“Fooled by Randomness” by Nassim Taleb

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My post to Nassim Taleb’s FB page, December 6 2014:

Listening to your treatise, “Fooled by Randomness” and as an optimist/millionaire/entrepreneur surmising what may be theassumed, intended purpose of your work to be one of convincing the risk taker to take ‘the road less travelled’ and adopt a life game plan of avoiding risk so as to survive nauseates me but still I continue…so far I see nothing but a bland, insipid, lackluster lifestyle devoid of passion, zest, and fulfillment of one’s life purpose and DNA.

Your avoidance of metaphysics is totally demonstrated in the formulaic applications of equations and statistics. To quote Alan Watts, “A short life pursuing one’s joy and passion would be highly superior to a life doing to making money in the hope that one day one might be able to life following one’s bliss.”

I beg to ask what’s the point? As far as sampling goes. You talk about the entrepreneurs who ‘lost and assume they all went away. May I beg to ask where? Where Nassim did they go? Did they wither and die in some ditch beside a dumpster? Was that the end outcome Nassim? Or did they do what most intrepid souls do, arise again to overcome the odds once more? Maybe your sample should include those who learned how not to do something like Edison and his 10k+ attempts at a light bulb?

Maybe it is too early yet to quit your treaties? Maybe I should follow your advice and not judge the future by the past? Oh, but the ennui is so, so pervasive and, on that, I will predict that your arguments and tenets will not hold up but suggest some B.F.Skinner, ‘Walden Two’ world where we are protected and safe from the dynamics and vicissitudes and, of course, dangers of our limited brains and should have them entrusted to pedantic pablum of your predilections to peaceful ‘middle of the road-ness’? Ugh! I may need an emesis basin…

Maybe you never have read Kipling’s ‘If” or Teddy Roosevelt’s “It Is Not the Critic Who Counts!” Or even seen “Wall Street” when the anti-hero son is advised by his sagacious father that he just might venture into the real world and not the game of finance and create something rather than ‘trade’ illusory paper. But, forgive me, he forgot to mention the other alternative and suggested something like, “Oh make millions trading illusory paper and in your disposable time write tomes about how to avoid risk and increase your chances of profiting from the trade of illusory paper.

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