Tragic Events in France
In the first segment of the program I spent a few minutes expressing my thoughts on the terrorist attacks in Paris. This past week, we saw tragic events unfold in France as terrorists held Paris under siege for several days. As a member of the media, I followed the events closely and could not come to grips with how anyone could resort to violence against people expressing their opinions and beliefs. In this case, satire from a group of cartoonists and magazine folks who have never threatened anyone with violence or mayhem.
The bedrock of a civilized human society is the freedom of expression or the freedom of speech. Whenever someone threatens this right, society suffers. No matter how offensive or even if you simply don’t agree with someone’s viewpoint, no one has the right to harm another individual. While saddened by the events in France, I was heartened by the outpouring of support from around the world. The gathering on Sunday, January 11, 2015 in Paris and other locations around France was a sight to be seen. World leaders (except for our own, big mistake), gathered arm in arm in a show of unity against terrorism with a sea of people from all walks of life behind them. Hopefully, this is the beginning of a new period of time, when the silent majority finally stands up to say enough is enough.
The pen will always be mightier than the sword. Even when it seems like the sword is winning, human society, freedom of expression and freedom of speech will eventually prevail.
In segments two and three of the program, I spend time chatting about trying to focus on the long-term versus worrying about the daily noise. So often, we make dumb mistakes with our finances because we dwell on short-term and temporary circumstances. I use the analogy of worrying about the day to day weather instead of focusing on the climate. Ultimately, it is much better to have a wardrobe based on the prevailing climate instead of today’s weather.
Investing is no different. One should build an all-weather portfolio so they can remain disciplined through good markets and bad. Too often, individuals will constantly tinker with their portfolio due to current circumstances. Ultimately, they end up fighting the last battle or hurdle, when a new one is just around the corner.
Diversity in Silicon Valley
Finally, in segment four, I talk briefly about diversity in Silicon Valley. Several large companies in Silicon Valley have been making some news recently as they speak about an obvious issue, diversity. The technology industry has long been known as a frat house dominated by men and lacking in diversity. Females, Hispanics and Blacks have long been underrepresented in Silicon Valley and Intel made a major commitment to help that problem this past week. The chip giant pledged $300 million at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. Let’s hope that Silicon Valley is able to find more talented people that better represent the American workforce.