Donald Trump Does Not Like to Read (but so what)

This is kinda old but still interesting: Trump ‘does not read books’: report

Additionally, a July Washington Post article reported similar information, first noting that Trump had not read any biographies of U.S. presidents because he didn’t have the time. The article also reported Trump as saying that he does not read extensively because he is able to come to correct decisions “with very little knowledge other than the knowledge I [already] had, plus the words ‘common sense,’ because I have a lot of common sense and I have a lot of business ability.”

I agree with Trump here…once you understand the basics or fundamentals of how the economy and the world works (or what I call ‘simple systems’), everything else falls into place, so you don’t need to keep acquiring more information, which is why I seldom read the news much or follow financial pundits, besides myself. That’s how 90+% of all my predictions–from Bitcoin, to foreign markets, to individual stock picks, to the S&P 500 and Nasdaq, to the US economy, etc.–have all come true. If you know the quadratic equation, you can solve any quadratic. If you know the rules of the economy, you can predict with a high degree of accuracy. You don’t need to keep checking the quadratic equation over and over again to verify it is true, because mathematical reality is objective reality (Platonism). Likewise, you don’t need to keep re-reading stuff if you already know what is true, too, and such truth exists independently of the subject/perceiver. If the vast majority of pundits are wrong (such as wrong predictions of Bitcoin failing, predictions of recession, predictions of Trump being impeached, etc.), what makes you think books which are also written by pundits will fare any better.

But books are great for learning (such as books about biology, physics, cooking, etc.), to satisfy one’s intellectual curiosity, or for entertainment value (thrillers, fantasy, suspense, etc.). But beyond the descriptive, when books venture into the prescriptive or predictive world, they become much less useful, or even detrimental. In writing and reading books, one often uses history to try predict the future, but this can fail miserably. It’s not uncommon for authors (either in book form or in article form) to draw parallels between the Roman Empire or the Great Depression, for why the US economy is doomed or why America will collapse. But even if a historical analogue is a 99% accurate representation of present-day reality, the 1% difference can change the outcome substantially, but also there is a large degree of subjectivity. There is always somebody at every point in history who thinks that things are in decay or getting worse. It’s kinda like chaos theory, where changing the initial conditions slightly results in a completely different outcome.

During the depths of the Great Recession, many books were published that argued that either America would have a repeat of Great Depression or sink into a multi-decade long stagnation like Japan during the 90’s and 2000’s, because there were so many similarities: high unemployment, reduced economic activity, over-leverage, failure of banks, etc. One such book was Vox Day’s, The Return of the Great Depression.

It was published on October 29, 2009. Given his extensive knowledge of economics, his high IQ, and other credentials, it would seem like a foregone conclusion that he would be right, but in retrospect he and everyone else who tried to draw historical parallels between the Great Depression and 2009, were dead wrong. For all of the hype, in terms of GDP, 2008 was more like a blip than any sort of depression:

Vox’s explanation for being wrong may be, “but I did not expect the fed and other central banks to mount such a vigorous response”…well that is the 1% difference…Had you heeded his advice, you would have sold your stocks at near the very bottom, before the 200% rally that followed.