Author Topic: The Fifth Risk - Michael Lewis  (Read 1916 times)

Liberty

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The Fifth Risk - Michael Lewis
« on: August 14, 2018, 01:16:14 PM »
Details are starting to come out about Michael Lewis' next book, coming in October:

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1324002646/

Quote
What are the consequences if the people given control over our government have no idea how it works?

"The election happened," remembers Elizabeth Sherwood-Randall, then deputy secretary of the Department of Energy. "And then there was radio silence." Across all departments, similar stories were playing out: Trump appointees were few and far between; those that did show up were shockingly uninformed about the functions of their new workplace. Some even threw away the briefing books that had been prepared for them.

Michael Lewisís brilliant narrative takes us into the engine rooms of a government under attack by its own leaders. In Agriculture the funding of vital programs like food stamps and school lunches is being slashed. The Commerce Department may not have enough staff to conduct the 2020 Census properly. Over at Energy, where international nuclear risk is managed, itís not clear there will be enough inspectors to track and locate black market uranium before terrorists do.

Willful ignorance plays a role in these looming disasters. If your ambition is to maximize short-term gains without regard to the long-term cost, you are better off not knowing those costs. If you want to preserve your personal immunity to the hard problems, itís better never to really understand those problems. There is upside to ignorance, and downside to knowledge. Knowledge makes life messier. It makes it a bit more difficult for a person who wishes to shrink the world to a worldview.

If there are dangerous fools in this book, there are also heroes, unsung, of course. They are the linchpins of the system―those public servants whose knowledge, dedication, and proactivity keep the machinery running. Michael Lewis finds them, and he asks them what keeps them up at nigh
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LC

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Re: The Fifth Risk - Michael Lewis
« Reply #1 on: August 15, 2018, 10:35:11 PM »
Looking forward to it, thanks for posting.

Lewis did a piece for the NYT I believe about the staff changeover at the DOE. Good read if anyone wants a taste.
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LounginMKL

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Re: The Fifth Risk - Michael Lewis
« Reply #2 on: August 16, 2018, 05:54:37 PM »
There are also a few pieces from Vanity Fair

https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2017/07/department-of-energy-risks-michael-lewis
https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2017/11/usda-food-stamps-school-lunch-trump-administration

I wonder if the book will be like Boomerang, just a compilation of his writings in Vanity Fair... 

dwy000

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Re: The Fifth Risk - Michael Lewis
« Reply #3 on: August 23, 2018, 07:50:09 AM »
Hmmm.  Coincidence that the book is being launched in October???

Liberty

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Re: The Fifth Risk - Michael Lewis
« Reply #4 on: August 23, 2018, 08:09:18 AM »
Hmmm.  Coincidence that the book is being launched in October???

It's almost as if timely information was sometimes released in a timely manner to inform the public about timely things.... Almost the reverse of paying people off so that damaging information only comes out after an election...
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Liberty

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Liberty

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Re: The Fifth Risk - Michael Lewis
« Reply #6 on: October 13, 2018, 09:48:33 AM »
I started listening to the audiobook of this. Good so far. Pretty short (about 5 hours). At 2x it's very easy to follow and basically just as long as a long podcast. Lewis is one of the best at documenting the people behind the big events, and this is no exception so far.
"Most haystacks don't even have a needle." |  I'm on Twitter  | Interesting podcast on sleep science

Packer16

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Re: The Fifth Risk - Michael Lewis
« Reply #7 on: October 14, 2018, 10:10:24 AM »
When you read Micheal Lewis about Trump you have to realize that Lewis is a Trump hater & may also have TDS.   I was surprised at his podcast (https://www.acast.com/yahoofinancesportsbook/michaellewisonsportsin2018) about golf where Lewis' true colors come out (where he talks more about Trump than sports), he has as much hatred as I have seen in a journalist, a real surprise as in most of his books to date have been pretty objective.

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Cigarbutt

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Re: The Fifth Risk - Michael Lewis
« Reply #8 on: October 14, 2018, 11:37:50 AM »
Micheal Lewis is a uniquely gifted writer, which does not rule out insufficient objectivity.
When he writes: "Itís what you fail to imagine which kills you", he may suffer from excessive imagination and he may even suffer from what he described in 1996 about Bob Woodward:
https://www.nytimes.com/1996/07/28/books/politics-1996-bill-and-bob-s-excellent-adventure.html
when referring to the commercial bind and the confirmation bias trap, but Mr. Lewis has shown, over time, a very unusual knack to spot and explain human misbehavior. His outsider take adds to the always elusive reality.
After reading his works, I've always come out with the impression that the view may have been seen through a particular prism but never felt being trapped into an ideological quagmire.
Conclusions may vary. That's the idea.

Liberty

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Re: The Fifth Risk - Michael Lewis
« Reply #9 on: October 15, 2018, 06:47:53 AM »
I'm done with the Michael Lewis book. A surprisingly large fraction of it is about the importance and value of data and data science, both to make our society function better and keep people safe. It was a fun, short one. Recommended.

Of course, people who haven't read the book immediately come out to try to discredit it because it might conflict with their ideology.

It's all interviews with people who are or were there. Lewis almost does no editorializing, and a very small fraction of it is about Trump, btw. If there are things that make Trump look bad in it, it's because he did the things described, not because of some bias.
« Last Edit: October 16, 2018, 07:01:10 AM by Liberty »
"Most haystacks don't even have a needle." |  I'm on Twitter  | Interesting podcast on sleep science