Thursday, May 20, 2021

Thursday Morning Links

  • Putting together all the evidence: Knowledge beforehand; Suppression of treatments and cures; Toxicity of the spike protein which, if it had been made by nature, should have been benign; Inclusion of the spike protein; Heavy promotion of scantily-tested vaccines; and Censorship of scientists and doctors who question the vaccines’ safety... putting together all this evidence, it is difficult to escape the inference that powerful people and organizations have engineered this pandemic with deadly intent. [Josh Mitteldorf]
  • There are many eerie parallels between today’s Value/Growth relationship and what we witnessed during the 1999 era. In the late ’90s, Value was suffering from a multi-year period of under-performance. Value managers were getting fired, academic papers were being written about “the death of Value,” and clients of Value managers were losing faith and patience.
    The green line in this chart shows the cumulative performance of the Russell 1000 Value minus the Russell 1000 Growth. During the 5 years leading up to the 1999 period, the line trended down sharply as Value under-performed. The blue line shows the 5 years leading up to today’s environment, a haunting parallel. 2020, in fact, was the worst calendar year in history for Value relative to Growth. Now, we acknowledge many differences between today and 1999 (interest rate levels, asset-light companies, etc.), but these can only explain so much. While earnings growth has been basically average for Growth stocks, their price appreciation has been anything but – the last few years have been all about multiple expansion, NOT superior fundamentals growth. We are hearing “it’s different this time” justifications for these high multiples today that rhyme dangerously with what we heard back in 1999. [GMO]
  • One of the major themes I’ve been operating under for the past several years posits that, due to passive investing’s increasing popularity, opportunities outside of the major indexes should become both more prevalent and more attractive. In many respects, acting on this thesis has served me well. Recently, though, traditional passive investing has become a bit less popular as many investors have eagerly embraced alternatives or variations such as ESG and its most speculative elements like green energy and electric vehicles. Now there are a myriad different ways to define ESG but, in practice, it has resulted in portfolios with a higher concentration in popular sectors like tech and an underweight of unpopular sectors like the traditional energy sector. In this way, ESG has merely served to magnify the momentum that passive index funds create when they allocate more new money to stocks and sectors with rising values, like tech and communications services, and less new money to those with falling values, namely energy. As a result, opportunities that run counter to these trends have become even more attractive than they otherwise would have. [Felder]
  • The Federal Circuit affirmed the PTAB’s decision in a judgment without opinion pursuant to Rule 36, and then denied Capella’s subsequent petition for rehearing en banc (again without opinion). Capella presents two primary arguments in support of its petition for certiorari.  First, Capella argues that the Federal Circuit’s issuance of a Rule 36 judgment in an appeal from the PTAB violates the plain text of § 144, which imposes upon the Federal Circuit a “mandatory” and “nondiscretionary” duty to issue an opinion in such appeals.  Pet. at 16 (quoting SAS Inst., Inc. v. Iancu, 138 S. Ct. 1348, 1354 (2018)).  Capella points out that, under longstanding Supreme Court precedent, an “opinion” is “a statement of the reasons on which [a] judgment rests,” id. at 17 (quoting Rogers v. Hill, 289 U.S. 582, 587 (1933)), and that a Rule 36 judgment contains no “reasons”—it contains only a judgment.  Congress had good reason to require the Federal Circuit to issue opinions in PTAB appeals, Capella maintains; appellate-court opinions provide important guidance both to the immediate parties to the case and the patent-law community generally regarding the scope and boundaries of patent rights. [IP Watchdog]
  • Chipotle Is a Criminal Enterprise Built on Exploitation. Chipotle’s contempt for the lives of its workers is appalling, even by fast-food standards. But there’s finally some good news: New York City is suing the fast-casual chain for nearly half a billion dollars, for 600,000 separate violations of workers’ rights. [Jacobin]
  • I am going to emphasize the line-of-sight requirement, since it is crucial to understanding what Starlink can and cannot do right now, and it’s an important reality check on what it might be able to do in the future. Like the similarly over-hyped mmWave 5G, Starlink is remarkably delicate. Even a single tree blocking the dish’s line of sight to the horizon will degrade and interrupt your Starlink signal. Whatever satellite internet dreams you may have will run crashing into this reality until you can literally rise above. [link]
  • One of my philosophical takeaways from this project is, of course, “convergent evolution is a hell of a drug.” A second is something like “taxonomy is not automatically a great category for regular usage.” Phylogenetics are absolutely fascinating, and I do wish people understood them better, and probably “there’s no such thing as a fish” is a good meme to have around because most people do not realize that they’re genetically closer to a tuna than a tuna is to a shark – and “no such thing as a fish” invites that inquiry. (You can, at least, say that a tree is a strategy. Wood is a strategy. Fruit is a strategy. A fish is also a strategy.) [link]
  • Mexico has the sixth largest electronics industry in the world after China, United States, Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan. Mexico is the second-largest exporter of electronics to the United States where it exported $71.4 billion worth of electronics in 2011. [wiki]
  • The couples who were still together after six years had “turn-toward bids” 87 percent of the time. Nine times out of 10, they were meeting their partner’s emotional needs. [The Atlantic]
  • When it comes to nest construction, few if any birds rival the detail put into their nests, like members of the oriole family. Here in the southern half of the Baja, we have both Hooded and Scott’s Orioles, with the Hooded variety being quite a bit more common. The intricacies that they go to in weaving the nests, pulling thread after thread from the edges of the palms to do the construction with. Then, literally sewing them into the palm fronds with their long bills, is to me, such a marvel. [link]
  • The existing gasoline version of the Ford F-150 starts just above $30,000, but that sum is hardly representative of the broad range of models available. Similarly, the base price that Ford has announced for the new electric version of the F-150, the 2022 Lightning, is only part of the story. What we know so far is that the base Lightning, which is intended for commercial customers, will likely cost around $42,000 including a mandatory destination charge (Ford declined to confirm exactly what that charge is, so we're estimating it for now), and the XLT will cost around $55,000. But the company isn't releasing pricing for top Lariat and Platinum trim levels, although a Ford spokesperson said top versions will reach $90,000. [Car and Driver]
  • The real change, of course, lies underneath. Tucked between the frame and the body of the F-150 Lightning sits the buyer's choice of two liquid-cooled lithium-ion battery packs—a standard-sized pack and an extended-range pack (Ford has yet to release specific sizes). No matter which size you go for, power is sent to all four wheels at all times via two inboard three-phase fixed magnet AC electric motors—one at the front, and another in the rear. There's also independent suspension on all four corners—a first for the F-150. Underneath, you'll find metal skid plates to protect the battery pack and aluminum control arms out back to keep weight down. [Road and Track]

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