- June 10, 2016Opinion | Perspective ‘Experts’ disappoint, part 2 April 17, 2016 in Rutland Herald / Times Argus Surprised and disappointed by the marijuana misinformation in circulation, we set part of the record straight in part one of our commentary (“Marijuana ‘experts’ disappoint,” April 10): Despite what Vermont’s health experts are telling us, science has not shown that marijuana causes laziness or...Read MoreApril 10, 2016Opinion | Perspective | Rutland Herald By Brendan Lalor and Philip Lamy Commentary | April 10,2016 Editor’s note: What follows is Part 1 of a commentary piece by Brendan Lalor and Philip Lamy. The second part will run in a future edition. We are concerned by the marijuana misinformation in circulation — and in particular by the number of “expert”...Read MoreMarch 3, 2016February 25, 2016We are concerned by the marijuana misinformation in circulation - and in particular by the number of “expert” sources ignoring relevant scientific data. These include organizations such as the Vermont Medical Society, the Vermont Academy of Family Physicians, the Vermont Psychiatric Association, the Vermont Association of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, the Vermont Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics, the Vermont Chapter of the American College of Physicians, the Vermont Public Health Association, Vermont Department of Liquor Control, the Vermont Department of Health, and individuals such as Dr. Paul Parker of Richmond. Why are so many experts repeating half-truths and outright falsehoods? This is especially disturbing because we Vermonters look to these medical and scientific bodies to inform our marijuana policy discussion. Further, when young people learn the real science, or gain experience of their own, they develop a legitimate cynicism that undermines their trust in our institutions. Hence, we write to promote greater integrity on the information-based side of our marijuana policy discussion.Read MoreFebruary 11, 2016Recently, I attended a public showing of the documentary “The Other Side of Cannabis: Negative Effects of Marijuana on Our Youth.” The film has been traveling across the state, sponsored by local drug awareness groups to stimulate public discussion of potential marijuana legalization in Vermont. The film might more accurately be subtitled “Reefer Madness 2.0” ...Read MoreFebruary 2, 2016Thanks to Ms. Slaton's Letter, we awoke from our slumber, recognizing in her words a call for an about-face from our current focus on marijuana in Vermont. She asks, "What are we teaching [our children] if we legalize a substance that is known to be harmful to their development and their ability to learn?" Bingo. She's right. If our children learn by paying attention to messages implicit in the law as Ms. Slaton suggests they do, then we are in big trouble, and we have already brought down immense harm on them by introducing them to alcohol.Read MoreJanuary 4, 2016September 23, 2015For at least the next 200 years, weather forecasts predict shitstorms, with global temperatures now set to remain elevated for hundreds of years to come. The latest IPCC report explains that our emissions are nearing the point of no return. Even if industrialized nations switched to solar power overnight, it is now too late to fully reverse the planet's course. Geologists have officially termed this new epoch, where the human species has irreparably shaped earth's geological history, the Anthropocene. Policymakers no longer have the luxury to decide how we might "stop" global warming. Instead, we have to figure out how we'll manage amidst climate instability.Read More
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- Ear to July 26, 2018 Ear to ground, rain can be so loud. Sky to cloud? Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Tumblr (Opens ...
- Billionaire LinkedIn founder Reid Hoffman says his masters in philosophy has helped him more than an MBA November 25, 2017 by Richard Feloni | Business Insider Nov. 24, 2017 Reid Hoffman is the billionaire cofounder of LinkedIn and one of tech’s most influential investors. Instead of a business education, he pursued his ...
- That ‘Useless’ Liberal Arts Degree Has Become Tech’s Hottest Ticket September 21, 2017 From George Anders 2015 column in Forbes magazine. Stewart Butterfield, Slack’s 42-year-old cofounder and CEO, whose estimated double-digit stake in the company could be worth $300 million or more. He’s the ...
- Why study philosophy?: A statement by Jordan Kotick, Vice-President J.P. Morgan, Wall Street October 5, 2016 While considering what to study in my first year as an Undergraduate, I decided to take a few Philosophy courses. When informed of my decision, those I knew murmured, “Philosophy…what ...
- A Society with Poor Critical Thinking Skills: The Case for ‘Argument’ in Education October 5, 2016 Huffington Post (08/15/13 | Updated 10/15/13) by Rabbi Shmuly Yanklowitz Researchers have shown that most students today are weak in critical thinking skills. They do poorly on simple logical reasoning tests (Evans, 2002). Only a ...
- Mill’s Utilitarianism August 25, 2016 Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Tumblr (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pinterest (Opens ...
- Mill’s Hedonism August 25, 2016 Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Tumblr (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pinterest (Opens ...
- Aristotle’s Ethics – Book X: On Happiness and Contemplation August 25, 2016 Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Tumblr (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pinterest (Opens ...
- Marijuana “Experts” Disappoint: Part II – The Law Enforcement Establishment June 10, 2016 Opinion | Perspective ‘Experts’ disappoint, part 2 April 17, 2016 in Rutland Herald / Times Argus Surprised and disappointed by the marijuana misinformation in circulation, we set part of the record straight in ...
- Marijuana “Experts” Disappoint: Part I – The Medical Establishment April 10, 2016 Opinion | Perspective | Rutland Herald By Brendan Lalor and Philip Lamy Commentary | April 10,2016 Editor’s note: What follows is Part 1 of a commentary piece by Brendan Lalor and Philip Lamy. ...
ThinkThe ego wants to want more than it wants to have. And so the shallow satisfaction of having is always replaced by more wanting. This is the psychological need for more, that is to say, more things to identify with. It is an addictive need, not an authentic one.Eckhart Tolle, A New Earth
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- Billionaire LinkedIn founder Reid Hoffman says his masters in philosophy has helped him more than an MBA
by Richard Feloni | Business Insider Nov. 24, 2017
- Reid Hoffman is the billionaire cofounder of LinkedIn and one of tech’s most influential investors.
- Instead of a business education, he pursued his master’s degree in philosophy.
- He told us that the analytical thinking skills he learned have made him a better investor and entrepreneur.
When students begin graduate studies in philosophy, they’re typically looking to explore the essence of existence — and suffice it to say, most are not getting on a path to riches.
But one of Silicon Valley’s most influential billionaires, LinkedIn founder and Greylock Partners investor Reid Hoffman, received his masters degree in philosophy from Oxford in 1993. He was originally planning to go into academia, but decided that his desire to do nothing less than change the world would be more likely in the world of tech. That’s not to say, however, that he abandoned the lessons he learned.
In an interview for Business Insider’s podcast “Success! How I Did It,” he explained that his unusual educational background has proven quite helpful throughout his career.
Hoffman told us his favorite philosophers are Aristotle, Friedrich Nietzsche, and Ludwig Wittgenstein, and he said that studying them has proven useful in two ways.
It honed his critical thinking
Hoffman said that “philosophy is a study of how to think very clearly,” and that is useful in both investing and being an entrepreneur, which he said is like being “an all-in investor.”
“Formulating what your investment thesis is, what the strategy is, what the risks with the approach are, what kinds of things you would be doing with it, are all greatly aided by the crispness of thinking that comes with philosophical training.”
It gave him deep insight into human nature
He told us, “I think what every entrepreneur in consumer internet is doing is essentially embodying a theory of human nature as individuals and as a group for how they’ll react to the service, especially if it’s community or network properties, how they’ll interact with each other, how this will fit in their landscape of how they identify themselves and how they communicate or transact with other people.
“That’s particularly, of course, part of the reason why at Greylock, I tend to look at networks and marketplaces centrally in my investment thesis, and these kinds of things are the concepts which actually come out of philosophy.”
Hoffman said in a recent episode of his podcast “Masters of Scale” that he considers the MBA path to be potentially dangerous for entrepreneurs, because it teaches them to approach business in a safe and ordered way; by studying the essence of human nature, he explained in our interview, he instead had an education into how humans interact with each other and the world — his business education came through trial-and-error in the real world.
“There’s almost a sense in which part of being an entrepreneur or being an investor is being an applied philosopher or an applied anthropologist,” Hoffman said.
- Billionaire LinkedIn founder Reid Hoffman says his masters in philosophy has helped him more than an MBA
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