There is no disappointment we endure one-half so great as what we are to ourselves.

I do not write this in a spirit of sourness or personal disappointment of any kind, nor do I have any romantic attachment to suffering as a source of insight or virtue. On the contrary, I would like to see more smiles, more laughter, more hugs, more happiness and, better yet, joy. In my own vision of utopia, there is not only more comfort, and security for everyone — better jobs, health care, and so forth — there are also more parties, festivities, and opportunities for dancing in the streets. Once our basic material needs are met — in my utopia, anyway — life becomes a perpetual celebration in which everyone has a talent to contribute. But we cannot levitate ourselves into that blessed condition by wishing it. We need to brace ourselves for a struggle against terrifying obstacles, both of our own making and imposed by the natural world. And the first step is to recover from the mass delusion that is positive thinking.

To my disappointment I now realized that to know all is not to forgive all. It is to despise everybody.

And so each of them loses himself to the other for the sake of the other person, and loses the other. And loses the vast possibilities ... in exchange for an unfruitful confusion, out of which nothing more can come, nothing but a bit of disgust, disappointment and poverty.

How melancholy a thing is success. Whilst failure inspirits a man, attainment reads the sad prosy lesson that all our glories are shadows, not substantial things. Truly said the sayer, disappointment is the salt of life a salutary bitter which strengthens the mind for fresh exertion, and gives a double value to the prize.

How melancholy a thing is success. Whilst failure inspirits a man, attainment reads the sad prosy lesson that all our glories are shadows, not substantial things. Truly said the sayer, disappointment is the salt of life a salutary bitter which strengthens the mind for fresh exertion, and gives a double value to the prize.

22 Investment Maxims [paraphrased] - 1. For all long-term investors, theres is only one objective— “maximum total return after taxes.”
2. Achieving a good record takes much study and work, and is a lot harder than most people think. Many people doubt that this is even possible on a consistent basis. I’m on the fence on this one. I see proof that it can be done but realize that most people won’t be able to do it.
3. It is impossible to produce a superior performance unless you do something different from the majority.
4. The time of maximum pessimism is th ebest time to buy, and the time of maximum optimism is the best time to sell. Sounds like something Warren Buffett would say.
5. To put “Maxim 4″ in somewhat different terms, in the stock market the only way to get a bargain is to buy what most investors are selling.
6. To buy when others are despondently selling and to sell wehn others are greedily buying requires the greatest fortitude, even while offering the greatest reward. This is so true.
7. Bear markets have always been temporary. Share prices turn upward from one to twelve months before the bottom of the business cycle. Bull markets are temporary too.
8. If a particular industry or type of security becomes popular with investors, that popularity will always prove temporary and, when lost, won’t return for many years. Interesting. The NASDAQ Composite Index comes to mind.
9. In the long run, the stock market indexes fluctuate around the long-term upward trend of earnings per share.
10. In free-enterprise nations, the earnings on stock market indexes fluctuate around the replacement book value of the share of the index.
11. If you buy the same securities as other people, you will have the same results as other people.
12. The time to buy a stock is when the short-term owners have finished their selling, and the time to sell a stock is often when short-term owners have finished their buying. Not quite sure how you’re supposed to know when this is.
13. Share prices fluctuate much more widely than values. Therefore, index funds will never produce the best total return performance. I always thought that this was true because the goal of the index is to capture the market’s return, minus fees.
14. Too many investors focus on “outlook” and “trends.” Therefore, more profit is made by focusing on value.
15. If you search worldwide, you will find more bargains and better bargains than by studying only one nation. Also, you gain the safety of diversification. Unless of course the nation you are studying is heavily dependent on exports to another country that is in trouble.
16. The fluctuation of share prices is roughly proportional to the square-root of the price.
17. The time to sell an asset is when you have found a much better bargain to replace it.
18. When any method for selecting stocks becomes popular, then switch to unpopular methods. As has been suggested in “Maxim 3,” too many investors can spoil any share-selection method or any market-timing formula.
19. Never adopt permanently any type of asset or any selection method. Try to stay flexible, open-minded and sekptical. Long-term top results are achieved only by changing from popular to unpopular the types of securities you favor and your methods of selection.
20. The skill factor in slection is largest for the common-stock part of your investments.
21. The best performance is produced by a person, not a committee. Interesting that he would say this.
22. If you begin with prayer, you can think more clearly and make fewer stupid mistakes.

Why, then, have we been bamboozled into accepting the usual tale without questioning? I suspect two primary reasons: we love a sensible and satisfying story, and we are disinclined to challenge apparent authority (like textbooks!). But do remember that most satisfying tales are false.

The Steady State theory was what Karl Popper would call a good scientific theory: it made definite predictions, which could be tested by observation, and possibly falsified. Unfortunately for the theory, they were falsified.

So the thing I realized rather gradually - I must say starting about 20 years ago now that we know about computers and things - there's a possibility of a more general basis for rules to describe nature.

The value of old age depends upon the person who reaches it. To some men of early performance it is useless. To others, who are late to develop, it just enables them to finish the job.

The sum of the right of nature; which is, by all means we can, to defend ourselves.

Each person's life is a story that is telling itself in the living.

War seems to be one of the most salutary phenomena for the culture of human nature; and it is not without regret that I see it disappearing more and more from the scene.

You see, all these laws that they are having so much trouble wondering if they are constitutional, they were all drawn up by lawyers. For almost two-thirds of the membership of the House and Senate are lawyers.

The search is what anyone would undertake if he were not sunk in the everydayness of his own life. To become aware of the possibility of the search is to be onto something. Not to be onto something is to be in despair.

It interests me tremendously to make copies... I started it by chance and I find it teaches me things.

It's as interesting and as difficult to say a thing well as to paint it. There is the art of lines and colors, but the art of words exists too, and will never be less important.

Some good must come by clinging to the right. Conscience is a man's compass, and though the needle sometimes deviates, though one often perceives irregularities in directing one's course by it, still one must try to follow its direction.

Whoever loves much, performs much, and can accomplish much, and what is done in love is done well.