Gods, Suckers And Why Investors Should Stick With Values

Do unto others…thou shalt not kill…buy low, sell high…

Never give a sucker an even break.

Values count. In the end, they’re all you have.

Now, let us ask you a question, dear reader. If you could know what the future would bring, why would you bother with values?

Let’s say you found a stock with a low price, superb management, great margins, no debt, and a product that was catnip to consumers. You would want to buy it, right? Because it would represent a real value to you.

But if you could read next year’s paper, you wouldn’t bother. You’d simply look to see which stock ran up the most in the last 12 months. You wouldn’t fool around with values.

And in your god-like state, you wouldn’t have to bother to do unto others as you would have them do unto you, either. You could do whatever you wanted, because you would know how it would all turn out.

Remember, that’s what the gods themselves did. They were always getting up to mischief – turning people into animals to punish them, turning themselves into animals so they could rape a few nymphs…generally behaving badly, but apparently having a good time at it. They did it because they were gods; they could get away with it.

Thou shalt not kill? Hey, what’s it to me? I’m a god…I can kill whomever I please.

Buy low, sell high? Nah…I’ll just buy what will make me richest.

Never give a sucker an even break? What the heck, I’ll just look into the future and see what the sucker can do for me.

Gods can get away with murder. But we humans really can’t know what will happen. And even if we could take a guess, we wouldn’t know what to make of it. Is it good? Or is it bad? Who can know God’s Own Plan except God himself?

That’s why we humble Daily Reckoners stick to reckoning values. We can guess about the direction of things. We can amuse ourselves with our theories…overpower our opponents with our arguments…and impress each other with our logic. But in the end, we have to stick with values…or we are lost.

Bill Bonner
Markets and Money

Bill Bonner

Bill Bonner

Since founding Agora Inc. in 1979, Bill Bonner has found success and garnered camaraderie in numerous communities and industries. A man of many talents, his entrepreneurial savvy, unique writings, philanthropic undertakings, and preservationist activities have all been recognized and awarded by some of America’s most respected authorities. Along with Addison Wiggin, his friend and colleague, Bill has written two New York Times best-selling books, Financial Reckoning Day and Empire of Debt. Both works have been critically acclaimed internationally. With political journalist Lila Rajiva, he wrote his third New York Times best-selling book, Mobs, Messiahs and Markets, which offers concrete advice on how to avoid the public spectacle of modern finance. Since 1999, Bill has been a daily contributor and the driving force behind Markets and Money.

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