Latticework Investor

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Interview with Alice Schroeder

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NotMakingThisUp‘s interview with Alice Schroeder outlines her story in writing The Snowball (the story of Warren Buffett’s life).

Couple of quotes that stand out for me are:

Warren has a term, the Institutional Imperative, to describe the empire-building and other foolishness that leads to overpriced acquisitions, underutilized capital, stock repurchased above its intrinsic value, stock issued below its intrinsic value, and all the other failures of capital management that companies are so prone to commit. CEOs are rewarded in all sorts of ways for creating bigger companies, not more profitable companies.

The first time I came across the term “Institutional Imperative” was in the books Poor Charlie’s Almanac and Seeking Wisdom.

Leading on to a quote about what Alice makes of Charlie Munger:

It’s hard to sum up Charlie in a couple of sentences or a paragraph. He’s quite humble in his genuine respect for the achievements of others, as long as they equal or exceed his own intelligence, in his opinion. He is so ungodly judgmental that some people find him insufferable, yet his fundamental kindness shines through. Politically … if you look up “politically incorrect” in the dictionary you’ll find a picture of Charlie there instead of a definition. That’s part of why Charlie is refreshing to be around, though. He’s always himself. There is not a phony cell in his body.

Your time will not be wasted talking to Charlie. Usually he’s got something very interesting and insightful to say. It’s better to listen when you’re around Charlie than to try to talk. The phenomenon I wrote about in the book, about him turning his head off when other people are talking, is very much in evidence at times. He’s really a treasure. I enjoyed interviewing Charlie immensely.


Written by latticework01

December 10, 2009 at 11:59 am

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