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The Coming Bear Market: Part II How to Prepare
Issue #492, October 16, 2017

Some Observations on Cemeteries
Issue #Interim Bulletin #491A, October 12, 2017

The Coming Bear Market: Part I: The Myth of Buy and Hold Forever
Issue #491, October 09, 2017

The Market makes New Highs
Issue #490, October 02, 2017

The Importance of a New High
Issue #489, September 25, 2017

A Little Insurance: Wealth, War and Wisdom
Issue #488, September 18, 2017

Some Observations
Issue #487, September 11, 2017

How to be Successful in Your Career
Issue #486A, September 07, 2017

How NOT to Buy a Home
Issue #486, September 04, 2017

This Week in the Market
Issue #485, August 28, 2017

Is the “Trump Bump” Running Out of Gas?
Issue #484, August 21, 2017

Gold is on the Move
Issue #483, August 14, 2017

The Importance of Estimation
Issue #482, August 07, 2017

Buying Art and Collecting: Part II of II
Issue #481, July 31, 2017

Buying Art and Collecting in General, Part I of II
Issue #480, July 24, 2017

Physicians need to be More Forceful: Follow-up
Issue #479, July 17, 2017

Physicians need to be More Forceful
Issue #478, July 10, 2017

Your First “Real” Investment
Issue #477, July 03, 2017

Leasing a Watch: Don’t
Issue #476, June 26, 2017

The Importance of Your Children having a Job
Issue #475, June 16, 2017

The Problem with Medical Student Debt is—the Med Schools
Issue #474, June 12, 2017

Critters and Varmints in your Home and Yard
Issue #473A, June 07, 2017

Leveraged ETFs
Issue #472, May 29, 2017

Leasing a Vehicle: Don’t!
Issue #471, May 22, 2017

Issue #470, May 15, 2017

More on Buying Jewelry
Issue #469, May 08, 2017

Buying Jewelry: Gold, Diamonds and Pearls
Issue #468, April 30, 2017

Thomas Sowell: Part III of III
Issue #467, April 24, 2017

Thomas Sowell: Pat II of III
Issue #466, April 17, 2017

Live Close to Where You Work
Issue #465, April 10, 2017

Medtronic in Hospital Management
Issue #Interim Bulletin #464A, April 07, 2017

Thomas Sowell: Part I of II
Issue #464, April 03, 2017

A Political Contribution a an Investment: Part II of II
Issue #463, March 27, 2017

A Political Contribution as an Investment: Part I of II
Issue #462, March 20, 2017

Buffett Selling Vacation Home
Issue #461, March 13, 2017

Advanced Placement (AP) ourses
Issue #460, March 06, 2017

The Importance of a Credit History
Issue #459A, March 02, 2017

A Credit Card Scam
Issue #459, February 27, 2017

The Electronic Health Reord
Issue #458, February 20, 2017

Issue #457, February 13, 2017

Platinum and Palladium
Issue #456, February 06, 2017

Economic Outlook for 2017: Part II of II
Issue #455A, February 02, 2017

Economic Outlook for 2017: Part I of II
Issue #455, January 30, 2017

A Story From Vegas
Issue #454A, January 25, 2017

Land Donation Deals and the IRS
Issue #454, January 23, 2017

The Theory of Gambler’s Ruin
Issue #453, January 16, 2017

Student Loans: But Wait, There’s More!
Issue #452, January 13, 2017

A Second Home
Issue #Interim Bulletin #451A, January 04, 2017

The Consumer Confidence Index
Issue #451, January 02, 2017

Social Security
Issue #450, December 26, 2016

My Outlook for 2017: Part II of II
Issue #449, December 19, 2016

My Outlook for 2017: The Market
Issue #448, December 12, 2016

Medicine in 20 Years
Issue #447, December 05, 2016

Higher Interest Rates
Issue #446, November 28, 2016

Trump and the Markets: The Bad and Ugly
Issue #445A, November 23, 2016

Trump and the Markets: The Good
Issue #445, November 21, 2016

Negative Trends: The Suits aren’t Makin’ Steel
Issue #444, November 16, 2016

The New DOJ Fiduciary Rule
Issue #443, November 07, 2016

Barron’s Conference, Part IV of IV
Issue #442, October 31, 2016

Barron’s Conference, Part III of IV
Issue #Interim Bulletin #441A, October 26, 2016

Barron’s Conference, Part II of IV
Issue #441, October 24, 2016

Barron’s Conference, Part I of IV
Issue #440, October 20, 2016

This Newsletter
Issue #439A, October 12, 2016

Memoirs of US Grant: Vol II
Issue #439, October 10, 2016

More Points on Collecting, Investing and the Economy
Issue #Interim Bulletin #438A, October 05, 2016

Personal Memoirs of US Grant
Issue #438, October 03, 2016

Ideas for a High School Part-Time Job
Issue #Interim Bulletin #437A, September 29, 2016

Collecting, Investing, and the Economy
Issue #437, September 26, 2016

Free College
Issue #436A, September 22, 2016

A Military Commitment to Pay for Med School
Issue #436, September 19, 2016

When a CD isn’t a CD
Issue #435, September 12, 2016

I Made a Mistake
Issue #Interim Bulletin #434A, September 07, 2016

What is Your Spare Time Worth?
Issue #434, September 05, 2016

Credit Cards and Bonus/Loyalty Points
Issue #433, August 29, 2016

The Write-off of Student Loans
Issue #Interim Bulletin #432A, August 25, 2016

412 Retirement Plans
Issue #432, August 22, 2016

Join the Club
Issue #Interim Bulletin #431A, August 18, 2016

The Case for Precious Metals and Hard Assets
Issue #431, August 15, 2016

When the US went off the Silver Standard
Issue #430, August 08, 2016

Why NOT to Open a Restaurant
Issue #429, August 01, 2016

Some Tips on Life Insurance
Issue #428, July 25, 2016

More Observations on Negative Interest Rates
Issue #427, July 18, 2016

Issue #426, July 11, 2016

Is a PhD Worth It? Part II of II
Issue #425, July 04, 2016

Is a PhD Worth It? Part I of II
Issue #424, June 27, 2016

Avoid Part-time real Estate Agents
Issue #423, June 20, 2016

Issue #422, June 13, 2016

The Problem with Auction Reserves
Issue #421, June 06, 2016

Make Full Use of Your Capital Investments
Issue #420, May 30, 2016

The Fed’s Announcement
Issue #419, May 23, 2016

Quit While You’re Ahead: A True Story
Issue #418, May 16, 2016

The Precious Metals
Issue #417, May 09, 2016

Negative Secular Trends: Part Ii of II
Issue #416, May 02, 2016

Negative Secular Trends: Part I of II
Issue #415, April 25, 2016

Not Winning is not the same as not Losing
Issue #414, April 19, 2016

Behavioral Economics: Part II: Weaknesses
Issue #413, April 11, 2016

Behavioral Economics: Part I: Valid Points
Issue #412, April 04, 2016

The Most Important Books I’ve Read
Issue #411, March 28, 2016

Secret to Success: Take Risks and do Things Differently
Issue #410, March 21, 2016

The Over-Priced Food Presentation Hustle
Issue #409, March 14, 2016


By Robert M. Doroghazi, M.D., F.A.C.C.

The Most Important Books I’ve Read

Issue #411, March 28, 2016

    Once and a while you’ll hear someone say “He never broke a book or went to class, and still got an “A”.
    RMD comment: I never believed that for one second. Knowledge doesn’t just magically appear in your brain, it has to be put there, and the only real option is to read.
    The following is a list, in no particular order, of the most important books I’ve read.
    1) A Treatise on the Diseases of the Chest (1821). I recommend this book to every physician in the world. Rene Theophile Hyacinthe Laennec invented the “Tube”, the stethoscope, and in this book describes what he heard with terms we still use today, such as rales, rhonchi, etc. Laennec thought that phthisis (the consumption, TB) was different than cancer (he was correct). He also thought that orthopnea (having to sit up to breath) was due to fluid on the lungs (correct again).
    More importantly, this book made me realize that although we may be more technologically advanced than previous generations, we are not any smarter. Geniuses as brilliant as Einstein invented the wheel, compass, gears, writing, and the concept of zero.
    2) The Divine Comedy (Dante Alighieri). The classics are the classics because their wisdom is eternal. I also recommend Gilgamesh, Beowulf, Canterbury Tales, The Prince, Gulliver’s Travels, Robinson Crusoe, Candide, Moby Dick, Huck Finn, etc., etc.
    3) General of the Army: George C. Marshall Soldier and Statesman (Cray, Norton, 1990). I believe it is important to have heroes, people to pattern your life after. Marshall was the greatest American of the 20th Century, and the greatest soldier-statesman since Washington. Truman called him “The great one of the age”.
    4) How to Win Friends and Influence People (Dale Carnegie, 1936). Simple, common-sense, genuine advice to help you become a nicer person.
    5) The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich (Shirer, 1960), Lenin (Volkogonov, Free Press, 1994), Stalin (Radzinsky, 1997) and Mao: The Unknown Story, Chang/Halliday, 2007). There is evil in this world, and all they understand is strength. 
    6) Harrison’s Principles of Internal Medicine (McGraw-Hill, 7th ed., 1974, blue cover). By the end of my 3rd year in med school, with the exception of Infectious Diseases, which never interested me, and some of rare neurological diseases, I had memorized this book, and could quote the chapter or even the page. 
    7) Race and Culture: A World View (Sowell, Basic Books, 1994). Wealth, Poverty and Politics: An International Perspective (Sowell, Basic Books, 2015. RMD comment: I believe Thomas Sowell, PhD, U of Chicago, 1968, is the greatest social philosopher of our time), Taboo: Why Black Athletes Dominate Sports and Why We’re Afraid to Talk about It (Entine, BBS Publications, 2000). A Question of Intelligence: The IQ Debate in America (Seligman, Birch Lane Press, 1992). There are differences between ethnic groups, cultures, races and sexes. To deny it only furthers prejudice.
    8) Carnegie (Krass, Wiley, 2002), Titan: The Life of John D. Rockefeller, Sr., (Chernow, Random House, 1998), and Morgan: American Financier (Strouse, Random House, 1999). These are the men who built the United States, and especially Rockefeller (see more below), defined philanthropy.
    9) Our Liberal Western Democracy is based on the Judeo-Christian ethic, as defined in The Bible. Whatever your religious beliefs, a human being had to physically write down the words. I suggest Who Wrote the Bible (Friedman, Summit Books, 1987).
    10) Bob Pettit: The Drive Within Me (Prentice Hall, 1966). Pettit, of the St. Louis Hawks, was one of my boyhood heroes, the greatest NBA forward ever. He was also a gentleman, compared to the taunting, braggadocios, offensive behavior of so many current athletes (and coaches). Gehrig, Musial, Bud Wilkinson and Nile Kinnick were gentlemen. After a home run, Mantle ran around the bases with his head down.
    11) Hannibal (Dodge, Da Capo Press, 1891). Grant is the only US General in Hannibal’s class. Dodge also wrote biographies of Caesar, Alexander and Napoleon. Western civilization did not surpass the level of Rome until Watt’s steam engine unlocked the power of fossil fuels.
    12) Blackjack for Blood: The Card-Counters’ Bible, and Complete Winning Guide (Carlson, Pi Yee Press), Getting the Edge on Craps: How to Control the Dice! (Sharpshooter, Bonus Books), Harrington on Hold’em, Vol. I-III (Creel Printers), and the book that started it all: Beat the Dealer: A Winning Strategy for the Game of Twenty One (Thorp, Vintage Books). A fascinating introduction to professional gambling. Investing is no more than an ability to handicap risk: companies often hire professional poker players to lecture on the subject.
    13) The only book purely about money I mention is The Millionaire Next Door: The Surprising Secrets of America’s Wealthy (Stanley and Danko, Longstreet Press, 1996). The book is not about investing or finance per se, but rather the best book I’ve read proving that thrift is the only sure way to accumulate wealth.
    One-quarter to one-third of my reading time is The Wall Street Journal, The Economist, Forbes, Barron’s, Smithsonian Magazine, current financial topics, and financial history. The rest is spent on the kind of books listed above.
    Examples of how ancillary knowledge will help with your investing. After many crushing defeats, such as the battle of Cannae, where the Romans lost more than 60,000 men, it was Quintus Fabius Maximus who finally devised the strategy to defeat Hannibal: not to fight him. Patience at the appropriate time is a great way to make money.
    I learned in college physics that Newton’s laws break down when approaching the speed of light. Want to determine if any proposal works? Carry it to an extreme: Does it still hold up?
    Solid investment advice and lessons can come from anywhere.
    Read all you can.
    I still believe probabilities strongly suggest we are early in a bear market, and that the rally from the lows of early February, as impressive as it has been, is a “bear trap”. I would use this rally to cull poorly performing stocks and build heavily defensive positions = cash. Also remember that no stock is immune in a bear market: 95% are down 20% or more at the final market bottom.
    I just had my 7th skin cancer removed, this one a squamous cell carcinoma from my left ear.
    RMD comment: sun screen is without a doubt one of the greatest inventions of the 2oth century. It’s inexpensive and it works. It rates with seat belts and keeping your vaccinations up to date as no-brainers to give you a happier, healthier life.
    This is one of the most fun newsletters I’ve written. I’ve been a compulsive book-buyer since joining the Book of the Month Club in 1970. My personal library numbers more than 2,500 works, with about 300 autographed by the author, including 70 Nobel Prize winners (2 receive this newsletter). I buy 6-8 hardback books every 4-6 weeks. I have book shelves in every bedroom, and stacks of books on the floor. I really need to build another library. I admit I have a near “reverence” for books.
    RMD comment: this reminds me of “Time at Last”, one of my favorite episodes of the Twilight Zone (Season 1, Episode 8, aired 11/20/59). Henry Bemis (played by Burgess Meredith), loves to read, but everyone is always taking his time. A nuclear holocaust comes, and he is the only survivor. He goes to the library and lines up the books he will be reading, uninterrupted, next week, next month, next year, for the rest of his life. As he bends down to pick up the first book, his glasses drop and shatter. Blind without them, he laments “That’s not fair. That’s not fair at all. There was time now”. 
    Bill Gates and Warren Buffett are worth $70B+. The Walton family combined a little more. They are pikers compared to John D. Rockefeller, Sr. At the height of his wealth in the early teens, when, paradoxically, the Standard Oil Trust was being broken up, Rockefeller was worth about $1.5B. For comparison, the GDP of the US was about $90B, so Rockefeller was worth about 1.7% of the GDP. The current GDP is $17T x 1.7% = $289B.   
    I have received a lot of comments on my article “Negative Secular Trends in Medicine: The American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) Maintenance of Certification and Over-reaching Bureaucracy” in this month’s American Journal of Medicine (129(3):238-239), where I am acutely critical of the ABIM. Prior to 1990, once you passed your Board exams, you were certified, and that was it. In 1986, the ABIM made a decision, based upon absolutely no scientific data, that anyone certified from 1990 on had to recertify every 10 years.
    A physician subscriber, who is also a JD, notes that no state requires a second bar exam. I am also told that in Europe recertification is not required.
    RMD comment: we need a change of leadership at the ABIM.         

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