A Prime Minister Tries to Storm-Proof Her Island’s Finances – “We wanted to come up with something that was conducive to bolstering resilience to rising climatic risks,” Espinosa says. “Adverse-weather clauses provide vulnerable sovereign debtors with a degree of flexibility by creating built-in buffers that can help them absorb some of the financial impact.”
Post Corona: Higher Ed “SARS was huge for e-commerce in Asia, and it helped Alibaba break out into the consumer space. COVID-19 could be to education in the United States what SARS was to e-commerce in Asia.”
In the scene embedded above, a young Leonidas is out surviving in the wilderness as part of his training to be a Spartan soldier. The scene above tells the story of him crossing paths with a wolf looking for a meal. In the scene, we see the boy turn away from the wolf and walk towards a small crevice in a mountain. The wolf gives chase and gets stuck as the boy dives backwards. Then the narrator says the above quote.
That scene has come to mind a good bit as I’ve considered how I try to continue making progress towards my goals in a world upended by this virus. Early in the days of social distancing in the US, I was really energized about locking in and getting a ton done with the extra hours of not having a commute to deal with. Then, I wondered why my brain felt like it was on a treadmill, reminding me that I had slipped a bit in using my tools to maintain my mental health. Today, I’m doing my best to take steady steps towards my goals and exercising the resilience I’ve built over the years going through tough times.
Hard times never last, tough people they do.
While I love this quote, it’s been challenging to watch is the parallel experience black folks are going through in the U.S. On one hand, the creativity we’re seeing from the musicians among us has been magical. DJ DNice kicked the energy off with his Homeschool sessions, and Timbaland and Swizz Beatz have carried the energy forward with the battles they’re organizing. I already love dancing by myself, and they’ve taken my solo dancing to another level.
At the same time, black folks are most likely getting hit harder by COVID-19 than other ethnic groups. New York, New Orleans, Detroit and more hot spots for the virus in the US have large black populations. It’s hard to see 40% of the deaths in Michigan coming from the black community when we only make up 14% of that state’s population.
My ears perked up last week when I heard Chamath Palihapitiya tell Kara Swisher that he sees something similar to the Patriot Act happening as we emerge from this pandemic. People will most likely want to know that the people around them are healthy and may be willing to give up more of their information in order to know who around them is healthy.
Telecom operators in South Africa are already working with the government to help track the movements of people who have tested positive for coronavirus and identifying the people with whom they come into contact with. Here in the US, there are calls for immunity certifications to identify people who could go back to work, provide healthcare, and more.
I don’t know right now, but I’ve been encouraged by the many virtual gatherings of black folks to put our heads together in efforts to figure out how we support each other, exercising resilience. I’m grateful to get to support friends’ and acquaintances’ businesses, particularly the ones who are setting aside some of the revenue to support efforts to keep folks fed and healthy, investing in resilience. As I get a sense of the next right thing to do, I will do that.
Banks Have Too Much Money Now – “But ideally what you want is for banks to have lots of capital in bad times, and then relax those requirements—let them lever up and buy stuff and take deposits and lend and trade Treasuries and generally support the financial system and the economy—when the crisis comes.”
Tackling COVID-19 in Africa – “If leaders across sectors translate their already proven resolve into more targeted, collaborative action in the coming weeks, we believe they can make significant progress in mitigating the economic impact of the pandemic—and safeguarding economies and livelihoods.”
What Dr Doom told me about the coming recession – “People initially said ‘Is this going to be a V-shaped recovery or is it going to be a U with a gradual recovery or is it going to be an L with stagnation or a W, a double dip?’ It is not a V. It is not a U. It is not an L. It is not a W. It is an I. A straight line down. Output is down. Consumption is down. Capex is down. Residential investment is down. Exports are down. Imports are down.”
Start-Ups Are Pummeled in the ‘Great Unwinding’ – “In many ways it’s energizing, but it’s also quite chaotic,” said Francis Davidson, chief executive of Sonder, which raised $345 million in funding and was valued at $1.1 billion. He said his investors had advised him to cut fast and deep to allow employees to hit the job market before things got worse and to avoid multiple rounds of layoffs.
‘He’s Going to Do Whatever He Wants’ – Svrcek went even further, saying Falwell misled her “to believe that the school was … abandoning plans to invite students back into residence halls following spring break.
Rihanna Talks New Music, Fenty Skincare & Her Plans To Have “3 Or 4 Kids” – “The Guyanese are like the Mexicans of Barbados,” she says. “So I identify – and that’s why I really relate and empathise with Mexican people or Latino people, who are discriminated against in America. I know what it feels like to have the immigration come into your home in the middle of the night and drag people out.”
Civil rights leaders oppose swift move off natural gas – “Whenever someone disagrees with what you say, they think, ‘Oh, you must be getting paid,'” Morial said. “It’s condescending, patronizing and racist. I hope you print it. I want them to see it. Because that’s the way we feel.”
Nothing Matters Anymore (Except What Actually Does) – “There’s so much that doesn’t matter; so much I did just two months ago seems ludicrous now. (Brunch every Sunday? Really?) So many silly habits and desires and feuds and consumptions and relationships that aren’t just bandwidth-consuming; they’re bandwidth-stealing, snatching time and energy away from the people and things that matter.”
EXAMINING THE RETURNS: The Financial Returns of Diverse Private Equity Firms (click last link in press release for full report) – “Likewise, despite being disproportionately represented in the top quartile of private equity fund performance, the assets in diverse private equity funds tell us that women- and diverse-owned PE firms are still less likely to be “hired” than non-diverse firms.”