Uber and Entrepreneurship

December 28, 2014

Tomorrow we are trying something new on CFAX 1070. We will have a full hour from 2 to 3pm.

In the first half we’re talking about the incredible success and growth of Uber.

In the second half a recent University of Victoria graduate will pitch me on his business opportunity and I’ll critique his concept in the last fifteen minutes.

Tune in, it should be fun!

Generally speaking I am of the view that we should tax those things we want less of and not tax those things we want more of.

So, in a perfect world I would eliminate taxes on income, capital and investment returns and tax consumption more heavily. I might even go further and tax certain types of consumption differently (high rates on cigarettes, alcohol and junk food and low rates on hybrid cars and healthy foods).

At his link you may read a critique from Bill Gates on Thomas Piketty’s book on capital. I think Gates makes some great points, including how to avoid dynastic wealth.


Bad News

December 21, 2014

“As a corollary let me know promptly if there’s significant bad news. I can handle bad news but I don’t like to deal with it after its festered for awhile.” – Warren Buffett


December 17, 2014

This is a neat test of intelligence. Feel free to email me your answers if you wish!


“For example, people hate losing things more than they like getting things, a phenomenon known as loss aversion. In some schools, teachers were offered a bonus at the end of their year if they could improve student performance. This kind of merit pay didn’t improve test scores. But, in other schools, teachers were given a bonus at the beginning of the year, which would effectively be taken away if their students didn’t improve. This loss-framed bonus had a big effect.”


On this month’s segment we discuss two great entrepreneurial success stories and investments.

Click the following link and fast forward to about 33 minutes:

WestJet was founded in 1996 and has gone on to become one of North America’s greatest airline success stories. It has survived a voluntary shut down, 9/11, SARS and the 2008/9 economic meltdown. When other airlines around the world were shedding staff, filing for bankruptcy, forcing staff to take unpaid leave and postponing important capital investments WestJet showed its 26th consecutive quarterly profit!

Apple has a market capitalization of just under US $700 billion and survived a near death experience. Steve Jobs, it’s founder and CEO, (from 1977 to 1983 and again from 1996 to his passing), not only created products but, more importantly, created categories. We talk with a caller about the future prospects for this business and as an investment.

I am not nor have I ever been an investor in either WestJet (WJA on TSX) or Apple (AAPL on NASDAQ).

I recommend the following reading on both companies: Flight Path by Peter Grescoe on the WestJet story and Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson on the Apple story.