The Cavalcade of Risk

July 28, 2008
Time for us to host the Cavalcade of Risk, a traveling agglomeration of blog posts on the general topic of — you guessed it — “risk.” There were more submissions than we could accommodate, and a number of them didn’t really address risk.  So, if we overlooked you for any reason – sorry!  We did our best.

Here are some of this week’s entries:

Nice watermelons:  Ever wondered what watermelon has to do with risk? The folks at Success Driven Philosophy (what kind of philosophy?  neo-Kantian, perhaps?) talk about how everyday items, even vegetables, can help us learn about risk on our lives.

This post was a standout – how could I not love a line like “my conservative nature is not only contrary to my beliefs, but detrimental to my happiness”?  But here’s my favorite line of all:  “Mom, this canteloupe tastes weird!”  I’ll be using that one regularly in all my daily affairs from now on.

(Yes, watermelons are vegetables.  Who knew?)

On second thought, hold the fish: Let’s talk about beer and fish, says Henry Stern, LUTCF, CBC. Tuesday (Healthy) Food Pyramid Update is posted at InsureBlog and says, “You wouldn’t think they would have much to do with risk, right? Well, one might be less risky than the other (and the answer might surprise you).”

George Will:  “No beer, no civilization.”  Me to George Will:  “I love you, man.”

That’s not mine, baby.  Honestly! Writing at Fraud, Phishing and Financial Misdeeds, Ed Dickson alerts us to the newest risk to our online privacy, “DNS Poisoning,” which can lead to major identity theft problems.  Since health privacy’s a major area of interest for me, I was … well, thrilled isn’t the right word … to hear about it.  it’s yet another way to lose your identity.  (I prefer Zen, myself.)

And introducing our Medical Director, Dr. Kevorkian: Stirring up you-know-what as usual, Joe Paduda presents Suicidal health plans, McCain, and the ‘free market’.  It’s posted at Managed Care Matters.

Morticia Addams, call on Line #3: Somebody calling himself The Whited Sepulchre is posting about the housing market bailout.  Near as I can tell, he’s against it.  It’s the Goth-sounding name that gets me, though.

The phrase “whited sepulchre” used to mean a disagreeable person in 19th Century slang, I think.  Now it sounds like somebody who listens to The Cure while drinking Corpse Grinders at a bar called The Cave.  So, even though it doesn’t seem very risk-related, he’s in.  That’s just the kind of guy I am.

“Let your bullets fly like rain”:While we’re on the topic – and sticking with the macabre imagery – Leon Gettler presents Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac fallout – the questions continue posted at Sox First. He says “The bailout of Fannie Mae and Freddie Max continue to raise questions. What are the long-term prospects for these GSEs? Is the US Government approach like sticking a band-aid on a machine gun wound?”

HomesteadingJoe Manausa presents Housing Prices Decline Slightly – A Clear Picture Is Forming posted at Tallahassee Real Estate Blog, assessing the risk of relocation for home owners.

Things suck, but not as badly as they say:  Dorian Wales presents A Look at Global Stocks Markets 6 Months into 2008 – 4 Important Lessons Learned Yet Again posted at The Personal Financier. He says “some things never change”- including the media overstating the situation.

Jason Shafrin presents Your doctor says you have six months to live. Should you believe him? posted at Healthcare Economist, saying, “If your doctors says you only have six months to live, should you believe him? The Healthcare Economist reviews a study which finds that physicians systematically overestimate how long people have to live.”

Interesting.  Stephen Jay Gould wrote a piece about how doctors underestimate length of survival.  I’ll have to study this more closely.  Morbid topic, though – maybe “The Whited Sepulchre” will research it for me.

Baby talk: At the Health Business Blog, David Williams talks about the efforts of a company whose board he leads.  They’re trying to align risk with behavior by “deploying online patient safety courses to reduce perinatal risk. Hospitals that deploy the courseware –and demonstrate competence in the key drivers of malpractice claims– will earn significant reductions in their malpractice premiums.”

More expensive by the dozenLouise at Colorado Health Insurance Insider takes a second look at Obama’s health proposals, especially their underlying assumption that group-purchased coverage is cheaper than individual policies.  Says Louise:  “Attacking the problem from the health insurance side is putting the cart before the horse. While I’m pleased to see health care taking such a major position in this election, I’d like to see both candidates focus on the underlying costs of our entire health care system.”

They’ve set up a wiki, too.  Not a tiki – a wiki.

Money talks (and prescribes?):  Over at Amateur Economists, J.C. condemns industry sponsorship in the medical profession.   He suggests that corporations contribute to a “blind fund” to keep everybody honest and to avoid polluting anybody’s behavior with pecuniary motives.

I’m powerless over money – my life has become unmanageable:  There’s a blog called “Bankaholic,” where Helen Anderson presents 4 Reasons Why Investors Should Avoid Hedge Funds at All Cost.

There oughtta be a 12-step program for bankaholics.  In the meantime, Mr. Will, pass the Pabst.

Money, it’s a sin: Attorney-blogger Brett Sherman has an interesting take on how financial behemoths can overlook simple risk management techniques, and how that can affect all of us.  Personally, I don’t think they cared about the risk – they just wanted to take the money and run – but maybe that’s just me.

Safe in the Safe? Advisor Will of Your Finish Rich Plan tells us just how much of your money in the bank is actually protected.

School of Hard Knocks, MBA Division: The  Silicon Valley Blogger presents Learning To Invest: The Education of A Long-Term Investor posted at The Digerati Life, saying, “I discuss the path of learning I took as an investor — and cover risk management concepts in the process.”

UPDATE:  Somebody named Michael Cannon from Cato At Liberty submitted a blogpost called “Cohn’s Fuzzy-Math Health Care Plan.”  It came in after the deadline but we’ll make an exception. Here’s their summary:  “The Left’s approach to cost-containment — give more health benefits to more people with more ailments, while making everyone pay less — is just plain goofy.”  That doesn’t look like what Cohn is saying, as far as I can tell, but read the post yourself and see what you make of it.

Next week they’ll cover ‘darkness’ and ‘a plague of locusts’: Over at Workers Comp Insider, Julie Ferguson discusses response measures to several workplace threats:  lightning, trench collapses, and heat stress.

They’re here! You’re next! You’re next, You’re …! That’s it for me; someone else is up … next.  Oh, and I almost forgot to adequately pimp myself.  What was I thinking?  I wrote in The Sentinel Effect about seven long-term health trends that should be of public concern but don’t seem to be.  I feel like Kevin McCarthy in the original version of Invasion of the Body Snatchers. That’s the sci-fi film where McCarthy plays a physician and says the classic line:  “Doctors can have hallucinations too.”

They don’t make ’em like that anymore.


There comes a point in every investor’s life when he looks at his balance sheets, turns pale, and cries … “Mom, this cantaloupe tastes weird!”


8 Responses to “The Cavalcade of Risk”

  1. Thanks for hosting the Cavalcade and including our article. You summarized it well, and I like the subheadline!

  2. hgstern Says:

    Wow, Richard, GREAT job! Thanks for hosting this week!!

  3. […] latest edition of the Cavalcade of Risk is up at The Sentinel […]

  4. […] Cavalcade Of Risk is up at The Sentinel Effect.  Joe Paduda has an interesting article over at Managed Care Matters […]

  5. Lisa Emrich Says:

    Richard, No posts on JEC Senate hearing regarding pharma’s risky pricing behavior?

  6. Hello !

    Thanks for the link, and the traffic.

    Here’s the origin of “the whited sepulchre” name:

  7. […] out the latest Cavalcade of Risk blog carnival at The Sentinel […]

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