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The Week’s Best Reads – 10/27/17

Oct 27, 2017 | Fifteen on Friday

This week’s highlights: An Empire of Pain, How to be a CEO, and Bill Gates’ views on education.

Fifteen on Friday – 10/27/17 – Issue 259

Happy Friday and the Weekend Before Halloween – 
I don’t remember Halloween ever being such a big deal growing up – but with 2 Trunk or Treat events, 2 fall festivals and 1 birthday party scheduled between Saturday and Sunday – I guess it officially is now.

I’ve chatted with several Fifteen readers recently, and thought I’d share a few ‘insider tips.’  Under ‘this week’s highlights’ at the top are my personal favorite reads of the week.  The #1 article in each section is my personal guess at what the most popular article will be in that section.

A quick word of thanks to you loyal readers who continue to tell your friends – and a word of welcome to many new subscribers.

Food for Thought:

  1. New Yorker – The Family That Built an Empire of Pain – Credit GR – The Sackler dynasty’s ruthless marketing of painkillers has generated billions of dollars—and millions of addicts.
  2. BuzzFeed – Here’s What My Parents’ 1974 Wedding Would Cost In 2017 Dollars My parents’ San Francisco wedding cost about $2,000, which in today’s money is roughly $10K. What it would actually cost to throw their wedding in 2017 is a whole other story.
  3. NYT – Giving Away Billions as Fast as They Can.  Step aside, Rockefeller. Move over, Carnegie. Out of the way, Ford.
  4. Motherboard – How I Socially Engineer Myself Into High Security Facilities.  A pentester shares a story that shows how social engineering can get you anywhere.
  5. WashPo – You want to make good cocktails at home. Here’s what you need to get started. – Credit DR –


  1. NYT – How to be a C.E.O. From a Decade’s Worth of Them.  Adam Bryant has interviewed 525 chief executives through his years writing the Corner Office column. Here’s what he has learned.
  2. BI – Maverick Capital, a $10.5 billion hedge fund, told clients it may have ‘cracked the code’
  3. Stratechery – Goodbye Gatekeepers.  Harvey Weinstein, the movie business, newspaper and all the news that’s fit to print
  4. NREI – Newly Nimble Family Offices Snag Deals Away From Private Equity.  Families were once regarded as slow-moving and inexperienced investors, but that’s all changed in the past few years.
  5. BI – Saudi Arabia just announced plans to build a $500 billion mega-city that’s 33 times the size of New York City – Normally a new world’s tallest building is a good indicator of a market top, but maybe this beats even that?


  1. GatesNotes – Our Education Efforts Are Evolving.  Bill Gates and The Gates Foundation updates and further refines their approach to education reform in the US.
  2. Medium – Adam Braun believes in a future that’s free from student debt.  Adam Braun firmly believes that education is the enabler to opportunity and it shows. In 2008 he founded Pencils of Promise
  3. NYT – A Diabetes Monitor That Spares the Fingers
  4. Vulture – An Oral History of ‘David Pumpkins’  The story of Saturday Night Live’s most improbable breakout character.
  5. Hodinkee – Paul Newman’s Rolex Daytona Sells For $17,752,500, Becoming The World’s Most Expensive Wristwatch Ever Sold


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