I really enjoyed Michael Lewis' The Big Short, and so when I saw this previous work at the local library I picked it up.
- That no matter how many instances of "irrational exuberance" we go through, we never learn. We have innate ability to believe that this time it's different. The ability for amateur investors, professional investors, economists and reporters to collectively lose touch with reality and start drinking each other's kool-aid is *amazing*.
- That after panic hits, after the bomb goes off, and when people finally pop their heads out again, everyone has an equally amazing ability to claim that they knew this was going to occur, and that they called it ahead of time. This level of revisionist history is somewhat akin to how every friend you have that went to Vegas has convinced themselves that they returned "up a couple bucks" (they didn't. Somone is paying for those hotels).
- That in both the run up to the peak and in the panic afterward, the press is not only not objective, but possibly an even greater contributor to the mob mentality than the investors they later blame for it. Examples from the dot-com era here were an awesome example, buying hook-line-and-sinker the pitch that fundamentals no longer applied and that it was about a land grab now in favor of user revenues later - the press *loved* this story and sang it to whomever would listen.