Saturday, May 16, 2009

The Great Devotions

In Jamie Dimon's 2008 Chairman's letter to JP Morgan shareholders he praises how our government has acted to address the ongoing global financial meltdown. While the actions of our government were not perfect, intervention was critical. He later quotes the following from President T. Roosevelt:

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points
out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of
deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs
to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is
marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives
valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again,
because there is no effort without error and shortcoming;
but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who
knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who
spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best
knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and
who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring
greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold
and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”

I like the speech very much as it is similar to the "it's better to have loved and lost" quote but applied to life.

For those interested in understanding how and why the meltdown occurred, consider reading the annual letter starting on page 14 with the section titled: Fundamental Causes and Contributions to the Financial Crisis. The letter in its entirety can be found below:

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