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35 Ideas from 2022

* * * Right before the year ends, I thought I’d share a handful of ideas I’ve read, learned, re-learned, and wrote about in the past twelve months….



Admission Open: Value Investing Workshops – Offline (Mumbai) and Online

1. Offline Workshop: Mumbai – After a gap of 2 years, I am back with my live, offline Value Investing workshop. The first session is planned in Mumbai on Sunday, 22nd January 2023. I am accepting only 50 students for this session, and less than 20 seats remain now. Click here to know more and join the Mumbai workshop.

2. Online Workshop – Admissions are also open for the January 2023 cohort of my online value investing workshop. The workshop involves 22+ hours of pre-recorded, detailed lectures and Q&A sessions, plus a 3-hour live online Q&A session scheduled on Sunday, 15th January 2023. I am accepting 50 students in this cohort, and less than 10 seats remain now. Click here to know more and join the online workshop.

* * *

Right before the year ends, I thought I’d share a handful of ideas I’ve read, learned, re-learned, and wrote about in the past twelve months. Here are 35 of them, in no particular order of importance. I hope you find these useful, as much as I did.

1. The Investor’s Manifesto

This is for you. This is from someone like you.

It is an Investor’s Manifesto.

It is something you can reflect back on if you ever felt stuck in your investing life.

If you believe in it, follow it, and stand for it, your investing life will be good.

Click here to download the manifesto.

Read it. Print it. Frame it. Face it. Remember it. Do it.

This is YOUR Manifesto.

And if you find value in it, please share it.

2. Long Term Investing is Hard

The biggest reasons more people do not practice long term investing are that –

  1. It flies in the face of anything taught in business schools – that is, short termism – where most influencers/experts come from,
  2. It requires a painful degree of patience because it is only over long periods of time that the market eventually gravitates toward value,
  3. Life spans of businesses and their competitive advantage periods, on an average, are shortening,
  4. Our attention spans and holding periods are shrinking, and
  5. Noise is magnifying.

Given all of this, long term investing has become an increasingly difficult and contrarian endeavour. And so, not many investors have the ability or the wherewithal to practice it.

In fact, most people participating in the stock market don’t even understand what they are doing. This is especially when making money gets quick and easy, and they are doing great at it.

Like Aesop’s wolf in sheep’s clothing, they play a role contrary to their real character, which often leads them to the slaughterhouse.

However, the lack of patience of such people to invest with a long-term horizon creates the opportunity for the few committed to long-term holding periods.

In the battle between impatience and patience, the latter wins.

With over nineteen years of practicing long term investing with sincerity and with decent success (purely based on personal standards of success), and seeing a lot of my fellow investors drop out due to their disbelief in its continuity and now ruing their decisions, I can vouch for this powerful idea.

Long term investing is certainly hard, but if you know how to deal well with its hardness, it’s totally worth it.

3. How to Survive Complexity of Financial Markets

I think the most important qualities that you need to survive the complexity of the financial markets are a combination of –

  1. Humility, and
  2. Fine-tuned bullshit detector.

You need humility to prevent yourself from overcomplicating investing more than it needs to be and taking risks greater than you’re able to handle.

And you need a fine-tuned bullshit detector to protect yourself from the swarms of sales pitches and get-rich-quick schemes that plague the industry.

There are other things – a good grasp of basic arithmetic and accounting, delayed gratification, and the ability to live below your means. But those first two are most important.

4. Before You Seek Investment Advice

When someone on TV says (or a journalist writes), “You should do X with your money,” stop and think: How do you know me? How do you know my goals? How do you know my short-term spending needs? How do you know my risk tolerance?

Of course, they don’t. Which means you shouldn’t pay much attention to it. Personal finance is very personal, which means broad, general, advice can be dangerous.

For media, I’m most interested in historical finance, which helps put investing into proper context, and behavioural finance, which lets you frame investing based around your own goals, flaws, and skills. But taking direct advice from someone who has never met you is asking for trouble (this includes me).

5. How to Manage Risk of Randomness in Investing

“All of life is a management of risk, not its elimination,” writes Walter Wriston, former chairman of Citicorp.

Randomness is the fabric that weaves the interaction of everything around us. Since you can’t remove randomness from our affairs, you can’t get rid of the risk also. Peter Bernstein in his book Against the Gods writes –

The essence of risk management lies in maximizing the areas where we have some control over the outcome while minimizing the areas where we have absolutely no control over the outcome and the linkage between effect and cause is hidden from us.

What does that mean to you as an investor? It means you need to avoid the game of regular dice and look for the loaded dice. In other words, you should own those stocks/investments where your knowledge (in-depth research) and expertise make the environment less random.

Once you have taken care of randomness, the second and more important thing to remember is to minimize the impact, should randomness strike. This means building a ‘margin of safety.’ The greater the potential impact, the larger the margin of safety you may need.

Here’s Warren Buffett explaining the idea in very simple words –

If you understood a business perfectly and the future of the business, you would need very little in the way of a margin of safety. So, the more vulnerable the business is, assuming you still want to invest in it, the larger margin of safety you’d need. If you’re driving a truck across a bridge that says it holds 10,000 pounds and you’ve got a 9,800-pound vehicle, if the bridge is 6 inches above the crevice it covers, you may feel okay, but if it’s over the Grand Canyon, you may feel you want a little larger margin of safety.

6. Get the Small Things Right

you must do just a few small things right to create wealth for yourself over the long run. Pat Dorsey, in his wonderful book – The Five Rules for Successful Stock Investing – summarizes these few things into, well, just five rules –

  1. Do your homework – engage in the fundamental bottom-up analysis that has been the hallmark of most successful investors, but that has been less profitable the last few risk-on-risk-off-years.
  2. Find economic moats – unravel the sustainable competitive advantages that hinder competitors to catch up and force a reversal to the mean of the wonderful business.
  3. Have a margin of safety – to have the discipline to only buy the great company if its stock sells for less than its estimated worth.
  4. Hold for the long haul – minimize trading costs and taxes and instead have the money to compound over time. And yet…
  5. Know when to sell – if you have made a mistake in the estimation of value (and there is no margin of safety), if fundamentals deteriorate so that value is less than you estimated (no margin of safety), the stock rises above its intrinsic value (no margin of safety) or you have found a stock with a larger margin of safety.

If you can put all your efforts into mastering just these five rules, you don’t need to do anything fancy to get successful in your stock market investing. Of course, even as these rules sound simple, they require tremendous hard work and dedication.

As Warren Buffett says – “Investing is simple but not easy.” And then, as Charlie Munger says, “Take a simple idea but take it seriously.”

You just need a simple idea. You just need to draw a few small circles. And then you put all your focus and energies there. That’s all you need to succeed in your pursuit of becoming a good learner, and a good investor.

I believe that the process of working on the basics (the small circles) of learning or investing over and over again leads to a very clear understanding of them. We eventually integrate the principles into our subconscious mind. And this helps us to draw on them naturally and quickly without conscious thoughts getting in the way. This deeply ingrained knowledge base can serve as a meaningful springboard for more advanced learning and action in these respective fields.

Josh writes in his book –

Depth beats breadth any day of the week, because it opens a channel for the intangible, unconscious, creative components of our hidden potential.

The most sophisticated techniques tend to have their foundation in the simplest of principles, like we saw in cases of reading and investing above. The key is to make smaller circles.

Start with the widest circle, then edit, edit, edit ruthlessly, until you have its essence.

I have seen the benefits of practicing this philosophy in my learning and investing endeavors. I’m sure you will realize the benefits too, only if you try it out.

7. Follow the Owner, Not the Dog

8. Mauboussin on Investing Process

Michael Mauboussin recently reflected on his investing process in an interview with Frederik Gieschen. Here are a few wonderful snippets from the same –

“Great investors do two things that most of us do not. They seek information or views that are different than their own and they update their beliefs when the evidence suggests they should. Neither task is easy.”

On common mistakes among analysts. “There was a letter from Seth Klarman at Baupost to his shareholders. He said, we aspire to the idea that if you lifted the roof off our organization and peered in and saw our investors operating, that they would be doing precisely what you thought they would be doing, given what we’ve said, we’re going to do. It’s this idea of congruence.”

What has he changed his mind on? “When you start to understand the fundamental components of complex adaptive systems, there’s no way to look at the stock market the same way again, personally.”

On being an effective teacher. “To be a great teacher, an effective teacher, it’s about being a great student, be a great learner yourself. And I think that comes through if you’re doing it well.”

Check out the interview here.

9. It’s Never a Market Crash Problem

It’s almost always an –

  • I don’t know who I am problem
  • I don’t know how much pain I am willing to take problem
  • I don’t have the patience to give my stocks time to grow problem
  • I bought on the tip of that popular social media influencer and did not do my homework problem
  • I did not diversify well problem
  • I bought the stock just because it dipped problem
  • I cannot resist my friends getting rich problem
  • I love to fall in love with my stocks problem
  • I cannot differentiate between stock price and intrinsic value problem
  • I suffer from a buy at any price problem
  • I borrowed to invest problem
  • I invested the money I needed soon problem
  • I don’t have time on my hands to see through market cycles problem
  • I trade too much and too often problem
  • I keep watching and worrying about stock prices problem
  • I will watch the market and my portfolio again after reading this post problem

And so, I must remind myself this at all times –

A market crash is ‘never’ the problem. ‘I’ am the problem, and I must sort myself out, because that is only what I control. And if I can control the ‘I’ better, a market crash will never be a problem.

10. Watch out for the streak of being right

Howard Marks of Oaktree Capital, wrote this in his seminal book The Most Important Thing

In bull markets – usually when things have been going well for a while – people tend to say ‘Risk is my friend. The more risk I take, the greater my return will be. I’d like more risk, please.’

The truth is, risk tolerance is antithetical to successful investing. When people aren’t afraid of risk, they’ll accept risk without being compensated for doing so… and risk compensation will disappear. But only when investors are sufficiently risk-averse will markets offer adequate risk premiums. When worry is in short supply, risky borrowers and questionable schemes will have easy access to capital, and the financial system will become precarious. Too much money will chase the risky and the new, driving up asset prices and driving down prospective returns and safety.

Risk, which Marks and Warren Buffett have often defined as losing significant amounts of money and permanently, often moves in the same direction as valuations.

In other words, risk increases/decreases as valuations rise/fall. At the same time, high valuations imply weak prospective returns, while depressed valuations imply strong prospective returns. Consequently, both Marks and Buffett suggest that risk is lowest precisely when prospective returns are the highest, and risk is highest precisely when prospective returns are the lowest.

Economist and investment strategist Peter Bernstein said –

The riskiest moment is when you are right.

In much of life, doing things right over and over again is a sign of skill. Consider chess players or expert musicians. They rarely make a wrong move or hit a wrong note. Also, the skill of one good musician does not cancel out the skill of other musicians, that is, it does not make it harder for others to be equally good. This is not true of financial markets. ‘Skilled’ investors’ actions cancel each other out as they quickly bid up the prices of any bargains, which makes luck the main factor that distinguishes one investor from another.

Skill in investing shines through over the long term, but a streak of being right in the short term can make anyone forget how important luck is in determining the outcome.

Watch out for that streak of being right, dear investor.

11. What Makes a Market Price

The general question of the relation of intrinsic value to the market quotation may be made clearer by the following chart, which traces the various steps culminating in the market price. It will be evident from the chart that the influence of what we call analytical factors over the market price is both partial and indirect — partial, because it frequently competes with purely speculative factors which influence the price in the opposite direction; and indirect, because it acts through the intermediary of people’s sentiments and decisions. In other words, the market is not a weighing machine, on which the value of each issue is recorded by an exact and impersonal mechanism, in accordance with its specific qualities. Rather should we say that the market is a voting machine, whereon countless individuals register choices which are the product partly of reason and partly of emotion.

Source: Ben Graham and David Dodd, Security Analysis

12. Jack Bogle’s Rules for Investing

Bogle argued for an approach to investing defined by simplicity and common sense. His book The Clash of the Cultures: Investment vs. Speculation has 10 rules laid out in great detail in Chapter 9, and they sum up the Bogle philosophy as:

Investing Versus Speculation

  1. Remember Reversion to the Mean
  2. Time Is Your Friend, Impulse Is Your Enemy
  3. Buy Right and Hold Tight
  4. Have Realistic Expectations: The Bagel and the Doughnut
  5. Forget the Needle, Buy the Haystack
  6. Minimize the Croupier’s Take
  7. There’s No Escaping Risk
  8. Beware of Fighting the Last War
  9. The Hedgehog Bests the Fox
  10. Stay the Course

13. Focus on the Risks You Take, Not the Returns You Make

In The Psychology of Money, Morgan Housel wrote this on the topic of luck vs risk –

Luck and risk are both the reality that every outcome in life is guided by forces other than individual effort. They are so similar that you can’t believe in one without equally respecting the other. They both happen because the world is too complex to allow 100% of your actions to dictate 100% of your outcomes.

They are driven by the same thing: You are one person in a game with seven billion other people and infinite moving parts. The accidental impact of actions outside of your control can be more consequential than the ones you consciously take.

Apply this to investing and you would realize that when you judge the financial success of others, and even your own, you must not just look at the returns made but also the risks assumed.

Doing well with money is, after all, is less about what you know and more about how you behave. The earlier you understand and appreciate it, the better off your financial return will be over the long run.

But just avoid dying early.

14. Decouple Your Ego from Outcome

There are negative connotations attached to the word ‘loss.’ It’s considered as a synonym to failure. The words loss, wrong, bad, and failure are all regarded as same. So when someone loses money in the stock market, he or she invariably equates it to being wrong. Similarly, when someone makes a profit, it’s assumed that the person was right. But in the stock market, being right and making a profit aren’t necessarily the same thing. And being wrong and incurring a loss aren’t same either.

Jim Paul and Brendan Moynihan wrote in their book What I Learned Losing a Million Dollars

Success can be built upon repeated failures when the failures aren’t taken personally; likewise, failure can be built upon repeated successes when the successes are taken personally…

Personalizing successes sets people up for disastrous failure. They begin to treat the successes totally as a personal reflection of their abilities rather than the result of capitalizing on a good opportunity, being at the right place at the right time, or even being just plain lucky. They think their mere involvement in an undertaking guarantees success. This phenomenon has been called many things: hubris, overconfidence, arrogance. But the way in which successes become personalized and the processes that precipitate the subsequent failure have never been clearly spelled out.

In other words, successes and failures get personalised when the ego gets involved. And bringing in the ego is the fastest way you can sabotage your investing.

The truth is that investment gains and losses are never a reflection of your intelligence or self-worth. In fact, investing is not about being right or wrong. It is about making decisions, after careful consideration. That is where you sow the seeds of future outcomes, good or bad.

But an outcome is, well, just an outcome, never to be taken personally.

When you decouple your ego from a bad outcome, it creates an opportunity for you to learn from it.

When you decouple your ego from a good outcome, it saves you from future disasters.

15. Investing is a Problem-Solving Exercise

The more I think about investing generally, the more it looks like a massive problem-solving exercise. To succeed at this, you need to manage a series of concepts that may appear to be incompatible. The paradox is that any of these ideas — either side of the argument — may be correct at different times.

The best investors are intellectually flexible but approach their craft as a discipline with a specific process. They understand Probability Theorem but view mistakes as learning opportunities. They use a variety of Mental Models, many of which may occasionally contradict each other or lead to different results. They engage in second-order thinking, use counterfactuals, are aware of information hygiene. They possess a high level of self-awareness regarding their own psychological states.

Source: Investing is a Problem-Solving Exercise by Barry Ritholtz

16. Investing’s Anti-Patterns

In most fields, studying the patterns of success is a standard way to learn. So when people come to financial markets they try the same approach. All new investors get busy investigating how successful investors made their money in the stock market. They want to know the secret behind the winning strategies. But investing is a world of counterintuitive ways.

All successful investors and traders have made their money in widely varying ways and more often than not, their strategies often contradict each other. If one market pro vouches for his or her winning method, another market savant would seem to oppose it ardently.

Jim Paul, in his book What I Learned Losing A Million Dollars, wrote —

Why was I trying to learn the secret to making money when it could be done in so many different ways? I knew something about how to make money; I had made a million dollars in the market. But I didn’t know anything about how not to lose. The pros could all make money in contradictory ways because they all knew how to control their losses. While one person’s method was making money, another person with an opposite approach would be losing — if the second person was in the market. And that’s just it; the second person wouldn’t be in the market. He’d be on the sidelines with a nominal loss. The pros consider it their primary responsibility not to lose money.

The truth is that like there is more than one way to skin a cat, there is more than one way to make money in the markets.

Obviously, there is no ‘one’ secret way to make money because the people who have achieved success in this game over the long run have done it using very different, and often contradictory, approaches. But one big lesson that almost all these people have agreed to settle for is this – Learning how not to lose money is more important than learning how to make money. 

Which means if you are looking for success in investing, your chances are better if you take the indirect approach, i.e., finding the ‘anti-patterns.’ In other words, finding ways which most often lead to losses and then actively try to avoid those patterns.

Some such anti-patterns include –

  • Chasing performance
  • Looking to get rich quick
  • Ignoring market cycles
  • Letting emotions guide decisions
  • Failure to accept mistakes and cut losses
  • Venturing beyond circle of competence
  • Ignoring margin of safety
  • Driven by FOMO – fear of missing out

The list is long, but the idea is simple. To win in investing, find the anti-patterns, and then try to avoid them.

17. When Stock Prices Fall, Are You Happy or Sad?

If you plan to eat hamburgers throughout your life and are not a cattle producer, should you wish for higher or lower prices for beef? Likewise, if you are going to buy a car from time to time but are not an auto manufacturer, should you prefer higher or lower car prices?

These questions, of course, answer themselves.

But now for the final exam: If you expect to be a net saver during the next five years, should you hope for a higher or lower stock market during that period?

Many investors get this one wrong. Even though they are going to be net buyers of stocks for many years to come, they are elated when stock prices rise and depressed when they fall.

In effect, they rejoice because prices have risen for the ‘hamburgers’ they will soon be buying! This reaction makes no sense.

Only those who will be sellers of equities in the near future should be happy at seeing stocks rise. Prospective purchasers should much prefer sinking prices.

Source: Warren Buffett, 1997 letter to shareholders

18. The Secret of Investing

If you haven’t figured out your temperament, the stock market is a very expensive place to find out. A long term view requires an ability to stomach extreme short term market volatility. If you can’t do that, you may want to move your money to other instruments like bank fixed deposits and liquid/debt funds.

Jason Zweig wrote in a post on The Wall Street Journal –

In order to capture the potentially higher returns that stocks can offer, you have to reconcile yourself to the certainty of horrifying short-term losses. If you can’t do that, you shouldn’t be in stocks — and shouldn’t feel any shame about it, either.

That’s the point. If your inner voice tells you that you are not wired to do well in stocks because, may be, you are not adept at business analysis or you are too emotional with stock prices or you just do not have the time, you must stay away from direct stock picking, and not feel any shame about that.

But if you are in the arena, it’s better to prepare for problems, expect that your portfolio will occasionally be ‘stormed,’ and get used to such storms. Any market crash won’t feel scary then, just because you would start accepting that as an integral part of your journey of wealth creation.

The secret of investing is that there is no secret. It’s staying the course.

The moment you get it, you become what Ben Graham would call an ‘intelligent investor’ who is destined to do well over the long run.

19. Investing in Uncertain Times

…is almost always more profitable than investing when everything seems certain.

Investors, like most people going about their daily lives, don’t like doubts and uncertainties – like the Covid-19 pandemic, or the Russia-Ukraine crisis. So, we would anything we can to avoid it.

Of course, it’s a good idea to avoid entirely what you can’t totally get your mind around, successful investing is largely about dealing well with uncertainties.

In fact, uncertainties are the most fundamental condition of the investing world.

Seth Klarman wrote in Margin of Safety

Most investors strive fruitlessly for certainty and precision, avoiding situations in which information is difficult to obtain. Yet high uncertainty is frequently accompanied by low prices. By the time the uncertainty is resolved, prices are likely to have risen.

Investors frequently benefit from making investment decisions with less than perfect knowledge and are well rewarded for bearing the risk of uncertainty. The time other investors spend delving into the last unanswered detail may cost them the chance to buy in at prices so low that they offer a margin of safety despite the incomplete information.

What Klarman suggests is that if you need reassurance and certainty, you’re giving up quite a bit to get it. Like high fees to experts who would predict the future (which you falsely believe as certainty, which it isn’t), or expensive prices for stocks (because everyone knows their future is clear, which often isn’t).

On the other hand, if you can get in the habit of seeking out uncertainty, you’ll have developed a great instinct. Plus, in the long term, it’s highly profitable.

20. Need for an Investment Premise

When you buy a stock, or any investment, you must have a premise – the foundational reason(s), the ‘why?’ for its place in your portfolio – not a narrative that you try to forcefully fit in to what’s hot and in the limelight. 

A premise is a reason why a stock will go up over the long run, because the underlying business will grow profitably because the management will allocate capital efficiently, and the market will value that business at current or higher multiples. A narrative, on the other hand, is usually a story you try to fit in to justify why a stock will go up, which is largely because it has gone up in the recent past, and you probably have already made up your mind to own it, and now you cannot go back because you have already committed to the idea in your mind.

Like a storytelling premise, an investment premise also has three elements – the protagonist (you), your goal (wealth creation, or financial freedom) and the obstacles you may face (your emotions of greed, fear, and envy, or the investment going bad).

Without a sound premise, the protagonist of a story may end up with wrong goals and wrong solutions. It will be a flop. In the same with, without a sound investment premise, you may end up owing just a ‘stock’ that you would flip in the next few minutes or days, not an ‘investment’ that you would be willing to own for a few years so that it contributes to your journey of wealth creation and financial freedom.

21. The Five Most Irrelevant Facts of Stock Investing

Look at the following chart. This is a stock’s price plus four other “irrelevant” facts that drain most investors when they consider their investments.

These four irrelevant facts are –

  1. Price the stock sold at its all-time high,
  2. Price you paid for the stock,
  3. Price the stock quoted at its highest since your purchase, and
  4. Price as on today

None of these matters when you are deciding what to do with your stock investment today. The only thing that matters is where the underlying business stands today and where its earnings and cash flows may reach 5-10 years down the line.

Of course, in the long run, stock prices are representative of the value created by businesses. But they are just that, representatives.

Actual value does not gets created in the world of stock market, but in the world of business.

In fact, like Mr. Bogle said, “the stock market subtracts value, due to all the costs we pay to play the game.”

One of those costs include the stress you take looking at your stock prices, which are plain irrelevant.

So, in short, avoid looking there. Look instead at the businesses you own, the managements that run them, and the value they may create over time.

22. Why Envy is a Really Stupid Emotion

Comparing yourself to others is a perfectly normal human instinct. It’s like comparing notes in a book club – you want to know what everyone else is talking about and how they’re feeling, so you can join them in the conversation. But this comparison isn’t always positive. Some people are more successful than others, some have more money than others, some look better than others – and it’s easy for these differences to lead us into envious rages when other people seem to be doing better than us at something we care about (like making money or looking good).

Charlie Munger calls, envy as a “really stupid sin because it’s the only one you could never possibly have any fun at. There’s a lot of pain and no fun.”

I believe it’s stupid to be envious because of two more reasons. One, envy leads us to want things (or people) for the wrong reasons. We want it because someone else has it, not because we need it.

Two, when we are envious of others, we want just those parts of their lives that look good – high net worth, big house, popularity etc., while not also wanting their hard work, sleepless nights, insecurities, mistakes, tragedies, sorrows, loneliness, injuries, etc.

By separating desire from demand, we can detach from our envy and instead be grateful for what we already have.

The next time you feel envious, remember that the root of this emotion is feeling like you don’t measure up to someone else. This is a natural part of life, but it’s not healthy or productive. Especially when you are an investor.

23. Focus on What’s More Important

Some equations of life I try to live by and that have helped me through my struggles, internal and external –

  • Observing > Seeing
  • Listening > Hearing
  • Health > Wealth
  • Compassion > Anger
  • Kindness > Wisdom
  • Love > Hate
  • Forgiveness > Vengeance
  • Truth > Facts
  • Empathy > Judgement
  • Giving > Receiving
  • Courage > Intelligence

24. Learn to Listen to Your Inner Voice

Vinod Sethi said this in the second episode of The One Percent Show as one of the lessons he learned early in life –

When people ask me what books I read, or books I recommend reading, I ask them to spend some time listening to their inner voice, their inner guide, their inner compass. It is out there alive and kicking and people should try to listen to it as much as they would like to read other things.

I am not discouraging people from reading other things. I am not saying that, but you need to combine that with what works for you.

25. Learn to Get Along with People You Disagree With

Morgan Housel said this in the fifth episode of The One Percent Show as one of his advices to youngsters on the skills they need to hone to do well in the coming decades –

I think the most undervalued skill is learning how to get along with people that you disagree with. And this is getting more important with technology because it used to be, not even that long ago, 10-20 years ago, that most people lived inside their own bubbles – their own political bubbles, their own religious bubbles. They just interacted with people who were like them, in their home, in their work, their friends.

Your sphere of influence in your social group was really tight in your local community. And now because of social media, your social group might be all over the world. You and I are talking in different continents right now. Like the kind of things that didn’t happen 10 or 20 years ago, but now we do it all the time. And because of that, you’re much more exposed to the views of people you disagree with.

The difference of views has always existed. We’re just aware of them now because of technology. And in that world, there’re basically two options. One, you can get increasingly angrier that other people think differently than you, and you have no ability to change their views. And that makes you angry and cynical. Or two, you can learn how to get along with people who disagree with you. Now, there’s always going to be situations where people you disagree with so fundamentally that it’s just not going to work.

26. Re-Reading Good Books is a Great Idea

The books we read are important because they become part of who we are. They give us ideas and inspiration, help us understand the world around us, and help make sense of our own lives. Books can be so much more than just entertainment or escapism — they can be an invaluable tool for growth and learning.

It’s rare these days to have time to really think deeply about books and ideas. We are bombarded with information, busy with work and family, social media and technology — and even when we’re not doing anything else at all. So it’s important that you re-read good books from time to time if only so that you can remember what they taught you in the first place.

Re-reading is an exercise in deepening your understanding of yourself and the world around you. When we re-read something, we see it from a different perspective, and that can help us see things we might have missed the first time around.

Re-reading books is great for multiple reasons –

  • You re-learn ideas that you learned the last time you read the book
  • You learn new ideas you missed the last time
  • You get a chance to re-look at how you processed a given idea in the past compared to now

Someone asked on this tweet about the book I have re-read the most. It is How to Stop Worrying and Start Living, closely followed by Poor Charlie’s Almanack.

27. Stock Market is a Distraction to Investing

28. Know What You Don’t Know

29. Principles of Intelligent Investing

30. Optimise for Happiness, Not for Returns

31. Market Hits You Where it Hurts the Most

32. Iron Rules of Life and Investing

33. An Investor’s Moats

34: Advice to a Young Investor

Read – Part 1, Part 2, Part 3.

35: Remember the Sturgeon’s Law

May also apply to this post.

* * *

I’m so grateful to have you share this journey with me in 2022, and look forward to continuing our connection in 2023, whatever it may bring.

Stay happy and healthy.

Happy 2023.

With respect,

The post 35 Ideas from 2022 appeared first on Safal Niveshak.

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Rand Paul Teases Senate GOP Leader Run – Musk Says “I Would Support”

Rand Paul Teases Senate GOP Leader Run – Musk Says "I Would Support"

Republican Kentucky Senator Rand Paul on Friday hinted that he may jump…



Rand Paul Teases Senate GOP Leader Run - Musk Says "I Would Support"

Republican Kentucky Senator Rand Paul on Friday hinted that he may jump into the race to become the next Senate GOP leader, and Elon Musk was quick to support the idea. Republicans must find a successor for periodically malfunctioning Mitch McConnell, who recently announced he'll step down in November, though intending to keep his Senate seat until his term ends in January 2027, when he'd be within weeks of turning 86. 

So far, the announced field consists of two quintessential establishment types: John Cornyn of Texas and John Thune of South Dakota. While John Barrasso's name had been thrown around as one of "The Three Johns" considered top contenders, the Wyoming senator on Tuesday said he'll instead seek the number two slot as party whip. 

Paul used X to tease his potential bid for the position which -- if the GOP takes back the upper chamber in November -- could graduate from Minority Leader to Majority Leader. He started by telling his 5.1 million followers he'd had lots of people asking him about his interest in running...

...then followed up with a poll in which he predictably annihilated Cornyn and Thune, taking a 96% share as of Friday night, with the other two below 2% each. 

Elon Musk was quick to back the idea of Paul as GOP leader, while daring Cornyn and Thune to follow Paul's lead by throwing their names out for consideration by the Twitter-verse X-verse. 

Paul has been a stalwart opponent of security-state mass surveillance, foreign interventionism -- to include shoveling billions of dollars into the proxy war in Ukraine -- and out-of-control spending in general. He demonstrated the latter passion on the Senate floor this week as he ridiculed the latest kick-the-can spending package:   

In February, Paul used Senate rules to force his colleagues into a grueling Super Bowl weekend of votes, as he worked to derail a $95 billion foreign aid bill. "I think we should stay here as long as it takes,” said Paul. “If it takes a week or a month, I’ll force them to stay here to discuss why they think the border of Ukraine is more important than the US border.”

Don't expect a Majority Leader Paul to ditch the filibuster -- he's been a hardy user of the legislative delay tactic. In 2013, he spoke for 13 hours to fight the nomination of John Brennan as CIA director. In 2015, he orated for 10-and-a-half-hours to oppose extension of the Patriot Act

Rand Paul amid his 10 1/2 hour filibuster in 2015

Among the general public, Paul is probably best known as Capitol Hill's chief tormentor of Dr. Anthony Fauci, who was director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease during the Covid-19 pandemic. Paul says the evidence indicates the virus emerged from China's Wuhan Institute of Virology. He's accused Fauci and other members of the US government public health apparatus of evading questions about their funding of the Chinese lab's "gain of function" research, which takes natural viruses and morphs them into something more dangerous. Paul has pointedly said that Fauci committed perjury in congressional hearings and that he belongs in jail "without question."   

Musk is neither the only nor the first noteworthy figure to back Paul for party leader. Just hours after McConnell announced his upcoming step-down from leadership, independent 2024 presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy, Jr voiced his support: 

In a testament to the extent to which the establishment recoils at the libertarian-minded Paul, mainstream media outlets -- which have been quick to report on other developments in the majority leader race -- pretended not to notice that Paul had signaled his interest in the job. More than 24 hours after Paul's test-the-waters tweet-fest began, not a single major outlet had brought it to the attention of their audience. 

That may be his strongest endorsement yet. 

Tyler Durden Sun, 03/10/2024 - 20:25

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‘I couldn’t stand the pain’: the Turkish holiday resort that’s become an emergency dental centre for Britons who can’t get treated at home

The crisis in NHS dentistry is driving increasing numbers abroad for treatment. Here are some of their stories.

This clinic in the Turkish resort of Antalya is the official 'dental sponsor' of the Miss England competition. Diana Ibanez-Tirado, Author provided

It’s a hot summer day in the Turkish city of Antalya, a Mediterranean resort with golden beaches, deep blue sea and vibrant nightlife. The pool area of the all-inclusive resort is crammed with British people on sun loungers – but they aren’t here for a holiday. This hotel is linked to a dental clinic that organises treatment packages, and most of these guests are here to see a dentist.

From Norwich, two women talk about gums and injections. A man from Wales holds a tissue close to his mouth and spits blood – he has just had two molars extracted.

The dental clinic organises everything for these dental “tourists” throughout their treatment, which typically lasts from three to 15 days. The stories I hear of what has caused them to travel to Turkey are strikingly similar: all have struggled to secure dental treatment at home on the NHS.

“The hotel is nice and some days I go to the beach,” says Susan*, a hairdresser in her mid-30s from Norwich. “But really, we aren’t tourists like in a proper holiday. We come here because we have no choice. I couldn’t stand the pain.”

Seaside beach resort with mountains in the distance
The Turkish Mediterranean resort of Antalya. Akimov Konstantin/Shutterstock

This is Susan’s second visit to Antalya. She explains that her ordeal started two years earlier:

I went to an NHS dentist who told me I had gum disease … She did some cleaning to my teeth and gums but it got worse. When I ate, my teeth were moving … the gums were bleeding and it was very painful. I called to say I was in pain but the clinic was not accepting NHS patients any more.

The only option the dentist offered Susan was to register as a private patient:

I asked how much. They said £50 for x-rays and then if the gum disease got worse, £300 or so for extraction. Four of them were moving – imagine: £1,200 for losing your teeth! Without teeth I’d lose my clients, but I didn’t have the money. I’m a single mum. I called my mum and cried.

Susan’s mother told her about a friend of hers who had been to Turkey for treatment, then together they found a suitable clinic:

The prices are so much cheaper! Tooth extraction, x-rays, consultations – it all comes included. The flight and hotel for seven days cost the same as losing four teeth in Norwich … I had my lower teeth removed here six months ago, now I’ve got implants … £2,800 for everything – hotel, transfer, treatments. I only paid the flights separately.

In the UK, roughly half the adult population suffers from periodontitis – inflammation of the gums caused by plaque bacteria that can lead to irreversible loss of gums, teeth, and bone. Regular reviews by a dentist or hygienist are required to manage this condition. But nine out of ten dental practices cannot offer NHS appointments to new adult patients, while eight in ten are not accepting new child patients.

Some UK dentists argue that Britons who travel abroad for treatment do so mainly for cosmetic procedures. They warn that dental tourism is dangerous, and that if their treatment goes wrong, dentists in the UK will be unable to help because they don’t want to be responsible for further damage. Susan shrugs this off:

Dentists in England say: ‘If you go to Turkey, we won’t touch you [afterwards].’ But I don’t worry because there are no appointments at home anyway. They couldn’t help in the first place, and this is why we are in Turkey.

‘How can we pay all this money?’

As a social anthropologist, I travelled to Turkey a number of times in 2023 to investigate the crisis of NHS dentistry, and the journeys abroad that UK patients are increasingly making as a result. I have relatives in Istanbul and have been researching migration and trading patterns in Turkey’s largest city since 2016.

In August 2023, I visited the resort in Antalya, nearly 400 miles south of Istanbul. As well as Susan, I met a group from a village in Wales who said there was no provision of NHS dentistry back home. They had organised a two-week trip to Turkey: the 12-strong group included a middle-aged couple with two sons in their early 20s, and two couples who were pensioners. By going together, Anya tells me, they could support each other through their different treatments:

I’ve had many cavities since I was little … Before, you could see a dentist regularly – you didn’t even think about it. If you had pain or wanted a regular visit, you phoned and you went … That was in the 1990s, when I went to the dentist maybe every year.

Anya says that once she had children, her family and work commitments meant she had no time to go to the dentist. Then, years later, she started having serious toothache:

Every time I chewed something, it hurt. I ate soups and soft food, and I also lost weight … Even drinking was painful – tea: pain, cold water: pain. I was taking paracetamol all the time! I went to the dentist to fix all this, but there were no appointments.

Anya was told she would have to wait months, or find a dentist elsewhere:

A private clinic gave me a list of things I needed done. Oh my God, almost £6,000. My husband went too – same story. How can we pay all this money? So we decided to come to Turkey. Some people we know had been here, and others in the village wanted to come too. We’ve brought our sons too – they also need to be checked and fixed. Our whole family could be fixed for less than £6,000.

By the time they travelled, Anya’s dental problems had turned into a dental emergency. She says she could not live with the pain anymore, and was relying on paracetamol.

In 2023, about 6 million adults in the UK experienced protracted pain (lasting more than two weeks) caused by toothache. Unintentional paracetamol overdose due to dental pain is a significant cause of admissions to acute medical units. If left untreated, tooth infections can spread to other parts of the body and cause life-threatening complications – and on rare occasions, death.

In February 2024, police were called to manage hundreds of people queuing outside a newly opened dental clinic in Bristol, all hoping to be registered or seen by an NHS dentist. One in ten Britons have admitted to performing “DIY dentistry”, of which 20% did so because they could not find a timely appointment. This includes people pulling out their teeth with pliers and using superglue to repair their teeth.

In the 1990s, dentistry was almost entirely provided through NHS services, with only around 500 solely private dentists registered. Today, NHS dentist numbers in England are at their lowest level in a decade, with 23,577 dentists registered to perform NHS work in 2022-23, down 695 on the previous year. Furthermore, the precise division of NHS and private work that each dentist provides is not measured.

The COVID pandemic created longer waiting lists for NHS treatment in an already stretched public service. In Bridlington, Yorkshire, people are now reportedly having to wait eight-to-nine years to get an NHS dental appointment with the only remaining NHS dentist in the town.

In his book Patients of the State (2012), Argentine sociologist Javier Auyero describes the “indignities of waiting”. It is the poor who are mostly forced to wait, he writes. Queues for state benefits and public services constitute a tangible form of power over the marginalised. There is an ethnic dimension to this story, too. Data suggests that in the UK, patients less likely to be effective in booking an NHS dental appointment are non-white ethnic groups and Gypsy or Irish travellers, and that it is particularly challenging for refugees and asylum-seekers to access dental care.

This article is part of Conversation Insights
The Insights team generates long-form journalism derived from interdisciplinary research. The team is working with academics from different backgrounds who have been engaged in projects aimed at tackling societal and scientific challenges.

In 2022, I experienced my own dental emergency. An infected tooth was causing me debilitating pain, and needed root canal treatment. I was advised this would cost £71 on the NHS, plus £307 for a follow-up crown – but that I would have to wait months for an appointment. The pain became excruciating – I could not sleep, let alone wait for months. In the same clinic, privately, I was quoted £1,300 for the treatment (more than half my monthly income at the time), or £295 for a tooth extraction.

I did not want to lose my tooth because of lack of money. So I bought a flight to Istanbul immediately for the price of the extraction in the UK, and my tooth was treated with root canal therapy by a private dentist there for £80. Including the costs of travelling, the total was a third of what I was quoted to be treated privately in the UK. Two years on, my treated tooth hasn’t given me any more problems.

A better quality of life

Not everyone is in Antalya for emergency procedures. The pensioners from Wales had contacted numerous clinics they found on the internet, comparing prices, treatments and hotel packages at least a year in advance, in a carefully planned trip to get dental implants – artificial replacements for tooth roots that help support dentures, crowns and bridges.

Street view of a dental clinic in Antalya, Turkey
Dental clinic in Antalya, Turkey. Diana Ibanez-Tirado, CC BY-NC-ND

In Turkey, all the dentists I speak to (most of whom cater mainly for foreigners, including UK nationals) consider implants not a cosmetic or luxurious treatment, but a development in dentistry that gives patients who are able to have the procedure a much better quality of life. This procedure is not available on the NHS for most of the UK population, and the patients I meet in Turkey could not afford implants in private clinics back home.

Paul is in Antalya to replace his dentures, which have become uncomfortable and irritating to his gums, with implants. He says he couldn’t find an appointment to see an NHS dentist. His wife Sonia went through a similar procedure the year before and is very satisfied with the results, telling me: “Why have dentures that you need to put in a glass overnight, in the old style? If you can have implants, I say, you’re better off having them.”

Most of the dental tourists I meet in Antalya are white British: this city, known as the Turkish Riviera, has developed an entire economy catering to English-speaking tourists. In 2023, more than 1.3 million people visited the city from the UK, up almost 15% on the previous year.

Read more: NHS dentistry is in crisis – are overseas dentists the answer?

In contrast, the Britons I meet in Istanbul are predominantly from a non-white ethnic background. Omar, a pensioner of Pakistani origin in his early 70s, has come here after waiting “half a year” for an NHS appointment to fix the dental bridge that is causing him pain. Omar’s son had been previously for a hair transplant, and was offered a free dental checkup by the same clinic, so he suggested it to his father. Having worked as a driver for a manufacturing company for two decades in Birmingham, Omar says he feels disappointed to have contributed to the British economy for so long, only to be “let down” by the NHS:

At home, I must wait and wait and wait to get a bridge – and then I had many problems with it. I couldn’t eat because the bridge was uncomfortable and I was in pain, but there were no appointments on the NHS. I asked a private dentist and they recommended implants, but they are far too expensive [in the UK]. I started losing weight, which is not a bad thing at the beginning, but then I was worrying because I couldn’t chew and eat well and was losing more weight … Here in Istanbul, I got dental implants – US$500 each, problem solved! In England, each implant is maybe £2,000 or £3,000.

In the waiting area of another clinic in Istanbul, I meet Mariam, a British woman of Iraqi background in her late 40s, who is making her second visit to the dentist here. Initially, she needed root canal therapy after experiencing severe pain for weeks. Having been quoted £1,200 in a private clinic in outer London, Mariam decided to fly to Istanbul instead, where she was quoted £150 by a dentist she knew through her large family. Even considering the cost of the flight, Mariam says the decision was obvious:

Dentists in England are so expensive and NHS appointments so difficult to find. It’s awful there, isn’t it? Dentists there blamed me for my rotten teeth. They say it’s my fault: I don’t clean or I ate sugar, or this or that. I grew up in a village in Iraq and didn’t go to the dentist – we were very poor. Then we left because of war, so we didn’t go to a dentist … When I arrived in London more than 20 years ago, I didn’t speak English, so I still didn’t go to the dentist … I think when you move from one place to another, you don’t go to the dentist unless you are in real, real pain.

In Istanbul, Mariam has opted not only for the urgent root canal treatment but also a longer and more complex treatment suggested by her consultant, who she says is a renowned doctor from Syria. This will include several extractions and implants of back and front teeth, and when I ask what she thinks of achieving a “Hollywood smile”, Mariam says:

Who doesn’t want a nice smile? I didn’t come here to be a model. I came because I was in pain, but I know this doctor is the best for implants, and my front teeth were rotten anyway.

Dentists in the UK warn about the risks of “overtreatment” abroad, but Mariam appears confident that this is her opportunity to solve all her oral health problems. Two of her sisters have already been through a similar treatment, so they all trust this doctor.

Alt text
An Istanbul clinic founded by Afghan dentists has a message for its UK customers. Diana Ibanez-Tirado, CC BY-NC-ND

The UK’s ‘dental deserts’

To get a fuller understanding of the NHS dental crisis, I’ve also conducted 20 interviews in the UK with people who have travelled or were considering travelling abroad for dental treatment.

Joan, a 50-year-old woman from Exeter, tells me she considered going to Turkey and could have afforded it, but that her back and knee problems meant she could not brave the trip. She has lost all her lower front teeth due to gum disease and, when I meet her, has been waiting 13 months for an NHS dental appointment. Joan tells me she is living in “shame”, unable to smile.

In the UK, areas with extremely limited provision of NHS dental services – known as as “dental deserts” – include densely populated urban areas such as Portsmouth and Greater Manchester, as well as many rural and coastal areas.

In Felixstowe, the last dentist taking NHS patients went private in 2023, despite the efforts of the activist group Toothless in Suffolk to secure better access to NHS dentists in the area. It’s a similar story in Ripon, Yorkshire, and in Dumfries & Galloway, Scotland, where nearly 25,000 patients have been de-registered from NHS dentists since 2021.

Data shows that 2 million adults must travel at least 40 miles within the UK to access dental care. Branding travel for dental care as “tourism” carries the risk of disguising the elements of duress under which patients move to restore their oral health – nationally and internationally. It also hides the immobility of those who cannot undertake such journeys.

The 90-year-old woman in Dumfries & Galloway who now faces travelling for hours by bus to see an NHS dentist can hardly be considered “tourism” – nor the Ukrainian war refugees who travelled back from West Sussex and Norwich to Ukraine, rather than face the long wait to see an NHS dentist.

Many people I have spoken to cannot afford the cost of transport to attend dental appointments two hours away – or they have care responsibilities that make it impossible. Instead, they are forced to wait in pain, in the hope of one day securing an appointment closer to home.

Billboard advertising a dental clinic in Turkey
Dental clinics have mushroomed in recent years in Turkey, thanks to the influx of foreign patients seeking a wide range of treatments. Diana Ibanez-Tirado, CC BY-NC-ND

‘Your crisis is our business’

The indignities of waiting in the UK are having a big impact on the lives of some local and foreign dentists in Turkey. Some neighbourhoods are rapidly changing as dental and other health clinics, usually in luxurious multi-storey glass buildings, mushroom. In the office of one large Istanbul medical complex with sections for hair transplants and dentistry (plus one linked to a hospital for more extensive cosmetic surgery), its Turkish owner and main investor tells me:

Your crisis is our business, but this is a bazaar. There are good clinics and bad clinics, and unfortunately sometimes foreign patients do not know which one to choose. But for us, the business is very good.

This clinic only caters to foreign patients. The owner, an architect by profession who also developed medical clinics in Brazil, describes how COVID had a major impact on his business:

When in Europe you had COVID lockdowns, Turkey allowed foreigners to come. Many people came for ‘medical tourism’ – we had many patients for cosmetic surgery and hair transplants. And that was when the dental business started, because our patients couldn’t see a dentist in Germany or England. Then more and more patients started to come for dental treatments, especially from the UK and Ireland. For them, it’s very, very cheap here.

The reasons include the value of the Turkish lira relative to the British pound, the low cost of labour, the increasing competition among Turkish clinics, and the sheer motivation of dentists here. While most dentists catering to foreign patients are from Turkey, others have arrived seeking refuge from war and violence in Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, Iran and beyond. They work diligently to rebuild their lives, careers and lost wealth.

Regardless of their origin, all dentists in Turkey must be registered and certified. Hamed, a Syrian dentist and co-owner of a new clinic in Istanbul catering to European and North American patients, tells me:

I know that you say ‘Syrian’ and people think ‘migrant’, ‘refugee’, and maybe think ‘how can this dentist be good?’ – but Syria, before the war, had very good doctors and dentists. Many of us came to Turkey and now I have a Turkish passport. I had to pass the exams to practise dentistry here – I study hard. The exams are in Turkish and they are difficult, so you cannot say that Syrian doctors are stupid.

Hamed talks excitedly about the latest technology that is coming to his profession: “There are always new materials and techniques, and we cannot stop learning.” He is about to travel to Paris to an international conference:

I can say my techniques are very advanced … I bet I put more implants and do more bone grafting and surgeries every week than any dentist you know in England. A good dentist is about practice and hand skills and experience. I work hard, very hard, because more and more patients are arriving to my clinic, because in England they don’t find dentists.

Dental equipment in a Turkish treatment room
Dentists in Turkey boast of using the latest technology. Diana Ibanez-Tirado, CC BY-NC-ND

While there is no official data about the number of people travelling from the UK to Turkey for dental treatment, investors and dentists I speak to consider that numbers are rocketing. From all over the world, Turkey received 1.2 million visitors for “medical tourism” in 2022, an increase of 308% on the previous year. Of these, about 250,000 patients went for dentistry. One of the most renowned dental clinics in Istanbul had only 15 British patients in 2019, but that number increased to 2,200 in 2023 and is expected to reach 5,500 in 2024.

Like all forms of medical care, dental treatments carry risks. Most clinics in Turkey offer a ten-year guarantee for treatments and a printed clinical history of procedures carried out, so patients can show this to their local dentists and continue their regular annual care in the UK. Dental treatments, checkups and maintaining a good oral health is a life-time process, not a one-off event.

Many UK patients, however, are caught between a rock and a hard place – criticised for going abroad, yet unable to get affordable dental care in the UK before and after their return. The British Dental Association has called for more action to inform these patients about the risks of getting treated overseas – and has warned UK dentists about the legal implications of treating these patients on their return. But this does not address the difficulties faced by British patients who are being forced to go abroad in search of affordable, often urgent dental care.

A global emergency

The World Health Organization states that the explosion of oral disease around the world is a result of the “negligent attitude” that governments, policymakers and insurance companies have towards including oral healthcare under the umbrella of universal healthcare. It as if the health of our teeth and mouth is optional; somehow less important than treatment to the rest of our body. Yet complications from untreated tooth decay can lead to hospitalisation.

The main causes of oral health diseases are untreated tooth decay, severe gum disease, toothlessness, and cancers of the lip and oral cavity. Cases grew during the pandemic, when little or no attention was paid to oral health. Meanwhile, the global cosmetic dentistry market is predicted to continue growing at an annual rate of 13% for the rest of this decade, confirming the strong relationship between socioeconomic status and access to oral healthcare.

In the UK since 2018, there have been more than 218,000 admissions to hospital for rotting teeth, of which more than 100,000 were children. Some 40% of children in the UK have not seen a dentist in the past 12 months. The role of dentists in prevention of tooth decay and its complications, and in the early detection of mouth cancer, is vital. While there is a 90% survival rate for mouth cancer if spotted early, the lack of access to dental appointments is causing cases to go undetected.

The reasons for the crisis in NHS dentistry are complex, but include: the real-term cuts in funding to NHS dentistry; the challenges of recruitment and retention of dentists in rural and coastal areas; pay inequalities facing dental nurses, most of them women, who are being badly hit by the cost of living crisis; and, in England, the 2006 Dental Contract that does not remunerate dentists in a way that encourages them to continue seeing NHS patients.

The UK is suffering a mass exodus of the public dentistry workforce, with workers leaving the profession entirely or shifting to the private sector, where payments and life-work balance are better, bureaucracy is reduced, and prospects for career development look much better. A survey of general dental practitioners found that around half have reduced their NHS work since the pandemic – with 43% saying they were likely to go fully private, and 42% considering a career change or taking early retirement.

Reversing the UK’s dental crisis requires more commitment to substantial reform and funding than the “recovery plan” announced by Victoria Atkins, the secretary of state for health and social care, on February 7.

The stories I have gathered show that people travelling abroad for dental treatment don’t see themselves as “tourists” or vanity-driven consumers of the “Hollywood smile”. Rather, they have been forced by the crisis in NHS dentistry to seek out a service 1,500 miles away in Turkey that should be a basic, affordable right for all, on their own doorstep.

*Names in this article have been changed to protect the anonymity of the interviewees.

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Diana Ibanez Tirado receives funding from the School of Global Studies, University of Sussex.

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Beloved mall retailer files Chapter 7 bankruptcy, will liquidate

The struggling chain has given up the fight and will close hundreds of stores around the world.



It has been a brutal period for several popular retailers. The fallout from the covid pandemic and a challenging economic environment have pushed numerous chains into bankruptcy with Tuesday Morning, Christmas Tree Shops, and Bed Bath & Beyond all moving from Chapter 11 to Chapter 7 bankruptcy liquidation.

In all three of those cases, the companies faced clear financial pressures that led to inventory problems and vendors demanding faster, or even upfront payment. That creates a sort of inevitability.

Related: Beloved retailer finds life after bankruptcy, new famous owner

When a retailer faces financial pressure it sets off a cycle where vendors become wary of selling them items. That leads to barren shelves and no ability for the chain to sell its way out of its financial problems. 

Once that happens bankruptcy generally becomes the only option. Sometimes that means a Chapter 11 filing which gives the company a chance to negotiate with its creditors. In some cases, deals can be worked out where vendors extend longer terms or even forgive some debts, and banks offer an extension of loan terms.

In other cases, new funding can be secured which assuages vendor concerns or the company might be taken over by its vendors. Sometimes, as was the case with David's Bridal, a new owner steps in, adds new money, and makes deals with creditors in order to give the company a new lease on life.

It's rare that a retailer moves directly into Chapter 7 bankruptcy and decides to liquidate without trying to find a new source of funding.

Mall traffic has varied depending upon the type of mall.

Image source: Getty Images

The Body Shop has bad news for customers  

The Body Shop has been in a very public fight for survival. Fears began when the company closed half of its locations in the United Kingdom. That was followed by a bankruptcy-style filing in Canada and an abrupt closure of its U.S. stores on March 4.

"The Canadian subsidiary of the global beauty and cosmetics brand announced it has started restructuring proceedings by filing a Notice of Intention (NOI) to Make a Proposal pursuant to the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act (Canada). In the same release, the company said that, as of March 1, 2024, The Body Shop US Limited has ceased operations," Chain Store Age reported.

A message on the company's U.S. website shared a simple message that does not appear to be the entire story.

"We're currently undergoing planned maintenance, but don't worry we're due to be back online soon."

That same message is still on the company's website, but a new filing makes it clear that the site is not down for maintenance, it's down for good.

The Body Shop files for Chapter 7 bankruptcy

While the future appeared bleak for The Body Shop, fans of the brand held out hope that a savior would step in. That's not going to be the case. 

The Body Shop filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in the United States.

"The US arm of the ethical cosmetics group has ceased trading at its 50 outlets. On Saturday (March 9), it filed for Chapter 7 insolvency, under which assets are sold off to clear debts, putting about 400 jobs at risk including those in a distribution center that still holds millions of dollars worth of stock," The Guardian reported.

After its closure in the United States, the survival of the brand remains very much in doubt. About half of the chain's stores in the United Kingdom remain open along with its Australian stores. 

The future of those stores remains very much in doubt and the chain has shared that it needs new funding in order for them to continue operating.

The Body Shop did not respond to a request for comment from TheStreet.   

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