Wasn’t alive when JFK was shot, but I would venture to guess that few will forget where they were when Steve Jobs passed away.
While I never met the man, his genius and tenacity were well-documented. He inspired a generation; he changed the world.
In delivering the 2005 commencement address at Stanford University, he told graduates: “Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life.”
Jobs challenged us to think differently, perhaps more so than any single person of our generation — and certainly more than any CEO in our lifetime. He didn’t simply create companies — he helped found Apple and an oh-by-the-way upstart named Pixar in his spare time — he created a mythology.
You’ll read and hear a lot about Steve Jobs in the days ahead, and I encourage you to soak it in. While his management style ruffled its fair share of feathers, his leadership and vision were unquestionable. Indeed, Warren Buffett and Bill Gates seem one-dimensional in comparison.
He leaves behind a wife, with whom he had three children, and one daughter, Lisa, from his early life, as well as an inspirational legacy that will span generations. Rest in peace, young man. You will be missed.
And now some random thoughts:
- ECB President Jean-Claude Trichet opined Thursday that the eurozone economy faces “intensified downside risks” and announced additional longer-term liquidity, as well as covered bond purchases.
- Ben Bernanke used similar vernacular when he announced his “Operation Twist” on Sept. 21 and the S&P dropped 11% over the following 10 sessions.
- The German DAX lost 35% since the summer before bouncing this week. While some will view this as proof positive that we’re in a “depression-esque” environment, I’ll offer that it’s a constructive step. In order to get through this, we needed to go through it, and we’re going through it now.
Todd Harrison is the author of "The Other Side of Wall Street" and the founder and CEO of Minyanville, an Emmy Award-winning financial media platform. Read him daily at www.minyanville.com.