Heather R Morgan

The Shameless Economist in pearls. Globetrotter. Writer.

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Let’s All Fail More to Become a Better Entrepreneurs

In the last five years I’ve made more reckless mistakes and had more mishaps than most people inflict on themselves in a lifetime. I’ve almost killed myself in the Middle East a dozen times, smuggling myself in and out of Sinai amidst bombings to go to the beach, and hitchhiking in Eastern Turkey in search of my ancestral homelands. I’ve also screwed up by blowing $50,000 on a marketing campaign that targeted a segment of customers that didn’t monetize well.

Even with all blunders and errors, some of which I’m less proud of than others, I have no regrets for any of my actions. While my risk-loving behavior may have brought me more chaos than most people could handle mixed with some failures, it also led me to my biggest wins.

For each of my failures I have learned more valuable lessons than college, grad school, books, lectures, and seminars could ever have taught me. (Not to...

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Blocking Turks Only Makes Them Stronger & More Stubborn

With the latest Turkish twitter ban, Turks are questioning whether Erdogan fears tweets leaking sex tapes from AK party officials, his own dirty secrets, or is just using this as a distraction from his other political fails.

Erdogan’s Twitter ban seems like a modern-day book burning to the world, but this isn’t Turkey’s first time blocking social media. While the censorship of Twitter shows blatant disregard for democracy and freedom of speech, the Turkish government has never been able to stop its people when they are most determined. Whether Turks are completely disregarding the few traffic laws that Turkey does have, or avoiding taxation with black market cash transactions, Turks are naturals at finding ways around laws and red tape.

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Internet Censorship: Not a New Game for Turkey
Turkey’s not the only country to censor the Internet, but this isn’t their first go with censorship...

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Find a Focused Direction or Fail

Stop pretending to be Superman or your kryptonite will kill you. By lying to ourselves by believing we can do everything, we are setting ourselves up for failure. Do yourself a favor and stop screwing yourself over.

We all think we can do everything. We lie to ourselves thinking we have more time than we do. We believe we can multitask and overbook. But we are wrong. By doing so, we are left with dozens of projects half-assed, half-done feeling burnt out.


Hong Kong: the Asian version of a New York minute on speed

In my early 20’s I lived in Hong Kong and worked in project management. I accepted my job just after ending a long relationship to a Hong Konger I met in college. At the time the only people I knew there were three loose acquaintances from California and Turkey.

To compensate for my lack of network and social support in this new country, I made a great effort to go out of...

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A Lesson in Economics for Engineers

If you are thinking about investing in Bitcoin you might as well flush your money down the toilet by investing in the Egyptian pound.

Even the smartest people are susceptible to the shortcomings of confirmation bias. We search for the data and metrics that support our claims, giving us the answers we want to see.

It was easy enough for engineers and the Silicon Valley tech crowd to believe in Bitcoin, a new kind of self-regulating currency based in the beauty of mathematics. Avoiding the pitfalls of politics, bureaucracy and monetary centralization sounds like a good plan on paper, but the efficient market hypothesis (that free markets will regulate themselves) doesn’t always work in practice. Unexpected ripple effects of the absence of regulation are even messier when financially engineered assets like Bitcoin are involved.


The Fragility of Artificial Assets

No matter how...

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