Monday, May 3, 2010

Climateer Line of the Day: Berkshire Hathaway's Charlie Munger on Age, Inflation and Solar Energy Edition (BRK.B; BRK.A)

I was tempted to title this post "Assistant Leader of a Cult Edition".*
From "As close to a Transcript of the 2010 Berkshire Hathaway Shareholders Meeting as you're likely to find (BRK.A; BRK.B)":
  • ...Munger, generally a grumpy fellow, is optimistic about the ability of humanity to solve its biggest problems. He sees solar energy as an answer to many of our problems... eventually. For now, when he does construction,

  • "I never miss an opportunity to pass up putting them in" because they're currently too expensive.

  • Buffett and Munger are asked about the reasons for their optimism for the future. Munger says the fact that we're close to solving our energy problems is important. Then he says: "If I can be optimistic when I'm nearly dead, the rest of you can handle a little inflation."...

*Last November I juxtaposed some Charlieism's in Q&A style:
Berkshire Hathaway's Charlie Munger on Cap-and-Trade and When He Started Liking Trains (BRK.A; BNI):

I had planned to post this on Tuesday when word came out that Charlie and Warren were getting some new trains to play with.
Herewith a compilation of Charlieisms:

"Mr. Munger, welcome. You had some strong words on the proposed global warming policy solutions. Could you boil down your thinking for us?"
CM: "Monstrously Stupid Right Now...Almost Demented"
"That seems a bit harsh."
CM: "Think about it a little more and you will agree with me because you're smart and I'm right."
"At the annual meeting..."
CM: "I didn't set out in life to become the assistant leader of a cult."*
"At the annual meeting you shared some thoughts on alternative energy, what did you say?"
CM: Who knows, Warren was stepping all over my straight lines. Here's the Omaha World-Herald live-blog-
"Munger says harnessing the sun's power and changing sea water to fresh, other changes are for the better. Munger says he sees very good things for the future, including enough energy generation to solve a lot of other problems along with it."
*Whitney Tilson’s 2007 Wesco Annual Meeting Notes, Opening Remarks

And for the rail-curious, Mr. Tilson took down this note:
...Berkshire’s investment in railroads...