Just before Shavuos, some scary business stories broke - not scary in the way watching a Dracula or Frankenstein movie is, fiction where anything can happen but no one really gets hurt.  These news stories were frightening because they were about real life, appeared within a day or two of each other, and were about events that may be imminent.  With just a few words some of Wall Street’s most brilliant gurus sent shivers down investors’ spines.  Even now, about two weeks later, The Street is still rattled by their comments.

Once upon a time, politics and business were two different worlds.  Not anymore.  These days there is a clear link between the two, and anyone who doubts this need only look at the growing number of billionaires tweeting about politics rather than investments.  Will this trend affect the upcoming mid-term elections and beyond? Could it affect the markets?  The answer to both is “Yes.”

Back in 1979, GM was one of the most powerful companies in the world. It literally had half of the US car market, a tremendous amount of cash and access to even more, among other assets.  That’s when the company decided to embark on a $40 billion expansion plan.  The goal: to eliminate all of the competition and take charge of the global auto industry.

That artificial intelligence (AI) poses a potential threat to people is not news.  Tech gurus and scientists, ethicists and futurists, sounded the alarm years ago.  It turns out they were both right and wrong: right in their assessment about the dangers but wrong in their timing.  The rapid advances being made in AI make it a concern much sooner than they anticipated.

By important measures, New York City is gradually bouncing back from the pandemic, but in one area the statistics are soaring.  Unfortunately, it’s the crime rate. The problem keeps getting worse, political leaders have no answer, and residents are frustrated, frightened, and angry.  This is a very bad combination and no one knows where it is headed.