keith rabois

Keith Rabois on Miami vs. Bay Area, Cognitive Variety, America’s Self-Examination & More and Keith’s Best Twitter Dunks (E1182) | This Week in Startups with Jason Calacanis

Check out the TWiStartups Show Episode Page & Show Notes

Key Takeaways

  • The autonomy of different states allows A/B tests of different approaches to handle COVID-19
  • On strict COVID regulations
    • “The whole point of human life is not just about not dying” Keith Rabois
  • On healthcare
    • If people are dissatisfied with the current system and you don’t like what Democrats are proposing, you need to provide an alternative
      • Conservatives made no effort to come up with market-based solutions
    • 70% of chronic illnesses are a result of lifestyle decisions
    • “It would not shock me if we wake up one day and say: Oh my god, I can’t believe we banned cigarettes but tolerated sugar” Keith Rabois
  • “Be very judicious about what habits you want to have in your life, calibrate who you spend your time with and that will change almost everything” Keith Rabois

Intro

  • Keith Rabois (@rabois) is a member of the Paypal Mafia, the founder of Opendoor, and a General Partner at Founders Fund
    • Related notes:
      • Podcast Notes (Part 1 and Part 2) from Keith’s appearance on This Week in Startups
      • Notes from Keith’s last appearance on Venture Stories
      • Notes from Keith’s appearance on The North Star Podcast
  • Host – Jason Calacanis (@jason)
    • Check out Jason’s book – Angel: How to Invest in Technology Startups
  • In this chat, Keith talks about his decision to move to Miami, the future of the Republican party, real estate trends, and more

The Rise of Startup Culture in Miami

  • Keith moved to Miami
    • A lot of people in the tech industry followed
  • There’s a lot of startup activity going on in Miami
    • Keith hasn’t been this busy as a VC in 8 years
  • Regulatory freedom is a big factor in Miami’s success
    • The whole-state government in Miami has been embracing technology
      • The future of the world is technology
    • Physical meetings are possible
    • San Francisco’s policies were becoming hostile to a thriving startup environment
      • Problems in California are due to government dysfunction
  • The cultural variety of Miami encourages conversations and leads to better collaboration
    • People from very different political spectrums peacefully co-exist
    • The Bay area has become closed-minded and intolerant of different views

Florida’s Policy, and Alternative COVID Approaches

  • The autonomy of different states allows A/B tests of different approaches to handle COVID-19
  • Florida has been open for months
    • COVID numbers are not worse than California’s
    • Businesses are operating normally
    • There was no job loss compared to other states
  • Florida’s education system is functioning as normal
    • Florida is ranked 35th for the rate of COVID spread among people younger than 18
    • COVID restrictions in other states are isolating and depressing young people
    • Abundance of engineering schools makes it easy for startups to hire
      • Miami graduaters more Hispanic and Black engineers than any other city in the US
  • “The whole point of human life is not just about not dying” Keith Rabois
    • Our daily decisions are not just about not dying
      • If they were, people would never drive a car, or run a marathon
    • People calculate risks and decide what’s worth doing
  • Are vaccination cards ethical?
    • There’s a difference between citizens rights and privileges
    • It may be reasonable to require vaccine cards to obtain certain privileges, particularly in large groups
      • For example, attending a basketball game
  • Countries will start enforcing their borders more strictly
    • This might be more permanent, even after COVID
    • We are starting to see that globalization has downsides too
    • Trump’s early closure of travel to China was heavily criticized
      • It turned out to be right
  • The US could have run challenge trials for the Moderna vaccine as soon as it came out
    • We would have learned a lot earlier that, this was the solution
    • Trump could have overruled the FDA and allow challenge trials
      • People could have been compensated for choosing to run the risk

Dealing with China and Saudi Arabia

  • TikTok is a national security risk to the US
    • The CCP (Chinese Communist Party) is manipulating content and gathering data
    • Biden’s administration has different perspectives on China
  • People seem unwilling to discuss the violation of human rights in China and Saudi Arabia

Rebuilding the Republican Party

  • The next Republicans primaries will probably be open to new candidates
  • Trump is likely not going to be able to successfully run again
    • Partly due to his age, he’s not as savvy as he used to be
    • He burned a lot of bridges during his presidency
  • The party shouldn’t try to change too much
    • Trump lost the presidency only by 14,000 votes, despite COVID and the media bias against him
    • Massive party transformations are more likely to harm than to help
  • Popular stances among Republicans
    • Strong confrontation of China
    • Cynicism towards elites, particularly in the media
  • Minimum Wage
    • The idea of a federal minimum wage doesn’t make sense
      • Costs of living are widely different among states
      • It would be bad for businesses
      • It wouldn’t fix perceptions of inequality
    • It seems more of an ideological debate than an economic one

Working on Fixing Healthcare

  • If people are dissatisfied with the current system and you don’t like what Democrats are proposing, you need to provide an alternative
  • Conservatives made no effort to come up with market-based solutions
  • We need to address the cost-subsidization that happens between different people
    • Around 70% of healthcare costs are borne in the last six months of people’s lives
    • 70% of chronic illnesses are a result of lifestyle decisions
      • How can you make people more accountable for their decisions?
      • Why should I subsidize the healthcare costs of people who eat sugar?
  • Government nutritional advice has been catastrophic
    • “It would not shock me if we wake up one day and say: Oh my god, I can’t believe we banned cigarettes but tolerated sugar” Keith Rabois

Trends in Real Estate and Remote Work

  • Opendoor, a startup founded by Keith, is worth $16B
    • Keith has access to extensive data about the real-estate market
  • People are moving away from densely populated cities
    • They are realizing that open, outdoor space matters
  • The ability to work remotely increased the flexibility
  • Post-Covid, he expects around 30% of companies to keep remote work
    • A lot of companies are performing well remotely, but many employees tend to be less satisfied
    • Most of the learning happens in an unstructured way that you can’t replicate remotely
      • Running into someone in the elevator or on the way to a coffee shop

Recent Remote Startup Investments by Keith

  • Run The World, an online-events platform seeking to re-create the experience of in-person conferences
  • Teamraderie aims to improve collaboration, creativity and productivity for remote teams

Additional Notes

  • You pick up the behavior and habits of the people you spend the most time with
    • If you want to be healthier, surround yourself with very healthy people
    • “Be very judicious about what habits you want to have in your life and calibrate who you spend your time with and that will change almost everything” Keith Rabois
  • Keith doesn’t like overfunding startups in their early stage
    • It creates issues in their company culture
This Week in Startups with Jason Calacanis : , ,
Notes By Giorgio Parlato

More Notes on these topics

Top Insights and Tactics From

31 Best Podcasts of All Time

FREE when you join over 12,000 subscribers to the
Podcast Notes newsletter

No Thanks