The Top 10 Top 10 Lists of 2008

by Derek Loosvelt | January 08, 2009

10. Time’s Top 10 Best Business Deals (Visa’s IPO topping the list perhaps proves that plastic is now king)

9. MSNBC’s Top 10 Charitable Gifts of 2008 (the fourth largest gift of the year came from the power couple David G. Booth, founder of Dimensional Fund Advisors, and his wife Suzanne who together sent $300 million to the University of Chicago Booth School of Business that, yes, bears their name)

8. The USPS Office of Inspector General’s Top 10 Postal Stories of 2008 (this is neither a link to an Onion story, nor does it having anything to do with “going postal,” and, in fact, it’s actually rather interesting, not to mention very related to the economic trials and tribulations of 2008 as well as to the year’s top stories; consider this sampling of top U.S. mail stories this year: "Periodicals go web-only" (No. 9), "Voting by mail takes off" (No. 7) and "Postal Service announces Voluntary Early Retirement Authority and a hiring freeze" (No. 6))

7. BusinessWeek’s 10 Best Business Books of 2008 (I wish I had the time to read of all these books—especially those scribed by Friedman and Gladwell; I also wish BW would have used proper rankings in its list because I'd sure like to know which of these ranked titles is more worthy of my time: Hell's Cartel: I.G. Farben and the Making of Hitler's War Machine or The Gridlock Economy: How Too Much Ownership Wrecks Markets, Stops Innovation, and Costs Lives)

6. Google’s Top 10 fastest rising search terms in mainland China (international marketing executives take note: six of the top 10 have to do with sex or sports)

5. Seeking Alpha’s Top 10 Records Set in 2008 (from record foreclosures to record Ponzi schemes, it was a rough year for just about everyone whose name isn’t Michael Phelps or Usai Bolt)

4. Time’s Top 10 Financial Collapses (okay, Lehman at No. 1 makes sense, but where the heck is Jimmy Cayne and Bear?)

3. CNBC’s Top 10 Famous Last Words (I can’t blame CNBC for not ranking these in any particular order because with McCain believing “the fundamentals of the economy are sound,” Madoff spouting off about how “it’s virtually impossible to violate rules” and Dodd believing that “Fannie and Freddie are very solid institutions,” among other famous phrases from the past 12 months, every sentence and fragment included in this list seems worthy of a No. 1 ranking)

2. New York magazine’s Top 10 Greatest Car Crashes in Movie History (they say movies are a great escape when times are tough, so in a year when tough times ruled the road, it’s only apropos that celluloid collisions ride near the top of the top 10 lists; warning: watch at your own risk—YouTube videos of the often-bloody scenes are linked to their descriptions)

1. The Economist’s Credit Crunch, the Board Game (right-o, it’s not quite a top 10 list, but this is borderline brilliant, damn fun and, instead of paying a $100 luxury tax or going directly to jail without passing Go, you can draw cards that read “Bernard Madoff looks after your wealth/Lose half of your assets to chosen player” and “You beat three counts of insider trading/Move forward 3 spaces”; plus, Credit Crunch’s board, cards and playing pieces can be downloaded at the aforementioned link, printed out and played in the privacy of your own home)

Filed Under: Finance


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