Creating Communities of Distributed Trust

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up the down escalator no III think I
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think there are real possibilities of
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creating communities of distributed
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trust right which is which is at the
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core of the to in my mind the whole
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effort right have now how do you create
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a community of distributed trust and and
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and what I’d like to see is that that
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distributed trust is applied to areas
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that are not so fiercely guarded by the
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you know the the powerful you know
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states governments and and and
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businesses right because again it when I
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think about how to play the long game
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here I think that is possible to carve
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out
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areas of got resistance but what I
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really mean is areas of sovereignty self
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sovereignty over issues again they’re
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not so fiercely guarded as money yes
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about the state and and so again this is
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an issue of tactics or other than
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strategy right and and and so that I
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would pursue a different tactical
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approach to the I think the goal we all
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or most of your listeners share with you
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and I for sure it it does seem to me and
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I want to bring this back to the run of
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iris now right which is that everything
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you’re describing whether it’s whether
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it’s your tactical approach my tactical
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approach I
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I think it’s tempting to think oh the
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instability that the virus brings is
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going to be an advantage in fighting
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this long game right I actually think
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it’s it’s it’s it’s a very much
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disadvantageous to both of us right the
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both of our tactical approaches here and
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and I don’t think you have to look much
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farther than what happened in Hungary
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right over the last two days where the
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the Hungarian Parliament and this has
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been building for a while right and
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event but Hungarian Parliament in
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response to the throne of iris emergency
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and it is an emergency gave really
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dictatorial powers to to Viktor Orban
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the the Prime Minister where he now has
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the ability ability to rule by decree
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right don’t have to pass the law doesn’t
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have to go to Parliament whatever the
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executive says is law there’s no time
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limit on this now in hunger there’s a
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new law that if you spread false
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information I think and use as the
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executive describes this what at stake
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or not you’re in prison for five years
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and if you try to leave the areas of
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confinement quarantine that they’ve set
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up that’s in the this this is what
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happens I think in weaker states
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go back to some you know idyllic state
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of nature where you know you can set up
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your you know Kingdom of Wakanda you
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know alright what happens is they’re
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taken over by thugs they’re taking them
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by warlords and by thugs and and you
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know in Hungary is uh it’s a member of
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the yeah I mean I mean it’s a core
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member of Europe so when I when I think
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about what’s going to happen in the next
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year and a half in Indonesia what’s
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gonna happen the next year and a half in
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Egypt it’s going to happen in today
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what’s happening right now in Iran for
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God’s sakes I I don’t think it works to
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our advantage
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III think that the impetus in every
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country and particularly in the weaker
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States is going to be for reclaiming of
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the physical of the violence of the gun
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and so this is why I think it’s more
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important than ever that we identify
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each other in our communities of empathy
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in our communities of our pack right so
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that we can fight this long game this
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long war and so we can support each
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other so anyway that’s not I’m just
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trying to bring it back to what’s
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happening today and and how we should
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think about this unfortunately I don’t
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think it’s a great opportunity but I
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think it’s something that we all need to
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come together even more around so that
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we can can stray stay strong or the the
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dark times that are ahead and I do think
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they’re dark times well never one to
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mince words and and and I certainly
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appreciate the perspective on I’m
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slightly more optimistic for the reasons
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that I outlined you know in the physical
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realm but in the digital realm right is
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the internet still a bastion of freedom
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and can you ultimately get people to act
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freely outside of you know some of the
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more restrictive social media platforms
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for instance but just any type of
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peer-to-peer communication system
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peer-to-peer digital realms would seem
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if you’re more conducive for the silent
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distance the quiet resistance yes and
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that individual thesis but how exactly
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we get there not not debating that it
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could get ugly I want to change gears
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for the the last a little bit that we
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have and just talk about your
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understanding of the investment you know
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as I guess for this generation of
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investors because one of your more
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popular posts this is water and yeah
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it’s still water it kind of talked about
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this shifting mindset where deflation
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expectations that were driven by
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technology are now inflation
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expectations there’s and this isn’t
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necessarily new but I like the way they
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laid it out the the globalism that had
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permeated the the macroeconomy for so
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long is now becoming more nationalistic
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now in some respects that’s not a bad
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thing because now you might have
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countries that are more resilient in the
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face of issues like pandemics when when
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today you know we’re seeing just how
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levered we are via global supply chains
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you talked about the kind of shifting
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from you know capital markets into you
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know true market mechanisms just
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political utilities and um and then just
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overall how financialization is kind of
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exacerbated you know all of those trends
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what what’s what’s the what’s the next
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step in in financial markets right yeah
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if if you run out of the capacity to
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print if you run out of the capacity to
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spend let’s not even talk about the u.s.
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let’s talk about some some country like
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like Hungary they don’t necessarily
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control their own currency it’s a small
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but usually functioning democracy what
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does a market system look like in a
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situation like hungry and then how do
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you ever get back to normalcy or how do
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you set the reset button so that the
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short answer is that for in a I’ll go
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back to
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I’m gonna go back 2,500 years yeah this
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is the academic in me right I can’t I
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can’t I can’t give you a straight answer
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right what you’re asking has all
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happened before like it’s all happened
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before right so Peloponnesian War you’ve
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got a thens and Sparta the big countries
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you know fighting each other and then
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the question is well what happens to the
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little countries what happens to ya
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you know magar you know all these these
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these little city-states and the the
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Athenians they’re trying to get their
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their allies together in one of the the
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little allies is saying well you know
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but you know you’re asking us to
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sacrifice everything is all for you I
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mean this this sounds this justice out a
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great deal and the Athenian ambassador
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says you know it was ever thus the
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strong do as they will the weak do as
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they must strong do as they will the
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weak do this they must
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and nothing has changed in 2500 freaking
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years when it comes to the ability of
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countries to chart their own course to
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deal with the exigencies of power hungry
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will do as they must even weaker
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countries than hungry will definitely do
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is they must and the strong do as they
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will so what they will when it comes to
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Europe when it comes to the United
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States when it comes to Japan which
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comes to to China is that there are no
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limits on you know printer Gober right
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there are no limits on you know we we
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haven’t even really touched yet modern
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monetary theory in the notion that well
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there’s not even a relationship between
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spending and taxing right
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you can run deficits as much as you want
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go on go for it we’re just getting
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started man
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getting started hey we’re not at the end
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game of this where yeah it’s like it’s
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like this is halftime hey this this
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isn’t the last few minutes of the fourth
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quarter
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with how governments are going to
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transform capital markets and the fourth
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key utilities with how they’re going to
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you know transform the meaning of money
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into what supports political power yeah
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this is just half time so I I think we
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really do have to take that long-term
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perspective that the printer can go burr
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for a lot longer and it doesn’t matter
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who gets elected you know you know it’s
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it’s it it’s all the same that the last
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10 years have been the greatest transfer
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of wealth – I call it the managerial
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class then I really think anything in
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history it has come through stock
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buybacks through stock sales through
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stock based compensation it’s all
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happened in the last 10 years and it’s a
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transfer of hundreds of billions of
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dollars of wealth to managers not
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entrepreneurs not founders not Shinya to
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managers managers and when that much
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wealth is transferred to that number of
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people in such a short period of time
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it doesn’t reverse itself yeah you know
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you know people don’t the the cheese may
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move but people still want their cheese
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yeah and and and I just I just think
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it’s so important to remember that we
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really are playing that long game to
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remember that the strong do is they will
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and the weak – as they must and to have
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in mind a set that that we’re just half
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time right now and that we need to play
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the game accordingly because what you
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don’t want to do is you don’t want to
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yeah you don’t want to storm an
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entrenched machine-gun nest you know
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with you know huzzah now is our time you
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know then you you really do I think want
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to play the long game
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I think there
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a real power of conviction and belief
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that allows us to play a long game
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mm-hmm and to keep it all together
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of course people like you doing your
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podcast it requires people like me doing
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our writing and most of it all it it
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requires a critical mass of people who
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whose greatest regret would be to give
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up and to be co-opted by the powers that
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be rather than play the long game and
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fight the long fight I can’t think of a
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better way to wrap up this conversation
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than calling for conviction and long
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term ISM and a market remedies panicked
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and and you know short termism generally
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drills the day then where can people
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find you on twitter I’m easy it’s it’s
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it’s all epsilon Theory all the time so
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at epsilon theory and epsilon Theory
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comm it’s for you to read and love to
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love to have you on board it’s a it’s an
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excellent read always I’ve been
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following you for years now and and
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definitely appreciate your commentary
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and watching it at all even as we get
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into a slightly darker period and you
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can tell for those that are tuning in if
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you can hear the background noise that
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naptime just ended so we we just wrapped
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up with the most perfect time because I
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just I just heard my kids wake up and
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surprise that they haven’t run in here
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already thank you for having me Ryan’s
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really a pleasure anytime Thank You Ben
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and stay safe
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YouTube take care

The Economic Lessons Of A Free Solo Climb

In 2017, American rock climber Alex Honnold ascended Yosemite National Park’s vertical rock formation, El Capitan, in under four hours. Honnold’s extraordinary journey to the top was captured in the documentary Free Solo, named after the method of climbing without ropes or equipment which Honnold used.
While audiences largely reacted to the movie with nail-biting, dizzying fascination, economist John Cochrane thought to himself, “Why wasn’t this done 150 years ago?” On today’s show, the three economic lessons that prompted his question, and the surprising links between rock climbing and economics.

 

Maybe we should celebrate communities that give rise to accomplishments.

George Monbiot: How to Really Take Back Control

Every successful movement relies on a restoration story.

In 2008, no one had a new restoration story.

Globalization (no capital controls) has made Keynesian impossible. (25 min)

A growth-based system can not be sustained (27 min)

(28 min) A New Restoration Story

Civil Rights and Obligations

Sister Simone Campbell, SSS—known as “the nun on the bus”—is someone I consider a modern prophet. She is the Executive Director of NETWORK, an organization that lobbies for socially just federal policies. On this “Independence Day” (in the United States), reflect on Sr. Simone’s invitation to co-create our collective freedom.

In the last half of the twentieth century, thankfully, our society began to engage in a serious process of trying to atone for the sin of slavery, and in doing so much emphasis was placed on promoting civil rights. An unintended consequence of this important movement was a heightened focus on individuals and individual exercise of the freedoms guaranteed in the Constitution. The civil rights movement came out of community, but the legal expression focused on individuals’ capacity to exercise their freedoms. Some fearful Americans—largely white men who professed a conservative version of Christianity—felt threatened, as if there were not enough rights to go around. They sought to create their own “movement.” This reaction in part fueled the rise of the tea party movement. . . .

But a democracy cannot survive if various groups and individuals only pull away in different directions. Such separation will not guarantee that all are allowed the opportunity for “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” All people must be recognized for their inherent dignity and gifts regardless of the color of their skin, their religious beliefs, or their place of origin. And all these gifts need to be shared in order to build up the whole.

So I have begun to wonder if the new task of the first half of the twenty-first century should be a commitment to civil obligations as a balance to the focus on civil rights.

Civil obligations call each of us to participate out of a concern and commitment for the whole. Civil obligations call us to vote, to inform ourselves about the issues of the day, to engage in serious conversation about our nation’s future and learn to listen to various perspectives. To live our civil obligations means that everyone needs to be involved and that there needs to be room for everyone to exercise this involvement. This is the other side of civil rights. We all need our civil rights so that we can all exercise our civil obligations.

The mandate to exercise our civil obligations means that we can’t be bystanders who scoff at the process of politics while taking no responsibility. We all need to be involved. Civil obligations mean that we must hold our elected officials accountable for their actions, and we must advocate for those who are struggling to exercise their obligations. The 100 percent needs the efforts of all of us to create a true community.

It is an unpatriotic lie that we as a nation are based in individualism. The Constitution underscores the fact that we are rooted and raised in a communal society and that we each have a responsibility to build up the whole. The Preamble to the Constitution could not be any clearer: “We the People” are called to “form a more perfect Union.”

Richard Rohr Meditation: Connecting to the Eternal

[While] European mystics and contemplatives often lived in community, they tended to focus on the individual experience of encountering the divine presence. African American contemplatives turned the “inward journey” into a communal experience. . . . The word contemplation includes but does not require silence or solitude. Instead, contemplative practices can be identified in public prayers, meditative dance movements, and musical cues that move the entire congregation toward a communal listening and entry into communion with a living God. . . .

.. This is how Howard Thurman describes the embodied locus of contemplation:

There is in every person an inward sea, and in that sea is an island and on that island there is an altar and standing guard before that altar is the “angel with the flaming sword.” Nothing can get by that angel to be placed upon that altar unless it has the mark of your inner authority. Nothing passes . . . unless it be a part of the “fluid area of your consent.” This is your crucial link with the Eternal. [1]

 . . As I see it, the human task is threefold.

  1. First, the human spirit must connect to the Eternal by turning toward God’s immanence and ineffability with yearning.
  2. Second, each person must explore the inner reality of his or her humanity, facing unmet potential and catastrophic failure with unmitigated honesty and grace.
  3. Finally, each one of us must face the unlovable neighbor, the enemy outside of our embrace, and the shadow skulking in the recesses of our own hearts.

Only then can we declare God’s perplexing and unlikely peace on earth. These tasks require a knowledge of self and others that only comes from the centering down that Thurman advocates. It is not an escape from the din of daily life; rather, it requires full entry into the fray but on different terms. . . . Always, contemplation requires attentiveness to the Spirit of God. .