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437: Hubris and Substitution

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A graph of US oil production

A graph of US oil production

New York Times columnist Paul Krugman published an opinion piece in which he lumped The Post Carbon Institute together with the Koch brothers as representatives of “climate despair,” claiming that anti-environmentalist right-wingers and anti-capitalist environmentalists are both wrong to think that we can’t have economic growth without increasing greenhouse gas emissions. Richard Heinberg responded explaining how Krugman fundamentally misunderstands the aims and objectives of the Post Carbon Institute and how he either misunderstands or misrepresents the very reports that he cited to support his argument. Krugman then dug himself into a deeper hole with a second column in which he castigates physical scientists for thinking that they are smarter than economists. In this episode of the C-Realm Podcast, Richard Heinberg joins KMO for a discussion on energy, economics and climate through the lens of biophysical reality.

CRV115

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Vault_Cover115The conversation from C-Realm Podcast #436 with Solar Bob Fairchild continues in this episode. Bob talks about his experience in Haiti and on the prospects for improving quality of life for people living there. KMO and Olga are in Vermont this weekend, exploring the possibility of moving here, and Olga and Doug describe visiting the home of a yoga teacher who moved here from NYC and is thriving.

436: Just a Matter of Time

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C-Realm_436_coverKMO welcomes Robert J. Fairchild (AKA Solar Bob) to the C-Realm to discuss the dramatic increase in oil extraction from hydraulic fracturing, it’s effects on the US and global economies, and what it really represents in terms of energy returned on energy invested. They make extensive reference to an article by Grant Smith, U.S. Seen as Biggest Oil Producer After Overtaking Saudi Arabia, which quotes Bank of America, Citigroup and the International Energy Agency in support of the notion that the United States will remain the world’s top producer of fossil fuels until 2030. Compare the quality of discussion in the comments to that article on Bloomberg.com to the discussion of the same article on the Friends of the C-Realm group.

CRV114

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Vault_Cover114KMO’s first attempt at recording a conversation with Dr. David Denkenberger took an oddball turn onto an obscure philosophical tangent and then ended abruptly with a dropped call. What appeared in C-Realm Podcast 435 was their second, more tightly focused attempt. Herein, Vault subscribers get a glimpse of the more esoteric territory the first conversation explored. Later, KMO talks with blogger and urban permaculturalist, Andy Russell about how he caught the Doomer bug, worked his way through it, and built a rewarding life for himself and his family.

435: No Matter What

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C-Realm_435_coverKMO talks to Global Catastrophic Risk Institute researcher, Dr. David Denkenberger. David’s forthcoming book, Feeding Everyone No Matter What: Solving the Food Crisis After Global Catastrophe, describes the technical feasibility of feeding everyone on Earth in aftermath of a calamity the wipes out conventional agriculture. He’s careful to distinguish technical feasibility from political or economic feasibility. Later, KMO shares some thoughts on the incompatibility of capitalism and environmental stewardship from the Socialist Equality Party and with a brief clip from a conversation between Laura Flanders and Gar Alperovitz before closing with some unconventional thoughts on technology from SF author Karl Shroeder.

CRV113

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Vault_Cover113No guest this week, so KMO borrows from a lecture, A History of Conspiracy Theories in America by Robert Goldberg, as the starting point for a meditation on fear, scape-goating, hucksterism and psychological resilience. KMO provides a preview of next weekend’s podcast with a reading from the Autonomy Acres blog and rounds out with a reading from the HP Lovecraft story, The Horror at Red Hook.

434: Ferguson Rorshach

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Mayhem or uprising?

Mayhem or uprising?

KMO talks with freelance writer and blogger Brian Kaller, who grew up in a town next to Ferguson, Missouri about how the news and images out of Ferguson seemed to provide confirmation for disparate and sometimes contradictory narratives about the forces at work in American culture. Everyone saw what they wanted or expected to see, and few voices showed any hint of doubt even while their reporting demonstrated near total ignorance of the story’s setting. You can read Brian’s article on the Ferguson coverage for The American Conservative here.

CRV112

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Vault_Cover112KMO shares more interviews collected on location at the People’s Climate March and Flood Wall Street. The points of view range from that of a high school student from Vermont wearing a “Challenge Corporate Power” button to Communist revolutionaries who are waiting for revolution-friendly conditions to crystallize. The longest conversation is between KMO and another practitioner of citizen journalism. No sound bites here. Only tools for thinking and concepts to conjure with.

433: March Then Flood

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C-Realm_433_coverKMO attended the People’s Climate March on Sunday and Flood Wall Street the next day. The first event was a permitted march that respected authority and was timed not to disrupt business. The second was unauthorized and was deliberately disruptive to traffic around the icons of finance capital in lower Manhattan. There were zero arrests at the People’s Climate March. There were 102 arrests at Flood Wall Street. KMO shares interviews collected on location at both events.

CRV111

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If you need an explanation, you don't want to know.

If you need an explanation, you don’t want to know.

KMO’s conversation with Mike Daisey closes in on the geeky goodness of murder hobos and inhabiting an alternate timeline in which JJ Abrams never made any Star Trek films and George Lucas never made his Star Wars prequel trilogy. Mike explains why the man who brought us TV’s first inter-racial kiss is a racist and why Singularitarians deserve to have large and irregularly-shaped objects inserted forcefully into their rectums. So NSFW.