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CRV103

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Jürgen Geuter (AKA tante)

Jürgen Geuter (AKA tante)

The conversations with Jürgen Geuter (AKA tante) and Lisha Sterling from C-Realm Podcast #424 continue here in the Vault. Both conversations focus on the interplay between democracy and dissent. Lisha says you can’t have one without the other. tante argues that the notion of privacy pre-supposes a certain level of autonomy that most people do not posses, and pretending that we are all equally autonomous beings sweeps uncomfortable issues around race, gender, class and wealth under the rug. Similarly, Lisha takes the position that cyber security is a social justice issue and that while we need police of various sorts, we can’t function as a democracy if the police see the citizens they are supposed to serve as an enemy to be preemptively defeated.

424: The Limits of Privacy

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Worried Monkey learns to solder at Hope X.

Worried Monkey learns to solder at Hope X.

KMO attended Hope X in NYC this past weekend (July 18 – 20, 2014) where he recorded an interview with tante (AKA Jürgen Geuter) about the unrealistic expectations we heap upon on idea of privacy. Specifically, he argues that our efforts are misdirected if we campaign against the invasion of our privacy when what we really want to prevent is discrimination and victimization. Lisha Sterling responds to this by admitting the limited benefit to be derived from beefed-up privacy laws, but she argues that  privacy is a biological and psychological need. tante gets the last word with a discussion of the incompatibility of liberal democracies and unaccountable and secretive intelligence agencies.

CRV102

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Daniel Ellsberg and Edward Snowden at Hope X.

Daniel Ellsberg and Edward Snowden at Hope X.

KMO attended the Hope X convention in New York City and collected interviews with Willow  Bl00 of the BrainMeats! podcast, Charles Duan, Director of Patent Reform at Public Knowledge, and Patrick Howell O’Neill who works the Tor beat for The Daily Dot. This episode was created for use on Radio Statler, and it may be that non-Vault subscribers can find it in the archived Radio Statler LiveStream.

423: “Away”

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Sustainable Dave

Sustainable Dave

KMO welcomes David Chameides to the C-Realm Podcast to talk about his efforts to effectively communicate the implications of peak oil and climate change to teenagers. Dave has delivered this message to the students at the North Carolina Governor’s School, a summer program for high-achieving students, for the past six years. He sees this as an opportunity to shape the worldviews of future leaders before the obligations of adulthood make many of their lifestyle choices for them. After the conversation, KMO concludes with some comments about the dysfunctional tendency of left-leaning intellectuals to form circular firing squads and fight with one another over trivial differences in ideology rather than looking for common ground upon which to build alliances and coalitions.

CRV101

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Vault_Cover101In another solo show, KMO riffs on the possibility and desirability of achieving ego death or non-dual awareness. Thomas Ligotti has a chapter on the topic in The Conspiracy Against the Human Race which KMO summarizes.  Later he reflects on environmental catastrophism.  In his chapter in Catastrophism: The Apocalyptic Politics of Collapse and Rebirth, Eddie Yuen argues that catastrophic rhetoric by climate activism bolsters the Right’s cause at the expense of progressive agendas. KMO applies this reasoning to the question of how to communicate with people who share most of the concerns of the C-Realm’s host and guests but who are skeptical about anthropogenic global warming.

422: I Me My

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C-Realm_422_cover

Ramana Maharshi

KMO speaks with Gary Weber, author of Happiness Beyond Thought: A Practical Guide to Awakening, about the means of breaking from of the self-referential internal monologue that keeps us obsessing over where we’ve been, where we hope to go, and the certainty that death awaits us at the end of our personal story.  While some people raise concerns that focusing too much energy and attention on one’s own mental states might take up cognitive and emotional resources that might be better directed  outward toward social and political transformation, in Gary’s experience, once one has achieved a state of non-dual awareness, one becomes even more effective in the social sphere. Ditching the I, Me, My narrative will make us more effective agents in the struggle for progressive societal transformation. According to Gary’s research, people with a handful of psychedelic experiences under their belt have a significant head start in silencing the self-referential mental chatter over psychedelic virgins.

CRV100

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They really don't think they'll share our fate?

They really don’t think they’ll share our fate?

In this 100th episode of the C-Realm Vault podcast, KMO and Chad Hill of the Hipcrime Vocab blog talk about growing up in an age of disintegrating opportunities and ever-rising expectations of achievement for young people, plausible definitions of the word “feudalism,” who does and doesn’t like the word “neoliberalism” and whether we might be better off if the population of the United States weren’t so docile or if open defiance of authority would provoke a crack down the effects of which could linger for decades.  Chad explains why he’s never been attracted to the libertarian mindset, and KMO explains his defection from it.

421: The Functional Equivalent of a Conspiracy

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Don't even think of sitting here.

Don’t even think of sitting here.

KMO and Kevin Carson, the author of The Desktop Regulatory State: The Countervailing Power of Networks and Super-Empowered Individuals, met up at the public library in Springdale, Arkansas to record a conversation about radical monopolies, car culture, retrofitting the built environment to compensate for peak oil, and how government and corporations “conspire” to criminalize low-cost living. Kevin explains the problem with literal, simplistic conspiracy narratives and discusses the culture of Northwest Arkansas. Finally, KMO plays a bit of conversation recorded in 2007 with the founder of The Farm, Stephen Gaskin, who died yesterday.

CRV099

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Don't get too comfortable.

Don’t get too comfortable.

KMO starts out with a long ramble that he won’t attempt to encapsulate here, and then moves into a conversation with Dr. Donnie Maclurcan of the Post Growth Institute recorded at CommonBound2014 about money and how fractional reserve banking isn’t exclusively a tool for criminal necromancers and Sith lords.  Thank you to film-maker Mark Dixon for recording that conversation.

420: Toward a Just Transition

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C-Realm_392_coverIn this second episode of interviews recorded at CommonBound 2014, KMO talks with Ed Whitfield of the Fund For Democratic Communities about effective communication and the appropriate and inappropriate uses of private property. Next up is Hannah Jones of the Responsible Endowments Coalition talking about her efforts to change investors’ conceptions of risk and return on investment. Then comes a conversation with Gar Alperovitz about taking the long view when it comes to social progress. After a poetic performance by Alixa and Naima of Climbing Poetree, KMO talks to them about a possible end to the Drug War.