This is a conversation recorded at the home of Charles Eisenstein in January of 2014. We have so many demands on our attention, and so many players trying to manipulate our worldview. What principle can we rely on to guide our choices? Charles proposes that we let beauty be our guide.
KMO is leaving Bellows Falls for the summer, so this will be the last episode of C-Realm Radio for a good long while. In the first hour, we hear from Duncan Crary and James Howard Kunstler about Jim's correspondence with John B. McLemore, a cranky character from Alabama made famous by the S-Town podcast. Duncan was supposed to call in to discuss the pre-recorded material, but life intervened and KMO ended up riffing for the second half of the first hour about his own dances with doomerism.
In the second hour, KMO's long-time partner in podcasting over at the Z-Realm, Marty, joins the conversation to talk about life, the universe and Wonder Woman. Marty was called in for the first episode of C-Realm Radio, so it is only appropriate that he should be around for the last episode.
Timothy Kercheville describes himself as a landless farmer, and he is demonstrating how a world of opportunities exists for people who are long on passion but short on land and capital. Timothy's is using his passion for regenerative agriculture to transform his local community in Kentucky. He has turned the sprawling lawn of the local jail into a working farm and transformed prisoners into gardeners in the process, and at every turn, he is using farming as a high-leverage point for preparing his community for the transition to a post-petroleum world.
Hour 1: Both the Vermont House and Senate moved heaven and earth to get a marijuana legalization bill in front of Governor Phil Scott (R). He hasn't said he'd veto the bill, but the tired marijuana cliches he's been regurgitating don't inspire much confidence. KMO and Silas talk to Matt Simon of the Marijuana Policy Project to put the situation in historical and national context.
Silas just returned from a school trip to Cuba. In the final moments of the first hour, he recounts some of his adventures on the island nation.
Hour 2: KMO spoke with David Holmgren in 2014 about his essay, Crash On Demand: Welcome to the Brown Tech Future for C-Realm Podcast 401: Psycho-Social Debt Jubilee. This best-of conversation finds a new home and a new audience here.
Sam Harris interviewed Charles Murray for his podcast. KMO tried to generate some discussion of that podcast episode on the Friends of the C-Realm group. The resulting discussion proved frustrating, as the most dedicated participants were focused on discrediting Murray and showed little willingness to engage with the issues that Harris and Murray discussed. Author and publisher Douglas Lain admits that Murray's talking points make him angry, but Doug is willing to resist the impulse to lead with ad hominem and actually delve into Murray's arguments. His effort at honest criticism is most appreciated.
In this episode of the C-Realm Podcast, KMO tries to highlight what he finds useful in Murray's presentation and Doug articulates why Murray's arguments are built on shaky foundations. The conversation concludes in C-Realm Vault podcast #246.
In the first hour, KMO welcomes engineer and entrepreneur James Felton Keith to the program to talk about data; how it is generated, how it is stored, and who benefits from its collection. James sees the faltering ability of employment to deliver value to people as a distribution problem. That may sound like political talk, but James says that his habit as an engineer is to view every problem as a problem of distribution.
In the second hour, we revisit the conversation from C-Ream Podcast episode 511 with Patricia Paul and Anu Kirk talking about the societal pressure to reframe technological unemployment in terms of personal failure on the part of workers who could have done SOMETHING to remain nimble and employable in the face of rapid technological change.
KMO and Douglas Lain discuss populism, anti-natalism, misanthropy and other crazy notions that people get into their heads. KMO makes repeated reference to a recent Baffler article by Angela Nagle, so you should probably check that out. The second hour consists of KMO's 2014 conversation with David Bollier, author of Think Like a Commoner: A Short Introduction to the Life of the Commons.