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#12 - Geoffrey Miller (Part 1 of 2)

Geoffrey Miller is an evolutionary psychology professor at the University of New Mexico in the USA, and is best known for his books The Mating Mind (2001), Mating Intelligence (2008), Spent (2009), and Mate (2015). He has a B.A. from Columbia University and a Ph.D. from Stanford University, and has also worked at NYU Stern Business School, UCLA, and University College London. He has over 120 academic publications addressing sexual selection, mate choice, signaling theory, fitness indicators, consumer behavior, marketing, intelligence, creativity, language, art, music, humor, emotions, personality, psychopathology, and behavior genetics. He has given 192 talks in 16 countries. His research has been featured in Nature, Science, The New York Times, The Washington Post, New Scientist, and The Economist, on NPR and BBC radio, and in documentaries on CNN, PBS, Discovery Channel, National Geographic Channel, and BBC. He has consulted for a variety of Fortune 500 companies, governments, NGOs, advertising agencies, market research companies, and social media companies. He is also active in the Effective Altruism, ancestral health, academic free speech, and polyamory movements. His current priority is leveraging evolutionary psychology insights to reduce the existential risks from Artificial General Intelligence.

Geoffrey's personal website: www.primalpoly.com

Geoffrey on Twitter: @primalpoly

Timestamps:

Feminist implications of Darwin and the politics of sexual selection. (00:00)

How the advent of bodyguards affected sexual politics. (00:07)

How to critique capitalism with evolutionary psychology. (00:17)

How being creative is a handicap. (00:24).

Can psychological knowledge provide an edge for creating radical social change? (00:31)

Declining fertility rates and anti-natalism. (00:37)

How the denial of IQ differences prevents us from criticizing cognitive domination. (00:50)

Will China soon dominate the world? (00:55)

How China’s use of molecular genetic technologies could lead to global domination in two generations. (01:01)

Antifa, guns, and why, if there is going to be revolution, Geoffrey thinks it’s not going to be an intersectional revolution. (01:08)

 

#11 - Will Sharkey

Will Sharkey is an ultraleft Catholic schoolteacher and Philosophy PhD. He is a member of the UK-based anti-capitalist organization Plan C. You can find more about Will and his work on his website, williamduncansharkey.com. You can also find him as @Anonyleftcommie.

A lot of people ask how I can be interested in Catholicism and communism at the same time. With Will's help, this is now the single best thing I've produced on this topic to date.

Will is also above average in his tolerance for what some people might consider outrage-worthy notions. Not that he necessarily agrees, but he has a very open-minded and generous conversational ethic. I think there are a few vaguely dicey talking points I float here and there, and Will was totally unperturbed. In my recent intellectual and political conflicts of late, Will hasn't always agreed with me, but he's never rejected our relationship as people and interlocutors because of it.

So I count Will as a model open-minded left-revolutionary who I am very lucky to know.

Timestamps

The first 30 minutes is chatting about schools and teaching and just general chit-chat.

Things get deeper at around 33 minutes when Will starts to tell me about Pier Paolo Pasolini, the famous Italian anarchist communist intellectual (about whom I know nearly nothing). From there it's off to the races, mostly about our different views on the three things we both share: Catholicism, anarchism, communism, and how those things add up.

#10 - Ilan Zvi Baron

Dr Ilan Zvi Baron is Associate Professor in the School of Government and International Affairs, and Co-Director of the Centre for the Study of Jewish Culture, Society and Politics at Durham University.

Baron has written multiple books, including Obligation in Exile: The Jewish Diaspora, Israel and Critique (Edinburgh University Press, 2015) and How to Save Politics in a Post-Truth Era (Manchester University Press, 2017). He has also published numerous academic articles on Jewish identity and security, including Diasporic Security and Jewish Identity in the journal Modern Jewish Studies (2014).

Ilan is a "reluctant Zionist" and I don't know many Zionists so I wanted to ask him about that. Unlike many of my podcasts, this one is actually pretty focused on this one topic. We also discuss some tangents of this question, mostly relating to ideology and the culture wars, etc. After some chit-chat, the conversation really kicks off around the 14 minute mark.

A Talk on "Immediate Collective Liberation"

This is the audio from a talk I gave to Plan C London on January 19, 2016. You can find the slides for this talk at the following links: PDF or HTML.

#9 - Sam Berkson

Sam Berkson is a poet and blogger. Sam is a really passionate and active writer, performer, and organizer (of culture and politics) in London. We recorded this podcast in Sam’s flat in Tottenham at 3am on a Friday night.

Sam's recent book, Settled Wanderers, is out now with Influx Press. You can find more of Sam's work on his website and you can hit him up at @AngrySamPoet.

Notes with timestamps

general patterns of the universe!!! 00:01

full automation or nah? 00:03

what’s up with Red Bull owning the whole world of extreme sports? 00:06

the crazy growth in performance in extreme sports 00:07

linguistic invariance, principles and parameters 00:14

even educated people basically don’t know shit 00:16

how natural human mental functioning is really faulty 00:18

the metaphor of the elephant and its rider 00:19:30

right-wing vs. left-wing models of human needs 00:24

the problem of aggregating from individualism to tribalism to global community  00:28

nobody does anything great out of desperation 00:44

why you have to be realistic about what thinking can do - 00:46

talking with people isn’t about solving problems but doing something meaningful 00:47

if listeners don’t like my podcasts then they're fired! 00:49

#8 - Russell Bentley

Russell Bentley is Professor of Political Theory at the University of Southampton, where he researches and teaches across the history of political thought, from ancient Greek to contemporary American politics. He also has experience in the upper echelons of university administration (formerly Associate Pro Vice-Chancellor of Education at the University of Southampton), from which he brings to us some uncommonly frank and revealing insights into higher education today. I invited Russell to chat with me because there are very few people I’ve met in academia who are at once so professional and candid about their views from within the belly of the beast.

You can find Russell on Twitter at @RKBntly.

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