Reporting From the Frontlines of the Culture Wars

The Michael Shermer Show | 14 May 2024 | 1h 34m | Listen Later | Podcasts | Spotify
Interview with Nellie Bowles about her book Morning After the Revolution: Dispatches from the Wrong Side of History. Discusses what it’s like to work at The New York Times; what it’s like to found a new media company; same-sex marriage; Liberalism versus Progressivism; the Black Lives Matter, #metoo, and transgender movements; Patrisse Khan-Cullors; White privilege; somatic abolitionism; anti-racism; cancel culture; and more.

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Nick Bostrom on Deep Utopia

The Michael Shermer Show | 16 April 2024 | 1h 45m | Listen Later | Podcasts | Spotify
Interview with Nick Bostrom about his book Deep Utopia: Life and Meaning in a Solved World. Discusses an AI Utopia and Protopia; Trekonomics and post-scarcity economics; the hedonic treadmill and positional wealth values; colonizing the galaxy; the Fermi paradox; mind uploading and immortality; Google’s Gemini AI debacle; LLMs, ChatGPT, and beyond; how would we know if an AI system was sentient?

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Chris Anderson on Infectious Generosity

The Michael Shermer Show | 23 January 2024 | 1h 18m | Listen Later | Podcasts | Spotify
Interview with Chris Anderson about his book Infectious Generosity: The Ultimate Idea Worth Spreading. Discusses what makes things infectious, generosity, the role of genes, environment and luck in his life, what makes TED Talks successful, power laws and giving, charging versus giving away, altruism, being good without God, billionaires, how average people can participate, public versus private solutions to social problems, and donor fatigue.

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Robert Sapolsky on Free Will and Determinism

The Michael Shermer Show | 17 October 2023 | 1h 53m | Listen Later | Podcasts | Spotify
Interview with Robert Sapolsky about his book Determined: A Science of Life Without Free Will. Discusses free will, determinism, compatibilism, and libertarian free will; how what people believe about free will and determinism influences their behaviors; punishment and retribution versus restorative justice; whether the self is an illusion; and more.

Sapolosky articulates exactly what I think about free will. The Dissenter interview is also worth a listen.

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William Magnuson – For Profit: A History of Corporations

The Michael Shermer Show | 4 February 2023 | 1h 36m | Listen Later | Podcasts | Spotify
Interview with William Magnuson about his book For Profit: A History of Corporations. Traces the history of corporations from Rome onwards, arguing that modern corporations should recapture the spirit of civic virtue so that all stakeholders, not just shareholders benefit from the profits of enterprise.

 

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Matthew Cobb – As Gods: A Moral History of the Genetic Age

The Michael Shermer Show | 27 December 2022 | 2h 00m | Listen Later | Podcasts | Spotify
Interview with Matthew Cobb about his book As Gods: A Moral History of the Genetic Age. Discusses objections to genetic engineering (political, religious, cultural), selective breeding, recombinant DNA, the ethics of genetics, patenting life, gene therapy, gene editing, CRISPR, literature and films on the dangers of genetic engineering, bioweapons, 3 Laws of Behavior Genetics, and what people fear about it.

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Marian Tupy & Gale Pooley on Superabundance

The Michael Shermer Show | 30 August 2022 | 1h 54m | Listen Later | Podcasts | Spotify
Interview with Marian Tupy and Gale Pooley about their book Superabundance: The Story of Population Growth, Innovation, and Human Flourishing on an Infinitely Bountiful Planet. Discusses the evidence that resource abundance increases faster than population – with the average human being creating more value than they consume.

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Anastacia Marx de Salcedo – Eat Like a Pig, Run Like a Horse

The Michael Shermer Show | 2 August 2022 | 1h 35m | Listen Later | Podcasts | Spotify
Interview with Anastacia Marx de Salcedo about her book Eat like a Pig, Run Like a Horse. Argues that regular aerobic exercise is far more important that finessing diet. Discusses her diagnosis of multiple sclerosis at age 27; her long-term psychological strategy for living with a serious illness; our 70-year-old “diet detour”; the obesity crisis; how dietary studies are conducted; diseases you can treat, manage or prevent with exercise; cholesterol and statins; and more.

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