Episode

11/17 The Myths Around Gentrification; FTX Empire Collapses w/ Leslie Kern & Jacob Silverman

November 17, 2022

Emma hosts Leslie Kern, professor of geography, environment, women’s and gender studies at Mount Allison University, to discuss her recent book Gentrification Is Inevitable And Other Lies. Then, she is joined by writer Jacob Silverman to discuss the recent developments surrounding the crypto exchange FTX and its founder, Sam Bankman-Fried. First, Emma runs through updates on the GOP making their House Majority official, Mitch McConnell beating out Rick Scott for Senate Minority leader, same-sex marriage legislation making it past the filibuster, violence in Iran, and a mass Starbucks worker strike in the US, also parsing through the ProPublica leak of a discussion between various anti-choice lobbyists. She’s then joined by Professor Leslie Kern, as she dives right into the nature of the monster of gentrification, first looking at the unnatural forces of modern neoliberalism that make it seem so inevitable today, with local and federal governments removing regulations and smoothing the path for capital and multinational organizations to turn housing into an asset class and use it as such. After diving deeper into this financialization of something necessary for life, taking spaces fundamental to the existence of urban communities and turning them into spaces of speculation and tourism built for outsiders, Professor Kern and Emma explore why the combination of a capitalist land market and mass disinvestment from certain communities will almost always point towards gentrification. Wrapping up, Professor Kern walks through the coining of the term in 1960s London to recognize a process that had been ongoing for a while, looking to explore the cultural drive that pushed certain middle-class homeowners away from suburban sprawl (not to mention the obvious economic elements), before the rise of neoliberalism in the ‘80s began to make urban centers a generally desirable investment for the rest of the middle-class, setting the stage for the third, finance-backed wave of gentrification that we see today. Jacob Silverman and Emma then dive into the rapid rise and fall of Sam Bankman-Fried, founder of a massive crypto empire in the FTX exchange and Alameda Research firm, diving into how his Ponzi scheme turned him into a billionaire on paper, while myriad liberal institutions offered him legitimacy, allowing him to effectively run wild, investing billions in others’ money completely unregulated. Wrapping up that story, Jacob and Emma discuss the echo of the 2008 financial crash that can be seen in the recent Crypto crashes, and the greater implications of SBF effectively disappearing billions of dollars from investors.

And in the Fun Half: Emma is joined by Brandon Sutton and Matt Binder as they tackle Karen Bass’ W in the LA Mayoral race, who could actually beat Trump in a GOP Presidential race, and the culpability of Kirsten Gillibrand as she CONTINUES to campaign for crypto. Herschel Walker soft launches his Letterboxd, Ben Shapiro and Matt Walsh discuss whether marriage is just having a baby, Mitch in Dallas dives deeper into how the crypto crash echos 2008, and Meta continues its mediocre early 2010s VR grift. Nick Adams talks anti-woke NBA stars and Sean Hannity hates on that sweet skunky smell of freedom, plus, your calls and IMs!

Check out Leslie’s book here: https://www.versobooks.com/books/4047-gentrification-is-inevitable-and-other-lies

Follow Jacob on Twitter here: https://twitter.com/SilvermanJacob

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