4/12 Speculation As Chaos; What’s Wrong With The Fed? w/ Aris Komporozos-Athanasiou & Nathan Tankus

April 12, 2023

It’s Hump Day! Emma hosts Aris Komporozos-Athanasiou, associate professor of sociology at University College London (UCL), to discuss his recent book Speculative Communities: Living with Uncertainty in a Financialized World. Then, Emma is joined by economist Nathan Tankus, proprietor of the Notes on the Crises newsletter, to discuss recent developments at the Federal Reserve and Silicon Valley Bank. First, Emma runs through updates on an impending recession, Memphis reinstating Justin Pearson to the Tennessee Statehouse, the identity of the Louisville shooter, Dianne Feinstein’s retirement, the drying of the Colorado River, and Alvin Bragg’s response to the attacks on him from the right, before diving into the recent letter from Rashida Tlaib and other progressive congressional members calling for the release of Julian Assange. Aris Komporozos-Athanasiou then dives right into defining “speculative communities,” as a community defined and united by its uncertain future, resigned to collective contemplation and anxiety with no solid structural support, before stepping back to explore “speculation” as a deterministic economic concept – an individual taking an unwanted risk for future gains – versus looking at it from a community perspective, as an open-ended engagement with our uncertain futures. This brings Professor Komporozos-Athanasiou to the topic of “political speculation,” which he defines as the weaponization of instability to capitalize on the confusion and anxiety it creates, as seen in the rise of right-wing populism in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis. Wrapping up, he and Emma tackle the role of enclosure in cutting off other community outlets for anxiety and structures for stability. Nathan Tankus and Emma then walk through what’s wrong with the Federal Reserve, from the absurdity of putting one agency in charge of the economy, to its obvious obsession with one side of its dual mandate. They conclude the interview by addressing the Fed’s response to the recent Silicon Valley bank run, and why the legislative deregulation of banking encourages administrative inaction.

And in the Fun Half: Hua from Raleigh dives into the role of gentrification in community displacement, Emma addresses yesterday’s Twitter drama, and the failures of popularism (especially in an electoral sense). Mitch from Glendale discusses Marianne Williamson’s candidacy, Emma and Bradley tackle the disappearance of Dianne Feinstein, watch Tucker Carlson quiver at the feet of his forgiving lord (Donald Trump), Elon Musk argues that he HAD to fire most of Twitter’s staff in order to waste money losing advertisers, and Jordan Peterson’s guest offers some of the most disgusting anti-trans arguments yet, plus, your calls and IMs!

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