We need a new economy. We need new money. Let’s talk about it now. AEWCH 110 with John Bloom & Conor McCabe.

26 May

AEWCH 110: JOHN BLOOM & CONOR MCCABE or REINVENTING MONEY & ECONOMY


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ISTEN HERE OR ON iTunesSpotifyOvercastSoundcloudPatreon

Thank you for your support in this time, friends. This podcast is only possible because listeners like you support it. If the show is keeping you company in isolation, please give what you can. Contribute to my mission by supporting Against Everyone With Conner Habib on Patreon! Thank you so, so much.

Want to buy books mentioned on this ep? Go to my list for AEWCH 110 on Bookshop.org. It will  help support independent bookstores, and the show gets a small financial kickback, too.
AEWCH110TitleCard
Friends!

As we emerge from our global crisis, there is a tremendous opportunity to reinvent the economy. Why? Because it’s been plainly revealed to be sick and unable to be there for us. I wanted to address what we should do, what questions we should be asking, and where we should be turning our attention.

So I invited two of the most profound economic thinkers I know, John Bloom and Conor McCabe – partially just to put these two brilliant people in conversation with each other.
John is organizational leader of RSF Social Finance, which seeks to transform our relationship to money on individual, communal, and global levels. He’s the author of two books, Inhabiting Interdependence: Being in the Next Economy and The Genius of Money: Essays and Interviews Reimagining the Financial World. And he’s the General Secretary of the Anthroposophical Society of America. He’s also the only guest who’s ever said “Holy Toledo!” on my show.

Conor is an Irish economic historian and activist; and he appeared on AEWCH 76 to talk about what money was, anyway. Money and Sins of the Father: Tracing the Decisions that Shaped the Irish Economy .

Rather than talking about money as the root of all evil, we talk about money as a creative tool, a brilliant spiritual technology. Then we get a bit darker, of course, as the times demand.

And rather than luxuriating in thoughts of cryptocurrencies – which merely move us deeper into tech systems and don’t help us radically reevaluate our situation – we talk about economy in challenging ways and on many levels. We talk about it in spiritual ways, political ways, historical ways, and more; all with the aim of freeing it from its current tangle.

This is a deep conversation that is much needed, especially now. I’m not just happy to share it with you, I’m hopeful for what can grow out of it.

ON THIS EPISODE

  • How capitalism has commodified money
  • The different kinds of money (purchase, lending, gifting) and how they relate to different psychic states and types of time
  • How our changing senses of time and space in the crisis are changing our relationship to money
  • Economic activity from the head vs economic activity from the heart
  • Sex work as pre- or post-economy, and why that threatens capitalism
  • Taking the state and culture out of economics to purify it
  • Why we can’t actually pay anyone for their labor
  • The invention of insurance
  • “Capitalism expands by enclosure”
  • The dangers of universal basic income

SHOW NOTES

• For more on John, you can read some of his articles on the Anthroposophical Society’s website.

• The GoFundMe for Navajo& Hopi people is still going on, and you can still contribute. And here’s a little story on it.

• Here’s a good summary story of the Bewley’s closure in Dublin.

• It is perhaps not surprising that I can’t find a ton of articles on Bill Gross being crazy, but there are at least some articles on his stamp collection troubles.

• If you’d like to know more about the “spheres” I was talking about, you can start here.

• “Austerity is the gold standard,” is one of Conor’s many great quips.

Community Supported Agriculture (CSAs) is becoming increasingly popular.
Interestingly, the initial structure of CSAs was developed by Rudolf Steiner.

• Here’s that truly excellent interview with Chamath Palihapitiya saying we should let the airlines fail. It’s so great, I’ve watched it a hundred times.

Until next time, friends,
CH
Irish

EVENT: MEDICINE SONGS IN SYNTHETIC FUTURES featuring Conner Habib, Gordon White & Reverend Danny Nemu, THIS SUNDAY, MAY 24

19 May

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Friends!
No podcast this week, but there is a special and awesome event coming up for my patreon patrons ONLY. I’ll be in conversation with Gordon White and Reverend Danny Nemu about our global crisis, the possibility of a worse crisis ahead, and how to avert it. Or, as Gordon puts it, “an unpacking of this present moment and modes of critical analysis that lead to more organic, analogue, flourishing futures.”

The event is going to be a live webinar and Q&A for my patrons and Rune Soup premium members only. That means you can see the whole thing live and ask us questions and be a part of what promises to be a profound and transformative event.

To sign in, all you have to do is be a patron and register and show up. It’s free, but not open to the general public. SO:
1. To become a patron, go to my patreon and sign up at any level. If you’re already a patron…
2. You’ll see the page as soon as you sign up in the POSTS section of my patreon.

That’s it!
See you soon, friends!
XO
CH

Talking philosophy, music, and Deleuze with Stephen Malkmus on AEWCH 109.

12 May
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LISTEN HERE OR ON iTunesSpotifyOvercastSoundcloud

Thank you for your support in this time, friends. This podcast is only possible because listeners like you support it. If the show is keeping you company in isolation, please give what you can. Contribute to my mission by supporting Against Everyone With Conner Habib on Patreon! Thank you so, so much.

Want to buy books mention on this ep? Go to my list for AEWCH 109 at Bookshop.org. It will  help support independent bookstores, and the show gets a small financial kickback, too.

ON THIS EPISODE

  • The clash between artists and philosophers
  • The problem with “fun” music
  • Why we sum up what a song is “about” from its lyrics
  • Characters in music and ideas as characters
  • How songs never end
  • Deleuze, Guattari, the power of Becoming, set free and turned into art
  • The way that most artists and political commentators are merely staying in pre-created logics
  • “Content” vs art
  • The Secret Histories of music and when it breaks through, and being possessive of the underground music that you like
  • Stephen’s role in the coming utopia
  • Bad corona art

SHOW NOTES

• For more on Stephen The documentary on his band Pavement, Slow Century.

• Adorno is a great philosopher, and I talk about him at length on AEWCH 89 with Brian O’Connor. But he sure had a lot of problems with art. And there’s a conspiracy theory/meme (maybe it’s just a joke?) about Adorno being the driving force behind The Beatles.

• My one foray into music writing was a conversation with my friend Chris Leo, who has been in a number of great bands, but here we specifically talk about The Van Pelt.

The Fall, which was basically their frontman, Mark E. Smith, remains one of the greatest bands of all time, and has had a huge influence on both Stephen as a musician and me as a thinker.

• One of my favorite episodes of my show is AEWCH 45 with Ben Chasny of Six Organs Of Admittance. We talk about the occult power of music.

• Stephen’s friend who died is an incredible musician – David Berman of Silver Jews.
They Might Be Giants dialasong brightened up many days for me.

• Here’s a live video of Nina Persson singing her excellent song, “Clip Your Wings” but I’m telling you, you just can’t get it unless you see her.

• Here’s Stephen in the infamous conversation with the infamous Ian Svenonious(who is also a fav musician of mine).

• César Aira is an incredible author, and the best novel of his to start with is The Miracle Cures Of Dr. Aira.

D&G• Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari (pictured) take center stage in this episode. There’s so much to explore with their work, but the best place to start, I think, is the biography by Francois Dosse. In this episode, I draw on concepts in Anti-Oedipus, its sequel, Thousand Plateaus, and What Is Philosophy? , as well as Deleuze’s Difference And Repetition.
Jodorowsky’s Dune is one of the greatest and most truly magical movies ever made.

• “Face the Truth” does sound like “Sex War” by Lungfish! Sort of.
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• And, as promised, here’s a photo of Lungfish’s Dan Higgs.

• Here’s the trailer for Green Room. It’s a good action/horror movie.

• I talk quite a bit about the fantasies of apocalypse on AEWCH 105 with Mark O’Connell.

William Craddock‘s book is unfortunately not on Bookshop.org, but here’s his wiki, and you can look him and his work up from there.

• Walter Benjamin’s work is more important than ever. I was so happy to hear that Stephen was a fan, too. He mentions a work I haven’t read, the massive (and so exciting to me, even though I haven’t read it yet), The Arcades Project.
Until next time, friends
CH
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How to turn a global crisis into a utopia. AEWCH108

28 Apr

Against Everyone With Conner Habib · AEWCH 108: FROM GLOBAL CRISIS TO UTOPIA


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ISTEN HERE OR ON iTunesSpotifyOvercastSoundcloud

Thank you for your support in this time, friends. This podcast is only possible because listeners like you support it. If the show is keeping you company in isolation, please give what you can. Contribute to my mission by supporting Against Everyone With Conner Habib on Patreon! Thank you so, so much.

Want to buy books mention on this ep? Go to my list for AEWCH 108 on Bookshop.org. It will  help support independent bookstores, and the show gets a small financial kickback, too.

AEWCH108TitleCardFriends,

This is a comprehensive over of our situation and what we need to do.

Bringing together political observation, philosophy, psychoanalysis, and occultism, I take apart the current crisis – a political and socioeconomic crisis that a virus emerged into – and how we can move from this into utopia.

First, I survey the situation. Then our lockdown. And then I move into the importance of breathing; why in the center of this all, is breathing. Not just physical breathing, but the intentional creation of rhythms.

After moving onto whether or not it’s okay to do nothing, I talk about what we’re afraid of. The visions of fear; both fears of what might happening and fear of what is already happening.

That fear is a cue for action. But what kind of action? At the end of the episode, I move towards a vision of utopia, and suggest how we can get there.

Let’s do this.
– This episode arose, mainly, from my nightly “sermon” series, NobodiesTogether. Each night, I talk about an aspect of this crisis, with the aim of getting us all to be more engaged, rather than being passive spectators. I present my perspective for 20-30 minutes, and then move to Q&A. We’ve also had many special guests join us, including Mona Eltahawy, Alex Vitale, Mary Helen Hensley, Jeb Havens, and Una Mullaly. If you’d like to join us each night (except Tuesday), get access by joining my patreon at any level.

SHOW NOTES

•The lead-up conversations to this episode include
• Finally, it was also inspired by my friend Una Mullally, and her wise words on her podcast, United Ireland, on which she talked about utopia in Dublin.

John Moriarty‘s books are not widely available in the US, but you can still order them from The Lilliput Press. They are well worth the money and the wait.

• For more on touch (and the other senses) and their spiritual value, read Albert Soesman’s Our Twelve Senses.

• Here’s my essay in The Irish Times on how the global crisis has affected our experiences of time and space.

• Here’s Walter Benjamin’s beautiful essay, “Theses On The Philosophy Of History.”

• For Franco “Bifo” Berardi’s most global-crisis-relevant books check out Breathing: Poetry and Chaos and The Second Coming.

• The author of the sleep pamphlet is Walther Buhler, whose work is difficult to find in the US.

• The Slavoj Žižek quote, “‘The function of ideology is not to offer us a point of escape from our reality but to offer us the social reality itself as an escape,” comes from his book, The Sublime Object of Ideology.

• Grant Morrison gives a great account of how fiction becomes reality in his book, Supergods: What Masked Vigilantes, Miraculous Mutants, and a Sun God from Smallville Can Teach Us about Being Human.

• I still can’t believe I had Billy Bragg on the show. Do listen to that episode, and his music, for some wisdom. And read his short book, The Three Dimensions Of Freedom.

• An incredible book for evaluating the lead up to this moment is Babel by Zygmunt Bauman and Ezio Mauro.
Until next time, friends.
CH
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Why we need a new concept of time & space to create political change. Listen to me & Srećko Horvat on AEWCH 107!

21 Apr

AGAINST EVERYONE WITH CONNER HABIB 107: SREĆKO HORVAT or DEMYTHOLOGIZING (AND RE-MYTHOLOGIZING) THE CRISIS

LISTEN HERE OR ON iTunesSpotifyOvercastSoundcloudPatreon

Thank you for your support in this time, friends. This podcast is only possible because listeners like you support it. If the show is keeping you company in isolation, please give what you can. Contribute to my mission by supporting Against Everyone With Conner Habib on Patreon!
Thank you so, so much.

Want to buy books mention on this ep? Go to my list for AEWCH 107 on Bookshop.org. It will help support independent bookstores, and the show gets a small financial kickback, too.

AEWCH107TitleCard

Friends,

We’re surrounded by terms that sound new, but that aren’t new. “Social distancing.” “The new normal.” And actions that seem new but are not new. Elevated police presence. Government overreach. Pandemic.

But these are old narratives that have been changed slightly to seem new. They’re mythic. So I invited one of the most important thinkers of our time to sort through what is new, what is old, and what is needed in our moment.

Srećko Horvat is an author, political organizer, and philosopher. Of his many profound and politically potent books, my favorite (and the one you should start with) is Poetry From The Future: Why a Global Liberation Movement Is Our Civilisations Last Chance. It’s a hopeful but evenhanded book about the possibility of interconnected movements in a world where neoliberal capitalism has won
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He’s one of the cofounders of the Democracy In Europe Movement 2025, or DiEM2025 – a broad-based coalition of thinkers, rebels, and political theorists committed to creating a true leftist alternative in European politics, particularly in response to the disintegration of the EU.

Srećko is also currently giving live mini lectures, Q&As through the DiEM25 channel, and hosting conversations with luminaries as diverse as Noam Chomsky, Slavoj Žižek, and Seinfeld co-creator Larry Charles. (And on the 24th, he’ll be speaking with Franco Bifo Berardi!)

I’m so excited to share this conversation with you. It’s one that combines the political, the spiritual, and the philosophical, with activism. It identifies and creates new directions for us to move in during this crisis, and after.

ON THIS EPISODE

  • How and why we were dreaming about the global pandemic before it happened, and how we assisted it in happening
  • Why the esoteric, the occult, and border science matter now; and how the right seizes on them because the left is ignorant
  • the “libidinal” economy and why the left needs to take it up instead of opting for class reductionism
  • Why a leftist project needs to include a reappraisal of time and space (and why it matters now more than ever)
  • The fundamental fantasies of the left, the right, and the center
  • The generation of political will through meditation, poetry, reading, creating, gardening, and more
  • Why people are turning to plants in the global crisis
  • The possibility of money losing value over time
  • How to think about the value of laziness
  • The difference between mythic art and occult art
  • Why we should and should not applaud healthcare workers
  • The importance of using your own language
  • The necessity of new and strange directions for our activism
  • Meeting the stranger and loving the Other (and dating the Other, too)
  • Why lust matters, and how it’s connected to love

SHOW NOTES

• For more on Srećko, here’s his lecture, “The Virus Mythologies,” where he breaks down the signs and signifiers And for a quick summary of his other work, you can read Subversion!. Here’s Srećko in conversation with Brian Eno about his book, Poetry From The Future.

• I start off with a nod to the eruption of Mount Tamboura – to learn more about that catastrophic time, read The Year Without Summer: 1816 and the Volcano That Darkened the World and Changed History by William Klingman.

• I deeply appreciate Slavoj Žižek’s book, about the values of religion, The Puppet and the Dwarf: The Perverse Core of Christianity.
• Unfortunately, I cannot recommend Eric Kurlander’s book, Hitler’s Monsters, which is filled with misinformation and (willful?) misinterpretation. The main issue is that Kurlander, like many “historians” of the occult, although Kurlander certainly knows exoteric history, he does not understand the occult. That said, I can recommend a better book on the same subject, Hitler: The Occult Messiah, by Gerald Suster. Suster’s book also has some mistakes, but he at least takes the occult seriously as something other than just religious mind-control and stupidity. That said, it’s a very difficult book to get! At the very least, read them both.

• If you’d like to hear more about psychologist and border science inventor Wilhelm Reich, and his challenging relationship with the left, check out AEWCH 59, where I talk with Reich scholar James Strick. And if you do want to hear about me talking Wilhelm Reich, here you go.

Here’s a bit on Subcomadante Galeono (known to many as Subcomadante Marcos, but who changed his name to honor the dead) and the Zapatistas.

• Marx uses the vampire metaphor a few times in his work, but none more famously than, ““Capital is dead labor, which, vampire-like, lives only by sucking living labor, and lives the more, the more labor it sucks.” (In Capital)

• Here’s Walter Benjamin’s Theses On A Philosophy Of History. It’s, for me, one of the most influential theoretical works. From the essay: “The only writer of history with the gift of setting alight the sparks of hope in the past, is the one who is convinced of this: that not even the dead will be safe from the enemy, if he is victorious.”

• And Srećko mentions Carlo Rovelli, whose work I have yet to read. But I think I’ll start with the one he suggests, The Order Of Time.

• To hear more about the problem with doomsday preppers, check out AEWCH 105 with Mark O’Connell.

Barthes-216x300• So much about the theorist Roland Barthes on this show. Including, here, How to Live Together: Novelistic Simulations of Some Everyday Spaces. Also, his classic, Mythologies. His book Sade/Loyola/Fourier is difficult to find, but here’s my essay on Fourier, and you can find excerpts of his book in A Barthes Reader (which was edited by Susan Sontag!).

• Here’s Michel Foucault’s essay, “Of Other Spaces: Utopias and Heterotopias.”

• The prayer of Saint Francis:

Lord, make me an instrument of your peace, Where there is hatred, let me sow love; Where there is injury, pardon; Where there is doubt, faith; Where there is despair, hope; Where there is darkness, light; Where there is sadness, joy;  O Divine Master, Grant that I may not so much seek To be consoled as to console; To be understood as to understand; To be loved as to love.  

For it is in giving that we receive; It is in pardoning that we are pardoned; And it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.
Amen.

See you in the future, friends.
CH
WB

My novel, Hawk Mountain, out in 2021 from W.W. Norton in the US, and Penguin/Doubleday in Ireland and the UK.

17 Apr

Friends, some good news.
My (very dark) novel, Hawk Mountain, will be published by W.W. Norton in the US and Penguin/Doubleday in Ireland and the UK in summer of 2021.
I can barely believe it.
My whole life I’ve wanted to be a novelist.
I’m beaming, friends.
Hi.
Can’t wait to share my book with you.

HM

The Publishers Market entry

Why “stay the f*ck at home” is not enough. I talk with family abolitionist Sophie Lewis on AEWCH 106!

14 Apr

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ISTEN HERE OR ON iTunesSpotifyOvercastSoundcloud

Thank you for your support in this time, friends.
This podcast is only possible because listeners like you support it. If the show is keeping you company in isolation, please give what you can.
Contribute to my mission by supporting
Against Everyone With Conner Habib on Patreon!

Thank you so, so much.


AEWCH106TitleCard
Friends,
We need to talk about the regulations and messages of “stay the fuck at home;” of quarantines and police powers; of medicine and our bodies; and we need to do it now.

So I asked the brilliant Sophie Lewis -family abolitionist, and author of the challenging and fascinating book about the politics of gestation, Full Surrogacy Now: Feminism Against Family – to talk about all this and more.

Sophie and I have intersecting influences; Donna Haraway was a huge provocateur for Sophie, and my mentor, Lynn Margulis, was a huge provocateur for Donna. What these influences have led to: a question about what the individual is, how we’re all connected, where our boundaries are.

This is an intense and wide-ranging conversation. I’m so happy to share it with you.

ON THIS EPISODE

  • Why being with our families is an intolerable proposition
  • How the right has seized resistance to the state in our time
  • How the left couldn’t be less prepared for this pandemic and why
  • The way the condemnation of magic and the non-critical acceptance of science has made us impotent in the face of the current events
  • Whether or not astrology is eugenic, even though tarot is great
  • How leftists can interrogate science now
  • What Sophie learned from her silence meditation retreat (and how being greeted with silence can affect change)
  • Why Sylvia Federici and political economy takes on witchcraft (and sex work) need to be critiqued (and, uh, I kind of go off)
  • Why individual self-care is a “pestilence.”
  • The lessons of hospice care
  • The value of strangers and strangerhood
  • Why the classical elements and magic matter to leftist theory
  • What if we didn’t reach for the tools of fear and fascism in duress?

SHOW NOTES

• For more Sophie, go to her website. There you can find her essay, “Momrades against Motherhood, Mothering against the World.” And we should all read Sophie’s great, brief essay, “The Virus and the Home” where she states, “A quarantine is, in effect, an abuser’s dream…” And here’s her essay exploring the problems with Donna Haraway’s Staying With The Trouble. Sophie is also a member of the Out Of the Woods Collective who you may want to look into. Finally, here’s a good discussion between Sophie and Joanna Biggs.

• As a supplement to Sophie’s essay read Des Fitzgerald‘s excellent short essay, “Stay The Fuck At Home,” and Natasha Lennard‘s essay, “Domestic Violence Is on the Rise With Coronavirus Lockdown. The Responses Are Missing the Point.”

• Assad Haider, who critiques the tensions between identity politics and class politics was on the show way back on AEWCH 26.

• And if you do want to hear about me talking Wilhelm Reich, here you go.

• Someone once asked Mahatma Gandhi what he thought of Western civilization. “I think it would be a good idea,” he said. At least that’s how the story goes.

• If you’re unfamiliar with Sylvia Federici‘s work, it’s useful to some, even if it deserves (serious and thorough) critique. Here’s Daniel Denvir interviewing her on The Dig. I’ve found Federici’s work mostly uninspiring and overrated; her essays about witchcraft and magic go something like: “Capitalism disempowered witches, but I don’t believe those people ever had power in the first place.” But as you can hear from Sophie’s take, Federici has been a huge figure for many leftists, and a sort of backdoor for some leftists into witchcraft (though mostly in an aesthetic sense). Some of my critique comes out on AEWCH 98 with Thomas Waters.

• Would you like to read (or re-read) “A Cyborg Manifesto” by Donna Haraway? Also, I enjoyed, though did not fully agree with her book, Simians, Cyborgs and Women: The Reinvention of Nature. And here’s Donna’s update on the book that Sophie found wanting.

• Check out Elizabeth Wilson’s excellent book, Psychosomatic: Feminism and the Neurological Body . And though I haven’t read her book Gut Feminism yet, I am excited to.

• Alyssa Battistoni’s essay about political organizing and disorganizing is “Spadework.” And here’s an interview with Alyssa – “Living Together Shouldn’t Put Us at War With One Another or With the Earth.” And for work by Sophie’s partner, Vicky Osterweil, go here.

• Here’s Douglas Crimp’s (pictured below) essay “
How To Have Promiscuity In An Epidemic” and many of his other essays are collected in Melancholia and Moralism: Essays on AIDS and Queer Politics.

DG
 
• Sophie talks about abortion frankly and directly here.

Sophie mentions, briefly, Ann Boyer. I have yet to read her book, The Undying: Pain, vulnerability, mortality, medicine, art, time, dreams, data, exhaustion, cancer, and care, but I’m excited to.
Until next time, friends,
CH