Excerpt: /119/ Reading Club: Digital Socialism

https://www.podbean.com/media/share/pb-ubvmn-da4935

On whether new tech can help build decentralised socialism.

We discuss Evgeny Morozov’s New Left Review essay, Digital Socialism? The Calculation Debate in the Age of Big Data. A useful companion to this (mentioned by George in the episode) is a lecture given by Morozov, that can be found at the bottom of this page.

Thanks for all the questions, they are addressed in the last third of the episode. 

Excerpt: /114/ Reading Club: The Light That Failed

https://www.podbean.com/media/share/pb-q3anv-d761f8

This episode is for our $10 and up patrons. Go to patreon.com/bungacast for access.

On the end of the Age of Imitation.

We discuss Ivan Krastev and Stephen Holmes’ The Light That Failed: A Reckoning and their arguments for why liberal democracy stopped being the model to follow – in Eastern Europe, Russia and even the USA.

Thanks for all the questions, they are addressed in the last third of the episode. 

/109/ Bunga Goes Ballard ft. Simon Sellars

https://www.podbean.com/media/share/pb-xsqur-d4a4e5

On Applied Ballardianism.

Is it J.G. Ballard’s world? Bunga talks Ballard with Simon Sellars, author of a new book on the great British sci-fi novelist J.G. Ballard. Urban decay, social breakdown, consumerism as social control and the Interzone. 

Opening passage is taken from Ballard’s 2000 novel ‘Super-Cannes’. 

Reading:

Applied Ballardianism, Simon Sellars, Urbanomic 

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/104/ The Aristocracy of Finance ft. Alexander Zevin

https://www.podbean.com/media/share/pb-s9bpj-d0594d

On The Economist and the contradictions of global liberalism.

Alexander Zevin joins us to discuss his work on the 176 year history of the magazine that has accompanied liberalism’s global expansion. Has it just reflected the world or has it actually influenced politics? How has The Economist balanced of democracy against the interests of finance and the needs of empire? And is the magazine suffering from N.O.B.S.? 

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Running order:

  • (06:02) Overview & early days
  • (29:52) 19th century & empire
  • (34:18) 20th century, esp 1930s and ’40s
  • (48:08) End of the Cold War and NOBS
  • (01:02:19) Liberalism & its enemies

 

Excerpt: /88/ Vouchers for Toxicity ft. Anton Jäger

https://www.podbean.com/media/share/pb-rda95-c0088e

On post-work. We discuss Anton’s review of David Graeber’s Bullshit Jobs and why it seems to have such appeal, even amongst elites. There is a crisis in the work ethic, but is it an error to counterpose work and leisure and simply opt for leisure? Is leisure even ‘ours’ anymore, or has it been fully colonised by capitalism? Ultimately, is the problem today more about bullshit in jobs, rather than bullshit jobs per se?

Readings:

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