Excellent interview, Bari. I used to work in financial regulation and almost everything your guest said about the financial system is spot on (imho). I respect how he elaborates his point of view in such a way that listener understand where he’s coming from, especially for a topic that is highly complex.

As for AI, I think the verdict it still out whether it will be “good” or “bad” for society, as was the case with the internet, social media and the printing press.

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I really like this podcast. Unbiased, straightforward and honest. One point they didn’t make is that the California Fed has 3 messed up banks - First Republic, Silvergate and SVB. California is a clown show, stem to stern.

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Bari -

There have always been "adults" running things.

But when the press stopped doing its job of holding people accountable - they got lazy.

That's why what you're doing is SO very important. Maybe your example will light a fire under the media.

I know I would be embarrassed if I woke up tomorrow and someone with limited resources was doing my job exponentially better than I was.



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This interview stimulated me to try GPT-4. I found that it gave me scientific paper citations that looked real, but were not. The papers did not exist in PubMed and checking the journal sites directly showed the same. Searching the paper titles on the web also came up empty. I conclude that GPT-4 makes these up! Caveat emptor, all over again.....

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Loved the interview!! Thank you Bari

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Bari, have you heard about Balaji’s $1M bet?

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Mar 22·edited Mar 22

Fun interview. I agree with Mr. Cowen about moderates being the most vulnerable to attack by The Mob. They just weren't built for a fight.

Conservatives--on the other hand-- view doing battle as part of their job and usually enjoy it.

I remember reading Margaret Thatcher would look forward to getting heckled on the campaign trail, otherwise she would get bored.

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Mar 22·edited Mar 22

Great interview, Bari. I love how you come into these with a good set of respectable, on-point set of questions that steer to the central issues of the topic.

I do have one frustration though about the discussions about ‘where are we going, is trouble inevitable’.

That is that we COULD grow out of this hole by restarting United States’ energy production and letting the industries ramp back up! They would then do a combination of: a) backing down the horribly costly use of “renewables”, and b) back down both our own importation of foreign energy sources or more significantly allowing us to supplement our allys’ energy - thereby freeing up their domestic production of products we all need.

This isn’t small at all. Energy is the engine of our lives. It has been since cave men learned how to make fire. We can’t make products without energy, we can’t produce fertilizer for our crops without it. We’re starting to get what I’ll call “GDP anemic” and it’s going to be more and more painful.

Don’t let the self confused double think that the John Kerrys blurt that “carbon offsets” fix global warming: every barrel of oil burned releases the same amount of CO2 whether it was drilled in USA, Saudi Arabia, etc. (and Natural Gas makes much more electricity for every molecule of carbon fuel burned than any other).

Finally, NO we can’t escape the need for energy production by transforming to an Information only economy. That can make things more efficient - and should be pursued- but the production of goods then just shifts to elsewhere and the energy gets consumed over there.

To get energy for production without reliance on fossil fuels, we need the innovation in new processes (and trust me, the final answer will be hydrogen fuel cells just based on the basic science). That innovation can come if keep our economy alive to develop it, but to stall here in ongoing financial overload because we refuse to run the GDP engine is suicidal (we frankly need to run this “all of the above” energy sourcing). The Chinese know this and they’re not letting the limitations of today’s technology stop them from developing the solutions for tomorrow.

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Some core of crypto projects are legitimate and have remained through all the ups and downs, crashes and recoveries from 2013, 2017, and 2021. These are the projects that aim to solve and then use one of the most basic problems in modern technology, developing systems of trust in an otherwise trust-less open network like the Internet. Bitcoin provided the first digital solution to this so-called problem of "distributed consensus" or "Byzantine Generals' Problem." There are now many others, with many potential applications, some realized, like Ripple (money transfer) and Filecoin (data transfer on the open internet).

Creating a monetary system in an open network is but one part of the broader use of such solutions. Ethereum has built into it practical machinery that Bitcoin lacks (and much higher speeds and more efficient use of energy) to make "distributed consensus" a reality and potentially replace highly centralized systems of authentication and value.

Bitcoin and Ethereum prices have probably bottomed and returning to a rising trend, because they have gotten free of the burden of selling pressure from the 2021-22 collapse of quasi-scams like Celsius, Terra & Luna, and FTX. These attempts at centralized exchanges were the last cycle's bogus attempt by scam artists to cash in on the crypto mania -- parallel to the 2016-18 ICO (initial coin offering) mania, also mostly made up of flimsy or fraudulent projects. The irony is that cryptocurrencies have no need of precisely that -- centralized exchanges. These were misguided attempts to centralize what by its nature is distributed.

The main large cryptocurrencies remain and will continue to grow in volume and use. They resist attempts to create something like our current banking system out of them. That's the point.

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