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Hidden Forces Profile

Hidden Forces

English, Finance, 1 seasons, 365 episodes, 20 hours 34 minutes
Get the edge with Hidden Forces where media entrepreneur and financial analyst Demetri Kofinas gives you access to the people and ideas that matter, so you can build financial security and always stay ahead of the curve.
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Reflections on Life, Markets, & Investing | Zach Abraham

In Episode 340 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Zach Abraham, the Principal and Chief Investment Officer of Bulwark Capital Management and the host of the Know Your Risk Radio Program. Zach and Demetri spend the first hour of their conversation discussing Zach’s approach to investing, where he thinks we are in the economic cycle, and why he believes we continue to see a disconnect between underlying economic fundamentals and asset prices. In the second hour, Demetri and Zach reflect on the economic, political, and cultural changes that they’ve experienced in their lives, how these changes reflect (and are reflected in) some of the policy choices that have led us to this point in developed countries, how these changes affect Zach’s economic outlook, and how they inform his philosophy as an investor, a parent, and a citizen. <p
27/11/202355 minutes 32 seconds
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What Happened at OpenAI & Why It Matters | Nathaniel Whittemore

In Episode 339 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Nathaniel Whittemore, host of the AI Breakdown for a timely conversation about the latest news surrounding the firing of OpenAI’s CEO and co-founder Sam Altman. This was recorded on Monday, November 20th as a Live Q&A for members of our Genius community that we opened up to our newsletter subscribers. Nathaniel and Demetri discussed what is known thus far about the reasons behind Sam Altman’s firing, why it’s being described as a "coup," who the various factions are, and how much of this has to do with concerns around AI safety vs. accelerationism. We also discuss the opportunity this creates for OpenAI’s largest shareholder (Microsoft), the implications for the AI industry, as well as the largest players in the space for AI foundation models, and much, much more. You can subscribe to ou
21/11/202352 minutes 43 seconds
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American Grand Strategy & the Logic of War | Edward Luttwak

In Episode 338 of Hidden Forces, speaks with Dr. Edward Luttwak about American grand strategy and the logic of war. Dr. Luttwak is an author and consultant to governments and companies around the world and is known for his work on grand strategy, military strategy and history, and international relations. Luttwak and Kofinas spend the first hour of their conversation discussing the logic of war and the dimensions of strategy, how the nature of a nation state’s political system influences its grand strategic objectives, and what American grand strategy is and should be given the strategic challenges the United States faces in the 21st century. In the second hour, the conversation shifts to China given U.S. President Biden’s and Xi Jinping’s recent in-person meeting at the APEC summit in San Francisco. Edward Luttwak explains why he believes
20/11/202356 minutes 35 seconds
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Leadership and the Longing to Belong | Jerry Colonna

In Episode 337 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Jerry Colonna, the co-founder and CEO of the executive coaching and leadership development company Reboot, the host of the Reboot Podcast, and the author of the recently published book “Reunion: Leadership and the Longing to Belong.” Demetri got to know Jerry during their first interview together after the publication of Jerry’s last book on the subject of leadership and the art of growing up, in which he explained how the lessons of leadership are at their core, lessons in humanity—that the process of becoming a better leader and the radical self-inquiry that it requires, ultimately makes us better human beings. In their second conversation together and in his latest book Reunion, Jerry Colonna builds on those insights to help us move beyond the inner world of becoming better huma
13/11/202357 minutes 51 seconds
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Artificial Intelligence and the Containment Problem | Mustafa Suleyman

In Episode 336 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Google DeepMind co-founder Mustafa Suleyman about the containment problem and the AI dilemma that he outlines in his book, “The Coming Wave: Technology, Power, and the Twenty-first Century's Greatest Dilemma." Mustafa Suleyman and Demetri discuss the rapid advancement and proliferation of Artificial Intelligence and Synthetic Biology, why this revolution is going to be fundamentally different from past periods of rapid technological change, and what can be done to solve the containment problem and prevent some of the more catastrophic outcomes from occurring, while still reaping the benefits of this next wave of innovation. The first hour of this episode is spent exploring how these AI systems work, how they learn, and how they perceive the world, as well as why they are
06/11/202352 minutes 17 seconds
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How to Think About This Political Moment | Marshall Kosloff

In Episode 335 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Marshall Kosloff. Marshall is the host of The Realignment and Arsenal of Democracy podcasts and is a media fellow at Hudson Institute. Marshall and Demetri spend the first hour applying Marshall’s realignment framework to U.S. foreign policy in light of the recent developments in Israel and the potential for a destabilizing regional war with Iran. In the second hour, they discuss Artificial Intelligence (AI) and social media regulation, the 2024 election, and the risk that we may be sleepwalking into a new world war that would devastate the global economy and put people’s lives at risk in ways that we haven’t experienced since the late 1930s and 1940s. You can subscribe to our premium content and access our premium feed, episode transcripts, and Intelligence Reports at <a hr
02/11/202356 minutes 2 seconds
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Mounting Risk of a New World War | Walter Russell Mead

In Episode 334 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with famed historian of American Foreign policy Walter Russell Mead about the evolving war in the Middle East and why we are living through the most dangerous period in international affairs since the 1930s. Professor Mead is a Distinguished Fellow in Strategy and Statesmanship at the Hudson Institute, the Global View Columnist at The Wall Street Journal, and the James Clarke Chace Professor of Foreign Affairs and Humanities at Bard College in New York. How have we found ourselves on the cusp of another war in the Middle East when the Biden administration’s explicit goal coming into office in 2020 was to get the United States out of this region so it could focus on China? This is the question that Mead and Kofinas look to answer in the first hour of their conversation. They also discuss the historical parallel
30/10/202357 minutes 15 seconds
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How America Broke Its War Machine | Michael Brenes

In Episode 333 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Michael Brenes, the Director of the Brady-Johnson Program in Grand Strategy at Yale University who recently authored an article for Foreign Affairs about the U.S. defense industrial base titled “How America Broke Its War Machine.” Michael and Demetri discuss the state of the U.S. defense industrial base, American military readiness, and the effect that great-power competition and the expansion and scope of U.S. military involvement in active conflicts overseas could have on the nation’s political stability. You can subscribe to our premium content and gain access to our premium feed, episode transcripts, and Intelligence Reports at If you want to join in on the conversation and become a membe
23/10/202355 minutes 54 seconds
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Iran's Role in the Hamas Attacks & Implications for the United States | Kamran Bokhari

In Episode 332 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with geopolitical analyst and forecaster Kamran Bokhari. Kamran is the Senior Director of the Eurasian Security & Prosperity Portfolio at the New Lines Institute for Strategy & Policy and has served at the U.S. State Department and as a Senior Consultant with the World Bank. The subjects of today’s conversation concern the escalating violence ignited by last weekend’s brutal attacks on Israeli civilians by Hamas, as well as the Israeli Defense Forces’ ongoing counteroffensive and bombing of the Gaza Strip. Kamran and Demetri spend the first hour of their conversation discussing the attacks, what we know about their original scope and intention, what role Iran may have played in helping plan the attacks, and whether or not we can expect Hezbollah to open a second front of attack in the north of Is
16/10/202355 minutes 39 seconds
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What the Bond Sell-off Means for Investors | Andy Constan & Mike Green

In Episode 331 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Andy Constan and Mike Green after a week of turmoil in the bond market that saw a dramatic repricing of long-term government debt, raising debt servicing costs for the US government and sending yields on 10-year Treasury bonds to nearly 5%. Demetri, Andy, and Mike spend the first hour of their conversation trying to make sense of the recent sell-off, as well as what the implications of these higher long-term interest rates will be for the economy and asset markets. The second hour is dedicated to discussing the risk-reward calculus for investors who are trying to decide whether or not they want to use this opportunity to add bonds to their portfolios, in what amount, over what duration, and what the risks and opportunities are of doing so given the continued uncertainty abou
10/10/202352 minutes 53 seconds
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Rise of the New Right & the Battle for America in 2024 | Henry Olsen

In Episode 330 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Henry Olsen, author of “Working Class Republican” and “The Four Faces of the Republican Party,” about where the United States and other western democratic countries find themselves politically today, the sources of populism’s broad, international appeal, and why he believes that we are living through the kind of political realignment that hasn’t happened for almost a century. Henry is also a columnist for the Washington post and the host of the weekly podcast “Beyond the Polls” where he speaks with leading political journalists and analysts about American politics and its presidential and congressional races. Demetri and Henry spend the first hour of their conversation discussing the history of democratic politics and how we got to where are today where so many Americans and others Westerners no
09/10/20231 hour 19 seconds
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U.S. Semiconductor Export Controls On China Are Failing | Dylan Patel

In Episode 329 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Dylan Patel, a semiconductor and A.I. analyst and the founder of boutique Semiconductor research and consulting firm SemiAnalysis, about how U.S. semiconductor export controls are failing and what the U.S. can do about it. Dylan and Demetri spend the first hour of their conversation going over Huawei’s groundbreaking new Kirin 9000s chipset produced by Chinese semiconductor foundry SMIC and what it tells us about the progress that China’s domestic chip industry has made in the year since the U.S. Commerce Department implemented a series of targeted updates to its semiconductor industry export controls. This also includes a discussion about the military and commercial implications of China’s progress for America’s strategic competition with the People’s Republic. In the seco
04/10/202352 minutes
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The New Geopolitics of Global Finance | Brad Setser

In Episode 328 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Brad Setser, the Whitney Shepardson Senior Fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations where he specializes in global trade and capital flows, financial vulnerability analysis, and sovereign debt restructuring. Brad has also served in multiple Democrat administrations as a senior advisor to the U.S. Trade Representative, as deputy assistant secretary for international economic analysis at the U.S. Treasury Department, and as a director for international economics on the staff of the National Economic and the National Security Councils. Brad and Demetri spend the first hour of their conversation discussing what Brad has described as “the new geopolitics of global finance,” how the political and national security assumptions and priorities that were taken for granted during the unipolar period are undergoing a series of transformations, and how these transformations are increasingly informing econom
02/10/20231 hour 59 seconds
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Tech, Military, & Economic Drivers of US-China Competition | Diana Choyleva

In Episode 327 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Diana Choyleva in what was originally recorded as a live Q&A for members of our Genius Community. The subject of the Q&A is the latest state of US-China relations with an emphasis on some of the most recent headlines related Huawei’s latest 5G phone with its domestically produced 7nm chip, China’s naval exercises in the pacific, as well as some of ongoing headlines around the state of its economy. During the introduction, Demetri makes the case for why China’s rise poses a threat to the liberal world and why our response to that threat needs to be situated within a larger political and economic movement that reconstitutes civic power in the democratic institutions of government which are the birthright of every American. Diana Choyleva has been kind enough to offer Hidden Forces listeners a discount to her <a href= "
25/09/20231 hour 1 minute 39 seconds
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Could America Lose a War Against China Over Taiwan? | Alex Velez-Green

In Episode 326 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Alex Velez-Green, the fmr. National Security Advisor to U.S. Senator Josh Hawley, who helped staff the senator on the Armed Services Committee and advised him on matters related to strengthening deterrence against China, including U.S. conventional and nuclear force structure and posture. Alex and Demetri discuss the perilous situation in which the U.S. now finds itself in the Pacific, how it got here, and what is required to ready the U.S. military for a war against China in the next few years, and if we are lucky, deter it altogether. The first hour of their conversation is dedicated to a discussion about the serious risks that the United States military currently faces in the pacific and why there is a real chance that the People’s Liberation Army will be
18/09/202355 minutes 21 seconds
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Reflections on Current Affairs & the Need for Frameworks

This is the first in a special series of episodes dedicated to exploring Demetri’s frameworks and ideas about the most consequential forces shaping our lives and the world around us.  You can subscribe to our premium content and gain access to our premium feed, episode transcripts, and Intelligence Reports (or Key Takeaways) at If you want to join in on the conversation and become a member of the Hidden Forces genius community, which includes Q&A calls with guests, access to special research and analysis, in-person events, and dinners, you can also do that on our subscriber page. If you still have questions, feel free to email [email protected], and Demetri or someone from our team will get back to you. If you enjoyed listening to today’s episode of Hidden Forces you can help support the show by doing the following: Subscribe on
15/09/20231 hour 14 minutes 50 seconds
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Dollar Doomerism & Why Things Are Better Than You Think | Michael Nicoletos

In Episode 325 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Michael Nicoletos, the founder and CEO of DeFi Advisors, an independent investment advisory firm specializing in macro and digital assets. Michael and Demetri spend the first twenty minutes discussing Michael’s biography, including his time living and working in the United States. What that experience taught him about the country’s capacity for change and why its embrace of failure is critical to America’s continual economic, cultural, and political renewal is also part of that conversation. The rest of the first hour is spent discussing something that Michael and Demetri often talk about in private: Dollar Doomerism—the perennial anxiety, particularly prevalent in American circles and among American media pundits that the United States Dollar is on the precipice of some kind of collapse or devaluation. The sources of this doomerism, its merits, and what proponents of this view s
11/09/202352 minutes 52 seconds
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Perennials & the Post-Generational Society | Mauro Guillen

In Episode 324 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Mauro Guillen, a Professor of Multinational Management and Vice Dean of the Executive MBA Program at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. Mauro combines his training as a sociologist and his experience as a business economist to identify and quantify the most promising opportunities at the intersection of demographic, economic, and technological developments. His book “2030” was an instant bestseller and he joins me today to discuss the insights and arguments that he puts forward in his latest book “The Perennials” about the Megatrends creating what he calls “a Postgenerational Society.” In this conversation, Mauro and I explore the sweeping demographic and technology-driven changes that we are only now just beginning to experience and why he believes that these changes are creating a new “post-generational workforce” that will liberate people from the constraint
21/08/202345 minutes 31 seconds
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How the US Government Will Force Banks to Fund the Deficit | Charles Calomiris

In Episode 323 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with the former Chief Economist at the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and the Director of the Center for Politics, Economics, and History at the University of Texas at Austin, Charles Calomiris about his recently published paper “Fiscal Dominance and the Return of Zero-Interest Bank Reserve Requirements.” In the paper, Dr. Calomiris considers the possibility that the United States government will enact new and more onerous forms of financial repression, including commandeering the US banking system to fund unsustainably high debt and deficit payments
14/08/202358 minutes 37 seconds
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The Worst (Or Possibly Best) Investment Podcast EVER | Le Shrub

In Episode 322 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with someone he has gotten to know mainly by following his anonymous account on Twitter where he goes by the name Shrubbery Capital or Le Shrub, for short. Le Shrub consistently provides some of the most entertaining and clever market commentary you will find anywhere and Demetri could not resist the opportunity to have him on the podcast, especially given the fact that this conversation was conducted in person. The two spend most of the first hour discussing Le Shrub’s background, his investment philosophy, and his process for coming up with new trade ideas, as well as his experience shorting the housing market in 2008 as part of a famous team known for doing “The Big Short.” What he learned from that experience and how it applies to today’s market
03/08/202351 minutes 21 seconds
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The Fourth Turning Is Here: Our Great National Challenge | Neil Howe

In Episode 321 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with bestselling author, renowned historian, economist, and theorist of generational change, Neil Howe. Twenty-five years ago, Neil and his late co-author William Strauss put forward a provocative new theory of American history. Looking back over the last 500 years, they’d uncovered a distinct pattern: modern history moves in cycles, each one lasting roughly 80 to 100 years, with each composed of four eras—or “turnings”—that always arrive in the same order and each last about 25 years. The last of these eras is always the most perilous. It’s a period of civic upheaval and national mobilization as traumatic and transformative as the New Deal and World War II, the Civil War, or the American Revolution. The authors called it the Fourth Turning, and Neil joins us today to explain why he thinks that the fourth turning has finally arrived, what it means for those of us living during this pe
27/07/20231 hour 10 minutes 56 seconds
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How Confidence Determines the Choices We Make | Peter Atwater

In Episode 320 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Peter Atwater, a recognized expert on the impact of confidence on individual and group decision-making, which he examines in his book, “The Confidence Map: Charting a Path From Chaos to Clarity.” In today’s conversation, you are going to learn about the hidden role that confidence plays in the choices we make, and why events that are often described as being unprecedented are more often than not entirely predictable if we know what to look for. In the first hour, Atwater and Kofinas go through the framework that Peter has put forward in his book—what he calls the confidence quadrant. In the second hour, the two apply this framework to both the world at large, as well as to our own lives by examining what we can do to be better prepared for the inevitable crises that come with
24/07/202350 minutes 27 seconds
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You Will Own Nothing: Your War with a New Financial World Order | Carol Roth

In Episode 319 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Carol Roth, the author of “You Will Own Nothing: Your War with a New Financial World Order and How to Fight Back.” The argument that Carol makes in the book is that we are on the precipice of a new financial world order, one that will fundamentally change the fortunes of hundreds of millions if not billions of people across the western world. How this new financial world order is being brought about and the role being played by international organizations, governments, and multinational corporations in facilitating it forms a large part of today’s conversation. Carol and Demetri devote the second part of the episode to examining the deeper technological, socio-cultural, and spiritual forces that are driving peoples awakening. They discuss how to differentiate betwen the fear-mongering misdirection of many media entrepreneurs and other, more credible sources of information, as wel
13/07/202356 minutes 45 seconds
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The New Political-Economy | Russell Napier, Edward Chancellor, & Helen Thompson

In Episode 318 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with political and financial historians Edward Chancellor, Russell Napier, and Helen Thompson. All three have appeared individually on the podcast before and joined Demetri ahead of his latest Genius community dinner in London to discuss the changing nature of the international economic and political order. Many of the material changes we are experiencing today are driven by the reversal of multi-decade trends in demographics, globalization, and low-cost, carbon-based energy sources. The ripple effects of these changes on inflation, risk rates, wealth & income distribution, national security, and the ruling legitimacy of national governments are already starting to materialize. Learning to navigate these changes is crucial if you want to remain ahead of the curve. Today’s conversation
03/07/202349 minutes 7 seconds
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White Sun War: The Campaign for Taiwan | General Mick Ryan

In Episode 317 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with General Mick Ryan. Mick Ryan is an author, strategist, and retired major general who has commanded at multiple levels in the Australian Army and served in Iraq, Afghanistan, and East Timor. After decades of brinkmanship and confrontation, the United States and China finally go to war when China invades the island of Taiwan. This is the premise that General Mick Ryan explores in his latest book “White Sun War: The Campaign for Tawain.” In an era when humans no longer just use machines but partner with them in all aspects of military operations, this fictional account views this future war through the eyes of the Americans, Chinese, and Taiwanese caught up in the maelstrom, revealing the heartbreak, courage, leadership, and despair of high-tech warfare played out on land, at sea
26/06/202347 minutes 35 seconds
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What the Fed’s Rate Decision Will Mean for Markets | Andy Constan

In Episode 316 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Andy Constan about this week’s FOMC meeting and what the Federal Reserve rate decision could signal about the direction of interest rates, inflation, and economic growth. Will it be heralded as the long anticipate Fed pivot or seen as yet another head fake on our way toward “higher for longer,” serving as a drag on equity valuations and a headwind to economic growth? Because Andy’s analysis is largely quantitative and flows based, he looks at not only what policymakers and investors are saying, but also what they’re doing, what they’re buying, and how they’re buying it. This holds important information for the direction of bond prices, equities (and other risk asset), inflation, and economic growth, all of which Constan and Kofinas discuss in the second part of their conversation. The two also run through different sc
14/06/202356 minutes 55 seconds
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Why You Should Care About Turkey’s Elections | Nicholas Danforth & Amberin Zaman

In Episode 315 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas is joined by Nicholas Danforth and Amberin Zaman to discuss the significance of the recent elections in Turkey for Turkish politics, the country’s complex relationship with its neighbors and allies in Europe and the United States, and for the Turkish economy, which has been teetering on the edge of a balance of payments crisis with no easy solution in sight. While much ink has been spilled by Western press outlets covering the recent elections, many of the stories have lacked a larger context for why Turkey’s elections matter for people outside of the country. Danforth and Zama attempt to answer this question in the first hour of today’s episode and devote the second part of their conversation to a discussion about Turkey’s political future, its orientation toward the West, and what, if anything the United States can do to improve relations with Ankara. You can subscribe to our premium conte
05/06/202352 minutes 46 seconds
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America’s New Religions & the Cult of Self-Making | Tara Isabella Burton

In Episode 314 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with novelist, sociologist, and theologian Tara Isabella Burton about America’s new religions, the evolution of the self in contemporary culture, and what it all means for the future of Western society. Tara Isabella Burton’s writings about religion and culture provide some of the sharpest, most insightful commentary about contemporary life that you will find anywhere. Her two most recent books explore the revival of religious practices and the evolution of what she calls self-making (i.e., the increased focus on oneself and one’s own experiences as the focal point of human experience) in Western society. Her insights are nothing short of revelatory. In their conversation, Tara and Demetri discuss three different manifestations of religion that Burton has identified: (1) social justice culture, (2) techno-utopianism, (3) and what she calls “right-wing atavism,” an ideology whose more
29/05/202359 minutes 37 seconds
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Why Is the Recession Taking So Long to Show Up? | Bob Elliott

In Episode 313 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Bob Elliott, the co-founder and CEO of Unlimited, a financial services firm that uses machine learning to create products that replicate the index returns of alternative investments. Demetri asked Bob onto the podcast to help sort through the noise of this latest financial news cycle as it pertains to the debt ceiling debate, regional bank stocks, the Fed’s fight against inflation, and where we find ourselves in the economic cycle. Many have been surprised by how long it’s taken for an economic recession to materialize given the speed and extent of the Federal Reserve’s rate rises. Demetri and Bob discuss what might explain this and what it means for investors if supply-side factors to the economy make combating inflation difficult for the Fed to do without undermining the
18/05/20231 hour 56 seconds
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What Generational Differences Tell Us About the Future | Jean Twenge

In Episode 312 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofians speaks with Jean Twenge, a researcher and professor of psychology who has written extensively about generational differences. Jean Twenge explains what we know about every generation born since 1925, arguing that the strongest candidate for explaining generational change is advancements in technology. Twenge spends the first hour discussing what we know about changes in fertility rates, political affiliation, income, wealth, sexuality, gender norms, attitudes toward life, mental health, and much more. The episode’s second hour is devoted to understanding Millennials and Generation Z. Jean and Demetri discuss how each of these generations is unique, what explains these differences, and what can be extrapolated about future economic, political, and other sociological trends by looking at the data. This conversation is relevant to anyone, whether you work in po
15/05/202353 minutes 40 seconds
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Origins of the Ukraine War & What Comes Next | Serhii Plokhy

In Episode 311 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Serhii Plokhy, the director of the Ukrainian Research Institute at Harvard University and a leading authority on Ukraine, Russia, and Eastern Europe. Plokhii has published extensively on the international history of World War II and the Cold War and he joins Demetri to discuss the subject of his latest book on the Russo-Ukrainian war and the return of history. This is a conversation about national identity, the disintegration of empires, and what will follow from the largest European land war since WWII. How will the Ukraine war's outcome inform the evolution of the international order? And what are the most compelling theories that explain Putin’s decision to invade in the first place? Was it to build a ‘greater Russia’ as some of his detractors have claimed or did Moscow face legitimate security concerns from NATO enlargement that on their own can explain the course of events? The answer to thi
08/05/202346 minutes 30 seconds
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“We’re Gonna Get Those Bastards!” | Jared Dillian

In Episode 310 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with writer and author Jared Dillian in what was originally aired as a Live Q&A for members of the Hidden Forces Genius Community. Jared is the editor of The Daily Dirtnap, a daily market newsletter for investment professionals focused on gauging and capitalizing on changes in market sentiment. He’s also the author of several successful books including his most recent, “We’re Gonna Get Those Bastards,” which is about everything that is depraved, especially finance, culture, music, and sex. This conversation ranges from discussions about market psychology, national security, and politics to things like how to handle financial success, how to use Twitter with integrity, and even what happens to us when we die. If you want to join in on these conversations in the future and become a member of the Hidden Forces ge
01/05/20231 hour 18 minutes 48 seconds
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Understanding the Hoax of the Century | Jacob Siegel

In Episode 309 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Jacob Siegel, a senior editor at Tablet magazine and the author of a widely shared article about disinformation titled, “A Guide to Understanding the Hoax of the Century.” The ‘hoax’ according to Siegel is the information war itself, which he believes conflates the anti-establishment politics of domestic populists with acts of war by foreign enemies turning the American people into targets of the US government and its intelligence agencies. Demetri and Jacob spend the first hour of their conversation trying to wrap their arms around this sprawling leviathan of public and private surveillance that has left so many of us feeling increasingly disoriented and vulnerable to being manipulated and controlled. They discuss what disinformation is, what it isn’t, and how the information ecosystem has become a battlefield for narrative warfare and mass psychological operations conducted aga
24/04/202350 minutes 51 seconds
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Disrupting the Battlefield: How Venture Capital is Changing Modern Warfare | Josh Wolfe

In Episode 308 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Josh Wolfe, co-founder and managing partner at Lux Capital about the state of venture investing and how venture capital is disrupting the battlefield and changing the nature of warfare. Josh and Demetri spend the first hour of their conversation discussing the rise of narrative warfare and how social media, synthetic media, and historically high levels of public distrust in government and mainstream media institutions have made the problem worse. They discuss potential solutions to this problem and what individuals can do to become more discerning consumers of information and better at identifying misleading narratives. In the second hour, Demetri and Josh discuss the state of venture capital investing, the opportunities, challenges, and risks posed by artificial intelligence, and how the venture community and the portfolio companies of firms like Lux Capital are disrupting the d
17/04/202355 minutes 12 seconds
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How to Think About the Current Moment in A.I. | John Borthwick

In Episode 307 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with the founder and CEO of Betaworks, John Borthwick about the current moment in artificial intelligence. In John’s first appearance on the podcast in 2017, Demetri and he spoke about the challenges and opportunities present in the field of A.I. and how we could progress technologically into an immersive future of superintelligence and simulation without losing touch with our humanity. The incredibly rapid adoption of ChatGPT has caused both Demetri and John to revisit these questions and whether that immersive future that they spoke about then has finally arrived. How we would even know if it has and what the appropriate response to the current moment is for the public, for companies investing in this technology, and for governments seeking to regulate and exploit it is the subject of the episode’s second hour, which is available to premium subscribers. You can subscribe to our prem
10/04/202358 minutes 14 seconds
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Engineering Society and the Human Experience | Michael Sacasas

In Episode 306 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Michael Sacasas. Michael is the executive director of the Christian Study Center in Gainesville Florida and the author of The Convivial Society, a widely read newsletter about technology, culture, and the moral life. Demetri and Michael discuss how we are engineering society and the human experience in ways that could have irreversible effects on humanity’s future. Many of you may be wondering if this conversation is about A.I. Not necessarily. Advancements in artificial intelligence may very well prove to be the catalysts, but if so then A.I. is just the apotheosis of trends that have been in place for decades if not longer, and which are changing the nature of our lives, our societies, and our politics in ways that are not necessarily desirable. Some of these trends threaten the values and traditions that we associate most strongly with human civilization and the flourishing of the natural worl
06/04/20231 hour 25 minutes 17 seconds
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The Threats to US Dollar Hegemony | Daniel McDowell

In Episode 305 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Daniel McDowell, the author of “Bucking the Buck,” a timely new book that seeks to establish a clear relationship between the heightened use of financial sanctions and the rise of “anti-dollar” policies designed to reduce an economy’s reliance on the US currency. Demetri and Daniel spend the first hour of their conversation examining the sources of Dollar hegemony, how the system works, and what allows the United States government to exercise power over it and over the individuals, companies, and economies that comprise it. The second hour begins with a conversation about the role of gold in the international system, its expanded use as a bulwark against US sanctions, and why more central banks are seeking to accumulate the metal as a form of geopolitical insurance against the long arm of American economic power. They also discuss alternatives to the US dollar, what it would take to begin to disp
30/03/202344 minutes 52 seconds
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Does the Fed Have Any Idea What It’s Doing? | Jeff Snider & Brent Johnson

In Episode 304 of Hidden Forces, Demetri shares the recording from a Live Q&A he hosted on Thursday, March 23rd with Brent Johnson and Jeff Snider. The three discussed the FOMC’s latest rate hike decision and if the Fed is indeed as clueless as Jeff Snider believes or if there is a method to the madness as Brent and Demetri seem to suggest. They also speculate about what is likely to come after the current crisis and if it will lead to the birth of a new financial and monetary order. How and over what timeframe that new order comes into being, the forces bringing it about, and what it means for various asset classes and economies are all topics that Jeff, Brent, and Demetri discuss. You can subscribe to our premium content and gain access to our premium feed, episode transcripts, and Intelligence Reports (or Key Takeaways) at If you want to join in on the conversat
27/03/20231 hour 26 minutes 20 seconds
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How to Manage Risk in the Coming Recession | David Rosenberg

In Episode 303 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with economist David Rosenberg. David is the founder and president of Rosenberg Research, an economic and financial market consulting firm that provides advice to thousands of retail and institutional clients across 40 countries. Demetri and David spend the first hour of their conversation discussing Rosenberg’s economic philosophy. David also shares lessons from his experience working in the finance industry since the early 1980s and what that experience taught him about markets, investing, and the economic cycle.   The second half of their conversation is much more investment focused. Demetri asks David about specific sectors of the economy like the resource sector, housing, and commercial real estate. They also discuss the impairment of bank balance sheets that has resulted from the Fed’s dramatic tightening of interests rates and how that impairment resembles the crisis that hit t
22/03/202352 minutes 59 seconds
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Is the Banking Crisis Over or Has It Just Begun? | Jeff Snider

In Episode 302 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Jeff Snider. Jeff is Chief Strategist for Atlas Financial and co-host of the Eurodollar University podcast where he untangles the inner workings of the global monetary and Eurodollar reserve currency system with implications for policymakers and investors. Jeff Snider has been ringing the alarm bell in anticipation of a panic inducing event like the bank failures we experienced last week for more than a year. In his last appearance on the show he pointed to what he called an “increasing sense of dread” that he felt was reflected in credit and derivatives markets. Markets were “in a very technical sense,” according to Jeff “hedged for something,” perhaps even a deflationary event in the monetary system like a bank panic that would lead the Fed to prematurely pause its rate hikes and possibly even reverse its policy entirely to stave off another financial crisis. Whether or not the
20/03/202355 minutes 9 seconds
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What the Bailout of SVB Means for the Fed's Fight Against Inflation | Steven Kelly

In Episode 301 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Steven Kelly about the government's decision to bail out depositors at Silicon Valley Bank and what this decision means for monetary policy and the Federal Reserve’s fight against inflation. This conversation was recorded on the morning of Monday, March 13th less than 24hrs after the Federal Reserve, the Treasury Department, and the FDIC came out with a joint statement assuring depositors at Silicon Valley Bank and Signature Bank that their deposits would be fully protected irrespective of FDIC deposit limits. While this stems the immediate fears of a bank run, the manner in which this was done creates further complications for the Federal Reserve and raises more questions than it answers about the direction of monetary policy. The goal of today’s episode is to provide you with the most up-to-date recap of what has happened thus far, why it happened, how it happened, what the gov
13/03/202333 minutes 57 seconds
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How Our Brains Model Reality & the True Nature of the World | Iain McGilchrist

In Episode 300 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Dr. Iain McGilchrist. Most people know Dr. McGilchrist for having authored “The Master and His Emissary” a book about what we popularly refer to as “the Divided Brain” and its role in the making of the modern world. It is Dr. McGilchrist’s view that we have systematically misunderstood the nature of reality, because we have depended on the aspect of our brains that is most adept at manipulating the world in order to bend it to our purposes. It’s the same part of our brains that is most proficient at constructing models or representations of the world and doubling down on them even in the face of falsifying evidence. In the conversation that follows you will learn how the brain is divided into two hemispheres: the left hemisphere, which is designed to help us apprehend the world and thus manipulate and control it, and the right hemisphere, which is designed to help us comprehend t
13/03/202358 minutes 24 seconds
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What’s Happened to Consensus Reality? | Jon Askonas

In Episode 299 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Jon Askonas a professor of politics at the Catholic University of America where he works on the connections between the republican tradition, technology, and national security. Jon is the author of a new series of essays for the New Atlantis titled “Reality: A Postmortem,” where he looks at the forces that have conspired to break consensus reality, and what it means for humanity and the world. The last few years in many Western countries have been characterized by a growing sense of bewilderment, anger, and distrust. Distrust in mainstream institutions, in each other, and in ourselves—in our own capacity to apprehend reality and come to consensus about the nature of the world around us. Jon and Demetri spend the first hour of their conversation discussing the sources of this fragmentation, the disembodied self, and the ways in which the modern age shares more in common with the e
06/03/202351 minutes 46 seconds
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What Pre-WWII France Can Tell Us About America in 2023 | Jonathan Kirshner

In Episode 298 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Professor of Political Science and International Studies at Boston College, Jonathan Kirshner. Dr. Kirshner belongs to the school of international relations known as “classical realism,” which places a unique emphasis on the role played by uncertainty and the need to grapple more seriously with the nuance of historical context, the governing ideologies and perspectives of different states, the quality of leadership, and the character and harmony of a nation’s people. Demetri and Jonathan spend the first hour of their conversation applying the framework of analysis that Kirshner puts forward in his latest book “An Unwritten Future” toward three distinct historical conflicts: the Peloponnesian war, the war in Vietnam, and the 2003 US invasion of Iraq. All three of these wars had ruinous consequences for the aggressor state. In the case of the Iraq war, the conflict badly damaged public perceptions
20/02/202355 minutes 14 seconds
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How to Balance Legitimacy & Power in a Fractured World | Sir Paul Tucker

In Episode 297 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with the former Deputy Governor of the Bank of England, Sir Paul Tucker. During his time at the BoE, Sir Paul sat on the bank’s monetary policy, financial stability, and prudential policy committees. He was a member of the G20 Financial Stability Board and a director of the Bank for International Settlements, which means he has worked at the highest levels of some of the most important policy-making bodies and research institutions in the world. What prompted today’s conversation was the recent publication of Paul’s book “Global Discord: Values and Power in a Fractured World.” The book deals with the incredibly important but rarely discussed subject of legitimacy and where it intersects with the world of geopolitics. How to maintain this legitimacy while navigating a change in the balance of power may be the
13/02/202357 minutes 1 second
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The 1990s and the Cancellation of the Future | Chuck Klosterman

In Episode 296 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Chuck Klosterman, a bestselling author and essayist whose work focuses on American popular culture. His most recent book about the 1990s describes a decade that happened long ago, but not nearly as long ago as it seems. The 1990s happened between the fall of the Berlin Wall and the collapse of the Twin Towers. During that time, one presidential election was allegedly decided by Ross Perot while another was plausibly decided by Ralph Nader. At the start of the decade everyone’s name and address was listed in a phone book, and everyone answered their landlines. By the end, exposing someone’s address was an act of emotional violence, and nobody picked up their cell phone. Pop culture accelerated without the aid of a machine that remembered everything,
06/02/20231 hour 33 seconds
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The Effect of China’s Reopening on Global Growth & Inflation | Shehzad Qazi

In Episode 295 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Shehzad Qazi, the Managing Director of China Beige Book, which provides institutional investors and corporate decision-makers with market-leading insights derived directly from their nationwide proprietary data on the Chinese economy. China Beige Book CEO Leland Miller was previously on Hidden Forces to talk about the impact of Covid-19 on China’s economy and banking system, the latter of which has been a persistent source of weakness for the country’s growth prospects. He and Demetri also discussed some of the geopolitical consequences that could potentially flow from the ongoing global disruptions caused by the pandemic and the effects on China’s highly levered real estate market. <span
30/01/202344 minutes 30 seconds
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What Comes After Secular Stagnation? | Barry Eichengreen

In Episode 294 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Distinguished Professor of Economics and Professor of Political Science at UC Berkeley, Barry Eichengreen. In his first appearance on this podcast nearly five years ago, Dr. Eichengreen discussed the legacy of the Great Moderation, a multi-decade period of low inflation and positive economic growth that lasted between the mid-1980s and the onset of the Great Financial Crisis. Since then, developed economies have experienced a period of lackluster growth known as “secular stagnation,” characterized by historically low-interest rates, persistently low inflation, and growing levels of social and political instability. The question that Dr. Eichengreen and Demetri wrestle with in this conversation is whether the current period of higher inflation and rising interest rates is a temporary phenomenon or if we are entering a new economic paradigm where s
23/01/202348 minutes 3 seconds
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How Sanctions and Export Controls Weaponize Global Trade & Finance | Agathe Demarais

In Episode 293 of Hidden Forces, Agathe Demarais, the Global forecasting director at the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) and author of Backfire, joins us for a discussion about the ripple effects of US sanctions and export controls, how they are reshaping the global economy by weaponizing trade and finance, and the steps that countries are taking to insulate themselves from the US Dollar-based global financial and trading system. This episode is part of a series of conversations that we’ve curated on the role and future of the US dollar, the reorganization of international trade along geopolitical lines, and the evolving impact of great power competition on global trade and finance. In the first hour of their conversation, Agathe and Demetri discuss the origins and evolution of US sanctions policy and how it has been applied successfully and unsuccessfully in
16/01/202346 minutes 52 seconds
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Navigating the Converging Worlds of Macro & Geopolitics | Roger Hirst & Jacob Shapiro

In Episode 292 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Roger Hirst and Jacob Shapiro. Roger has spent over two decades on the equity derivative desks at various investment banks and is currently the Managing Editor of Real Vision Creative Studios. Jacob is Partner & Director of Geopolitical Analysis at Cognitive Investments and Founder and Chief Strategist of the business and political risk consulting firm Perch Perspectives. Both Roger and Jacob are part of a small and highly talented team of content creators at financial media company Lykeion, where they co-author a monthly research publication focused on the converging worlds of Geopolitics & Macro. The first hour of today’s conversation is devoted to a discussion about the move from a unipolar world order to a multipolar one. The forces that are bringing that multipolarity about and its impact on global security, international trade and commerce
09/01/202351 minutes 45 seconds
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Turkey-Syria & the New Geopolitics of the Greater Middle East | Joshua Landis

In Episode 291 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Joshua Landis. Landis is the director of the Center for Middle East Studies at the University of Oklahoma and a widely recognized Syria expert. He was last on the podcast over three years ago to discuss the then-ongoing invasion of northern Syria by the Turkish military and the long-term withdrawal of American forces from the Middle East and Central Asia. The background for today’s conversation are the ongoing negotiations between Turkey, Russia, and Syria and President Erdoğan’s desire to expand Turkey’s military presence in northern Syria. Erdoğan’s stated aim is to create a larger buffer zone in which to transfer Syrian refugees and from which to defend Turkey from the threat posed by an independent Kurdish state aligned with elements of The Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK). Ankara’s jingoistic rhetoric may be in part responsible for bringing Ru
02/01/202352 minutes 56 seconds
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What Is Silvergate Capital & Why Does It Matter? | Edwin Dorsey

In Episode 290 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Edwin Dorsey. Edwin is the author of “The Bear Cave,” a financial newsletter focused on exposing corporate misconduct that regularly moves markets and is cited frequently in Bloomberg terminal breaking news alerts. Edwin was recently profiled in Institutional Investor and is part of a wave of new authors on Substack who are changing the landscape of financial journalism. Today’s conversation focuses on Silvergate, a little-known but very important bank that recently found itself under investigation by US Senators Elizabeth Warren, Roger Marshall, and John Kennedy for its role in facilitating the movement of funds critical to the ope
28/12/20223 minutes
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Are We Headed Towards a Monetary Breakdown? | Jeff Snider

In Episode 289 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Jeff Snider. Jeff is Chief Strategist for Atlas Financial and co-host of the Eurodollar University podcast where he untangles the inner workings of the global monetary and Eurodollar reserve currency system with implications for policymakers and investors. The public often takes for granted the Federal Reserve’s ability to end economic recessions by engaging in what is popularly referred to as “money printing.” Unfortunately, the reality is much more complicated and Jeff and Demetri spend the first hour of their conversation explaining what makes it so and why it matters. They spend the second hour of their conversation discussing what a recession will look like in 2023-2024, how bad it could get, and why it could lead to a monetary break
26/12/202255 minutes 59 seconds
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Why You Should Care About the Twitter Files | Renée DiResta

In Episode 288 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Renee DiResta about the recent revelations stemming from the Twitter Files, why we should care about them, and what we can do to fix the problems of unaccountable censorship and misinformation on social media. Renée is the technical research manager at the Stanford Internet Observatory, where she investigates the spread of narratives across social media and how actors leverage these networks to exert influence. She has advised Congress, the State Department, and other academic, civic, and business organizations, and has studied disinformation and computational propaganda in the context of pseudoscience conspiracies, terrorism, and state-sponsored information warfare, which makes her the perfect person to speak to about this incredibly impor
19/12/20221 hour 3 minutes 52 seconds
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How Much of Crypto Is a Criminal Conspiracy? | James Block

In Episode 287 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with James Block. James is the author of Dirty Bubble Media, a popular substack account that publishes critical thought pieces about the crypto industry and which was recently featured in an Atlantic magazine article titled, “Crypto Was Always Smoke and Mirrors.” In this conversation, Demetri and James discuss what they believe is a multi-billion dollar criminal conspiracy that involves money laundering, tax evasion, sanctions evasion, and other forms of illicit activity that sits at the very heart of the crypto ecosystem. One of the challenges that comes with trying to cover the see
15/12/202249 minutes 43 seconds
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China's Plan to Decouple From the US Dollar | Diana Choyleva & Dinny McMahon

In Episode 286 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Diana Choyleva and Dinny McMahon, the co-authors of a comprehensive new report that examines China’s plans to decouple from the dollar-based global trading and financial system. In this conversation, Choyleva and McMahon discuss Beijing’s rationale for wanting to transform the renminbi into an international currency, how the Chinese communist party is striving to make that transformation, why it might prove unattainable, and what progress we can expect them to make over the coming decade. Regardless of whether the yuan proves capable of challenging US Dollar hegemo
05/12/202245 minutes 15 seconds
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Crypto Contagion, Genesis, & the FTX-USDT Connection | Coffeezilla

In Episode 285 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Stephen Findeisen, a fraud investigator who goes by the pseudonym "Coffeezilla” and runs an eponymous YouTube channel dedicated to exposing scams, con artists, and fraudsters. His work has been widely covered in the media including on the BBC and VICE and Coffeezilla himself was recently profiled in a feature article for the New Yorker. Stephen’s investigations into FTX, Tether, Digital Currency Group, and the continued fallout and contagion sparked by the collapse of Luna and other related crypto companies, hedge funds, and lending platforms are the subjects of today’s incredibly timely conversation. Coffeezilla
28/11/202257 minutes 2 seconds
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America 2024, Ukraine Politics, & the Ubermensch | Marshall Kosloff

In Episode 284 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Marshall Kosloff, the co-host of the Realignment podcast about the recent mid-terms, Trump’s announcement that he’s running for President of the United States in 2024, the politics of the Ukraine war, and an Ubermensch culture in tech that has influenced conversations about US domestic and foreign policy. The underwhelming performance of republicans in the 2022 mid-term elections has cast into doubt many pundits’ expectations about the strength of the Republican party and Trump’s own electability in 2024. What caused the underwhelming performance of Republicans in the mid-terms and whether or not that weakness will continue in the next election cycle is something that Demetri and Marshall discuss in the first hour of their conversation today. The second hour is primarily a conversation about the politics of the Ukraine war and the rise of what Demetri describes as a new
21/11/202251 minutes 28 seconds
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The Downfall of FTX and Crypto’s Path Forward | Vance Spencer & Michael Anderson

In Episode 283 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Vance Spencer and Michael Anderson about the downfall of FTX, the political back-story behind Sam Bankman-Fried’s legislative push to build a regulatory moat around his business empire, and the path forward for the crypto industry. As the crisis at FTX was unfolding, Vance received a call from none other than Sam Bankman-Fried. The two had never spoken before, but Vance had become recently critical of Sam’s efforts to lobby Washington for regulation that many felt would benefit him and his companies at the expense of everyone else in the industry. The legislation that SBF was pushing for would be particularly detrimental to the ecosystem of crypto known as
14/11/202254 minutes 40 seconds
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Who is Sam Bankman-Fried and What Really Happened at FTX? | Marc Cohodes

In Episode 282 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with famed short seller Marc Cohodes about Sam Bankman-Fried, the recent bankruptcy of FTX, and the bigger story behind the alleged fraud that he and his network of enablers have perpetrated. Marc Cohodes has famously exposing numerous corporate frauds at great personal expense and risk to himself and his family. So, when Cohodes began raising the alarm earlier this year by publicly calling FTX a scam, while describing Sam Bankman-Fried as a fraudster, many of us took notice. During this time, Sam Bankman-Fried was largely seen as the new golden child of crypto. He spent the last several years cultivating a cultish following and rubbing shoulders with some of the most powerfu
14/11/202255 minutes 3 seconds
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Energy Security, Geopolitics, & the New Energy Order | Meghan O'Sullivan & Jason Bordoff

In Episode 281 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Meghan O’Sullivan and Jason Bordoff. Meghan O’Sullivan is a former deputy national security adviser on Iraq and Afghanistan. She is currently Jeane Kirkpatrick Professor of the Practice of International Affairs at Harvard Kennedy School and a board member of the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at Kennedy School. She sits on the board of directors at Raytheon and the Council on Foreign relations, and is the North American Chair of the Trilateral Commission. Jason Bordoff is the Co-Founding Dean of the Columbia Climate School, the Founding Director of the Center on Global Energy Policy, and Professor of Professional Practice in International and Public Relations at Columbia University. Jason also served as Special Assistant to President Barack O
07/11/202255 minutes 46 seconds
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What are the Politics of a Fed Pivot? | Nick Timiraos

In Episode 280 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas shares the the audio from a live Q&A call that he recently hosted for members of the new Hidden Forces Genius tier with Wall Street Journal chief economics correspondent Nick Timiraos. These calls are part of our Investor Roundtable series and include discussions with experts who our members would like to hear more from and who they would like to have the chance to ask questions to directly. We had a chance to discuss some of the news coming out ahead of the FOMC meeting this week, including increased calls for the Fed to slow its rate of tightening and concerns about the Fed’s long-term independence in the face of political pressure. You can access transcript to this investor roundtable by going directly to the episode page at</
02/11/202254 minutes 11 seconds
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How Does China See the World? | Kaiser Kuo

In Episode 279 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Kaiser Kuo. Kaiser is the host and co-founder of the Sinica Podcast, the editor-at-large of The China Project, and the former director of international communications for Baidu, China’s leading search engine. How does China see the world? What do we get wrong when talking about China? What are the central diving forces in Chinese politics? And what “does China want?”  While concrete answers to such complex social and political questions are illusive, grappling with them is essential if we want to find a peaceful way through what is becoming an increasingly dangerous period in US-China relations. The goal of this conversation is
31/10/202255 minutes 9 seconds
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Conspiracy Theories: Why the Rational Believe the Irrational | Michael Shermer

In Episode 278 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Michael Shermer. Michael is the Founding Publisher of Skeptic magazine. He hosts his own podcast, “The Michael Shermer Show,” and is the best-selling author of books like “The Believing Brain, “Giving the Devil His Due,” “The Moral Arch,” “The Mind of the Market,” and many more. Shermer's latest book titled "Conspiracy: Why the Rational Believe the Irrational" presents an overarching review of conspiracy theories—who believes them, why, which ones are real, and what we should do about them. Long a fringe part of the American political landscape, conspiracy theories are now mainstream: 147 members of Congress voted in favor of objections to the 2020 presidential election based on an unproven theory about a rigged elect
26/10/202254 minutes 49 seconds
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The Rise of the Global Dollar System | Perry Mehrling

In Episode 277 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Perry Mehrling. Dr. Mehrling is Professor of International Political Economy at the Pardee School of Global Studies, Boston University, where he teaches courses on global money. He is perhaps best known for having pioneered the so-called “money view,” an economic framework that attempts to put the real-world practitioners’ view of financial markets into an academic perspective. Mehrling’s most recent book, “Money and Empire,” is in some sense a biography of the US Dollar told through the life and times of the renowned economic historian, Charlie Kindleberger. The book traces the evolution of Charlie’s thinking alongside the rise of the international dollar system. It’s an ill
24/10/20221 hour 14 minutes 6 seconds
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How to Prepare the World for a Peaking China | Michael Beckley & Hal Brands

In Episode 276 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Michael Beckley and Hal Brands, the authors of a recently published book titled “Danger Zone,” about how to prepare America and the world for a peaking China. The book argues that the conventional wisdom about the long-term strategic threat that China poses to the existing international order is fundamentally wrong. If a war between the US and China is to break out, it could happen much sooner than the US defense establishment prepared for. Hal Brands and Michael Beckley's basic thesis is that China is at a perilous moment in its development as a great power: strong enough to violently challenge the existing order, yet increasingly losing confidence that time is on its side. Witness its aggression toward Taiwan, its r
10/10/202255 minutes 23 seconds
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Dollar Milkshake Wrecking Ball | Brent Johnson & Michael Kao

In Episode 275 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas publishes the audio from a recent Twitter Spaces event featuring Brent Johnson and Michael Kao, who were both later joined on stage by Michael Nicoletos and Michael Howell for a dynamic conversation about the explosive appreciation in the relative value of the US Dollar, the sources of Dollar strength, and what could bring an end to its role as the main global reserve currency. Brent Johnson is CEO of Santiago Capital and the author of the “Dollar Milkshake Theory.” Michael Kao is CIO and Portfolio Manager of Kao Family Offices and is well-known for coining “the Dollar Wrecking Ball” as a similar metaphor for describing the dynamics of Dollar hegemony. Michael Nicoletos is a macro investor and the founder and fmr. CIO at <
04/10/20221 hour 48 minutes 55 seconds
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The Battle Over Semiconductors & US-China Competition | Chris Miller

In Episode 274 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Chris Miller. Chris is Associate Professor of International History at the graduate school of global affairs at Tufts University. He is also the author of Chip War, which chronicles the geopolitical history of a decades-long battle to control the modern world’s most critical resource: the microchip (or semiconductor) and the commercial industry that supports it. We spend the first hour discussing the technological, commercial, and distributional characteristics of the existing semiconductor supply chain. Chris explains the various steps involved in the production process, the incentives that operate in the industry, the technological imperatives that inform investment decisions, and the role of government subsidies an
03/10/202254 minutes 21 seconds
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Why There Are Reasons To Be Hopeful About America | Scott Galloway

In Episode 273 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Scott Galloway. Scott is a professor of marketing at NYU’s Stern School of Business, a serial entrepreneur, a prolific media personality, and the author of four books. His most recent book, titled “Adrift,” attempts to tell the story of America—from the end of world war two to the present day—in order to understand how we arrived at this precarious moment in our nation’s history, the challenges that lie before, and what it will take to navigate those challenges successfully. So that we can emerge from this period with our nationhood and humanity intact.</
26/09/20221 hour 5 minutes 31 seconds
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The Rise of Inflation & the Great Demographic Reversal | Charles Goodhart

In Episode 272 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with economist and author Charles Goodhart. Professor Goodhart is widely recognized for his contributions to the fields of monetary economics and central bank policy and is famously associated with what we commonly refer to as “Goodhart's Law,” the stipulation that any observed statistical regularity ceases to function as an objective or accurate measure the moment that it becomes a target of public policy. Both professor Goodhart and his co-author and former colleague Manoj Pradhan recently coauthored a book titled “The Great Demographic Reversal,” which puts forward a compelling and controversial argument about the long-term effects of an aging society on inflation, interest rates, investment, savings, and consumption, a
19/09/202254 minutes 23 seconds
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Secular Inflation & the End of the Great Moderation | Nick Timiraos

In Episode 271 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Nick Timiraos, the chief economics correspondent for The Wall Street Journal, where he covers the Federal Reserve and U.S. economic policy. Timiraos is also the author of Trillion Dollar Triage, a detailed account of the day-by-day and sometimes hour-by-hour policymaking by Federal Reserve officials during the heights of the Covid-19 pandemic and subsequently between 2020-2021.  The first part of this conversation focuses on the immediate concerns that investors have about Fed policy and the path of interest rates. This includes a discussion about inflation targeting and inflation expectations, personnel and the centralization of policymaking at the Fed, and tradeoffs between eco
12/09/202250 minutes 35 seconds
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Oil Market Update Report & Live Q&A | Rory Johnston

In Episode 270 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Rory Johnson, a widely quoted researcher and expert in global commodities markets and founder of Commodity This episode is a preview of what subscribers to the new Hidden Forces “Genius” Tier will have access to on a regular basis. This new tier will include live, quarterly calls with guests and researchers whose work Demetri relies on to help him navigate markets and make educated investment decisions for his own portfolio. The tier is scheduled to launch later this month and will also include, among other things, a first-class community purpose-built for real-team quality inte
08/09/202250 minutes 48 seconds
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Navigating a World Trapped Between Scarcity & Abundance | Mike Green

In Episode 269 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with portfolio manager & chief strategist at Simplify Asset Management, Mike Green. Mike is a deep thinker and so much of what he has to say is value-additive. It illuminates some aspect of the market or some socio-political phenomenon or dynamic that has profound explanatory power. Today’s conversation was no exception. The two spent the first hour discussing a number of topics that Demetri has explored on his podcast before, including topics related to corporate vs. state power, the role of government in the economy, the lack of leadership in government, and the types of reforms needed to resolve some of the structural challenges that our political economy faces. The second hour, which is available to premium subscribers
05/09/20221 hour 14 seconds
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Machine Intelligence, Humanity, & the Will to Power | Demetri Kofinas

In Episode 268 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas replays a monologue that he wrote and first published nearly five years ago about the future of humanity, machine intelligence, and the power process. When he began Hidden Forces, Demetri was primarily concerned with exploring some of the recent advancements in technology and humanity’s scientific understanding of both the external world, as well the internal one that gives rise to the human experience. He believed (and still does) that many of the socio-cultural and political changes that we were experiencing in the world were being strongly influenced and shaped by these advancements, which is why so many of our early episodes were philosophical in nature, dealing with questions of epistemology, identity, and meaning.</p
29/08/202231 minutes 36 seconds
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Alex Jones & the War on Information | Alex Lee Moyer

In Episode 267 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Alex Lee Moyer the filmmaker behind “Alex’s War,” an excellent new documentary about Alex Jones, the founder of Infowars. Alex is an incredibly controversial cultural figure and media personality whose popularity and influence have become especially difficult to measure since he was banned from YouTube and most every other major media and social media platform in 2018. Jones granted Moyer unprecedented access for a documentary that is truly unique in both its political appeal and in how it intimately captures parts of Alex’s life that very few people outside of his immediate community have been able to experience. It is an exploration of our relationship to truth and our distrust of mainstream institutions that grappl
22/08/20221 hour 17 minutes 44 seconds
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The Price of Time in a World Without Interest | Edward Chancellor

In Episode 266 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with financial historian, journalist, and author Edward Chancellor. For the last twenty years, Chancellor has been arguably known best for his book, “Devil Take the Hindmost,” which is a fantastic history of the last 400 years of financial speculation. Yet, that streak may be soon coming to an end with the publication tomorrow of his latest book, “The Price of Time,” an absolutely brilliant philosophical exploration of interest and its essential role in valuing and directing the allocation of capital, labor, and resources in the economy over time. Interest rates have sometimes been described on this podcast and elsewhere as the “price of money.” While this definition is useful, it fails to capture the temporal dimension of
15/08/202253 minutes 33 seconds
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Why Global Liquidity Matters Now More Than Ever | Michael Howell

In Episode 265 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Michael Howell. Michael is the CEO of CrossBorder Capital, a London-based, independent research and investment company that provides asset allocation and capital markets advice to institutional investors. This conversation is a natural follow-up to our recent episodes with Lev Menand on the shadow banking system and Eric Basmajian on economic cycles.
08/08/202254 minutes 9 seconds
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How to Prepare for the Next Taiwan Strait Crisis | Dmitri Alperovitch, Elbridge Colby, & Jamil N. Jaffer

In Episode 264 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas publishes the contents of a call that he hosted on Twitter Spaces this past Tuesday evening only hours after Nancy Pelosi, the US Speaker of the House of Representatives arrived in Taiwan. The subject of the call concerns both the short and long-term consequences of Pelosi’s trip and whether or not the US is ready to defend Taiwan in the event of a Chinese naval blockade or invasion of the island by the People’s Liberation Army. Speakers Dmitri Alperovitch, Elbridge Colby, and Jamil N. Jaffer discuss how the US can prepare for this eventuality, the urgency of the task at hand, and the possibility and consequences of the US losing a war with China over Taiwan in the next few years. If
05/08/20221 hour 22 minutes 15 seconds
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A Recession, More Inflation, or Both? | Eric Basmajian

In Episode 263 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Eric Basmajian. Eric is an economic cycle analyst and the Founder of EPB Macro Research, an economics-based research firm focusing on inflection points in economic growth and the impact on asset prices. His research has been featured across major financial media outlets and he’s been kind enough to provide a sample of his latest cyclical trends monthly update report for premium subscribers to our super nerd tier that you can get through this week’s episode page on our website. This conversation is the la
01/08/202257 minutes 28 seconds
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Global Macro in an Age of Great Power Conflict | Demetri Kofinas

In Episode 262 of Hidden Forces, I (Demetri Kofinas) share an interview I recently gave on “The Breakdown” with Nathaniel Whittemore, but not before delivering an important message, which has to do with a new Hidden Forces community tier that we will be launching. I’m excited to announce that we will be launching a new Hidden Forces community tier where you'll be able to get immediate access to me, my thoughts, special content, etc., along with private events that will include opportunities to ask questions directly to my guests and to me in real-time. We are giving you a preview of that experience this coming Wednesday, August 3rd, from 6:30 PM — 8 PM EST when I will be hosting a live video Q&A over zoom. Anyone can join and ask me pretty much any question they want so long as
28/07/202253 minutes 25 seconds
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American Defense in an Age of Great Power Conflict | Elbridge Colby

In Episode 261 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Elbridge Colby, co-founder and principal of The Marathon Initiative, an organization whose mission is to develop the diplomatic, military, and economic strategies that the United States will need to navigate a protracted era of great power competition. Colby has also served as US Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Strategy and Force Development and was the chief architect of the 2018 National Defense Strategy (NDS), which was by some estimates the most significant revision of U.S. defense strategy since 9/11, if not since the end of the Cold War. This is a conversation about the national security challenges that Elbridge Colby believes we face as a country, their urgency, and what is needed in terms of practica
25/07/20221 hour 2 minutes 50 seconds
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What’s Driving the Price of Oil? A Supply-Side Story | Rory Johnston

In Episode 260 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Rory Johnston. Rory is a widely quoted researcher and expert in global commodities markets. His work includes a variety of research and investment projects including his commodity market research platform at Commodity Context Dot Com, as well as both public market portfolio and private equity strategy at Price Street. This episode is for premium subscribers only and is part of an ongoing series of conversations that I’ve been curating with guests focused on investment themes and opportunities in the commodities complex. The goal of this conversation is to provide you with a more critical look at the supply side story in oil, refined products like gasoline and diesel, and to a lesser degree natural gas, including drive
21/07/202247 minutes 8 seconds
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Turkish-Greek Relations & Battle Over the Eastern Mediterranean | Ryan Gingeras

In Episode 259 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Ryan Gingeras, a professor in the Department of National Security Affairs at the Naval Postgraduate School and an expert on Turkish, Balkan, and Middle East history. Gingeras has authored six books on Turkish history and culture, including his forthcoming, “The Last Days of the Ottoman Empire,” which is scheduled for release by Penguin in October 2022. In recent years, Turkey has become an X-factor of sorts in global politics. Its president, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, has attracted the ire of liberal-minded politicians and his transactional political style has raised questions about Turkey’s dependability as a NATO ally and about its long-term commitment to the rules-based international order. This is obviously a concern f
18/07/20221 hour 1 minute 46 seconds
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Rise of Shadow Banking & Risks of a Financial Crisis | Lev Menand

In Episode 258 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Lev Menand, author of “The Fed Unbound: Central Banking in a Time of Crisis.” Menand is an associate professor of law at Columbia Law School who has worked as an economist at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York and as a senior advisor to both the Deputy Secretary of the Treasury and the Assistant Secretary for Financial Institutions. He joins Demetri for an important and timely conversation about the US Dollar and the evolution of the international financial system into a kind of Frankenstein’s monster whose appendages and doppelgängers reach into the dee
14/07/20221 hour 2 minutes 15 seconds
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Energy Geopolitics & the Remaking of the Modern World | Helen Thompson

In Episode 257 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Helen Thompson, author and Professor of Political Economy at the University of Cambridge. Thompson’s current research concentrates on the political economy of energy and the long history of the democratic, economic, and geopolitical disruptions of the twenty-first century, which she explores magisterially in her new book “Disorder: Hard Times in the 21st Century.”  For those of us who grew up in the 1980s and 1990s, the nature of the world as we knew it to be only seemed to be getting better and better. The price of energy and the cost of capital kept getting cheaper, the world kept getting safer and more interconnected, and liberal democracy and free-market capitalism were seen as inevitable outcomes of the end of hi
11/07/20221 hour 3 seconds
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Value Investing & How to Have “Soul in the Game" | Vitaliy Katsenelson

In Episode 256 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with the CEO of Investment Management Associates, Vitaliy Katsenelson. Vitaliy is a well-known value investor and author of several books on investing and life. His latest, “Soul in the Game,” is a philosophical exploration of the sources of life’s meaning told through a collection of day-to-day observations and insights about Vitaliy’s early childhood in Russia, his experiences as a parent, and his love of classical music, and most importantly of art, which features prominently in their discussion. This conversation combines two of the objectives that Demetri laid out in the introduction to a recent episode he published on the subject of courage and self-actualization, namely his desire to take a more holistic approach to
04/07/20221 hour 24 minutes 57 seconds
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The Power of Crisis & How to Fight a Geopolitical Recession | Ian Bremmer

In Episode 255 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Ian Bremmer. Ian Bremmer is the president and founder of Eurasia Group, the world’s leading global research and consulting firm, and GZERO Media, a company dedicated to providing intelligent and engaging coverage of international affairs. Bremmer is also the author of ten books, including his latest, “The Power of Crisis,” in which he argues that we are unprepared for a trio of looming crises in the areas of pandemic response, climate change, and the next technological revolution. All of these looming crises that Ian focuses on are subjects that we’ve explored in great depth over the years with folks like fmr. FDA commissioner Scott
27/06/202249 minutes 42 seconds
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How to Trade Market Sentiment & Why Inflation Is Coming Down | Jared Dillian

In Episode 254 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Jared Dillian, editor of The Daily Dirtnap, a financial newsletter for professional investors focused on gauging market sentiment and how to capitalize on it. Dillian is also the author of two very successful books on Wall Street and investing and is the host of the Be Smart podcast, where he talks to his listeners about everything from how to sort out their personal finances to how to approach trading and investing in the stock market and everything in between. This conversation is yet another in a series of episodes that we’ve been doing focused on how to navigate the transition in market regime
20/06/202254 minutes 14 seconds
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The Path Towards Self-Actualization & How to Overcome Your Fears | Demetri Kofinas

In Episode 253 of Hidden Forces, I (Demetri Kofinas) share an interview I recently gave on the In-Bloom podcast hosted by Micaela Richmond. This was a pretty emotional conversation, and I don’t want to spoil the episode by giving it away, but I do want to say that while the subjects I mostly cover on Hidden Forces are intellectual the things that matter most to me are most definitely not. Every now and then I publish episodes that speak to those things like my episode with Jerry Colona on the hero’s journey and the art of growing up or my</span
13/06/20221 hour 13 minutes 55 seconds
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The Revenge of Risk Rates & the Return of Dividend Investing | Daniel Peris

In Episode 252 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Daniel Peris, Senior Vice President and Senior Portfolio Manager at Federated Hermes in Pittsburgh. Daniel is also the author of three books that together explore the intellectual underpinnings of modern portfolio allocation, with a particular focus on dividend investing, why it’s fallen out of favor with investors over the last 30 years, and why dividend-paying securities are positioned to outperform some of their more growth-oriented, cashless competitors in the next 30. While our recent episodes with Tony Greer and Jeff Currie also focus on the rotation from growth stocks to value stocks, those conversations are industry-specific, namely, they focus on commodities and industrial resources. Conversely, the objective
30/05/202251 minutes 48 seconds
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How to Trade the Great Rotation From Big Tech to Commodities | Tony Greer

In Episode 251 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Tony Greer, the founder of TG Macro, an independent research firm that provides fundamental, technical, and behavioral analysis of global markets to institutional and non-institutional clients alike. This conversation follows-up on a series of episodes we’ve published recently focused on the macro, political, and geopolitical economy, with an especially strong focus on commodities, currencies, and government policy. The goal with all of these episdoes has been to help listeners develop a framework for thinking about some of the big-picture trends driving markets and the economy, with the ultimate goal of helping them gain the type of conviction needed i
23/05/202253 minutes 42 seconds
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Revenge of the Dollar & the Meltdown in Global Markets | Brent Johnson

In Episode 250 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with CEO of Santiago Capital and originator of the “Dollar Milkshake” theory, Brent Johnson. Brent and Demetri discuss his thesis on the Dollar as part of a much larger conversation about the sell-off that we’re currently experiencing in risk assets, the dislocations we’re seeing in currencies and currency pairs like Dollar-Yen, and how to position yourself as conditions change in real-time.  Because so much is happening in markets right now it is challenging to know where to focus your attention, which is why Brent’s framework around the role of the US Dollar and its impact on financial flows is crucial for understanding what we’re seeing in markets today. We have published co
16/05/202247 minutes 37 seconds
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The Collapse of LUNA & UST and the Vulnerability in Crypto | Nathaniel Whittemore

In Episode 249 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Nathaniel Whittemore, host of “The Breakdown” a podcast distributed by CoinDesk, which focuses on the big picture power shifts in the economy and society, seen through the lens of crypto. It’s also the largest daily analysis podcast in the bitcoin and crypto space and one that Demetri has relied on to sort through the daily noise and to get a sense of its community’s cultural attitudes and narratives for years. Demetri asked Nathaniel to come onto the podcast today to help him make sense of the events that have transpired in crypto over the last week, including the collapse of Terra Luna and its algorithmically maintained stablecoin UST. But they also discuss the overall state of the market and the implications and co
15/05/20221 hour 23 minutes 21 seconds
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The New Era of Great Power Competition | John Mearsheimer & Stephen Walt

In Episode 248 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with professors of international relations John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt. Professor Mearsheimer is the R. Wendell Harrison Distinguished Service Professor of Political Science at the University of Chicago and the author of multiple books including “The Tragedy of Great Power Politics,” “Why Leaders Lie,” and “The Great Delusion: Liberal Dreams and International Realities.” Professor Walt is the Robert and Renee Belfer Professor of International Affairs at Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government. He is also the author of several books including “Revolution and War,” “Taming American Power: The Global Response to U.S. Primacy,” and most recently “The Hell of Good Intentions.” They both have appeared separately on the podcast before: professor Walt
11/05/20221 hour 7 minutes 44 seconds
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Revenge of the Old Economy & How to Invest in the Commodity Supercycle | Jeff Currie

In Episode 247 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Jeff Currie, global head of Commodities Research at Goldman Sachs and an expert on commodity markets, commodity dynamics related to corporate risk management & geopolitics, and how to invest strategically in what Jeff Currie believes is a “commodity supercycle.” Currie is a fountain of knowledge and uniquely good at breaking down the market dynamics and material importance of an industry that incorporates every single aspect of the global economy from capital markets, to supply chains, to international politics. Understanding these dynamics is crucial for businesses and governments who need to navigate and plan for a future that is going to look radically different from anything that we have seen in a very long time.
09/05/20221 hour 47 seconds
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The End of the Beginning for Crypto | Michael Anderson & Vance Spencer of Framework Ventures

In Episode 246 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Michael Anderson and Vance Spencer. Michael and Vance are the founders of Framework Ventures, a crypto-native venture capital firm with a team of technologists, researchers, and investors that actively build alongside the companies and protocols in which they invest. They were on the podcast two years ago to discuss their thesis on the opportunities in decentralized finance and they are back on today to talk about blockchain gaming and their latest, big bet on the future of the crypto industry. We are huge fans of these guys. They’re thoughtful. They’re passionate. And they’re native. They’ve grown up in this space and their investment philosophy and framework reflect this. Besides discussing the opportunities in gami
02/05/202242 minutes 27 seconds
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How to Position & Prepare Yourself for the End Game | Grant Williams

In Episode 245 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Grant Williams. Grant is the host of the Grant Williams Podcast and the author of the “Things that Make You Go Hmmm…” newsletter, which you can find at We are grappling with what will turn out to be the greatest socio-economic and political changes in one hundred years. What these changes will mean for the future of democracy, civil society, and the viability of capitalism are what today’s conversation is all about. How you choose to position yourself in anticipation of these changes is one of the most important challenges you will ever face as an investor and sovereign indi
25/04/202254 minutes 7 seconds
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Global Food Shortages & the Need for Energy Security | Doomberg

In Episode 244 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with the always congenial, yet uncompromisingly opinionated chicken, Doomberg. Doomberg’s expertise in heavy industry makes him the perfect guest to discuss what’s happening in energy and commodity markets. So, it’s no surprise that he and Demetri talked about this, as well as the investment opportunities in uranium, which Doomberg has written about extensively in his most recent post on substack titled “Sitting Down With Sprott.” The two also discuss the renewed lockdowns in Shanghai, how they compound existing global food and supply chain issues, and how those issues ar
18/04/202245 minutes 47 seconds
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How to Survive in the New Economic & Financial Order | Russell Napier

In Episode 243 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with investor and financial historian Russell Napier. Russel was on the podcast a year ago for a conversation about his book on the Asian Financial Crisis and “The Birth of the Age of Debt.” Today’s episode picks up where that conversation left off, building on the foundations of the post-Bretton Woods system of flexible exchange rates and dollar hegemony to speculate on what comes next—on what the new order that is now being born will look like, how it will operate, and what its implications will be for economies, industries, portfolios, and the role of the dollar in the new, international monetary system. It’s a conversation about inflation, war, and how to position oneself for a new world where old assumptions about monetary pol
11/04/202254 minutes 11 seconds
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The Information War & Things Worth Fighting For | Demetri Kofinas

In Episode 242 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas shares an appearance he made on “The Realignment” podcast a week before the invasion of Ukraine. Demetri spoke to the seriousness with which he views the information problem and the information war that we’re all combatants in today, the move from unipolarity to a world of disorder, as well as the spiritual deadening that he feels we’ve all been living through. He also discusses the need for both a national purpose and a sense of self that is inclusive, communal, and forgiving of our individual shortcomings—a sense of self that makes space for the imperfections of a human life. The world that we are living in tod
04/04/20221 hour 16 minutes
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Preparing the U.S. & Europe for Russian Cyber Attacks | Chris Painter

In Episode 241 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Chris Painter, a globally recognized leader and expert on cyber security who has been at the vanguard of U.S. and international cyber issues for over thirty years—first as a prosecutor of some of the most high-profile cybercrime cases in the country and then as a senior official at the Department of Justice, FBI, the National Security Council, and the State Department. He’s responsible for having established the Office of the Coordinator for Cyber Issues and served as Senior Director for Cyber Policy in the National Security Council. With the Biden administration reiterating prior warnings that the Russian Government is exploring options for conducting cyberattacks against the United States in
28/03/202241 minutes 14 seconds
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Risks of Nuclear War & the Escalation Ladder | Jon Wolfsthal

In Episode 240 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Jon Wolfsthal, a veteran of the national security establishment who has served as both special assistant to the President of the United States for National Security Affairs and senior director at the National Security Council for arms control and nonproliferation. He’s been involved in almost every aspect of U.S. nuclear weapons, arms control, nonproliferation and security policy during his 30-years of working on issues of national security. This episode is an exploration of US and Russian nuclear doctrine and decision-making protocols. It’s a conversation about how people and institutions in both the United States and Russia think about nuclear war and escalation management, acknowledging that nuclear war would be an
24/03/202242 minutes 48 seconds
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The Battle for Ukraine & Prospects for World War III | Peter Zeihan

In Episode 239 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Peter Zeihan geopolitical strategist and author of the soon-to-be-released book “The End of the World is Just the Beginning: Mapping the Collapse of Globalization.” Demetri asked Zeihan back on the podcast in order to get his perspective on the very serious situation that is unfolding in Ukraine and Eastern Europe at the moment. We discuss the European security theatre, US-Russia relations, the risks of military confrontation with NATO, nuclear escalation, and knock-on effects to global energy markets and food systems. We also speculate on China’s involvement in the diplomatic efforts over Ukraine, the implications for Taiwan, the US Dollar system, and so much more. Our objective in brin
21/03/202249 minutes 53 seconds
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Hidden Forces Event in New York City | Thursday, March 31st

I'm hosting an event at Ideal Glass Studios in New York City’s Greenwich Village on Thursday, March 31st. The event includes a panel featuring the founders of Nillion, a decentralized public network based on an exciting new cryptographic primitive called Nil Message Compute (NMC) that I recently covered in Episode 234 with Miguel De Vega. Attendees will have a chance to learn more about the project, ask questions of the panelists, and socialize with fellow Hidden Forces listeners and past guests of the podcast who will also be in attendance. Doors open at 6 PM EDT and the panel will begin promptly at 7 PM. Make sure to RSVP here while there are still seats available.
20/03/20223 minutes 53 seconds
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Quantifying Structural Risk in 'Zombified' Markets | Hari Krishnan & Ash Bennington

In Episode 238 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Hari Krishnan (Head of Volatility Strategies at SCT Capital) and Ash Bennington (Senior & Crypto Editor at Real Vision) about their book “Market Tremors: Quantifying Structural Risks in Modern Financial Markets.” Since the Global Financial Crisis, market structure has undergone a dramatic shift. A combination of Central Bank policy, disintermediation of commercial banks through regulation, and the growth of passive products such as ETFs have ‘zombified’ markets. Risk has increasingly built up beneath the surface through a combination of excessive leverage and crowded exposure to specific asset classes and strategies. In many cases, historical volatility understates prospective risk. <span style="font-wei
17/03/202252 minutes 20 seconds
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A History of Venture Capital & How to Make the Future | Sebastian Mallaby

In Episode 237 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with journalist, historian, and author Sebastian Mallaby about his latest book, “The Power Law,” which delves into the history of the venture capital industry and early-stage investing. This conversation is meant to provide you with a framework for thinking about how to invest in businesses, initiatives, and projects, which not only lack cash flows, but whose values are often fundamentally intangible, difficult to measure, and often impossible to quantify. As more and more of our economic life happens in the digital realm, the ability to assess value and invest accordingly will become an increasingly invaluable skill-set for investors. In Part Two of their conversation, which i
14/03/202246 minutes 27 seconds
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Economic Warfare & the Weaponization of the Dollar | Julia Friedlander

In Episode 236 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Julia Friedlander, the C. Boyden Gray senior fellow & director of the Economic Statecraft Initiative at the Atlantic Council’s GeoEconomics Center. Ms. Friedlander served as senior policy advisor for Europe in the U.S. Treasury Department’s Office of Terrorism and Financial Intelligence, where she collaborated with EU partners on global sanctions policy and combatting illicit finance and as director for the European Union, Southern Europe and Economic Affairs at the National Security Council, charged with coordinating U.S. interagency policy on transatlantic relations and the European Union for White House. Julia’s extensive experience in economic statecraft make her the perfect person to speak to about the the sancti
10/03/202243 minutes 51 seconds
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Russia-Ukraine War & Risks of NATO-Russia Escalation | Dmitri Alperovitch

In Episode 235 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with the fmr. CTO and co-founder of CrowdStrike Dmitri Alperovitch about the latest developments in the war between Russia and Ukraine, including the risks of escalation between Russia & NATO, implications for US-Sino relations, cyberattacks against Western countries, political warfare, and much more. Dmitri Alperovitch was on this podcast late last year for an episode titled “Why Putin Plans to Invade Ukraine,” in which he explained why he was convinced that Vladimir Putin was going to invade Ukraine in January or February of 2022. It was a controvers
07/03/202251 minutes 31 seconds
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Nillion NMC: A Secure Processing Layer for Web3 | Miguel de Vega

In Episode 234 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Dr. Miguel de Vega, the creator of Nillion’s new cryptographic primitive, Nil Message Compute (NMC). Nillion allows a decentralized network of nodes to work together using a non-blockchain technology known as Secure Multi-Party Computation (SMPC) to store and process information at essentially centralized server speed, all while remaining information-theoretic secure (ITS). This unique feature represents a significant breakthrough in decentralized systems, allowing Nillion to operate the first decentralized and permissionless public SMPC network at scale. Its security and performance characteristics enable Nillion to not only serve as a secure processing layer for Web3, but also as a source of off-chain computation, as a decentralized private enclave, and as an e
28/02/20221 hour 1 minute 40 seconds
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Update on Ukraine & US-Russia Escalation

The war in Ukraine has broken out while I've been away on vacation. This is an update for listeners so that you know what to expect from the show in the next couple of weeks. In the meanwhile, you can follow me on Twitter at @kofinas, where I have been sharing my thoughts on the geopolitical situation, as well as retweeting those of the people I follow in order to stay abreast of events as they evolve. This is a dangerous time for the world, but especially for the people of Ukraine who have shown incredible courage in the face of an aggressive adversary whose motivations and final objectives remain unclear at this point in time.
26/02/20222 minutes 5 seconds
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The PayPal Mafia & the Founders Who Shaped Silicon Valley | Jimmy Soni

In Episode 233 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with award-winning author and recurring Hidden Forces guest Jimmy Soni about his newst book on the PayPal Mafia and the founders who shaped Silicon Valley and transformed the Fintech and online payments industry. The history of the so-called “PayPal Mafia” does not simply constitute the individual histories of star-studded founders like Peter Thiel, Elon Musk, Reed Hoffman, and others. The history of PayPal is in many ways the history of the future. It's about a company that was in so many ways ahead of its time. PayPal was fintech before anyone even knew what that word meant. It was one
21/02/202248 minutes 5 seconds
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Monetary Tightening & the End of the Risk-on Trade | Mohamed El-Erian

In Episode 232 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Mohamed El-Erian, President of Queens' College Cambridge and chief economic adviser at Allianz, the corporate parent of PIMCO where Mohamed was CEO and co-chief investment officer from 2007 to 2014. El-Erian is one of the most gifted communicators in finance who is intimately connected with the global policymaking community. He has a unique perspective on one of the most important forces driving financial markets and his insights into government policy are invaluable to investors the world over. In this conversation, Mohamed shares his views on the direction of Fed policy, his projection for rate hikes in early 2022, and what it will take for the Fed to regain control of t
14/02/202251 minutes 53 seconds
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The Metaverse, Virtual Worlds, and the Problems of Philosophy | David Chalmers

In Episode 231 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with renowned philosopher and author of “Reality+” David Chalmers about the metaverse, the nature of reality, and the problems of philosophy in a virtual world. David’s central thesis is that the metaverse and virtual reality are genuine realities and that we may be living in such virtual worlds already. Along the way, Demetri and David conduct a grand tour of big ideas in philosophy and science, using virtual reality technology to explore new perspectives on long-established philosophical questions. How do we know that there’s an external world? Is there a god? What is the nature of reality? What’s the relation between mind and body? How can we lead a good life? All of these questions are illuminated or transformed in thi
07/02/202253 minutes 58 seconds
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Robinhood, Reddit, & the Revolt of the Retail Investor | Spencer Jakab

In Episode 230 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Spencer Jakab, an award-winning financial journalist who edits the Wall Street Journal’s “Heard on the Street” column and who is out with a new book chronicling one of the craziest news stories of the last few years. The story centers on a motley crew of retail traders on Reddit’s r/WallStreetBets forum who almost broke the Internet by using social media, the Robinhood trading app, and a sophisticated understanding of options contracts to wreak havoc on Wall Street while making a fortune doing it. This is a retrospective on the now infamous GameStop/$GME: the video game retailer who attracted crazy amounts of media attention this time last year. Spencer and I discuss the facts of the story in detail, how the meme stock sque
31/01/20221 hour 8 minutes 39 seconds
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Why Did the Future Arrive First in Russia? | Peter Pomerantsev

In Episode 229 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Peter Pomerantsev, a Soviet-born British journalist, former TV producer, and author about the break-down in belief systems and shared mythologies that we are experiencing in the West and why this has left so many people feeling increasingly cynical about the world and indifferent towards the future. Peter was early in his diagnosis, having first experienced this phenomenon during his time living and working in Russia. It was not long after that experience and the publication of his first book “Nothing is True, But Everything Is Possible” that he be
24/01/202256 minutes 42 seconds
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The Kazakhstan Protests & Russia's Standoff With the West | Joanna Lillis

In Episode 228 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Kazakhstan-based journalist Joanna Lillis, author of “Dark Shadows: Inside the Secret World of Kazakhstan,” about the recent protests and unrest that unfolded in Kazakhstan over the past two weeks and how this ties into the larger geopolitical chess match currently underway in Eastern Europe. This is the multi-polar world in action. It’s no longer some theoretical thing that we’ve read about or that we’re moving towards—we are in it. This is the world we live in, and in this world, everything is up for grabs. Every crisis, every border skirmish, every negotiation is an opportunity for any and all of the major powers to change the
17/01/202239 minutes 34 seconds
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Is America Undergoing a Narrative Reset or Realignment? | Saagar Enjeti & Marshall Kosloff

In Episode 227 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Saagar Enjeti and Marshall Kosloff, the co-hosts of “The Realignment,” an absolutely phenomenal podcast that consistently produces some of the best conversations at the intersection of politics and society that you will find anywhere. They are both successful entrepreneurs and thought leaders in their own rights—Saagar Enjeti interviewed former president Donald Trump four separate times in his capacity as Chief Whitehouse Correspondent for the Daily Caller and currently co-hosts the immensely popular “Breaking Points” with Krystal Ball. Marshall Kosloff is an executive producer at “On Deck” where he also hosts “The Deep End,” a podcast where he interviews visionary builders, creators, and experts with world-changing i
10/01/20221 hour 3 minutes 54 seconds
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Why Putin Plans to Invade Ukraine & What the West Can Do About It | Dmitri Alperovitch

In Episode 226 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Dmitri Alperovitch, the former CTO and co-founder of CrowdStrike, the world’s largest cybersecurity company, which has been involved in investigations of several high-profile cyberattacks including the 2014 Sony Pictures hack, the 2015–2016 cyber-attacks on the Democratic National Committee (DNC), and the 2016 email leak involving the DNC. Alperovitch currently serves as Chairman of the non-profit Silverado Policy Accelerator, where he focuses on advancing American prosperity and global leadership by working directly with both the executive branch and Capitol Hill on issues related to cyber, trade & industrial security, and ecological & economic security. What prompted this conversation was a <a href= "https://
03/01/202243 minutes 38 seconds
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Meditations on Courage & Why Fortune Favors the Brave | Ryan Holiday

In Episode 225 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Ryan Holiday, a popular author whose books have made philosophy and the writings of the ancients interesting and accessible to millions of people. He’s done this with bestselling books like “The Obstacle is the Way” and “Ego is the Enemy” and he continues to do this with his latest book “Courage is Calling.”  Demetri and Ryan discuss what courage is, why it matters, and if we can learn to live and act courageously. We are living in a time when people would rather stand on the sidelines than speak out against injustice, go along with convention, or bet on their own talents and abilities. And yet, Ryan would argue that we need courage now more than ever. Our hope is that today’s c
27/12/20214 minutes 46 seconds
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The 'Restart of History' & How to Invest in a Broken Economy | Demetri Kofinas

In Episode 224 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas appears as a guest on the Mining Stock Daily, a podcast by Trevor Hall which focuses on the junior mining and mineral exploration sector. Their conversation centers on the macro, big-picture themes of society, polity, economy, and culture that preoccupy most of Demetri’s attention, as well as on his own approach to investing. You can find more information about Trevor’s podcast at where you can listen to the entire, original episode, which mainly includes stories from Demetri’s time working in media and his thoughts about the difference between mediums like radio, TV, and podcasting. </s
20/12/202149 minutes 47 seconds
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The Power of Independent Voices & How to Make It in the Gig Economy | Doomberg

In Episode 223 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Doomberg, an anonymous publisher and the proprietor of a bespoke consulting firm that provides advisory services to family offices and c-suite executives. The firm’s principals apply their decades of experience across heavy industry, private equity, and finance to deliver innovative thinking and clarity to complex problems. In the first hour of today’s conversation, Demetri and Doomberg discuss how to build a successful publishing company and what it takes to cultivate an audience in today’s decentralized, networked economy and fragmented media ecosystem. They discuss what that process has been like for the Doomberg team, what goes into building a brand from scratch, and the opportunities that have emerged for independent v
13/12/202151 minutes 20 seconds
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How the US Navy Creates Prosperity & Why We'll Miss It | Gregg Easterbrook

In Episode 222 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Gregg Easterbrook. Gregg was a staff writer, national correspondent, and contributing editor at The Atlantic and has authored thirteen books about a variety of subjects including climate change, globalization, philosophy, and American football. Demetri and Gregg explore the subject of Easterbrook’s latest book, “The Blue Age.” They discuss the extraordinary transformation of the international trading order that we’ve been living through over the last seventy years and the unique role that the US Navy and advancements in naval architecture and marine engineering have played in making all of that possible. It’s difficult to appreciate just how unprecedented this long period of peace on the oceans has been and how extraordinary the deflationary pressures are that this peace has unleashed. It has also had huge implications for the expansion of credit, the reduct
06/12/202149 minutes 34 seconds
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Jim Grant on What Inflation Means for Asset Values, Crypto, and Meme Stocks

In Episode 221 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Jim Grant, the founder of Grant's Interest Rate Observer: a legend in the business of investor education and financial media. What separates Jim from millions of his fellow financial journalists, commentators, and authors is the historical perspective that he brings, informed not just by the immense volume of books and periodicals that he’s consumed over the course of his lifetime, but primarily by the wisdom of his own lived experiences and lessons learned from the experiences of others that he’s had the privilege to know and interview over the course his life. Given the ongoing controv
29/11/202151 minutes 32 seconds
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What Happened to the American Economy & How to Fix It | Julius Krein

In Episode 220 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Julius Krein, the editor of American Affairs, a quarterly journal of policy and political-economy that delves into the deeper sociopolitical, cultural, and economic issues facing America and other Western countries. The episode is broken into two parts, the first hour of which focuses on issues of political-economy, policy, and market dynamics that have driven the American economy into a state of “proletarianization,” where its citizens are increasingly ruled by an oligarchy of global elites whose insatiable appetite for wealth and power is endangering the very systems of free-market capitalism and liberal democracy that this kakistocracy claims to uphold. It’s an outcome that Julius Klein would refer to as “capitalis
22/11/20211 hour 9 seconds
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The Lab-Leak Hypothesis & the Origin of Covid-19 | Alina Chan & Matt Ridley

In Episode 219 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Matt Ridley and Alina Chan. Alina is a Canadian molecular biologist specializing in gene therapy and cell engineering at the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard and Matt is a British science journalist who has written countless bestselling books on subjects ranging from evolution, to innovation, to genomic science. They are the co-authors of an electrifying new book titled “Viral” that grapples with the mystery of how Covid-19, a virus whose closest known relatives live in bats residing in subtropical southern China, somehow managed to begin spreading among people more than 1,500 kilometers away in the city of Wuhan, while leaving none of the expected traces that such outbreaks usually create. Instead, nearly two years
15/11/20211 hour 6 minutes 4 seconds
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The Age of A.I. and Our Human Future | Eric Schmidt & Dan Huttenlocher

In Episode 218 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Eric Schmidt and Daniel Huttenlocher. Eric is co-founder of Schmidt Futures and the former CEO & Chairman of Google and Daniel is the inaugural dean of the MIT Schwarzman College of Computing. They are the co-authors, along with Henry Kissinger, of a phenomenal new book titled, “The Age of AI And Our Human Future,” which explores how Artificial Intelligence is transforming human society—and what it means for all of us. Eric and Dan spend the first hour discussing the technical dimensions of artificial intelligence—what it is and how it works—as well as how it will continue to shape and transform our social and physical realities. The second half of the conversation focuses on the national security dimensions of artifi
11/11/202146 minutes 56 seconds
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A Memoir of Illness, Discovery, & the Body Politic | Ross Douthat

In Episode 217 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with New York Times Op-Ed columnist Ross Douthat about his five-year struggle with a disease that in his own words, officially, doesn't exist. It’s a story about personal suffering but also about what happens when we become terribly ill only to realize that even the doctors who are willing to treat us can only do so much. Demetri and Ross spend the first half of their conversation discussing the book and its lessons for not only those dealing with chronic illnesses like Lyme disease, which has afflicted Ross, but for anyone who feels the need to challenge or circumvent the medical establishment in order to treat an illness or cure a serious disease. Unsurprisingly, this leads directly into a conversation about Covid-19, a
08/11/202159 minutes 21 seconds
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Index Funds, ETFs, & the Passive Investing Revolution | Robin Wigglesworth

In Episode 216 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Robin Wigglesworth, the Financial Times global finance correspondent and author of “Trillions,” a book which chronicles the origins, history, and future of the index fund, arguably the most disruptive financial innovation of the last 50 years. Robin and Demetri spend the first half of their conversation exploring the history of passive investing and its evolution into what some argue has become a market-distorting phenomenon that is making markets less efficient by inhibiting price discovery and concentrating power in the hands of an increasingly smaller number of index fund managers and purveyors of indices. In the overtime, the two switch gears to discuss some of the tim
25/10/202148 minutes 9 seconds
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Andrew Yang on His Forward Party and the Rise of a New Political Consensus

In Episode 215 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with 2020 Presidential candidate and Founder of the Forward Party, Andrew Yang. Yang is perhaps best known for popularizing the idea of universal basic income, what he called “the freedom dividend” during his run for president in 2020. He recently launched “the Forward Party,” a political party focused on breaking what Andrew sees as a two-party duopoly that is no longer working and whose members and policies have fallen increasingly out of favor with the majority of Americans. He details many of his policy proposals in his new book “Forward,” including ranked-choice voting, open
18/10/202146 minutes 12 seconds
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Uncontrolled Spread: How COVID-19 Crushed Us & How to Fight the Next Pandemic | Scott Gottlieb

In Episode 214 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Scott Gottlieb. Dr. Gottlieb is a physician who served as the head of the FDA from 2017 to 2019. He currently serves on the boards of Pfizer and Illumina and is a regular contributor to CNBC where he has become one of the most recognizable faces in America. His recently published book, “Uncontrolled Spread,” examines how the coronavirus and its variants overwhelmed our national defenses and outlines the steps he thinks we need to take in order to better protect ourselves and our country from the next pandemic. The first half of Demetri’s conversation with Scott was spent examining the systemic failures that Dr. Gottlieb thinks exacerbated the scope of the Covid-19 pandemic, as well as the economic costs associated wit
11/10/202157 minutes 56 seconds
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How Washington Works in the New Gilded Age | David Wessel

In Episode 213 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with David Wessel, a senior fellow in Economic Studies at the Brookings Institution and director of the Hutchins Center on Fiscal and Monetary Policy. David is also the author of a new book titled, “Only the Rich Can Play: How Washington Works in the New Gilded Age.” In the book, Wessel tells the story of the creation of a lucrative tax break in which wealthy elites attend to one another, under the guise of social justice and redistribution. This tax break, known as “Opportunity Zones,” was sold as a way to incentivizing people to invest in distressed, low-income communities, with the official purpose of spurring economic growth and job creation, but which in practice, seems to have served primarily as yet another tax loop
04/10/202141 minutes 57 seconds
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Wireless Wars: China’s Dangerous Domination of 5G | Jon Pelson

In Episode 212 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with telecom industry veteran and author of “Wireless Wars,” Jon Pelson, about how American companies invented cellular technology, transferred that technology to China, and then sat by and watched as their Chinese competitors drove them out of business. He shares stories from the executives and scientists who built the industry, as well as those of Western politicians, businesspeople, and members of the military who cooperated with and in some cases actively aided the Chinese government and its state champions in their efforts to overtake and crush their western competitors. The first part of today’s conversation is spent familiarizing listeners with 5G technology, how it work
27/09/202149 minutes 39 seconds
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A Nihilist’s Guidebook for the Modern Investor | Demetri Kofinas

In Episode 211 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas shares his recent appearance on “The Empire’s New Clothes,” a documentary series where host Bradford Pope McArthur examines the cyclical forces that make and break empires and tries to answer the big questions of how we got here as a society and what might be in store for us in the years to come. Topics include global macro, cryptocurrencies, geopolitics, and more. You can access the transcript to this conversation through the Hidden Forces Patreon Page<span style="
23/09/202151 minutes 39 seconds
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A.I. Future: Utopia or Apocalypse? Ten Visions For Our Future | Kai-Fu Lee

In Episode 210 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Kai-Fu Lee, CEO of Sinovation Ventures, a leading Chinese technology venture firm. Dr. Lee was formerly the president of Google China and the New York Times bestselling author of AI Superpowers. His latest book, “AI2041: Ten Visions for Our Future,” provides the foundation for today’s conversation about the future of a world driven by artificial intelligence, what it will look like, and the challenges and opportunities for humanity that such a world will create. In the first part of today’s episode, Kai-Fu and Demetri discuss a number of key technologies that Dr. Lee believes will play a pivotal role in transforming our lives over the next 20 years such as artificial intelligence and quantum computing, how these techn
20/09/202141 minutes 25 seconds
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Lessons from the Soviet Union and the Flight to Safety | Simon Mikhailovich

In Episode 209 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Simon Mikhailovich, founder and Managing Partner of “The Bullion Reserve,” a professionally managed private vehicle providing full-service solutions that ensure legal compliance, jurisdictional diversification, liquidity, physical access, and deliverability of gold bullion. Operating within a single structure, TBR maximizes flexibility and enables the use of gold bullion as a deep out of the money put option on the failure of extreme monetary policies with an asymmetric upside. Demetri and Simon spend most of the podcast discussing Simon’s experience growing up in and emigrating from the Soviet Union, and the economic and political lessons that he has drawn from that experience and that we can apply to our present pre
16/09/20211 hour 40 minutes 16 seconds
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The Age of Crisis: COVID-19 & our Post-Pandemic Future | Adam Tooze

In Episode 208 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Adam Tooze, professor of history and the director of the European Institute at Columbia University. He’s also a prolific public commentator and author of several prize-winning books including his latest, “Shutdown: How COVID Shook the World Economy.” In the first part of their conversation, Demetri and Adam work their way through the chain of events that occurred between the outbreak of SARS-CoV-2 in January 2020 and the inauguration of Joe Biden in January 2021. Effectively the period that we now consider to be the first full year of the pandemic. In Adam’s own words we “wrestle with power and knowledge in time,” in an effort to understand
13/09/202147 minutes 59 seconds
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China's Western Horizon: Beijing and the New Geopolitics of Eurasia | Daniel Markey

In Episode 207 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Daniel Markey, Senior Expert on South Asia at the United States Institute of Peace who recently served as senior research professor at Johns Hopkins University’s School of Advanced International Studies and as the academic director of the school’s Global Policy Program. He is also the author of “China’s Western Horizon: Beijing and the New Geopolitics of Eurasia,” which provides the roadmap for this conversation. In the first part of their discussion, Demetri and Daniel examine how the communist party in China views the lands, countries, and regions to its west, both historically and in terms of its contemporary security concerns and economic ambitions. How do its Eurasian neighbors view China? What motivates the CCP’
06/09/202152 minutes 4 seconds
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How America Lost the ‘Good War’ in Afghanistan | Jonathan Schroden

In Episode 206 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Jonathan Schroden, Director of the Countering Threats & Challenges Program at CNA. Schroden has served as a strategic advisor on Afghanistan to the US military since 2008, ranging from commands in-country to operational commands outside of Afghanistan, as well as strategic elements in the Pentagon, including the Office of the Secretary of Defense. In the first part of today’s conversation, Jonathan and Demetri examine the lens through which the public has become informed about the events unfolding in Kabul over the last two weeks and the public narrative that has quickly formed around what is truly a humanitarian and political disaster.   The question however that has been
30/08/202147 minutes 26 seconds
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Afghanistan Withdrawal & Implications for U.S. Policy in Asia | Laurel Miller

In Episode 205 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Laurel Miller, Director of International Crisis Group’s Asia Program who previously served as deputy and then acting Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan in the U.S. State Department. Laurel also held the position of senior foreign policy expert at the RAND Corporation and served as a Senior Advisor to the Assistant Secretary of State for European Affairs, Senior Advisor to the U.S. special envoy for the Balkans, and Deputy to the Ambassador-at-Large for War Crimes Issues during her previous time in government. Today’s episode is meant to provide you with a comprehensive understanding of the situation currently unfolding in Afghanistan, the unique circumstances leading up to the collapse of the Afghan g
26/08/202155 minutes 58 seconds
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Opportunities for Value Investing, China's Digital Currency, & the Pivot to Asia | James Aitken

In Episode 204 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with investor and macro-financial strategist James Aitken. This is an over 2-hour-long conversation that ranges from a discussion about the oil industry and the impact of ESG mandates on prices, to the short-and-medium-term impacts of monetary & fiscal policy on inflation, to the post-Covid economy and opportunities for value investing. In the Overtime, James and Demetri pivot their discussion to Asia and the ongoing crackdown in Chinese capital markets, as well as the disruptive implications of China’s deployment of its digital currency electronic payments (DCEP) system and what it means for companies and investors doing business in China. They also discuss the impact that the
23/08/202154 minutes 18 seconds
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Kofinas Answers Audience Questions in First-Ever “Ask Me Anything” Episode

In Episode 203 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas answers dozens of audience questions about his process for guest selection, outreach, and preparation, thoughts about certain conspiracies, the business side of podcasting, his experience creating a TV show on RT, and much, much more. All questions were submitted through the Hidden Forces Patreon Page. Premium subscribers gain access to our overtime feed, which can be easily added to your favorite podcast application.<
16/08/20211 hour 27 minutes 25 seconds
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A History of the Future: Hope & Fear in the Social Smartphone Era | Rory Cellan-Jones

In Episode 202 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with veteran BBC technology correspondent Rory Cellan-Jones about the biggest developments and news stories in tech from the dot-com bubble of the late 1990s to the rise of Google and Facebook. These stories and more are included in Rory’s new book “Always On,” which chronicles the rise of the smartphone era and how technology has altered our customs, expectations, and lives in ways that are easy to forget only fifteen years since the launch of the first iPhone. This is a conversation unlike most any other that you will have heard on this podcast, because there isn’t any one particular lesson that you are meant to take away from it. Instead, we want you to use it as an opportunity to reflect on just how much change we’ve s
09/08/202140 minutes 43 seconds
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Is Elon Musk Humanity’s Savior or a Supervillain? | Tim Higgins

In Episode 201 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Wall Street Journal automotive and technology reporter Tim Higgins, about his new book “Power Play,” which chronicles the incredible and chaotic rise of Tesla and its controversial CEO Elon Musk. In the first part of their conversation, Tim and Demetri discuss the origin story of Tesla all the way up until the successful launch of the Model S: a truly remarkable achievement that came during a time when Americans were desperate to find something in their economy to feel hopeful about. Unfortunately, the success that Tesla enjoyed during that period was not something the company would be able to replicate and this is what most of the second half of this conversation is spent discussing. The two examine the difficulties
02/08/202140 minutes 12 seconds
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WeWork, Adam Neumann, & the Great Startup Debacle | Maureen Farrell

In Episode 200 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Maureen Farrell, author of “The Cult of We: WeWork, Adam Neuman, and the Great Startup Delusion.” Maureen, along with her colleague and co-author Eliot Brown, were some of the first reporters at the Wall Street Journal to cover what is arguably the biggest financial debacle in the history of early-stage investing. And yet, this description doesn’t even begin to capture the incredible story that is the rise and fall of WeWork: a story about a real estate company that was at one point the most valuable start-up in America, despite racking up over $10 billion dollars in losses over the course of just nine years and vaporizing nearly for
26/07/202155 minutes 32 seconds
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The Asian Financial Crisis & the Birth of the Age of Debt | Russell Napier

In Episode 199 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with investor and financial historian Russell Napier. Napier’s latest book, “The Asian Financial Crisis: 1995-1998,” covers a period of time that many investors are either not familiar with or haven’t studied anywhere near as closely as they should given its relevance to the investment regime in which we are living today. Today’s investment regime—what Russell Napier called “The Age of Debt”—is characterized by excessive private and public debt levels, financial repression, market concentration, and all of the unintended consequences that arise from the perverse incentives that these dynamics create. We spend the first hour of our conversation discussing the crisis itself, its drivers, as well as the practices and policies
19/07/202153 minutes 10 seconds
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The Memory Thief & the Secrets Behind How We Remember | Lauren Aguirre

In Episode 198 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Lauren Aguirre, an award-winning science journalist whose book “The Memory Thief,” tells the story of a team of doctors responsible for discovering a surprising connection between the use of opioids—specifically fentanyl—and memory loss. This condition, first detected in drug overdose victims with severe damage to their hippocampus has since led to a series of discoveries about the nature of memory, as well as the mysteries that persist about how we remember—where memories live, how they’re formed, and why we forget most of what happens to us in a day but can remember some events with stunning clarity, years, even decades later. Perhaps the greatest mystery that Lauren tackles in her book is why Alzheimer’s—a degenera
12/07/202140 minutes 21 seconds
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Revenge of the Real: Politics for a Post-Pandemic World | Benjamin Bratton

In Episode 197 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Benjamin Bratton, professor of visual arts at UC San Diego and the author of “Revenge of the Real: Politics, for a post-pandemic world.” Bratton’s book explores how our collective response to the COVID-19 pandemic demonstrates a critical inability on the part of society to govern itself. The pandemic in this sense serves as a sort of non-negotiable reality-check that upends the comfortable illusions of a world that increasingly bears no resemblance to the one we have vacated.  Benjamin raises important questions about not only how we came to find ourselves in our current predicament of mask wars, urban riots, and institutional decay, but also, how we might go about constru
05/07/202146 minutes 38 seconds
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Crypto Ethics & How to ‘Make Money Great Again’ | Hasu & Demetri

In Episode 196 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas is interviewed at the ETHGlobal HackMoney Summit by crypto researcher and writer Hasu, whose work Demetri has relied to educate himself on some of the most important issues in crypto over the years. In this conversation, Demetri explores many of the same themes of financial nihilism, hyperreality, and transformation that he recently discussed in his appearance on the Grant Williams Podcast, but with a much deeper focus on Bitcoin, Ethereum, DeFi, and the larger crypto ecosystem. This includes a discussion about crypto ethics and moral accountability, particularly among some of Bitcoin’s most outspoken promoters. Anyone interested in following Hasu can do so on twitter at <a hre
28/06/202155 minutes 42 seconds
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Mental Immunity & the Search for a Better Way to Think | Andy Norman

In Episode 195 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Andy Norman, an award-winning author, public philosopher, and prominent advocate for the field of “cognitive immunology,” which studies the mind’s resistance to bad ideas. In this conversation you will learn how mental immunity works, how epidemics of irrationality occur, and how present cultural conditions exacerbate the spread of bad ideas by compromising our mental faculties, exploiting loopholes in the evidentiary chain of reasoning that most of us rely on in order to assess, accept, or reject claims and assertions. Whether we’re talking about the spread of baseless online conspiracies, increased political polarization, or the bewildering popularity of cancel culture,
21/06/202156 minutes 33 seconds
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The Power of Mimetic Desire in Markets, Politics, & Culture | Luke Burgis

In Episode 194 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Lukis Burgis, founder and director of Fourth Wall Ventures and author of “Wanting,” a book about the power of mimetic desire and how it impacts our behavior in markets, politics, and culture. The goal of this conversation is to help you understand what mimetic desire is and how it operates in your own life and in society at large, whether that be in financial markets, politics, or the broader economy. In practical terms, this means understanding the forces that shape how we come to want the things that we desire, from fancy degrees to high-flying stocks, to political ideologies, so that we can learn how to extract ourselves from the systems of wanting that leave us exhausted. <span style="font-weight: 40
14/06/202156 minutes 43 seconds
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Winning: The Unforgiving Race to Greatness | Tim Grover

In Episode 193 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with world-renowned trainer, author, and CEO of Attack Athletics, Tim Grover. Tim has personally trained and worked with some of the most elite, iconic athletes in the world, including Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant, Dwyane Wade, and hundreds of other sports and business professionals. He is the preeminent authority on the science and art of physical and mental dominance and his latest book, “Winning: the Unforgiving Race to Greatness,” is a testament to that life-long dedication. This is not a conversation that’s going to give you a roadmap to victory. Not even close. In fact, we wouldn’t even describe it as motivational. For some people, Tim’s words will be incredibly validating. For others, unnerving, because “winning does
07/06/20211 hour 6 minutes 6 seconds
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Financial Nihilism, Narrative Investing, & the Hyperreality of Markets

In Episode 192 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas shares a recent appearance he made on the Grant Williams Podcast. Grant has been on the Hidden Forces Podcast before, twice on his own and twice as a guest along with Ben Hunt. We have provided links to all of those previous appearances in the related section on the episode page on our website. Grant spent the first 20 minutes asking Demetri questions related to his bio and how he got started in media, as well as the origins of Hidden Forces. The rest of the episode is devoted to discussing many of the various forces that Demetri has talked about on this podcast—things like the phenomenon of financial nihilism, the hyperreality of markets & society, China and the changing geopolitical order, and much more. <span sty
01/06/20211 hour 36 minutes 44 seconds
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Podcast Update: The Will to Win, Mimetic Desire, & the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict

Demetri shares his thoughts about the news cycle and provides listeners with a sneak peak into the next 5 weeks of content, including episodes on the will to win and memetic desire.
24/05/20219 minutes 36 seconds
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Ultrasound Money & the Ethereum Triple Halving | Nikhil Shamapant

In Episode 191 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Nikhil Shamapant, the author of a recently published and widely circulated 79-page report that sets an ambitious 18-month price target on Ethereum of $150,000 per ETH—more than 30x the current level. Nikhil believes this will be driven primarily by two upcoming changes to the underlying Ethereum protocol which will reduce the supply of ETH by the equivalent of roughly three Bitcoin halving cycles. The changes are scheduled to take place in two phases beginning with the adoption of EIP-1559 in mid-July of this year and culminating with the formal transition to proof-of-stake in late 2021, turning Ethereum into the preferred savings vehicle in crypto, according to Nikhil. The second part of this episode is an hour-long
17/05/20211 hour 10 minutes 6 seconds
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The Sources of Chinese Communist Party Conduct | Josh Rogin

In Episode 190 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Josh Rogin, a Washington Post foreign-policy columnist and author of the book Chaos Under Heaven: Trump, Xi, and the Battle for the 21st Century. Rogin’s book explains for mainstream audiences how the Chinese Communist Party works: its history, nature, motivations, operations, and objectives. It does so in a language that is both accessible and at times entertaining because it’s full of personal anecdotes colored by Josh’s own reporting which is a testament to his skill as an investigative journalist and as someone with a reputation for breaking big stories. While we don’t break any stories today, some of what you will hear in this episode is probably going to be news to y
10/05/20211 hour 6 minutes 4 seconds
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Doom: The Politics of Catastrophe | Niall Ferguson

In Episode 189 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with historian Niall Ferguson about his latest book, “Doom: The Politics of Catastrophe.” The book is a historical tour de force of epic disasters ranging from pandemics to botched military responses, to nuclear accidents. What all these catastrophes share in common is a striking combination of operator and managerial error resulting from systemic problems that became calamities in the face of predictable, though unimaginable crises. While Doom is mainly a history of disaster, its lessons apply most urgently in our own time, which provided us an opportunity to explore some of the contemporary challenges that we face in western society with someone who thinks and writes about such risks and opportunities regularly. At the t
03/05/20211 hour 3 minutes 48 seconds
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Existential Risks & the Future of Humanity | Toby Ord

In Episode 188 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Toby Ord, a Senior Research Fellow in Philosophy at Oxford University and author of “The Precipice,” a book that focuses on the big picture questions facing humanity’s long-term future and the risks which threaten to put a premature end to our existence. The purpose of today’s conversation is first, to get you to reflect on this question of whether or not humanity and our future is worth fighting for, and second, to reflect on what that means in terms of human action, politics, and global cooperation. What are the existential risks that we face as a species? How do we calculate those risks? Where do we focus our attention, how do we prioritize, and finally, what can we do to mitigate those risks that we deem worthy of
26/04/20211 hour 11 minutes 33 seconds
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What Climate Science Tells Us, What It Doesn’t, and Why It Matters | Steven Koonin

In Episode 187 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Steven Koonin, author of “Unsettled: What Climate Science Tells Us, What It Doesn’t, and Why It Matters.” Dr. Koonin serves as Director of NYU's Center for Urban Science and Progress. He previously served as Undersecretary for Science in the U.S. Department of Energy under Barack Obama and as Chief Scientist at BP, where he was a strong advocate for research into renewable energies and alternative fuel sources. The science of climate change has become, like almost everything else, a matter of political identity in 21st century America. A recent Pew Research study found that Democrats are more than three times as likely as Republicans to say that dealing with climate change should be a top priority. And yet, if you ask
19/04/20211 hour 5 minutes 16 seconds
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Solving the Oracle Problem: Blockchain’s Missing Link | Sergey Nazarov

In Episode 186 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Sergey Nazarov, Co-founder of Chainlink, the leading decentralized oracle network used by global enterprises and projects at the forefront of the blockchain space, which enables smart contracts on any distributed ledger to reliably connect to real-world data, securing billions of dollars in value across decentralized finance, insurance, gaming, and other industries. Chainlink and other decentralized oracles are not blockchains. They are not, in other words, monolithic networks of distributed databases that all operate in unison. Instead, they consist of a potentially infinite subset of networks that support blockchains and operate in parallel to them and to each other by relying on a common framework that is highly cu
05/04/20211 hour 14 minutes 29 seconds
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Mission Economy: A Moonshot Guide to Changing Capitalism | Mariana Mazzucato

In Episode 185 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Mariana Mazzucato, a Professor in the Economics of Innovation and Public Value at University College London (UCL), where she is Founding Director of the UCL Institute for Innovation & Public Purpose (IIPP). She is the winner of numerous, prestigious international prizes including the 2020 John von Neumann Award, Chairs the World Health Organization's Council on “the Economics of Health for All,” and is also the author of three highly-acclaimed books, the latest of which is “Mission Economy: a Moonshot Guide to Changing Capitalism.”  In it, Mariana argues that if we want to meet the principal challenges facing us in the 21st century, we need to rethink t
29/03/202154 minutes 30 seconds
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The Lonely Century: Coming Together in a World That’s Pulling Apart | Noreena Hertz

In Episode 184 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Noreena Hertz, a renowned thought leader, academic, and broadcaster, named by The Observer as “one of the world’s leading thinkers” and by Vogue as “one of the world’s most inspiring women.”  Over the course of her career, Hertz has grappled with issues of political-economy, markets, business, culture, and technology. In her latest book, “The Lonely Century,” she draws from this well-spring of knowledge, as well as from her research in the fields of psychology, philosophy, and evolutionary biology in order to help us understand how our growing sense of loneliness and isolation—from ourselves and from each other—is contributing to much of the social instability, political dysfunction, and existential angst that many of
22/03/202158 minutes 39 seconds
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Engine of Inequality: The Fed & the Future of Wealth in America | Karen Petrou

In Episode 183 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Karen Petrou, co-founder and Managing Partner of Federal Financial Analytics and author of “Engine of Inequality: The Fed and the Future of Wealth in America.” The objective of this episode is to help you better understand how monetary policy and financial regulations have changed in the years since the great financial crisis and how those changes have destabilized financial markets by transferring risk from the more tightly regulated banking sector to other parts of the system. In the subscriber overtime, Karen and Demetri discuss solutions to this predicament and what policy actions the Fed and regulators can take to rectify the problem. The two also discuss some of the
15/03/202157 minutes 5 seconds
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This Is How They Tell Me the World Ends: The Cyber-Weapons Arms Race | Nicole Perlroth

In Episode 182 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Nicole Perlroth, award-winning cybersecurity journalist for The New York Times and author of a recently published book on the cyber-weapons arms race titled “This Is How They Tell Me The World Ends.”   This is the latest episode in a series that we’ve devoted to the subject of information security and the threat posed to our infrastructure and to our lives by the cyber-weapons industry.   Cyberattacks against individuals, companies, and infrastructure have increased steadily year after year. Attacks like the recent one targeting a water treatment facility in Florida or the Solarwinds hack, disc
08/03/202159 minutes 32 seconds
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Silicon Valley’s Ultimate Exit: Arguments for and Against the Network State | Balaji Srinivasan

In Episode 181 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Balaji Srinivasan, an angel investor, entrepreneur, and prominent futurist who’s views on crypto, the future of education, and the network state put him at the forefront of innovation and disruption in money, business, and politics.  The two discuss Balaji’s thesis for the rise of the network state, what it means for existing institutions of money & power, and what life will look like for human beings in this not-too-distant future. Demetri’s thesis is that Silicon Valley culture and the ongoing disruptive dynamics associated with social networks, mobile devices, automation, and now cryptocurrencies, are not only restructuring and remaking the commercial world but increasi
01/03/20211 hour 56 minutes 43 seconds
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Podcast Update: Cybersecurity, Financial Warfare, the Mission Driven State, & More

In Episode 180 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas provides listeners with a sneak peak into the next 5 weeks of content, including episodes on the networked state, financial warfare, cybersecurity, the loneliness epidemic, and how to rebuild the mission-driven state. You can access the episode overtimes, as well as the transcripts and rundowns to each week’s episode through the Hidden Forces Patreon Page. All subscribers gain access to our overtime feed, which can be easily added <span style="font-w
22/02/20219 minutes 8 seconds
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Generational Conflict, Decentralization, & Global Disorder | Radigan Carter

In Episode 179 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas shares the overtime to his 4-hour-long conversation with Radigan Carter, an investor who has spent the last two decades of his life working across five continents as a member of the US military, as a private contractor, and as a special agent for the United States government. In this second-half of their conversation, Radigan shares not only his remarkable insights on geopolitics and foreign affairs, including a long discussion about the security and politics of the Middle East, Europe, and Asia, but also his perspective on what’s happening within the United States: the radicalization of the citizenry and
15/02/20211 hour 50 minutes 15 seconds
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Meme ‘Stonks’: How Call Options & Reddit Broke Wall Street | Lily Francus

In Episode 178 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Lily Francus, a 25-year-old PhD student in bioinformatics who spends her time modeling complex, dynamic systems, trading meme stocks, and writing about options, derivatives, and how stories and ideas spread on the Internet. Unless you’ve been living under a rock or don’t have an Internet connection you will already know that some really crazy shit happened in the last couple of weeks involving the video game retailer GameStop, a number of large, Wall Street institutions, and the online community subreddit r/Wall Street Bets, which has now grown to over 8 million users. There have been so many competing explanations put forward for <span style= "font-weight: 400;
08/02/20211 hour 8 minutes 36 seconds
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Generational Wealth-Building During a Fourth Turning | Radigan Carter

In Episode 177 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Radigan Carter, an investor who has spent the last two decades of his life working across five continents as a member of the US military, as a private contractor, and as a special agent for the United States government. He has extensive experience leading large multinational teams -- including a 350-person security force -- in the Middle East, Central Asia, and Africa. Ratigan’s love of history, knowledge of foreign affairs, and first-hand experience overseas give him a unique perspective from which to comment on the political, national security, and economic issues facing Western society today
01/02/20212 hours 6 minutes 58 seconds
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Cryptocurrencies, Foreign Threats, & the Fight of a Generation

In Episode 176 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas shares his thoughts on a series of interconnected topics including Tether, Bitcoin, domestic terrorism, generational conflict, and foreign interference. The medium posted cited in this episode is “The Bit Short: Inside Crypto’s Doomsday Machine.” The two Blockchain Debate Podcast episodes cited are (1) <a href= "
25/01/202114 minutes 25 seconds
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Restoring Trust in an Age of Political Polarization | Kevin Vallier

In Episode 175 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Kevin Vallier, an Associate Professor of Philosophy at Bowling Green State University, whose interests lie primarily in political philosophy, ethics, philosophy of religion, and economics.    In his latest book, “Trust in a Polarized Age,” Kevin draws on empirical data and liberal political philosophy to demonstrate that rising levels of political polarization can be largely attributed to a multi-decade decline in trust. If we want to reduce political polarization, argues Kevin, “we have to start by rebuilding social and political trust.” While this may seem like a tall order during a time in which Americans are less trusting than at any point since at least the 1960’s when measurements began, the situation is not hop
18/01/202159 minutes 1 second
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Future of Financial Media & Digital Assets | Jason Yanowitz & Michael Ippolito

In Episode 174 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Michael Ippolito and Jason Yanowitz, the founders of Blockworks, a financial media brand that delivers breaking news and premium insights about digital assets to millions of investors. In this conversation, Jason and Michael share news about the recent launch of their editorial site, including anecdotes from their experience creating a crypto-focused, financial media company from scratch in an industry that has seen explosive growth in investor interest over the last 12 months. If you are interested in blockchain technology, decentralized finance, cryptocurrencies, or just generally fascinated by
15/01/202149 minutes 59 seconds
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Social Media Purge: The Urgent Need to Regulate Big Tech | Matt Stoller

In Episode 173 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Matt Stoller, Director of Research at the American Economic Liberties Project and author of Goliath: The Hundred Year War Between Monopoly Power and Democracy. The two discuss the reaction of Big Tech to the storming of the Capitol building in Washington D.C. this past week, what it reveals about the power that these data monopolies have over their competitors and the government, and how we can use the law and regulation to restore equilibrium between corporate power and governance in American life. Topics include: Section 230, common carriage laws, the de-platforming of Trump by Facebook & Twitter, the banning of Parler from the Apple iOS & Android app stores and Amazon’s servers, and more. <span style=
13/01/202153 minutes 22 seconds
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America’s Political Precipice & the Hyperreality of Markets: Grant Williams & Ben Hunt

In Episode 172 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Grant Williams and Ben Hunt. Ben is the founder of the widely read Epsilon Theory, a newsletter and website that is known for its insights and analysis on markets and society with a particular focus on how narrative drives our perception of the world and our place in it. Grant is the long-time publisher of a popular financial newsletter and the host of the very popular Grant Williams Podcast, which you can f
11/01/20211 hour 7 minutes 34 seconds
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The Code of Capital: Markets, Big Tech, & Blockchain | Katharina Pistor

In Episode 171 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Katharina Pistor, a leading scholar of corporate governance, money & finance, property rights, and comparative law & legal institutions. She’s also a prominent commentator on cryptocurrencies, has testified before Congress about them, and has written papers dealing with the issues of digital statehood and monetary sovereignty. Her latest book, “The Code of Capital,” is a tour de force that explains in captivating detail how the law is used to code and construct capital, protecting some assets over others, how this creates wealth for society, and how its use and abuse can make the difference between societal cohesion and political revolution. In today’s conversation, you will learn how the law—a powerful tool for socia
04/01/20211 hour 7 minutes 21 seconds
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The Future of Freedom, Governance, and the Networked State

In Episode 170 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas shares an interview he recently did on the Bankless podcast, where he gives his views on the future of freedom and governance. Topics include cryptocurrencies, global macro, monetary policy, geopolitics, and more.  Since our episode with Rohan Grey aired, we have seen new regulatory proposals including the FinCen KYC regulations on self-hosted wallets and the recent securities fraud lawsuit filed by the SEC against Ripple. As part of our effort to educate listeners about the ongoing transition towards a pro-regulatory environment, we have put together a couple of episodes in the new year dealing with these issues head-on.  Today’s conversation deals with some of these topics, specific
28/12/20201 hour 41 minutes 6 seconds
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The Tyranny of Merit: What Has Become of the Common Good? | Michael Sandel

In Episode 169 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Michael Sandel, professor of Government Theory at Harvard University Law School, host of the BBC series “The Public Philosopher,” and author of numerous, bestselling books including his latest, “The Tyranny of Merit.”   When people complain about meritocracy, the complaint is usually not about the ideal but about our failure to live up to it. According to this complaint, meritocracy is a myth, a distant promise yet to be redeemed. This complaint is certainly valid. But what if the problem runs deeper? What if the real problem with meritocracy is not that we have failed to achieve it but that the ideal is flawed? What if the rhetoric of rising no longer inspires, not simply because social mobility has stalled but, more
21/12/202057 minutes 30 seconds
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Understanding the STABLE Act and the Push to Regulate Crypto | Rohan Grey

In Episode 168 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Rohan Grey, an expert on the legal design and regulation of digital fiat currency and one of the prime authors of the recently proposed STABLE Act put forward by congresswoman Rashida Tlaib of Michigan and congressmen Jesús García and Stephen Lynch of Illinois and Massachusetts respectively.    The stated justification for the bill is to “protect consumers from the risks posed by emerging digital payment instruments, such as Facebook’s Libra and other Stablecoins,” which the authors define as “digital currencies, whose value is permanently pegged to or stabilized against a conventional currency like the dollar and which pose new regulatory challenges while also representing a growing source of market, liquidity, and c
14/12/20201 hour 1 minute 45 seconds
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What’s Gone Wrong with the Democratic Party & How to Fix it | David Shor

In Episode 167 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with political data scientist David Shor. David was recently described in New York Magazine as Obama’s “In-House Nate Silver” for his work on the president’s re-election campaign where he was responsible for building and maintaining the campaign's election forecasting system, which accurately predicted the outcome to within a point in every state and was the primary input to the campaign's resource allocation decisions in the 2012 election. In this conversation, David shares his theory about why Democrats have struggled to win elections in recent years, why the polls have been so off in both of the last two presidential elections, and what the
07/12/202059 minutes 4 seconds
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What America's Founders Learned from the Greeks & Romans | Thomas E. Ricks

In Episode 166 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Thomas Ricks about his book “First Principles: What America's Founders Learned from the Greeks & Romans.” The two discuss the influence of Greco-Roman thought and culture on America’s founding generation, while drawing lessons that can be applied to our democracy today. First Principles is a timely book, in that we find ourselves grappling today with many of the same questions, concerns, and anxieties that animated and vexed the drafters of the American constitution. It is also a deeply profound one, because it reminds us that America was, is, and always will be an experiment. The constitution was construc
30/11/202058 minutes 42 seconds
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Emerging Markets & the Turkish Lira: Assessing the Risks & Opportunities | Paul McNamara

In Episode 165 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Paul McNamara, an Investment Director at global asset manager GAM who serves as the company’s lead manager on hedge fund, emerging market bond and currency long-only strategies. The first half of this conversation focuses on the macro forces driving EM overall, including how the latest vaccines could affect the global recovery and the service and export sectors in emerging markets, the global debt picture and its impact on economic recovery, the resumption of trade, etc. The second half of our conversation focuses exclusively on one emerging market country in particular: Turkey. Turkey is a un
23/11/202053 minutes 38 seconds
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The Long (and Short) of it: A Cynic’s Take on Markets & Investing | Jim Chanos

In Episode 164 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with legendary short-seller Jim Chanos, founder of Kynikos Associates, about the art and science of selling short. What is short-selling? What does it mean to sell something short? How does one learn to do it successfully? These are just some of the questions that Demetri and Jim explore in their two-hour-long conversation on markets, politics, and life. Demetri asks Jim for his philosophy on investing and why value-oriented allocators have had a difficult time profiting during the later stages of this bull market. A vocal critic of corporate excess and malfeasance, Chanos also offers his view on what a Biden administration will mean for financial regulation, capital markets, equity valuations, and the broader economy. The
19/11/202056 minutes 6 seconds
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Ten Lessons for a Post-Pandemic World | Fareed Zakaria

In Episode 163 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with CNN host and bestselling author Fareed Zakaria, about his book “Ten Lessons for a Post-Pandemic World.”  The two explore a wide range of economic, political, social, & geopolitical issues facing America and the world in 2020. They discuss the outcome of the US election and its implications for the republican and democratic parties. Fareed shares his thoughts on what he believes are the major foreign policy challenges currently facing the United States and how a Biden administration will differ in its approach to meeting them. Zakaria also provides lengthy commentary on the news media, censorship, Big Tech, the future of US-China relations
16/11/202054 minutes 52 seconds
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Making Sense of Election 2020 and Its Aftermath | Matt Taibb

In Episode 162 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Matt Taibbi, a contributing editor for Rolling Stone, co-host of the “Useful Idiots” podcast, and author of several, best-selling books on politics, finance, media, and culture. The two discuss the state of the US presidential election and speculate about what may have contributed to Trump’s outperformance, how this election may eventually draw to a close, and when we will know for sure who the winner is. In the overtime, Demetri and Matt discuss what a post-Trump presidency may look like in the event that he loses, the dangerous role played by tech platforms during this election, and how we m
06/11/202045 minutes 3 seconds
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Limits and Consequences of Ponzi Economics on Politics, Markets, & Society

In Episode 161 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas plays an interview he recently gave to Sebastien Couture and Friederike Ernst on Epicenter.TV. This is a wide-ranging, macro conversation focused on markets, politics, geopolitics, and crypto. If you enjoyed listening to today’s episode of Hidden Forces you can help support the show by doing the following: Subscribe on Apple Podcasts | Spotify | <a href= "https://www.stitcher.
02/11/202051 minutes 58 seconds
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Rise of a New Kleptocracy: How Dirty Money is Conquering the World | Tom Burgis

In Episode 160 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Tom Burgis, an investigations correspondent at the Financial Times who is also the author of Kletopia, a book that chronicles the world of dirty money, with its complex web of criminals, money launderers, and politicians who enable it.   In recent decades, we have witnessed in the West the rise of a new kleptocracy that knows no boundaries and obeys few laws, which is enabled by a sort of political consensus to loot. This looting has become so pervasive that the money extracted by its members is enough to buy the political power needed to change the laws and loot some more. It's a self-perpetuating cycle of fraud, criminality, and widespread corruption of the very systems of liberal, democratic capitalism that these kleptocrats depend upon for their
26/10/20201 hour 4 minutes 51 seconds
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The Kill Chain: Defending America in the Future of High-Tech Warfare | Chris Brose

In Episode 159 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Chris Brose, fmr. Staff Director of the Senate Armed Services Committee, a fmr. speechwriter to two Secretaries of State, and the current Head of Strategy at Anduril Industries, a defense product company working at the bleeding edge of innovation in defense strategy, procurement, and development. This is a conversation about the story that the American public tells itself about the strength and primacy of American military power and how that story has increasingly fallen out of step with the reality of how our military operates, the technologies it has at its disposal, and the threat that countries like Russia and China pose to America’s
19/10/20201 hour 1 minute 53 seconds
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Isolationism: A History of America’s Efforts to Shield Itself from the World | Charles Kupchan

In Episode 158 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Charles Kupchan, a professor of international affairs at Georgetown University, who served as special assistant to the president for national security affairs in the Obama Whitehouse and on the National Security Council under President Bill Clinton.  The two explore the history of isolationism in the United States and apply those lessons towards a broader conversation about the future of America and the 2020 election during the episode overtime. You can access the overtime, as well as the transcript and rundown to this week’s episode through the Hidden Forces Patreon Page<span styl
12/10/202042 minutes 22 seconds
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Chinese Invasion Threat: Taiwan's Defense & American Strategy in Asia | Ian Easton

In Episode 157 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Ian Easton, Senior Director at the Project 2049 Institute and author of "The Chinese Invasion Threat” about the likelihood and consequences of a Chinese invasion of Taiwan. The Taiwan Strait is one of the most dangerous flashpoints on earth and the island of Taiwan sits right in the middle of one of the busiest maritime sea and air routes in the world. It is situated at the very center of what is known as the first island chain, stretching from as far south as Vietnam and Indonesia, all the way up through the Philippines and north of Japan, giving it unique strategic and commercial significance as a gateway to the pacific. 
05/10/20201 hour 31 seconds
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The Rise of Mohammed bin Salman and the Future of Saudi Arabia | Bradley Hope & Justin Scheck

In Episode 156 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Wall Street Journal reporters Bradley Hope and Justin Scheck about their new book, “Blood & Oil” that chronicles the rise to power of Saudi Crown Prince Mohamed bin Salman, a story full of multi-billion dollar business deals, high-powered finance, and political intrigue. The first 15 minutes or so of their conversation deal with Bradley and Justin’s process for writing the book, their cultivation of leads, and how they went about fact-checking stories. The rest of the episode and the overtime focuses on Salman’s approach to statesmanship, his role and that of his family as “swing investors” in silicon valley, and what it means for the politics of the greater Middle East should he assume the throne. <span
28/09/202051 minutes 36 seconds
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'Accommodative' Monetary Policy & Risks to Central Bank Independence | Bill Nelson

In Episode 155 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Bill Nelson, Chief Economist & Executive Vice President at the Bank Policy Institute, who spent most of his career working at the Federal Reserve, with a brief stint at the Bank For International Settlements. Before joining BPI, Dr. Nelson served as a deputy director of the Division of Monetary Affairs at the Federal Reserve Board and actually helped design and manage several of the Fed’s emergency liquidity facilities during the 2008 crisis. Dr. Nelson’s expert understanding of the plumbing of our monetary system and how monetary policy is effectuated at the ground level is important because, despite all the ways in which the Fed has sought to increase transparency and fu
21/09/202057 minutes 2 seconds
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The Hype Machine: The Promise and the Peril of Social Media | Sinan Aral

In Episode 154 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Sinan Aral, MIT Professor and author of “The Hype Machine,” about the promise and the peril of social media. Is social media a force for meaningful connection, collaboration, social support, and access to life-saving information? Or is it a propaganda machine that, left unchecked, will destroy democracy, civil society, and our health? Can the promise of social media be realized without the peril? Or are they inexorably linked? This episode is the latest in a series of thoughtful conversations that we have hosted on Hidden Forces dealing with some of the more problematic issues surrounding social media and its influence on politics & society. Demetri’s conversations with</s
14/09/20201 hour 2 minutes 28 seconds
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The Rise of Carry: the New Financial Order of Decaying Growth & Recurring Crisis

In Episode 153 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with authors Kevin Coldiron, Jamie Lee, and Tim Lee, as they explain how the behavior of financial markets today is not, as is commonly believed, some function of the economy, interest rates, or political developments, but rather a manifestation of what they call “the rise of carry” or the suppression of volatility.  In finance, a carry trade is typically thought of as an interest rate arbitrage expressed as a trade between two currencies, where the more historically stable currency is used to fund the purchase of an historically less-stable but higher-yielding alternative in exchange for taking on currency risk. The authors extend this principle across every facet of the econo
07/09/202056 minutes 6 seconds
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Some Thoughts to End the Summer...

In this short segment, Demetri Kofinas shares some thoughts to end the summer and looks ahead at what listeners can expect to hear in the next few months. You can access the Hidden Forces episode overtimes, transcripts, and rundowns to through the Hidden Forces Patreon Page. All subscribers gain access to our overtime feed, which can be easily added to your favorite podcast application. If you enjoyed listening to today’s episode of Hidden Forces you can help support the show by doing the following: Subscri
31/08/202013 minutes 9 seconds
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Erdoğan’s Turkey & the Revival of the Ottoman Empire | Soner Çağaptay

In Episode 152 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Soner Çağaptay, the Beyer Family fellow and director of the Turkish Research Program at The Washington Institute. Soner has written extensively on U.S.-Turkish relations, Turkish domestic politics, and Turkish nationalism and is the author of several books on Turkey including his latest “Erdoğan's Empire: Turkey and the Politics of the Middle East.” Turkey’s neighborhood is arguably ground zero for anyone interested in studying the effects of the breakdown of the American-led international order. America and its Western allies have more or less kept the peace in the greater Middle East and Europe for
24/08/202053 minutes 27 seconds
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Uncharted Future: Learning to Navigate an Unpredictable World | Margaret Heffernan

In Episode 151 of Hidden Forces, In Episode 151 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with journalist, author, and documentary filmmaker Margaret Heffernan, whose best-selling book Willful Blindness, was named one of the most important business books of the decade by the Financial Times. Her latest book, “Uncharted,” addresses many of the core themes and subjects that have captivated our attention on this podcast for years. In today’s conversation, Margaret and Demetri explore many of the various phenomena that arise from our unhealthy relationship with the future. Whether it’s the on-air financial host pumping & dumping stocks to his viewers, the policymaker forecasting unemployment figures and growth rates, or the Silicon Valle
17/08/20201 hour 3 minutes 35 seconds
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Is Gold in a New Bull Market? A Deep-Dive Into Humanity’s 5,000-Year-Old Obsession | Rick Rule

In Episode 150 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Rick Rule, President & CEO of Sprott US Holdings and Senior Managing Director of Sprott Inc. a global, alternative asset manager focused on precious metals and real assets with approximately 12 billion dollars in assets under management. After spending most of the last decade in a period of prolonged underperformance, gold has spent the last two years on a tear, up 67% since September 2018. This episode is meant to introduce Hidden Forces listeners to gold, precious metals, and the larger natural resource industry. We discuss gold’s physical qualities as a commodity that needs to be prospected, mined, extracted, refined, and stored, as well as its investment profile in the form of bullion, equities, and derivative pro
10/08/202051 minutes 46 seconds
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The Death of Engagement: America’s New Cold War with China | Orville Schell

In Episode 149 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Orville Schell, Director of the Center on U.S.-China Relations at the Asia Society about the implications of Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's monumental speech at the Nixon Library, the history of engagement with China’s Communist Party, and what a New Cold War with China will mean for the future of peace and security. Dr. Schell’s career as a China scholar spans the entire arch of US-Sino relations since Nixon’s fateful trip to the Middle Kingdom in 1972 and the opening up of China to the world. The same year (1967) that Dr. Schell earned his master's degree in Chinese studies an astounding 70 percent of Americans agreed on one thing: the greatest threat to U.S. security
03/08/20201 hour 3 minutes 32 seconds
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The Rise of Decentralized Finance | Framework Ventures’ Michael Anderson & Vance Spencer

In Episode 148 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Michael Anderson and Vance Spencer. Mike and Vance are the founders of Framework Ventures, a thesis-driven venture capital firm whose team of technologists, researchers, and investors partner with founders and teams to build token-based networks and develop the requisite cryptoeconomics, governance, and community to scale.    The team’s focus is on the hot new space of decentralized finance, known as DeFi for short. They are the largest owners outside of the core team & exchanges of both the decentralized oracle provider Chainlink and the derivatives platform Synthetix.  Framework’s investment thesis relies on three assumptions. The first is that (1) financial institutions
27/07/202057 minutes 14 seconds
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What the Twitter Hack Tells Us About Why the Internet Is Broken & How to Fix It | Muneeb Ali

In Episode 147 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Muneeb Ali, co-founder of Blockstack, a full-stack decentralized computing platform and app ecosystem that puts users in control of their identity & data.  The two spend the first half of their conversation discussing the recent twitter hack and what lessons can be drawn from the attack. The rest of the episode (including the overtime) is spent on Blockstack and how protocols like it offer solutions for problems of security and privacy on the Internet today. You can access the episode overtime, as well as the transcript and rundown to this week’s episode through the <span style=
22/07/20201 hour 3 minutes 1 second
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Don’t Label Me: How to Do Diversity Without Inflaming the Culture Wars | Irshad Manji

In Episode 146 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Irshad Manji, a public intellectual, best-selling author, and Emmy award nominated documentary filmmaker whose latest book “Don’t Label Me,” attempts to educate readers on how to have conversations about politically sensitive subjects without inflaming the culture wars. It should not surprise anyone to learn, therefore, that today’s conversation with Irshad is one of the most pleasant, honest, and meaningful that we have ever had on this podcast.  Unlike this conversation, public discourse today often feels like a series of battles and skirmishes between two monolithic view points. Discussions likewise, are often seen as opportunities to try one another in the court of public opinion. If we accept that a pluralistic,
20/07/20201 hour 12 minutes 33 seconds
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The Rise of Ethereum, the Future of DeFi, & the Transformation of Crypto Media | Camila Russo

In Episode 145 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Camila Russo, the host of the Defiant podcast and author of “The Infinite Machine,” the first official account of the rise of the Ethereum blockchain. The first 25 minutes of this conversation explores Camila’s experience working as a journalist in Argentina, how she got interested in covering cryptocurrencies, as well as her process for writing such an ambitious book. The rest of the episode deals mostly with the book itself, including a discussion about the ICO craze of 2017 and the impact that it’s had on Ethereum, it’s developer community, and investor appetite for funding new ventures and initiatives in the space. This part of the conversation continues into the overt
13/07/202058 minutes 45 seconds
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Grandstanding: the Use and Abuse of Moral Talk | Brandon Warmke & Justin Tosi

In Episode 144 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with philosophers Brandon Warmke and Justin Tosi about the phenomenon of grandstanding, which they define as “the use and abuse of moral talk for the purposes of self-promotion.”  Although moral grandstanding is a spectacle most commonly associated with those on the political left, the practice of grandstanding is an entirely bipartisan phenomenon. Its increased prevalence in public discourse has dangerous implications for politics and society. For grandstanders, it isn’t the pursuit of virtue that motivates them. They aren’t concerned with doing good; they’re concerned with looking good; they want others to think that they are morally superior, and they’re willing to go to gre
06/07/20201 hour 4 minutes 52 seconds
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How to Fix America's Broken Health System (And Why It Hasn't Happened) | Vivian Lee

In Episode 143 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Vivian Lee, President of Health Platforms at Verily Life Sciences (an Alphabet company) about America’s broken health system, how to fix it, and why it’s been so difficult to do until now.  According to an Institute of Medicine 2012 study, we waste 30 cents of every dollar we spend on health care. That’s over $1 trillion per year. Nearly one-fifth of the US economy goes to pay for health. That’s two to three times more than other high-income OECD nations where health coverage is universal. And yet, our life-expectancy statistics place us 26th out of 35 among those same OECD countries. How is this possible? What you are going to learn today is that while the solution to Ame
29/06/202050 minutes 20 seconds
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‘Stonks,’ the Rise of Retail Bros, & Powell’s Money Printer | Tony Greer

In Episode 142 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Tony Greer, editor of the Morning Navigator and founder of TG Macro. This episode begins with a clip from David Portnoy (a.k.a Barstool Dave or Davey Daytrader), in what is probably the most epic hype video ever created for stock trading.  Portnoy has come to personify not only the recent rip-roaring retracement in equities, but also, the philosophy that the stock market no longer bears any relationship to the real economy. “It took me a while to figure out that the stock market isn’t connected to the economy,” according to David Portnoy. “I tell people there are two rules to investing: Stocks only go up, and if you have any problems, see rule No. 1.” <span s
17/06/202051 minutes 18 seconds
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Co-Founder of Neoliberal School on the Foreign Policy of Presidents from F.D.R. to Trump | Joseph Nye

In Episode 141 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Joseph Nye, the co-founder of the international relations theory of neoliberalism who is credited with developing the concept of "soft power."  In his latest book “Do Morals Matter?,” Dr. Nye meticulously weighs the ethics of the foreign policy decisions of American presidents from F.D.R. to Donald Trump. He argues that good moral reasoning should be three-dimensional, weighing and balancing the intentions, the means, and the consequences of a president's decisions. “A moral foreign policy is not a matter of intentions versus consequences but must involve both as well as the means that were used,” professes Joseph Nye.   In this conversation, Demetri and professor Nye disc
15/06/202059 minutes 50 seconds
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Active Measures: The Secret History of Disinformation & Political Warfare | Thomas Rid

In Episode 140 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Thomas Rid, Professor of Strategic Studies at Johns Hopkins University’s School of Advanced International Studies about active measures, the history of disinformation, and political warfare. We live in the age of organized deception. Spy agencies pour vast resources into hacking, leaking, and forging data, often with the goal of weakening the very foundation of liberal democracy: trust in facts. As a renowned expert on technology and national security, Thomas Rid was one of the first to sound the alarm. More than four months before the 2016 election, he warned that Russian military intelligence was “carefully planning and timing a high-stakes political campaign" to disrupt the democratic process. But as crafty as such
08/06/202046 minutes 31 seconds
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The Age of Monopoly: Power, Censorship, & The New Consensus | Matt Stoller

In Episode 139 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Matt Stoller, Director of Research at the American Economic Liberties Project and author of Goliath: The Hundred Year War Between Monopoly Power and Democracy. In this nearly two-hour long conversation, we discuss how monopoly, commercial concentration, and regulatory capture drive outcomes in our economy, markets, and political system and what we can do to take that power back. This episode was recorded on Friday, May 29th, amidst the riots that have been unfolding across the country in response to the death of George Floyd, a 46-year old African American man who appears to have been suffocated by Minneapolis Police officer Derek Chauvin. Neither Matt or Demetri are in any position to provide further insight into wha
01/06/20201 hour 3 minutes 28 seconds
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Germany’s Constitutional Court Ruling & the Myth of Central Bank Independence | Adam Tooze

In Episode 138 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Adam Tooze, professor of history and Director of the European Institute at Columbia University about the German Constitutional Court’s recent ruling. In its decision, the German Court finds that the European Central Bank’s 2015 bond-buying program would be illegal under German law unless the ECB can prove the purchases are justified. The ruling threatens to undermine the very credibility of Central Bank independence, which has always been predicated on a political consensus about what the proper role of monetary policy is, how it should operate, and what its objectives should be.  This consensus no longer holds, not only in Europe but across much of the developed world. Left unresolved, the contradictions between the
25/05/202053 minutes 59 seconds
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How the Wealth Gap Drives Imbalances in Global Trade & Finance | Michael Pettis

In Episode 137 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with professor of finance at Beijing’s Peking University, Michael Pettis. Profesor Pettis’ research has focused mainly on Chinese financial markets, global trade & capital flows, and central banking. He spent seventeen years on Wall Street running fixed-income trading and capital market desks and has advised governments on privatizations of national banking systems and commercial bank debt restructuring & loan issuance.  In their latest book, “Trade Wars are Class Wars,” Michael Pettis and his co-author Matthew Klein argue that rising inequality within countries heightens trade conflicts between them.   The entire conversation lasts for approximately two hours and we devote the first hour to understanding how balance of pa
18/05/20201 hour 1 minute 58 seconds
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The Great Monetary Inflation & the Future of Digital Money | Michael Casey

In Episode 136 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with CoinDesk Chief Content Officer Michael Casey about “The Great Monetary Inflation” and the future of digital money. The two chronicle the financialization of the global economy that occured between the end of gold convertibility in 1971 and the Great Financial Crisis of 2008. They discuss how the period of the 1970’s weighed heavily on the American zeitgeist and the political transformation that occurred between the start of the Iran hostage crisis and the fall of the Berlin Wall. The episode culminates in a conversation about the political and monetary forces that have been unleashed in response to the spread of COVID-19 and their implications for the future of capitalism and liberal democracy. For those interested in
11/05/20201 hour 9 minutes 16 seconds
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'The Food Supply Chain is Breaking': Food Security During a Global Pandemic | Lowell Randel

In Episode 135 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Lowell Randel, Vice President of Government and Legal Affairs for the Global Cold Chain Alliance, which serves as the voice of the cold chain industry, representing 1,300 member companies in over 85 countries. The two discuss the impact that COVID-19 and the government shutdowns have had on food supply chains, processing facilities, and the industrial farm sector. The COVID-19 pandemic has caused significant shifts in consumer demand away from food service businesses like restaurants and towards foot retail outlets like supermarkets and groceries. Food industry players are in turn looking to adapt, redirecting products originally destined for the food service sector to retail instead. This has created challenges for f
04/05/202049 minutes 9 seconds
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Radical Uncertainty: Investing in a Volatile World | Eric Peters

In Episode 134 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Eric Peters, CIO of One River Asset Management and author of Weekend Notes about investing in a volatile world where four decades of assumptions about markets, politics, and policy no longer hold.  We are living through a period of radical uncertainty and disillusionment with institutions and markets that we haven’t seen for a hundred years. International alliances are shifting. National priorities are changing. The role of government in society is growing. The stakes for portfolio managers, politicians and individuals have never been higher. Learning how to navigate the volatility and radical uncertainty of the present moment is the seminal challenge that we face. How we
27/04/202056 minutes 30 seconds
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Monetary Revolution: Innovation in the Age of Financial Repression | Nic Carter

Nic Carter is a partner at Castle Island Ventures, a Cambridge MA-based venture fund focused on seed stage investments in public blockchain startups. He’s also the cofounder and chairman of Coin Metrics, a blockchain analytics company and he is a regular columnist at CoinDesk where he writes thoughtfully about the political economy and issues concerning bitcoin and the cryptocurrency market. Nic been on the show before; he was our guest on episode 97. He’s thoughtful; he’s interesting to talk to, and this conversation turned out to be so enjoyable that we’ve decided to make it available to everyone. If you like what you hear, please take a moment to share your thoughts and feelings about the podcast on twitter or as a review on Apple Podcasts. If you are interested in supporting the show and gaining access to our premium RSS feed, as well as to transcripts, notes, & rundowns from every episode you can do this directly through the <a href="
26/04/20201 hour 46 minutes 51 seconds
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The Power of Authenticity, Narrative, & Breaking the Ad Model | Grant Williams & Ben Hunt

In this Special Episode of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas releases the overtime segment to Episode 123 with Grant Williams and Ben Hunt. The three discuss the power of authenticity and narrative in an era of fake news and “ponzi people,” what it’s like to build a content business, what they’ve learned doing it, and what drives them to keep going. You can support Demetri and the team at Hidden Forces by becoming a premium subscriber, which gives you access to transcripts, rundowns, and overtime segments, including this week’s special recording with Castle Island Ventures partner Nic Carter. All subscribers g
20/04/202053 minutes 47 seconds
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Surveying the Damage: The State of China’s Economy in the Wake of COVID-19 | Leland Miller

In Episode 133 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Leland Miller, CEO of China Beige Book, which runs the largest private Chinese data collection operation in the world, about the state of China’s economy in the wake of COVID-19. The two discuss the impact of the global shutdown on all the major sectors of China’s economy, as well as the implications for China’s already fragile banking system. During the overtime, Leland and Demetri consider a host of geopolitical consequences that could flow from the ongoing global disruptions. They also discuss the effects to Chinese real estate and how the CCP may try a catastrophic contraction. You can access the episode overtime, as well as the transcript and rundown to this week’s ep
13/04/202054 minutes 38 seconds
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The Impact of COVID-19 on Global Supply Chains with ISM CEO | Tom Derry

In Episode 132 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Tom Derry, CEO of the Institute for Supply Management and publisher of the market-moving ISM Manufacturing Index about the impact of COVID-19 on global supply chains. This is a deep-dive into how the  intricate world of just-in-time manufacturing, outsourcing, and globalization has been impacted by the world-wide disruptions caused by the novel coronavirus. In recent years, global supply chains have been in the process of a fundamental shift, in part to strengthen their immune systems to mitigate the risk of multiple threats — unprecedented trade turbulence, as well as economic uncertainty, geopolitical events and rising labor costs. COVID-19 (novel coronavirus) has provided a severe new test to these global supply ch
09/04/202054 minutes 49 seconds
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The Second Leg Down: Strategies for Profiting After a Market Sell-Off | Hari Krishnan

In Episode 131 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Hari Krishnan, a portfolio manager at Doherty Advisors responsible for the VXR (VIX replication strategy) and hedging solutions business. The two discuss Hari’s thesis around risk management, portfolio construction and positioning once a market downturn is already underway. Although the content discussed in this episode is considered “sophisticated,” we try and make it accessible to the average listener. Topics include the investor mindset, protecting against systemic risk, options pricing, the role of credit in the market cycle, endogenous vs. exogenous risk, agent-based modeling, exchange traded products, volatility, and trend following strategies.  The overtime includes more detailed examples of tactics and strateg
05/04/20201 hour 4 minutes 26 seconds
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Gillian Tett | Wartime Economy: The Greatest Financial & Political Crisis Since World War II

In Episode 130 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Gillian Tett, chair of the editorial board and editor-at-large of the Financial Times about America’s new “wartime economy” and the unspoken consequences of the most radical financial and political crisis since World War II. Demetri starts the conversation by asking Gillian what it’s like to run the largest financial newspaper in the world during the greatest economic and political crisis in three generations. The two discuss the latest central bank policy actions, fiscal stimulus, and a series of other timely topics ranging from distressed corporates, emerging markets, dollar funding, and much, much more. If you want to read the transcript to today’s conversation or gain
31/03/202043 minutes 57 seconds
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Why a Spike in the Price of Gold Futures Matters for People Buying Toilet Paper in Nebraska | Josh Crumb

In Episode 129 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Josh Crumb, founder & CEO of Abaxx Technologies, which is launching a new commodity futures exchange in Singapore over the next year. Josh was formerly a macro economist and commodity strategist at Goldman Sachs, where he was the head of metals strategy. He is also a co-founder of gold bullion dealer Goldmoney, and Jewelry company Mene.  In their conversation, Josh and Demetri discuss a curious case of backwardation on the COMEX, which is the futures and options market for trading metals in New York. The price of gold in near-dated futures expiring at the end of March spiked by almost 10% to $70 an ounce above the price of obtaining physical gold in London. Only on a handful of occasions since 2000 have gold prices ri
30/03/20201 hour 12 minutes 49 seconds
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George Selgin | Government-Mandated Shutdown: Monetary & Fiscal Policy in Crisis

In Episode 128 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with George Selgin, director of the Center for Monetary and Financial Alternatives at the Cato Institute about the recently announced monetary and fiscal policy measures being undertaken to stem the economic fallout from COVID-19 and the government mandated shutdown of the American economy. This is a deep-dive into the specifics of the Federal Reserve and US government’s policies, including the mechanics of the monetary and fiscal stimulus. We are living in unprecedented times. The closest analogy to what we are experiencing is the mobilization undertaken to fight World War II with one crucial difference: this is a radical demobilization of the American economy. To fight the virus, Americans are being asked to stay in thei
28/03/202059 minutes
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Ben Hubbard | Saudi Arabia’s Oil Price War & the Rise of Mohammed Bin Salman

In Episode 127 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Ben Hubbard, the Beirut bureau chief for The New York Times about Saudi Arabia and the rise to power of Mohammed bin Salman. Topics include the ongoing oil price war, tensions with Iran, the war in Yemen, and the geopolitics of the Middle East. The two also discuss the impact of coronavirus for the region’s politics and security. According to Ben Hubbard, when King Salman of Saudi Arabia ascended to the throne in January 2015 and began bestowing enormous powers on his 29-year-old son, Mohammed bin Salman, it sent minds reeling. Given Saudi Arabia’s importance as the wealthiest country in the Middle East and a key partner of the West, foreign officials, journalists, experts, and spies had long scrutinized the Saudi roy
23/03/202052 minutes 58 seconds
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Coronavirus: An Analysis Using Complex Dynamic Systems Theory | Yaneer Bar-Yam

In this Special Episode of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Yaneer Bar-Yam, President of the New England Complex Systems Institute. Professor Bar-Yam studies the unified properties of complex systems as a systematic strategy for answering basic questions about the world. His research is focused both on formalizing complex systems concepts and relating them to everyday problems. In particular, he studies the relationship between observations at different scales, formal properties of descriptions of systems, the relationship of structure and function, the representation of information as a physical quantity, and quantitative properties of the complexity of real systems. Applications have been to physical, biological, and social systems. He has applied this background t
19/03/202045 minutes 44 seconds
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Theories of War & How the ‘Rest’ Learned to Fight the West | David Kilcullen

In Episode 126 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with David Kilcullen, a theorist and practitioner of guerrilla and unconventional warfare, and counterterrorism. David has amassed extensive operational experience over a 25 year career with the Australian and U.S. governments as an army officer, analyst, policy advisor and diplomat. He served in Iraq as senior counterinsurgency advisor to U.S. General David Petraeus and was senior advisor to U.S. Secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice. He has served in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Somalia, Libya, and Colombia. He's Professor of International and Political Studies at the University of New South Wales, Canberra. He's also the author of five prize winning books on terrorism, insurgency, and future warfare, including his latest, “The Dragons and the Snakes: How the Rest Learned to
16/03/20201 hour 6 minutes 19 seconds
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Mike Green | Passive Investing's Role in the Coronavirus Market Melt-Down & Prospects for a Melt-Up

In this Special Episode of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Chief Strategist & Portfolio Manager at Logica Capital Advisers, Mike Green, who returns for a timely conversation about the recent market melt-down, the fundamental economic and political impacts of coronavirus, and prospects for a stimulus-driven melt-up that may bring about the greatest bout of inflation in more than a generation. Hidden Forces is made possible by listeners like you. Please take a moment to support the show by subscribing to one of our three premium content tiers.  You can access the rundowns, transcripts, and overtimes to our weekly episodes through the Hidden F
15/03/202049 minutes 46 seconds
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Laura Huang | Find Your Edge: Learning How to Turn Adversity into Advantage

In Episode 125 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Harvard’s Laura Huang about her research into intuition and behavior as it relates to investing and entrepreneurship. Rather than focus on our shortcomings, Laura teaches us how to turn adversity into advantage. The title of Laura’s book is an acronym that stands for four different words: Enrich, Delight, Guide, and Effort. The foundation of our edge, according to Laura, comes from our ability to provide value to and enrich those around us. Those who have an edge find ways to enrich and bring value to others rather than posturing about the supposed value they bring (we all know people like that). Those who have an edge, however, are also able to demonstrate and effectively communicate the value they bring, rather than
09/03/202058 minutes 10 seconds
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Peter Zeihan | Disunited Nations: The Scramble for Power in an Ungoverned World

In Episode 124 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Peter Zeihan, a geopolitical strategist who combines an expert understanding of demography, economics, energy, politics, technology, and security to help his clients prepare for an uncertain future. Before founding his own strategy firm, Peter helped develop the analytical models for Stratfor, one of the world’s premier private intelligence companies. He’s also a critically-acclaimed author whose first two books — The Accidental Superpower and The Absent Superpower — have been recommended by Mitt Romney, Fareed Zakaria and Ian Bremmer. His latest book, “Disunited Nations: The Scramble for Power in an Ungoverned World,” hits bookstores tomorrow. This is one of the most educational conversations that we have ever record
02/03/20201 hour 7 minutes 3 seconds
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Financial Nihilism: Price Discovery in a World Where Nothing Matters | Ben Hunt & Grant Williams

In Episode 123 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with two guests who have each made one prior appearance on Hidden Forces: Grant Williams and Ben Hunt. Ben is the founder of the widely read Epsilon Theory, a newsletter and website that’s become popular for its insights and analysis into markets and society with a particular focus on how narrative drives our perception of the world and our place in it. Grant is the long-time publisher of a popular financial newsletter, the host of a phenomenal <span style= "font-w
24/02/20201 hour 3 minutes 43 seconds
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Demetri Kofinas Shares Stories from his Life and Career in Markets and the Media on TC’s Chartcast

Demetri Kofinas makes a guest appearance on TC’s Chartcast, a boutique podcast for short sellers hosted by Tesla Charts and Georgia Orwell. Demetri shares stories from his life and career in markets and the media, including lessons learned from his experience overcoming dementia in his early 30’s. TC’s Chartcast is available on most major podcast platforms and you can follow TC and Georgia on twitter at @TeslaCharts and @Georgia_Orwell_.  If you are interested in learning more about Demetri’s podcast, head over to and subscribe to our free email list. You can access the overtimes, transcripts, and rundowns to our full episodes through the Hidden Forces Patreon Page<span style="fon
17/02/20201 hour 6 minutes 42 seconds
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Christopher Cole | The Hundred Year Portfolio: How to Grow & Protect Generational Wealth

In Episode 122 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Christopher Cole, the founder of Artemis Capital Management about how to grow and protect generational wealth that lasts a hundred years. Imagine you have the opportunity to grant your family great wealth and prosperity for 100 years. The opportunity is subject to one final choice. You must decide what assets to invest in and maintain that allocation for an entire century without ever changing it. The future of your children’s children depends on your decision. What do you do? According to Christopher Cole, in order to be successful the hundred year portfolio must be able to navigate the secular booms of the market (1947-1963,1984-2007) while not losing capital during periods of economic contraction, stagnation, and r
10/02/202054 minutes 52 seconds
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Homo Sovieticus and the Wily Man: Truth, Ambition, & Compromise in Putin’s Russia | Joshua Yaffa

In Episode 121, of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Joshua Yaffa, a Moscow correspondent for The New Yorker about what life is like in Putin’s Russia. Yaffa's latest book on the subject is a fascinating inquiry into the Soviet and post-Soviet personality type that sustains the state’s power and Vladimir Putin’s place atop it.  Joshua Yaffa’s new book is titled, “Between Two Fires: Truth, Ambition, and Compromise in Putin’s Russia.” It’s a book about life in modern Russia that pulls both from the country’s history, as well as from a large body of sociological research into the Soviet and post-Soviet personality type whose “habits, inclinations, and internal moral calculations,” according to Joshua “elevated Vladimir Putin to his current position and which now perform t
03/02/20201 hour 4 minutes 8 seconds
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How to End the New Class War and Save Democracy From the Managerial Elite | Michael Lind

In Episode 120 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Michael Lind, a highly accomplished intellectual, writer, and academic about his latest book “The New Class War.” According to Michael Lind, the animating force behind the new class war is not income or wealth inequality but power. The old spectrum of left and right has given way to a new dichotomy in politics among insiders and outsiders, the former of which wield social power in three realms—government, economy, and culture. Each of these realms is the site of the new class war punctuated by periods of intense conflict and contained by periods of interclass compromise. Michael Lind’s overall argument is that “only power can check power.” Absent a compromise between the classes there are only two possible outcomes: 1
27/01/20201 hour 5 minutes 41 seconds
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Sean Carroll | Why Almost No One Understands Quantum Mechanics and Other Problems in Physics & Philosophy

In Episode 119 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Sean Carroll, a best-selling author and research professor of theoretical physics at the California Institute of Technology. His research has focused on fundamental physics and cosmology, especially issues of dark matter, dark energy, spacetime symmetries, and the origin of the universe. Recently, Dr. Carroll has worked on the foundations of quantum mechanics, the emergence of spacetime, and the evolution of entropy and complexity.   Our focus today is on the subject of Sean Carroll’s latest book “Something Deeply Hidden: Quantum Worlds and the Emergence of Space-time.” The conversation jumps around quite
20/01/202057 minutes 8 seconds
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Jim Grant | What’s the Price of Mispricing Risk? Interest Rates, Repo Markets, and an Activist Fed

In Episode 118 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Jim Grant, founder of Grant's Interest Rate Observer, a twice-monthly journal of the financial markets.  Born in New York City and raised on Long Island, Jim had thoughts, first, of a career in music, not interest rates—french horn was his love. But he threw it over to enter the Navy. Following his stint in the Navy, Jim enrolled Indiana University where he studied economics under Scott Gordon and Elmus Wicker and diplomatic history under Robert H. Ferrell, and later, obtained a master’s degree in international affairs under the guiding tutelage of cultural historian, critic and public intellectual Jacques Barzun.  In 1972, at the age of 26, Grant began working as a cub re
13/01/202049 minutes 31 seconds
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David Epstein | Range: Why Generalists Triumph in Today’s Specialized World

In Episode 117 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with author David Epstein about what the world’s most successful people have in common. He discovers that in most fields—especially those that are complex and unpredictable—generalists, not specialists, are the ones primed for success. “As computers master more of the skills once reserved for highly focused humans,” says David, “people who think broadly and embrace diverse experiences and perspectives will increasingly thrive.” David’s conclusions run counter to the prevailing view among “experts” who argue that anyone who wants to develop a skill, play an instrument, or lead their field should start early, focus intensely, and rack up as many hours of deliberate practice as possible. “If you dabble or delay,” they say “yo
06/01/20201 hour 3 minutes 58 seconds
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Eugenia Zukerman | Like Falling Through a Cloud: a Conversation About Life, Music, and the Ethereality of Memory

In Episode 116 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Eugenia Zukerman, an internationally renowned flutist, writer, and former television correspondent. Eugenia was the artistic director of the Bravo! Vail Valley Music Festival in Colorado for thirteen years and the arts correspondent on CBS Sunday Morning for more than twenty-five years. She is the author of two novels, two works of nonfiction, and numerous screenplays, articles, and book reviews.    Three years ago, Eugenia’s family began to notice changes in her cognition. She was unusually forgetful and at times confused in ways that seemed unusual. Pushed by her family to undergo testing, it was determined that she was suffering symptoms consistent with a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s. It was around this time that Eugen
29/12/201944 minutes 40 seconds
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Cutting Edge Therapy: Cancer Cured After Eleven Years of Battling CLL | Brian Koffman

In Episode 115 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Brian Koffman, a doctor turned CLL patient, whose patient education and advocacy efforts have given hope and encouragement to CLL cancer patients everywhere. Brian Koffman is extraordinary, in many ways. He’s extraordinary in the medical sense because, after twelve years of battling blood cancer, doctors can no longer find a single trace of malignancy in his entire body. He is 100% cancer-free going on almost two years, thanks to an experimental therapy that wiped out his CLL cancer in less than a month. But there’s another way in which Dr. Koffman is extraordinary, and this has to do with how he has <span style= "font-
23/12/20191 hour 45 minutes 59 seconds
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Mike Green | The Greatest Story Ever Sold: The Rise of Passive Investing & the Fall of the Free Market

In this week’s episode of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with investor Mike Green. Mike Green most recently served as the discretionary portfolio manager for Thiel Macro, LLC, an investment firm that manages the personal capital of Peter Thiel. He's been a student of markets, and market structure in particular, for nearly 30 years. His research into and analysis of the shift from actively managed portfolios and investment funds to systematic passive investment strategies has been presented to the Federal Reserve, the BIS, the IMF and numerous other industry groups and associations. His intention has been to alert regulators to the clear and present danger that he feels these strategies pose to the stability and viability of global capital markets. It is important to note that while the post-2008 period has seen a flourishing of more complex, behavioral approaches to economics that reject notions of
16/12/20191 hour 12 minutes 33 seconds
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John Mearsheimer | The Failure of American Hegemony: Why Nationalism Trumps Liberalism Every Time

In Episode 113 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with John Mearsheimer, professor of political science and international relations at the University of Chicago. Dr. Mearsheimer’s intellectual contributions have had a profound influence on the thinking of an entire generation of students in international relations. He’s been a vocal critic of neoliberal hegemony, nation-building, as well as the so-called “forever wars” that America has been engaged in ever since the Bush administration’s invasion of Afghanistan in 2001. He is most closely associated with the realist school, which views the international system as fundamentally anarchic, where the most dominant concern among the great powers is defined by their desire and competition for security that sometimes leads to war.  <span style="font-weight: 40
09/12/20191 hour 4 minutes 30 seconds
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Steve Keen | Monetary Misperceptions, Climate Economics, and the Limits to Growth

In Episode 112 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Steve Keen one of the few economists to correctly anticipate the Global Financial Crisis of 2008, as well as the subsequent deflationary forces that would frustrate and confound policymakers in the years afterward. The two discuss Keen’s latest work modeling the impact of climate on economic output, as well as debunking some of the most common misperceptions about money and credit held by Keynesian and Austrian theorists alike. Demetri and Steve have known each other going back almost ten years. Dr. Keen was a frequent guest on Demetri’s old television program Capital Account, where he w
02/12/20191 hour 1 minute 45 seconds
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Nuclear Crisis: How America Lost Post-Soviet Russia | Stephen Cohen

In this week’s episode of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Stephen Cohen, professor emeritus of Politics at Princeton University and of Russian Studies and History at NYU. Dr. Cohen has received several scholarly honors over his lengthy career, including two Guggenheim fellowships and a National Book Award nomination, and was, for many years, a consultant and on-air commentator on Russian affairs for CBS News. Former CBS evening news anchor Dan Rather has referred to Stephen Cohen as “one of, if not the premier expert on the old Soviet Union, Russia, and Russian history in al of what we call Western civilization.” We live in dangerous times, not only in international relations but also in domestic affairs. Russian fear-mongering and gratuitous insults leveled at Russian President, Vladimir Putin serve as powerful political litmus tests in contemporary America. Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard, a presidential candidate for the Democratic party, was recently accused by for
25/11/20191 hour 34 minutes 16 seconds
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Kyle Bass | The Present Danger: America, China, and the Second Cold War

In Episode 110 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Chief Investment Officer of Hayman Capital Management and founding member of the “Committee on the Present Danger: China,” about the gathering threat posed to Western, liberal democracies and open societies by the Chinese Communist Party. Kyle explains how the CCP and its state champions have been using US capital markets to fund the development of China’s armed forces, the threats posed by a Chinese operated 5G network, as well as concerns about the acquisition and use of Americans’ genomic data by the Chinese government. Kyle also goes into detail about his thesis on Hong Kong, its peg to the USD, as well as the fragility of its banking system. Additional topics include the “reeducation camps” and reports of organ harvesting in Xinjiang, the Chinese social cred
18/11/201955 minutes 12 seconds
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Rana Foroohar | How Big Tech and Finance Betrayed Us and What We Can Do About It

In Episode 109 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Financial Times Global Business Columnist, Rana Faroohar about her latest book dealing with the worlds of Big Tech and finance.  We are living in a dramatic period of societal change and uncertainty that most generations rarely get to experience. The changes we are experiencing are being driven primarily by a particular set of Internet-enabled technologies and businesses that are undergoing a rapid phase of consolidation.  The last time Americans saw anything similar was during the late 19th century. This was a period where people’s relationships to nature and to the land were being radically reshaped by the railroads, industrial capitalism, and urbanization. Their sense o
11/11/20191 hour 6 minutes 15 seconds
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Aesthetic Intelligence: How to Boost it and Use it in Business and Beyond | Pauline Brown

In Episode 108 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Pauline Brown, the former Chairman of North America for LVMH, the world’s leading luxury goods company. Pauline has over thirty years’ experience acquiring, building, and leading some of the world’s most influential, luxury brands. In this conversation, she shares insights about how anyone can strengthen and grow his or her own aesthetic intelligence and apply that intelligence towards enhancing the quality and prosperity of one’s life and business. Pauline’s case for aesthetic intelligence rests on four basic points. The first is simply that aesthetics matter, not only in life but also in business. The second is that aesthetic intelligence can be cultivated. In fact, each of us possesses far more capacity than we use
04/11/20191 hour 4 minutes
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Online Extremists, Techno-Utopians, and the Hijacking of the American Conversation | Andrew Marantz

In Episode 107 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with New Yorker staff writer Andrew Marantz, about his new book “Antisocial: Online Extremists, Techno-Utopians, and the Hijacking of the American Conversation. In the book, Andrew reveals how the boundaries between technology, media, and politics have been erased, resulting in the deeply broken informational landscape in which we all now live. This conversation is meant to help us understand what went wrong and how we might go about trying to fix it. For several years, New Yorker staff writer Andrew Marantz has been embedded in two worlds. The first is the world of social-media entrepreneurs—the new gatekeepers of Silicon Valley—who upended all traditional means of receiving and transmitting information. The second is the
28/10/201957 minutes 34 seconds
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US Withdrawal and the End of the Rules-Based Global Order | Joshua Landis

In Episode 106 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Joshua Landis, a Middle East scholar and Syria expert about the disorderly withdrawal of American forces from Syria and the larger shift in the balance of power that we are seeing as nations scramble to remake alliances in the wake of America’s absence. It seems that what we've seen transpire in the Middle East during the past week is a symptom of a much larger trend: the deterioration of the rules-based international order, the fulcrum around which the world has turned for three generations—the entirety of living memory. It is the break-down of national borders, in many cases borders that have been artificially constructed and maintained by the credible threat of American military power. As America begins its long-an
17/10/20191 hour 5 minutes 9 seconds
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US Pullout and Turkish Assault on Kurdish Region of Rojava in Northern Syria | Jake Hanrahan

In Episode 105 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Jake Hanrahan about the crisis unfolding in the border region between Syria and Turkey following the US withdrawal of forces from northern Syria. This withdrawal precipitated the subsequent assault by Turkish Armed Forces on the Kurdish YPG-controlled region of Rojava. Jake Hanrahan is an independent journalist and documentary filmmaker based in the UK. He has reported from Syria, Iraq, southeast Turkey, and other conflict zones for HBO, Vice News, PBS Newshour, and BBC News, to name a few.  Turkish President Erdogan, after obtaining the consent of President Trump, began his invasion into the Kurdish YPG controlled region of Syria known as Rojava this past Wednesday. During
15/10/201946 minutes 23 seconds
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Mike Maloney on the Hidden Secrets of Money, Libertarianism, and Austrian Economics

In Episode 104 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Michael Maloney, perennial entrepreneur and host of the documentary series Hidden Secrets of Money about monetary history, libertarianism, and Austrian economics.  Before starting, Mike overcame his childhood dyslexia to found a series of companies, including a high-end stereo manufacturer, winning several design awards in the process. Few people know this, but one of Mike Maloney’s own designs is on permanent display at the Victoria and Albert Museum i
14/10/20191 hour 14 minutes 6 seconds
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Rule Makers and Rule Breakers: How Tight and Loose Cultures Wire Our World | Michele Gelfand

In Episode 103 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with cultural psychologist Michele Gelfand, who argues that the world’s cultures can be classified into two categories by virtue of their norms. She offers a lucid explanation of how and why cultures become tight or loose, outlining their different societal attitudes. This episode is full of eye-opening insights for development professionals, policymakers and those working in international business.  According to Gelfand, tight cultures have a large number of social norms that enforce order and conformity and tend to evolve in nations that face many natural and human-made threats. Loose cultures, on the other hand, have more lenient norms and tolerate a wider array of behaviors. They generally face fewer chronic threats –
07/10/20191 hour 8 minutes 29 seconds
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Financial Fault Lines, Central Banks, and the Law of Unintended Consequences | William White

In Episode 102 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with economist and former Deputy Governor of the Bank of Canada, William White, about the state of our market economy and the prospects for an ‘international reset’ of the global financial system. William R. White was most recently chairman of the Economic and Development Review Committee at the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) from 2009 to 2018. He is famous for having flagged the wild behavior in debt markets before the Great Financial Crisis of 2008. He began his career in 1969 as an economist working at the Bank of England. In 1972 he joined the Bank of Canada where he spent 22 years and was appointed Deputy Governor in September 1988. In 1994, he joined the Bank for International Settlemen
30/09/20191 hour 8 minutes
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The Age of Cryptocurrency and the Remaking of the Modern World | Michael Casey

In Episode 101 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Michael Casey, an acclaimed author, journalist, researcher, and entrepreneur who currently serves as CEO and founder of Streambed Media, an early-stage video production and technology platform that seeks to optimize capital formation and creative output in the digital media industry. Michael is also chairman of CoinDesk’s advisory board and a senior advisor at the MIT Media Lab’s Digital Currency Initiative, where he has spearheaded research projects that employ blockchain technology to achieve social impact goals. Michael Casey’s breadth of experience as a financial journalist for Dow Jones and the Wall Street Journal, as well as his time spent stationed overseas in Thailand and Argentina, provide him with a unique p
23/09/201959 minutes 51 seconds
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Hedera Hashgraph Goes Public as Governing Council Deploys Nodes | Leemon Baird & Mance Harmon

In Episode 100 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Hedera Hashgraph founders Leemon Baird and Mance Harmon about Open Access, now that the network has officially gone public. This is the go-to-episode for anyone looking to understand the public ledger and why Fortune 100 companies like IBM, Deutsche Telekom, Boeing, and others have joined Hedera's Governing Council. As a seed investor in Hedera
16/09/20191 hour 39 minutes 38 seconds
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Sources of Financial Instability: Challenges for Monetary and Fiscal Policy | Claudio Borio

In episode 99 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Claudio Borio about outstanding sources of financial instability and some of the challenges facing Central Banks as the economy and markets begin to show signs of weakness heading towards the end of 2019. Dr. Borio heads the Monetary and Economic Department at the Bank for International Settlements and has written extensively about some of the longer-term, structural forces bedeviling policymakers since the early 2000s.  More recently, the Federal Reserve held its annual Economic Symposium in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, where Fed Chairman Jay Powell delivered a speech titled, “Challenges for Monetary Policy,” in which he addresses “three longer run questions” bedeviling policymakers. In the speech, Powell breaks up the post-war history of central banking into three distinct eras: 1950–198
09/09/20191 hour 4 minutes
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9/11 Terror Attacks and the Saudi Connection | Senator Bob Kerrey

I've taken the next few weeks off for a much needed summer vacation. I'll be releasing a couple of overtime segments while I'm gone that are normally available only to our Patreon subscribers. This segment was recorded with Senator Bob Kerrey, one of the ten members of the 9/11 Commission. Not only are his comments about the Kingdom's involvement in the attacks provocative and revealing, but the conversation itself is jovial and pleasant in a way that is rarely seen in our politics today. This recording also includes information about upcoming episodes, including conversations with the Chairman of North America for Louis Vuitton, the co-founder of Kickstarter, and many other notable guests. I hope you all enjoy it, and please feel free to reach out to me by email at [email protected] with any feedback or suggestions about the show and our upcoming lineup of guests.  <
26/08/201927 minutes 44 seconds
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Hong Kong Revolution: Geopolitical & Financial Implications for China and the World | David Webb

In Episode 98 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with famed Hong Kong investor David Webb, an outspoken critic of China’s authoritarian grip over the coastal territory. There are two parts to this story that we explore during this conversation. The first deals with Hong Kong – specifically, its political and economic future as an independent territory of mainland China. The second deals with China itself – specifically, its political and financial stability as the most leveraged economy at scale, in the world.  The events in Hong Kong over the last several months – exacerbated by Chief Executive Carrie Lam’s determination to push through the Extradition bill despite mounting opposition – have created a terrifying sense of cri
19/08/20191 hour 42 seconds
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What is Bitcoin? | A History and Ontology of the Cryptocurrency with Nic Carter

In Episode 97 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Nic Carter, co-founder of both the VC fund Castle Island Ventures, as well as the research and data analytics company Nic also has a master’s degree in philosophy, and the two spend much of the overtime applying that discipline to bitcoin by examining the works of people like Friedrich Nietzsche and his philosophy around essence, John Rawls and his veil of ignorance, as well as applying a strain of utilitarian thought to questions of money and society. This conversation with Nic Carter is an attempt to understand Bitcoin as more than just the sum of its parts. One of the lessons that Demetri has taken away from his continued research into Bitcoin through the works of people like Nick Szabo, Paul Sztorc
12/08/20191 hour 10 minutes 13 seconds
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Matt Taibbi | Democratic Contenders, Election 2020, and the Goldman 1MDB Scandal

In this week’s episode of Hidden Forces, I make available the overtime to my episode with journalist Matt Taibbi that aired on February 18th, 2019.  In this overtime, Matt Taibbi shares his experience on the campaign trail with Donald Trump in 2016, as well as his predictions for the 2020 election. Matt and I also discuss the Goldman Sachs 1MDB scandal, which has remained largely out of the headlines. Producer & Host: Demetri Kofinas Editor & Engineer: Stylianos Nicolaou Subscribe & Support the Podcast at Join the conversation on <a href="https://www.facebo
05/08/201931 minutes 10 seconds
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Raoul Pal | The Fourth Turning: Generational Theory and the Future of Global Money

In Episode 96 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with investor and co-founder of Real Vision, Raoul Pal about the future of global money in a multi-polar world, including a discussion about Bitcoin, Libra, debt, demographics, and much more. The inspiration for this conversation derives from a theme captured in William Strauss and Neil Howe's Generational Theory, also known as the Fourth Turning, where the authors describe a four-stage cycle of social moods associated with recurring generational archetypes, which they call "turnings.” These include: "The High", "The Awakening", "The Unraveling," and "The Crisis." The question we explore in this conversation is: “are we at the fourth turning, and if so, what does this mean for
29/07/20191 hour 3 minutes 18 seconds
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Ben Hunt | The Narrative Machine: Investing in a World of Tall Tales, Big Games, and Giant Cons

In Episode 95 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with investor and author of Epsilon Theory, Ben Hunt, about the power of narrative and how it is used to shape and control our behavior as investors. This episode also includes a series of in-depth discussions about the long legacy of the 2008 financial crisis, identitarian narratives, three-body problems, the challenge of making accurate predictions, and ‘The Great Bitcoin Epic.' Ben Hunt’s background and career path have been anything but ordinary. He received his Ph.D. in Political Science from Harvard, co-founded multiple tech companies, and managed his own billion-dollar hedge fund. When he isn’t busy writing about market narratives or indeterminant models, you can find him tending to his horses, gathering a fresh bas
22/07/20191 hour 19 minutes 9 seconds
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Jerry Colonna | Heeding the Call to Adulthood: Lessons on Life and Leadership

In Episode 94 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with author of REBOOT, Jerry Colonna about leadership and the art of growing up.  This is a deeply personal conversation, but it is also one that draws upon the common wellspring of human experience. Learning to be a great leader is also about learning how to become an adult, and this requires that we learn how to embrace life in all of its beauty, suffering, and grace. The introduction to this week’s episode retells the story of Minos, King of Knossos after whom the great Minoan civilization is named. The Minoans populated the islands of the eastern Mediterranean during the second millenniu
15/07/20191 hour 2 minutes 37 seconds
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🔊 Hidden Forces Service Announcement: An Opportunity to Listen and Support the Show

This is a service announcement for regular listeners of Hidden Forces. I have released a nearly 2-hour long recording of my conversation with Leemon Baird and Mance Harmon of Hedera Hashgraph to my Hidden Forces Patreon subscribers that will be published on the main podcast feed after the network goes public sometime this summer. I wanted to give supporters of the podcast the opportunity to hear that conversation before anyone else. It’s a great excuse for those who haven’t subscribed yet, to do so. There is no long-term commitment and you can cancel your subscription at any time. Subscribing for even a single month helps fund the podcast and keep it ad-free, but I know that many of you will end up sticking around longer, as the overtime content, in particular, is well worth your support. You can access that episode, as well as our latest overtime segments, transcripts, and rundowns at <a hre
12/07/20191 minute 12 seconds
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Stephen Walt | America’s Foreign Policy Elite and the Decline of U.S. Primacy

In Episode 93 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Harvard University's Professor of International Affairs Stephen Walt, about the arch of American foreign policy and the decline of U.S. primacy.  The conversation begins by addressing the major arguments made by America’s foreign policy elite in favor of US engagement and American military leadership abroad. Before the end of World War II, there was no foreign policy “community” in the United States, as there was in the United Kingdom or France. The US was still largely an isolationist country, and the expectation was that it would return to isolation after the allies signed the Paris Peace Treaties in 1947, just as it had after the Paris Peace Conference in 1919. Though demobilization started in earnest shortly after
08/07/20191 hour 11 minutes 58 seconds
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Joshua Wong on the Struggle for Hong Kong and the Future of 'Greater China'

In this timely Interview, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Hong Kong activist and politician Joshua Wong, who is often referred to by media outlets and the international press as the “leader of the Hong Kong protests.” Joshua shares information about the latest developments on the ground, including ongoing efforts by Beijing and the Hong Kong government to put a stop to the pro-democracy movements and restore order in the coastal territory. Producer & Host: Demetri Kofinas Editor & Engineer: Stylianos Nicolaou Subscribe & Support the Podcast at Join the conversation on <a href="
07/07/201921 minutes 27 seconds
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US-China Summit at the G20 Amid Fallout From the Protests in Hong Kong | Ho-Fung Hung

In Episode 92 of Hidden Forces, Demetri speaks with East Asian affairs expert Ho-Fung Hung about the upcoming US-China trade talks taking place at this weekend’s G20 summit, as Xi-Jinping grapples with the ongoing protests in Hong Kong. Ho-Fung is the Henry M. and Elizabeth P. Wiesenfeld Professor in Political Economy at Johns Hopkins University, as well as the author of two books on China, including the award-winning “Protests with Chinese Characteristics,” published in 2011.  On June 16th, 2019, an estimated 2 million people took to the streets of Hong Kong to protest the handling of a proposed extradition bill by the Hong Kong government and its Chief Executive Carrie Lam. This followed two massive demonstrations against the extradition bill earlier in the month, including
28/06/201936 minutes 47 seconds
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David Rosenberg | Betting Against the ‘Powell Put’ and the Return of the 'Risk-Off' Trade

In Episode 91 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Chief Economist and Strategist at Gluskin Sheff, David Rosenberg, about the latest Fed rate decision and his outlook for the global economy. In the overtime to this week’s episode, David provides listeners with a look into his investment strategy and how he is positioning himself and his clients for a global slowdown that he believes may already be underway. David Rosenberg and Demetri recorded this episode only hours after the FOMC concluded its two-day meeting this past Wednesday. The Federal Open Market Committee decided to keep the fed funds rate unchanged, while simultaneously signaling
24/06/201956 minutes 12 seconds
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Ash Carter | Inside the Pentagon: Life at the Center of American Military Power

In Episode 90 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with former United States Defense Secretary Ash Carter. Secretary Ash Carter served as head of the US Defense Department during President Barack Obama’s second term in office. Before his time as Secretary of Defense, Ash Carter served in the number two and number three positions at the Pentagon. As you can all imagine, it was a privilege for Demetri to have a cabinet secretary on the podcast, particularly someone with Secretary Carter’s breadth of experience and scope of responsibilities. His newly published memoir, “Inside the Five-Sided Box: Lessons from a Lifetime of Leadership in the Pentagon
17/06/20191 hour 5 minutes 10 seconds
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Jamie Metzl | Genetic Engineering, Biohacking, and the Future of the Human Species

In Episode 89 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Jamie Metzl about the cutting edge of genomic science, synthetic biology, and big data. The two also discuss US-China relations, North Korea’s nuclear program, post-Soviet Russian history, Iraq, Iran, and so much more. Jamie Metzl is described by Wikipedia as “an American technology futurist, geopolitical expert, and writer.” He’s also a novelist, entrepreneur, and media commentator. He’s authored six books, including one with his former boss Richard Clarke, who he worked for at the US State Department and while serving in the National Security Council. Richard Clarke, who was National Coordinator for Counter-Terrorism during the la
03/06/20191 hour 16 minutes 24 seconds
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Eve Ensler | The Apology: a Conversation about Strength, Vulnerability, and Social Change

In Episode 88 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Tony Award-winning playwright, author, performer, and activist Eve Ensler, about her latest book (The Apology), as the two share their life experiences in a deep discussion about gender roles and the responsibility of men in our changing social and cultural landscape. Eve Ensler has been waiting much of her life for an apology. Sexually and physically abused by her father as a girl, Eve has long grappled with his betrayal and its effects for her whole life. In this deeply personal and open conversation, Demetri and Eve discuss chapters from the book, what it was like for Eve to grow up, how she dealt with her pain and trauma, and what lessons may exist for all of us. Demet
27/05/20191 hour 17 minutes 40 seconds
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David Weinberger | Complex Systems, Inexplicable Models, and the Future of Prediction

In Episode 87 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with philosopher David Weinberger about the science of prediction, its evolution, and its future. The two begin by exploring classical approaches developed by early philosophers and mathematicians in the ancient world and upon which advancements were later made by enlightenment thinkers and experimental scientists.    The models developed in this tradition have, until now, provided explanations for phenomena, which are used to make predictions about the future states or trajectories of these and other phenomena that adhere the same laws of action or motion.    What is new today is the evolution of what are known as “machine learning
20/05/201959 minutes 42 seconds
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TSLAQ and the Crowdsourced Short Sale of the Century | TeslaCharts

In Episode 86 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with TeslaCharts, one of the leading members of the online community known as TSLAQ, a group of largely anonymous Twitter users who exist to expose the reality behind the Tesla façade. TSLAQ is a hive-like collective of financiers, accountants, Ph.D.’s, lawyers, pilots, and members of just about any other occupational discipline you can imagine. What unites them all is Tesla, or more specifically, their outrage at a CEO who they believe to be a carnival barker running the biggest fraud in corporate America. In the words of TSLAQ’s most prominent member Mark Spiegel, Elon Musk is responsible for “th
06/05/20191 hour 1 minute 37 seconds
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The End of "The Everything Bubble” | Kevin Smith and Otavio Costa

In this Special Episode of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Kevin Smith and Otavio Costa of Crescat Capital, in a continuation of our recent markets coverage, with a particular focus on specific indicators that could validate a bear market hypothesis. It has been difficult not to feel anxiety and trepidation while looking out across the Value-Price Continuum during the last few years. Many of us understand that our economy no longer functions as advertised. Financialization of the US economy over the past four decades has skewed the relationship between price and value in favor of price, specifically in favor of higher prices. The unprecedented support that monetary authorities provided financial intermediaries and asset holders during the last bear market has create
29/04/201947 minutes 59 seconds
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Great Financial Crisis Ten Years On: Past Role and Current Risks from China | Anne-Stevenson Yang

In Episode 85 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with China expert Anne Stevenson-Yang about the imminent dangers facing global financial markets in the event of a break in the renminbi-dollar peg.  In the years leading up to the Great Financial Crisis, it was generally understood that the Chinese were artificially depressing the value of the RMB vis-à-vis the USD, in order maintain an abnormally large current account surplus that would be recycled into western financial markets in the form of government securities, equities, real estate, etc. By recycling so much of the proceeds from trade back into foreign markets, the CCP managed to maintain a lower exchange rate than it otherwise would be, were it to convert those dollars back into renminbi. In other words, China was
22/04/201951 minutes 43 seconds
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Johann Hari | Uncovering the Real Causes of Depression and Anxiety

In Episode 84 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with celebrated author Johann Hari about his book “Lost Connections” and the silent epidemic of depression and anxiety that is pervading our society and burdening the lives of so many people. Lost Connections begins as a chronicling of Johann’s search for answers to the causes of his own depression, but becomes an investigation into the reasons for its increasing prevalence in the lives of others. In the introduction to the book, Johann tells us that some one in five U.S. adults is taking at least one drug for a psychiatric problem and that nearly one in four middle-aged women in the United States is taking antidepressants at any given time. Addictions to legal and illegal drug
15/04/20191 hour 17 minutes 46 seconds
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Raghuram Rajan | The Future of Capitalism and the Global Economy

In Episode 83 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Raghuram Rajan, about the future of capitalism and the global economy amid rising rates of populism and disintegration in the global order. Raghu Rajan was named by Euromoney magazine as Central Banker of the Year in 2014 while serving as the 23rd Governor of the Reserve Bank of India. Dr. Rajan has also held the position of Chief Economist at the IMF and is currently a professor of finance at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. He is the author of several books, including his most recent, The Third Pillar: How Markets and the State Leave the Community Behind. In this conversation, Demetri engages Raghu on a wide range of issues, from central banking and in
08/04/201949 minutes 49 seconds
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Nicholas Christakis | Evolutionary Origins of Ethics, Morality, and a Good Society

In Episode 82 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Dr. Nicholas Christakis about the evolutionary origins of ethics, morality, and a good society. A renowned sociologist and physician, Dr. Christakis was named to Time Magazine’s 2009 list of the 100 most influential people in the world. He is known for his research on social networks and on the socioeconomic, biosocial, and evolutionary determinants of behavior, health, and longevity. He directs the Human Nature Lab and is the Co-Director of the Yale Institute for Network Science, as well as the Sterling Professor of Social and Natural Science at Yale University. Listeners to this show will recall our prior <a href= "
01/04/20191 hour 8 minutes 18 seconds
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Loonshots: Crazy Ideas that Win Wars, Cure Diseases, and Transform Industries | Safi Bahcall

In Episode 81 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Safi Bahcall, a physicist, biotech entrepreneur, and the author of “Loonshots,” a book about how to nurture the types of crazy ideas that win wars, cure diseases, and transform industries. In the early days of World War II, the Third Reich’s commander of submarines Karl Dönitz submitted a memorandum to the German Navy, advocating for a system of submarine warfare that would devastate allied supply lines, merchant vessels, and warships. For a nation with a second-rate navy, this was asymmetrical warfare at its finest. With the implementation of the plan, known as “Rudeltaktik,” allied losses began to rise rapidly, from 750,000 tons of cargo lost in 1939 to 7.8 million in 1942. Every month, U-boats were sinking ships fa
25/03/20191 hour 4 minutes 36 seconds
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Tesla Financial and Legal Woes as SEC Seeks to Hold Elon Musk in Contempt | Ed McCabe

In this Special Episode of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Ed McCabe about the latest woes plaguing Tesla after the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) recently alleged in a federal filing that its CEO Elon Musk, violated a settlement with the agency when he tweeted in February about the electric carmaker's 2019 production targets. Midway through the episode, the two are joined by Lawrence Fossi, known by his pen name as Montana Skeptic, and the three continue their conversation for the rest of the episode and into the overtime segment. When considering the performance of Tesla’s stock in the face of sober calculations, one cannot help but be reminded of Benjamin Graham’s famous quote: "In the short run, the market is a voting machine but in the long run it is
13/03/201953 minutes 50 seconds
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Neural Interfaces and the Future of Human-Computer Interaction | Thomas Reardon

In Episode 80 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with CTRL-labs CEO Thomas Reardon, about his company’s ground-breaking innovations in neural interface design, computational neuroscience, and machine learning that turn science fiction into reality. Thomas Reardon’s career is no less impressive than his most recent endeavor to displace the graphical user interface and revolutionize immersive computing. He is a founding Board Member of the World Wide Web Consortium and famous for having created Internet Explorer at Microsoft, which, at its peak, represented 96% of all web browsers in existence. Over one billion people on earth have used Reardon’s software to access the Web. After leaving Microsoft, Reardon decided to go back to school, receiving his undergraduate degree in
11/03/20191 hour 4 minutes 57 seconds
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Surveillance Capitalism in the Age of the Unprecedented | Shoshana Zuboff

In Episode 79 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Shoshana Zuboff, about the rise of “Surveillance Capitalism,” a pernicious new economic logic, which robs us of our experiences, dispossess us of our sanctuaries and makes our lives increasingly unlivable. In 1609, while in search of a rumored, northeast passage to Asia on behalf of the Dutch East India Company, the English explorer and navigator Henry Hudson, landed on what is modern day New York City. Though written accounts exist of Hudson’s encounters with local tribes, native accounts have been handed down to us through oral tradition, often transcribed much later by missionaries and settlers. In 1765, a Moravian missionary who lived for many years among the Delaware
25/02/20191 hour 5 minutes 58 seconds
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Matt Taibbi | The News Media and Manufacturing Consent in the 21st Century

In Episode 78 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Matt Taibbi, a contributing editor for Rolling Stone and winner of the 2008 National Magazine Award, about his latest book, Hate, INC. Matt Taibbi is someone who truly needs no introduction. His polemical, but also highly illustrative and expository writing stands apart from his contemporaries, and the significance of his contributions, particularly to the public debate during the 2008 financial crisis cannot be understated. He served as an interpreter for what was, in his own words, “a crime story that most people mistakenly thought of as an economic story.” His attacks on those he identified as
18/02/20191 hour 21 minutes 59 seconds
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Cal Newport | Digital Minimalism: Choosing Life in a Hyperconnected World

In Episode 77 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Cal Newport about his latest book, Digital Minimalism and the act of “choosing life” in a hyperconnected world. “The mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation,” writes, transcendentalist author and essayist Henry David Thoreau, in the first chapter of Walden titled, “Economy.” “But men labor under a mistake...the improvements of ages have had but little influence on the essential laws of man's existence.” In an effort to uncover those “essential laws” Thoreau went to the woods: “I wished to live deliberately,” he says, “to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived. I did not wish to live what was not life, liv
11/02/20191 hour 5 minutes 47 seconds
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MAGA Hat Kid and a Modern Morality Play Gone Wrong | Robby Soave

In Episode 76 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Robby Soave, the journalist at the center of what has become the biggest national news story in America, eclipsing the thirty-five-day-long government shutdown that ended today. This conversation centers on a drama that began unfolding over the previous weekend and which has continued into this week. It concerns a group of Catholic school students from Kentucky’s Covington Catholic High School, who were thrust into the national spotlight for seeming to have denigrated and mocked the dignity of a native American man who was solemnly beating his drum at the steps of the Lincoln Memorial during MLK weekend and on the day of an Indigenous Peoples March in the nation’s capital. <span style="font-weight: 400;"
25/01/20191 hour 1 minute 34 seconds
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Hyperbitcoinization and Other Arguments by a Bitcoin Maximalist | Pierre Rochard

In Episode 75 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Pierre Rochard, a self-ascribed Bitcoin Maximalist who co-founded the Satoshi Nakamoto Institute and who has been a researcher, investor, and software developer in the space since early 2013. In addition to developing Bitcoin software, Pierre is an outspoken advocate for Bitcoin's decentralized governance, the operator of one of the largest Lightning Network routing hubs, and the host of the Nodded Bitcoin Podcast.   This conversation is broken into two parts. The first deals with fundamental questions concerning bitcoin’s base layer protocol, the supply schedule, governance, decentralization, utility, and challenges to layer 1 scalability. Included in this first part is a fascinating conversation about anarcho-capita
22/01/201959 minutes 3 seconds
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Forward Guidance: Investor Concerns and Market Trends for 2019 | Peter Boockvar

In Episode 74 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Peter Boockvar. Peter is Chief Investment Officer for Bleakly Advisory Group and a regular on CNBC, where he provides market commentary about fed policy, market trends, economic data, stocks, bonds, etc. Every now and again, Demetri brings people from the media onto Hidden Forces in order to get their take on the markets and to hear their interpretations about the latest data, news, and information. The purpose of this is to gain a better understanding of how the news media is constructing the very narratives that given reason to what we’re seeing and what we can expect to see in the coming weeks and months. There has been a significant shift in how the financial press has
15/01/201951 minutes 58 seconds
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ETC 51% Attack and What It Means for Proof-of-Work and Crypto Exchanges | Haseeb Qureshi

In Special Episode of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Haseeb Qureshi of MetaStable Capital about the recent 51% attack against Ethereum Classic, its implications for exchanges that continue to list smaller market-cap cryptos like ETC, Dash, Monero, etc., and what it means for the debate between proof-of-work and proof-of-stake. On January 5th, 2019, the digital currency exchange Coinbase detected a deep chain reorganization of the Ethereum Classic blockchain. In order to protect customer funds, they immediately paused interactions with the ETC blockchain. Coinbase reported the 51% attack on January 7, 2019, but a few people on Twitter had already become aware that something wasn’t right wit
12/01/201945 minutes 58 seconds
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Quantifying Uncertainty: A History of Financial Theory and its Implications | Daniel Peris

In Episode 73 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Daniel Peris, a Senior Portfolio Manager at Federated Investors in Pittsburgh where he oversees the firm's dividend-focused products. He is the author of three books on investing, most recently: "Getting Back to Business: Why Modern Portfolio Theory Fails Investors, and How You Can Bring Common Sense to Your Portfolio." Before transitioning into asset management, Peris was a historian focused on modern Russian history. He is the author of a book and several articles on the Soviet Union in the 1920s and 1930s. Today’s conversation is about the evolution of financial theory, beginning wi
07/01/20191 hour 3 minutes 6 seconds
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Bob Kerrey | a Contemporary Political History of Policy and War

In Episode 72 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with former US Senator and Governor from the great state of Nebraska, Bob Kerrey. Senator Kerrey currently serves as Managing Director at Allen & Company. He is also Executive Chairman of the Minerva Institute for Research and Scholarship. Senator Kerrey also served as one of the ten members of the 9/11 commission, tasked with investigating the terrorist attacks of September 11th, 2001. In this conversation, Senator Kerrey shares stories of his experience growing up in 1950's and early 1960’s America, his service in Vietnam, and the life-altering injury that sent him down a path of service, first as Nebraska’s governor and later, as its senator. We discuss both the cultural, as well as the political transformations that ha
01/01/20191 hour 11 minutes 58 seconds
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Howard Marks Overtime and Subscription Launch Announcement!

In this Christmas Day special of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas shares twenty-five minutes of never-before-heard audio from his conversation with Howard Marks, but not before announcing the long-awaited-for launch of the Hidden Forces subscription service. Subscribers can gain access to overtime segments, transcripts, and rundowns from each and every episode. Subscriptions require creating a Patreon account, but can be accessed directly through the Hidden Forces website via subscription tabs located within any particular episode Producer & Host: Demetri Kofinas
25/12/201833 minutes 8 seconds
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Chinese Commercial Espionage and the Arrest of Huawei’s CFO | James Mulvenon

In Episode 71 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with James Mulvenon, Vice-President of Defense Group Inc.’s Intelligence Division and Director of DGI’s Center for Intelligence Research and Analysis. Dr. Mulvenon is an expert on the Chinese military and Chinese cyber issues and has published widely on Chinese military affairs, party-army relations, C4ISR, and nuclear weapons’ doctrine and organizations. He’s a regular commentator on the Chinese military, cyber warfare, and Chinese industrial espionage, all of which we discuss in today’s, hour-long conversation. This episode was prompted by the recent arrest of telecommunications giant Huawei’s CFO Meng Wanzhou during her transit through Vancouver airport on December 1st, 2018. Meng is currently out on bail, awaiting the
18/12/201858 minutes 48 seconds
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Andrei Shleifer | Crisis of Beliefs: A New Model of Investor Psychology

In Episode 70 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Andrei Shleifer, professor of economics at Harvard University. Dr. Shleifer is the most cited economist in the world according to RePEc’s database. Throughout the course of his career, Andrei Shleifer has worked in the areas of comparative corporate governance, law & finance, behavioral finance, as well as institutional economics. He has published seven books, including, A Crisis of Beliefs: Investor Psychology and Financial Fragility with his co-author Nicola Gennaioli.    Demetri’s conversation with Andrei centers on the subject of beliefs: how they impact markets and how economists and financial practitioners are attempting to model them using data about people’s expectations, assumptions, and attitudes in order to
11/12/201852 minutes 48 seconds
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Rebecca Goldstein | Why Philosophy Isn’t Going Away: a Conversation on What Matters Most

In Episode 69 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with renowned philosopher and novelist Rebecca Goldstein, about the philosophy of mattering and what makes human life worth living. The question of “what makes life worth living,” is something that human beings have been grappling with since time immemorial. Perhaps, nowhere did this question pose a more existential imperative than in ancient Greece, which provides the setting for this conversations. The show begins with an anecdote from “The Histories of Herodotus,” where the ancient historian recounts the story of King Croesus, the late ruler of Lydia, who governed the lands of western Anatolia in the mid-sixth century B.C. At the height of his reign, Croesus was visited by Solon, the lawgiver who had just laid the found
04/12/20181 hour 7 minutes 49 seconds
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The US-China Trade War: Global Markets in a Multi-Polar World | David Kotok

In Episode 68 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with David Kotok, co-founder and CIO of Cumberland Advisors. David Kotok’s articles and financial market commentaries have appeared in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Barron’s, and other publications.    This is a fascinating conversation that spans a wide range of issues currently facing the global economy, as well as subjects and themes stretching as far back as 5th century Athens. Demetri asks David Kotok for his opinion on a series of topics including trade, the US Dollar, European monetary policy, as well as what markets he thinks are most at risk as the Fed continues down its path of tightening and as protectionist trade measures introduce new anomalies into the American economy. Kotok also shares his ex
27/11/20181 hour 1 minute 36 seconds
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American Zeitgeist | Commentary on Politics, Culture, and the Winds of Change

In this week's episode of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas conducts an impromptu monologue after a last-minute rescheduling of his interview with a prominent, former US senator, governor, and member of the 9-11 commission. He reflects on some of the subjects he intended to cover with his guest, including the role of the Saudi government in the 9-11 attacks. He also spends a good amount of time exploring the spirit of the last 4 decades in America, as he considers what future generations will say about the new millennium.  This is an unusual episode, in so far audiences get a look at Demetri's "headspace" before an interview, and how preparing for it causes him to reflect on subjects that concern all of us.  Producer & Host: <span style= "font-weight: 400;"
20/11/201833 minutes 32 seconds
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Bill Janeway | Venture Capitalism and the Future of the Innovation Economy

In Episode 67 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Bill Janeway about capitalism in the innovation economy. Janeway is a senior advisor and managing director of Warburg Pincus, where he was responsible for building the investment firm’s information technology investment practice. Bill is also a co-founder and member of the board of governors of the Institute for New Economic Thinking. In 1948, the same year in which Claude Shannon’s revolutionary paper on information theory was first published in the Bell Labs Technical Journal, economist Paul Samuelson released what would become, the best-selling economics textbook of all time. Though no one can measure the creative impact of Shannon’s ideas in shaping the next 70 years o
13/11/20181 hour 29 minutes 6 seconds
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Brian McCullough | How the Internet Happened: From Netscape to the iPhone

In Episode 66 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with serial technology entrepreneur and host of the Internet History Podcast, as well as the Techmeme Ride Home, Brian McCullough. Brian is also the author of HOW THE INTERNET HAPPENED, published by Liveright, a subsidiary of W.W. Norton. In 2014 he was the co-founder of a startup human named Penelope, and in 2016 he launched Maxwell into beta. In March of 1989, CERN scientist Tim Berners-Lee wrote a proposal to develop a distributed information system for the laboratory. “Vague, but exciting,” was the comment that his supervisor, Mike Sendall, wrote on the cover, and with those words, gave the green light to what would become the information revolution.  Before the end of 1990
23/10/20181 hour 11 minutes 17 seconds
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Dinny McMahon | Debt, Dysfunction, and the End of the Chinese Miracle

In Episode 65 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with China expert Dinny McMahon, who spent ten years as a financial journalist in China, including six years in Beijing at The Wall Street Journal and four years with Dow Jones Newswires in Shanghai. Demetri and Dinny discuss how Chinese malinvestment, massive debt burdens, and a population that is aging faster than anywhere else in the world has created the conditions for the worst economic and political crisis in modern history. It has often been argued that the Chinese economic model may offer the best prototype for how humans should organize politically, in the 21st century. For Westerners, it’s difficult to appreciate the scope of China’s development, and this is because of the
16/10/20181 hour 1 minute 18 seconds
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Hannah Fry | Hello World: Being Human in the Age of Algorithms

In Episode 64 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with mathematician and public educator, Hannah Fry. Dr. Fry’s mathematical expertise has led to the development of several  documentaries on the BBC, where she also hosts her own, long-running Radio 4 program: The Curious Cases of Rutherford and Fry. Already a two-time author, Hannah is out with her third and latest book, Hello World: Being Human in the Age of Algorithms.    Since the turn of the twentieth century, algorithms have assumed the power previously associated with pontiffs or the divine right of kings. In an instance of late 20th century lore, the great Chess Champion Garry Kasparov, reflecting upon his historic loss to IBM’s Deep Blue described the algorithm that defeated him in less than twenty moves, as having ‘suddenly played like a God for one moment’. Kasparov’s experience – that of having been unnerved by the intelligence and obstinate posture of an oth
09/10/201858 minutes 57 seconds
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Howard Marks | Mastering the Market Cycle: Getting the Odds on Your Side

In Episode 63 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with legendary value investor Howard Marks. Howard serves as the co-chairman and co-founder of Oaktree Capital Management, a leading investment management firm responsible for over 120 billion dollars in client assets. This week’s conversation centers on the market cycle, its origins and impact. Howard shares his philosophy on risk management, asset bubbles, contrarianism, and what he calls second-level thinking – an approach thinking about value that puts price front and center. The two also explore how markets and the economy have changed over the last fifty years and how the drivers of a secular bull-market in finance may already have come to an end. They explore how a new-normal economy, characterized by low-returns on
02/10/20181 hour 8 minutes 50 seconds
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Elon Musk and the Fall of the Church of Tesla | Montana Skeptic

In Episode 62 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Lawrence Fossi, known by his pen name as Montana Skeptic. Lawrence is the portfolio manager for a family office with over one billion dollars under management. A graduate of Yale Law School, he has 30 years of experience as a commercial trial attorney. Fossi started writing about Tesla three years ago under the pseudonym Montana Skeptic. He quickly developed a reputation as one of Tesla’s most thoughtful critics until earlier this year, when he was "doxed" and his identity discovered. Elon Musk used this information to phone his boss, threatening a lawsuit unless Montana was silenced. This is the first time that Lawrence Fossi has appeared on camera for an interview on this subject or any other. <span style="fo
30/09/201857 minutes 1 second
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Collapsing Demand at Tesla amid Elon Musk SEC Fraud Charges | Gordon Johnson

In Episode 61 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with equity research analyst Gordon Johnson, about a possible bankruptcy of Tesla amid the recently announced SEC fraud charges levied against its CEO Elon Musk. The two also discuss the ongoing criminal probe of its CEO Elon Musk, by the Department of Justice, and the impact that it may have on the company's stock price. Gordon Johnson has been called the biggest bear on Tesla by Bloomberg and CNBC and has the lowest price target on the street for the electric car manufacturer. He’s also been recognized for his accurate stock picks in numerous publications including Bloomberg, Barron’s, Forbes, The Wall Street Journal, Reuters, The Financial Times, and   Tesla a
25/09/201851 minutes 15 seconds
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Bruce Schneier | Cyberattacks and Survival in a Hyperconnected World

In Episode 60 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Bruce Schneier, about cyberattacks, cyberwar, and survival in a hyperconnected world. Cyberattacks constitute one of the most urgent threats facing collective humanity according to Bruce Schneier. History has proven him right. In the summer of 2017, a weapon of cyberwar was dropped onto a world without borders, where the heavy artillery and nuclear warheads that defined the battlelines of the 20th century have been rendered useless. The attack, known as NotPetya, is estimated to have cost its victims ten billion dollars in damages. This is a fraction of the six-hundred billion dollars that the Center for Strategic and International Studies estimates to be the annual cost of cybercrime, constituting nearly 1% of global
18/09/20181 hour 4 minutes 41 seconds
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Grant Williams | Quantum Uncertainty and Spooky Correlations at the Zero-Bound

In Episode 59 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Grant Williams about the crisis brewing in emerging markets, the collapse in cryptocurrencies, and the palace intrigues of Elon Musk. All of these phenomena exhibit the common feature of “quantum weirdness at the zero-bound,” where the laws of classical economics break down, space-time preferences collapse, and quantum entanglements lead to spooky correlations that threaten the very fabric upon which markets are made and prices discovered. Grant Williams is perhaps known best for industry leading, long-form conversations with some of the most brilliant fund managers, short sellers, and financiers from around the world. He is also the founder and editor of the popular financial newsletter, “Things that Make you go Hmmm
11/09/20181 hour 7 minutes 38 seconds
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Jonathan Haidt | Trigger Warnings, Safe Spaces, and the Coddling of the American Mind

In Episode 58 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Jonathan Haidt about how trigger warnings, safe spaces, and microaggressions are setting up the iGeneration for failure on America’s college campuses. In the Fall of 2013, the President of the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, Greg Lukianoff, noticed that something odd was happening on America’s college campuses. Words were increasingly being seen as dangerous. A series of strange reports began to emerge of undergraduates asking for threatening material to be removed from the college curriculum. By the Spring of 2014, The New York Times began reporting on this trend, including demands that school administrators disinvite speakers whose ideas students found off
04/09/20181 hour 1 minute 29 seconds
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Joseph Lubin | ConsenSys and the Nature of the Firm in a Decentralized Economy

In Episode 57 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Joseph Lubin about the progress being made at Consensys and precisely how Joe believes that Ethereum will overcome the scalability challenges that have plagued its network since the earliest days of its founding. For the last few years, many blockchain enthusiasts have been eagerly anticipating the release of what many have referred to as “the Netflix moment.” In other words, blockchain enthusiasts expect to see a killer application running atop Ethereum, or some other distributed ledger, that will be adopted by the mass consumer. One of the criticisms of this view is that comparisons between the mid-to-late 1990’s and the current era in blockchain technology are overblown. It took twenty years of Internet protocol de
20/08/201853 minutes 29 seconds
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Hedera Hashgraph and the Second Internet Revolution | Tom Trowbridge

In Episode 56 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Hedera Hashgraph President Tom Trowbridge about the latest news from the company that made its splash on the Hidden Forces podcast less than one year ago. In the Fall of 2008, equity markets were in free fall. The Dow Jones Industrial Average, S&P 500, and Nasdaq Composite were all on their way towards making lows not seen since the mid-1990’s. Stock valuations would collapse by more than fifty percent, prominent investment banks filed for bankruptcy while others fled into the rapacious arms of their competitors or under the safe umbrella of Congress and the Federal Reserve. At the same time as Schumpeter’s ghost was rattling his chains on Wall Street, Satoshi’s white pape
13/08/201857 minutes 15 seconds
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Ryan Selkis | Token-Curated Registries: Building the Information Database for a New Financial System

In Episode 55 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Ryan Selkis about how his company, Messari, is bringing a new level of data gathering and analysis to the crypto space by building what are known as token-curated registries. Information has become, quite literally, the currency of the digital age. Yet, even before the advent of cryptocurrencies, investors have always understood information to be a valuable asset. “The most valuable commodity I know of is information,” said the iconic Wall Street villain Gordon Gekko. However, information is a commodity, only in so far as it derives its value from the computational efforts of those who seek to process it. In a world of informational abundance, the quality of our computations, not their quantity, determine the scale of
06/08/201854 minutes 54 seconds
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Barry Eichengreen | The Legacy of the Great Moderation: Currency, Populism, and Credit

In Episode 54 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with economic historian Barry Eichengreen about his experience studying currency pegs and exchange rate mechanisms, as the two explore how the legacy of globalization, trade liberalization, and the great moderation laid the foundation for the challenges facing the modern economy. Barry Eichengreen has made a career of studying the history of money and the role that currency has played in the international order. Currency regimes are not fixed in stone. Our current system of floating exchange rates backed by the petrodollar has only been with for the last forty years. Before it, the Western world existed on the gold exchange rate mechanism of Bretton Woods, which lasted for less than thirty years, and whose dissolution lead
30/07/201858 minutes 44 seconds
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Gillian Tett | an Anthropologist's Field Guide to Wall Street and Silicon Valley

In Episode 53 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Gillian Tett, Managing Editor of the Financial Times US about her experience at the paper and how her background in anthropology has helped her identify financial bubbles in technology and the economy. “It's tough to make predictions, especially about the future,” said the famous Yankee captain, Yogi Berra, and yet, this hasn’t stopped us from trying. Attempting to predict the future is a sport as old as civilization itself. Oracles and wishing wells litter the landscape of humanity’s past. Yet, in a world whose outcomes are no longer determined by the forces of nature, ordaining the future has become a matter of market introspection. Learning how to cultivate a sense of objectivity, empathy, and cultural awareness ca
23/07/201845 minutes 58 seconds
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Simon Winchester | a History of Precision Engineering and the Making of the Modern World

In Episode 52 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Simon Winchester about the value of precision (and imperfection) in the modern age. Few things are as responsible for the making of the modern world as precision engineering; yet, it is largely invisible to us. We live our lives in a customizable fashion, expecting the world to conform to our expectations, wants, and desires. And yet, below this surface layer of personalization and complexity exists a world of exactness so precise that it evades our capacity to notice it. It is this world of increasing perfection, uniformity, and repetition that Simon Winchester writes so eloquently about. This conversation is neither a salute to precision nor a rebuke of perfection. It is
16/07/201856 minutes 46 seconds
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Mind-Body Philosophy: Solving the Hard Problem of Consciousness | Patrick Grim

In Episode 51 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Patrick Grim, a world-renowned philosopher, and bestselling author, about the roots of human consciousness. Recent advances in science and technology have allowed us to reveal — and in some cases even alter — the innermost workings of the human body. With electron microscopes, we can see our DNA, the source code of life itself. With nanobots, we can send cameras throughout our bodies and deliver drugs directly into the areas where they are most needed. We are even using artificially intelligent robots to perform surgeries on ourselves with unprecedented precision and accuracy But despite all the advances that we’ve made, there’s one part of our biology that remains largely
09/07/20181 hour 2 minutes 46 seconds
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The Hard Problem of Currency: Are Stablecoins Possible? | Nevin Freeman

In Episode 50 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Nevin Freeman, the founder of a new stable-value cryptocurrency project, about the hard problem of currency. 2018 is the year of the stablecoin, or so says Nevin Freeman, the founder of a new stable-value cryptocurrency project based in the San Francisco Bay area. In order to understand what stablecoins and how they work, we first need to understand money. In order for something to qualify as money, it has traditionally needed to function as both a store of value, and as a medium of exchange for goods and services. The medium of exchange component of money allows it to function as a vital coordination mechanism for society, allowing humans and international governments and
02/07/201851 minutes 9 seconds
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Vitalik Buterin and Vlad Zamfir | The Ethereum Roadmap and Solving the Blockchain Scalability Problem

In Episode 49 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Vitalik Buterin and Vlad Zamfir about the future roadmap for Ethereum. If contracts are the foundation of modern civilization, then our record systems are the infrastructure that keep this foundation from falling apart. These features allow our society to establish and verify identities; give value to goods and services; create and enforce laws; govern interactions between individuals, organizations, and nations — in short, they secure our social, economic, and political policies and allow us to maintain the social order. But there is a problem with these systems, and they are beginning to buckle and crack. The information age
25/06/201855 minutes 37 seconds
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Annie Duke | Making a Sure Bet: Optionality, Decision Making, and How to Embrace Uncertainty

In Episode 48 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Annie Duke and about how we can make smart decisions and ensure our long-term success. We make millions of decisions over the course of our lives. Most of these seem to be small and of little consequence, and so we make our choices and act with little care or thought. Other decisions require more care and consideration, as their significance will, for better or worse, have a lasting impact on our life: What job offer to accept, what life partner to choose, how to invest in retirement. When faced with these truly important decisions, many people become crippled by their fear and doubt. What if it’s a bad prediction? What if I am mi
18/06/20181 hour 1 minute 23 seconds
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Claude Shannon: The Story of How One Man Created the Information Age | Jimmy Soni

In Episode 47 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Jimmy Soni about the father of Information Theory, Claude Shannon, and Shannon’s foundational work, A Mathematical Theory of Communication. The 20th century is known as the information age, and for a good reason. It is a period that is dominated by knowledge and data. It’s an era in which the economy is no longer driven by traditional industries — such as construction, manufacturing, or agriculture — but by advanced information technologies that store, retrieve, transmit, and manipulate data. This revolution finds its roots in Information Theory. And remarkably, it is a theory that was developed by one man: Claude Shannon. Before Shannon, society had a rather immature understanding of what inform
11/06/201857 minutes 24 seconds
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The Quest for the Nobel: Cosmology, Physics, and the Search for the Origins of the Universe | Brian Keating

In Episode 46 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Brian Keating, astrophysicist and author of Losing the Nobel Prize: A Story of Cosmology, Ambition, and the Perils of Science's Highest Honor. When we think about competition, we don’t typically think about scientists. Instead of seeing these individuals as adversaries competing for fickle prizes or glory, we see them as impartial explorers of the cosmos. We see them as the selfless gatekeepers of knowledge. </spa
04/06/20181 hour 12 minutes 7 seconds
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Daniel H. Pink | Biological Clock: Why “What” You Do is Just as Important as “When” You Do It

In Episode 45 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Daniel Pink, the highly acclaimed author of numerous, best-selling books including his latest, When: The Scientific Secrets of Perfect Timing. Timing is everything, so it’s kind of surprising that most of us don’t give it any serious consideration. We think about what things we want to do. We think about who we want to do these things with. When we want to do something is generally our final consideration — if we consider it at all. Take college students, for example. They must take classes in art, math, history, science, and a host of other fields. Each year, just before the semester begins, students flock to their computers and plot out the class schedules that will govern their lives for the next five months. Their top considerations are when their friends are taking classes, how they can avoid getting up early, and how
21/05/201852 minutes 45 seconds
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Collective Achievement: The Hidden Force That Creates the World’s Greatest Teams | Sam Walker

In Episode 44 of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas speaks with Sam Walker, author of The Captain Class, about how our love affair with athletic performance is about more than rivalry. People love sports. As we love watching the teams we adore try and fight their way towards victory. Their wins are our wins, and we celebrate these triumphs with feelings of joy that are difficult to match or even describe. Their losses are equally ours, and the pain of those losses can feel like a personal failure. Much has been said about the psychology of sports, about those things that draw us in and keep us spellbound. However, scientists have failed to locate exactly
14/05/20181 hour 6 minutes 10 seconds
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The Rise of Xi Jinping and the Dawn of a New Imperial China | Elizabeth C. Economy

In Episode 43 of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas speaks with Elizabeth Economy about the emergence of a new imperial China and the rise of Xi Jinping. We may be witnessing the birth of a new imperial China, one that was brought about by the charismatic machinations of the nation’s leader, Xi Jinping. At the present juncture, it’s not exactly clear what Xi’s excessive centralization of power means or how his disruptive new policies will impact the rest of the world, but we can say one thing with certainty — international power dynamics are already starting to shift in response. Xi’s tenure truly began in 2012, when he became the General Secretary for China’s Communist Party, which is the sole governing party in China. Today, he also serves as the head of the state and the head of the military. Taken as a whole, these are all of the most important leadership positions in the Chinese government. If that’s not enough, earlier th
07/05/201856 minutes 53 seconds
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Remaking the Future: Why Education in African Countries is Crucial to Our Survival | Fred Swaniker

In Episode 42 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Fred Swaniker about the future of African leadership and education in the 21st century. By the year 2050, the human population will increase by a staggering 2.4 billion. According to data from the UN World Population Prospects, the figures are cause for great concern. Researchers worry that our planet may not have the carrying capacity to sustain a population of this size; however, their primary concern stems from the fact that a majority of the increases will take place in the world’s most depressed areas. In fact, experts predict that approximately 50%
30/04/20181 hour 1 minute 32 seconds
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Jim Holt | Metaphysics, the Philosophy of Science, and Why the World Exists

In Episode 41 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Jim Holt about the philosophy of science, ethics, and metaphysics. Jim Holt is on a quest to understand the fundamental nature and meaning of our universe. What is infinity? Is time real? Why does the world exist? These are the most important questions that humanity has ever pondered. When attempting to answer such large, existential questions, it’s not enough to use observational evidence alone. This is where metaphysics comes in. Unlike the hard-nosed, falsifiable propositions that form the foundation of empirical science, metaphysics poses questions for which definitive answers are hard to come by. Aristotle famously heralded the field as “the first philosophy,” since i
23/04/20181 hour 3 minutes 9 seconds
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Jeremy Heimans and Henry Timms | Crowdsourcing and the New Power Reshaping Business, Politics, and Society

In Episode 40 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Jeremy Heimans and Henry Timms about the forces reshaping politics, business, and society. There is no question that our world is experiencing a dramatic shift in power. On the surface, this is to be expected. After all, to quote Friedrich Nietzsche, power is "a sea of forces flowing and rushing together, eternally changing." Yet, for nearly all of human history, power was held and jealously guarded by a select minority of individuals. Although control could be seized by new parties through uprisings, such attempts have only been successful when made by nobles or military leaders. Real power has been out of the reach of the vast majority of people since time immemorial. To
16/04/20181 hour 6 seconds
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Elon Musk and the Cult of Tesla: Are We Seeing a Bubble Bursting in Tech? | Mark Spiegel

In Episode 39 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Mark Spiegel about how Elon Musk may very well be the personification of a bubble in tech. When asked to name a hero of the modern age, most people don’t have to think long before giving their answer. Elon Musk is the man who sits at the helm of this era’s most disruptive industries. Through SpaceX, Musk is democratizing space and leading humanity into an era that’s dominated by privately held companies — an era in which anyone can, quite literally, reach for the stars. His Boring company is set to revolutionize travel by making vacuum-powered, ultra-high-speed transportation systems a reality. And Elon Musk is even transforming that which is most immutable: the human brain. In 2016, Musk founded Neuralink to develop
09/04/20181 hour 4 minutes 41 seconds
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Tesla Bankruptcy: Has the Road to Profitability Closed for Good? | Charley Grant

In Episode 38 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Charley Grant about whether or not Tesla can avoid an inexorable spiral towards bankruptcy. Tesla is a kind of wonderchild. It entered the stage in the summer of 2003 with the aim of accelerating the arrival and adoption of electric vehicles. The company was founded by several Silicon Valley luminaries, most notably Elon Musk. Since its founding more than fifteen years ago, the company has transformed the way the world thinks about energy and electric cars. Despite the fact that electric vehicles have yet to see widespread adoption, they have become surrounded by a level of fanfare that is enjoyed by few other innovations. Yet, the road ahead of Tesla is becoming increasin
02/04/201845 minutes 5 seconds
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Josh Wolfe | Investing in the Future: Meditations on Passion, Randomness, and Optionality

In Episode 37 of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas speaks with Josh Wolfe, co-founder of Lux Capital. Lux Capital is a venture firm that specializes in the hard sciences, supporting scientists and entrepreneurs who pursue counter-conventional solutions to the most vexing puzzles of our time. Josh is also a founding investor and board member with Bill Gates in Kymeta, which makes cutting-edge antennas for high-speed global satellite and space communications. He is a Westinghouse semi-finalist and published scientist who previously worked in investment banking at Salomon Smith Barney and in capital markets at Merrill Lynch. In 2008, Josh Wolfe co-founded and funded Kurion, a contrarian bet in the unlikely business of using advanced robotics and state-of-the-art engineering and chemistry to clean up nuclear waste. He is a columnist with Forbes who has lectured at MIT, Harvard, Yale, C
26/03/20181 hour 23 minutes 9 seconds
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Leemon Baird | Hedera Hashgraph: A Revolutionary New Public Ledger and Governance Framework

In Episode 36 of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas interviews Leemon Baird about the launch of Hedera Hashgraph, a public ledger built atop the hashgraph consensus protocol that aims to serve as the trust layer of the modern Internet. Hedera implements a suite of solutions that we have never seen before in a public ledger. Its method of governance is unique. Its open review approach to software development challenges the paradigm that has dominated the world of cryptoeconomics for the past decade. Its approach to database sharding allows for massive increases in throughput and its approach to proxy staking incentivizes ownership without the burden of having to stand your own node. Is the technological superiority of hashgraph enough to secure its success as the utility protocol of the future, or will blockchain developers reject a model of governance that demands stability over the right of any one individual to copy the code
19/03/20181 hour 20 minutes 29 seconds
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Banking on Bitcoin | Solving the Problem of Credit Using Distributed Applications

In Episode 35 of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas speaks with Alex Mashinsky. Alex is the founder, and CEO of Celsius, a next generation lending wallet that aims to be the ‘Killer App’ of the bitcoin and cryptocurrency revolution. Celsius attempts to overcome the limitations of a traditional banking system by leveraging technology and rethinking lending for the 21st century. A serial entrepreneur, Mashinsky is the founder of seven New York City-based startups with over three billion dollars worth of exits to his name. He is a serial inventor with over 35 patents, relating to exchanges, VOIP protocols, messaging & communication. Alex Mashinksy is also one of the inventors of Voice Over Internet Protocol with a foundational patent dating back to 1994. In their conversation, Demetri attempts to understand the mechanics behind the Celsius Network, as well as how the company intends to manage risk, execute short sales on behalf of insti
05/03/201855 minutes 31 seconds
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Brian Kelly | Investing in Cryptocurrency: a Financial Markets Perspective on Bitcoin

In Episode 34 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Brian Kelly, CEO of BKCM LLC, a digital asset investment firm. He is an experienced Global Macro investor with over twenty-five years’ experience in financial markets and a CNBC contributor who appears regularly on Fast Money. Our most recent episodes with Chris Burniske on modeling cryptoassets and with Ari Paul on cryptocurrency trading methodologies introduced two foundational frameworks to our audience. This week's episode with Brian Kelly affords our audience the opportunity to explore both of these perspectives (theory and execution) in a single conversation. Brian Kelly is uniquely qualified to talk about the financial side of cryptocurrencies, but he also provid
26/02/201857 minutes 34 seconds
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Bill Browder and the Fall of Glasnost: A Tale of Murder and Corruption in Russia

In Episode 33 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Bill Browder about how his wealth was plundered by Russian oligarchs and placed in the hands of Vladimir Putin. This is the story of Bill Browder and the end of glasnost. It stands as a microcosm of how the USSR attempted, and failed, to reform itself. However, in order to truly tell the tale, we must begin with another man: Mikhail Gorbachev. Mikhail Gorbachev came to the stage at the end of the 1980s with a policy of glasnost, which can best be translated and explained in English as “openness.” Practically speaking, the policy was focused on ending th
19/02/20181 hour 8 minutes 1 second
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Ari Paul | How the Top Crypto Funds Are Trading and Investing in Cryptocurrency

In Episode 32 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Ari Paul about the inner workings of hedge funds focused exclusively on the cryptocurrency space. Over the course of the last year, cryptocurrency has dominated our society. The price of the most popular digital currencies surged, increasing in value by well over 1000% in a matter of weeks. We saw similar rises in initial coin offerings, with the number of token offerings increasing from just seven a month in January 2017 to more than forty a month by the end of the year. This crypto euphoria fueled the formation of several cryptoc
12/02/20181 hour 6 minutes 41 seconds
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Chris Burniske | How Do You Value a Cryptocurrency? Cryptoeconomics and How to Build a Financial Model for Valuing Cryptoassets

In Episode 31 of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas speaks with Chris Burniske about how to value a cryptocurrency. Chris is a co-founder of Placeholder, a New York venture firm that specializes in cryptoassets. Before Placeholder, Chris Burniske pioneered ARK Invest's Next Generation Internet strategy, leading the company to become the first public fund manager to invest in cryptocurrency. He then transitioned to focus exclusively on cryptoassets, paving the way for Wall Street to recognize it as a new asset class. His commentary has been featured on national media outlets, including the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, Fortune, and Forbes. With the total market capitalization of all cryptocurrency having surpassed $800 billion by the start of 2018, it was only a matter of time before Wall Street would stand up and take notice. The establishment of a cash-settled futures market for bitcoin in late 2017 is one of many bullish signs for the long-term viability of cryp
29/01/20181 hour 9 minutes 59 seconds
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Tim O’Reilly | We Can Predict the Future Only by Learning to Map the Present

In Episode 30 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas asks the question, "how can we learn how to predict the future?" According to his guest, Tim O'Reilly, learning how to predict the future starts with building better maps. Tim O'Reilly has played a seminal role in creating the framework through which an entire generation has come to know and understand the modern Internet. If you have ever used terms like “open source” or “web 2.0,” you are relying on the language cultivated by Tim O'Reilly, through his innumerable conferences, gatherings, and intimate conversations. His work has reshaped how people in the computer industry think about technology. He is the founder, CEO, and Chairman of O’Reilly Media, and his most recent book, WTF: What’s the Future and Why It’s Up to Us, forms the basis for much of this conversation. The need to explore is a fundamental driver of human progress. Without it, we would never have ventured off the p
22/01/20181 hour 5 minutes 10 seconds
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The Iranian Protests and the Forces Driving Change Across the Middle East | Hooman Majd

In Episode 29 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Hooman Majd about how to interpret the Iranian protests within the wider political, cultural, and financial dimensions of the greater Middle East. The ongoing Iranian protests have delivered the worst scenes of unrest since millions took to the streets over a disputed presidential election in 2009. During the tensions that occurred a decade ago, protesters claimed that widespread election fraud resulted in the state erroneously reelecting Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, as president of Iran; however, the <a href= "
08/01/20181 hour 11 minutes 22 seconds
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Industrial Society and Its Future | Machine Intelligence, Encryption, and the Will to Power

In Episode 28 of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas lays out his vision for a future driven by the emergent forces we have been covering in 2017. He reads passages from Ted Kaczynski’s “Industrial Society and its Future,” as well as from Bill Joy’s “Why the Future Doesn’t Need Us.” He plays clips from interviews with Barack Obama, Tim Cook, and Jamie Dimon, as he considers how power, privacy, and control, all factor into the emerging technological landscape. What is the goal of the machine? What do we seek to accomplish with our technologies? What are the benefits and the costs associated with the technological, political, and economic forces of the modern age?  Producer & Host: Demetri Kofinas Editor: Stylianos Nicolaou Join the conversation on Facebook, Instagram, and <a href= "
01/01/201826 minutes 26 seconds
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Gary Shilling | Regulatory Reform and the Impact of the Trump Tax Plan on the U.S. Economy

In Episode 27 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with economist Gary Shilling, who famously called the bottom in what has become a 36-year bull market in US Treasuries, about the ramifications of Donald Trump’s economic policies, the role of cryptocurrencies, and the prospect for stocks, commodities, and the dollar in 2018. Few would reasonably argue that regulatory reform is not needed in the United States. The issue for politicians and policymakers has always been one of balance and practicality. The turbulence of the 1970’s produced a slew of regulatory measures like wage and price controls that proved disastrous for the economy. Likewise, the financial deregulation of the 1980s and 1990s rolled back investor protections that had served to safeguard customer deposits
18/12/20171 hour 4 minutes 51 seconds
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Climate Science, Climate Models, and Climate Change. What Is Driving The Earth's Warming? | NASA's Gavin Schmidt

In Episode 26 of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas speaks with NASA's Chief Climate Scientist and Head of the Goddard Institute for Space Studies, Gavin Schmidt. The two cut through the controversy surrounding climate change and dive right into the heart of climate science. They parse through the data, explore the climate models, and consider the impact that further warming could have on humanity in the decades to come. What is driving the warming of our planet? What is causing the acidification of the oceans? What is shrinking the ice sheets? What is causing the rise in sea levels, the decrease in snow cover, and the melting glaciers? Is there a causal connection between human activity and the prolonged droughts, intense heat waves, and raging wildfires we have seen in recent years? What are the feedback mechanisms of climate change? How do we measure the impact of losing reflective layers of ice, exposing permafrost, or releasing
11/12/20171 hour 12 minutes 10 seconds
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Lacy Hunt | What Are The Global Macro Forces Driving The 21st Century? The Demographics of Deflation and Financial Repression

In Episode 25 of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas speaks with Lacy Hunt, Executive Vice President of Hoisington Investment Management Company. For nearly 14 years, Dr. Lacy Hunt was Chief U.S. Economist for HSBC Group, one of the world’s largest banks. He was also Executive Vice President and Chief Economist at Fidelity and held the position of Senior Economist for the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas. Global Macro is an investment strategy based on the interpretation and prediction of large-scale events. Many such events are driven by chronic conditions, including debt deflation, structural demographics, and low savings rate. What role have governments played in amplifying and perpetuating the impact of these forces by bailing out financial markets and flooding the banking system with cheap money? In order to answer this question, we must rely on a panoply of data, statistics, and econometrics – bank lending, money velocity,
27/11/20171 hour 1 minute 22 seconds
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Jeffrey Rosen | Constitutional Law In The 21st Century – Privacy, Personhood, and Freedom

In Episode 24 of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas speaks with Jeffrey Rosen, the nation's most widely read and influential legal commentator. Their conversation examines the landscape of constitutional law in the 21st century. How do we interpret a more than 200-year-old document in an age of empire, terror, and technological futurism? How do theories of mind apply to the laws of personhood? How will our criminal justice system evolve along with our notions of agency and free-will? How do we interpret the First Amendment in an age of synthetic news and artificial intelligence? Where do the Bill of Rights and the Constitution stand on the question of genetic engineering and designer babies? Can the Fourth and Fifth Amendments protect our right to privacy and freedom from self-incrimination in an age of mass surveillance? How does constitutional law inform the practices of corporations and publishers? Can this enduring document safeguard ou
06/11/201748 minutes 25 seconds
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Heather Berlin | a Theory of Mind and the Neural Basis of Consciousness

In Episode 23 of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas speaks with Dr. Heather Berlin about the neural basis of consciousness. The two consider a theory of mind based on a materialist perspective on reality. Materialism is a form of philosophical monism which holds that matter is the fundamental substance in nature, and that all things, including mental aspects and consciousness, are results of material interactions. If this is the case, then where do our thoughts and our feelings, come from? Who is in charge of our volitions and our desires? What is the neural basis of depression, anxiety, and psychosis? What is the substantive source of human creativity, inspiration, and genius? Is there really nothing more to the experience of consciousness – to life itself – than the observable firing of billions of neurons jumbled together in an atomic stew consisting almost entirely of empty space? Dr. Heather Berlin is a cognitive neuroscientist
30/10/20171 hour 11 minutes 25 seconds
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Mance Harmon | the Hashgraph Consensus Algorithm: A Panel Discussion With The Founders Of The Future Internet

Members of the hashgraph consensus algorithm's founding team, including the CEO of Swirlds, Mance Harmon, speak with Demetri Kofinas about the future of the Internet. In this blockbuster event, blockchain developers, entrepreneurs, and fans of Hidden Forces ask questions to the founders of hashgraph about their revolutionary technology. Leemon Baird, Mance Harmon, and the rest of the Swirlds team claim to have built an entirely new distributed ledger technology that is better (orders of magnitude more efficient), faster (300,000+ transactions per second pre-sharding), safer (asynchronous byzantine fault tolerant), and fairer (mathematically proven fairness with consensus time stamping) than the blockchain. This is the second installment in a series of interviews, panel discussions, and conversations that Demetri Kofinas has had with the founders of Hashgraph. Hashgraph is a consensus algorithm that appears to have solved the problem
23/10/20171 hour 22 minutes 57 seconds
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Lemon Baird | the Future Is Not Blockchain. It's Hedera Hashgraph

In Episode 22 of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas speaks with Leemon Baird, the inventor of Hedera Hashgraph, a new, distributed ledger technology poised to disrupt the entire ecosystem of blockchain-based applications and cryptocurrencies. Leemon Baird is the Co-founder and CTO of Swirlds Inc. With over 20 years of technology and startup experience, he has held positions as a Professor of Computer Science at the Air Force Academy, Adjunct Professor at multiple other prestigious universities, and as a senior scientist in several labs. He has been the co-founder of several startups, including two identity-related starts-ups with successful exits. He received his Ph.D. in Computer Science from Carnegie Mellon University faster than any student in school history (2 years, 9 months), has multiple patents and over 100 publications in peer-reviewed journals on computer security, machine learning, and mathematics. He regularly keynotes on
16/10/201753 minutes 19 seconds
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John Borthwick | Design Philosophy, Superintelligence, Relativism, and Simulation

In Episode 21 of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas speaks with John Borthwick about design philosophy, superintelligence, relativism, and simulation. John Borthwick is CEO and Co-founder of Betaworks, a startup platform that builds and invests in companies across the social, data-driven media Internet. The Betaworks platform combines three areas of expertise. The first is a studio for building products like Giphy, Dots, Bitly, and Tweetdeck. The second is an investment fund for early-stage start-ups related to the areas in which the company is building (investments here include: Tumblr, Kickstarter, Medium and Gimlet). Lastly, there is "camp": a thematic accelerator program for start-ups in frontier technology such as Bots, AI, and Verbal Computing. In this manner, John Borthwick and his team at Betaworks combine art and science in their design philosophy, as they create extraordinary companies and work with exceptional people acr
02/10/201757 minutes 45 seconds
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Public Intellectuals, Thought Leaders, and the Marketplace of Ideas | Daniel Drezner

In Episode 20 of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with political scientist Daniel Drezner about public intellectuals, thought leaders, and the marketplace of ideas. Dr. Drezner is professor of international politics at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University, a nonresident senior fellow at the Brookings Institution, and the author of “Spoiler Alerts” for the Washington Post. His latest book, The Ideas Industry, explores the balance that must be struck between public intellectuals and thought leaders in a properly functioning marketplace of ideas. What is the state of intellectual thought in American society? Where does one go in order to find good information? How does one measure the value of an idea if he or she cannot determine its veracity? How have the foundations of Western intellectual development like empiricism and reason been turned into political footballs? Why has trust in institutions eroded? Why
25/09/201755 minutes 30 seconds
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Geoffrey West | Natural vs. Socioeconomic Systems: a Unified Theory of Sustainability

In Episode 19 of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas speaks with theoretical physicist Geoffrey West about his work studying biological systems, infrastructure, and the socioeconomics of cities. Dr. West's primary interests have been in fundamental questions in physics, especially those concerning the elementary particles, their interactions, and cosmological implications. Geoffrey West currently serves as distinguished professor at the Santa Fe Institute, where he served as President from July 2005 through July 2009. Prior to joining SFI Dr. West was the leader, and founder, of the high energy physics group at Los Alamos National Laboratory. He is also the author of SCALE, a remarkable, and timely book, whose substance and theory we explore today. In today’s conversation, we explore some of the most remarkable insights coming out of the field of computational biology. This is an interdisciplinary cohort consisting of theoretical phys
11/09/20171 hour 17 minutes 17 seconds
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Samuel Bowles | The Origins of Economic Man and the Moral Economy

In Episode 18 of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas speaks with Samuel Bowles, about economic man and the moral economy, exploring some of the latest insights from the field of behavioral economics with insights about how incentives and prices convey information and shape perceptions of value in the economy. Dr. Bowles is a Research Professor at the Santa Fe Institute, where he heads the Behavioral Sciences Program. His studies on cultural and genetic evolution have challenged the conventional economic assumptions of an economic man motivated entirely by self-interest. The author of nearly twenty books, Samuel Bowles has most recently written The Moral Economy: Why Good Incentives Are No Substitute for Good Citizensand A Cooperative Species: Human Reciprocity and Its Evolution.  In today’s conversation, we follow the archeological record of economic man. We pursue the path towards rational expectations and utility maximization. We ta
21/08/20171 hour 1 minute 40 seconds
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Robert Johnson | Political Economy, Technocracy, and the New Gilded Age

In Episode 17 of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas speaks with Robert Johnson, about the political economy, inequality, and the failings of our technocratic institutions. Dr. Johnson serves as President of the Institute for New Economic Thinking and is a Senior Fellow and Director of the Global Finance Project for the Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt Institute in New York. Robert Johnson served for many years as a Managing Director for George Soros at Soros Fund Management and was part of the famous team of speculators that broke the bank of England in 1992, forcing the pound out of ERM. He served as Chief Economist of the US Senate Banking Committee under the leadership of Chairman William Proxmire, and before this, as Senior Economist of the US Senate Budget Committee under the leadership of Chairman Pete Domenici. Black Wednesday was almost 25 years ago to the day. How has global finance, international tr
07/08/20171 hour 11 minutes 37 seconds
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The Chinese Financial System and the Prospects for a Hard Landing in China | Anne Stevenson-Yang

In Episode 16 of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas speaks with Anne Stevenson-Yang. Anne is the co-founder of J Capital Research, which conducts ground-up, primary research for institutional money managers on stocks, the Chinese economy, and the Chinese financial system. She is also the author of the recent book China Alone: China's Emergence and Potential Return to Isolation, in which she sets out her views on the Chinese economy and political system, arguing that China historically repeats a cycle of expansion and retreat. In today’s conversation, we take a trip around the world to the land of China. Our conversation concerns itself with the contemporary changes in Chinese society that came after the death of Chairman Mao. What was life like in China before Nixon and Kissinger made their famous visit in 1971? Why did modernization and reform in China begin after 1978? Who was responsible for the opening in China? What was the role
24/07/201758 minutes 19 seconds
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Genomics, Machine Learning, and the Future of Big Data in Medicine | Eric Schadt

In Episode 15 of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas speaks with Dr. Eric Schadt. Eric Schadt is founder and CEO of Sema4, as well as Dean of Precision Medicine at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. During the course of his 20-year career, Dr. Eric Schadt has built genetics and systems biology groups at Merck. He built the computational biology group at Rosetta. He has served as co-founder of Sage Bionetworks and as Chief Science Officer of Pacific Biosciences. He now serves as the founder and CEO of Sema4. He has published more than 300 peer-reviewed papers in leading scientific journals, and he has contributed to a number of discoveries relating to the genetic basis of common human diseases such as diabetes, obesity and Alzheimer’s. In today’s conversation, we explore the information technology of biology – DNA – the world of genomics, where big data looms large. We begin by mapping the territory
10/07/20171 hour 4 minutes
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The Measure of All Things: Phenomenology, Design, and the Human Experience | Christian Madsbjerg

In Episode 14 of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas speaks with Christian Madsbjerg. Christian Madsbjerg is the founder of ReD Associates, a consultancy group focused on helping companies bridge the qualitative divide between themselves, their products, and their customers. The anthropologists, sociologists, economists, journalists, and designers who make up ReD employ the methods of social science to study human behavior. Instead of minimizing complexity, they embrace the non-linearities illuminated through human experience, helping companies reinvent themselves and their products from the bottom up. In today’s conversation we examine the world from the perspective of human experience. This is what philosophers call “phenomenology.” Rather than objectify reality, we will revel in its subjectivity. Rather than discount our senses in favor of hard data, we will discount the data in favor of our experience. E
26/06/201756 minutes 37 seconds
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Jim Grant | A History of Interest Rates and Why They Matter for Your Financial Future

In Episode 13 of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas speaks with James Grant. James Grant is a legend of the financial newsletter industry. Once the editor of the yield column in Barron’s, he would leave in 1983 to found Grant’s Interest Rate Observer, two years after the sacred risk-free rate touched just under 20%. This is a level that seems nearly impossible to fathom in today’s world of near-zero and even negative, interest rates. Having observed, reported, and opined on markets for almost 50 years, James Grant represents a bastion of experience and wisdom. In this episode, we stop to listen. We stop to remember a time, in which the extraordinary measures and unprecedented actions of our monetary and fiscal authorities would have seemed unimaginable. We take a hard look at money. How does this shadow of wealth find its value? How is the rate of interest determined, and what is the role of financial markets in facilitating the disc
12/06/201758 minutes 54 seconds
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Steve Keen | Can Five Hundred Years of Economic Theory Help Us Predict the Next Financial Crisis?

In Episode 12 of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas speaks with economist Steve Keen. Steve is Professor of Economics at Kingston University in London and one of a handful of economists to correctly anticipate the Global Financial Crisis of 2008. Professor Keen is also the popular author of “Debunking Economics,” as well as the timely book, “Can We Avoid Another Financial Crisis?”  In today’s conversation, we tear up the textbook of contemporary economics. We dispense with equilibrium. We embrace irrationality. We internalize economic externalities and drop assumptions about the world that do not comport with the reality of lived experience. We begin our history of economics with the physiocrats, enlightenment thinkers of the early 18th century who concerned themselves with the question: “where does stuff come from?” We move through the classical period of economics, exploring the philosophies of Adam Smith and David Ricardo. We sto
05/06/201758 minutes 38 seconds
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Philosophical Mathematics and the Incompleteness of Formal Systems | Ray Monk

In Episode 11 of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas speaks with Ray Monk. Ray Monk is Professor of Philosophy at the University of Southampton in the UK, where he lectures on logic, philosophical mathematics and the philosophy of Wittgenstein. He is presently a visiting Miller Scholar at the Santa Fe Institute. A prolific biographer, professor Monk has written books on the philosophers and mathematicians Ludwig Wittgenstein and Bertrand Russell, as well as the theoretical physicist and director of the Los Alamos Laboratory during the Manhattan Project, Robert Oppenheimer. In their conversation, Demetri and Ray explore the mysterious and paradoxical world of mathematics. What are the foundations of mathematics? Where did mathematics come from? How did this seemingly infinite body of knowledge arise from virtually nothing? What are Euclid’s axioms? What are Plato’s forms? What did the Pythagorean mystery cults worship? How did our noti
22/05/20171 hour 9 minutes 33 seconds
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Diplomacy, Politics, and Foreign Policy. Anarchism for the 21st Century | Carne Ross

In Episode 10 of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas speaks with Carne Ross. Carne is the founder of Independent Diplomat, which advises dozens of democratic countries and political groups on using diplomacy to achieve their foreign policy goals. In his former capacity as a British diplomat, Carne worked on the Middle East, the global environment, weapons of mass destruction and terrorism. He served in British embassies within Germany, Norway, Kosovo, Afghanistan and the UK Mission to the United Nations in New York, where he was Britain’s Middle East expert. Carne was also chief speechwriter to the British foreign secretary. Carne Ross resigned from the UK Foreign Service in 2004, after testifying and giving secret evidence to the UK’s first official inquiry into the Iraq war. Author of two books on world political affairs, Carne is a frequent commentator on international affairs on the BBC, NPR, CNN, Al Jazeera and elsewhere. Carne has also
15/05/20171 hour 22 minutes 41 seconds
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Sebastian Mallaby | A History of the Federal Reserve and the Chairmanship of Alan Greenspan

In Episode 9 of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas explores the history of the Federal Reserve under the chairmanship of Alan Greenspan with biographer Sebastian Mallaby. Sebastian is a writer, commentator, and chronicler of financial and economic history. He is the Paul A. Volcker senior fellow for international economics at the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) and a contributing columnist for the Washington Post. His interests cover a wide variety of domestic and international issues, including central banks (the federal reserve), financial markets, and the intersection of economics and international relations. Some of his books include More Money Than God: Hedge Funds and the Making of a New Elite, The World’s Banker, and The Man Who Knew: The Life & Times of Alan Greenspan, Winner of the 2016 Financial Times/McKinsey Business Book of the Year Award. Alan Greenspan is one of the most consequential and yet, least understood figur
08/05/20171 hour 8 minutes 49 seconds
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Life, Death, and Rebirth: What I Found When I Lost My Mind

In this SPECIAL EPISODE of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas plays part of a documentary about him, created by CBC Radio One’s “The Current.” The documentary is based on of an article published by Demetri dealing with his experience of, and subsequent recovery from, severe dementia and anterograde amnesia caused by a Craniopharyngioma. Demetri is the very fortunate survivor of a brain tumor for which he underwent both surgery, as well as radiation therapy in the summer and fall of 2013. He lived with his brain tumor for four years before it began to cause him serious symptoms, most notably, dementia and anterograde amnesia. After his surgery in June of 2013, Demetri experienced an unprecedented reacquisition of memories previously thought to have been lost forever. The tumor had not disrupted the formation of new memories,
24/04/201722 minutes 36 seconds
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Combating Cyberterrorism and Cybercrime in the 21st Century | Josh Corman

In Episode 8 of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas speaks with cybersecurity expert and cyber safety advocate, Josh Corman. Josh is the founder of I am The Cavalry, an advocacy group actively engaged in addressing some of the most pressing issues of public safety and threats to human life on the Internet today. He is also the Director of the Cyber Statecraft Initiative at the Atlantic Council. Josh Corman is part of the 2016 Cybersecurity Task Force commissioned by the United States Congress to address the growing risk to our hospitals, medical infrastructure, and connected devices, from cyber-attacks. Gone are the quaint, innocent days of the early Internet, with its pesky Trojan’s, Macro Viruses, RATs, slammer worms, and blaster worms. Today’s cybersecurity landscape features a wide assortment of easily accessible and robust attack tools that exploit software bugs like Shellshock and Heartbleed. This is a cybersecurity landscape l
17/04/20171 hour 46 minutes 9 seconds
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W. Brian Arthur | Complexity Economics, Complexity Science, and Chaos Theory

In Episode 7 of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas speaks with one of the pioneers in complexity science, W. Brian Arthur. Brian Arthur has long been associated with the Santa Fe Institute, having served on its board of trustees and its board of science. He has been described by Fortune Magazine, as “one of the country’s leading economic thinkers,” and he is best known for his pioneering work on the operation of high-technology markets. He is the author of numerous papers and books, including The Nature of Technology: What it is and How It Evolves, and </sp
10/04/20171 hour 38 minutes 16 seconds
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Space Warfare and the Weaponization of Outer Space | Joan Johnson-Freese

In Episode 6 of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas speaks with Joan Johnson-Freese about space warfare and the weaponization of outer space. Joan Freese is a professor of National Security Affairs at the US Naval War College. She’s been a faculty member at the Asia-Pacific Center for Security Studies and the Air War College, which emphasizes the employment of air, space, and cyberspace in joint operations. Professor Freese has also served on the Space Studies Board of the National Academies of Science and has often testified before Congress on matters of space warfare and space security. She is the author of multiple books on space warfare and space security, among them, Heavenly Ambitions: America’s Quest to Dominate Space, The Chinese Space Program: A Mystery Within a Maze, and her latest book, Space Warfare
03/04/20171 hour 5 minutes 1 second
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Marc Faber | The Wealth Gap, Populism, and the Prospects for War in Asia

In this Market Forces segment of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with the investor, commentator, and editor of the Gloom, Boom, and Doom Report, Marc Faber. Though Dr. Faber has been dubbed "Dr. Doom," by the financial press, he is perhaps most famous for his very accurate timing of the US stock market bottom in March 2009. A veteran of the financial industry, Dr. Faber worked during the 1970's for White Weld & Company Limited in New York City, Zurich, and Hong Kong. He moved to Hong Kong in 1973. He was a managing director at Drexel Burnham Lambert Ltd Hong Kong from the beginning of 1978 until 1990. In 1990, he set up his own business, Marc Faber Limited, acting as an investment advisor and fund manager. Marc Faber now resides in Chiang Mai, Thailand, though he keeps a small office in Hong Kong. In this nearly hour-long conversation, Marc Faber speaks with Demetri Kofinas about the growing wealth and income disparity across t
01/04/201753 minutes 57 seconds
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How Technology is Advancing Networking & Accountability in Commercial Real Estate

In this Market Forces segment of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas speaks with Ben Friedland, Vice Chairman and Co-Head of CBRE’s Alternative Investments Practice (AIP), an industry-specific practice group focused on advising private equity firms, hedge funds, and other Alternative Investment companies on their real estate strategies throughout New York City and around the world. Throughout his 18+ years with CBRE, Ben has distinguished himself by developing exclusive relationships with many of the world’s most prestigious financial services companies. Partnering closely with his clients, he shapes and implements creative real estate strategies that align with their goals, helping them further efficiencies and achieve significant savings. Ben has consistently been recognized as one of CBRE’s top producers globally and is in a unique position to provide insight into how the forces of technology and globalization are changing this age-old, multi
01/04/201740 minutes 21 seconds
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Why are Financial Markets So Bad at Pricing Geopolitical Risk? | Rachel Ziemba

In this Market Forces segment of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas speaks with Emerging Markets Analyst Rachel Ziemba. Rachel leads Emerging Markets coverage for Roubini Global Economics and writes extensively across all three EM/Frontier regions, as well as about commodities. She has a particular interest in the macroeconomics of oil-exporting nations, including the management of oil wealth, energy-sector supply risks, and China. Rachel has served as an expert member of task forces in the U.S, and the UK on issues ranging from economic sanctions, Chinese security challenges, Egypt and sovereign wealth funds. Today’s conversation begins with a look at North Korea and the geopolitical crisis that is unfolding on the Korean Peninsula. Why are financial markets so bad at pricing geopolitical risk and do governments even have a firm grasp on the evolving threat of a nuclear exchange between the United States and the regime of Kim Jong-
01/04/201747 minutes 7 seconds
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Christopher Cole | How Do We Profit from the Unknown? Financial Volatility at the Edge of Crisis.

In Episode 5 of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas speaks with Christopher Cole about political and financial volatility. Chris is the founder of Artemis Capital and the portfolio manager of the Artemis Vega Fund, which seeks to profit from periods of financial volatility, dislocation, and systemic crisis in financial markets. His core focus is systematic, quantitative, and behavioral based trading of financial volatility derivatives. What is volatility? What accounts for the unprecedented levels of mean reversion in implied volatility that we have seen in financial markets? What accounts for volatility persistence? Demetri and Chris compare spot (historic) volatility to implied (forward) volatility. They look at volatility-of-volatility (vol-of-vol). Christopher Cole presents his opinion that modern portfolio and system rebalancing strategies actually dampen financial volatility. Demetri sees these strateg
27/03/20171 hour 32 minutes 17 seconds
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Television History and Culture in America (1946-2009) | Television Historian Gary Edgerton

In Episode 4 of Hidden Forces,host Demetri Kofinas speaks with famed historian of television culture, Gary Edgerton. Professor Edgerton is Dean of the College of Communication at Butler University. He has published eleven books and more than eighty book chapters, journal articles, and encyclopedia entries on a wide assortment of media and television culture topics. He is also co-editor of the Journal of Popular Film and Television. His award-winning book, The Columbia History of American Television, was named the 2008 John G. Cawelti Award winner for Outstanding Scholarly Inquiry into American Cultural Studies by the American Culture Association.  In their conversation, Demetri and Gary discuss the history of television as a technology and storytelling medium that fundamentally transformed American society and culture from the end of World War II until the present day. They explore the ways
20/03/20171 hour 3 minutes 56 seconds
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Art, Finance, Technology, and the Development of the Postmodern Self | Philosopher Mark C. Taylor

In Episode 3 of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas speaks with philosopher and theologian Mark C. Taylor. Mark is Chair of the Department of Religion and Co-Director of the Institute for Religion, Culture and Public Life. A leading figure in debates about postmodernism, Taylor has written on topics ranging from philosophy, religion, literature, art and architecture to education, media, science, technology and economics. He has authored 30 books, among which include Journeys to Selfhood: Hegel and Kierkegaard, About Religion: Economies of Faith in Virtual Culture, Confidence Games: Money and Markets in a World without Redemption, The Moment of Complexity: Emerging Network Culture, and Speed Limits: Where Time Went and Why We H
13/03/20171 hour 44 minutes 10 seconds
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Jim Rickards | Can Complexity Science, Bayesian Inference Theory, and History Help Predict the Next Financial Crisis?

In Episode 2 of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas speaks with New York Times bestselling author and financial commentator, Jim Rickards. Jim is the author of multiple New York Times bestsellers including The Death of Money, Currency Wars, and <a href= "
06/03/20171 hour 31 minutes 28 seconds
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How will Artificial Intelligence, Big Data, and Automation Impact the Future of Work? | David Kirkpatrick

In Episode 1 of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas speaks with journalist and tech guru David Kirkpatrick. David is the author of “The Facebook Effect: The Inside Story of the Company That Is Connecting the World," and the founder of Techonomy Media, which produces some of the best conferences at the intersection of technology, business, academia, and government. David is also a contributing editor to Bloomberg Television and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. Nothing is off the table in this conversation. In fact, we run the table. In our inaugural episode of Hidden Forces, We take listeners on a whirlwind technological tour of the 21stcentury. Demetri and David explo
27/02/20171 hour 31 minutes 6 seconds
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Hidden Forces Launch Trailer

What drives the changes we see in the world? What are the underlying forces that influence our lives? What causes markets to rise and fall? Why does life sometimes imitate art? Why do we seem to disagree more than ever before in our politics? What determines what you see on Facebook? What makes something beautiful? My name is Demetri Kofinas, and I've spent the better part of my life asking these questions. I built my career in media obsessing over them. For me, this has always been a quest to discover the true nature of my world, where I come from and where I’m going. This is about uncovering and understanding the mystery of a world that is so rich and beautiful in its design and function, that to not wonder at its magnificence is to miss something profound. If you also find yourself asking these questions or if they inspire you to wonder more about the reality you are living in, about where things come from, how they came to be, how they work and what it all means fo
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