Macroeconomics has never been so ... delish! Macro and Cheese explores the progressive movement through the lens of Modern Monetary Theory, with hot and irreverent political takes, spotlights in activism, and the razor sharp musings of Real Progressives Founder and host Steve Grumbine. The cheese will flow as experts come in for a full, four course deep dive into the hot queso.
Comfort Food for Thought!
Dying for Capitalism with Charles Derber
Charles Derber, author of "Dying for Capitalism", talks with Steve about the intersectionality between capitalism, environmental destruction, and militarism. He argues that the capitalist system, particularly in its neoliberal form, is inherently connected to the threats of environmental catastrophe and war. He emphasizes the historical context of these connections, tracing the shift from water-powered capitalism to coal and then oil as a means to maintain control and avoid public opposition. He highlights the role of the military in perpetuating climate change and the destructive consequences of war on the environment.
Charles addresses the skepticism and cynicism often associated with the idea of changing capitalism but he believes change is possible through diverse strategies and alliances. He draws lessons from historical movements, such as the abolitionist movement, the Bolshevik revolution, and the reinvigorated labor movement. He touches on social media, which can be used to control and manipulate, but can also be a powerful tool for organizing and mobilizing activism.
Charles Derber is Professor of Sociology at Boston College and has written 26 books - on politics, democracy, fascism, corporations, capitalism, climate change, war, the culture wars, culture and conversation, and social change. His most recent books include Dying for Capitalism, Welcome to the Revolution, Moving Beyond Fear, Sociopathic Society: A People's Sociology of the United States; Capitalism: Should You Buy It?
Radical Political Economists on Palestine with David Fields
David Fields talks to Steve about “Economists for Palestine,” the statement released by the Union for Radical Political Economics (URPE). They emphasize economists’ responsibility to take a stand against the genocide being perpetrated against the Palestinians. They look at the connection between Zionism and the global capitalist system, debunking misinformation while highlighting the difference between antisemitism and anti-Zionism.
We at Macro N Cheese urge our listeners to circulate the statement. https://urpe.org/2023/11/08/economists-for-palestine/
Economists for PalestineWe stand in unwavering solidarity with the Palestinian people. Since October 7th, 2023, over two million people have faced a brutal onslaught by the Israeli military and state. They have been forced to flee with nowhere to go as homes, shelters, evacuation routes, border crossings, hospitals, places of worship and entire neighborhoods have been bombed.We mourn civilian deaths in both Israel and Palestine. Israel’s retaliation for the October 7th incursion continues, however, and over 9,000 Palestinians have been killed in the ongoing assault so far. More than 8,000 people have been killed in three weeks in Palestine. The estimated number of children among the casualties is over 3,000 and UNICEF estimates that about 420 children have been killed or wounded daily. Even reporters have been threatened with violence or killed.Since the Nakba 75 years ago, the Palestinian people have endured profound suffering, forced displacement, and a brutal 16-year-long inhumane siege and blockade in Gaza. Human rights organizations have characterized Gaza as ‘the largest open-air prison’.We also condemn the role of the U.S. state in supporting the ongoing siege in Palestine, its support for the horrors inflicted on Gaza, and its refusal to support a humanitarian ceasefire. It is imperative that we do not turn our backs on the devastating impact of this violence on people’s lives. The fight for Palestinian liberation and a fair, enduring peace in the region is intricately linked with the liberation and resistance efforts spearheaded by indigenous, colonized, and oppressed communities historically and worldwide.We stand in support of efforts by the Palestinian people to sustain themselves economically through control over their land and their labor. We stand in solidarity with the anti-Zionist Jewish communities that have been raising their voices against the carpet bombing of Gaza, for the liberation of the Palestinian people, and who are working for a just, equitable, and durable peace.We urgently call for:1. An immediate ceasefire2. Immediate restoration of food, fuel, water, and electricity to the Gaza Strip3. Cessation of all settlement activity and disarmament of all settlers4. Immediate delivery of humanitarian aid on the scale required5. Respect towards the Geneva Conventions by all parties concerned6. An end to apartheid and strident moves toward a democratic future for all people regardless of race, religion, gender identity and nationalityIn addition, we strongly uphold the principle of academic freedom, especially in light of the
Dismantling Green Colonialism Part 2 with Hamza Hamouchene
**Welcome to Episode #250! This represents 250 straight weeks of work on this podcast. We couldn’t have managed without our diligent team: Steve Grumbine, host and head honcho, Andy Kennedy, audio engineer, editor and producer, Virginia Cotts, Julie Alberding, Jonathan Kadmon, Commie John Siener, and Tim O’Neill, who create show notes, art, transcripts, and a whole section of extra information and links to resources.
We have now added a bonus event, Macro ‘n Chill, a weekly Zoom meeting where the community can gather, listen, and discuss the episode. To find us, go to the RP Events Calendar on Real Progressives’ website, realprogressives.org/rp-events-calendar. Click the upcoming Tuesday where you’ll find information and the registration link. The event is usually posted on Saturday after the newest episode is released. If it's not there, check back later. See you next Tuesday!**
This week’s episode is the second half of Steve’s interview with Hamza Hamouchene about his book, Dismantling Green Colonialism: Energy and Climate Justice in the Arab Region.
Steve and Hamza agree on the importance of reckoning with the realities of the current capitalist imperialist system, which has proven to be a failure in addressing the most crucial needs of people and planet. Hamza argues that alternative visions for a better world already exist – he himself is an eco-socialist – but the challenge lies in implementing them and building the necessary alliances and coalitions of working people, both at the national and global levels.
The conversation also delves into the specificities of the Arab region, which has elements of authoritarian and military dictatorships due to its subordinate insertion into the global capitalist economy and its role as a key nodal point in global fossil fuel regimes. Hamza highlights the need for a just energy transition that takes into account the control and ownership of fossil fuel resources and the potential for green renewable energies.
Hamza calls for diversifying tactics and strategies, organizing and building power to challenge imperialism and the decarbonization by dispossession.
Dr. Hamza Hamouchene is a London-based Algerian researcher-activist, commentator, and a founding member of Algeria Solidarity Campaign (ASC), Environmental Justice North Africa (EJNA) and the North African Food Sovereignty Network (Siyada). He is currently the Arab region Programme Coordinator at the Transnational Institute (TNI). His work is focused on issues of extractivism, resources, land and food sovereignty as well as climate, environmental, and energy justice in the Arab region.
@BenToumert on Twitter
Dismantling Green Colonialism Part 1 with Hamza Hamouchene
When we talk about the climate crisis, common wisdom says we’re all in it together. That implies that everyone is responsible, and everyone needs to do something about it. Our guest, Dr. Hamza Hamouchene, attacks this notion unequivocally: “The historical responsibility, of course, in the climate crisis lies within the industrialized capitalist West.” Most of the impacts are felt by communities in the global South, in countries that have been impoverished since colonial times. As developing nations they are additionally burdened by international financial institutions when, in fact, they are owed climate reparations.
Hamza is co-editor of Dismantling Green Colonialism: Energy and Climate Justice in the Arab Region. He talks with Steve about the urgent need for climate justice and decolonization, while suggesting what a just transition would entail.
They emphasize the critical need for support of the Palestinians, whose cause must be included in discussions of colonialism, climate justice, global trade, and energy systems.
Part Two of this interview will be released next week.
Dr. Hamza Hamouchene is a London-based Algerian researcher-activist, commentator and a founding member of Algeria Solidarity Campaign (ASC), Environmental Justice North Africa (EJNA) and the North African Food Sovereignty Network (Siyada). He is currently the Arab region Programme Coordinator at the Transnational Institute (TNI). His work is focused on issues of extractivism, resources, land and food sovereignty as well as climate, environmental, and energy justice in the Arab region.
@BenToumert on Twitter
RP Live Presents: Inside a Failed State Q & A with Michael Hudson
This week’s episode is another webinar from our RP Live series: Inside a Failed State, with Michael Hudson.
Michael prefers a Q&A format. Attendee questions revolved around US political economy, domestic and global. He discusses topics such as healthcare, de-dollarization, and the impact of economic policies on the working class. He emphasizes the need for a change in economic philosophy and highlights the government's ability to create money for social programs.
A common Hudson theme is the difference between the production and consumption economy, or what he calls the real economy, and the financial sector of assets and liabilities, of loans and debts, which is superimposed on the real economy.
“Money is spent in the real economy, but bank credit is spent really just to increase the debt overhead in the economy — the overhead of mortgage debt, of corporate debt, and speculative debt.”
A Michael Hudson episode always sparks lively, sometimes contentious, comments. His insights on finance, politics, and class power dynamics give fans and detractors alike something to chew on.
Michael Hudson is President of The Institute for the Study of Long-Term Economic Trends (ISLET), a Wall Street Financial Analyst, Distinguished Research Professor of Economics at the University of Missouri, Kansas City. Support him at patreon.com/michaelhudson
Find his work at michael-hudson.com
Degrowth and MMT with Christopher Olk and Colleen Schneider
**Tuesday, October 24th, join us for an informal Zoom meeting where we will be listening and discussing this episode. 8 pm ET/5 pm PT. Find the registration link at https://realprogressives.org/event/macro-n-chill-247/
As a society we are conditioned to believe we can f*ck with nature, with the living world, but the economy is immutable. We dare not try to change it. As MMTers we say: hahahahaha... *sob*
These two assumptions explain why we’re hurtling towards ecological catastrophe and why austerity has become a way of life.
Steve’s guests this week are Colleen Schneider and Christopher Olk. They are co-authors, with Jason Hickel, of the paper, How to Pay for Saving the World: Modern Monetary Theory for a Degrowth Transition.
Any listeners who have paid attention to Real Progressives’ journey over the past couple of years will be excited to add Colleen and Christopher’s insights to their intellectual arsenal. They are those rare scholars who manage to be both realistic and optimistic. (They are not suggesting that the right slate of politicians will tweak capitalism to make it heal the the planet and the population.)
They discuss how both MMT and the degrowth movement challenge the myth of scarcity. They look at the disparities between the Global North and South. They emphasize the interconnectedness of ecological and social issues, and the need to address both the predation on the Global South and the climate crisis.
They talk about non-reformist reform and the ways in which addressing national economic policies can be played out at the local level to radicalize people. By understanding the power dynamics within the financial system, MMT can empower and mobilize, allowing us to attack multiple problems as if they were one. Which they kind of are.
Colleen Schneider is a PhD student and research assistant in the Institute for Ecological Economics at the Vienna University of Economics and Business and is a lecturer at Torrens University. She has a BA in Physics from UC Berkeley and MSc in Socio-Ecological Economics and Policy from WU. Her research focuses on the political economy of monetary and fiscal policy in a social-ecological transformation. Her recent work brings an MMT-informed lens to degrowth scholarship. She teaches courses in social ecological economics, and the intersection of money, society, and environment, and has also worked and published in the field of environmental justice.
@ColleenFights on Twitter
Christopher Olk is a PhD candidate in political economy at Free University Berlin. His current research focuses on the links between international monetary power, offshore finance, and fossil fuels. Christopher is also active in the climate justice movement.
@christopher_olk on Twitter
So relevant, clear and concise! Just what the world needs. Keep up the wonderful work !
Market failures designed to maintain poverty (political disenfranchisment), pro-class willfull ignorance & arrogant distain, corporate crime-spree abetted by near universally currupt politicians & media etc. all explained with credable guests and enthusiastic host! Federal public works program / Job guarantee required!
Awesome show on economics!!!
Please try to improve the guests’ audio (garblgrble tbhx :))