Doug Rushkoff’s “Media Squat” show is broadcast tonight on WFMU at 6PM ET live from “Personal Democracy Forum” in NYC with Mark Pesce and Craig Newmark
Category Archives for Douglas Rushkoff
Thurs, June 18 7pm: Arthur presents DOUGLAS RUSHKOFF in NYC
Rushkoff on Marc Maron's show on June 1…
Doug shows up around 18:15…
Harvey Pekar guests on Douglas Rushkoff's "Media Squat" radio show this evening
Tonight Arthur columnist Douglas Rushkoff will interview legendary file-clerk and comic book writer Harvey Pekar on his weekly radio show Media Squat. Topics to be discussed include Pekar’s new graphic novel on the history of the Beats (which you can, frustratingly enough, read without images on Google Books), Rushkoff’s new book, and Pekar’s famous on-air conflict on Late Night where he called Letterman a scab and shill for GE.
Media-Squat Radio airs every Monday at 7pm EDT
Listen on WFMU, iTunes, or Media Squat
Excerpts, movie for Rushkoff's forthcoming book LIFE, INC
This didn’t just happen.
In Life Inc., award-winning writer, documentary filmmaker, and scholar Douglas Rushkoff traces how corporations went from a convenient legal fiction to the dominant fact of contemporary life. Indeed as Rushkoff shows, most Americans have so willingly adopted the values of corporations that they’re no longer even aware of it.
This fascinating journey reveals the roots of our debacle, from the late Middle Ages to today. From the founding of the chartered monopoly to the branding of the self; from the invention of central currency to the privatization of banking; from the birth of the modern, self-interested individual to his exploitation through the false ideal of the single-family home; from the Victorian Great Exhibition to the solipsism of MySpace; the corporation has infiltrated all aspects of our daily lives. Life Inc. exposes why we see our homes as investments rather than places to live, our 401k plans as the ultimate measure of success, and the Internet as just another place to do business.
Most of all, Life Inc. shows how the current financial crisis is actually an opportunity to reverse this 600-year-old trend, and to begin to create, invest and transact directly rather than outsourcing all this activity to institutions that exist solely for their own sakes.
Corporatism didn’t evolve naturally. The landscape on which we are living – the operating system on which we are now running our social software – was invented by people, sold to us as a better way of life, supported by myths, and ultimately allowed to develop into a self-sustaining reality. It is a map that has replaced the territory.
Rushkoff illuminates both how we’ve become disconnected from our world, and how we can reconnect to our towns, to the value we can create, and mostly, to one another. As the speculative economy collapses under its own weight, Life Inc. shows us how to build a real and human-scaled society to take its place.
In Life Inc, Douglas Rushkoff presents the unnerving, unbelievable, but ultimately undeniable proof that our world has been overtaken by an absolutely artificial economy.
He shows how our most fundamental assumptions about money and commerce are actually false ones – artifacts of a 400-year-old plan by a waning aristocracy to maintain control of Western Europe. Although the architects of this corporatism have long since passed on, we still live in a landscape defined by their plans and have internalized their values as our own.
Taking on some of the biggest assumptions of our age, this is a book filled with dangerous ideas and rather unspeakable heresies:
# Money is not a part of nature, to be studied by a science like economics, but an invention with a specific purpose.
# Centralized currency is just one kind of money – one not intended to promote transactions but to promote the accumulation of capital by the wealthy.
# Banking is our society’s biggest industry, and debt is our biggest product.
# Corporations were never intended to promote commerce, but to prevent it.
# The development of chartered corporations and centralized currency caused the plague; the economic devastation ended Europe’s most prosperous centuries, and led to the deaths of half of its population.
# The more money we make, the more debt we have actually created.
Most importantly, Rushkoff shows how this moment of financial crisis is actually an opportunity to reinstate commerce and communities based in creating value for one another, rather than continuing to extract it for the benefit of institutions that no longer exist.
“Life Inc”‘s Introduction and Chapter One are online at:
Rushkoff is currently blogging at boingboing
Rushkoff’s posting away on boingboing this week. Or is it this month? I’m not sure. Anyways, here’s links to a couple of his economics-oriented posts:
May 15: Complementary Currency Panel Discussion with Douglas Rushkoff, Alex Gordon-Brander, and Charles Eisenstein at the I.D. Project in New York
For those of you who have yet to make it down there, Friday, May 15th is a wonderful occasion to check out the Interdependence Project (or I.D. Project) in the East Village, a non-profit educational organization dedicated to channeling meditation and mindfulness practice into their real-life applications in the arts, ecology, activism, and community service. From 8 to 10pm, longtime Arthur contributor Douglas Rushkoff will join writers Alex Gordon-Brander and Charles Eisenstein in a panel discussion entitled “Beyond the Benjamins: Complementary Currency Systems and Social Interdependence”, followed by a question and answer session. Should be a lively and informative evening for people looking to find out what complementary currency is and how they can get jump-start an alternative exchange movement from the ground up.
A description of the event from the I.D. Project Website:
Alternative currency systems naturally encourage cooperation, reciprocation, self-reliance, and mutual aid. These four elements are the foundation of social interdependence and socio-economic solidarity. Come learn about starting a complementary currency and how new forms of exchange build value in your community.
Join us for a panel discussion featuring Alex Gordon-Brander, Charles Eisenstein, and Douglas Rushkoff. Q&A to follow introductions and explanations.
Friday May 15, 2009, 8pm-10pm
Lila Center, Interdependence Project
302 Bowery @ Houston St., 3rd fl.
F/V, D, 6, R/W trains all nearby
$10 or $5 (students/unemployed/monthly IDP donors)
Money should not keep you away!
Let us know if you can’t afford the cost and would like to attend.
The I.D. Project also has a group in Portland, Oregon!
Arthur people on WFMU tonight
Arthur Magazine editor/owner Jay Babcock will be one of the guests on author/journalist/longime Arthur columnist Douglas Rushkoff’s WFMU “Media Squat” show tonight—Monday, May 4—7-8pm EDT. You can listen to the show, live, online. More info at WFMU:
More info on Doug’s show, including past episodes:
Rushkoff defends the Dark Ages tonight on WFMU, 7pm EDT
Provocative thinker/Arthur columnist Douglas Rushkoff will be doing his weekly radio show, “The Media Squat” live tonight at 7pm EDT on WFMU. Streams at wfmu.org.
StreetsBlog Aaron Naparstek joins me on MediaSquat: WFMU.org, 7pm, and itunes WFMU. I plan to defend the so-called Dark Ages.
Should be interesting listening, especially for folks who were intrigued by Doug’s recent essays on the economy (“Let It Die,” “Hack Money, Hack Banking”) when he touched on current scholarship regarding life and commerce in the late Middle Ages.
STIMULUS, ASS-BACKWARDS by Douglas Rushkoff
by Douglas Rushkoff
April 16, 2009
I’ve been trying to figure out exactly why President Obama’s approach to the economic crisis upsets me so much, so regularly, and I think I figured it out.
His impulse—perhaps as someone with more faith in the power of centralized, top-down decision-making than I have—is to fix our economic problems by supporting existing institutions. In the president’s view, the best approach now is to pump some necessary short-term assets into flagging institutions to help them make it through the rough patches in the economic road, and then get them to pay it back to the government once times are better. That’s the approach he’s taken to the banks, the automotive industry, and even the insurance industry.
What the Obama Administration doesn’t seem to understand is that the institutions they are attempting to prop up are the very ones whose solvency depends on the continuing extraction of wealth and value from the real people and places making up America.