Radical Personal Finance Interview with Jacob: How ERE Protects from Catastrophic Risk

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mathiverse
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Radical Personal Finance Interview with Jacob: How ERE Protects from Catastrophic Risk

Post by mathiverse »

Last edited by mathiverse on Thu Mar 11, 2021 3:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Hristo Botev
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Re: New Radical Personal Finance Interview with Jacob: How ERE Protects from Catastrophic Risk

Post by Hristo Botev »

Is this like the most delayed book tour in all of human history? I think that's four in a row now.

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Re: New Radical Personal Finance Interview with Jacob: How ERE Protects from Catastrophic Risk

Post by jacob »

Wow, that was fast! That interview ended only ~49.5 hours ago.

I haven't listened to it yet. However, it was my first time talking about catastrophic risk. There are definitely some kinks to work out before I get comfortable talking about bad outcomes and human suffering.

I think "I led too high/meta" when describing collapse in terms either adding complexity or devolving into subsystems. Whereas I should have started with more concrete examples. The last 1/3 felt very much like trying to explain ERE back in 2010. My interviewee strategy was to try to define the framework first and then move onto examples. Needs work ...

Still trying to figure out how best to communicate these ideas ...

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Re: New Radical Personal Finance Interview with Jacob: How ERE Protects from Catastrophic Risk

Post by theanimal »

Very pleased to see and listen to all these interviews!

Perhaps a way to explain risk is to tie it into short term high impact destructive events? For example, how an ERE lifestyle could help someone fare with Hurricane Sandy, Texas power failure, Katrina...etc and go up in time scale from there.

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Re: Radical Personal Finance Interview with Jacob: How ERE Protects from Catastrophic Risk

Post by fiby41 »

1:08 jacob and 7wannabe5 definitely predicted the pandemic. I used to reassure myself I have been reading too much into the ERE forums everytime someone sneezed after those posts. Nice to hear jacob being on podcasts again.

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Re: Radical Personal Finance Interview with Jacob: How ERE Protects from Catastrophic Risk

Post by BWND »

This was a nice listen. I can't remember if it was this one or another recent podcast where you described the forums as like the grad school of these sorts of problems. I may have wandered into the wrong lecture theatre using a fake ID... :oops: Like many round here I've been bingeing as these new ones get released.

I was struck by the comment that when you go off exploring problems and solutions, quite often it comes back to ERE and the principles of the book. The ERE philosophy is so large it has its own gravitational pull 8-) Given that, I think it's nice that there has been a particular slant to the discussion on recent interviews. Catastrophic risk here for example, rather than "ok, tell us how you retired young". From an educational perspective it's good to hear that deeper dive into something and then hear interviewer and interviewee go through the thought process of - ok where does that sit in terms of my life, how does that relate to the other external factors/risks, what might you want to think about in that area etc.

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Re: Radical Personal Finance Interview with Jacob: How ERE Protects from Catastrophic Risk

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Re: Radical Personal Finance Interview with Jacob: How ERE Protects from Catastrophic Risk

Post by white belt »

The audio quality is much better than previous interviews, which I’m assuming is because you have a legitimate microphone now. I also like the cold weather coveralls hanging in the background.

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Re: Radical Personal Finance Interview with Jacob: How ERE Protects from Catastrophic Risk

Post by jacob »

white belt wrote:
Fri Mar 12, 2021 5:55 pm
I also like the cold weather coveralls hanging in the background.
If you look closer you'll also see a painting of Plato's Cave by DW.

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Re: Radical Personal Finance Interview with Jacob: How ERE Protects from Catastrophic Risk

Post by chenda »

Lovely to see you in the flesh like Jacob!

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Re: Radical Personal Finance Interview with Jacob: How ERE Protects from Catastrophic Risk

Post by Alphaville »

that was good, and the audio on the website was particularly good, better than in the hermitix one, where i think bandwidth compression was a little much, but nevertheless the signal survived well. this one however, leaps and bounds.

finished the last part on youtube, so i got a bit of visual... great job on the mic arm, hahaha.*

and great improvements too on the light + subject framing. i had no idea there was a window behind also, that one was new to me.

as for the content, i think the interviewer is too optimistic to think that we can get it together and reengineer farmland in a matter of years. that's a fantasy. i mean, with this pandemic alone, with a large and tangible body count, we couldn't even get something as basic as universal mask use in public spaces! :lol:

count me among the pessimists regarding ape domination of the biosphere. agreement is the problem indeed.

--

* if/when the rubber bands dry, up, i'd recommend replacing with ribbons of bicycle inner tube, which is closer to the elasticity of shockmount material.

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Re: Radical Personal Finance Interview with Jacob: How ERE Protects from Catastrophic Risk

Post by Quadalupe »

Another great interview! Joshua is a good interviewer and allowed you to expand on the topic. A couple of thoughts that went through my head when I listened to this interview:
  • I liked how this interview tied in with some things Taleb has written about as well in Antifragile. Don't think too hard about macro things that can go wrong, but focus on what the essential and fragile categories/processes/things are in your life and focus on that. This is how you become resilient against a wide range of catastrophes. And even if they don't happen, with ERE you lead a more fulfilling & interesting life anyway. You can't lose! :D
  • When Jacob talked about getting bored with tasks when you have mastered them, I immediately had to think of this comic: https://www.smbc-comics.com/?id=2722. ERE, and even FIRE isn't (I think) about suffering for 5 years so you can then retire to your hammock & cocktails (shoutout to Office Space when Milton did exactly that :lol: ). It is more about setting yourself up for i) resilience & efficiency and ii) optionality do to any cool thing you want.
  • I laughed when Joshua asked Jacob point blank what probability he saw for climate salvation. Jacob gave a polite deflecting answer about knowledge about the problems and solutions being there, but scattered among various fields. I think Joshua is too optimistic about global effective and timely solutions, because i) the global coordination problem is almost impossible to solve and ii) there are points of no return after which solutions that might have helped ten years earlier are no longer effective.
  • One general question I had at the end of the interview is why Jacob is so suddenly jumping back on the podcast bandwagon. Don't get me wrong, I really like these more in depth conversations! I am just curious what caused your return to the podcast FIRE scene.

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Re: Radical Personal Finance Interview with Jacob: How ERE Protects from Catastrophic Risk

Post by Alphaville »

Quadalupe wrote:
Sat Mar 13, 2021 7:03 am
[*] I laughed when Joshua asked Jacob point blank what probability he saw for climate salvation. Jacob gave a polite deflecting answer about knowledge about the problems and solutions being there, but scattered among various fields. I think Joshua is too optimistic about global effective and timely solutions, because i) the global coordination problem is almost impossible to solve and ii) there are points of no return after which solutions that might have helped ten years earlier are no longer effective.
yeah the emphasis on "optimism" and "positivity" can be a denial of reality. i like optimism for motivating people, but as science, that's just wishful thinking. @jacob made a very good explanation of tipping points but that went whoosh.

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Re: Radical Personal Finance Interview with Jacob: How ERE Protects from Catastrophic Risk

Post by UK-with-kids »

Is this frequency of podcast interviews really sustainable or will we soon reach Peak Jacob?

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Re: Radical Personal Finance Interview with Jacob: How ERE Protects from Catastrophic Risk

Post by jacob »

Tech details/current fancy-level: Skype with video, continental US connection(?), no local recording, blue yeti mic on mount (mouth height 12-16" diagonally to the side, cardiod pattern set), paper towel curtain covering window with indirect 11am light, random strong white bulb overhead, weaker random yellow bulb in front, elevated webcam.

Todo: Non-rotating chair to curb the fidgeting (it was pointed out before, but I forgot) and upgrading the webcam (system: ubuntu 20.04).

---

Overall comments: No, this is not a delayed book tour but the podcast circuit does seem to have started with the ERE audiobook coming out. Suddenly I got hit with several invites at once. Maybe it went from there. Pretty sure there was some pent up demand, but I'm hoping to keep it going for a while. Thus, ...

I AM looking to do more podcasts but mostly as either an interviewee or a conversation, not as a interviewer. I want to explore different kinds of media. I figure it's about time. Also contemplating doing something like a set of lectures or some such.

I AM ALSO looking to get out of the "FIRE-movement"-space since I think ERE is bigger and has more potential (has richer complexity) than what FIRE has become. It feels a little bit like doing crossfit whereas what most people want are six-pack abs, and currently they turn to crossfit to provide quick&easy tips for that simplistic goal. I want to move on and away from that space/consumer demographics. Get too close and complainypants will whine about all that other stuff that seems irrelevant to good abs as far as they understand.

I tell or suggest FIRE podcasters up front to pick some focus that is NOT [how I got started], [how you can get started], or [how I spent the last 10 years]. I think others can do this better because I don't find those questions particularly interesting anymore---they're arriving 10 years too late in my case, so I'm particularly unexcited about it. Like the magic of memorizing the multiplication table. Yeah, like becoming FI, it's just something you gotta get overwith ASAP to level up. I want to show people that there's more to [living or ERE] than FIRE.

Talking ERE outside the FIRE space already recognizes that oversimplification, so I prefer that environment. The non-FIRE aspects. Trying to offer ERE as a practical individual "you can start now" solution to the so-called meta-crisis whether explicitly or implicitly as a stepping stone, instead of just talking about it or suggesting that people start by trying to grow a tomato plant.

Either way, figuring it out as we go ...

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Re: Radical Personal Finance Interview with Jacob: How ERE Protects from Catastrophic Risk

Post by jacob »

@Quadalupe - I actually had that exact SMBC comic in my show notes/preparation but I didn't get around to talking about it because it went a different way. I generally have a lot of notes. Usually I "waste"/don't use about 50% of them. Then I try to use them elsewhere. Nothing goes to waste. If you can't close the loops, you make new ones ;-)

@theanimal/Alphaville - I still need to do a lot of thinking and gain some experience in how best to convey and reify "the science" into doable actions. Putting it in terms of "Texas" et al., etc. is a good idea. Personal experience is better. All I have [here personally] is the 2003 central Europe heatwave(*). What I really struggled with here was presenting the complexity. Like lag times.

(*) Add: I also have COVID and GFC but those didn't suck nearly as much due to being adapted.

Whenever the media form serves as a limiting function on the message, it takes some time to figure out what form/channel/narrative works best. Also depends on the audience, when JS suggested he'd play the optimist and I play the pessimist, I instantly knew I'd already lost to the bright-sided North-American contingent.

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Re: Radical Personal Finance Interview with Jacob: How ERE Protects from Catastrophic Risk

Post by theanimal »

@Jacob- What about explaining how you're taking action in the form of your garden(which you did discuss) but also the shelving system of staples? You mentioned you are a self sufficient system and don't really need to go out to the store much during the past year. Perhaps it's worth expanding on that? Saying how you have the buckets and go through them with what you use. You had a good explanation somewhere on here (can't remember the thread) that persuaded a few members that those actions were sensible. This might also help distinguish you from the stereotypical Doomsday Prepper that's painted into people's minds and show how you are actually putting it into action in a reasonable manner.

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Re: Radical Personal Finance Interview with Jacob: How ERE Protects from Catastrophic Risk

Post by Alphaville »

off the top of my head, an easy metaphor for a climate tipping point would be steering down a mountain road: you can steer all you want while driving fast, but once you're flying off the side of the mountain, no amount of steering will save ya :lol:

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Re: Radical Personal Finance Interview with Jacob: How ERE Protects from Catastrophic Risk

Post by chenda »

Alphaville wrote:
Sat Mar 13, 2021 3:14 pm
off the top of my head, an easy metaphor for a climate tipping point would be steering down a mountain road: you can steer all you want while driving fast, but once you're flying off the side of the mountain, no amount of steering will save ya :lol:
Ha, so adopt the brace position and hope you're in the least crumpled part of the wreckage... intelligent prepping in the best location..

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Re: Radical Personal Finance Interview with Jacob: How ERE Protects from Catastrophic Risk

Post by Alphaville »

chenda wrote:
Sat Mar 13, 2021 3:27 pm
Ha, so adopt the brace position and hope you're in the least crumpled part of the wreckage... intelligent prepping in the best location..
but we can get a flying car! we can build it mid-air! #optimist :lol:

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