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Meeting of Minds Podcast

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Meeting of Minds brings together the top minds in history, theology, finance, economics, language, mathematics and science. Host Jerry Bowyer invites guests to be both intelligent and clear and to follow truth wherever it leads.
16 Episodes
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Acclaimed stage actor Max McLean talks about how the pandemic shut down his theater business, and how that adversity caused him to pivot and turn his popular stage play about C.S. Lewis into a film, a film which is seeing record success. McLean has read so much Lewis, and played him on stage so many hundreds of times, and internalized his ideas to such an extent, that in some sense, talking to him is like talking to C.S. Lewis himself. To join the conversation listen in to our all-too-brief conversation and make sure to see the film yourself. To find a location near you, go to www.cslewismovie.com. Timestamps: 0:00 – Intro 1:07 – Pivoting to film under lockdown 6:56 – Distribution in theaters 9:56 – Being faithful to Lewis’s work 16:13 – On prayer and authenticity 20:52 – “Lewis is a bottomless well” 27:19 – Tolkien and Lewis’s conversion 33:18 – Lewis is ahead of us, not behind 36:04 – Discussion guide and Lewis’s journey 41:10 – Other movies in the future See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
In honor of Banned Books week, Tom Spence, president of the conservative publishing house Regnery, talks about his own experience getting banned by one of the sponsors of Banned Books week, and the fact that none of the books on the list were actually banned and none of the books that were banned are actually on the list. Timestamps: 0:00 – Intro 5:12 – Seething over Abigail Shrier 11:29 – Censorship unites us – Target censors Abigail Schreier 15:52 – Pros and Cons of Amazon for conservative books 21:17 – Elizabeth Warren and big tech 27:50 – Regnery giving refuge to honest liberals 33:00 – No neutrality in modern politics See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Professor Deirdre McCloskey is one of the most interesting thinkers in economics today. In this interview, conducted at FreedomFest 2021 in Rapid City South Dakota, near Deadwood, we push past a number of frontiers and traverse an open range of topics. That’s McCloskey in a nutshell – ignore the artificial fences between academic specializations and let the conversation go where it goes. In this case it goes through such territories as: the astonishing rise in standards of living since the rise of capitalism; why capitalism shouldn’t be called capitalism; what it should be called; why Bourgeois values have enriched us (and in more ways than economically); what the difference is between virtues and values; what Christianity had to do (and didn’t have to do) with the rise of modern human betterment; why theoretical economics has been wrong to obsess over “Maximum Utility” (a sociopathic form of economic modeling); the cult of statistical significance and its addiction to the p-value, and an upcoming book on Christianity and economics. Enjoy! Timestamps: 0:00 – Intro 9:40 – Why “virtues” rather than “values”? 14:09 – The meaning of Jesus being born in Bethlehem 18:54 – Eurocentric economics, why some minorities are successful 27:07 – Free speech and the rich young ruler 32:11 – A party of Liberty, politics for adults 40:16 – How art can affect politics 43:35 – Bettering Humanomics 47:48 – The new atheists 50:16 – God in Mammon 59:17 – The Bible on slavery See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Rick Graber is the CEO of the Bradley Foundation and Chairman of the Philanthropy Roundtable. He discusses a fascinating article he recently penned for RealClearMarkets and the Daily Signal (Woke Foundations, Beneficiaries of Capitalism, Undermine Free Market (dailysignal.com)) about how large financial institutions, both for-profit and non-profit, are turning their backs on the system which made their wealth possible in the first place. Timestamps: 0:00 – Intro 1:17 – Catching up with corporate engagement 4:11 – Early days of board room activism 10:55 – Why foundations go leftist 13:55 – Philanthropy roundtable versus the feeder system 18:05 – New Yorker hit piece on the Bradley Foundation 22:02 – How to earn the Bradley Prize 25:11 – Alternatives to government programs, school choice 28:21 – Freedom in eastern Europe 32:38 – Importance of donor privacy See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
George Gilder was Reagan’s favorite living source of quotes about the economy. He was also the most prescient visionary about the microchip, then the internet, and (now) blockchain. He explains why the global COVID shutdown in the name of “science” was unscientific, why artificial Intelligence will not replace the human mind, why blockchain is a truth system which will replace the Google model of the world, and why you should be attending the www.cosm.technology conference to understand what’s coming next.  Recorded at the FreedomFest 2021 conference in Rapid City South Dakota. http://2021.freedomfest.com/ Timestamps: 0:00 – Intro 3:43 – The channel and the signal, replacing oil 7:13 – Socialized energy risks shortage 9:34 – The “system of the world”, Life After Google 12:50 – The forgotten “Asian flu”, Coronavirus and Galilee 22:18 – The new system of the world and learning curves 28:28 – Bitcoin and Monetarism, Milton Friedman in China 32:19 – Crypto Currencies and gold 38:58 – Tyranny and blockchain 47:22 – Mapping the human brain 52:08 – Faith precedes knowledge See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
N.T. Wright may well be the most influential New Testament scholar of our generation, and is certainly the most influential evangelical in that category. He sat down with Jerry to discuss his fresh-off-the-press commentary on Galatians (https://www.eerdmans.com/Products/2560/galatians.aspx). Wright restores Paul’s writing to its original historical and political context, showing that Galatians addresses a time very much like our own, in which Christians were tempted to distort their theology and practice out of fear of persecution, and also a time when clashes over ethnic identity threatened to destroy both Church and society. Galatians, the epistle, points to the true solution. Galatians, the commentary, will help you understand how. Timestamps: 0:00 – Intro 1:06 – Wright’s new commentary on Galatians 5:31 – How Galatians can answer racial conflict 9:04 – Neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free 13:53 – The role of the old law 16:43 – Are all distinctions done away with? 20:51 – Galatians and Abolitionism 25:20 – The autobiography of Paul, and the Jewish exemption 33:37 – The Messiah and his people 39:06 – How the Messiah bears the curse of Torah 49:30 – A little leaven leavens the whole lump. 51:57 – Applying Galatians to ethnic conflict 56:00 – A third race See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Rob Arnott is founder and Chairman of Research Affiliates, which is the advisor on more than 150 Billion (with a B) dollars’ worth of investment assets. He talks about politics (and the surrender of both parties to fiscal and monetary irresponsibility,) economics (especially monetary economics and inflation, the issue of our time) and investment (including where he is putting his own money.) To hear one of the most sophisticated pioneers in quantitative investment analysis speak candidly and intelligently for 55 minutes as he shares his latest thinking, listen here. Timestamps: 0:00 – Intro 2:00 – The base case of our economic future 6:17 – The future of the Republican party 12:16 – Investing for collapse, how politics affects markets 16:52 – The significance of qualifying for the S&P 24:25 – Trading value and growth 26:46 – Reports of Value’s death have been greatly exaggerated 30:05 – Emerging markets vs. US stock 36:51 – Zero returns on US investment 39:56 – How risky are emerging markets? 43:10 – Why big tech panders to the left 48:12 – Preparing for economic crisis in the US 52:32 - Environmental, Social, and Governance investing See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Dr. Skousen, the creator of the Gross Output measurement, explains how it measures the whole economy, not just the slice measured by GDP, and why the economy is driven by business, not consumption. Also, why GO is a better predictor than GDP. He also talks about FreedomFest, the most successful conference for intellectually curious people who are interested in expanding freedom. Timestamps: 0:00 – Intro 1:59 – Where does FreedomFest come from? 5:20 – The Anthem Film Festival 8:15 – Why FreedomFest goes to Las Vegas and South Dakota 11:23 – Bringing intellectual speakers to FreedomFest 15:15 – FreedomFest Debates 18:49 – Signing up for FreedomFest 19:31 – A festival for attendees, not donors. 20:23 – The Structure of Production 22:00 – The Economics of Profit and Loss 24:03 – Say’s law 29:00 – What Seattle’s success says about Say’s law. 33:35 – Consumer spending and gross output. 45:17 – Gross Output versus GDP 48:09 – Inaccuracies of consumer confidence 51:38 -  Predicting GO See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
A Civic Sermon Delivered at Historic Trinity Cathedral The Great Seal of the United States was commissioned by Congress in order to represent in visual form the foundational principles of the American Republic. In this presentation which I gave in the historic Trinity Cathedral in downtown Pittsburgh for a group of CEOs hosted by the Young President’s Organization, we unpack the meaning of the various images which can be found on the back on any U.S. Dollar Bill. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Steve Forbes, Editor-in-Chief of Forbes Magazine, Chairman of the Board of its parent company, and former presidential candidate, joined Jerry to talk about the rising risk of inflation. Steve is the only person to win US Steel’s Crystal Owl award for economic forecasting. He untethers his inner owl for us this week on the question of inflation. Neither a perma-hawk nor a perma-dove, and certainly no Chicken Little, Steve is currently concerned about the inflation outlook and the value of the dollar. Listen to his commentaries here: The Steve Forbes Podcast, “What’s Ahead” Timestamps: 0:00 – Intro 1:30 – The Fed doesn’t understand inflation 5:26 – What to learn from oil prices 7:40 – Inflation affects more than economics 10:16 – Inflation in Nazi Germany 13:50 – Small amounts of inflation can still do big damage 18:27 – Falling trust in the dollar abroad 21:11 – The pandemic and WWII 27:46 – Anti-Corporate Republicans and big tech 37:10 – Inflation as nationalization 43:28 – Self-governance versus big government See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Several years ago, I interviewed my friend Steve Forbes about his book Money: How the Destruction of the Dollar Threatens the Global Economy – and What We Can Do About It. In that interview he anticipated many of the problems that we see cropping up right now, so we’re pulling this interview out of the vault and publishing it for you here. We will also follow up shortly with a brand new interview with Steve to bring this discussion up to date and let him share what he’s seeing right now. Timestamps: 0:00 – Intro 1:09 – Money: How the Destruction of the Dollar Threatens the Global Economy – and What We Can Do About It 4:15 – America after the 2008 Recession 7:30 – Can the US switch back to a gold standard? 13:22 – Asian currency crises were avoidable with better knowledge 20:44 – Different kinds of gold standard and the problem with the ones that didn’t work well 26:19 – Will we need a currency crisis to create the will to fix money? 28:15 – Nixon and Burns, why they ended gold standard, but didn’t need to 31:58 – WWI and the gold standard 36:09 – Gold price changes mean the dollar, not gold, instability 40:53 – Why the British gold standard didn’t work Churchill was overruled. 44:48 – How going off gold promoted income inequality. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Nobel Prize winning economist and creator of experimental economics Vernon Smith joins this episode of Meeting of Minds with Jerry Bowyer. He talks about the necessity of faith, not just in religious matters but in science as well, and how the latest data in economics is reaffirming the insights of moral philosophy taught by Adam Smith over 200 years ago. Smith also talks about housing bubbles and how they happened. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Can it be a normal thing for Christians to read the New Testament in the original Greek? Southern Baptist Theological Seminary Professor Rob Plummer’s Beginning with New Testament Greek book and short Daily Dose of Greek videos are proving that it can. He’s heard from thousands of Christians, from construction workers to retired engineers…and even some pastors…who tell him that they’re now reading the Bible in Greek. To hear from Professor Plummer about how you can do this too, please listen, and share. Timestamps: 0:00 Introductions 0:43 Daily Dose of Greek/Hebrew is for the average Christian, not just seminary students 4:40 Learning Koine Greek can bring you closer to the apostles' original writing; what languages were used around Jesus and what did he actually speak? 13:07 3 minutes a day is enough to learn Greek or Hebrew; the tools you need to learn effectively, many of which are totally free 18:32 Get a study buddy; the modern miracle of educated laypeople around the world 25:04 What happened when the message of the bible stopped being mediated through institutions 28:52 Why Greek should be like underwear; the importance of graciousness and respecting English translations; the snowball effect of mistranslating a single phrase 37:21 You can be reading Greek in 1 year; the different approaches to learning Greek; 42:47 The pitfalls of over-reading some words; why contextual awareness is important 45:16 The treasures unlocked by reading the Gospels in Greek; reading in Koine Greek is a way to read passages again for the first time 53:40 Going Deeper with New Testament Greek is great for complete beginners, but it also contains state-of-the-art linguistic analysis 57:06 How ancient authors structured their writing without spacing or punctuation; the power of reading the original papyri; 1:04:09 How to start your journey into Koine Greek; you don't have to be a genius or have a lot of education to learn; 1:06:36 Final thoughts See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
I recently had a discussion with English author and critic Os Guinness over the new addition to his first major work, The Dust of Death, as well as his new book, The Magna Carta of Humanity. As a decades-long reader of Os Guinness, I knew I had to discuss his work, both new and old, through the lens of our current political and cultural crises. With his new addition of The Dust of Death, Guinness discovers the origins of America’s ruling class in the turbulent countercultural radicalism of the 1960s. Between the revolutionary ideas, riots, and political purges, the parallels are undeniable, and Guinness’ timeless book could not be any more pertinent. The solution to this political chaos, he concludes, is a Christian “third way” materializing in true leadership – “We need a Lincoln.” But we don’t have a Lincoln. How can “our side” return to the biblical roots of America’s founding and rediscover the intellectual heritage of the Reformation? That’s exactly what Os Guinness’ new book, The Magna Carta of Humanity, offers, applying the revolutionary faith found in the book of Exodus to our own history. From Sinai, through the American founding, to our modern political trials, Guinness outlines the Christian alternative to the progressive mob. Timestamps: 00:45 - Introducing the Magna Carta of Humanity. 01:05 - The Dust of Death and the "third way." 02:37 - How the 60s created on oligarchy. 08:42 - We need a Lincoln. 10:26 - We need Reformation. Why don't Christians have influence? 12:35 - On the work of Rene Girard 15:58 - The Madness of Crowds 17:30 - Putting the Protestant intellectual heritage to use. 20:00 - Cultural Marxism affecting Christianity. 25:33 - The "populist instinctive revolt" against the elite. 28:16 - Is there a danger from the right as well as the left? 32:14 - Cultural climate change. 33:24 - Who can lead us? 35:25 - Conservatism of blood and soil versus the conservatism of ideas. 38:42 - Patriotism versus Nationalism. 41:20 - "Generationalism." 42:58 - Returning to Hebraic roots. 47:10 - "A little less plato, and a little more moses." Helenic philosophy in Christianity. 49:00 - Covenental societies - How the Covenent sparked the Constitution. 51:09 - Christianity and social justice. Why we can't give up on Evangelicalism. 56:10 - Christianity is both conservative and progressive. 58:33 - It's no longer morning in America - Christians need to wake up. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Peter Thiel on the Bible

Peter Thiel on the Bible

2021-05-1743:511

Peter Thiel, the highly successful tech entrepreneur and author, discusses his mentor Rene Girard; the Bible, how we read it, and how it reads us; Jesus’ death and resurrection; atheism; and the limitless escalation of violence towards apocalypse. Timestamps: 0:43 The Bible reads us  2:02 Cain and Abel vs. Romulus and Remus 6:05 Cross vs Resurrection 7:26 The Gospels are different from Death of Socrates 9:04 The Bible is discontinuous from pagan classics 11:30 "The idea that victims exist comes from Judeo-Christianity and nowhere else." 14:54 Was Nietzsche somehow extremely close to the truth of Christianity? 17:18 Pagan Pharmakoi, the ancient sacrificial medicine 19:48 Fascism and Communism 23:00 Girard on the Woes against the Pharisees 26:02 The cycle that leads to apocalypse 31:11 Steven Pinker and the story of progress 32:19 Is an apocalypse, such as a nuclear war, inevitable? 35:10 Being too sanguine about apocalypse makes it more likely 42:08 Is there an off-ramp? What would it look like? If we don't know, shouldn't we at least try to figure it out? See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
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