Monthly Archives: June 2024

EP 242 Magatte Wade on a Vision for African Economic Development



Jim talks with Magatte Wade about the ideas in her book The Heart of A Cheetah: How We Have Been Lied to about African Poverty, and What That Means for Human Flourishing. They discuss the origins of the book’s title, the issue with aid, George Ayittey’s “cheetahs vs hippos” frame, a leapfrogging strategy, Magatte’s childhood in Senegal, recognizing lies about African poverty, business school in France, nine months in Columbus, Indiana, the meaning of African prosperity, criticizing by creating, creating a soft drink company around traditional African ingredients, rules & regulations of forming a business in Senegal, free enterprise in pre-colonial Africa, why fully rejecting the West is a wrong fork, special economic zones, Africa as the greatest victim of socialism, supporting African entrepreneurs, possible results of Africa’s coming population boom, charter cities, special economic zones, and much more.

Magatte Wade is the Director of the Center for African Prosperity at Atlas Network, the leading organization of African free-market think tanks. She was listed as a Forbes “20 Youngest Power Women in Africa,” a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum, and a TED Global Africa Fellow. Magatte’s passion for the role of free markets in overcoming poverty and the power of enterprise to tackle social issues and promote entrepreneurial education make her a sought-after speaker and thought leader at major conferences, events, and universities around the world.


EP 241 Tor Nørretranders on the User Illusion of Consciousness



Jim talks with Tor Nørretranders about the ideas in his 1991 book The User Illusion: Cutting Consciousness Down to Size. They discuss the dialogue between Niels Bohr and Albert Einstein, defining consciousness, primary vs extended consciousness, the origins of the user illusion in computer interface design, the mind as an attempt to create a relevant myth, measuring the human mind in terms of information theory, consciousness as a story of reduction & compression, the physics of information, Maxwell’s demon, I & me, Benjamin Libet’s experiments on the delay of consciousness, being the spectator of our own acts, delayed auditory feedback, the veto theory, moving free will to the “me,” Robert Sapolsky’s arguments against free will, the reality of emergence, exformation, a simple translation of The Iliad, Julian Jaynes’s theory of the origins of consciousness, why modern lives have less information, the problem with a subtractive approach to happiness, and much more.

Tor Nørretranders is an independent author, thinker and speaker based in Denmark, serving an international audience. Generally seen as a leading science communicator of Denmark, Tor has involved himself in numerous activities in the public arena, from newspaper journalism through books and magazine articles to hosting and producing television shows on science and the general world view. His lecture tours, gathering tens of thousands of people, have been major events on the Scandinavian scene.