Charged Up! podcast: How PayPal changed our lives

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Episode 73 with BBC journalist, author, filmmaker Jacques Peretti

 



Your spending habits have changed dramatically over the last
15 years and it’s not by accident. In his book, “The Deals That Made
World
,” BBC journalist, author and filmmaker Jacques Peretti outlines
exactly what went down behind the scenes to move us from a cash-based to a
cashless society. Trends aren’t always by accident and new habits are often
pre-designed.

So, let’s get charged up! about learning how certain deals
changed the way we live our lives!

See related: How “cashless” trend affects those who rely on cash

Transcript: 


So, let’s
start with your background. This is a fascinating book, “The Deals That
Made the World,” and you go over lots of different topics and we’re going
to concentrate today on the system of cash and credit how we use it now, but
first tell me a little bit about your background and how you did this book in
the first place.

Peretti: Yes so
I’ve been a BBC journalist for 10 maybe 15 years and I’ve made many many
documentaries. What I’ve began to notice- I started to look at a kind of common
theme with all the films that I’ve been making and I realized that essentially,
whatever I looked at, there was always the kind of deal that was at the heart
of what had happened, and it was often a business deal. And so, I started to
think, well, business really has been the kind of the motor for how our lives
changed, and that’s what I want to do examine.

Hoff: So how did
you choose the deals that you chose?

Peretti: Well I
looked to all the wide ranging aspects of human behavior, so, our day to day
lives from the moment we wake up, to toothpaste we choose to use, the cash we
spend, the jobs we go to, the leisure time that we spend, our consumer habits;
all of these things. The very sort of integral nature of the way we live our
lives has been affected by these things and I want to look at how wide ranging
those have been.

Hoff: Absolutely,
and I love it because you take us in the back room behind every deal and how
the choices that we make we think we make independently, but of course, in a
way it was orchestrated that we would be making those choices. So, it’s very
eye opening when you think, well, I just got that new cellphone because I
wanted to, but really everything is motivated. So we tap into the psychology of
human beings, and you go through several deals involving tech upgrades, food,
drugs, work, risk, tax, wealth, robots and cash, and we’re going to concentrate
on cash, and the deal that you say brought us from a physical currency world to
a cashless world and how that will affect how we live our lives and how we
spend our money. And you say in the book that PayPal was a catalyst for this
ever increasingly cashless society. Can you go into that a little bit?

Peretti: Yeah of
course. What was really interesting was two things happened at the same time.
So, Elon Musk, Peter Taylor, Max Levchin, who were three, at that time,
entrepreneurs starting out in Silicon Valley that they got together and started
PayPal. But at the same moment that they were doing that (the idea at that time
in Silicon Valley was the gold rush was all about finding a secure online
payment, and whoever could do that would monetize the internet which hadn’t
been monetized)- at that same moment, there was a guy at MIT called Drazen
Prelec, and he was looking into pain of payment. So, he was looking into the
neurological process that takes place when we actually pay for something with
cash.

And those two things came together at a crucial moment. So, what he
discovered with his MIT experiments was that when you pay with cash, you
actually feel physical neural pain. You know that flinch but when you hand over
money? There’s a sort of moment where you actually don’t want to hand it over;
that’s a neurological process. And so, what the guys at PayPal discovered at
the same time was the faster you make the payment, the less there is the
neurological pain, the less pain there is. And as a result, the faster the
payment, the more you are inclined to spend.

This was kind of like a road
to Damascus experience. There was a moment where they discovered that once you
start making payments contactless or online, then you’re free to spend without
that pain, and you will spend whatever you will spend. What was really amazing
was Draven did an experiment at MIT with some of the students where he put
together an auction for a fictional basketball game. He said this could be a
final, and basically you bid for the game. And what he found was that people
who bid with cash would just bid up to the face value of the ticket, so they
wouldn’t bid beyond that. But he found that when people paid with credit cards
or Contactless, they would literally bid six times the amount of the value. So,
he said that, literally, once you don’t see physically the cash in front of
you, you become untethered from the reality of spending, and so you’re prepared
to spend whatever it takes to get what you want. And this revelation came at
the same moment that PayPal were launching a version of online payment. And so,
it was an extraordinary moment where you basically would be able to spend without
that neurological pain, and it transformed payment.

Hoff: And then
you go in the book about how eBay and PayPal teamed up, and that eBay tapped
into even a more infantile part of our brains where it is a game that you’re
playing, or it’s gambling at a casino, and even if it’s nothing that you ever
wanted or ever thought that you wanted, suddenly you want to win that bid and
people went out of control when it came to using this online currency that was
nothing more than a touch with the button, and then at the same time in this
very gambling moment game. Can you go into that a little bit?

Peretti: Yeah. So,
it’s basically like the reinfantilization of the consumer. So, when you’re a
child, you say, ‘I want that and I want it now.’ There’s no sense of any pain.
You want an object. You want it instantaneously. And so, what you had with
credit cards, first of all, far more effectively with contactless payment and
so, was the idea that essentially you could have that childhood experience. I
want it and I want it now.

And so, we became reinfantilized as consumers by
this behavior. And what eBay was about was very cunningly recreating the idea
of the- it came about at the same moment as online gambling took off, and here
was this idea of a kind of addiction to the idea of spending just as you would
with gambling. So, it was a really interesting moment with the internet. And I
think what they did was they kind of cunningly recreated the idea of the
bizarre, so it was the idea of a kind of marketplace. That’s all eBay was- a
platform, rather like Google’s platform or Facebook’s platform, it’s a platform
for basically anything with any variable of value added to it. And I think what
was interesting was that when you start to bid, you get into that gambling
mindset; it has a kind of addictive quality, and that was what they knew about
when they launched it. And so that tied to PayPal becomes a kind of
intoxicating combination.

Hoff: Yeah. And
it’s amazing, you did mention credit cards as well, and how actually these students
subjected themselves to MRI scans that showed that there is an actual
neurological event that takes place when you have to pay with cash versus when
you have to pay with card. Can you talk about credit cards and how it has now
evolved into these online payments? Obviously at CreditCards.com we talk about
controlling your cards but there you still have to physically take out a card.
There is some sort of emotion involved. And now when you move it to where you
don’t have to do anything about it, what do you see changing as far as our
habits go?

Peretti: Well,
when credit cards first arrived, they were a business card. So essentially, if
you see the early ads for American Express and so on, what they are is, you see
a sort of suave, white male businessman sitting on a plane, and a stewardess
walks down the aisle. He flashes his card. And it’s a bit like he’s saying,
‘I’m James Bond,’ you know. It’s an aspirational thing. I have this wealth, and
it’s tied up in this card. But what happened with credit cards was they moved
from being a business tool to being a consumer tool. So they moved into the
space of all of us using them.

What’s kind of interesting is that all of
the evolution of payment has been about making it ever more seamless, and so now
you’re going into a space where, when you have the Amazon stores where
basically you just walk through, and essentially, the very fact that you walk
through the store means you have paid for it (there’s a store where there is no
cash, there is no till, there is no need to pay for anything, you just walk out
of the store). And so, we’re in a space where payment becomes organic; it
becomes evolutionary to the point where you make the payment without there
being any neurological process whatsoever, and credit card companies are aware
of this. And so, when you talk to Visa or MasterCard and so on, they say,
‘Yeah, the seamless transaction is dangerous, actually.’ And so, what we need
to do is we need to almost put in what they describe as speed bumps in the process.
So rather than just accelerating down the road to the consumer decision, you
have various bumps at which the brain kicks in and says, ‘No, hang on a sec.
I’m paying for something, I do need to think about this.’ And so, credit card
companies are aware of that and the responsibility that comes with that and
they are actually actively doing something to put those speed bumps in place.

Hoff: That’s
interesting, and have you heard any of what those speed bumps might be? A
warning on your phone that says, ‘You just purchased this,’ or, ‘You’re
thinking about purchasing this?’

Peretti: Yeah. So
actually, the clunky things that first happened when you first started to pay
online and so on, putting a number in, whatever that might be, they might
reintroduce those things in order for you to feel like, actually I have to do
something clunky which makes me start to think about what it is that I’m
buying.

Hoff: Yeah
absolutely. I mean, I know people who even sign up for the services through
Chase or whatever bank it is that they sign up with that sends them an SMS the
minute they buy something. So, in a way, even though you’ve already bought it,
it is a reminder that you just did spend this much money, and maybe the next
time you just remember it.

Hoff: Let’s talk
a little bit about credit card debt. I thought it was interesting that you talk
about in the chapter that a lot of times people think that more low income
people are just being irresponsible with money and they’re not really
financially agitated. You say that’s not necessarily the truth. And again, you
talk about how this little neurological trick is really racking up credit card
debt for all Americans.

Peretti: Yeah, so
that went from being a luxury to being a necessity and being actually the
engine of the economy. So, when you look post 2008, post to crash where you’re
looking at is the deliberate policy on the part of banks and governments to
increase the level of debt because debt becomes the engine for growth. I think
we’re slightly seeing a turnaround now because we’re seeing a rebirth of
manufacturing; interesting moment in the economy. But at that moment, what you
were looking at was literally more debt as the solution to debt. And so what
you have is instead of debt being a luxury thing where you would say, ‘Oh I’ll
buy this consumer good, a new car or whatever it might be,’ what you were
looking at was credit cards being used to pay for electricity bills, for gas
bills, for food, and so debt became normalized as a way of just literally the
week to week budget. And I think at that moment when debt became normalized
that was a real shift in terms of our attitude toward what debt is, and of
course government is the macro version of that. So, the level of debt which
governments are prepared to accept becomes — You know, when Donald Trump was
first elected, and he said, ‘We have a lot of power as America, and the power
we hold is the amount of debt we are in to other nations,’ that is actual real
power. And so, in the modern world there is power in a sense.

Hoff: Interesting.
And you know when you think about it, when the banks have been offering no
interest, essentially, there’s really little incentive to save your money for a
lot of people. So, they say, ‘Why would I put the money in the bank, I’m not
making anything off this,’ which is the reason why you’re not having any interest.

Peretti: Absolutely.
Debtors are rewarded, savers are penalized for saving. And that goes back to
“blackened shoals,” the idea of that notion of debt risk being the
motor of Wall Street rather than safety. So you had this notion in the mid-70s
where there was a sort of philosophical shift in the way business was done
where risk was seen as the way that you would be rewarded; the more you risked,
the more you were rewarded down the line, whereas if you play it safe as a
business, you’re going to ultimately die. And so that kind of notion underpins
debt in a way that underpins the modern economy.

Hoff: Absolutely.
Interestingly, the game Monopoly I think was originally invented to show how
dangerous debt can be and how dangerous, in a sense, capitalism could be when
it’s abused, when people buy up all the railroads and they can charge whatever
they want. But I often play Monopoly with friends, and I’m a saver, and so I
like money and my bank account and I never mortgaged my properties, and I’m
always out very quickly because everybody else will totally mortgage their
properties and buy the most expensive ones, and they are rewarded for that. So,
it’s interesting, the whole concept it’s built into us from children almost
because you play games like that, and you learn very quickly, ‘OK, if I go into
debt and if I take a lot of risk, I’m going to actually end up more successful
than other people.’ It’s interesting, and now we’re getting back to very high
debt levels that we saw before 2008, so lessons aren’t necessarily always
learned.

Peretti: That’s
absolutely right.

Hoff: How do you
think tech companies are gonna displace banks, if at all, or are they just
going to work with them?

Peretti: Yeah, I
think when we call them tech companies that’s kind of a misnomer. They started
out as tech companies, but ultimately what they want to be is the new banks,
and they’re quite clear about that, actually, because what they’re about is
sort of encroaching into every element of our lives. So, in a way, all the
history of capitalism is one of monopolies being created and broken up by
governments. We’re at a point now where what we have is actually the creation
of monopolies through the Silicon Valley companies, and the inability of
government to be able to break up those monopolies. The Facebook crisis, there
are things that in a put a bit of a jugger into the system, but they haven’t
really ultimately changed anything.

I think what you see with these
companies is there’s no limits on their ambition. That’s what’s so fantastic,
and perhaps terrifying, but also fantastic about the way they operate. You know
Bill Gates has his famous line about, ‘No tech company now that is worth its
salt is doing what it was doing six months ago.’ i.e., it’s target should
always be something other than what it was doing six months ago. And I think
when you look at Apple, you look at Google, Google’s pay systems, Apple’s pay
systems, Facebook… Looking at, you know, when Mark Zuckerberg last year flew
to Kenya, no one could quite understand in Kenya what he was doing there. What
he was doing what he was looking at M-Pesa, which was a mobile money system
which had entirely transformed the Kenyan economy. And what it had done was it
had meant that poor Kenyans who had no bank accounts were able to leapfrog at a
moment the whole system of banking to use mobile money. Now what Mark
Zuckerberg was interested in was he was thinking, ‘Well if we co-op M-Pesa on
Facebook, we essentially become de facto the Bank of Africa. And one of the
businesses that I talked to is very fascinating saying that mobile money is
transformative for small businesses in Africa. Somebody carrying cash would
have been mugged, would have been bribed in the past. She said, “Now all
of a sudden I got my money on my phone and no one can do that to me.” And
she said, “I would never get a loan from a bank.” And so, in a way
it’s kind of an interesting moment where tech companies are looking at the
world and they’re saying, ‘Well actually, we don’t even have to look at the top
of the pyramid, we can look at the bottom of the pyramid.

The developing world
is the real cash cow. We become the de facto bank for these emerging economies
and for these emerging businesses and we own capitalism, and so, I think
ultimately (and they make no secret of this), this is what we are about- we’re
about becoming the new banks. And at the moment I think there’s a kind of
cooperation between the traditional banks and the tech companies, but
ultimately, the tech companies don’t need the banks, but the banks need the
tech companies.

Hoff: Hmm,
interesting. Do you think there’s going to be a backlash at all or a government
regulation that comes down?

Peretti: When
Donald Trump was elected he made a phone call famously to Rupert Murdoch and
said, ‘What can we do about regulating Silicon Valley?’ And Rupert Murdoch
laughed and said, ‘Are you joking? Obama’s been in their pocket for the last
eight years.’ It’s interesting how the Facebook crisis around Cambridge
Analytica played out because it’s ultimately played out just like you know when
you look at Mark Zuckerberg standing there in front of the Senate committee or
whoever, they are in awe of him, and I think quite rightly so, because they
sense intuitively the power shift. They know that the power lies with them. And
so, I think what we’re seeing is a kind of polite request for there to be some
policing of what they’re up to, but ultimately, Silicon Valley own the keys to
the New World, and they know that.

Hoff: Interesting.
And of course, they even own the ability to influence people, right? So, you as
a politician, I mean, there’s always probably going to be that fear in a
politician’s mind, ‘If I go too hard on Silicon Valley they’ll punish me in
some way.’

Peretti: Yeah, I
mean what we’ve seen the last 30 to 40 years is a kind of gradually in a way
what the left would call corporate capture, but what we could quite rightly
call the diminishing of the state, just in financial terms, and the stepping in
of corporations to the space that the state would have occupied in the past.
And it’s gonna be a very interesting next 40 years where we see how the state
evolves in terms of its relationship with these corporations, because I think
when you talk to people like Paul Polman, who runs Unilever, or Indra Nooyi who
runs Pepsi, what they talk about is corporate responsibility, not as some kind
of lip service to, you know, oh we must do more for society, but actually they
literally say global warming, poverty, inequality, these are real things that
will affect our businesses unless we do something about it, and they realize
the power that they hold transnationally that governments simply don’t have.
And I think they know that that space is the space they now occupy, and what
they choose to do with that power, that’s the question really.

Hoff: Yeah
absolutely. I thought it was also interesting in the book when you talked about
how we do see that a lot of the countries in the developing world, just as a
necessity, and because their cell phones are kind of their life that there’s a
lot of smaller developing countries and cities that are going cashless faster
than they are in the western world, and that there are some cities and
countries in Europe that are going cashless very quickly. And you mentioned
Sweden and Holland, Holland with the homeless people wearing certain jackets,
and then in Sweden how bank robberies have diminished so fast because there’s
no money in the banks. Can you go into that? What are we seeing? What are those
cities and those countries starting to look like?

Peretti: Yeah well
that story was just a great story where a guy basically goes in with a shotgun
into a bank and says,” Give me all your money,” and they go, “We go
to have any money. We literally don’t have any cash, I’m really sorry.”
And the guy sort of walks out really deflated. This is the new world. It’s kind
of phenomenal. I mean the homeless coat thing’s really interesting. So,
university developed this idea of, you basically swipe your card against the
guy’s coat, and that gives cash to their account. Now actually that’s been
developed. So, there’s been a homeless community that put together this idea
that they can sort of crowd fund their own accommodation if they all get the
same swipe through their coats. It’s an interesting moment where you sort of
look at that and you think, ‘Is that brilliant or is it terrible?’ The
technology is amazing but socially you think, ‘Is that right or is it
horrendous? I can’t work out which one it is.’ But there’s no doubt, when you
talk to all the tech companies, they all say that the developed world is
hampered by its 20th century infrastructure.

The architecture, the road the
planning, all the laws are pre-internet laws, and so they say when you try to
get anything done, it’s really cumbersome and unwieldy and it takes too long.
Whereas when you look at the developing world, they can leapfrog all the 20th
century infrastructure because they never had it to start with. And so, they
can become digital automatically, and that has created a kind of level playing
field where places like Singapore and Taiwan and South Korea- you see Asia
suddenly sort of grow to head of Britain, Europe, America and so on. It’s a
really interesting moment of a power shift because countries that aren’t
encumbered by all that pre-internet stuff, they can suddenly motor in the fast
lane to the future. And so, I think that’s where we’re at. That feels to me the
space we’re in now.

Hoff: Yeah
absolutely. It’s a fascinating space to be in because we go to a lot of
conferences and we hear a lot of fintech conferences about developments that
are happening with apps or with payment systems, and to see which one is going
to be the one that actually takes over will be interesting. And in fact,
talking about that, I want to talk about a blockchain a bit. If you go into a
little bit of history of blockchain and how it works, and then what role it is
playing in our currency today.

Peretti: I think
block chain is going to be basically as important as the internet. Blockchain I
think is quite simple. What it started out with was a security system. It was a
way of making fantastically big financial deals secure. So, when you talk to
bankers, finance people, they talk about it as a digital handshake. And what
they mean by that is, in the past, security was an issue because you would have
various people holding the information in place, whereas what you have with
blockchain, the analogy is with a nuclear submarine. When you get the nuclear
key in a submarine, there’s no one person to hold the code. The code is held by
six or seven different parties, and those parties have to come into the
conversation of the deal at specific moments to write the close. So, in a way,
this blockchain technology was used to make multibillion dollar deals secure,
and in a way that was the genesis of blockchain.

But what blockchain has
evolved into, I think, is it’s evolved into a potentially revolutionary tool
for us, for ordinary people, to be able to fight in a way the power of Silicon
Valley and the tech companies. And I think that’s because what it gives us
potentially is the ability to understand every single nanobyte of information
about any one thing we are doing. So, in the first place where blockchain is
being used is in food. So, say you want to buy a piece of chicken from your
supermarket. Now currently you go to the supermarket, you look at the package,
and it has information on the back of the package which has been given to you
by the producer. It will say it comes from Texas, or whatever it says; it’s
organic. And you think, well, I only have the word of the producer that it is
organic and that it comes from Texas. With blockchain, you take a picture of
that piece of chicken that you buy, and whatever you access that information,
and it will tell you from the field to the fork every single aspect of that
chicken, where it’s come from, who handled it, how long it took to get there.

So,
it’s basically the opening up of data on a new level, and I think once we
access it then it gives us a tool for fighting back in a way. And what people
talk about with blockchain now is they say that it’s almost like the internet before
the browser. So, we’re at the browser moment; we’re at the moment where the
browser has been invented, and where we are able to access the internet for our
own purposes, and I think that’s where blockchain is at, and it has the
potential to revolutionize everything. That’s kind of where we’re at.

Hoff: I want to
go into blockchain talking also about cryptocurrencies, because right now it’s
the Wild Wild West of cryptocurrencies. There’s tons out there, people are
trying to get in fast. I think everybody knows that at one point this bubble’s
going to really explode, maybe one currency will be decided upon per country,
or the government will start regulating it. What do you see happening with
cryptocurrencies? I did talk to somebody (I did an episode on gold) and he
said, you know, crypto currencies might be a good idea right now, but
eventually they will be regulated by the government. Probably the government
itself will take one cryptocurrency that will become the new currency instead
of the greenbacks that we have now. What do you think about that?

Peretti: I think
we’re kind of at a bit of a moment like before the dollar was created. You have
an interesting moment in America before the dollar. You had something like, I
mean, have a guess, how many currencies do you think were in operation in the
United States before the dollar?

Hoff: I think it
was like a couple of hundred?

Peretti: Yeah. So,
you’re talking about 200 currencies operating concurrently within the United
States. And this was everything from supermarket vouchers to things you would
buy from the shop. Basically, the dollar was created as a way of unifying
currency. So, what you are going to now is a sort of pre-dollar world, a world
where you have bitcoin and every single God knows what, and these are all
currencies, they’re all currencies of a sort. And crypto currencies are part of
that jigsaw. I think what you’re seeing obviously, Switzerland, Sweden, various
countries are actually trying to launch “legitimate” crypto
currencies of their own, national currencies that are cryptocurrencies. So,
you’re seeing a moment where there is an attempt to bring the cryptocurrency
under national control, and I think what you will see is a fight, and you’ll
probably see an accommodation between the two.

So, you will see underground
crypto currencies continue because there is a need for them. The crime world
needs them, the shadow economy requires them, and also national governments
require them, and I think cryptocurrencies will just move into that space. You
will see a new jigsaw, and I think you’ll see a jigsaw that mirrors, in a way,
the cash economy. So, you’ll see a jigsaw that has both above the board
national government signing up to crypto currencies, and you’ll also have a
dark side, an underside of cryptocurrency that still operate in the way that
they have when they first began with bitcoin and so on. And I think that’s the
space I think it’ll go into. I think that’s inevitable really.

Hoff: And
finally, what do you see happening within the next 10 years 20 years as far as
us transforming into a totally cashless society? Do you think that’s going to
happen?

Peretti: Oh, I
think it’s interesting. Ken Rogoff was kind of a big advocate of the end of
cash, and he said it’s a fascinating thing. He said the more governments try to
kill cash, the more cash is in circulation. The Freakonomics guys reckon that
it’s something like a quarter to a third of global business is basically run
through the cash economy, and so it provides a very real need. And what’s
interesting is that the more the governments try to control cash, you know they
are unable to collect tax from corporations so they look to the bottom of the
pyramid, they say, can we make a cashless economy so we can tax everyone at the
lowest level, it’s not going to work. The amazing thing about cash is it’s been
around for 2000 years, and it’s not going to disappear tomorrow. And the need
for it, or the need for some version of a shadow economy, continues. So, I
think you write off cash, as Ken says, you write off cash at your peril.

And
you know what’s extraordinary is they say in business that the more ludicrous
the idea, the more legitimate it could be. And so, you see people now trying to
invent crypto currencies based on gamified versions of it. You know, what kind
of bonkers thing will become the new currency? And I think you’ll enter a world
where we’ll have a thousand different currencies running concurrently, and
actually there’ll be an attempt to kind of centralize and control that, but it
will fail ultimately because capitalism is about human endeavor, and it’s about
trying to find ways through the system, ways that haven’t been thought of
before. And I think it’s inevitable that it can’t be controlled. I think that’s
the nature of capitalism. It can’t ultimately be controlled, but they will try.
And that’s kind of my feeling about it.

Hoff: Fascinating
fascinating. I think it’s the question a lot of us are asking- is there going
to be a backlash? Are we going to go back? What’s the future going to look
like? And I think it is a confusing future to know, but it’s fascinating to
hear what you think might happen.

Peretti: I think
Wall-e, which was an amazing Pixar movie about us all traveling to space, was
an incredible movie. But a lot of people, a lot of analysts, looked at it and
said, wow, could it be there is that company who runs the future? You know, one
company that runs everything literally? Our food, our transport system, our
communications systems…. You know is that Google, is it Facebook, who is that
company that is satirized in Wall-e, the movie where we leave earth? And I
think what you’ve seen with capitalism is an interesting kind of thing where
there have been monopolies, and oil, you know, the banks, they’ve been broken
up in the past by government because government had the power to do that. Do
they have the power to do that now, that is the central question? And if they
don’t, that is the sort of tipping point. That’s the moment at which
corporations go, OK, we really do have the keys; we really do own this stuff.
And I think if that’s the moment we’re at, then we’re in a new ballgame
entirely, one from which capitalism hasn’t been in previously, and I think
that’s for me the question that we’re at now.

Hoff: Yeah and
it’s a question that comes to mind when you read your book, “The Deals
that Made the World: Reckless Ambition, Backroom Negotiations, and the Hidden
Truths of Business,” and the cash section is just one of the many sections
you go through, so it’s a fascinating look at how we do the things we do, what
we consume, and the deals that went into making that happen. I always ask
people at the end of my podcast, our show is called Charged Up, what gets you
charged up about figuring out the deals that impact the way we live our lives?

Peretti: You
know, I just think life is about understanding what’s happening to you, and I
think we’re undergoing a revolution now in the way that people underwent a
revolution in the mid-19th century. Far, in a way, more fundamental, because
it’s affecting everything. It’s about biology, it’s about DNA and mapping of
the genome. You know we’re at the moment of multidisciplinary revolution which
is extraordinary, and I think just the very idea of understanding where we’re
at, you know, follow the money. What’s the money about? And I think to me, we’re
living, in a way, in sci-fi fantasy. We’re living in a moment where science
fiction can’t compete with reality. And to me that’s very exciting. So, what
gets me charged up is just the very idea of understanding where we’re at and
trying to decipher where we’re going next.

Hoff: Fantastic.
Jacques Peretti, thank you so much for joining us and for a great discussion. I
highly recommend your book. Thank you.

Jacques: Thank
you so much.





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