E8: Samo Burja on America's future, China, AI, and the new global order
Erik sits down with political scientist Samo Burja ( @SamoBurja ) who founded Bismarck Analysis, a consulting firm that analyzes institutions (ranging from governments to companies). Samo is one of the most interesting and wide-ranging thinkers today. In this episode, they discuss the current state and future state of America, China, Russia, Ukraine, energy, the US dollar, AI, and more.
Moment of Zen: https://link.chtbl.com/moz
The Cognitive Revolution: https://link.chtbl.com/TheCognitiveRevolution
(00:00) Episode preview
(02:05) Who’s right: Balaji, Zeihan, or Olson?
(06:18) Why China’s prospects aren’t as bad as Zeihan thinks
(08:46) What have we learned one year out after Ukraine?
(12:12) Future of The U.S. dollar
(14:19) Sponsors: Mercury | Secureframe | MarketerHire
(16:03) Balaji’s Bet
(16:42) Future of America
(21:06) Why Brazil hasn’t panned out
(25:34) Is AI communist and crypto libertarian
(28:37) Evolution of elites
(32:40) Comparing Elon and SBF
(35:12) Economics of automation and AI
(40:28) How intellectual culture has changed
(42:39) America exporting Western values
(46:42) America and China converging
(49:00) Startup cities vs incumbents
(51:54) Samo’s consultancy
(54:35) Samo’s upcoming research interests
Erik’s Twitter: @eriktorenberg
Samo's Twitter: @samoburja
Please support our sponsors: Secureframe | Mercury | MarketerHire
- Secureframe: https://secureframe.com/
Secureframe is the leading all-in-one platform for security and privacy compliance. Get SOC-2 audit ready in weeks, not months. I believe in Secureframe so much that I invested in it, and I recommend it to all my portfolio companies. Sign up for a free demo and mention UPSTREAM during your demo to get 20% off your first year. Secureframe has just released Secureframe Trust, a new product that lets you showcase your organization's security posture to build customer trust.
- Mercury: https://mercury.com/
Now more than ever, startup founders need a safe place to put their cash. Mercury protects your money and also provides the streamlined user experience that great founders expect through partner banks and their sweep networks. Mercury offers up to $5 million in FDIC insurance, which is 20 times the per-bank limit. They also make it easy to invest any cash above the FDIC-insured amount in a money market fund, a hundred thousand startups trust Mercury with their finances. I've been a happy Mercury customer and have found their team incredibly helpful and responsive. Mercury is a financial technology company, not a bank. Banking services are provided by Choice Financial Group and involve bank and trust members FDIC.
- MarketerHire: https://marketerhire.com/upstream
MarketerHire is one of my favorite resources for growing startups looking to hire marketers. With 1000s of pre-vetted marketers across a dozen roles, whether you need help with growth, marketing, SEO, lifecycle, content, or any other aspect of growth marketing strategy. Over 5,000 companies already use MarketerHire to hire expert marketers on demand, ranging from top venture-backed startups to the most well-known Fortune 500s.
Go to marketerhire.com/upstream and use code UPSTREAM to get your $1,000 credit for your first hire.