Why is the $ King? And why do we pay interest? An interview with Guido Preparata

This podcast interview with Guido Preparata is about two broad topics: first, how the United States maintains its central role in the global economy through the power of the dollar as the world’s reserve currency. Second, about a fresh, unfamiliar take on money as we know it today, how money might be reformed, and its effect on economic production.

In between we take in: the bubble economy; the slump of the past ten years; why American prepotence is probably stable; why the high priests of economics are at ease with Bitcoin; how Marx got the origin of exploitation wrong; the work of the monetary reformer Silvio Gesell; and many other topics.

Guido Preparata is an economist by training, with a PhD in political economy from UCLA. In the 1990s he worked at the Italian central bank, the Bank of Italy. From 2000 to 2008 he taught political economy at the University of Washington, and during that time wrote two books: Conjuring Hitler and The Ideology of Tyranny. Since 2012, he’s been Senior Lecturer in Social Sciences at the Pontifical Georgian University in Rome, and recently was the editor of and a substantial contributor to the book New Directions for Catholic Social and Political Research, published in 2016.


Show notes:

Guido Preparata’s website.

Guido Preparata, Domenico d’Amico, Evelyn Ysais, “The Political Economy of Hyper-Modernity: a tale of America’s hegemonic exigencies through the Undulations of the U.S. Balance of Payments.” The essay referred to for the first part of the podcast. Link to Guido Preparata’s website, containing instructions for obtaining a copy.

Guido Preparata, “On the Art of Innuendo: J.M. Keynes’ plagiarism of Silvio Gesell’s monetary economics.” This essay is referred to in the podcast, in explaining how Gesell’s economics were both used and mocked by Keynes.

Ken Rogoff, The Curse of Cash. Guido Preparata refers to this book in explaining bankers’ ease with cryptocurrency. Amazon USA / Book Depository.