Info

The All Things Risk Podcast

The All Things Risk podcast explores the themes of risk, uncertainty and resilience as applied to sports, the arts, current affairs and just about any other domain. We feature long-form conversations with interesting guests who have loads of fascinating stories, tips and tools.
RSS Feed Subscribe in Apple Podcasts
The All Things Risk Podcast
2022
January


2021
December
November
October
September
August
July
June
May
April
March
February
January


2020
December
November
October
September
August
July
June
May
April
March
February
January


2019
December
November
October
September
August
July
June
May
April
March
February
January


2018
December
November
October
September
August
July
June
May
April
March
February
January


2017
December
November
October
September
August
July
June
May
April
March
February
January


2016
December
November
October
September
August
July
June
May
April
March
February
January


All Episodes
Archives
Now displaying: November, 2021
Nov 14, 2021

This is the second of our two consecutive episodes about cryptocurrencies, blockchain, and digital finance. You don’t need to have listened to the first of these with Ethan Lou in order to get out a lot of this one – at the same time, we do recommend you listen to it. In it, we covered the ‘wild west' of the cryptocurrency world.

Today, we continue to talk about the risks and opportunities in this space, but our focus turns to the present and future of these technologies – including other uses of blockchain, stablecoins, and even a prediction or two.

I am delighted to bring to you my conversation with Dante Disparte. Dante is a global leader in harnessing risk and emerging technologies to improve economic competitiveness and resilience. He is currently the Chief Strategy Officer and Head of Global Policy at Circle. Circle is a digital financial services firm, which among other things, has built the US dollar coin (USDC). Prior to this, Dante was a founding executive at the Diem Association. Diem (previously known as Libra) is the blockchain payment system of Meta (formerly known as Facebook of course). Dante was also a member of the USA’s Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). You may also be familiar with his name as he co-authored Global Risk Agility with Daniel Wagner, a frequent guest on All Things Risk.

We get into a fair bit in this conversation, including:

  • The risks and opportunities of crypto and blockchain, which include Dante’s take on his former professor Nassim Taleb (author of The Black Swan)’s prediction that Bitcoin goes to zero. Dante has great respect for Taleb but disagrees with this particular take;
  • Stablecoins and what Dante calls “digitally-enabled and secure networks”, including some interesting applications for these technologies;
  • Geopolitics and cryptocurrencies;
  • What the future holds;
  • A lot more!

Show notes:

Dante’s website

Dante on Twitter

Circle

The US Dollar Coin (USDC)

Nassim Taleb’s take on Bitcoin

Yuval Noah Harari and Sapiens

Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) and fraud

Our conversation with Oliver Bullough on “Moneyland”

“How Robert Mueller Used Bitcoin to Catch Russia”

The Diem / Libra project

The potential use of blockchain to speed up insurance payments following disasters

“Is America Losing the Digital Currency Race” – Dante’s piece in Project Syndicate

Web 3.0

Our episode on Global Risk Agility with Daniel Wagner

Our episode with Ethan Lou, author of “Once a Bitcoin Miner”

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

Like what you heard?

Subscribe and/or leave a rating and review on Apple Podcasts: http://apple.co/1PjLmK

Subscribe on Stitcher: http://www.stitcher.com/podcast/all-things-risk/the-all-things-risk-podcast

Subscribe on Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/ben-cattaneo

Follow the podcast on Twitter: https://twitter.com/RiskThings

Drop us a note: allthingsrisk@gmail.com 

Nov 9, 2021

The next two episodes will be focused on cryptocurrencies and we will be giving this the full “All Things Risk” treatment. If you look at many of the resources available to try and understand this stuff, you will inevitably be driven to the areas of computer science, finance, economics and in some cases, philosophy. Bitcoin has even been described as a libertarian nirvana and many cryptocurrencies have an almost cult-like status amongst some of their proponents. On top of this, there is plenty of mis-information based on a lack of transparency – which of course can lead to fraud as much as (if not more than) riches.

What I have long thought is that there was a lack of explanation for the cryptocurrency phenomenon based on the human condition. That is, until now. Meet Ethan Lou. Ethan is a journalist at Canada’s Financial Post, an early crypto investor, and the author of a fabulous new book called Once a Bitcoin Miner – Scandal and Turmoil in the Cryptocurrency Wild West.

I came across Ethan upon reading his opinion piece in Canada’s Globe and Mail in which he equates the world of crypto to the “frontier myth” in which participants are motivated not just by greed and speculation but also by a sense of adventure and even fantasy. That entails good and bad things, particularly when that fantasy comes up against reality. Ethan has met a range of colourful and sometimes dodgy characters during his crypto journey and he shares of some of that in this episode. This path even took him to North Korea, and we discuss that too. He also discusses whether or not these assets are in a bubble and shares advice for the crypto-curious.

Regardless of your views of and experiences in cryptocurrency and blockchain, I don’t think you can fully understand these things without understanding the perspective that Ethan shares. His insights are colourful, based on first-hand experience, and very revealing.

Show notes:

Ethan’s website;

Once a Bitcoin Miner;

Ethan on Twitter;

Ethan’s Financial Post column;

Ethan’s Globe and Mail article;

Anthony Di Iorio;

Virgil Griffith;

Ronny Chieng video in the Daily Show;

Nassim Taleb on Bitcoin;

Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs);

Gerald (Jerry) Cotton and the Quadriga insolvency;

Bitcoin ETFs

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

Like what you heard?

Subscribe and/or leave a rating and review on Apple Podcasts: http://apple.co/1PjLmK

Subscribe on Stitcher: http://www.stitcher.com/podcast/all-things-risk/the-all-things-risk-podcast

Subscribe on Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/ben-cattaneo

Follow the podcast on Twitter: https://twitter.com/RiskThings

Drop us a note: allthingsrisk@gmail.com 

1