It's NICOLE SANDLER, filling in again for Brad and Desi on the BradCast. [Audio link to full show is posted below this summary.]
Today's interview should be of great interest to all of the creators out there. Artists (both fine and musical), authors, and creators of goods that are sold to consumers all fight an uphill battle against a handful of giant corporations who call the shots, set the prices, and take advantage.
In their new book, Chokepoint Capitalism: How Big Tech and Big Content Captured Creative Labor Markets and How We'll Win Them Back, authors CORY DOCTOROW and REBECCA GIBLIN show how powerful corporations construct "anti-competitive flywheels" designed to lock in users and suppliers, make their markets hostile to new entrants, and then force workers and suppliers to accept unfairly low prices.
In the second half of the book, they explain how to navigate around the chokepoints, using tools ranging from transparency rights to collective action and ownership, radical interoperability, contract terminations, job guarantees, and minimum wages for creative work.
Focused on solutions, they're calling on workers from all sectors to unite to help smash these chokepoints and take back the power and profit that's being heisted away --- before it's too late.
There's also is a bit of news to report at the top of the show. The two big items both coming from President Joe Biden. On Thursday, he surprised everyone by announcing an Executive Action to pardon everyone convicted on federal simple marijuana possession charges, and called for the reclassification of marijuana as NOT a Schedule I narcotic. Pretty huge.
Then, at a fundraiser in NY on Thursday night, Biden, referencing Russia's assault on Ukraine, warned that "for the first time since the Cuban missile crisis, we have a direct threat of the use of a nuclear weapon if in fact things continue down the path they are going … we have not faced the prospect of Armageddon since Kennedy and the Cuban missile crisis …. I don't think there's any such thing as the ability to easily use a tactical nuclear weapon and not end up with Armageddon."