What is your opinion of the Ketogenic diet? 4:52

It seems really difficult to follow. It makes sense that the brain and the body would have a backup mechanism, for example, the Ice Ages when humans evolved, there weren’t a lot of plants available… but at the same time you know we’ve been eating plants for thousands of years so I don’t agree with my good friend Zuko, and I don’t think plants are bad for you but something closer to the Paleo diet is probably correct.

Ketogenic just seems very artificial. It may have specific therapeutic benefits in certain circumstances. It’s always worth trying and it’s worth doing ketogenic just to see how the brain and the body processed sugar and fat… and I think the interplay between sugar [and] fat is really interesting. Fat is what makes you satiated, fat in your diet… so when you eat fatty foods that’s what makes you feel like oh I’m getting full… and the easiest way to do that is to go on a ketogenic diet where you’re eating like tons of bacon all the time are you gonna feel almost nauseous at the end where you don’t want to look at the fat anymore.

But sugar, by the way, makes you hungry. So sugar basically signals to your body “oh there’s like this incredible food resource in the environment that we’re not evolved for” and so you rush out to get sugar… and the problem is that the sugar effect dominates the fat effect so if you eat a fatty meal and you throw some sugar in then the sugar is going to deliver the hunger, and the fat is going to deliver the calories, and you’re just going to binge… so that’s why all desserts are actually large combinations of fat and carbs together… and in nature it’s very rare to find carbs and fat together, in nature I find carbs and fat together in coconuts, and mangos, maybe bananas but it’s basically tropical fruits… but it’s the combination of sugar and fat together that is really deadly and so you gotta watch out for that in your diet.

I mean diet and nutrition is another thing, like I’m not an expert and the problem is diet nutrition is like politics… everybody thinks their [an] expert… their identity is wrapped up in it, because what they’ve been eating, what they think they should be eating, is obviously the correct answer.

Everybody has a little religion there so it’s a very difficult topic to talk about… but I will just say in general that any sensible diet that works avoids the combination of sugar and fat together. So if you look at the low-calorie diets they’re basically trying to avoid fat because of the number of calories. Now you’re always hungry but you’re not getting many calories on a low-calorie diet… but a low sugar diet you’re actually getting a fair bit of calories, you’re eating calorie dense foods, but you’re eating less of them than you normally would because the sugar is spiking your insulin and making you hungry and isn’t causing your store the even fat as dietary fat it’s more likely to burn off either just through pure heat thermogenesis or a muscular exertion. Anyways, I’m not really qualified to speak on diet. I don’t have the best diet.

Why are rich people shooting cars in the space when others still go hungry? 15:23

[Referring to Elon Musk’s SpaceX launching a Telsa into space] Why are we on periscope when people are hungry? At some point in your life, you do make choices and opportunity costs to trade certain things up. To some extent, especially food and you know famines… [there are] famine and political problems far more than there are food problems. There’s enough food in the world, it’s a distribution problem… it’s a political problem and you know Elon Musk is trying to you know build rocketry and space engines.

I mean on the one hand his customers are all military or you know governments but on the other hand, he’s inspiring a new generation to create technology that over time could get us more energy, help us make sure we never run out of phosphates or commodities that frankly will literally change the world… like literally by changing the world that we are on. So I don’t begrudge Elon launching any cars in the space… people should kind of do and help out in the way they’re best at and it’s different for everybody… and Elon is a very unique and very driven he’s kind of the only guy that I watch out there that makes me think I’m not doing anything interesting with my life…. that makes me sort of question like am I on the right path? Usually, I’m very happy with the way I’m going and the way things are and what I’m doing… but when I see Elon I do question.

Look we can already feed all the people out there to the person asked: “why we can’t feed all [the people]”… we can actually feed everybody. No one is starving because of lack of food it’s because of distribution, it’s because of politics, and because of war, it’s because warlords use food as a weapon. It is incredibly rare for someone to starve and in the United States you know it’s nonsense. I grew up incredibly poor I mean we basically could not starve the USC social safety net does not let you fall to that level. It has many flaws but that is not one of them.

What do you think about basic income?

Basic income is a very tricky topic. I think the best basic income is the one that we create through technology abundance… so you know everybody has electricity, everybody gets a basic education, everybody gets universal healthcare, you know those are basic abundance through delivered goods. The moment you start delivering people money, you know because money is a universal adapter you can turn it into anything, then people always want more. There’s sort of an insatiable desire for it and I just fear that a basic income plus a direct democracy would essentially lead to a complete economic collapse into socialism… because the moment that like the bottom you know 51% figures out they can vote themselves all the money from the top 49 percent that’s what happens… and it’s logical. I would do the exact same thing if I were in their shoes that
would just vote for higher and higher and higher basic income. So I think the sentiment is good but I think the execution is flawed.

There’s also a dystopian side of it where the people who are providing the basic income then agree to do it but grudgingly they take away the rights to vote and sort of the rights from the people who are receiving basic income, and you create a permanent underclass… and at the end of the day I think you know people want to work, people want to be useful, people want to express themselves. You’re on this earth you know you’re an animal, you have capabilities, you’re unique, your DNA is unique, your outlook is unique, your capabilities are unique… nobody wants to feel useless and just like you know fed… people want to do things, people want to make a difference, so rather than basic income I would rather plow all of that effort into education and opportunities for people and creating technology enabled abundance through robots and machines and factories and automation that we can provide all the basics of life for free or near free… and to do that we gotta get humans out of it right, if you look at the parts that are exploding in cost in the economy which is the ones that aren’t it’s just how much humans are still involved versus automation… so automation is good thing.

What’s your stance on equity versus equal opportunity? 22:00

Equality of outcome and equal opportunity are two different things. People confuse the two. Free people when given equal opportunities, will be free to make different choices, and different choices will map to the real world in different ways and will lead to different outcomes. So some people will do better and some won’t and they will end up with unequal outcomes because they made unequal choices. So you can give people equal opportunity, things like, estate taxes help create equal opportunity, free education helps create equal opportunity, but equal outcome is the exact opposite.

Equal outcome destroys all motivation and purpose. It destroys markets, distress signals. That’s a slippery slide to communism. If you want to have a healthy society then you give everyone an equal opportunity. I say equal in “quotes” because life isn’t fair. I mean sometimes you might be born, you know, you may be born with a crippling disease, you know, that’s not fair. You might be born in the third world, that’s not fair. You might be born and it’s the wrong parents, who just didn’t take care of you the right way. You may have eaten the wrong thing or fallen down the stairs. It’s just, there’s no fairness in life, so there’s actually no equal… but what you can do is you can try and provide equal resources and equal opportunities. Don’t get too caught up in this idea of something unfair happened to you because that will just distract you from doing what you can do [with] the things that are under your control. Then, stay away from equal outcome. Equal outcome systems are awful.

How would you fix student loan debt? 23:48

Well, I think the total endowment of all the universities in the United States is somewhere over a trillion dollars (might be like 1.2 or 1.4) and I think the entire student loan debt is around 1.2 trillion dollars, so the universities can actually solve the student loan debt problem, they can forgive it.

I think the problem is we’re over-educated in weird ways and we’re miseducated [in others]. So we have adopted this legacy idea [that] the only way to be properly educated is a university. A university is much more about filtering smart people out of the noise and then credentialing, then stamping them, so an employer can say, oh yeah, this person went to a good university, they’re probably pretty smart.

They kind of get acceptance into being in the elite class, you know, the aristocracy of the United States. The people who went to good schools versus people who didn’t. They just have very different outcomes in life from that moment on… and so then you deserve to pay a lot of money for that credential stamp. If you’re a poor kid, maybe you’re lucky you get a scholarship, and you end up in debt. I think that whole system is pretty broken, we have to separate credentialing long term from education.

Filtering, credentialing, [and] education are different things so anyone should [be able to] take a test that proves that they’re good enough and get a stamp. It doesn’t matter whether they went to Harvard, or they went to their local school, or they didn’t go to school. So you need that kind of assistant to emerge and that’ll start breaking the university problem.

Also, the federal government is underwriting student loans regardless of the earning power of that graduate down the road. So even though I started out as an English and History major and I love those topics, I don’t think the government should have been subsidizing my degree in English [and] in History because I probably would not have been able to pay my student loans back. In fact, they should have been encouraging me a little bit to at least pickup something vocational for my own sake and also for the sake of the taxpayers to sort of balance that bill out.

So I could see some combination of a tax and university endowments, combined with a student loan forgiveness program, combined with “hey we’re not going to fund you anymore for things that are never going to be able to be repaid”… so there’s a different funding level based on what you choose to do in the future and student loans should probably be dischargeable in bankruptcy otherwise you end up in some kind of a debt slavery situation. I’m sure they were lobbyists behind that one.

What is the most exciting change in the world right now? 32:32

I think we live in an age of technological marvels [and] revolutions… but we just miss it, we just forget it. You know it’s like how we take everything for granted, but the pace of technology change is accelerating so much. Not the singularity… I’m not going all the way there, but the pace of technological change is accelerating so much that I think we do have the reach for all humans to live a life of abundance in our grasps. In one sense I feel like I’m lucky because I’m the first generation that gets to have massive income mobility, gets to have iPhones, gets to have the internet. The generation before me didn’t have the Internet, poor people I feel so bad for them. They missed the Internet!

On the other hand we may be the last generation that misses life extension right, so we may all die of natural causes and the generation after us is getting all the cyborg implants… but I think overall we live in a very exciting transition age, a frontier age, an age of technological marvels, where each of us has a supercomputer and is connected to every other human on the planet, and it’s a fantastic time to be alive. So I just look at the pace of technology evolution and revolution and that gives me hope for humanity I just hope we don’t kill it over politics.

Why have children? 36:50

So you came here through an unbroken chain of your ancestors from tadpoles till now that all replicated, are you literally gonna be the first ones to miss that branch? Yes, of course my ancestors are dead and I will never communicate with them, but I just can’t even imagine the thought that I have great grandfather’s and great-great grandfather’s who suffered all kinds of misery and hell to survive and to replicate… and I’m gonna say oh yeah, I couldn’t be bothered I was having too good of a time it’s actually passed the genes along.

So I think that’s one reason to have children, I think the second reason is that when you have children you learn to love something more than you love yourself… and you can talk about that all day long but you’ve never had that feeling until you’ve had a child, and it’s very important for all of us I think to experience that feeling.

Thirdly, I think that at some level if you if you don’t have kids, you don’t want your genes to know that you’ve given up, right. You’re a carrier for your genes and your sort of controlled by them… not in a puppets and string sort of way where they’re conscious and controlling you, but in a you’re literally evolved to serve your genes… so I just feel like if you don’t replicate, if you choose not to have children, then you’re basically violating your biological programming in such a severe way, that I have to believe that will come back to bite you in your moods, or if you’re you know sense of meaning or fulfillment later in life.

You know some people can’t have kids, unfortunately, so for them I think that they find God, or they adopt kids, or they love and give in other ways, all that is valid… but I’m just saying that if you have the opportunity, do the service for your ancestors [and] have the kids, do the service according to your genes [and] have the kids, and give yourself the gift of loving something other than yourself, or more than yourself.

Do you mute politics on Twitter 43:46

I don’t I’m not above that yet. I find politics highly entertaining right but I try to watch it a little more detached, I try not to get emotionally involved… but it’s hard, like just very recently before getting on this Periscope I put out a tweet about Wired who wrote an article that’s starting to make the case against the First Amendment, and wants to basically say we should start having discussion around censorship, and I just think that’s bullshit. The one thing that is not up for debate is the right to debate. The one subject that I get really passionate about is free speech because there’s a reason it’s the first amendment to the bill of rights and not number 9.

All the other rights derive from and are protected by the freedom of speech. If you don’t have [the right] to speak, you don’t have anything… and these people who want to say “well let’s just have the dialogue about censorship”… that is a slippery slope to hell. That is the kind of thing that would make me then fall back on the Second Amendment and get a gun and go to the hills because I think it’s that strong of a thing that you can literally have a slide from a free society into an autocratic society without free speech.

Free speech is fundamental and people say that “oh yeah it is limited some cases”, it’s not. Free speech is not limited, what’s limited is actually creating a threatening environment for other people. So it’s the actions of your speech that you can still be held accountable for. The actions that come out of them, but the speech itself should not be limited.

I think that people like Wired who are starting to advocate for mechanisms to censor people I would say, well if you really want to stress test a censorship system, what you should do is you should design it, you should build it, and they should hand it over to your worst enemy and let them run it on you for the next ten years. If that still gives you the outcome you want, then it’s fine… but I think what you’ll find is that creating any mechanism for censorship is basically just creating the perfect weapon for the next dictator to take over.

Whether you hate Trump or whether you hate Bernie, you give them those kinds of powers and mechanisms, if they can muzzle speech there’s nothing they can’t do. I think I’ve been up and have to hop off pretty soon I’m running out of time I will do one last question and then I will bid you all farewell.

2 Curated Resources

For those interested in learning more about the Ketogenic Diet (a low carb diet).

The Wired article that Naval heavily critiqued via Twitter.