Indoxicate Podcast


Maarten Steenhagen
Short reflections on philosophy, society, and the dreadful state of the world
The logic of sociocracy
How do you make a decision with a group of people? In some activist circles a sociocratic method of consent* decision making has become popular. But there continues to be confusion about the core idea behind this method. This core idea is the somewhat misleading concept of consent*. I will explain later why I think it is misleading, and dangerously misleading. But for now, it’s enough to highlight that the notion of consent* has taken on a close to mythical status. (Full text on:
May 21
11 min
Eurovision nationalism
The Dutch submission for Eurovision is a song called ‘Europapa’ by Joost Klein. It’s a cunningly catchy tune accompanied by a spell-binding and garish videoclip. The entire thing seems tuned to give uncomplicated pleasure and satisfaction, like candyfloss you give to a child. But it adds to that a sense of nostalgia and, ultimately, I think, nationalist angst. And that’s why it should put us on high alert. Musically the song reminds me of the happy hardcore revivalism celebrated and perfected in the work of Danny L. (Full text on:
Mar 6
8 min
Why do climate activists stand with Palestine?
‘No climate justice on occupied land!’ It was Greta Thunberg who chanted this, together with hundreds of climate activists in a large gathering in Amsterdam on 12 November 2023. Around 80,000 people had gathered between the Museums of Modern Art and Van Gogh to listen to Thunberg’s speech. She used most of her time on stage to express support for the Palestinian people, even handing the microphone to Sara Rachdan, a Palestinian activist, to let her talk about the atrocities committed by Israel: the olive trees burnt, the houses destroyed. (Full text on:
Jan 31
14 min
The music of 2023
To celebrate the end of the year, I’ve again gone through the songs and albums that I’ve played most during the last twelve months. Looking back, I can detect some themes and fascinations that were distinctive of 2023. I hope the overview is varied enough to be interesting as well to a listener whose musical tastes don’t coincide with mine. January Josquin des Prez, Petite camusette The vocal works of the European middle ages and Renaissance are traces of a highly disciplined and alien culture. (Full text on:
Dec 31, 2023
29 min
AI Risk and Capitalism
How people seem suddenly worried about ‘Artificial Intelligence’! It’s as if massive threats to human flourishing suddenly become acceptable if they’re cushioned by a soothing cloud of sci-fi speculation. Well, let me tell you, there’s a much bigger problem, and the current path of AI largely owes its existence to it. It’s capitalism that is the overarching threat we should be discussing. So, what happened? A large number of people working in ‘Artificial Intelligence’ (AI) have begun to see that AI might actually turn out very dangerous. (Full text on:
Jun 2, 2023
8 min
Marching from A to B
In December 2010 I was a graduate student at University College London (UCL) working on what felt like an impossible number of essays, while at the same time teaching philosophy students about psychology and the legacy of Sigmund Freud. It was a cold month, but I loved the bustle of London. My days triangulated between seminar room, library, and a tiny studio flat on Gower Street, right behind the monumental Waterstones bookshop. (Full text on:
May 31, 2023
10 min
Now the emergency is over...
On the 5th of May 2023 the World Health Organisation (WHO) announced that the enduring COVID-19 pandemic is now merely an established and ongoing health issue, and no longer a public health emergency of international concern. This change of position came about after the responsible committee (which even boasts Anders Tegnell as an advisor) had satisfied itself with a steep decrease in the number of reported COVID-19 deaths and hospitalisations (i. (Full text on:
May 9, 2023
13 min
The right to encrypt
As you may have heard, the government of the United Kingdom is trying to pass an Online Safety Bill. This piece of legislation would have far-reaching and negative consequences for online security and privacy. In an open letter well-known communication channels such as WhatsApp and Signal object. They believe that the Bill could “break end-to-end encryption” and would “open the door to routine, general and indiscriminate surveillance of personal messages.” (Full text on:
Apr 30, 2023
18 min
Why am I still on Twitter?
I sent my first tweet on the 17th of June 2009. It contained a six-word description of that afternoon—I was travelling somewhere. Back then Twitter was for me a way of finding out what my friends were up to. Now, twelve-and-a-half thousand tweets and fourteen years later, the experience of being on Twitter resembles that of standing in the lurid departure hall of a noisy international airport—an activity I would undertake only because I wanted to get somewhere, not because I particularly like it. (Full text on:
Apr 19, 2023
15 min
A consumer phenomenology of the digital
Somewhere in Plato’s work you’ll find an argument against writing. That’s right; writing, as such. Given how important writing is to me, it always gives me an unsettled feeling to consider whether Plato is anywhere near worth taking seriously on this point. In the Phaedrus, Plato makes Socrates say that the written word will degrade human memory and remove the dialogic character of thinking—a text may speak to you, but it never listens. (Full text on:
Apr 13, 2023
14 min
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