From Alpha To Omega

What is happening to our economy and our politics? Are we stuck forever in this corporate dystopia? What can we learn from the failures of radical politics over the last 100 years? Tom O'Brien talks in depth to experts from the fields of Political Economy, Politics, Science, Philosophy, Complexity, Mathematics, Music, and the Environment.



      #084 Econophysics with David Zachariah

      This week we are joined by David Zachariah,a Researcher in machine learning in Uppsala University and a political econo-physicist in his spare time. We discuss the seminal work of Machover and Farjoun, 'Laws of Chaos', which introduced the techniques of statistical mechanics to world of political economy. He tells us about the empirical evidence for the predictions made by Machover and Farjoun, and subsequent work in the field, including his own work into understanding the mechanics of the...



      #083 Dialectical Materialism

      This week we talk again to Professor Helena Sheehan about her book ‘Marxism and the Philosophy of Science: A Critical History’. Verso books have just released a new edition, as part of their Radical Thinkers series. You can find the book here: You can also find my new patreon page here:


       2018-02-11  55m

      The Vietnam War & Revolution

      This week we talk to show regular C. Derick Varn about the recently released 10 part documentary series of ‘The Vietnam War’, made by Ken Burns and Lynn Novak. It’s a pretty amazing documentary series, about as balanced and accurate a program about a US war you could expect to find on a mainstream US network. Even more so, considering it was made with money from the Koch Brothers. The idea for the show was to talk about the amazing ability of the Vietnamese people to purposefully act under th...


       2018-01-04  1h8m

      #081 The Syriza Wave

      The podcast is back on track after an extended break, with many new shows lined up and raring to go. This week I am delighted to welcome Professor Helena Sheehan to the show to discuss her most recent book ‘The Syriza Wave: Surging and Crashing with the Greek Left’. She is a professor emeritus at Dublin City University, and the author of many books included 'Marxism and the Philosophy of Science: A Critical History'. The music on this show was: ‘The Order of the Pharaonic Jesters’ by Sun Ra ...


       2017-12-10  45m

      #080 The Russian Game

      This week I am delighted to welcome John Helmer, the man behind the excellent 'Dances With Bears' blog. John is a journalist working in Moscow since 1989, the author of several books on military and politics, and has previously worked as a an adviser to the US President Jimmy Carter and the Greek Prime Minister Andreas Papandreou. We discuss the current state of the Russian economy, the economic war currently being waged against Russia, and the prospects for the geopolitcal and economic...


       2017-07-11  51m

      #079 UK Election Special

      A UK Election Special with regulars C. Derick Varn and Doug Lain, where two yanks slate the election for not ushering in a communist revolution, and one exiled paddy gets all in a fluster for Jeremy, his meme army, and the possibilities for an alien invasion led communist revolution. Enjoy!


       2017-06-09  59m

      #078 MMT & Crisis

      This week I am delighted to welcome back Alexander Douglas to show. Alex is a lecturer in philosophy at St. Andrews University, and is the author of ‘The Philosophy Of Debt’. This show digs deeper into the murky world of understanding the differences and possible syntheses between MTT and Marxist economics. We discuss the problems an inflationary crisis poses to MMT, the stability of MMT and a job guarantee under times of duress, and Kalecki’s class based critique of full employment polic...


       2017-03-28  41m

      #077 Show me the Money Derick!

      This week I am delighted to welcome back C. Derick Varn to show. Derick, a regular guest, last appeared on the show on the Donald Trump Election special. I got quite a bit of feedback on that show, with a number of requests to get Derick back on the pod, to set him straight on MMT. What starts out as a feisty affair, eventually settles into a Marxist love-in, where we end up essentially agreeing about everything, and decide to get married. We also discuss the idea of a Church of Marx,...


       2017-01-24  1h11m

      #076 The City

      This week I am delighted to welcome Tony Norfield to the show to talk about his excellent new book: 'The City: London and the Global Power of Finance'. We discuss the role of Britain in the current geopolitical scene, and how and why finance plays such an important role in the UK economy. We also talk about why neoliberalism is such an overused and misused term, the recent Brexit fiasco, and the rise of China with it's new Silk Road. You can find Tony's book...


       2016-12-30  59m

      #075 The Bittersweet Science Pt.2

      This week we have part two of our discussion with Charles Farrell, where we delve into the murky world of high stakes sports-betting, his appearance in the new documentary film ‘Dirty Games’, and his life-changing meeting with a two headed calf. You can find out more about the film Dirty Games here: And you can find out more about the book ‘The Bittersweet Science’ here: The music on t...


       2016-12-08  36m