New Home Top 5

The United States of Bed Bath & Beyond

By Ben Hunt | 81 Comments

A grown man made a wager. He lost. He made another wager. He lost again. End of story.
– Tony Soprano

This is the story of weak men and rapacious men.
This is the story of Bed Bath & Beyond.
This is the story of America today.

Hunger Games

By Ben Hunt | 31 Comments

You have been told that the odds are ever in your favor. You have been told this for your entire life. More and more, you suspect this is a lie.

You have been told a new story. A brave story. That by banding together and acting as one, you can “democratize” the stock market. Today, as you see the collapsing stock prices of the companies you supported, you suspect that this was a lie, as well.

Men of God in the City of Man is a nine part series about a narrative virus that infected the charismatic and Pentecostal churches in the United States. It isn't a story about Christian Nationalism. It isn't a story about January 6th. It isn't a story about why people voted for Trump. It is a story about a story. It is a story about the language that created a self-sustaining movement defined by its unwavering belief in a fundamentally corrupt electoral system.

Recent Notes

Narrative Derangement Syndrome

By Rusty Guinn

Awareness of narrative is a necessary tool for the politically engaged citizen.

Up to a point.

If obliviousness to narrative is the easiest way to shut off our brains, narrative derangement syndrome is a close second. The citizen must be vigilant against both.

Language is a Virus: Mike Pence edition

By Ben Hunt

This is not a note about Mike Pence.

This is a note about language.

This is a note about how viral words of *therapy* have infected blue tribe brains and viral words of *war and conflict* have infected red tribe brains, words that change the way we see the world and speak to the world. Words that change the way we THINK.

How To Live Forever: The Future Is Shaped By The Art We Make

By Scott Bradlee

A beautiful note by musician/composer Scott Bradlee, of Postmodern Jukebox fame, on the permanence and power of art.

Mythology IS the song.

What will your verse be?

The Economic Perception Model

By Kyla Scanlon

Recession – like beauty – is in the eye of the beholder. Unlike beauty, though, our economic perceptions are far more likely to fall into the self-imposed traps of cynicism and nihilism.

Hagakure: The Secret Wisdom of the Samurai

By Brent Donnelly

This is the Way.

Not just for the samurai but for the trader.

Men of God in the City of Man, Part 8: Zoonosis

By Rusty Guinn

Physical viruses sometimes jump from one species to another.

Narrative viruses sometimes jump from one culture to another.

All it takes is the right virus and a susceptible host.

Men of God in the City of Man, Pt. 7: Mutation

By Rusty Guinn

Narrative viruses are not immune to events in reality world – especially when we have made those narratives part of our identity.

And when a narrative becomes part of our identity, it changes what we need to be true.

Men of God in the City of Man, Pt. 6: Pandemic

By Rusty Guinn

Surprising outcomes in reality world that seem to confirm a narrative often produce explosive growth in its scale.

But also in its scope.

Root, Root, Root For Our Home Team

By Matt Zeigler

“I can’t find Dad.”

In which a stressed-out family makes an active choice to look past the totems of Team Red and Team Blue to find the truth of their Pack.

Men of God in the City of Man, Pt. 5: Epidemic

By Rusty Guinn

Men of God prophesied as early as 2007 that God would make Donald Trump the President of the United States.

Our narrative virus gave these predictions fertile ground to take root.

Men of God in the City of Man, Part 4: Epimemetics

By Rusty Guinn

Every narrative is built on memes that have evolved and adapted to human culture over centuries.

But some environments change the way that those memes are expressed. The effects can be explosive.

The Launch of FiatNews.com

By Rusty Guinn

Today we announce the beta launch of FiatNews.com, an Epsilon Theory sub-site devoted to the measurement of opinion content in news.

Our goal? Giving citizens the ability to know when they’re being told how to think.

Fostering Reality in an Unreal World

By Brent Donnelly

ET contributor Brent Donnelly captures the spirit and the content of our Epsilon Connect conference better than anything we could have done ourselves. Plus you get the slides from our presentations!

Men of God in the City of Man, Part 3: Memetics

By Rusty Guinn

In the same way that genetics governs how physical viruses reproduce within a host, memetics governs how narrative viruses reproduce within a culture.

And the memes which govern our narrative virus are powerful.

Derivative Hoops

By Hubie Brownstone

A synthetic basketball lasted only one year (2007-2008) in the NBA.

But Synthetic Basketball? Oh, that’s here to stay.

When The Best Conference Speaker Is Your Uber Driver (Epsilon Connect 2023 Notes)

By Matt Zeigler

The best speaker at Epsilon Connect 2023 was my Uber driver.

Buckle up, honeys.

The United States of Bed Bath & Beyond

By Ben Hunt

A grown man made a wager. He lost. He made another wager. He lost again. End of story.
– Tony Soprano

This is the story of weak men and rapacious men.
This is the story of Bed Bath & Beyond.
This is the story of America today.

Trading is a lot like Poker

By Brent Donnelly

With the passing of Doyle Brunson, it’s a good day to compare poker to trading.

An AI in the City of God

By Ben Hunt

The City of Man always wins.

The Visigoths always sack Rome. The Vandals always sack Hippo. Augustine always dies in the siege. Bad things always happen to good people … at scale.

Here’s how we use generative AI to flip the script.

Dedollarization is Not a Thing

By Brent Donnelly

People like to throw around the phrase “gradually, then suddenly” as a witty rejoinder to suggest a dedollarization of the world is a nonlinear process that will unfold any day now. That only sounds smart when Hemingway says it.

There is no structural dollar depreciation or dedollarization story. Global usage of the USD is stable and changes in the value of the USD are cyclical.