57 episodes

Produced by The New Republic and hosted by literary editor Laura Marsh and staff writer Alex Pareene, The Politics of Everything is a podcast about the intersection of culture, politics, and media.

The Politics of Everything Talkhouse

    • News
    • 4.8 • 12 Ratings

Produced by The New Republic and hosted by literary editor Laura Marsh and staff writer Alex Pareene, The Politics of Everything is a podcast about the intersection of culture, politics, and media.

    How Disney World Struck a Deal With Florida to Govern Itself

    How Disney World Struck a Deal With Florida to Govern Itself

    When you’re in Disney World, lost in the eerily self-contained universe of its vast theme parks, it can be hard to see that you’re also in the Reedy Creek Improvement District, a special governance zone that gives the Walt Disney Company powers very like those of a county government. In April, Governor Ron DeSantis and the Florida legislature passed a bill that would do away with Reedy Creek. But dissolving the district may result in a host of unfortunate consequences. On episode 48 of The Politics of Everything, hosts Laura Marsh and Alex Pareene discuss the surprising past and uncertain future of Disney’s Reedy Creek with Jacob Schumer, a lawyer in Maitland, Florida, and Richard Foglesong, a historian and political scientist and the author of Married to the Mouse: Walt Disney World and Orlando.
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    • 30 min
    So Long, DDT. See You Around Soon.

    So Long, DDT. See You Around Soon.

    In the 1940s, the pesticide DDT exploded in popularity. Ignoring warnings that it might poison the environment and endanger human health, corporations and governments sprayed the chemical for decades—until countries finally began outlawing its use, for precisely those reasons. On episode 47 of The Politics of Everything, hosts Laura Marsh and Alex Pareene talk with Elena Conis, the author of How to Sell a Poison: The Rise, Fall, and Toxic Return of DDT. They explore how corporations dismissed the dangers of DDT to protect profits, how pioneering environmentalists like Rachel Carson fought back, and why harmful chemicals may cause problems long after their usage has ceased.
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    • 32 min
    More Reasons to Hate the Dentist (Rerun)

    More Reasons to Hate the Dentist (Rerun)

    Few people enjoy going to the dentist. But generally speaking, we don’t question what’s done to us when we’re there. On episode 33 of The Politics of Everything, Laura Marsh and Alex Pareene speak with Ferris Jabr and Daryl Austin, two journalists who have investigated dental overtreatment and fraud. It’s impossible to say exactly how widespread gratuitous treatment is—and it can even be difficult to know what necessary treatment is. Because of a lack of reliable research into dentistry practices, because the field operates with minimal oversight and regulation, and because of high costs and dwindling insurance reimbursements, there may be a real incentive to “creatively diagnose,” as one dentist put it. In other words: Get a second opinion. Then get a third.
    This episode originally aired on July 21, 2021.
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    • 29 min
    The Unlikely Success of Permanent Daylight Saving Time

    The Unlikely Success of Permanent Daylight Saving Time

    When the Sunshine Protection Act sailed through the Senate this March, everyone was shocked. In a deadlocked Congress that has passed almost nothing, how did a bill about daylight saving time, of all things, make it through? On episode 46 of The Politics of Everything, hosts Laura Marsh and Alex Pareene explore what exactly happened in the upper chamber and look into America’s chaotic history of changing the clocks. What does DST’s success demonstrate about how our country does politics? Guests include the political scientist Ed Burmila, who’s previously appeared on the show, and the journalist Paul McLeod, who wrote about DST for Buzzfeed News.
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    • 37 min
    The End of Russia Today

    The End of Russia Today

    It was easy to make fun of RT America. Funded by the Russian government, the English-language news channel seemed to worry little about journalistic standards and often engaged in bald propaganda. Now that it’s gone, it’s hard to mourn it. But the closure of RT America also signals the end of an era of more open communication between Russia and the United States. On episode 45 of The Politics of Everything, hosts Laura Marsh and Alex Pareene discuss the aims of Russia’s experiment in American news, the grim transformation of Russian politics over the past two decades, and what’s to come. Guests include Ben Judah, the author of Fragile Empire: How Russia Fell In and Out of Love with Vladimir Putin, and Peter Pomerantsev, the author of This Is Not Propaganda: Adventures in the War Against Reality.  
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    • 33 min
    Special Report: Ambassador Emily Haber on Germany’s Break With Russia

    Special Report: Ambassador Emily Haber on Germany’s Break With Russia

    Last weekend, new German Chancellor Olaf Scholz gave a powerful speech announcing major changes in German policy in light of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine. 


    “With the invasion of Ukraine, we are in a new era,” Scholz said. He announced that Germany would take a strong role in checking Russia’s aggression through funding its military and increasing defense spending. He also announced that Germany would learn to live without the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline that it had worked for years with Russia to complete and bring into service. In Berlin that day, hundreds of thousands gathered in the Tiergarten to protest the invasion and support Germany’s stand against Putin’s actions. 


    Emily Haber is a German diplomat who has served as the German ambassador to the U.S. since 2018. But she actually spent much of her diplomatic career based in the Soviet Union and post-Soviet Russia. So she’s deeply familiar with the region’s painful history—including, as she readily acknowledges, the role played by her own country. 


    TNR editor Michael Tomasky spoke with Haber on Friday, March 4. She spoke about the factors behind Scholz’s speech and Germany’s change of heart, debate within Germany about the policy moves, and Russia’s past and Putin’s ambitions. 

     
    Watch Tomasky’s conversation with Haber
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    • 30 min

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5
12 Ratings

12 Ratings

red-on ,

Always interesting

The topics, guests, hosts and format of this podcast make it every time a worthwhile choice.

swansong2000 ,

Very good

‘nuff said

Alek M ,

Great mix of serious and droll

I think Pareene is a great audio (and prose) presence. Glad he’s finally found a worthy show and co-host.

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