Every week Chris Hayes asks the big questions that keep him up at night. How do we make sense of this unprecedented moment in world history? Why is this (all) happening?
This podcast starts to answer these questions. Writers, experts, and thinkers who are also trying to get to the bottom of them join Chris to break it all down and help him get a better night’s rest. “Why is this Happening?” is presented by MSNBC and NBCNews Think.
Performance in a Pandemic with Ani DiFranco (2021)
Chris is on vacation this week, so WITHpod is republishing another favorite episode.
From the original description:
Grammy award-winning musician Ani DiFranco joins for an enlightening conversation about her creative process, how she’s pivoted during the pandemic, and what’s enabled her to keep making music after so many years.
The Future of Entertainment with Seth Meyers (2022)
Chris is on vacation this week, so WITHpod is sharing a favorite recent episode from our inaugural “Future Of” series. From the original description:
The ways we consume media have changed tremendously over the last decade. Shows with live audiences, perhaps more than any other type of program, had to pivot virtually almost overnight when the pandemic started. That certainly was the case with “Late Night with Seth Meyers.” As viewers have more sources for entertainment now than ever before, the show had to find creative ways to keep fans engaged and entertained. Lucky for us, Seth Meyers, the affable host of the show bearing his name, joins to discuss what he thinks about the future of entertainment and comedy, why he felt closer to the audience while hosting from home and more.
‘Allow Me to Retort’ with Elie Mystal (2022)
Chris is on vacation this week, so we're sharing a favorite recent episode. Please note that this conversation was originally recorded in May of 2022 before the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade. From the original description:
“Forced labor is already unconstitutional and what is forced birth other than forcing a woman to labor against her will?” remarked Elie Mystal, a justice correspondent at The Nation, following the leak of a Supreme Court draft opinion that would overturn Roe v. Wade. Mystal is also author of the New York Times bestselling book, “Allow Me to Retort: A Black Guy’s Guide to the Constitution,” in which he points out problems with-and solutions for- reversing systemic issues created by America’s founding document. He joins WITHpod to discuss his objections to conservative interpretations of rights, abortion rights law, changes he’d make to the Constitution, and revisions he’d make to the structure of the Supreme Court and more.
‘The G Word’ with Adam Conover
From GPS systems, to weather forecasts, to the food we consume, the U.S. government plays a role in virtually every facet of our lives. What happens behind the scenes and how do these background actions impact our lives, good and bad? Seeking the answers to those questions is the project of “The G Word,” a Netflix miniseries executive produced by former President Barack Obama and hosted by Adam Conover. Loosely based off of “The Fifth Risk: Undoing Democracy” by Michael Lewis, the six-part documentary explores the triumphs and failures of the government and how we might be able to change it. Conover joins WITHpod to discuss his creative process, maintaining editorial independence while working with Obama, his experiences getting rarely granted insider access of federal agencies and more.
‘His Name is George Floyd’ with Robert Samuels
It’s been a little over two years since the tragic murder of George Floyd, and what was arguably the largest civil rights protests in United States history. Since May of 2020, hashtags and icons have been used to commemorate him, but he was so much more than a face on a mural. He was a father, partner, athlete, and friend who constantly strove for a better life, as chronicled in “His Name Is George Floyd: One Man’s Life and the Struggle for Racial Justice.” The book builds off of a series in The Washington Post in October 2020 called “George Floyd's America.” Robert Samuels, a national enterprise reporter at The Washington Post, co-wrote the book with colleague Toluse Olorunnipa, a political enterprise and investigations reporter. Samuels joins WITHpod for a personal look at how systemic racism impacted Floyd’s life, his family’s social mobility, his legacy and more. Samuels also discusses how even despite all of the seemingly endless challenges Floyd faced, he still held on to his vision for a better world.
The Most Conservative Supreme Court in Nearly a Century with Jamal Greene
The Supreme Court currently has a majority of conservative judges, and it’s the most conservative court since the New Deal Era. The Court made more conservative decisions this term than at any time since 1931, according to statistics compiled by professors Lee Epstein of Washington University in St. Louis and Keven Quinn of the University of Michigan. The recent decision to overturn Roe v. Wade has caused some to speculate that this may be the beginning of a movement to overturn other landmark liberal decisions like Obergfell v. Hodges. Jamal Greene is the Dwight Professor of Law at Columbia Law School and author of “How Rights Went Wrong: Why Our Obsession with Rights Is Tearing America Apart.” He joins WITHpod to discuss what methodology Supreme Court justices use to arrive at their decisions, whether there is political motivation, and just how strictly they interpret the Constitution.
Why Is This Happening?
I’m turning into a regular listener. Fave episodes thus far: Ta-nehisi Coates, Anna Deveare Smith, Casey Johnston (that was a surprise—a very engaging discussion that is making me reconsider lifting weights), Jamie Raskin. The Lafayette episode with Mike Duncan turned me on to his enormous podcast—currently knew-deep in the French Revolution. Much looking forward to the Reconstruction mini-series! You’re an excellent interviewer—your curiosity shines through and keeps you listening.
Valuable show, Chris
I especially enjoyed your recent episode, ‘Ask a swole woman’ on the joy that comes from getting strong, and about keeping fitness easy and not so freaking serious like it’s usually presented. Btw I’ve totally noticed you change on tv. Your face has angularity now, you move fluidly on your new set (kudos to the set designer), and your suits fit great.
Canadians should listen
Love the deep dive into important topics. Thank you!