589 episodes

In politics, you’re often told not to get lost in the weeds. But we love the weeds! That’s where politics becomes policy – the stuff that shapes our lives. Every Tuesday and Friday, Dylan Matthews, Jerusalem Demsas, German Lopez, Dara Lind, and other voices dig into the weeds on important national issues, including healthcare immigration, and housing.
Produced by Vox and the Vox Media Podcast Network.

The Weeds Vox

    • News
    • 5.0 • 1 Rating

In politics, you’re often told not to get lost in the weeds. But we love the weeds! That’s where politics becomes policy – the stuff that shapes our lives. Every Tuesday and Friday, Dylan Matthews, Jerusalem Demsas, German Lopez, Dara Lind, and other voices dig into the weeds on important national issues, including healthcare immigration, and housing.
Produced by Vox and the Vox Media Podcast Network.

    America’s Public Health Experiment: The testing failure

    America’s Public Health Experiment: The testing failure

    German talks with Dr. Neeraj Sood, director of the Covid Initiative at the University of Southern California’s Schaeffer Center for Health Policy and Economics, about the US’s many failures on Covid-19 testing. They dive into the country’s original mistakes, then go into how lack of testing continues to plague America’s pandemic response. They conclude with what this means not just for the current pandemic but for future public health crises, too.

    Host:
    German Lopez (@germanrlopez), senior correspondent, Vox

    Credits:
    Sofi LaLonde, producer & engineer
    Libby Nelson, editorial adviser
    Amber Hall, deputy editorial director of talk podcasts

    Sign up for The Weeds newsletter each Friday: vox.com/weedsletter 

    Want to support The Weeds? Please consider making a donation to Vox: bit.ly/givepodcasts
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    • 41 min
    Defund the police?

    Defund the police?

    German, Jerusalem, and Dylan talk about an idea that has come to dominate national discussions of policing: defunding the police. They walk through the pros and cons of the idea as a policy proposal, then discuss how it’s affecting the politics of criminal justice. Finally, they discuss new research on discrimination against Black and Latinx renters.

    References:

    German’s article on police research

    German’s article on guns and policing

    Austin’s defunding journey

    Study finding more police mean fewer homicides

    Study finding London police closures led to more violent crime

    Expert survey finding most say more police funding would mean public safety improvements

    2020's protests led to state policing reforms, but not defunding

    Pew on public opinion toward defunding the police

    Rogé Karma interviews Patrick Sharkey on The Ezra Klein Show

    White paper: “Racial Discrimination and Housing Outcomes in the United States Rental Market”

    Jerusalem's article on discrimination against housing voucher recipients

    Hosts:
    Dylan Matthews (@dylanmatt), senior correspondent, Vox
    German Lopez (@germanrlopez), senior correspondent, Vox
    Jerusalem Demsas (@jerusalemdemsas), policy reporter, Vox


    Credits:
    Sofi LaLonde, producer & engineer
    Libby Nelson, editorial adviser
    Amber Hall, deputy editorial director of talk podcasts

    Sign up for The Weeds newsletter each Friday: vox.com/weedsletter 

    Want to support The Weeds? Please consider making a donation to Vox: bit.ly/givepodcasts
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

    • 1 hr 3 min
    Biden’s $3.40 a gallon problem

    Biden’s $3.40 a gallon problem

    Dylan, Jerusalem, and Dara talk about the specific kind of inflation that’s roiling American politics: the heightened price of gas. They discuss how and why gas prices have shot up in recent months, and what it means for Joe Biden’s popularity and presidency. Plus, a white paper about the most important labor market of all: the global market for soccer (excuse me, football) players.

    References:

    Biden’s strongly worded letter on gas prices

    Biden is tapping the strategic petroleum reserve

    Reuters on why gas prices are high

    Why OPEC isn’t lowering gas prices

    Eric Levitz on what Biden should do to combat inflation

    The correlation between Biden’s popularity and gas prices

    Lasting Impacts of a Gas Price Shock during Teenage Driving Years

    Voters who drive a lot are likelier to vote based on gas prices

    Presidential approval is historically strongly affected by gas and food prices (and not due to media coverage)

    The collapse of New England’s Transportation and Climate Initiative

    White paper: “Does Employing Skilled Immigrants Enhance Competitive Performance? Evidence from European Football Clubs”

    Mo Salah reduced prejudice

    Newcastle Football Club controversy


    Hosts:
    Dylan Matthews (@dylanmatt), senior correspondent, Vox
    Jerusalem Demsas (@jerusalemdemsas), policy reporter, Vox
    Dara Lind (@dlind), immigration reporter, ProPublica


    Credits:
    Sofi LaLonde, producer & engineer
    Libby Nelson, editorial adviser
    Amber Hall, deputy editorial director of talk podcasts

    Sign up for The Weeds newsletter each Friday: vox.com/weedsletter 

    Want to support The Weeds? Please consider making a donation to Vox: bit.ly/givepodcasts
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

    • 51 min
    Taxing Back Better

    Taxing Back Better

    Dylan talks to Chye-Ching Huang, the executive director of the Tax Law Center at NYU Law, about the many, many, many tax provisions in Democrats’ Build Back Better package. First they dive into the new tax benefits in the bill, from the expanded child tax credit to the $7,500 credit for electric cars. Then they talk about how the bill raises money through taxes, especially through higher taxes on high-income people and corporations. Then they talk about the future of taxes, like what will happen when most of the Trump tax cuts expire at the end of 2025. 

    References:

    A breakdown of the components of the House Build Back Better bill

    Whose taxes Build Back Better would raise and cut

    Huang’s testimony to Congress on Build Back Better

    UChicago and Columbia researchers on the Child Tax Credit and employment

    The health care tax credit provisions of Build Back Better, explained

    The clean energy tax credits would help cut emissions by 40-50 percent

    The bill’s minimum corporate tax plan and millionaire surtax, explained

    How rebuilding the IRS would boost tax compliance

    Host:
    Dylan Matthews (@dylanmatt), senior correspondent, Vox

    Credits:
    Sofi LaLonde, producer & engineer
    Libby Nelson, editorial adviser
    Amber Hall, deputy editorial director of talk podcasts

    Sign up for The Weeds newsletter each Friday: vox.com/weedsletter 

    Want to support The Weeds? Please consider making a donation to Vox: bit.ly/givepodcasts
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

    • 49 min
    How does the pandemic end?

    How does the pandemic end?

    Now that nearly 60 percent of the US population is fully vaccinated, Dylan, German, and Jerusalem discuss potential exit strategies for policies such as mask mandates and mandatory quarantines. They also talk about what an “endemic” Covid might be like in the US and which aspects of pandemic life might stick around. Finally, they discuss how better access to mental health care could affect crime.

    References:
    Mandate the vaccines, not masks

    The case for ending school mask mandates at the end of the year

    The case for keeping mask mandates

    Emily Oster on kids and masks

    The Black Death and its Consequences for the Jewish Community in Tàrrega

    Against “deep cleaning” surfaces for COVID

    Vaccines are coming along for children under 5

    Do booster shots make vaccinating the world harder?

    White paper of the week: Better access to outpatient psychiatric care reduces crime

    Cognitive-behavioral therapy reduced crime in Liberia

    Hosts:
    Dylan Matthews (@dylanmatt), senior correspondent, Vox
    German Lopez (@germanrlopez), senior correspondent, Vox
    Jerusalem Demsas (@jerusalemdemsas), policy reporter, Vox

    Credits:
    Sofi LaLonde, producer & engineer
    Libby Nelson, editorial adviser
    Amber Hall, deputy editorial director of talk podcasts

    Sign up for The Weeds newsletter each Friday: vox.com/weedsletter

    Want to support The Weeds? Please consider making a donation to Vox: bit.ly/givepodcasts
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

    • 59 min
    Reshaping America’s cities

    Reshaping America’s cities

    Vox policy reporter Jerusalem Demsas talks with the Atlantic’s Derek Thompson (@DKThomp) about how the future of remote work could reshape America’s cities, upend US labor markets, and cause fundamental shifts in where people live. Derek and Jerusalem discuss how it would take only a small percentage of remote workers to impact the urban geography of the US — with complicated implications for electoral politics and the climate.

    References:

    Jerusalem's Q&A with housing economist Enrico Moretti on the future of remote work: Remote work is overrated. America’s supercities are coming back.

    Superstar Cities Are in Trouble [The Atlantic]

    How America Lost Its Mojo [The Atlantic]

    The Coronavirus is Creating a Huge, Successful Experiment in Working From Home [The Atlantic]

    Where Americans Are Moving [Bloomberg]

    Could a Heartland visa help struggling regions? [Economic Innovation Group]

    Host:
    Jerusalem Demsas (@jerusalemdemsas), policy reporter, Vox

    Credits:
    Sofi LaLonde, producer & engineer
    Libby Nelson, editorial adviser
    Amber Hall, deputy editorial director of talk podcasts

    Sign up for The Weeds newsletter each Friday: vox.com/weedsletter

    Want to support The Weeds? Please consider making a donation to Vox: bit.ly/givepodcasts
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

    • 58 min

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