Conversations with a series of people who have nothing in common except that program host Robert Wright is curious about what they’re thinking.
Biden’s Exit Strategy (Robert Wright & Mickey Kaus)
Mickey’s plan to install Nancy Pelosi in the Oval Office ... Who can convince Biden not to run for reelection? ... Mickey’s comeback strategy for Biden ... Bob takes the Parrot Room into untested waters ... Is Boris Johnson in trouble over Covid protocols or policy failures? ... Are seditious conspiracy charges warranted for the Oath Keepers? What about Trump? ... Mickey: The Supreme Court got the vaccine mandate ruling wrong ... Bob: It will be bad if Russia invades Ukraine, but it won’t threaten U.S. interests ... Bob: China doesn’t have a monopoly on repressive software exports ... Parrot Room preview: Bob takes a Covid test, Mickey catches Bob in an almost-devastating contradiction, Bob tries to catch Robert Malone in a contradiction, Sidney Poitier, Bob Saget, Terry Teachout, Bob v. Andrew Sullivan, Don’t Look Up, Ruth Barrett sues the Atlantic, Bari Weiss on Hollywood, David Remnick claims we’re suspended between democracy and authoritarianism, Mickey has second thoughts about donating to the Salvation Army, Matt Ridley on the origin of Covid, a Jeffrey Epstein update, Maya Angelou gets a quarter, and what’s up with Leon Wieseltier’s journal? ...
How to Talk about Trans Issues (Robert Wright & Agustín Fuentes)
Bob’s early encounters with LGBTQ visibility and invisibility ... How the pros talk about gender ... The uses of “queer” ... A writerly defense of the singular “they” ... Agustín: We need a national conversation about the trans bathroom issue ... What was the intent behind J.K. Rowling’s controversial tweets? ... What counts as an “advantage” when trans women play women’s sports? ...
Biden’s Long, Slow Pivot toward Normalcy (Robert Wright & Mickey Kaus)
Mickey: Biden is too scared of his base ... Bob: Biden privileged loyalty over competence in his staffing ... Are January 6 rioters getting off too easy? ... How can an election get overturned? Bob and Mickey count the ways ... Bob’s January 6 epiphany ... Where’s the love for Sherrod Brown and Cory Booker? ... Can Omicron save us from Delta? ... Is it time to “pivot to normalcy” yet? ... Parrot Room preview: Robert Malone on Joe Rogan, the Ghislaine Maxwell verdict in jeopardy, does everyone want to date AOC, Ben Smith’s new publication, Leonard Bernstein on the Beatles, Nick Kristof may not even reach the Kaus threshold in Oregon, Beverly Hills criminals, what’s wrong with “gaslighting,” Betty White, Peter Bogdanovich, Novak Djokovic runs afoul of Aussie vaccination policy, Greg Gutfeld gets reprimanded, and is the great David Remnick takedown upon us? ...
Life and Science (Robert Wright & Edward O. Wilson)
Has sociobiology been vindicated? ... Why the term ‘evolutionary psychology’ survived ... Is there room for free will in a modern scientific world view? ... Science, religion, and “provisional deism” ... Is the “theory of intelligent design” even a theory? ... How religion informed Ed's approach to science ... Facing death without hope of an afterlife ... How Ed reconciled work and family ...
Bob and Mickey’s New Year's Eve Awards Gala (Robert Wright & Mickey Kaus)
Could a bad actor engineer a Delta-Omicron hybrid? ... Bob: Mainstream coverage of Omicron’s dangers has been misleading ... Bob’s three 2022 Covid predictions ... How do decisions get made inside Biden’s White House? ... Bob and Mickey’s Heroes of the Year ... Bob and Mickey’s Villain of the Year ... The Best and Worst Ideas of the Year ... The Year’s Biggest Surprise ... Ditching the metaverse, Pelosi persisting, and other 2022 predictions ... Parrot Room preview: words and concepts that need to go in 2022, Bob and Mickey reveal what “undernews” is, Biden’s cognitive status, 2021’s least deserving media attention-getter, the shortage of good hit pieces, who’s cruising for a bruising in 2022, Bob and Mickey’s worst opinions of 2021, Ghislaine Maxwell convicted, remembering E.O. Wilson, The Expanse, Bob defends his hair, Mickey defends his LSD abstinence, Pacific Crucible, the documentary Ascension, and more reasons why Ron Brownstein’s “coalition of the ascendent” is the worst idea of the decade ...
The Year in US Foreign Policy (Robert Wright, Daniel Larison, Kelley B. Vlahos)
Why Bob loves Daniel’s Substack Eunomia and Kelley’s work at Responsible Statecraft ... Daniel and Kelley on how their conservative roots led them to anti-Blobism ... Daniel makes a conservative case for supporting international law ... Trump 2.0? Daniel and Kelley discuss Biden’s foreign policy failures ... Bob wonders why Biden didn’t try harder to revive the Iran nuclear deal ... The US is starving Afghans in the name of humanity ... Credit where due: Biden got us out of Afghanistan ... How the military-industrial complex helped create the Russia-Ukraine crisis ... Assessing China’s internal abuses and external ambitions – and how to respond ...
A show you need in your podcast rotation.
Bob is an incisive, non-tribal thinker and curious, funny interlocutor - much needed in these weird times
Andrew sends me
Andrew Sullivan sends me here for wright v kause. Nice one. Like the angle and entertainment.