183 episodes

Beg to Differ is a weekly roundtable podcast brought to you by http://TheBulwark.com. Host Mona Charen is joined by Linda Chavez of the Niskanen Center, Bill Galston of the Brookings Institution, and Damon Linker, who writes "Notes from the Middleground," to discuss the news of the week in a respectful, rational forum.

Beg to Differ with Mona Charen The Bulwark

    • News
    • 4.6 • 1.2K Ratings

Beg to Differ is a weekly roundtable podcast brought to you by http://TheBulwark.com. Host Mona Charen is joined by Linda Chavez of the Niskanen Center, Bill Galston of the Brookings Institution, and Damon Linker, who writes "Notes from the Middleground," to discuss the news of the week in a respectful, rational forum.

    An Open Convention Could be Great for Democracy

    An Open Convention Could be Great for Democracy

    A.B. Stoddard joins to discuss Biden's intransigence, the Democratic party's next moves, the pros and cons of anointing Harris, and more.

    Highlights / Lowlights

    A.B.: Trump is Planning for a Landslide Win by Tim Alberta in The Atlantic
    and her 2022 item: Why (and How) Biden Should Decline to Run Again

    Mona: What Lessons Do the Stunning Results of the French Election Offer? (New Yorker)

    Bill: Amid Doubts About Biden’s Mental Sharpness, Trump Leads Presidential Race (Pew)

    Damon: Time to Go, Joe, by Marc Leibovich in The Atlantic

    Linda: A Better Approach to Race in Medicine by Amy F.S. Lutz in Persuasion
    For What It's Worth by Linda Chavez

    • 1 hr 14 min
    Courting Disaster

    Courting Disaster

    Former Rep Adam Kinzinger joins the group (plus Chris Cillizza) to discuss the Court's worst ruling since Korematsu, opening the door to God know what if Trump wins. Also, what would an open convention look like?

    Highlights / Lowlights:

    Mona: Are We in ‘Soviet America’? Not Even Close. By Cathy Young, The Bulwark

    Linda: Her trip to Israel, where she was recording.

    Adam: Cara Mund, a sincere Never Trump candidate who ran (and lost, but got 19%!) in North Dakota. Adam joined her on her radio show to discuss the state of the Republican Party

    Chris: Gabe Fleisher's Wake up to Politics. Gabe has been writing about politics since he was a child and is a politics prodigy. (Substack here)

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    • 1 hr 3 min
    The Most Consequential Failure of Recent Times

    The Most Consequential Failure of Recent Times

    The Atlantic's David Frum joins to discuss the debate debacle and what comes next? Can Biden be persuaded to drop out? Also, a look at two Supreme Court cases.

    Highlights / Lowlights 

    David: Slain Gazan named as Doctors Without Borders staffer was Islamic Jihad rocket maker (Times of Israel)

    Mona: Gaza Chief’s Brutal Calculation: Civilian Bloodshed Will Help Hamas (WSJ)

    Linda: 4.1 million migrants: Where they’re from, where they live in the U.S. (WaPo)

    Bill: France is facing an election like no other. Here’s how it works and what comes next. (AP)

    Damon: Same-Sex Relations, Marriage Still Supported by Most in U.S. (Gallup)

    • 1 hr 14 min
    Attack of the Phones

    Attack of the Phones

    Will Saletan guest hosts as Tom Edsall joins the panel to discuss rising political polarization, Biden’s latest moves on immigration, and the crackdown on social media and kids using smartphones.

    Highlights / Lowlights

    Tom: The book 'Wolves of K Street' by Brody and Luke Mullins and a story from 
    his weekly poker game.

    Linda: Experts Handicap the Trump-Biden Debate (Karl Rove, WSJ)

    Damon: No, I Don't Want to Protest (Pamela Paul, NYT)
    Why Activists Keep Failing the Causes That Fire Them Up (Sarah Isgur, NYT)

    Bill: The Return of Peace Through Strength by Robert C. O'Brien (Foreign Affairs)
    Biden and Trump tied in the Emerson Poll in... Minnesota.

    Will: Louisiana Requires All Public Classrooms to Display Ten Commandments (NYT)
    Bibi's shameful Biden attack video

    • 1 hr 8 min
    The 'Absurdly Normal' President

    The 'Absurdly Normal' President

    Tom Nichols joins the panel to discuss the rise of the right in Europe (and here), the Hunter Biden verdict, and the Israel hostage rescue.

    Mona: The Big Lie's Bad, Very Bad Week by Charlie Sykes.

    Linda: No, You Don’t Have the Power to Stop Climate Change by Quico Toro (Persuasion)

    Bill: American journalist Evan Gershkovich to stand trial on espionage charges in Russia (NPR)

    Damon: John Ganz's new book "When the Clock Broke: Con Men, Conspiracists, and How America Cracked Up in the Early 1990s"

    Tom: John Bolton going through exhaustive detail about Trump's manifest unfitness and then saying he won't vote for Biden on MSNBC.

    Tom's referenced item "The Jimmy Clean Hands Election" at The Atlantic.

    • 1 hr 18 min
    The 'Rally Round the Criminal' Effect

    The 'Rally Round the Criminal' Effect

    Sasha Havlicek and Philip Bump join the panel to discuss online disinformation, the GOP reaction to Trump guilty verdict, and the Fauci follies in Congress.

    highlights / lowlights

    Sasha- The 80th Anniversary of D-Day at Normandy American Cemetery.

    Damon- The Tower and the Sewer by Mark Lilla (NYR)

    Linda- This Catholic leader shelters migrants. Texas says he runs ‘stash houses.’ (WaPo)

    Philip- Two years later, Dinesh D'Souza's obvious misinformation is finally taken down

    Mona- World War II Veterans meeting with Ukrainian President Zelensky at Normandy and "The Biggest War on the Small Screen" by Benjamin Parker (Bulwark)

    • 1 hr 15 min

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5
1.2K Ratings

1.2K Ratings

Bodenhamers ,

Because Mona is fantastic

I have followed Mona Charen since she wrote for National Review. Completely fearless, savy, and quick, she hosts a fantastic podcast. ¡Mona 2024!

My only suggestion: tamp the brakes on all the Mika Brzezinski-like sighs.

Kinda - no very - annoying.

THF Seattle ,

Obey in advance

The Gerald Ford Presidential Foundation is doing exactly what one should not do when facing the threat from a tyrant. The board showed great cowardice by declining to honor Liz Cheney because it is afraid of retribution from Trump if he returns to power.

Great conversation with David Hume Kennerly.

jnnyg65 ,

A Convivial Convention of Chaotic Chicken Littles

I turned off the current show at the first commercial break today and realized that incessantly hysterical fear mongering is detrimental for everyone’s mental health.

BTD holds itself out to the public as “a political roundtable where guests discuss news of the week in a respectful, rational forum. Instead, what I heard was the opposite.

The hosts never consider that The Justices ruling might be an attempt to “Trump Proof” the executive branch in case he gets reelected. Trump already did “the thing” and permitting his prosecution would not change that. The real prevailing danger is that if reelected, Trump prosecutes Biden & Co for high crimes against The Republic. This decision effectively mitigates that outcome.

One could argue this opinion rests on a set of consequentialist assumptions taken from the Federalist Papers before the Constitution was ratified. Namely that our nation needs an energetic executive branch to lead our Democracy and that the dangers of prosecution outweigh any benefit associated with ensuring that presidents don’t break the law. Perhaps the justices are leaving the ultimate choice not to the courts, but to the American people through the election process, just as The Founders envisioned.

If you want to hear balanced and intelligent discourse in such matters, might I suggest listening instead to Divided Argument, Advisory Opinions, or even the liberal-biased Strict Scrutiny, as they attempt to present a rational dialogue between dissenting adults but without the drama.

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