SimonCast is keeping the legacy of Senator Paul Simon alive through wide-ranging, civil conversations. Host John Shaw, director of the Paul Simon Public Policy Institute at Southern Illinois University Carbondale, sits down with elected officials, historians, journalists, policy analysts, military experts, economists, authors, philanthropists, and others to learn about their lives and careers and elicit their perspectives on our changing world.
SimonCast is the official podcast of the Paul Simon Public Policy Institute at Southern Illinois University Carbondale, a nonprofit, nonpartisan think tank working for better politics and smarter government and preparing students for careers in public service.
Produced in collaboration with WSIU Public Radio. Hosted by John Shaw. Produced and edited by Alee Quick. Web support by JC Dart. Visit paulsimoninstitute.org/podcasts or wsiu.org/podcast/simoncast for more information and a complete archive of the show. Support our show at paulsimoninstitute.org/support.
John Shaw: Hearing the perspectives of interesting, compelling people – Episode 40
John Shaw, director of the Paul Simon Public Policy Institute and host of Simoncast, becomes the focus of today's interview with Alee Quick.
Jennifer Close: No one knows how to write a novel until you do it – Episode 39
Novelist Jennifer Close talks about the long and winding novel-writing process, how she encourages young writers as an instructor, and why politics snuck into her latest novel
Tanisha Fazal: Mitigating war's worst effects – Episode 38
Tanisha Fazal, a professor of political science at the University of Minnesota, talks about why she studies war — "my motivation is usually about trying to mitigate war's worst effects," she says — why we should be thinking differently about the costs of war, and what makes Russia's war in Ukraine unique.
Peter Goodman: Income inequality is a powerful threat to democracy – Episode 37
New York Times global economic correspondent Peter S. Goodman talks about his book "Davos Man: How the Billionaires Devoured the World," which explores the contradictions on display at the World Economic Forum, why economic inequality is a powerful threat to democracy, and how billionaires exploited the COVID-19 pandemic. He also tells us how he crafts fascinating stories about everyday people to explain big ideas like supply chain disruptions and global shipping delays.
Ray Long: The triumphs and travails of Michael Madigan – Episode 36
Chicago Tribune investigative reporter Ray Long talks about his book "The House That Madigan Built," which covers the long and powerful career of former Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan and serves as an unofficial primer on Illinois politics. We also discuss the former speaker's fall from grace and the federal racketeering charges he now faces.
Melinda Henneberger: Writing about injustice in Kansas City – Episode 35
Journalist Melinda Henneberger talks about her work at the Kansas City Star, including a series of columns about a retired police officer who was accused of rape, for which she won the 2022 Pulitzer Prize for commentary.