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The Ezra Klein Show

The Ezra Klein Show

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Ezra Klein brings you far-reaching conversations about hard problems, big ideas, illuminating theories, and cutting-edge research. Want to know how Stacey Abrams feels about identity politics? How Hasan Minhaj is reinventing political comedy? The plans behind Elizabeth Warren’s plans? How Michael Lewis reads minds? This is the podcast for you. Produced by Vox and the Vox Media Podcast Network.
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After creating and running Parks and Recreation and writing for The Office, Michael Schur decided he wanted to create a sitcom about one of the most fundamental questions of human existence: What does it mean to be a good person? That’s how The Good Place was born.Soon into the show’s writing, Schur realized he was in way over his head. The question of human morality is one of the most complicated and hotly contested subjects of all time. He needed someone to help him out. So, he recruited Pamela Hieronymi, a professor at UCLA specializing in the subjects of moral responsibility, psychology, and free will, to join the show as a “consulting philosopher” — surely a first in sitcom history.I wanted to bring Shur and Hieronymi onto the show because The Good Place should not exist. Moral philosophy is traditionally the stuff of obscure academic journals and undergraduate seminars, not popular television. Yet, three-and-a-half seasons on, The Good Place is not only one of the funniest sitcoms on TV, it has popularized academic philosophy in an unprecedented fashion and put forward its own highly sophisticated moral vision.This is a conversation about how and why The Good Place exists and what it reflects about The Odd Place in which we actually live. Unlike a lot of conversations about moral philosophy, this one is a lot of fun.References: Dylan Matthews' brilliant profile on The Good Place Dylan Matthews on why he donated his kidney Book recommendations: Michael Schur:Ordinary Vices by Judith N. ShklarThe Spy Who Came in from the Cold by John le Carré Beloved by Toni MorrisonPamela Hieronymi:What We Owe to Each Other by T.M. ScanlonBeing and Nothingness by Jean-Paul SartreMortal Questions by Thomas NagelMy book is available for pre-order! You can find it at www.EzraKlein.com.Submit questions for our upcoming "Ask Me Anything" at ezrakleinshow@vox.comYou can subscribe to Ezra's new podcast Impeachment, explained on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, Overcast, Pocket Casts, or your favorite podcast app. Credits:Producer and Editor - Jeff GeldResearcher - Roge KarmaEngineer - Cynthia GilLearn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
For most of his life, Wayne Hsiung was a typical overachiever. He attended the University of Chicago, started his PhD in Economics, became a law professor at Northwestern, was mentored by Cass Sunstein. But then, something snapped. In the midst of a deep, overwhelming depression, Hsiung visited a slaughterhouse and was radicalized by the immense suffering he saw. He now faces decades in prison for rescuing sick, injured animals from slaughterhouses.Hsiung is the founder of Direct Action Everywhere, an organization best known for conducting public, open rescues of animals too sick for slaughter. These rescues are, in many cases, illegal, and Hsiung and his fellow activists are risking years of imprisonment. But the sacrifice is the point: Hsiung and his colleagues are trying to highlight the sickness of a society that criminalizes doing what any child would recognize as the right thing to do.In our conversation, I wanted to understand a simple question: How did he get here? What leads someone with a safe, comfortable life to risk everything for a cause? What does society look like to him now, knowing what he faces? And the big question: Is Hsiung the weird one? Or is it all of us — who see so much suffering and injustice and simply go about our lives — who have lost our way?References: New York Times story on a DxE rescue mission Video of the mission to save Lily the piglet Book recommendations:Everything is Obvious by Duncan J. Watts The Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor DostoevskyGrit by Angela DuckworthMy book is available for pre-order! You can find it at www.EzraKlein.com.Want to contact the show? Reach out at ezrakleinshow@vox.comYou can subscribe to Ezra's new podcast Impeachment, explained on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, Overcast, Pocket Casts, or your favorite podcast app. Credits:Producer and Editor - Jeff GeldResearcher - Roge KarmaEngineer - Jeremy DalmasLearn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Imagine you’re walking to work. You see a child drowning in a lake. You’re about to jump in and save her when you realize you’re wearing your best suit, and the rescue will end up costing hundreds in dry cleaning bills. Should you still save the child?Of course you should. But this simple thought experiment, taken seriously, has radical implications for how you live your life.It comes from Peter Singer’s The Life You Can Save, one of the most influential modern works of ethical philosophy. Singer is perhaps the most influential public intellectual of my lifetime. His book Animal Liberation helped build America’s animal rights movement. His work helped create the effective altruism movement.In Singer’s hands, the questions that motivate a moral life are startlingly simple. But if you take them seriously, living morally is very, very hard. And the way most of us are living, right now — well, we’re letting a lot of children drown. What happens if we force ourselves to recognize that fact? What does it demand of us?That’s the topic of my conversation with Singer. We also discuss the differences between ethical philosophy and religion, why moral reasoning is a social act, the ethics of caring most about those closest to you, The Good Place, AI risk, open borders, where our obligations to others end, why Singer wouldn’t have become a philosopher if he’d been an effective altruist in his youth, and much more.Book recommendations: On Liberty by John Stuart MillThe Better Angels of Our Nature by Steven PinkerOn What Matters by Derek ParfitReasons and Persons by Derek ParfitTo read Peter SInger's book please visit www.thelifeyoucansave.orgTo learn more about effective altruism, visit Vox's Future PerfectMy book is available for pre-order! You can find it at www.EzraKlein.com.Want to contact the show? Reach out at ezrakleinshow@vox.comYou can subscribe to Ezra's new podcast Impeachment, explained on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, Overcast, Pocket Casts, or your favorite podcast app. Credits:Producer and Editor - Jeff GeldResearcher - Roge KarmaEngineers - Cynthia GilLearn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Happy Thanksgiving! Please enjoy a re-air episode from April 2018 with Lilliana Mason.Yes, identity politics is breaking our country. But it’s not identity politics as we’re used to thinking about it. In Uncivil Agreement: How Politics Became Our Identity, Lilliana Mason traces the construction of our partisan “mega-identities”: identities that fuse party affiliation to ideology, race, religion, gender, sexuality, geography, and more. These mega-identities didn’t exist 50 or even 30 years ago, but now that they’re here, they change the way we see each other, the way we engage in politics, and the way politics absorbs other — previously non-political —spheres of our culture. In making her case, Mason offers one of the best primers I’ve read on how little it takes to activate a sense of group identity in human beings, and how far-reaching the cognitive and social implications are once that group identity takes hold. I don’t want to spoil our discussion here, but suffice to say that her recounting of the “minimal group paradigm” experiments is not to be missed. This is the kind of research that will change not just how you think about the world, but how you think about yourself. Mason’s book is, I think, one of the most important published this year, and this conversation gave me a lens on our political discord that I haven’t stopped thinking about since. If you want to understand the kind of identity politics that’s driving America in 2018, you should listen in.Books recommendations:Ideology in America by Christopher Ellis and James Stimson Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi The Power by Naomi AldermanMy book is available for pre-order! You can find it at www.EzraKlein.com.Want to contact the show? Reach out at ezrakleinshow@vox.comYou can subscribe to Ezra's new podcast Impeachment, explained on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, Overcast, Pocket Casts, or your favorite podcast app. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Because podcast

Because podcast

2019-11-2501:24:085

Gretchen McCulloch is a self-described “internet linguist,” host of the podcast Lingthusiasm, and author of the recent book Because Internet: Understanding the New Rules of Language. In it, she demonstrates that the way we've come to speak on the internet -- from emojis to exclamation points -- is not random or arbitrary, but part of a broader attempt to make our written communication more vibrant, meaningful, and, genuinely human. Far from ‘ruining’ the written English language, internet-speak, McCulloch argues, is revolutionizing language in unprecedented, and ultimately positive, ways.We discuss why I feel bad if I don't use enough exclamation points (or use too many), why postcards are the pre-internet predecessors to Instagram, how emojis act as written equivalents of our body language, why sarcasm is like a “linguistic trust fall,” the meaning of “Ok boomer” and much more.Book recommendations: It’s Complicated:The Social Lives of Networked Teens by danah boyd You Look Like a Thing and I Love You by Janelle ShaneThis Is How You Lose the Time War by Amal El-Mohtar and Max GladstoneIf you enjoyed this episode, you may also like: danah boyd on why fake news is so easy to believeYou will love this conversation with Jaron Lanier, but I can’t describe itMy book is available for pre-order! You can find it at www.EzraKlein.com.Want to contact the show? Reach out at ezrakleinshow@vox.comYou can subscribe to Ezra's new podcast Impeachment, explained on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, Overcast, Pocket Casts, or your favorite podcast app. Credits:Producer and Editor - Jeff GeldResearcher - Roge KarmaEngineers - Cynthia GilLearn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Yancey Strickler is the co-founder and former CEO of Kickstarter, and he’s just released a new book, This Could Be Our Future: A Manifesto for a More Generous World. In Strickler’s telling, our society has been so thoroughly captured by the value-system of financial maximization, that we don’t even view it as such. Kickstarter was an affront to that value-system, a way that groups could fund ideas outside of the realm of profit. And this new book is trying to dig deeper into that worldview, unveil its fallibility, and offer an alternative way of imagining our society.So, in this conversation we talk about profit and the economy, but also about climate change, the founding story of Kickstarter, what makes great fiction so great, Alan Moore’s notion of the “idea space,” the bizarre way that Strickler went about writing his book, and much more.Book recommendations: Time Loops by Eric Wargo Value and Ethics in Economics by Elizabeth Anderson Dune by Frank Herbert If you enjoyed this episode, you may also like: A mind-bending, reality-warping conversation with John HiggsEdward Norton’s theory of mind, movies, and powerMy book is available for pre-order! You can find it at www.EzraKlein.com.Want to contact the show? Reach out at ezrakleinshow@vox.comYou can subscribe to Ezra's new podcast Impeachment, explained on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, Overcast, Pocket Casts, or your favorite podcast app. Credits:Producer and Editor - Jeff GeldResearcher - Roge KarmaEngineers - Cynthia Gil & Chris ShurtleffLearn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
I’ve wanted to have Dave Eggers on the show for a while now. Eggers has not only written a vast range of books (a deeply ironic personal memoir, a heartwarming novel about a Sudanese refugee, a futuristic story about a tech dystopia) but he's also founded the national tutoring nonprofit 826 Valencia, started the literary magazine McSweeney’s, co-authored the screenplay of Where the Wild Things Are, and much more. I’m fascinated by people who are able to do a variety of wildly different things, all successfully. Dave Eggers is one of those people. So, we start this conversation by discussing Eggers’s life’s work, his recent book The Captain and the Glory, and Donald Trump. But then — somewhere around the halfway point — the conversation transforms into something I can only describe as, well, therapeutic. Eggers doesn’t own a smartphone or have wifi in his house, and hearing the way he talks about the internet, social media, and our relationship to them put me in a sort of quasi-meditation state that I can’t describe adequately with words.This one is a little strange, but it may just make your day. It certainly made mine.Book recommendations: The Custom of the Country by Edith Wharton The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton Ethan Frome by Edith Wharton The House of Mirth by Edith WhartonIf you enjoyed this episode, you may like: You will love this conversation with Jaron Lanier, but I can’t describe itCal Newport on doing Deep Work and escaping social mediaMy book is available for pre-order! You can find it at www.EzraKlein.com.Want to contact the show? Reach out at ezrakleinshow@vox.comYou can subscribe to Ezra's new podcast Impeachment, explained on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, Overcast, Pocket Casts, or your favorite podcast app. Credits:Producer and Editor - Jeff GeldResearcher - Roge KarmaEngineer - Cynthia GilLearn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
If you're anything like me, this episode will make you think about the way you shop, learn, eat, parent, and exercise in a whole new way.My guest today is Elizabeth Currid-Halkett, a professor of public policy at the University of Southern California whose most recent book The Sum of Small Things: A Theory of the Aspirational Class documents the rise of a new, unprecedented elite class in the United States. Previously, the elite classes differentiated themselves from the rest by purchasing expensive material goods like flashy clothes and expensive cars. But, for reasons we get into, today’s elite is different: We signify our class position by reading the New Yorker, acquiring elite college degrees, buying organic food, breastfeeding our children, and, of course, listening to podcasts like this one.These activities may seem completely innocent — perhaps even enlightened. Yet, as we discuss here, they simultaneously shore up inequality, erode social mobility, and create an ever-more stratified society — all without most of us even noticing. This is a conversation that implicates us all, and, for that very reason, it is well worth grappling with.Book recommendations: Just Kids by Patti Smith Art Worlds by Howard S. BeckerThe Goldfinch by Donna TarttIf you enjoyed this episode, you may also like: When meritocracy wins, everybody losesWork as identity, burnout as lifestyleWhat a smarter Trumpism would sound like My book is available for pre-order! You can find it at www.EzraKlein.com.Want to contact the show? Reach out at ezrakleinshow@vox.comYou can subscribe to Ezra's new podcast Impeachment, explained on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, Overcast, Pocket Casts, or your favorite podcast app. Credits:Producer and Editor - Jeff GeldResearcher - Roge KarmaEngineer - Jeff GeldLearn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Andrew Marantz is a writer at the New Yorker who, for years, has been deeply immersed in the world of conservative trolls, alt-right social media personalities, and online conspiracy theorists. His most recent book Antisocial has been viewed as a brilliant ethnography of the bizarre universe that is the alt-right. But I’m interested in it for a different reason: Somehow, these folks have figured out how to manipulate the social media ecosystem that frames our political discourse. Thus, they represent an important window into understanding how that ecosystem functions, who it advantages, and where it dramatically falls short. We discuss:- Why Mark Zuckerberg’s defenses of Facebook so obviously fail- Where the conversation about “free speech” in America went completely off the rails- How alt-right personality Mike Cernovich cracked social media algorithms to influence the 2016 news cycle- What Marantz calls the “primary laws of social media mechanics” and how they can be manipulated to bring out the worst in human nature- Why conflict has become the primary way to garner attention and influence online while more constructive social interactions remain in obscurity- How a kid from a progressive, upper-middle-class family became one of the nation’s leading neo-Nazis- The role the social justice left plays in fomenting online extremismAnd much more.Book recommendations: Contingency, Irony and Solidarity by Richard Rorty The Captive Mind by Czesław MiłoszUncanny Valley by Anna WienerMy book is available for pre-order! You can find it at www.EzraKlein.com.Want to contact the show? Reach out at ezrakleinshow@vox.comYou can subscribe to Ezra's new podcast Impeachment, explained on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, Overcast, Pocket Casts, or your favorite podcast app. Credits:Producer and Editor - Jeff GeldResearcher - Roge KarmaLearn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Due to a technical glitch this interview with Edward Norton did not find it’s way into most people’s feeds. If you were able to download the first one this is indeed the exact same interview, but if you missed it please give a listen and enjoy - we had a lot of fun with this one.You’ve heard of Edward Norton. He’s starred in critically acclaimed films like American History X, Fight Club, and Birdman, been nominated for multiple Academy Awards, and, most recently, wrote, directed, and starred in Motherless Brooklyn, a film about a detective with Tourette’s syndrome who ends up taking on the most corrupt and powerful forces in New York City politics.Motherless Brooklyn, as it happens, is one of my all-time favorite books.And so this conversation was an unexpected pleasure. In addition to a joint love of Motherless Brooklyn, Norton and I share an unusual number of interests: Meditation, the uncontrollable nature of the mind, the difficulty of solving problems by thinking about them, the psychology of power, media analytics, cultural ideas of heroism, thwarted masculinity in politics, Ralph Nader, and more.It’s rare that I think a conversation could’ve gone for hours more. But it’s true for this one.References:Motherless Brooklyn by Jonathan LethemThis Could Be Our Future by Yancey StricklerCatching the Big Fish by David Lynch  *The world according to Ralph Nader* Book recommendations:Barbarian Days by William Finnegan Wind, Sand, and Stars by Antoine de Saint-ExupéryBuddhism without Beliefs by Stephen BatchelorIf you like this episode, check out:What Buddhism got right about the human brainYou will love this conversation with Jaron Lanier, but I can’t describe itMy book is available for pre-order! You can find it at www.EzraKlein.com.Want to contact the show? Reach out at ezrakleinshow@vox.comYou can subscribe to Ezra's new podcast Impeachment, explained on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, Overcast, Pocket Casts, or your favorite podcast app. Credits:Producer and Editor - Jeff GeldResearcher - Roge KarmaEngineer - Jeff GeldLearn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Introducing Reset

Introducing Reset

2019-11-0800:42:56

Thanks for listening to Reset from Recode and the Vox Media Podcast Network. Today's episodes were Can A.I. Tech You To Write Better and Quantum Supremacy, WTF.If you enjoyed these episodes, subscribe to Reset for free on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, Overcast, Pocket Casts, or your favorite podcast app to get new episodes every week.Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Michael Lind is a visiting professor at the University of Texas at Austin, the co-founder of the New America Foundation, and an important contributor to American Affairs, a journal originally created to imagine a more Trumpist conservatism.Lind is by no means a supporter of Trump. But, for decades now, he has been developing a coherent intellectual worldview around many of the same issues that Trump intuited, however crudely, during his campaign. He’s one of the intellectuals that the nationalist conservatives trying to imagine a Trumpism after Trump tell me they read most closely.There are three big pieces of Lind’s thought that I think help to illuminate this era. One is his idea of the “new class war,” which builds a deep cultural component into class identity and maps much better onto populist resentment. The next is his approach to China, which has long been skeptical of Washington’s optimistic consensus. And the third is his insistence that political conflicts — be they class wars or partisan ones — don’t end in victories, they end in “settlements.”References: "The New Class War" by Michael Lind"The Return of Geoeconomics" by Michael Lind"Classless Utopia versus Class Compromise" by Michael Lind"Donald Trump, the Perfect Populist" by Michael LindBook recommendations: The Machiavellian Defender’s of Freedom by James Burnham Foundation by Isaac AsimovThe Rise and Fall of the Great Powers by Paul KennedyMy book is available for pre-order! You can find it at www.EzraKlein.com.Want to contact the show? Reach out at ezrakleinshow@vox.comYou can subscribe to Ezra's new podcast Impeachment, explained on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, Overcast, Pocket Casts, or your favorite podcast app. Credits:Producer and Editor - Jeff GeldResearcher - Roge KarmaLearn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Welcome to episode 2 of our climate cluster. The more I prepared for this series, the more I realize there was a big blue gap in my understanding of climate change.Oceans cover 70% of the earth, absorb 93% of the heat from the sun, and capture 30% of the carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. Forty percent of the world’s population lives within 60 miles of the coast, and half a billion people rely on oceans as their primary food source. As go the oceans, so goes humanity.Dr. Ayana Elizabeth Johnson is the founder of the Urban Ocean Lab and the Ocean Collectiv, she’s held positions at the NOAA and the EPA, and was named by Outside Magazine as the most influential marine biologist of our time. And she’s able to do something a lot of people aren’t: communicate not just the science of climate change from the ocean perspective, but the role oceans play in the human story.This is not a dry, complex disquisition on climate science. This is a vivid tour of the way oceans shape our lives, and the costs and consequences of reshaping them.Book Recommendations: Eat like a Fish by Bren Smith Water in Plain Sight by Judith D. SchwartzEmergent Strategy by adrienne maree brownMy book is available for pre-order! You can find it at www.EzraKlein.com.Want to contact the show? Reach out at ezrakleinshow@vox.comYou can subscribe to Ezra's new podcast Impeachment, explained on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, Overcast, Pocket Casts, or your favorite podcast app. Credits:Producer and Editor - Jeff GeldResearcher - Roge KarmaEngineer - Ernie ErdatLearn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Welcome to the first episode of our climate cluster. This isn’t a series about whether “the science is real” on climate change. This is a series about what the science says — and what it means for our lives, our politics, and our future.I suspect I’m like a lot of people in that I accept that climate change is bad. What I struggle with is how bad. Is it an existential threat that eclipses all else? One of many serious problems politics must somehow address?I wanted to kick off the series with someone who knows the science cold. Kate Marvel is a research scientist at NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies and a professor at Columbia University’s Department of Applied Physics and Mathematics. But Marvel isn’t just a leading climate scientist. She’s also unique in her focus on the stories we tell each other, and ourselves, about climate change, and how they end up structuring our decisions. We discuss:- How a climate model actually works- Why this is the good place- Why there is so much variation in climate scientists’ predictions about global temperature increases- Why global warming is only one piece of the much larger problem of climate change- Why a hotter planet is more conducive to natural disasters- The frightening differences between a world that experiences a 2°C temperature increase as opposed to a 5°C temperature increase- Whether the threat of climate change requires solutions that break the boundaries of conventional politics- The underlying stories that animate much of the climate debate- Whether the planet can sustain continued economic growth- What it means to “live morally” amid climate changeAnd much more...Book recommendations:Parable of the Sower by Octavia ButlerParable of the Talents by Octavia ButlerAnnihilation by Jeff VendermeerMy book is available for pre-order! You can find it at www.EzraKlein.com.Want to contact the show? Reach out at ezrakleinshow@vox.comYou can subscribe to Ezra's new podcast Impeachment, explained on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, Overcast, Pocket Casts, or your favorite podcast app. Credits:Producer and Editor - Jeff GeldResearcher - Roge KarmaEngineer - Ernie ErdatLearn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
“Neoliberalism” is one of the most confusing phrases in political discourse today. The term is often used to describe the market fundamentalism of thinkers like Milton Friedman and Frederich Hayek or politicians like Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher. At the same time, critics often place more progressive figures like Bill Clinton, Barack Obama, and even Elizabeth Warren under the neoliberal banner. This raises an important question: what the hell is neoliberalism?I decided to bring on two guests today to help us answer that question. Wendy Brown is a professor of political theory at UC Berkeley, author of Undoing the Demos and In the Ruins of Neoliberalism, and one of the foremost critics of neoliberalism, not only as a set of economic policies but a “governing rationality” that infects almost all aspects of our existence. Noah Smith is an economist, a columnist at Bloomberg, and is known for his robust defenses of some (though not all) neoliberal positions, which earned him the prestigious title of Chief Neoliberal Shill of 2018. We discuss:- The differences between neoliberal theory and “actually existing neoliberalism”- Neoliberalism as not only a set of economic policies but a form of “public reason” that influences our very conception of what it means to be human- How neoliberal thought came to dominate almost every aspect of our lives- Whether neoliberalism is an inherently anti-democratic project- The relationship between neoliberal economic policies and traditional morality- The differences between New Deal liberalism and Obama-era neoliberalism- Whether a growth-driven economic model is compatible with our planet's ecological limitsBook recommendations: How Asia Works by Joe StudwellLaw Without Future by Jack JacksonDemocracy in Chains by Nancy McLeanMy book is available for pre-order! You can find it at www.EzraKlein.com.Want to contact the show? Reach out at ezrakleinshow@vox.comYou can subscribe to Ezra's new podcast Impeachment, explained on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, Overcast, Pocket Casts, or your favorite podcast app. Credits:Producer and Editor - Jeff GeldResearcher - Roge KarmaEngineer - Topher RouthLearn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Hey EK Show listeners! Something different today. The first episode of my new podcast: Impeachment, Explained.This was the week of confessions. Acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney admitted to a Trump administration quid quo pro with Ukraine, with cameras rolling. EU Ambassador Gordon Sondland confirmed that President Trump made Rudy Giuliani the hinge of America’s Ukraine policy. And then the administration announced that the location for the upcoming G7 summit: Trump’s own resort in Doral, Florida. We break down the three stories that mattered most in impeachment this week.And then we dig into the four words that will shape the entire impeachment fight: “High Crimes and Misdemeanors.” What did they mean when they were added to the Constitution? How have they been interpreted through American history? And do Trump’s acts qualify?Listen to the first episode here, and subscribe to Impeachment, Explained, on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, Overcast, Pocket Casts, or your favorite podcast app to get stay updated on this story every week.References:"Indispensable Remedy: The Broad Scope of the Constitution’s Impeachment Power" by Gene Healy"The case for normalizing impeachment" by Ezra KleinWant to contact the show? Reach out at ezrakleinshow@vox.comCredits:Producer and Editor - Jeff GeldResearcher - Roge KarmaEngineers - Malachi Broadus & Jeremey DalmasTheme music composed by Jon NatchezSpecial thanks to Liz NelsonLearn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
How do you feel right now? Excited to listen to your favorite podcast? Anxious about the state of American politics? Annoyed by my use of rhetorical questions?These questions seem pretty straightforward. But as my guest today, psychologist Lisa Feldman Barrett, points out there is a lot more to emotion than meets the mind.Barrett is a superstar in her field. She’s a professor of psychology at Northeastern University, holds appointments at Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital, and has received various prestigious awards for her pioneering research on emotion. Her most recent book How Emotions Are Made: The Secret Life of the Brain argues that emotions are not biologically hardwired into our brains but constructed by our minds. In other words, we don’t merely feel emotions — we actively create them.Barrett’s work has potentially radical implications. If we take her theory seriously, it follows that the ways we think about our daily emotional states, diagnose illnesses, interact with friends, raise our children, and experience reality all need some serious adjusting, if not complete rethinking.If you enjoyed this episode, you should check out:A mind-expanding conversation with Michael PollanThe cognitive cost of poverty (with Sendhil Mullainathan)Will Storr on why you are not yourself A mind-bending, reality-warping conversation with John HiggsBook recommendations: Naming the Mind by Kurt Danzinger The Island of Knowledge by Marcelo Gleiser The Accidental Species by Henry GeeSense and Nonsense by Kevin L. LalandWant to contact the show? Reach out at ezrakleinshow@vox.comSubscribe to Impeachment, Explained on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, Overcast, Pocket Casts, or your favorite podcast app to get stay updated on this story every week.Credits:Producer and Editor - Jeff GeldResearcher - Roge KarmaRecording engineer - Cynthia GilField engineer - Joseph FridmanThe Ezra Klein Show is a production of the Vox Media Podcast NetworkLearn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
In his brilliant 2014 book Nothing is True and Everything is Possible, Soviet-born TV producer turned journalist Peter Pomerantsev described 21st-century Russia as a political anomaly. He wrote about “a new type of authoritarianism” that waged war on reality by peddling conspiracy theories, disregarding the notion of truth, and framing all political opposition as the enemy of the people.Sound familiar?Upon leaving Russia, Pomerantsev found that the world around him had been infected with the same post-truth disease he had diagnosed in Moscow. The war against reality had spread across the globe, from London and Washington, DC, to Mexico City and Manila, Philippines. All over the place, the same values that had once defined liberal democracy — free speech, pluralism, the open exchange of ideas — were now being used to undermine it. This development became the centerpiece of his dizzying new book This is Not Propaganda, and it is the focal point of our conversation. We discuss:- How information went from being the tool of dissidents to the tool of authoritarians- Why Russia developed modern, post-truth politics first- The tactics that spin doctors and troll farms use to warp our sense of reality- How the end of the Cold War triggered a global descent into relativist chaos- How liberal democratic values like free speech and pluralism are being used to undermine liberal democracy- Why “all politics is now about creating identity”- Whether it is possible to organize the internet democratically- Why the informational chaos of digital politics is much worse outside the US- The worst butchering of a guest’s name in the show’s historyAnd much more. Taking a step back from our current moment, American politics is now dominated by the internal machinations of the post-Soviet political systems Pomerantsev specializes in understanding. To see our politics clearly requires seeing their politics clearly.References:For a Left Populism by Chantal MouffeOn Populist Reason by Ernest LaclauBook recommendations:The Asthenic Syndrome by Kira Muratova (film)History becomes Form by Boris GroysIf you enjoyed this conversation, you may also like:Jia Tolentino on what happens when life is an endless performance Want to contact the show? Reach out at ezrakleinshow@vox.comNews comes at you fast. Join us at the end of your day to understand it. Subscribe to Today, ExplainedLearn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
The loneliness epidemic

The loneliness epidemic

2019-10-1001:21:1819

As US surgeon general from 2014 to 2017, Vivek Murthy visited communities across the United States to talk about issues like addiction, obesity, and mental illness. But he found that what Americans wanted to talk to him about the most was loneliness.Loneliness isn’t simply painful, it’s lethal. Several meta-studies have found the mortality risk associated with loneliness is higher than that of obesity and equivalent to smoking 15 cigarettes per day. So, Murthy decided to label loneliness a public health “epidemic,” a term that medical professionals don’t throw around lightly.Murthy’s advocacy has changed the national discourse around loneliness. However, this isn’t a conversation simply about loneliness as a public health problem: It is about loneliness as a deeply painful lived experience — one that both Murthy and I are all too familiar with.There’s a lot in this conversation. Murthy’s explanation of how loneliness acts on the body is worth the time, all on its own. It’ll change how you see the relationship between social experience and physical health. But the broader message here is deeper: You are not alone in your loneliness. None of us are. And the best thing we can do is, often, helping someone else out of the very pit we’re in. References: Ezra's conversation with Johann Hari on the causes of depressionMurthy's article that called loneliness an "epidemic" KFF/Economist poll of loneliness in US, UK and Japan Book recommendations: Tuesdays with Morrie by Mitch Albolm Conversations with God by Neale Donald Walsch Dear Madam President by Jennifer Palmieri Want to contact the show? Reach out at ezrakleinshow@vox.comNews comes at you fast. Join us at the end of your day to understand it. Subscribe to Today, ExplainedLearn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Racism is one of the most morally charged words in the English language. It is typically understood as a form of deep inner prejudice — something that people actively feel and consciously express. My guest today, Ibram X. Kendi, wants to redefine racism. He defines the idea simply: support for policies that widen racial inequality.Kendi is a professor of African-American Studies and director of the Antiracist Policy Center at American University. His National Book Award-winning Stamped From the Beginning argued that racist policies beget racist ideas, not the other way around. His new book, How to Be an Antiracist, is a continuation of that project. It focuses on racism as a structural ecosystem that black people face, not a prejudice that white people feel.The implications of this redefinition are far-reaching. Are you a racist if you loathe people who aren’t of your race but don’t want to pass policy on it? Are you a racist if you tried to narrow racial inequality but your program backfired?In this conversation, we map the boundaries of Kendi’s definition and its implications. We discuss his admission that he “used to be racist most of the time,” his argument against racial integration, whether it’s giving too much power to policy to blame it for all racial inequality, whether the word “racist” is too charged for the more nuanced conversations we need to have, the meta-philosophy behind African-American studies, and much more.Book recommendations: Autobiography of Malcolm X (as told to Alex Haley)The Souls of Black Folk by W.E.B. DuBois Fatal Invention by Dorothy Roberts Want to contact the show? Reach out at ezrakleinshow@vox.comNews comes at you fast. Join us at the end of your day to understand it. Subscribe to Today, ExplainedWe are conducting an audience survey to better serve you. It takes no more than five minutes, and it really helps out the show. Please take our survey hereRegister to attend the live Ezra Klein Show taping in SFLearn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
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Comments (132)

Daniel Becce

Ezra claims that listeners can't be ethical if they aren't reviewing podcasts. Unless you spend your days behind a MacBook keyboard, this is a high bar. Try leaving a review from a PC, Android, or even an iPhone 6. The reviewing process is what is most broken about podcasting.

Dec 9th
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Gary Haase

Fans of the EPL intuitively get this. #COYS

Nov 29th
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Keyser soze

When your argument can be boiled down to " things were better in the dark ages, the early ones, not those highfalutin later ones," you may have a problem...

Nov 26th
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Grant Robbins

This was a great podcast.

Nov 19th
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Olga Musayev

Isn't Ezra Klein 35? That makes him technically a millennial, but definitely not a Boomer, regardless.

Nov 16th
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Sharon McKinnon

Couldn't listen anymore. Every second word out if the guest was like.

Nov 13th
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Judy Gordon

Hi Ezra, Your conversation with Edward Norton was so interesting! This was the 3rd Norton interview I've listened to in 3 days but it was totally fresh. Your podcast is in my favorite subscription list. Thanks for what you're doing.

Nov 1st
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Otto Bruun IV

Fantastic show

Oct 21st
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Sharon McKinnon

This is the most relatable podcast I've ever heard. Thank you for talking about this.

Oct 14th
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Nicolas Brylle

One of the better conversations in a while. Thank you!

Oct 8th
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Greg Clayson

blah. no thanks.

Sep 27th
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Mihir Kulkarni

Thank you for this amazing podcast! I adore Randall and it was awesome hearing him open up!

Sep 23rd
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James R

the Voyager interstellar.... dead link

Sep 16th
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Saramenti

1:03:38 interesting question.

Sep 12th
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A J Hackett

agree, she just doesn't finish a sentence before chasing off after another thought

Aug 29th
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NLuc

I find it really hard to follow her. the train of thought isn't structured and she talks in long monologues without resolving the question. Ezra does this too, of course, but he is much better structuring his throughts. one point, she mentions the wealth of congress. well, rich people being congresspeople's is probably always going to happen, and should happen! we want good lawyers and effective people in these positions. that isn't to not criticize the institution, but claiming income/wealth is fundamental is wrong headed.

Aug 27th
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Gene

I'm surprised there's no mention of community owned enterprises. If workers can elect their own representatives into the board of the company, the board essentially acts as a quasi parliament that can dictate or overthrow it's executive (CEO).

Aug 19th
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Drew Misner

This is another great interview, but one thing is really lacking, even after listening to it twice. Chetty talks at length about neighborhood but does not define what it is! Are we talking about West Village vs East Village? Manhattan vs Staten Island? Buffalo vs NYC? Ezra mentions the Bay Area - is this considered a neighborhood? Given the talk of integration/diversity - are we talking about non urban vs urban? Chetty used IRS data according to Ezra, so maybe it's by zip code? Without knowing this it makes it extremely difficult to visualize the dynamics discussed in the podcast. Also, it sounds like much of what is discussed is manifest as neighborhood effects or that neighborhood is simply a proxy for things like education, role models, support, etc that could be the target of policy independent of location.

Aug 19th
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Keith Trainor

This one is a fascinating topic, but a tough listen. Maybe there is a better spokesperson out there for Medicare For All, but perhaps there is not. This guest didn't seem to hear 50% of the questions he was asked.

Aug 15th
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Tom Garundazoo

I think they are miss using 'ambivalent' what I think they really mean is 'uncertainty' or 'nuance' which are totally different

Aug 13th
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