No, seriously, Sean and Paul spend the better part of half an hour waxing lyrical about the technical marvels and liberatory potential of frozen, TV dinners. But first they discuss the recent brouhaha over the World Socialist Web Site’s interviews with prominent early American and Civil War historians about the New York Times‘s 1619 project. Sean also brings an update from a recent labor conference, “Bargaining for the Common Good,” surprising Paul with yet another area of political overlap.
In which Sean realizes he’s part of the Koch-topus, reviews the movie Angel Has Fallen, and discusses car refueling etiquette. Meanwhile, Paul tries to get Sean as obsessed with the Baumol Effect as he is.
Paul’s interview with Alex Tabarrok about the Baumol Effect.
PDF of Tabarrok’s booklet, Why Are the Prices So Damn High?
Angel Has Fallen trailer.
This week, Paul describes his encounter with nativist blowhard Nigel Farage at a libertarian conference. Then Sean and Paul discuss the idiocy of blaming the El Paso shooting on video games and the possible use of the ICE raids in Mississippi to retaliate against a labor union organization drive.
Sean is back from France and Italy and has THOUGHTS. (He also cheers for France over team USA in the World Cup, so take with a grain of salt.) The guys also discuss the uninspiring first Democratic debate and additional ways Twitter sucks before ending with Paul exploring the origins of the term “Judeo-Christian.”
This week, after a short discussion of the Mueller Report, Paul and Sean do a little more arguing than usual as they debate the Green New Deal’s vision of a carbon neutral future. It’s a must listen if you love either salt mines, ducks, or cement. (As you can tell, Impolitic specializes in giving the people what they want, as long as what they want involves heavy industry or quacking.)
Paul declares his affection for Beto O’Rourke and becomes the object of Sean’s ribbing. Then Paul argues that Andrew Yang is, surprisingly, the most significant candidate in the 2020 race. Finally the guys discuss the rest of the Chinese propaganda anime “The Leader” about the life of Karl Marx. (We can only imagine that the title of the inevitable Hollywood remake will be “Jenny’s Deathbed.”)
Impolitic gives the people want they want, which in this case meant watching the first episodes of The Leader, a Chinese Communist Party produced anime about the life of young Karl Marx, his love of Jenny Westphalen, and turgid philosophical one liners. Then Sean and Paul discuss Simon van Zuylen-Wood’s article (29:45) about socialist hipsters in fair Brooklyn before Paul describes (58:30) his idealized health insurance system in the magical land of Libertopia. Finally, the guys wish (1:32:05) Bill Weld well in his Presidential aspirations.
This week, the guys discuss the increasingly crowded field of hopefuls for the Democratic nomination for President in 2020. Paul argues that both the size of the field and the growing ability of progressive candidates to raise funds outside of party control could lead to the kinds of collective action problems that bedeviled Republicans in 2016. Sean responds with the hottest of hot takes, the “probable” nomination of one Bernie “My Hair Don’t Care” Sanders. Then the guys talk about the federal government shutdown, what it exposes about the dysfunction in American politics, and a few hopeful silver linings.
Frederic Bastiat was a French classical liberal who sat in the National Assembly after the Revolution of 1848. But while today classical liberalism is largely associated with the political Right in American politics, in 19th century France Bastiat sat on the Left side of the Assembly with the socialists in opposition to the monarchists.
Bastiat, who came from a long line of merchants, was particularly frustrated with French mercantilism, the idea that domestic industry ought to be protected from cheaper foreign competition. It’s a bad idea that won’t die, but I suppose we have mercantilists to thank for inspiring this witty, little satire.
Here’s a link to Sean’s friend’s medical fundraising page.
Here’s a link to next episode’s reading from Lenin on imperialism.
Does the opening music sound like mediocre elevator music? Yes? Well, good, because it is an homage to the most mediocre of modern Presidents, the late George H.W. Bush, a man whose current legacy appears to be that he is roundly agreed by all to be a somewhat better human being than the present occupant of the Oval Office.
After a discussion of Père Bush’s legacy, Sean and Paul try to decide what the heck to make of the gilets jaunes or “yellow vest” protestors in France. Are they from the Right? From the Left? Nobody, least of all us, really knows, but they are exceedingly French.
Opening music credit: “Vacaciones (salsa)” by Dee Yan-Key from the Free Music Archive.