Paul and Sean reflect on their respective brushes with Z-list celebrity: Paul as a result of The Radio Right’s forthcoming publication; and Sean as a consequence of his internationally-viral Twitter thread. Next, they consider the relative merits of reforming, defunding, and abolishing the police, with side reflections on fascism, military dictatorship, and public sector unionism. Finally, they share their thoughts on Seattle’s Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone and conclude with high praise for modern Nerf gun technology.
Paul and Sean discuss the protests and urban rebellions sweeping the US after George Floyd’s murder by police, with detours on 60s radicalism and reaction, social movement theory, and (inexplicably) the rise of the Soviet bureaucracy.
Paul and Sean discuss Bryan Caplan’s controversial take on college education as being primarily a form of social signaling, then Paul introduces Sean to the wonders of the Painter of Light himself, Thomas Kinkade, and what he symbolizes about the past, present, and future of evangelicalism.
After a brief farewell to Bernard Sanders, Paul and Sean discuss how the economy, labor, tech, and daily life have been transformed by the COVID-19 pandemic and which of those changes will persist even after the pandemic is over.
Paul is hopping mad as he and Sean discuss the many failures of the Food and Drug Administration in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic. The US could have followed the example of South Korea, but instead of encouraging private companies to rapidly develop multiple tests for the virus as they did in Korea, the FDA created a single point of potential failure by giving only the CDC permission to develop a test. And, because we live in the worst timeline, it failed. They were also slow to remove regulations that discouraged manufacturers from switching over to surgical mask production.
This week, Sean admits to Paul that his Super Tuesday predictions were less than super. They then discuss the COVID-19 pandemic, HBO’s Chernobyl, and what HBO’s Chernobyl can tell us about the COVID-19 pandemic (spoiler: it’s not a flattering comparison!).
Paul’s audio is bad. Sean is sick. And the episode is a week late. But our analysis of the Democratic primary still holds water. And Sean’s glimpse into the soul of the liberal establishment (i.e. a public interest communications conference called ‘Frank’) remains, regrettably, current.
At the request of one of our Patreon donors, Sean and Paul debate the need for intellectual property, coming to an agreement that, at a minimum, reform to copyright length is desperately needed. (Here’s a link to Paul’s blog post referenced in the conversation.) They also discuss Sean’s mixed feelings about the new movie, 1917, and the sorry state of the Democratic primaries.
Paul and Sean compare notes on their winter holidays before getting down to business: discussing the blood-soaked history of American meddling in Iran, the immoral foolishness of a potential war with Iran, and what we can do to stop it. Stick around until the end for their reflections on what a successful anti-war movement will have to do — and what kinds of challenges the anti-war opposition will face.