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!).
After a little coronavirus chat and a discussion of Paul’s Mini-Beef with Max Boot™, Sean and Paul square off on the electability question as it pertains to one Bernard Sanders.
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.
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.
If you’ve ever wondered why people in the 1800s thought TB patients were so damn hot, this episode is for you! Check out Paul and Sean’s discussion of Victorian America’s Cult of the Consumptive, then stay tuned as they bid adieu to Beto “The Cursing Candidate” O’Rourke and catch up on the 2020 Democratic presidential primary. Later, Paul dishes the dirt on his recent trip to Elysium (i.e. giving tours of rich New Jerseyans’ mansions) and gushes over Shared Security Accounts. Finally, Paul and Sean wrap the episode by providing some uninformed commentary on Kanye’s new album.
Paul checks in after another visit to Tech Crunch Disrupt. Spoiler alert: this year’s conference involves far less urine. Then, the boys take stock of the fast-developing impeachment news. Finally, Sean convinces Paul that, after a half century of severely-limited social and political ambitions, Americans are rediscovering their old-timey sense of utopian optimism.