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The Ezra Klein Show podcast

The Ezra Klein Show

*** Named a best podcast of 2021 by Time, Vulture, Esquire and The Atlantic. *** Each Tuesday and Friday, Ezra Klein invites you into a conversation on something that matters. How do we address climate change if the political system fails to act? Has the logic of markets infiltrated too many aspects of our lives? What is the future of the Republican Party? What do psychedelics teach us about consciousness? What does sci-fi understand about our present that we miss? Can our food system be just to humans and animals alike?

*** Named a best podcast of 2021 by Time, Vulture, Esquire and The Atlantic. *** Each Tuesday and Friday, Ezra Klein invites you into a conversation on something that matters. How do we address climate change if the political system fails to act? Has the logic of markets infiltrated too many aspects of our lives? What is the future of the Republican Party? What do psychedelics teach us about consciousness? What does sci-fi understand about our present that we miss? Can our food system be just to humans and animals alike?

 

#185

The Hidden Costs of Cheap Meat

About 50 years ago, beef cost more than $7 a pound in today’s dollars. Today, despite high inflation, beef is down to about $4.80 a pound, and chicken is just around $1.80 a pound. But those low prices hide the true costs of the meat we consume — costs that the meat and poultry industries have quietly offloaded onto not only the animals we consume but us humans, too. Animal agriculture is responsible for at least 14.5 percent of total greenhouse gas emissions, with some estimates as high as 28 percent. It uses half the earth’s habitable land. Factory farms pose huge threats as potential sources of antibiotic resistance and future pandemics. And the current meat production system loads farmers with often insurmountable levels of debt. Our meat may look cheap at the grocery store, but we are all picking up the tab in ways we’re often starkly unaware of. Leah Garcés is the chief executive and president of Mercy for Animals and the author of “ [Grilled: Turning Adversaries Into Allies to Change the Chicken Industry.] (https://www.bloomsbury.com/us/grilled-9781472962584/) ” Few animal rights activists have her breadth of experience: For years, she’s been steeped in the experiences of farmers who raise animals, communities that live alongside industrial animal operations and, of course, the farmed animals that live shorter and more miserable lives. So I invited her on the show for a conversation about what meat really costs and how that perspective could help us build a healthier relationship to the animals we eat and the world we inhabit. We discuss what it’s like to live next to a hog farm, factory farming’s role in growing antibiotic resistance, how the current system of contract farming saddles individual farmers with debt, the lengths the U.S. government — and taxpayers — goes to to subsidize industrial animal farming, the possibility that the next pandemic will emerge from a crowded factory farm, how high costs — like deforestation in the Amazon — are hidden from consumers at the grocery store, the challenge of helping children make sense of routinized cruelty, whether regenerative agriculture can help undo the damage done by industrial animal farming, the historic animal welfare case currently in front of the Supreme Court and more. Mentioned: [Mercy for Animals] (https://mercyforanimals.org/) “ [Sen. Cory Booker has a plan to stop taxpayer bailouts of Big Meat] (https://www.vox.com/future-perfect/2022/11/22/23471771/cory-booker-meat-farming-industrial-agriculture-accountability-act) ” by Marina Bolotnikova and Kenny Torrella Book Recommendations: [Wastelands] (https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/688403/wastelands-by-corban-addison/) by Corban Addison [Meatonomics] (https://meatonomics.com/the-book/) by David Robinson Simon [Animal Machines] (https://www.cabidigitallibrary.org/doi/book/10.1079/9781780642840.0000) by Ruth Harrison Thoughts? Email us at ezrakleinshow@nytimes.com. (And if you’re reaching out to recommend a guest, please write  “Guest Suggestion” in the subject line.) You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more episodes of “The Ezra Klein Show” at [ nytimes.com/ezra-klein-podcast] (https://www.nytimes.com/column/ezra-klein-podcast) , and you can find Ezra on Twitter @ezraklein. Book recommendations from all our guests are listed at [ https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs] (https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs.html) . ... Read more

Yesterday

1 HR 21 MINS

1:21:37

Yesterday


#184

This Conversation About the 'Reading Mind' Is a Gift

Every day, we consume a mind-boggling amount of information. We scan online news articles, sift through text messages and emails, scroll through our social-media feeds — and that’s usually before we even get out of bed in the morning. In 2009, a team of researchers found that the average American consumed about [ 34 gigabytes of information a day] (https://www.nytimes.com/2009/12/10/technology/10data.html) . Undoubtedly, that number would be even higher today. But what are we actually getting from this huge influx of information? How is it affecting our memories, our attention spans, our ability to think? What might this mean for today’s children, and future generations? And what does it take to read — and think — deeply in a world so flooded with constant input? Maryanne Wolf is a researcher and scholar at U.C.L.A.’s School of Education and Information Studies. Her books “ [Proust and the Squid: The Story and Science of the Reading Brain] (https://www.harpercollins.com/products/proust-and-the-squid-maryanne-wolf?variant=32122454671394) ” and “ [Reader, Come Home: The Reading Brain in a Digital World] (https://www.harpercollins.com/products/reader-come-home-maryanne-wolf?variant=32128334594082) ” explore the relationship between the process of reading and the neuroscience of the brain. And, in Wolfe’s view, our era of information overload represents a historical inflection point where our ability to read — truly, deeply read, not just scan or scroll — hangs in the balance. We discuss why reading is a fundamentally “unnatural” act, how scanning and scrolling differ from “deep reading,” why it’s not accurate to say that “reading” is just one thing, how our brains process information differently when we’re reading on a Kindle or a laptop as opposed to a physical book, how exposure to such an abundance of information is rewiring our brains and reshaping our society, how to rediscover the lost art of reading books deeply, what Wolf recommends to those of us who struggle against digital distractions, what parents can do to to protect their children’s attention, how Wolf’s theory of a “biliterate brain” may save our species’ ability to deeply process language and information and more. Mentioned: [The Glass Bead Game (Magister Ludi)] (https://us.macmillan.com/books/9780312278496/theglassbeadgame) by Hermann Hesse [How We Read Now] (https://global.oup.com/academic/product/how-we-read-now-9780190084097?cc=us&lang=en&) by Naomi S. Baron [The Shallows] (https://wwnorton.com/books/9780393357820) by Nicholas Carr [Yiruma] (https://open.spotify.com/artist/0fauHpmSHwodVYIjTqOGHz?si=l8-EYpXpT2y2y6fkUk_x4w) Book Recommendations: [The Gilead Novels] (https://us.macmillan.com/books/9780374605353/thegileadnovelsoprahsbookclub) by Marilynne Robinson [World and Town] (https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/87014/world-and-town-by-gish-jen/) by Gish Jen [Standing by Words] (https://www.counterpointpress.com/dd-product/standing-by-words/) by Wendell Berry [Love’s Mind] (https://www.google.com/books/edition/Love_s_Mind/WMgCAAAACAAJ?hl=en) by John S. Dunne [Middlemarch] (https://www.gutenberg.org/files/145/145-h/145-h.htm) by George Eliot Thoughts? Email us at ezrakleinshow@nytimes.com. (And if you’re reaching out to recommend a guest, please write  “Guest Suggestion” in the subject line.) You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more episodes of “The Ezra Klein Show” at [ nytimes.com/ezra-klein-podcast] (https://www.nytimes.com/column/ezra-klein-podcast) , and you can find Ezra on Twitter @ezraklein. Book recommendations from all our guests are listed at [ https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs] (https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs.html) . ... Read more

22 Nov 2022

1 HR 09 MINS

1:09:38

22 Nov 2022


#183

Bill McKibben on the Power That Could Save the Planet

The fight against climate change is at a crossroads. This past year, the climate movement in the United States achieved significant success. The recently passed Inflation Reduction Act represents the single largest investment in emissions reduction in U.S. history. [More than a dozen states] (https://thehill.com/changing-america/sustainability/climate-change/3524659-a-look-at-state-efforts-to-combat-climate-change-in-2022-so-far/#:~:text=In%20Maryland%2C%20the%20state's%20legislature,goal%20in%20the%20United%20States.) have taken some form of climate action in 2022 alone. Earlier this year, California — which, if it were a country, would have the fifth largest economy in the world — approved a record $54 billion in climate spending alongside sweeping new restrictions on fossil fuel development. These investments coincide with a wave of technological transformation: Over the past decade, the cost of solar energy has declined around 90 percent and that of onshore wind around 70 percent, making these energy sources economically competitive with fossil fuels for the first time. “The new numbers turn the economic logic we’re used to upside down,” [writes] (https://www.newyorker.com/news/essay/in-a-world-on-fire-stop-burning-things) the climate activist and journalist Bill McKibben. To him, the import of this moment is clear: For the first time, McKibben argues, humanity has at our fingertips the tools needed to end humanity’s millenniums-long dependence on burning things for energy — and to save our climate in the process. To those familiar with the climate movement, McKibben is a familiar name. His book “The End of Nature” has been compared to Rachel Carson’s “Silent Spring” in terms of its impact on the climate movement. He’s founded organizations like Third Act and 350.org, the latter of which is among the largest climate activist organizations in the world today. He was a key leader in the fight to block the Keystone XL pipeline. And he currently writes the influential newsletter “ [The Crucial Years] (https://billmckibben.substack.com/) .” Ask anyone in the climate movement today about their inspirations and McKibben will almost certainly top the list. But in McKibben’s telling, the climate movement’s successes in getting us to this point actually require it to change. A movement founded on blocking bad things from happening now needs to turn to building at intensified speed; a movement that has long fought to preserve the natural world now has to help usher in a wholesale transformation of the global landscape; a movement that has long been critical of capitalism and economic growth now has to align itself with those forces in order to achieve its ends. Those shifts will require new tactics, new animating ideas, new motivations and new priorities — with the future of the climate hanging in the balance. So I wanted to have McKibben on the show to talk about this dawning era of the climate fight we’re entering, and what changes the movement will have to make to meet this moment. Mentioned: “ [The Single Best Guide to Decarbonization I’ve Heard] (https://www.nytimes.com/2022/09/20/opinion/ezra-klein-podcast-jesse-jenkins.html) ” by The Ezra Klein Show Book Recommendations: [New York 2140] (https://www.hachettebookgroup.com/titles/kim-stanley-robinson/new-york-2140/9780316262347/) by Kim Stanley Robinson [Orwell’s Roses] (https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/607057/orwells-roses-by-rebecca-solnit/) by Rebecca Solnit [How It Went] (https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/711895/how-it-went-by-wendell-berry/) by Wendell Berry Thoughts? Email us at ezrakleinshow@nytimes.com. (And if you’re reaching out to recommend a guest, please write  “Guest Suggestion” in the subject line.) You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more episodes of “The Ezra Klein Show” at [ nytimes.com/ezra-klein-podcast] (https://www.nytimes.com/column/ezra-klein-podcast) , and you can find Ezra on Twitter @ezraklein. Book recommendations from all our guests are listed at [ https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs] (https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs.html) . ... Read more

15 Nov 2022

1 HR 24 MINS

1:24:34

15 Nov 2022


#182

I Don’t Quite Buy the DeSantis Narrative, and Other Midterm Thoughts

The results of Tuesday’s midterm elections are still trickling in, but the broader story is clear: The red wave that many anticipated never materialized. Republicans gained 54 House seats against Bill Clinton in 1994 and 63 seats against Barack Obama in 2010. It doesn’t look as though the G.O.P. will secure anything close to that in 2022, and Democrats could retain their narrow control of the Senate — all against the backdrop of raging inflation and low approval ratings for President Biden. Why didn’t Democrats get wiped out? Why did so many Republicans underperform while others, like Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida, won decisively? And what does it all imply for 2024? To talk through the midterm results and their implications, I am joined by my column’s editor, Aaron Retica. We discuss why this election ended up being so shockingly close; how Democrats’ performance could, paradoxically, make it harder for Biden to win in 2024; why the significance of DeSantis’s victory is probably being overhyped; why inflation didn’t seem to matter nearly as much to the elections’ outcomes as most analysts believed it would; how a possible DeSantis-Donald Trump fight in the 2024 Republican primaries could create electoral space for more traditional Republicans to break through; John Fetterman’s distinct working-class appeal in Pennsylvania, the moral calculus of Democrats’ decision to bolster extreme Republican candidates in the primaries; the uncertain future of American democracy and more. (Note: This episode was recorded on the afternoon of Wednesday, Nov. 9.) Mentioned: [The Bitter End] (https://press.princeton.edu/books/hardcover/9780691213453/the-bitter-end) by John Sides, Chris Tausanovitch and Lynn Vavreck “ [Hillary Clinton Accepted Her Loss, but a Lot Has Changed Since 2016] (https://www.nytimes.com/2022/11/08/opinion/midterms-election-denial-winners-losers.html) ” by Lynn Vavreck “ [Republicans Have Made It Very Clear What They Want to Do if They Win Congress] (https://www.nytimes.com/2022/11/06/opinion/republican-congress-agenda-mccarthy.html) ” by Ezra Klein ["What It Means to Be Kind in a Cruel World"] (https://www.nytimes.com/2021/02/19/opinion/ezra-klein-podcast-george-saunders.html) by The Ezra Klein Show Podcast Recommendations: [The Prince: Searching for Xi Jinping] (https://www.economist.com/theprincepod) (The Economist) [Odd Lots] (https://www.bloomberg.com/oddlots-podcast?sref=B3uFyqJT) (Bloomberg) [Volts] (https://www.volts.wtf/podcast) (David Roberts) EKS Episode Recommendations: “ [These Political Scientists Surveyed 500,000 Voters. Here Are Their Unnerving Conclusions.] (https://www.nytimes.com/2022/10/28/opinion/ezra-klein-podcast-lynn-vavreck-john-sides.html) ” by The Ezra Klein Show “ [A Powerful Theory of Why The Far Right is Thriving Across the Globe] (https://www.nytimes.com/2022/11/01/opinion/ezra-klein-podcast-pippa-norris.html) ” by The Ezra Klein Show “ [Donald Trump Didn’t Hijack the G.O.P. He Understood It.] (https://www.nytimes.com/2022/05/06/opinion/ezra-klein-podcast-matt-continetti.html) ” by The Ezra Klein Show Aaron's essay recommendation: ["The Paranoid Style in American Politics"] (https://harpers.org/archive/1964/11/the-paranoid-style-in-american-politics/) by Richard Hofstadter Thoughts? Email us at ezrakleinshow@nytimes.com. (And if you’re reaching out to recommend a guest, please write  “Guest Suggestion” in the subject line.) You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more episodes of “The Ezra Klein Show” at [ nytimes.com/ezra-klein-podcast] (https://www.nytimes.com/column/ezra-klein-podcast) , and you can find Ezra on Twitter @ezraklein. Book recommendations from all our guests are listed at [ https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs] (https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs.html) . “The Ezra Klein Show” is produced by Emefa Agawu, Annie Galvin, Jeff Geld and Rogé Karma. Fact-checking by Michelle Harris, Rollin Hu, Kristin Lin and Kate Sinclair. Original music by Isaac Jones. Mixing by Jeff Geld and Sonia Herrero. Audience strategy by Shannon Busta. Special thanks to Kristin Lin and Kristina Samulewski. ... Read more

10 Nov 2022

1 HR 08 MINS

1:08:40

10 Nov 2022


#181

George Saunders on the ‘Braindead Megaphone’ That Makes Our Politics So Awful

George Saunders is regarded as one of our greatest living fiction writers. He won the Booker Prize in 2017 for his novel “ [Lincoln in the Bardo] (https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/231506/lincoln-in-the-bardo-by-george-saunders/) ” and has published numerous short-story collections to wide acclaim, including his most recent book, “ [Liberation Day] (https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/564990/liberation-day-by-george-saunders/) .” He also happens to be one of my favorite people to read and to talk to. Saunders is an incredibly prescient and sharp observer of American political culture. Way back in 2007, he argued that our media environment was transforming politics into a competition within which the loudest voices would command the most attention and set the agenda for everyone else. With the rise of social media — and the advent of the Trump era — that observation has been more than vindicated. So as we approach the midterm elections, I wanted to have Saunders back on the show to talk about how politics and media have changed, and how those changes are shaping the way we interact, communicate and even think. We discuss how Twitter takes advantage of — even warps — our “malleable” selves, how politicians like Marjorie Taylor Greene strategically manipulate our attentional environments, how Barack Obama leveraged our human desire to be seen as our best selves, whether discipline or gentleness is more effective in helping others grow, what options we have to resist anti-democratic tendencies in our politics, whether a post-scarcity future — with jobs for everyone — would leave us more or less satisfied, how the greatest evils can be committed by those trying to care for their loved ones, what attending Trump rallies taught Saunders about political violence and more. Mentioned: [The Braindead Megaphone] (https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/300474/the-braindead-megaphone-by-george-saunders/) by George Saunders “ [Host] (https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2005/04/host/303812/) ” by David Foster Wallace “ [The Semplica-Girl Diaries] (https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2012/10/15/the-semplica-girl-diaries) ” by George Saunders [Bullshit Jobs] (https://www.simonandschuster.com/books/Bullshit-Jobs/David-Graeber/9781501143335) by David Graeber “ [What It Means to Be Kind in a Cruel World] (https://www.nytimes.com/2021/02/19/opinion/ezra-klein-podcast-george-saunders.html) ” by The Ezra Klein Show “ [I Didn’t Want It to Be True, but the Medium Really Is the Message] (https://www.nytimes.com/2022/08/07/opinion/media-message-twitter-instagram.html) ” by Ezra Klein Book Recommendations: [The Storm Is Here] (https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/691120/the-storm-is-here-by-luke-mogelson/) by Luke Mogelson [Sugar Street] (https://groveatlantic.com/book/sugar-street/) by Jonathan Dee [Marlena] (https://us.macmillan.com/books/9781250160157/marlena) by Julie Buntin Thoughts? Email us at ezrakleinshow@nytimes.com. (And if you’re reaching out to recommend a guest, please write  “Guest Suggestion” in the subject line.) You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more episodes of “The Ezra Klein Show” at [ nytimes.com/ezra-klein-podcast] (https://www.nytimes.com/column/ezra-klein-podcast) , and you can find Ezra on Twitter @ezraklein. Book recommendations from all our guests are listed at [ https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs] (https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs.html) . “The Ezra Klein Show” is produced by Emefa Agawu, Annie Galvin, Jeff Geld and Rogé Karma. Fact-checking by Michelle Harris and Mary Marge Locker. Original music by Isaac Jones. Mixing by Jeff Geld. Audience strategy by Shannon Busta. Special thanks to Kristin Lin and Kristina Samulewski. ... Read more

08 Nov 2022

1 HR 02 MINS

1:02:22

08 Nov 2022


#180

Inflation Does More Than Raise Prices. It Destroys Governments.

“One can usually pretend that there is a logic to the distribution of wealth — that behind a person’s prosperity lies some rational basis, whether it is that person’s hard work, skill and farsightedness or some ancestor’s,” writes J. Bradford DeLong. “Inflation — even moderate inflation — strips the mask.” DeLong is an economic historian at the University of California, Berkeley, a former deputy assistant secretary of the Treasury and the author of “ [Slouching Towards Utopia] (https://www.basicbooks.com/titles/j-bradford-delong/slouching-towards-utopia/9780465019595/) ” — a new book about the wave of economic growth that transformed the world in the 20th century. In it, he argues, among other things, that inflation isn’t just economically damaging; it’s one of the most destabilizing, destructive forces in all of politics. Left unchecked, it has the power to swing elections, erode the foundations of core social institutions and usher in wholesale changes in political and economic regimes. That’s exactly what happened the last time inflation was this high. In DeLong’s telling, the inflation crisis of the 1970s was weaponized to discredit the reigning New Deal economic order and helped give rise to the small government, pro-market political turn of the 1980s — the consequences of which we are living with today. So I wanted to have DeLong on the show to walk me through that story and some of the questions it raises: Why is inflation is so uniquely politically destructive? What are the right — and wrong — lessons to take from the experience of the 1970s? What kinds of political transformations could today’s inflation could bring about? We also discuss why inflation spiraled out of control in the 1970s (and whether it could have been stopped sooner), the efficacy of price controls as a way of taming inflation, why DeLong believes it’s a mistake to take the 1970s comparisons too literally, how unchecked inflation can decimate social trust, how economic thinking became obsessed with “moochers” and “slackers” in the 1980s and ’90s, whether the 2007-08 financial crisis brought an end to the neoliberal era, what DeLong would say to his younger self serving in the early Clinton administration and more. Book Recommendations: [The Rise and Fall of the Neoliberal Order] (https://global.oup.com/academic/product/the-rise-and-fall-of-the-neoliberal-order-9780197519646?cc=us&lang=en&) by Gary Gestle [Free Market] (https://www.basicbooks.com/titles/jacob-soll/free-market/9780465049707/) by Jacob Soll [Adam Smith’s America] (https://press.princeton.edu/books/hardcover/9780691203812/adam-smiths-america) by Glory M. Liu Thoughts? Email us at ezrakleinshow@nytimes.com. (And if you're reaching out to recommend a guest, please write  “Guest Suggestion" in the subject line.) You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more episodes of “The Ezra Klein Show” at [ nytimes.com/ezra-klein-podcast] (https://www.nytimes.com/column/ezra-klein-podcast) , and you can find Ezra on Twitter @ezraklein. Book recommendations from all our guests are listed at [ https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs] (https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs.html) . “The Ezra Klein Show” is produced by Emefa Agawu, Annie Galvin, Jeff Geld and Rogé Karma. Fact-checking by Michelle Harris, Rollin Hu, Mary Marge Locker and Kate Sinclair. Original music by Isaac Jones. Mixing by Jeff Geld and Sonia Hererro. Audience strategy by Shannon Busta. Special thanks to Kristin Lin and Kristina Samulewski. ... Read more

04 Nov 2022

1 HR 09 MINS

1:09:40

04 Nov 2022


#179

A Powerful Theory of Why the Far Right Is Thriving Across the Globe

As we approach the 2022 midterms, the outlook for American democracy doesn’t appear promising. An increasingly Trumpist, anti-democratic Republican Party is poised to take over at least one chamber of Congress. And the Democratic Party, facing an inflationary economy and with an unpopular president in office, looks helpless to stop them. But the United States isn’t alone in this regard. Over the course of 2022, Italy elected a far-right prime minister from a party with Fascist roots, a party founded by neo-Nazis and skinheads won the second-highest number of seats in Sweden’s Parliament, Viktor Orban’s Fidesz party in Hungary won its fourth consecutive election by a landslide, Marine Le Pen won 41 percent of the vote in the final round of France’s presidential elections and — just this past weekend — Jair Bolsonaro came dangerously close to winning re-election in Brazil. Why are these populist uprisings happening simultaneously, in countries with such diverse cultures, economies and political systems? Pippa Norris is a political scientist at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, where she has taught for three decades. In that time, she’s written dozens of books on topics ranging from comparative political institutions to right-wing parties and the decline of religion. And in 2019 she and Ronald Inglehart published “ [Cultural Backlash: Trump, Brexit and Authoritarian Populism] (https://www.cambridge.org/core/books/cultural-backlash/3C7CB32722C7BB8B19A0FC005CAFD02B) ,” which gives the best explanation of the far right’s rise that I’ve read. We discuss what Norris calls the “silent revolution in cultural values” that has occurred across advanced democracies in recent decades, why the best predictor of support for populist parties is the generation people were born into, why the “transgressive aesthetic” of leaders like Donald Trump and Jair Bolsonaro is so central to their appeal, how demographic and cultural “tipping points” have produced conservative backlashes across the globe, the difference between “demand-side” and “supply-side” theories of populist uprising, the role that economic anxiety and insecurity play in fueling right-wing backlashes, why delivering economic benefits might not be enough for mainstream leaders to stave off populist challenges and more. Mentioned: [Sacred and Secular] (https://www.cambridge.org/core/books/sacred-and-secular/5CE209CE245D444D40BB44D0DDD78F43) by Pippa Norris and Ronald Inglehart “ [Exploring drivers of vote choice and policy positions among the American electorate] (https://perryundem.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/10/538-regression-placeholder.pdf) ” Book Recommendations: [Popular Dictatorships] (https://www.cambridge.org/core/books/popular-dictatorships/D7B24EB0DE0D44E5C154F83D2E8A84C4) by Aleksandar Matovski [Spin Dictators] (https://press.princeton.edu/books/hardcover/9780691211411/spin-dictators) by Sergei Guriev and Daniel Treisman [The Origins of Totalitarianism] (https://bookshop.org/p/books/the-origins-of-totalitarianism-hannah-arendt/6669301?ean=9780156701532) by Hannah Arendt Thoughts? Email us at ezrakleinshow@nytimes.com. (And if you're reaching out to recommend a guest, please write  “Guest Suggestion" in the subject line.) You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more episodes of “The Ezra Klein Show” at [ nytimes.com/ezra-klein-podcast] (https://www.nytimes.com/column/ezra-klein-podcast) , and you can find Ezra on Twitter @ezraklein. Book recommendations from all our guests are listed at [ https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs] (https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs.html) . “The Ezra Klein Show” is produced by Emefa Agawu, Annie Galvin, Jeff Geld and Rogé Karma. Fact-checking by Michelle Harris, Mary Marge Locker and Kate Sinclair. Original music by Isaac Jones. Mixing by Jeff Geld. Audience strategy by Shannon Busta. Special thanks to Kristin Lin and Kristina Samulewski. ... Read more

01 Nov 2022

1 HR 30 MINS

1:30:26

01 Nov 2022


#178

These Political Scientists Surveyed 500,000 Voters. Here Are Their Unnerving Conclusions.

How does the popularity of a president’s policies impact his or her party’s electoral chances? Why have Latinos — and other voters of color — swung toward the Republican Party in recent years? How does the state of the economy influence how people vote, and which economic metrics in particular matter most? We can’t answer those questions yet for 2022. But we can look at previous elections for insights into how things could play out. John Sides and Lynn Vavreck — political scientists at Vanderbilt and U.C.L.A., respectively — have routinely written some of the most comprehensive analyses of American presidential contests. Their new book, “ [The Bitter End: The 2020 Presidential Campaign and the Challenge to American Democracy] (https://press.princeton.edu/books/hardcover/9780691213453/the-bitter-end) ” — written with Chris Tausanovitch — is no exception. The book’s findings are built on top of numerous layers of data and analysis, including a massive survey project that involved interviewing around 500,000 Americans between July 2019 and January 2021. We discuss the core questions of 2020: How did Donald Trump come so close to winning? Why did Latinos swing toward Republicans? What role did Black Lives Matter protests have on the outcome? How did the strange Covid economy of 2020 affect the election results? And of course, what does all of this portend for the midterm elections in November? Mentioned: “ [Polarization and State Legislative Elections] (https://stanforddpl.org/papers/handan-nader_myers_hall_polarization_2022/handan-nader_myers_hall_polarization_2022.pdf) ” by Cassandra Handan-Nader, Andrew C. W. Myers and Andrew B. Hall [Identity Crisis] (https://press.princeton.edu/books/paperback/9780691196435/identity-crisis) by John Sides, Michael Tesler and Lynn Vavreck “ [Losers’ Consent] (https://academic.oup.com/book/32905) ” by Christopher J. Anderson, André Blais, Shaun Bowler, Todd Donovan and Ola Listhaug Book Recommendations: [The Increasingly United States] (https://press.uchicago.edu/ucp/books/book/chicago/I/bo27596045.html) by Daniel J. Hopkins [Groundbreakers] (https://global.oup.com/academic/product/groundbreakers-9780199394609?cc=us&lang=en&) by Elizabeth McKenna and Hahrie Han [The Loud Minority] (https://press.princeton.edu/books/hardcover/9780691181776/the-loud-minority) by Daniel Q. Gillion [Rock Me on the Water] (https://www.harpercollins.com/products/rock-me-on-the-water-ronald-brownstein) by Ronald Brownstein [State of Terror] (https://www.simonandschuster.com/p/state-of-terror) by Hillary Rodham Clinton and Louise Penny “ [Bono Is Still Trying to Figure Out U2 and Himself] (https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2022/10/24/magazine/bono-interview.html) ” by David Marchese Thoughts? Email us at ezrakleinshow@nytimes.com. (And if you're reaching out to recommend a guest, please write  “Guest Suggestion" in the subject line.) You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more episodes of “The Ezra Klein Show” at [ nytimes.com/ezra-klein-podcast] (https://www.nytimes.com/column/ezra-klein-podcast) , and you can find Ezra on Twitter @ezraklein. Book recommendations from all our guests are listed at [ https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs] (https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs.html) . “The Ezra Klein Show” is produced by Emefa Agawu, Annie Galvin, Jeff Geld and Rogé Karma. Fact-checking by Michelle Harris and Kate Sinclair. Original music by Isaac Jones. Mixing by Jeff Geld. Audience strategy by Shannon Busta. Special thanks to Kristin Lin and Kristina Samulewski. ... Read more

28 Oct 2022

1 HR 33 MINS

1:33:59

28 Oct 2022


#177

A Step-by-Step Guide to Becoming a Trump Enabler

​​“What would you do for your relevance?” the political journalist Mark Leibovich asks in his new book, “ [Thank You for Your Servitude: Donald Trump’s Washington and the Price of Submission] (https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/653294/thank-you-for-your-servitude-by-mark-leibovich/) .” “How badly did you want into the clubhouse, no matter how wretched it became inside?” For Leibovich, you can’t truly understand the current Republican Party without taking stock of the almost Shakespearean drama that unfolded during the Trump presidency — in which Republican after Republican bowed to the will of their ascendant party leader. Through his extensive — and often quite colorful — reporting with Trump’s inner circle of enablers, Leibovich tries to understand the motivations that fueled Trump’s takeover of the G.O.P. But this conversation isn’t only important in retrospect. With the Republican Party poised to possibly recapture at least one house of Congress in November, many of Trump’s core enablers could soon hold considerable political power. Who are they? What do they believe? How will they act if given power? We discuss why the stakes in 2022 midterms feel higher than ever, why the Republican Party has changed so profoundly since the days of Paul Ryan and Eric Cantor, how the governing structure of the G.O.P. fell apart as Trump rose in influence, the many reasons politicians from Lindsey Graham to Elise Stefanik converted from Trump skeptics to staunch Trump defenders, the political motivations of Kevin McCarthy — who may become the next speaker of the House — and how he might wield power, how the persistence of Trumpism could profoundly alter American democracy, why Leibovich believes figures like J.D. Vance prostrated themselves to a man who insulted them, what options Democrats have for countering election denialism and more. Mentioned: “ [Donald Trump Is Not Going Anywhere] (https://www.nytimes.com/2015/10/04/magazine/donald-trump-is-not-going-anywhere.html) ” by Mark Leibovich Book recommendations: [Why We Did It] (https://www.harpercollins.com/products/why-we-did-it-tim-miller?variant=40138691018786) by Tim Miller [Confidence Man] (https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/668293/confidence-man-by-maggie-haberman/) by Maggie Haberman [NSFW] (https://us.macmillan.com/books/9781250822888/nsfw) by Isabel Kaplan Thoughts? Guest suggestions? Email us at ezrakleinshow@nytimes.com. You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more episodes of “The Ezra Klein Show” at [ nytimes.com/ezra-klein-podcast] (https://www.nytimes.com/column/ezra-klein-podcast) , and you can find Ezra on Twitter @ezraklein. Book recommendations from all our guests are listed at [ https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs] (https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs.html) . “The Ezra Klein Show” is produced by Emefa Agawu, Annie Galvin, Jeff Geld and Rogé Karma. Fact-checking by Michelle Harris, Mary Marge Locker and Kate Sinclair. Original music by Isaac Jones. Mixing by Jeff Geld, Sonia Herrero and Isaac Jones. Audience strategy by Shannon Busta. Special thanks to Kristin Lin and Kristina Samulewski. ... Read more

25 Oct 2022

1 HR 05 MINS

1:05:55

25 Oct 2022


#176

There’s Been a ‘Regime Change’ in How Democrats Think About Elections

According to the conventional rules of politics, Democrats should be on track for electoral disaster this November. Joe Biden’s approval rating is stuck around 42 percent, inflation is still sky-high and midterms usually swing against the incumbent president’s party — a recipe for the kind of political wipeouts we saw in 2018, 2010 and 1994. But that’s not what the polls show. Currently, Democrats are on track to hold the Senate and lose narrowly in the House, which raises all kinds of questions: Why are Republicans failing to capitalize on such a favorable set of circumstances? How did Democrats get themselves into this situation — and can they get out of it? And should we even trust the polls giving us this information in the first place? Matt Yglesias is a veteran journalist who writes the newsletter [“Slow Boring”] (https://www.slowboring.com/?utm_source=%2Fprofile%2F580004-matthew-yglesias&utm_medium=reader2&utm_campaign=substack_profile) and co-hosts the podcast [“Bad Takes.”] (https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/bad-takes/id1643012374) And in recent years he’s become an outspoken critic of the Democratic Party’s political strategy: how Democrats communicate with the public, what they choose as their governing priorities and whom they ultimately listen to. In Yglesias’s view, Democrats have lost touch with the very voters they need to win close elections like this one, and should embrace a very different approach to politics if they want to defeat an increasingly anti-democratic G.O.P. We discuss why Yglesias thinks the 2022 polls are likely biased toward Democrats, how Republicans’ bizarre nominee choices are giving Democrats a fighting chance of winning the Senate, why Biden’s popular legislative agenda hasn’t translated into greater public support, the Biden administration’s “grab bag” approach to policymaking, why Yglesias thinks there’s been a “regime change” in how Democrats think about elections, how social media has transformed both parties’ political incentives, what the Democratic agenda should look like if the party retains both houses of Congress and more. Book recommendations: [Famine: A Short History ] (https://press.princeton.edu/books/paperback/9780691147970/famine) by Cormac Ó Gráda [Slouching Towards Utopia ] (https://www.basicbooks.com/titles/j-bradford-delong/slouching-towards-utopia/9780465019595/) by J. Bradford DeLong [Strangers to Ourselves ] (https://us.macmillan.com/books/9780374600846/strangerstoourselves) by Rachel Aviv Thoughts? Guest suggestions? Email us at ezrakleinshow@nytimes.com. You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more episodes of “The Ezra Klein Show” at [ nytimes.com/ezra-klein-podcast] (https://www.nytimes.com/column/ezra-klein-podcast) , and you can find Ezra on Twitter @ezraklein. Book recommendations from all our guests are listed at [ https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs] (https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs.html) . “The Ezra Klein Show” is produced by Emefa Agawu, Annie Galvin, Jeff Geld and Rogé Karma. Fact-checking by Michelle Harris, Mary Marge Locker and Kate Sinclair. Original music by Isaac Jones. Mixing by Jeff Geld, Sonia Herrero and Isaac Jones. Audience strategy by Shannon Busta. Special thanks to Kristin Lin and Kristina Samulewski. ... Read more

21 Oct 2022

1 HR 12 MINS

1:12:53

21 Oct 2022


#175

A Legendary World-Builder on Multiverses, Revolution and the ‘Souls’ of Cities

N.K. Jemisin is a fantasy and science-fiction writer who won three consecutive Hugo Awards — considered the highest honor in science-fiction writing — for her “Broken Earth” trilogy; she has since won two more Hugos, as well as other awards. But in imagining wild fictional narratives, the beloved sci-fi and fantasy writer has also cultivated a remarkable view of our all-too-real world. In her fiction, Jemisin crafts worlds that resemble ours but get disrupted by major shocks: ecological disasters, invasions by strange, tentacled creatures and more — all of which operate as thought experiments that can help us think through how human beings could and should respond to similar calamities. Jemisin’s latest series, which includes “ [The City We Became] (https://www.hachettebookgroup.com/titles/n-k-jemisin/the-city-we-became/9780316509855/) ” and “ [The World We Make] (https://www.hachettebookgroup.com/titles/n-k-jemisin/the-world-we-make/9780316509893/) ,” takes place in a recognizable version of New York City — the texture of its streets, the distinct character of its five boroughs — that’s also gripped by strange, magical forces. The series, in addition to being a rollicking read, is essentially a meditation on cities: how they come into being, how their very souls get threatened by forces like systemic racism and astronomical inequality and how their energies and cultures have the power to rescue and save those souls. I invited Jemisin on the show to help me take stock of the political and cultural ferment behind these distressing conditions — and also to remember the magical qualities of cities, systems and human nature. We discuss why multiverse fictions like “Everything Everywhere All at Once” are so popular now, how the culture and politics of New York and San Francisco have homogenized drastically in recent decades, Jemisin’s views on why a coalition of Black and Latinx voters elected a former cop as New York’s mayor, how gentrification causes change that we may not at first recognize, where to draw the line between imposing order and celebrating the disorder of cities, how Donald Trump kept stealing Jemisin’s ideas but is at the root a “badly written character,” whether we should hold people accountable for their choices or acknowledge the way the status quo shapes our decision-making, what excites Jemisin about recent discoveries about outer space, why she thinks we are all “made of exploding stars” and more. Mentioned: [N.K. Jemisin interview] (https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/i-build-a-world-with-fantasy-master-n-k-jemisin/id1081584611?i=1000418571825) on Vox’s "The Gray Area with Sean Illing" Book recommendations: [Fullmetal Alchemist] (https://www.simonandschuster.com/search/books/Imprint-VIZ-Media-LLC/Series-Fullmetal-Alchemist-Fullmetal-Edition/_/N-1z13f69Z1z0zt2k/Ne-pgw) by Hiromu Arakawa [Mechanique ] (https://www.genevievevalentine.com/mechanique/) by Genevieve Valentine [Witch King ] (https://us.macmillan.com/books/9781250826794/witchking) by Martha Wells [The Death and Life of Great American Cities ] (https://www.buurtwijs.nl/sites/default/files/buurtwijs/bestanden/jane_jacobs_the_death_and_life_of_great_american.pdf) by Jane Jacobs Thoughts? Guest suggestions? Email us at ezrakleinshow@nytimes.com. You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more episodes of “The Ezra Klein Show” at [ nytimes.com/ezra-klein-podcast] (https://www.nytimes.com/column/ezra-klein-podcast) , and you can find Ezra on Twitter @ezraklein. Book recommendations from all our guests are listed at [ https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs] (https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs.html) . “The Ezra Klein Show” is produced by Annie Galvin, Jeff Geld and Rogé Karma. Our researcher is Emefa Agawu. Fact-checking by Michelle Harris and Mary Marge Locker. Original music by Isaac Jones. Mixing by Jeff Geld and Sonia Herrero. Audience strategy by Shannon Busta. Special thanks to Kristin Lin, Kristina Samulewski and Jesse Bordwin. ... Read more

18 Oct 2022

1 HR 04 MINS

1:04:19

18 Oct 2022


#174

What Rachel Maddow Has Been Thinking About Offscreen

“The Rachel Maddow Show” debuted in the interregnum between political eras. Before it lay the 9/11 era and the George W. Bush presidency. Days after the show launched in 2008, Lehman Brothers collapsed, and a few weeks later Barack Obama was elected president. And then history just kept speeding up. The Tea Party. The debt ceiling debacles. Donald Trump. The coronavirus pandemic. January 6th. The big lie. Maddow covered and tried to make sense of it all. Now, after 14 years, she has taken her show down to one episode a week and is beginning other projects — like “ [Ultra] (https://www.msnbc.com/rachel-maddow-presents-ultra) ,” the history podcast we discuss in this episode. But I wanted to talk to Maddow about how American politics and media has changed over the course of her show. We discuss the legacies of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the cycle of economic crises we appear to keep having, Maddow’s relationships with Pat Buchanan and Tucker Carlson, where the current G.O.P.’s anti-democracy efforts really started, how Obama’s presidency changed politics, how Maddow finds and chooses her stories, the statehouse Republicans who tilled the soil for Trump’s big lie and more. Book Recommendations: [Hitler in Los Angeles] (https://www.bloomsbury.com/us/hitler-in-los-angeles-9781620405642/) by Steven J. Ross [Nazis of Copley Square] (https://www.hup.harvard.edu/catalog.php?isbn=9780674983717) by Charles R. Gallagher [Hitler’s American Friends] (https://us.macmillan.com/books/9781250148957/hitlersamericanfriends) by Bradley W. Hart [The Oppermanns] (https://www.simonandschuster.com/books/The-Oppermanns/Lion-Feuchtwanger/9781946022332) by Lion Feuchtwanger [1940] (https://yalebooks.yale.edu/book/9780300205749/1940/) by Susan Dunn [Down in New Orleans] (https://www.ucpress.edu/ebook/9780520933842/down-in-new-orleans) Billy Sothern Thoughts? Email us at ezrakleinshow@nytimes.com. (And if you're reaching out to recommend a guest, please write  “Guest Suggestion" in the subject line.) You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more episodes of “The Ezra Klein Show” at [ nytimes.com/ezra-klein-podcast] (https://www.nytimes.com/column/ezra-klein-podcast) , and you can find Ezra on Twitter @ezraklein. Book recommendations from all our guests are listed at [ https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs] (https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs.html) . “The Ezra Klein Show” is produced by Annie Galvin, Jeff Geld and Rogé Karma. Our researcher is Emefa Agawu. Fact-checking by Michelle Harris, Mary Marge Locker and Kate Sinclair. Original music by Isaac Jones. Mixing by Jeff Geld. Audience strategy by Shannon Busta. Special thanks to Kristin Lin and Kristina Samulewski. ... Read more

14 Oct 2022

1 HR 23 MINS

1:23:35

14 Oct 2022


#173

Hard Fork: Elon’s Hidden Motives + A Meetup in the Metaverse

Today we’re bringing you an episode from the recently launched New York Times podcast, [Hard Fork] (https://www.nytimes.com/2022/10/04/podcasts/hard-fork-technology.html) . Hosted by [veteran tech journalists] (https://www.nytimes.com/2022/10/04/podcasts/hard-fork-technology.html) Kevin Roose and Casey Newton, Hard Fork is a rigorous and fun exploration of Silicon Valley’s already-emerging future — and its evolving imprint on the rest of the world. In this episode, Kevin and Casey discuss Elon Musk’s on-again-off-again – and recently on-again – interest in Twitter, as the billionaire signals once again that he’s buying the social media platform. What might be behind the change of heart? And what will the deal mean for employees and users? Casey and Kevin swap theories and predictions — and also step into the metaverse with the New York Times reporter Kashmir Hill. Hard Fork is produced by Davis Land. Edited by Paula Szuchman and Hanna Ingber. Fact-checking by Caitlin Love. Original music by Dan Powell, Elisheba Ittoop and Marion Lozano. Engineered by Corey Schreppel. Special thanks to Sam Dolnick, Shannon Busta, Julia Simon, Larissa Anderson, Pui-Wing Tam, Kate LoPresti, Nell Gallogly, Mahima Chablani and Jeffrey Miranda. You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more episodes of “The Ezra Klein Show” at nytimes.com/ezra-klein-podcast, and you can find Ezra on Twitter @ezraklein. Book recommendations from all our guests are listed at [https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs] (https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs) . ... Read more

11 Oct 2022

1 HR 06 MINS

1:06:06

11 Oct 2022


#172

How the Fed Is ‘Shaking the Entire System’

“There are moments when history making creeps up on you,” [writes] (https://www.nytimes.com/2022/10/04/opinion/the-all-too-real-risk-of-a-global-recession.html) the economic historian Adam Tooze. “This is one of those moments.” Countries across the world are raising interest rates at unprecedented speeds. That global monetary tightening is colliding with spiking food and energy prices, financial market instability, high levels of emerging market debt and economies still struggling to recover from the Covid pandemic. Alone, each of these factors would warrant concern; combined, they could be catastrophic. We’re already beginning to see what happens as these dynamics intersect: Britain just experienced a bond market meltdown that threatened one of the most advanced financial systems in the world. Developing countries like Sri Lanka, Argentina and Pakistan are experiencing political and economic crises. The World Bank [believes] (https://www.worldbank.org/en/news/press-release/2022/09/15/risk-of-global-recession-in-2023-rises-amid-simultaneous-rate-hikes) we could be headed for a severe global recession. Tooze is the director of the European Institute at Columbia University and the author of multiple histories of financial crises and near crises and of the excellent [Chartbook newsletter] (https://adamtooze.substack.com/) . He believes this particular confluence of high inflation, rising interest rates and high levels of debt points to an economic “polycrisis” unlike any the world has seen. And he and others have argued that the U.S. Fed’s decision to raise interest rates is a core driver of that crisis. So this is a conversation about the fragile, uncertain future of the global economy at this history-making moment and the Fed’s role in it. We discuss what the British financial market meltdown means for the rest of the world, how the interest rate hikes in rich countries export inflation to other countries, the looming possibility of a global recession, why Tooze believes something could break in the global financial system, why countries in South Asia are experiencing a particularly severe form of “polycrisis,” how the Fed should weigh its mandate to bring down inflation against the global consequences of its actions, why he believes analogies to the American inflationary period of the 1970s are misguided and more. Mentioned: “ [Slouching Towards Utopia by J Bradford DeLong — fuelling America’s global dream] (https://www.ft.com/content/a6b2198f-6c37-43aa-9638-063e4a6ca08c) ” by Adam Tooze Book recommendations: [The Neapolitan Novels] (https://www.europaeditions.com/book/9781609455057/the-neapolitan-novels-boxed-set) by Elena Ferrante [Youthquake] (https://www.worldcat.org/title/youthquake-why-african-demography-should-matter-to-the-world/oclc/1276798092) by Edward Paice [Slouching Towards Utopia] (https://www.basicbooks.com/titles/j-bradford-delong/slouching-towards-utopia/9780465019595/) by J. Bradford DeLong Thoughts? Guest suggestions? Email us at ezrakleinshow@nytimes.com. You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more episodes of “The Ezra Klein Show” at [ nytimes.com/ezra-klein-podcast] (https://www.nytimes.com/column/ezra-klein-podcast) , and you can find Ezra on Twitter @ezraklein. Book recommendations from all our guests are listed at [ https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs] (https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs.html) . “The Ezra Klein Show” is produced by Annie Galvin, Jeff Geld and Rogé Karma. Fact-checking by Michelle Harris, Rollin Hu, Mary Marge Locker and Kate Sinclair. Original music by Isaac Jones. Mixing by Jeff Geld. Audience strategy by Shannon Busta. Special thanks to Kristin Lin, Kristina Samulewski, Jason Furman, Mike Konczal and Maurice Obstfeld. ... Read more

07 Oct 2022

1 HR 25 MINS

1:25:56

07 Oct 2022


#171

When You Can’t Trust the Stories Your Mind Is Telling

The National Institute of Mental Health estimates that nearly one in five adults in America lives with a mental illness. And we have plenty of evidence — from suicide rates to the percentage of Americans on psychopharmaceuticals — that our collective mental health is getting worse. But beyond mental health diagnoses lies a whole, complicated landscape of difficult, often painful, mental states that all of us experience at some point in our lives. Rachel Aviv is a longtime staff writer at The New Yorker and the author of the new book “ [Strangers to Ourselves: Unsettled Minds and the Stories That Make Us] (https://us.macmillan.com/books/9780374600846/strangerstoourselves) .” Aviv has done [some of the best reporting] (https://www.newyorker.com/contributors/rachel-aviv) toward answering questions like: How do people cope with their changing — and sometimes truly disturbing — mental states? What can diagnosis capture, and what does it leave out? Why do treatments succeed or fail for different people? And how do all of us tell stories about ourselves — and our minds — that can either trap us in excruciating thought patterns or liberate us? We discuss why children seeking asylum in Sweden suddenly dropped out mentally and physically from their lives, how mental states like depression and anxiety can be socially contagious, how mental illnesses differ from physical ailments like diabetes and high blood pressure, what Aviv’s own experience with childhood anorexia taught her about psychology and diagnosis, how having too much “insight” into our mental states can sometimes hurt us, how social forces like racism and classism can activate psychological distress, the complicated decisions people make around taking medication or refusing it, how hallucinations can be confused with — or might even count as — a form of spiritual connection, what “depressive realism” says about the state of our society, how we can care for one another both within and beyond the medical establishment, and more. This episode contains a brief mention of suicidal ideation. If you are having thoughts of suicide, text 988 to reach the [Suicide & Crisis Lifeline] (https://988lifeline.org/) . A list of additional resources is available at [SpeakingOfSuicide.com/resources] (https://www.speakingofsuicide.com/resources/) . Mentioned: “ [It’s Not Just You,] (https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2022/09/20/opinion/mental-health-america.html) ” a series on mental health in America from New York Times Opinion “ [The Trauma of Facing Deportation] (https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2017/04/03/the-trauma-of-facing-deportation) ” by Rachel Aviv Ruth Ozeki on The Ezra Klein Show: “ [What We Gain by Enchanting the Objects in Our Lives] (https://www.nytimes.com/2022/01/25/opinion/ezra-klein-podcast-ruth-ozeki.html) ” Thomas Insel on The Ezra Klein Show: “ [A Top Mental Health Expert on Where America Went Wrong] (https://www.nytimes.com/2022/07/22/opinion/ezra-klein-podcast-thomas-insel.html) ” Judson Brewer on The Ezra Klein Show: “ [That Anxiety You’re Feeling? It’s a Habit You Can Unlearn.] (https://www.nytimes.com/2021/04/20/opinion/ezra-klein-podcast-judson-brewer.html) ” Book Recommendations: [Madness and Modernism] (https://global.oup.com/academic/product/madness-and-modernism-9780198779292) by Louis Sass [Of Two Minds] (https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/104443/of-two-minds-by-t-m-luhrmann/) T.M. Luhrmann “ [Wants] (https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/1971/05/ii-wants/664752/) ” by Grace Paley Thoughts? Email us at ezrakleinshow@nytimes.com. (And if you're reaching out to recommend a guest, please write  “Guest Suggestion" in the subject line.) You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more episodes of “The Ezra Klein Show” at [ nytimes.com/ezra-klein-podcast] (https://www.nytimes.com/column/ezra-klein-podcast) , and you can find Ezra on Twitter @ezraklein. Book recommendations from all our guests are listed at [ https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs] (https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs.html) . “The Ezra Klein Show” is produced by Annie Galvin and Rogé Karma. Fact-checking by Michelle Harris, Mary Marge Locker and Kate Sinclair. Original music by Isaac Jones. Mixing by Sonia Herrero, Isaac Jones and Carole Sabouraud. Audience strategy by Shannon Busta. Special thanks to Kristin Lin and Kristina Samulewski. ... Read more

04 Oct 2022

1 HR 07 MINS

1:07:05

04 Oct 2022


#170

Ethereum’s Founder on What Crypto Can — and Can’t — Do

When most people hear “crypto,” the first thing they think of is “currencies.” Cryptocurrencies have skyrocketed in popularity over the past few years. And they’ve given rise to an entire ecosystem of financial speculation, get rich quick schemes, and in some cases outright fraud. But there’s another side of crypto that gets less attention: the segment of the community that is interested in the way the technology that powers crypto can decentralize decision making, make institutions more transparent and transform the way organizations are governed. That’s the side I find far more interesting. There are few individuals as central to that latter segment of crypto as Vitalik Buterin. When he was still just a teenager, Buterin co-founded Ethereum, a decentralized platform whose token Ether is the second most valuable cryptocurrency today, surpassed only by Bitcoin. But the vision behind Ethereum was that the blockchain technology could be used for more than digital money; it could create a sort of digital infrastructure on top of which organizations and companies and applications could be built — ostensibly free of centralizing structures like banks and governments. Over the last decade, Buterin has become arguably the core public intellectual on the nonfinancial side of crypto. His new book, “ [Proof of Stake] (https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/714151/proof-of-stake-by-vitalik-buterin/) ,” is a collection of long, thoughtful essays that taken together lay out a vision of crypto as a truly transformative technology — one with the potential to revolutionize everything from city governance to voting systems to online identity. I myself have dueling impulses about Buterin’s vision. On the one hand, I believe many of our governing systems and institutions are badly in need of the kind of reimagining he is engaged in. On the other hand, I’m deeply skeptical of whether the issues Buterin and his ilk are focused on are actually technological problems that blockchains can solve. So this is a conversation that sits squarely within that tension. Mentioned: [Seeing Like a State] (https://yalebooks.yale.edu/book/9780300078152/seeing-like-a-state/) by James C. Scott Book recommendations: [The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich] (https://www.simonandschuster.com/books/The-Rise-and-Fall-of-the-Third-Reich/William-L-Shirer/9781451642599) by William L. Shirer [Harry Potter and The Methods of Rationality ] (https://www.hpmor.com/) by Eliezer Yudkowsky [Algorithmic Game Theory] (https://www.cambridge.org/us/academic/subjects/computer-science/algorithmics-complexity-computer-algebra-and-computational-g/algorithmic-game-theory?format=HB) by Noam Nisan, Tim Roughgarden, Eva Tardos and Vijay V. Vazirani Thoughts? Guest suggestions? Email us at ezrakleinshow@nytimes.com. You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more episodes of “The Ezra Klein Show” at [ nytimes.com/ezra-klein-podcast] (https://www.nytimes.com/column/ezra-klein-podcast) , and you can find Ezra on Twitter @ezraklein. Book recommendations from all our guests are listed at [ https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs] (https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs.html) . “The Ezra Klein Show” is produced by Annie Galvin and Rogé Karma. Fact-checking by Michelle Harris, Mary Marge Locker and Kate Sinclair. Original music by Isaac Jones. Mixing by Sonia Herrero, Isaac Jones and Carole Sabouraud. Audience strategy by Shannon Busta. Special thanks to Kristin Lin, Kristina Samulewski, Will Wilkinson, Alex Tabarrok, Glen Weyl and Nathan Schneider. ... Read more

30 Sep 2022

1 HR 37 MINS

1:37:18

30 Sep 2022


#169

We Know So Little About What Makes Humanity Prosper

Why do some countries produce far more science Nobel laureates than others? Why did Silicon Valley happen in California rather than Japan or Boston? Why did the Industrial Revolution happen when it did and where it did? These are just some of the questions that have inspired the formation of a new intellectual movement called “progress studies.” The basic idea is this: For hundreds of thousands of years, human history played out without any rapid, marked advance in material living standards. And then, suddenly, in just the past few hundred years, everything changed: Humanity achieved a truly mind-boggling amount of progress in the evolutionary blink of an eye. In the early 21st century, we are all living in the world that progress bequeathed. And yet we understand shockingly little about what drives that progress in the first place. That’s important because, at least according to some metrics, progress seems to be slowing down. We spend far more on scientific research but that research results in fewer breakthrough discoveries. Key economic indicators such as productivity growth have slowed. Many have argued that the technologies we’ve invented in recent decades, while highly impressive, aren’t as transformative as the technologies from the last century. All of which means that the questions animating progress studies aren’t mere academic exercises; they are central to understanding how we can bring about a better future for all. Patrick Collison is the co-founder and chief executive of the multibillion-dollar payments company Stripe. But for years now, Collison has also been developing and advocating a worldview that has become the intellectual backbone of this new discipline. In 2019, Collison, alongside the economist Tyler Cowen,   [called for] (https://www.theatlantic.com/science/archive/2019/07/we-need-new-science-progress/594946/) “a new science of progress.” And since then, an intellectual ecosystem has sprung up around it, full of its own magazines and thinkers and syllabuses and podcasts. And Collison himself is putting its theories into practice through organizations  (like Fast Grants and Arc Institute) that he’s founded and funded. This conversation is an attempt to better understand Collison’s worldview, and more broadly the worldview of progress studies. The ideas that animate progress studies are worth taking seriously on their own terms. But they are also important because they are becoming increasingly influential among a wealthy elite with the power and resources to shape all of our futures. Mentioned: “ [Science Is Getting Less Bang for Its Buck] (https://www.theatlantic.com/science/archive/2018/11/diminishing-returns-science/575665/) ” by Patrick Collison and Michael Nielsen [A Culture of Growth] (https://press.princeton.edu/books/paperback/9780691180960/a-culture-of-growth) by Joel Mokyr ["Kludgeocracy in America"] (https://www.nationalaffairs.com/publications/detail/kludgeocracy-in-america) by Steve Teles  Book Recommendations: [Empire and Revolution] (https://press.princeton.edu/books/paperback/9780691175652/empire-and-revolution) by Richard Bourke [Scene of Change] (https://www.amazon.com/Scene-Change-Lifetime-American-Science/dp/B000OKQR44) by Warren Weaver [A Widening Sphere] (https://mitpress.mit.edu/9780262543996/a-widening-sphere/#:~:text=In%20A%20Widening%20Sphere%2C%20Philip,school's%20intellectual%20and%20social%20cultures.) by Philip N. Alexander Thoughts? Guest suggestions? Email us at ezrakleinshow@nytimes.com. You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more episodes of “The Ezra Klein Show” at [ nytimes.com/ezra-klein-podcast] (https://www.nytimes.com/column/ezra-klein-podcast) , and you can find Ezra on Twitter @ezraklein. Book recommendations from all our guests are listed at [ https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs] (https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs.html) . “The Ezra Klein Show” is produced by Annie Galvin and Rogé Karma. Fact-checking by Michelle Harris, Mary Marge Locker and Kate Sinclair. Original music by Isaac Jones. Mixing by Sonia Herrero, Isaac Jones and Carole Sabouraud. Audience strategy by Shannon Busta. Special thanks to Kristin Lin and Kristina Samulewski. ... Read more

27 Sep 2022

1 HR 31 MINS

1:31:19

27 Sep 2022


#168

Why Russia Is Losing the War in Ukraine

When Russia invaded Ukraine in February, the question most analysts were asking was not whether Russia would win. It was how fast. On almost every quantifiable metric from military strength to economic size Russia has decisive advantages over Ukraine. A swift Russian victory appeared inevitable. Of course, that swift victory didn’t happen. And in recent weeks, the direction of the war has begun to tilt in Ukraine’s direction. On Sept. 6, the Ukrainian military launched a counteroffensive near Kharkiv in northern Ukraine and regained 3,400 square miles of territory in a week — more territory than Russia had captured in the last five months. Analysts are now saying it’s unlikely that Vladimir Putin can accomplish one of his chief aims: annexing the Donbas by force. Andrea Kendall-Taylor is the director of the trans-Atlantic security program at the Center for a New American Security. She’s a former intelligence officer who, from 2015 to 2018, led strategic analysis on Russia at the National Intelligence Council. When we spoke, she was recently back from a trip to Ukraine. And she believes that the long-term trends favor a Ukrainian victory. In this conversation, Kendall-Taylor helps me understand this watershed moment in the war. We discuss why Ukraine’s recent counteroffensive was so significant; how it and other recent developments have hampered Russian morale, manpower and weapons supply; whether sanctions are really influencing Russia’s strategy, and how sanctions might get worse; how this conflict is profoundly changing Europe; whether this recent turn of events signals a possible Ukrainian victory; why “personalist dictators” like Putin can be so dangerous when backed into a corner; how likely it is that we’ll see stalemate or settlement negotiations in the near future; how Kendall-Taylor rates the likelihood of various outcomes; what we should expect in the next phase of the war and more. Mentioned: “ [Ukraine Holds the Future] (https://www.foreignaffairs.com/ukraine/ukraine-war-democracy-nihilism-timothy-snyder) ” by Timothy Snyder “ [The Russia-Ukraine War at Six Months] (https://adamtooze.substack.com/p/chartbook-146-the-russia-ukraine) ” by Adam Tooze Recommendations: [Stalin: Paradoxes of Power, 1878-1928] (https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/299269/stalin-by-stephen-kotkin/) by Stephen Kotkin Twitter Accounts to Follow for Russia-Ukraine War Analysis: [Michael Kofman] (https://twitter.com/KofmanMichael) [Rob Lee] (https://twitter.com/RALee85) [Mick Ryan] (https://twitter.com/WarintheFuture) [The Institute for the Study of War] (https://twitter.com/TheStudyofWar) Thoughts? Guest suggestions? Email us at ezrakleinshow@nytimes.com. You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more episodes of “The Ezra Klein Show” at [ nytimes.com/ezra-klein-podcast] (https://www.nytimes.com/column/ezra-klein-podcast) , and you can find Ezra on Twitter @ezraklein. Book recommendations from all our guests are listed at [ https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs] (https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs.html) . “The Ezra Klein Show” is produced by Annie Galvin and Rogé Karma. Fact-checking by Michelle Harris, Mary Marge Locker and Kate Sinclair. Original music by Isaac Jones. Mixing by Sonia Herrero, Isaac Jones and Carole Sabouraud. Audience strategy by Shannon Busta. Special thanks to Kristin Lin, Kristina Samulewski and Emma Ashford. ... Read more

23 Sep 2022

1 HR 17 MINS

1:17:00

23 Sep 2022


#167

The Single Best Guide to Decarbonization I’ve Heard

In August, Joe Biden signed into law the Inflation Reduction Act, which included $392 billion towards a new climate budget — the single largest investment in emissions reduction in U.S. history. The CHIPS and Science Act and the Bipartisan Infrastructure Act bring that number up to around $450 billion. All of that spending is designed with one major objective in mind: to put the United States on a path to a decarbonized economy, with the goal of reaching net zero emissions by 2050. Achieving that goal is perhaps the single most important challenge of our age. And so I wanted to dedicate a full episode to it. How big is the task of decarbonizing the U.S. economy? What do we actually need to do to get there? How does the I.R.A. help do that? And what are the biggest obstacles still standing in our way? Jesse Jenkins is an assistant professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering at Princeton University and leads the Princeton ZERO Lab. He was a lead author of [the Net Zero America report] (https://netzeroamerica.princeton.edu/?explorer=year&state=national&table=2020&limit=200) , the most comprehensive attempt to map out the different pathways to decarbonization I’ve seen. He also leads the REPEAT Project, which has done some of the most in-depth modeling of how the Inflation Reduction Act and other climate policies could affect emissions. As a result, this conversation ended up being the single clearest explanation I’ve heard of both the path to decarbonizing America and the impact the Biden administration’s climate bills could have on that effort. I learned a ton from this one, and I think you will too. Book recommendations: [Making Climate Policy Work] (https://www.wiley.com/en-us/Making+Climate+Policy+Work-p-9781509541805) by Danny Cullenward and David G. Victor “ [Sequencing to Ratchet Up Climate Policy Stringency] (https://www.rff.org/publications/journal-articles/sequencing-to-ratchet-up-climate-policy-stringency/) ” (academic paper) by Michael Pahle, Dallas Burtraw, Christian Flachsland, Nina Kelsey, Eric Biber, Jonas Meckling, Ottmar Edenhofer and John Zysman [How Solar Energy Became Cheap] (https://www.routledge.com/How-Solar-Energy-Became-Cheap-A-Model-for-Low-Carbon-Innovation/Nemet/p/book/9780367136598) by Gregory F. Nemet Thoughts? Guest suggestions? Email us at ezrakleinshow@nytimes.com. You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more episodes of “The Ezra Klein Show” at [ nytimes.com/ezra-klein-podcast] (https://www.nytimes.com/column/ezra-klein-podcast) , and you can find Ezra on Twitter @ezraklein. Book recommendations from all our guests are listed at [ https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs] (https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs.html) . “The Ezra Klein Show” is produced by Annie Galvin and Rogé Karma. Fact-checking by Michelle Harris, Mary Marge Locker and Rollin Hu. Original music by Isaac Jones. Mixing by Carole Sabouraud and Isaac Jones. Audience strategy by Shannon Busta. Special thanks to Kristin Lin and Kristina Samulewski. ... Read more

20 Sep 2022

1 HR 41 MINS

1:41:12

20 Sep 2022


#166

Now All Biden Has to Do Is Build It

In the past few months, Joe Biden’s agenda has gone from a failed promise to real legislation. Taken together, the CHIPS and Science Act and the Inflation Reduction Act (along with the Bipartisan Infrastructure Act) have the potential to put America on a path to decarbonization, develop some of the most advanced and crucial supply chains in the world, and build all kinds of next-generation technologies. It’s hard to overstate just how transformative these plans could be if they are carried out in the right way. But that’s a big “if.” Because Biden’s legacy will not be written just in tax code and regulatory law. All of this legislation is about building things in the real world — from wind farms to semiconductor manufacturing plants to electric vehicle charging stations and so much more. Which means the hard work isn’t over. It’s just beginning. Felicia Wong is the president and chief executive of the Roosevelt Institute and someone who has had an unusually clear read of the Biden administration from the beginning. Wong has been arguing that Biden wants to fundamentally reshape the productive capacity of the economy. And now he’s gotten approval of bills that have the potential to do just that. But Wong is also realistic about the obstacles in the way of realizing that project. And so the question at the center of this conversation is: What will it take to turn the Biden agenda from written legislation into lived reality? We also discuss the death of the “care infrastructure” for helping families that was at the heart of the Build Back Better proposal, the challenges of building up the American semiconductor industry, why some progressives view these bills as “corporate welfare,” the conservative argument that government shouldn’t be “picking winners and losers,” how these bills could respond to America’s deep regional inequalities, how to address the problem of NIMBYism, what participatory budgeting and worker cooperatives can teach us about better ways to represent community voices, why we should want the government to take bigger risks even if that means more government failure, and much more Mentioned: “ [All Biden Has to Do Now Is Change the Way We Live] (https://www.nytimes.com/2022/09/11/opinion/biden-climate-congress-infrastructure.html) ” by Ezra Klein Book recommendations: [The Middle Out] (https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/671443/the-middle-out-by-michael-tomasky/) by Michael Tomasky (accompanied by new podcast, " [How to Save a Country] (https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/how-to-save-a-country/id1644703919) ") [Elite Capture] (https://www.haymarketbooks.org/books/1867-elite-capture) by Olúfẹ́mi O. Táíwò Chords of Change (forthcoming 2023) by Deepak Bhargava and Stephanie Luce Thoughts? Guest suggestions? Email us at ezrakleinshow@nytimes.com. You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more episodes of “The Ezra Klein Show” at [ nytimes.com/ezra-klein-podcast] (https://www.nytimes.com/column/ezra-klein-podcast) , and you can find Ezra on Twitter @ezraklein. Book recommendations from all our guests are listed at [ https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs] (https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs.html) . ​​ “The Ezra Klein Show” is produced by Annie Galvin and Rogé Karma. Fact-checking by Michelle Harris, Mary Marge Locker and Kate Sinclair. Original music by Isaac Jones. Mixing by Carole Sabouraud and Isaac Jones. Audience strategy by Shannon Busta. Special thanks to Kristin Lin and Kristina Samulewski. ... Read more

16 Sep 2022

1 HR 09 MINS

1:09:09

16 Sep 2022


#165

We Build Civilizations on Status. But We Barely Understand It.

“We see status virtually everywhere in social life, if we think to look for it,” writes Cecilia Ridgeway. “It suffuses everyday possessions, the cars we drive, the clothes we wear, the food brands we prefer, and the music we listen to.” And that’s only a partial list. Status influences the neighborhood we live in, the occupation we pursue, the friends we choose. It attaches itself to our race, gender, class and age. It shapes our interpersonal interactions. And, most of the time, it does all of this without us even realizing what’s happening. Ridgeway is a sociologist and professor emerita at Stanford who has spent her career studying what she calls the “deep story” of status. Her 2019 book “ [Status: Why Is It Everywhere? Why Does It Matter?] (https://www.russellsage.org/publications/status) ” is the culmination of decades of research into what status is, how it actually works, and the myriad ways it shapes our world. We typically think of status as social vanity limited to elite institutions or the top percentages of the income ladder. But Ridgeway argues that the truth is closer to the opposite: Status is everywhere. It’s the water we all swim in. And the reason it’s everywhere is that it’s one of humanity’s oldest and most powerful social technologies — a technology that has built civilizations, inspired revolutions and spurred countless innovations while also reinforcing some of our world’s deepest inequalities and injustices. So this conversation is about making visible an often overlooked force that shapes so much of our world, our lives and even our sense of self. It also explores how status hierarchies emerge from “a fundamental tension in the human condition”; why sports, religion, fashion and meritocracy can all be considered forms of status “games”; how status games simultaneously help explain the advent of modern science and the pervasiveness of racial and gender stereotypes; why scholars increasingly view status as a “fundamental human motive”; why our society allocates higher status to investment bankers than teachers; how public policy can change our status beliefs; how elite-status signaling has shifted from wearing fancy clothes and driving expensive cars to reading The New Yorker and listening to NPR; how the internet has completely transformed our relationships with status; and much more. Mentioned: [The Sum of Small Things] (https://press.princeton.edu/books/paperback/9780691183176/the-sum-of-small-things) by Elizabeth Currid-Halkett [The Knowledge Machine] (https://wwnorton.com/books/9781631491375) by Michael Strevens [The Status Game] (https://www.harpercollins.com/products/the-status-game-on-social-position-and-how-we-use-it-will-storr?variant=40160558514210) by Will Storr Book Recommendations: [Envy Up, Scorn Down] (https://www.russellsage.org/publications/envy-scorn-down-1) by Susan T. Fiske [The Psychology of Social Status] (https://link.springer.com/book/10.1007/978-1-4939-0867-7) by Joey T. Cheng, Jessica L. Tracy, Cameron Anderson [The Theory of the Leisure Class] (https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/328375/the-theory-of-the-leisure-class-by-thorstein-veblen/) by Thorstein VeblenThis episode is guest-hosted by Rogé Karma, the senior editor for “The Ezra Klein Show.” Rogé has been with the show since July 2019, when it was based at Vox. He works closely with Ezra on everything related to the show, from editing to interview prep to guest selection. At Vox, he also wrote articles and conducted interviews on topics ranging from policing and racial justice to democracy reform and the coronavirus. Thoughts? Guest suggestions? Email us at ezrakleinshow@nytimes.com. You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more episodes of “The Ezra Klein Show” at [ nytimes.com/ezra-klein-podcast] (https://www.nytimes.com/column/ezra-klein-podcast) , and you can find Ezra on Twitter @ezraklein. Book recommendations from all our guests are listed at [ https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs] (https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs.html) . ​​“The Ezra Klein Show” is produced by Annie Galvin and Rogé Karma. Fact-checking by Michelle Harris and Kate Sinclair. Original music by Isaac Jones. Mixing by Carole Sabouraud and Isaac Jones. Audience strategy by Shannon Busta. Special thanks to Kristin Lin and Kristina Samulewski. ... Read more

13 Sep 2022

1 HR 29 MINS

1:29:43

13 Sep 2022


#164

Opinion Roundtable: Behind America’s Public School Battles

Today we’re bringing you a special episode from New York Times Opinion: a roundtable, hosted by [Lulu Garcia-Navarro] (https://www.nytimes.com/column/first-person) , about how parents view the role of school. America’s schools have emerged as a battleground for the country’s most fervent cultural disagreements, and in many places, parents are finding themselves on the front lines. Three parents of public school students joined Lulu Garcia-Navarro to discuss the big questions underlying the new era of parental activism. Letha Muhammad is a mother of three in Raleigh, N.C., and serves as the executive director of the nonprofit Education Justice Alliance, which works to dismantle the school-to-prison and school-to-deportation pipelines. Tom Chavez of Elmhurst, Ill., is a father of three who co-founded the group Elmhurst Parents for Integrity in Curriculum, which seeks to remove ideological agendas from the classroom. Siva Raj lives in San Francisco with his two sons and co-founded the group SF Guardians, which led the drive to recall three of the city’s school board members this year. This episode was produced as part of [a special series from New York Times Opinion] (https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2022/09/01/opinion/schools-education-america.html) exploring the purpose of K-12 education.  This [Times Opinion roundtable] (https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2022/09/01/opinion/us-school-parents.html) was produced by Lulu Garcia-Navarro, Phoebe Lett, Kristin Lin, Derek Arthur and Cassady Rosenblum, with help from Shannon Busta, Olivia Natt, Aaron Retica, Eleanor Barkhorn, Alison Bruzek and Anabel Bacon. Original music and mixing by Isaac Jones. Fact-checking by Kate Sinclair, Mary Marge Locker and Michelle Harris. You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more episodes of “The Ezra Klein Show” at nytimes.com/ezra-klein-podcast, and you can find Ezra on Twitter @ezraklein. Book recommendations from all our guests are listed at [https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs] (https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs) . ... Read more

10 Sep 2022

40 MINS

40:20

10 Sep 2022


#163

The Subtle Art of Appreciating ‘Difficult Beauty’

When is the last time you paused — truly paused the flow of life — to appreciate something beautiful? For as long as we know, humans have sought out beauty, believing deeply that beautiful things and experiences can enhance our lives. But what does beauty really do to us? How can it fundamentally alter our experience of the world? Beauty is always “teaching me something about my own mind,” says the writer and philosopher Chloé Cooper Jones. In her book, “Easy Beauty,” Jones takes readers on a journey across the globe and into her intimate family life to explore what beauty has done for her and what it can potentially do for all of us. At the core of Jones’s book — and of this conversation — is a distinction between two radically different kinds of beauty. On the one hand, there’s “easy beauty”: a Renaissance painting, a sunset, a deliciously prepared meal. Easy beauty includes the kinds of things we are taught to consider beautiful. But Jones argues there’s also a deeper form of beauty — a “difficult beauty,” which can be found in places that may initially strike us as mundane, messy, even ugly. That is, if we clear the space within our own minds long enough to look for it. This conversation also explores how Jones’s relationship to her disabled body has changed over time, what it means to appreciate the physical world more fully, how all of us are affected by our society’s crushing physical beauty standards, how Jones has created a “neutral room” in her mind to cope with those difficult standards, what attending a Beyoncé concert taught her about “radical presence,” what a celebrity party Peter Dinklage attended revealed about how far we need to go in respecting different bodies, why it is worth it to “make friends” with the idea that we may all become disabled or incapacitated at some point, how children reflect and reveal parts of ourselves we didn’t even know existed, what advice she has for those of us who spend very little time considering beauty but could benefit from it as Jones has, and more. Book Recommendations: [Staring] (https://global.oup.com/academic/product/staring-9780195326796?cc=us&lang=en&) by Rosemarie Garland-Thomson [H is for Hawk] (https://groveatlantic.com/book/h-is-for-hawk/) by Helen Macdonald [Romance in Marseille] (https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/604955/romance-in-marseille-by-claude-mckay-edited-with-an-introduction-by-gary-edward-holcomb-and-william-j-maxwell/) by Claude McKay This episode is guest-hosted by Tressie McMillan Cottom (@ [tressiemcphd] (https://twitter.com/tressiemcphd) ), a sociologist and writer whose work focuses on higher education policy, race, beauty and more. She is a Times Opinion columnist and the author of “Thick: And Other Essays,” which was a finalist for the National Book Award, and “Lower Ed: The Troubling Rise of For-Profit Colleges in the New Economy.” Thoughts? Guest suggestions? Email us at ezrakleinshow@nytimes.com. You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more episodes of “The Ezra Klein Show” at [ nytimes.com/ezra-klein-podcast] (https://www.nytimes.com/column/ezra-klein-podcast) , and you can find Ezra on Twitter @ezraklein. Book recommendations from all our guests are listed at [ https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs] (https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs.html) . “The Ezra Klein Show” is produced by Annie Galvin and Rogé Karma; fact-checking by Michelle Harris, Mary Marge Locker and Kate Sinclair; original music by Isaac Jones; mixing by Sonia Herrero and Isaac Jones; audience strategy by Shannon Busta. Special thanks to Kristin Lin and Kristina Samulewski. ... Read more

06 Sep 2022

1 HR 14 MINS

1:14:26

06 Sep 2022


#162

Best Of: This Conversation With Richard Powers Is a Gift

Today we're revisiting one of our favorite conversations from 2021 with the novelist Richard Powers. Enjoy! There are certain conversations I fear trying to fit into a description. There’s just more to them than I’m going to be able to convey. This is one of them. Richard Powers is the author of 13 novels, including the 2019 Pulitzer Prize-winning [“The Overstory.”] (https://wwnorton.com/books/9780393356687) If you haven’t read it, you should. It’ll change you. It changed me. I haven’t walked through a forest the same way again. And I’m not alone in that. When I [interviewed] (https://www.nytimes.com/2021/06/01/opinion/ezra-klein-podcast-barack-obama.html) Barack Obama this year, he recommended “The Overstory,” saying, “It changed how I thought about the earth and our place in it.” Powers’s new book is [“Bewilderment.”] (https://wwnorton.com/books/9780393881141) You could think of it as 'The Innerstory': It is about how and whether we see the world we inhabit. It’s about the nature and limits of our empathy. It’s about refusing to die before we’re dead and taking seriously the gifts and responsibilities of being alive. It is about how we change our minds and how we change our societies. It is about how we treat delusion as normal and clarity as lunacy. It is enchanting, and it is devastating. It is not just books through which Powers has been exploring these ideas. It is also through radical changes he’s made to how he lives his life. That’s where we start but far from where we end: This conversation touches on mortality, animism, politics, old-growth forests, extraterrestrial life, Buddhism and beyond. Mentioned: [Finding the Mother Tree] (https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/602589/finding-the-mother-tree-by-suzanne-simard/) by Suzanne Simard Book recommendations: [How to Be Animal] (https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/606910/how-to-be-animal-by-melanie-challenger/) by Melanie Challenger [Rooted] (https://www.hachettebookgroup.com/titles/lyanda-lynn-haupt/rooted/9780316426473/) by Lyanda Lynn Haupt [Ever Green] (https://www.penguinrandomhouse.ca/books/706580/ever-green-by-john-w-reid-and-thomas-e-lovejoy/9781324006039) by John W. Reid and Thomas E. Lovejoy You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more episodes of “The Ezra Klein Show” at [ nytimes.com/ezra-klein-podcast] (https://www.nytimes.com/column/ezra-klein-podcast) , and you can find Ezra on Twitter @ezraklein. Book recommendations from our guests are listed at [ https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs] (https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs.html) . Thoughts? Guest suggestions? Email us at ezrakleinshow@nytimes.com. This episode of “The Ezra Klein Show” was produced by Annie Galvin, Jeff Geld and Rogé Karma; fact-checking by Michelle Harris; original music by Isaac Jones; mixing by Jeff Geld, audience strategy by Shannon Busta. Special thanks to Kristin Lin. ... Read more

02 Sep 2022

1 HR 24 MINS

1:24:24

02 Sep 2022


#161

A Grammy-Nominated Singer Performs and Explores Music's Power

In times of deep sorrow or joy, humans have always turned to music. Archaeologists have found evidence of instruments among very early civilizations. Spiritual communities have centered on music for centuries. We teach our children their ABCs and how to brush their teeth with songs. We dance out our feelings and cry along with sad tunes. What is it about music that enables it to work so powerfully on our bodies, minds and emotions? That is one of the core animating questions of this conversation with Allison Russell. Russell is a Grammy-nominated singer and songwriter whose debut album, “ [Outside Child] (https://allisonrussellmusic.com/js_albums/persephone-luck-mansion-sessions/) ,” was named one of the best albums of 2021 by critics at NPR and The Times. Russell has played in bands including Birds of Chicago and Our Native Daughters, traversing folk, rock ’n’ roll, Celtic music, the blues and other genres. But alongside her powerhouse vocals and gorgeous melodies, Russell infuses a deep scholarly curiosity into her songs — not just about the nature and power of music, but also what it can teach listeners about our world. Digging into archives and family history, she explores themes like generational trauma, our relationships to diaspora and migration and how music can build empathic bridges between us in times of deep division. But above all, her songs testify to the sheer human capacity for resilience: our capacity to transcend our darkest times if we hold on, reach out to one another and seek out art that helps console. In this episode, Russell performs four songs with a full band, so listeners can enjoy her infectious art. And then we use those songs as jumping-off points to explore the deeper ideas embedded in her music: why we fall into melodies so soon after our births; how music moves us differently from how books or speeches do; how sound can help regulate our emotions, slow our breathing and rewire our neural networks; how Russell’s melodies and vocal performances come together in her mind; why songs can at times be more persuasive than nonfiction; why our unwillingness to divulge painful secrets goes back to the Victorian era; how generational trauma like the Middle Passage connects to personal trauma in the present; how Russell structures her songs to help people transcend profound pain; what message Russell would send to people who are struggling and much more. This episode contains references to sexual abuse. Mentioned: “ [The Transmogrification of Trauma into Art] (https://www.ted.com/talks/allison_russell_the_transmogrification_of_trauma_into_art) ” by Allison Russell “ [Barley] (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z-rCa9sOLMQ) ” by Birds of Chicago “ [Real Midnight] (https://open.spotify.com/album/7mFltVGJpL7QSFfPAdWeMZ?si=33qzaBWdR1qMbqtUJJtsgg) ” by Birds of Chicago “ [Songs of Our Native Daughters] (https://open.spotify.com/album/4h2VDUKuFcJ0cJTQFcNc3A?si=SioGSzAtScq-35Rrpd08Lw) ” by Our Native Daughters “ [The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald] (https://open.spotify.com/track/536L9C0N7vhYdibCJx3cI2?si=6b18e0b965a043f6) ” by Gordon Lightfoot “ [Take Em Away] (https://open.spotify.com/track/0DtFrdgJKviX326gJMWbIm?si=9a1aa38867e6400f) ” by Old Crow Medicine Show “ [The Art of Disappearance] (https://www.nytimes.com/2022/08/11/magazine/connie-converse-disappearance.html) ” by Hanif Abdurraqib Music and Book Recommendations: [The Bone People] (https://www.panmacmillan.com/authors/keri-hulme/the-bone-people/9780330485418) by Keri Hulme [A Fortune for Your Disaster] (https://tinhouse.com/book/a-fortune-for-your-disaster/) by Hanif Abdurraqib [Breaking the Thermometer] (https://www.breakingthethermometer.com/) by Leyla McCalla [Carry Me Home] (https://www.anti.com/releases/carry-me-home/) by Mavis Staples and Levon Helm This episode was guest hosted by Annie Galvin, the associate producer of “The Ezra Klein Show.” Galvin has covered books and music for almost a decade and hosted a season of “ [Public Books 101] (https://www.publicbooks.org/public-books-101/) ,” a public-scholarship podcast she co-created. Thoughts? Guest suggestions? Email us at ezrakleinshow@nytimes.com. You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more episodes of “The Ezra Klein Show” at [ nytimes.com/ezra-klein-podcast] (https://www.nytimes.com/column/ezra-klein-podcast) , and you can find Ezra on Twitter @ezraklein. Book recommendations from all our guests are listed at [ https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs] (https://www.nytimes.com/article/ezra-klein-show-book-recs.html) . “The Ezra Klein Show” is produced by Annie Galvin and Rogé Karma; fact-checking by Michelle Harris, Mary Marge Locker and Kate Sinclair; original music by Isaac Jones; mixing by Carole Sabouraud and Isaac Jones; audience strategy by Shannon Busta. Special thanks to Kristin Lin, Kristina Samulewski and Erika Duffee. Russell’s band is Monique Ross, Chauntee Ross and Mandy Fer. Additional thanks to Jeff Gruber of Blue House Productions and Allison’s touring engineer, Ross Collier. The songs Russell performs in this episode were written by Allison Russell and Jeremy Thomas Lindsay. ... Read more

30 Aug 2022

1 HR 21 MINS

1:21:10

30 Aug 2022