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The Impact

By Vox  

In Washington, DC, the story often ends when Congress passes a law. For us, that’s where the story begins. We examine the consequences of what happens when powerful people act — or fail to act. This season, Jillian Weinberger explores the big ideas from the 2020 presidential candidates: how their ideas worked, or didn’t work, in other places or at other times. Produced by Vox and the Vox Media Podcast Network.

In Washington, DC, the story often ends when Congress passes a law. For us, that’s where the story begins. We examine the consequences of what happens when powerful people act — or fail to act. This season, Jillian Weinberger explores the big ideas from the 2020 presidential candidates: how their ideas worked, or didn’t work, in other places or at other times. Produced by Vox and the Vox Media Podcast Network.

 

#31

Introducing Land of the Giants: The Netflix Effect

In the new season of Land of the Giants, Recode's Peter Kafka and Rani Molla examine how Netflix has disrupted entertainment and completely changed the way we watch TV. Listen to the first episode and then subscribe to Land of the Giants: The Netflix Effect in your favorite podcast app. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices ... Read more

03 Jul 2020

39 MINS

39:47

03 Jul 2020


#30

The Toll

In this bonus, chat episode of The Impact, Jillian is joined by Vox's Matt Yglesias and Course Correction's Nelufar Hedayat to talk about how the data collected on Covid-19 deaths will help shape our world, now and in the future. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices ... Read more

10 Jun 2020

25 MINS

25:46

10 Jun 2020


#29

Where the US already has a border wall

Nogales, Arizona, and Nogales, Sonora, are known as “Ambos Nogales” — “both Nogaleses.” The city straddles the border of Arizona and Sonora, Mexico. For a long time, a hole-riddled chain-link fence ran along that border. Residents could cross back and forth with ease. But in 1995, the federal government replaced the chain-link fence with a wall. Over time, that wall has been fortified with surveillance towers, more Customs and Border Patrol agents, and drones.  President Trump wants to extend the Nogales model all along the US-Mexico border. In the final episode of the season, The Impact goes to Nogales with the Arizona Republic to find out why the federal government decided to build the wall, how it has changed Ambos Nogales, and how it has affected migrants who hope to cross into the United States. Further listening and reading:  Rafael Carranza’s reporting in the Arizona Republic Maritza Dominguez’s work on the Valley 101 podcast  Radiolab’s Border Trilogy explores Operation Blockade and the federal government’s Prevention Through Deterrence policy Vox’s guide to where 2020 candidates stand on policy, including immigration Subscribe to The Impact on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or your favorite podcast app to automatically get new episodes of the latest season each week. Host: Jillian Weinberger, @jbweinz About Vox: Vox is a news network that helps you cut through the noise and understand what's really driving the events in the headlines. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices ... Read more

19 Feb 2020

32 MINS

32:16

19 Feb 2020


#28

Free tuition is not enough

Free college tuition seems like a solution to so many problems. After all, the price of tuition is the No. 1 reason students give for leaving school. And when students don’t finish, they can’t access the many benefits of a college degree. That’s why several presidential candidates have proposed some version of a free college program. But in Kalamazoo, Michigan, free college isn’t a proposal, it’s a reality — and it has been for almost 15 years. Students who live in Kalamazoo and attend its public schools K-12 have their in-state college tuition completely covered. It’s called the Kalamazoo Promise.  The Promise has had some impressive results, but it's only brought Kalamazoo’s college graduation rates up to the Michigan state average. In this episode, we follow the lives of two Promise recipients, Aaliyah Buchanan and Olivia Terrentine, to find out why free tuition has not been the panacea Kalamazoo had hoped it would be. We always want to hear from you! Please send comments and questions to impact@vox.com. Further listening and reading:  Michelle Miller-Adams’s book about the Kalamazoo Promise, The Power of a Promise: Education and Economic Renewal in Kalamazoo, gives in-depth background on the program MLive’s Kayla Miller introduced us to Aaliyah and wrote a great piece about the Promise last year The UpJohn Institute has a real trove of data and research about the Promise for anyone who would like to dig further into the numbers Vox’s explainer on free college in the 2020 race Subscribe to The Impact on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or your favorite podcast app to automatically get new episodes of the latest season each week. Host: Jillian Weinberger, @jbweinz About Vox: Vox is a news network that helps you cut through the noise and understand what's really driving the events in the headlines. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices ... Read more

12 Feb 2020

26 MINS

26:58

12 Feb 2020


#27

Family Dollar(s)

Natasha Razouk wants to give her 7-year-old the best possible life. She buys big boxes of fresh tomatoes at Costco, and she gets her daughter warm boots, a good coat, and school supplies each year.  But all that is expensive. Natasha’s daughter grows out of clothes quickly, and she needs books and health care and day care. That’s why the Canadian government gives every parent, including Natasha, a little money each month — a few hundred Canadian dollars — to help cover the cost of raising a child.  It’s called the “child benefit.” In 2016, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau promised it would lift hundreds of thousands of children out of poverty. Now, a number of US presidential candidates have signed onto a similar proposal. In this episode, we see whether the Canadian child benefit delivered on Prime Minister Trudeau’s promise. We find out how that money changed Natasha’s life and her daughter’s. And we look at what US presidential candidates can learn from our neighbors to the north. We always want to hear from you! Please send comments and questions to impact@vox.com. Further listening and reading:  Vox’s Dylan Matthews explains what child benefits are and the plan to introduce one in the US. The National Academy of Sciences recently studied child benefits as a tool to cut child poverty in half; here’s what it found. In the episode, we talk about a graph Kevin Milligan drew. See it, and an associated tweet thread, here. You can read a paper Kevin wrote with Mark Stabile about previous child benefit increases here. Vox’s guide to where 2020 candidates stand on policy.  Subscribe to The Impact on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or your favorite podcast app to automatically get new episodes of the latest season each week. Host: Jillian Weinberger, @jbweinz About Vox: Vox is a news network that helps you cut through the noise and understand what's really driving the events in the headlines. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices ... Read more

05 Feb 2020

20 MINS

20:53

05 Feb 2020


#26

Saving Private Health Care

Janet Feldman has been paying for private insurance for years. She does so even though Australia has a robust public insurance option. But when she was diagnosed with a serious illness, her doctor told her not to use the private insurance she was paying for. She stuck to public insurance — and she’s very glad she did, because using the private system in Australia can have some serious disadvantages.  In fact, so many Australians prefer the public system to the private that it’s become a problem for the stability of the two.  Australia’s public-private system looks a lot like proposals from a number of US presidential candidates, including former Vice President Joe Biden and former South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg. In this episode, Vox health care reporter Dylan Scott continues his international investigation of health care across the world, with a stop in Australia. He meets with doctors, researchers, patients — even a robot — and returns to the US with evidence that could both hearten and concern candidates like public-private boosters like Biden or Buttigieg.    We always want to hear from you! Please send comments and questions to impact@vox.com. Links: Dylan’s deep dive into Australian health care Stephen Duckett’s working paper on public and private insurance in Australia Dylan’s piece on the three different kinds of health care plan floated by the Democratic candidates Vox’s guide to where 2020 candidates stand on policy  Subscribe to The Impact on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or your favorite podcast app to automatically get new episodes of the latest season each week. Host: Jillian Weinberger, @jbweinz About Vox: Vox is a news network that helps you cut through the noise and understand what's really driving the events in the headlines.   Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices ... Read more

31 Jan 2020

29 MINS

29:25

31 Jan 2020


#25

How Taiwan got Medicare-for-All

In the early 1990s, the government of Taiwan decided to try an experiment. In just nine months, they completely revolutionized their health care system, covering every Taiwanese citizen through a single-payer program. It’s a system that looks very similar to the Medicare-for-all proposals from presidential candidates like Sens. Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren.  Vox health care reporter Dylan Scott went to Taiwan to investigate how its single-payer system is working and what the United States can learn from it. He interviewed patients, doctors, government officials, and a researcher with a charming love story. Dylan learned that while the people of Taiwan love their version of Medicare-for-all — a program that has significantly improved Taiwan’s health outcomes — the entire system could go bankrupt, soon.  We always want to hear from you! Please send comments and questions to impact@vox.com. Further listening and reading:  Dylan's deep dive on Taiwan's health care system Uwe Reinhardt’s last book, Priced Out: The Economic and Ethical Costs of American Healthcare Tsung-Mei (May) Cheng wrote a Wall Street Journal opinion piece making the case for a public option Dylan’s piece on the three kinds of health care plan floated by the Democratic candidates Vox’s guide to where 2020 candidates stand on policy    Subscribe to The Impact on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or your favorite podcast app to automatically get new episodes of the latest season each week. Host: Jillian Weinberger, @jbweinz About Vox: Vox is a news network that helps you cut through the noise and understand what's really driving the events in the headlines. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices ... Read more

29 Jan 2020

31 MINS

31:39

29 Jan 2020


#24

Green New Germany

Two decades ago, Hans-Josef Fell quietly started a revolution in his home country, with a law that looks a lot like part of the Green New Deal endorsed by many Democratic candidates. That law transformed Germany, and that has the potential to change the world.   Fell found a way to make renewable energy technology — like solar panels and wind turbines — cheap. His law allowed Germans to sell the renewable energy they create to the grid at a really high fixed price. Germany paid that fixed price through a surcharge on every electricity consumer’s bill. Demand for renewables grew so much in Germany that China started to mass produce solar panels and wind turbines, which drove the price down. Now, people all over the world can afford this technology. But the law has also had some unintended consequences. Due to some amendments and market forces, the surcharge on Germany’s electric bills have skyrocketed. Electricity has become a burdensome expense for Germans living on welfare, and the high cost has even left a few spending a lot of time in the dark.  Further listening and reading: Vox’s David Roberts on how government policy helped make solar technology affordable Vox’s Umair Irfan and Tara Golshan on Sen. Bernie Sanders’s Green New Deal Vox’s guide to where all the 2020 candidates stand on policy, including climate change issues Subscribe to The Impact on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or your favorite podcast app to automatically get new episodes of the latest season each week. Host: Jillian Weinberger, @jbweinz About Vox: Vox is a news network that helps you cut through the noise and understand what's really driving the events in the headlines. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices ... Read more

22 Jan 2020

24 MINS

24:01

22 Jan 2020


#23

After conviction, a second chance

President Gerald Ford took office during one of the most difficult times in the country’s history. In August 1974, the US had just lived through Watergate, President Richard Nixon’s resignation, and more than a decade of divisive fighting over its involvement in Vietnam. While millions of Americans fought in Southeast Asia, many others protested the war at home — or dodged the draft. Ford wanted to find a way to bring the country together. Just a few weeks after assuming the presidency, he created a Clemency Review Board, a bipartisan group that would decide the fate of the young Americans who were convicted of refusing induction, or going AWOL (absent without leave), from Vietnam. Those young men could fill out an application, and the board would decide whether they deserved a pardon — which would erase a felony conviction from their record. Many of the Democratic candidates for president want to do the same thing today. They’re proposing a Clemency Review Board to review applications from federal inmates, many of whom are serving long sentences because of harsh penalties enacted during the War on Drugs.  In this episode: forgiveness and redress after two long conflicts, the Vietnam War, and the War on Drugs. The Impact looks back at how Ford tried to heal the nation — and how he transformed the lives of two men as a result. We’ll also find out how Ford’s idea might work today, for a new generation of young people behind bars. Further listening and reading:  The Uncertain Hour’s third season explores the War on Drugs and its aftermath Vox’s German Lopez on incarceration in America Vox’s guide to where 2020 candidates stand on policy, including criminal justice reform  Professor Mark Osler’s law review article on Ford’s Clemency Review Board Subscribe to The Impact on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or your favorite podcast app to automatically get new episodes of the latest season each week. Host: Jillian Weinberger, @jbweinz About Vox: Vox is a news network that helps you cut through the noise and understand what's really driving the events in the headlines. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices ... Read more

15 Jan 2020

29 MINS

29:39

15 Jan 2020


#22

How to stop an epidemic

Sen. Elizabeth Warren is running for president with a plan to fight the opioid epidemic. Her legislation would dramatically expand access to addiction treatment and overdose prevention, and it would cost $100 billion over 10 years. Addiction experts agree that this is the kind of money the United States needs to fight the opioid crisis. But it’s a really expensive idea, to help a deeply stigmatized population. How would a President Warren get this through Congress?  It’s been done before, with the legislation Warren is using as a blueprint for her proposal. In 1990, Congress passed the Ryan White Care Act, the first national coordinated response to the AIDS crisis. In the decades since, the federal government has dedicated billions of dollars to the fight against AIDS, and it’s revolutionized care for people with this once-deadly disease.  But by the time President George H.W. Bush signed the bill into law, hundreds of thousands of people in the US already had HIV/AIDS, and tens of thousands had died.  In this episode: how an epidemic begins, and how it ends. We look at what it took to get the federal government to finally act on AIDS, and what that means for Warren’s plan to fight the opioid crisis, today.  We always want to hear from you! Please send comments and questions to impact@vox.com. Further listening and reading:  When We Rise: My Life in the Movement, Cleve Jones’s book about his work for LGBTQ rights and against AIDS And the Band Played On: Politics, People, and the AIDS Epidemic, by Randy Shilts Vox’s German Lopez on Elizabeth Warren’s plan to fight the opioid epidemic Vox’s guide to where 2020 candidates stand on policy  Subscribe to The Impact on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or your favorite podcast app to automatically get new episodes of the latest season each week. Host: Jillian Weinberger, @jbweinz About Vox: Vox is a news network that helps you cut through the noise and understand what's really driving the events in the headlines. Follow Us: Vox.com  Newsletter: Vox Sentences Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices ... Read more

08 Jan 2020

31 MINS

31:41

08 Jan 2020


#21

The Impact of 2020

In this season preview, Vox’s Jillian Weinberger calls a fellow native Ohioan to discuss the perils of Swing State pride during presidential elections, and their frustration with the way election coverage casts their home state. Facing yet another presidential election, The Impact is taking a different tack. We're not running around Ohio, asking patrons in diners to name their preferred candidate. We're exploring what all these contenders actually want to do if they're elected. The 2020 candidates have some bold ideas to tackle some of our country's biggest problems, like climate change, the opioid crisis, and unaffordable health care. A lot of their proposals have been tried before, so, in a sense, the results are in. This season, the Impact has those stories: how the big ideas from 2020 candidates succeeded — or failed — in other places, or at other times. What can Sen. Elizabeth Warren's proposal to fight the opioid crisis learn from what the US did to fight the AIDS epidemic? How did Germany — an industrial powerhouse that invented the automobile — manage to implement a Green New Deal? How did public health insurance change Taiwan?  If you haven’t already, subscribe to The Impact on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or your favorite podcast app to automatically get new episodes of the latest season each week. We always want to hear from you! Please send comments and questions to impact@vox.com. Host: Jillian Weinberger, @jbweinz About Vox: Vox is a news network that helps you cut through the noise and understand what's really driving the events in the headlines. Follow Us: Vox.com  Newsletter: Vox Sentences Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices ... Read more

06 Jan 2020

03 MINS

03:56

06 Jan 2020