May 21st, 2020 | 38 mins 2 secs
My guest is Yaron Weitzman. He's the author of "Tanking to the Top: The Philadelphia 76ers and the Most Audacious Process in the History of Professional Sports." When a group of private equity bigwigs purchased the Philadelphia 76ers in 2011, the team was both bad and boring. Attendance was down. So were ratings. The Sixers had an aging coach, an antiquated front office, and a group of players that could best be described as mediocre.
Enter Sam Hinkie -- a man with a plan straight out of the PE playbook, one that violated professional sports' Golden Rule: You play to win the game. In Hinkie's view, the best way to reach first was to embrace becoming the worst -- to sacrifice wins in the present in order to capture championships in the future. And to those dubious, Hinkie had a response: Trust The Process, and the results will follow.
May 18th, 2020 | 34 mins 20 secs
My guest is Bob Holman. On December 3, 2019, Bowery Books simultaneously released two new books of poetry by Bob Holman—written 50 years apart. LIFE POEM and THE UNSPOKEN serve not only as bookends to a lifetime immersed in words, performance, and the avant garde, but they also show the evolution of an artist, an art form, and a downtown art scene that’s gone from Allen Ginsberg to Lou Reed to Eileen Myles to Mahogany L. Browne. He's also a New Yorker in the midst of the epicenter of the Corona pandemic.
May 18th, 2020 | 41 mins 26 secs
My guest is Jonathan Haber. He's the author of "Critical Thinking." Critical thinking is regularly cited as an essential twenty-first century skill, the key to success in school and work. Given our propensity to believe fake news, draw incorrect conclusions, and make decisions based on emotion rather than reason, it might even be said that critical thinking is vital to the survival of a democratic society. But what, exactly, is critical thinking? In this volume in the MIT Press Essential Knowledge series, Jonathan Haber explains how the concept of critical thinking emerged, how it has been defined, and how critical thinking skills can be taught and assessed.
Episode 219: The Scientific Attitude: Defending Science from Denial, Fraud, and Pseudoscience in the midst of Corona, with Lee McIntyre
May 17th, 2020 | 54 mins 59 secs
My guest is Lee McIntyre. He's the author of "The Scientific Attitude: Defending Science from Denial, Fraud, and Pseudoscience." Attacks on science have become commonplace. Claims that climate change isn't settled science, that evolution is “only a theory,” and that scientists are conspiring to keep the truth about vaccines from the public are staples of some politicians' rhetorical repertoire. Defenders of science often point to its discoveries (penicillin! relativity!) without explaining exactly why scientific claims are superior. In this book, Lee McIntyre argues that what distinguishes science from its rivals is what he calls “the scientific attitude”―caring about evidence and being willing to change theories on the basis of new evidence. The history of science is littered with theories that were scientific but turned out to be wrong; the scientific attitude reveals why even a failed theory can help us to understand what is special about science.
May 17th, 2020 | 37 mins 46 secs
For decades, statisticians, social scientists, psychologists, and economists (among them Nobel Prize winners) have spent massive amounts of precious time thinking about whether streaks actually exist. After all, a substantial number of decisions that we make in our everyday lives are quietly rooted in this one question: If something happened before, will it happen again? Is there such a thing as being in the zone? Can someone have a “hot hand”? Or is it simply a case of seeing patterns in randomness? Or, if streaks are possible, where can they be found?
May 12th, 2020 | 1 hr 48 secs
My guest is Patrick Murrary. He was named the Monmouth University Polling Institute’s founding director in 2005. He is frequently called upon by the media to provide commentary on polling and the political world, including appearances on CNN, MSNBC, Fox News, PBS, and National Public Radio. During federal election years, Murray also serves as a national exit poll analyst for major networks. In the institute’s home state, Murray has appeared on numerous Power Lists of the most influential people in New Jersey politics.
May 10th, 2020 | 39 mins 53 secs
My guest is Carol Ann Davis. Her new book "The Nail in the Tree" narrates her experience of raising two sons in Sandy Hook, Connecticut, on the day of and during the aftermath of the shooting there. Part memoir, part art-historical treatise, these meditations lead her to explore crucial subjects, including whether childhood can itself be both violent and generative, the possibility of the integration of trauma into daily life and artistic practice, and the role of the artist. Davis is the author of two previous poetry collections, Psalm (2007) and Atlas Hour (2011), both from Tupelo Press, and a professor of English at Fairfield University.
May 10th, 2020 | 1 hr 4 mins
My guest is Tony Jones. He's the author of numerous books, including "Did God Kill Jesus?" He also is the host of the Reverend Hunter podcast and the co-host of the Killer Serials podcast.
Episode 214: Industrial-Strength Denial: Eight Stories of Corporations Defending the Indefensible, from the Slave Trade to Climate Change, with Barbara Freese
May 9th, 2020 | 36 mins 10 secs
My guest is Barbara Freese. Her newest book is "Industrial-Strength Denial: Eight Stories of Corporations Defending the Indefensible, from the Slave Trade to Climate Change." In it she argues that corporations faced with proof that they are hurting people or the planet have a long history of denying evidence, blaming victims, complaining of witch hunts, attacking their critics’ motives, and otherwise rationalizing their harmful activities. Denial campaigns have let corporations continue dangerous practices that cause widespread suffering, death, and environmental destruction. And, by undermining social trust in science and government, corporate denial has made it harder for our democracy to function.
Episode 213: Why Conservatives and Liberals Are Not Experiencing the Same Pandemic, with Luke Conway
May 9th, 2020 | 32 mins 7 secs
My guest is Luke Conway. He is a professor of psychology at the University of Montana. He just wrote a piece summarizing his research on conservative and liberal experiences of the pandemic.
May 9th, 2020 | 1 hr 9 mins
My guest is Jennifer Briney. She's the host of the wildly popular Congressional Dish podcast which offers granular and entertaining coverage of the U.S. Congress.
May 7th, 2020 | 1 hr 25 mins
My guest is Liel Leibovitz. He's a Senior Writer at Tablet Magazine and a co-host of the wildly popular podcast Unorthodox. His newest book is Stan Lee: A Life in Comics.
May 4th, 2020 | 1 hr 11 mins
My guest is Lauren Sandler. Her newest book is "This Is All I Got: A New Mother's Search for Home." More than forty-five million Americans attempt to survive under the poverty line, day by day. Nearly 60,000 people sleep in New York City-run shelters every night—forty percent of them children. This Is All I Got makes this issue deeply personal, vividly depicting one woman's hope and despair and her steadfast determination to improve her situation, despite the myriad setbacks she encounters.
May 3rd, 2020 | 1 hr 13 mins
My guest is Edward J. Watts. He holds the Alkiviadis Vassiliadis endowed Chair and is professor of history at the University of California, San Diego. The author and editor of several prize-winning books, including "The Final Pagan Generation" and "Mortal Republic", he lives in Carlsbad, California.
April 30th, 2020 | 1 hr 3 mins
My guest is Noah Rothman. He is the Associate Editor of Commentary and the author of Unjust: Social Justice and the Unmaking of America.
Episode 207: The Power Worshipers: Inside the Dangerous Rise of Religious Nationalism, with Katherine Stewart
April 28th, 2020 | 51 mins 45 secs
My guest is Katherine Stewart. Her newest book is "The Power Worshippers: Inside the Dangerous Rise of Religious Nationalism." For too long, she argues, the Religious Right has masqueraded as a social movement preoccupied with a number of cultural issues, such as abortion and same-sex marriage. In her deeply reported investigation, Katherine Stewart reveals a disturbing truth: this is a political movement that seeks to gain power and to impose its vision on all of society. America’s religious nationalists aren’t just fighting a culture war, they are waging a political war on the norms and institutions of American democracy.