Give and Take

Conversations at the Heart of the Matter

About the show

Someone once observed that if Howard Stern and Krista Tippett had a love child, it would be Scott Jones. Scott liked that.

At "Give and Take,” Scott Jones talks with artists, authors, theologians, and political pundits about the lens through which they experience life. With empathy, humor, and a deep knowledge of religion, current events, and pop culture, Scott engages his guests in a free-flowing conversation that's entertaining, unexpected, occasionally bizarre, and oftentimes enlightening. He likes people, and it shows.

Past interviewees include Mark Oppenheimer, Melissa Febos, David French, Miroslav Volf, Dan Savage, Nadia Bolz-Weber, Rob Bell, and (yes) Krista Tippett.

Scott is the former host and producer of the popular Mockingcast podcast (https://themockingcast.fireside.fm) and an in-demand consultant on all things “pod.” He’s also the co-host, with Bill Borror, of New Persuasive Words (https://npw.fireside.fm). Scott is also a prolific writer, a frequent conference speaker, a PhD candidate in Theology, and an ordained minister.

A New Jersey native, Scott lives with his best friend and wife, Lindy, in the suburbs of Philadelphia with two rescue pit bulls that he swears are sensitive souls.

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Episodes

  • Episode 233: Life At The End Of Us Vs Them, with Marcus Rempel

    July 8th, 2020  |  47 mins

    My guest is Marcus Rempel. He's the author of "Life At The End Of Us Vs Them." critics of both Christianity and culture. The end of us versus them can deteriorate into the chaos of each against each or it can open outward into freely chosen communion. It is an expectant - and apocalyptic - time. How does one live in this strange, endtime world? As a wanderer in the odd, cross-culture country Girard and Illich have mapped, the author arrives at a surprising new place in relation to those who are his other: women, queer folk, refugees, Muslims, atheists, and Indigenous people. In this collection of essays, he blinks, looks around, and makes some field notes.

  • Episode 232: Grandstanding: The Use and Abuse of Moral Talk, with Justin Tosi and Brandon Warmke

    July 3rd, 2020  |  49 mins 36 secs

    My guests are Justin Tosi and Brandon Warmke. Their new book is "Grandstanding: The Use and Abuse of Moral Talk." We are all guilty of it. We call people terrible names in conversation or online. We vilify those with whom we disagree, and make bolder claims than we could defend. We want to be seen as taking the moral high ground not just to make a point, or move a debate forward, but to look a certain way--incensed, or compassionate, or committed to a cause. We exaggerate. In other words, we grandstand.

  • Episode 231: In Good Faith: Questioning Religion and Atheism, with Scott Shay

    June 24th, 2020  |  50 mins 10 secs

    My guest is Scott Shay. Scott's second book, "In Good Faith: Questioning Religion and Atheism," has been recognized as one of the best books of 2018 by Mosaic Authors and earned a finalist award from National Jewish Books. Scott gives talks around the country and is interviewed on TV, radio, and podcasts many times throughout the year.

  • Episode 230: Corona Means Kissing Sports Goodbye...For Now, with Bradley Klein

    June 21st, 2020  |  57 mins 33 secs

    My guest is Bradley Klein. He's a political scientist turned renowned sports writer and golf consultant. We talk about a piece he recently wrote about the future of sports in the age of Corona.

  • Episode 229: Taking Children, with Laura Briggs

    June 10th, 2020  |  48 mins 42 secs

    My guest is Laura Briggs. Her new book is Taking Children: A History of American Terror. In these unprecedented times, one thing remains true--those who wish to enact racist and discriminatory practices will find a way to do so, often taking advantage of crises to make horrific changes more swiftly. As Laura Briggs shows in TAKING CHILDREN, America has a long history of using racist policies to disband and explicitly harm families of color. From forcing Native American children into schools built to pacify them, to the current administration's use of child separation as a deterrent to immigrate here -- separating children from their families has been a tool used by the government for centuries. Laura Briggs urges readers not to turn a blind eye, but rise to the occasion to fight to change it.

  • Episode 228: The Way Up Is Down, with Marlena Graves

    June 9th, 2020  |  38 mins 50 secs

    My guest is Marlena Graves. Her newest book is "The Way Down Is Up." "Now, with God's help, I shall become myself." These words from Danish philosopher Søren Kierkegaard resonate deeply with Marlena Graves, a Puerto Rican writer, professor, and activist. In these pages she describes the process of emptying herself that allows her to move upward toward God and become the true self that God calls her to. Drawing on the rich traditions of Eastern and Western Christian saints, she shares stories and insights that have enlivened her transformation. For Marlena, formation and justice always intertwine on the path to a balanced life of both action and contemplation. If you long for more of God, this book offers a time-honored path to deeper life.

  • Episode 227: Lost In Thought, with Zena Hitz

    June 7th, 2020  |  47 mins 36 secs

    My guest is Zena Hitz. She's the author of "The Intellectual Life." In an overloaded, superficial, technological world, in which almost everything and everybody is judged by its usefulness, where can we turn for escape, lasting pleasure, contemplation, or connection to others? While many forms of leisure meet these needs, Zena Hitz writes, few experiences are so fulfilling as the inner life, whether that of a bookworm, an amateur astronomer, a birdwatcher, or someone who takes a deep interest in one of countless other subjects. Drawing on inspiring examples, from Socrates and Augustine to Malcolm X and Elena Ferrante, and from films to Hitz’s own experiences as someone who walked away from elite university life in search of greater fulfillment, "Lost in Thought" is a passionate and timely reminder that a rich life is a life rich in thought.

  • Episode 226: Monetizing Your Podcast, with Satish Gaire

    June 6th, 2020  |  22 mins 46 secs

    My guest is Satish Gaire. Satish has also started many companies to help businesses. This includes DirectPay, WooAgents, myDentalWebsite, BookSmartr and many more.
    Satish’s mission is to help humanity by spreading the knowledge that he has gained from his many years of doing internet marketing and running his own business. He wants to help others to achieve the same level of success. His ultimate goal is to put a smile on your face, through his podcasts, videos, speeches and courses.

  • Episode 225: Not Forsaken, with Jennifer Michelle Greenberg

    June 4th, 2020  |  36 mins 44 secs

    My guest is Jennifer Michelle Greenberg. She's the author of "Not Forsaken." Jenn Greenberg was abused by her church-going father. Yet she is still a Christian. In this courageous, compelling book, she reflects on how God brought life and hope in the darkest of situations. Jenn shows how the gospel enables survivors to navigate issues of guilt, forgiveness, love, and value. And she challenges church leaders to protect the vulnerable among their congregations. "Not Forsaken" is not an easy read. But, perhaps today more than ever, it is a must-read.

  • Episode 224: The Economics of Health Care in the midst of a Pandemic, with Jordan Al-Zu’Bi

    May 31st, 2020  |  35 mins 24 secs

    My guest is Jordan Al-Zu’Bi. He's an economist who focuses on the health insurance industry. We talk about the health insurance industry and how the pandemic will impact it.

  • Episode 223: Pre and Post President Trump, with Bradley S. Klein and David Shields

    May 30th, 2020  |  1 hr 17 mins

    My guests are Bradley S. Klein and David Shields. Klein has played golf with Trump, written about him as a sports journalist and consulted on his golf courses. David Shields has written one of the most provocative and revealing books about Trump, Nobody Hates Trump More Than Trump. If you're looking for an interesting Trump conversation in the midst of Corona, this is it.

  • Episode 222: Tanking To The Top, with Yaron Weitzman

    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.

  • Episode 221: A Poet Talks Pandemics, with Bob Holman

    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.

  • Episode 220: Critical Thinking, with Jonathan Haber

    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.

  • Episode 218: The Hot Hand, with Ben Cohen

    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?