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The Ezra Klein Show

Vox

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Ezra Klein brings you far-reaching conversations about hard problems, big ideas, illuminating theories, and cutting-edge research. Want to know how Mark Zuckerberg intends to govern Facebook? How Elizabeth Warren believes the US government got rigged...Show More
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Is modern society making us depressed?

1:31:07 | Apr 16th, 2018

“What if depression is, in fact, a form of grief — for our own lives not being as they should?” asks Johann Hari. “What if it is a form of grief for the connections we have lost yet still need?” In his new book, Lost Connections, Hari advances an ar...Show More
Yuval Harari, author of “Sapiens,” on AI, religion, and 60-day meditation retreats

1:07:04 | Feb 28th, 2017

Yuval Noah Harari’s first book, “Sapiens,” was an international sensation. The Israeli historian’s mind-bending tour through the trump of Homo sapiens is a favorite of, among others, Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg, and Barack Obama. His new book, Homo D...Show More
Work as identity, burnout as lifestyle

1:24:45 | Apr 22nd

In the past few months, two essays on America’s changing relationship to work caught my eye. The first was Anne Helen Petersen’s viral BuzzFeed piece defining, and describing, “millennial burnout.” The second was Derek Thompson’s Atlantic article on ...Show More
Rebecca Traister: Women's rage is transforming America

1:10:08 | Oct 4th, 2018

Why did Christine Blasey Ford have to smile and politely ask for breaks while Brett Kavanaugh could rage at the cameras and dismiss the hearings as a farce? The answer is in Rebecca Traister’s essential, perfectly timed new book, Good and Mad: The R...Show More
What Ellen Pao saw coming

1:10:44 | Jun 18th, 2018

Ellen Pao had a rough 2015. She lost her high-profile gender discrimination lawsuit against Kleiner Perkins, one of Silicon Valley’s biggest and most powerful venture capital firms. She also stepped down as CEO of Reddit after a tumultuous tenure in ...Show More
The core contradiction of American politics

1:09:09 | Feb 11th

The Republican and Democratic parties are not the same. I’ll say it again: The Republican and Democratic parties are not the same.I don’t just mean they believe different things. I mean they’re composed in different ways, they argue from different pr...Show More
Mark Zuckerberg on Facebook’s hardest year, and what comes next

49:02 | Apr 2nd, 2018

It’s been a tough year for Facebook. The social networking juggernaut found itself engulfed by controversies over fake news, electoral interference, privacy violations, and a broad backlash to smartphone addiction. Wall Street has noticed: the compan...Show More
Why liberals and conservatives create such different media (with Danna Young)

1:36:25 | Jun 20th

The debate over polarized media can make the two ecosystems sound equivalent. One is left, the other right, but otherwise they’re the same. That couldn’t be more wrong. They’re structured differently, they work differently, they value different thing...Show More
Contrapoints on taking the trolls seriously

1:21:25 | May 13th

YouTube is where tomorrow’s politics are happening today.If you’re over 30, and you don’t spend much time on the platform, it’s almost impossible to explain how central it is to young people’s media consumption. YouTube far outranks television in ter...Show More
Pop music can make you smarter

21:44 | Mar 6th

Vox takes culture seriously. Our coverage of movies, TV, books, and music delves deep into what our cultural touchstones reveal about who we are and what we care about — and how what we consume influences our world in turn.That's why I'm so excited t...Show More
Sean Decatur doesn’t see a free speech crisis on campus

1:20:44 | Jan 17th

Sean Decatur is the president of Kenyon College and the first African-American to hold that job. He’s also one of the most thoughtful voices in the debate over free speech and political correctness on campus."Colleges and universities have been charg...Show More
Cal Newport has an answer for digital burnout

1:11:43 | Jan 14th

Cal Newport suspects you’re a digital maximalist — someone who believes that any potential for benefit is reason enough to start using a new technology. Don’t feel bad. That’s how most of us are. That’s how society teaches us to be.Newport wants us t...Show More
Adam Serwer on white political correctness

52:52 | Dec 10th, 2018

“What a society finds offensive is not a function of fact or truth,” writes Adam Serwer, “but of power.” Serwer is a writer at the Atlantic, and he’s been looking at the identity politics and political correctness debates from a direction that’s too ...Show More
How Democracies Die

1:15:25 | Jan 29th, 2018

The year is young, but Steven Levitsky and Daniel Ziblatt’s How Democracies Die is going to be one of its most important books. It will be read as a commentary on Donald Trump, which is fair enough, because the book is, in part, a commentary on Donal...Show More
Evan Osnos on the North Korea crisis, Trump’s mental health, and China's rise

1:24:45 | Nov 6th, 2017

Evan Osnos is the author of the National Book Award-winning The Age of Ambition: Chasing Fortune, Truth, and Faith in the New China, as well as a staff writer at the New Yorker. And he’s recently back from a trip to North Korea, where he learned how ...Show More
Can Raj Chetty save the American dream?

1:22:42 | Aug 8th

I don’t ordinarily find myself scrambling to write down article ideas during these conversations, but almost everything Raj Chetty says is worth a feature unto itself. For instance:- Great Kindergarten teachers generate hundreds of thousands of dolla...Show More
What deliberative democracy can, and can’t, do (with Jane Mansbridge)

56:30 | Jul 11th

Every time I do an episode on polarization, I get a few emails asking: What about deliberative democracy? Couldn’t that be an answer?Deliberative democracy, if you’re not familiar, refers to a broad set of approaches in which citizens get together, w...Show More
The cognitive cost of poverty (with Sendhil Mullainathan)

1:39:12 | Jun 24th

If you’re a Parks and Rec fan, you’ll remember Ron Swanson’s Pyramid of Greatness. Right there at the base sits “Capitalism: God’s way of determining who is smart and who is poor.”It’s a joke, but not really. Few want to justify the existence of pove...Show More
The art of attention (with Jenny Odell)

1:27:20 | May 23rd

“For some, there may be a kind of engineer’s satisfaction in the streamlining and networking of our entire lived experience,” writes Jenny Odell. “And yet a certain nervous feeling, of being overstimulated and unable to sustain a train of thought, li...Show More
What kind of news is cable news? (With Brian Stelter)

1:27:51 | May 16th

Brian Stelter is the host of CNN’s Reliable Sources, as well as the network’s chief media correspondent. But before he was the host of Reliable Sources, he was just a kid with a blog — a blog that obsessed over the coverage decisions, business models...Show More
Ask Ezra Anything 3: Endgame

1:36:25 | May 6th

Time for another AMA! You all hit the big stuff in this one. What’s the purpose of this show? How do I prep for it? What did I think of the Whiteshift conversation? What has fatherhood changed in my worldview? What weird work habits do I recommend? H...Show More
ICYMI: Julia Galef

1:34:27 | Mar 14th

For this episode of The Ezra Klein Show, we're digging into the archives to share another of our favorites with you!*At least in politics, this is an era of awful arguments. Arguments made in bad faith. Arguments in which no one, on either side, is w...Show More
Noah Rothman on the "unjustice" of social justice politics

1:12:51 | Feb 25th

I'm Jane Coaston, senior politics reporter at Vox with a focus on conservatism and the GOP.For the last three years or so, there has been an ongoing discussion among conservatives about identity politics and what many view as the corrosive use of ide...Show More
Why should we care about deficits?

1:08:27 | Feb 21st

Stony Brook University’s Stephanie Kelton is the most influential proponent of Modern Monetary Theory, a heterodox take on government budgets that urges a focus on inflation, rather than deficits. Jason Furman was President Barack Obama’s chief econo...Show More
Andrew Sullivan and I work out our differences

2:07:02 | Feb 14th

I’ve been arguing with Andrew Sullivan online for almost 15 years now. It’s one of my oldest and most rewarding hobbies. In the past, I’ve always felt we understood each other, even in periods of sharp disagreement. Lately, that’s changed.Sullivan an...Show More
Leftists vs. liberals, with Elizabeth Bruenig

1:21:58 | Feb 7th

What separates Obama-era liberalism from Sanders-style democratic socialism? What are the fights splitting and transforming the Democratic Party actually about?This is a conversation I’ve wanted to have for a while, in part because I often find mysel...Show More
The world according to Ralph Nader

1:26:02 | Feb 4th

Ralph Nader needs no introduction. But if your knowledge of Nader mostly consists of his 2000 campaign for the presidency, his career does demand some context. Nader is one of America’s truly great policy entrepreneurs, and arguably one of its great ...Show More
This conversation will change how you understand misogyny

2:16:39 | Jan 31st

Misogyny has long been understood as something men feel, not something women experience. That, says philosopher Kate Manne, is a mistake. In her book Down Girl: The Logic of Misogyny, Manne defines misogyny as “as primarily a property of social envir...Show More
Will Storr on why you are not yourself

1:28:26 | Dec 6th, 2018

“To have a self is to feel as if we are, in the words of neuroscientist Professor Chris Frith, the ‘invisible actor at the centre of the world’.” That’s Will Storr, writing in his fantastic book Selfie. Ignore the very of-the-moment title. Storr dive...Show More
Jay Rosen is pessimistic about the media. So am I.

1:22:24 | Oct 18th, 2018

This is a tough conversation. It was a tough one to hold, and it’s a tough one to publish. I’m a journalist. I’ve been a journalist for 15 years. I believe in journalism. But right now, I’m worried we’re failing. I’m worried we’re making American po...Show More
Jaron Lanier’s case for deleting social media right now

1:23:47 | Jul 9th, 2018

During my book leave, I took a social media sabbatical. No reading Facebook. No reading Twitter. And you know what? It was great. I felt able to think more clearly, and listen more closely, than had been true in years. I’m not sure that was all becau...Show More
"An orgy of serious policy discussion" with Paul Krugman

1:35:18 | Dec 11th, 2017

On October 24, 2016, in the final days of the presidential election, Paul Krugman, the Nobel-prize winning economist and New York Times columnist, tweeted, "When this election is finally over, I'm planning to celebrate with an orgy of...serious polic...Show More
How the Republican Party created Donald Trump

1:51:09 | Oct 2nd, 2017

Thomas Mann and Norman Ornstein have studied American politics for more than three decades. They are the town’s go-to experts on the workings of Congress. In 2012, they rocked Washington when they published It’s Even Worse Than It Looks, a book that ...Show More
David Remnick on journalism in the Trump era and why he hires obsessives

1:29:26 | Sep 19th, 2017

For the past 19 years, David Remnick has been the editor of the New Yorker, perhaps the greatest magazine in the English language. Under his leadership, the New Yorker has received 149 nominations for National Magazine Awards and won 37. It’s also, p...Show More
Chris Hayes on whether Trump should be removed from office

1:07:02 | Aug 15th, 2017

In the aftermath of Trump’s bizarre, dangerous North Korea tweets, I’ve been fixated on a question: Should Trump be removed from office?   The mechanisms we have for curbing a dangerous presidency are limited, at least as we normally think about th...Show More
Al Franken on learning to be a politician

56:34 | Jun 20th, 2017

Sen. Al Franken’s new book, Al Franken, Giant of the Senate, is the rare politician memoir that’s actually interesting. And note that I said interesting, not funny (though it is also funny).Most books by politicians are about how they’re not really p...Show More
Cal Newport on doing Deep Work and escaping social media

1:20:18 | Apr 18th, 2017

I was asked recently to name a book that changed my life. The book I chose was Cal Newport’s “Deep Work,” and for the most literal of reasons: it’s changed how I lived my life. Particularly, it’s led me to stop scheduling morning meetings, and to pre...Show More
Cecile Richards on Planned Parenthood, labor organizing, and the Supreme Court

1:12:21 | Mar 7th, 2017

Before Cecile Richards was president of Planned Parenthood, she was a labor organizer working with garment workers in El Paso, Texas. The experience taught her a key principle of political change: people do things for their reasons, not your reasons....Show More
Are bosses dictators? (With Elizabeth Anderson)

1:30:52 | Aug 19th

Imagine a society whose rulers suppress free speech, free association, even bathroom breaks. Where the government owns the means of production. Where the leader is self-appointed or hand-selected by a group of wealthy oligarchs. Where exile or emigra...Show More
The Constitution is a progressive document

1:02:13 | Aug 15th

“The Constitution must be adapted to the problems of each generation,” writes Erwin Chemerisnky, “we are not living in the world of 1787 and should not pretend that the choices for that time can guide ours today.”Does that sentence read to you as obv...Show More
Matt Bruenig’s case for single-payer health care

2:04:55 | Aug 12th

The Democratic primary has been unexpectedly dominated by a single question: Will you abolish private health insurance?Wrapped in that question are dozens more. Why, if private health insurance is such a mess, do polls show most Americans want to kee...Show More
Astra Taylor will change how you think about democracy

1:21:47 | Aug 5th

Astra Taylor’s new book has the best title I’ve seen in a long time: Democracy May Not Exist, But We’ll Miss It When It’s Gone.I talk a lot about democracy on this show, but not in the way Taylor talks about it. The democracy I discuss is bounded by ...Show More
Introducing Land of the Giants

27:19 | Aug 2nd

Ezra sits down with Jason Del Rey, host of Land of the Giants, a new podcast from Recode and the Vox Media Podcast Network. Land of the Giants is about the major technology companies that have reshaped our world and explores the ways that they've cha...Show More
Is big tech addictive? Nir Eyal and I debate.

1:19:13 | Aug 1st

“How do successful companies create products people can’t put down?”That’s the opening line of the description for Nir Eyal’s bestselling 2014 book Hooked: How to Build Habit-Forming Products. Hooked became a staple in Silicon Valley circles — it was...Show More
Generation Climate Change

1:37:28 | Jul 29th

This is one of those episodes I want to put the hard sell on. It’s one of the most important conversations I’ve had on the show. The fact that it left me feeling better about the world rather than worse — that was shocking.Varshini Prakash is co-foun...Show More
Is the media amplifying Trump’s racism? (with Whitney Phillips)

1:27:39 | Jul 25th

Some podcasts I do are easy. There’s a problem and, hey look, here’s a great answer! Some are hard. There’s a problem and, well, there may not be a good answer. This is one of those.When Donald Trump tweeted that four new Democratic members of Congre...Show More
Rutger Bregman’s utopias, and mine

1:32:19 | Jul 22nd

Universal basic income. A 15-hour work week. Open borders.These ideas may strike you as crazy, fantastical, maybe even utopian... but that’s exactly the point.My guest today is Dutch historian Rutger Bregman, whose book Utopia for Realists is not onl...Show More
How white identity politics won the Republican civil war

1:28:40 | Jul 18th

Tim Alberta’s new book American Carnage documents “the Republican Civil War”: a decade-plus struggle over whether the Republican Party would build itself around white identity politics or try to reach out to a changing America.Trump’s election settle...Show More
George Will makes the conservative case against democracy

1:16:28 | Jul 15th

It’s a good time to be a Republican. But it’s a bad time, George Will argues, to be a conservative. Hence his new, 700-page manifesto, The Conservative Sensibility, which tries to rescue conservatism from the perversions of the Trumpist GOP.Will’s co...Show More
Rod Dreher on America’s post-Christian culture war [CORRECTED]

1:55:38 | Jul 8th

[A quick note about this episode - we have fixed an error that caused some listeners to hear overlapping audio in the first portion of the show. Thank you for your understanding, and we're sorry for the issue]In 2017, Rod Dreher published The Benedic...Show More
White threat in a browning America (Jennifer Richeson re-air)

1:18:33 | Jul 4th

This conversation with Yale psychologist and MacArthur genius Jennifer Richeson first appeared a year ago, and it’s one of my favorites. But I wanted to repost it now for two reasons.First, it’s as a necessary companion to Monday’s conversation with ...Show More
Behind the panic in white, Christian America

1:36:56 | Jul 1st

About seven in 10 American seniors are white Christians. Among young adults, fewer than three in 10 are. During the span of the Obama administration, America went from a majority white Christian nation to one where white Christians are a minority. Th...Show More
An enlightening, frustrating conversation on liberalism (with Adam Gopnik)

1:51:00 | Jun 27th

“Liberalism is as distinct a tradition as exists in political history, but it suffers from being a practice before it is an ideology, a temperament and a tone and a way of managing the world more than a fixed set of beliefs.”That’s from Adam Gopnik’s...Show More
Failing towards Utopia

20:11 | Jun 21st

Nice Try! is a new podcast from Curbed and the Vox Media Podcast Network that explores stories of people who have tried to design a better world, and what happens when those designs don't go according to plan. Season one, Utopian, follows Avery Trufe...Show More
Stacey Abrams and Lauren Groh-Wargo (Live!)

1:04:55 | Jun 17th

“The phrase ‘identity politics’ is a weaponization of the Democrats’ structural advantage in elections from now until eternity,” says Stacey Abrams.In this live interview from 2019’s Code conference, Kara Swisher and I sat down with Abrams and her ca...Show More
This changed how I think about love (with Alison Gopnik)

1:34:57 | Jun 13th

Alison Gopnik is a professor of psychology and philosophy at the University of California Berkeley. She’s published more than 100 journal articles and half a dozen books. She runs a cognitive development and learning lab where she studies how young c...Show More
The plan behind Elizabeth Warren’s plans

54:36 | Jun 10th

Oligarchic capitalism? Elizabeth Warren has a plan for that. Opioid deaths? She’s got a plan for that too. Same is true for high housing costs, offshoring, child care, breaking up Big Tech, curbing congressional corruption, indicting presidents, stre...Show More
Michael Lewis reads my mind

1:43:27 | Jun 6th

Michael Lewis needs little introduction. He’s the author of Liar’s Poker, Moneyball, The Big Short, The Blind Side, The Fifth Risk. He’s the host of the new podcast “Against the Rules.” He’s a master at making seemingly boring topics — baseball stati...Show More
How Mitch McConnell convinced Michael Bennet to run for president

1:18:51 | Jun 3rd

I’m not sure what I expected Sen. Michael Bennet’s answer to be when I asked him why he was running for president. I didn’t expect it to be “Mitch McConnell.”Since arriving in the Senate in 2009, Bennet has built a reputation as a senator’s senator. ...Show More
How the brains of master meditators change

1:11:10 | May 30th

Richie Davidson has spent a lifetime studying meditation. He’s studied it as a practitioner, sitting daily, going on retreats, and learning under masters. And he’s pioneered the study of it as a scientist, working with the Dalai Lama to bring master ...Show More
Why good people are easily corrupted (with Lawrence Lessig)

1:24:51 | May 27th

I’ve been learning from, and arguing with, Harvard law professor Lawrence Lessig for a decade now. We have a long-running debate over whether money or polarization is the root cause of our political ills. But our debate works because we share a cruci...Show More
Matt Yglesias and Jenny Schuetz solve the housing crisis

1:05:25 | May 20th

In this special crossover episode, Brookings Institution’s Jenny Schuetz joins The Weeds’ Matt Yglesias to discuss subsidies, zoning reform, and much more.
The purpose of political violence

1:21:08 | May 9th

“Between 1830 and 1860, there were more than seventy violent incidents between congressmen in the House and Senate chambers or on nearby streets and dueling grounds.”Here’s the wild thing about that statistic, which comes from Yale historian Joanne F...Show More
The disillusionment of David Brooks

1:38:55 | May 2nd

2013 was David Brooks’s worst year. “The realities that used to define my life fell away,” he says. His marriage ended. His children moved out. The conservative movement was undergoing the crack-up that would lead to Donald Trump, and to Brooks’s exc...Show More
Emily Oster schools me on parenthood

57:06 | Apr 29th

I’ve read a lot of Emily Oster over the past year. Her first book, Expecting Better, has become the data-minded parent’s bible on pregnancy. Her new book, Cribsheet, extends that analysis to the first years of life.Oster is an economist at Brown Univ...Show More
Lessons from Vox’s first 5 years

1:35:58 | Apr 25th

This is a special episode for me. Vox turns 5 this week! So I sat down with my co-founders, Melissa Bell and Matt Yglesias, to discuss what went right, what went wrong, what changed in the media environment, and what we learned along the way.Matt’s r...Show More
How social democrats won Europe — then lost it

1:09:35 | Apr 18th

Democratic socialism is on the rise in the United States, but it’s been a dominant force for far longer in Europe. Ask Bernie Sanders to define his ideology and he doesn’t start naming political theorists; he points across the Atlantic. “Go to countr...Show More
In defense of white-backlash politics

1:41:50 | Apr 15th

“The big question of our time is less, ‘What does it mean to be American?’ than, ‘What does it mean to be white American in an age of ethnic change?’” writes Eric Kaufmann in his new book Whiteshift: Populism, Immigration, and the Future of White Maj...Show More
Identity, nationalism, and fatherhood

1:48:48 | Apr 11th

Michael Brendan Dougherty is a senior writer at National Review and the author of My Father Left Me Ireland, a moving, lyrical memoir about fatherhood and identity. It’s also a stirring defense of nationalism, an attack on wonks, and a critique of so...Show More
An ex-libertarian’s quest to rebuild the center right

1:26:54 | Apr 8th

Nothing would do more to repair American politics than for the center right to regain power in the Republican coalition. But before that can happen, the center right needs to exist — it needs a theory of both policy and politics, one that would allow...Show More
How whiteness distorts our democracy, with Eddie Glaude Jr.

1:31:42 | Apr 4th

“Race isn’t about black people, necessarily,” says Eddie Glaude Jr. “It’s about the way whiteness works to disfigure and distort our democracy, and the ideals that animate our democracy.”Glaude is the chair of Princeton University’s department of Afr...Show More
Pete Buttigieg’s theory of political change

1:02:29 | Apr 1st

First off. Hello! I’m back from paternity leave. And this is a helluva podcast to restart with.Pete Buttigieg is a Rhodes scholar, a Navy veteran, and the mayor of South Bend, Indiana. He’s a married gay man, a churchgoing Episcopalian, and a proud m...Show More
Meet the policy architect behind the Green New Deal

1:25:20 | Mar 28th

Last month, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Sen. Ed Markey introduced a Green New Deal resolution, outlining a bold effort to decarbonize the US economy and forestall the worst effects of climate change. Ever since, it has been the talk of the town...Show More
The somewhat fractured state of American conservatism

1:03:38 | Mar 25th

Matthew Continetti, editor-in-chief of the Washington Free Beacon, sits down with Vox senior politics reporter Jane Coaston to discuss intellectual conservatism, the legacy of William F. Buckley and Ronald Reagan, neoconservatism, and the role Donald...Show More
American politics after Christianity, with Ross Douthat

1:19:35 | Mar 21st

I’m Vox’s interviews writer, Sean Illing. Lately, I’ve been interested in the following question: Is the decline of institutionalized Christianity making our politics worse? The answer may be yes, but I’m not convinced it’s for the reasons many peopl...Show More
Why Gov. Jay Inslee is running for president on climate change

1:08:05 | Mar 18th

Vox senior politics reporter, Jane Coaston speaks to Washington Gov. Jay Inslee at South by Southwest about climate change, his 2020 candidacy, why it's time to eliminate the filibuster, and the Green New Deal.We are conducting an audience survey to ...Show More
The roots of extremism, with Deeyah Khan

1:25:29 | Mar 11th

What draws someone into an extremist movement? Is it about ideology? Race? Politics? So many of our discussions about extremism try to explain away the problem by reducing its complexity, but that brings us further and further away from actually solv...Show More
ICYMI: Paul Krugman

1:39:51 | Mar 7th

For this episode of the Ezra Klein show we're digging back into the archives to share another of our favorite episodes with you!***On October 24, 2016, in the final days of the presidential election, Paul Krugman, the Nobel-prize winning economist an...Show More
Life after climate change, with David Wallace-Wells

1:14:34 | Mar 4th

After years of hovering on the periphery of American politics, never quite the star of the show, it seems that climate change is having a moment. An ambitious Green New Deal, backed by a large and active youth movement, identifies global warming as a...Show More
Pramila Jayapal thinks we can get to Medicare-for-All fast

1:00:08 | Feb 28th

The Democratic Party is quickly coalescing around an ambitious Medicare-for-All platform — and Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-WA) is shaping up to be a major voice in that debate.Jayapal co-chairs the Congressional Progressive Caucus and, earlier this week,...Show More
Anniversary special: Rachel Maddow

1:43:48 | Feb 18th

To celebrate The Ezra Klein Show's third anniversary, I’m listening back to the very first episode: a conversation with Rachel Maddow. Rachel is, of course, the host of MSNBC's primetime news show and a best-selling author. But she took a winding pat...Show More
Ending the age of animal cruelty, with Bruce Friedrich

1:21:25 | Jan 28th

You often hear that eating animals is natural. And it is. But not the way we do it.The industrial animal agriculture system is a technological marvel. It relies on engineering broiler chickens that grow almost seven times as quickly as they would nat...Show More
Robert Sapolsky on the toxic intersection of poverty and stress

1:21:09 | Jan 24th

Robert Sapolsky is a Stanford neuroscientist and primatologist. He’s the author of a slew of important books on human biology and behavior. But it’s an older book he wrote that forms the basis for this conversation. In Why Zebras Don’t Get Ulcers, Sa...Show More
Frances Lee on why bipartisanship is irrational

1:03:13 | Jan 21st

There aren’t too many people with an idea that will actually change how you think about American politics. But Frances Lee is one of them. In her new book, Insecure Majorities, Lee makes a point that sounds strange when you hear it, but changes every...Show More
Eric Holder’s plan to save democracy

1:00:48 | Jan 10th

Eric Holder was attorney general during the first six years of Barack Obama’s presidency, and there are days when it feels like he’s the attorney general of Obama’s post-presidency, too. Holder chairs the National Democratic Redistricting Committee, ...Show More
Anil Dash on the biases of tech

1:17:23 | Jan 7th

“Marc Andreessen famously said that ‘software is eating the world,’ but it’s far more accurate to say that the neoliberal values of software tycoons are eating the world,” wrote Anil Dash. Dash’s argument caught my eye. But then, a lot of Dash’s arg...Show More
Jill Lepore on America’s two revolutions

1:30:32 | Jan 3rd

Jill Lepore is a Harvard historian, a New Yorker contributor, and the author of These Truths, a dazzling one-volume synthesis of American history. She’s the kind of history teacher everyone wishes they’d had, able to effortlessly connect the events a...Show More
Best of: N.K. Jemisin

1:25:36 | Dec 31st, 2018

This is the most fun I’ve ever had on a podcast. Nora Jemisin — better known by her pen name, N.K. Jemisin — won the Hugo Award for best novel this year for the third year in a row. No one had ever done that before. Jemisin is also the first author t...Show More
Best-of: Bryan Stevenson

1:34:44 | Dec 27th, 2018

Here, at the holidays, I wanted to share some of my favorite episodes of the show with you. Bryan Stevenson tops the list. He’s the founder of the Equal Justice Initiative, the author of the remarkable book Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redempti...Show More
Kara Swisher interviews me on the Future of Journalism (Live!)

1:35:36 | Dec 24th, 2018

When I decided to start an interview podcast, the first person I went to for advice was Kara Swisher — founder of Recode, host of the Code Conference and the Recode/Decode podcast, and one of the most legendary interviewers in the business. Since the...Show More
TED’s Chris Anderson on the lessons of listening

1:11:56 | Dec 20th, 2018

You know TED. Black stage, red accents, wireless mic, one speaker. Billions of views each year. TED is more than a conference now; it’s a meme: “Thanks for coming to my TED talk” closes Tumblr and Twitter posts. Chris Anderson is the guy that took TE...Show More
Rep. Katie Porter on how capitalism is failing

1:21:57 | Dec 17th, 2018

Katie Porter is the Rep.-elect from California’s 45th District, which happens to be the district I grew up in. She’s part of the brigade of Democrats who turned Orange County blue for the first time since the Great Depression. But that’s not why I as...Show More
How Hasan Minhaj is reinventing political comedy

1:44:12 | Dec 13th, 2018

In Patriot Act, Hasan Minhaj’s new Netflix show, he does three things political comedians often don’t do. First, he makes political comedy personal. Second, he makes it visual. And third, he makes it last. Minhaj was the last correspondent hired by J...Show More
How to be a better carnivore

32:07 | Dec 3rd, 2018

Here are two things I believe. First, the way we treat the animals we kill for food is shameful. Second, only a tiny percentage of the population will go vegetarian or vegan and stay that way, at least until lab-grown meat gets a lot better. The mid...Show More
Peter Beinart on anti-Semitism in America and illiberalism in Israel

1:28:35 | Nov 29th, 2018

This is a conversation I’ve been putting off, if I’m being honest. I can’t hold it from the safe space of journalistic distance. It’s about the strange, vulnerable space that many Jews, myself included, find themselves in today. The first part of thi...Show More
Where Jonathan Haidt thinks the American mind went wrong

1:53:13 | Nov 26th, 2018

Jonathan Haidt is a psychologist at New York University and the co-founder of Heterodox University. His book The Righteous Mind, which describes the different moral frameworks that animate the left and the right, was a key influence on my work. But t...Show More
The Impact: Deportation without representation

33:48 | Nov 22nd, 2018

For Thanksgiving listening, I have an episode of The Impact, from my Weeds co-host Sarah Kliff. The Impact is a show about how policy shapes our lives. This season, Sarah and her team are focusing on the most exciting, innovative ideas at the state a...Show More
Molly Ball on Nancy Pelosi’s future and Paul Ryan’s failure

1:05:25 | Nov 19th, 2018

The midterm elections are being interpreted almost entirely as a referendum on President Donald Trump. But it was also a referendum on Paul Ryan’s speakership, which drove Trump’s domestic policy agenda, and Nancy Pelosi’s opposition strategy. In its...Show More
Whitney Phillips explains how Trump controls the media

1:52:16 | Nov 15th, 2018

Here’s a fun fact: The best training for understanding the president’s media strategy is to have studied internet trolls for years and years. Okay, maybe that fact wasn’t so fun. Maybe it’s incredibly depressing. At any rate, Whitney Phillips did exa...Show More
Ask Ezra Anything

1:38:04 | Nov 12th, 2018

You had questions. Smart, interesting questions. Questions about the zero-sum logic of markets, about whether compromise is possible or even desirable in today’s politics, about where the left goes too far, about local vs. national politics, about ho...Show More
Presidents in crisis with Slow Burn’s Leon Neyfakh

1:26:00 | Nov 8th, 2018

Slow Burn is one of my favorite podcasts of the past few years. Its first season, on Watergate, relived the confusion, chaos, and strangeness of the Richard Nixon presidency’s collapse. Its second season, on Bill Clinton’s affair with Monica Lewinsky...Show More
Sandy Darity has a plan to close the wealth gap

52:31 | Nov 5th, 2018

Here’s something to consider: For families in which the lead earner has a college degree, the average white family has $180,500 in wealth. The average black family? $23,400. That’s a difference of almost $160,000 — $160,000 that could be used to send...Show More
How identity politics elected Donald Trump

1:36:54 | Nov 1st, 2018

Identity Crisis is the most important book written on the 2016 election. Based on reams of data covering virtually every controversy, theory, and explanation for the outcome, it settles many of the debates that have raged over the past two years. Mo...Show More
Rep. Mark Sanford on losing the Republican Party to Donald Trump

1:06:20 | Oct 29th, 2018

Mark Sanford was elected to Congress in 1994, where he quickly established himself as one of the most conservative members of the chamber. In 2002, he was elected governor of South Carolina. He was, again, one of the most conservative elected officia...Show More
Doris Kearns Goodwin (live!) on how great presidents are made

1:23:15 | Oct 25th, 2018

If you’ve got a question, Doris Kearns Goodwin has a charming, insightful, well-told presidential anecdote for you. Actually, a couple of them. I interviewed the Pulitzer Prize-winning presidential historian live onstage for the release of her new ...Show More
What Nate Silver's learned about forecasting elections

1:21:22 | Oct 22nd, 2018

This close to an election, who do I want to hear from? Nate Silver, of course. I sat down with the FiveThirtyEight founder and math wizard to talk about how he builds his forecasting models, what they’re saying about 2018, how big the Democrats’ st...Show More
Future Perfect: making prisons more humane

24:01 | Oct 20th, 2018

A sneak peek at Vox’s newest show, about provocative ideas with the potential to radically improve the world. Host Dylan Matthews tackles big questions about the most effective ways to save lives, reform prisons, fight global warming, and end world p...Show More
Why Bill Gates is worried

1:00:50 | Oct 15th, 2018

“To put it bluntly,” wrote Bill and Melinda Gates in their foundation’s annual Goalkeepers Report, “decades of stunning progress in the fight against poverty and disease may be on the verge of stalling. This is because the poorest parts of the world ...Show More
Reihan Salam makes the case against open borders

1:29:04 | Oct 11th, 2018

In his new book, Melting Pot or Civil War: A Son of Immigrants Makes the Case Against Open Borders, Reihan Salam tries to do something difficult: build a pro-immigrant case for a more restrictive immigration system. This is an argument, interesting...Show More
Jose Antonio Vargas on living undocumented in Trump’s America

1:29:14 | Oct 8th, 2018

Jose Antonio Vargas was born in the Philippines in 1981. When he was 12, his mother sent him to America, to live with family. When he was 16, he went to the DMV to get a driver's license and found out his green card was forged; he was an undocumented...Show More
Patrick Deneen says liberalism has failed. Is he right?

1:01:33 | Oct 1st, 2018

Liberalism, write Patrick Deneen, "has been for modern Americans like water for a fish, an encompassing political ecosystem in which we have swum, unaware of its existence.” Deneen, a political theorist at Notre Dame, isn’t talking about the libe...Show More
Francis Fukuyama’s case against identity politics

1:30:17 | Sep 27th, 2018

Is all politics identity politics? And if so, then what does it mean to condemn identity politics in the first place? That’s the subject of my discussion with Stanford political scientist Francis Fukuyama. In his new book, Identity: The Demand for D...Show More
Carol Anderson on the myth of American democracy

59:23 | Sep 24th, 2018

The president of the United States was the runner-up in the popular vote. The majority in the US Senate got fewer votes than the minority. And even if Democrats win a hefty majority of the vote in 2018’s House elections, Republicans, due to gerrymand...Show More
Martha C. Nussbaum on how fear deforms our politics

58:09 | Sep 17th, 2018

In her new book Monarchy of Fear, famed philosopher Martha C. Nussbaum identifies fear as the oldest and deepest of our emotions. Fear takes hold in our earliest infancy, when we can experience need but we can’t act. And it lurks underneath our psych...Show More
David French on “The Great White Culture War"

1:37:06 | Sep 10th, 2018

David French is a senior writer for National Review and one of the conservatives I read most closely. About a month ago, he published an interesting column responding to some things I had said, and to the broader currents cutting through our politics...Show More
Your attention is being hijacked. Chris Bailey can help.

1:08:00 | Sep 4th, 2018

Life is the sum focus of what you pay attention to. You hear that a lot. But look at the verb there: “pay” attention to. As if attention is something we consciously spend out. As if it’s something we control. But do we? Not these days. There’s a war...Show More
Anand Giridharadas on the elite charade of changing the world

1:30:04 | Aug 30th, 2018

“How can there be anything wrong with trying to do good?” asks Anand Giridharadas in his new book, Winners Take All. “The answer may be: when the good is an accomplice to even greater, if more invisible, harm.” Giridharadas has done his time in elit...Show More
I build a world with fantasy master N.K. Jemisin

1:25:49 | Aug 27th, 2018

I’m just going to say it. This may be the most fun I’ve ever had on a podcast. Nora Jemisin — better known by her pen name, N.K. Jemisin — just won the Hugo Award for best novel for the third year in a row. No one had ever done that before. Jemisin ...Show More
Reup: Zephyr Teachout vs. Corruption

1:29:07 | Aug 24th, 2018

Zephyr Teachout is a law professor at Fordham University and one of the nation’s foremost experts on political corruption. She’s also, after a glowing New York Times endorsement this week, arguably the frontrunner in the race to replace Eric Schneide...Show More
Is our economy totally screwed? Andrew Yang and I debate.

1:13:58 | Aug 20th, 2018

"The future without jobs will come to resemble either the cultivated benevolence of Star Trek or the desperate scramble for resources of Mad Max,” writes Andrew Yang. Well then. Yang is the founder of Venture for America, the author of The War on N...Show More
Chef Marcus Samuelsson on immigration, creativity, and Anthony Bourdain

1:17:32 | Aug 13th, 2018

Marcus Samuelsson is the Michelin-starred chef behind Harlem’s The Red Rooster an award-winning cookbook author,the winner of the first season of Top Chef: Masters, ;nd the host of No Passport Required, a new food and travel show from Eater and PBS. ...Show More
Why online politics gets so extreme so fast

1:07:36 | Aug 6th, 2018

During the 2016 campaign, Zeynep Tufekci was watching videos of Donald Trump rallies on YouTube. But then, she writes, she "noticed something peculiar. YouTube started to recommend and ‘autoplay' videos for me that featured white supremacist rants, H...Show More
Taking Trump’s corruption seriously

1:02:10 | Aug 2nd, 2018

The question of whether President Trump colluded with Russia during the 2016 election has consumed Washington since the Justice Department appointed Robert Mueller special counsel in March 2017. But there's another question worth considering: the f...Show More
The surprising story of how American politics polarized

1:07:26 | Jul 30th, 2018

We talk a lot on this podcast about the epic levels of political polarization and how much of our ongoing breakdown they explain. But what was American politics like before it was polarized? And what got us from there to here? Sam Rosenfeld is a pol...Show More
The most important idea for understanding American politics in 2018

1:15:56 | Jul 23rd, 2018

America is changing. A majority of infants are, for the first time in US history, nonwhite — and the rest of the population is expected to follow suit in the coming decades. The number of religiously affiliated Americans is at a record low, and the s...Show More
What economists and politicians get wrong about trade

54:55 | Jul 19th, 2018

For decades, Harvard’s Dani Rodrik has been a lonely voice in the economics profession warning that the academics were getting this one wrong. Trade is not an unalloyed good; “globalization would deepen societal divisions, exacerbate distributional p...Show More
How to disagree better

1:38:37 | Jul 16th, 2018

Arthur Brooks is the president of the American Enterprise Institute, one of Washington’s most respected and powerful conservative think tanks. He’s also launching a new podcast, The Arthur Brooks Show, with Vox Media on the art and practice of disagr...Show More
The most clarifying conversation I’ve had about Trump and Russia (part 2)

1:05:54 | Jul 5th, 2018

What have we actually learned about Donald Trump’s ties to Russia, and his administration’s efforts to cover those ties up? What role did Russia really play in the 2016 election? And what are special counsel Robert Mueller’s possible endgames — what ...Show More
The Supreme Court vs. Democracy

1:06:33 | Jul 2nd, 2018

If 75,000 votes in Michigan, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania had tipped the other way, President Hillary Clinton would’ve named both Antonin Scalia and Anthony Kennedy’s replacements. But they didn’t. And now Donald Trump, in less than two years, will fi...Show More
Eric Garcetti on the lessons of Los Angeles

1:03:07 | Jun 25th, 2018

There’s been a lot of talk about the coming of majority-minority America — the point, projected for roughly 2045, when there will no longer be any racial or ethnic group that makes up a majority of the United States. But there are plenty of places ...Show More
The Green Pill

1:01:45 | Jun 11th, 2018

What accounts for the way most of us eat? What’s the ideology, the theory, behind our diets? And what happens when you stop believing in it? Over the past decade, I’ve been on a fitful journey toward veganism. At least, that’s the way I normally say...Show More
How Jane Mayer exposed Eric Schneiderman, Bush’s torture program, and the Kochs

1:15:18 | Jun 4th, 2018

On May 7, Jane Mayer and Ronan Farrow published a story in the New Yorker detailing New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman’s alleged history of sexually and psychologically terrorizing the women he dated. Hours later, Schneiderman stepped down. ...Show More
Political power and the racial wealth gap

1:22:09 | May 28th, 2018

The racial wealth gap is where past injustice compounds into present inequality. When I asked Ta-Nehisi Coates, on this show, what would prove to him that white supremacy was over in this country, he pointed to the closing of the racial wealth gap. ...Show More
Tyler Cowen on the painful end of American complacency

1:30:53 | May 21st, 2018

Headlining any conversation with Tyler Cowen is difficult. This one, for instance, covers how to write a book, single-payer health care, political correctness, loneliness, the expanding Overton window, the tech backlash, technological innovation, the...Show More
A mind-expanding conversation with Michael Pollan

1:23:17 | May 14th, 2018

This is perhaps the most literal title I’ve given a conversation on this podcast. This is a discussion about how to expand your mind — how to expand the connections it makes, the experiences it’s open to, the sensory information it absorbs. And, more...Show More
Optimism about America

1:22:15 | May 7th, 2018

In a February 2017 column, David Brooks wrote about "the Fallows Question, which I unfurl at dinner parties: If you could move to the place on earth where history is most importantly being made right now, where would you go?” The Fallows question is...Show More
The New York Times’s lead Clinton reporter reflects on her coverage

55:07 | May 3rd, 2018

It’s time to talk about the damn emails — and the way the media covered them. Amy Chozick reported on Hillary Clinton for a decade. She was there as Clinton’s campaign fell short in the 2008 Democratic primaries. And as the New York Times’s lead rep...Show More
The age of "mega-identity" politics

1:19:40 | Apr 30th, 2018

Yes, identity politics is breaking our country. But it’s not identity politics as we’re used to thinking about it.  In Uncivil Agreement: How Politics Became Our Identity, Lilliana Mason traces the construction of our partisan “mega-identities”: ide...Show More
Is American democracy really in decline? A debate.

1:53:28 | Apr 23rd, 2018

Yascha Mounk’s new book, The People vs. Democracy: Why Our Freedom Is in Danger and How to Save It, is perhaps the year’s scariest read. In it, Mounk argues that “liberal democracy, the unique mix of individual rights and popular rule that has long c...Show More
Special episode: The Syrian conflict, explained by a UN diplomat who saw it start

57:39 | Apr 20th, 2018

Many of you will remember the interview I did with Grant Gordon, who works on humanitarian policy innovation at the International Rescue Committee. That conversation received a huge response — some of you even wrote in to say it had changed your care...Show More
Carol Anderson on White Rage and Donald Trump

1:31:26 | Apr 12th, 2018

Carol Anderson is a professor of African-American studies at Emory University and the author of White Rage: The Unspoken Truth of Our Racial Divide. Anderson’s book emerged from a viral op-ed she wrote for the Washington Post in 2014, amid the backl...Show More
The Sam Harris Debate

2:09:15 | Apr 9th, 2018

There’s a lot of backstory to this podcast, most of which is covered in this piece. The short version is that Sam Harris, the host of the Waking Up podcast, and I have been going back and forth over an interview Harris did with The Bell Curve author ...Show More
Is Mitch Landrieu the "White, Southern Anti-Trump"?

1:25:43 | Mar 26th, 2018

Mitch Landrieu is the white mayor of New Orleans, and he wants America to talk about race. Landrieu is the author of the new book, In The Shadow of Statues: A White Southerner Confronts History. The statues he refers to are Confederate war memorials,...Show More
Melinda Gates (live!) on stopping climate change, ending malaria, and the problems money can’t solve

54:43 | Mar 19th, 2018

Melinda Gates is the co-founder and co-chair of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the largest private foundation in the United States. With more than $40 billion in assets, the Gates Foundation works on a dizzying array of issues, from eradicati...Show More
A better conversation on guns

52:54 | Mar 12th, 2018

Want to know why we can’t make any progress on the guns debate? Because this isn’t a debate over policy. It’s a debate over identity. After last month’s shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, I remembered a book Evan Osnos recommended on ...Show More
This isn’t Joe Kennedy’s grandfather’s Democratic Party, and he knows it

1:01:48 | Mar 5th, 2018

When you’re sitting in front of Rep. Joe Kennedy, it’s clear that you’re sitting in front of a Kennedy. The face, the jawline — it’s all uncannily familiar. But Kennedy, the grandson of Robert F. Kennedy, is rising in a changed Democratic Party. In ...Show More
Amy Chua on how tribalism is tearing America apart

59:14 | Feb 26th, 2018

Human beings are tribal creatures, particularly when they feel threatened. And the reality of living in America in 2018, at a time of massive demographic change and social upheaval, is that we all feel threatened, and so we are all becoming more trib...Show More
My favorite new podcast

22:07 | Feb 23rd, 2018

This is one I'm excited to share. For months, we've been working on a daily explainer podcast called — wait for it — Today, Explained. The idea is, every weekday afternoon, to take something important in the news, slow it down, and dig into what's re...Show More
How technology brings out the worst in us, with Tristan Harris

1:10:36 | Feb 19th, 2018

In 2011, Tristan Harris’s company, Apture, was acquired by Google. Inside Google, he became unnerved by how the company worked. There was all this energy going into making the products better, more addicting, more delightful. But what if all that mad...Show More
Steven Pinker: enlightenment values made this the best moment in human history

1:12:34 | Feb 12th, 2018

Does the daily news feel depressing? Does the world feel grim? It’s not, says Harvard professor Steven Pinker. This is, in fact, the best moment in human history — there’s less war, less violence, less famine, less poverty, than there ever has been. ...Show More
Why my politics are bad with Bhaskar Sunkara

1:12:35 | Feb 5th, 2018

Bhaskar Sunkara is the founder and publisher of Jacobin, a journal of “socialist perspectives on politics, economics, and culture.” He launched the publication in 2011 when he was an undergraduate at George Washington University. Today, its print edi...Show More
How to oppose Trump without becoming more like him

1:15:06 | Jan 22nd, 2018

Krista Tippett is the host of the award-winning radio show and podcast On Being. In 2014, she was awarded the National Humanities Medal by President Barack Obama. For good reason. She's created, over decades, something rare in American life: spaces w...Show More
You will love this conversation with Jaron Lanier, but I can’t describe it

1:36:52 | Jan 15th, 2018

Oftentimes it’s easy for me to describe these conversations. This one is on Trump and Russia. That one is on health care. But not this time. I want you to listen to this conversation, because Jaron Lanier is brilliant and his mind is unusual and ...Show More
The most clarifying conversation I’ve had on Trump and Russia

1:15:53 | Jan 8th, 2018

What really happened between the Trump campaign and the Russian government? The investigation into that question has rocked American politics. The FBI director was fired over it. The attorney general might get fired over it. The president’s former c...Show More
Pod Save America’s Jon Favreau on Trump’s first year, the GOP’s “rot,” and the left’s failures

58:53 | Jan 2nd, 2018

Jon Favreau was President Obama’s chief speechwriter. In those days, he was a frequent critic of the political media, frustrated, as many in the Obama administration were, with its focus on conflict, on ephemera, on appearing even-handed even when re...Show More
The inside story of Doug Jones’s win in Alabama

1:04:29 | Dec 25th, 2017

“The day before the Washington Post story came out, we were behind by one point, 46 to 45,” says Joe Trippi. “And the day before the election, we were ahead in our own survey by two points. We ended up winning by 1.8.” This, Trippi says, was the ...Show More
What life is like in North Korea

50:50 | Dec 18th, 2017

The most important story in the world right now is how real the chance of war with North Korea is — and how cataclysmic such a war would be. Part of the reason the risk of war is so real is that our understanding of North Korea is so sparse. "The He...Show More
The case for impeachment

1:11:04 | Dec 4th, 2017

I have grown obsessed with a seemingly simple question: Does the American political system have a remedy if we elect the wrong person to be president? There are clear answers if we elect a criminal or if the president falls into a coma. But what if w...Show More
What Buddhism got right about the human brain

1:18:34 | Nov 27th, 2017

I wanted to take a post-Thanksgiving break from politics and current events this week to talk to Robert Wright. He's written some of the best books on religion and evolutionary psychology, including Non-Zero and The Evolution of God.  His latest boo...Show More
Rebecca Traister on #MeToo, female rage, and Anita Hill’s legacy

1:31:04 | Nov 20th, 2017

We’re living through an upheaval. The #MeToo moment has engulfed some of the most powerful men in politics, entertainment, and media. It has also forced a national reckoning with the reality of America’s sexual and workplace cultures — how often they...Show More
Ai-jen Poo: the future of work isn’t robots. It’s caring humans.

1:05:02 | Nov 13th, 2017

When we talk about the future of work, we usually focus on artificial intelligence, robotics, driverless cars. The future of work, we’re told, is a future where humans cease to be necessary. Ai-jen Poo wants to refocus that conversation. When we thi...Show More
Why politics needs more conflict, not less

1:17:11 | Oct 30th, 2017

Here’s a counterintuitive thought: maybe Congress in particular, and politics in general, has too little conflict, not too much. That’s James Wallner’s argument, and it’s more persuasive than you might think. Wallner is a political scientist who bec...Show More
Why the Weinstein scandal gives Tig Notaro hope about Hollywood

44:16 | Oct 23rd, 2017

Tig Notaro dropped out of high school. She drifted between odd jobs for a long time and eventually found her way to Colorado, where she discovered open mic nights and a talent for stand-up comedy.  Stand-up brought discipline to her life. But fame e...Show More
Introducing: The Impact, with the curious case of the $629 Band-Aid

26:08 | Oct 19th, 2017

This is a bonus episode that I'm really excited about. It's Vox's new show, The Impact, hosted by Sarah Kliff.  So often in Washington, the story stops when Congress passes a law. Reporters move on to the next legislative or political battle. B...Show More
What happens when human beings take control of their own evolution?

1:05:00 | Oct 16th, 2017

Over the past decade, scientists have developed what was once just the subject of dystopian fiction: gene editing technology. It's known as CRISPR. Jennifer Doudna, a professor of molecular and cell biology and chemistry at the University of Califor...Show More
Ta-Nehisi Coates is not here to comfort you

1:11:35 | Oct 9th, 2017

“It’s important to remember the inconsequence of one’s talent and hard work and the incredible and unmatched sway of luck and fate,” writes Ta-Nehisi Coates in his new book, We Were Eight Years in Power. Coates’s view of his career flows from his vi...Show More
Reihan Salam wants to remake the Republican Party -- again

1:20:22 | Sep 25th, 2017

In 2008, Reihan Salam co-wrote Grand New Party: How Republicans Can Win the Working Class and Save the American Dream with his frequent collaborator Ross Douthat.  After nearly eight years of President Bush, Salam wanted to remake the Republican Par...Show More
What Hillary Clinton really thinks

1:00:55 | Sep 12th, 2017

On page 239 of What Happened, Hillary Clinton reveals that she almost ran a very different campaign in 2016. Before announcing for president, she read Peter Barnes’s book With Liberty and Dividends for All, and became fascinated by the idea of using ...Show More
Dan Rather thought he'd seen it all. But then came President Trump.

1:09:45 | Sep 5th, 2017

Dan Rather has covered the most momentous events of the modern era. He was in Dallas, Texas, during President Kennedy's assassination. He was in Vietnam, embedded with US troops, in 1965 and 1966. He reported on Watergate, stood at the Berlin Wall as...Show More
From 4Chan to Charlottesville: where the alt-right came from, and where it's going

1:27:38 | Aug 29th, 2017

Angela Nagle spent the better part of the past decade in the darkest corners of the internet, learning how online subcultures emerge and thrive on forums like 4chan and Tumblr. The result is her fantastic new book, Kill All the Normies: Online Cultu...Show More
Why prosecutors, not cops, are the keys to criminal justice reform

1:17:59 | Aug 22nd, 2017

Angela J. Davis is the former director of the DC public defender service, a professor of law at American University, and editor of a remarkable new book titled Policing the Black Man, which pulls together deeply researched essays on virtually every a...Show More
Sen. Michael Bennet on why this is a dismal, sociopathic era in Congress

1:19:32 | Aug 8th, 2017

Michael Bennet is an accidental senator. He was unexpectedly appointed to fill an open seat after Ken Salazar joined the Obama administration. He had never run for elected office before, or served in a legislative body. Perhaps that’s why he’s always...Show More
What’s scary isn’t Trump’s illiberalism but America's acceptance of it

1:06:05 | Aug 1st, 2017

Yascha Mounk is a lecturer at Harvard, a columnist at Slate, and the host of The Good Fight podcast. He’s also an expert on how democracies backslide into illiberalism — which was the topic of our first conversation on this podcast. But when Moun...Show More
Julia Galef on how to argue better and change your mind more

1:33:46 | Jul 25th, 2017

At least in politics, this is an era of awful arguments. Arguments made in bad faith. Arguments in which no one, on either side, is willing to change their mind. Arguments where the points being made do not describe, or influence, the positions being...Show More
Dr. Nneka Jones Tapia, the first psychologist to run a jail

1:08:45 | Jul 18th, 2017

Cook County Sheriff Thomas Dart calls the 8,000-person Cook County Jail the largest mental health institution in the country. Thirty percent of its inmates have diagnosed mental health issues, and the number with undiagnosed conditions is thought to ...Show More
Eddie Izzard on World War I, cake or death, and marathoning

1:13:51 | Jul 11th, 2017

Now that I've gotten Eddie Izzard to re-derive his famed "cake or death?" routine in real time, I'm ending this podcast. Always good to go out on top. Okay, maybe I won't actually end it. But this episode was a thrill to do. Eddie Izzard has long...Show More
Avik Roy and Ezra debate the Senate GOP's health bill

1:26:05 | Jul 3rd, 2017

According to the Congressional Budget Office, the Senate GOP’s health care bill — officially known as the Better Care Reconciliation Act — will lead to 22 million fewer people with health insurance and plans with such high deductibles that low-income...Show More
danah boyd on why fake news is so easy to believe

1:27:58 | Jun 27th, 2017

danah boyd is an anthropologist and computer scientist who studies the way people actually use technology. Not the way we wish we used technology, or the way we hope we will use technology, but the way we actually use it.“Technology,” she says, "is m...Show More
Zephyr Teachout on suing Trump, fighting corruption, and breaking monopolies

1:33:53 | Jun 13th, 2017

Zephyr Teachout is a law professor at Fordham University, the author of Corruption in America, one of the lead lawyers in the emoluments case that’s been brought against Donald Trump, and a former gubernatorial and congressional candidate.Which is al...Show More
Masha Gessen offers a plausible Trump-Russia theory

1:06:14 | Jun 6th, 2017

Masha Gessen is a Russian-American journalist and the author of, among other books, The Man Without a Face: The Unlikely Rise of Vladimir Putin. Since the election, she has been analyzing Donald Trump through the lens of Russian politics and personal...Show More
Kwame Anthony Appiah on cosmopolitanism

1:07:59 | May 30th, 2017

Few words are as reviled in American politics as “cosmopolitan.” The term invokes sneering, urban, elite condescension. It’s those smug cosmopolitans who led to Donald Trump’s election. It’s those rootless cosmopolitans who’re shipping jobs overseas ...Show More
Yascha Mounk: Is Trump’s incompetence saving us from his illiberalism?

1:34:59 | May 23rd, 2017

Yascha Mounk is a Lecturer on Government at Harvard University, a Fellow in the Political Reform Program at New America, and host of the podcast, The Good Fight. He’s also the author of some of the scariest political science research I’ve seen in a l...Show More
Bryan Stevenson on why the opposite of poverty isn’t wealth, but justice

1:33:42 | May 16th, 2017

Bryan Stevenson is the founder and executive director of the Equal Justice Initiative. He and his staff have won reversals, relief, or release for more than 115 wrongly convicted prisoners on death row. He’s the author of the power book Just Mercy, a...Show More
Death, Sex, and Money’s Anna Sale on bringing empathy to politics

1:13:36 | May 9th, 2017

There’s much talk of “empathy” in today’s politics, but it’s a cramped, weaponized form of empathy — an empathy designed to force us to grudgingly tolerate each other, or an empathy used to explain away the reasons we hurt each other.You can glimpse ...Show More
Cory Booker returns, live, to talk trust, Trump, and basic incomes

1:08:38 | May 4th, 2017

Senator Cory Booker is back! In this special live episode of The Ezra Klein Show — taped at Vox Conversations — Booker and I dig into America’s crisis of trust. Faith in both political figures and political institutions has plummeted in recent decade...Show More
VC Bill Gurley on transforming health care

1:13:30 | May 2nd, 2017

Washington has been gripped of late by the world’s most depressing, least imaginative, debate over health care. The question, as it stands, is whether Obamacare will survive (while being mildly, but persistently, sabotaged by the Trump administration...Show More
Elizabeth Warren on what Barack Obama got wrong

47:25 | Apr 25th, 2017

Elizabeth Warren is the founder of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the senior senator from Massachusetts, and the author of the new book, “This Fight Is Our Fight: The Battle to Save America's Middle Class.”You might have heard of her.Warre...Show More
G. Willow Wilson on religion, comics, and modern myths

1:12:36 | Apr 11th, 2017

This is a podcast about topics we don’t always cover on this show. Religion. Spirituality. Gender roles. Traditionalist societies. Comic books.G. Willow Wilson is the author of The Butterfly Mosque, Alif the Unseen, and the Hugo award winning comic b...Show More
Chris Hayes on the crisis of elites and the politics of order

1:40:03 | Apr 4th, 2017

I could describe this podcast, and I will. But the tl;dr is this is one of my favorite conversations so far, and you’re going to enjoy it. So just go listen. Chris Hayes is, of course, the host of the MSNBC primetime show, “All In.” He’s also the aut...Show More
Tyler Cowen explains it all

1:31:46 | Mar 28th, 2017

I have never come across a mind quite like Tyler Cowen’s. The George Mason economist, and Marginal Revolution blogger, has an interesting opinion on, well, everything. He’s a genuine polymath who can talk knowledgeably about more subjects than I even...Show More
Molly Ball on whether facts matter in politics

1:13:43 | Mar 21st, 2017

You may remember the Atlantic's Molly Ball from the fantastic pre-election conversation we had on this podcast. She's back this week to talk about an issue I've become more and more obsessed with — does factual argument matter in American politics? O...Show More
Denis McDonough on how to run the White House

1:19:03 | Mar 14th, 2017

How do you actually run a White House? What is the president’s actual job? What is the chief of staff’s role? What happens if you screw up? These are questions I’ve been reflecting on rather a lot lately, for obvious reasons. And so I asked Denis McD...Show More
Tim Ferriss on suffering, psychedelics, and spirituality

1:48:33 | Mar 2nd, 2017

Tim Ferriss is the author of the 4-Hour Workweek, as well as the new book, Tools of Titans. He’s also the host of The Tim Ferriss Show, which is one of my favorite podcasts, and an inspiration for this show. Tim is a relentless optimizer, and on his ...Show More
Elizabeth Drew covered Watergate. Here's what she thinks of Trump.

1:08:46 | Feb 21st, 2017

Elizabeth Drew is the author of Washington Journal, one of my favorite books about Watergate. Drew covered the story as a reporter for the New Yorker, and the book emerges from the real-time, journalistic diary she kept amidst the chaos. As such, it ...Show More
Avik Roy on why conservatives need to embrace diversity

1:28:31 | Feb 14th, 2017

Avik Roy advised Mitt Romney’s 2012 campaign on health care, ran the policy shop on Rick Perry’s 2016 campaign, and then worked for Marco Rubio after Perry dropped out. So Roy’s Republican credentials are pretty solid. But he’s aghast at the directio...Show More
Kara Swisher gives a master class on reporting and interviewing

1:35:23 | Feb 7th, 2017

Before I launched this podcast, I asked Kara Swisher to coffee. Swisher founded the technology news site Recode, hosts the excellent Recode Decode podcast, and runs a legendary conference series. She is among the best interviewers working today. Some...Show More
David Miliband explains the global refugee crisis

46:38 | Feb 2nd, 2017

Donald Trump's executive order temporarily banning Muslim refugees from Iraq, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, and Yemen, and indefinitely banning them from Syria, doesn't come in a vacuum. The world is currently experience the worst refugee crisis since...Show More
Jennifer Lawless on why you — yes, you — should run for office

1:01:08 | Jan 31st, 2017

There are 500,000 elected positions in the United States. I'll say that again: 500,000. And that's no accident. "Our political system is built on the premise that running for office is something that a broad group of citizens should want to do," writ...Show More
JD Vance: the reluctant interpreter of Trumpism

1:40:32 | Jan 24th, 2017

J.D. Vance's Hillbilly Elegy has been adopted as the book that explains Trumpism. It's the book that both Senator Mitch McConnell and Senator Rob Portman recommended as their favorite of 2016. It's a book Keith Ellison, the frontrunner to lead the DN...Show More
Keith Ellison: The Democratic National Committee has become the Democratic Presidential Committee, and that needs to end

1:00:50 | Jan 17th, 2017

Congressman Keith Ellison is the frontrunner to lead the Democratic National Committee in the Trump era. Ellison has a fascinating backstory: he's the first Muslim elected to the US Congress, and he was the second member of Congress to endorse Bernie...Show More
Elizabeth Kolbert: We have locked in centuries of climate change

1:18:31 | Jan 10th, 2017

Elizabeth Kolbert covers climate change for the New Yorker. She's the Pulitzer prize-winning author of The Sixth Extinction. And she recently wrote a paragraph I can't stop thinking about. "The problem with global warming—and the reason it continues ...Show More
Sarah Kliff and Ezra Interview Obama About Obamacare

1:12:55 | Jan 6th, 2017

Two weeks before he leaves office, President Obama sits down for a lengthy conversation about the lessons of the Affordable Care Act and the law's uncertain future.
You Ask, Ezra Answers

1:33:19 | Jan 3rd, 2017

At long last, here’s the Ask Ezra Anything episode. You sent in great questions, and I answered as many as I could. To keep me honest — and to make sure I didn’t just talk to myself for two hours — I invited friend-of-the-show Grant Gordon back to th...Show More
Evelyn Farkas explains the crisis in Syria and the threat of Russia

1:17:54 | Dec 27th, 2016

From 2012 to 2015, Evelyn Farkas served as Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Russia, Ukraine, and Eurasia, where she was responsible for policy toward Russia, the Black Sea, the Balkans, and Caucasus regions and conventional arms control.Fark...Show More
Tim Wu's interesting, unusual, fascinating life

1:29:12 | Dec 20th, 2016

Columbia law professor Tim Wu makes me feel boring and underaccomplished. He’s been a Supreme Court clerk, a Silicon Valley startup employee, a bestselling author, and a star academic. He coined the term "network neutrality," wrote the superb book Th...Show More
Ta-Nehisi Coates: "There’s not gonna be a happy ending to this story"

1:40:54 | Dec 14th, 2016

Ta-Nehisi Coates is an author at the Atlantic. His book, Between the World and Me, won the National Book Award, and was spoofed on SNL. He's writing the (awesome) Black Panther series for Marvel. He's a certified MacArthur Genius. And he just release...Show More
Stripe CEO Patrick Collison on management, rationalism, and the enlightenment

1:27:16 | Dec 6th, 2016

Patrick Collison is the 28-year-old CEO of Stripe, the online payments company that was just valued at $9 billion.Haven't heard of Stripe? You've probably used it. Last year, 40 percent of people who bought something online used Stripe's payment syst...Show More
Award-winning chef José Andrés on cooking, creativity, and learning from the best

1:26:53 | Nov 29th, 2016

José Andrés isn't just a chef. He's a force. All that talk of how DC is now a hot dining scene? Andrés deserves more than a bit of the credit. He's popularized Spanish tapas through Jaleo, brought El Bulli-style molecular gastronomy to America throug...Show More
Heather McGhee returns to talk Trump, race, and empathy

59:35 | Nov 22nd, 2016

There are few episodes of this show that people loved as much as my conversation with Heather McGhee, president of the think tank Demos. Our first discussion focused on race, class, populism, and the sometimes toxic ways the three interact. It's a to...Show More
Ron Brownstein: Clinton didn’t lose because of the white working class

1:03:52 | Nov 15th, 2016

Why did Hillary Clinton lose the election? Why did Donald Trump win it? And why was the polling so completely wrong?No one digs deeper into the demographics, polls, and trends of modern American politics than the Atlantic's Ron Brownstein. Though he ...Show More
David Frum on the 2016 election, and the long decline of the GOP

1:32:04 | Nov 6th, 2016

We’re bringing the Ezra Klein Show to you a little early this week because, well, there's an election coming in a few days. And we wanted to talk about it. The 2016 election is the product of profound failures on the part of different institutions in...Show More
Deborah Tannen on gendered speech, Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump, and you

1:29:56 | Nov 1st, 2016

To understand the 2012 election, you had to ask a political scientist. To understand the 2016 election, you need to call a linguist.At least, I did. Deborah Tannen is a Georgetown University linguist who's done pioneering work in how men and women's ...Show More
Joseph Stiglitz on broken markets, bad trade deals, and basic incomes

1:06:17 | Oct 25th, 2016

This week’s guest is a Nobel Prize winner. We like to sprinkle those in every so often. Joseph Stiglitz revolutionized how economists understood market failures (hence that prize), served as chief economist at The World Bank, led the Council of Econo...Show More
Let's talk about Hillary Clinton's policy ideas, with Jonathan Cohn

1:10:01 | Oct 18th, 2016

The overwhelming focus of this election has been Donald Trump — the things he does, says, tweets. But the next president is likely to be Hillary Clinton. And we've put a lot less effort into understanding her lengthy, detailed agenda for the country....Show More
Francis Fukuyama on whether America's democracy is decaying

1:07:30 | Oct 11th, 2016

Francis Fukuyama is a political scientist, a public intellectual, and progenitor of the famed "End of History" thesis. But his recent work is his most important yet. Over two volumes, he's been studying how societies become safe, pluralistic liberal ...Show More
Tyler Cowen interviews Ezra Klein about politics, media, and more

1:13:17 | Oct 6th, 2016

A number of you have asked that we turn the tables and have someone interview me for the show. So when Tyler Cowen — economist at George Mason University, blogger at Marginal Revolution, and generalized genius — invited me o