On Rational Actors, Kevin and Gabriel discuss the schism between CPAC and the gay conservative group GOProud. Are conservatives ready to accept gay marriage? They discuss why gay marriage and abortion are not analogous, and why knowing an openly gay person increases one’s support for marriage equality. Will gay rights groups be magnanimous in victory toward social conservatives? Kevin and Gabriel consider the recent defeat of religious freedom laws that would allow discrimination by business owners, and debate whether appeals to religious conscience will convince most Americans to support such legal exemptions.
Is science reaching the limit of what humans can grok?
Texas Sharpshooter Fallacy explains some cancer clusters
Gorilla Illusion: We’re blind to what we’re not looking for
Maybe we won’t boldly go where no man has gone before
Can Neil deGrasse Tyson fill Carl Sagan’s shoes?
The militarization of research: How worried should we be?
On The Posner Show, Sarah talks with Matt about the fallout from Gov. Brewer’s veto of Arizona’s SB 1062. Matt explains why, contrary to what many conservatives claim, the failure of the bill was not an example of persecution of Christians. Are religious institutions poised to lose their tax-exempt status over gay rights? They debate whether photographers should be able to refuse service to gay couples, and Matt explains why, if he were a photographer, he would refuse. If the Supreme Court strikes down bans on same-sex marriage, will conservative Christians retreat to monastic-like communities? Sarah and Matt debate whether marriage is a broken institution. Plus: Is the persecution narrative a winning strategy for the Christian right?
On The DMZ: Has Mitt Romney been proven right about Russia? Has the Ukraine crisis exposed Obama’s weakness? Have conservatives rediscovered interventionism—or are they attracted to Putin? Does the crisis rekindle Rubio’s 2016 hopes, or does Rand Paul’s isolationism hold sway with primary voters? Did the GOP establishment strike back against Tea Partiers in the Texas primaries? Plus: How CPAC is like show business.
On Foreign Entanglements, Rob and Dmitry discuss the recent Russian incursion into Crimea. Dmitry summarizes Russian interests in the region. Have the US and Europe handled the situation correctly so far? Dmitry suggests that, in the long run, Putin will pay substantial costs for the incursion. Is the new Ukrainian government stable enough to fight back? Rob and Dmitry compare the strengths of the Russian and Ukrainian militaries. Finally, Dmitry thinks through some options for the Western response.
On Critic Proof, Alyssa and Willa discuss the women of HBO’s True Detective. Alyssa worries that the dark, popular new show could all fall apart in the finale. How do professional critics experience TV differently than ordinary viewers? They turn to American Hustle and other Academy Awards nominees, and Willa praises the nuanced moralism in The Wolf of Wall Street. They close by wondering: Are critics trying to take something away from fans? (Spoilers throughout.)