On Foreign Entanglements, Rob and Justin discuss foreign policy and the 2012 presidential election. Rob and Justin start by critiquing a recent Foreign Policy article by Karl Rove and Ed Gillespie, then move on to a discussion of the role that foreign policy has played in the GOP primary. They then work through some implications of Barack Obama’s apology for the burning of Korans in Afghanistan. Justin bemoans the lack of seriousness in the GOP foreign policy establishment, while Rob pushes on to the Asia Pivot. Rob and Justin conclude with a discussion of maritime affairs and the rise of China.
Conor is joined by Elizabeth, who argues that men should be welcomed into feminism. But would she extend her offer to James Poulos, author of the controversial and provocatively titled article “What Are Women For?” Conor poses the next question: Should contraception be free? He isn’t so sure. And Elizabeth isn’t sure she buys David Brooks’s argument that the American elite talks like sexual progressives but behaves like traditionalists. It’s Eating Disorder Awareness Week—so of what should we be aware? And that prompts Conor to ask, “Are foodies disordered eaters?” Plus: ex-DC residents on whether the culture of the city forces idealistic young people to sell out.
On The Posner Show, Sarah speaks with Sean Faircloth, author of the new book Attack of the Theocrats. They discuss why the separation of church and state makes Rick Santorum want to throw up, whether the Democrats are blowing it by saying the contraception “controversy” is about women’s health without addressing religious freedom head on, and how so many religious exemptions get written into laws. Plus: Should Mitt Romney be asked about his underwear?
Glenn is joined by Jodi Kantor, author of the hot new book The Obamas. Jodi reports on fault lines within the Obamas’ marriage and stresses the difficulty of moving from Chicago to the White House. She discusses the “angry black woman” controversy surrounding the book’s initial release, and Glenn sympathizes with Michelle Obama’s plight. Jodi and Glenn explore the unusual relationship the Obamas share with Valerie Jarrett. The conversation ends with a review of President Obama’s thin-skinned reaction to some unwelcome advice from Berkeley Law Dean Christopher Edley.
This week, Bob joins Matt to analyze Tuesday’s debate, and how it might affect the upcoming primaries. Matt says Santorum is a very bad politician, but what if he wins in Romney’s home state? Looking at Marco Rubio, Chris Christie, and Rand Paul, Bob and Matt evaluate prospective VP candidates. Bonus: Bob shares some dangerous multitasking tips for traveling journalists.
On Foreign Entanglements, Matt is joined by Helle to debate military action against Iran. Helle accuses Matt of attacking strawmen, while Matt argues that neocons have been hot for bombing Iran for a long time. They debate the tension between attacking Iran and supporting Iranian democracy, and whether hawks have a misplaced faith in the power of military solutions. Matt lays out his preferred policy: engagement, not appeasement.
Mark talks about his recent profile of Maggie Gallagher, a leading opponent of gay marriage. He and Conor agree that legal gay marriage is both inevitable and probably a good thing. They disagree about who truly speaks for Catholics. Conor calls for abandoning the norm that says “objective journalists” should hide their opinions, while Mark sees value in it. Is it always best to be charitable toward one’s ideological opponents? They conclude by debating whether homeschooling is bad for a liberal society.
On The Posner Show, Sarah asks political reporter Emily Belz: what was Darrell Issa thinking? While many political observers look at the GOP’s anti-contraception crusade as an electoral loser, Christian conservatives see their “religious liberty” framing as a long game, mapped out in the Manhattan Declaration, that will play out well beyond 2012. In the GOP primary, though, it seems to be helping Rick Santorum. Is his surge explained by evangelicals who buy Mike Huckabee’s “we are all Catholics now?” Plus: what Santorum means when he talks about spiritual warfare.
Glenn and John begin by debating the merits of Coming Apart, Charles Murray’s new book on the “white underclass.” John likes the book’s focus on the importance of culture; Glenn acknowledges that culture matters while rejecting Murray’s conclusion that public policy can do little to help the poor. They also debate whether the ascendancy of a black president has led to more emphasis on class and less on race in political discourse. Glenn and John next discuss controversial remarks about gays by CNN’s Roland Martin. They go on to debate the moral status of religiously founded beliefs that homosexuality is immoral.