Glenn and Tim talk about the problem of increasing inequality in the US, which is the subject of Tim’s new book, The Great Divergence. Tim and Glenn debate international comparisons of inequality between the US and other countries. Tim explains why some common explanations of American inequality—race, gender, and immigration—don’t hold water. He argues that education, skill-based technological change, and globalization play a much stronger role. Glenn asks about the role of unions—good for equality but, perhaps, not so good for productivity. Tim recommends a less antagonistic culture of labor-management relations as a possible antidote to rising inequality.
On Washington Squares, Michael talks to Daniel about politics and baseball. They begin by analyzing Obama’s varieties of coolness, and discussing whether Romney is underrated by the media. Daniel reviews Marco Rubio’s recent foreign policy speech and what it means for the veepstakes. Will Rubio be the Sarah Palin of 2012? Michael and Daniel next turn to the political writers’ pastime, baseball. They conclude by examining whether sports can elevate culture.
On Foreign Entanglements, Rob speaks with Charli, who critiques Foreign Policy‘s recent “Sex” issue. Rob wonders why they decided to publish an issue just on sex. They then discuss how Game of Thrones subverts the foreign policy theory known as realism and offers a chilling portrayal of torture. Is Cersei Lannister the least likeable character in the series? And how are George R.R. Martin’s racial depictions better than Tolkien’s? Finally, Charli and Rob consider how pop culture can affect the study of foreign relations.
This week on The DMZ: Matt responds to the swipe he took from Washington Post blogger Jennifer Rubin. Is it a new day for gay conservatives? Did Sen. Marco Rubio help his VP campaign with his foreign policy speech? Do Mitt Romney and the GOP face a pop culture gap with President Obama, and if so, are they able to fix it?
This week on The Glenn Show, the topic is political correctness. Amy and Glenn agree that it’s a problem, and Amy stresses its bad affects in the university. Glenn asks what’s wrong with ostracizing people who incite bigotry or hurt the feelings of others with their words. Amy illustrates her argument with the example of “food deserts.” Glenn’s concerns reach far beyond the college campus—he stresses that there’s PC on both left and right. Even if some professors are politically biased, won’t accurate research and data ultimately win out? And is political correctness the weapon of the weak or the intellectually lazy?
Peter and Conor kick things off by discussing President Obama’s management skills—they agree that Mitt Romney will make them an issue, but disagree about whether Romney’s experience as a management consultant has prepared him for the White House. Conor says it’s impossible to tell what President Romney’s foreign policy would be, whereas Peter argues that he’s always been “cautiously hawkish.” Peter makes the case against the Buffett Rule. And Conor explains how his “best of journalism” awards differ from the National Magazine Awards.
This week on The Glenn Show, John and Glenn talk about their personal and professional lives. Have professors abandoned engaging with the broader intellectual world? John announces his new position at Columbia University and Glenn explains why he so loves teaching at a place like Brown. John and Glenn make the case against political correctness in the classroom. John waxes eloquent about the joys and sorrows of fatherhood. Glenn relates his existential crisis in the wake of his wife’s recent death, and John gives him some sage advice.
On The Posner Show, Sarah talks with Grant about the Vatican’s crackdown on the nuns in the Leadership Conference of Women Religious. Is this payback for the nuns’ support of health care reform? Grant explains the church’s “preoccupation” with feminism, and why he is dubious that the Bishops’ upcoming “fortnight for freedom” campaign will have any traction with Catholics in the pews. Do the views of dissenting lay Catholics matter to the Church? Plus: Does Paul Ryan get Catholicism wrong?
On Washington Squares, Michael Brendan Dougherty brings on Michael Bull, author of the Bible Matrix books. Dougherty begins by admitting that the Bible can seem like a confused jumble, even to believers. Bull explains the hidden themes and patterns in the Creation account in Genesis and how they repeat themselves throughout the entire Bible. Dougherty relates an example of hidden meaning that moves him personally, and talks about how these patterns in the Bible seem to be reflected even in history now. What is the Book of Revelation really about? And what are the hidden symbols in the physical elements of worship? Finally, Bull previews his next book, God’s Kitchen.
This week on The DMZ, Matt says that Romney is already doing a better job than McCain of taking the fight to Obama. Bill thinks that Romney has learned something from Howard Dean about being a tough-talking moderate. Matt argues that Obama is stirring up class envy to get re-elected, but Bill thinks that attacking Romney for being financially out of touch is fair game. Plus, The DMZ is accepting submissions for a theme song!