Economist Bryan Caplan on Open Borders

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Mike talks with Bryan Caplan, a Professor of Economics at George Mason University and a blogger for EconLog. Professor Caplan is the author of multiple books, including two he and I have previously discussed on the show – The Myth of the Rational Voter, and The Case Against Education. On this episode, they discussing Bryan’s latest book, Open Borders: The Science and Ethics of Immigration.

Topics Mike & Bryan discuss include:

  • ‘a world of global apartheid’
  • immigration and economic inequality
  • the moral presumption in favor of immigration
  • why Nobel Laureate Milton Freedom was wrong about immigration
  • how open borders could easily double world GDP
  • the cultural effects of open borders
  • immigration, crime, and terrorism
  • the partisan political calculus of immigration policy
  • open borders and global brain drain
  • a Burkean approach to immigration
  • and lots more!

Bryan Caplan on Twitter

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Richard Robb on Choice in Economics, Politics, and Life

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Mike talks with Richard Robb, a professor of professional practice in international and public affairs at Columbia University and CEO of the investment firm Christofferson, Robb & Company, which he co-founded in 2001. They discuss his recent book Willful: How We Choose What We Do.

After the interview, Kristin joins Mike for a conservative perspective.

Topics Richard and Mike cover include:

  • the rational choice paradigm
  • behavioral economics
  • purposeful, ‘for itself’ action
  • how and why we pick beliefs that appeal to us
  • the four-step process of belief formulation
  • Pareto efficiency and public policy
  • if policymakers have enough skin in the game
  • choosing over time
  • the critical need for authentic challenges with real stakes and uncertain outcomes

Today’s show is sponsored by SaneBox – email management for any inbox. For a free two-week trial and $25 credit, go to sanebox.com/politicsguys.

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Binyamin Appelbaum on The Economists’ Hour

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Mike talks with Binyamin Appelbaum, who writes about economics and business for the editorial page of the New York Times. From 2010 – 2019 he was a Washington correspondent for the Times, covering economic policy in the aftermath of the 2008 crisis. They discuss his recently released book: The Economists’ Hour.

After the interview, Jay joins Mike to provide a conservative perspective.

Topics Mike & Binyamin discuss include:

  • why markets are wonderful
  • Keynesianism, monetarism, and supply side economics
  • the massive influence of Milton Friedman
  • fine-tuning the economic machine
  • balancing unemployment and inflation
  • the shifting value of a human life
  • why we shouldn’t reinstate 20th century financial regulations
  • President Trump’s ‘turtle shell nationalism’
  • defending Alan Greenspan
  • and lots more!

Binyamin Appelbaum’s NYT Columns

Binyamin Appelbaum on Twitter

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The Politics Guys and Future Hindsight

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Mike talks with Mila Atmos, host of the Future Hindsight podcast. They discuss rights and responsibilities in a democracy, cynicism, adopting a cause, the 2020 Democratic presidential field, Joe Biden as the DNC’s chosen candidate, the impeachment of President Trump, how to make a difference, why Mila is hopeful, and lots more. After the interview, Trey joins Mike to provide a conservative perspective.

Update: Mila checked in after the episode dropped, and confessed to also being a Cory Booker fan. When she was in Iowa in November, a voter asked her who he should caucus for, and she emphatically replied, “Booker!”

Future Hindsight on Twitter

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Jacob Hacker on The Great Risk Shift

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Mike talks with Yale political scientist Jacob Hacker about the newly revised version of his book The Great Risk Shift. After the discussion, Jay joins Mike for a discussion of Hacker’s key ideas.

In this interview, we discuss the rise in economic insecurity, declining social mobility in the US, the ‘old contract’ versus the ‘new contract’ between employers and workers, technological change & globalization, the waves and the tides of the economy, Medicare for all, reasons to be hopeful, and lots more.

Here’s Mike’s previous discussion with Dr. Hacker, on his book American Amnesia.

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The Politics Guys & The Political Orphanage

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On this special crossover show, Mike talks with Andrew Heaton, host of The Political Orphanage podcast. They cover a lot of ground in a conversation that (very) loosely revolves around presidential power. Along the way, they discuss Caddyshack, Edmund Burke, impeachment, anonymous Senate conviction votes, a constitutional convention, Thomas Paine, why a Stormy Daniels based case would have been the most fitting impeachment for President Trump, national emergency powers, splitting up the presidency, expanding the Supreme Court, ‘These United States’ vs ‘The United States’, politics as the new religion, and lots more.

Andrew Heaton on Twitter

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The Politics Guys & Democracy Works on Trump, Impeachment and the Future of Democracy

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Mike talks with Chris Beem and Michael Berkman from Penn State’s McCourtney Institute for Democracy about their Democracy Works podcast and a whole bunch of other things including:

  • the fact that two of our last four, and three of our last nine presidents have gone through impeachment
  • the ‘best case’ outcome from this impeachment process
  • the potential fallout from straight party line impeachment voting
  • if Donald Trump is a unique case or a portent of presidents to come
  • strengthening our political institutions
  • whether we’re optimistic or pessimistic about the future of liberal democracy in the United States
  • and lots more!

The McCourtney Institute on Twitter

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America, Compromised: Lawrence Lessig on Corruption in America

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Mike talks with Lawrence Lessig, the Roy L. Furman Professor of Law and Leadership at Harvard Law School. Professor Lessig co-founded Creative Commons in 2001 and is the author of numerous books, including Republic, Lost: Version 2.0 which he and Mike talked about on the podcast a few years ago (here’s a link to that interview). In this episode, they discuss about his recent book America, Compromised.

Topics covered include:

  • why the Mafia isn’t corrupt, but Congress is
  • raising the cost of corrupting Congress
  • giving American citizens Democracy Vouchers
  • why we should pay members of Congress a lot more
  • good people in the bad institution of Congress
  • corruption in the financial industry
  • why no financial institution heads were prosecuted in the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis
  • corruption in political media
  • and lots more!

Lawrence Lessig on Twitter

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Scott Adams on how ‘Loserthink’ is Ruining America

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Mike talks with Scott Adams, creator of Dilbert, one of the most popular comic strips of all time. In recent years, Adams has become an important part of the political conversation through his commentary on Donald Trump as well as the bestselling book Win Bigly. He’s got a new book out called Loserthink: How Untrained Brains Are Ruining America, which he and Mike discuss on the show.

Topics Mike & Scott discuss include:

  • Donald Trump as the ‘most psychologically capable leader we’ve ever had’
  • why people think like losers
  • the value of mockery
  • the loserthink surrounding climate science
  • why Adams watches both Fox and CNN (as painful as that may sound)
  • how and why to think like an engineer
  • the use of hyperbole and thinking like a leader
  • the ‘48 hour rule’ the ‘20 year rule’ and the ‘magic question’

Scott Adams on Twitter

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Behind the Scenes in the Obama White House with Lawrence Jackson

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Mike talks with Lawrence Jackson, an official White House Photographer in the Obama administration. He’s just released a beautiful book of photographs and stories about his time with the Obamas called Yes We Did: Photos and Behind-the-Scenes Stories Celebrating Our First African American President

Topics Mike & Lawrence discuss include:

  • what the Obamas are really like
  • being behind the scenes in the White House
  • the ultra-competitive nature of President Obama
  • the toll that being president takes on a person
  • the survey Jackson took of 300 former White House staffers
  • and lots more

Listener support helps make The Politics Guys possible. If you’re interested in supporting the show, go to patreon.com/politicsguys or politicsguys.com/support.