Tyler Cowen’s Love Letter to Big Business

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Mike welcomes George Mason University economist Tyler Cowen back to the show to discuss his latest book, Big Business: A Love Letter to an American Anti-Hero. As you may know, Tyler is a very busy guy – in addition to his academic position, he runs the Marginal Revolution blog  and Conversations with Tyler podcast. He’s also regular contributor at Bloomberg Opinion and has written multiple books, including two Mike previously spoke with him about on the show: Stubborn Attachments and The Complacent Class.

Topics Mike & Tyler discuss include:

  • fraud in the business world
  • if big business is more honest than people in non-business settings
  • why top CEos may actually be underpaid
  • work vs leisure
  • monopolies, with a focus on Facebook, Google, and Amazon
  • problems with the finance industry
  • crony capitalism
  • how much political influence big business really has
  • why we personalize big business, and why we shouldn’t

follow Tyler Cowen on Twitter

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Helena Rosenblatt on the Lost History of Liberalism

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Mike talks with Helena Rosenblatt, a professor of history at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York, about her latest book, The Lost History of Liberalism: From Ancient Rome to the Twenty-First Century.

Topics Mike & Helena discuss include:

  • the meaning of liberalism in ancient Greece and Rome
  • liberalism as an aristocratic virtue
  • the connection between liberalism and education
  • the Catholic Church as an historical opponent of liberalism
  • classical, ‘laissez faire’ liberalism
  • progressive Republicans, Wilsonian Democrats, and 20th century American liberalism
  • how mid-twentieth century totalitarianism affected liberalism
  • the key challenges to modern liberalism

Helena Rosenblatt on Twitter

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David Rose on Why Culture Matters Most

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Mike talks with University of Missouri St. Louis economist David Rose about his book Why Culture Matters Most. Topics they discuss include:

  • why democratic capitalism is the only reliable way to achieve mass flourishing
  • the relationship between culture, trust, institutions, and mass flourishing
  • small group vs large group trust
  • the role of religion in building a high-trust society
  • why trust in the system has been in such steep decline
  • how limited government helps to maintain trust in the system
  • what we can do to increase trust and strengthen our democratic institutions

Panel on Capitalism & Poverty (YouTube)

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I Think You’re Wrong (But I’m Listening): Beth Silvers and Sarah Stewart Holland on How to Have Grace-Filled Political Conversations

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Mike talks with Beth Silvers and Sarah Stewart Holland, hosts of the Pantsuit Politics podcast about their new book, I Think You’re Wrong (But I’m Listening): a Guide To Grace-Filled Political Conversations.

In this conversation, Mike, Sarah, and Beth discuss:

  • why they became political podcasters
  • the role of faith in political discussion
  • ‘taking off your jersey’ before talking politics
  • why the left and the right often view politics as more important than it is, and how that makes productive dialog more difficult
  • how to have grace-filled political conversations
  • cultivating a sense of curiosity
  • ‘embracing the paradox’
  • partisan echo chambers
  • and lots more!

follow Pantsuit Politics on Twitter

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.

Matt Grossmann on How Policy Change Happens

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Mike talks with political scientist Matt Grossmann, Director of Michigan State University’s Institute for Public Policy and Social Research, about his book Artists of the Possible: Governing Networks and American Policy Change Since 1945.

Topics Mike & Matt discuss include:
– how much of a role the public has in policy change
– the flaws in our standard notions of how policy change happens
– how Matt examined every major policy change from 1945 – 2004
– why policy favors the status quo – and liberal interests
– President Trump as a policymaker
– and lots more

– follow Matt Grossmann on Twitter

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.

Mark Godsey on The Innocence Project and Blind Injustice

Mike talks to Mark Godsey, a former federal prosecutor who’s currently a professor of law at the University of Cincinnati College of Law. Professor Godsey is the co-founder and director of the Ohio Innocence Project, which is one of the most active and successful Innocence Projects in the country. He’s also the author of Blind Injustice: A Former Prosecutor Exposes the Psychology and Politics of Wrongful Convictions.

Topics Mike & Mark discuss include:

  • the scope of the wrongful convictions problem
  • the prosecutorial mindset and wrongful convictions
  • main reasons for wrongful convictions
  • how Innocence Projects work to free the wrongfully convicted
  • making it easier to free the wrongfully convicted
  • how to decrease wrongful convictions

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.

Matthew Pressman on the Liberal Values That Shaped the News

Mike talks with media expert Matthew Pressman, an Assistant Professor of Journalism at Seton Hall University. Prior to earning his doctorate in history, Dr. Pressman worked for eight years at Vanity Fair, where his articles about the news media won the 2010 Mirror Award for Best Commentary (digital media). He’s the author of On Press: The Liberal Values That Shaped the News.

Topics Mike & Matt discuss include:

  • the shift from ‘straight news’ to interpretation
  • the meaning of objectivity in the news
  • how commercial pressures shape news coverage
  • the inherent conservative bias of pre-1960s news media
  • the conservative critique of ‘liberal media’
  • racism and sexism in newsrooms and news coverage
  • the rise of the reader-oriented newspaper
  • the media’s response to Donald Trump
  • if today’s media is better than the pre 1960s media

    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.

Aquinas and the Market: Theologian & Economist Mary Hirschfeld on a Humane Economy

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Mike talks with theologian and economist Mary Hirschfeld about her book Aquinas and the Market: Toward a Humane Economy. Professor Hirschfeld started her career as an economist, getting her Ph.D. from Harvard and then working and teaching in the field for the next 15 years. She then made a fascinating career change, going back to graduate school and earning a doctorate in theology from Notre Dame. She’s currently an Associate Professor of Economics and Theology at Villanova University.

Topics Mike and Professor Hirschfeld discuss include:

  • what theology can bring to a discussion of economics
  • what Thomas Aquinas – a medieval Dominican friar – can contribute to our understanding of 21st century economics
  • why economics isn’t as value-neutral as many people think
  • money, desire, and happiness
  • ‘maximizing your utility’ vs. ‘ordering your life’
  • why private property is a good thing
  • inequality and economic justice

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

Patrick Deneen on Why Liberalism Failed

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Mike talks to Patrick Deneen, a Professor of Political Science at the University of Notre Dame. In his book Why Liberalism Failed, Deneen argues not only that liberalism has failed (which you probably picked up from the title) but more importantly, he argues that it failed because it was based on a fundamentally unsound understanding of human beings.

In this talk, Mike and Professor Deneen discuss the individual autonomy, liberalism & capitalism, how liberalism’s success led to its failure, virtue ethics & Judeo-Christian values, education, Alexis de Tocqueville, Wendell Berry, and lots more.

Patrick Deneen on Twitter

Recommended Reading:

Articles
The World Is Better Than Ever. Why Are We Miserable? (Andrew Sullivan on Steven Pinker and Patrick Deneen)
Can Democracy Save Us? (Ryszard Legutko’s review of Why Liberalism Failed.)
The Dead End of the Left? Augusto Del Noce’s Critique of Modern Politics.

Books
The Revolt of the Elites and the Betrayal of Democracy. Christopher Lasch
The True and Only Heaven: Progress and Its Critics. Christopher Lasch
The Culture of Narcissism: American Life in an Age of Diminishing Expectations. Christopher Lasch
The Demon in Democracy: Totalitarian Temptations in Free Societies. Ryszard Legutko
The Crisis of Modernity. Augusto Del Noce
The Age of Secularization. Augusto Del Noce
The World-Ending Fire. Wendell Berry
Democracy in America. Alexis de Tocqueville

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

Tyler Cowen on Stubborn Attachments to Prosperity and Freedom

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Mike talks with Tyler Cowen, a professor of Economics at George Mason University, blogger at Marginal Revolution, host of the ‘Conversations with Tyler‘ podcast, regular contributor at ‘Bloomberg Opinion‘, and author of a number of books including The Great Stagnation, Average is Over, The Complacent Class, and most recently Stubborn Attachments: A Vision for a Society of Free, Prosperous, and Responsible Individuals.

Topics Mike & Tyler discuss include:
– Why we should focus more on economic growth.
– The importance of sustainable growth.
– How future people should be valued.
– Why human rights should trump even economic growth.
– Economic growth and human happiness.
– Tyler’s specific policy recommendations.

Follow Tyler on Twitter

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