Kavanaugh, Nafta 2.0, Hacks, Trump Money

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This week Trey Orndorff and The Politics Guys is excited to introduce Athena King, a political scientist from Virginia State University. The Politics Guys asks that listeners listen to Athena and send us your feedback on what you think of the show.

After introduction Trey and Athena again dress the newest developments concerning Brett Kavanaugh. Specifically the two discuss Kavanaugh’s Washington Post Op-Ed in defense of his hearings and the Friday cloture vote that opens the possibility of a vote on Kavanaugh’s nomination on Saturday or Sunday. Both Trey and Athena agree that Kavanaugh is likely to be confirmed, but Trey thinks it will be a wider margin with limited Democratic support and Athena believes Mike Pence will be necessary to cast a tie-breaking vote.

Trey and Athena the address “Nafta 2.0” or more properly USMCA. Athena argues that American supply chains need more open markets. Trey agrees but is willing to concede that this is a win for the Trump Presidency and a fulfillment of a large campaign promise. Athena gets into the details of automobiles while Trey focuses on the international economic questions of the shift. Only time will tell if and when the Senate will take up the issue.

Next the pair move to an underreported story out of Bloomberg on the possibility of a Chinese hardware hack on American company servers. Apple and Facebook have denied the allegations, but it appears that China has been trying to infiltrate servers in the U.S. Trey wonders if this might not be an argument for a more nationalist economic policy and is, at a minimum, a question that free marketeers like himself must answer. Athena questions what the Chinese motive is.

Finally Trey and Athena discuss the issue of Trump’s finances in wake of a New York Time story highlighting the dubious — and potentially fraudulent — money policies the Trump family used. Athena and Trey agree that this is unlikely to move the needle of support for Trump, but wonder what the broader picture will continue to be as more information slowly drips out.

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14 thoughts on “Kavanaugh, Nafta 2.0, Hacks, Trump Money”

  1. Where is Jay? Are you seriously railroading him because you don’t agree with his stance? The show is trash without him.

    1. Jay’s off for the next few weeks while we audition new co-hosts. Jay isn’t able to do this because he doesn’t have the time or equipment to do the show prep and post-production, which isn’t something we can ask a new person to do. Trey is able to do these things, and so he was the host yesterday and will be next week. (The only other person who currently can do pre and post production is me, and as I’m left of center, I couldn’t co-host with either of the two potential left of center co-hosts we’re trying out.)

      I’m sorry to hear that you feel that the show is ‘trash’ without Jay. If you could explain why, that would be helpful, as I think both Trey and Will are very good right of center co-hosts.

  2. Hey guys,

    I haven’t missed an episode of your show for 2 years now. Before I started listening regularly I was completely apathetic about politics and it’s impact on my life. Thank you for engaging me, enlightening me, and providing views on both sides of the political spectrum.

    That being said, I do have what you may consider criticism. Mike and Jay (perhaps because they’ve known each other the longest?) bounce ideas/perspectives off each other much better than the other hosts. You guys are able to speak exactly what you believe about an issue, whereas Trey comes off like he’s holding back/afraid to offend, or just unwilling to push back on anything. I hate to say it but Trey is boring (sorry Trey!). I sincerely hope Jay isn’t going to back away from doing this podcast the vast majority of the time. I would consider myself a centrist whose moved much more to the right side of the spectrum, and I’d owe a lot of that to Jay.

    Finally, I thought Athena came across in this episode as someone whose presupposition is to disagree with Trump no matter what the issue is, and then look for arguments to support. It was clear to me she didn’t have a strong grasp on trade and her arguments were lacking. Of course, Trey did not push back or press in on any of this. Guys, it was just an awful episode. This show should not be about identity politics nor being politically correct by having every perspective under the sun represented, especially if the perspective is shallow.

    Thanks for all you guys do and your hard work.

    1. We really appreciate you taking the time to comment. Chemistry is absolutely an important part of any two-person show, as is the appropriate amount of combativeness. (Though perhaps that’s not exactly the right word, but my love of alliteration brought it to mind.) We don’t intend to bring on anyone to co-host on a regular basis unless we feel that doing so will serve our listeners. We’re hoping to get plenty of feedback on this week’s episode with Athena, as well as next week’s episode with Trey and Alexandra. Once the people have spoken, we’ll move forward, but not until then.

      By the way – any thoughts on Will’s show with me last week, as well as the Trey / Ken pairing?

      1. Will/Ken both solid, but I think most would say you and Jay put on the best show.

        At some point I’d like to see you guys bring on someone with a conservative religious perspective (Christian, Jewish, Muslim) and discuss how that drives his/her political perspective. I think there are a lot of misunderstandings out there on the left about religion’s importance to conservative culture, especially evangelicals Christians who voted for Donald Trump. I think the mainstream media have driven a lot of these misunderstandings out of ignorance and it becomes an echo chamber for many of their readers.

        Thanks again!

        1. Great idea! I’m hip deep in alligators at present, but bringing on someone who can provide a conservative religious perspective would definitely provide a perspective we haven’t included to this point.

  3. Listening to today’s show while I thought the topics where good I didn’t really enjoy the may Athena phrased her answer and responses. I don’t mean this in a rude way but she kinda became someone I tuned out. While her views and opinion are fine, she is not someone I would ever enjoy listening to on a regular basis. Past that one thing I’ve missed with this show is the back and forth you and jay had including the disagreements while I understand some of Jay’s comment inflame listeners having grown up in the midwest and since lived in 12 states since. I found that the things he says while they inflmae more liberal people are the real world views of many people. While I love Trey and his commentary and find him to be very eloquent in his explanations. He is unable to be as unintentional provocative which is something I strongly feel this show needs because only by addressing these ideas that fire people up can both sides better understand the otherside if the ideological spectrum. Again you guys do amazing work and I love listening to what you all have to say the only question I really have now is why do you folks have such an aversion to having a heated debate like people in the real world have?

    1. Thanks very much for taking the time to comment. I don’t think we necessarily have an aversion to debate (as you point out, there are times when Jay and I get into it, and Ken can certainly be very forceful as well) but Jay and I started The Politics Guys because we felt that while there was already plenty of heated debate out there, there wasn’t much calmer and more respectful exchange of ideas. Also, between Trey being all drugged up on anti-cold medicine and it being Athena’s first ever show, things might have been a little less lively than they’d normally be. Still, it’s good to get the sort of constructive criticism you offered, and I greatly appreciate it. (I’d love to hear what you thought about the show Will and I did last week, as well as how you feel about the Trey / Ken pairing).

  4. Just wanted to give my input, since you asked:

    I am arguably right of center, but i love the idea of having more women of people of color for more diverse ideas. That being said, i think king was a poor host. Perhaps she has a learning curve, so i keep that in mind. Heres why:

    1. She is remarkably long winded for seemingly simple questions
    2. We have other long-winded hosts, who i will not mention, who i dont mind. King however, takes a really long time with her response and yet doesnt even seem to answer the question. She is asked, i think more than once, what she thinks on a subject and then gives a looonnnngg response that doesn’t even say what she thinks.

    1. Thanks much for taking the time to comment! After next weeks show, when we have our second potential co-host on, it would be great if you could let us know what you think about her, as well has how she compares to Athena. We appreciate the help!

  5. My feedback on the new host.

    I really liked her more than I was expecting. Some folks have felt her answers being “long winded” but I just took that to be considerate and thorough. I really like the way she walked through her thoughts in a logical manner and guided the listener to her conclusion. I felt like a learned quite a bit from her.

    I guess for some, she’s a bit academic. But I really .. really enjoyed her style.

  6. At 8 minutes the host erroneously states that Justice Kennedy withdrew his support for Kavanaugh. He must be thinking of Judge Stevens. It’s an important difference considering it is a battle for Kennedy’s seat on the court.

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