ReConsider, by Xander and Erik, is a twice per month podcast in which we take on, in-depth, one pressing political issue facing western Democracies with a fresh, researched, and challenging perspective. We help listeners see the full context behind the issue and make up their own minds.
In this episode, Dr. Donald Marron of the Urban Institute joins us to help bring a big chunk of economic expertise to the discussion we've been having about economics and particularly monetary policy this year. We even manage to get him to crack a few jokes with us about topics from butter to Bitcoin.
Dr. Marron served on the President's Council of Economic Advisers and was Director of the Congressional Budget Office. As you can guess from all this experience, he's particularly great at explaining economics to smart people who aren't economists. We had a ton of fun and know you will, too.
Last episode we heard a lot of arguments in the favor of the gold standard as opposed to having a fiat currency. In this episode we'll understand the decline of the gold standard and the reasons behind it to learn some of the hurdles to returning.
Now that ain't workin'--that's the way you do it!
What the heck is fiat currency? Why are we on it? Can the US print money to pay its debts? Why do people want to return to the Gold Standard? Find out all of this and more as we kick off a series on economics that will include everything from inflation to interest rates to Bitcoin!
Do separatist movements in Catalonia, Basque, Lombardy & Venecia, and other places, constitute a larger threat to the nation-state? What drives people to move towards fixing a nation versus leaving it when they're fed up?
Catalonia declared independence. It didn't go well. But why did they? Why now? And what are the implications for the rest of Europe?
Ever wonder why the United States has a system with two parties and not more? Find out why the US system is the way it is, and why other countries are different.
"Multiculturalism leads to parallel societies and therefore remains a ‘life lie,’ [or ‘sham’]... “ -- Angela Merkel, 2015
Just after enacting the "open door" migrant policy, Angela Merkel and all of Europe faced a political backlash, including rising nationalism and anti-immigrant sentiment. Europe took in a fairly small number of Middle Eastern refugees. Why has it been so painful?
After the largest mass civilian shooting in history, can we come together as a nation to reduce violence? Yes, but it requires good problem solving skills.
In this episode we dive into understanding why Vegas was so deadly and how that was allowed to happen. We also look into the broader data on gun violence in America and elsewhere in order to understand what may be the biggest factors in America's death/violence rate.
You've heard of the Fracking Revolution. You may also know that your fuel bill is a little lower than it was in the 2000s.
But man oh man, the picture is much bigger than that. The Middle East, Europe, Russia, and the foreign policy of the United States may be substantially different--for decades to come--than they would have been without the Revolution.
So yeah. Big deal.
President Trump has had a lot of trouble getting a legislative win, and he's pressing Congress harder than ever to deliver one. The GOP has both the House and the Senate--what are the forces keeping them from getting things done?
Welp, FBI Director James Comey got fired. There's a lot of different accounts of what happened--and a lot of speculation as to why. What do we actually know, and how does this fit into the broader context of history and this administration?
LEARN THIS AND MORE! On the latest episode of RECONSIDER, where we don't do the thinking for you!
But seriously, why on earth do we have the Electoral College? Something about having to travel in carriages?
It's a question a lot of people are asking after an election with a pretty big gap between the popular vote and the outcome.
So why on earth does it exist? What's the point? Is it fulfilling its purpose? What alternatives are there, and how would we get to them?
Learn all this and more, including why you don't kill your admirals, on today's episode!
"I'm gonna drain the swamp."
Love him or hate him, Donald Trump's rise and agenda are a political revolution.
But revolutions are hard, even after you win. Most have failed miserably. What will it take for Trump to fulfill his vision, rather than fall apart?
There's a lot of pain and frustration across the country--and no matter what, half of it was going to be really upset today. How did Trump pull the upset? Where do we go from here? How do we understand each other better and heal the divide?
Why are referendums ending up so different from how polls suggest?
Everything's falling apart! The breakdown of multilateral institutions! Anti-establishment candidates are popping up everywhere! Russia is escalating! China! Syria! Turkey! Terrorism!
What's it all look like in the long-term?
The Party Conventions have come and gone. Each of the two major parties has made their case to America that their candidate is fit to lead. What's the takeaway for the country? What are the underlying strategies of each party and what groups are they trying to win? What do each of them, and the convention system in general, mean for the future of the US?
After busting some myths about US education performance and its causes, we interview renowned SF Teacher of the Year Lana Corda to understand some of the challenges facing one of the toughest school districts in the country. We learn a lot about the on-the-ground details about some of the barriers to improving student performance.
How's the US education system performing relative to other countries? How can we improve our own performance?
There are many opinions and narratives about what to do, and in this episode, Xander and Erik dive into the data to understand which hold water, and which are swept away by facts.
Hoo boy, we've got an exciting presidential nomination this year. More and more we're hearing rumblings that the GOP might go to a brokered convention. But... how the heck does that work? What'll happen if it gets there? How likely is it? Find out all that and more in our wackiest episode yet!
This episode's a ton of fun. Listen before Tuesday, March 15th if you can!