Friday, May 21

Driftglass and Blue Gal's Weekly Podcast

A question for those listening through this blog: we've been avoiding talking about breaking news because some people listen to us days later. Should we keep these podcasts more thematic, or make them weekly reviews of what's going on? What do you think?

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  1. "Burnin' Down the House" – D'oh! A great staple of college theater wrap parties (good dance tune), and occasionally still at friends' weddings... (I remember that Doonesbury cartoon, too, although you could pretend you read it in an omnibus.)

    On trust and faith, out here in CA, in ballot season, pro and con proposition ads run around the clock, and at least one side is lying every time. Each measure requires a bit of research. There a few sites like Calitics that do good overviews, and looking at who's backing each measure helps a great deal. But basically, you can count on over half the political ads to just outright lie. It can be a bit exhausting. I think with Edwards, since some of his policies were quite good, my main question was less 'is he personally honest?' versus 'will he feel compelled to stick with these policies due to political pressure/realities?' (It was a good thing for the Dems he didn't get the nomination, even if he did force health care as a major issue.) But anyway, I thought by that measure Edwards was more "trustworthy" than someone like Mittens Romney, who Harold Meyerson called the "Platonic ideal of insincerity," and would change on a dime in both rhetoric and actual policy. Never trust a man who doesn't even respect you enough to try to lie to you convincingly.

    Don't forget A Face in the Crowd, either...

    You're spot on on Brooks, as usual. He's shilling two things: one, that he's a "reasonable conservative" to the NYT and NPR crowds (Frum is trying to horn in on the same brand), and two (as you point out), the bullshit that Republicans are mostly reasonable and respectable and are no worse than Democrats. (In some cases, he claims the Dems are worse – for instance, more racist. Only a teabagger/one of their Fox News patrons/a fellow traveller would buy that shit – and that's precisely to whom Brooks pitched it.) In Brooks' fantasy world, the Bush years never happened, and Reagonomics worked wonderfully. He's a class warrior for the privileged who pretends he knows "real Americans" at the Applebee's salad bar while he spars with his former classmates on air and in print. In almost every NPR or PBS appearance, he'll make a modest, planned concession about his own side to lower his audience's guard, then plug the same, ridiculous point – the Democrats are just as bad.

    On the theme-current news thing, honestly, I'd say just cover whatever you find most interesting. If you're interested in the subject, and animated, likely the audience will find it interesting as well. When current news is discussed, I'm always a fan of giving it context, looking at history, fact-checking, connecting it with a broader theme, etc. It's more interesting and less likely to become dated that way, and I think you two often go that route anyway, whether through planning or natural inclination. (You didn't get to all the Rand Paul implosions this week, but every week is a good week to mock libertarian idiocy.) Looking at The-Bullshit-They're-Selling and This-Is-How-They-Do-It is sorta always both timely and timeless. I thought this podcast really rolled along nicely and naturally. FWIW... And have a nice weekend.

  2. Anonymous9:23 PM

    My 2¢: I'm always glad that the podcast is not a "weekly wrap-up of current events." When you bring in The News, it's always in service to what you're already doing. That works well for you two, I think, by which I mean, it works well for me that you two do it. :^)

  3. Weekly review of news works for me.

  4. StonyPillow8:58 AM

    Hegel and Schopenhauer would be fun, too. And timely? Look at Fox and everyone else who is trying to create their own alternative Bizarroworld through brute force of will and tell me a half hour on Schopenhauer wouldn't just hit the spot. (/GeicoGecko)

    Just what Batochhio says. You can get "The Week That Was" anywhere from "Wait, Wait, Don't Tell Me" (still hoping for a Carl Kasell answering machine tape some day), Colbert and Stewart to Crooks and Liars and a million other blogs. You can only get Blue Gal and Driftglass here.

  5. Anonymous10:52 AM

    I'm fine with the way you're doing the podcast. I listen to enough instant comment already. Take your time.


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