No, not Leo DiCaprio’s co-star in The Revenant, rather the current state of markets around the world. Also, the oil plunge, Should people sell, sell, sell?  The answer is no, no, no. A look ahead to tomorrow’s job report, hat’s off to Ted Cruz for opposing ethanol in Iowa, Ben Carson’s great lunch with the Committee to Unleash Prosperity, and finally, Republicans killing (figuratively, not literally) each other in Iowa and New Hampshire.

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How much Fargo was in the TV show “Fargo”? Let’s listen to a true Fargoan explain. Don’t worry – it’s not a recap of a show you didn’t see. It’s something quite different. How did eminent domain affect the Mary Tyler Moore show? Why did a one-hit-wonder rocker end up dead in his car smelling of gasoline? Why do I think of the seven hills of Rome when someone mentions Wild Bill Hickok? The Ramble explains all.

Greg Corombos of Radio America and Jim Geraghty of National Review applaud the choice of South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley to give the Republican response to President Obama’s final State of the Union address, but they also look at the charred wreckage of previous GOP rebuttals.  They also sigh as North Korea alleges it conducted a hydrogen bomb test.  And they react to Donald Trump suggesting Ted Cruz could have eligibility issues because he was born in Canada.

It’s a special Tuesday night edition of HWX, with Brian Ward of Fraters Libertas and Paul Happe, the Nihilist in Golf Pants, reconvening to discuss the critical issues of our times.  Topics addressed include:

*  Reviews of Star Wars:  The Force Awakens.  The perils of watching your heroes age, having your myths demystified, and being seduced by the dark side.

Ricochet Editor-in-Chief Jon Gabriel and KTAR-FM’s Jim Sharpe welcome National Review’s Stephen L. Miller (aka @RedSteeze) to discuss Obama’s 94th attempt at gun control, Hillary’s heckler, and not feeling the Bern. Finally, inspired by Vladimir Putin’s new cologne, Jon and Jim rank presidential candidates based on scent!

You can subscribe to the podcast here.

Greg Corombos of Radio America and Jim Geraghty of National Review welcome the retirement of Rep. “Baghdad” Jim McDermott.  They groan as the government uses a heavy hand against Oregon ranchers but a small number of armed protesters seem to have the response all wrong.  And they have fun with Hillary Clinton’s promise to get to the bottom of whether we’ve been visited by aliens if she is elected president.

SG_5840Is America smart enough? In his new book, Hive Mind: How Your Nation’s IQ Matters So Much More Than Your Own, economist Garett Jones explores the important role of national IQ in creating national prosperity.  I recently sat down with him to discuss how exactly a country’s cognitive firepower translates into a better economy — and what we can do about, if anything.

Jones is the BB&T Professor for the Study of Capitalism at The Mercatus Center, and associate professor at George Mason University. He has worked on Capitol Hill, and has contributed to C-Span’s Washington Journal, the Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg Business Week, Fox Business, and the New York Times. He holds a BA from Brigham Young University, a MPA in Public Affairs from Cornell University, a MA in Political Science from UC-Berkeley, and a PhD in Economics from UC-San Diego.

The ordinary pro-life activist was once a middle-aged Catholic woman who voted for Democrats, says Daniel K. Williams, author of Defenders of the Unborn: The Pro-Life Movement before Roe v. Wade.

In a 10-minute conversation with The Bookmonger, Williams explains that the original pro-lifers were liberal rather than conservative. He also explains why the Supreme Court’s controversial ruling changed everything and what today’s pro-lifers can learn from their intellectual ancestors.

Greg Corombos of Radio America and Jim Geraghty of National Review applaud Saudi Arabia for standing up to Iran’s attack on it’s embassy by cutting off ties with the world’s leading sponsor of terrorism.  They also groan as President Obama readies more executive orders on gun control.  And they discuss the exodus of more than 20 Ben Carson staffers at the end of 2015.

If Chicago’s the Third City, New York is the first to be sure. So where does that leave Washington, D.C.? Without it, what would we be? But we’re not so concerned with prestige on this particular program as we are with what events, characters, considerations and compromises gave birth to these two superpowers of influence and, being based in Chicago as we are, naturally our own city is the measuring stick for comparing them both.

In hour one we are joined by Tom Lewis, professor emeritus, English at Skidmore College. He’s written extensively on the mid-Atlantic states and, for an aside, an absolutely superb history of our business of radio. In Washington: A History of Our National City, we learn of just what Washington the man had to overcome to give us a seat of government.

Bill Bennett is one of America’s great teachers. He taught, really, when he was secretary of education. He teaches daily on his radio show. And he teaches through his books, the latest of which is America the Strong: Conservative Ideas to Spark the Next Generation.

bennett-FB-icon3In this “Q&A,” Jay asks him to talk about drug legalization. And Common Core. And the terms “neocon” and “establishment.” He also asks him to identify big problems with 1) liberals, 2) conservatives, and 3) libertarians. There is also a little talk concerning the upcoming presidential election.

In this special New Year’s Eve edition of Kudlow and Pawlenty’s Money & Politics, Larry and Tim take a look at the year ahead and make some predictions.

Who will be the Republican nominee (one guess), what the establishment will do about it, how the economy will fare in the year ahead, the year in Hillary, and some thoughts on the primary season and the general election.

Greg Corombos of Radio America and Jim Geraghty of National Review close out their special year-in-review political awards by handing out the prestigious crystal martinis for person of the year and turncoat of the year.  They also share their political New Year’s resolutions.

Jay has a ‘Hammer, in this “Q&A.” With Dr. Charles Krauthammer, he covers a good bit of terrain. They begin with baseball, and then food. Then they talk about that curse on campus, political correctness. And the “establishment.” (What is it?) And Israel. And Syria. And Obama. And Hillary. And global warming. And the future of America. (Is decline a choice? Yes. A bad one? Most definitely.)

Charles Krauthammer will lift your spirits, even if his topic is on the grim side. Hailing him, Jay paraphrases the old GE slogan: “You bring good things to life.”

Greg Corombos of Radio America and Jim Geraghty of National Review reveal their choices for most under-reported story, most over-reported story and the best story of 2015.

Charles Murray is the famous public-policy analyst whose books include “Losing Ground” (1984) and “Coming Apart” (2012). His new book is “By the People: Rebuilding Liberty without Permission.”

In this “Q&A,” Jay invites him to talk about some of the biggest issues. What is libertarianism? What is conservatism? What is Barack Obama? What is Hillary Clinton? How are race relations faring? Is America one big meth house? Are colleges worth sending your kids to these days? Do you err on the side of national security or civil liberties? Is America biting the dust?

Greg Corombos of Radio America and Jim Geraghty of National Review hand out year-end political awards for best idea, worst idea and boldest tactic.

The greatest social injustice of our time isn’t income inequality or racism — it’s family breakdown, says Micheal Novak, co-author of Social Justice Isn’t What You Think It Is (with Paul Adams and Elizabeth Shaw).

In a 10-minute conversation with The Bookmonger, Novak describes the intellectual origins of “social justice,” how the Left has usurped the term, and what conservative candidates should say about it in 2016.

Greg Corombos of Radio America and Jim Geraghty of National Review continue their 2015 political awards.  Today they “honor” the worst scandal, the best political theater and the worst political theater.

Mona is joined by special guest host Rob Long this week filling in for a vacationing Jay Nordlinger. They consider the state of Christmas observance, conservatism in the age of Trump, the nature of Republican primary voters, weather free market solutions to our problems are what people really want or not, and other reflections on the state of the world. As Rob notes “everyone’s a pundit!” (Though actually running and winning ain’t so easy.)

The podcast closes with some observations about Hollywood from Rob, and some recommendations for your viewing pleasure.

Greg Corombos of Radio America and Jim Geraghty of National Review present the second installment of their 2015 year-end political awards.  Today they discuss the political figure they were sorry to see pass away in 2015, their top rising political stars and who they see fading into oblivion.

Welcome to the second episode of The Conservatarians, the thrill-a-minute, hit new podcast hosted by Ricochet Editor-in-Chief Jon Gabriel and KTAR-FM‘s Jim Sharpe. Jon and Jim dissect the week’s events, including Ann Telnaes’ attack on the Cruz kids, Donald Trump’s attack on Yiddish, and the Elf on the Shelf’s attack on personal privacy.

You can subscribe to the podcast here.

Prepare to geek out: Lileks monologues Star Wars past and present.

(No spoilers herein!)

It’s time to put on the tuxedos and hand out the crystal martinis.  It’s the start of our year-end political awards for 2015.  Today Greg Corombos of Radio America and Jim Geraghty of National Review hand out their choices for most underrated, most overrated and most honest political figures.

Welcome to our newest occasional podcast, The Ramble with James Lileks. 

This week, let’s Tiptoe past the Yoo Lips, as James and John Yoo —yes, that John Yoo— discuss the Walking Dead, dystopian sci-fi, why Minnesota would be zombie-free, and what 80s hair-metal band’s hit song would be perfect for a zombie show.