Retirement does not suit Thomas Sowell. He is working away. He tells Jay he wants to die with his boots on. He does enjoy freedom from his syndicated column, however. It means he does not have to keep up with the news as much. His latest book is a revised, expanded version of “Discrimination and Disparities.” As Jay says (and Sowell agrees), he likes to write books that address and correct public misunderstandings – especially when those misunderstandings lead to bad policy. In this “Q&A,” Sowell talks about equality, diversity, IQ, immigration, free enterprise, and a host of other issues. Clear thinking and clear expression are Sowell’s stock in trade.

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Last week, Jay took a road trip with Kevin Williamson, from Dallas to Rockdale, a town in Milam County, Texas. They went to Rockdale to see a newspaper editor, with whom they did a podcast. But on the way there, they did a podcast themselves: in which Jay asked Kevin about Texas, America, and the rhythms of life. Go along for the ride – it’s a good conversation, offering much food for thought, and some laughs.

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Carly Fiorina is an experienced person with much to say. She says some of it in a new book: “Find Your Way.” Jay talks with her about this, and about the American scene today: free enterprise; character in office; immigration; the U.S. role in the world; etc. There is also a look-back to the 2016 presidential campaign. A very impressive person, Carly Fiorina, and a superb conversationalist.

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Donald Kagan is someone you can learn from. Many have, over the years. Also, he is a delight to talk to, and listen to. He is an eminent scholar, an eminent classicist – an expert on ancient Greece. He also knows sports and many another subject. Jay talks with him about his upbringing in Brooklyn, his education, the state of the campus, the meaning of conservatism, the fate of America … This is one to maybe listen to twice.

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Sally Jenkins is a sports columnist for the Washington Post, and one of the outstanding sportswriters in the entire country. Her father, Dan Jenkins, passed away earlier this month. She wrote a column about him, here. Jay says that it is one of the best columns he has ever read, on any subject. Dan Jenkins worked for Sports Illustrated, Golf Digest, and other publications, and wrote a string of best-selling novels, including “Semi-Tough,” “Life Its Ownself,” and “Baja Oklahoma.” Jay is among the legions of Dan Jenkins nuts. He and Sally talk about her dad. And then about sports at large: college basketball, pro basketball, Colin Kaepernick, MLB, soccer, and more. You know what’s a great sport? Figure skating. Dan Jenkins thought so, Sally Jenkins thinks so – and Jay thinks so. If you don’t know Sally Jenkins, you will very much enjoy getting to know her, in this ’cast. Her dad used to ask, “Who can explain the athletic heart?” Both of these Jenkinses are pretty good at it.

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Arthur Brooks is one of the luminaries of the conservative world. An economist and public-policy analyst, he is the longtime president of the American Enterprise Institute. He will soon decamp for Harvard. His latest book is “Love Your Enemies: How Decent People Can Save America from the Culture of Contempt.” He and Jay talk about this, and related subjects. And not-necessarily-related subjects, including music. Brooks was a professional French-horn player before turning to other pursuits. Over the course of this lively and unusual conversation, he and Jay make some points, tell some stories (including on themselves), and express their mutual admiration.

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Bjorn Ihler is an expert on counter-extremism and he works for peace, human rights, and mutual

Bjorn Ihler

understanding. He had a highly, highly unusual experience eight years ago: He survived the horrendous massacre in Norway, in which 77 people were killed. Today, he talks with Jay about the massacre in New Zealand. He has plenty to say, as you can imagine. There are parallels between the two massacres. Bjorn, incidentally, is the husband of Asma Khalifa, the Libyan woman with whom Jay recently did a “Q&A,” here. Together, they founded the Khalifa Ihler Institute.

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David Luhnow is the Latin America bureau chief of the Wall Street Journal – and one of Jay’s favorite journalists. Luhnow is immensely knowledgeable, and he imparts his knowledge in clear, balanced terms. Though an American, he was born and raised in Mexico. His brother Jeff has an interesting job, and he’s very good at it: general manager of the Houston Astros. David and Jay start out by talking a little baseball. Then they get into the nitty-gritty: murder, dictatorship, freedom, and the burden of history in Latin America.

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All eyes are on Venezuela — to the extent they’re on Latin America at all. But spare a glance for Nicaragua. The Nicaraguans are going through hell right now as the dictator, Daniel Ortega, has cracked down hard. He has made a special villain out of Felix Maradiaga — Jay’s guest on this “Q&A.” The regime has good reason to fear and hate Maradiaga: He is a bold and thoughtful advocate of democracy. In this podcast, he takes us through the Nicaraguan situation, past, present, and even future. A most illuminating interview. A bracing one, too.

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Asma Khalifa is a young woman from Libya — a Berber. She is also a human-rights activist and democracy leader. She is one of Jay’s favorite people. He says he considers her a heroine. Jay recorded this “Q&A” with her in Mexico City, where she was participating in a meeting of the Oslo Freedom Forum. During the Libyan Civil War, she sided with the rebels, against Qaddafi. She volunteered to be a field nurse. She saw terrible things, atrocities. She did not like the hatred that was filling her heart. That was not her, she reasoned. So she did something extraordinary. She requested to treat enemy forces, Qaddafi’s men, for a while. She has an amazing experience to relate. Also in this podcast, Asma Khalifa talks about Syria and other vital matters.

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Madeleine Kearns is a young journalist from Scotland. She works at National Review. She has recently been on an unusual beat: transgenderism as it relates to children. She has written, “… some American children are on irreversible cross-sex hormones as young as 12 and have double mastectomies as young as 13.” When you hear about these cases, she says, you want to ask, “Is this really happening?” It is. Jay Nordlinger talks with her about it: a fascinating, appalling subject. Maddy Kearns would rather not be covering it. But someone has to do it, she says, and what happened is this: “I learned too much to be able to walk away in good conscience.”

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In an earlier episode, Jay talked with Charles Hill. Now he talks with another Grand Strategist at Yale, Professor John Lewis Gaddis, who is best known for Cold War history. His biography of George F. Kennan won the Pulitzer Prize. Jay talks with him about Kennan, of course — and about Paul Nitze and many another Cold War figure. They also talk about figures more recent, including George W. Bush. In addition to politics and history, they talk about campus life — and about Professor Gaddis’s upbringing in small-town Texas. You don’t have to pay tuition at Yale to sit with JLG. Click on this ’cast.

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Jay’s guest is a legendary teacher at Yale University: Charles Hill, a retired Foreign Service officer and a diplomat-in-residence, among other things, at Yale. He is especially known for Grand Strategy. In previous times, he was an aide to Kissinger, Shultz, and, at the United Nations, Boutros-Ghali. With Jay, he talks about his upbringing in New Jersey, his life in the arena, his career in the academy, and the fate of the world.

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Jay does a sportscast — but with a twist at the end: a discussion of Star Wars, Star Trek, etc., with two experts on the subject: David French and Sopan Deb. David is one of Jay’s regular sports gurus, and so is Vivek Dave. They are both present. Sopan is a ringer, a guest guru: a writer for the New York Times, a stand-up comedian, a musician, and more. The gang talks about the NBA, including the Boston Celtics (Sopan’s team), recent trade action, the All-Star game (worth watching?), and Charles Barkley (a classic American). Then there is talk about the Super Bowl: Is Tom Brady the GOAT? How about Coach Belichick? Furthermore, what about the Super Bowl ad that relates directly to Vivek? Finally, there is the sci-fi flight. Come along for the ride.

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Otto Reich is a former U.S. ambassador to Venezuela. He’s also one of Jay’s favorite people. They talk about the current crisis: where it stands, how it developed, and what might happen next.

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Eric Edelman is one of our top diplomats (retired though he may be) and one of our top foreign-policy thinkers. In a long career, he was ambassador to Finland and ambassador to Turkey. Before that, he was an assistant to George P. Shultz. Some years before that, he was a doctoral student at Yale, writing about post-war Italy. Jay reviews some pressing concerns with him, past and present, though mostly present – and future. Edelman is a cool thinker in a hot world.

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Megha Rajagopalan is a foreign correspondent for BuzzFeed News. She is one of Jay’s favorite reporters. She grew up in Maryland, and for years reported from China. She is now in the Middle East. She and Jay talk mainly about China: the pleasures and perils of reporting from there; the mass round-up of the Uyghurs; the ability of ordinary Chinese to find out the truth about their country; and so on. At the end, Jay asks Megha why she wanted to be a journalist in the first place. You will enjoy getting to know this young woman.

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Peter Wood is the president of the National Association of Scholars. He is also an anthropologist. Jay is an old anthro major. So, they talk anthro major to anthro major, so to speak. What happened to this once-proud field? They also talk about higher education. And lower education. And online education, for college students. Is that a bright prospect? A dim one? Toward the end, Jay asks Mr. Wood what he likes to read, in his off hours. In all, an absorbing conversation with this scholar and gentleman.

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In a sportscast, Jay asks David French and Vivek Dave about last night’s championship game – Alabama vs. Clemson. Or should that be Clemson vs. Alabama? They also debate the college-football playoff system: Should more teams be involved? Later, there is talk of the NFL – including the dreaded double doink (a field-goal attempt that doinks once, doinks again, and then fails). Finally, the NBA, and the eye-rubbing wonder of James Harden. By the way, does he travel? (Big-time.) Also, is Steph Curry the greatest shooter of all time, hands down? A lively, interesting podcast here.

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Michael Rubin is a wide-ranging authority on the Middle East, a resident scholar at the American Enterprise Institute. In this “Q&A,” Jay simply picks his brain: about Syria, Saudi Arabia, Iran, Afghanistan, and elsewhere. Rubin has a lot to say, and he says it very, very clearly. At the beginning, Jay asks him about his background: Rubin grew up in a family of veterinarians. He was allergic to dogs and cats, however. The black sheep in the family, he became a historian of the Middle East.

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