Mona and Jay had not talked to each other in a while — she had been moving, he had been traveling — so they have some catching up to do. They talk about “dreamers” and immigration. They talk about Trump and “Chuck ‘n’ Nancy.” They talk about the Koreas. They talk about Joe Biden (!). About New Jersey (Mona’s native state). About the Confederacy and the ongoing war over monuments. About many things.

They even talk about Taylor Swift, if briefly (swiftly). The music they go out on is not Taylor but Bach – as jazzed up by the Swingle Singers, back in a swinging era.

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Why did the West grow rich in the 18th century after thousands of years of nearly zero economic growth? Joel Mokyr, an economic historian at Northwestern University, contends that it was the culture in Western Europe that sparked the Great Enrichment.

Joel Mokyr is the author of the recent book, A Culture of Growth: The Origins of the Modern Economy. He joins me on the podcast to discuss his argument, what the lessons of economic history can teach us about the future of innovation, and whether the techno-optimists or -pessimists are right about the future.

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Ricochet Founders® Peter Robinson and Rob Long take your questions (after they chat about current events for a few minutes).

Thanks to everyone who chimed in with the great queries. We’ll do this again in a few months. Happy end of summer!

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Welcome to the Harvard Lunch Club Political Podcast for August 29, 2017, it’s the Loving Trump’s Hate edition of the show, with your hosts Todd Feinburg, radio talk show host; and Mike Stopa, nanophysicist extraordinaire. This week, our special guest is Washington Examiner writer Emily Jashinsky who will tell us about all the slimy things you ever wanted to knowabout the Southern Poverty Law Center, that lovely group of self-absorbed, utterly humorless social justice fanatics. Please drop us a comment on Ricochet if only to welcome Emily to her first time on the show.

Next, we will talk about the things that Donald Trump hates. What really makes him angry (as opposed to the things where he thinks he is supposed to be angry)??? Yes, the media! Yes, CNN! Anything else? What makes him so engaging when he is out there punching away at the bad guys? Or do you think he is engaging? We will analyze.

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Marriage is one of society’s oldest institutions, and research suggests its importance hasn’t faded with time. Here to discuss the numerous benefits of marriage, as well as its role in the “Millennial Success Sequence,” is Dr. W. Bradford Wilcox.

 

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Jay and Mona talk of Nazis – neo and old (Jay is in Salzburg), how the Republican Party has now managed to take on the Democrats’ past sins, nuclear brinksmanship, and whether Trump’s churning staff changes will make a difference.

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Welcome to the Harvard Lunch Club Political Podcast for August 11, 2017 it’s the Vive La Difference edition of the podcast with your hosts, nanoscientist Mike Stopa, and, would you believe it? co-host and Smart Girl Extraordinaire Teri Christoph! But then, where’s Todd??? Wish we knew. He is off on a soul-finding three month journey of non-stop silence in the Peruvian jungle, on a diet of roasted banana peels and tropical bird sushi. We expect him back next week.

In the meantime, Mike and Teri get to bubble our way through topics ludicrous and absurd for your listening pleasure. Look, the vibe is a little different than usual. I, for one, had a fabulous time.

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This week, our good pal Larry Kudlow sits in for the making-tv-great-again Rob Long. We’ve also got Henry Olsen, author of The Working Class Republican: Ronald Reagan and the Return of Blue-Collar Conservatism who tell us what why Reagan’s greatest influence may have been Franklin Roosevelt, how The Great Communicator would’ve come down on the health care debate, and supposes who would have won in a Trump-Reagan electoral contest. Later, Mr. Immigration Mickey Kaus stops by to school us on why the Emma Lazarus poem isn’t policy and what the media gets wrong over and over about this contentious issue. We also talk about the good economic news, and the tight ship John Kelly is running at the White House.

Music from this week’s podcast: The Immigrant Song by Led Zeppelin

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The US economy appears to be stuck at around 2% GDP growth, much less than the 3.5% it has averaged between World War II and the Great Recession. One reason is that productivity growth – that is, output per worker — is barely rising. Why is the American economy apparently not as productive as it used to be? Are we, despite tech giants such as Apple and Google, somehow less innovative than in the past? If so, why are we so worried about robots taking our jobs?

To help us answer those questions and others, I’m delighted to have as my guest today Bret Swanson, an AEI visiting fellow and president of Entropy Economics, a strategic research firm specializing in technology, innovation, and the global economy. Bret is the co-author of the recent report, “The Coming Productivity Boom,” and he joins us today to discuss why he thinks much higher productivity growth is just around the corner.

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Jim Geraghty of the National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America applaud Claremont McKenna College in California for defending free speech rights and punishing students who attempted to prevent a guest from speaking on campus. Reports claim that President Donald Trump has asked for specifics on his powers to pardon aides, family members, and even himself, leading Jim to ask when the president will stop making life more difficult for himself and allow the investigation to run its course. They call into question the genuinenss of OJ Simpson’s contrition after he was granted parole on Thursday and Jim makes a bold prediction about OJ’s future.

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The President is on the record, the WSJ’s Bill McGurn talks about Charlie Gard, The Washington Post’s Bob Costa on the mood in DC, @Lileks ponders Russian history, Long wonders who’s going to get fired, and Robinson has one last question. Or three.

Music from this week’s podcast: Charlie Don’t Surf by The Clash

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Jon Gabriel (@ExJon) and Stephen Miller (aka @RedSteeze) welcome author and columnist Michael Malice to chat about, what else, North Korea and “RuPaul’s Drag Race.” Michael is the author of Dear Reader: The Unauthorized Autobiography of Kim Jong Il, hosts the “Your Welcome” podcast, and has been a frequent guest on “Kennedy,” “Red Eye,” and other Fox offerings.

The intro song is “Is Chicago, Is Not Chicago” by Soul Coughing. Stephen’s song of the week is “Farrah Abraham” by Mathew Lee Cothran and Jon’s is “Ariadna” by Kedr Livanskiy. To listen to all the music featured on The Conservatarians, subscribe to our Spotify playlist. You also should subscribe to this podcast and give it five-star, glowing reviews on iTunes!

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Perry Link is one of the great China scholars of today. There have been two sides to his career: He is an expert on Chinese literature and language; and he has been a boon to Chinese dissidents. With Jay, he talks about Liu Xiaobo, the Nobel laureate and political prisoner, who died last week. And about other dissidents. And about various aspects of today’s China, and its relation to the West.

By the way, Jay mentions Professor Link’s famous essay “The Anaconda in the Chandelier,” which can be found here.

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Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America endure three bad martinis today as two more GOP Senators bail on the plan to overhaul Obamacare and a new effort to vote on a clean repeal is already in grave danger of failing. They criticize President Trump for keeping Obama’s infamous Iran Nuclear Deal without giving his advisers enough time to develop a new policy. Attorney General Jeff Sessions is another source of disappointment today as he declares his intention to increase the use of civil asset forfeiture, which allows the federal government to seize the property of suspected criminals — without charging them with a crime.

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With increasingly populist figures gaining traction across the world (even winning or nearly winning major elections), it seems as if the values of western liberalism are on the decline. But are these leaders and their policies the direct cause of populism, or rather a manifestation of years of brewing anxiety? Here to discuss this and his recent book, “The Retreat of Western Liberalism,” is Financial Times columnist and commentator Edward Luce.

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Stephen Miller (aka @RedSteeze) bought a ticket to Wonder Woman and the internet lost its collective mind. Alamo Drafthouse intended the viewing to be women-only … until Stephen decided to join them. The Conservatarians co-host returns from vacation to talk about his trip to the movies, the international media coverage it garnered, and the people on the right and left who tried to co-opt it.

Jon’s song of the week is “Lawman” by Girl Band, and Stephen’s is “Apocalypse” by Cigarettes After Sex. To listen to all the music featured on The Conservatarians, subscribe to our Spotify playlist. You also should subscribe to this podcast and give it five-star, glowing reviews on iTunes!

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Long Parkcasting

We’re all over the globe physically and all over the map topically this week as we cover the British elections with our guests Toby Young from The Spectator (read his take on the election here) and we’ve got the great Andrew McCarthy on Comey, the NSA, and Trump’s legal conundrums. Also, Rob is in a park in London. Yes, in a park. Now, that’s devotion.

Music from this week’s podcast: Werewolves Of London by Warren Zevon

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Welcome to this special, Corbyn-Might Maneuver edition of the Harvard Lunch Club Political Podcast with our British-Irish-U.K. correspondent William Campbell coming to us (naturally) from Berlin to give us the lowdown on the shocking outcome of the British Parliamentary elections.

William is staying up until three in the morning just so we can podcast the news before anyone else! And here is our scoop: Britain is a bloody mess! The Tories failed miserably. But Labor didn’t win either. So what does *that* mean?!? Do they call another election? Can Jeremy Corbyn actually become Prime Minister? Is the Brit’s answer to Bernie Sanders ready for the job?

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It’s Comeypalooza on this installment of Law Talk, as Richard Epstein and John Yoo react to the former FBI director’s congressional testimony. We won’t give it away here, but the professors’ diagnosis is sure to surprise you. Then: Was Robert Mueller’s appointment as independent counsel necessary?; a disagreement on the proper use of the impeachment power; Which cabinet secretary should be packing his bags?; Understanding the 25th Amendment; and the legal and political implications of withdrawing from the Paris agreement on climate change. All that, plus Yoo in the south of France, Epstein in Chicago, and Senik ties the knot.

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Jay is away this week. Charlie Sykes and Peter Wehner join Mona to evaluate the impact of the Comey hearings and discuss the broader questions facing conservatives in the age of Trump.

Music: Brahms. Variations on a theme by Paganini

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