Alabama elected a Democratic Senator! Democrats ran the tables in Virginia! How did that happen? What does this mean for the Democrats? What does this mean for the Republicans? Did Doug Jones really win this, or was Roy Moore just a singularly weak GOP candidate? Was this an aberration, or might it signal something bigger afoot?
What is diplomacy, why is it important, and how does it work? How can we know if diplomacy has been successful? Is it just when we’re not currently at war, or is it more complicated than that? Special guest Dr. Emily Edmonds-Poli helps us answer all your diplomacy-related questions.
What exactly do we know about Russian interference in the election? There is a lot of news about Russian interference, shady dealings, meetings, fake news, bots, and all manner of complicated goings on about our last election. In the wake of tech companies like facebook and twitter coming before congress to give an account of their behavior, we thought it might be nice to take stock of what we know about Russian interference and ask some questions about how Americans should feel about foreign meddling in our elections.
What’s the deal with lobbying? How powerful are lobbyists, really? Nobody seems to like it, but it doesn’t seem to be going anywhere. Should we be mad about that, or is the public image of lobbying as an all-powerful enemy of democracy inaccurate?
Despite enjoying popular support, federal gun control legislation seems all but impossible. Is the NRA really bribing representatives? Not exactly, but they have an awful lot of influence, and we explore the politics of interest groups to understand why.
What do NFL Players & tiki-torch wielding Nazis have in common? They put our ideas of freedom of speech to the test! How far do (or should) the legal protections of free speech extend? What exactly is the relationship between the first amendment and the principle of freedom of expression? Does the first amendment really protect speech that many believe by its very nature can harm vulnerable people? What are the best arguments for and against restricting hate speech? Should we try to stop the Nazis from spreading their hateful ideas or do our principles of free speech provide a good enough reason to allow them to speak, no matter how much we hate what they have to say?
From sanctuary states to repealing Obamacare, How should we think about conflicts between the federal government & state governments? Is there any clear way to determine who has the right to set policy, or is our system built for constant conflict between the states and the federal government? And if so, is that a good thing?