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Blabbermouth

The Stranger's week-in-review podcast, in which Eli Sanders, Dan Savage and a group of "experts" explain what just happened in the news, and what it all means. A wide-ranging discussion of everything you need to know in order to pose as an informed, productive member of society!
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Now displaying: April, 2018
Apr 25, 2018

The Democrat didn’t win in Arizona’s 8th Congressional district this week, but the results of that race were still very, very encouraging. Dan Savage, Eli Sanders, and Rich Smith talk about why this particular loss is actually a kind of win, and then they examine a new, shade-throwing slogan that Democrats are considering for the midterms. The Republicans, this slogan goes, are the party of “corruption, cronyism, and incompetence.” Who could argue with that one? But, also: Will it work? After that, will anything work when it comes to the staggering number of Americans who just don’t vote? Katie Herzog joins Dan and Eli to look at the results of a new poll that asked this country's nonvoters what the hell they’re thinking. The answers are a trip, but they also represent an opportunity for the right politician. (Who, the poll reveals, is a certain lovable lefty authoritarian.) Finally, Rich returns to deal with the pressing issue of Professor Jordan Peterson, the Canadian psychologist whose hot take on the so-called crisis in masculinity has transformed him into “maybe the most influential public intellectual in the Western world right now.” Is there anything Peterson is actually right about? Why did he perform so well in his epic face-off with Channel 4’s Cathy Newman? (Which now has more than 9 million views on YouTube.) And why, exactly, do so many young men worship this dude? Plus, as always, the music of Ahaemfule J. Oluo!

Apr 18, 2018
Eli Sanders, Rich Smith, and Katie Herzog try to process all their feelings about James Comey. Because, you know, it's complicated. Yes, it's nice to see Comey speaking truth to Trump power. But, also, Comey kinda cost Hillary Clinton the election. And no, it's not yet time to get over that one. After that, a Congressional race you should be watching in Arizona and an issue that's not getting enough attention: the shuttering on Backpage.com. Katie explains why the disappearance of Backpage is bad for sex worker safety, explores the dilemma of how best to combat human trafficking online, and explains what Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act has to do with all this. Finally, Tax Day has come and gone but a recent column from Sarah Vowell is still with us. Pointing to Henry David Thoreau—who went to jail rather than pay taxes in support of a government that embraced slavery and made war on Mexico—Vowell suggests we all think about where we draw the line. So Eli, Rich, and Katie (not the biggest contributors to the US Treasury, but definitely contributors!) talk about that one. Plus, as always, the music of Ahaemfule J. Oluo!
Apr 11, 2018
Paul Ryan is leaving Congress, President Trump says missiles will soon be headed toward Syria, and the FBI just raided the office of Trump attorney Michael Cohen. Quite a lot to talk about this week, and Rich Smith, Katie Herzog, and Eli Sanders dive right in with a list of new lows that Ryan sunk to this year before bailing out. After that, Chase Burns is back to pore over Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s testimony before Congress this week. How’d Zuck do? For that matter, how did our esteemed, and often elderly members of Congress do investigating social media? Will any of this make Facebook cool again? Finally, three things we’re loving this week. Chase talks about why The Queen of Versailles is still a must-watch (or re-watch) for this moment. Rich says you need to see the serious-podcast-mocking American Vandal. And Katie talks up the disturbing glories of Mommy Dead and Dearest. Plus, as always, the music of Ahamefule J. Oluo!
Apr 4, 2018
First, an election result from Wisconsin that you need to hear about: Rebecca Dallet, the candidate backed by Democrats, just won a way-down-ballot race for state supreme court—by 11 points! Republicans like Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker are freaking out about the “blue wave” that’s coming to that state, which Trump narrowly won in 2016, and Dan Savage, Rich Smith, and Eli Sanders are here to talk about why that’s just great. (And what you can do to make the coming blue wave even greater.) After that, Trump’s fact-free rage about migrant caravans. The president says he’s now sending the US military to guard the border with Mexico. Okay… But really, what does one even do with bluster this incoherent? Then, Katie Herzog talks about Sinclair Broadcast Group (aka “Trump TV”) and the Orwellian video that’s been going around of Sinclair anchors at local TV stations around the country all reading from the same “fake news” script. What to do? Boycott Sinclair? Encourage its reporters to quit en masse? Vote for people who will actually regulate Sinclair's use of the public airways? Katie, Dan, and Eli discuss. Finally, the Roseanne re-boot, reconsidered. Last week Katie, Dan, and Eli all had mostly positive things to say about the show. (Although a full 2/3 of them hadn’t even watched the re-boot yet!) This week, we hear a dramatic reading of comments from our Blabbermouth Podcast Facebook group arguing about whether or not people should watch Roseanne, given how “problematic” she is. Then Katie, Dan, and Eli talk about Roxanne Gay’s great column on all this in The New York Times. They also answer the question: "Will you keep watching?" Plus, as always, the music of Ahamefule J. Oluo!
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