conversations with fascinating people.

June 16 2012 10:30 AM

Yanis Varoufakis: What You Heard About Tomorrow's Greek Election Is Wrong

According to standard media accounts, tomorrow’s parliamentary election in Greece is actually a referendum on the euro, because a victory by Syriza, the “radical left” party, would lead Greece to exit the euro zone. That’s nonsense, explains Greek economist Yanis Varoufakis, who helped Syriza develop its strategy.

You can watch the whole conversation at BhTV.

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June 9 2012 10:45 AM

T.M. Luhrmann: How God Became Nice

In researching her new book When God Talks Back, anthropologist T.M. Luhrmann spent two years at an evangelical church called the Vineyard. She didn’t find much fire and brimstone there. Here she explains how evangelicals came to embrace a kinder, gentler God:

You can watch the whole conversation at BhTV.

June 4 2012 7:34 PM

Marc Ambinder: How Washington's Gay Mafia Helped My Career

Veteran journalist Marc Ambinder has left Washington after years of political reporting and is ready to share some of the city's secrets. Here he explains why DC is a place where being gay can bring significant career advantages:

You can watch the whole conversation at BhTV.

June 3 2012 11:11 AM

Marc Ambinder: Chris Hayes and the New Politics of Stigmatization

Veteran political journalist Marc Ambinder recently relocated from DC to California and, in parting, wrote a much-discussed piece on things he learned about Washington while living there. I asked Ambinder to reflect on the controversy surrounding MSNBC host Chris Hayes’s famous Memorial Day weekend remarks about the word “heroes”. In particular, I asked, do the attacks on Hayes reflect a change in the quality of Washington discourse?  

You can watch the whole conversation on BhTV.

May 28 2012 10:34 AM

Shadi Hamid: The Case for Intervention in Syria

Shadi Hamid, Research Director of the Brookings Doha Center, favors military intervention in Syria by a coalition consisting of Turkey, Arab nations, and western nations. Here he makes the case for intervention, and I raise some doubts about its wisdom, and he responds to them:  

You can watch the whole conversation on BhTV.

May 26 2012 10:10 AM

Paul Zak: The Scientist Who Became a Promiscuous Hugger

Paul Zak, author of the new book The Moral Molecule, is a pioneer in the study of oxytocin, the neurotransmitter that brings feelings of trust and empathy. Having stimulated the release of oxytocin in experimental settings, he decided he’d try to stimulate its release in less formal settings. And that, as he explains here, is how he became known as “Dr. Love.”

You can watch the whole conversation at BhTV.


May 20 2012 11:00 AM

Matthew Hutson: Is Magical Thinking Good for You?

Matthew Hutson’s book The 7 Laws of Magical Thinking is about the ways most people, even atheists, are prone to illusions--ranging from out-and-out superstitions to subtler departures from rationalism. Are these illusions, on balance, a good thing?

You can watch the whole conversation at Bloggingheads.tv.

May 19 2012 12:23 PM

Matthew Hutson: Is Caring About Your Legacy Irrational?

Matthew Hutson’s new book The 7 Laws of Magical Thinking discusses ways most people, even atheists, think “magically”--ranging from out-and-out superstition to subtler departures from rationalism. Hutson contends that caring about your legacy is an example of magical thinking, and here I challenge him on that point:  

You can watch the whole conversation at Bloggingheads.tv.

May 14 2012 6:35 PM

David Frum's Ironic Indictment of the Ruling Class

David Frum’s new novel Patriots is, among other things, an indictment of the ruling class. But, unlike many such indictments, Frum’s complaint isn’t about a concentration of power per se. Here, after relaying a scene from the novel, he puts a finer point on his critique of modern America: 

You can watch the whole conversation on Bloggingheads.tv.

May 13 2012 10:02 AM

Is David Frum's New Novel an Act of Revenge?

David Frum was famously fired by the conservative think tank the American Enterprise Institute and is now considered an apostate by much of the conservative establishment. As it happens, the conservative establishment doesn’t come off looking too good in his new novel Patriots. I asked Frum whether the book is payback:

You can watch the whole conversation at Bloggingheads.tv.

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