The Weekly Wonk
A weekly podcast from the New America Foundation's new publication, the Weekly Wonk.
info_outline Get Your BA from the University of Everywhere 03/05/2015
Get Your BA from the University of Everywhere Higher education is in crisis, in large part because - as Kevin Carey points out in his new book, The End of College - students (and their parents) are paying more and getting less. The announcement that Sweet Briar College will close at the end of this year illustrates how untenable the current system is. On this episode, Carey, director of New America's education policy program, talks with ProPublica's Marian Wang about his book and how information technology will facilitate the creation of institutions that serve what Carey calls the "big middle" in education, who are currently left behind or saddled with debt.
info_outline Technology for the People, By the People 02/26/2015
Technology for the People, By the People If you use a smartphone or your kid has a tablet, you should already be wondering how we can educate, engage, and retain diverse talent in tech. But experts say you should also be curious to know why Ida B. Wells is Aliya Rahman's favorite data scientist. On this episode, Anne-Marie Slaughter talks with Rahman, program director of Code for Progress, as well as Megan Smith, Chief Technology Officer at the White House, and Jessica Rosenworcel of the FCC, about how leadership can make an impact in tech.
info_outline The Internet Everywhere, Really 02/06/2015
The Internet Everywhere, Really We can make planet-wide, always-on, high-speed(ish) Internet communications a reality for everyone. In other words, a universal Internet is possible, say Alan Davidson, New America's Vice President for Technology Policy and Strategy and Director of the Open Technology Institute (OTI), and Danielle Kehl, a policy analyst with OTI, in this conversation with Anne-Marie Slaughter (and in New America's Big Ideas series on CNN). According to Davidson and Kehl, now that the goal of internet everywhere for everyone is on the horizon, global and local participation and investment are the keys to getting to that finish line.
info_outline Our (North American) Passport To A New America 01/23/2015
Our (North American) Passport To A New America Borders are perhaps the biggest and most contentious issue when it comes to trade, immigration, diplomacy, and innovation. Twenty years after NAFTA and with the Trans-Pacific Partnership on the horizon, it's time to update the United States' border-sharing relationships with its neighbors. One provocative way to start the conversation: Let's create a North American passport, say Andres Martinez and Daniel Kurtz-Phelan in this conversation with Anne-Marie Slaughter (and in New America's Big Ideas series on CNN). Martinez and Kurtz-Phelan point out that the privileges of movement and access shared among the United States, Canada, and Mexico should reflect just how interwoven our respective economies--including education, manufacturing, and research, in addition to trade itself--have become.
info_outline Being Unemployed Shouldn't Make You Unemployable 01/21/2015
Being Unemployed Shouldn't Make You Unemployable In the story of the American Dream, the moral is that with hard work, making a comeback or reinventing yourself is possible. Inherent in that moral is the viability of second chances. Real life for the long-term unemployed in America tells a different story, say Rachel Black and Aleta Sprague in this conversation with Anne-Marie Slaughter (and in New America’s Big Ideas series on CNN). Black and Sprague report that for America to have a real second-chance economy, we must make policy changes that will remove barriers for dreamers of the American Dream to re-enter our economy.
info_outline Leisure Is the New Productivity 01/14/2015
Leisure Is the New Productivity Instead of working harder to be more productive, we need to work smarter by taking time out to relax and connect with friends and family. In study after study, the research shows that by taking breaks in between periods of focused attention, we will get more done and could even make strides toward greater gender and class equality, says Brigid Schulte in this conversation with Anne-Marie Slaughter. According to Schulte, author of the best-selling book Overwhelmed: Work, Love, and Play When No One Has the Time, it's when we hit the pause button that our brains unlock their most powerful creativity and innovation.
info_outline Securing Peace in an Age of Genocide 12/16/2014
Securing Peace in an Age of Genocide How do we prevent atrocities like those in Bosnia and Rwanda from happening again? Over the course of her career, Samantha Power - U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. and author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning book A Problem From Hell, has approached this question from diplomatic, military, and historical angles. The subject of a 12,000-word profile in this week'sNew Yorker, Power spoke recently with Anne-Marie Slaughter as part of New America's Leadership, Innovation, and Ideas series. In this excerpt from their conversation, Power and Slaughter discuss how the U.S. government, civil society, and the United Nations can innovate to pursue a peaceful and secure global future.
info_outline Communities Before Categories 12/10/2014
Communities Before Categories We all know that increasingly, Hispanic Americans are at the forefront of national conversations about politics, and not just in the context of the electoral landscape or immigration debates. Anne-Marie Slaughter talks with Heritage senior fellow Mike Gonzalez about his book, A Race for the Future, and why conservatives need to embrace demographic change and craft a message to Hispanic voters that prioritizes community and opportunity above the polarization of the status quo.
info_outline Muckraking: The New Old Human Rights Campaign 12/03/2014
Muckraking: The New Old Human Rights Campaign What can the history of investigative journalism – or global muckraking, as Columbia professor Anya Schiffrin calls it – teach us about the future of human rights? More than anyone might think, as Schiffrin tells Anne-Marie Slaughter in their discussion of Schiffrin’s new book, Global Muckraking: 100 Years of Investigative Journalism from Around the World.
info_outline The Hackers of Oz 11/19/2014
The Hackers of Oz How do we win a war that can’t be seen? Anne-Marie Slaughter goes behind the cyber curtain to find out by speaking with ASU Future of War Fellow Shane Harris about his new book, @War: The Rise of the Military-Internet Complex. Harris, who has been reporting on intelligence as a journalist for 15 years, talks on this episode about his unprecedented access to how the NSA works and why our response to the threat of cyber war – rather than the risks of harm - will have a bigger impact on cyberspace in the 21st century.
info_outline The Weekly Wonk: Can We Save Good Local Journalism? 10/29/2014
The Weekly Wonk: Can We Save Good Local Journalism? It’s possible, says Perry Bacon, Jr., who believes that only local journalism can sustain democracy where it is most active these days—at the state and municipal levels. On this week’s episode, Bacon talks with Anne-Marie Slaughter about why we need a New York Times in every state and how—in this moment when global digital storytelling is thriving and local papers are shedding thousands of jobs—we might begin to get there.
info_outline The Weekly Wonk: History Is Happening Now 10/22/2014
The Weekly Wonk: History Is Happening Now In this episode, Slaughter talks with historian Khalil Muhammad, director of the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture at the New York Public Library, about why the story of police violence against people of color seems to be repeating itself from Rodney King to Trayvon Martin to Michael Brown.
info_outline The Weekly Wonk: How A Sex Scandal Changed Democracy 10/15/2014
The Weekly Wonk: How A Sex Scandal Changed Democracy One week of presidential politics in the spring of 1987 changed political journalism forever and not for the better. So says noted political writer (and alumnus of three presidential campaign trails) Matt Bai in his new book, All the Truth is Out: The Week Politics Went Tabloid. On this episode, Bai speaks with Schmidt Family Fellow Christopher Leonard to tell us how Gary Hart’s failed presidential bid fundamentally shaped this modern age of political tabloid journalism and what he thinks that means for the future of democracy.
info_outline The Weekly Wonk: Poverty Is a Majority Issue 10/09/2014
The Weekly Wonk: Poverty Is a Majority Issue “The poor” aren’t other people – they’re us. According to recent scholarship, by the time we’re 75 years old, 59 percent of us will fall below the poverty line at some point in our lives. Factoring in related experiences like near-poverty, unemployment, or use of public assistance, that number climbs to a staggering 80 percent. In this episode, Ford Academic Fellow and SUNY-Albany professor Virginia Eubanks talks with New America Managing Editor Fuzz Hogan about the biggest thing we can do to address inequality in this country: recognizing that poverty is a majority issue and something that impacts us all.
info_outline The Weekly Wonk: A New Kind Of Campus "Diversity" 10/01/2014
The Weekly Wonk: A New Kind Of Campus "Diversity" Promoting diversity in education was one the biggest and most widely practiced ideas of the 20th century. But as Tomiko Brown-Nagin, Daniel P.S. Professor of Constitutional Law and Professor of History at Harvard, argued in last week’s edition of The Weekly Wonk, diversity isn’t getting us where we need to go to help students who are truly disadvantaged. She has another big idea to make higher education a real pathway to social mobility: directing resources to students who are the first in their families to attend college. In this episode, Slaughter and Brown-Nagin outline the stakes for how reaching out to first-generation students can make college, in the words of Horace Mann, a “great equalizer.”
info_outline The Weekly Wonk: Why Populism Isn't Going Away 09/24/2014
The Weekly Wonk: Why Populism Isn't Going Away Conventional wisdom and media narratives suggest that visible populist movements like the Tea Party and Occupy Wall Street emerged in response to the financial crisis of 2008. New America Fellow Yascha Mounk disagrees. In a recent article for Foreign Affairs (“Pitchfork Politics”), he argues that this surge in populism is part of a more complex trend, dating back to the 1990s and a steadily growing disenchantment with government. On this episode, Mounk and Slaughter discuss the impact of reading this rise in populism as part of a longer-term story and explore ways—in Mounk’s words—to “channel populist passions for good.”
info_outline The Weekly Wonk: A Different Kind of War Story 09/17/2014
The Weekly Wonk: A Different Kind of War Story Why do veterans miss war? That's the question that has animated the latest work of Sebastian Junger, the best-selling author and filmmaker whose recent film, Korengal, picks up where his Academy Award-nominated war documentary Restrepo left off. The answer, he says, could have broad social implications. On this episode, Junger and Slaughter discuss those implications, and explore how both evolution and gender shape the experience of war – and peace - for men and women.
info_outline The Weekly Wonk: Our Exotic Poverty Problem 09/10/2014
The Weekly Wonk: Our Exotic Poverty Problem Why are some Americans choosing to fight malaria in Malawi over meth in Minnesota? In other words: why do we tend to romanticize development work abroad while neglecting problems down the street? On this episode, Anand Giridharadas, New York Times columnist and author most recently of The True American, tells us how this disconnect illuminates a fundamental misunderstanding of the biggest problems that plague our society.
info_outline The Weekly Wonk: Our War with Teachers 09/03/2014
The Weekly Wonk: Our War with Teachers Most of us can easily remember our favorite teachers. Yet as a whole, American society devalues the profession – eroding the enthusiasm of educators with debates over teacher pay, tenure and testing. That dynamic is nothing new, says Dana Goldstein, a former New America Fellow and the author of the new book, “The Teacher Wars: A History of America's Most Embattled Profession.” On this episode, Goldstein explains that if we want a peaceful future, we must learn from the education wars of the past.
info_outline The Weekly Wonk: We Interrupt This Broadcast 08/28/2014
The Weekly Wonk: We Interrupt This Broadcast No, you're not imagining things: news media today is dominated by white male voices. Lauren Bohn wants to change that. The co-founder of the startup Foreign Policy Interrupted explains what we lose when we don't hear the perspectives of women and minorities on the news – and how she's planning to disrupt the same old talking points and talking heads.
info_outline The Weekly Wonk: How Good Is Your Networking Game? 08/14/2014
The Weekly Wonk: How Good Is Your Networking Game? Are you really as connected as you think you are? New America Fellow Eric Tyler tells us that you might not be -- that's right, even with your hundreds of Facebook contacts. But don't fret. Tyler's big idea? An online accelerator to help you remedy those critical pain points in your contacts and make your network go global.
info_outline The Weekly Wonk: Advantage: USA 07/30/2014
The Weekly Wonk: Advantage: USA Quit worrying about China's ascendance. On one important measure, Chinese-American Eric Liu tells us, the U.S. still has the power to keep a competitive edge: Find out what that is, and what we can learn about America's future from the Liu family immigration story. He's the author of the recently published, "A Chinaman's Chance" and a 1999 New America Fellow.
info_outline The Weekly Wonk: Betting on Women Leaders 07/23/2014
The Weekly Wonk: Betting on Women Leaders Can we break the glass ceiling with dollars bills? On this episode, former Bank of America and Citigroup executive Sallie Krawcheck explains how she hopes a new index fund – offered by her organization, Ellevate – comprised of those businesses that have women in leadership positions might help propel more women into c-suites and corporate boards.
info_outline The Weekly Wonk: The Next Global Revolution 07/10/2014
The Weekly Wonk: The Next Global Revolution We're at the beginning of a new global battle – a race to reinvent government and make it better. That's what The Economist Editor-in-Chief John Micklethwait and his co-author Adrian Woolridge argue in their new book, The Fourth Revolution. In the first edition of our new podcast format, Micklethwait tells Slaughter his big idea: governments can, and will, change – and technology and transparency will get us there.
info_outline The Weekly Wonk: Reparations Revisited & That Precious Power 06/19/2014
The Weekly Wonk: Reparations Revisited & That Precious Power This week, Atlantic correspondent Ta-Nehisi Coates extends the conversation he started with his June cover story, The Case for Reparations. Later, what history can tell us about modern warfare: New America Fellow and Abraham Lincoln Biographer Matt Pinsker moderates a discussion on how the power to declare war has evolved since the days of our founding fathers.
info_outline The Weekly Wonk: How Soccer Changed World 06/11/2014
The Weekly Wonk: How Soccer Changed World This week - why soccer means more than goals, how the sport has changed racial politics throughout the world and how FIFA's confused - and sometimes corrupt – politics could threaten the sport's future. Listen to a discussion featuring New America Editorial Director Andrés Martinez, Slate Editor David Plotz and Joshua H. Nadel, an assistant history professor at North Carolina Central University.