A weekly discussion about politics, hosted by The New Yorker's executive editor, Dorothy Wickenden.
Loneliness, Tyranny, and the Coronavirus07/05/2020 Duración: 18min
Though some economies have begun reopening, many people around the world are battening down for an indefinite period of extreme social distancing. Loneliness can be a destructive force. The toll of isolation on people’s health has been well documented, but isolation can also be a potent political tool, one often wielded by autocrats and despots. Masha Gessen joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss how the pandemic is reshaping politics, for better and for worse.
The Pandemic Is Wreaking Havoc in America’s Prisons and Jails04/05/2020 Duración: 21min
Three months ago, Kai Wright, the host of WNYC’s the United States of Anxiety, joined David Remnick for a special episode about the effects of mass incarceration and the movement to end it. Now, as the coronavirus pandemic puts inmates in acute and disproportionate danger, that effort may be gaining new traction. Wright and Remnick reconvene to examine the COVID-19 crisis in prison and its political effects. David Remnick also speaks with Phil Murphy, the governor of New Jersey, who has signed an executive order to release certain at-risk inmates from states prisons—the sort of measure that would once have been deeply unpopular and risky. “I haven’t really spent any time on the politics,” Governor Murphy says. “In all the steps we’ve taken, we’re trying to make the call as best we can, based on the facts, based on the data, based on the science.” And Kai Wright interviews Udi Ofer, the head of the A.C.L.U.’s Justice Division, who notes that “the communities that the C.D.C. has told us are most vulnerable to C
Trump vs. the United States Postal Service30/04/2020 Duración: 20min
The U.S. Postal Service is a rare thing: a beloved federal agency. Mail carriers visit every household in the country, and they are the only federal employees most of us see on a regular basis. But the service has been in serious financial trouble for years, a problem exacerbated by the coronavirus crisis. The survival of the system depends on intervention from Congress, but President Trump has called the postal service “a joke,” and without congressional intervention it could be forced to cease operating by the end of the year. Casey Cep, a New Yorker staff writer and the daughter of a postal worker, joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss the past and future of the U.S.P.S.
A City at the Peak of Crisis27/04/2020 Duración: 47min
Experts predicted that Wednesday, April 15th would be a peak of the COVID-19 pandemic in New York City, its epicenter. On that day, a crew of New Yorker writers talked with people all over the city, in every circumstance and walk of life, to form a portrait of a city in crisis. A group-station manager for the subway talks about keeping the transit system running for those who can’t live without it; a respiratory therapist copes with break-time conversations about death and dying; a graduating class of medical students get up the courage to confront the worst crisis in generations; and a new mother talks about giving birth on a day marked by tragedy for so many families. The hour includes contributions from writers including William Finnegan, Helen Rosner, Jia Tolentino, Kelefa Sanneh, and Adam Gopnik, who says, “One never knows whether to applaud the human insistence on continuing with some form of normal life, or look aghast at the human insistence on continuing with some form of normal life. That's the myst
Trump and Biden Face Off Over China and the Coronavirus23/04/2020 Duración: 21min
Around the world, COVID-19 is fundamentally altering politics. In China, the Communist Party is lauding its handling of the crisis and spreading disinformation about the virus in the U.S. And, as attacks on Chinese-Americans increase, the Biden and Trump campaigns accuse each other of being overly cozy with Beijing. Evan Osnos joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss how the coronavirus is affecting the course of the 2020 Presidential election.
Bill McKibben and Elizabeth Kolbert on the Pandemic and the Environment20/04/2020 Duración: 16min
Bill McKibben and Elizabeth Kolbert join David Remnick to talk about the twin crises of our time: the coronavirus pandemic and the climate emergency. What can one teach us about the other? During the COVID-19 national emergency, the Trump Administration has loosened auto-emissions standards, and has proposed easing the controls on mercury released by power plants, among other actions. With protesters no longer able to gather, construction on the controversial Keystone Pipeline has resumed. Still, McKibben and Kolbert believe that the pandemic could remind the public to take scientific fact more seriously, and possibly might change our values for the better. “When we get out of detention,” McKibben says, “I hope that it will be a reminder to us of how much social distancing we’ve been doing already these last few decades,” by focussing on technology and the virtual world. In the pleasure of human contact, he hopes, “we might begin to replace some of the consumption that drives every environmental challenge we
Mitch McConnell, the Most Dangerous Politician in America16/04/2020 Duración: 19min
Mitch McConnell was first elected to the Senate in 1984, but he didn’t come to national prominence until the Obama Presidency, when, as the Senate Majority Leader, he emerged as one of the Administration’s most unyielding and effective legislative opponents. In the past three years, McConnell has put his political skills to work in support of Donald Trump’s agenda, despite the lasting damage that his maneuvering is doing to the Senate and to American democracy. Jane Mayer joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss how and why McConnell, who faces reëlection this year, became one of Trump’s staunchest allies.
The Injustice of COVID-1913/04/2020 Duración: 10min
On the surface, COVID-19 may seem to be a great leveller. Princes and Prime Ministers, musicians and Hollywood A-listers, N.B.A. players, and other prominent people have made headlines for contracting the virus. But looking more closely at the numbers of illnesses and fatalities, we see that the virus—far from an equalizer—exacerbates the inequality of the American health-care system. Minorities, and particularly African-Americans, account for a greatly disproportionate number of deaths in places around the country. Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor, a contributor to The New Yorker and an assistant professor of African-American studies at Princeton University, describes to David Remnick the circumstances that give rise to this stratification. Even the basic preventative measures urged on Americans by the C.D.C. are less accessible in black communities. To shelter in place, she points out, “you need to have safe, sound, and comfortable housing . . . [and] only nineteen per cent of black people have the ability to work
Can Trump Avoid a Post-Coronavirus Great Depression?09/04/2020 Duración: 21min
Two weeks ago, Congress passed a two-trillion-dollar stimulus bill aimed at mitigating the damage the coronavirus is doing to the American economy. With the stock market flagging and unemployment reaching historic highs, further government intervention will almost certainly be needed to stave off financial devastation. But even as COVID-19 cases quickly rise around the country, President Trump says that business should return to normal this spring. John Cassidy joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss the dangers of Trumponomics, lessons from other nations about how to respond to pandemics, and how to put American back to work without precipitating a rebound of the virus.
Why We Underestimated COVID-1906/04/2020 Duración: 11min
Even as the scale of the coronavirus outbreak was becoming apparent, spring breakers flooded the beaches of Florida and New Yorkers continued to congregate in parks. Despite the warnings of politicians and health-care professionals, many people failed to treat the coronavirus pandemic as a serious threat. Daniel Kahneman, a Nobel Prize-winning expert on human behavior, told Maria Konnikova that the problem isn’t just that the threat posed by COVID-19 is hard to grasp, it’s that public officials haven’t done enough to explain the threat. “There should be clear guidelines and clear instructions. We all ought to know whether we should open our Amazon packages outside the door or bring them in,” Kahneman said. “It’s not a decision individuals should consider making on the basis of what they know, because they don’t know enough to make it.”