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How do humans come to believe all the impossible things we believe? The answers, one story at a time.

 

Dec 20, 2016

As Barack Obama's presidency comes to an end, first drafts of his legacy are already being written. In this episode I'm joined by three scholars who are contributors to one such draft—an upcoming book called Reconsidering Obama: Reflections on Rhetoric. Professors Jennifer Mercieca, Mark McPhail, and David Frank...


Oct 31, 2016

"Political correctness" has been a devil term for Donald Trump's presidential campaign, but the term's meaning is far from clear. In this episode I offer a history of political correctness, and suggest that, like every other part of Trump's campaign, his use of the term is like nothing we've seen before.


Sep 19, 2016

From time to time the news media call upon debate coaches to analyze the presidential debates, but always with an emphasis on what each candidate needs to do in order to score political points. In this episode we are joined by six current and former debate coaches and argumentation scholars, who lead the conversation in...


Aug 2, 2016

To many the goal of eliminating homelessness in the United States is hopelessly naive. But that is only because the nation has forgotten that homelessness, as we know it today, is less than 40 years old. Whitney Gent returns to share the forgotten story of the origins of homelessness.


Jul 21, 2016

The Michigan state legislature is currently considering a law that would fine those engaged in "aggressive panhandling." The bill's sponsor claims that there is a need to raise awareness of the dangers posed by people seeking financial assistance on the streets. But guests Whitney Gent and Melanie Loehwing reply that...