The Great Antidote

The Great Antidote

Adam Smith said, "Science is the great antidote to the poison of enthusiasm and superstition." So join us for interviews with the leading experts on today's biggest issues to learn more about economics, policy, and much more.

Episodes

July 29, 2022 42 min

Jon Murphy, recent PhD graduate from George Mason University and incoming instructor at Western Carolina University, talks to us today about Adam Smith’s theoretical and practical exceptions to free trade. We explore whether Smith would have endorsed The Jones Act through his endorsement of Britain’s Navigation Acts. 

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Weifeng Zhong, senior research fellow at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University, talks to us today about the distinction between misinformation, disinformation, and propaganda. He leads us through his story of discovering the Tiananmen Square Massacre and how it led to the Policy Change Index project. We talk about hopes and fears for the future, along with some differences between the United States and China. 

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Jason Fichtner, vice president and chief economist at the Bipartisan Policy Center, talks to us about retirement and saving strategies. He takes us through different types of savings accounts, why you should start saving today, and why you should start saving today. We also talk about starting to save later in life, how to save for and pay off big expenses, and social security considerations.

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Clark Neily, senior vice president of legal studies at the Cato Institute, talks to us about upcoming Supreme Court justice Ketanji Brown Jackson. We explore her unique qualifications and the hopes that this brings, amicus briefs and how they are filed, and her judicial philosophy. 

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Peter Van Doren is the editor of the quarterly journal Regulation and is a senior fellow at the Cato Institute, where he specializes in housing, land, energy, and more. Today, he talks to us about what energy independence is, whether America is energy independent, and if that is a good thing. He also talks to us about energy more generally, including nuclear and green energy. 

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June 24, 2022 42 min

Daniel Klein, professor of economics at George Mason University and expert on Adam Smith, talks to us about Smith’s definition of justice. There are three types of justice: commutative, distributive, and estimative. Today we break down the differences between each and their applications in government and private life. 

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June 17, 2022 47 min

Walter Olson is the author of several books and a senior fellow at the Cato Institute's Center for Constitutional Studies. Today, we talk about the 2020 election and the increasing fears of election fraud. He talks to us about the different types of election fraud, the actual reality of election fraud, and voter suppression. 

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Inflation is always around, but it has been particularly worrisome recently. A startling departure from the United States' usual average of about 2% inflation, we faced 8.5% in the month of April. Where does inflation come from? What regulatory bodies aim to deal with inflation? How do they do it? Does it work?

Today, Thomas Hoenig talks to us and answers all these questions and more, including his personal experience as Preside...

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Arnold Kling is an economist and the author of the book The Three Languages of Politics: Talking Across Political Divides. His substack, In My Tribe, explores many areas of economics and policy. Today, he talks to us about the divide in politics, explaining the need for his book and giving current examples. We explore affective polarization and the rise of polarization generally. 

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May 27, 2022 44 min

Randy Simmons is the author of Beyond Politics and the director of the Institute of Political Economy at Utah State University. Today, we talk about the field of public choice economics or, as economist James Buchanan calls it, "politics without romance". What exactly is Beyond Politics? What is a market failure? What is a government failure? Tune in for the answers to these questions and more. 

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May 20, 2022 49 min

Brian Knight, director of Innovation and Governance and a senior research fellow at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University, talks to us today about woke capitalism. What is woke capitalism? Is this debate new? Will it benefit companies or backfire? Listen for all that and more. 

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Jay Bhattacharya is a professor of medicine at Stanford University, a research associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research, and co-author of the Great Barrington Declaration. Today we talk about the United States's response to COVID-19 and the silencing of dissenting voices in the scientific community in the time of this national emergency. 

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Philip Klein, author of two books and editor of National Review Online, talks to us today about the unprecedented move by Florida governor Ron DeSantis and the legislature to revoke Disney's special district status. We explore what special district status is, why this happened, what this means for conservatives (and the birth of fight club conservatives), and whether this is a threat to free speech. 

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April 29, 2022 45 min

Henry Clark, professor and program director of the Political Economy Project at Dartmouth College, talks to us today about the French and Scottish enlightenments. We talk about intellectuals who influenced Adam Smith and their influence on him, and discuss Smith's originality. 

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April 22, 2022 39 min

Kenneth Elzinga, Robert C Taylor Professor of Economics at UVA , author, and antitrust 
expert,  talks to us today about teaching economics, the importance of Christianity to his life and profession, and his work with antitrust. 

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Chris Coyne is an economics professor at George Mason University and the author of several books, including Manufacturing Militarism: US Government Propaganda in the War on Terror, coauthored with Abigail Hall. Today we talk about the US war on terror, propaganda, and its implications for free society. 

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Jason Brennan, professor of business ethics at Georgetown University and author of many, many books, talks to us today about the book he coauthored with Chris Surprenant,  Injustice for All: How Financial Incentives Corrupted and Can Fix the US Criminal Justice System, and the distorting incentives in all areas of the criminal justice system. 

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Josh Rauh, professor of finance at the Stanford Graduate School of Business and senior fellow at Hoover Institution, talks to us today about his career journey, what public pensions are, the public pension crisis, and more. 

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Lauren Hall is professor and chair of political science at Rochester Institute of Technology and a prolific author. Her most recent book, The Medicalization of Birth and Death, was published in 2019.

She joins host Juliette Selgren to talk about the medicalization of birth in recent history; the role of hospitals, regulation, and liability; and young people's lack of appreciation for complexity.

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March 18, 2022 44 min

James Otteson is a business ethics professor at the University of Notre Dame and author of several books, including What Adam Smith Knew.  He talks to us about Adam Smith, his life, ideas, and notable works. Also, I recently moved to Liberty Fund's https://www.adamsmithworks.org/ , go check it out!

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