Wednesday, May 17, 2017

What are you listening to now?

Since I'm training for an ultramarathon these days, I'm getting as much of my news by ear (podcasts) as by eye (reading). As I lumber along, sometimes I'll listen to escapist fare -- but often I'll want a dose of new White House outrages.

To this end, I've added some new podcasts to my repertoire:


These four come from an outfit that calls itself Crooked Media. Whenever there is a change of administration, there are staffers cut loose from important, often satisfying, sometimes powerful, jobs. When the incoming administration is a wrecking crew of doubtful rectitude, what better for such people to do than take their communication skills, their knowledge of how systems actually work, and their commitment to progressive policy goals -- and create a small political podcast empire?

Jon Favreau (former Obama speech writer), Jon Lovett (speech writer to both H. Clinton and Obama), Dan Pfeiffer (Obama communications strategist) and Tommy Vietor (former national security spokesman) discuss all things political on Pod Save America. Their background gives them access to major political figures like Senator Mark Warner of the Senate Intelligence Committee, while their relative youth and new outsider status keeps things fresh.

On Pod Save the World, Vietor uses his foreign policy experience to talk about ... well, the world. His previous job gives him access to actual experts on places like Syria and China. Would that the Trump administration seemed to have a clue about any of this.

Pod Save the People is activist Deray McKesson's showcase for everything from the fight for voting rights to an interview with Edward Snowden in which the fugitive gives his slant on Trump firing FBI director Comey.

With Friends Like These is Ana Marie Cox's attempt to prove that people can talk with each other, often across wide differences. Cox founded Wonkette, a great site for raw news.

Two other podcasts I find informative these days:
There was a time when discussions among national security legal eagles would have repelled me. I don't trust that their point of view leads anywhere but justification for overreach by the powers-that-be. But Trump's shenanigans have brought me to this source and so I find myself appreciating Lawfare. Somebody still thinks law matters, even if it isn't the President and his enablers.

On the Media is a long time favorite, now more vital than ever. Brooke Gladstone and Bob Edwards are journalists who can pick up the scent of bullshit -- most notably when it emanates from people whose sympathies they might well share. We need this talent these days.

What are you listening to?

3 comments:

Sandra de Helen said...

I read my news online, the usual trusted sources. My daughter listens to podcasts hours every day, usually either comedians or true crime. When I listen to podcasts, I listen to This American Life, Radio Lab, the Moth Radio Hour, or the New Yorker. I tune in once a week to Stage and Studio on KBOO radio to stay in touch with what's happening in the theatre scene in Portland, my former home. For a treat, I listen to opera.

Rain Trueax said...

I don't have an iPod and when I walk (not often enough), I like silence to avoid log trucks or whatever else might be on the road. The speakers I've listened to from the computer vary in what they are espousing. The latest was Chomsky. I don't follow political theorists on either side. Bad enough to watch or read the news...

joared said...

Sound like some interesting podcasts. I keep up with a combination of often changing radio, selective traditional tv network news, PBS, Japan, German, BBC, Charlie Rose, CNN, newspapers on my iPad, various paper reading mat''l -- at various times. More sources than I have time to use.

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