« Making Sense with Sam Harris

#114 — Politics and Sanity

2018-01-22 | 🔗

In this episode of the Making Sense podcast, Sam Harris speaks with David Frum and Andrew Sullivan about the Trump presidency, hyper-partisanship, how democracies fail, immigration, the lowering life expectancy in the U.S., racism, social media, the opioid crisis, marijuana legalization, religion, what a healthy politics might look like, and other topics.

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This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
Today or hear the audio from my event in DC Andrew celebrated David from I love the event. The conversation? But here the two mistakes I think I made the first is: I brought politics to DC which was a totally natural thing for me to do. When I go to a city on first trying to fight, local guests, so as to spare people the hassle of travelling. And in D c is quite natural to think of people in politics and having speakers of it. Caliber of David Forearm and Andrew Sullivan there, it was natural to grab them but the reality is it
a city in the world that would have loved to have me, avoid politics altogether and talk to a physicist or a biologist. It has to be DC and honestly I had occurred to me until after the fact. So I should taken David and Andrew to some of the city, and that would have made much more sense for the local audience but also as you here David and Andrew are people with so much to say that I found myself moderating a conversation between them, largely again, was totally natural. For me to do and felt fine at the time, because I was interested to hear what both of them had to say But in the aftermath I realized that most of the people, who can now that night came to see me. In fact, most of the text of the event had sold before it even announced, whom I guess would be so from the perspective,
Someone who came out to hear me talk that person got short changed. Again? This is something that I'm learning as I go, but I believe these are legitimate concerns, so going forward. I think, unless some real reason to have two guests on stage, I will opt to have just one you'll either keep me from focusing too much on one guest as I did, in my event, with Eric Weinstein and Shapiro we're ban, and I, got into a mini debate and sidelined Eric for awhile and will keep me from falling. Into the maw of merely moderating between two other people. However, interesting but that said, I dont think any of these flaws really affect the podcast and if you and Joy Andrew Andy it as much as I do you enjoy it into them. At this event there are some intent. Moments. It was some heckling for my guests at various points that contentious between us.
Or the end, we have agreed about moralist everything for the first hour and then several topics of debate came up mostly in the current period. There was a legal marijuana which David Andrew strongly disagree about question about the validity of religion where they both strongly disagree with me There was a question of Kissinger, I believe were Andrew and David found themselves at loggerheads at a few. Others little inconvenience it, we couldn't deal with each one of those topics at length, but anyway there was enough there, I see where we all stand and we all certainly had fun one point of sub tax that didn't actually get explained. Onstage Andrew had just really an article in New York magazine, a day for which he was getting toad hammered on social media, about the me to movement. So he was a little shy.
Shocked there- and I think that was one reference to it. That got laugh from the crowd because everyone knew what was going on there, but it actually never got disgust. So in case you don't know who they are David from his AY Senior editor of the atlantic- and he is the author of the new book trumpet receive the corruption of the American Republic, has ninth book. I have read it and I recommend And it has been on upon Cassa think twice before he's been increased, of media. For quite some time he was a fellow with a American Enterprise Institute, he's been a lifelong republican and he was a speech writer for President George W Bush from two thousand one or two thousand too. He halted Ba and a man history from Yale and a law degree from Harvard man certainly knows a lot about politics, and my second guess what
Sullivan, whose also been on the package before, and we debated various things in print over the years. Andrew, is a rider large for New York magazine, he holds a ba from Oxford University in modern history and modern languages and a Phd in government from Harvard he was Leader of the New Republic from ninety ninety one, ninety six and the creator of the daily dish, which was won the first political blogs, how he ran from two thousand to two thousand fifteen, He's a winner of three National magazine awards. I was also- weekly american colonies for the Sunday Times of London from ninety ninety six to two thousand fourteen Have you dont know what Andrews commentary was very influential in helping our nation come to its senses. Around marriage, equality, fatty rather first cover story in first book in favour of maritime law
one thousand nine hundred and eighty nine and one thousand nine hundred and ninety five. He wrote a memoir about the AIDS epidemic height of love undetectable in ninety ninety eight, and after that he wrote the book, the conservative soul and two thousand six, and so on. I bring you David from and resolving live from the Warner Theatre in Washington, DC yeah. Here here. Why don't you get tonight? HU? I have great buyers are either by us here, but I realized they actually need no introduction in this town. So please welcome Andrew Zella
David from becoming so heard from my wife, my daughter, my youngest daughter, who just turn for was ass yesterday, who her favorite monsters were, and He thought for a while and he's a Grover and Donald Trump. Now- this after two and a half since he was Vote for Donald Trump, so she's made progress. Now I promise we are not going to focus exclusively on politics and don't keep that promise. There will be a long queue and ay, and you can you can move on to other things of that interests, but clearly, with the with the two of you, we need to talk about trumpet has consequences. I want to start
by attempting to nullify the any kind of charge partisanship there would be levelled at us. However, incongruously, maybe I'll start with you David Eve, you David, if you don't know, is just about to release, say a big and and wonderful book on the Trump issue, Trump accuracy and that is for sale along with our books in the lobby. Afterwards will have a book sign in sums easily, where the cheapest, unaids, ever so David Bowe, just deflate this notion that that any expression of concern, the sort that we will take. You wait here
politics and were trump in particular, must be an expression of ideology or partisanship here will first, I dont know why shouldn't be so worried about that, because we, when you express a moral attitude or political attitude, I dont think you have to decide the true or false zither plausible or not either holds water or does it so the? Why question that's just cycle analysis. We all have. We all have I come to this as someone who is very conservative person, who's been alike. Lifelong involving the conservative movement, not just in this country but in my native Canada, has been very Bob and Britain as well, and I've been a pretty consistent supporter in fact have a perfectly
its order of those parties- and I think a lot of my reaction to Donald Trump is not sets the deepest level. Not a political one. He's crook he's cruel, he's cruel to animals killed with children is called a people depend depend on. Him is true, cruel to the men and women who come into his orbit. I think that's that's the beginning of my reaction to him. I think it's maybe the opposite. That needs to be explained that it is. It is not the revulsion against him, which is now shared by more than sixty percent of american society. That's not the phenomenon that needs to be explained in, and we raise the question of. Is this partisan? Is this ideological? It's it's those who support him! Some support him, because, unfortunately, even bigger more excited by cruelty, then maybe it's comfortable to admit that's how the Guardia Toil Games in Rome sold out.
If you can fill the whole Colosseum with people watching quoting there's something that's excited about it, but a lot of people, because a partisanship or ideology are able to close their eyes to what they say. And maybe this is an entirely vain hope, but what would it take to have it conversation on this issue of this over about to have that could change. And we're talking about thirty, five percent of the population and an environment of hyper partisanship, unlike any we ve seen before. What do you think about, after the prospect of actually changing minds on this issue? What would it take? I dont know what it would take. I've I've been staggered and dismayed by the number of people who are prepared to side with a figure so repellent in so many ways, except for one thing, which is tribalism, and this is not a partisan ship is
is a bit like supporting officials. It is an existential it is an integral to your entire being. But America is now essentially not one country, its two tribes. Warring in a zero sum game in which one party seeks to undo everything of the last minute, duration, in which the notion that you might actually accept that there is a place to parties in this system, and they should take turns that, in fact, that's a strength of a bipartisan system. This has been completely wiped away by these deeper and more primordial. Loyalties. Is here with us, or is he with them and the bulk of the when this does go absolutely to the republican parties. Transformation really in the nineties, particularly I think and onwards, into leaving that the other party has no right to govern at all. That is illegitimate.
Whereas I was happy supporter of republican presidents and conservative furnaces until I thought you know it's good for Tony Blair and milk when they have a shot. This is good for us Beata power, for because the point is really the whole system. Now this particular interest, and then you realize the Republicans have become something like a cultural tribal force in which they have to run everything, and they still doing here. What was it? You must talk about the system, because it is just a fact that democracies veil- and this is something you cover in your book and its act that we are not very sensitive to. I feel like I've was just speaking personally. I feel, like the first moment, In my life, where I realized I was living in the stream of history like real history, where work Bad things happen in surprising ways, nine eleven that was
where's moment. We realise ok for the big bombs, start falling anywhere and You can't take anything really for granted and eight, but yet I feel like I up until the moment of tromp, have been asleep on this particular point that I've taken our institutions and their staff. For granted, have taken democracy for granted and so connect some of the doubts about what was at stake here. While I think one of the reasons it's easy to be blind to the danger around you is that we imagined the danger. The only candidate to worry about is the danger at its most extreme. Unless its hitler- it's fine. I can try to persuade you know their lot stops on the train line of bad before you get to Hitler station that you can say, let's study the worst example of democratic break them the history of the world and their sale cable. Obviously, our situation is nothing like that and I started writing books in order,
explain why that analogy can be so completely mistaken, and yet the danger can be real, because when democracies corrode they dont have taken corrode more gently in. U S begin it? U S Andrew about change, minds in fact, mind having changed every day, and you can see that the gallop holes reflect that they're not be is not cataclysmic event, but every day in a couple thousand people in America change their mind on this issue. They become disillusioned. That's that's happening! That's why we're in a dangerous situation, because Donald Trump and the people, if Donald Trump were popular, he would rule popularly because he has not and because the people around him. Fear that in a real election they might not do so well, in fact, they didn't do so well, the last time they keep telling you they did, but that they didn't. You know if the ball had bounce a little bit differently and we just looking at the total vote, Donald Trump, not about half a point more of Michael Dukakis, nobody rights essays, but the new car,
Why what What's on their minds, the Dukakis he's like Dukakis plus half a point made deny that his mental condition product worsen Would he also is aware of it and the people around them are aware of it and that's why they need to circumvent alive of normal, more political process be precisely because they know that mines are changing, gates them they're, going to need to use power in other kinds of work. It's better than what do you make all the enabling we have seen from mainstream Republicans my what is that the crucial minds: the need to change our view that the Republicans in Congress and what would it take for your Paul Ryan to name and aim to just disavow this present, What is it just pure opportunism? Explain this or is there something deeper and less cynical
I know something deeper and more cynical, human Nature, apparently is worse than I really if you start with that assumption than life, can hold nothing but pleasant. Surprise that we start the bad assumption, then things get better All Ryan's made this deal and he's he's getting things proud of that Steve Ban and has moved off. We ve seen what what what his integrity tromp was. Not the set of issues that he rode twenty fifty what's entangled. Him is the power that seeks to hold in order to protect himself and legal danger and to enrich himself and also to meet his psychic needs and maybe to go out some of his in her hates what he's he's not so interested the details of of any of these building sites so that people do care they could they can strike a bargain with him ass The popularity of the Republican Party continues to corrode Don.
More and more become the only game in town. They will have to defend that. That's the danger next tangible by sitting there Hopkins Take that losses. It looks like, in November, twenty a team they may lose a house they may lose do asks if, if that happens, If that happens, There may be individual intellectuals and donors who turn on double profits. It's your fault, but the logic of the situation. Horses party to cling to him more debt firstly because remember you cannot just as you it took three. It took three houses, branches of government, the houses and the president to pass attacks got it only one of them to defend it, so I want to know more about what it looks, for democracy to begin to her and then there are many signs here.
We're not in normal territory. One is just with respect to the norms of political discourse and they most. Infuriating retorted to everything, I've I've say when I worry out loud about Trump that I have encountered is he's just trolling. I guess, though, that excuse is any possible indiscretion whether its threatening nuclear war or singling out some private person on twitter for abuse. You the we have to present United States going after someone that this notion of just trawling, which that there's a kind of nihilistic, delight in him, eradicating the norms of civil political discourse. And you must spend as much time on social media as I do. I will try not to avoid certainly today.
We'll get to that, look at what happened. What what do you think about this idea that there's a sense that a minister seems genuinely new where you have smart. These are not stupid people. These are smart people who delight in a kind of reckon ball like chaos. Yes, because something really happened, it seems to me in this moment now if if you're not at school, conservative, a new study political thought, if you terrified of what happens in democracy, this is they continue in an hour later, when the ancients understood the democracy is inherently on table and will almost always devolve at some point into a tyranny that those two things b connected what happens is that people have simply decided, are not interested in from deliberation, emotions a much more important than arguments there, much more interested in people rather than
suppose at some point they made a decision, they would rather abandoned self government and give it up to the one man. This is something that they all predicted in the asian world. We essentially when democracy He is fully extended when everyone is equal to everyone else, there no intermediaries things, that's just the masses, The celebrities then there was some point at which the masses the celebrity to govern for them and great calming there and when they made, that decision is a personal commitment to that person. Which is that the level that cannot be argued out of this is a cold Then he represents a rebuke to the elites that didn't think he could happen that
Have failed dramatically on a whole variety of France over the last twenty or thirty years, and it's a sign that they really don't care. If this system of government survives, that's it, incredibly dangerous moment in democracy that one of our major parties- flew of intellectuals who should know better have decent. Go along with this, no, they don't understand what we are dealing with and how powerful and dangerous this is the ECHO Andrews point: the people belong to the generation of my parents who came of age after rewards you for thirty years they saw life just get better and better, and better for the ordinary person. Things become that incomes rose. The housing
better. The opportunities got better. Schooling got better. That put people whose parents had not finished high school raven complete College and they had to tremendous confidence in the system that made all of this possible. I serve somebody like watching old movie whenever a character sets ward. A white lab coat. You know he's got an answer, especially it is, as a german accept that he will tell you the time machine works. How tiny Some inside the bloodstream he has the answers and starting sometime I'm in the Middle Knighton seventies. Whenever you see a man of the White LAB goat he's like a few Bristol maniac he's too that we will see the wheels his last seen will be vanishing down the governor tyrannosaurs Rex, and you know it was a good idea to bring back to life, and so so we have a loss of confidence in a lot of institutions, but but here's something to say- and I think that maybe this is the very first thing I should have said here. I think one of the things that are so excited,
and inspiring about them. When I say the moment, I don't need a big man, I mean literally the hour we're living. It is the counteract told this is a revival of civic spirit. I never thought I was sitting on a stage on a theatre on a Friday night and People listen to these musings when they could be doing- and I don't know I think no, if narcissistic personality disorders, infectious, I hope not, I don't have it I dont have. I have had enough of it yet to think that people are here for any of us me they're here because one of the reactions to this president. I it's ok in the book as an email. I got from somebody who said that he had react into the election Donald Trump by resolving to be a better citizens, and you see that an end you're doing it and think and is then that's what's gonna make the difference let's do it
if only that would would generally true. More pessimistic last longer feeling I'm here, squelch, any single hint of options, here I would say, A couple of things. I've been amazed at how many people are really happy with the president that has contempt for the courts that talks about shutting down the free press that fit that wants to use the Justice Department to process his political opponents, actions that are inimical to liberal democracy. I I'm I'm amazed by the number of people that much prefer to remote about their identity or the people, hating them or the people they ate, as opposed to thinking about what are the best solution for this particular problem. I think identity politics has
and we made all of this works and that when the right decided to adopt identity politics in a particular way in time they can founded all of its problems, so that Essentially, you not voting for a set of policies against. Seems irrelevant what he's doing that the people things when we got you he's deceiving. Classic Rangoon. Fourthly, when you ran a populist person standing up the forgotten men and women, but no one cares No wonder the reason is he's just a white man who represents the last. Stand really of a white majority country which is going to become a non white majority country. Whatever you mean by white, and that is the first time in human history that ever happened. What is happening at a time also of mass immigration and declining and stack stagnant living standards for most people, it is
It is, it is a very dangerous moment, and everybody should be attempting at such a moment to mitigate those those issues to lean against those issues where the political temptation, of course, is to famine for extraordinary power, and that's happening now and boats. I say you not voting on a set of issues you ve only because you gave your voting because your boss In voting for your wife, your voting, because you are women these arguments. This is not a democracy I want to touch identity politics, because I think that is especially automatic on the left now, and they will be the reason why the last will fail to contain this problem. But I stand this point of Explaining the trump phenomenon it seems to me, it's not, it can be fully exploit
perhaps almost without reference to food trump is himself has like he's. I have said this before, but I ve been thinking of him for a very long time as EVIL Chauncey Gardiner diseases. Like he's a person, stumbled into a situation that is misinterpreting his chaos. As these genius manipulative gifts he's in some deep sense, exactly as he appears and in his pain actually, no consequence. Clean, uninformed and in the silicon and callous and eighty eight, did you say something in your book about that is not so. Him is the enemies he picked. That explains his rise in his ears Counter elitist stand across the board, which has which has drawn so much support. Like everybody else, I was riveted by the Michael Wolf Book, of course, in
as someone who is releasing a book the week after you feel that a bit like whereby to go on the golden Globe stage ever over, but I think. That the image of a Donald Trump as a drooling imbecility senile tending maniac that that, I think that's not a can't be true. He has gifts and one of his gifts. What is most important You want give granted one gift whatever whatever you're about to say I'll, give you programme does not one more year he's got he's got the bullies instinctive ability to see the second weak spot in his yard. He He d have jump into, and marker Rubio into ten crews found that thing that for
I will try to call had crews. A liar meet seems audacious right, but but when he saw tat, crews was at TED. Crews is not the person he had constructive again at TED Cruises. A very sophisticated graduate of America's most Expensive educational institutions in itself was a deep knowledge of the war and it was not a very modern marriage it has met while his wife was. They had Gordon the GUILT Goldman Sachs, often taxes. This guy was not the person that he presented himself to his it even Jehovah voters. He thought there was a central lie at the heart of the TED crews. Message. Donald Trump saw that any hammered that point, and he saw that there was a kind of psychic weakness inject Bush that he could that and that that low energy was a way of saying, I'm an attack you and an attack on an attack you and what you're gonna do is take us to have that.
And stand under tiptoes to look taller but you're never going to meet me and, and he what he did to those opponents he's done to the american political system is found its points of vulnerability in his twisted, He he wants you to believe that he's papa. He is not, but what he is. He is very skill that is being able to put together something close. Enough enough popular support to overwhelm the institutions and to keep that support? Revved up my conscience, Making then united in what they hate and make everybody else be divided in what they are trying to defend is another simple gift he has or other ability which politicians in the past in the West have not done now. They done it in code. They ve done it with different issues, appealing to certain instincts, but no one's going out there and openly said vote
me, because you hate or afraid of black fell from you, because you're fraid of foreigners come in with different color skin, actually go out there. Their letters. You can pull in politics there, their appeals you can make to people's worst lizard brain thanks, and in most liberal democracies, every politicians we don't do that because we know not how awful it is, but how powerful- and he just was the first person to say I think I'm gonna say these things- I'm gonna call it a shithole country without a mate and evil
I think ardor category yeah, so maybe you can do that. We will do that. Honourable to somebody who just simply did not have the scruple or the political calculation simpler and then, and then what he's done and in this the he's got more quick gives them. That is able. Actually he did a self hostage taking with how is it that you get a Lindsey Graham who was one dominoes? Severest critics and a person who is committed to a set of political views about as far within the Republican Party as you could be away from Donald Trump and you can not only his defender, but the person who would be one of to sign of a criminal referral of one have done crops opponents break all the rules of the Senate, Linsey, Graham wilds, or not the rules, but the habit Senate Lindsey I'm so loves he's a real institutional senator that you would send this thing. We don't even informing, never mind consulting your democratic counterparts. How'd you get Lindsey Graham to do that in the answers. Donald Trump positive, shackled, the whole republican Party to himself, if he
down. They all good, and indeed they sort of no he's going to be the last man to sink, because he's got a four year term in there facing but it certainly is Mary situational truth is just that's just what and when you have thirty five percent of the country and whatever percentage of the Republican Party that is there, Simply will not disavow you no matter what you do. What we did was you think anyone anyone could successfully exploit thirty five percent, that is on mobile mishandle group in two party system, with an electoral college, exploiting thirty five percent is actually quite cricket. Use point thirty five Mean Herbert Hoover got more than thirty five percent of the vote in nineteen thirty two didn't do a lot of good that liquid witwer Trump understood. What previous republicans have not faced up to is. The republican message has become over the past generations, especially since the great recession. More more,
think not only with the country, but with the Republican Party on voters. That was something that Donald Trump understood, that part that the others did not that your own voters don't but- by my joke. About this, I kept saying through cycle was that the republican base was signalling. They wanted more healthcare security lesson agreed and no more bushes and with the party it was less healthcare, more immigration and one more bush and that they couldn't have missed it more and he saw them. But what, what would Paul Ryan, the others believe is, if only we had better communication explained more. I've only put a little bit more of this special sauce on it. We could somehow build out you. We were not going to change your core message. What we can, in fact, that was the thing that so many people said
What we do not want any way change a core message, but we will season it with Donald Trump in into it, it was if you ve got thirty five percent. That's only a problem so long as you got a political system that requires a majority. But what am I can short circuit that what have I consider weaken, weaken the political restraints and you can actually govern with with less than half of the country, maybe a lot less than half, and what does it look like? I think Americans pay too much it when they think of Democrats the great them they pay too much attention in this particular example of what happens to the wars in Europe. I sometimes tried and reputable what's happening now in Central Europe, but one of the ways we have theirs right here at home, which is what happened in the half century after reconstruction and here's a statistic that when you but this gerrymandering in North Carolina to keep in mind so weak in eighteen. Seventy two of the civil war popular, save South Carolina, but several hundred thousand people of whom a hundred
and cast a vote in the presidential election of eighteen. Seventy two Nightwing for half a century later the states populations grown from seven hundred thousand to one point: seven million the number of votes cast Ross from a hundred thousand two, fifty fast and looking up at mistletoe, I'm still on American stated had a governor of the state legislature. I think you'd have to be a pretty inform person of the state's history to say why wasn't really that much of the democracy and nineteen twenty four, but it looked like one had elections it had newspapers, it had courts that function
more or less approximately failure, if it fairly at least for the white half of the population, you that could be the future. One would think that Donald Trump has forces force and I think a lot of us in the right hand, side spectrum is a a deeper encounter with the american past things that we found her past and buried. There were- maybe just dormant in that are coming to the fore again and put the problem is its use Vienna? I'm not. Obviously there is no defensive trump there's, not a single redeeming characteristic, but you boy, I mean I've. I've really hard. I prayed about this because the you not suppose acquisitive not supposed to hate somebody. White like that use in Europe. In your mind, all they want I resent most about this- is the psychic terror that mentally despair prison cannon, pose upon you every minute of the day that
my definition of a free societies, is where you can spend a week without thinking about person, who's running the country, what he's Youtube exploited, a situation where they did it purposely look. We have thirty. Years for most people in this country, getting nowhere economically fastened your day, they ve also experience also experienced an unprecedented will, not quite unprecedented, but only once before. This volume of immigration. From my country, primarily that has completely alter the demographics of this country in ways that people specially. Older generations are simply bewildered by Last time that happened, we have the ninety twenty four immigration act, which basically shot all immigration down. If you want
if you are democratic Party and you're? Only response to this question, which, by the way, also must affect the wages in terms of competition, are the only response that situation is all of you. People are racists and we're not gonna. Even discussing discuss the issue, then I think that's why people land back with him and an eye think the Democrats and ability to listen to those white working class voters in the middle of the country has has been an incredible big, is big and enable it to his command. So these present, as Hillary Clinton, was unable to his candidacy. You. I just think that single the idea that migration is all upside with no casualties. That's clearly a lie in the fact that millions of people were suffering that the actual truth that equation and its unaddressed
the left and and do not want to address the giraffe as it sell uranium worry. This is how the far left is now up by the entire territory on questions of identity and is actively alienating the very people we need to talk to them and they don't say some of the people are better see. What's going on that, if they think they don't hear what they beat, what a big pool they can't hear you can hear the lazy bigotry beliefs about white working. I think They don't hear someone on television used the word white male as a ball of insult in itself.
And that is that reverse racism has has definitely push people up against the wall. I don't think I think if they were a credible centre left party which adopted serious policies to address economic inequality and curtail immigration. I think that win very easily. So how do you hear how you both of you, the repressed by the rosy as future, here of the left and the right? What conservatives end and liberals do well now to put us back on our proper footing to one of the beginning of answering questions recognize what a frozen political world we lived in for the past quarter century and of your somebody standing your ninety ninety and looking forward twenty five years and backward twenty five years ribbon,
Winkle falls asleep in like ninety weeks up and twenty fifteen and says who's running for President Bush important What are the top or healthcare to rack? Ok, you go back five years. You make an idea or nineteen sixty five, the most powerful person in Washington DC, as the head of the air Bells Theo, the second most powerful, J Edgar Hoover. There are the brook weakens their urban riots. It's a different world and I think in a dynamic country like this would happen between eighteen, sixty, five and eighty. Ninety in politics is normal and the stasis, because we think we're how much everything else in the country's change between ninety ninety twenty four, but not the internet, to ninety. You know that we were in Niger. Ninety life expectancies are still rising for Americans and that they stop causing, after that, it's a different world, but the politics were frozen. Whatever else he's done, I think I'm trumpets, unfrozen those politics, and so, when you ask the beginning
question what partisanship I think for those of us who are of a certain age. It's going to be hard to understand those matters are about to start moving really fast and a lot at the question of who is on the right and who is on the left is going to be what those things are is going to mean, I think, more different in twenty twenty five from twenty fifty than men, twenty fifteen from ninety ninety effing Andrew points, this new things are going I'm going to become issues, immigration will remain a huge issue. What is happening in a way? We think how much we talk about wages and how little we talk. What life expectancies Americans are living less long and that why Americans, when markets when Americans are living with what the lesson that other American just generally, that
life expectancies. Arcs, are moving at improving for Non White Americans way less quickly than they are for people in the rest of the world and that has in peacetime there only to other places without has ever happened or unwanted by medicine, the post soviet republics after the break up of the Soviet Union in during the depression american life expectancy, continue to improve that. How does that not mean? Is an amazing a degree of how the political world is so insulated from everybody else? It people dying earlier is, as is the opiate epidemic, the main policy areas its aid may cause, but Americans are less likely worse evils. The people are the developed countries they eat worse. They shoot themselves accidentally at rates.
Dramatically higher. They have more other kinds of accidents it. If you could you could the drugs or the drugs are strictly part of that? Not all of it and the fact that is not this, but that is not maybe that If you are most and peoples that that does not issue one, I find that amazing. I think it has to become issued want and- and the problem here is that the is ideology. What happened is that politics became one ideology, verses, other and they never changed so that those of us who were started out and I still think myself as a small to conserve, but those of us started out believing that the problem of the seventies was overweening. Government too high taxes needed to be reformed, needed to be opened up to many times That is a completely legitimate position, because those are the problems of time that now run its course. It has succeeded and therefore, now is a failure.
What has happened is that the NEO liberalism that was needed in the seventies is actually poison in twenty. Seventy, it is not addressing the issues and yet Brian and Republicans- put this this bills through. This entirely, not about reality, its entire. About ideology and also people appanage, severely honest, both socially and politically they change their minds. I do not really see you can do, apparently, is to decide this time. Forty Democrat Robin, then There's no incentive for no one cent If anybody in this system to come out and enter the center, ok see where you take the extremes, you take We, the pathology of identity politics on the left that we ve touched on briefly, and you take the extreme of the right that you describe in your book, which is there so many staff, thereby being one of them was that seven,
percent of Republicans are still taken in by birth tourism. They still think Obama was May your not may not then, if you, I was sure he why, under those whose like accordion thirty you get up to seventy Y know So what this just seems discussion proof. So, though, what were? How do we move towards some kind of normalcy? Well, remember: when you see all these statistics about about what Republican Slink member every week, there are fewer republics. This is that this is an Iphone seventy percent of seventy people. You you can mark. That says is like it's Friday night. You don't want to bring up fractions bye. But denominator is, is going down, you can't just look at the new millennium rated damage, but eminent strictly,
Certainly true, you have this radicalized. You have this wreck this radicalized republican world, where we are going to see. Let's talk about you and me, maybe in this context, because I should have entered. I have known each other. I want embarrassing because he so useful, but we know each other while and if we're just remedies thing about this: I've, I've known Andrew for years longer than I've done, my wife or the third night. My point: simply that thank you but the the point here is that we both started out in a certain place and changed our minds and my sport Clinton and ninety two, which meant I was sort of excluded suddenly from any sort of respectability and conservatives, then when I turned against the Iraq war,
decisively and apologise for my role in a sort of bring that subject up, but nonetheless, then I was completely cut off. There, and this is also true now increasingly, unfortunately, on the left, if you don't sign up to the entire brigade of identity, Politics, you are balanced and and so the bill for us to address the very process of thinking. Changing your mind. Of weighing different things of seeing something. The other side might have thought of an old, we doing that has been has been stigmatized and your praised constantly and all the rewards in both our intellectual me unto him the intro intellectual if a media you praised unrewarded, whether you really diversity or in a right wing, think tank your loyalty to the party line David actually was
from a high, because he actually thought that Obamacare was perfectly decent flawed. Possibility and it was not the hill, the Republicans to dialogue, and he was five people people are. This has become a group mentality within Washington itself, in which no independence of thought. No, independence? A party is, is, is ruled in any way legitimate. One thing that is always struck me is incredibly strain. Is that, if you know a someone's position on one topic was say: climate change for the better, the link between human behaviour and climate change, you know their position with a high order of confidence on a does, an unrelated topics, whether it's gone control I went was relating to prevent climate change and gun control. And yet you know you can win money all day long. If you could just find a casino, it would take his best. So
and the climate change thing is look it's always been a sceptic about any sort of left wing cause and has put it that way, This is not a left wing course. This is sites clearly and the and there are obvious things we can do something we are doing it- the other instances. This bizarre them whose are doing I do not understand I just there is some its. I click. The fifth is regarded as an area. There is no other civilised country in the world where political party, really denies the existence of climate change political party in the world, no right wing political party in the world, except that this at the ideological, alienated and angry fruit,
We're going to read that there's a lot of things about the politics of the obsolete, but the that that linking up parent, that's the party system. Those parties do that. You have to organise different people in different points of view to cooperate on policies, and you can do this happens on in any political system that dead people a set of of concerns, and so people from LOS Angeles, are able to work collaborate with people from Boston on different kinds of issues, because that that's party mechanisms do, I dont think, and I think they're always and beat one more liberal and for more conservative. That's linked to the structure of the human brain. Their people and people have different interests that, when people who work for the government sector, that people were for the private sector, that we have different interests that this special problem we have right now is
We are supposed to be committed, first and foremost, the rules of the game rules that protect your view when you're gonna win my geyser power and protect my rights when someone else's people are in power and that's what's endanger right now. I think when the day will come. I hope when we can go back to you know taking it, the wet map and hitting each other with them of whether what the corporate income tax rate would be. I will probably agree with Paul Ryan, but where the corporate income tax rate should be, but I don't agree with him so much that I am willing to corrode the american constitutional system get my way like twenty one percent is, to my mind the definition of a consumer. Twenty one once when you want to conserve and and keep this valuable and rare experiment in liberal democracy in history. The world alive and healthy, and that means at hearing not just to its formalities but to its norms,
I am one of those key norms is understandably the other party or the other point of view, does have a chance and should have a role in in in government and in and this is the genius My sister, Anne and Andrew spoke of a while ago that things it, but complacent you'd like to continue with neither the content you'll need to subscribe at Samara Edward you get access to all full length, episodes of making says pancakes into other subscriber only content, including bonus episodes. And I am as in the conversations I've been having a waking up that making his pipe hasn't had freed and rely entirely on with your support and even subscribed. Now, SAM Aristotle
Transcript generated on 2020-03-23.