The Weeds

By Vox

Listen to a podcast, please open Podcast Republic app. Available on Google Play Store.

Category: News & Politics

Open in iTunes

Open RSS feed

Open Website

Rate for this podcast

Subscribers: 3574
Reviews: 10

 Jul 31, 2019
Hosts spend an unfortunate amount of time talking about inane things (space force sounding cool and references to tv) versus actual policy... which I thought was the point of getting into the weeds

 Jul 20, 2019
The host constantly talks over everyone else and it drives me nuts

 May 30, 2019

 Mar 6, 2019

Dedicated Listener
 Mar 3, 2019
Insightful about both current happenings and bigger issues that matter now _and_ later. This is always important, but especially with so much of the news agenda set by whatever distraction is currently being created by Trump.


In politics, you’re often told not to get lost in the weeds. But we love the weeds! That’s where politics becomes policy – the stuff that shapes our lives. Every Tuesday and Friday, Matthew Yglesias is joined by Ezra Klein, Dara Lind, Jane Coaston and other Vox voices to dig into the weeds on important national issues, including healthcare, immigration, housing, and everything else that matters. Produced by Vox and the Vox Media Podcast Network.

Episode Date
Does America need trade deals?
Yale's Hilary Matfess joins Matt to debate Elizabeth Warren's trade proposals, and the role of trade policy in progressive politics.<br><strong>Recommended reading:</strong><br><a href="">“The progressive case for free trade”</a> by Hilary Matfess<br><br>-------------------------------------------------------<br><a href=""><strong><em>Join the Weeds Facebook group!</em></strong></a><strong><em><br><br>News comes at you fast. Join us at the end of your day to understand it. Subscribe to </em></strong><a href=""><strong><em>Today, Explained</em></strong></a>
Aug 23, 2019
Slavery and its legacy
Jane, Dara, and Matt discuss the 1619 project and its critics<br><br><strong>Related reading:<br></strong><a href="">“The 1619 Project”</a> New York Times Magazine<br><br><a href="">“Henry Clay, Edward Baptist, and the Whipping Machine”</a> by Bradley A. Hansen<br><br><a href="">“Cotton, Slavery, and the New History of Capitalism”</a> by Alan L. Olmstead and Paul W. Rhode<br><br><a href="">“Capitalism and Slavery” </a>by John J. Clegg, New York University<br><br><a href="">“Slavery and Anglo-American capitalism revisited”</a> by Gavin Wright, Stanford University<br><br><a href="">White paper</a><br>--------------------------------------<br><a href=""><strong><em>Join the Weeds Facebook group!</em></strong></a><strong><em><br><br>News comes at you fast. Join us at the end of your day to understand it. Subscribe to </em></strong><a href=""><strong><em>Today, Explained</em></strong></a>
Aug 20, 2019
Trump's war on Medicaid
The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities' Jessica Schubel explains how Medicaid works, and how the White House is trying to undermine it.<br><br><a href=""><strong><em>Join the Weeds Facebook group!</em></strong></a>
Aug 16, 2019
Epstein conspiracy time
<a href="">Jane</a>, <a href="">Dara</a>, and <a href="">Matt</a> try to offer actual facts about prison suicide and new research on hot weather and crime.<br><br><strong>Related reading:<br><br></strong><a href="">“Jeffrey Epstein’s Death, in Context”</a>’ by Ken White, the Atlantic<br><br><a href="">"Jeffrey Epstein’s Death Underlines A Nationwide Problem"</a> by Jesselyn Cook, Huffington Post<br><br><a href="">White paper</a><br><br>**********************************<br><a href=""><em>National Suicide Prevention Lifeline</em></a><em>:</em> 1-800-273-8255<br><br><a href=""><strong><em>Join the Weeds Facebook group!</em></strong></a>
Aug 13, 2019
The case for a Green New Deal
Julian Brave NoiseCat of Data for Progress joins Matt to discuss the vision of the Green New Deal, the need to link it to social justice, and whether or not it’s politically viable.<br><br><strong>Recommended reading:<br></strong><a href="">“No, climate action can’t be separated from social justice”</a> by Julian Brave NoiseCat<br><br><br><a href=""><strong><em>Join the Weeds Facebook group!</em></strong></a>
Aug 09, 2019
Domestic terrorism after El Paso
ProPublica’s <a href="">Dara Lind</a> joins <a href="">Jane</a> and <a href="">Matt</a> to talk about the mass shooting in El Paso and what it means to take white nationalist violence seriously.<br><br><strong>Recommended reading:<br></strong><br><a href="">“The top House Republican is blaming video games for the weekend’s mass shootings”</a> by Jane Coaston, Vox<br><br><a href="">“A question for conservatives: what if the left was right on race?”</a> by Jane Coaston, Vox<br><br><a href="">“Crush This Evil”</a> by The Editors, National Review<br><br><a href="">“Who are the Trenchcoat Mafia?”</a> BBC News<br><br><a href="">“Columbine: Whose Fault Is It?”</a> by Marilyn Manson, Rolling Stone<br><br><a href="">“Network exposure and excessive use of force”</a> by Marie Ouellet et al, <em>Criminology &amp; Public Policy </em>(white paper)<br><br><a href=""><strong><em>Join the Weeds Facebook group!</em></strong></a>
Aug 06, 2019
The second Democratic debate
Ezra and Matt dissect the six-hour, two-night July debate marathon.<br><br><a href=""><strong><em>Vox’s guide to where 2020 Democrats stand on policy</em></strong></a><br><br><a href=""><strong><em>Join the Weeds Facebook group!</em></strong></a>
Aug 02, 2019
The many mysteries of Jeffrey Epstein
<a href="">ProPublica’s Dara Lind</a> joins <a href="">Jane</a> and <a href="">Matt</a> to discuss the sexual assault case that’s also a political scandal and a financial puzzle.<br><strong><em><br>**White paper starts at 45:20**</em></strong><br><br><strong>Recommended reading:<br></strong><a href="">“Jeffrey Epstein, the convicted sex offender who is friends with Donald Trump and Bill Clinton, explained”</a> by Jane Coaston, Vox<br><br><a href="">“Who Was Jeffrey Epstein Calling?”</a> by the editors of The Intelligence<br><br><a href="">“Jeffrey Epstein Burrowed Into the Lives of the Rich and Made a Fortune”</a> by Khadeeja Safdar, Rebecca Davis O’Brien, Gregory Zuckerman, and Jenny Strasburg, Wall Street Journal<br><br><a href="">“How a future Trump Cabinet member gave a serial sex abuser the deal of a lifetime”</a> by Julie K. Brown, Miami Herald<br><br><a href="">“Jeffrey Epstein Pitched a New Narrative. These Sites Published It.”</a> by Tiffany Hsu, New York Times<br><br><a href="">“What’s next in the Jeffrey Epstein case? A former federal prosecutor explains.”</a> by Jane Coaston, Vox<br><br><a href="">“Jeffrey Epstein's Accusers Are Finally in the Spotlight”</a> by Lily Herman, Refinery29<br><br><a href="">“Too many men think teenage girls are fair game. That gave Jeffrey Epstein cover”</a> by Moira Donegan, the Guardian<br><br><a href="">“Alan Dershowitz, Devil’s Advocate”</a> by Connie Bruck, the New Yorker<br><br><a href="">“How a Predator Operated in Plain Sight”</a> by Lisa Miller, the Cut<br><br><a href="">White Paper</a><br><br><br><br><br><br><br><br><br><br>
Jul 30, 2019
Dysfunctional federalism
Yale law professor David Schleicher joins Matt to talk about why state and local politics don’t work anymore.<strong><br></strong><br><a href=""><strong><em>Join the Weeds Facebook group!</em></strong></a><br><br><br><br><br><br>
Jul 26, 2019
Go back to Cincinnati
ProPublica reporter <a href="">Dara Lind</a> joins <a href="">Jane</a> and <a href="">Matt</a> to discuss President Trump’s rhetoric around the small group of congresswomen known as “the Squad”: Reps. Ayanna Presley, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ilhan Omar, and Rashida Tlaib. They also dive into Trump's crackdown on refugee resettlement and a white paper about the connection between student debt and job satisfaction. <br><br><strong>Recommended reading:<br></strong><a href="">“The Trump racism spin cycle” </a>by Jane Coaston<br><br><a href="">“Asylum Seekers That Followed Trump Rule Now Don’t Qualify Because of New Trump Rule”</a> by Dara Lind<br><br><a href="">“‘Send her back!’: Trump’s attacks on Ilhan Omar — and the response to them — represent a new low” </a>by Aaron Rupar<br><br><a href="">“Trump says he’s not concerned about being racist because ‘many people agree’ with him”</a> by Aaron Rupar<br><br><br><a href=""><strong><em>Join the Weeds Facebook group!</em></strong></a><br><br><br><br><br><br><br><br><br><br>
Jul 23, 2019
Why everyone hates Big Tech, with The Verge's Nilay Patel
Verge editor-in-chief and Vergecast host <a href="">Nilay Patel</a> joins <a href="">Matt</a> in this special crossover episode to explain what Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, which allows platforms to circumnavigate liability for user content, really means. They also discuss Elizabeth Warren’s proposal to break up big tech platforms, and how it may or may not fix anything. <br><br><strong>Recommended reading:<br><br></strong><a href="">Why the internet's most important law exists and how people are still getting it wrong</a> by Alex Castro<br><br><a href="">Facebook’s $5 billion FTC fine is an embarrassing joke</a> by Nilay Patel<br><br><a href=""><strong>Subscribe to Vergecast!</strong></a><strong><br></strong><br><a href=""><strong><em>Join the Weeds Facebook group!</em></strong></a><br><br><br><br><br><br>
Jul 19, 2019
Space Force all the way!
Worldly's <a href="">Alex Ward</a> joins <a href="">Jane</a> and <a href="">Matt</a> to explain Trump's more-tedious-than-it-sounds plan for military domination of the final frontier.<br><br><strong>Recommended reading:<br></strong><a href="">“Trump really, really wants troops in space”</a> by Alex Ward<br><a href="">“Trump wants a ‘Space Force.’ We have many questions.”</a> by Alex Ward<br><a href="">“Trump’s call for a Space Force, explained”</a> by Alex Ward<br><br><a href=""><strong><em>Join the Weeds Facebook group!</em></strong></a><em><br></em><br><br><br><br><br><br><br><br><br>
Jul 16, 2019
School’s out for summer
Cristina Novoa from the Center for American Progress joins Matt to talk about child care disruptions and possible solutions.<br><br><a href="">“When Parents Can’t Find Summer Child Care, Their Work Suffers”</a> by Cristina Novoa<br><br><a href=""><em>Join the Weeds Facebook group!</em></a>
Jul 12, 2019
Ask Weeds Anything
ProPublica reporter Dara Lind joins Jane and Matt to answer your questions.&nbsp;
Jul 09, 2019
A progressive case for globalism
Reed College economist Kimberly Clausing joins Matt to talk about trade and the middle class.
Jul 05, 2019
Democracy's week in court
Jane, Dara, and Matt on two big Supreme Court cases on gerrymandering and the census.<br><br><a href="">White paper</a>
Jul 02, 2019
Debate Weeds: Ezra and Matt on the long-awaited Democratic presidential debate
<a href="">Matt</a> and <a href="">Ezra</a> weigh in on the first Democratic presidential debate of the 2020 cycle.<br><br>Read more of Vox's coverage of the debate here: <br><br><a href="">Winners and losers from night one of the debate</a><br><a href="">Winners and losers from night two of the debate</a><br><a href="">Matt on Warren's performance</a><br><a href="">Ezra on Harris' performance</a>
Jun 28, 2019
What’s really going on with child detention?
Dara, Jane, and Matt on the breakdown of trust that’s driving the latest crisis at the border.<br><br><strong>Related reading:<br></strong><a href="">The horrifying conditions facing kids in border detention, explained</a><br><a href="">White paper</a><br><br><br>
Jun 25, 2019
What’s really happening in Central America
Adriana Beltrán of the Washington Office on Latin America joins Matt to explain the deep roots of the migration crisis.<br><br><br>
Jun 21, 2019
Jamestown: Utopia for Whom
<a href="">Nice Try!</a> is a new podcast from <a href="">Curbed</a> and the <a href="">Vox Media Podcast Network</a> that explores stories of people who have tried to design a better world, and what happens when those designs don't go according to plan. Season one, Utopian, follows Avery Trufelman on her quest to understand the perpetual search for the perfect place. Enjoy this special preview of the first episode, <em>Jamestown: Utopian for Whom</em>, and <a href="">subscribe to Nice Try!</a> for free in your favorite podcast app.
Jun 19, 2019
The “illiberal” right
<a href="">Jane</a> and <a href="">Ezra</a> discuss the ongoing conservative crackup and the case of Parkland teen Kyle Kashuv.<br><br><strong>Related reading:<br></strong><a href="">A New Consensus</a><br><a href="">Kyle Kashuv Becomes a Symbol to Conservatives Who Say the Left Can’t Forgive</a><br><a href="">Against David French-ism</a><br><a href="">Jane’s article about David French vs. Sohrab Ahmari</a><br><a href="">Against the Dead Consensus</a><br><a href="">Kyle Kashuv on his Harvard crisis</a><br><a href="">The Illiberal Right Throws a Tantrum</a><br><a href=";module=Opinion&amp;pgtype=Homepage">Is the Religious Right Privileged? by Ross Douthat</a><br><br><br><br>
Jun 18, 2019
5 big ideas to use tax credits to fight poverty
Meg Wiehe from the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy explains the leading progressive tax plans in Congress and how they differ from Trump’s tax cuts.<br><br><strong>Related reading:<br></strong><a href="">Understanding Five Major Federal Tax Credit Proposals</a><br><a href="">American Family Act</a><br><a href="">Working Families Tax Relief Act</a><br><a href="">LIFT Act</a><br><a href="">LIFT+ Act</a><br><br><br>
Jun 14, 2019
Into the weeds with Elizabeth Warren
The Massachusetts senator joins Ezra Klein to explain her plans, and her plan to make the plans happen.
Jun 11, 2019
A user's guide to antitrust
Matt sits down with Public Knowledge policy counsel Charlotte Slaiman to explain how US antitrust enforcement works and how it might better wrestle with Big Tech.
Jun 07, 2019
Trump’s tariff triple option
<a href="">Jane</a>, <a href="">Dara</a>, and <a href="">Matt</a> discuss Trump's efforts to halt unauthorized immigration through Mexico by threatening tariffs, and a white paper on private prisons. <br><br><strong>Related reading:<br></strong><a href="">Dara’s “remain in Mexico” explainer</a><br><a href="">Trump’s plan, explained</a><br><a href="">Mexican president’s response to Trump</a><br><a href="">White paper</a><br><br><br>
Jun 04, 2019
Monetary mysteries revealed
Bloomberg’s Karl Smith joins Matt to explain how the Federal Reserve’s errors discredited capitalism and how full employment can fix almost everything.
May 31, 2019
Building the Trump state
<a href="">Jane</a>, <a href="">Dara</a>, and <a href="">Matt</a> break down Trump's multi-front resistance to congressional oversight and increasing pressure on the civil service.<br><br>Related reading:<br><a href="">Trump vs. IRS lawyers</a><br><a href="">The shift at USCIS</a><br><a href="">White Paper</a>
May 28, 2019
Rethinking education reform
<a href="">Libby Nelson</a> and <a href="">Dylan Scott</a> join <a href="">Matt</a> to talk about 2020 Democrats' K-12 policy<br><br>Bernie's charter school plan - <a href="">link</a><br>Harris' teacher pay plan - <a href="">link</a><br>Elizabeth Warren's case against the neighborhood school - <a href="">link</a><br>Online charter schools are bad - <a href="">link</a><br><br>Join The Weeds' Facebook community <a href="">here</a>
May 24, 2019
The loneliness of Justin Amash
<a href="">Jane</a>, <a href="">Dara</a>, and <a href="">Matt</a> analyze the Michigan Republican's call to consider impeaching Trump.<br><br><a href="">White paper</a><br><br><br>
May 21, 2019
America's two housing crises
Brookings's Jenny Schuetz joins Matt to discuss subsidies, zoning reform, and much more.
May 17, 2019
Make America 2015 Again
<a href="">Jane</a>, <a href="">Dara</a>, and <a href="">Matt</a> discuss Joe Biden's claim that Trump is an aberration, plus some fresh research on the macroeconomics of bankruptcy.<br><br><strong>Related reading:<br><br></strong><a href="">Biden/aberration explainer</a><br><br><a href="">Biden/bankruptcy explainer</a><br><br><a href="">MOVE bombing</a>
May 14, 2019
Green New Weeds
<a href="">David Roberts</a> joins <a href="">Ezra</a> and <a href="">Jane</a> to explain the policy and politics of the Green New Deal. Plus: Which candidate has the better climate plan, Beto O’Rourke or Jay Inslee?<br><br><strong>Related reading:<br></strong><a href="">The Green New Deal, explained</a><br><a href="">David Roberts on what’s in the Green New Deal</a><br><a href="">The Green New Deal critics</a><br><a href="">The case against incremental climate policy</a><br><a href="">Gov. Jay Inslee’s climate policy</a><br><br><br><br><br><br><br><br><br><br>
May 10, 2019
Sarah's Last Stand
Dylan Scott joins Sarah and Matt to talk about single-payer's big day on Capitol Hill and some hot administrative data from Rhode Island.<br><br>Related reading:<br><a href="">CBO report</a><br><a href="">Dylan’s article on a Medicare-for-all hearing<br>Dylan’s other article on the Medicare-for-all hearing </a><br><a href="">Sarah and Dylan on the different Democratic health care plans</a><br><br><br><br><br>
May 07, 2019
Mexico: America's waiting room
<a href="">Dara</a>, <a href="">Jane</a>, and <a href="">Matt</a> discuss Dara's fresh reporting on asylum officers' complaints about Trump's "wait in Mexico" policy initiative.<br><br><strong>Related reading:</strong><br><a href="">Dara’s piece on asylum officers</a><br><br>
May 03, 2019
Incels and bullshitters
Senior correspondent <a href="">Zack Beauchamp</a> joins <a href="">Jane</a> and <a href="">Matt</a> to share his reporting on the origins and evolution of a troubling new internet community.<br><br><strong>Related reading:<br><br></strong><a href="">“Our incel problem”</a> by Zack Beauchamp<br><br><a href="">Research paper</a><br><br><br><br><br><br><br><br><br><br>
Apr 30, 2019
Was The Weeds on the wrong side of history?
<a href="">Sarah</a>, <a href="">Ezra</a>, and <a href="">Matt</a> celebrate Vox's fifth anniversary with a look at the changing nature of the policy dialogue in Washington.<br><br>This special episode of <a href="">The Weeds</a> was taped in front of a live audience at The LINE DC to celebrate Vox’s fifth anniversary. If you enjoyed it, we think you’ll also enjoy this live taping of <a href="">Recode Decode with Kara Swisher</a> featuring Julia Angwin, and this special episode of <a href="">The Ezra Klein Show</a> with Vox’s co-founders Ezra Klein, Matt Yglesias, and Vox Media’s Publisher Melissa Bell.<br><br>The Weeds is a Vox Media Inc. Production<br>Produced by: Jeff Geld
Apr 26, 2019
What to obstruct when you’re obstructing
<a href="">Matt</a>, <a href="">Jane</a>, and <a href="">Andrew Prokop</a> talk about the Mueller report — which one of them has actually read to the end.<br><br><strong>Related reading:<br></strong><a href="">Quinta Jurecic’s color-coded analysis of Mueller’s obstruction language</a><br><a href="">Rick Hasen’s article on Mueller not prosecuting Donald Trump Jr.</a><br><a href="">Full Mueller report</a><br><a href="">White paper</a><br><br><br><br><br><br><br>
Apr 23, 2019
Maybe collusion, probably obstruction [Special Crossover Edition]
<br>Ezra Klein joins Zack, Jenn, and Alex in a crossover episode with Worldly on Robert Mueller’s just-released report. They explain the special counsel's main findings on collusion with Russian election interference and on obstruction of justice and why they aren’t good for Trump. Then they zoom out and talk about what this whole episode reveals about the health of American democracy and how this gives a green light for Russia and other authoritarian powers to intervene in future US elections. Given how important this report is, and how early they got up to cover it, your intrepid hosts were too tired for jokes this week — sorry.<br><br><br>The <a href="">full text of the report</a>, compiled by Alex for your reading pleasure<br><br><a href=""><br>A refresher on who's who</a> in the Trump-Russia universe<br><br><br>Here's <a href="">a look at the collusion section</a> of the report from Zack<br><br><br>Here's <a href="">another take from Zack</a> on Attorney General William Barr's worrying role in all of this<br><br><a href=""><br>Ten examples of potential obstruction</a> in Mueller's report <br><br><a href=""><br>How 11 legal experts evaluate the claims of obstruction<br></a><br><br>Zack and Future Perfect's Dylan Matthews break down <a href="">the big winners and losers from the report<br></a><br><a href=""><br>The Big Vox Explainer</a> on the Mueller report <br><br><br>If you liked this episode, we think you’ll like <a href="">Worldly</a> and <a href="">The Ezra Klein Show</a>. Tap to learn more and subscribe for free to get new episodes.
Apr 18, 2019
Trump Family (Tax) Values
<a href="">Dara</a>, <a href="">Sarah</a>, and <a href="">Matt</a> talk about the suspiciously timed retirement of Trump's sister, IRS enforcement, and new research on how police stops can actually cause crime.<br><br>Related reading:<br><a href="">ProPublica study on the EITC audits</a><br><a href="">White paper</a>
Apr 16, 2019
How Canada got Medicare-for-all done
<a href="">Ezra</a> returns to discuss filibuster reform and the legacy of Tommy Douglas with <a href="">Sarah</a> and <a href="">Matt</a>.<br><br><strong>Recommended reading:<br></strong><a href="">Tommy Douglas named greatest Canadian</a><br><a href="">Filibuster reform explainer</a><br><a href="">Sanders and reconciliation explainer</a><br><a href="">Doctor strike explainer</a><br><a href=";context=up_workingpapers">White paper</a><br><br><br>
Apr 12, 2019
The Purge: DHS
<a href="">Jane</a>, <a href="">Dara</a>, and <a href="">Matt</a> discuss Trump's personnel shake-up at the Department of Homeland Security and what's next for immigration policy.<br><br>Recommended reading:<br><a href="">Jake Tapper on Trump telling border patrol agents to ignore the law</a><br><a href="">The White House’s wish list for DHS actions</a><br><a href="">Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen’s resignation, explained</a><br><br><br><br><br>
Apr 09, 2019
Attack of the clone bills
<a href="">Matt</a>, <a href="">Sarah</a>, and <a href="">Dara</a> copied this discussion of model legislation from an asbestos lobbyist.<br><br><br>Recommended reading:<br><a href="">USA Today article</a><br><a href="">Article on 'ALEC'</a><br><a href=";seq=1#page_scan_tab_contents">Research on model legislation 1</a><br><a href="">Research on model legislation 2</a><br><a href="">Research on model legislation 3</a>
Apr 05, 2019
Learning from Norway's lesbian mothers
<a href="">Dara</a>, <a href="">Jane</a>, and <a href="">Matt</a> on President Donald Trump’s latest border moves and a new wrinkle in the story of the gender pay gap.<br><br>Recommended reading:<br><a href="">Explainer on Trump cutting off aid</a><br><a href="">Explainer on border closure</a><br><a href="">CNN report on Trump’s border briefings</a><br><a href="">The US policy of returning Central American asylum seekers to wait in Mexico</a><br><a href="">An optimistic take on aid and El Salvador</a><br><a href="">A pessimistic take on aid and El Salvador</a><br><a href="">White paper</a><br><br><br>
Apr 02, 2019
Infrastructure Week (and Farm Week and Teacher Week)
<a href="">Dara</a>, <a href="">Jane</a>, and <a href="">Matt</a> analyze three new policy proposals from Amy Klobuchar, Elizabeth Warren, and Kamala Harris.<br><br>Recommended reading:<br><a href="">Amy Klobuchar's infrastructure plan </a><br><a href="">Elizabeth Warren's agriculture plan</a><br><a href="">Kamala Harris's teacher-pay plan</a><br><a href="">HuffPost feature on Harris's truancy policy </a><br><br>We are conducting an audience survey to better serve you. It takes no more than five minutes, and it really helps out the show. Please take our survey here: <a href=""></a>
Mar 29, 2019
Mueller's investigation is over. Obamacare repeal isn't.
<a href="">Sarah</a>, <a href="">Dara</a>, and <a href="">Jane</a> discuss the Hill's response to Mueller, the DOJ's siege of Obamacare, and the benefits of IUDs.<br><br><a href="">National Review article</a><br><a href="">Zack Beauchamp's article on the reaction to William Barr's Mueller letter</a><br><a href="">New York Times article on Mueller report</a><br><a href="">White paper</a><br><br>We are conducting an audience survey to better serve you. It takes no more than five minutes, and it really helps out the show. Please take our survey here: <a href=""></a>
Mar 26, 2019
Should presidential candidates get into the weeds?
<a href="">Sarah</a>, <a href="">Jane</a>, and <a href="">Matt</a> debate the value of policy details in the primary.<br><br>We are conducting an audience survey to better serve you. It takes no more than five minutes, and it really helps out the show. Please take our survey here: <a href=""></a>
Mar 22, 2019
The reparations primary
<a href="">Dara</a>, <a href="">Jane</a>, and <a href="">Matt</a> on the unexpected issue of the moment, plus Swedish administrative data on what makes a CEO.<br><br>Suggested reading:<br><a href="">White Paper</a><br><a href="">Original Ta-Nehisi Coates essay on reparations</a><br><br>We are conducting an audience survey to better serve you. It takes no more than five minutes, and it really helps out the show. Please take our survey here: <a href=""></a>
Mar 19, 2019
Live Weeds with Julián Castro
<a href="">Dara</a>, <a href="">Jane</a>, and <a href="">Matt</a> sit down with the former US secretary of housing and urban development and 2020 presidential candidate, live from South by Southwest.<br><br>We are conducting an audience survey to better serve you. It takes no more than five minutes, and it really helps out the show. Please take our survey here: <a href=""></a>
Mar 15, 2019
Introducing Switched on Pop
Vox takes culture seriously. Our coverage seeks to understand how our cultural touchstones work — and what they reveal about who we are.<br>That's why we’re excited to introduce you to <em>Switched on Pop</em>. It's a podcast that digs into the cultural context and musical theory of pop music, and it's now part of the Vox Media Podcast Network.<br>In this episode, you'll meet hosts Nate Sloan and Charlie Harding. You'll hear some of their favorite interviews, as they pull back the curtain on how pop hits work their magic. You can<a href=""> subscribe</a> to <em>Switched on Pop</em> wherever you get your favorite shows. <br><br>We are conducting an audience survey to better serve you. It takes no more than five minutes, and it really helps out the show. Please take our survey here: <a href=""></a><br><br><br>
Mar 13, 2019
Live Weeds with Pete Buttigieg
<a href="">Dara</a>, <a href="">Jane</a>, and <a href="">Matt</a> sit down with the South Bend, Indiana, mayor and presidential candidate, live from South by Southwest.<br><br>We are conducting an audience survey to better serve you. It takes no more than five minutes, and it really helps out the show. Please take our survey here: <a href=""></a>
Mar 12, 2019
The long con
<a href="">Jane</a> and <a href="">Matt</a> discuss Jacob Wohl and the intermingling of grift and conservative politics.<br><br><a href="">Jane's article on Jacob Wohl</a><br><a href="">Iraqi dinar on YouTube</a><br><a href="">Casey Newton's newsletter - The Interface</a><br><br>We are conducting an audience survey to better serve you. It takes no more than five minutes, and it really helps out the show. Please take our survey here: <a href=""></a>
Mar 08, 2019
But seriously, how are you going to pay for it?
<a href="">Sarah</a>, <a href="">Dylan</a>, and <a href="">Matt</a> discuss Pramila Jayapal’s Medicare-for-all bill, its lack of pay-fors, and an interesting white paper on income transparency. <br><br><a href="">Sarah on private insurance in other countries</a><br><a href="">Dylan's interview with Matt Bruenig</a><br><a href="">Sarah's interview with Rep. Jayapal on her bill</a><br><a href="">White paper<br></a><br>We are conducting an audience survey to better serve you. It takes no more than five minutes, and it really helps out the show. Please take our survey here: <a href=""></a>
Mar 05, 2019
The Weeds fixes racism
<a href="">Jane</a>, <a href="">Dara</a>, and <a href="">Matt</a> excavate the most contentious moment in the Cohen hearing in a hunt for "racist bones."<br>Recommended reading:<a href=""><strong>Dara on the Meadows/Tlaib standoff </strong></a><strong><br></strong><a href=""><strong>Jane on Steve King&nbsp;</strong></a>
Mar 01, 2019
Amy Klobuchar and the Jill Robinson effect
<a href=""><strong>Sarah</strong></a> and <a href=""><strong>Matt</strong></a> discuss the recent spate of stories about the Minnesota senator — and an announcement from Ezra!<br><br>Relevant articles:<br><br><a href=""><strong>Paper on the Jill Robinson Effect</strong></a><strong><br></strong><a href=""><strong>Buzzfeed Klobuchar story</strong></a><strong><br></strong><a href=""><strong>Huffington Post Klobuchar story</strong></a><strong><br></strong><a href=""><strong>Kelsey Piper story on the fake white paper</strong></a>
Feb 26, 2019
Day care for all!
Sarah, Dara, and Matt discuss Elizabeth Warren's universal child care plan — and the other options on the table.<br><br>Relevant articles:<br><br><a href=""><strong>Alvin Chang wealth tax explainer</strong></a><strong><br></strong><a href=""><strong>Jonathan Cohn day care story</strong></a><strong><br></strong><a href=""><strong>Quebec day care study</strong></a><strong><br></strong><a href=""><strong>Warren's child care plan</strong></a><strong><br></strong><a href=""><strong>The Family Fun Pack</strong></a><strong><br></strong><a href=""><strong>Head Start negative evaluation</strong></a><strong><br></strong><a href=""><strong>Head Start positive evaluation</strong></a>
Feb 22, 2019
Collusion and the Mueller endgame
Andrew Prokop joins Dara and Matt to explain what we've learned from the latest developments in the Russia investigation.<br><br><a href=""><strong>Andrew's article on Jerome Corsi's unreliable book</strong></a><br><a href=""><strong>Article on the redacted Manafort transcript</strong></a><strong><br></strong><a href=" "><strong>Marcy Wheeler article</strong></a><strong><br></strong><a href=""><strong>Special counsel regulation text</strong></a><strong><br></strong><a href=""><strong>Trump Tower Moscow explainer</strong></a>
Feb 19, 2019
Emergency Weeds
Dara, Sarah, and Matt explain the border security deal and Trump’s plan to bypass Congress.<br><br><a href=""><strong>Dara's article</strong></a><strong><br></strong><a href=""><strong>Matt's article on non-legislative priorities</strong></a>
Feb 15, 2019
What’s the best way to help the poor?
Dylan Matthews joins Sarah, Ezra, and Matt to discuss five new plans on poverty from leading Democrats.<br><br><a href=""><strong>Dylan's Article</strong></a><strong><br></strong><a href=""><strong>Sarah's Article on Childhood Wealth</strong></a><strong><br></strong><a href=""><strong>Elizabeth Warren's Housing Bill</strong></a><strong><br></strong><a href=""><strong>Cory Booker's HOME Act</strong></a>
Feb 12, 2019
Virginia is embroiled in multiple blackface scandals — and Jane Coaston, Sarah Kliff, and Dylan Scott are here to talk about it.<br><br><a href=""><em>Video about Slavery in the US Medical System</em></a><em><br><br></em><a href=""><em>Jane's Article</em></a>
Feb 08, 2019
Do we need private insurance?
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt break down the latest twist in the Medicare-for-all debate — plus rigorous new research on Facebook.<br><br><a href="">White Paper</a><br><br><br><br>
Feb 05, 2019
House Democrats’ plan to save democracy
Jane, Dara, and Matt break down HR 1 — the first bill from the new Democratic majority.
Feb 01, 2019
Elizabeth Warren and the Two-Income Trap
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt analyze the presidential candidate’s first popular book and review new evidence on the dangers of opioid marketing.<br><br><a href="">Ezra's Article</a><br><br><a href="">Matt's Article</a><br><br><a href="">White Paper</a><br><br><br><br><br><br><br><br><br>
Jan 29, 2019
The end of the shutdown
Jane, Ezra, and Matt have a slightly ill-timed discussion about the Pelosi-Trump showdown and the politics of the wall.
Jan 25, 2019
Investigating ER bills and SNAP fraud
Sarah, Dara, and Matt discuss Trump's latest proposal, suspicious ER billing practices, and SNAP investigations<br><br><a href=""><em>Sarah's articles about hospital ER fees</em></a><em><br><br></em><a href=""><em>White Paper</em></a>
Jan 22, 2019
You can't eat your principles for dinner
Sarah, Dara, and Matt analyze the prolonged shutdown's impact on the future of the federal workforce<br><br>Reference Articles:<br><br><a href=""><em>The shutdown threatens the promise of government jobs — and a way of life</em></a><em><br><br></em><a href=""><em>FBI, federal agents see cases hampered, lives rattled as shutdown continues</em></a><em><br><br></em><a href=""><em>The American Action Forum explainer on the Anti-Deficiency Act</em></a><em><br><br></em><a href=""><em>How the Border Patrol union became Trump’s closest shutdown allies</em></a>by Dara Lind<br><br><a href=""><em>Why Don’t Unpaid Federal Workers Walk Off the Job?</em>&nbsp;</a>
Jan 18, 2019
Taxing the rich
Jane, Ezra, and Matt consider the ethics and economics of a 70 percent top marginal rate<br><br><a href=""><em>Americans misperceive racial economic equality</em></a>
Jan 15, 2019
Tucker Carlson vs the free market
Jane, Dara, and Matt explain the argument over economic populism that’s roiling the conservative world
Jan 11, 2019
Ask Weeds Anything
Matt, Sarah, and Dara take questions from our audience Book Recommendations: The Field of Blood by Joanne B. Freeman Theodore Roosevelt: A Strenuous Life by Kathleen Dalton Bad Blood: Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startup by John Carreyrou Stories: The 17 saddest moments of Jeb Bush’s very sad campaign by Dara Lind Despite congressional pressure, Amtrak can’t get its story straight on train-boarding rules by Matthew Yglesias Do No Harm by Sarah Kliff
Jan 08, 2019
New year, no government
Dara, Jane, and Matt explain why a shutdown is not The Purge and delve into the all-important difference between slats, bollards, and walls&nbsp;
Jan 04, 2019
Classic Weeds: The great white panic
Jane Coaston joins Dara, Ezra, and Matt to talk about the racial panic tearing America apart and also salt. References and further reading: Ezra's piece on the changing demographics in America Identity Crisis book mentioned by Ezra Salt white paper This episode is a rebroadcast from July of 2018.&nbsp;
Jan 01, 2019
The Weeds Year-End Spectacular
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt share what they learned in 2018, predictions for 2019, and their favorite research of the year. Links: Matt's white paper pick Sarah's white paper pick Ezra's white paper pick Sarah’s ER opus Ezra on white threat
Dec 28, 2018
Congress actually did something important
Jane, Dara, and Matt analyze the substance and political context of the big bipartisan criminal justice reform bill. References and further reading: German Lopez explains the First Step Act Jane’s piece on Kanye West’s meeting with President Trump James Forman Jr. examines why many African American leaders supported the war on crime&nbsp;
Dec 21, 2018
Bernie and Biden and Beto, oh my!
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt decide it’s not too soon to start talking about the 2020 election. Plus — Obamacare litigation forever! References and further reading: Matt’s explainer on the Democratic field for 2020 Matt’s piece on Joe Biden’s policy ideas A previous episode of The Weeds on the Obamacare lawsuit Ezra’s piece on the Texas ruling against Obamacare&nbsp;
Dec 18, 2018
A big, beautiful podcast about the border wall
Matt, Dara, and Jane discuss what happens when engineering crushes dreams. Links: For an in-depth read on the border wall, here's a great explainer. The GAO report Dara cited can be found here. And here's the Atlantic article that Matt mentioned about the ICE crackdown&nbsp;
Dec 14, 2018
A Weeds farewell to Paul Ryan
Jane, Ezra, and Matt consider Paul Ryan’s legacy and new research on crime and the minimum wage. References and further reading: Ezra’s piece on House Speaker Paul Ryan’s legacy Matt’s essay following the announcement of Paul Ryan’s retirement Ted Cruz’s confusing tweet of Beto O’Rourke speaking on the shooting of Botham Jean A white paper examines the effects on criminal recidivism when states increase minimum wages Annie Lowrey’s piece in the Atlantic on a jobs guarantee&nbsp;
Dec 11, 2018
Pod Save the US-Saudi alliance?
Special guest Tommy Vietor of Crooked Media’s Pod Save the World joins Dara and Matt to break down the anti-Saudi backlash sweeping Washington.&nbsp;
Dec 07, 2018
Midwest Republicans lost in 2018 — but they’re not giving up power
Jane, Ezra, and Matt talk about state-level GOP power grabs and the curious case of Trump’s disappearing populism. References and further reading: Tara Golshan’s piece on the recent legislation proposed by GOP lawmakers David Frum’s book and Yascha Mounk’s book on populism and the threat to democracy Ezra’s conversation with Nate Silver Matt’s explainer on the Indiana Carrier factory Michael Brendan Dougherty’s essay on the support Trump needs after the 2018 elections A research paper on Americans’ misconceptions of the major political parties&nbsp;
Dec 04, 2018
Mexico was the wall all along
Dara and Matt explain the situation at the border now that the caravan has finally arrived. References and further reading: Li Zhou explains the liberal blowback against Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer Vox’s piece on the shutdown negotiations The weird outlet mall at the border Dara’s article on the asylum bottleneck A New York Times piece on the current conditions in Tijuana The Washington Post breaks down the “Remain in Mexico” policy Dara outlines what we still don't know about “Remain in Mexico”&nbsp;
Nov 30, 2018
The many flavors of Medicare-for-all
Dylan Scott joins Sarah and Matt to break down eight different plans circulating to expand government health insurance programs. References and further reading: Sarah breaks down five competing health care plans from Democrats Dylan lays out the Urban Institute’s proposed health care plan &nbsp; A white paper finds ICE partnerships with local police led to a decline in elementary-school enrollment of Hispanic students Are you interested in more discussions around health care policy? Join our Facebook community for conversation and updates.&nbsp;
Nov 27, 2018
The Impact: How do you make education funding fair?
Our Thanksgiving special is an episode of The Impact -- a show about how policy shapes our lives hosted by Sarah Kliff. This season, Sarah and her team are focusing on the most exciting, innovative ideas at the state and local level. This episode, they're in Vermont, looking at a radical law to equalize education funding. Like what you’re hearing? Find The Impact on Apple Podcasts|Google Podcasts|Spotify|Stitcher|Overcast|ART19&nbsp;
Nov 23, 2018
The future of conservatism is being forged in California
Jane, Ezra, and Matt explain a new brand of right-wing politics rising under conditions of permanent opposition. References and further reading: Jane’s piece on the driving force that is California-style conservatism A white paper examining which voters supported Medicaid in Maine’s 2017 referendum John Sides, Michael Tesler, and Lynn Vavreck explain the 2016 presidential election through identity politics in their book Identity Crisis&nbsp;
Nov 20, 2018
Facebook is bad, please join our Facebook group
Dara, Jane, and Matt analyze the social network that America loves to hate and can't escape. References and further reading: New York Times exposé on Facebook’s reaction to Russian interference on their site Michelle Goldberg tells Democrats to leave Facebook in a Times opinion piece An article from the New York Times on advertisers’ reactions to the Facebook report An interview with Sheryl Sandberg from CBS News Ask Weeds Anything is back! Sarah Kliff, Dara Lind, and Matt Yglesias will answer your questions about politics and policy on an upcoming episode of The Weeds. Got a question? Ask away in our Facebook group or send along to;
Nov 16, 2018
Jeff Sessions is gone but not forgotten
Dara, Jane, and Matt talk about the endgame for the attorney general Trump loved to hate. References and further reading: Dara reports on Trump’s asylum ban Dara defines Jeff Sessions’s legacy through immigration crackdowns and deportation Heather Mac Donald’s “The War on Cops” The Trump administration enters its Leeroy Jenkins phase A piece from Politico on the magical powers of Trump Jane’s essay from National Review on Trumpism McKay Coppins’s Atlantic article on the GOP’s adoption of Trumpism&nbsp;
Nov 09, 2018
About last night
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt break down seven key takeaways from Tuesday's election. References and further reading: Ezra’s piece on Trump’s failing political strategy Ezra’s essay on William Kristol’s 1993 health memo&nbsp;
Nov 07, 2018
Seattle’s plan to save democracy
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt offer midterm predictions, look at democracy vouchers, and analyze the real impact of Daylight Savings Time. References and further reading: Sarah explores the effects of Seattle’s democracy vouchers on The Impact Nicholas Carnes’s piece on the representation of the working class in government A working paper presents evidence that Daylight Savings Time results in an increase in electricity demand An article in Quartz explains the lobbying behind Daylight Savings Time Matt’s case against time zones&nbsp;
Nov 06, 2018
Bad for the Jews
Jane, Dara, and Matt dissect the rising currents of anti-Semitism in the Trump era. References and further reading: Adam Serwer’s piece on the Pittsburgh shooter Dara joins Today, Explained to discuss the migrant caravan Time analyzes Ted Nugent’s anti-Semitic Facebook post about gun control The Atlantic’s profile of a neo-Nazi who took Trump’s speech as an endorsement of anti-Semitism Michael Brendan Dougherty’s piece in National Review on why he’s disappointed Jane's essay on conspiracy theories and anti-Semitism Maureen Dowd's controversial opinion piece in the New York Times: A Bellingcat essay on how anti-Semites were "red-pilled"&nbsp;
Nov 02, 2018
Operation Win the Midterms
Defense correspondent Alex Ward joins Dara and Matt to analyze Trump’s dispatch of thousands of US soldiers to the border. References and further reading: Alex’s piece on the role of troops at the US-Mexico border An article from Reuters on the clashes at the Mexico-Guatemala border Dara explains the migrant caravan Dara’s piece on the shrinking caravan Dara reports on a new “travel ban” that the Trump administration is considering&nbsp;
Oct 31, 2018
Republicans’ health care message: Lie a lot
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt break down rhetoric and reality on preexisting conditions. References and further reading: Sarah outlines the position of Republicans on preexisting conditions Sarah’s piece from 2016 on the future of Obamacare Robert Draper’s article on Priorities USA and its campaign against Mitt Romney Ezra makes the case that Trump is a moderate&nbsp;
Oct 30, 2018
Our elections are being hacked
In this episode, Ezra and Jane dig into the dismal state of election security, as well as the many, many ways that people’s votes are obstructed, distorted, and prevented. Isn’t democracy grand? References and further reading: Benjamin Wofford’s piece on our hacked election system Jamelle Bouie in the Daily Beast breaks down the motive behind voter ID laws Issie Lapowsky of Wired clarifies that you cannot cast a vote with a text message The Atlantic reports on black civic engagement versus voter turnout during the Trump era A report from the Brennan Center on democracy Ezra’s interview with Carol Anderson Carol Anderson’s timely book on a history of voter suppression Matt’s piece on the hack gap The Daily Kos explains that when more people vote, Republicans lose&nbsp;
Oct 26, 2018
What's next for House Democrats?
Ella Nilsen and Dylan Scott join Matt Yglesias to talk about Democrats' midterm message and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi's future. References and further reading: Ella’s piece on the priorities of House Democrats if they take the House in November. Ella breaks down the fight for leadership over House Democrats Dylan outlines the 2018 midterms using an ad from Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND) Dylan explains the role of health care in the Missouri Senate race&nbsp;
Oct 24, 2018
Cory Booker’s plan to close the racial wealth gap
Dara, Sarah, and Matt talk about a new "baby bonds" proposal and new research that explores perceptions of illegal immigrants. References and further reading: Sarah’s piece on Sen. Cory Booker’s (D-NJ) plan for baby bonds A report on the racial wealth gap An article on unclaimed cash from baby bonds in the United Kingdom Ira Katznelson on racial inequality in “When Affirmative Action Was White” A white paper on the social construction of illegality&nbsp;
Oct 23, 2018
Trump versus the Caravan
Jane, Dara, and Matt explain the reality behind the migrant caravan fueling the latest MAGA conspiracy theories. References and further reading: Trump’s first campaign ad Rep. Matt Gaetz’s tweet claiming to share footage relating to the caravan&nbsp;
Oct 19, 2018
Republicans run everything, and they’re mad as hell
Tara Golshan joins Jane and Matt to analyze the state of the GOP on the brink of the midterms. References and further reading: Ella Nilsen gives a rundown of the creative political ads from this midterm season. Tara’s piece on Rep. Duncan Hunter’s attacks on his opponent. Jane’s article in the National Review on “Trumpism.” Matt Schlapp’s tweet about Sens. Kamala Harris and Cory Booker.&nbsp;
Oct 17, 2018
America’s moral failure on climate
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt debate the new IPCC report, William Nordhaus's Nobel Prize, and a hot new working paper about Medicaid contraction. References and further reading: The IPCC report on the impact of global warming David Roberts’s piece on the fight over the carbon tax in Washington state during 2016 Earl Swift tells of the disappearing Tangier Island in his book Chesapeake Requiem A white paper on the effects of disenrollment from Medicaid A contrasting paper on the effects of disenrollment led by Craig Garthwaite&nbsp;
Oct 16, 2018
I’mma let you finish
Jane, Dara, and Matt talk about Kanye West, Taylor Swift, the black conservative political tradition, and the shifting politics of the Trump era. References and further reading: Jane dissects Trump’s meeting with Kanye West Jemele Hill’s article on black men and Brett Kavanaugh Hoteps, explained Jane’s piece on racism within the Republican Party Vann Newkirk’s piece on black civic engagement in the Trump era Vox's Constance Grady analyzes the Taylor Swift voter registration bump&nbsp;
Oct 12, 2018
As tough as Texas
Tara Golshan and Ella Nilsen join Matt to talk about the critical midterm races in the Lone Star State. References and further reading: Ella’s piece on Democrats running in Texas Tara outlines key themes in the race between Ted Cruz and Beto O’Rourke Tara’s piece on a potential blue wave in the state Tara details more on the battle between Cruz and O’Rourke&nbsp;
Oct 10, 2018
The craziest Obamacare lawsuit yet
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about Obamacare (again!), waning democratic legitimacy, and why retaking the SAT drives class and racial gaps in college enrollment. References and further reading: Josh Blackman’s piece on the ACA lawsuit Amicus brief from the pro- and anti-ACA law professors Katie Keith’s article on oral arguments John Harris’s piece on the ruthlessness of the Republican Party David Farris's book on fighting dirty Jennifer Victor's pinned tweet on the meaning of democracy A white paper on how retaking the SAT affects college admissions&nbsp;
Oct 09, 2018
Alexa, raise the minimum wage
Jane, Dara, and Matt talk about Amazon's pay raise, Sen. Bernie Sanders’s Stop BEZOS Act, and the new politics of big tech. References and further reading: Alexia Fernández Campbell’s piece on Vox about Amazon’s pay raises Sarah Butler of the Guardian lays out the pay raise versus bonus situation Matt’s piece in Slate on Jeff Bezos’s relationship with Wall Street Dylan Scott explains Medicare-for-all Kevin Roose’s daily Twitter updates on sources of the top-performing Facebook posts about Christine Blasey Ford and Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh&nbsp;
Oct 05, 2018
When women run
Congressional reporter Ella Nilsen joins Sarah and Matt to explain the unprecedented surge in women running for Congress this year. References and further reading: Michele Swers’s paper that highlights how women representatives bring back more funding to their district Sarah’s piece on how electing women changes the way the government functions Jennifer Palmieri’s book that examines the criticisms of Hillary Clinton&nbsp;
Oct 03, 2018
Death to NAFTA! Long live USMCA!
Ezra, Sarah, and Matt dive into the latest on the Kavanaugh nomination — and why USMCA is great for Canadians who drink milk. References and further reading: Alvin Chang charts every question the Senate asked Kavanaugh Ezra’s piece on the Republicans’ strategy to save Kavanaugh Catherine Rampell compares Trump’s new trade deal to the old A white paper on “College Party Culture and Sexual Assault”&nbsp;
Oct 02, 2018
Do Republicans even care if Kavanaugh is guilty?
Sarah, Jane, and Matt break down an excruciating day in American politics. References and further reading: Laura McGann’s piece on sexual harassment claims against Glenn Thrush of the New York Times Constance Grady explains rape culture of the 1980s A poll found evangelicals would support Kavanaugh even if allegations against him were true Eric Erickson argues Trump will escalate matters if Kavanaugh is rejected&nbsp;
Sep 28, 2018
What Sarah learned on parental leave
Sarah, Matt, and Ezra dive into how other countries design parental leave policies — and what the US could do better. Plus: a white paper on subways, and outer space! References and further reading: RAND review on child care allowance Pew research finds birthrates are down while the desire to have kids is not ProPublica relates mothers to candy wrappers Henrik Levin charts attitudes toward working mothers with school-age children White paper on subways and pollution in urban centers&nbsp;
Sep 25, 2018
What could stop the next Botham Jean?
Jane, Dara, and Matt discuss a tragic death in Dallas and the difficult politics of police reform. References and further reading: Adam Serwer’s piece in the Atlantic on the National Rifle Association’s Catch-22 Numbers on the NRA David French names this “the worst police shooting yet” Jane Esberg and Jonathan Mummolo paper explaining the misperceptions of crime Josh Sugarmann explains the ties between the firearm industry and the NRA Pew poll on how the police and the public view policing Justin Moore reacts to comments by Dallas Police Chief Renee Hall&nbsp;
Sep 21, 2018
#MeToo goes to the Supreme Court
Dara, Ezra, and Matt discuss the allegations that could derail Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation References and further reading: Christine Blasey Ford speaks out to the Washington Post Malcolm Gladwell's episode of Revisionist History on Brian Williams Twitter thread from Sandra Newman on false accusations Report on binge drinking by high school students since the 70s Slate article on Judge Kozinski's inappropriate emails Caitlin Flanagan's piece on why she believes Ford Jian Ghomeshi reflects after becoming an outcast John Hockenberry's essay on exile&nbsp;
Sep 18, 2018
Can Elon Musk save Tesla from himself?
Jane, Dara, and Matt talk about the potential meltdown of one of America’s most important entrepreneurs. References and further reading: Emily Stewart's piece on Elon Musk smoking pot&nbsp;
Sep 14, 2018
I am the Resistance inside The Weeds podcast
Dara, Ezra, and Matt talk about Bob Woodward’s book, that op-ed, and the two-track Trump presidency. References and further reading: The infamous NY Times op-ed written by a White House insider Andrew Prokop's explainer of Bob Woodward's new book White paper: Does Rape Culture Predict Rape?&nbsp;
Sep 11, 2018
Colin Kaepernick, the most important election issue in the world
Jane, Dara, and Matt get ready for some football. References and further reading: Jane's explainer of the NFL protests Jane's piece on Nike's new "Just Do It" campaign Jane's piece "Nike has made billions selling rebellion to young people"&nbsp;
Sep 07, 2018
What’s at stake in the midterms
Jane, Dara, and Matt kick off the unofficial beginning of campaign season by asking what happens if Democrats win in November and what if they lose? References and further reading: Matt's piece on the House Republican list of investigations that could happen if Dems win David Mayhew's Divided We Govern, mentioned by Matt Dara's piece on where DACA stands now&nbsp;
Sep 04, 2018
America picked a lousy time to turn its back on refugees
In an unexpectedly globe-hopping episode of The Weeds, Dara and Worldly co-host Zack Beauchamp examine the ripple effects of Trump’s America First attitude toward the refugee crisis. References and further reading: Politico article about how the Trump administration is slow walking refugee resettlement for 2018 with rumors of even lower levels for 2019 Trump's turn away from global leadership on refugee issues&nbsp; The disqualifying comments of Trump's nominee to lead the International Organization for Migration&nbsp; BBC piece on the regional Venezuelan conflict Zack's Today, Explained episode about Hungary Washington Post piece about the dire situation in Syria right now NY Times piece on Trump ending funding to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency Dara's Worldly episode&nbsp;
Aug 31, 2018
John McCain vs. the idea of John McCain
Vox politics editor Laura McGann joins Dara and Matt to talk about John McCain's legacy and Donald Trump's response to his death, then Dara and Matt tackle a white paper that looks at the connection between financial decisions and partisanship. References and further reading: Matt's piece about John McCain's death Laura's piece on John McCain's ties to Sarah Palin Ryan Lizza's piece on the 2013 immigration plan, mentioned by Dara White paper: Partisanship and Risky Financial Decisions&nbsp;
Aug 28, 2018
The art of the squeal
Jane, Dara, and Matt talk about Paul Manafort’s guilty verdict, Michael Cohen’s guilty plea, and what comes next for Donald Trump. References and further reading: Dara's piece about Donald Trump's tweets and what they say about his relationship with Manafort and Cohen Matt's piece about Trump's Fox &amp; Friends interview Jane's piece on how the right is spinning the Cohen and Manafort news Ken White's tweet thread, mentioned by Dara&nbsp;
Aug 24, 2018
Elizabeth Warren’s plan to save/destroy capitalism
Dara, Ezra, and Matt discuss a big idea to make the economy great again. References and further reading: Matt's piece on Elizabeth Warren's corporate accountability bill Matt's piece on Kevin Williamson's attack on Warren's accountability bill The Varieties of Capitalism, book mentioned by Matt David Ciepley's writing on corporations, mentioned by Dara Dylan Matthews' piece on co-determination , mentioned by Ezra Sam Hammond's piece on Warren's bill, mentioned by Ezra and Dara Aaron Klein's analysis of Warren's accountability plan, mentioned by Ezra&nbsp;
Aug 21, 2018
We’re not gonna pay rent
Jane Coaston joins Matt and Dara to talk about exploding housing costs in America’s coastal cities and what we can do about them. References and further reading: Jeff Stein's piece on rent and housing&nbsp;
Aug 17, 2018
Lordy, Omarosa has tapes
Emily Stewart joins Dara and Matt to talk about the perhaps-unbelievable book everyone’s talking about, and the dysfunctional White House that spawned it. References and further reading: Emily's piece on Omarosa's recording of John Kelly Emily's highlights from Omarosa's book Unhinged Maggie Haberman tweet confirming that earlier secret White House tapings were not Omarosa, mentioned by Dara White paper "Unemployment, Temporary Work, and Subjective Well-Being: The Gendered Effect of Spousal Labor Market Insecurity"&nbsp;
Aug 14, 2018
Senior health correspondent Julia Belluz and science reporter Brian Resnick join Dara and Matt to discuss the replication crisis in scientific studies. References and further reading: Brian's piece on the marshmallow test John P. A. Ioannidis' "Most Published Research Findings Are False," mentioned by Julia Scientists tired to replicate 100 psychological studies, 40% passed, mentioned by Brian Scientists also tried to replicate 100 economic studies, 60% passed Vox's survey of 270 scientists about the biggest problems in science, mentioned by Brian Julia's piece on Amy Cuddy and power posing NY Times magazine feature on Amy Cuddy, mentioned by Dara Julia's piece on 'big paper towels' campaign against hand dryers Mars chocolate study, mentioned by Julia&nbsp;
Aug 10, 2018
The Great Twitter Wars of 2018
Jane Coaston and Dylan Matthews join Ezra to discuss the Sarah Jeong fracas, the Ben Shapiro-Mark Duplass meltdown, the problems with Twitter, the ways partisan dehumanize each other, and more. References and further reading: The context for Sarah Jeong's "goblins" tweet The context for Sarah Jeong's "cut white people" tweet&nbsp; German Lopez's piece on what makes people less racist Brian Resnick's piece on reducing prejudice William F. Buckley supporting segregation Zack Beauchamp's piece in defense of Sarah Jeong Ezra's demographics piece David French's piece on Sarah Jeong W.E.B Du Bois' The Soul's of Black Folks Ashley Jardina's Washington Post piece on white identity Jamelle Bouie's newsletter Political Tribes by Amy Chua Where Do We Go from Here: Chaos or Community? by Dr. Martin Luther King White paper Party Animals? Party Identity and Dehumanization That time Dylan got owned on Twitter by Sen. Ben Sasse&nbsp;
Aug 07, 2018
Paul Manafort, alleged ostrich-collar criminal
Andrew Prokop joins Dara and Matt to talk about Paul Manafort’s trial and what it means for the larger Russia investigation. References and further reading: Andrew's piece on the trials of Paul Manafort Andrew's breakdown of the opening statements at Manafort's trial Franklin Foer's profile of Manafort, mentioned by Andrew&nbsp;
Aug 03, 2018
The great white panic
Jane Coaston joins Dara, Ezra, and Matt to talk about the racial panic tearing America apart and also salt. References and further reading: Ezra's piece on the changing demographics in America Identity Crisis book mentioned by Ezra Salt white paper&nbsp;
Jul 31, 2018
“Mission Accomplished,” trade war edition
Congressional reporter Tara Golshan joins Dara and Matt to break down Trump’s kinda sorta trade deal with the EU and ongoing trade tensions with China” References and further reading: Tara's piece on Trump's mischaracterization of the US trade deficit Politico Europe rundown of the trade deal, mentioned by Matt The Weeds has been nominated for this year's People's Choice Podcast Awards! Cast your vote for The Weeds for free before Tuesday, July 31st at
Jul 27, 2018
What Republicans can do on Trump and Russia
Matt, Dara and Ezra talk about Republicans, Trump and Russia. Plus: A research paper reveals how Dara lost on College Jeopardy. References and further reading: Politico Playbook piece mentioned by Matt, "GOP to the world: What would you like us to do?" Law Review paper "Separation of Parties, Not Powers" The Weeds has been nominated for this year's People's Choice Podcast Awards! Cast your vote for The Weeds for free before Tuesday, July 31st at
Jul 24, 2018
It’s surprisingly easy to get away with murder in America
Senior criminal justice reporter German Lopez joins Dara and Matt to talk about the high number of unsolved homicides in America. References and further reading: Ghettoside: A True Story of Murder in America by Jill Leovy German's reporting on the violent crime clearance rate in America Study referenced by Dara that looked at community cooperation from Secure Communities (a massive federal immigration enforcement program) In-depth reporting on the low murder clearance rate across the US from The Washington Post Anthony Braga study on Boston's approaches to solving homicides mentioned by German
Jul 20, 2018
There’s collusion, and then there’s collusion
Dara, Ezra, and Matt discuss President Trump's remarkable performance in Helsinki and new research on employers colluding to hold down pay. Links: Dara mentioned Quinta Jurecic's piece tying Trump in Helsinki to Trump on Charlottesville. Here's the Ari Fleischer tweet Ezra referenced. Ezra walked through what we know about Trump's dealings with Russia. Here's that rundown (and more analysis) in text form. Trump tweeted during recording — here's the full text Matt read. Matt mentioned Adam Entous's New Yorker piece on Israel, Saudi Arabia, and the Emirates. The 2015 Morning Joe interview Ezra mentioned. Joe Scarborough says Putin has a record of killing journalists and political opponents, and invading countries. Trump responds, "At least he's a leader." White paper: "Theory and Evidence on Employer Collusion in the Franchise Sector" (Alan B. Krueger, Orley Ashenfelter) More on the news about the no-poaching agreement in Washington state.
Jul 17, 2018
Republicans' plan for health care: ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
Dylan Scott joins Dara and Matt to talk about the Trump administration’s latest moves to destabilize health insurance markets. Dylan's piece on risk adjustment payments, and another piece on the Trump administration’s latest steps to undermine the Affordable Care Act. Dylan also specifically referenced Nicholas Bagley. Read him on risk adjustments here.
Jul 13, 2018
Brett Kavanaugh and the future of the Supreme Court
Dara, Ezra, and Matt break down what we know about Trump’s pick for the Supreme Court References and further reading: Paper about Norwegian immigrants, mentioned by Matt "Twice a Stranger: The Mass Expulsions that Forged Modern Greece and Turkey" good book with background on the refugee paper
Jul 10, 2018
1,2,3,4 Trump declares a trade war
Staff writer Zeeshan Aleem joins Dara and Matt to break down what's really happening with Trump and trade, and how much it matters. References and further reading: Zeeshan's piece on the US-China trade war
Jul 06, 2018
Family detention is the new family separation
Matt, Dara and Ezra talk about the Trump administration's use of family detention as an alternative to family separation. Then they turn to a white paper that looks at racial attitudes and white privilege. References and further reading: Tara Golshan's piece on the latest immigration bill Politico piece on the Senate efforts to fix family separation "Racial attitudes in response to thoughts of White privilege" white paper Kate Manne's piece on Bernie Sanders' white male problem mentioned by Matt Kate Manne's book "Down Girl" mentioned by Matt Professor Ashley Jardina's dissertation on white identity and American politics mentioned by Ezra Michael Tesler's book “Post-Racial or Most-Racial?" mentioned by Ezra
Jul 03, 2018
America’s Next Top Supreme Court Justice
Vox senior politics reporter Jane Coaston joins Matt and Dara to talk about the future of the Supreme Court without Justice Kennedy. References and further reading: NYT piece on Justice Kennedy's son's connections to the Trump family Dara's piece on the most likely picks for Kennedy's replacement Jane's piece on Senator Mike Lee Jane's piece on polling that show's Trump voters were motivated by the Supreme Court vacancy Examiner piece on overturning Roe v. Wade
Jun 29, 2018
With borders wide open
Ezra returns from the wilds of book leave to talk about open borders with Dara and Matt. References and further reading: Dara's piece on the 1996 immigration bill "Trillion dollar bills on the sidewalk" white paper Bryan Caplan paper on open borders Ezra's interview with LA Mayor Eric Garcetti
Jun 26, 2018
The messy drama queens of the Supreme Court
While Sarah, Matt and Ezra are away Dara is joined by Dylan Matthews and Andrew Prokop to talk about the friction between how the Supreme Court says it makes its decisions, and the way everyone assumes it really works. Is it time for the Court to stop getting polite and start getting (legal) real(ist)? References and further reading: Andrew’s explainer on the gerrymandering decision The “efficiency gap,” explained by one of its creators  Dylan on the public-sector union case Janus v. AFSCME Dara’s piece on Trump v. Hawaii, the travel ban case  Sonia Sotomayor endorsed legal realism before joining the Court  KENNEDYWATCH, 2018 Edition
Jun 22, 2018
Which children matter?
Senior politics reporter Jane Coaston joins Dara and Matt to talk about the ideological roots of Donald Trump's family separation policy. References and further reading: Dara's piece on "operation wetback" the immigration policy Donald Trump loves Jane's piece on Stephen Miller Jamelle Bouie's piece on Stephen Miller Politico piece about Trump possibly shutting down the government in September over border wall, mentioned by Jane Dara's piece on the number of families separated at the border daily Dara's piece on how asylum officers are being told to implement Sessions' new rule
Jun 19, 2018
Ask Weeds Anything...Again!
Sarah, Dara and Matt answer your questions.
Jun 15, 2018
Why 12-step programs work — and family separation doesn’t
While Sarah and Matt are away Dara is joined by congressional reporters Tara Golshan and Ella Nilsen to talk about immigration and family separation. Then she's joined by criminal justice reporter German Lopez to talk about a white paper that looks at the effectiveness of 12- step programs. References and further reading: Ella's piece on Democrats trying to stop family separation at the border Tara's piece on the chaos in the House over immigration Sarah's piece on the missing children and family separation Miriam Jordan's NYT piece on transitional foster care placements for migrant children White paper on the effectiveness of 12-step programs German's piece on Alcoholics Anonymous
Jun 12, 2018
Can we get tough on rapists without being “tough on crime”?
Sarah, Dara and Matt talk about the recent recall of Judge Aaron Persky, the California judge who sentenced former Stanford University swimmer Brock Turner to six months when he was convicted of sexual assault in 2016. References and further reading: Julia Ioffe's piece on the Stanford professor who led the charge against Persky AP reporting on Persky's record as a judge Rachel Marshall's piece on why the recall isn't a progressive victory John Pfaff Twitter thread on how elections impact judicial behavior German Lopez's piece on incarceration rates from 1985-2010 Laura McGann's piece on men in #metoo exile Wesley Lowery's piece on widespread unsolved murders in major American cities
Jun 08, 2018
Cake Wars, Supreme Court edition
Dara, Sarah and Matt trace the Supreme Court Masterpiece Cakeshop ruling back to peyote and then discuss a Swedish study about lottery winners. References and further reading: explainer on the Masterpiece Cakeshop ruling piece about religious liberty in American history The Gallup poll on rates of support for gay marriage, mentioned by Sarah White paper on Swedish lottery winners
Jun 05, 2018
Trump isn’t losing immigrant kids, but he is taking them from their parents
Sarah and Matt are joined by Congress reporter Tara Golshan to talk about missing children, separated families, and the latest immigration action on the Hill. References and other reading: Sarah's piece with an immigration expert explaining the 1,500 "missing" migrant children Sarah explainer on family separations Tara's piece on Republican moderates and immigration Dara's explainer on the family separation policy
Jun 01, 2018
The debate over “no excuses” charter schools, explained
Libby Nelson, news editor and former education reporter, joins Matt and Sarah to talk about the discipline practices and educational outcomes at so-called "no excuses" charter schools. Then they turn to a white paper that looks at lead poisoning and fertility. References and further reading: Illinois Public Radio story on Noble Academy Video of teacher at Success Academy ripping up student's homework Research mentioned by Libby on outcomes at the Harlem Children's Zone Upper West Side parents mad about school integration plan White paper on lead poisoning and fertility
May 29, 2018
Nobody has babies anymore (except Sarah)
Sarah and Matt talk about America’s rapidly falling birthrate, and a study on the long-term benefit of the 1980s Medicaid expansion. References and further reading: National Center for Health Statistics report on declining birth rates Vox's Julia Belluz's piece on the low birthrate trend NPR piece on the CDC report on declining fertility rates in the U.S. Sarah's piece on why teen births are declining Lyman Stone paper Sarah mentioned arguing that government interventions don't boost fertility NY Times piece Matt referenced on American women having fewer children then they'd like Dylan Matthew's piece explaining the child allowance plan The white paper on Medicaid coverage and economic mobility Converge with Casey Newton is a new conversational game show from The Verge. Listen to the first episode today, and subscribe wherever you're enjoying this podcast.
May 22, 2018
Caught in the Intellectual Dark Web
Senior politics reporter Jane Coaston joins Dara and Matt to debate the “identity politics” backlash and the prospects for pluralism. References and further reading: Bari Weiss' piece on the 'intellectual dark web' Conor Friedersdorf's piece on how the left fuels the right's bigotry
May 18, 2018
Drugs! (But not the fun kind)
Sarah, Dara and Matt discuss the the exorbitant cost of prescription drugs and a white paper that looks at the correlation between counties that vote Republican and the number of low and high-skilled immigrants living in those communities. References and further reading: Dylan Scott's piece on the price of prescription drugs mentioned by Sarah The white paper on 'The Political Impact of Immigration: Evidence from the United States'
May 15, 2018
The many scandals of Michael Cohen
4790 senior political reporter Andrew Prokop joins Dara and Matt to explain the strange tale of Donald Trump’s lawyer and fixer, Michael Cohen, who now seems to be in serious legal hot water. References and further reading: Andrew's piece on the corporations that hired Michael Cohen Andrew's piece on the Cohen's ties to Russia Andrew's Stormy Daniels explainer
May 11, 2018
Did you read the memo about the TPS reports?
Sarah, Dara, and Matt analyze Trump’s drastic rollback of Temporary Protected Status for immigrants from Honduras, El Salvador, and Haiti and discuss new research on the never-ending “economic anxiety” debate. References and further reading: Dara's TPS explainer White paper on attitudes toward social change
May 08, 2018
Should psychiatrists diagnose Trump? Should journalists?
Vox's science reporter Brian Resnick joins Dara and Sarah to talk about psychiatry's Goldwater Rule, which has never met a test like Donald Trump. References and further reading: Brian's piece on why Trump's fitness for office is not a medical question Brian's explainer on the Goldwater Rule Sharon Begley's article Trump's mental health mentioned by Sarah Sarah's piece on fax machines Dara's piece on why the palace intrigue stuff matters to Trump
May 04, 2018
What if the government guaranteed everyone a job?
Vox's Dylan Matthews joins Sarah and Matt to break down the jobs guarantee debate and discuss research on a promising school desegregation initiative undermined by racist police practices. References and further reading Dylan's jobs guarantee explainer (with links to Stephanie Kelton's writing) Dylan's explainer of Sen. Cory Booker's jobs guarantee proposal (with links to Darrick Hamilton and Sandy Darity's writing) Bryce Covert's piece on the case for a jobs guarantee Gallup poll on workers getting a sense of identity from their jobs White paper on school integration "risks and benefits"
May 01, 2018
Ambien for all, Ronny Jackson and the VA, explained
Congressional reporter Ella Nilsen makes her Weeds debut joining Sarah and Matt to break down the botched nomination at the Veterans’ Administration, they also address the questions around the troubled agency’s future. References and further reading: Sarah's piece on the Ronny Jackson scandal Ella's piece on the controversy surrounding Jackson's nomination CNN piece on Ronny Jackson's alleged 'grab-and-go' clinic NY Times piece on the concierge emergency room
Apr 27, 2018
Speaker Ryan had a farm bill (E-I-E-I-O)
Sarah, Dara and Matt discuss a Republican farm bill that would impose work requirements on SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) beneficiaries. Then they turn to a white paper on OxyContin and the heroin epidemic. References and further reading: Good Politico article summarizing the farm bill Marion Nestle's piece on the farm bill White paper on OxyContin's impact on the heroin epidemic German Lopez's piece on the OxyContin white paper
Apr 24, 2018
Boiling the frogs of war
Zack Beauchamp joins Dara and Matt to explain the ever-expanding 2001 Authorization for the Use of Military Force and Trump's even more expansive legal rationale for bombing Syria. References and further reading: Vox's history of the AUMF A primer on the legal dispute in Doe v. Mattis Chesney primer on the Corker-Kaine Draft AUMF Who is Italian philosopher Giorgio Agamben?
Apr 20, 2018
Honor cults in the FBI and Norwegian military
Matt, Sarah and Dara work backward from James Comey through FBI history and discover an 18th-century demon hidden in the Constitution. No, really. References and further reading: Dara's piece on the tension between the rule of law and political leadership Recent PBS poll on how Americans view the FBI Max Weber, explained White paper on gender integration in the Norwegian military
Apr 17, 2018
All 👏 payer 👏 rate 👏 setting 👏
Dylan Scott joins Sarah and Matt to talk about Paul Ryan's retirement, his legacy, and the Weedsiest health reform of all. References: Sarah's all-payer rate setting explainer Dylan's piece on Paul Ryan's legacy Melanie Mason's piece on California's healthcare bill RTI evaluation of all-payer rate setting Health Affairs evaluation on changes in hospital use in Maryland
Apr 13, 2018
The imprudent Scott Pruitt
Sirens galore, as the team races through Environmental Protection Agency administrator Scott Pruitt's many, many scandals and a white paper about unnecessary ambulance use. References: Trump's defense of Scott Pruitt A good explainer on the Pruitt scandal How EPA deregulations impact toxic air pollution Michael Grunwald's piece on Pruitt's rollback of Obama era environmental regulations Elaina Plott's pieces on Scott Pruitt and more Working paper on ambulance usage in New York
Apr 10, 2018
Sinclair’s alarming takeover of local TV news
Dylan Matthews joins Sarah and Matt to break down the history of Sinclair Broadcast Group, its politics, and the regulatory favors that fueled its growth. References: Dylan's piece on the Sinclair media takeover Timothy Burke's Sinclair anchor mashup Alving Chang's piece on Sinclair media, see if your local news station is owned by Sinclair Martin and McCrain's paper on local news and national politics Good Mother Jones piece on Sinclair's local news takeover
Apr 06, 2018
Is Donald Trump ruining the Census?
Sarah, Dara, and Matt talk about the citizenship question, funding, and the potential consequences of a botched enumeration. Plus a weedsy dive into potential redistricting mischief, and research on Jose Canseco's malign influence on Major League Baseball. References: Dara's piece on the 2020 census Carlos Waters' video on the 2020 census The baseball white paper
Apr 03, 2018
The optimistic take is things have always been bad (Worldly crossover)
The Weeds/Worldly crossover event continues: Jennifer Williams tries to persuade Dara and Matt they're wrong about an Islamophobic shift in Trump's new cabinet, and the old-fashioned democracy-promoting hawkery of George W. Bush.
Mar 30, 2018
Is Facebook bad?
Matt, Sarah and Ezra on a new, blockbuster study on racial mobility — and whether Mark Zuckerberg should shut down Facebook. References: Race and Economic Opportunity in the United States Dylan Matthews' piece Income Mobility Charts for Girls, Asian-Americans and Other Groups. Or, Make Your Own Extensive Data Shows Punishing Reach of Racism for Black Boys Matt's case against Facebook
Mar 27, 2018
Cambridge Analytica: Scandal, hype, or both?
Andrew Prokop, senior politics reporter for, joins Dara and Matt to break down the scandal that’s rocking the worlds of technology and politics. References: The Jane Mayer piece on the Mercers Dara mentioned A study on Big Five personality attributes and voting behavior SCIENCE! on the Cambridge Analytica model A big five personality test you can do at home  Andrew's Cambridge Analytica explainer Matt's good Facebook take
Mar 23, 2018
The opioid debate: could reversing overdoses worsen the epidemic?
An economics working paper finds that access to Naloxone, a drug to reverse opioid overdoses, may increase opioid abuse. Sarah and Ezra explain the paper that started a social media firestorm — and what it means for combating the opioid epidemic. References: Doleac and Mukherjee working paper A good summary of the debate from The Atlantic Health Affairs blog post  Working paper from Daniel Rees People are dying because we misunderstand how those with addiction think A lifesaving drug for overdoses doesn’t reduce opioid deaths? Be skeptical Trump’s opioid crisis plan: more death penalty, fewer prescriptions, more treatment
Mar 20, 2018
Abolish ICE
Dara and Matt break down the history of Immigration &amp; Customs Enforcement: how it got this way, and why some on the left want it to go away.
Mar 16, 2018
Trigger warning: Discussion of White House chaos and political correctness
Vox senior politics reporter Jane Coaston joins Ezra and Matt to talk about Trump turmoil, political correctness and the latest research on the state of the parties.
Mar 13, 2018
Nickname fights and wildcat strikes
Vox Politics &amp; Policy reporter Alexia Fernandez-Campbell joins Dara and Matt to talk about the West Virginia teachers strike. References: Alexia’s article on teachers Vox's Alvin Chang just published this amazing tool to see how teachers are paid in your state An explainer on the Supreme Court’s Janus case How public-sector unions are preparing for a post-Janus future The original “If You’re Gonna Play in Texas” Photographer evidence that he’s been called “Beto” since he was a toddler A good primer on “Hispanic” as an identity constructed in the US
Mar 09, 2018
Relief at last for America’s long-suffering banks
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about a bipartisan bank deregulation bill, Medicaid work requirements, and constitutional hardball. References: Mark Tushner’s original constitutional hardball article Ron Chernow’s biography of Ulysses Grant Why there are two Dakotas Dylan Scott’s “Trump’s Hidden War on Medicaid”
Mar 06, 2018
Guns, Weeds, and Steel
Vox senior politics reporter Jane Coaston joins Dara and Matt to talk about a week of extremely erratic policymaking from an increasingly chaotic Trump White House.
Mar 02, 2018
Medicare for Many More
Dylan Scott joins Sarah and Matt to talk about a new universal health care plan — plus some exciting administrative data from the good-old USA!
Feb 27, 2018
The stupidest fucking idea I’ve ever heard
There are also some good ideas discussed. All of them are about guns. German Lopez joins Dara and Matt to talk about gun control in the wake of the Parkland shooting.
Feb 23, 2018
It's finally infrastructure week
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about what’s really wrong with American infrastructure, the massacre in Parkland, FL, and new research on legislators’ irrational decision-making. Whitepaper! Bias in Perceptions of Public Opinion Among American Political Elites by David E. Broockman, Christopher Skovron
Feb 20, 2018
DACApocalypse in the Senate
Matt, Dara, and Andrew Prokop talk about the Senate's failed immigration push, and they parse through the many-layered Rob Porter scandal. DACA/Immigration ReferencesThe 8 Republican senators who voted for the bipartisan compromiseMoran, Thune, and Portman’s new DACA proposal statementTara Golshan’s piece about Grassley’s Secure and Succeed Act Rob Porter ReferencesThe ever-shifting White House story on Rob PorterThe Rob Porter scandal, explainedJane Coaston’s piece: The White House had to protect Rob Porter to save Donald Trump
Feb 16, 2018
The gender pay gap is mostly about children
Matt, Ezra, Sarah, and Dylan Matthews try to explain Trump’s budget and Disability Insurance. For today's white paper: Move over Swedish administrative data, it’s Denmark’s turn. Trump’s budget references:Dylan's explainer on Trump's proposed budgetAirports Council International report on the ownership of European airportsCongressional Research Service report on airport privatizationMatt’s explainer on Trump’s infrastructure planDisability Insurance references:Dylan's defense of SSDITerrance McCoy’s pieces on SSDI for The Washington Post: 597 days. And still waiting &amp; After the check is gonePlanet Money / This American Life report on SSDI A Fiscal Crisis UnfoldingStephen Goss’ perspective on SSDI: The Financing Challenges Facing the Social Security Disability Insurance Program Recessions only modestly increase actual awards of disability insuranceExpiring unemployment benefits don’t lead to an increase in disability applicationsWhat it’s like to apply for disability insuranceDemographics explain most of the rise in disability incidence, and it’s not in fiscal troubleDisability insurance explains at most 0.1 percentage points of the decline in male workGender pay gap references:Today’s white paper: Children and Gender Inequality: Evidence from DenmarkClaudia Goldin studyMarianne Bertrand studySarah’s illustrated version of the Claudia Goldin study
Feb 13, 2018
The six-hour shutdown, explained
Matt, Dara, and Tara Golshan, all weary from lack of sleep, try to make sense of the few hours on Thursday night/Friday morning when the government was shut down. Referenced Works Republicans laughing in Tara's face about addressing immigration: Immigration anxiety got Trump elected. Congress isn’t touching it. Further Reading House Democrats’ confusing, high-risk DACA government shutdown gamble, explained Congress just funded CHIP for a full decade
Feb 09, 2018
What's up with Amazon's health venture — and the stock market
Matt, Ezra, and Sarah talk about the Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway, and JP Morgan announcement about their joint healthcare venture, as well as the recent volatility in the stock market. White paper: From the Bargaining Table to the Ballot Box: Political Effects of Right to Work Laws Referenced Works: Ben Thompson's Stratechery piece: Amazon Health
Feb 06, 2018
MS-13, explained
Dara, Matt, and Zack Beauchamp talk about the policy failures that created the gang haunting Donald Trump's dreams. Referenced Works Are there more than 2,000 MS-13 gang members in Virginia’s wealthy Fairfax County? The Teens Trapped Between a Gang and the Law The 'one percent' statistic Dara mentioned: Why Trump is Wrong to Blame Migration for MS13 Expansion, Violence Further Reading 3 winners and 2 losers from Donald Trump’s first State of the Union Gangs in Central America
Feb 02, 2018
The state of our podcast is strong
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt parse through Trump's State of the Union address and the response delivered by Rep. Joe Kennedy III. Referenced Works: Matt's piece on the State of the Union: Donald Trump has no solutions for America’s big problems German Lopez's piece that Ezra mentioned: Trump’s pathetic response to the opioid epidemic The Health Care Cost Institute report Sarah referenced: 2016 Health Care Cost and Utilization Report Further Reading: Dylan Scott's piece on the address: State of the Union: Trump’s abandoned promise to bring down drug prices
Jan 31, 2018
The white genocide episode you’ve been waiting for
A DACA ransom note from the White House prompts Matt, Dara and Jane Coaston to muse on whose nation this is, anyway. Referenced Works The American Conservative piece Jane referenced: Of Sh*tholes And Second Thoughts Elizabeth Bruenig's op ed for The Washington Post: The antisocial politics of Trump The Passing of a Great Race Nations and Nationalism Imagined Communities Profile of Stephen Miller in high school: How a liberal Santa Monica high school produced a top Trump advisor and speechwriter Further Reading Explainer on the White House immigration framework: The immigration deal Trump’s White House is floating, explained Dara on framework pitting current immigrants against future immigrants: The White House is trying to force Democrats to choose between current immigrants and future ones Jane’s piece on white genocide: The scary ideology behind Trump’s immigration instincts Economic consensus on immigration: There's no evidence that immigrants hurt any American workers
Jan 26, 2018
Shutdown deal special
Dara, Sarah, and Ezra dig into the details of the new shutdown deal — and what it means for the future of shutdown politics.
Jan 22, 2018
The Shutdown Special
A few hours before a looming shutdown, DC is a very postmodern place. Referenced works: Dara on the DACA situation Dylan Matthew on past shutdowns Simulacra and Simulation by Jean Baudrillard On Capitol Hill: The Struggle to Reform Congress and its Consequences by Julian Zelizer How the National Parks Became the Biggest Battleground in the Shutdown from The Atlantic, by Garance Franke-Ruta
Jan 19, 2018
No one wants to take responsibility for sick kids or fake news
Matt, Ezra, and Sarah talk about Mark Zuckerberg's recent announcement regarding what Facebook will focus on in 2018, and the state of the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP).
Jan 16, 2018
Shithole special
The mask slipped with Trump's "shithole" comments, and Matt and Dara take a hard look at what lies beneath it. Content warning: explicit policy discussions.
Jan 12, 2018
Lie back, light up, and enjoy some executive time
German Lopez joins Matt and Sarah to talk about Attorney General Jeff Sessions' most recent move on marijuana, how Trump spends his time, and child mortality in the US.
Jan 09, 2018
Winter, explained
Brian Resnick joins Dara and Matt to talk about the 'bomb cyclone' and how it relates to the climate.
Jan 05, 2018
Why is US life expectancy falling?
It's only the second day of 2018, and Matt, Ezra, and Sarah are already talking about alarming statistics--this time, to do with average American life expectancy. White paper: Bias in Perceptions of Public Opinion Among American Political Elites The GOP is trying to pass a super-unpopular agenda — and that's a bad sign for democracy Impact Policy Submission URL:
Jan 02, 2018
The most undercovered policy stories of 2017
Sarah returns from New Zealand in time to reflect with Matt on the year in policy. White paper: Uniform Pricing in US Retail Chains
Dec 29, 2017
Ask Weeds Anything!
Matt, Ezra, and Sarah answer your questions.
Dec 22, 2017
Tax reforms and garbage factories
Matt and Ezra talk about what the tax bill actually does, whether the deficit matters, and a white paper about rugged individualism. White paper: Frontier Culture: The Roots and Persistence of “Rugged Individualism” in the United States Other referenced works: Albion's Seed: Four British Folkways in America (America: a cultural history) American Nations: A History of the Eleven Rival Regional Cultures of North America Dialect Diversity in America: The Politics of Language Change
Dec 19, 2017
The Great Awokening comes to Congress
Matt, Dara, and Tara Golshan talk about how Congress does and doesn’t handle sexual harassment allegations.
Dec 15, 2017
Alabama senate special
Matt and Ezra talk about the result of the Alabama senate race and the state of the GOP.
Dec 13, 2017
Is the FBI good now?
Matt, Dara, and German Lopez discuss the (shallow, according to some) politics of pro-FBI liberals.
Dec 08, 2017
Net neutrality, explained (Also! Why CVS is buying Aetna)
Matt, Ezra, and Sarah talk through the argument around net neutrality, the possible CVS-Aetna merger, and a white paper about who becomes an inventor in America. Ben Thompson's defense of Ajit Pai Who Becomes an Inventor in America? The Importance of Exposure to Innovation
Dec 05, 2017
How the GOP is weaponizing the tax code
Matt, Dara Lind, and Vox contributor Mike Konczal talk tax reform and Democrats' sexual harassment problem.
Dec 01, 2017
Five big problems with the GOP tax plan
Matt and Ezra parse through the many flaws of the tax bill.
Nov 28, 2017
A very Weeds Thanksgiving
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about what they're thankful for this year — plus disturbing new research about gender bias in surgical referrals. White paper: Interpreting Signals in the Labor Market: Evidence from Medical Referrals
Nov 21, 2017
Tax reform special
Tara Golshan and Dylan Scott join Matt to break down the two different GOP tax bills.
Nov 17, 2017
Republicans’ Roy Moore problem
Matt and Sarah discuss allegations against Roy Moore, Trump's new pick for Health and Human Services secretary, and a slightly better work week. White paper: Time as a Network Good: Evidence from Unemployment and the Standard Workweek
Nov 14, 2017
Virginia is for Democrats
Dara Lind and Andrew Prokop join Matt to talk about this week’s election results and the implications for 2018.
Nov 10, 2017
The vaunted, versatile VAT
Matt, Ezra, and Sarah talk about the possibility of a Value-Added Tax, midterm elections, and acid rain. Mentioned works: A Fine Mess: A Global Quest for a Simpler, Fairer, and More Efficient Tax System by T. R. Reid Creating an American Value-Added Tax The People Left Behind When Only the ‘Deserving’ Poor Get Help Mortality and Access to Care among Adults after State Medicaid Expansions White paper: Long-Run Pollution Exposure and Adult Mortality: Evidence from the Acid Rain Program
Nov 07, 2017
The tax bill's winners and many, many losers
Dylan Scott and Dylan Matthews join Matt to talk about House Republicans’ tax plan.
Nov 03, 2017
Indictment special! Plus: is Paul Ryan cowardly or courageous?
The gang talks about recent developments in the Russia investigation, and Sarah tells us what she learned visiting Canada with Bernie Sanders.
Oct 31, 2017
Purge 3: The Bannoning
Andrew Prokop joins Matt to talk about Steve Bannon’s war on the GOP establishment.
Oct 27, 2017
Republicans: "Math" means you have to cut taxes on the rich. Weeds: Nope.
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk more tax reform, John Kelly's failure to fix the Trump administration, and new research on dental scams. White paper: Health Services as Credence Goods: A Field Experiment
Oct 24, 2017
How immigration took over Virginia’s governor race
Dara Lind and Andrew Prokop join Matt to talk about the surprisingly interesting governor’s election in Virginia.
Oct 20, 2017
The Impact: The curious case of the $629 Band Aid
Introducing The Impact, a new show from Vox hosted by Sarah Kliff.  The Impact explores how policy affects real lives. This season, we’re focusing on healthcare, and the first episode tackles with one of thorniest questions in the American healthcare system: prices. Subscribe to The Impact wherever you get your podcasts.
Oct 18, 2017
How do you solve a problem like Harvey Weinstein?
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt dig into the Harvey Weinstein story, talk a bit about tax reform, and cover new research on Medicaid expansion and savings. White paper: Medicaid and Household Savings Behavior: New Evidence from Tax Refunds
Oct 17, 2017
Trump couldn't repeal Obamacare, so he's making it worse
Dylan Scott joins Sarah and Matt to dive into the newest forms of Obamacare sabotage, and to talk about heroin.
Oct 13, 2017
CHIPping away at gerrymandering
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about CHIP reauthorization, the Supreme Court's big gerrymandering case, and a seminal Richard Thaler paper (Mental Accounting and Consumer Choice).
Oct 10, 2017
Republicans have big dreams and big problems on tax reform
Dylan Matthews and Andrew Prokop join Matt to talk about Republicans hopes, dreams, and nightmares on tax reform.
Oct 06, 2017
Australia solved its gun problem. Could America?
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about gun control in the wake of Las Vegas, the GOP tax reform blueprint, and job-sharing in Germany. White paper: The Employment and Output Effects of Short-Time Work in Germany Referenced articles: What Do We Know About the Association Between Firearm Legislation and Firearm-Related Injuries? A Dynamic Analysis of Permanent Extension of the President’s Tax Relief After a year of work, Republicans have decided nothing on corporate tax reform (Matt's piece)
Oct 03, 2017
The Puerto Rico disaster and Trump's inadequate response
Eliza Barclay and Alexia Fernández Campbell join Matt to talk about Hurricane Maria and its aftermath.
Sep 29, 2017
What's budget reconciliation, and how did it eat the Senate?
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt delve into Senate procedure arcana, break down the latest GOP repeal bill, and talk about a surprisingly easy way to reduce theft. White paper: SNAP Benefits and Crime: Evidence from Changing Disbursement Schedules
Sep 26, 2017
Weeds Live: Canadian immigration and a health insurance experiment
Dara Lind joins Matt and Sarah at the Now Hear This Festival to discuss the Canadian immigration system, and the audience chooses a white paper ( for them to talk about.
Sep 22, 2017
The worst GOP healthcare bill yet
Ezra and Sarah parse through Graham-Cassidy, the latest Republican repeal bill. White paper:
Sep 20, 2017
White House Chinese food summit leads to congressional chaos
Congressional reporters Jeff Stein and Tara Golshan join Matt to talk about congressional Democrats' hopes and Republicans' fears.
Sep 15, 2017
BernieCare and Hillary's abandoned UBI
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt discuss Bernie Sanders' Medicare for All bill and Hillary Clinton's musings on creating a national version of the Alaska Permanent Fund.
Sep 13, 2017
Weeds Live: Atul Gawande on opioids, end of life care, and rock and roll
Atul Gawande is a surgeon and the author of Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End. Sarah interviewed him live, asking about the opioid epidemic, his work with end of life patients, and his terrible college rock band.
Sep 08, 2017
Trump's art of the sabotage
Sarah and Matt discuss DACA, ACA implementation, and some game-changing new research on the real history of all-payer rate setting. White paper: Uncompensated care and the collapse of hospital payment regulation: An illustration of the Tinbergen Rule by Jeffrey Clemens and Benedic Ippolito Paper on Maryland and hospital rate setting: Tracking the demise of state hospital rate setting by John McDonough
Sep 06, 2017
Deferred action podcasting
Dara Lind joins Matt to talk about the past, present, and future of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.
Sep 01, 2017
The policy origins of America's most expensive natural disaster
Sarah and Matt talk about the policy errors behind Hurricane Harvey's devastation, the single-payer wonk gap, and new research on kindergarten red shirting. White paper: School Starting Age and Cognitive Development
Aug 30, 2017
Donald Trump vs the congressional GOP
Tara Golshan and Andrew Prokop join Matt to talk about the bad blood between Trump and Mitch McConnell. Links! Andrew's interview with Dave Hopkins Now Hear This registration (Promo code Weeds) Weeds Facebook group
Aug 25, 2017
How the rich ate all the growth
Ezra and Matt discuss two big papers that help explain America's economic malaise: Income and Wealth Inequality: Evidence and Policy Implications The Rise of Market Power and the Macroeconomic Implications
Aug 23, 2017
Statue limitations
Libby Nelson and German Lopez join Matt to discuss the politics and history of Confederate monuments.
Aug 18, 2017
A very meritorious podcast
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt break down Trump's plan to slash legal immigration, a new way to sabotage Obamacare, and research on ER scams. Got a bill from an emergency room? We want to hear about it. The Company Behind Many Surprise Emergency Room Bills from The New York Times Surprise! Out-of-Network Billing for Emergency Care in the United States from NBER
Aug 16, 2017
Can John Kelly fix the Trump administration? Can anyone?
Dara Lind and Andrew Prokop join Matt to talk about Kelly's record as DHS Secretary and Trump's bizarre Twitter feud with Mitch McConnell.
Aug 11, 2017
Is Google in an "ideological echo chamber"?
Matt, Ezra, and Sarah talk about the now-infamous Google memo, the Democrats' plan for prescription drug pricing, and a study on opioid prescriptions and medical schools.
Aug 09, 2017
The bacon fat theory of school segregation, and some White House chaos
Ezra, Sarah and Alvin Chang talk about the quiet return of segregation in schools, chaos in the Trump White House, and taxing marijuana. Links!The Washington Post article on school desegregation and the Supreme Court.Alvin's piece on school desegregation and gerrymanderingAlvin's article on living in poor neighborhoodsAlvin's article on white America self-segregatingAlvin's piece on Obamacare repeal splitting neighborhoods
Aug 02, 2017
ACA repeal is finally dead (maybe)
Sarah, Matt, and Dylan Scott analyze the night Trumpcare died and what's next for health care.
Jul 28, 2017
Skinny repeal and Trump's management by tweet
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about yet another Obamacare repeal plan, Trump's feud with Jeff Sessions, and new research on retail health clinics.
Jul 26, 2017
A deep dive on basic income
Dylan Matthews joins Matt to discuss the three different version of universal basic income, and why only one of them is good.
Jul 21, 2017
At last, a Weeds about weed (also Obamacare)
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about Democrats' plans to improve Obamacare and new evidence that smoking pot makes you bad at math. Links! White paper: ‘High’ Achievers? Cannabis Access and Academic Performance Ezra's conversation with Dr. Nneka Jones Tapia Latest Worldly episode Tell us (and other Weeds fans) what you thought about the episode in our Facebook group! Subscribe to VoxCare for healthcare news in your inbox daily!
Jul 19, 2017
McConnellCare II: Cruz Control
Matt and Sarah sit down with Dylan Scott to talk through all the nitty gritty details of the Senate's latest health care plan. Links! Ezra debates the Senate health care bill with Avik Roy Dylan Scott's reporting leading up to this latest iteration of the bill McConnell talking to moderates about tax cuts How the Trump administration saved Obamacare in Alaska Tell us (and other Weeds fans) what you thought about the episode in our Facebook group! Subscribe to VoxCare for healthcare news in your inbox daily!
Jul 14, 2017
Minimum wage research showdown (also Russia)
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt wonk out on the latest minimum wage research and Ted Cruz's new health plan — plus some Russia stuff, too. White Paper: Minimum Wage Increases, Wages, and Low-Wage Employment: Evidence from Seattle
Jul 12, 2017
Understanding the opioid epidemic
Drug policy reporter German Lopez joins Matt for a close look at the biggest drug overdose crisis in American history.
Jul 07, 2017
Trumpism and travel bans
Dara Lind and Dylan Matthews join Ezra to talk about the updated travel ban, how Trumpism has translated into policy, and the impact that increasingly awesome video games have had on young men's work habits. Links! White Paper: Leisure Luxuries and the Labor Supply of Young Men Peter Suderman's piece about young men playing video games instead of getting jobs
Jul 05, 2017
Meanwhile, House Republicans are trying to write a budget
Jim Tankersley and Tara Golshan join Matt to talk about House Republicans' struggles to write a budget resolution and get their tax reform agenda on track.
Jun 30, 2017
CB--Oh no this health care bill is terrible too
A new CBO score on the latest Obamacare repeal bill pushes Sarah to the breaking point!Links:Follow along as Matt, Ezra, and Sarah read through the CBO reportGraphs comparing silver insurance plan costs under different health care bills for different income brackets  White Paper: Health Insurance Coverage and Health — What the Recent Evidence Tells Us
Jun 28, 2017
Senate Republicans' health care idea: Make the poor pay more for less
The Senate health care bill is out — and Sarah, Ezra, and Matt are back in the studio to dive into the details of what it means for the marketplaces, Medicaid, and very rich people.
Jun 23, 2017
Georgia (and Obamacare repeal) on our minds
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about Tuesday's special elections and the soon-to-be-released Senate health care bill.
Jun 21, 2017
Trump’s “buck stops somewhere else” foreign policy
Foreign editors Yochi Dreazen and Jennifer Williams join Matt to talk about the diplomatic crisis in Qatar and the never-ending war in Afghanistan.
Jun 16, 2017
Legends of the secret health care bill
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt take the deepest look they can at Senate Republicans' secret health care bill, plus a quick look at Jeff Sessions’s non-answers on Russia and new research on the long-term impact of lead exposure.Links!White paper of the week from the Brookings Institution: New evidence that lead exposure increases crimeCaitlin Owens in Axios on the Senate GOP not releasing their healthcare billDylan Scott on what it would look like it Senate Republicans voted to repeal ObamacareDavid Leonhardt's New York Times piece on the half-hearted opposition to the GOP’s health care planJeff Stein's piece on the left's game plan for beating the GOP health bill9 legal experts weigh on whether or not Sessions can discuss his conversations with the presidentKevin Drum on lead's connection to violent crime and lower IQs in Mother Jones
Jun 14, 2017
Infrastructure week (jk it's about Comey)
Dara Lind and Yochi Dreazen join Matt to talk about Comey's testimony and the larger consequences of the Russia investigation.
Jun 09, 2017
Meet Sprinklecare
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about competing single-payer bills in Nevada and California, plus research on the value of access to the Obama White House.
Jun 08, 2017
Jared Kushner: International man of mystery
Dylan Matthews and politics reporter Andrew Prokop join Matt to talk about the Paris Accords and the mysterious role of the First Son-in-Law.
Jun 02, 2017
A platinum get out of jail free card
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about the real causes of mass incarceration, Trump's move to roll back contraceptive coverage, and the mysterious world of high-end credit cards.Links!German Lopez’s piece about John Pfaff’s “Locked in” Mark A.R. Kleiman, Angela Hawken, and Ross Halperin on graduated reentry as prison reform.Today’s white paper, "Status Goods: Experimental Evidence from Platinum Credit Cards" Our Weeds in the Wild Episode about birth control Ezra Klein’s conversation with Chris Hayes about “A Colony in a Nation” Jon Bois excellent video, The Dumbest Boy in the WorldBooks!"Locked In: The True Causes of Mass Incarceration" by John Pfaff"The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness" by Michelle Alexander"A Colony in a Nation" by Chris Hayes
May 31, 2017
Weeds in the Wild: Tennessee's Healthcare Bald Spot
Sarah Kliff travels to Tennessee to see what it looks like when Obamacare explodes.Links!Sarah's piece about her trip to Tennessee More details about the Missouri bald spotAn interactive map of the counties most at risk of losing all their insurers Our lovely Weeds Facebook groupEmail us at
May 29, 2017
CB--Oh, this bill stinks
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about the new CBO score of Trumpcare and the results of this week's special election in Montana.
May 26, 2017
Trump's budget has landed, and it's terrible
A tanned and rested Ezra joins Matt and Sarah to talk budget, auto-enrollment in health care, and some eye-popping research on zoning.Links:Sarah's piece on auto-enrollmentJeff Stein's piece on reactions to Paul Ryan's agenda The wonderful Weeds Facebook group
May 24, 2017
All the Trump scandal drama you've been craving
Yochi Dreazen and Jennifer Williams join Matt to talk about the new Trump/Russia special counsel and the latest scandal swirling around Michael Flynn.
May 19, 2017
Trump chaos, UBI, and the fracking baby boom
Dylan Matthews joins Sarah and Matt to talk about Trump's latest problems, his reporting on basic income in Kenya, and new research on fracking's impact on marriage and childbearing.
May 17, 2017
Weeds in the Wild: Free Money... For Everyone!
One of the world’s first universal basic income experiments is happening right now in a small Kenyan village. Dylan Matthews went there to investigate.Links!Dylan Matthew's piece about his Kenya tripTwo economists make the case for and against an American UBIA longer UBI explainerPlease send us feedback! Post your thoughts in our Facebook group or email us at
May 12, 2017
The wall in our hearts
Vox's Dara Lind joins Sarah and Matt to talk about James Comey's firing, the border wall, and whether incomes have really been as stagnant as they seem.
May 10, 2017
AHCApocalypse III
Dylan Scott joins Sarah and Matt to discuss the surprisingly swift passage of a revised and reanimated version of Paul Ryan's repeal bill.
May 05, 2017
High-Risk Podcasting
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about Congress's big spending deal, Republicans' newest Obamacare repeal idea, and research on what happens when abortion providers shut down.
May 03, 2017
AHCApocalypse II
Live at Vox Conversations, Sarah, Ezra, and Matt discuss the GOP's doomed effort to reboot Obamacare repeal and the White House's "new" tax reform "plan."
Apr 28, 2017
French elections, national service, and Queens at war
Libby Nelson and Dylan Matthews join Matt to talk about the global nationalist tide, forcing integration across class and ethnic lines, and research on gender and foreign policy dynamics.
Apr 26, 2017
Weeds Live!
In front of their first-ever live audience, Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about Trump surprises, Singapore's health care system, and the impact of longevity inequality on retirement programs.
Apr 19, 2017
Weeds in the Wild: Meet Joan, the Robotic Pelvis
Sarah and Byrd take a look at some policy experiments working to drive down teen pregnancy and abortion rates. They're showing promising results — but they're also under threat.
Apr 14, 2017
The World's Worst Club
Sarah and Matt are joined by Dara Lind for a discussion of the United fiasco, Trump-era immigration enforcement, and pre-K's surprising health benefits.
Apr 12, 2017
Nuclear Winter
Jim Tankersley joins Sarah and Matt to talk tax reform, senate procedure, and the most exciting Swedish administrative data yet.
Apr 05, 2017
A cheery discussion of global warming, Obamacare repeal, and death
Ezra, Sarah, and Matt pick apart Trump's next executive order on climate, exhume the AHCA's corpse, and read a white paper about death.
Mar 31, 2017
Weeds in the Wild: Postville
It was the biggest workplace immigration raid the U.S. had seen to date. 389 workers, almost all of them Hispanic, were detained at a kosher meatpacking plant in Postville, Iowa on May 12, 2008.On this episode of Weeds in the Wild, we look at the effects that this raid had across the state of Iowa, and then take a step back to understand how our immigration policies made this kind of raid possible.
Mar 24, 2017
Mad Dogs and Obamacare Repealers
Ezra and Matt are joined by Yochi Dreazen to talk about national security policy in the Trump era, the latest on ACA repeal, and research indicating the internet's not to blame for political polarization.
Mar 21, 2017
CB-uh oh!
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about Donald Trump's taxes, the disastrous CBO score of the GOP health care bill, and a study on how Chinese imports reduce Americans' marriage rates.
Mar 15, 2017
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt discuss how to pronounce the big new Republican health law, plus analyze its content and the puzzling politics surrounding its introduction.
Mar 08, 2017
Don't Call It a State of the Union
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt try to discuss Donald Trump's address to a joint session of congress through the lens of actual policy.
Mar 01, 2017
Death Panel If You Do, Death Panel If You Don't
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk fake news, town hall protests, and research on why your cell phone bill is so high.
Feb 22, 2017
Weeds in the Wild: Sarah Goes to Kentucky
In another episode of their new podcast, Sarah and Vox's Liz Scheltens explore why Obamacare enrollees in Kentucky voted for Trump.
Feb 17, 2017
Privet, Amerika!
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about the latest Russia-related scandal engulfing the Trump administration, the White House's lack of progress on policy, and new research on how Medicaid expansion reduced the divorce rate.
Feb 15, 2017
The Time Traveling Emanuel Brothers
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about anti-Trump protests, cabinet confirmations, and health insurance age rating (exciting!)
Feb 09, 2017
SCOTUS, DBCFT, and Hitler's Highways
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about Neil Gorsuch, a controversial tax reform idea, and Nazi infrastructure building.
Feb 01, 2017
The Don't-Call-It-A-Muslim-Ban
Dara Lind joins Ezra and Matt to discuss Donald Trump's latest crackdown on immigrants and refugees.
Jan 30, 2017
Gag Order and Infrastructure
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about widely-misunderstood Trump administration efforts to shut up career civil servants, talk about infrastructure, and ask journalism's most pressing question: What's up with eggs?
Jan 26, 2017
Inauguration Special
Shortly after the inauguration ceremonies ended, Ezra, Matt, and Sarah gathered to analyze what it all means in the first Trump-era Weeds episode.
Jan 21, 2017
DeVos, Rigged Polls, and Quitting Bureaucrats
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt are joined by Libby Nelson to discuss Trump's not-so-great hires, not-so-great polls, and new research into how career staff act during presidential transitions.
Jan 18, 2017
Trump Cabinet, Obamacare Update, and Heroin
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about the rush to hold hearings on Trump's cabinet appointees, the sudden emergence of trouble in repeal paradise, and an effort to cut down on pill abuse that backfired massively.
Jan 10, 2017
Sarah and Ezra Interview Obama About Obamacare
Two weeks before he leaves office, President Obama sits down for a lengthy conversation about the lessons of the Affordable Care Act and the law's uncertain future.
Jan 06, 2017
Happy New Year
Sarah and Matt offer predictions for 2017, and offer tax wonk tips about when to time your child's birth.
Jan 04, 2017
Year-End Spectacular
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt each review one big thing they learned in a tumultuous year for policy and politics.
Dec 28, 2016
Kentucky, the Rust Belt, and the Big Picture on Trade
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about what Obamacare-using Trump voters are hoping for, which regions really need help, and a massive overview of the evidence on globalization and inequality.
Dec 21, 2016
Russia and the American Dream
Ezra and Matt discuss Russian hacking, Rex Tillerson, and inequality's role in reducing social mobility.
Dec 14, 2016
Trump's Surprisingly Ambitious Education Agenda
Matt is joined by Libby Nelson to discuss Donald Trump's big plans for K-12 education and his massive financial conflicts of interest.
Dec 07, 2016
Assessing the Trump Cabinet — and Exploring How Recessions Affect Health
Sarah and Matt take a deep dive into what Trump's cabinet picks say about how he will govern, with a particular focus on HHS Secretary-designate Tom Price. Also: an exciting white paper on recessions and health outcomes!
Nov 30, 2016
Conflicts of Interest, Trump and the Media, and Rethinking Teen Pregnancy
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt consider the extraordinary possibility of corruption during the Trump administration, the president-elect's unusual relationship with the media, and a new study debunking the old study about 16 and Pregnant.
Nov 23, 2016
Sneak peak: a new Vox podcast, about how policy effects real people
This is a pilot episode of a new show Sarah has been working on, looking at the real-life stakes of policymaking. The show's name? That's for you to help us decide.
Nov 21, 2016
The Trump Agenda
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about Obamacare repeal, deportations, and the House Democrats leadership fight.
Nov 16, 2016
Trumpocalypse Now
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt look at the causes and consequences of Donald Trump's shocking win.
Nov 09, 2016
The Massive Policy Stakes of 2016
You may not know it from watching cable news — but both Trump and Clinton have very clear and very different policy visions for America. Ezra, Matt, and Sarah dive into their plans to change the country in the last pre-election episode.
Nov 04, 2016
Is Obamacare Failing?
Ezra, Matt and Sarah go deep into what's going wrong with Obamacare's rising premiums — and take on a research paper that helps explain a lot about Gilmore Girls (really!)
Oct 26, 2016
Final Debate Special
Ezra, Sarah, and Matt rally after a late night to talk about the third and mercifully last presidential debate.
Oct 20, 2016
Second Presidential Debate Special
The morning after Clinton and Trump's debate in St. Louis, Ezra, Sarah, and Matt head to the studio to talk about internal Republican divisions, Trump's threat to throw Clinton in jail, and the surprising amount of policy the two candidates covered.
Oct 10, 2016
Veep Debate and Cranky Judges
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt debate Mike Pence's puzzling performance at the vice presidential debate and highlight new research on the surprising link between college football and prison sentences.
Oct 05, 2016
The First Debate and Pet Health Care
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt try to take the policy content of the Trump-Clinton debate seriously and discuss important new research into out of control health care spending -- on pets.
Sep 29, 2016
An Interview with Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell
The Weeds' Sarah Kliff heads to Capitol Hill to interview Secretary Burwell on all things health care. They talked about how to pay doctors to provide better care, the current state of the Obamacare marketplaces, and what she's learned about management running the federal government's largest agency.
Sep 21, 2016
Best Census Ever, the Trump Foundation, and Class Discrimination
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt get deep into the weeds of the latest Census report on income and poverty, briefly consider Donald Trump's ridiculous charity, and discuss new research into class-based employment discrimination.
Sep 14, 2016
Gender Wage Gap and the Mystery of State Legislatures
Reunited after many summer vacations, Sarah, Ezra, and Matt take a deep dive into Claudia Goldin's theory of the gender pay gap and possible remedies. Plus hot new research that proves nobody cares about state government.
Sep 08, 2016
EpiPen Prices, the Clinton Foundation, and Lead Exposure
Why did EpiPen's price skyrocket 400 percent over the past decade? Sarah and Matt dive into the complex world of American drug pricing to find out. Also on this episode: understanding why the Clinton Foundation gets so much scrutiny, and a white paper of the week that shows how problematic a small level of lead exposure can be.
Aug 31, 2016
Obamacare Update and Aging America
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt are all together for a gloriously in-the-weeds discussion of the success and failure of the Affordable Care Act plus some hot new research with bad news for the future of economic growth.
Aug 24, 2016
Think Tanks, Transition, and What Drives Trumpkins
Ezra and Matt talk about conflicts of interest in think tank funding, Hillary Clinton's transition team, and the biggest study yet of who supports Donald Trump and why.
Aug 18, 2016
Trump's tax plan, democratic legitimacy, and the Freakonomics of decisionmaking
Ezra is joined by Dara Lind and Libby Nelson to talk about Donald Trump's new tax plan — how it shows the difference between Trump and reform conservatives, between the Donald and Ivanka, between Democrats and Republicans, and the similarities between Trump and Paul Ryan. The trio also talks about what happens when elections lose legitimacy, and mull over a fascinating new paper by Steven Levitt — yes, the Freakonomics economist — that could change how you make decisions.
Aug 12, 2016
Interview with Atul Gawande
With Ezra and Matt on summer vacation, Sarah is left to her own devices — and decides to share a fantastic interview from the Ezra Klein Show with surgeon and writer Atul Gawande.  Atul talks about the fascinating academic work he has in progress, attempting to improve end-of-life care and make hospitals safer, and how he became a writer in the first place.
Aug 03, 2016
With Matt dispatched to Philadelphia, Sarah and Ezra are left to make sense of the Democratic National Convention. They discuss why it feels so different from the Republican National Convention last week, why it matters that a woman was just nominated for president, and whether Sanders could inspire a Tea Party of the left.
Jul 28, 2016
Republican Convention Special
Matt, Sarah, and Ezra take a deep dive into the many detailed policies proposals discussed at the RNC in Cleveland.
Jul 22, 2016
Basic Income and Police Shootings
Andy Stern joins Ezra, Sarah, and Matt to talk about his new book, Raising the Floor: How a Universal Basic Income Can Renew Our Economy and Rebuild the American Dream. Then, the regular cast considers new research on police use of force.
Jul 15, 2016
Hillary Clinton. Yes, that Hillary Clinton.
A special presentation from the Ezra Klein Show: My interview this week is with Hillary Clinton. You may have heard of her.I won't bore you with Clinton's bio. Instead, I want to say a few words about what this interview is, as it's a bit different than the EK Show's normal fare (though I do ask her for book recommendations!).I got about 40 minutes with Hillary Clinton. I wanted to use that time to try to answer a question I've had about Clinton for years: why is the candidate I see on the campaign trail so different from the person described to me by her staff, colleagues, friends, and even foes? I wanted, in other words, to try to see what Clinton is like when she's working her way through policy and governance issues. And so that's what we talk about. Among the topics we covered are:- Extreme poverty, welfare reform, and the working poor- Is it time for more deficit spending?- Would more immigration be good for the economy?- The difficulties of free college and universal health care- What skills does a president need that campaigns don't test?- What's on her bookshelf?- Why America stopped trusting elites — and what elites should do about itIf you want more on this discussion, I also reported out a long piece on how Clinton governs — you can find it on
Jul 14, 2016
Free College, Email Extravaganza, and the China Shock
Matt, Ezra, and Sarah talk about proposals to eliminate college tuition, the real issues behind Hillary's email server, and a new paper on a small policy change with huge consequences.
Jul 08, 2016
Brexit 2, SCOTUS on abortion, and the missing male workers
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt discuss the United Kingdom's descent into political chaos, a big win for abortion rights at the high court, and a big labor market mystery.
Jul 01, 2016
Welfare reform, SCOTUS deadlock, and health care jerk
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt consider the alarming rise in deep poverty over the past 15 years, a fresh Supreme Court non-decision that imperils Obama's immigration policy, and what to make of the slowing rate of growth of health care spending.
Jun 25, 2016
Guns, Brexit, and Free Condoms
Sarah and Matt discuss the nexus of terrorism and gun control, Britain's upcoming referendum, and an unintended consequence of school condom giveaways.
Jun 17, 2016
5uper Tue5day
Hillary Clinton's clinch of the Democratic nomination gives Sarah, Ezra, and Matt a chance to go deep on what we know about women in electoral politics.
Jun 10, 2016
Accountable Care Organizations, more Swedish administrative data, and the big city recovery
With Ezra in sunny California, Matt and Sarah gets weedsier than ever as she attempts to explain to Matt the mysteries of ACOs before they discuss a brewing controversy over economic journal citations.
Jun 03, 2016
Health care innovation, did Dems rig the primary, and fetal stress
Health care innovation, did Dems rig the primary, and fetal stress: Sarah, Ezra, and Matt look at a specific case in America's great productivity slowdown, assess Bernie Sanders' complaints, and examine some exciting Swedish administrative data.
May 27, 2016
90s nostalgia, Obamacare lawsuits, and the truth about abortion
Ezra, Sarah, and Matt look back at whether Bill Clinton deserves credit for the booming economy of the 1990s, survey the ongoing legal challenges to Obamacare, and dissect new research revealing some surprising facts about abortion rates around the world.
May 20, 2016
Competition in Obamacare marketplaces and how low-income housing can boost poor neighborhoods
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about which companies are succeeding and failure in the Affordable Care Act's new individual market and why, and delve deep into the weeds of some new research on the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit.
May 13, 2016
Trump is the Republican nominee. What happens next?
Trump is the last man standing in the Republican nominating contest — so Ezra, Matt, and Sarah spend this week's entire episode taking stock of what that means. How did the rise of Trump happen? What does it mean for the Republican party? And how much potential does this have to reshape America's political parties?This episode is brought to you by Texture, an app to help you binge-read your favorite magazines. get a free trial right now when you visit episode is also brought to you by Club W, which will give you $20 off your first order when you go to, and will pay your shipping on orders of four bottles or more.And by Goldman Sachs. To learn about developments currently shaping markets, industries, and the global economy, subscribe to the firm’s podcast, ‘Exchanges at Goldman Sachs,’ available on iTunes.
May 06, 2016
Interview with Secretary of Defense Ash Carter
Max Fisher sits down with Defense Secretary Ash Carter to talk about the modern international environment, why Carter thinks great power rivalry is making a comeback, and for some deep weedsy talk about nuclear weapons.
May 02, 2016
Land value taxes, soda taxes, and carbon taxes — oh my!
Every policy nerd has their favorite tax proposal — and today on the Weeds, Sarah, Matt, and Ezra talk about a few of theirs. What would happen if we abolished all taxes and replaced them with a land tax? Is it a good idea to tax sugary sodas? And how did the carbon tax become the default option in the environmental debate?This episode is brought to you by Texture, an app to help you binge-read your favorite magazines. get a free trial right now when you visit episode is also brought to you by Club W, which will give you $20 off your first order when you go to, and will pay your shipping on orders of four bottles or more.And by Goldman Sachs. To learn about developments currently shaping markets, industries, and the global economy, subscribe to the firm’s podcast, ‘Exchanges at Goldman Sachs,’ available on iTunes.
Apr 29, 2016
Our undemocratic primaries, Obama's new fiduciary rule, and the challenge of information polarization
With Sarah still on vacation Ezra and Matt ask what we want out of our presidential nominating system, explain a new regulatory initiative that could save the middle class billions, and look at some new research on media consumption and polarization.The Weeds is supported by Goldman Sachs. To learn about developments currently shaping markets, industries, and the global economy, subscribe to the firm’s podcast, ‘Exchanges at Goldman Sachs,’ available on iTunes.The Weeds is also brought to you by The Great Courses Plus. Visit to stream Understanding Investments and hundreds of other courses for free!And by Harry’s Razors. Visit right now and get $5 off your first purchase with promo code WEEDS.
Apr 22, 2016
Interview with Jason Furman
The Obama administration's top economist talks to Vox's Dylan Matthews about the challenges facing the American economy.
Apr 18, 2016
Why inequality matters, Trump's delegate problem, and the geography of life expectancy
With Sarah on vacation, Matt and Ezra talk about the philosophical underpinnings of worries about inequality, take a look at Donald Trump's difficulty grappling with the delegate selection process, and discuss a blockbuster new paper that reveals huge city-to-city variation in how long poor people live. The Weeds is supported by Goldman Sachs. To learn about developments currently shaping markets, industries, and the global economy, subscribe to the firm’s podcast, ‘Exchanges at Goldman Sachs,’ available on iTunes.The Weeds is also brought to you by The Great Courses Plus. Visit to stream Understanding Investments and hundreds of other courses for free!
Apr 15, 2016
What the hell is going on with tax havens, explained
Ezra, Matt and Sarah use the Panama Papers to discuss how tax havens and shell corporations became such a big deal, and why America has done so little to stop them. Matt and Ezra argue a bit about the effectiveness of global governance. Economist Gabriel Zucman gets name-checked quite a bit. Sarah runs through some really surprising new Obamacare data (Medicaid fans — you know who you are — won't want to miss this!). Today’s episode is brought to you by The Great Courses Plus. Visit to stream Inexplicable Universe: Unsolved Mysteries and hundreds of other courses for free!This episode is also brought to you by Re:Dream, a documentary series on Youtube taking a look at the idea of the American Dream. Watch the videos, find local events, and join the conversation at
Apr 08, 2016
A medical struggle to digitize, a tax calculator, and a paper that explains Trump
It would be really weird to walk into a bank and have the teller take down your information on pen and paper. But it happens all the time in medicine — and we try to explain why. Also in this episode: a new tax calculator reveals how the candidates want to change your taxes, and a political science paper from 2014 helps predict the rise of Trumpism.This episode is brought to you by Club W, offering The Weeds listeners fifty percent off your first wine order when you go to episode is also brought to you by Re:Dream, a documentary series on Youtube taking a look at the idea of the American Dream. Watch the videos, find local events, and join the conversation at
Apr 01, 2016
Replacing No Child Left Behind, wonky March Madness, and Uber's productivity
Special guest star Libby Nelson joins Sarah and Matt to explain the Every Student Succeeds Act, examine the strange history and economics behind the NCAA's non-payment of athletes, and break down some new research on why Uber works. Today’s episode is brought to you by The Great Courses Plus. Visit to stream Inexplicable Universe: Unsolved Mysteries and hundreds of other courses for free!This episode is also brought to you by Re:Dream, a documentary series on Youtube taking a look at the idea of the American Dream. Watch the videos, find local events, and join the conversation at
Mar 25, 2016
Super(b) Tuesday special
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt discuss the results of the March 15 primaries and the state of the 2016 presidential election.Today’s episode is brought to you by The Great Courses Plus. Visit to stream Inexplicable Universe: Unsolved Mysteries and hundreds of other courses for free!This episode is also brought to you by Club W, offering The Weeds listeners fifty percent off your first wine order when you go to
Mar 16, 2016
The productivity slowdown, TrumpCare, and better textbooks
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about why Silicon Valley's technical marvels aren't visible in economic statistics, dive into the details of Donald Trump's surprisingly banal health plan, and tackle some new research on improving teaching by improving textbooks.This episode is brought to you by Squarespace. Start building your website today Enter offer code WEEDS at checkout to get 10% off.This episode is also brought to you by Harry’s razors. Visit and enter WEEDS at checkout to receive $5 off your first purchase.
Mar 11, 2016
Super Tuesday/Exhausted Wednesday special!
In this episode of the Weeds, Ezra, Matt and Sarah discuss the results of Super Tuesday. Everyone is tired, so it gets a bit weird. Topics include whether Donald Trump is actually a moderate, how the election shows American politics is either polarizing or de-polarizing, and whether Bernie Sanders or Hillary Clinton would be a stronger general-election candidate. Oh, and Bernie Sanders has finally convinced Matt that free college —including for rich kids — is a good idea! This week’s episode of The Weeds is sponsored by Warby Parker. Warby Parker brings you a new concept in eyewear: Contemporary eyeglasses that are extremely affordable and fashion forward. Visit to begin your free home try-on experience today!This episode is also brought to you by Club W, offering The Weeds listeners fifty percent off your first wine order when you go to
Mar 02, 2016
TPP, the Nevada Caucus, and the Great Texas Abortion clinic shutdown.
By popular demand, Sarah, Matt, and Ezra finally address the Trans Pacific Partnership before contemplating the GOP's ongoing self-immolation, and the real consequences of the war on Planned Parenthood.Today’s episode is brought to you by Harry’s razors. Visit and enter WEEDS at checkout to receive $5 off your first order.Today’s episode is also brought to you by The Great Courses Plus. Visit to stream Inexplicable Universe: Unsolved Mysteries and hundreds of other courses for free!Today’s episode is also sponsored by CNN’s new original series “Race for the White House.” Uncover the reasons some campaigns became powerful while others failed. The series premieres Sunday, March 6th, at 10pm Eastern on CNN.
Feb 26, 2016
The Supreme Court vacancy and the possible collapse of American democracy
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt consider the case for reforming America's current practice of granting life tenure to Supreme Court Justices, discuss the political fight over replacing the late Justice Scalia, and ponder a 25 year-old work of political science that implies the United States is heading for a coup.Today’s episode is brought to you by The Great Courses Plus. Go to for a special limited-time offer to stream hundreds of courses for free!This episode is also brought to you by Club W. Visit and get fifty percent off your first order today, and don’t ever come home to a wine-free house again.
Feb 19, 2016
Could more corruption fix American politics?
Sarah, Ezra, and Matt use the New Hampshire primary results as a lens through which to discuss Jonathan Rauch's case for "political realism" as a governing philosophy.This episode of The Weeds is brought to you by Squarespace. Start Building your website today at Enter offer code WEEDS at checkout to get 10% off.This episode is also brought to you by Harry’s razors. Go to right now to get $5 off your first order with the promo code WEEDS.
Feb 12, 2016
The Iowa Caucuses
Who wins the 2016 election will hugely influence what type of policies Washington passes — and that's why Ezra, Sarah, and Matt devote this entire episode of The Weeds to dissecting the results of the Iowa caucus. We look at Bernie's surprising success, the declining strength of political parties, and how a Cruz administration would govern.For a limited time, The Great Courses Plus is offering The Weeds listeners a chance to stream The Fundamentals of Photography and hundreds of other courses for free! Go to to take advantage of this special offer.Club W is a revolutionary new wine club that sends you wine directly to yourdoor -- saving you all those trips to the grocery store. Not only does Club W send you wine, they send you wine that you'll LOVE drinking. Visit to get fifty percent off your first order.
Feb 02, 2016
Will taxing the rich hurt growth – and will third parties save politics?
It’s one of the most fundamental disputes in Washington: what effect do taxes have on the economy? On this week's episode of the Weeds, Ezra, Matt, and Sarah work through some of the top papers to explain. Also on this episode: why a third party won't save American politics, and a new working paper that shows a surprising way to encourage students to attend high school.This episode is brought to you by Squarespace. Start building your website today Enter offer code WEEDS at checkout to get 10% off. Squarespace—Build it Beautiful.For a limited time, The Great Courses Plus is offering The Weeds listeners a chance to stream The Fundamentals of Photography and hundreds of other courses for free! Go to to take advantage of this special offer.
Jan 29, 2016
Ross Douthat on campus conservatism, being thankful for Donald Trump, and how to write so liberals will read you
In this preview of Ezra's coming interview podcast, he interviews New York Times op-ed columnist Ross Douthat. Douthat is the author of Privilege: Harvard and the Education of the Ruling Class, Grand New Party: How Republicans Can Win the Working Class and Save Themselves, and Bad Religion: How We Became a Nation of Heretics. He's also a fascinating political thinker with a skill that's rare in these polarized times: he's a conservative writing for an overwhelmingly liberal audience, and he's able to regularly disagree with his readers without alienating them. In this discussion, he tells Ezra about his winding path to the Times op-ed page, as well as his appreciation for Donald Trump, and his predictions for what could split both the Democratic and Republican parties.
Jan 26, 2016
Campaign finance and global inequality — with lead poisoning in between
On this episode of the Weeds, Ezra, Matt, and Sarah dive into one of Bernie Sanders' favorite campaign trail arguments: that money causes more Congressional dysfunction than partisanship. Also on this episode: why the lead poisoning crisis in Flint matters, and a discussion of a (not so great) paper of the week on global inequality. This episode is sponsored by The Great Courses Plus. Just for a limited time The Great Courses Plus is offering our listeners a chance to stream this course: The Fundamentals of Photography - a $235 value- and hundreds of other courses for FREE! Visit for this limited-time offer.This episode is also sponsored by Ballotcraft, a fantasy politics game. Think fantasy football, but for politics. Win in Ballotcraft by best predicting who's going to win the Iowa Caucuses, New Hampshire Primaries, and other upcoming elections. It's 100% free. Check it out at
Jan 22, 2016
Obama's Legacy, debating single payer, and Obamacare's jobs impact
Matt, Sarah, and Ezra reflect on Obama's successes and failures, take a look at Hillary Clinton's new attack on Bernie Sanders, and consider some research on the new health law's surprising lack of impact on the labor market.This episode is brought to you by Squarespace. Start building your website today Enter offer code WEEDS at checkout to get 10% off. Squarespace—Build it Beautiful.
Jan 15, 2016
Immigration and the minimum wage — with an armed stand-off in between
America's immigration debate is peppered with terms like "path to citizenship" and "amnesty." Those catch phrases can mean vastly different things to different people — and on this week's episode of the Weeds, Vox's Dara Lind joins Sarah and Matt to explain. Also on this episode: understanding the family behind the armed stand-off in Oregon, and a new white paper that argues against increasing the minimum wage. This episode is brought to you by Squarespace. Start building your website today Enter offer code WEEDS at checkout to get 10% off. Squarespace—Build it Beautiful.
Jan 08, 2016
Teen births are plummeting — and economists are judging your Christmas gifts
In a very merry Christmas day episode of the Weeds, Ezra and Matt talk to Sarah about how why teen birth rate fell in half since the mid-2000s — and whether MTV's 16 and Pregnant might have anything to do with it. Also in this episode: an economic critique of Christmas presents and a deep dive into Hillary Clinton's pledge not to tax the middle class.
Dec 25, 2015
Gentrification, a budget deal, and the decline of floating voters
Matt, Sarah, and Ezra lay out what is and isn't troubling about gentrification, break down congress' latest fiscal deal, and discuss a paper that explores why swing voting has become rare.
Dec 18, 2015
Ezra interviews Ben Bernanke
In this special episode of The Weeds, Ezra interviews former Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke about what it's like to manage the most powerful economic policymaking institution in the world during a financial crisis. They also talk about Bernanke's views on the Republican party, what he learned from George W. Bush and Barack Obama, and what happened when he went to Texas.
Dec 15, 2015
Why health premiums rise, and how partisans discriminate
Ezra, Sarah, and Matt are reunited at last for a deep dive into why patients in and out of Obamacare are paying more for health insurance, the rising tide of Islamophobia in the presidential campaign, and a look at fascinating new research on the psychological depths of contemporary partisanship. Have you heard The Message? It’s an original science fiction podcast from Panoply and GE Podcast Theater. All of Season 1 is available now, so listen and find out why a 70-year-old alien recording seems to be killing people. Search for The Message on iTunes.
Dec 11, 2015
Dietary fat and climate change
Matt is joined by special guest stars Julia Belluz and Brad Plumer to discuss the science of eating fat, the Paris climate conference, and the public health implications of climate change. The Weeds is brought to you by Squarespace. Start building your website today at Enter offer code WEEDS at checkout to get 10% off. Squarespace—Build it Beautiful. Have you heard The Message? It’s an original science fiction podcast from Panoply and GE Podcast Theater. All of Season 1 is available now, so listen and find out why a 70-year-old alien recording seems to be killing people. Search for The Message on iTunes.
Dec 04, 2015
Childbirth, retirement, and terror in between
This week, Ezra, Sarah, and Matt discuss the flaws in the DC elite's favorite idea: raising the retirement age, consider how to respond to terrorist attacks (with a bonus digression about 19th century anarchist assassins), and debate a striking new data set that shows the baffling variation in how frequently different hospitals perform c-sections rather than traditional childbirths. This episode is brought to you by Squarespace. Start building your website today at Enter offer code WEEDS at checkout to get 10% off. Squarespace—Build it Beautiful.
Nov 20, 2015
We know how to eliminate poverty. So why don't we?
On this week's episode of the Weeds, fellow Vox editor Dylan Matthews joins Sarah and Matt for what is certainly the most in-depth discussion of basic income ever broadcast. Would it really just work to give every American a base salary, regardless of whether they worked or not? Also on this episode: a recap of the best policy tussles in the Republican debate, and a fascinating white paper on why colleges don't punish cheaters — even when they get caught. This podcast is brought to you by Spotless, a sexy and bold drama laced with dark humor from Esquire Network. Learn more about Spotless by downloading ‘Coming Clean’ a roundtable podcast that goes behind the scenes of TV’s best dark dramas, and tune into the Spotless series premiere November 14 at 10/9c on Esquire Network. Today’s episode of The Weeds is sponsored by the American Heart Association, which is urging lawmakers to save physical education. The average school gets just $764 every year for physical education. Go to to learn more and take action.
Nov 13, 2015
How politics is making us stupid
Facts rarely seem to win any political debate — and on this episode of the Weeds, Matt, Ezra, and Sarah use political science research to explain why. Also: the case for softball debate questions and a troubling new study on rising death rates among white, middle-aged men. This episode is brought to you by Squarespace. Start building your website today at Enter offer code WEEDS at checkout to get 10% off. Squarespace: Build it Beautiful. This episode is also brought to you by Audible, with over 180,000 audiobooks and spoken-word audio products. Get a free audiobook of your choice at
Nov 06, 2015
Are we counting poverty all wrong?
This week, Ezra, Sarah, and Matt finally deliver the equivocal takes on gerrymandering that America has been waiting for, dive into the weeds of the big budget compromise, and tackle what may be the dorkiest policy issue of all time — the use of survey vs administrative data to measure household level poverty. Today’s episode of The Weeds is sponsored by the American Heart Association, which is urging lawmakers to save physical education. The average school gets just $764 every year for physical education. Go to to learn more and take action.
Oct 30, 2015
Want to fix inequality by taxing the rich? Good luck.
In this week's episode of the Weeds, Ezra, Matt, and Sarah dive head first into a new Brookings white paper about income inequality (and how to not to fix it). We also imagine what a Joe Biden administration could have been, with a commander-in-chief who considers Republicans friends rather than enemies. This episode of The Weeds is brought to you by Squarespace. Start building your website today at  Enter offer code WEEDS at checkout to get 10% off. Squarespace: Build it Beautiful.
Oct 23, 2015
The Weeds: Can the government trick you into dieting?
On this week's episode, Ezra, Sarah, and Matt debate a little known Obamacare program, learn all about Nordic economies, and take on a new white paper forcing health economists to rethink deductibles.
Oct 16, 2015
Arthur Brooks on think tanks, happiness, and management
In a special edition of The Weeds, Ezra interviews Arthur Brooks —head of the right-leaning American Enterprise Institute, a New York Times columnist, a major influence on Jeb Bush, and a surprisingly snappy dresser. Really.
Oct 15, 2015
Would single payer health care work in America?
In the second episode of the Weeds, Ezra, Sarah, and Matt debate whether nationalized health care could work in America, what solutions are really needed to solve the country's mass shooting issue — and introduce an exciting new, regular segment: white paper of the week!
Oct 09, 2015
Ezra, Matt and Sarah Try to Podcast
In this first episode of the new podcast the weeds, Ezra Klein, Sarah Kliff, and Matthew Yglesias look at why Hillary Clinton is trying to gut a major part of Obamacare, how Donald Trump's tax plan made Matt sad, and whether American politics is becoming structurally biased towards outsiders like Trump and away from insiders like Bush. It gets real nerdy, real fast. This episode was sponsored by For a free audio book and a 30 day free trial, head to
Oct 02, 2015