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Conversations with Bill Kristol


Conversations with Bill Kristol features in-depth, thought-provoking discussions with leading figures in American public life.

Popular episodes

Scott Lincicome on the Economy, Inflation, and the Supply Chain

Nov 19 • 01:02:12
Why have the costs of basic goods and services been increasing in recent months? Will shortages in stores and delays in orders for durable goods persist—and what is the meaning of the often invoked supply-chain issues? What public policies might help ameliorate the situation? In this Conversation, Scott Lincicome, a senior fellow at the Cato Institute, considers the dynami...

Linda Chavez: The Border, the Biden Administration, and Immigration Reform

Nov 5 • 01:12:20
In recent years, immigration has become a major flashpoint in our politics. Our increasingly rancorous quarrels often serve to obscure rather than clarify policy choices, and make it more difficult to achieve sound policies. As a result, even as attention is given to problems at the border, surprisingly little attention is paid to reforming our broken immigration system. I...

Harvey Mansfield on Machiavelli as the Founder of Modernity

Oct 21 • 01:11:44
But since my intent is to write something useful to whoever understands it, it has appeared to me more fitting to go directly to the effectual truth of the thing than to the imagination of it. — Niccolo Machiavelli, in Chapter 15 of The Prince. According to Harvey Mansfield, these lines including the phrase effectual truth—a term invented by Machiavelli—are central to Mach...

William Baude on Election Subversion: How Great a Threat?

Oct 8 • 01:07:25
In a recent law review article, University of Chicago law professor William Baude writes, After the 2020 presidential election, the peaceful transfer of power can no longer be taken for granted. How well did our institutions respond to the challenges? What vulnerabilities in our electoral processes and loopholes in our laws represent the most critical threats for the futur...

Joe Trippi: The Biden Administration, the Parties, and Looking Ahead to the Midterms

Sep 21 • 01:03:05
Eight months into his presidency, how is Joe Biden doing politically? How should we understand the current dynamics in the Democratic and Republican parties? What key things should we look for as we head toward the midterm elections in 2022? To consider these questions, we are joined by veteran Democratic strategist Joe Trippi, a shrewd and incisive analyst of our politics...

Donald Kagan: War and Human Nature

Sep 8 • 01:20:38
Donald Kagan (1932 - 2021), who passed away this summer, was a preeminent historian of both the ancient and modern worlds. In 2015,  we were privileged to host Professor Kagan for a wide-ranging Conversation about the major themes of his work. We are pleased to re-release the Conversation here. In the Conversation, Kagan and Kristol discuss what humanity's greatest wars—fr...

Aaron Friedberg: On US-China Relations and the Threats We Face

Sep 3 • 01:41:23
How will the American withdrawal from Afghanistan influence US-China relations? How should we understand China’s geostrategic ambitions—and the threat to Taiwan in particular? How is America dealing with the challenge? To discuss these questions, we are joined again by Princeton professor Aaron Friedberg, author of A Contest for Supremacy and the forthcoming Getting China ...

Eric Edelman: The Crisis in Civil-Military Relations

Aug 26 • 01:03:41
Civilian control over the military, and a non-partisan military, have been bedrock principles of American government since the founding of the country. In recent times, however, significant strains have developed in our civil-military relations. Why should we be alarmed about the growing politicization of the military in America? Why must partisan neutrality prevail, and w...

David Epstein: The Political Ideas of The Federalist

Aug 12 • 01:18:19
Written by Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, and John Jay to defend the ratification of the Constitution, The Federalist has long been recognized as a fundamental text in American political thought. Yet the complexity and subtlety of The Federalist as a work often is not sufficiently appreciated. In this Conversation, David Epstein, author of The Political Theory of The F...

Ashish Jha: On the Delta Variant, Vaccines, and Where We Stand

Jul 28 • 01:09:54
Where do things stand with Covid-19? How has the emergence of the Delta variant changed the situation? How might things look in the US as we had into the fall? To discuss these questions, we are joined again by Dr. Ashish Jha, dean of the Brown University School of Public Health. Jha explains why the highly-contagious Delta variant, coupled with greater-than-anticipated re...

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