In the most recent discussion episode, you guys talked about how you don't mind celebrities in politics and in fact think it somewhat "fits" the current moment in the way that men with beards fit with the 1880s. My question is: if you could magically appoint any celebrity to any public office, who would you pick, and for what position? (This is supposed to be more of a fun question, but feel free to take it as seriously or as realistically as you want!)
Huge fan of the Marshall, Saagar, the Realignment and Breaking Points! The Spotify link button on the subscriber page just links back to the same page (https://realignment.supercast.com/subscriber). You may already be aware of this and still working on getting it set up but just wanted to let you know.
I think DeSantis has more support than you guys (primarily Saagar) think amongst voters. Saagar was saying on BP that Trump is just a better version of DeSantis (i.e bigger celebrity, DeSantis is just a Trump carbon copy, etc.), but I feel the opposite. DeSantis seems to have learned a lot from Trump, but actually knows how to govern. Trump is no where to be seen on Social Media. DeSantis is all over conservative meme accounts that people share, he is actually on Twitter, he's governing well, he can claim he saved us from more COVID lockdowns. I also know many "2016 Trump Voter, but 2020 Biden Voter" people who would happily vote DeSantis over Trump (albeit that's not empirical). DeSantis is Trump-Esque, but younger, has a better governing resume, has military experience, visibly/orally sharper, knows how to read the "vibes", and the "libs" hate him (which needs to be a top attribute for the GOP candidate, whether we like it or not). The Trump affect is weaker than it has ever been, but the "anything-but-Biden" vibe is very high. I am reading the FDR bio by Jean Edward Smith, and the 1932 election seems somewhat similar. We have an awful economy, Hoover is not sensitive and set in his ways and the nation is fed up. A politician named FDR is reading the "vibes" of the nation well and ascends to the presidency. I feel like DeSantis could do some of that.. I know it's wishful thinking. Maybe the culture war is too strong. Maybe our media ecosystem hasn't reset yet enough for this. As students of history and far smarter than I am on this topic, I would love to hear your thoughts. I am a recent college grad, live in Texas, went to university in the south. I just feel like DeSantis is the hotter name than Trump.
(It's Tee-Fen-Taller) I wanted to ask Saagar about his comment calling Joe Manchin a "great senator." The reason you gave was that he uses cultural issues to manipulate voters into overlooking his failures and corruptions, which you called horrific. So when you say he's a great senator, do you just mean he's good at holding on to power? It sounds like you don't approve of what he does with that power. To me a "great senator" would be a senator who uses the power entrusted to them by voters in order to materially improve voter's lives and responsibly execute the responsibilities of the office. In a similar vein, when Saagar talks about that book, Freedom from Fear, the explanation is that all of the myriad New Deal policies made people feel like the government was doing something to alleviate the suffering caused by the Great Depression. Of those policies, however, very few of them were actually effective as far as bringing the Depression to an end. My apologies if I got that wrong. So if FDR's New Deal policies were actually not effective, what is it that makes him such an admirable figure? (before WW2 that is). Are you defending a version of Plato's Noble Lie? Thanks for all the work y'all do putting these shows together. I find them extremely valuable.
I have been listening to the 3 Frank DiStefano episodes again and it has me thinking about what the next big issue is that resets our political landscape (ex. westward expansion, slavery, industrial revolution/new deal). What is the new big issue? I keep coming back to "information" or the "data economy". Personal data being monetized has changed our life (ex. social media, amazon using consumer data to make their own products, personalized ads, etc.). I think Andrew Yang said in his Realignment episode that the "freedom dividend" could be the money we get in returnn for everyones personal data being widely used. Curious to see what your pre-midterm thoughts are about this? I know this is the goal of the show and its always a moving target, but love to see how you think about it as of June 2022. Thanks guys.