This is a slightly different kind of Know Your Enemy episode—a conversation about hope and despair as the effects of climate change bear down upon us. At the center of that conversation is a brilliant new book, Daniel Sherrell's Warmth: Coming of Age at the End of the World, that focuses not on the facts of climate change or how to stop it, but what it feels like to imagine and live into the future in the knowledge of its existence. Matt and Sam are joined by Sherrell and Dorothy Fortenberry, a playwright and television writer currently working on Extrapolations, an upcoming limited series for Apple TV+ that focuses on climate change.
Sources and Further Reading:
Daniel Sherrell, Warmth: Coming of Age at the End of Our World (Penguin, 2021)
Pope Francis, Laudato si' ("On Care for Our Common Home"), May 2015
Dorothy Fortenberry, "Can't Fight This Feeling Anymore: What Donald Trump Understands about Politics Today," Commonweal, November 5, 2020
Sam Adler-Bell, "Beautiful Losers: The Left Should Resist the Comforts of Defeat," Commonweal, March 11, 2020
...and don't forget to subscribe to Know Your Enemy on Patreon for access to all of our bonus episodes!
More episodes from "Know Your Enemy"
You Have Questions, We Have Answers (Mailbag episode)
1 dzień temu
1:10:25As the end of the year approaches, Matt and Sam are once again answering questions from you, their beloved listeners. Like previous mailbag episodes, there was an abundance of excellent questions that were submitted. Topics include: the possibilities for the religious left, white Christian nationalism, your hosts' literary habits and favorite novels, conspiracy theories—and more. For those who especially enjoy this type of episode, check out the next KYE bonus episode on Patreon, which will take up even more listener questions!Sources:Hannah Gold, "The Loud Parts," Harper's, October 2022Jewish Currents, "The Jews" (On the Nose podcast episode), November 23, 2022Alastair Roberts, "On Thomas Achord," Alastair's Adversaria, November 27, 2022Rod Dreher, "The Thomas Achord – Alastair Roberts Mess," The American Conservative, November 27, 2022Matthew Sitman, "Whither the Religious Left?" New Republic, April 15, 2021Ned Rorem, Lies: A Diary, 1986-1999 (2002)Breece D'J Pancake, The Stories of Breece D'J Pancake (2002)Breece D'J Pancake, "Trilobites," The Atlantic, December 1977Andre Dubus, Selected Stories (1995)Janet Malcolm, "I Should Have Made Him for a Dentist," New York Review of Books, March 2018John le Carré, The Spy Who Came in from the Cold (1963)Art Shay, Album for an Age: Unconventional Words and Pictures from the Twentieth Century (2000)...and don't forget to subscribe to Know Your Enemy on Patreon for access to all of our bonus episodes
How Fetterman Won (w/ Joe Calvello)
40:27This is episode is a little different. Listeners know that Matt and Sam have been following John Fetterman's Senate campaign in Pennsylvania from the start, doing their first episode about him after his primary win in May. After his victory over Dr. Oz earlier this week in the general election, they talked to the Fetterman campaign's Director of Communications, Joe Calvello, for a behind-the-scenes look at how they did it. Topics discussed: Fetterman's strategy of defining Oz early (and, yes, the origins of some of Fetterman's most popular Twitter dunks), left populism, crime, abortion, why voters have a right to be angry, and how the campaign responded to Fetterman's stroke and turned his very public recovery into one more argument about why he'd fight for Pennsylvanians. To hear Know Your Enemy's full take on the midterm elections, recorded earlier this week, listen and subscribe on Patreon here — you'll also get access to all of our previous bonus episodes!
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TEASER: The Red Ripple (Midterm Debrief)
3:44Subscribe to Know Your Enemy on Patreon to listen to this bonus episode, and all of our bonus content: https://www.patreon.com/knowyourenemyMatt and Sam recap and analyze the 2022 midterms — as we know them so far. Why did Dems do so much better than we thought? Why did the GOP underperform? How cucked were the polls? How happy is Matt that John Fetterman beat Dr. Oz? (Very) What about Blake Masters in Arizona? Was this a bad night for Trump? Was it a good night for DeSantis? How worried should we be about the integrity of American democracy given these results? And how happy should we be that the Democrats managed to stave off the worst possible outcome? Listen while it's hot...
1:31:15"What is best and weakest in America goes out to reciprocating strength and deficiencies in Richard Nixon." It's difficult to think of a more electric meeting of author and subject than Garry Wills and Richard Nixon, a meeting that produced what might be the best book ever written about American politics, Wills's Nixon Agonistes: The Crisis of the Self-Made Man. What begins as reporting from the campaign trail during the 1968 presidential contest—where Wills introduces us to Nixon, George Wallace, Nelson Rockefeller, and more—eventually becomes a profound meditation on the fate of liberalism in the United States. Wills found in Nixon the key to unlocking the reigning—but by then faltering—myths of their country's history and self-understanding, and what they reveal about each other. Along the way he discusses the complex psychological dance between Nixon and Dwight Eisenhower; takes us on a tour of Nixon's hometown, Whittier, California; describes the Republicans' "southern strategy"; examines the roiling anger and protests over the Vietnam War; and offers on-the-ground reportage from the 1968 conventions (the GOP's in Miami, the Democrats', infamously, in Chicago). Matt and Sam try to make sense of it all and ponder what Nixon Agonistes might say about how we got here and where we're going. Sources:Garry Wills, Nixon Agonistes: The Crisis of the Self-Made Man (1970) Confessions of a Conservative (1979) Outsider Looking In: Adventures of an Observer (2010)Kevin Phillips, The Emerging Republican Majority (1968)Tom Wolfe, The New Journalism (1973)KYE, "Joan Didion, Conservative, (w/ Sam Tanenhaus)" Jan 13, 2022 ...and don't forget to subscribe to Know Your Enemy on Patreon for access to all of our bonus episodes!
TEASER: State of the States (w/ Aaron Kleinman)
2:27Subscribe to Know Your Enemy on Patreon to listen to this bonus episode, and all of our bonus content: https://www.patreon.com/knowyourenemyWith the midterms a week away, Sam talked to Aaron Kleinman of The States Project (aka @BobbyBigWheel) about the battle to defend American democracy at the state level — where Trumpist state legislators continue to deny the 2020 election and lay the groundwork for ignoring the will of the majority in the future. How did the conservative movement manage to to take over so many statehouses? Can Democrats still turn back the tide? What is the "independent state legislature" theory? Aaron helps answers these questions and more — and gives us a useful rundown of the states to watch closely in the midterms next Tuesday.
Why Conservatives Love Baseball (w/ David Roth)
1:13:49At long last, an episode about baseball—America's national pastime, and a sport that conservatives in the United States seem to especially love. To understand baseball's appeal, both to conservatives and the rest of us, Matt and Sam are joined by David Roth of Defector Media, a brilliant, funny writer who also is a long suffering Mets fan. Topics include: the start of the MLB playoffs, baseball's interesting place in American history, varieties of conservative baseball fans, and more!Sources: George F. Will, Men at Work: The Craft of Baseball (Macmillan, 1990) "Foul Ball," New York Review of Books, June 1991Donald Kagan, "George Will's Baseball—A Conservative Critique," Public Interest, Fall 1990Tim Marchman, "Did George Will’s Men at Work Anticipate Baseball’s Statistical Revolution?" Slate, April 27, 2010David Bentley Hart, "A Perfect Game," First Things, August 2010Greg Hillis, "Quit Trying to 'Fix' Baseball," Commonweal, March 27, 2018David Roth, "Replacement-Level Billionaires," The Baffler, March 2020Leander Schaerlaeckens, "Was Donald Trump Good at Baseball?" Slate, May 5, 2020Michael Serazio, "The GOP hates baseball now. But it has always been a conservative sport," Washington Post, April 7, 2021...and don't forget to subscribe to Know Your Enemy on Patreon for access to all of our bonus episodes!
TEASER: Giorgia Meloni's Neo-Fascism (w/ David Broder)
3:03Subscribe to Know Your Enemy on Patreon to listen to this bonus episode, and all of our bonus content: https://www.patreon.com/knowyourenemySam is joined by David Broder — the Europe editor of Jacobin Magazine and author of First They Took Rome: How the Populist Right Conquered Italy and the forthcoming book, Mussolini's Grandchildren: Fascism in Contemporary Italy — to discuss the recent victory of Giorgia Meloni in Italian general elections. Meloni's Brothers for Italy party descends directly from the neo-fascist parties of post-war Italy. We discuss the ways in which her victory is continuous and discontinuous with the recent history of right-wing populism in Italy — from Silvio Berlusconi to Matteo Salvini. And David explains how Meloni has incorporated fascist nostalgia and historical revision into a 21st century, identitarian nationalism, which draws heavily on conservative economics, anti-feminist and anti-LGBTQ politics, and "great replacement" nativist conspiracy. Further reading: David Broder, "Italy’s drift to the far right began long before the rise of Giorgia Meloni," Guardian, Sept. 2022. Natasha Lennard, "It's a Girl (Fascist!)," The Intercept, Sept. 2022.Adam Tooze, "Who is going to vote for Italy's right-wing coalition?," Chartbook, Sept 2022.
TEASER: I Taught the Sheriff (w/ John Ganz)
3:05Subscribe to Know Your Enemy on Patreon to listen to this bonus episode, and all of our bonus content: https://www.patreon.com/knowyourenemyKYE super guest John Ganz joins Matt and Sam for a characteristically spirited discussion of The Claremont Institute's "Sheriff Fellowship," which invites county sheriffs from across the country to California for a weekend of West Coast Straussian ideological programing. Drawing on the history of "posse comitatus" movements and recent reports on the role of conservative sheriffs in resisting COVID mandates, propagating 2020 election lies, and cozying up to vigilante militias, we offer a synthesized account of why the mythologized figure of the sheriff — and sheriffs themselves — have such an attraction for right-wing radicals intent on subverting American democracy.Further Reading:Jessica Pishko, "Here’s the Secret “Sheriff Fellowship” Curriculum From the Country’s Most Prominent MAGA Think Tank," Slate, Sept 21, 2022.Alexandra Berzon and Nick Corasaniti, "2020 Election Deniers Seek Out Powerful Allies: County Sheriffs," NYTimes, Jul 25, 2022.Adam Rawnsley, "MAGA Claremont Institute Honors Sheriffs Who Defy Laws They Don’t Like," Daily Beast, Nov 22, 2021.Ashley Powers, "The Renegade Sheriffs," The New Yorker, Apr 23, 2018. Kimberly Kindy, "Boosted by the pandemic, ‘constitutional sheriffs’ are a political force," Washington Post, Nov 2, 2021.Christian Vanderbrouk, "Notes on an Authoritarian Conspiracy: Inside the Claremont Institute’s “79 Days to Inauguration” Report," The Bulwark, Nov 8, 2021. Michael Anton & Glenn Elmers, "The Stakes: Harry Jaffa’s Philosophy," The American Mind, Sept 19, 2022.
After the Theocons (w/ Damon Linker)
1:28:19Damon Linker is an idiosyncratic figure among political writers—trained by Straussians as a political philosopher, he's a former editor of First Things, the flagship publication for intellectual religious conservatives, who broke with that publication over the Iraq War (among other things) and is now a self-described centrist. He's also a longtime friend of the podcast, who recently started his own attempt to grapple with what's happening in the GOP and among conservatives, a Substack newsletter he titled Eyes on the Right. In this conversation, Matt and Sam talk with Linker about what his own trajectory can teach us about the Right: his experiences working at First Things while the Bush administration was gearing up to invade Iraq; why thinks Sarah Palin marked a turning point on the Right; and his case for understanding Donald Trump as a political, rather than legal, problem. Sources:"The End of Democracy? The Judicial Usurpation of Politics," First Things, November 1996Damon Linker, "There is No Happy Ending to America's Trump Problem," New York Times, Aug 21, 2022 "A Giving of Intellectual Accounts," Eyes on the Right, Sept 9, 2022 "How Do You Solve a Problem Like Donald Trump?" Eyes on the Right, July 18, 2022 The Theocons: Secular America Under Seige (Doubleday, 2006)Matthew Sitman, "Reading Left to Right" (review of Richard John Neuhaus: A Life in the Public Square), Commonweal, Aug 24, 2015...and don't forget to subscribe to Know Your Enemy on Patreon for access to all of our bonus episodes!
On Barbara Ehrenreich (w/ Alex Press & Gabriel Winant)
1:35:10This episode was unplanned, but when Barbara Ehrenreich died on September 1, 2022, we felt an urge to honor her memory and the profound influence she has had on the American left, socialism, feminism, and our collective thinking about class struggle. From her work in the women's health movement of the 1960s, to her theorizing (with ex-husband John Ehrenreich) of the "professional-managerial class" in the 1970s, to her explorations of Reagan-era yuppie pathologies, and her renowned exposé of low-wage work in 2001's Nickel and Dimed, Barbara Ehrenreich has been an essential and nuanced guide to the inner-life of American class conflict in the latter half of the 20th century and the beginning of the 21st. To undertake this journey through an extraordinary body of work, we're joined by two brilliant writers who have both — in their own way — taken up Ehrenreich's profound ethical and intellectual challenge: Alex Press, staff writer at Jacobin magazine (and KYE's favorite labor journalist); and returning guest Gabe Winant, University of Chicago historian and author of The Next Shift: The Fall of Industry and the Rise of Health Care.As Gabe writes in his stunning obituary last week, "Ehrenreich’s specialty was to reveal her readers to themselves by showing them the other. Her humor and projection of personal vulnerability were particularly deft techniques for asking the reader to see their own position, often through identification with Ehrenreich: she invites this, beckoning you to follow her into her subject, and then suddenly wheels around on you—and you are caught out." We hope this episode can manage something of that technique for the listener, that you might find yourself "caught out" too, thinking deeply about where you fit into the story Barbara is telling — and what it might call on you to do, fight for, or think harder about. Enjoy. Further Reading: Barbara & John Ehrenreich, "The Professional-Managerial Class," Radical America, March 1977. — "The New Left and the Professional Managerial Class," Radical America, May 1977.— "Death of a Yuppie Dream," Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung, Feb 2013. Barbara Ehrenreich & Deirdre English, Witches, Midwives, and Nurses: A History of Women Healers, The Feminist Press, 1973.Barbara Ehrenreich, Fear of Falling: The Inner Life of the Middle Class, Pantheon, 1989. Barbara Ehrenreich, Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting By in America, Metropolitan, 2001. Barbara Ehrenreich, "Preface to Klaus Theweleit's Male Fantasies Volume 1: Women, Floods, Bodies, History," U of Minnesota Press, 1987. Gabriel Winant, "On Barbara Ehrenreich," n+1, Sept 9, 2022. — "Professional-Managerial Chasm," n+1, Oct 10, 2019. — "The Right Kind of Worker," Know Your Enemy, May 2022. Alex Press, "On the Origins of the Professional-Managerial Class: An Interview with Barbara Ehrenreich." Dissent, Oct 22, 2019. David Rieff, "White Bread, White Dread (review of Fear of Falling)," LA Times, Aug 20, 1989. This episode of Know Your Enemy is dedicated to Barbara Ehrenreich (1941-2022) and all those who loved and learned from her.