The Pod Delusion show

The Pod Delusion

Summary: The Pod Delusion is a weekly news magazine podcast about interesting things. From politics, to science to culture and philosophy, it's commentary from a secular, rationalist, skeptical, somewhat lefty-liberal, sort of perspective.

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Podcasts:

 What Britain Can Learn About Referendums From Papua New Guinea | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 43:28

This week we steer clear of the general election - so this podcast won't go out of date! Instead, we talk about a referendum that took place on the other side of the world, on the island of Bougainville, which has just voted to leave Papua New Guinea. There are some striking parallels with our own, umm, recent experience!We also dig into Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey's recent announcement that he wants to make Twitter an open protocol - and speak to open standards expert Terence Eden about whether this could mean good things, or whether it's just a cynical excuse to shift the blame for having loads of Nazis.Plus! We get in the festive spirit by asking two behavioural scientists why we can't just give cash instead.And! One final check-in with Blakeley who has been spending the election campaign away from social media. We discover how he has become well adjusted while the rest of us have just become even more broken.***Join our Patreon and support a voice of sanity in a world that has gone mad.***Follow The Pod Delusion on Twitter and Facebook.Follow your host, James O'Malley, on Twitter. You can email him on psythor(at)gmail.com with any comments or queries! You can follow Dr Liz too.Shane MacLeod from the Lowy Institute was our guest to talk about Bougainville. If you want some further reading, he recommends this paper and this paper, and this magazine piece explaining the peace process and referendum.Terence Eden was our open standards expert. Go check out his always interesting blog.Ella Jenkins and Mike Hughes are from Ogilvy's Behavioural Science Unit.You can also follow Blakeley on Twitter, he might even do some tweets now.

 Is A Narwhal Tusk An Effective Weapon? | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 33:39

This week we tackle the most important question raised by the London Bridge attack: We ask two of the world's most eminent narwhal scientists if their tusks make good weapons. Plus! We dig into a new report on freedom of expression and, horrifyingly, find out that things are actually getting worse.***Join our Patreon and support a voice of sanity in a world that has gone mad.***Follow The Pod Delusion on Twitter and Facebook.Follow your host, James O'Malley, on Twitter. You can email him on psythor(at)gmail.com with any comments or queries! You can follow Dr Liz too.Terrie M Williams and Mads Peter Heide-Jørgensen were our narwhal scientists.Quinn McKew is the deputy executive director of Article 19, and you can read the full report on freedom of expression here.Go subscribe to Primarily: 2020 for all of your Democratic Primary needs!You can also follow Blakeley on Twitter, not that he'll be tweeting much between now and the election.

 How To Survive An Interview With Andrew Neil | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 55:39

This week we speak to Tom Hamilton, a former advisor to Ed Miliband and Jeremy Corbyn on how a politician can go into an interview with the likes of Andrew Neil or Emily Maitlis and come out alive. We also dig into some big, meaty issues and get the low-down on how trade deals actually work with trade expert Dmitry Grozoubinski, and what strategic challenges are facing NATO with the former Vice President of the Atlantic Treaty Association, David Landon Cole. Plus! We catch up with Blakeley Nixon to see how his election season is going without social media.***Join our Patreon and support a voice of sanity in a world that has gone mad.***Follow The Pod Delusion on Twitter and Facebook.Follow your host, James O'Malley, on Twitter. You can email him on psythor(at)gmail.com with any comments or queries! You can follow Dr Liz too.Tom Hamilton is the co-author of Punch and Judy Politics: An Insiders' Guide To Prime Minister's Questions.Dmitry Grozoubinski is our trade mastermind, and runs workshops and courses at Explain Trade.David Landon Cole was our NATO expert.You can also follow Blakeley on Twitter, not that he'll be tweeting much between now and the election.

 How To Abolish The Monarchy | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 39:20

This week we fast-forward to the results of the 2022 Monarchy referendum, in which Britain votes to dump King Charles and turn Britain into a Republic. But how easy is it going to be? What are the complexities that make it an impossible task? We speak to Dr Andrew Blick, a constitutional politics and history expert to find out. Plus! The story of how a group of volunteers are responsible for some stunningly important election infrastructure that the government really should be taking care of itself.***Join our Patreon and support a voice of sanity in a world that has gone mad.***Follow The Pod Delusion on Twitter and Facebook.Follow your host, James O'Malley, on Twitter. You can email him on psythor(at)gmail.com with any comments or queries! You can follow Dr Liz too.Democracy Club is totally awesome and you should go help them out with one of their quests.Dr Andrew Blick was the esteemed academic who indulged my ludicrous hypothetical about the monarchy.You can also follow Blakeley on Twitter, not that he'll be tweeting much between now and the election.

 Dodgy LibDem Bar Charts And Some Surprisingly Good News About Climate Change | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 01:05:59

This week we finally go all Jeremy Paxman on the Liberal Democrats and their questionable use of bar charts by holding Mark Pack, who is running for the party's Presidency, to account. We also had a lovely chat with him about the challenges of digital campaigning. Plus! A new report reveals where are the best and worst places in the world to be non-religious, and we speak to Dr Rebecca Ford, who works on smart energy systems about how (amazingly) we're actually making pretty good progress at decarbonising the grid. PLUS! A major new twist in the insane BBC Breakfast Cenotaph conspiracy theory. We're so, so sorry.***Join our Patreon and support a voice of sanity in a world that has gone mad.***Follow The Pod Delusion on Twitter and Facebook.Follow your host, James O'Malley, on Twitter. You can email him on psythor(at)gmail.com with any comments or queries! You can follow Dr Liz too.Mark Pack is running for LibDem President.Bob Churchill from Humanists International was talking about The Freedom of Thought Report.Dr Rebecca Ford is part of EnergyREV. Here's one of the incredibly interesting papers she co-authored.You can also follow Blakeley on Twitter, not that he'll be tweeting much between now and the election.

 Roll Up, Roll Up, Please Bring Some Insulin, It's The Festival Of Brexit! | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 43:47

This week we explore the government's plan to host a big "Festival of Brexit", to celebrate the biggest foreign policy disaster since World War 2, and figure out how the terror threat level is actually calculated. Plus! We speak to cartoonist Darryl Cunningham about his new book that takes aim at billionaires - and kick off a horrifying election season experiment.***Join our Patreon and support a voice of sanity in a world that has gone mad.***Follow The Pod Delusion on Twitter and Facebook.Follow your host, James O'Malley, on Twitter. You can email him on psythor(at)gmail.com with any comments or queries! You can follow Dr Liz too.Prof Richard Aldrich was our terror expert. Here's his book on GCHQ, and his book on the relationship between the spooks and Number 10.Dr Harriet Akinson has written a whole book about the Festival of Britain and how it was used for post-war propaganda.This is Billionaires by Darryl Cunningham (note the lack of Amazon link - take that, Bezos).You can also follow Blakeley on Twitter, not that he'll be tweeting much between now and the election.

 Don't Retweet Bullshit Polls | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 53:24

What polling pitfalls can we avoid this election season? And what's it like being a candidate on the campaign trail? We speak to pollster Matt Singh and first time Labour candidate for Morecambe and Lunesdale Lizzi Collinge about what being a candidate in a very close marginal actually feels like. Plus! We catch up with Dr Liz who speaks to us on location from a slightly unexpected country.***Join our Patreon and support a voice of sanity in a world that has gone mad.***Follow The Pod Delusion on Twitter and Facebook.Follow your host, James O'Malley, on Twitter. You can email him on psythor(at)gmail.com with any comments or queries! You can follow Dr Liz too.Matt Singh on Twitter and his firm, Number Cruncher Analytics.Lizzi Collinge on Twitter and her campaign website.

 Does Winter Weather Hurt Election Turnout? | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 51:38

This week we figure out the process for joining the EU (hey, it might be important soon), and discover if the conventional wisdom that winter weather is bad for election turnout is actually nonsense. Plus we learn about a Prime Minister who went to Europe, got a deal, and was then turfed out of office in less than a year... it happened in the 18th century. Plus a look at a new podcast based on an amazing dataset: The log books of an LGBT helpline from the 1970s and 80s.***Join our Patreon and support a voice of sanity in a world that has gone mad.***Follow The Pod Delusion on Twitter and Facebook.Follow your host, James O'Malley, on Twitter. You can email him on psythor(at)gmail.com with any comments or queries! You can follow Dr Liz too.Dr Anders Sundell and a blog post about his weather paper.Anna Nadibaidze's Twitter and some of her previous writing on EU enlargement.Caroline Gillan's PhD on the Earl of Bute.The Log Books podcast and Primarily: 2020 podcast - subscribe to both!

 Hello from Belgrade - Back Next Week! | File Type: audio/x-m4a | Duration: 01:28

The Pod Delusion is having a week off while James and Dr Liz are on holiday, but we’ll be back as normal next Friday!

 HONK! Life In Kurdistan, Untitled Geese, Nationalised Restaurants And Brexit Disco | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 49:39

This week we go from the serious to the absurd. We find out what the Kurdish region of Syria is actually like, we take Owen Jones’s suggestion of a National Restaurant chain seriously, get down to a Brexit Disco, and ask an actual goose behaviour scientist if geese really are dicks.***Join our Patreon and support a voice of sanity in a world that has gone mad.***Follow The Pod Delusion on Twitter and Facebook.Follow your host, James O'Malley, on Twitter. You can email him on psythor(at)gmail.com - prospective advertisers are especially welcome! You can follow Liz too.Norma Costello's Twitter and Journalist Page.Prof Peter Atkins' writing on nationalised British restaurants [PDF].Dr Claudia Wascher (she's also on Twitter).The Hustle by Article 54 on Bandcamp and Spotify.Rhodri Marsden on Twitter.Our theme music is by the amazing Milton Mermikidies.HONK!

 Irish Unification, WannaCry, Fixing Left Behind Towns and why What3Words is A.Bad.Idea | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 01:01:39

This week we ask a question that could prove as tricky as Brexit: If Northern Ireland votes to join with the Republic of Ireland... has anyone actually thought through how that might work? We speak to Irish border expert Dr Katy Hayward about what the news channels could be asking her about in 2025.We also dig into another Brexit spin-off issue, the problem of the "left behind" areas of the country and what we can do to help them - we speak to an economist and policy expert who has one intriguing idea. And on the mercifully non-Brexit front, we scare ourselves silly by talking about the WannaCry attack that hit NHS computer systems, and spoke to the author of a new study on exactly what the impact was on the health service. And finally, we look at the publicity hungry location app What3Words, and why it might not be such a great idea after all.Join our Patreon and support a voice of sanity in a world that has gone mad.Follow The Pod Delusion on Twitter and Facebook.Follow your host, James O'Malley, on Twitter. You can email him on psythor(at)gmail.com - prospective advertisers are especially welcome!Dr Katy Hayward's university page and Twitter.Dr Saira Ghafur works for the Institute of Global Health Innovation at Imperial College London.The WannaCry study, published in Nature.Part 1 and Part 2 of Jamie Thunder's Left Behind policy proposal.Terence Eden's Twitter and his blog post about What3Words.Please help spread the word by posting a link to the show on social media or leaving us a nice review on iTunes.

 Why did Britain end up a democracy? And could it all fall apart? Plus: Branches of Currys that still use the old logo. | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 01:00:26

This week we do some hardcore political science, but don't be scared - it explains whether Britain can survive the current shitshow or not. Also! Whether a four day week could actually work, why normal people think about politics way differently to us nerds, and all about what will become your new obsession: Spotting shops with out of date signage.Join our Patreon and support a voice of sanity in a world that has gone mad.Join Humanists UK to protect and uphold human rights for everyone.Follow The Pod Delusion on Twitter and Facebook.Follow your host, James O'Malley, on Twitter.We speak to James A Robinson, author of Why Nations Fail about his new book The Narrow Corridor, which is available now.Aidan Harper from the New Economics Foundation tells us how we can have a 4 day week.Chris Curtis from YouGov tells us about this intriguing research into how voters think about policy.And Joseph Begley tells us all about LogoPops!

 Scooby Doo And The Economics Of Dictatorships (It's That Sort Of Show) | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 56:47

Join our Patreon and support a voice of sanity in a world that has gone mad.Follow us on Twitter and Facebook.Follow your host, James O'Malley, on Twitter.Join Humanists UK today.Ahmed SkaliAhmed and Stephanie Rizio's Dictatorships PaperScott PackScott's book, Tips From A PublisherVictorian BloggingSee the actual Victorian Blogging CollectionMarc Silk on Twitter and Instagram.Marc's Showreel

 Seb Dance MEP Explains What Really Happens In The European Parliament | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 58:49

Join our Patreon and support a voice of sanity in a world that has gone mad.Follow us on Twitter and Facebook.Follow your host, James O'Malley, on Twitter.  Join Humanists UK today.Seb Dance MEP.Dr Kirsty Hughes’ Thinktank, The Scottish Centre on European Relations.Dr Jack Stilgoe.The Londependence Party.Conway Hall’s Victorian Blogging Exhibition.Dr Liz’s Science Fiction Double Feature podcast.

 Fascist Sci-Fi Luminaries, Bitcoin Terrorists and Space Collisions! | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 58:07

It's really happening. THE POD DELUSION IS BACK!Join our Patreon and support a voice of sanity in a world that has gone mad:https://patreon.com/poddelusionFollow us on Twitter and Facebook:https://twitter.com/poddelusion/https://www.facebook.com/PodDelusion/Join Humanists UK today:https://humanists.uk/pod/Jeannette Ng’s acceptance speech:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sQ58zf0vzB0Under The Pendulum Sun by Jeannette Ng:https://amzn.to/2LliQR9Brenna Smith’s Bitcoin Terror Financing piece:https://www.bellingcat.com/news/2019/08/09/the-evolution-of-bitcoin-in-terrorist-financing/Jonathan O’Callaghan’s SpaceX scoop:https://www.forbes.com/sites/jonathanocallaghan/2019/09/02/spacex-refused-to-move-a-starlink-satellite-at-risk-of-collision-with-a-european-satellite/Helen Zaltzman’s new podcast, The Veronica Mars Investigations:https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/veronica-mars-investigations/id1475687979Dr Liz’s Science Fiction Double Feature podcast:https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/science-fiction-double-feature/id1180425463

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