148 Comments

What a fantastic Podcast. We need more of this honest talk. It made me make a bit more sense of what all this is about. Do we believe in government of,by and for the people? All citizens? Or do we believe in a government for the land and landowners? That’s been the fight throughout our history. Still fighting. We’ll always have to fight until everyone is valued.

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And I LOVE that quote from VP Harris. More of that!

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This was an awesome conversation, Tim & Prof Glaude! Thank you!

I am not sure how to elevate this idea, so I will start with some of the comment boards. First: thank you for everything the Bulwark does. I'm proud to support you. Now, my idea is this:

There will be a several day Democratic National Convention, as well as a several day Republican National Convention. There will be broadcasted debates. Could there be an event or a series of events that I can only describe at the moment as nonpartisan rallies for democracy? Could the itineraries for these include speakers from all reasonable sides of the political spectrum, interleaved with celebrities (singers/performances/comics)? Could these be hosted in important locations, such as battleground states? Could they somehow be nationally televised & tick tocked (I'm old)? Could they touch on important democratic ideas, such as the facts 1) that no candidate will ever be perfect and solve all of our problems, 2) it's our responsibility as citizens to choose better leaders (a nod to some of Eddie Glaude's commends toward the end of the discussion), 3) Americans are not enemies, 4) compromise is our historic strength?

Again, thank you for what you do, and if you think this idea is worth pursuing, what I should do or who I should contact next?

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I LOVE this idea !!

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Sorry, Tim, but when your guest talked about the founding of Israel as a Jewish state in 1948 "in the context of colonialism" and did not once mention the murder of 6 million Jews during the Holocaust -- had to turn it off.

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Thank you, Tim. I recall you saying once that your mom was born in the 1960s, and I loved what you said to the professor about those of us, Gen X really, or Gen Jones(per Jonathan Pontell), growing up surrounded by disturbing events. Amen to that! And you did not call us baby boomers, (hallelujah!) for this, I am ever so grateful! We did experience the fallout of the boomers for sure, but we were always an afterthought, tucked neatly in with a generation we could not relate to, and our voices have never really mattered. Yes, we grew up with corruption and violence as the air we breathed in childhood.

(I got in trouble once for standing on a garbage can in my neighborhood yelling, “Politics! Violence! Politics! Violence!…” I didn’t know what the words meant but someone said they were bad words.)

What differs our time as youth distinctly from the young people of today, is that we never expected anyone to listen to us. No one paid much attention to us. We weren’t the baby boomers afterall. And obviously, because we are a rather forgotten, displaced generation, many still feel unheard and as if they don’t matter.

So, sorry for the rant, but I appreciate you calling it out!

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I was deeply irritated by Glaude describing the backlash against DEI and affirmative action as a matter of white people ("the Christopher Rufos of the world") taking something away from black and brown students. The fact is that merit-based admission, including the use of standardized testing, has greatly helped minority students gain access to higher education, and especially to the most selective schools. There is absolutely no quicker way to alienate the Asian community, of which I am a member of, than to continue promoting DEI and racial quotas as a basis for admissions. If a certain minority group can't compete on test scores, the answer is to give them every bit of help they need - tutoring, test prep, financial assistance to afford this things - rather than just let them in by giving them a lower bar to clear. Every Asian family in our orbit is feeling some version of "this woke stuff has gone too far" and is very open to voting for Republicans, especially at the state and local level. If the Republican nominee was someone other than Trump, many Asian voters would be joining the black and Hispanic voters switching sides. Indeed, some are doing it anyway in spite of Trump. Glaude framed DEI, equity, and merit-free affirmative action as intrinsic goods and was highly presumptuous that the Bulwark audience would be in his camp. Tim disappointingly didn't challenge him during that part of the podcast. I didn't bother listening to the last 10 or so minutes, Glaude simply lost me.

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Why did you hear merit free? I didn’t.

I think we all have to be a bit more honest anout this. He didn’t say anything about quotas at all. All who are not whote males just want an equal shot. They are not the standard that we all have to match. I don’t want to be anywhere that people are the same - whether I am one of the sames or the only one different. I don’t want special treatment and he didn’t say he did either. He just wants to be there if he deserves it. That’s what I heard. But in order to fully understand I’ll have to read the book.

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Honestly, it is one of the few episodes where I left early too. I did not feel the professor was open to different thought. Even about my aforementioned comment, he minimized.

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I had a lot of trouble with his deep sympathy for the anti-Israel protests (like, it's totally normal that they want Israel wiped off the map and 7 million Jews ethnically cleansed... after all, Israel has had a RIGHT WING government for much of their lives! What else are they supposed to think?!), contrasted with his analysis of Trump voters ("white folks have gone crazy again").

I'm a Bulwark subscriber; of course my sympathy for Trump voters is limited. But Dr. Glaude's wildly different standards for understanding others is pretty hypocritical, and I don't think we're going to defeat Trump by writing off his voters as morons who can't possibly be understood in other terms. This is probably my deepest disagreement with the turn the Bulwark has taken recently.

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Yep. I left when he described the founding of Israel in 1948 "in the contest of colonialism," instead of in the context of 7 million Jews murdered by Nazi Germany...

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May 15·edited May 15

My big complaint with Prof. Glaude is his take on just how hard this generation has it. Harder than anyone. Oh my, those poor students who were suffering without food for a few hours after they took Hamilton Hall. I contrast that with my mother and grandmother’s stories of having to take their rations cards to buy the everyday staples of life during WWll and had to go without many times. Or the fear of young Jews, the ages of these students, living in Europe and being round up for extermination. I mean is he for real on that subject of todays student’s sufferings?

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Agree, I don’t want to minimize the pandemic, but it’s hard not to feel like kids might feel better if they just put their phone down. Beaming a curated feed of nonsense and disasters into your face 24/7 can’t be good for you. There’s also such an emphasis on a sort of pop psychology online, especially around trauma, that you wonder if people are allowing themselves to be defined by perceived harm instead of learning to manage it.

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And with that I have some hope again. Work to do. But hope.

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This may be my favorite podcast episode. So many words of wisdom. I am ordering the book

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I cannot lie, I had a moment of near panic during this one. No, not when Tim casually mentioned coming to terms with a Trump victory (vomits into my mouth), but when Eddie started listing off top-tier schools and tossed Amherst into the list after the typical Ivys! "What, no Williams" I screamed to no one in particular during my morning run. But fortunately, Williams was then promptly mentioned and all was right with the world for this Purple Cow and Ephperson. #amherstwasmysafetyschool

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You touched upon one of my minor pet peeves. For most high school seniors wanting to go to college, the alternatives aren't ivy league or community college. For most, it's which 4 year state university/college or nearby private school.

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Yes, I was confused and dismayed about the idea that some Biden voter is upset because they think their kid can't get into an Ivy League because of affirmative action. Where I come from most students are excited to be able to get into the best state university.

It's mainly the Eastern elites who worry about college admission not your average voter.

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Enjoyed the show—thanks :)

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May 15·edited May 15

Dr. Glaude is an engaging speaker and I enjoyed listening to him. I wish I'd heard him somewhere else. We're trying to hold a coalition together here to save the Republic in six months, and it suddenly had already become a lot harder with the anti-Israel protests, which have driven splits between us faster than I would have believed possible. The comments here show that Dr. Glaude is not very helpful with that, in fact the opposite.

Listening to a Black man with a PhD from Princeton tell us that no, there really HASN'T been any progress for Black people in this country during the past seventy years was a little like being visited from a much worse alternate reality. Tim, to his credit, did try to push back, some. What it reminded me of was Clarence Thomas's take on his Yale experience: the two extremes of the horseshoe are so close that they crush reality between them.

Dr. Glaude thinks that Bernie Sanders represented how American politics should be remade. He, and a tiny percentage of the voting public who don't like the United States very much. He wanted to "break the back of Clintonism". His opinion, but I think that Clintonism was what made the Democrats competitive again after Reagan. He offers excuses for people who choose not to vote because the choices on offer don't meet their standards. Tim did push back well on that one, but the guest just wasn't buying it: when people decline to be good citizens, in his view, it's somebody else's fault. The legitimizing of the Israel-as-a-Colonial-Project tropes were ahistorical and outrageous, as they always are. Poison delivered with a spoonful of sugar and a sunny smile is still poison.

Dr. Glaude IS an engaging speaker, and I really would enjoy hearing you two contrast your analyses of neoconservatism. Please do bring him back for that, Tim -- and please follow your impulse to do it AFTER the election.

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One point on which I appreciated Glaude's critique of The Bulwark was his argument that the binary-choice framework is patronizing. Whenever I hear it, there's a part of me that wants to vote third party just to give the middle finger to those attempting to trap me in their binary-choice prison.

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May 19·edited May 19

If the only choice were between, say, Elizabeth Warren and Gavin Newsom, or between Jim Jordan and Tucker Carlson, I would consider either of those to be a real "binary-choice prison" and would sit the election out.

The choice between Biden or Trump for President is binary, but it's no prison. Almost nine years after Trump came down that garish elevator, I think that a lot of what comes across as "patronizing" is actually tightly controlled frustration at people who prefer blaming the messenger to accepting that (our current) reality is real, that the difference between the two is one of kind and not degree, and that the election of only one will lead to a disaster that may be unrecoverable.

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You seem to accept our current milieu as a force of nature for which no one can be held responsible - a constraint that we just have to accept and react to. I refuse to accept those rules of the game as a given. I know too much game theory to allow myself to get stuck in one model.

But this is also a matter of my personality. Whenever anyone tries to coerce or manipulate me, my top priority becomes making them regret it.

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Not a force of nature, but one of a limited universe of available fact sets among which we can choose. We exercise our agency by choosing the fact set in which we're going to participate, but we have very little power as individuals to modify the conditions of the set itself, so the question of "who's responsible" is only a distraction, at least in the short term.

I exited this particular fact set in 2017 by becoming a permanent expat, so I enjoy these discussions as an intellectual and social exercise rather than as a real participant. While I certainly have family and some financial connections to the US, I don't in fact have a dog in the fight, so if I seem detached and perhaps a little blasé, that's probably why.

My personality is not dissimilar, except that whenever anyone tries to coerce or manipulate me, unless they do something malicious to actually harm me, my top priority is only to neutralize any power they may have over me. After that, their regrets are not my concern.

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Can't agree. Speaking civilly, among friends, about disagreements is how you keep the coalition together.

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I've thought so for a long time, but I'm no longer so sure. The Hamas-sympathetic demonstrations and civil disobedience have been like acid poured over our coalition and political culture, eating away in days and weeks alliances that took months and years to build, and damaging and disfiguring everything that they don't destroy outright. I really don't see how we completely recover from this, especially in only six months. And if we fail in November, none of it will matter anyway. The fact that then these deluded individuals will probably see what REAL geocide looks like under a second Trump presidency is, of course, no comfort at all.

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May 15·edited May 15

That started well before this on the liberal side of this coalition. I voted in 2020 to save democracy and only to save Democracy because candidate Biden offered literally nothing else for me. This coalition then proceeded to do nothing but vote in Biden and pursue business as usual as if the trajectory of the Republican party, politics in general, and the underlying drivers of both would change on their own. That useless strategy not only betrayed their promise to attempt to save Democracy it also lost them the house in 2022 so they couldn't even try in the last two years. Trust was gone after that: trust in the strategy, trust in the institutions, and trust in the people of the coalition itself.

I am working very, VERY hard to find some miniscule scrap of faith that enough of this coalition has learned something and now has the will and ability to actually do anything about any of those problems if it is voted into power despite the fact that the same key players are making the same empty promises and platitudes *AGAIN* after either intentionally reneging on their promises the first time or at the least failing utterly and completely to act on them. Posts on this site make it damn near impossible to find that faith because they show exactly how much contempt much of this coalition has for a decisive chunk of people in the coalition who are having the same struggles I am.

But that is why I hang around here, to get a more accurate read on how worth saving this country is. It does provide that.

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Yes, it feels like a bait and switch: the Democrats ran on democracy, but the only thing they actually did to save democracy was to not be Trump. It's almost as if they wanted to preserve the threat of Trump in order to force us to vote for Democrats again.

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I'm sorry for your frustration and I'm sure that it's genuine. However, I really don't think that the Infrastructure Act or the misnamed -- but not misdirected -- Inflation Reduction Act were "business as usual" or "the trajectory of the Republican Party"; I thought that they were good, widely popular, Center-Left constructive legislation. And the 2022 losses were far lower than the usual midterm losses for the party in power. I'm also not sure what you include in the "any of those problems" that you want whoever wins in November to "do anything about", but I hope that we have a President who will try to build consensus on some of them.

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May 15·edited May 15

I want them to save our Democracy. That means doing something to actually *fix* it so it can operate reliably. I cannot be done without at the very least removing the filibuster and finding ways to render gerrymandering of the house ineffective through electoral reform. That is a bare minimum. Something to start to get us closer to one person one vote as opposed to tyranny of the minority. There is much more that should be done on this issue alone imo so I'm already giving away most of it and any consideration of any other issues. What more do I have to give up to not be considered entitled and radical I wonder? It is mind boggling to me that tightening up the loopholes Trump exploited during his attempted legislative coup is *ALL* the Dems did on the sole issue that unites this coalition.

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You don't sound either entitled or radical to me, at not least so far. The easiest and most effective thing that could be done to fix the House AND the Electoral College would be to repeal the Reapportionment Act of 1929, take the artificial cap off the House of Representatives, and stop the under-representation of the most populous states. It only takes an Act of Congress, not an amendment, and it really frustrates me that Pelosi's leadership team apparently had no interest in it during the last Congress. I hope that changes next year if the Democrats win.

I totally agree on the filibuster, but the dirty little secret is that both parties denounce it when they're in the majority but never get around to abolishing it, because they think that they'll need it when they're in the minority. It gets a lot of mileage for something that came into existence as an oversight and everybody in the Senate claims to hate. As for gerrymandering, that's another thing that both parties hate -- but only when the other one does it. Neither the courts or the Congress are going to do anything about it; it's going to have to be the people ourselves, state by state.

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Tim, I would like to continue to thank you for having such an interesting variety of guests. As someone that leans further left than the typical Bulwark contributor (and reader!), it is refreshing to hear you actually engage with further left folks in the pro-democracy coalition. As you have acknowledged there’s a few topics in where there’s a pretty narrow range of opinions at the Bulwark, often in foreign policy, where it’s nice to hear you all engage with people that are in the coalition you have reluctantly (and perhaps temporarily!) joined.

Anyway, that’s all to say that while I enjoyed Charlie’s version of the podcast, especially when he leaned into being a Wisconsinite as I was also born and raised, I find your approach to be so much more enjoyable and valuable to what I think the Bulwark is really hoping to accomplish. We can all learn continue to learn from each other, and a closed off center to center right group is no less susceptible to group think if they’re only hearing opinions in their narrow group than people that only consume newsmax.

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I found Eddie Glaude’s comments on the campus protests and Israel uninformed, nonsensical and apologist. I also noticed that you did not push back on most of what he said yet again. Please stop asking your guests about Israel if you aren’t prepared to push back on their comments. I’m all for hearing contrary opinions, but I felt sick to my stomach listening to this man go unchallenged as he spouted nonsense on your show today. It was the first time I thought about canceling my Bulwark subscription in 5 years.

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If I, a left-wing social democrat can deal with Sarah, Tim, and JVL all whining about student loans daily and pay them money, you can deal with somebody who is more friendly to the arguments of pro-Palestine folks.

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You are comparing about having to hear about a policy preference you disagree with and hearing about unchecked antisemitism. You’ve demonstrated that you don’t get it.

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Eddie Glaude makes we white folks think deeply. Should we so choose. And I do. And he is right.

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May 15·edited May 15

The world is broken. Blame the Jews.

He's bringing up 1948? The Jewish state of Israel is not going away. Sorry, Prof.

Gazans, please quit cosplaying refugee and build your own state in Gaza. You hsve my support.

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I turned it off when he talked about the establishment of Israel in 1948 "in the context of British colonialism" and did not ever say the words: 7 million dead jews...

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Did we watch/listen to the same podcast? When did either one of them blame Jews?

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In his entire discussion about us.

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His answer to Tim's question about campus protests against Israel starting at 14:30

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It was amazing to listen to and then not hear Tim push back on any of it again.

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I don't think Tim wanted to get stuck there. It's our job to push back.

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