“Know Your Enemy” — now, more than ever, a helpful recommendation

Ed. Note: Podcasts are enjoying a surge in popularity during the enforced downtime of the pandemic.  Write us with your favorites to share the enjoyment!

By Abby Fox:

I’ve found one of the best ways of beating the COVID-19 blues is to listen to a great podcast. Suddenly you’re less alone in the world when you hear the familiar voices of people who feel like they’re your friends, talking you through today’s politics.

However, unlike many people who seem to love dozens of podcasts, I have had difficulty landing on one that I want to keep listening to after the first couple of episodes.

But I am absolutely hooked on “Know Your Enemy.”

The premise is that if liberals are to ever understand the Right (and the origins of today’s crazy politics) they need to learn about the conservative thinkers, writers, figures and institutions that have developed the big ideas and ideologies the Republican Party has loyally followed since Post World War II-America.

If that sounds dry or dull, it’s not at all — these educated, thoughtful, insightful guys are teaching me a lot of things I don’t have the time to brush up on. They take deep dives on difficult stuff – really deep – and their conversations are usually at least an hour long, but they know how to distill abstract, academic concepts to understandable language that less literate Democrats can follow. And they have strong (though quietly understated) senses of humor.

Favorite episodes so far have been “Gunpower” with guest Patrick Blanchfield (about right wing NRA arguments);  “What Happened to Norman?” (about Norman Podhoretz’s memoir Making It) with guest David Klion;  and “Windbag City” (about the “Chicago School” of Economics) with guest Marshall Steinbaum.

Podcast Title: “Know Your Enemy”

Hosted by: Matthew Sitman and Sam Adler-Bell




Abigail Fox is a native of northern Virginia and a member of the Mason District Democratic Commmittee. She works for a science journal in Washington, DC.




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