Uniformed in the Information Age: Listen to this Part I

image from flickr.com

Election season is upon us, which means it’s time for the condescending commentary of media experts inside the beltway to debate about just how many standard deviations to the left the public is about important political topics and how the general lack of informed voters is hurting the state of democracy in our country. Unfortunately, there’s some validity to these complaints. Statistics really aren’t crucial to prove this point. From peoples’ responses about foreign policy to healthcare to free phones, the examples are endless. You have no doubt experienced this at a gathering of friends or family when one person posits an outlandish argument for his or her political flavor based on an article or two he or she probably found off another friend’s post on Facebook. Don’t be “that guy.” To be fair, though, staying informed can be overwhelming. There are a plethora of topics with myriads of opinions from a smorgasbord of sources. So how can one separate the wheat from the chaff and be a responsible, informed citizen? Listen to this.

Podcasts are a quick, easy and efficient way to stay abreast on almost any topic that peaks your interest. Most are free on iTunes and you can download the Podcast app from the App Store for free as well. Listen to them in your car, on a run, on a plane, or wherever. You can find podcasts for almost any category you would like, and you can download them straight to your phone so you can listen without needing an internet connection. Over the next few posts, I’ll be reviewing some of my personal favorite podcasts that can keep you informed about what’s going on in our country and help expand your knowledge of free-market ideas.

The first station I recommend is The Ricochet Podcast from the makers of the ricochet.com. Ricochet’s mantra boasts that members can join their community to be a part of the most civilized conversation on the web for center-right ideas. Their site features a variety of notable contributors but also allows for any paying member to post their thoughts as well, making for a very lively discussion about relevant topics all with the focus of maintaining the aura of respect, unlike what you see in the YouTube comments section. The weekly podcast is hosted by Rob Long, Ricochet co-founder and Hollywood TV producer (and an self-proclaimed rhino); Peter Robinson, Ricochet co-founder and former speechwriter for Ronald Reagan; and columnist, author, and segue master James Lileks. The trio discuss the latest political headlines with a riveting combination of wit and intelligence. They aren’t shy about disagreement either. Download the most recent episode “Arguing in Good Faith” and you’ll see what I mean. In addition to discussing their own thoughts on these topics, they regularly interview guests from all spheres of the conservative realm. These men are incredibly entertaining and leave you incessantly swiping to refresh your feed every week for the latest post. You can check out their site at rochet.com. Three tiers of membership (appropriately named Coolidge, Thatcher and Reagan) are offered with a variety of features for each level. Not only is it the most civil conversation on the web, but it’s a great way to stay informed and entertained.

Next up, a podcast with the perfect mixture of politics and pop culture.