The Year in Review (Red Wine Edition)

We (Hemant and Jessica) sat down to discuss all the big stories from 2016. By which we mean whatever stories we could cram into two hours. Those topics included atheism, our future traveling roadshow, and Donald Trump.

Fair warning: There was a box of wine between us during the taping of this podcast. See if you can guess when the Merlot kicks in.

(Image via Shutterstock)

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  • Reply Ian December 12, 2016 at 11:25 am

    One factor as to why the Reason Rally was so much smaller this time that I don’t see you mention is that the atheist/skeptic community is currently fractured. I don’t believe not inviting the atheist youtubers was an oversight. I think that was by design, since the Reason Rally appears to have been organised by the atheist faction that would be in ideological opposition to what seems to be the big youtube atheist stances. Hence, no invites. This is the year of plurality being dead and ideological identities ruling supreme, so that fits in perfectly in the overall assessment of the year.

  • Reply Ian December 12, 2016 at 1:07 pm

    And then you got to the male birth control study and there it is, the feminist party line treatment of the topic. I’m not even disappointed, since I am aware Jessica is definitely from the faction of the community that would be hostile to me and that this was their cookie cutter stance on this study – this is just a straw that breaks that particular camel’s back. Like I said earlier, ideology rules all nowadays and pluralism is dead. You’re even pointing out that you’re aware of being in a bubble in this episode and you make the excuse everybody makes, that YOUR bubble is different and valid.

    Anyway, back onto that study. “Skeptics with a K” did a reasonable treatment of it in episode 185 that comes from a perspective similar to yours but tries to not just go with the ideological line, and instead actually looks into it. It’s what I would recommend for anyone who is interested in learning more about it.

  • Reply John Garcia December 13, 2016 at 2:39 pm

    Thanks for the recap and the laughs, folks. Hope you come to Michigan sometime as I am in the Lansing area.

  • Reply Brennan December 14, 2016 at 2:45 pm

    Having biological kids is the single biggest impact on the environment an individual can have! If you ignore that you’re showing a STRONG bias toward your own genes which is akin to racism.

    On Ian’s comment you could have addressed that there were safety concerns due to suicide ideation that (although they were likely about equal to the dangers from the women’s studies back in the day was a lot more severe than currently available birth control), but this was by no means an in depth episode (and it was a venting podcast to boot) and it seems you might have been aware of this stuff based on your comments so it was not a big deal.

    Also, I am surprised you don’t need protection from spam-bots yet.

  • Reply Tony December 18, 2016 at 11:00 pm

    I’ve only just started listening and this was my third episode. All three were listened to this evening while I did work that didn’t take any brainpower. Like Ian above (if I understand him correctly) I am also very tired of identity politics and think it is ruining open discourse on important issues; but unlike Ian I didn’t think Jessica’s take on the male contraceptive pill was “the feminist party line treatment of the topic” at all. I thought her points were valid ones and her description of the effect the pill has had on her for ten or more years was very moving. I don’t think her perspective is an unfair or even political one — she’s perfectly correct in saying that (many or most) men are not willing to make the sacrifices women make in this area. The reason is obvious: women have so much more at stake when it comes to an unplanned or unwanted pregnancy. Not saying that’s a good reason or that men *shouldn’t* be willing to put up with zits, mood swings, weight gain, etc., but the tremendous investment in time, energy, and resources required in raising a child is often borne to a much greater degree by women and so they are naturally willing to suffer the adverse side effects of the pill more than men are willing to suffer them. Perhaps male attitudes on this topic will eventually change … but, as far as we’ve come, I doubt it will be anytime soon.

    But that’s not why I came here. I came to let you know that I’m a new listener and loved the show (you seemed concerned about the size of your listenership) and I wanted to tell you that I listen to a lot of podcasts (have done so since they were invented) and I think this is the only one I’ve ever heard which had one host get progressively more inebriated throughout the show to the point of uncontrollable hiccuping. Hilarious! Your show is informative, funny, certainly friendly …and, it seems, debaucherous. Perfect mix, for me anyway. Well done!! 🙂

    If you ever take your …ahem… possible tour across the border to Canada (specifically Toronto), I’d definitely show up. In fact, I’d come see it even if you only made it as far as Buffalo.

    Looking forward to more episodes!

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