The New Yorker: Politics and More

WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Podcast Overview

A weekly discussion about politics, hosted by The New Yorker's executive editor, Dorothy Wickenden.

Podcast Episodes

The Brothers Trump

John Cassidy talks with Dorothy Wickenden about how the Russia scandal is closing in on the President's innermost circle: his son Donald Jr., and his son-in-law Jared Kushner. Is Donald Jr. the fall guy, and did the Trump campaign's digital operations, which were overseen by Kushner, coordinate with Russian government hackers?

Ai Weiwei Talks to David Remnick About Art, Censorship and Twitter

David Remnick sits down with Ai Weiwei, China’s most famous artist and dissident, as he plans a new major public-art installation in New York. They discuss censorship, human rights, and social media, which Ai finds fantastically liberating. And, if Donald Trump’s tweets ruin an occasional state relationship, Ai thinks that “maybe that relationship should be ruined.”


Lizzie Widdicombe Visits Mar-a-Lago

Mar-a-Lago was just another private club in Palm Beach, Florida, when Donald Trump bought the property and turned it into a gilded palace. Now, for a recently raised initiation fee of two hundred thousand dollars and annual dues of fourteen thousand dollars, members have a chance to rub elbows with the President, and watch him deal with global crises in the club’s dining room. The New Yorker’s Lizzie Widdicombe and the radio producer Steven Valentino travel to Palm Beach to speak with self-styled Democratic resisters by the pool and attend a benefit at Mar-a-Lago, where they sample Trump wine and wait for the President to show.

How Mean Are the Senate Republicans?

Ryan Lizza joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss what happened when it became clear that the Senate’s health-care plan would rob millions of poor, elderly, young, and catastrophically sick Americans of medical insurance, and what the debacle portends for tax reform and the rest of the Republican domestic agenda.

Zhang Yuanan Talks to Evan Osnos About the Chinese View of Trump

At the Republican National Convention in 2016, Evan Osnos interviewed Zhang Yuanan, a reporter for Caixin, a news organization based in Beijing. Zhang was tasked with translating Trump’s rhetoric—literally and figuratively—for a Chinese audience. A year later, Osnos catches up with Zhang to find out if China is really ready for a U.S. policy that puts “America first.”

Brexit Blues

The failure of the Conservative Party to gain a parliamentary majority in the UK general election held earlier this month has been seen as a repudiation of Prime Minister Theresa May and her plan for the British withdrawal from the European Union. Sam Knight joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss how England is coping with its strains of populism and nationalism, and how the debate over Brexit is changing.

Jon Lee Anderson Visits Manuel Noriega in Prison

When Manuel Noriega died, last month, the Panamanian strongman had been in prison and out of the public eye  for a quarter century. A U.S. ally with C.I.A. ties, Noriega came to rule his country brutally, collaborated with the Medellín drug cartel, and eventually opposed the United States—symbolically waving a machete against America during rallies. The U.S. finally invaded Panama in 1989, and deposed him. In 2015, Noriega, incarcerated for decades on drug trafficking and other charges, granted a rare interview to Jon Lee Anderson. The former dictator admitted mistakes but apologized for nothing, and claimed that he had no bitterness toward his patrons turned conquerors. 

Donald Trump as Julius Caesar

What happens in the Trump era when art and politics collide? Rebecca Mead joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss the controversy over a production of Shakespeare’s “Julius Caesar” in New York, and two other works that have sparked heated debate on the right and the left: Lin-Manuel Miranda’s “Hamilton” and Margaret Atwood’s “A Handmaid’s Tale.”

Robert Gallucci Talks to David Remnick About Negotiating with North Korea

In a face-to-face meeting, President Obama warned his successor that America’s biggest security concern was North Korea. Since then, Pyongyang has conducted a series of ballistic missile tests, countered by a successful anti-missile test from Washington. Robert Gallucci, the chief U.S. negotiator during the last major crisis over North Korea’s nuclear-weapons program, talks with David Remnick about the value of deterrence and engagement. He notes a lack of coherence in the Trump Administration’s statements on North Korea, which seesaw between overtures toward negotiation and warnings of possible war. With leaders in each country who are “known to be impulsive,” Gallucci doesn’t see an easy resolution to the crisis.

Trump’s “Meddlesome Priest”

This week, the former F.B.I. director James Comey testified before Congress about his private meetings with the President. David Grann joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss the F.B.I.’s controversial political history, and how a man who prizes apolitical crime-fighting found himself all but accusing Trump of obstruction of justice

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