The Personal and Political

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Wednesday, September 26, 2012

On today’s show: New York Times Social Q’s columnist Philip Galanes answers your questions about peacefully living with a roommate. Steven Johnson explains how political change has been transformed in the digital age. Kevin Cook talks about why the 1970s were the NFL’s most colorful decade. And New Yorker staff writer Jill Lepore traces how political campaigns became big business.

Philip Galanes Gives Roommate Advice

Living with other people requires consideration, negotiation, tolerance, and the ability to communicate to keep a peaceful home—or dorm room. Philip Galanes, New York Times Social Q’s columnist and author of Social Q's: How to Survive the Quirks, Quandaries and Quagmires of Today gives advice on how to be a good roommate.

Leave a question about roommate etiquette or other social conundrums!

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Progress in a Networked Age

Steven Johnson makes the case that a new model of political change is on the rise, transforming everything from local governments to classrooms, from protest movements to health care. In Future Perfect: The Case for Progress in a Networked Age shows how politics are influenced by the interconnectedness of the Internet and breaks with the conventional categories of liberal or conservative thinking.

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NFL Football in the Rowdy, Reckless 1970s

Kevin Cook explains why he thinks the 1970s were the most colorful decade in NFL history and were the years that pro football grew up. His book The Last Headbangers: NFL Football in the Rowdy, Reckless ‘70s—the Era that Created Modern Sports draws on interviews with legendary coaches and players—Franco Harris, Joe Montana, Terry Bradshaw, Roger Staubach, Ken “Snake” Stabler—and tells the story of their heroics and off-field carousing.

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Jill Lepore on "The Lie Factory"

New Yorker staff writer Jill Lepore discusses her latest article, “The Lie Factory,” about how politics became a business. Lepore is also the author of the new book The Story of America: Essays on Origins.

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A Totally Incomplete Collection of Campaign Jingles: Part 1

When he accepted the presidential nomination earlier this month, Barack Obama joked about the nature of modern politics—and the amount of money required to run a media campaign— by saying “If you're sick of hearing me approve this message, believe me, so am I.” There was sustained applause.

The Museum of the Moving Image has a great collection of Presidential campaign advertisements and posted below are a few examples of the lost art of the political jingle. The lyrics in most of these ads aren’t exactly at Cole Porter levels of word-play. A few notable clunkers include: “He is the gov that brings the dove of peace and joy” and “Reachin’ out across the sea, makin’ friends where foes used to be.” But many of them are catchy.

Take this 1952 ad for Adlai Stevenson. The Democratic governor of Illinois may have lost two consecutive Presidential elections, but he did produce at least one hummable advertisement.  The show-tunes vote has been an essential swing constituency ever since.

More jingles after the jump--->


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