#162 The Fall and Rise of Small Towns: Dar Williams

The New Yorker called  Dar Williams  "one of America's best singer-songwriters.” Williams is also passionate about urban planning and revitalization. Her new book, "What I Found in a Thousand Towns: A Traveling Musician's Guide to Rebuilding America's Communities" is both a well researched and well-written account of the death and rebirth of American towns and cities. The book is full of practical solutions and inimitable accounts of small towns. Listen.

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#161 A Fresh Look at Freedom: Russell Shorto

We discuss the American Revolution and the meaning of freedom with acclaimed historian and journalist, Russell Shorto, author of the 2018 book, "Revolution Song: A Story of American Freedom."
Russell Shorto is also the writer of a fine new podcast series, "American History Tellers."

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#157 Our Towns. Solutions & Reinvention: James Fallows

"This still can be the country people would like to think it is," says well-known journalist James Fallows of The Atlantic magazine and co-author of "Our Towns: A 100,000-Mile Journey Into the Heart of America." He says that most people don't realize how fast the country is moving toward becoming a better version of itself.

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#155 The Great Environmental Debate: Charles C. Mann

Our guest, journalist, Charles C. Mann, author of new book, "The Wizard and The Prophet", is a correspondent for The Atlantic, Science and Wired. Two of his previous books, 1491 and 1493, were widely-acclaimed best sellers.

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#154 Fighting Gang Violence: Jonathan Green

Our guest, Jonathan Green, is the author of the new book, "Sex Money Murder: A Story of Crack, Blood and Betrayal." He tells the hair-raising story of how SMM dealt with rivals, as well the role the gang leaders played in the crack epidemic.

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#149 Fixing Capitalism: Luigi Zingales

Our guest, finance professor, Luigi Zingales of the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, makes a crucial distinction between free markets and big business. Luigi is the author of two widely reviewed books: "Saving Capitalism from Capitalists (coauthored with Raghuram Rajan) and "A Capitalism for the People: Recapturing the Lost Genius of American Prosperity." He is also the co-host of the popular podcast, "Capitalisnt."

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#148 The World Is Getting Better: Gregg Easterbrook

Our guest, journalist Gregg Easterbrook is author of the new book, "It's Better Than It Looks: Reasons for Optimism in an Age of Fear."

We look at why our pessimistic outlook has been blurred by the rise of social media, and is getting in the way of urgently needed reforms, from reducing climate change to fixing the national debt.

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#145 Making Luck Happen: Janice Kaplan

In this episode with award-winning author, editor and journalist, Janice Kaplan, we learn about the exciting ways you can grab opportunities and improve your life. 

There is a clear difference between random chance and luck. The case is made in the new book that she wrote with risk-taking expert Barnaby Marsh, "How Luck Happens: Using the Science of Luck to Transform Work, Love and Life ."

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#143 Will #NeverAgain Bring Lasting Change? Elizabeth Matto

"This generation has become more in tune and in touch with the avenues of political power," says Professor Elizabeth Matto, Director of the Center for Youth Political Participation at the Eagleton Institute, Rutgers University, and the author of "Citizen Now: Engaging in Politics and Democracy.

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