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OK, Maybe Centrism Really Is Bad for Your Brain

We're going to raise the level of public debate in this dog pound, and let that be our legacy.

by Rob Zacny
Dec 13 2018, 10:46pm

courtesy of HBO

During the hot, endless summer of 2008 the Slate Gabfest considered chocolate chip cookie recipes, and the fact that people care about them. The ensuing discussion (downloadable here) was so officious and tone deaf that one Rob Zacny realized he need never listen to this show again. A group of pundits who could fuck up a conversation about chocolate chip cookies could, clearly, fuck up anything. Meanwhile, across the country, Patrick Klepek listened to this same group of people and had a political awakening.

Now, ten years later, the Waypoint gang has to work through their complicated feelings about the Slate Political Gabfest and, in particular, the worldview they bring to their work as expressed by their recent episodes on the passing of George H.W. Bush and the assault allegations against now-Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh. Is there a point where centrist punditry literally becomes one with parodies about it? Is the technical language of expertise more about gatekeeping and limiting political imagination than about describing and explaining the world around us? Finally, in our second segment, Rob has been watching the latest season of Hard Knocks and finds a fascinating portrait of a doomed coaching regime planning for a future that will have no room for it. Austin explains what a Herb is. Both topics center on Hue Jackson and the waning days of his tenure at the NFL's worst team.

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