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Intelligence Squared U.S. Debates

Panoply

America feels divided. From the most salient questions about our national identity and place in the world, to fundamental concerns about technology, religion, the economy, and public policy, Intelligence Squared U.S. is here to help. A respite from polarized discussions, we bring together the smartest minds to debate and dissect issues in depth, restoring civility and bringing intelligence to the public square in the process.

America feels divided. From the most salient questions about our national identity and place in the world, to fundamental concerns about technology, religion, the economy, and public policy, Intelligence Squared U.S. is here to help. A respite from polarized discussions, we bring together the smartest minds to debate and dissect issues in depth, restoring civility and bringing intelligence to the public square in the process.

Location:

New York, NY

Networks:

Panoply

Description:

America feels divided. From the most salient questions about our national identity and place in the world, to fundamental concerns about technology, religion, the economy, and public policy, Intelligence Squared U.S. is here to help. A respite from polarized discussions, we bring together the smartest minds to debate and dissect issues in depth, restoring civility and bringing intelligence to the public square in the process.

Twitter:

@iq2us

Language:

English

Contact:

635 Massachusetts Avenue, NW Washington, DC 20001 (202) 513-3232


Episodes

Is Amazon Good for Small Business?

9/23/2022
Amazon has come a long way since online book sales. In fact, when it comes to revenue, Jeff Bezos’ creation is the world’s biggest internet-based company. But what makes the "everything store" so ubiquitous? In large part, it’s the small and medium-sized businesses that use the platform to sell their goods. This year, more than 1.9 million of these businesses participated in its marketplace, which accounted for some 60 percent of Amazon's retail sales. But was it ultimately good for them? In...

Duration:00:51:05

Long Live The British Monarchy?

9/16/2022
For nearly three-quarters of a century, Queen Elizabeth II sat on high as Britain’s monarch. With her death, however, new momentum is building that questions the future of the British Crown. Several former British colonies, including Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and Jamaica, have debated severing ties, while Republican campaigners in Britain now see opportunity to reassess what it means to have a monarchy, without offending a popular queen. Against that backdrop, we debate the longevity...

Duration:00:50:35

Should We Search for Extraterrestrial Life?

9/9/2022
For decades, scientists around the world have dedicated their lives — and research dollars — to one question: Is there anyone else out there? In the early 1970s, NASA joined the hunt with its own program to search for extraterrestrial life, or SETI for short. When that was defunded by Congress, private efforts took hold. But just what have decades of SETI brought us? And how should we approach the search in those to come? For SETI’s supporters, finding other intelligent life in the cosmos is...

Duration:00:51:21

Will AI Do More Harm Than Good?

9/2/2022
Is it true that artificial intelligence will do more harm than good? Proponents say it will help us solve problems like climate change and world hunger, while eliminating dangerous and mundane jobs. But critics warn that A.I.’s current trajectory is a dangerous one, which will likely concentrate power, reduce jobs, surveil consumers and voters alike, and threaten democracy. What’s more, some people say these conditions are not based on science fiction, but are already in the process of...

Should The SAT Be Erased?

8/26/2022
Last year, only 1.5 million high school students took the SAT, down from 2.2 million in the class of 2020. Covid-19 played a big role in the decision among many schools not to move forward with at-home testing. But the move sparked even wider discussion about the test itself. Currently, at least 75% of colleges actually don’t require the SAT or ACT. That’s an all-time high, with many schools pledging not to return to it. But is that the right move? Proponents call into question the efficacy...

Duration:00:51:03

Is Cancel Culture Toxic?

8/19/2022
You know the drill. Someone does, or says, something offensive. A public backlash -- typically on Twitter -- ensues. Then come the calls to "cancel" that person, brand, or institution. That usually means the loss of cultural cache, political clout, and often a job or career. While the term "cancelling" has roots in a misogynistic joke, it has come to be one of the most prominent tools of progressive activists. Many see "cancelling" as a modern-day means of holding people to account, calling...

Duration:00:50:36

Should Trump Be Indicted?

8/12/2022
After a series of prime-time hearings from the January 6th Committee and hundreds of charges against individuals who a participated in the events of that day, the Department of Justice faces a complex political and legal question: Should it charge Donald Trump with federal crimes? Arguing "yes" is Barbara Comstock. Arguing "no" Tom Ginsburg. Emmy award-winning journalist John Donvan moderates. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

Duration:00:50:36

Should We Eat More Processed Foods?

8/5/2022
Processed food is bad for you, right? Well, there’s more to this story. As new technologies create foods that can’t be made in home kitchens, such as plant-based meats and dairy products made with plant proteins, the question of whether we should all be consuming more highly processed foods is up for debate. Advocates say a substantial increase in food processing is the best way to feed growing human populations while also reducing food waste. We should trust – and invest – in food...

Duration:00:51:07

Should We Forgive Student Debt?

7/29/2022
Facing growing discontent over the rising cost of higher education, many prominent Democrats – and some Republicans – are calling on Washington to cancel the approximately $1.6 trillion Americans currently owe in student loan debt. Supporters see debt forgiveness as a necessary step to safeguarding the nation’s financial future and combating inequality in the education system. But others argue that this blanket policy would balloon the federal deficit, reward irresponsible borrowers, and...

Duration:00:50:56

Should We Isolate Russia?

7/22/2022
As punishment for the war, most of Russia’s energy imports to Europe will be banned by the end of the year. But is that smart policy? Those who argue “yes” say Russia must be punished for its actions. Those who argue “no” say isolating the Kremlin to this extent is a dangerous gamble, which could undermine Europe’s economies, push Russia further toward China, and lay the groundwork for an escalation. In this context, we debate this question, "Should we isolate Russia? Learn more about your...

Duration:00:50:57

Agree to Disagree: Can the Fed Manage a Soft Landing?

7/15/2022
The Fed recently announced aggressive interest rate hikes and is signaling more to come. Its goal? To stabilize the economy amid surging inflation (reaching rates not seen in some 40 years) and lingering supply chain disruptions and shortages. But can the Fed actually manage a so-called "soft landing"? Arguing "yes" is Dean Baker. Arguing "no" is Yeva Nersisyan. Emmy award-winning journalist John Donvan moderates. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

Duration:00:50:37

We Should Expand the Supreme Court

7/8/2022
Nine justices hold tremendous power. Advocates on the left see a Supreme Court out of touch with the electorate, obstructed by partisan interests, and rendered illegitimate by years of controversial appointments. But those opposed believe dramatically changing one of the three core pillars of American government would undermine the court’s legitimacy. Intelligence Squared U.S. in partnership with The Newt and Jo Minow Debate Series at Northwestern Pritzker School of Law asks: Should we...

Duration:00:50:26

Humans Can Adapt to Climate Change

7/1/2022
The dangers of climate change are “no longer over the horizon.” Humanity may soon pass the “point of no return.” These are the phrases U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres used to describe what he called an “utterly inadequate” global response to rising temperatures. But if we were to decisively act, and restructure our global economy with the climate in mind, who would shoulder the burden? Or should our collective focus orient more toward humans’ capacity for adaptation? Podcast: Arguing...

Duration:00:51:12

Debate Like a World Champion: A Conversation with Bo Seo, Harvard Debate Coach & Global Debate Champion

6/17/2022
What's it take to debate like a champion? How can you engage so that people will listen? How can you listen actively, and respond in good faith? A mission critical program for listeners of Intelligence Squared, we sit down with Bo to examine debate through the lens of education, politics, and the future of democracy. Considered one of the most recognized figures in the global debate community, he has won both the World Schools Debating Championship and the World Universities Debating...

Duration:00:51:05

Should Society Legalize Psychedelics?

6/3/2022
Psychedelics, in medical terms, is an inexact category of drugs that affect perceptions and cognition. Their proponents say 1960s-era associations have undermined exciting research in the field of neuroscience. Psychedelics should be made much more widely available, they contend, to treat a range of mental and emotional issues, as well as to ascertain a more profound sense of ourselves. People should also be empowered to make their own decisions in its use. Not so fast, say opponents. These...

Duration:00:51:59

Agree to Disagree: Does Your Electric Vehicle Help The Planet?

5/20/2022
Tesla vehicle sales are, well … electric. The company posted $5.5 billion in 2021 profits, roughly six times its previous year earnings. Globally, the electric car industry is anything but static, soaring to 7 million units in 2021. EV advocates argue that while the technology and resources aren’t perfect, they are ultimately better for the environment long term as the tech improves. Opponents say the kinds of infrastructure EVs require still require huge investments that would be better...

Duration:00:52:26

Agree to Disagree: Can Small Investors Beat The Street?

5/13/2022
In a modern-day battle of David and Goliath on Wall Street, thousands of amateur retail investors banded together to bid up stocks in a handful of failing companies, most notably the nostalgic video game hub known as GameStop. Within days, the renegade traders sent stocks soaring and dealt heavy blows to hedge funds and other traditional professional investors who had bet against the companies. The "meme stock" phenomenon was born. But where does "revolution" stand a year later? Did the...

Duration:00:50:54

Agree to Disagree: Is It Right to End Roe?

5/9/2022
The Supreme Court is poised to make a decision so controversial that even a leaked draft majority opinion can send shockwaves across the nation. In 98-pages, Justice Alito decried Roe v. Wade as “egregiously wrong from the start," declared no right to abortion can be found in the Constitution, and sent abortion laws back to the states — about half of which have "trigger laws" that will ban abortion almost immediately upon Roe's demise. Exactly how likely is this draft opinion to become the...

Duration:00:53:36

It's Time to Expand Nuclear Power

4/22/2022
The calls for nuclear are growing louder. The Biden administration recently announced that it was putting $6 billion toward saving distressed nuclear power plants from closure, considering them carbon-free alternative to fossil fuels. Elon Musk doubled down, not only calling for an expansion of nuclear energy, but even offering to eat food grown near reactors live on TV. But its critics argue that expanding nuclear energy is dangerous, costly, and ill-advised. So, we unearthed from the...

Duration:00:52:35

Thinking Again with Adam Grant: The Power of Debate, and Knowing What You Don’t Know

4/8/2022
The hallmark of a productive debate is not persuasion, but insight. So says Adam Grant in this wide-ranging conversation with John Donvan and Intelligence Squared CEO Clea Conner. A good argument is not only about convincing, Grant explains, but also to learn. In his new book, Think Again, Grant explores a set of cognitive skills that might matter more than pure aptitude: The ability to rethink and unlearn. That is the focus of this conversation; the capacity to change your mind, and why it...

Duration:00:51:57