Paradox Project Podcast

The official podcast for the Paradox Project

This week we discuss the election in respect to the evangelical community. We're joined by Matthew Anderson, who recently noted the increasingly split on the Religious Right over Donald Trump.


Matthias and Jordan are back with a guest to bring more Terrible Opinions and a nuanced perspective on the 2016 election and the current state of the GOP. Noah Rothman of Commentary magazine joined us this week to offer some hope for Republicans after this election. His recommendation? Enough forgiveness to go around, a healthy dose of humility, and a good hard look at what went wrong. 

We discuss the big story from the weekend: Donald Trump's lewd comments about women as caught on videotape. Jordan wonders why people drew the line at this particular moment; Noah points out that these quotes are particularly damning because they're completely candid. Is this what the candidate is really like when no one's looking? 

We touch on the Trump-Clinton debate and the general horror that is the 2016 election, but mostly try to focus on what comes next. Noah details the healing process that will be necessary for the GOP to move forward and notes that anyone who took the risk of standing against Trump will be politically elevated after the election (see: Ben Sasse, Mike Lee). Matthias wonders if we can do anything about a political landscape that is post-truth and so obviously, dangerously partisan. Jordan hopes the GOP can move beyond the factions that divided the party and made way for someone like Trump. 


This week on the Paradox Podcast, our regular hosts cover Hillary's campaign & what is going wrong with her as a candidate. We also discuss how the press can possibly recover from this election.

Terrible Opinions

Matthias: Attacking Trump's weight is insane and we should never ever do it. 

Jordan: I love Top 40 music. There's something wonderful 

Zach: Voters are toblame for this election



Matthias: Georgia Tech will have a good season, 3 or fewer losses

Zach: This will get a lot worse before it gets better

Jordan: Paradox will have some news soon


Jay Caruso of RedState joins us in our ongoing conversation about the renewal of the Republican party.

But we start off with terrible opinions. Matthias feels that Ben Carson wasn't suited for politics, but thinks he's a nice guy and still really likes him. Jordan notes that the outrage mob on went way too far bashing the "women in headphones" piece. It was dumb, but they made an industry out of being angry at it. Zach asks that, if you're going to make faces at a baby, you should make eye contact with the parents. Jay doesn't think that Hillary's coughing thing was a big deal (but her fainting may alter that position).

We talk with Jay about rebuilding the GOP, specifically about his piece in the National Review ( in which he walks through how the GOP can reach out to minority and urban voters after a Hillary victory.

We also discuss the alt right and try to figure out how to balance the need to recognize themas a news story with how covering their every move gives them oxygen, energy,and the money they need to continue.

For predictions,  Jay notes that, we're going to see the elimination of the network TV model in the next five years.


For part 2 in our Rebuilding Conservatism series, Jason Pye (Director of Communication at FreedomWorks) joins us. Jason brings us a vision of rebuilding conservatism from a policy perspective that focuses on amplifying and supporting conservative voices within Congress.

Matthias: I feel like Danielle Morrill's piece on work life balance comes from a place of extreme privlidge & can be a toxic attitude for many people

Jason: I'm tired of the Harambe nonsense and also I love Nihilist Arby's

Jordan: I love Kim Kardashian & I think she uses the free market to her advantage

Zach Noble: They've found that using robot babies in sex ed courses DOESN'T disuade girls from having babies and that's great. We should have more kids.

We then talk about Jason's work with Freedom Works & the House Freedom Caucus and how to connect with the core conservative movement that is influencing policy within Congress.

For predictions...

Matthias: bots (automated comment generators) will play an increasing role in the dark part of campaigns

Jason: The Georgia Bulldogs will go 9-3 and will beat Georgia Tech in the last game of the season

Zach: The Magnificent 7 remake will be great

Jordan: Nothing at the 2016 Video Music Awards will be weirder than the 2016 presidential campaign


Joining us this week is Evan Siegfried author of the book GOP GPS: How to Find the Millennials and Urban Voters the Republican Party Needs to Survive


For our terrible opinions: Evan feels like the Ryan Lochte scandal was a godsend for Brazil since he was able to overshadow every disastrous thing that happened at the Rio Olympics. Zach thinks Fox and Drudge are worse than the Washington Post and the New York Times when it comes to bias. Jordan expresses her frustration at the media glee over the naked Donald Trump statues across the country.


The majority of the podcast is spent talking with Evan about his book and about the GOP's crisis in terms of Millennials and minorities. We also talk about the GOP and technology, where the right has fallen behind and how they can catch up.


For predictions, Evan predicts there is a lot more negative stuff about Trump that will come out in the coming weeks (probably related to Russia). Matthias thinks Trump will bounce up in the next few weeks but will then dive back down. Jordan thinks Rubio will win in Florida.


For episode 37, the Paradox team is just exhausted with this whole year

Terrible Opinions

Zach: The name of the President of the Harvard GOP club is funny and Philip Bump is fine with making fun of his (very ridiculous) name. Matthias loudly disagrees.

Jordan: It was unfair when people got angry at Hillary for the Orlando shooter showing up at her rally.

Matthias: Evan McMullin is running for president. He is a ridiculous choice and he is being incredibly unfair to Hillary Clinton (inasmuch as he implies that she has no experience in dealing with terrorism).

Also, Zach brings up a study on teacher pay (indicating that teachers make far less money than comparable workers) and Matthias looks at this with the national employment data.


In the terrible opinions this week, Matthias says we should couple abortion restrictions & gun restrictions as a way to make sure everyone is constantly angry, Zach likes Larry Sabato's idea of adding former Presidents & Vice Presidents as "national senators", Jordan thinks that asking a candidate's child questions about the candidates sexual past should be off limits. 

We cover the Democrat National Convention and the extent to which the Democrats remain divided even as they are meant to coalesce around Hillary as the nominee. 

For predictions, Matthias says Chelsea Clinton will run for president in 2024, Jordan says the re-boot of the Gilmore Girls will mention the current election and Zach says there will be a leaked "Clinton sex story" scandal, either real or fabricated, before the election is over.


After a little break, Zach, Jordan, and Matthias are back with our terrible opinions just in time to talk about the GOP Convention. Zach thinks Tim Kaine is a great VP pick. Matthias thinks that, if Democrats want to beat Trump, they need to stop defending Hillary and admit she is a disaster area. Jordan thinks it is awesome that people love Pokemon Go (and that it is not an indication of the fall of all culture) and also admires Bernie Sanders for staying loyal to the Democrat party even though his fought disrupt the party.

The team then covers the key moments of the GOP convention, including Ted Cruz's speech and political future. Having mostly given up on the presidential race this year, we talk about how 2020 is likely to pan out in the GOP primary. 

For predictions, Matthias thinks Hillary's emails will come out via Wikileaks sometime around September & October. 


Matthias, Jordan and Zach are back for more Terrible Opinions, predictions and (we hope) nuanced opinions about the state of things in politics and culture. In this week's episode, Zach and Matthias debate a plot point in a recent "Game of Thrones" episode, we discuss our (lack of) opinions on Brexit, and we lament the "purposely uninformed" voter. 

The media lost it this week when the U.K. voted to leave the European Union, with culture war lines clearly falling along Leave for the right and Remain for the left. None of us have a definite opinion either way, but we discuss possible economic fallout as well as the overreaction of the left. 

Another important topic recently has been whether or not the government can put you on a secret list and take away your constitutional rights. We make fun of liberals just a little bit after the ridiculous Democratic sit-in, which was 1) catered and 2) useless. Zach reminds listeners that the ACLU was also against the "no fly/no buy" ban on gun sales, so maybe not everyone has gone crazy. 

We end by giving Matthias a hard time for unlocking his Twitter account and contradicting his vow to keep it locked down until after the election. 


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