On The Posner Show, Sarah talks to Eric about Town of Greece v. Galloway, a case the Supreme Court just decided to hear in which two town residents challenged as a violation of separation of church and state Christian prayers that have opened the town council’s meetings. Eric says that Supreme Court precedent on the subject of legislative prayers has created “chaos” and adopted a “pernicious” historical test. Eric argues that a moment of silence is the best solution. They discuss how the case is likely to play out before the Supreme Court. Plus: What about the Texas cheerleader case?
On The Glenn Show, Glenn and John continue their debate about affirmative action. Glenn points out areas outside of academia where he thinks affirmative action would be appropriate. They debate the use of employment tests that show a disparate racial impact. Glenn uses his own graduate economics program as an example of how standards can be revised, not lowered, to promote diversity. Do opponents of affirmative action overvalue qualification? John quotes Zora Neale Hurston, who said that blacks must compete even if the game is rigged. They close by examining whether efforts to lower the black crime rate are a kind of affirmative action.
On The DMZ: Picking up where his wife left off, Matt makes the case that breastfeeding and farmer’s markets are innately conservative. Then The DMZ braves the scandal zone. Has the “second-term curse” caught Obama? Matt sees a president crossing ethical lines to win re-election, while Bill doesn’t see much scandal at all. Does it make political sense for the opposition party to chase scandal, or does that risk backfiring? Matt argues the stories can’t be dismissed, and Bill explains why he’s happy to have investigations. And how do these incidents compare to Watergate and the Lewinsky scandal?
On The Posner Show, Sarah talks with Sigal about last week’s violence at the Western Wall by ultra-Orthodox men opposed to the activities of the group Women of the Wall. They discuss the background of this controversy, including the arrest of the group’s leader a month ago. Sigal argues that last week was a watershed moment for Israeli feminism. Are mainstream Israelis following this story closely? Sarah observes that women from fundamentalist backgrounds often find secularism to be a major challenge to their identity. Will American Jews be able to play a role in resolving this issue?
On Foreign Entanglements, Rob speaks with Colin about the recent conviction of former Guatemalan dictator Efrain Rios Montt for genocide. Rob and Colin talk about why it took so long to try Rios Montt, the role that Cold War politics played in the Guatemalan civil war (including the culpability of the US), and the wave of democratization that swept across Latin America. They end by discussing whether this wave is being rolled back, and how convicting figures like Rios Montt can help stabilize Latin American democracy.
On the debut of The Score, Michael and Freddie talk baseball. They discuss the nostalgic vs. sabermetric views of baseball, and whether the stat-heads have forgotten about human nature. Freddie highlights the inherent irrationality of sports. If you were given total power over the MLB, what would you change? Freddie rhapsodizes over simulated baseball. Plus: Has the Internet made managers less likely to take risks?