Steve's Blog

My Podcasts

Author: Stephen J. Turnbull
Organization: Faculty of Engineering, Information, and Systems at the University of Tsukuba
Contact: Stephen J. Turnbull <>
Date: 2022/11/12
Copyright: 2019, 2020, 2022 Stephen J. Turnbull

Here are some podcasts I listen to, and recommend for students of social science and economics interested in practicing English. I use Apple Podcasts, but most of them are registered with several platforms. I provide links to Apple's Podcasts site because the descriptions there may be useful.

This page will be updated irregularly. Because I hope this will be useful to students, I would like to tag them with typical length, but that will come later. #unfollowed podcasts generally don't have links. I'll look those up later, too.

Wow ... I'm now subscribed to 57 podcasts, about 20 of which update weekly or more often. Not to mention 4 that I've unfollowed for having boring political biases. (I don't have a problem with political bias, I can "correct" for that -- but boring, I have no patience for boring.)

Tags and Acronyms:

  • #historical This podcast is known to have ended.
  • #dormant This podcast has not had an episode in many months.
  • #unfollowed I don't subscribe any more.
  • #CrookedMedia Published by Crooked Media.
  • #Lawfare Published by Lawfare.
  • YMMV Your Mileage May Vary (not about quality, just not to my taste).

For the Curious

Other podcasts I listen to. I don't include them in "recommended" for various reasons: some are quite long, others very specialized, others don't fit the theme of social and economic sciences.

  • The New Abnormal Hilarious attacks on Donald Trump, his Administration, the Republican Party, and Trumpist conservatives.

  • Rational Security US national security issues, mostly political or diplomatic, including intelligence agencies. Participants somewhat progressive but reasonably objective. Major cast change in mid-2021 but still excellent. #Lawfare

  • The Report A condensed audio version of the Mueller Report on Russian interference in the 2016 US Presidential election from the Rational Security crew. #historical #lawfare

  • Arms Control Wonk Open source intelligence about armaments by Jeffrey Lewis (@ArmsControlWonk on Twitter).

  • The Diplomat: Asia Geopolitics Geopolitical diplomacy from Pakistan to Japan by Ankit Panda.

  • The Un-Diplomatic Podcast A very progressive foreign policy discussion. The host Van Jackson was a Korea specialist in the U.S. military. Generally an Asia-Pacific focus (his previous podcast was called Pacific Pundit).

  • Bombshell from War on the Rocks. Discussions of US national security and delicious drinks by all-female cast of former military and civilian intelligence officials. According to Van Jackson of The Un-Diplomatic Podcast, Bombshell is the premier podcast of the War on the Rocks stable. He should know -- his old show Pacific Pundit was also produced by War on the Rocks.

  • Net Assessment from War on the Rocks. Basically War on the Rocks in debate format. I may be missing something, but the positions of the hosts all seem very set and not very thoughtful. #unfollowed

  • War on the Rocks Discussion of alcoholic beverages and military aspects of US national security. Also the sponsor of Bombshell and the former Pacific Pundit. Frequent guest Michael Kofman is among the best military analysts on Russia's war in Ukraine.

  • Geopolitics Decanted Host Dmitri Alperovitch is a well-known expert in information security, now consulting on national security as well. Born in Ukraine, the podcast frequently covers Russia's war on Ukraine, often with Michael Kofman. Amazingly, even if Kofman appears on War on the Rocks in the same week, he talks about somewhat different aspects of Russia's war on Ukraine.

  • Russian Roulette Economy, society, and politics of Russia and the former Soviet Union. #dormant

  • Power Problems from the Cato Institute. International diplomacy.

  • The Asia Chess Board Grand diplomatic strategy in Asia and the Pacific.

  • The Bulwark American politics. The host is very conservative, and so are most (but not all!) of the guests.

  • The Cyberlaw Podcast Law and policy for information and communication technology. Very conservative host, but a wide range of interesting industry and government guests.

  • Darknet Diaries Stories about computer hacking, mostly.

  • Malicious Life More stories about computer hacking.

  • MalwareTech Podcast More information security.

  • Deep State Radio American politics and national security. Mostly very progressive, but participants are well-informed. #unfollowed

  • #Fsck 'Em All Reform of the US criminal justice system, by a computer science major turned criminal defense lawyer. #dormant

  • Intelligence Matters Role of intelligence in US national security. Host Michael Morell is a former CIA Director.

  • The Lawfare Podcast Various discussions of (mostly) US legal issues.

  • LRC Presents All the Presidents' Lawyers President Trump's legal troubles and those of the rascals surrounding him. (LRC is "Left, Right & Center," see next entry. This one is much better, although I'm politically far to the left of Ken "Popehat" White.) Replaced by Serious Trouble. #dormant

  • Left, Right & Center Politics with opinions from both conservative and progressive voices in each episode. Unfortunately the "Right" proponents all seem to think they need to defend the indefensible, namely Donald Trump. Recently, the "Left" guests are no better. I don't listen to it any more unless there's a really interesting guest. #unfollowed (twice!)

  • Make No Law Free speech law in the US, also by Popehat. #dormant

  • NSL Podcast About US national security law and related legal cases.

  • Pod Save America Former Obama White House officials on US politics. #CrookedMedia

  • Pod Save the People. Black activists discussing US politics. #CrookedMedia

  • Pod Save the World. Former Obama White House officials on US diplomacy and world affairs. #CrookedMedia

  • Risky Business News and industry interviews in information security.

    Manzai rhythm! (That means the conversational pace will be familiar but there are no tsukkomi/boke roles.)

    Now has a more frequent news version (search for it).

  • With Friends Like These Variety, often personal, with a very progressive female host. #historical #CrookedMedia

  • The Monocle Daily An excellent daily news show from England. Fernando Pacheco provides a funny and informative Brazilian's point of view on culture, especially music.

  • Pacific Pundit was replaced by The Undiplomatic Podcast_. ``#historical`

  • The Respass Report Another black activist. #dormant

  • The Wilderness from the cast of Pod Save America. #dormant (again, it shows up during election campaigns). #CrookedMedia

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Stephen J. Turnbull