On the Radio

Season 10, Episode 12

The modern world overwhelms us with sounds we didn’t ask for, like car alarms and cell-phone “halfalogues.” What does all this noise cost us in terms of productivity, health, and basic sanity? To find out more, check out the podcast from which this hour was drawn: “Please Get Your Noise Out of My Ears.” 

Season 10, Episode 11

John Mackey, the C.E.O. of Whole Foods, has learned the perils of speaking his mind. But he still says what he thinks about everything from “conscious leadership” to the behavioral roots of the obesity epidemic. He also argues for a style of capitalism and politics that at this moment seems like a fantasy. What does […]

Season 10, Episode 10

A fine reading of most policies for “business interruption” reveals that viral outbreaks aren’t covered. Some legislators are demanding that insurance firms pay up anyway. Is it time to rethink insurance entirely? To find out more, check out the podcasts from which this hour was drawn: “Many Businesses Thought They Were Insured for a Pandemic. […]

Season 10, Episode 9

As beloved and familiar as they are, we rarely stop to consider life from the dog’s point of view. That stops now. In this latest installment of the Freakonomics Radio Book Club, we discuss Inside of a Dog with the cognitive scientist (and dog devotee) Alexandra Horowitz. To find out more, check out the podcast from which […]

Season 10, Episode 8

It isn’t just supply and demand. We look at the complicated history and skewed incentives that make “affordable housing” more punch line than reality in cities from New York and San Francisco to Flint, Michigan (!). To find out more, check out the podcasts from which this hour was drawn: “Why Are Cities (Still) So […]

Season 10, Episode 7

The pandemic has hit America’s biggest city particularly hard. Amidst a deep fiscal hole, rising homicides, and a flight to the suburbs, some people think the city is heading back to the bad old 1970s. We look at the history — and the data — to see why that’s probably not the case. To find […]

Season 10, Episode 6

Three leading researchers from the Mount Sinai Health System discuss how ketamine, cannabis, and ecstasy are being used (or studied) to treat everything from severe depression to addiction to PTSD. We discuss the upsides, downsides, and regulatory puzzles. To find out more, check out the podcast from which this hour was drawn: “How Are Psychedelics […]

Season 10, Episode 5

Games are as old as civilization itself, and some people think they have huge social value regardless of whether you win or lose. Tom Whipple is not one of those people. That’s why he consulted an army of preposterously overqualified experts to find the secret to winning any game. To find out more, check out […]

Season 10, Episode 4

The families of U.S. troops killed and wounded in Afghanistan are suing several companies that did reconstruction there. Why? These companies, they say, paid the Taliban protection money, which gave them the funding — and opportunity — to attack U.S. soldiers instead. A look at the messy, complicated, and heart-breaking tradeoffs of conflict-zone economies. To […]

Season 10, Episode 3

We all know our political system is “broken” — but what if that’s not true? Some say the Republicans and Democrats constitute a wildly successful industry that has colluded to kill off competition, stifle reform, and drive the country apart. So what are you going to do about it? To find out more, check out […]