Search the Site

Christopher Werth

Date
Length

Ten Signs You Might Be a Libertarian

Gary Johnson, the Libertarian Party’s presidential candidate, likes to say that most Americans are libertarians but don’t know it yet. So why can’t Libertarians (and other third parties) gain more political traction?

9/14/16
50:38

The Future (Probably) Isn’t as Scary as You Think

Internet pioneer Kevin Kelly tries to predict the future by identifying what’s truly inevitable. How worried should we be? Yes, robots will probably take your job — but the future will still be pretty great.

8/31/16
34:58

Are You Ready for a Glorious Sunset? (Replay)

The gist: we spend billions on end-of-life healthcare that doesn’t do much good. So what if a patient could forego the standard treatment and get a cash rebate instead?

8/24/16
40:55

Aziz Ansari Needs Another Toothbrush (Replay)

The comedian, actor — and now, author — answers our FREAK-quently Asked Questions.

8/17/16
31:25

Is It Okay for Restaurants to Racially Profile Their Employees? (Replay)

We seem to have decided that ethnic food tastes better when it’s served by people of that ethnicity (or at least something close). Does this make sense — and is it legal?

8/3/16
57:20

Ten Ideas to Make Politics Less Rotten

We Americans may love our democracy — at least in theory — but at the moment our feelings toward the Federal government lie somewhere between disdain and hatred. Which electoral and political ideas should be killed off to make way for a saner system?

7/27/16
44:48

What Are Gender Barriers Made Of?

Overt discrimination in the labor markets may be on the wane, but women are still subtly penalized by all sorts of societal conventions. How can those penalties be removed without burning down the house?

7/20/16
36:29

Is the Internet Being Ruined?

It’s a remarkable ecosystem that allows each of us to exercise control over our lives. But how much control do we truly have? How many of our decisions are really being made by Google and Facebook and Apple? And, perhaps most importantly: is the Internet’s true potential being squandered?

7/13/16
47:54

Confessions of a Pothole Politician

Eric Garcetti, the mayor of Los Angeles, has big ambitions but knows he must first master the small stuff. He’s also a polymath who relies heavily on data and new technologies. Could this be what modern politics is supposed to look like?

7/6/16
43:44

Why Do We Really Follow the News? (Replay)

There are all kinds of civics-class answers to that question. But how true are they? Could it be that we like to read about war, politics, and miscellaneous heartbreak simply because it’s (gasp) entertaining?

6/15/16
39:58

Why Does Everyone Hate Flying? And Other Questions Only a Pilot Can Answer

Patrick Smith, the author of Cockpit Confidential, answers every question we can throw at him about what really happens up in the air. Just don’t get him started on pilotless planes — or whether the autopilot is actually doing the flying.

6/1/16
43:42

The Longest Long Shot

When the uncelebrated Leicester City Football Club won the English Premier League, it wasn’t just the biggest underdog story in recent history. It was a sign of changing economics — and that other impossible, wonderful events might be lurking just around the corner.

5/25/16
42:59

How to Be Tim Ferriss

Our Self-Improvement Month concludes with a man whose entire life and career are one big pile of self-improvement. Nutrition? Check. Bizarre physical activities? Check. Working less and earning more? Check. Tim Ferriss, creator of the Four-Hour universe, may at first glance look like a charlatan, but it seems more likely that he’s a wizard — and the kind of self-improvement ally we all want on our side.

5/18/16
41:28

How to Win Games and Beat People

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.

5/11/16
52:26

How to Get More Grit in Your Life

The psychologist Angela Duckworth argues that a person’s level of stick-to-itiveness is directly related to their level of success. No big surprise there. But grit, she says, isn’t something you’re born with — it can be learned. Here’s how.

5/4/16
44:25

How to Become Great at Just About Anything

What if the thing we call “talent” is grotesquely overrated? And what if deliberate practice is the secret to excellence? Those are the claims of the research psychologist Anders Ericsson, who has been studying the science of expertise for decades. He tells us everything he’s learned.

4/27/16
51:51

How to Be More Productive

It’s Self-Improvement Month at Freakonomics Radio. We begin with a topic that seems to be on everyone’s mind: how to get more done in less time. First, however, a warning: there’s a big difference between being busy and being productive.

4/20/16
38:34

Are Payday Loans Really as Evil as People Say?

Critics — including President Obama — say short-term, high-interest loans are predatory, trapping borrowers in a cycle of debt. But some economists see them as a useful financial instrument for people who need them. As the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau promotes new regulation, we ask: who’s right?

4/6/16
49:36

The Economics of Sleep, Part 2 (Replay)

People who sleep better earn more money. Now all we have to do is teach everyone to sleep better.

3/30/16
42:47

The No-Tipping Point

The restaurant business model is warped: kitchen wages are too low to hire cooks, while diners are put in charge of paying the waitstaff. So what happens if you eliminate tipping, raise menu prices, and redistribute the wealth? New York restaurant maverick Danny Meyer is about to find out.

3/9/16
43:14

How Can This Possibly Be True?

A famous economics essay features a pencil (yes, a pencil) arguing that “not a single person on the face of this earth knows how to make me.” Is the pencil just bragging? In any case, what can the pencil teach us about our global interdependence — and the proper role of government in the economy?

2/18/16
40:48

When Willpower Isn’t Enough (Replay)

Sure, we all want to make good personal decisions, but it doesn’t always work out. That’s where “temptation bundling” comes in.

12/31/15
41:56

Am I Boring You?

Researchers are trying to figure out who gets bored — and why — and what it means for ourselves and the economy. But maybe there’s an upside to boredom?

10/29/15
39:29

The Economics of Sleep, Part 2

People who sleep better earn more money. Now all we have to do is teach everyone to sleep better.

7/16/15
43:25

The Economics of Sleep, Part 1

Could a lack of sleep help explain why some people get much sicker than others?

7/6/15
44:56

Is It Okay for Restaurants to Racially Profile Their Employees?

We seem to have decided that ethnic food tastes better when it’s served by people of that ethnicity (or at least something close). Does this make sense — and is it legal?

6/24/15
52:39

Diamonds Are a Marriage Counselor’s Best Friend

It may seem like winning a valuable diamond is an unalloyed victory. It’s not. It’s not even clear that a diamond is so valuable.

4/16/15
40:29

How Many Doctors Does It Take to Start a Healthcare Revolution?

The practice of medicine has been subsumed by the business of medicine. This is great news for healthcare shareholders — and bad news for pretty much everyone else.

4/9/15
58:53

This Idea Must Die

Every year, Edge.org asks its salon of big thinkers to answer one big question. This year’s question borders on heresy: what scientific idea is ready for retirement?

3/5/15
54:33

The Maddest Men of All

Advertisers have always been adept at manipulating our emotions. Now they’re using behavioral economics to get even better.

2/26/15
36:04

The Freakonomics Radio Network

Follow this show
610 Episodes
Follow this show
89 Episodes
Follow this show
66 Episodes
Follow this show
22 Episodes

How to Listen

You want to listen to Freakonomics Radio? That’s great! Most people use a podcast app on their smartphone. It’s free (with the purchase of a phone, of course). Looking for more guidance? We’ve got you covered.

Learn more

Freakonomics Radio Network Newsletter

Stay up-to-date on all our shows. We promise no spam.