The Economics of Sports Gambling (Ep. 388 Rebroadcast)

What happens when tens of millions of fantasy-sports players are suddenly able to bet real money on real games? We’re about to find out. A recent Supreme Court decision has cleared the way to bring an estimated $300 billion in black-market sports betting into the light. We sort out the winners and losers.

Are You a Maximizer or a Satisficer? (NSQ Ep. 14)

Also: what is the best question you’ve ever been asked in a job interview?

Is Economic Growth the Wrong Goal? (Ep. 429)

The endless pursuit of G.D.P., argues the economist Kate Raworth, shortchanges too many people and also trashes the planet. Economic theory, she says, “needs to be rewritten” — and Raworth has tried, in a book called Doughnut Economics. It has found an audience among reformers, and now the city of Amsterdam is going whole doughnut.

How Can You Stop Comparing Yourself With Other People? (NSQ Ep. 13)

Also: how can we stop confusing correlation with causation?

How the Supermarket Helped America Win the Cold War (Ep. 386 Rebroadcast)

Aisle upon aisle of fresh produce, cheap meat, and sugary cereal — a delicious embodiment of free-market capitalism, right? Not quite. The supermarket was in fact the endpoint of the U.S. government’s battle for agricultural abundance against the U.S.S.R. Our farm policies were built to dominate, not necessarily to nourish — and we are still living with the consequences.

Does “As If” Thinking Really Work? (NSQ Ep. 12)

Also: how effective is the placebo effect?

The Simple Economics of Saving the Amazon Rain Forest (Ep. 428)

Everyone agrees that massive deforestation is an environmental disaster. But most of the standard solutions — scolding the Brazilians, invoking universal morality — ignore the one solution that might actually work.

Are Ambitious People Inherently Selfish? (NSQ Ep. 11)

Also: why do we habituate to life’s greatest pleasures?

The Pros and Cons of Reparations (Ep. 427)

Most Americans agree that racial discrimination has been, and remains, a big problem. But that is where the agreement ends.

Why Are Stories Stickier Than Statistics? (NSQ Ep. 10)

Also: are the most memorable stories less likely to be true?