Political Gabfest

The “Gain of Function” Edition

The lab-leak theory of COVID-19, the Belarus hijacking, and David Shor on polling and pragmatic politics.

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Episode Notes

Here are some notes and references from this week’s show:

David Leonhardt for The New York Times: “The Lab-Leak Theory

Nicholson Baker for New York Magazine: “The Lab-Leak Hypothesis

Nicholas Wade for The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists: “The Origin of COVID: Did People or Nature Open Pandora’s Box at Wuhan?

Anne Applebaum for The Atlantic: “Other Regimes Will Hijack Planes Too

The Skies Belong to Us: Love and Terror in the Golden Age of Hijacking, by Brendan I. Koerner

Eric Levitz for New York Magazine: “David Shor on Why Trump Was Good for the GOP and How Dems Can Win in 2022

Eric Levitz for New York Magazine: “David Shor’s Unified Theory of American Politics

Here’s this week’s chatter:

John: Mark Mortensen and Heidi K. Gardner for Harvard Business Review: “WFH Is Corroding Our Trust in Each Other

Emily: Patrick Smith for WBEZ: “Mayor Lori Lightfoot Blamed Gun Violence On Judges, But Emails Show Her Staff Knew It Wasn’t True

David: Apple Photos “Memories” feature

Listener chatter from Jen Overbeck: Alan Burdick for The New York Times: “So You Want to End the Conversation?

For this week’s Slate Plus bonus segment, Emily, John, and David talk about the difficulties of ending a conversation that has run its course.

If you enjoy the show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the Political Gabfest. Sign up now at slate.com/gabfestplus to help support our work.

Tweet us your questions and chatters @SlateGabfest or email us at gabfest@slate.com. (Messages may be quoted by name unless the writer stipulates otherwise.)

Podcast production by Margaret Kelley.

Research and show notes by Bridgette Dunlap.

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About the Show

Voted “Favorite Political Podcast” by Apple Podcasts listeners. Stephen Colbert says, “Everybody should listen to the Slate Political Gabfest.” The Gabfest is hosted by Emily Bazelon, John Dickerson, and David Plotz. Listen for the debates, stay for the cocktail chatter.

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