Blue Pill AND Red Pill in One Podcast
The current political climate is coloring everything I listen to, and so when The Magic Bureaucrat and his Riverside Miracle, an episode of 99% Invisible, began with a story of welfare reform that seemed to be a conservative's wet dream, I was wary; 99% Invisible, though usually about design, takes a fairly liberal view of the world-- innovation is good, new ideas and designs can empower people, and we are progressing towards better and better designs of nearly everything-- the story begins with Larry Townsend's new welfare program in Riverside, which would come to be known as workfare and would encourage welfare recipients to "find a job, any job" instead of getting education and training . . . and this was during the Clinton years and the program was regarded as a huge success . . . BUT the story takes a predictably liberal turn, and the reasons are significant and very topical and I think both liberals and conservatives could learn something from the piece, about the economy, economic research, and the power of music . . . Townsend enlisted his staff to make an album of original songs in various genres to inspire people on welfare to get a job (and spent a few thousand dollars of taxpayer money to produce the album) and, in case you were wondering: yes there's some '90's rap on there and it's stupendous.