June 3, 2018
The 1st Amendment: it’s America’s most cherished and well-defended constitutional freedom that’s not that gun one. Either way, we’re used to living in a country where free speech has few limits, and only really runs into trouble when it can get people killed. But what happens when that free speech lobbies for white supremacist ideas that have historically caused violence and death? What happens when that speech comes in the form of text on websites, days after an awful tragedy? And what happens when a couple of random tech bros hold the power to boot that speech off the Internet on a (morally defensible) whim?
On this week’s episode of The Cracked Podcast, Alex Schmidt is joined by NPR’s Sam Sanders for a fun look at the strangest phenomenon of the past few months. Drawing on legal experts, tech thinkers, and one hard-to-stomach interview, they’ll explore how a few people now hold the keys to our entire public square. And even though you’re (probably) not a creepy jerk hiding out on EvilFrogTwitter.biz, get ready to consider whether the Internet freedom you love has ever existed at all.
January 26, 2020
Freedom sucks…and that is why we have to defend it. Because our democracy involves doing a lot of stuff that takes energy, takes time, and lacks that Michael Bay Quality that only a surprise missile launch can provide. So on this episode of The Cracked Podcast, Alex Schmidt and special guest Jason Pargin (who writes for Cracked as David Wong) are exploring the ways being afraid of everything (an easy action) can stop us from being free. Discover the decades-long tradition of some Americans wanting to give up everything in exchange for not needing to think, the centuries-long tradition of people inciting fake panics, and the reasonable ways you can help change things for the better.
January 19, 2020
How’s your local shopping mall doing? Have you checked on it lately? Swing by sometime, because its department store might’ve turned into a call center or a hospital or a go-kart track. On this episode of The Cracked Podcast, Alex Schmidt is joined by the one and only Kai Ryssdal (Marketplace, Make Me Smart) for a look at surprising, strange, and shocking stories from all over the U.S. economy. Discover an international pig flu, a 26-word statement that built the modern Internet, and more amazing ways cash is ruling everything around you. By the way, if you’re an American listener, you spent the past few years funding an astonishingly huge bailout. Surprise! Listen for details!
January 12, 2020
Movies, TV, gaming: three things that are theoretically a waste of time. Oh sure, they deliver value in the art sense, and comfort in the goofing-off sense. But what if they’re more valuable than that? What if consuming shows and playing video games (accidentally) turns people into real-life heroes? On this episode of The Cracked Podcast, Alex Schmidt is joined by comedians/writers Caitlin Gill and Alex Watt for a look at the surprising number of times that exact thing happened. They’ll explore stories of regular people who saved a life thanks to skills gained randomly from cartoons, sitcoms, ‘World Of Warcraft’, and more silly entertainment.