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Act Four: A Matter of Principal

The anti-government protests last month in Russia were surprising for a few reasons – including the fact that they included tons of young people. After the protests, teenagers started posting videos to the internet of their teachers lecturing them about the protests and the kids arguing back.

Prologue

The Department of Homeland Security’s new policies on deportation have sown fear and confusion among undocumented immigrants. Ira Glass and Lilly Sullivan go to Chicago and meet a family trying to navigate the situation.

Act Two: Heavy Vetting

One of the justifications for the executive order from the administration was that we needed to temporarily stop admitting immigrants and refugees from these seven countries in order to scrutinize and improve the vetting process. Ira speaks with the vetters about how they vet and what they make of the new order.

Prologue

Host Ira Glass interviews Congressman Seth Moulton (D., Mass.), who served four tours as a Marine in Iraq. Moulton talks about an Iraqi translator he grew close to, and about a special visa program that allows Iraqi and Afghan translators to come to the U.S.

Prologue

Host Ira Glass explains that this hour we will hear from people from all over the country, with different points of view, explain what they’re feeling and thinking about Donald Trump’s election.

Prologue

There’s a political parable about Hillary Clinton that’s made the rounds this year. Host Ira Glass interviews contributor Jack Hitt, who says that in this parable you can see almost every version of Hillary that exists in the popular imagination: the A student, the opportunist, the mastermind, the rat fink, the pragmatist, the truth-twister.

Prologue

There’s a seismic, historic change going on in the Republican party this year. Producer Zoe Chace tells Ira about a place you can eavesdrop on a group of Republican friends as they fret and argue about that change week after week: a podcast called Ricochet.

Prologue

A year ago, we did a story about a study that found that a simple 20-minute conversation could change someone’s mind about controversial issues like gay marriage and abortion. But a few weeks after we aired the story, the study was discredited.

Prologue

Ira talks to cyber cafe workers around the world about something that lots of Americans have never heard of, but that people in other countries know all about: a lottery run by the U.S. government where the prize is a visa to come to America. Each year people flock to cyber cafes to enter it, hoping for a lucky break that will change their life.

Act Two: Dream Come True

Perhaps the biggest proponent of smaller government in the United States is lobbyist and activist Grover Norquist, head of Americans for Tax Reform. He envisions a government reduced in size by half, and has compelled scores of conservative politicians take pledges to never raise taxes.

Prologue

Host Ira Glass speaks with Columbia University professor Peter Coleman, who shares some surprising details about the battle surrounding the abortion debate in Boston during the 1990s. We learn what secret meetings between the warring groups could accomplish, and what they couldn't.