Open Thread, 11/14/2020 – Brown Pundits

By Razib Khan 127 Comments

I don’t know anything about Diwali, but Happy Holdidays! (I found out that it was Diwali this weekend from Twitter and the comments here).

A new podcast on the election results with Josiah Neeley and Richard Hanania. We get kind of spicey by the end, as I make fun of Richard making fun of Peter Turchin, and make a huge prediction about Hunter Biden’s future.

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Open Thread – 10/31/2020 – Brown Pundits

By Razib Khan 201 Comments

So I started a Subreddit. You can start your own threads there. Eventually, that might make the “open threads” redundant (they are not scaling well with ~400 comments per week).

I’ve posted a few podcasts on the Patreon. One is a new podcast from Richard Hanania, where he takes a skeptical stance toward France in relation to the late unpleasantness. But several are from the Substack I’m starting shortly (probably next week). Probably won’t be posting those in the future.

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Open Thread – 10/24/2020 – Brown Pundits

By Razib Khan 503 Comments

Going to post some notes on the latest podcast here. I talked to Fred Martin, who is of Haitian origin, but pretty stridently French, and a liberal. We discussed the killing of Samuel Paty, and Islam and Islamism in France. We also mooted the differences in relation to race between the USA and France, and our contrasting experiences. Finally, we talk about the coming winter of coronavirus in Europe.

A lot of the discussion centered around the contrast between France and the USA, which is always interesting to explore.

Thanks to everyone who is a Patron. I’ve started posting podcasts which you can’t find elsewhere yet there…

On Twitter, Suhag Shukla has been pushing back on the “caste is a huge problem for Indian Americans” narrative. I think she’s right on the specific issue. But, I am skeptical when she seems to attribute caste to colonialism, or, that it is not tightly integrated into Hinduism. I think Hinduism has a caste problem like Islam has a religious oppression problem. Religions are made by humans, and how they play out is a human matter. For whatever reason, Islamic societies have not been pluralistic in an egalitarian manner to other religions, while Hinduism in India is hard to disentangle from caste and jati. This doesn’t mean they’re necessary connections. Caste and jati are not major issues in Balinese or Cham Hinduism, though varna does exist.

The major dynamic which needs to be reiterated is that American Hinduism is very distinct from Hinduism in India, just as American Islam is very distinct from Islam in the Near East. I’m 99% sure that the Indian Americans I know (Generation X) would exhibit no caste bias of any note because in the USA it’s just not relevant in any way.

Brown Pundits Subreddit.

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Open Thread – 10/17/2020

By Razib Khan 197 Comments

The thread is open. Three new podcasts this week in case you aren’t subscribed. Sometimes I get overwhelmed with things and I just can’t be bothere with detailed show notes.

As I mentioned before I’m recording interviews for a new podcast I’m starting up separate from the others I run. I’m just throwing them on Patreon for now. Today I recorded an interview with the author of 1177 B.C.: The Year Civilization Collapsed. Looking at the tracks…he’s a very good talker!

I really recommend the book, it’s pretty well written. He also talks about his follow-up book, in terms of when we can expect and what it’s about.

Also, I may start trashing stupid comments now and then. Just to keep you guys “honest.”

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Open Thread – 10/10/2020

By Razib Khan 114 Comments

Some cool podcasts will be posted soon. Already posted two on the Patron page, including a very cool one where Mukunda and Jahanarra talk to Michael Fortner. A professor at CUNY, Fortner is the author of Black Silent Majority: The Rockefeller Drug Laws and the Politics of Punishment.

I’ve also posted a podcast with Devang Mehta on what’s wrong with science, and how to fix it (also, some advice for Indians who might want to get into the world of Western academic science).

Also, I will probably post a few previews of a new podcast I’m starting (solo) for patrons. This is going to be part of my new substack newsletter. This weekend I’ll be talking to an old friend from grad school who snapped and turned against wokism last week (he was involved with BLM since 2015, and I just got off the phone with him and he told me things he’s seen in BLM up until this summer left him very jaded, suspicious, and skeptical).

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Open Thread – 9/26/2020 – Brown Pundits

By Razib Khan 193 Comments


I have mixed feelings about casting Dev Patel as Gawain. Though my feelings are not strong, they are similar to my feelings about casting white actors as non-Europeans in the past: you get over it, but it takes away from verisimilitude.

Please make sure that you subscribe to the podcast (there are links to various platforms on the main website at the link). We don’t always post show-notes due to being busy.

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