Intelligence Squared U.S. Debates

Intelligence Squared U.S. Debates / Intelligence Squared U.S. Debates

Airs Sunday, February 5, 2017, at 6 p.m. Almost everyone can think of something they would like to change in the U.S. Constitution. Some would like to update it to fit new technologies and evolving social mores. Others think the Supreme Court has illegitimately “updated” it too much already, and would like to restore its original meaning. Either way, it is always tempting to invoke Article V to amend the Constitution—to “fix" it, or “restore" it, or “improve" it... The debaters are Lawrence Lessig, David Super, Mark Meckler, and Walter Olson.

Intelligence Squared U.S. Debates
Intelligence Squared U.S. Debates

Airs Sunday, December 4, at 6 p.m. It is alleged that the practice of gerrymandering—dividing election districts into units to favor a particular group—subverts democracy by making congressional districts “safe” for one party or the other. As a result, only those voting in primaries are in effect choosing our representatives. Are primary voters more extreme in their views, and therefore pulling democrats to the left and republicans to the right? Or is the impact of gerrymandering overblown?

Airs Sunday, November 20, at 6 p.m. There are an estimated 11 million undocumented immigrants in the United States, and the question of what to do with them has sparked years of fierce debate, but no significant action. Should we give undocumented immigrants a path to citizenship? The debaters are Angela Kelley, Steven Camarota, Marielena Hincapié, and Rich Lowry.  

Airs Sunday, November 13, at 6 p.m. Health care costs in the U.S. are nearly double what other rich countries spend. We read of drug therapies that cost $100,000 a year or more, and of large drug price increases. Is this a major driver of excessive health care costs? Or is it a by-product of the huge costs of getting new drugs approved? Has big pharma delivered drugs that reduce the need for costly surgeries, which extend life and improve its quality? Or do they deserve the blame that has been leveled against them?

Airs Sunday, October 30, at 6 p.m. Reducing carbon emissions is clearly good for the environment but often imposes substantial costs, which can affect everyone indirectly through higher energy costs, slower economic growth, reduced employment, and lower business profits. Has the Environmental Protection Agency considered the costs and benefits of its regulatory mandates fairly and appropriately? Is its Clean Power Plan a bold initiative to reduce carbon pollution at power plants, or an unconstitutional usurpation of power?