Sep 1 • 40M

So This Just Happened #003: Oliver Anthony and the coolness gap

Republicans desperately crave cultural cachet, while also being indifferent or racist to creative people

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Appears in this episode

Matthew Sheffield
Kali Holloway
Lots of people want to change the world. But how does change happen? History is filled with stories of people and institutions that spent big and devoted many resources to effect change but have little to show for it. By contrast, many societal developments have happened without forethought from anyone. And of course, change can be negative as well as positive. In each episode of this weekly program, Theory of Change host Matthew Sheffield delves deep with guests to discuss larger trends in politics, religion, media, and technology.
Episode details


Over the past month, you couldn't go anywhere as a political junkie without being force-fed takes from right-wing media figures on the music of Oliver Anthony, who turns out to be someone who isn't particularly a fan of Republicans.

In this episode, Kali and Matt talk about why Republicans are so desperate to be cool and how it's also related to their demeaning and often racist attitudes toward Black Americans.


02:16 -- Republicans aren't cool, and they know it all too well

06:51 -- The right's love-hate relationship with adult entertainers

09:28 -- No, Donald Trump is not the next Tupac because he got a mugshot

16:13 -- The possible cognitive roots America's political divide

23:47 -- Vivek Ramaswamy's Hindu Christian nationalism

33:30 -- Ted Cruz's cringe beer PR stunt

Stories mentioned

Turning Point USA kicks out adult film star Brandi Love

Republicans wishcast about Trump and the Black vote after mugshot

The mini Capitol Insurrection that no one covered

Vivek Ramaswamy is reconfiguring Republican candidacies

Ramaswamy's attempt at Hindu-Christian fusion 

Ted Cruz fails at beer drinking 

Ron DeSantis shows he's good at smiling

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Theme song

Easy Lover: “The End of Our Deceit
Lyrics by Kali Holloway
Music by Jeremy Wimmer