The Spokesmen #142 – John Kerry & Sticky Wickets

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8 comments to The Spokesmen #142 – John Kerry & Sticky Wickets

  • Aaron

    Carlton or Tim, I’m a listener from the beginning. However, if you bring American politics up once again you will lose my listenership forever.

  • Hi Aaron

    We don’t plan these things, the mentions of politics bubble up as we go along, as they likely would do in any normal, real-world conversation. It might be wise not to ever talk about religion and politics but sometimes – given that politics at least can directly impinge on our daily lives, including our lives as cyclists – it’s pretty much unavoidable

    Now, we don’t major on politics and we generally steer the conversation away from it pretty quickly but we certainly can’t promise it won’t be discussed in future.

    As a European I find it interesting that some subjects seem to be more touchy than others to American guests (and, I guess, listeners) but that’s also one of the beauties of a multi-national roundtable discussion – after all, variety is the spice of life.

  • Mike Stead

    Aaron, most of the participants are American. America – like it or not – largely dictates trends in modern cycling, being the world’s largest market and featuring some of the world’s largest manufacturers. And political issues are cycling issues – from the Olympics to on-and off-road advocacy to laws affecting us all. I think the team do an admirable job avoiding he said-she said gainsaying and commenting on the realpolitik of news/events/etc. Let’s not shy away from the real world – cycling doesn’t exist in a politics-free bubble, nor should the Spokesmen.

  • DP-San Diego

    I think that it is entirely appropriate to reference political issues, including statements by candidates, when the safety of cyclists is affected.

  • Ian

    “I think that it is entirely appropriate to reference political issues, including statements by candidates, when the safety of cyclists is affected.”

    Couldn’t agree more about this. Cycling advocacy is inextricably linked to nearly all of the topics on The Spokesmen. We shouldn’t pretend that it’s apolitical–or avoid calling out individual politicians or parties when they actively work to undermine the interests of cyclists.

  • Aaron

    I agree that when an individual politician needs to be called out, s/he should. What I was referring to was gratuitous remarks about the presidential campaigns. I am an avid cyclist, passionate about the country, and a conservative. My family has been in the USA since the 1600s, and the state of our country is frightening to me right now.

    I am involved in politics enough that I would be happy if this show stays far away from gratuitous comments about politics.

    However, as it seems others do want to talk about it, I’ll say it: In terms of the presidential campaigns, I think Hillary Clinton is evil, and while Trump is far from my favorite – I would have loved to vote for Ted Cruz – the worst thing for the USA and the world is Hillary as president.

  • Aaron,

    I know that you are a long time listener to and supporter of both The Spokesmen and The FredCast, and I am sincerely appreciative. During your years of being a listener, I hope you will have seen that I try to keep certain hot button issues (e.g. politics, religion, fashion, music, etc.) out of my shows, but that I also do not squelch or censor my guests and contributors, either on the podcasts or on the sites (unless there is obvious hate speech or profanity).

    The Spokesmen and The FredCast are shows produced by cyclists for cyclists. There are plenty of other places people can hear about politics and the other hot button topics I mentioned above but, as you said, there are occasions when politicians deserve to be called out for comments and/or actions that relate specifically to cycling. Otherwise, there really is no place in a cycling podcast for political comments. That being said, I can’t think of many conversations I’ve had over the past 6 months that haven’t included, in one way or another, a discussion of the U.S. presidential election or the Brexit, so since The Spokesmen is a conversation, it is natural that politics may come up as a natural course of conversation.

    I respect your opinions about the election and I also respect the opinions of our other hosts and contributors, and I am sure you do too. I did not create the podcasts or the web sites as forums for politics, and I would ask that everyone (listeners and podcast contributors alike) keep the focus on bikes and issues directly related thereto, rather than making either the sites or the podcasts into places for a debate about the relative merits of the presidential candidates.

    All the best, and thanks for being such an avid listener and supporter.


  • Ian

    I’d be curious to hear how one can talk about bicycle advocacy in any sort of meaningful way without bringing in politics.

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