Every fortnight, ConservativeHome will compile a handful of podcast recommendations – content that has been published in the weeks preceding – for its readers. Although these will mainly focus on podcasts for conservative listeners, we will try to include other options – should they be particularly interesting. Sometimes this feature will contain other types of media.

Host: Matt Chorley
Episode: An Interview with Social Mobility Commissioner Katharine Birbalsingh

Duration: 30 minutes
Published: November 22
Link: Here

What’s it about?

In this interview, Matt Chorley sits down with Katharine Birbalsingh, the founder and headmistress of Michaela Community School, and more recently appointed the Government’s new Social Mobility Commissioner, to discuss a range of educational issues. From whether her school is too strict, to what she aims to change in her new position, Birbalsingh is characteristically compelling and unapologetic in her worldview.

Some teaser quotes:
  • (On making sure the Government listens to her on the Social Mobility Commissioner) – “I’m not in the business of being ignored. I don’t waste my time. I think I need to be quite selective and interesting about the things we choose to put forward.”
  • “We can all go on all day about how terrible Boris Johnson is. I just explained how one of my kids corrected him. But I don’t think that’s going to come to any use.”
  • “I think we could right now, with no more money in the education system, we could make things better, simply with different ideas.”

A fun insight into what’s next for the Government’s social mobility strategy.

Title: So What You’re Saying Is… (New Culture Forum)
Host: Peter Whittle
Episode: Viral: The Search for the Origin of Covid-19 – Matt Ridley

Duration: 50:34 minutes
Published: November 20

What’s it about?

In this conversation with Peter Whittle, Matt Ridley introduces some of the topics from his brave new book, Viral: The Search for the Origin of Covid-19, co-authored by Dr Alina Chan, a genetic engineering expert. Ridley exposes some of the complacency the West has had around how the pandemic started, taking listeners through the various inconsistencies that haven’t yet been explained.

Some teaser quotes:
  • “The World Health Organization became very beholden to China over the last few years. Dr Tedros, the Director General, was elected with Chinese support and China basically went around Africa saying “if you support this guy, we’ll give you more subsidies”.
  • (On whether his book has been dangerous to write) – “Yes it is… It is very clear that the wolf warrior diplomacy that the Chinese state operates is one that involves cyber attacks, denigration, criticism of people who say unwelcome things about what’s going on in China.”
  • “The ecological explanation for pandemics, which is very, very fashionable among a certain kind of environmentalist activist, simply don’t make much sense.”

A wake-up call as to how much the media and politicians have buried their heads in the sand about the origins of Covid.

Title: Triggernometry
Host: Konstantin Kisin and Francis Foster
Episode: Viral: Kathleen Stock – Hounded Out for Trans Views

Duration: 1:07:53 hours
Published: November 21

What’s it about?

Readers of my podcast review may know that Kathleen Stock, the former Professor of Philosophy at Sussex University, featured in the last feature of these series. It felt fitting to put another of her interviews in a) in the same week that JK Rowling posted about receiving death threats for holding “gender critical” views (aka believing sex and gender are different things), but b) also because it is simply very interesting too. In the chat, Stock elaborates on her ordeal at the hands of activists, who hounded her after she expressed (perfectly common sense) arguments on gender identity.

Some teaser quotes:
  • (On gender ideology) – “I just think it shows how susceptible to flashy-sounding ultimately mad ideas human beings can be in the right circumstances… I think it’s sociologically interesting how so many of us seem to have gone along with this, despite the obvious, terrible consequences for children, for gay women, for women in sport and so on.”
  • “Alongside extreme trans activism goes this cult-like structure which says ‘anyone who disagrees with us is a hater'”.
  • “There’s nothing academic about this; there’s something pretty primitive about this. It’s like ‘get that heretical figure out of our environment’.”

An interview that shocks as much as captivates.