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What on Earth is Going on? is a podcast for the curious, where small talk is banned and tangents are prized. Strap yourself in for genuine dialogues with people who think deeply and are ready to tackle the big questions, such as broadcaster Terry O'Reilly, economist Miles Corak and journalist Sally Armstrong.

Join Ben Charland to peel back the headlines and ask, what are the forces, people and ideas that shape the human story today? Have things always been this nuts, or are they getting crazier by the day? From the Mafia to the Beavertonwomen in politics to women in leadershiphistory to artificial intelligence, and entrepreneurship in the digital age to the art of wheelchair fencing, just what on Earth is going on?

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Apr 3, 2020

Is dividing people up by their generation (Baby Boomer, Gen X, Millennial, etc.) unhelpful and even harmful? Is it a form of ageism, along the same lines as racism or sexism? What is the coming crisis of our time, and have we already arrived? And is it ethically justified to have children in this world in flux?

Ben is...


Mar 20, 2020

One of the key features of the democratic process is opinion polling, whether it is leader likability or attitudes on various issues. But do these snapshots of the horserace have an impact on the race itself? How has scientific polling and statistical analysis changed? How will it change in the years to come? And, what...


Mar 6, 2020

Do our names shape our destiny? What does it mean to live life as Don as opposed to Donald or Donnie? What prejudices do we carry with our names and the names of others, and what about those who change theirs? When we name our children, are we projecting our own battles and biases onto them before they even know the...


Feb 21, 2020

Humans are living longer, delaying disease and decay later and later. It's conceivable that we could eradicate the big killers and attain a certain kind of infinite postponement of death. But what would this mean for our humanity? What does philosophy have to say about this, and about the state of our ongoing social...


Feb 7, 2020

Ziya Tong is "one of the world's most engaging science journalists" and after co-hosting Discovery Canada's Daily Planet television program for ten years, she wrote her first book, The Reality Bubble. It's a veil-removing tour-de-force, filled with wonder, rigour and a powerful thesis about our role in the world and how...