Foreign Influence

Foreign Influence header image 1

Covid optimism • Hong Kong crackdown continues • Facebook “censorship” • Universalism is the answer to racism • Israel/Palestine • UFOs are real! But are aliens?

It's the Foreign Influence Podcast, with American Bill Poorman and Dutchman Nikolaj Groeneweg taking you on a humorously serious and seriously humorous romp through international events. This time we had to catch up on a lot of items since we took an episode off:

• We allows ourselves just a bit of covid optimism, given the success of the vaccines so far. 💉 Now we just need to focus on the entire globe.

• The crackdown on Hong Kong continues in China as the government bans remembrances of the Tiananmen Square crackdown. So many crackdowns.

• Facebook bans Trump for two years. But it's not "censorship" if the government doesn't do it.

• We wade into the controversy over race by standing firm on the idea that universalism is the answer to racism. And it's tough to be in that space in modern politics.

• We wade into the very simple, easy-to-fix Israel-Palestine conflict. We came *this close* 🤏🏻 to solving it.

• Finally, UFOs are real! 👽 Supposedly. But that doesn't mean it's aliens. And why are the pictures always so blurry?

Thanks for listening! 🙏🏻

Make sure to sign up for our newsletter - the Foreign Influence Dispatch - for links from today's show and more info and commentary from us.

Reach out to us at hello@foreigninfluencepodcast.com or through social media. You'll find us individually on Twitter, but also check out our FI Facebook page, where we can continue the conversation.

Remember, if you like what you hear, please help spread the word. 🙏

Bill & Nikolaj

Happy Mother’s Day! • Chinese spaceship apocalypse • Covid • Gas attack! • Channel (fish) wars • Cheerio Scotland?

It's the Foreign Influence Podcast, with American Bill Poorman and Dutchman Nikolaj Groeneweg taking you on a humorously serious and seriously humorous romp through the fortnight's international events. This time:

• Happy Mother's Day to all whom it may concern! And a special thank you to our own two special "birthing people". 

• We've all survived the Chinese spaceship apocalypse, as the Long March 5B booster rocket fell into the ocean somewhere just southwest of India. Well, at least that's what we're told.

• Covid continues to ravage India and South America. With a surplus of doses in the US, maybe it can start helping out.

• A critical pipeline that supplies half the gas (petrol) and diesel to the east coast of the US shut down after a cyberattack. Why in the hell is this system attached to the internet?

• The United Kingdom held elections. Now we have to think about whether Scotland will leave the UK for the EU. Good times. Thanks, Brexit!

• And some good news - the US might really, kind of, possibly leave Afghanistan. Breath held...

Thanks for listening!

Make sure to sign up for our newsletter - the Foreign Influence Dispatch - for links from today's show and more info and commentary from us.

Reach out to us at hello@foreigninfluencepodcast.com or through social media. You'll find us individually on Twitter, but also check out our FI Facebook page, where we can continue the conversation.

Remember, if you like what you hear, please help spread the word. 🙏

Bill & Nikolaj

India covid crisis, but the vaccines are holding up • US policing - a good Floyd verdict, but the robot dogs are coming • Too much good news

It's the Foreign Influence Podcast, with American Bill Poorman and Dutchman Nikolaj Groeneweg taking you on a humorously serious and seriously humorous romp through the week's international events. This time:

• India is experiencing a horrific covid outbreak, but the efficacy of the vaccines is really good. If only we can get them to where they are needed.

• A good verdict in the case of George Floyd - murder and manslaughter convictions for the police officer involved. But there's so much more to do with re-designing policing - including getting rid of all the guns! But don't worry - there's an even worse idea being deployed - biased robot police dogs!

• There was so much good news this week we ran out of happy music. The US was back to the climate table in time for Earth Day. Plus, toilet paper sales are down, and distilleries are getting back to making whiskey instead of hand sanitizer!

Thanks for listening!

Make sure to sign up for our newsletter - the Foreign Influence Dispatch - for links from today's show and more info and commentary from us.

Reach out to us at hello@foreigninfluencepodcast.com or through social media. You'll find us individually on Twitter, but also check out our FI Facebook page, where we can continue the conversation.

Remember, if you like what you hear, please help spread the word. 🙏

Bill & Nikolaj

On the way to vaccination • Pay attention to the South China Sea • Academic papers made easy

It's the Foreign Influence Podcast. In fact, it is the 50th episode of the Foreign Influence Podcast! As always, join American Bill Poorman and Dutchman Nikolaj Groeneweg as they take you on a humorously serious and seriously humorous romp through the week's international events. This time:

• Bill has had his first dose of vaccination, and he feels fine. But the battle ain't over people. Hold it together.

• If ongoing pandemic isn't enough to get your blood going, how about war in Asia? It doesn't get a lot of coverage in the west, but China and the US continue to escalate tensions in the South China Sea. Not good. Repeat, not good. But hey, we can still laugh, can't we?

• Nikolaj has started processing academic papers for the small-brained, like Bill. Find the explanations on LinkedIn and YouTube. This time - how to tackle bias by building better algorithms.

Thanks for listening!

Make sure to sign up for our newsletter - the Foreign Influence Dispatch - for links from today's show and more info and commentary from us.

Reach out to us at hello@foreigninfluencepodcast.com or through social media. You'll find us individually on Twitter, but also check out our FI Facebook page, where we can continue the conversation.

Remember, if you like what you hear, please help spread the word. 🙏

Bill & Nikolaj

The US and China get pissy with one another • Anti-Asian attacks in the US • When stairs strike back

It's the Foreign Influence Podcast, with American Bill Poorman and Dutchman Nikolaj Groeneweg, taking you on a humorously serious and seriously humorous romp through the week's international events! This time:

• High level US and Chinese officials met for the first time since Biden took office, and it was quite the argumentative spectacle. 

• In a somewhat funny, but also somewhat scary and cringeworthy moment, Pres. Biden tripped up the stairs to Air Force One three times. 

Thanks for listening!

Make sure to sign up for our newsletter - the Foreign Influence Dispatch - for links from today's show and more info and commentary from us.

Reach out to us at hello@foreigninfluencepodcast.com or through social media. You'll find us individually on Twitter, but also check out our FI Facebook page, where we can continue the conversation.

Remember, if you like what you hear, please help spread the word. 🙏

Bill & Nikolaj

America is back • Yay? • Principle or propaganda • China Time

It's the Foreign Influence Podcast, with American Bill Poorman and Dutchman Nikolaj Groeneweg, taking you on a humorously serious and seriously humorous romp through the week's international events! This time:

• Biden announces "America is back". Is that good news? 

• American credibility and empire and allies and promise.

• From Paris to Peoria? Say, yes!

Thanks for listening!

Make sure to sign up for our newsletter - the Foreign Influence Dispatch - for links from today's show and more info and commentary from us.

Reach out to us at hello@foreigninfluencepodcast.com or through social media. You'll find us individually on Twitter, but also check out our FI Facebook page, where we can continue the conversation.

Remember, if you like what you hear, please help spread the word. 🙏

Bill & Nikolaj

De-platforming • Maybe insurrection is the limit? • US vs Europe free speech • Whence truth?

It's the Foreign Influence Podcast, with American Bill Poorman and Dutchman Nikolaj Groeneweg, taking you on a humorously serious and seriously humorous romp through the week's international events! This time:

• De-platforming people - talking them offline is a serious issue. Isn't it? 

• Comparing US vs European concepts of freedom of speech and freedom of expression

• Capitol policeman says thanks, but f*ck you for being there.

Thanks for listening!

Make sure to sign up for our newsletter - the Foreign Influence Dispatch - for links from today's show and more info and commentary from us.

Reach out to us at hello@foreigninfluencepodcast.com or through social media. You'll find us individually on Twitter, but also check out our FI Facebook page, where we can continue the conversation.

Remember, if you like what you hear, please help spread the word. 🙏

Bill & Nikolaj

Insurrection • Awesome “beacon of democracy” • Enlightenment values on the line • Accountability

It's the Foreign Influence Podcast, with American Bill Poorman and Dutchman Nikolaj Groeneweg, taking you on a humorously serious and seriously humorous romp through the week's international events! This time:

• Seriously, what the hell else are we going to talk about? There was an insurrection - not hard to call it an attempted coup - in the US this week by Trump supporters. Seriously 2021? We couldn't get one good week?!

• Processing the details, events, and outcomes of the insurrection. Including with the Animaniacs!

• Revolutions aren't for lightweights.

• There needs to be accountability and consequences.

• Enlightenment values themselves - liberty, equality, brotherhood, reason - are all under threat now. With authoritarian regimes ready to throw them into the dustbin of history. Good times!

Thanks for listening!

Make sure to sign up for our newsletter - the Foreign Influence Dispatch - for links from today's show and more info and commentary from us.

Reach out to us at hello@foreigninfluencepodcast.com or through social media. You'll find us individually on Twitter, but also check out our FI Facebook page, where we can continue the conversation.

Remember, if you like what you hear, please help spread the word. 🙏

Bill & Nikolaj

Happy New Year! • 2020 reflections, 2021 predictions • And about as much happiness as we can muster

It's the Foreign Influence Podcast, with American Bill Poorman and Dutchman Nikolaj Groeneweg, taking you on a humorously serious and seriously humorous romp through the year's week's international events! This time:

• It's our end-of-the-year show! We still don't know where the crab people are, but we're sure they're delicious.

• According to scientists and historians, 2020 hasn't even made it on the list of worst years (yet). We have the objective answer to when you really didn't want to be alive.

• We invoke the Power of the Jinx to make sure 2021 will be better.

• We remember the long-term trends that will really shape life going forward.

Thanks for listening!

Make sure to sign up for our newsletter - the Foreign Influence Dispatch - for links from today's show and more info and commentary from us.

Reach out to us at hello@foreigninfluencepodcast.com or through social media. You'll find us individually on Twitter, but also check out our FI Facebook page, where we can continue the conversation.

Remember, if you like what you hear, please help spread the word. 🙏

Stay safe, and be nice to one another!

Bill & Nikolaj

The US makes being a Third World country cool again • Nikolaj has just had it • Bring on the vaccines, baby!

It's the Foreign Influence Podcast, with American Bill Poorman and Dutchman Nikolaj Groeneweg, taking you on a humorously serious and seriously humorous romp through the week's international events! This week:

• The Supreme Court joins the Deep State

• The US is making being a Third World country great again

• In a related manner, Nikolaj has just about had it with the US

• The GOP has done caught the crazy

• In the good news, we have a vaccine! We're absolutely certain it will go to the needy first.

Thanks for listening!

Make sure to sign up for our newsletter - the Foreign Influence Dispatch - for links from today's show and more info and commentary from us.

Reach out to us at hello@foreigninfluencepodcast.com or through social media. You'll find us individually on Twitter, but also check out our FI Facebook page, where we can continue the conversation.

Remember, if you like what you hear, please help spread the word. 🙏

Stay safe, and be nice to one another!

Bill & Nikolaj

Podbean App

Play this podcast on Podbean App