The word "decadence" evokes luxury, stagnation, slow decline—and chocolate strawberries. In the new edition of The Decadent Society, Ross Douthat asks how the United States can fight decadence, or whether we might do just fine living with pleasant resignation. He joined Shadi and Damir to discuss prospects for revival—from wokeness to a new post-liberal politics to UFOs and interplanetary colonialism. As these options suggest, anti-decadence is exciting, but not necessarily if you're trying to quietly raise your kids and get them to school.
In Part Two, available here for subscribers, the conversation continues with Damir asking Ross if wokeness will burn itself out or if it must be countered with a new, more compelling faith. Shadi, Ross, and Damir also discuss why elites don't find Christianity compelling, the problem of "anti-supernaturalism," whether meritocracy has failed, and why—despite his religious conservatism—many liberals seem to like Ross.