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Fire at Will

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Fire at Will

A safe space for dangerous conversations, from The Spectator Australia. The Spectator is the world’s longest-running magazine of news, arts and ideas. Hosted by Will Kingston.

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Recent Episodes of Fire at Will


We're all Soviets now, with Sir Niall Ferguson

We're all Soviets now, with Sir Niall Ferguson

Sir Niall Ferguson is arguably the world's greatest living historian. He first pointed out that we’re in Cold War II back in 2018. In articles for The New York Times and National Review, Sir Niall tried to show how China now occupies the space vacated by the Soviet Union when it collapsed in 1991.

This view is less controversial now than it was then. China is clearly not only an ideological rival; it’s also a technological competitor, a geopolitical rival, and a military rival.

Sir Niall has recently amended his thesis to something altogether more dist...

Episode 75 17 July 2024 50m and 30s


Lies my liberal teacher told me, with Wilfred Reilly

Lies my liberal teacher told me, with Wilfred Reilly

Education was once the search for truth. Sadly, this is no longer the case in many universities across the Western world. Instead of promoting debate, disagreement, and viewpoint diversity, too many institutions peddle a series of ideological narratives that seek to engrain a black armband view of history, an assertion of the importance of identity over merit, and a subjective definition of truth.

That’s why there is no more urgent priority in the world today for sensible conservatives than to fight back against the radical left’s colonisation of education. Wilfred Reilly has accepted the challenge. Wilf...

Episode 74 10 July 2024 1h, 1m and 45s


Decoding the modern bloke, with Geoff Norcott

Decoding the modern bloke, with Geoff Norcott

It wasn’t so long ago that one phrase sat above any other in the hierarchy of endorsements for a British or Australian male: “He’s a good bloke.” 

You don’t hear it as much in 2024 because blokehood is under attack across the Western world. Historically positive masculine virtues are now shamed as toxically masculine. At a minimum, blokeishness is derided as boorishness by our social betters in the media, politics, business, and culture. 

The first step to reclaiming blokehood is understanding it, which is what Geoff Norcott has done. As a rare right-winger, Geoff is a u...

Episode 73 3 July 2024 49m and 41s


"Machines are the children of humanity" - Agnieszka Pilat

"Machines are the children of humanity" - Agnieszka Pilat

It feels like AI can now write anything for us and create anything for us. In some respects it’s exciting, but it’s also scary, and it raises a depressing question: will technology kill creativity?

There are few people better placed to answer that question than Polish-American artist Agnieszka Pilat. Agnieszka is the Silicon Valley elite’s favourite artist. Intelligencer magazine has called her the court painter of the potentate’s of Silicon Valley, including Elon Musk, who has twice invited her onsite for an artist residency at SpaceX. 

She is best known for her work...

Episode 72 26 June 2024 43m and 2s


How the elites betrayed America's working class, with Batya Ungar-Sargon

How the elites betrayed America's working class, with Batya Ungar-Sargon

There has long been a curious sub-genre in liberal journalism. It can best be described as “examining working class Americans in their natural habitat.” It goes something like this. Journalists from New York or California will bravely venture into a red state, observe the local inhabitants from afar, and come back with a series of superficial insights that reinforce the existing prejudices of coastal elites. 

Partly as a result of this lack of journalistic curiosity, liberal America is no closer to truly understanding the underlying forces that swept Donald Trump into the White House, and may yet do so...

Episode 71 19 June 2024 55m and 56s


Gay Shame, with Gareth Roberts

Gay Shame, with Gareth Roberts

The most peculiar aspect of 'Pride' is how it has lumped together the gay population, with the most extreme proponents of gender ideology, when the latter have arguably done more than any other group to harm the former. 

Gareth Roberts has witnessed this firsthand. Gareth has fallen into commentary on gender ideology, but like previous guests of the show such as Graham Linehan and Helen Joyce, he was marvellously successful before wading into such treacherous waters. 

Gareth is a screenwriter and novelist, best known for his work on the iconic British series Doctor Who. His la...

Episode 70 12 June 2024 50m and 34s


Imagining nuclear armageddon, with Annie Jacobsen

Imagining nuclear armageddon, with Annie Jacobsen

The world could end before you finish listening to this podcast. That's the reality of a nuclear-armed world. If a sense of complacency had crept in about the threat of nuclear weapons, Annie Jacobsen's stunning new book is a wake up call. 

'Nuclear War: A Scenario' imagines the 72 minutes after the 'button is pushed', and it doesn't end well. It's shockingly realistic, due to Annie’s meticulous research, which reflects her status as a Pulitzer Prize finalist and New York Times bestselling author.

Follow Will Kingston and Fire at Will on social media here.

S...

Episode 69 5 June 2024 43m and 54s


A heretical conversation with Andrew Gold

A heretical conversation with Andrew Gold

Heresy is defined as opinion profoundly at odds with what is generally accepted. It has rarely been more dangerous to be a heretic, which is why it's rarely been more important to champion them.

There is no bigger heretic than Andrew Gold. Andrew is a journalist, author, and TV presenter who produces documentaries on bizarre and controversial subcultures.

He has battled an abusive exorcist, dueled with the Crazy Baby Lady, hunted UFOs, and spoken to a teen school captain, who also happened to be a pedophile. His podcast is appropriately titled, ‘heretics’.

Follow Will...

Episode 68 29 May 2024 57m and 52s


The rebirth of the West, with Victor Davis Hanson

The rebirth of the West, with Victor Davis Hanson

Note: We had some minor sound issues in the first 10 minutes, but we couldn’t bring ourselves to edit out anything that Victor said. Stick with it. It’s worth it!

In some respects, the West is exhibiting similar symptoms to past civilizations that decayed, declined, or were completely wiped off the map. At the same time, there are green shoots that may point to a rebirth of the United States, and Western civilization more broadly.

To put our moment in a historical context, Will is joined by the inimitable Victor Davis Hanson. Victor's latest book...

Episode 67 22 May 2024 57m and 15s


The REAL reason for African poverty, with Magatte Wade

The REAL reason for African poverty, with Magatte Wade

Australiana is now Fire at Will - your safe space for dangerous conversations.

Why is Africa poor? There’s a series of trendy answers to that question, that are almost taken as read amongst the progressive elite that dominate our institutions. Racism, slavery, and colonialism. 

Magatte Wade has called BS on this narrative, and she is uniquely qualified to do so, being widely regarded as the world’s leading African prosperity activist. She is an entrepreneur, speaker, and author. Her latest book is titled ‘The Heart of a Cheetah: How we have been lied to about A...

Episode 66 15 May 2024 52m and 58s

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