KCRW's Left, Right & Center

Reviews For KCRW's Left, Right & Center

This is, bar none, the best rational discussion of current political issues, bringing together views from Left and Right for reasonable, relatively low-spin, reflection and light analysis. Plus, it’s actually reasonably entertaining as well. It seems like politics is the only realm in which a string of mediocre words can be used in a five-star review, but I’m sooooo very grateful there’s a podcast like this one! Every Friday afternoon/evening, I start impatiently refreshing my feed in anticipation of the next LRC. 😁


Have Steph Kelton on the show to offer mmt side, Josh, otherwise....
It’s a pretty good show, but it’s based on a California conception of the political wings. “Left” hosts, like Emily Bazelon, aren’t very moderate, whereas “Right” hosts, like Rich Lowry, are fairly moderate. At the same time, I think the Right has more extreme journalists in the media generally, so it’s a tough balancing act. Josh Baros is a great center for business issues, but not really for social issues. Overall it’s a top notch show.
Otherwise the guy named Rich defending Trump this would be a fantastic political podcast. The host stole the "God Bless You" bit from David Sedaris.
Josh Barro does a good job challenging guests on their claims, and asking about what may seem to be contradictory beliefs.
Another example of the fact that 99% of journalists are liberal by definition. When are you guys going to figure out this isn’t working? Even though our president is an a-hole, for the most part he’s a conservative. There are still a LOT of conservatives out there, and you’re going to lose the next election because most listeners can see through your bias. I gave it two stars only because as jaded as they are, the speakers tend to be educated and well spoken.
You have an opportunity to listen to conservative and liberal ideas butted up against each other without the blather and echo chambers but through sensible conversation
Not a bad idea to have a podcast with a balanced lineup talking about political issues from different angles. But two episodes of Rich Lowry’s bad faith argumentation was enough for me. Lose him as a host and I might give it a try again.
I’m sorry I have tried to listen to you guys. For a while it wasn’t bad but now it’s just a complete left view of all things. It’s really just pathetic that you call this pod cast Left, Right and Center. Just re name it and get it over with.
Great podcast, but Josh is often not exactly “center” on a lot of things. But still my favorite listen on the drive home!
I’m Normally a massive fan of the show but to cut off the debate before Mr. Vargas had the opportunity to respond really upset me. That’s JUST when it was getting interesting, and a discussion about the PURPOSE of immigration is precisely why I tune in.
His replacement is SO obviously on the left it’s killing me. Love the show otherwise 😘
Episode “Stand by your prince” is what is wrong with our political discourse. Wild claims made about Georgia’s gubernatorial race that go unchallenged, makes it difficult to have a constructive discussion. The guests claiming Stacey Abrams election was stolen do not know basic facts about how governments work or twist facts for an agenda. This rhetoric hurts us all.
Left left and slightly right masquerading as some neutral podcast


can’t you find a better commentator than ann marie cox?
I gave this show about 9 months but it is not really that engaging. I liked the premise, but it is not well executed. In short, it is really just more of the 3 progressives vs 1 conservative panel format that dominates public radio. The show would be more aptly titled Far Left, Left, and Center. How they can claim that Josh Barro is the “center” is beyond me. Most shows that had a few hits with journalists, columnists, or other subject matter experts have and they are almost uniformly from the left.
I enjoy listening to this podcast but it strains credulity for Rich Lowry to say that Trump’s speech is merely ‘inappropriate’. Trump has crossed the line many times in his divisive and yes, inciting speech. I’m glad that there is some pushback in this point.
The problem with most political podcasts is they make you angry with one side or the other. Although I like to listen to stuff on both sides I come to this podcast for the sanity. Thanks and keep up the great work.
For the love of all things holy, either move the mic away from Rich’s nose, or make him breathe out of his mouth, because that breathing sound directly into the mic is infuriating.
I look forward to this every week. Far better than any other show that pretends to give every viewpoint. This one actually does. Keep up the good work!
Claims to have views from every side. Too bad the left view is from someone who could write for Salon and the right view is typical Fox News. Liberal leftist propaganda.
Left, Far Left and Extreme Absurdity
So much better since they got Josh Barro to host and got rid of Bob Scheer, added more time and segments, more guests, etc. He’s really turned the show around and made it more interesting and relevant again
For me The thing that made @lrckcrw so special was its format: a straight-ahead political discussion-conversation from different perspectives with a seated panel from start to finish. I enjoyed hearing honest, opinionated, informed, uninterrupted dialogue. I always thought the show was too short at 30 minutes because they never really had time to delve deeply into any one topic. Then they extended the show to an hour and I thought great, now they can really go to town with the "civilized yet provocative" conversation,discussion& debate.Little did I know that @lrckcrw was about to become the Josh Barro GoodTime Hour. The host Josh Barro started doing the things that they do on every other news magazine show at the expense of the best thing about the show-its format. Josh started asking the panel to "sit-back" while he did separate interviews and discussions with other guests. Then Josh would invite the panel back and bring on another guest-completely destroying the continuity,mood and tone of the initial discussion with the original panel. Its also very problematic for Josh to be both the host and the Center voice for the show. As the host he has certain allegiances and obligations that certainly infringe on his freedom to speak his mind for the Center. Then they thought it would be a good idea to change the show's theme music-"Let's Call The Whole Thing Off"-an iconic duet featuring Ella Fitzgerald & Louis Armstrong to something bland & generic that would fit in better with the show's new bland & generic style & format. How could it get any worse, you ask? Well, after giving up on the show months ago I recently tuned in again to see that Good Old Boy Josh B has STOLEN the LRC show description for his latest "All Trump/All the Time" radio endeavor "LRC Presents: All The Presidents Lawyers." LRC is now described as a "weekly confrontation"while his new show is the "civilized yet prococative discussion," allegedly. It wasn't enough for them to change the show music & the unique format, they had to steal the catchy show description too for their new Trump All The Time trainwreck of a show. Sounds like the're auditioning for MSNBC jobs. Oh wait, josh is/was already an MSNBC contributor. I can understand the motivation for wanting to make the show more relevant for todays audience in regards to music& format etc, but stealing the show's description for your new Trump Sh*# Show is just cheap, lazy, and more than a little sleazy. Way to go guys!
I was embarrassed for her after her monologue on ‘space’ and ‘her greenies’. There are so many bright and articulate lefties that do not meander on needlessly - please find one!
When people with no experience in the world of podcasting ask me where to dive in and why, I often recommend this show. It is refreshing to hear radically different political beliefs espoused in a calm manner. In addition, the format has some variety. At this point in the culture, political television of all stripes consists of shouting--literally. LRC is an oasis where poeople can hear a variety of ideas expresed intelligently.
Update: My original review was written 7+ years ago so I thought I’d update it. It really is “Left, Left, and Right” but that’s the way it’s always been. The idea that Josh Barrow is considered the “center” on public radio, tells you a lot of what you need to know. I like listening to Josh Barrow but I doubt he would tell you he’s anything other than decidedly liberal. ————————————— I don't hold myself in particularly high regard, but having said that, I don't consider myself a partisan. I do enjoy this podcast but I think it's helpful to understand what you are going to get before you actually start listening. As is common with most public radio fare (which I do enjoy), you are mostly going to get strong views to the left of the political spectrum. Now I don't find anything wrong with this, as this is what I expect from public radio and I enjoy listening or reading differing points of view. Sure, it brings a smile to my face when they mention A. Huffington as a "voice of the independent blogosphere," but almost everything is relative. What you get are 3 views that are to varying degrees, to the left of the American political spectrum, and then you have the conservative Tony Blankley. Speaking for myself here, I think that due to his intellect, he really brings some balance to what would otherwise be a more traditionally lopsided public radio podcast (Not that there is anything wrong with that!).
Fantastic politics podcast - does a better job of offering credible voices from the left & right than most alternatives. The perspective of the left needs some improvement - pundits seem uncertain whether to embrace radical progressivism or centrist-left politics which leads to a certain schizophrenia in viewpoints. Rich has the balls (which few do) to call out Trump from the right on certain issues. But overall an excellent way to recap political events.
Why isn’t there a cable news station like this? A respectful discussion of politics that draws the open minded to consider alternative points of view.
Left, Right and Center is among my favorite weekly political analysis!
A great place to catch up on the week of news. Wish there were more shows like it. I have been an avid listener for several years now, starting back when Matt Miller was the host. Still a great one.


By LDR1993
Wish this was a daily podcast, like how it isn’t biased like so many shows we have today.
Pundits have no clue. Blathering about nothing that would threaten their jobs at the ministry of truth. Cruise missile liberals vs 4th Reich rightists.
Left Right and Center? More like Left Left and Lefter. It’s not enough to have a conservative on the show merely to have a conservative. Get someone who can actually debate the points and proudly represent conservative and libertarian ideals. I started listening to this show BECAUSE I wanted to hear strong points from both sides but this is just falling into the category of more mainstream news noise.
Good podcast, I've been listening for a number of years now. But they're version of "Left" is rather tame. If they truly wanted to live up to their name, they've engage wtih a more progressive liberal who wasn't afraid to take the RIght to task. Worth listening to, but know what you're getting.
Josh Barro is the perfect host. He keeps the conversation flowing. I don’t agree with Rich Lowery very often but I always pay attention to his thoughtful explanations. I am so glad they expanded to the full hour.
I look forward to this podcast every week. It’s becoming apparent that today’s tribalism of people living in echo chambers of their own opinions is counter productive. LRC helps ADVANCE the conversation. Josh has taken the center seat woth aplomb and I love what they’ve done to expand the format with add’l guests, including questions and conversation with the week’s right and left involved. Keep up the good work!
Rich has no balls. And I’m sick to death of listening to Katrina grand standing for 50 minutes. Bring back Megan permanently so lrc is an actual discussion again rather than just another tax payer funded leftist public radio program.
I love this show. I love how they have all perspectives and try to challenge all sides of an argument. With that said, I hate that they changed theme song. Louis Armstrong and Ella Fitzgerald ‘let’s call the whole thing off’ was so fitting and appropriate. Such a bummer. I hate to say, it but it makes a big difference for me.
The show is much better when Matt Yglesias is on. Otherwise it’s not necessary listening. Slate Political Gabfest and The Weeds are far superior.
This is a great podcast. The name sums it up, you get great opinions from all sides. I love to hear arguments that challenge my beliefs and opinions and this podcast delivers.
I love this show, but KCRW still doesn’t have a reasonable representative for the left. Bob Scheer slowly became too obnoxious and out of touch, so I’m glad he’s gone. Katrina Vanden Heuvel, however, is almost as bad—she’s rude, she rants in non-sequiter talking points, she frequently interrupts, and she seems oddly aligned against any investigation into the Russia probe. I hope she can find another panel to ruin, and let someone better join LR&C.
for the podcast
Took me a bit to get used to the longer time, but now I am appreciating all the extra talking time guests have. And despite having differing views, everyone is so polite! :)
Less than six minutes in to my first episode, several blatant lies went unchallenged.
Each episode offers facts, opinions from all sides and it's entertaining. I always learn something new. I never miss an episode. Look forward to future episodes.
Great podcast, especially love the host Josh! However getting really sick of Katrina interrupting with her rambling that sounds more like a gossip column than straight talk. Her baseless comments sound more like she’s talking just because she likes the sound of her own voice rather than proving a point. Also, someone keeps breathing directly into the mike with that nose whistling sound...which is making me slightly crazy. But love the rest of the panel and really enjoy the content! Great work!
Left, lefter, and leftest.
Don’t like the program with Josh Barro as moderator - he has an annoying contrarian and sometimes misogynistic bent.