Dan Carlin is an American political commentator, amateur historian, and podcaster. Once a professional radio host, Carlin eventually took his show to the Internet, and he now hosts two popular independent podcasts: Common Sense and Hardcore History.
Carlin obtained a B.A. in History from the University of Colorado Boulder. He broke into the television news business in Los Angeles in the late 1980s. He has worked as a television news reporter, an author, a columnist, and for the last dozen years, a radio talk show host. No longer broadcasting on terrestrial radio, Carlin has achieved recognition in internet radio, podcasting, and the blogosphere. Currently, he hosts two popular podcasts, both of which are frequently among the highest-ranked podcasts on review sites such as podcastalley and iTunes.
Carlin is the son of Academy Award nominated actress Lynn Carlin and film producer Ed Carlin.
Carlin believes the two main political parties in the United States are a large part of the problem, rather than the solution to the country's governmental and societal dilemmas. His main areas of focus in many of the political podcasts are increasing government corruption and the erosion of civil liberties. He frequently discusses the invasion of personal privacy by the NSA and other government agencies, and what he believes to be an unhealthy level of secrecy and unaccountability in Washington. Carlin also uses history to help analyze societal and governmental problems and propose solutions.
Common Sense is similar in scope to several Carlin-hosted radio programs that aired between 1994 and 2004. The shows highlighted his independent political views, his sense of humor, and unique communication style. The podcast riffs on current events and US politics. All sides of the political spectrum are subject to blistering criticism (and occasional praise). He has described his political philosophy as "Neoprudentist" taking a skeptical approach to evaluation of the current political trends and forces. He fosters discussion by developing and presenting self-deprecating ("Martian") but innovative thought experiments on solutions to current problems. The podcasts are said to be broadcast "almost live from the end of runway two here at the Emerald International Airport."
Among his main complaints about US political culture are corruption and money in government, the growth of the federal government and the powers of the President, and partisanship preventing real problems from being addressed. He supports some form of nationalization of health care. In a 2010 Common Sense show titled "Flirting with the Berserk Line," Carlin announces that the only two politicians in the US he believes are most likely to help fix the US political system are Dennis Kucinich and Ron Paul.
"Common Sense" was nominated for a Podcast Award in the Politics/News category in 2012 and 2013.
Hardcore History is Carlin's forum for exploring topics throughout world history. The focus of each episode varies widely from show to show but they are generally centered around specific historical events and are discussed in a "theater of the mind" style. New episodes are released approximately every two to three months.
In 2012, Hardcore History was nominated for a Stitcher Award in the Best Educational & Learning Podcast category. In addition, Carlin has received the Best Classic Podcast in iTunes’ Best of 2014 awards with more than 3 million downloads.
- Dan Carlin (8 June 2014). "Common Sense Archive: Show 276 - Past Transgressions". http://www.dancarlin.com/ (Podcast). Event occurs at 16 minutes. Retrieved 10 June 2014.
- Calin, Dan. "Common Sense 182 – Flirting with the Berserk Line". Dan Carlin. Orator LLC. Retrieved 5 May 2015.
- "The People's Choice Podcast Awards". The Podcast Award. PodcastAwards.com. Retrieved 5 May 2015.
- Matthews, Christopher (August 29, 2013). "Despite Being Oh-So 2005, Podcasting Is Drawing Listeners and Advertisers Alike". Time (Time Inc.). Retrieved May 5, 2015.
- "The 2012 Stitcher Awards". Retrieved November 21, 2012.
- CIPOLLE, ALEX V. (December 24, 2014). "Q&A with Hardcore History’s Dan Carlin: Print Edition". Eugene Weekly. Retrieved May 5, 2015 – via EUGENEWEELY.COM.
- Station finds best choice for slot left by Savage. (via The Free Library)