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Ones and Tooze

Dancing on the Debt Ceiling?


Ones and Tooze Override Photo
Ones and Tooze Override Photo

Hear what Foreign Policy columnist Adam Tooze has to say on this first episode of FP’s new weekly economics podcast, Ones and Tooze.

The United States Treasury Department warns the country could hit the debt limit as soon as October. Currently, the U.S. debt ceiling is $28.5 trillion, and if Congress is not able to raise that amount, the country could default on its payments.

These kinds of headlines and numbers get thrown around a lot, but what does it all really mean? Is it a good idea to lift the debt ceiling, particularly to pass large infrastructure bills? Or is it dangerous to increase the already large amount the United States owes?

Now you can listen to digestible answers to this and other business news questions on Foreign Policy’s newest podcast, Ones and Tooze, where popular FP economics columnist Adam Tooze will share his insights each week. The structure of the show sets it apart: Every episode, Tooze and FP deputy editor Cameron Abadi will explain two numbers you should know about to understand the world better.

This week, the first figure Tooze and Abadi dive into is that number we alluded to at the top: $28.5 trillion, the U.S. debt ceiling. Then, they unpack a shocking fact from Tooze’s new book, Shutdown: How Covid Shook the World’s Economy: During the pandemic, 3.3 billion people around the globe were furloughed, or prevented from going to work. If you want to find out more, check out the first episode of Ones and Tooze—and subscribe on your favorite podcast platform.

About Ones and Tooze:  Foreign Policy economics columnist Adam Tooze, a history professor and a popular author, is encyclopedic about basically everything: from the COVID shutdown, to climate change, to pasta sauce. On our new podcast, Tooze and FP deputy editor Cameron Abadi will look at two data points each week that explain the world: one drawn from the week’s headlines and the other from just about anywhere else Tooze takes us. Check out Adam Tooze’s column here.  See All Episodes


More Ones and Tooze episodes:

Is Italy on the Verge of Returning to Fascism?

Plus: The economic history of Australia.

Can Ukraine Win the War Yet Lose Its Economy?

Plus: The economics of the British monarchy.

Is China’s Economy in Trouble?

Plus: The economics of golf.

Other Foreign Policy podcasts:


The Hidden Economics of Remarkable Women (HERO)

A Foreign Policy series about women creating change through economic empowerment, hosted by Reena Ninan. This season, you’ll hear from people reforming marital laws in South Africa and property rights in Kenya—and how victories in both places could unlock women’s financial potential. Also, what microfinance strategies work best, and why better lending practices could be huge for small and medium-sized enterprises—accounting for a shocking 90% of businesses globally. HER♀ is a Foreign Policy production made possible through funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Celebrate remarkable women wherever you go. Ten lucky listeners will receive a digital download poster of our beautifully illustrated logo. Enter into this giveaway by writing a review on Apple Podcasts and clicking here.


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I Spy

Spies don’t talk—it’s the cardinal rule of the business. But here at Foreign Policy, we get them to open up. On I Spy, we hear from the operations people: the spies who steal secrets, who kill adversaries, who turn agents into double agents. Each episode features one spy telling the story of one operation. Want swag? Check out I Spy's merch by clicking here.


To learn more about creating a podcast with FP Studios, contact Andrew Sollinger at

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