Burn the Boats

Intimate Conversations with America’s Change-Makers

Burn the Boats is an award-winning podcast featuring intimate conversations with change-makers from every walk of life. Host Ken Harbaugh interviews politicians, authors, activists, and others about the most important issues of our time.

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Latest Episode

Dr. Dan Barkhuff: Political Violence on the Horizon

Former Navy SEAL and founder of Veterans for Responsible Leadership explains why he thinks Civil War in the US is unrealistic, but future political violence isn’t.

Dan is a former Navy SEAL with multiple combat deployments. After returning home, he attended Harvard Medical School and became an Emergency Medicine doctor at the University of Vermont.

Dan is a conservative, but was appalled by Trump’s comments and messages during the 2016 election. Dan did not vote for Trump in that election, but decided to give him a chance. After a year of the Trump Presidency, Dan said Trump was “worse than I thought he would be—and I thought he was going to be terrible.” In response, Dan created Veterans for Responsible Leadership, an organization that is dedicated to holding public officials accountable and helping to defeat candidates like Trump.

Recent Episodes

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David Hogg: Demanding an End to Gun Violence

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David Hogg discusses the political burden placed on Gen-Z, his trauma from the Parkland shooting, gun violence, and protests....
Listen to David Hogg: Demanding an End to Gun Violence

Dara Starr Tucker: Confronting Racism

Burn the Boats | S:1 E:136
Political Commentator Dara Starr Tucker talks about why many white Americans hide behind “politeness” as an excuse for not confronting racism....
Listen to Dara Starr Tucker: Confronting Racism

Rep. Jason Crow: Political Courage

Burn the Boats | S:1 E:135
Rep. Crow discusses Space Command remaining in his state, right-wing extremism, and the lack of political courage shown by Republican politicians....
Listen to Rep. Jason Crow: Political Courage

Denver Riggleman: Combating Conspiracy Theories

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Former Representative Denver Riggleman describes the appeal of conspiracy theories, and the damage that they can do....
Listen to Denver Riggleman: Combating Conspiracy Theories

More about the name of the show...

Award-winning host Ken Harbaugh interviews politicians, authors, activists, and other change-makers about the most important issues we face today.

The title for this podcast, Burn The Boats, is inspired by an order given by Alexander the Great to his Navy in 332 BC. Upon landing his forces on the shores of Persia, he told his commanders to “Burn the boats.” The message was clear. Alexander’s Army would either win by advancing, or die on the beaches. There would be no turning back.

America today is at a crossroads. What will define us, in the crises we currently face and for generations to come, are the choices we make when failure is not an option.

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Ken Harbaugh

The Host
A former US Navy Pilot and past president of Team Rubicon Global. He has served as a commentator for NPR, a host on Crooked Media, and a contributor to The NY Times, The Atlantic, and Yale Journal of International Law.

Declan Rohrs

Declan Rohrs (He/Him) was born and raised in Lakewood, Ohio. At Evergreen, he has assumed various roles, including Assistant Producer, Editor, Content Creator, and Email-Signature Guru.

Sean Rule-Hoffman

Sean hails from Orange Village, OH. He earned a degree in Music Technology with a minor in Electronic Media and Film from Capital University in Columbus, OH.