Recent Posts

“The leaks were real but the stories are fake”: TrumpWatch Podcast 2-16

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John Nichols comments on Trump’s first press conference as president.  Paul Ryan must have been tearing his hair out: he waited eight years to get a Republican in the White House, and now Trump has squandered his “honeymoon period” and is spending more time talking about CNN than about GOP plans on taxes, trade, immigration, and Obamacare.

Trump Watch

 The West Coast Is Leading the Resistance Against Trump: “Start Making Sense” 2/16

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alifornia, Oregon, and Washington are leading what could become the largest resistance movement against federal policy in more than a century. Sasha Abramsky reports.

Also: Are evangelical Christians hypocrites for supporting Trump? Katha Pollitt says they understand how politics works; now it’s payback time for the president.

Plus: Almost two dozen lawsuits have been filed against Trump’s Muslim travel ban—is that too many? David Cole, national legal director of the ACLU, says that lots of judges ruling against the president is a good thing.

Start Making Sense

Our Insane Clown President: Matt Taibbi on TrumpWatch 2-9

Matt Taibbi says “Trump made idiots of us all.” He covered the campaign for Rolling Stone—and his new book is “Insane Clown President.”

Also: suing the president: it’s not easy. But Erwin Chemerinsky has found a way to do it–under the Emoluments Clause of the Constitution. Erwin is Dean of the law school at UC Irvine.

Trump Watch

Keith Ellison: How the Democrats Can Win. “Start Making Sense,” 2/9

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The Democrats need to “champion working families and give voters a reason to show up at the polls in 2018 and beyond”—that’s what Representative Keith Ellison says. The Nation has endorsed him for chair of the Democratic National Committee.

Also: What can Ivanka possibly do for women who work? Amy Wilentz examines the website of our de facto first lady to find some answers.

And historian Eric Foner talks about another time in our past when the federal government was as vicious as Trump wants it to be: the 1850s, when the Fugitive Slave Act was the law of the land.

Start Making Sense

The First Trump Watch Podcast: Harold Meyerson, Jane Mayer, Amy Wilentz – KPFK 2/2

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Today in Trump World: For that we turn to HAROLD MEYERSON, with the story of Trump’s efforts to recruit leaders of the construction trades.  Harold ouf course is executive editor of The American Prospect and a regular contributor to the LA Times op-ed page and other publications.

Plus: JANE MAYER of the New Yorker reports on Dark Money and Donald Trump – the big money donors, especially the Koch brothers, didn’t want him, but he won anyway – what does that tell us?  Her book Dark Money is out now in paperback.

And AMY WILENTZ will talk about Ivanka, our de-facto First Lady — what can she possibly do for women who work?  Amy has the cover story in The Nation, about Ivanka.


Trump Watch

How Far Outside the Legal Mainstream is Neal Gorsuch? David Cole on “Start Making Sense” 2/2

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David Cole, the national legal director of the ACLU, discusses Trump’s nomination of Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court, and its implications for constitutional rights and liberties in the Trump era and beyond. Cole also says that last weekend’s demonstrations against Trump’s Muslim ban were crucial to the court victories the ACLU has won so far against the executive order.”

Also, Zoë Carpenter reports on what Trump has actually done in his first days in office, as opposed to what he has tweeted.

Plus, John Nichols takes the long view, explaining the significance of recent victories against gerrymandering in Wisconsin.

Start Making Sense

Trump and the Women’s March: Harold Meyerson and Katha Pollitt on KPFK 1/26

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KATHA POLLITT talks about the Women’s March last Saturday, and why it was so great — starting with the Pussy Hats.

And Harold Meyerson reviews the situation in Washington –Trump’s first week has been a lively one.  Harold of course is Executive Editor of The American Prospect.

Also, Alan Minsky explains what’s happening with Trump and Trade after the TPP and with NAFTA after the blow-up with the Mexican president.


Trump Watch

Our Insane Clown President: Matt Taibbi on The Nation podcast 1/26

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Matt Taibbi
says “Trump made idiots of us all.” He covered the campaign for Rolling Stone—and his new book is Insane Clown President.

Also: The Women’s March last Saturday was glorious—what’s the next step? Joan Walsh comments—and responds to David Brooks’s argument that the marchers focused on the “wrong issues”: reproductive rights, equal pay, affordable health care, action on climate change—which, he said, are only “for upper-middle-class voters in university towns and coastal cities.”

And Erwin Chemerinsky, Dean of the Law School at UC Irvine, is suing Donald Trump—for violating the Emoluments Clause of the Constitution, which prohibits officials from taking money or gifts from foreign governments. To determine whether and how much he has received from foreign governments, the plaintiffs are seeking Trump’s tax returns.

Start Making Sense

We can’t just protest Trump: The Nation podcast 1/19

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Fran Piven argues that social movements need to “make trouble” to effectively challenge Trump—starting with sanctuary movements that will enlist large numbers of people in resisting his deportation efforts.

Plus, David Cole says defending First Amendment freedoms to criticize the president will be a major task in the coming year.

And Katha Pollitt talks about the Women’s March on Washington this Saturday, and about the danger of underestimating Trump.

Start Making Sense

The Democrats in Opposition: Harold Meyerson KPFK 1/18

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Trump is vicious, but vulnerable: that’s what GARY YOUNGE says—he writes for The Guardian and The Nation.

Also:  what’s wrong with the Democrats—a big topic!  HAROLD MEYERSON of The American Prospect talks about what the party needs to do to regain power.

And we’re still thinking about Obama – today we want to talk about what happened with his hopes to transform America’s relationship with the rest of the world – for that we turn to ADAM SHATZ, he’s a contributing editor at the London Review of Books.  He writes for the New York Review and the New York Times magazine.