Recent Posts

In Trump’s Madness, There’s Opportunity in Korea: Bruce Cumings

Bruce Cumings: “There’s a silver lining in having Trump as president: he is untethered to anybody, especially the Washington establishment, and in a curious way he may be able to make a lot of progress when all those other folks would raise all kinds of problems and insist on a laundry list of all the things North Korea has to do to please us. We seem to be in a different realm now.”
. . . read at TheNation.com HERE  6/14/2018

Journalism

‘We’ll Surivive Trump’: Seymour Hersh; ‘We Can Beat the GOP in November’: John Nichols

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Seymour Hersh won a Pulitzer Prize in 1970 for his expose of the My Lai massacre—he was a 33-year-old freelancer at the time. Since then, he’s won pretty much every other journalism award. He’s worked as a staff writer for The New York Times and The New Yorker. He’s also written a dozen books, most recently Reporter: A Memoir.
Plus: Since Trump took office, the Democrats have flipped 44 state legislative seats. What will it take to repeat that to win control of the House and the Senate?  John Nichols explains.  6/14/18

Trump Watch

In Trump’s ‘Madness,’ A Chance for Peace in Korea: Bruce Cumings; plus Ahilan Arulanantham on Trump’s family separation policy, and Harold Meyerson on the Democrats

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“In Trump’s madness, he brings innocent eyes” to the Korean conflict, says University of Chicago historian Bruce Cumings—which frees Trump from Washington establishment thinking, and create a real possibility of peace in Korea.
Plus: The Trump administration’s policy of separating children from their parents seeking asylum at the border is unusually cruel—and also unconstitutional. Ahilan Arulanantham, legal director of the ACLU of Southern California, explains the organization’s recent legal victory—and the need for citizen activism on the issue.
Also: Now that some of the key primaries are over, the Democrats’ chances of retaking the House, and maybe the Senate, have come into sharper focus. Harold Meyerson of The American Prospect is optimistic. 6/13/18

Start Making Sense

‘Call Me a Refugee, Not an Immigrant’: Viet Thanh Nguyen

Refugees are different from immigrants. Refugees are unwanted where they come from. They’re unwanted where they go to. They’re a different legal category. They’re a different category of feeling in terms of how the refugees experience themselves. If you call yourself an immigrant here, you fit. People will want to hear your heartwarming story about getting to this country. If you say you’re a refugee, that’s the quickest way to kill a conversation, because people can’t relate to that.. . .
… continued at TheNation.com, HERE  6/11/18

Journalism

‘Don’t Underestimate Trump’: A Q&A w/Seymour Hersh

“The first two words you hear 90 percent of the time from the panelists on cable news are the most lethal words in the language today: “I think.” I don’t care what somebody thinks. I want to know what they know.  So you have this layer of instant gratification, instant news, and this incessant race to produce stories. There’s no checking. It’s just bam, bam, bam. That’s because Trump, whether you like him or not, is catnip for the cable ratings, and catnip for The New York Times.”
continued at TheNation.com, HERE  6/8/2018

Journalism

Trump Is ‘Crazy Like a Fox’: Seymour Hersh—Plus Bryce Covert on homelessness and Viet Thanh Nguyen on refugees

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Seymour Hersh has won dozens of awards for his reporting on My Lai, Abu Ghraib, CIA surveillance of the anti-war movement in the Nixon years, and the crimes of Kissinger and the CIA in Chile and other places. He worked as a staff writer for the New York Times and The New Yorker, where he wrote during the Iraq war. He’s also written a dozen books—the new one is Reporter: A Memoir.  In this interview he talks about his career, and the president and the media, today.
Also: Nearly half of all renters in America today can’t afford rent, and over half a million Americans are homeless on any given night. The problem is simple: a severe shortage of affordable housing. How did we get here? Bryce Covert reports.
Plus: One of the defining features of Trump’s politics has been the way he’s appealed to hatred and fear of refugees and immigrants. Viet Thanh Nguyen talks about refugee lives, and refugee writers. He’s the author of the novel The Sympathizer—it won the Pulitzer prize—and editor of the new book The Displaced: Refugee Writers on Refugee Lives.  He’s also the recipient of a MacArthur Foundation “genius” grant—and he’s a refugee himself, arriving from Vietnam with his family in 1975, when he was 4 years old.  6/7/18

Start Making Sense

From 9-11 to Donald Trump: Tom Engelhardt; plus Wendy Pearlman on Trump and Syrian Refugees

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Trump asked for, and got, a ten percent increase in defense spending this year – even though the American military is the most massive, the most technologically advanced, and the best-funded fighting force in the world. But in the last fifteen years of constant war it has won nothing. Tom Engelhardt comments; he’s the legendary editor who created and runs the TomDispatch website, and his new book is “A Nation Unmade by War.”
Plus: Trump and Syrian refugees: During Obama’s last year, about 10,000 were admitted to the US; so far this year, the number is eleven. Wendy Pearlman explains – she interviewed hundreds of Syrian refugees across the Middle East and Europe. Her new book is “We Crossed a Bridge and It Trembled: Voices from Syria.”   6/8/18

Trump Watch

Trump vs. Syrian Refugees: An Interview With Wendy Pearlman

The “extreme vetting” that Trump called for on the campaign trail has already been in place for years. Less than 1 percent of refugees around the world are resettled to a third country like the United States. The process begins with the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, which screens refugees and identifies a very small number of the most vulnerable cases to be considered for resettlement. They then pass those cases on to the US government, where some eight different government agencies participate in layers of interviews, medical screenings, background checks, and matching of biometric data with security databases. . . .
. . . continued at TheNation.com, HERE  6/1/18

Journalism

How Abortion Rights Triumphed in Ireland: Katha Pollitt; plus Wendy Pearlman on Syrian Refugees and Tom Engelhardt on ‘America’s Empire of Nothing’

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Everyone said the Irish vote on abortion would be close – but 66 per cent voted “yes” last Friday, including a majority of men, and a majority of every age group except those over 65. Katha Pollitt was there – she reports on the campaign, and the victory celebrations.
Also: the American military is the most massive, the most technologically advanced, and the best-funded fighting force in the world — but in the last fifteen years of constant war it has won nothing. Tom Engelhardt comments; he’s the legendary editor who created and runs the TomDispatch website, and his new book is “A Nation Unmade by War.”
Plus: Trump and Syrian refugees: During Obama’s last year, about 10,000 were admitted to the US; so far this year, the number is eleven. Wendy Pearlman explains – she interviewed hundreds of Syrian refugees across the Middle East and Europe. Her new book is “We Crossed a Bridge and It Trembled: Voices from Syria.” 5/30/18

Start Making Sense

‘Trump Isn’t Stupid’: Yanis Varoufakis, plus Rachel Kushner on Women in Prison

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After reviewing Trump’s growing confrontation with Europe, Yanis Varouvakis concludes that ‘Trump Isn’t Stupid.’ Yanis is a former finance minister of Greece who took office in 2015.  He became a European-wide celebrity when he resisted the demands of Europe’s bankers for austerity as Greece held out for restructuring its debt, –But then the government submitted and Yanis left office.  Now he has co-founded an international grassroots movement that is campaign for the revival of democracy in Europe. He’s written many books, most recently “Adults in the Room” and “Talking to my Daughter About the Economy—or, How Capitalism works—and how it fails.”
Also: there are 219,000 women in prison in the United States — Rachel Kushner’s new novel, “The Mars Room,” is a story about of one of them. She’ll be in-studio to talk about it.  5/31/18

Trump Watch