Al Franken: Is Jeff Sessions a Lying Little Weasel?

Questions for Al Franken, and answers, about Trump voters, Bernie voters, and Russians.  Our Q&A for “Start Making Sense,” The Nation’s weekly podcast, edited and condensed for print.  His new book is Al Franken: Giant of the Senate.
(His answer to the question, “Is Jeff Sessions a Lying Little Weasel?”: “That’s not how I would characterize the attorney general of the United States.”

Amy Wilentz: Does Jared Kushner Know Anything About the Countries He’s Supposed to Be Doing Diplomacy With?

Q.  Jared Kushner, the most trusted man in the Trump White House, has been on page one of the Los Angeles Times recently. One story was headlined, “Nations feel cut off from the Trump White House.” What was that about?
Amy Wilentz: Trump has a problem, especially at the State Department: He has not made appointments or filled ambassadorships throughout the world. So foreign ministries don’t know how to communicate. They’re used to dealing with the desk and the ambassador from the United States, who know about their area or their specific country, and that doesn’t exist right now. So they’re calling Jared. It’s kind of frightening, because he doesn’t really know anything about these places.
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Laura Poitras on Julian Assange: ‘Admirable, Brilliant, and Flawed’

JWIn Citizenfour, you quote from your production diaries, “I thought I could ignore the contradictions. I was wrong. They are becoming the story.” How did you decide to do it that way?
Laura Poitras:
I wanted to present a narrative that had complexity and contradictions, and tell the audience about some of the contradictions I was feeling when I was filming: What’s the story about? What am I filming? What’s going on?
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 Tom Frank: On the Road in Trump Country

How Trump won, and why Clinton lost: a Q&SA with Tom Frank, who has been touring red states to talk about the new paperback edition of his book Listen, Liberal, or Whatever Happened to the Party of the People? 
Two highlights: people hated Hillary Clinton — and they liked Bernie.
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