Living in the USA

The Youth Vote: Harold Meyerson; Ken Burns’s ‘Holocaust’: David Nasaw; ‘Bad Mexicans’: Kelly Lytle Hernandez

Listen HERE
To increase young voters’ turnout, we need to appeal not only to abortion rights but also to economic issues, Harold Meyerson concludes after reading the polls.

Also: Ken Burns’ new documentary on PBS, “The US and the Holocaust,” searches for heroes and happy endings – but there aren’t any, Historian David Nasaw argues.

Plus: “Bad Mexicans”—that’s what the revolutionaries of 1910 were called as they fought on both sides of the US-Mexico border against the robber barons and their political allies. UCLA historian Kelly Lytle Hernandez tells that story, which is the subject of (her new book)–it’s been long-listed for the National Book Award.  9-29-2022


Gustavo Arellano on L.A.’s Lying Sheriff; Eyal Press on Dirty Work; Eric Foner on 1776 & 2022

Listen HERE
We’re still thinking about LA County Sheriff Alex Villaneuva ordering a raid on the home of Sheila Kuehl last Wednesday–she’s one of the county supervisors who has called for his resignation. He says she’s the target of an investigation of corruption in the award of contracts by the supervisors – but he says all kinds of things, many of which are lies. Gustavo Arellano reports – he’s a columnist for the LA Times.

Plus: Dirty work—and the people who do it: the low-income workers who do our most ethically troubled jobs. What does that have to do with the rest of us? Eyal Press will explain—his book “Dirty Work” is out now in paperback.

Also:Historian Eric Foner comments on the ways Republicans have made the teaching of American history a key battleground in their culture war against Democrats in the upcoming elections —especially the history of the American revolution.

And we’ll also have Your Minnesota Moment: the Pillow Guy and the FBI.  9-22-2022

Abortion Politics: Harold Meyerson; Sarah Posner: Southern Baptists; Amy Wilentz: Jared’s book

Listen HERE
Republican moves on abortion continue to strengthen Democratic candidates, says Harold Meyerson–especially in Michigan. Also: Amazon workers organize in the Inland Empire, and nurses are on strike in Minnesota.

Plus: The transformation of the Southern Baptist Convention into a powerful right wing political force developed over the last 50 years. Before 1973, when abortion became a constitutional right, the Southern Baptists did not have a political position on abortion. Then came what they call the “conservative resurgence”—we call it the “fundamentalist takeover.” Sarah Posner explains that history.

Also: a new installment of The Children’s Hour: stories about Ivanka, Jared, Don Junior and Little Eric. This week: Jared writes a book! He called it “Breaking History.” We have comment from our Chief Jared Correspondent, Amy Wilentz.  9-15-2022

Biden v. Newsom: Harold Meyerson; Amy Littlefield on Kansas; Remembering Barbara Ehrenreich

Listen HERE
The president and the governor of Calif arguing about who is more pro-labor – that’s something new: Harold Meyerson comments.
Also: the organizing that won that huge abortion rights victory in Kansas: Amy Littlefield reports.
And we remember Barbara Ehrenreich, who died last week – we did this interview with her in 2002, when “Nickel and Dimed” had just been published.  9-8-2022

A Labor Landmark: Harold Meyerson; The GOP & the NLRB: Chris Lehmann; Jan. 6: Patrick Leahy

Listen HERE
Harold Meyerson on the labor breakthrough in California: a statewide panel to set standards for wages and working conditions for the 550,000 fast food workers in the state.
Also: Republicans are making plans if they win control of the House in November–Chris Lehmann reports that their top targets include the NLRB and the Department of Labor. Chris is The Nation’s new D.C. Bureau Chief.
Plus: Patrick Leahy of Vermont has been a senator for almost 50 years. He describes how, on January 6, when senators took refuge from the mob attacking the capitol, they prepared to complete the work of counting the electoral votes in their underground bunker–until he insisted they should wait until they could return to the Senate chamber. His new book is ”The Road Taken.”  9-1-2022


Advantage Democrats: Harold Meyerson; The States: Daniel Squadron; Wisconsin: John Nichols

Listen HERE
The fight for abortion rights and against a resurgent Donald Trump are mobilizing Democrats for the midterms; student debt cancellation helps. Harold Meyerson reports.
Also: The Supreme Court next term will take up a case that could make Trump’s fake electors scheme the law of the land. Daniel Squadron explains the situation – and how winning majorities in state legislatures in swing states is the key to preserving democracy in 2024. Squadron is the co-founder and executive director of The States Project.
And John Nichols reports on Wisconsin, where Mandela Barnes is challenging the horrible Ron Johnson for the Senate, and the indispensable Tony Evers is running for reelection as governor.  8-25-2022

Biden’s Big Bills: Harold Meyerson; John Nichols on Liz Cheney; Peter Richardson on Carey McWilliams

Listen HERE
Harold Meyerson explains Biden’s big achievement–it’s mainly a climate change bill with a side helping of health reform and some additional taxation of corporations.
Also: Liz Cheney is way behind in the polls leading up to next week’s Wyoming primary. John Nichols went to Wyoming to see her in action, and reports that she’s “fighting to outlast and replace Trump as the manager of the right-wing franchise in American politics.”
And Peter Richardson talks about the life of the legendary historian and editor Carey McWilliams.  8-11-2022


From Banker to Organizer: Pramila Jayapal; The Right to Vote: Eric Foner

Listen HERE
Pramila Jayapal is head of the Congressional Progressive Caucus and represents Seattle in the House. She will explain how, as a young immigrant from India, she went from being an investment banker to a lifelong organizer. Her book, “Use the Power You Have: A Brown Woman’s Guide to Politics and Political Change,” is out now.

Also historian Eric Foner talks about about voting rights and voter suppression, about who gets to be a citizen, the rights of undocumented immigrants, and about the roots of mass incarceration — –they all relate to the 13th, 14th and 15th Amendments, part of the country’s attempt to redefine citizenship after the end of slavery. His book, “The Second Founding: How the Civil War and Reconstruction Remade the Constitution,” is out now in paperback.  8-4-2022

Advice for Men from Katha Pollitt; Film in the Age of Reagan: J. Hoberman

Listen HERE
Jordan Peterson’s books of advice for men have sold five million copies – he says men should work hard, be responsible, demand more of themselves—and make their beds. Katha Pollitt has some comments about that.

Also: The synergy between politics and popular culture has never been clearer or stronger than in the Age of Reagan. J. Hoberman, author of “Make My Day: Film Culture in the Age of Reagan,” explains how this came to be. Hoberman was a legendary film critic for the Village Voice for 30 years and now writes for the New York Review, the New York Times, and The Nation.  7-28-2022