Living in the USA

Biden & Infrastructure: Harold Meyerson; Covid & Big Pharma: Gregg Gonsalves; “Bloodlands”: Ella Taylor

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Joe Biden has redefined “infrastructure” to include workers – Harold Meyerson explains what’s in the biggest ‘public works’ bill in 50 years.
Also: Big Pharma profits while the Global South waits for covid vaccines: Gregg Gonsalves comments.
And Ella Taylor talks about “Bloodlands,” a BBC thriller set in Northern Ireland 20 years after the end of “The Troubles” — when a murder investigation threatens to bring them back. Also: “Keeping Faith,” a BBC thriller set in Wales – both on Acorn TV.  4-1-21

Biden’s next big thing: Harold Meyerson; Michelle’s memoir: Amy Wilentz; Q-Anon: Ella Taylor

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Biden’s next big thing: after the success of his $1.9 trillion covid relief bill, Biden’s economic recovery bill is ready for prime time. Harold Meyerson explains. Also, the Democrats’ voting rights bill – and the unlikely union organizing Amazon workers in Bessemer, Alabama.
Also: Michelle Obama’s memoir is out now in paperback – It’s called “Becoming,” and it has sold more than 14 million copies worldwide in hardcover. The book avoids politics—which seems strange for the person the New York Times called “the most outspoken first lady in modern history.” Amy Wilentz comments. (originally broadcast in November 2018).  3-25-21

Bernie & the Covid Relief Bill: Harold Meyerson; Black Lives Matter & the LAPD: Carol Sobel; “Rosa Luxemburg”: Ella Taylor

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Bernie Sanders and Biden’s $1.9 trillion covid relief bill: it’s the most important piece of social legislation at least since Medicare in 1966, 55 years ago. The bill that became law is nothing like Joe Biden’s politics over the last 30 years–nothing like the Democrats under Obama, or Clinton–and very much the culmination of Bernie’s politics over the same period.
Plus: Black Lives Matter versus the LAPD: a new official report in Los Angeles says the police in LA  violated the law by attacking and arresting BLM marchers  in last summer’s protests. Civil rights attorney Carol Sobel will explain.
And our TV critic Ella Taylor will talk about “Rosa Luxemburg,” the movie, directed by Margarethe von Trotta starring Barbara Sukowa, won won Best Actress for the role at Cannes in 1986.  3-18-21

Biden’s Triumph: Harold Meyerson; Parents in Prison: Chesa Boudin; ‘Night of the Kings’: Ella Taylor

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Joe Biden’s 1.9 trillion dollar covid relief bill is about to become law, seven weeks into Biden’s presidency. It’s a huge achievement. Harold Meyerson comments.
Also, Chesa Boudin, the recently elected progressive district attorney of San Francisco, talks about prisoners as parents—he grew up with parents in prison (David Gilbert and Kathy Boudin).
And our TV critic Ella Taylor talks about “Night of the Kings,” a drama set inside a men’s prison in Ivory Coast –– it’s been shortlisted for the Oscar for best Foreign Feature.  3-11-21

Biden as Working Class Hero: Harold Meyerson; Trumpers & Us: Katha Pollitt; Will Smith’ “Amend” on Netflix: Eric Foner

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Joe Biden is becoming a working class hero, after the strongest statement in support of unions since FDR: Harold Meyerson talks about support for Amazon workers in Alabama.
Also: Katha Pollitt takes up the question, what can we do about the 74 million people who voted for Trump?
Plus: Eric Foner will talk about Will Smith’s new 6-part series on Netflix–it’s about the 14th Amendment, which established birthright citizenship, and guarantees equal protection to “all persons” in the United States – the show is called “Amend.”
And we have a new feature: “What Does Science Say?” today: the effect of Black Lives Matter protests on police killings. 3-5-21

Biden’s Child Benefit proposal: Harold Meyerson; Trump’s future: Rick Perlstein; ‘Allen v. Farrow’: Ella Taylor

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Biden’s Pandemic Relief Bill should pass the House Friday–-it includes child benefit payments for every family with children. But in order for Biden’s plan to be included in the bill, it can only be for a year. Mitt Romney has proposed a permanent program – that’s what we really need.
Also: Rick Perlstein talks about the future of the Republicans with Trump defeated – how divided are leaders over Trump’s continued domination of the party? Rick’s new book is “Reaganland.”
And Ella Taylor critiques the tabloid documentary Allen v. Farrow – and recommends “It’s a Sin,” a British series on HBO Max about a group of gay men who share a London apartment as the AIDS epidemic hits.  2-25-2021

Biden & the economy: Harold Meyerson; UCLA & the LAPD: Kelly Lytle Hernandez & Shannon Speed; ‘Judas & the Black Messiah’: Ella Taylor

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Biden’s economic recovery plan: Harold Meyerson comments, starting with the latest obstacles to keeping the $15 minimum wage in the Senate bill that goes to reconciliation – also, is aid to state governments a “blue-state bailout”?
Also: UCLA has gotten a multi-million dollar grant to establish an archive of the age of mass incarceration, starting with 177 boxes of LAPD records from the seventies through the 2000s –Kelly Lytle Hernandez and Shannon Speed explain the project and how they will be partnering with community groups.
Plus: our TV critic Ella Taylor reviews “Judas and the Black Messiah,” now on HBU Max, about the Chicago police assassinating Black Panther Fred Hampton in 1969, and also talks about “Nomadland,” the wonderful film starring Francis McDormand as a working class woman who has lost her husband, her job and her house and is living and working out of her van—it opens Friday on Hulu.  2-18-2021

Impeachment: Harold Meyerson; the Progressive Agenda: Alan Minsky; ‘The Maurianian’: Ella Taylor

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Harold Meyerson says the devastating new footage of the rioters shown on Day Two of the impeachment trial underlines Trump’s failure to try to stop them, the most undeniable grounds for a guilty verdict on his impeachment trial.
Also, Alan Minsky of Progressive Democrats of America makes the case for the $15 minimum wage, and looks ahead at Biden’s plans for reviving American manufacturing.
And Ella Taylor reviews “The Mauritanian,” the new film about a Guantanamo detainee and his attorney, played by Jodie Foster.  2-11-2021

Pandemic Aid: Harold Meyerson; Biden & Black America: Barbara Ransby; ‘Dear Comrade!’: Ella Taylor; Remembering Rennie Davis

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Biden’s $1.9 trillion pandemic relief bill: Harold Meyerson says he won’t reduce it. Also: the Republicans, and the impeachment.
Plus: Biden and Black America: Barbara Ransby comments.
And Ella Taylor reviews “Dear Comrades!”, the Russian film about a massacre of striking workers in Russia in 1962.
Finally, we remember Rennie Davis — he died on Feb. 2.   2-4-2021

Biden’s First Week: Harold Meyerson; The Insurrectionists: Gary Younge; “White Tiger”: Ella Taylor

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Joe Biden’s first week was filled with bold and necessary executive orders, and a plan to pass pandemic economic relief, before the impeachment trial, without Republican support–Harold Meyerson of The American Prospect explains.
also: Gary Younge talks about the coming fight with Trump and Trumpsim, starting with the insurrection of January 6.  Key question: what was the plan?
plus: Ella Taylor reviews “White Tiger,” the Indian rags-to-riches film that combines satire, melodrama and action film. 1-28-2021