Living in the USA

A Good Week for Workers: Harold Meyerson; plus Bhaskar Sunkara on Biden and Adam Hochschild on Woke History

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Workers won union recognition is some significant places in the past week.  Harold Meyerson reports on interns and residents in Philadelphia joining the SEIU, a bus factory—in Georgia!—joining the Steelworkers, and dancers at a strip club in LA joining Actors Equity.

Plus: Progressives and Biden: what is to be done—about the 2024 election? Bhaskar Sunkara, president of The Nation, comments.

Also: Ron DeSantis is campaigning for president promising to “stop woke history.” That is, to stop teaching about slavery and its legacy of institutional racism. Adam Hochschild found the history guide DeSantis wants: the Hillsdale College “1776 Curriculum.” He reports on what’s in it —and what’s not.  5-18-2023

Worrying about Biden: Harold Meyerson; Writers’ Strike: Josh Gondelman; Working Class Voters: Senator Sherrod Brown

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The latest polls indicate voters think Biden is too old. Should the Democrats nominate someone else? Harold Meyerson comments.

Also: an update on the Writers’ Guild strike against the hollywood studios, with Josh Gondelman – he’s an Emmy-award winning writer for his work on Last Week Tonight with John Oliver, on HBO. He’s also a regular on NPR’s news quiz show, Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me.

Also: one of the Senate Democrats up for reelection in 2024 is Sherrod Brown of Ohio, one of our heroes –we spoke with him in 2020 about politics and history, and how he has won reelection in a state that is increasingly Republican.  5-11-2023

The Writers’ Strike: Harold Meyerson; plus D.D. Guttenplan on Clarence Thomas and Anatol Lieven on Ukraine

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At midnight on Monday, 11,500 Writers’ Guild of America writers went on strike seeking a new film and TV contract. The writers voted for the strike by a historic margin: 98% in favor; 2% opposed. Harold Meyerson of The American Prospect comments.

Also: Anatol Lieven is back after three weeks in Ukraine, where he found soldiers determined to win, and Russian bombardment doing surprisingly little damage.

Plus: D.D. Guttenplan argues that it’s time to impeach Clarence Thomas, on the grounds of misconduct; also, it’s time to remove and replace Diane Feinstein, on the grounds of her inability to perform her duties, especially on the Judiciary Committee, where her absence has denied the Democrats a majority.  5-4-2023

Tucker Carlson & History: Harold Meyerson; Amy Wilentz on Haiti; Anatol Lieven on Ukraine

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Tucker Carlson’s audience, 3.5 million, is a lot smaller than his pioneering predecessors in right-wing media; Harold Meyerson comments. Also: recent labor victories in LA.

Plus: A neighborhood in Port-au-Prince fights back against the gangs. Amy Wilentz comments on the news from Haiti.

Also: Anatol Lieven is back after three weeks in Ukraine, where he found soldiers determined to win, and Russian bombardment doing surprisingly little damage.  4-27-2023

Fox News & Us: Harold Meyerson; Afghan girls: Shabana Basij-Rasikh; Abortion Politics: John Nichols

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Fox News created a Frankenstein – and the story isn’t over yet: Harold Meyerson comments on the Dominion Voting Systems settlement.

Also: Afghan girls who escaped from the Taliban: the boarding school that evacuated its students from Kabul during the chaotic withdrawal of the Americans. SOLA, the School of Leadership Afghanistan is the place where Afghan girls study to become members of the generation that will one day lead a peaceful and united Afghanistan. The founder, Shabana Basij-Rasikh, will explain.

Plus: John Nichols will comment on how the fight for abortion rights will be a key issue for Democrats in the 2024 election, especially after Republican judges have tried to ban medication abortions.  4-20-2023


Abortion Politics: Harold Meyerson; plus Beverly Gage on J. Edgar Hoover

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The latest move by a Republican judge to ban the abortion drug Mefipristone is likely to turn out more Democratic voters, says Harold Meyerson. Also: Trump’s Easter Sunday tweet.
Plus: We know a lot about the bad things J. Edgar Hoover did, but it turns out there’s a lot we didn’t know. Historian Beverly Gage joins the podcast to explain. Her new book is “G-Man: J. Edgar Hoover & the Making of the American Century” — it’s been nominated for an LA Times Book Prize, which will be awarded next week.  4-13-2023

Progressives win in Chicago and Wisconsin: Harold Meyerson & John Nichols; plus Chris Lehmann on Trump in Court

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Progressive Brandon Johnson won the Chicago mayoral election: Harold Meyerson explains how he did it, and the lessons for progressives.
Also: The landslide victory of the progressive candidate in Wisconsin’s Supreme Court race, Janet Protaisewicz, ten times bigger than Biden’s, shows how abortion wins elections–John Nichols explains.
plus: Will Trump’s indictment on 34 felonies change anything in the 2024 election? Or had everybody already decided what they think about Donald Trump? Chris Lehmann reports.  4-6-2023

Low-Wage Workers’ Victory in LA: Harold Meyerson; the Minor League Baseball Union: Kelly Candaele and Peter Dreier; Women v. Trump: Dahlia Lithwick

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Last week’s 3-day strike in LA by public school custodians, food service workers, teachers’ aides and bus drivers won a 30% pay increase–Harold Meyerson reports.

Also: How minor league baseball players organized a union for the first time in history: Kelley Candaele and Peter Dreier report.

And Dahlia Lithwick talks about some of the heroes of the Trump years: the women lawyers who fought him on the big issues—the Muslim ban, neo-Nazis in Charlottesville, and voting rights. Her book is “Lady Justice” has been nominated for an LA Times book award.  3-30-2023

Billionaires and banks: Harold Meyerson; Women in 2023: Katha Pollitt; Vietnam Era Protest: Christian Appy

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Harold Meyerson comments on the fed, the banks, and the billionaires; also, the coming indictment of Donald Trump.

Plus: American women in 2023: the news is bad, but it’s not all bad. Katha Pollitt explains.

Also: the largest anti-war demonstrations in American history were protests in the fall of 1969–with more than two million people in the streets demanding “End the War in Vietnam.” But did those demonstrations help end the war?  Historian Chris Appy comments on the new documentary, “The Movement and the ‘Madman,’” on PBS American Experience March 28.  3-23-2023

Banks and Democrats: Harold Meyerson; Masks and Covid: Gregg Gonsalves; Wisconsin votes: John Nichols

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Harold Meyerson reports on the Democrats who supported reducing regulation of mid-sized banks like Silicon Valley Bank – and on the Democrats who are taking a stand against Netanyahu’s moves against democracy for Israeli Jews.

Also: John Nichols reports on the promising situation in the most important election before the 2024 presidential race: the Wisconsin Supreme Court election coming up on April 4, which could switch the court from conservative to liberal control, legalizing abortion and ending gerrymandering. Plus: the Democrats who tried to block the 2019 bill that reduced regulation on banks like Silicon Valley Bank.

And: Do masks work — to help stop the spread of covid?  A New York Times columnist recently said that they don’t, and cited an authoritative review of research as his source. But it turns he was wrong about that study.  Gregg Gonsalves of the Yale School of Public Health, will explain.  3-16-2023