Living in the USA

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

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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

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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

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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

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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

Climate Action: Harold Meyerson, Rebecca Solnit, & Thelma Young Lutunatabua; Amy Wilentz on Ivana

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Biden’s clean energy plan was our best chance for addressing the climate emergency for the next several years; but Joe Manchin killed it, he says, because he’s concerned about inflation. Harold Meyerson comments.
Also: Addressing Climate Despair: how taking action is an act of hope. Thelma Young Lutunatabua and Rebecca Solnit talk about their new project  @NotTooLate_Hope
Plus: Ivana Trump, mother of Don Jr., Ivanka and Eric Trump, has died. She was 73. In 2017, her memoir “Raising Trump” was published. Amy Wilentz comments.  7-21-2022

Harold Meyerson on Jan. 6, plus Sarah Posner and David Cole on the Supreme Court

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On Tuesday the January 6 committee held yet another dramatic hearing, this one on the origins of the ‘Stop the Steal’ rally and the events that provoked that 1:30 am tweet of Trump’s urging supporters to come to Washington, where it “will be wild.” Harold Meyerson has our analysis.
Also: the people who say “America is a Christian Nation” had some big victories at the Supreme Court this term: on school prayer, and on taxpayer funding of religious schools. Sarah Posner comments on the endgame of the Christian Nationalists; she’s the author of the book Unholy, about Christian Nationalists
and their politics.
Plus: What is to be done about The Supreme Court? David Cole, national legal director of the ACLU, and legal affairs correspondent for the Nation, has the best answer: organize, and vote.  7-14-2022

Biden’s failure: Harold Meyerson; Abortion Rights: Michele Goodwin; Ukraine: Anatol Lieven

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Biden’s weak responses to the end of abortion rights and the Supreme Court majority’s obstacles to gun control have been disastrous for Democrats. Harold Meyerson comments, and on the Georgia races with Rev. Raphael Warnock and Stacey Abrams.
Also: The end of abortion in 26 states will be deadly for many poor women, especially poor women of color. Law professor Michele Goodwin explains, reviewing the history of forced pregnancy under the slave regime in antebellum America, and how it was banned by the 13th Amendment’s prohibition of “involuntary servitude.”
Plus: How will the war in Ukraine end? The Russians have failed to install a puppet government there but the Ukrainians are not going to recover the territory Russia seized in 2014. So some kind of negotiated settlement is necessary, and better sooner than later. Anatol Lieven, author of “Ukraine and Russia.” comments.  7-7-2022

Trump and the Armed Mob: Harold Meyerson; Evangelicals and Jan. 6: Sarah Posner

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Harold Meyerson comments on Tuesday’s historic testimony by Cassidy Hutchinson – and on the Supreme Court and abortion.
Also: In understanding the January 6 insurrection, much of the focus has been on white nationalist militias like the Proud Boys. But white evangelicals also played a big part on January 6. Sarah Posner, author of Unholy: How White Christian Nationalists Powered the Trump Presidency, and the Devastating Legacy They Left Behind, joins the podcast to discuss religion’s role in the riots.  6-30-2022

The Hearings on Trump’s Crimes: John Nichols; plus Joan Walsh on Sex Ed

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This week’s hearings of the Jan. 6 committee have been powerful and devastating in laying out the evidence of Trump’s crimes, first in pressuring state officials to alter election results, and then in pressuring the Justice Department to declare the elections corrupted. John Nichols comments.
Plus: Republicans have opened another front in the culture war with the slogan “parental rights”–not just banning the teaching of Critical Race Theory, whatever that is; now they are campaigning to ban comprehensive sex education. Joan Walsh explains.  6-23-2022