Bernie Sanders blames both US Policy and Putin for the Ukraine crisis – much smarter than DSA, which barely mentions Putin in its statement, as Harold Meyerson explains.
Also: Mitch McConnell thinks Republicans are going to lose the Senate in November if Trump’s candidates and issues dominate the election. Is McConnell right? John Nichols comments. 2-17-2022
The Democrats are not doomed to defeat in the midterms, says Ro Khanna. Politics can turn around in the next few months. Khanna represents Silicon Valley in Congress, where he’s a prominent figure in the Progressive Caucus. His new book is Dignity in a Digital Age: Making Tech Work for All of Us.
Also: Amy Wilentz discusses Haiti: a country that should be inaugurating a new president. It has done so every five years on February 7—except for glitches, coups, and postponements—ever since Baby Doc Duvalier fled the island 37 years ago. But not this year. Wilentz explains why it’s struggling to get the new beginning in needs, and how it might make it there.
One more thing: Donald Trump is responsible for about 100,000 unnecessary deaths from Covid-19 during his presidency, according to scientists at The Lancet. John Nichols explains who in his administration made which of the deadly decisions, and who made money off of the pandemic: a topic he delves into in his new book, Coronavirus Criminals and Pandemic Profiteers. 2-10-2022
Republican strategies in the coming Supreme Court nomination fight: Harold Meyerson comments. Also: A billionaire for mayor in L.A.?
also: It’s Black History Month, and we feature Isabel Wilkerson and her unforgettable book about the Great Migration, “The Warmth of Other Suns.”
Plus: Pramila Jayapal, head of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, talks about her path from immigrant to organizer to member of Congress. Her book is “Use the Power You Have: A Brown Woman’s Guide to Politics and Political Change.” 2-3-2022
Harold Meyerson on The Supreme Court vacancy, and how things could get beter for the Dems.
Also: Gustavo Arellano on “A People’s Guide to Orange County”
Plus Ellen Schrecker on “The Lost Promise: American Universities in the Sixties”. 1-27-2022
What can the Dems do to dig themselves out of the hole they are now stuck in? Harold Meyerson says they need to pass the most popular parts of Build Back Better – ASAP.
Plus: Beto O’Rourke’s strategy for winning the governorship of Texas focuses on organizing everywhere to massively boost Democratic voter turnout—the strategy Stacey Abrams has followed in Georgia. Steve Phillips explains how more than a million young voters of color will be eligible to vote in 2022 who were not old enough four years ago—when Beto first ran statewide and came within 214,921 votes of winning.
Also: new discoveries about America’s atom spies. Julius and Ethel Rosenberg were executed in June, 1953. We know that Julius did not give ‘the secret of the a-bomb’ to the Russians—that was the work of a couple of other people. And the FBI knew it at the time. So: why did the FBI go after the Rosenbergs, instead of the person they knew was the real spy? His name was Ted Hall—a brilliant young physicist who worked on the Manhattan Project. The FBI investigated him, but never charged him with a crime. Now Dave Lindorff has found out why. 1-20-2022
What is to be done about inflation? Harold Meyerson says it’s not Joe Biden’s fault.
Plus: Is Omicron the kinder, gentler covid we could live with? Mike Davis has some criticisms of that view.
Also: The 1619 Project examines the consequences of slavery for American history – Martha Jones comments on the 1619 Project’s new book. 1-13-2022
It looks like Joe Manchin will torpedo filibuster reform, this killing voting rights legislation: Harold Meyerson reports from Washington.
Also: Eric Foner and Henry Louis Gates talk about W.E.B. DuBois, the Black historian and activist of the first part of the 20th century, and his book Black Reconstruction 1860-1880—published originally in 1935, and out now in a new edition from the Library of America, edited by Foner and Gates.
Plus: Adam Hochschild on his book “Rebel Cinderella: From Rags to Riches to Radical, the Epic Journey of Rose Pastor Stokes.” 1-6-2022
2021, the year in review:
Gary Younge on the Insurrection: what was the plan?
Mike Davis on the Pandemic: beware of talk about “light at the end of the tunnel”
Rick Perlstein on the Republicans’ 40-year campaign to ban abortion.
plus: we remember Rennie Davis- he died in February. 12-30-2021
Trump is going to be indicted for racketeering and fraud, because of his financial crimes, and that will prevent him from being the Republican candidate: that’s what David Cay Johnston says—he’s an award-winning investigative reporter, and his new book is ‘The Big Cheat: How Trump Fleeced America and Enriched Himself and His Family.’
Also: Revelations about the January 6 insurrection include striking new information about the Trump kids that day: Who did what, and also who didn’t do anything. Amy Wilentz reports.
Plus: : A report from Kwajalein, one of the Marshall islands in the Pacific that’s a major US military base. Tom Lutz says it’s completely paved over, and the only greenery is the golf course. The runway is one foot above sea level. The island will be under water by about 2035. Tom also describes life in some other places—his new book is ‘The Kindness of Strangers.’ 12-23-2021
Biden’s signature social programs are not going to pass before the New Year, and maybe not at all, because of Joe Manchin’s obstructionism: Harold Meyerson reports. Also: some good news on unions, especially at the University of California.
Later in the show, how climate change will transform the coming face-off between the US and China – historian Alfred McCoy says China will be the world’s number one military & economic power by 2030 but Chinese domination will last for only 20 years, because rising temperatures and rising sea levels will bring crisis and disaster to China’s economy—and to ours as well. His new book is ‘To Govern the Globe: World Orders and Catastrophic Change.’
Also: Mutual aid and racial justice during the year of Covid: Kristina Wong explains how, in the darkest days of the pandemic, she started the Auntie Sewing Squad to make masks for the most vulnerable communities—and how she became, in her words, a sweatshop overlord. Her new co-edited book is ‘The Auntie Sewing Squad Guide to Mask Making, Radical Care, and Racial Justice.’ 12-16-2021
Books by Jon Wiener
Start Making Sense
“Start Making Sense” is The Nation magazine’s weekly podcast, hosted by Jon Wiener. It’s political talk without the boring parts.