Trump Watch

The Mueller Report: Now it’s Congress’s Turn. John Nichols–plus Bill McKibben, and We Remember Gary Stewart

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The Mueller Report–we have the evidence, especially on obstruction; now Congress needs to do its part. John Nichols reports.
Plus: Our Climate Moment: we talk with Bill McKibben, founder of 350.0rg, about balancing fear and hope in the face of the grim realities of climate change — his new book is “Falter: Has the Human Game Begun to Play Itself Out?”
Also: Gary Stewart, activist, organizer, and popular music maven, passed away last week — we remember him, with an interview from 2005–on Girl Groups.  4/18/19

Netanhayu’s Election & American Jews: Harold Meyerson; plus Eric Foner on Reconstruction and Laurie Winer on Stephen Miller

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Israel’s 2019 election results are in, and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is set to serve a record fifth term — with help from Trump.  For American Jews, it means more alienation from Israel.  Harold Meyerson comments–he’s executive editor of The American Prospect.
Next, “Reconstruction: America After the Civil War” premieres on PBS this week; we talk with historian Eric Foner about the first interracial democracy in the world–and how it was destroyed.  Eric is the award-winning historian and author of the definitive history “Reconstruction: America’s Unfinished Revolution.”
Plus: Stephen Miller went from being a shy middle school kid in Santa Monica to Trump’s top advisor, the evil genius behind Trump’s vicious immigration and asylum policies — Laurie Winer reports on what happened to him.  Laurie wrote about Stephen Miller for LA Magazine.  4/11/19

Republicans and ‘Socialism’: John Nichols; plus Zoe Carpenter on Toxic Plastics, and Ben Ehrenreich on Climate and Commerce

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Republicans and ‘Socialism’ — Republicans are running in 2020 against ‘socialism’; John Nichols talks about Milwaukee, America’s socialist city for 50 years.
Also: Plastics and Petrochemicals: An estimated 8 tons of plastic end up in the oceans per year. But the real problem is the manufacturing of plastics.  Zoë Carpenter explains.
Plus, Climate Change in the City: Ben Ehrenreich reports from Commerce, CA. on a community movement fighting for environmental justice. 4/4/19

The Mueller Report: Harold Meyerson; plus the 50th Anniversary of John and Yoko’s Bed-In for Peace and Jane Mayer on Mike Pence

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The Mueller Report: a three page summary of the 300-plus page report has been released — that’s less than one percent of Mueller’s findings — Harold Meyerson comments.
also: Today marks the 50th Anniversary of John Lennon and Yoko Ono’s Bed-In for Peace at the Amsterdam Hilton, “our protest against all the suffering and violence in the world.. . . there are many ways to protest.” Celebrated in song: “The newspapers said – Say what you’re doing in bed; I said we’re only trying to get us some peace.”  We talk with Dick and Mickey Flacks about their lives on the left — their new memoir is “Making History Making Blintzes: How Two Red Diaper Babies Found Each Other and Discovered America”.
Plus: Jane Mayer on Mike Pence – and his mother.  The big question: would Pence be worse? Jane Mayer says “probably yes.”  She wrote about Mike Pence for The New Yorker, where she’s a longtime staff writer. 3/28/19

College Admissions Scams, from Jared Kushner to the Present: Amy Wilentz, plus Medicaid in Arkansas and Abortion in Mississippi

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50 people in six states were accused by the Justice Department last week of taking part in a major college admission scandal. They include Hollywood stars and business leaders, who paid bribes to elite college coaches. But that’s not the way Jared Kushner got in to Harvard—his father paid the university directly. Amy Wilentz comments on the legal, and the illegal, ways wealthy people get their unqualified children into elite schools.
Also: In 2017, the Trump administration announced that, for the first time in history, states could impose a work requirement on the low-income people who rely on Medicaid for health nsurance. Arkansas was the first state to implement one, staring last June. A number of other states, including Arizona, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, New Hampshire, and Wisconsin, are chomping at the bit to follow suit. Bryce Covert reports on the impact of the work requirement in Arkansas.
Plus: Mississippi has only one place you can get an abortion–it’s in Jackson, and the state also has a wonderful organization based there called the Mississippi Reproductive Freedom Fund. Rebecca Grant reports on the remarkable woman who founded and leads that organization.  3/20/19

Bill McKibben: Climate Victories–and Setbacks; plus Harm Reduction and the Opiate Epidemic

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What lessons can we draw from the recent victories—and setbacks–for the climate movement in California?  To replace coal and oil, do we need nuclear power? Is switching from coal powered electric plants to natural gas a step in the right direction? Bill McKibben comments–and talks how to get to a Green New Deal. Bill’s new book, “Falter: Has the Human Game Begun to Play Itself Out?” will be published on April 16.
Also: what can we do to reduce the death toll in the current epidemic of opioid overdoses? Maia Szalavitz suggests our focus should be on harm reduction, and especially on the creation of safe injection sites—Philadelphia may be the first US city to follow the example of Vancouver and many West European cities.  3/14/19

Naomi Klein: The Politics of the Green New Deal; plus Dahlia Lithwick on Trump’s ‘Emergency’

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Naomi Klein says the Green New Deal needs to follow the example of the New Deal of the 1930s, when nothing would have happened without “massive pressure from social movements” that “changed the calculus of what was possible.” Naomi is a contributing editor at The Nation and author of several number one bestsellers, including “This Changes Everything.”
Plus Dahlia Lithwick talks about the national challenge to Trump’s “national emergency”—the constitutional issues, the political issues, and the dangers of treating as normal his rambling, fact-free, egomaniacal performance in the Rose Garden announcing his “emergency.” Dahlia writes about the courts and the law for Slate and hosts the podcast ‘Amicus.’

The Case for Universal Child Care: Katha Pollitt; plus David Klion on Bernie’s New Foreign Policy

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Medicare for All, a Green New Deal, free college tuition, a $15 minimum wage – and now it’s time to add Child care for all to the Progressive agenda. That’s Katha Pollitt’s proposal—she argues it will help huge numbers of people. (And Elizabeth Warren just made it a campaign issue of hers.)
Also: Bernie’s foreign policy: in 2016 he ran on domestic issues almost exclusively. This time around, he’s going to say more about foreign policy—a lot more. David Klion explains; he’s profiled Bernie’s foreign policy advisor, Matt Duss, for The Nation.  2/21/19

The Green New Deal in California: David Dayen; Plus Isabel Wilkerson on ‘The Warmth of Other Suns’

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The Green New Deal in California: bad news is that the governor seems to be pessimistic about high-speed rail; meanwhile, in Los Angeles, the mayor had good news about stopping natural gas plants – David Dayen reports.
Next up, February is Black History Month in America – we revisit an interview with Pulitzer-prize winning author, Isabel Wilkerson, where she talks about her book ‘The Warmth of Other Suns’ and the great migration of Black people out of the South.  2/14/19


Trump and ‘Socialism’: Harold Meyerson, plus Manuel Pastor: Calif. vs. Trump, and Elizabeth Kolbert, Trump vs. Climate change

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Harold Meyerson of The American Prospect on the president’s State of the Union speech Tuesday night — and whether “socialism” is as big a negative for Americans as Trump thinks it is.
Also: as of October, 2018, California had filed 44 lawsuits against Trump, and more are expected for 2019. We talk with Manuel Pastor about climate, immigration and the future of California v. Trump.  His book is “State of Resistance.”
Plus Elizabeth Kolbert, Pulitzer-prize winning author of “The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History,” on Trump, climate and endangered species. 2/7/19