January 4 - Sessions Ignore the Opioid Crisis to Wage a War on Marijuana; It's All About Money-Laundering; Trump Tries to Stop the Publication of a Number 1 Best-Seller

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Part 1

We begin with the Attorney General’s reversal of an Obama-era policy restraining federal prosecutors in states that have legalized marijuana from to bringing charges. Mark Kleiman, a Professor of Public Policy at New York University where he leads the Crime and Justice Program, joins us to discuss Jeff Session’s peculiar obsession about what he sees as a greater scourge than the opioid epidemic, marijuana, which the AG likens to heroin, and the furious backlash from Colorado’s Republican Senator Cory Gardner who accused Sessions of violating promises he had made and threatened retaliation.

 

Mark Kleiman

Part 2

Then we assess the importance of the explosive admission by Steve Bannon in the new book “Fire and Fury” which Trump is trying to suppress. Bannon’s belief that Mueller’s probe “is all about money laundering”, suggesting that the special counsel’s “path to f***ing Trump goes right through Paul Manafort, Don Jr., and Jared Kushner…they’re going to roll those guys”. And Bannon goes on to say that Mueller will crack Don Jr. like an egg on national TV. An expert on international money laundering, James Henry, the co-founder with David Cay Johnston of the new investigative reporting news service DCReport.org and author of “Blood Bankers” joins us to discuss how, after being black-balled by Wall Street, money laundering became the Trump business model with an open invitation to Russian gangsters, kleptocrats, oligarchs and assorted third world looters to invest in the Trump family’s real estate projects. Buttressing Bannon’s warning, we also discuss the New York Times op-ed by the heads of Fusion GPS who urged congressional investigators to look into Trump’s Russian money laundering, an effort which but fell on deaf Republican ears.

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Part 3

Then finally we speak with Clay Calvert, the Brechner Eminent Scholar in Mass Communication and Director of the First Amendment Project at the University of Florida. He joins us to discuss Trump’s litigious efforts to silence Bannon with a cease-and-desist warning and his attack on the new book by Michael Wolff that contains the widely quoted remarks of Bannon’s which portray an unqualified and ignorant leader and first family in the White House. We assess what appears to be a futile threat by Trump’s lawyer who is demanding that the publisher immediately cease-and-desist the publication of the book but is already number 1 on Amazon’s best-seller list.