May 8 - As the Republicans Crack Up, A Weak and Divided Democratic Party Stumbles Into Victory; Canada's Growing Wildfires; "The Tyranny of the Weak" Will Not Use Its Nukes First

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Full Program


Part 1

We begin with this historical moment in American political history where one party the Republican Party is beginning to crack up following the capture of the GOP by Donald Trump, while the other party the Democrats, are poised to stumble into an historic opportunity with weak candidates and a divided party. Keith Poole, the Distinguished Chair in the Department of Political Science in the School of Public and International Affairs at the University of Georgia and the author of “Polarized America: The Dance of Ideology and Unequal Riches”, just out in a second edition, joins us. We discuss the breakup of the Republican Party, the coming reckoning within the Democratic Party, and the likely change in the judiciary with the Supreme Court reversing its long march to the far right.

Part 2

Then we assess the growing wildfires in Canada that are now spreading from the province of Alberta into Saskatchewan and speak with Stephen Pyne, an author and expert on the history, ecology, and management of fire. He is the Regents Professor in the School of Life Sciences at Arizona State University and the author of "History of Fire Since 1960" and joins us to discuss how there is little than can be done to stop these large fires in boreal forests and as history shows, they can last for months until the winter snows put them out. 

Part 3

Then finally we examine the tyranny of the weak in North Korea where the country and its people are suffering under crippling sanctions because of its nuclear program but now its young dynastic leader Kim Jong Un is claiming he will not use nuclear weapons first and North Korea “will faithfully fulfill its obligation for non-proliferation and strive for global denuclearization”. Charles Armstrong, a Professor of History and the Director of the Center for Korean Research at Columbia University, joins us to discuss whether North Korea’s pursuit of a “nukes and butter” strategy will work now that they have some 20 nuclear weapons and will have about 100 by 2020.

Charles K. Armstrong