October 20 - Trump is Not So Much a Liar as He is a Bullshitter; "The Populist Explosion: How the Great Recession Transformed American and European Politics"; Inside the Syrian Tragedy

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Full Program


Part 1

We begin with an analysis of the final presidential debate that is widely seen as “game over” for Donald Trump who most of the punditry and many Republicans feel crossed the line in not promising to adhere to the tradition of the loser conceding elections, a cornerstone of democracy which Trump twice refused to agree to last night, then again today, stating that he will only accept the results if he wins.  Jeff Hancock, a professor in the Department of Communication at Stanford University who researches how people use deception with technology and whose TED talk on deception has been seen over a million times, joins us to discuss his article at CNN “Trump’s Bullshit: Why his supporters don’t care that he’s lying” and assess whether the outrage expressed by the elites over Trump’s threats against democracy will in any way influence his followers who don’t trust the media and have given up on politics as usual.


Jeff Hancock

Part 2

Then we speak with John Judis, a senior writer at The National Interest and an editor-at-large for Talking Points Memo. He joins us to discuss his latest book, “The Populist Explosion: How the Great Recession Transformed American and European Politics” and look into why the traditional political parties in Europe, the duopolies of socialists and conservatives, as well as America’s duopoly of the Democratic and Republican parties, are fraying and is some cases splitting apart. We examine the surge of populism on the right and left and the long-running and highly consequential readjustment underway as the status quo fails, pitting the “people” against the “establishment”.

Part 3

Then finally we examine the Syria tragedy from the perspective of the innocent lives devastated by this war which are chronicled in a new book by Janine di Giovanni, “The Morning They Came For Us: Dispatches from Syria”. The Middle East Editor of Newsweek, Janine di Giovanni is the winner of the 2016 Courage in Journalism Award and has covered wars in Bosnia, Chechnya and Sierra Leone and joins us to discuss her efforts to get us to understand what it like for ordinary people to be trapped inside a war and her hope that we can overcome our the lack of compassion for the Syrian refugees which is reflected in fear mongering going on in our political debate.

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