April 30 - Netanyahu Reveals Iran's Secret Nuclear Weapons Program; Trump Threatens to "Close Down the Country" Unless He Gets His Border Wall; Trump Force-Feeds the "Deep State" While Claiming It Is Out To Get Him

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We begin with the announcement today by Israel’s Prime Minister Netanyahu that he was exposing Iran’s secret nuclear weapons program contained in 55,000 documents secretly obtained by Israeli intelligence. With President Trump quickly claiming Netanyahu’s revelations prove him 100% right, and with the new Secretary of State Mike Pompeo calling Iran “the greatest sponsor of terrorism in the world”, we will analyze what appears to be an orchestrated campaign ahead of an expected U.S. pullout of the P5+1 Iran agreement by Trump on May 12.  Mansour Farhang, a professor of international relations at Bennington College who resigned as revolutionary Iran’s first ambassador to the United Nations and is the author of “The U.S. Press and Iran: Foreign Policy and the Journalism of Deference”, joins us. We will discuss what appears to be an impending collision between Iran and Israel over Syria where a number of bases were struck by missiles and Iranian personnel were killed on Sunday night. We will assess the extent to which both the right wing government of Israel and the theocratic regime in Iran feed off each other’s propaganda and the possibility that they could stumble into a war that neither wants which could engulf the region.

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Part 2

Then, with Vice President Pence visiting the southern border today and President Trump calling our immigration laws a “total disaster”, we will examine the plight of immigrants from a caravan of 1,500 mostly El Salvadoran refugees who have crossed through Mexico and have now dwindled to about 300 and are now arriving in Tijuana showing up at the San Ysidro port of entry claiming political asylum. Mae Ngai, a Professor of History at Columbia University and author of “Impossible Subjects: Illegal Aliens and the Making of Modern America”, joins us to discuss how Trump has threatened to “close down the country” if he did not get his border wall and that shutting the door on those claiming political asylum is a form of cruel theater meant to rile up Trump’s nativist base and distract Americans from his ruinous presidency.

Part 3

Then finally we speak with a 28-year veteran of Congress, Mike Lofgren, who was a senior analyst on the House and Senate Budget Committees and is the author of “The Deep State: The Fall of the Constitution and the Rise of a Shadow Government”. He joins us to discuss his article at The Washington Monthly “The Deep State Strikes Back – Against Torture: Why generals oppose the nomination of Gina Haspel as CIA director” and how Trump is force-feeding the “deep state” while conning his followers into believing the “deep state” is out to get him.

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April 29 - Could Trump Win the Nobel Prize and a Second Term?; Kim Jong-Un's Charm Offensive Undercuts Trump's Leverage; Is Kim Jong-Un Playing Trump?

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 We begin with President Trump’s premature boasts about a successful summit with North Korea’s Kim Jong-un which has yet to take place and his tweet “KOREAN WAR TO END” which has prompted Senator Lindsey Graham to gush on Fox News “if this happens, President Trump deserves the Nobel Peace Prize.” Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative journalist David Cay Johnston, the best-selling author of ‘The Making of Donald Trump” and his latest “It’s Even Worse Than You Think: What the Trump Administration is Doing to America”, joins us to discuss whether Trump could get a second term. We will assess the state of the Democratic opposition which in large part is depending on Trump to either melt down and be dragged out of the Oval Office in a straightjacket or be dragged out of the Oval Office in an orange jumpsuit by Robert Mueller. With the crowd shouting “Nobel, Nobel” last night at a Trump rally in Michigan, at the same time a comedian was trashing the president at the annual White House Correspondent’s Dinner which Trump boycotted for a second time, we will explore the separate universes in American politics with Trump-haters disgusted at Republicans on one side and Trump-lovers who hate Democrats on the other.

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Part 2

Then we look into the extent that Donald Trump is being played by Kim Jong-un whose charm offensive with the South Koreans appears to be undercutting the leverage Trump has in terms of pressuring North Korea with sanctions and maintaining military threats when the two Koreas are talking peace. Gilbert Rozman, a Professor of Sociology at Princeton University and author of “International Relations and Asia’s Northern Tier: Sino-Russian Relations and North Korea, and Mongolia”, joins us to discuss what kind of a deal is likely to emerge from the forthcoming Trump-Kim summit.

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Part 3

Then finally we get an assessment of what denuclearization of the Korean peninsula could mean and whether greater engagement between the two Koreas could lead to the opening of North Korea to the outside world and speak with Sung Yoon Lee, a Professor of International Affairs at the Fletcher School of Diplomacy at Tuft’s University. He joins us to discuss whether either of the summits will lead to the North demobilizing its outsized standing army and the firing of thousands of be-meddled generals and the removal of hundreds of thousands rockets and artillery tubes targeting Seoul.

 

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April 26 - What Changed Between the First and Second Trials of Bill Cosby?; A Psychiatrist Assesses Trump's Unhinged Rant on Fox and Friends; How the DCCC Does Triage Revealed in a Secret Tape

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We begin with the three guilty verdicts in the second trial of Bill Cosby who has fallen from grace as the beloved “America’s dad” to facing the rest of his life in jail for drugging and sexually assaulting women. Deborah Tuerkheimer, a professor of Law at Northwestern University’s School of Law and author of numerous articles on rape and domestic violence, joins us to discuss what has changed in the intervening time between the last trial which ended in a hung jury and this one. We will assess the extent to which the #metoo movement has influenced the broader culture and thus the jury pool out of which the jury of 7 men and 5 women who convicted the 80 year-old Cosby came. And we will also look into whether the new evidence presented was the factor in overcoming the defense who attacked Cosby’s main accuser Andrea Constand for having received $3.38 million in 2006 as part of a confidential financial settlement with Cosby.

 

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Part 2

Then with President Trump calling in to his favorite program “Fox and Friends” this morning, ostensibly to wish Melania happy birthday, we will examine the unhinged paranoid rant that ensued in which there was a fragmented and psychotic tirade against the press, James Comey and Senator Tester mixed with praise for Kanye West and the pro-Trump African-American social media “personalities”, Diamond and Silk. Dr. Bandy Lee, a forensic psychiatrist on the faculty of Yale School of Medicine and editor of the bestselling book “The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump: 27 Psychiatrist and Mental Health Experts Assess a President”, joins us. We assess the extent to which Trump is acting like a trapped animal lashing out and how as investigations close in on him and his chaotic incompetence becomes more apparent, our dangerous president is likely to become more dangerous.                                

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Part 3

Then finally we speak with Lee Fang, an investigative journalist with The Intercept where his latest article is “Secretly Taped Audio Reveals Democratic Leadership Pressuring Progressive to Leave Race”. We explore how the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee does triage in deciding which of the many Democratic hopefuls running for congress to back, and whether in trying to change red districts blue, by choosing conservative over progressive candidates, grassroots activists will be alienated and the candidates elected will end up voting with the Republicans.

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April 25 - Assessing the Revolution Underway in Armenia; HUD Punishes the Poor While Rewarding the Rich; Mulvaney's Brazen Admission Makes a Lie of Draining the Swamp

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We begin with a resumption of large-scale demonstrations in Armenia’s capitol Yerevan against Serzh Sargsyan the long-serving president who, like Putin and Turkey’s Erdogan, appointed himself prime minister but provoked so much outrage he was forced to step down because of people power.  Grigor Atanesian, a political commentator and journalist covering Armenia who has an op-ed in the Moscow Times “What Does Turmoil in Armenia Spell for Russia?”, joins us to discuss Putin’s growing alarm at the possibility of a youth-led colored revolution breaking out in Armenia.  With a new round of popular unrest erupting, sparked by the break- off of talks with the opposition by the Deputy Prime Minister Karapetyan who was appointed by the ousted leader and was is a former executive with Russia’s Gazprom, we assess the situation.

Part 2

 

Then we examine the proposal by the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Dr. Ben Carson to triple the rents that low-income families will be expected to pay for subsidized housing at the same time we are learning that the Fox News host Sean Hannity, who is so close to the president he has been described at Trump’s shadow Chief of Staff, has received sweetheart loans from HUD that have boosted Hannity’s $100 million real estate portfolio.  Robert Silverman, a Professor of Urban and Regional Planning at the University of Buffalo School of Architecture and Planning, joins us to discuss efforts underway to privatize HUD so that instead of providing housing for low-income families, the priority will be making real estate developers and speculators rich.

Robert Silverman

Part 3

Then finally we look into the most brazen example of what a cynical lie Trump’s promise to “drain the swamp” was with Mick Mulvaney, President Trump’s head of the OMB and acting head of the CFPB, speaking yesterday before the American Bankers Association who have donated $32,000 to Mulvaney’s political campaigns, making the extraordinarily honest admission of his corruption telling the bankers that, “If you are a lobbyist who never gave us money, I didn’t talk to you. If you are a lobbyist who gave us money, I might talk to you”.  Lisa Gilbert, the Vice President of Legislative Affairs at Public Citizen join us to discuss how Trump and his cabinet are filling the swamp while lining their own pockets

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April 24 - Trump Threatens Iran That They Will Have "Big Problems"; The Strange Motives Behind the Toronto Massacre; Trump Hangs Out His VA Nominee to Dry

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We begin with President Trump threatening Iran today warning they will have “big problems” if they resume their nuclear program while Trump seems determined to blow up the P5+1 deal with Iran which is preventing Iran from pursuing nuclear weapons.  A veteran CIA operative and Middle East expert Robert Baer, who is currently a national security analyst for CNN, joins us to discuss what exactly Trump may be threatening as he stood beside France’s President Macron, who incidentally is trying to persuade Trump to stick with the Iran deal which Trump characterized today as “insane”. With rumors rampant in the Middle East press about a buildup of U.S. naval and air forces in the Eastern Mediterranean and the Gulf, we will assess the extent of the belligerent influence of the new national security advisor John Bolton as well as warlike threats from Israel’s Prime Minister Netanyahu and Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince who are lobbying the White House to blunt Iran’s growing influence in the region, particularly in Syria and in Iraq where elections are about to take place with an Iranian-backed candidate the frontrunner.

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Part 2

 

Then we go to Canada and speak with Henry Giroux, the McMaster University Professor for Scholarship in the Public Interest whose most recent books are “America at War With Itself” and “The Public in Peril: Trump and the Menace of American Authoritarianism”. He joins us to discuss yesterday’s use of a van as a weapon in Toronto which resulted in 10 killed and 14  wounded, mostly women. We try to understand the motives of the driver Alek Minassian who appears to be influenced by the so-called Incel rebellion and the fact that the suspect who taunted the police to shoot him, is alive because the police in Canada are not as trigger-happy as they are here in the U.S.

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Part 3

Then finally we look into the increasingly tenuous state of Trump’s nominee to head up the Veterans Administration, Rear Admiral Ronny Jackson, who was elevated from his position as White House physician by Trump to head up the second biggest government department after the Pentagon.  Suzanne Gordon, an award-winning journalist and author of “The Battle for Veteran’s Healthcare: Dispatches from the Frontlines of Policy Making and Patient Care” whose forthcoming book is “Wounds of War: How the VA Delivers Health, Healing and Hope to the Nation’s Veterans”, joins us. We discuss Trump’s extraordinarily back-handed endorsement of his nominee today in a press conference in which Trump said he was standing by his nominee while at the same time saying he did not want his nominee to go through an ugly process and be attacked by a “vicious group of people”, meaning the press, concluding with the nail in the coffin, “If I were him, I wouldn’t do it”.

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