March 15 -The Dangerous Symmetry of Sycophants, Hardliners and Hawks in Both the Kremlin and the White House; Has Mueller Crossed Trump's Red Line?; A Trump Cheerleader as the New Economic Adviser

Full Program

LISTEN TO FULL PROGRAM -

Part 1

We begin with sanctions against Russia announced today by the Secretary of the Treasury in response to their meddling in the U.S. election which do not target oligarchs and government officials close to Putin or in any way effect Russia’s intelligence services or impact its economy. Dr. Michael Carpenter, a former deputy assistant secretary of defense with responsibility for Russia, Ukraine and Eurasia who was Director for Russia on the National Security Council, joins us to discuss Trump’s peculiar reluctance to criticize Putin even in the face of the apparent attack on a NATO member’s soil using a WMD, Novichok, a Soviet-era military nerve agent. We assess the dangerous symmetry of Putin surrounding himself with sycophants, hardliners and hawks in the Kremlin, while Trump does the same in the White House as he fires those that try to restrain his reckless impulses while bringing aboard sycophants and hardliners like his new Secretary of State and hawks like John Bolton who is apparently poised to replace General McMaster.

 

carpenter michael

Part 2

Then we examine the speculation in the press that Trump is about to fire his Attorney General Sessions and replace him with the EPA head Scott Pruitt using the Vacancies Reform Act of 1998 to limit special council Mueller’s probe. Jack Blum, an expert on white-collar financial crime and international tax evasion who was a staff attorney with the Senate Antitrust Subcommittee and the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and a consultant to the United Nations Center of Transnational Corporations, joins us to discuss if such a move is possible and whether in subpoenaing the Trump Organization, Mueller has crossed a red line laid down by Trump.

Jack Blum

Part 3

 
Then finally we speak with economist Dean Baker, the co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research, about Trump’s choice of a TV pitchman Lawrence Kudlow as his new head of the National Economic Council, a supply-side cheerleader who advised the governor of Kansas to implement a sweeping tax cut plan to produce bountiful growth that instead has crippled the state to the point of bankruptcy. We also discuss Dean Baker’s article in the Los Angeles Times “If Trump wants to get reelected, he should rethink his Federal Reserve picks”.
 
Image result for Dean Baker

 

mp3audio: 

March 14 - Trump Purges the White House of Top Advisers Who Offer Criticism or Caution; Is the Trump Organization a Racketeering Enterprise?; The Students Who Walked Out Today to Protest Gun Violence

Full Program

LISTEN TO FULL PROGRAM  

Part 1

We begin with an assessment of where U.S. foreign policy is heading as Trump purges his White House of any critical or cautionary voices while he installs his new more agreeable Secretary of State proclaiming Mike Pompeo has “a very similar though process” to his. Michael Fuchs, a Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress who served as a deputy assistant secretary of state, a special advisor to the secretary of state for strategic dialogue and a member of the policy planning staff, joins us to discuss his article at The Guardian “Rex Tillerson was disastrous for the U.S., Mike Pompeo may be worse”. We look into what letting Trump be Trump will look like as the last remaining adults in the room are shown the door and General McMaster is replaced by John Bolton who is rumored to be the next National Security Advisor. He, along with Pompeo, will be enabling an insecure narcissist and weak strongman with an infantile fascination with bigness, toughness and power along with contempt for diplomacy.

Michael Fuchs

Part 2

Then we speak with Tom Adams, a retired attorney who co-authored an article in the San Francisco Chronicle with a former U.S. Attorney Dennis Aftergut, “Russian criminals’ links to Trump could compromise him” and have written an extensive investigative report which is at the website of Congresswoman Jackie Speier, “The Trump Organization – A Racketeering Enterprise?” We discuss how Trump has laid down a red line with the Mueller investigation not to look into the family business but whatever crimes Mueller might uncover, Trump’s pardon power does not extend to state crimes and that both RICO, the Racketeering and Corrupt Organizations Act, and New York law, could be used against him.

 

Part 3

Then finally we speak with two young students who walked out of class today joining a nationwide demonstration of tens of thousands of high school students demanding action to stop gun violence one month after the mass shooting of high school students in Florida. 16 year-old Mackenzie Mattone who organized a student walkout at Benjamin Cardoza High School in New York City joins us first then we will hear from 17 year-old Jatziri Campos at Muchin College Prep, a Charter School in gun-plagued downtown Chicago.

DSC_0228

 

mp3audio: 

March 13 - Trump Unceremoniously Dumps Tillerson; A Double Agent on Russia's Escalation of the Spy-Versus-Spy Wars; An Update on the Closely-Watched Race for Congress in Pennsylvania

Full Program

LISTEN TO FULL PROGRAM  

Part 1

We begin with Trump’s crude and deliberately humiliating firing of Secretary State Tillerson today and speak with Dr. Rachel Kleinfeld a senior associate in the Democracy and Rule of Law Program at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace who was appointed to the Foreign Affairs Policy Board, the advisory body to the U.S. Department of State. She joins us to discuss Tillerson’s appalling record at the State Department which has been eviscerated during his tenure as the Trump Administration invests heavily in hard power throwing money at the Pentagon while cutting the State Department’s budget by 32%, purging seasoned diplomats and crippling America’s soft power. We discuss the many humiliations Trump has inflicted on Tillerson who once referred to the President as a “f***ing moron” and whether Tillerson’s condemnation of Russia for the nerve gas attack in the U.K. while Trump’s spokesperson Sara Sanders was avoiding blaming Russia, was the trigger to the firing of Tillerson in what appears to be yet another example of Trump’s fealty to Putin.

Part 2

Then, with another Russian dissident showing up dead in London today on top of the list by BuzzFeedNews of 14 suspicious deaths in the U.K. linked to Russian spy agencies, we speak with an American double agent who was recruited by Russia’s Military Intelligence the GRU but was all the while working with the FBI. Naveed Jamali, a Senior Fellow in the Program on National Security at the Foreign Policy Research Institute, who spent three years as a civilian double agent working with the FBI, joins us to discuss Putin’s escalation in the previously bloodless spy-versus-spy wars and his book “How to Catch a Russian Spy: The True Story of an American Civilian Turned Double Agent”.

Image result for Naveed Jamali

Part 3

Then finally we get an update on today’s closely-watched congressional election in Pennsylvania between a moderate Democratic challenger and Republican closely identified with Trump which many see as a harbinger of a possible Democratic takeover of the House in November. Terry Madonna, the Director of the Center for Politics and Public Affairs at Franklin and Marshall College who founded the Keystone Poll and is a pollster for the Philadelphia Daily News and other newspapers and television stations in Pennsylvania, joins us.

Image result for Terry Madonna,

 

mp3audio: 

March 12 - Putin Blames Election Meddling on Jews; The Multi-Billion Dollar Saudi Royal Shakedown; The Amazingly Ignorant Secretary of Education

Full Program

LISTEN TO FULL PROGRAM  

Part 1

We begin with the backlash from Israeli officials, Jewish groups and prominent Senators and House members to remarks that Russia’s president Putin made in an interview with NBC’s Megyn Kelly in which he blamed meddling in our 2016 election on Jews and other minorities. With Britain’s Prime Minister May today telling parliament that it is “highly likely” Russia was behind the attack in the U.K. on an exiled Russian spy and his daughter, who were poisoned by a type of military-grade nerve agent developed by Russia, we will look into how the Russian media is dealing with both the pushback from Russian election meddling and yet another assassination on British soil of former spies Putin has labelled as traitors who “will kick the bucket, trust me”. Julia Davisthe founder and editor of Russian Media Monitor, which analyzes Russian media and the relationship between news and propaganda, joins us to discuss how, ahead of Russia’s March 18 election, Putin is becoming more brazen in signaling to the Russia people via state-controlled TV that he is their strong leader at war with the West, claiming in a two-hour documentary titled “Putin”, that he had ordered the downing of a Turkish passenger plane that was reported to be hijacked and heading for the Sochi Olympics.  

Image result for Julia Davis russia

Part 2

Then, with the announcement today by the White House that Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman, MBS, who is soon to be crowned king, will meet with Trump on March 20, we speak with Ali Al-Ahmed, the founder and director of the Institute for Gulf Affairs who is an expert on Saudi Arabian political affairs and Saudi-American relations. He joins us to discuss the extraordinary confiscation of wealth underway as MBS shakes down the fortunes and holdings of prominent Saudi princes including the multi-billionaire Prince Alaweed Bin Talal, as well as the war MBS is bogged down in Yemen in which thousands of innocent women and children are being bombed and starved to death.

ali-al-ahmed-150-220

Part 3

Then finally we review the Education Secretary Betsy DeVos’s interview on “60 Minutes” which the Christian fundamentalist billionaire stumbled her way through, struggling to answer basic questions in a performance that even alarmed the White House. Mitchell Robinson, Chair of Music Education at Michigan State University’s College of Music and author of “Privatize, Monetize, Weaponize: How the DeVos family devoured Michigan’s schools”, joins us to discuss the damage done so far to American education by this dim-witted dilettante.


 

 

mp3audio: 
Tags:

March 11 - Trump Covers His Bets Ahead of the Summit With Kim Jong-Un; Our Reality TV President to Sit Down With the World's Most Ruthless Dictator; Trump and the Republicans Are Running Out the Clock on Robert Mueller

Full Program

LISTEN TO FULL PROGRAM  

Part 1

We begin with the sudden summit with North Korea’s Kim Jong-un announced by Donald Trump that is to take place in May at a place yet to be determined. Already Trump has covered his bets by saying “I may leave fast or we may sit down and make the greatest deal in the world”. Sung Yoon Lee, a Professor of International Affairs at the Fletcher School of Diplomacy at Tufts University, joins us to discuss Trump’s claim about the North Korean’s that “I think they want to make peace, I think it’s time” and how much that seems to miss the point that Kim’s primary goal is the perpetuation of his family’s cruel and criminal regime. We will also speculate about the see-sawing diplomacy underway with an about-face from having Vice President Pence getting stiffed by the North Korean delegation at the Winter Olympics, to Kim Jong-un’s invitation for a summit with Trump delivered to the White House by South Korea’s National Security Advisor and the head of South Korea’s intelligence service after their recent meeting with Kim which followed the thawing of relations between the North and South on display at the Winter Olympics.   

Part 2

Then we examine further the fast-track war-to-peace change from Trump threatening “little rocket man” with “fire and fury” to quickly deciding to be the only prominent American, apart from Dennis Rodman, to meet with Kim Jong-un, an American who also happens to be the President of the United States. Kent Harrington, a former senior CIA analyst who served as the National Intelligence Officer for East Asia, joins us to discuss the unusual approach to international diplomacy underway with a former builder of sky-scrapers starting construction on the penthouse before he has laid the foundations.

Image result for Kent Harrington,

Part 3

Then finally we look into the growing legal jeopardy Trump has from his pre-election cover-up of an affair with Stormy Daniels and the $130,000 payoff his lawyer made to the porn star along with an NDA which could soon be broken. Nina Burleigh, the National Politics Correspondent at Newsweek joins us to discuss her article “Stormy Breaks Trump’s Favorite Legal Tactic: The NDA” and her cover article at Newsweek “”The Star-Mangled Banner: Can the American Legal System Survive Donald Trump?”

Image result for Nina Burleigh,

 

mp3audio: