September 19 - A Possible Thaw in U.S.-Iranian Relations; The Paymasters of the Radicals About to Shutdown the Government; The Pope Offers Hope

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Full Program



Part 1

We begin with hopeful signs of a thaw in the intractable relationship between the U.S. and Iran following encouraging words from Iran’s new President Hassan Rouhani who said his exchange of letters with President Obama has been “positive and constructive”. Middle East expert Rasool Nafisi joins us to discuss Iran’s behind-the-scene brokering of the Russian/American deal on Syria and to analyze the new tone ahead of Rouhani’s visit to New York next week.


rasool nafisi


Part 2

Then we examine the bankrolling of the radicals in the House of Representatives who have steamrolled their leadership into agreeing to shutdown the government unless Obama’s signature achievement that was voted into law and upheld by the Supreme Court is defunded. Zephyr Teachout, a professor of law at Fordham University and the former National Director of the Sunlight Foundation joins us to discuss the role of the Koch Brothers in turning the Tea Party from a populist movement into a Congressional caucus of strident shills for right-wing plutocrats.


Part 3

Then finally we assess the impact of the Pope’s remarks that the Catholic Church is obsessed with abortion, gay marriage and contraception and should not interfere spiritually in the lives of gays and lesbians. Marianne Duddy-Burke, the executive director of Dignity USA, the leading organization of LGBT Catholics and Frances Kissling, the former president of Catholics for Choice, join us to discuss how Pope Francis’s words might translate into action.


frances kissling