The Majority Report with Sam Seder

Rachel Heiman, associate professor of anthropology at The New School, joins us to discuss her book, Driving after Class: Anxious Times in an American Suburb.

On today's show: Mitt Romney heckles Russell Westbrook at NBA playoff game, isn't doing so hot in the Utah Senate primary.

Rachel Heiman joins us to discuss her ethnographic study of a suburban town in New Jersey. How Heiman wove herself into the fabric of the town for about a year, attending local meetings, interviewing kids and adults, and even working as a babysitter. The reasons Baby Boomers migrated from cities to the suburbs in the 1980s: The enduring postwar ideal of the nuclear family in a single-family home, public divestment in cities, racial anxieties. Changes in the middle class brought on by neoliberalism, growing inequality, and the myth of rugged individualism. Coded language like "security" and gated houses as a proxy for other types of barriers. The rise of hyper-scheduling, tutors, SUVs, and other expressions of parents' fears. What's driving this insecurity? "Shop local" as a way to keep tax dollars in one's own, relatively wealthy, town.

On the fun half: Fox News clowns take shots at Bernie Sanders' proposal for a federal jobs guarantee, only succeed at making it sound great. Rand Paul gives into Trump, votes for Pompeo because he "learned his lesson" on Iraq. Alek Minassian arrested for van attack in Toronto, apparently a member of "incel" community. Senate to postpone confirmation hearing for VA nominee (and doctor to Trump) Ronny Jackson over concerns about his on-the-job behavior. Tucker Carlson whines about DSA members who were mean to Milo, suddenly likes safe spaces. Why hasn't Trump mentioned the Waffle House hero? Melania, having tasted freedom, resists holding her husband's hand. Mindy backs up Rachel Heiman's findings. Vote for Genevieve Jones-Wright, a DSA candidate for DA in San Diego. Sean Hannity flabbergasted/thrilled that newscasters keep saying his name. Trump parrots talking points from Fox News.

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Direct download: 4-24-18-Rachel_Heiman-pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:14pm EDT

On today's show: Tom Perez defends the cost of the DNC's lawsuit against Russia and Wikileaks. Milo gets shouted out of a Manhattan bar by the DSA. Gina Haspel's involvement in Bush-era torture program, black site prisons, destroying evidence. Wisconsin is ramping up its punishment of food stamp recipients. The teacher strikes spread to IN, GA...will there be enough solidarity for them to win? Sean Hannity got HUD help on numerous multi-million dollar property deals.

On the fun half: What Kant can teach us about public vs. private uses of reason. Zizek says leftists should focus on mundane concerns beyond the revolutionary moment; Jamie agrees. Jordan Peterson goes on Real Time With Bill Maher, says Democrats need to have respect for Trump voters. The top three selling points of socialism. Where should we draw the line on coalition-building? A Mexican immigrant tells us about Texas' anti-immigrant bill SB4. KS Secretary of State Kris Kobach says students participating in walkouts need to stay in class and learn about the second amendment. Hero man disarms shooter in Waffle House without the use of a gun. Cops harass counter-protesters for wearing masks at GA white supremacist rally. Is contact with liberals causing Trump voters to double down?

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Direct download: 4-23-18-Sam_Seder-pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:00pm EDT

Good morning everyone, on today's show Digby and Andy Kindler join us. 

Digby joins us to talk about the Cuomo/Nixon democratic primary in NY and why Cuomo is in more trouble than he appears prepared for before discussing the legal jeopardy Michael Cohen is in. Finally, the shock doctrine is in full effect in Puerto Rico.

Andy Kindler joins us to tell us about his new movie The Fiddling Horse and helps us bully the newly resurgent Dennis Miller who's back back back baby! ba ba ba! Dennis Miller's new column in Breitbart is a doozy and his new radio spot "Miller Minute" is somehow even worse.

On the fun half: Farmer tells of the brutal tactics used by ICE, Theranos makes game about shooting journalists, plus your calls and IMs!

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Direct download: 4-20-18-Digby_Andy-Kindler-pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:31pm EDT

Professor Daniel Bessner joins Michael Brooks to discuss his new book, Democracy in Exile: Hans Speier and the Rise of the Defense Intellectual and Daniel Bessner shows how the experience of the Weimar Republic’s collapse and the rise of Nazism informed Hans Speier’s work as an American policymaker and institution builder. How intellectuals began embedding themselves in the defense establishment beginning in the 1930s. Hans Speier's origins in Weimar Germany and on the German socialist left. How intellectuals came to believe they had to save democracy "from the people, for the people."

On the fun -  Alex Jones in big legal trouble, denies calling Sandy Hook a hoax, Laura Ingraham gets trolled by a Border Angel, Dave Rubin edits Q&As and bombs at stand up, Trump remembers Barbara Bush, Nikki Haley gets misled but not confused, and your calls and IMs.

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Direct download: 4-19-18-Johann_Hari-pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:50pm EDT

Domingo Morel (@domingomorel), Assistant Professor of Political Science at Rutgers University – Newark and author of Takeover: Race, Education, and American Democracy, joins us.

On today's show: Comey has said the GOP has "lost their way."

Domingo Morel joins us to discuss his book, 'Takeover: Race, Education and American Democracy.' By the '60s and '70s, lots of funding was going to city schools in which racial minorities had a real voice. School boards as entryway into politics for marginalized communities. The state takeover of "failing" urban schools as a response to this growing base of power. The 1989 takeover of a school in Jersey City that started the trend. How state takeovers of schools allowed politicians to abolish or replace community-led school boards. How these trends shifted in the early '00s to reflect a bipartisan, neoliberal program of privatization. What teachers and students have been doing to resist.

On the fun half: John from San Antonio on trends in special elections. Meghan "glass houses" McCain accuses Comey of writing book for money, attention. Fox & Friends pal around like real, human friends in hilarious promo. Barbara Bush didn't want Jeb to run for president. Wisconsin teacher speaks in favor of new governor, funding for transportation, gets told off. Raygun says electoral politics are just as important as direct action. Jamie still disagrees. A caller on flat earth theories, youth movements and the internet. The Mooch calls in to defend his people.

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Direct download: 4-18-18-Domingo_Morel-pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:10pm EDT

David Faris (@davidmfaris), an associate professor of political science at Roosevelt University in Chicago, joins us to discuss his book, It's Time to Fight Dirty: How Democrats Can Build A Lasting Majority in American Politics.

On today's show: Sean Hannity is the third Michael Cohen client revealed by court, claims it's no big deal.

David Faris joins us to discuss what the Democrats should do to hold onto power, if and when they get it back. How Republicans consolidate power by pushing the boundaries of what's legal and acceptable. How the Democrats should follow suit: National voting rights laws, giving statehood to Puerto Rico and Washington DC. The "archduke moment" when Republicans stole a seat on the Supreme Court. How Democrats could pack the courts and what they could concede in the process. Why are the Democrats like this in the first place? Is the current leadership able to change, or do they need to be replaced? Why the filibuster is bad. The need to change how Senate seats are apportioned and an interesting idea out of California. Card check and union power. The issues with gerrymandering.

On the fun half: The relative importance of social movements and electoral politics. Trump asks "are there any Hispanics in the room?" Hannity opens show with news montage of his name, quickly moves onto Syria. Alan Dershowitz puts Hannity on the spot. Alex Jones claims hot girls tried to convert him to Satanism as a teen, is being sued by Sandy Hook parents. Senator John Larson (D-CT) rips into the balanced budget amendment proposal, defends Social Security and Medicare. Greg in Oklahoma updates us on the labor actions there. Should university endowments over a certain amount be taxed? A tip on keeping your info safe from Zuck: disconnect.me. A caller gives a detailed assessment of the conflict in Syria and why the U.S. shouldn't leave the Kurds (and others) to die.

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Direct download: 4-17-18-David_Faris-pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:24pm EDT

On today's show: Libertarian economist finds regulations have no negative impact on business dynamism. Trump addresses nation on Syria strikes. KY governor Matt Bevin claims kids will be poisoned and molested because teachers are striking. Why the Democratic Party is supporting the current wave of teacher strikes. The crew discusses Cynthia Nixon's chances of beating Andrew Cuomo to become governor of New York, what's going on with unions and the Working Families Party, and how progressive Nixon would be in office.

On the fun half: The Mooch is offended on behalf of Italian-Americans that Comey compared Trump to a mob boss. Comey says Trump is morally unfit to be president, upsetting Fox and Friends. Starbucks has two black men arrested for the crime of sitting down and waiting for their friend. The absurdly well-funded reach of the conservative Young Americans Foundation. Alex Jones "sick" over air strikes in Syria, says Trump has betrayed him. Eddie Glaude says our country is in decline because of Trump. Joseph Ballin finally quits MR. Sam's opinion on Dennis Kucinich. Conservatives aren't the only ones on campus whose free speech is being threatened. Sam defines "business dynamism." How to win over working class Trump voters. Why is Matt Bevin so sure that kids left home alone are getting molested?

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The Northwest Immigrant Rights Project continues to do amazing work, but thanks to Jeff Sessions they’re poised to lose a major source of funding. Please consider donating what you can here.

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Direct download: 4-16-18-Sam_Seder-pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:12pm EDT

Sam Live from the 2018 Mass Tort Conference in Las Vegas

On today's show: Sam speaks with radio host Thom Hartmann about the history of reform and where America is headed. The cycles of reform and backlash that characterized much of the 20th century. Paul Manafort's sociopathic career. How the Republican Party has changed. The various factors that will contribute to an economic crisis worse than 2008. Thom co-signs MMT.

Sam talks to human rights lawyer Gavi Mairone about his work suing banks on behalf of the victims of terrorism and ethnic cleansing. The lasting effects of chemical weapons Saddam Hussein used on Kurds in Iraq. How he is helping 4,000 plaintiffs  hold war profiteers semi-accountable for their suffering.

Shannon Pennock at Pennock Law Firm explains how tort lawyers are holding pharmaceutical companies responsible for over-distributing heartburn medications that have been linked to kidney disease.

James Comey hints to George Stephanopoulos that the pee tape may be real. Trump claims he's been draining the swamp, even if it "may not look like it." Elizabeth Warren tells Mick Mulvaney "you're hurting real people" by dismantling the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, which she started. Ainsley Earhardt tells Geraldo she wants war in Syria to overshadow Comey's book. Corey Booker corners secretary of state nominee Mike Pompeo on his ties to Islamophobic hate groups. CA Sheriff Donny Youngblood caught on video telling CO union it's "better financially" to kill suspects than to "cripple" them. Code Pink confronts Nikki Haley over the murder of Palestinian protesters.

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The Northwest Immigrant Rights Project continues to do amazing work, but thanks to Jeff Sessions they’re poised to lose a major source of funding. Please considering donating what you can. Donate here!

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Follow the Majority Report crew on Twitter:

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Direct download: 4-13-18-Sam_Seder-Mass_Torts-Day_2.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:25pm EDT

Sam broadcasts live from the Mass Torts conference in Las Vegas, NV!

On today's show: Jimmy Kimmel takes down Paul Ryan.

Sam speaks with Jared Johnson of SueTheCollector.com about consumers' rights when dealing with debt collectors. The many ways debt collectors can break the rules, rendering your debts null and void. How to deal with student loan collectors. How the laws are expanding to be more consumer-friendly but how the Santander ruling set it back.

Sam speaks with Mike Papantonio about his work suing opiate distributors on behalf of communities. Distributors' little known role in creating the opioid crisis and how the law can hold them accountable. How this is different from the Big Tobacco settlement of 1998. How aware were doctors in the '90s of the dangers of opiate addiction? How funds from settlements can be distributed to under-funded communities hit hard by the opioid crisis.

Judicial nominee Wendy Vitter refuses to say whether she agrees with the Brown v. Board of Education decision. Cynthia Nixon wants to legalize recreational marijuana in New York. Jeffrey Sachs says it's time to get out of Syria.

Sam speaks with Kimberley Dougherty, the torts lawyer representing the gymnasts in the Larry Nassar sexual abuse case, about how the Safe Sport Act could keep young athletes safe from abuse in the future.

Sam speaks with Cenk Uygur of The Young Turks about the latest in US electoral politics. The real reasons Paul Ryan is not running for re-election. Why he thinks Trump will be impeached sooner than later. The likelihood that the Democrats will win the Senate and the need for new, progressive faces. Why you should support Alison Hartson in her primary campaign against Dianne Feinstein. (More: justicedemocrats.com/alison) Cenk's opinion on the situation in Syria.

Sean Hannity has a meltdown over the upcoming George Stephanopoulos interview with James Comey.

The Northwest Immigrant Rights Project continues to do amazing work, but thanks to Jeff Sessions they’re poised to lose a major source of funding. Please considering donating what you can. Donate here!

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Follow the Majority Report crew on Twitter:

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Direct download: 4-12-18-Sam_Seder-Mass_Torts.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:05pm EDT

Alex Hochuli (@Alex_1789), writer and host of the Aufhebungabunga podcast, joins us to discuss the slow motion coup against former Brazilian president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva.

On today's show: Paul Ryan will not seek re-election, is a grotesque person.

Alex Hochuli joins us to discuss the slow motion coup against Brazilian president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva. Lula's background as a labor leader. The deals Lula struck during his time as president (2003-2011) that left him vulnerable to corruption charges. Lula's limited social reforms that reduced hunger and poverty. How the right turned spontaneous protests to their advantage and redirected them against Lula's Workers' Party. The three factors that led to Lula successor Dilma Rousseff's impeachment and Lula's criminal charges. The substance of the charge against Lula (or lack thereof) and quirks of the Brazilian legal system. The rise of right-wing militias and the assassination of human rights activist and Rio councilwoman Marielle Franco. The dangers Lula faces in prison. What it means that even a center-left politician like Lula can face a right-wing coup at any time. Where does the Brazilian left go from here?

On the fun half: Senators give Mark Zuckerberg a metaphorical swirlie in Congressional hearing. Trump has a normal time with kids at the White House. Melania scores minor points for humanity. Tammy in Texas discusses her viral confrontation with Ted Cruz. Sean Hannity's halfhearted list of people waiting to be raided by the FBI. How much of the military's de facto economic draft is the result of a conscious conspiracy? Actor Jeffrey Wright doesn't pay the workers in his gold mine. A caller discusses how many of his Bible belt classmates grew up to be liberals.

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Direct download: 4-11-18-Alex_Hochuli-pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:13pm EDT

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