The Majority Report with Sam Seder (general)

It's Casual Friday! Sam and Emma host Alex Pareene, contributing editor at The New Republic and author of the AP newsletter on Substack to wrap up the week in news. Alex, Emma, and Sam immediately dive into the state of the Democratic Party now that leadership and media have now fully committed to both dismantling the infrastructure package, the central part of Biden’s agenda, and blaming the progressives for tanking Biden’s agenda. They begin by reflecting on the Dems’ ability to find $1 Billion for Israel’s Iron Dome, exploring the leverage behind AOC’s disheartening vote and why they seem completely unable to level anything against Joe Manchin, no matter the familial controversies or previous statements that are readily available to be cited whenever by whoever. They also discuss the Biden Administration’s devastating immigration policy, particularly with his election as a repudiation of Trump’s xenophobic policy, and how the response to the “images” of abuse of Haitian refugees alongside the gutting of the infrastructure package has simply further emphasized Biden’s staunch commitment to making everyone unhappy with his presidency. After wrapping up the infrastructure talk and covering the incredible levels of incompetence and disappointment at hand, they touch on Alex’s recent piece on the lyme disease vaccine. Emma and Sam wrap up the free half with former Haiti Special Envoy Daniel Foote’s resignation over the Biden Admin’s treatment of Haitian refugees, and Jen Psaki’s just insane response.

In the second half, Sam and Emma are joined by comedian Andy Kindler as they cover his favorite topics, from the nuances of InfoWars production to a valid reason to break out the Italiphobic impressions. In the Fun Half the MR crew also dive into Biden’s pivot to the Pacific as a continuation of a neocon project started decades ago and the first real threat we’ve had for a new cold war, before covering Michael Tracey’s response to everything but Matt Lech’s single question, plus, your IMs!

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sunsetlakecbd is a majority employee owned farm in Vermont, producing 100% pesticide free CBD products. Great company, great product and fans of the show! Use code Leftisbest and get 20% off at http://www.sunsetlakecbd.com. And now Sunset Lake CBD has donated $2500 to the Nurses strike fund, and we encourage MR listeners to help if they can. Here’s a link to where folks can donate: https://forms.massnurses.org/we-stand-with-st-vincents-nurses/

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Listen to Alex's podcast "The Politics of Everything" here.

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Direct download: 9_24_Casual_Friday_w__Alex_Pareene__Andy_Kindler_-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:19pm EDT

Emma hosts Alexandra Brodsky, civil rights attorney at Public Justice, to discuss her recent book Sexual Justice: Supporting Victims, Ensuring Due Process, and Resisting the Conservative Backlash, and how the culture around sexual assault and harassment has shifted drastically over the last decade and a half. They jump back to Alexandra’s awakening to the ability of activism in supporting survivors during her years at college, garnering notoriety for filing a complaint with 15 others against her university for failing to enforce Title IX properly. She then touches on how this inspired her path into law and emphasized the importance of promoting general knowledge around the rights survivors have, before they jump into the conflict of finding justice for survivors while also treating any accused fairly and with due process, AND acknowledging that the due process argument is being weaponized against survivors. After reflecting on how the idea of “process” is used to uphold the status quo throughout politics, they dive into how the role of famous cases bolstered the #MeToo movement, why Brodsky wanted to take on how sexual harassment affects everyday people, and briefly touch on how #MeToo’s connection to labor rights is often overlooked, with many occupations, from domestic workers to gig workers, having no protections. They discuss the role of media and its racial biases, particularly in how cases of sexual assault and harassment are handled, drawing contrasts between a variety of cases, from Anita Hill’s testimony to a High School boys locker room, before wrapping up the interview with a discussion on the importance of lifting up voices outside of the power structures that be and what Alexandra’s hopes are moving forward. Emma also touches on the continued insistence by mainstream media that the progressives have to sign on to cuts to the reconciliation bill, despite having no idea of what to cut.

And in the Fun Half: Tucker Carlson gets out his calipers as he talks great replacement theory and can’t help but interject his own worldview into Biden’s mouth, Emma, Brandon, Matt, and Matt talk certain journalists’ obsession with college kids, and Stephen Crowder continues to invite guests on that best highlight his bigotry and trauma. Mike from Rochester gives his own updates on labor organizing, Dave from Jamaica talks culture war, reactionaries, and Black James Bond, and the MR crew discusses Evo Morales’ speech on not compromising with racists and fascists, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Sam and Emma host public sector immigration lawyer Daniel Melo to discuss his recent book Borderlines: The Edges of U.S. Capitalism, Immigration, and Democracy, which contextualizes immigration policy within the history of the US, and exploring what we can do to push back against the unfair designation of the migrant position. Melo begins by stepping back to the early battles between colonies, then states and the federal government on who has say regarding who can come into the country, looking particularly at the fears of negative influences on the early capitalist economy, whether that be anarchists, poor Irish folks, or the spirit of the Haitian revolution. Next, he dives into the first laws in the early 1920s that worked to criminalize immigrants, and how the developing Great Depression and reassertion of white supremacy worked to bolster this rhetoric of scapegoating migrants. Emma, Sam, and Daniel then cover a little theory, addressing the role migrants play within a Marxist view of our economy, providing capitalists with a cheap labor sector to aid the exploitation of the working class, before moving on to the false narrative constructed around immigration, from the ability to simply “get in line” for acceptance into the country to the idea that migrants drive down wages for US citizens, and how the law gets used to reinforce this status quo. They wrap up the interview by discussing the current state of the US immigration system, the importance of unpacking the undemocratic nature of the citizen-migrant dichotomy, and what the role of labor organizing can play in bolstering a progressive immigration agenda. Sam and Emma conclude the free half by touching on the state of the infrastructure and reconciliation package, and CNN’s apparent lack of awareness about what the Democratic platform has been in the fight for this over the last few months.

And in the Fun Half: Emma and Sam dive back into CNN’s miscalculations of the infrastructure package, not quite realizing that $6 trillion is indeed not $3.5 trillion, and its inability not to finger point at progressives who’ve made their stance clear for months. Rudy from Orlando calls in to chat about the importance of taking away the exclusionary regulations around the medical industry that attempt to ensure patient survival, and Stephen Crowder finally gets back into his groove after hospitalization, fully diving back into middle school racism. Lastly, the MR crew basks in the schadenfreude of Bill Gates finally being questioned about his relationship with Jeffrey Epstein, and Kowalski from Nebraska calls in with his farm report, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Sam and Emma tackle a huge last week in news, as well as what's coming down the pike in Congress, the courts, and more. They also speak with Bhairavi Desai, Executive Director of the New York Taxi Workers Alliance (NYTWA), to discuss NYTWA's new debt forgiveness campaign for Medallion cab drivers. Bhairavi, Sam, and Emma dive into the recent conflict around the NYC taxi company Medallion, and how after decades of the city inflating the price, making hundreds of millions, while capitalizing particularly on immigrants taking out loans, the city helped bolster Uber and Lyft’s unregulated takeover of the market, with some officials even going to work for them following their job in government. Next, they take on how COVID, in particular, created a massive impending problem for Medallion taxi cab drivers, who average $550,000 in debt, which is compounded by the floundering of city policy in effectively handling this, and what the NYTWA’s recent protests have entailed, as well as what they’re fighting for. Emma and Sam also cover developments in a few longstanding strikes, including the St. Vincent nurses, the United Mine Workers of America strike in Alabama, and the IATSE strike among some production unions, before touching on how Biden’s administration has capitalized on pre-existing Trump immigration policy with the use of Title 42. They also look forward to what progression we can see over the next couple of weeks when it comes to the bipartisan infrastructure bill and reconciliation, touching on how Democrats could ensure the raising of the debt ceiling, what Pelosi’s September 27th commitment means for reconciliation, and how the recent double backing by corporate Dems could affect what policy survives the next six days. Lastly, they touch on another democratic cop-out as Chuck Schumer hides behind the parliamentarian and the Democrats’ relationship to immigration policy.

And in the Fun Half: Jacob from Alabama talks unions and Hurricane Ida recovery, Gregory from Oklahoma gives some updates on both his candidacy and his main opponent in his upcoming election, and the MR crew walks through the step by step one-man show that was the blueprint for Pence’s election overturn attempt. They also talk COVID updates, dive into the absurdities of Sam Harris, Joseph from Massachusetts grants Sam the unfortunate knowledge of who Logan Paul is, and Tulsi Gabbard joins Tucker to potentially nobody’s pleasure, plus, your calls and IMs!

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possible thanks to the Solar Investor Tax Credit (going away soon). My Solar Nerd’s mission is SIMPLE: Help you find the best solar program for your home and make the transition as EASY and SMOOTH as possible. Go to mysolarnerd.com and fill out the inquiry form now. Make sure you select Majority Report Listener for how you heard about My Solar Nerd to receive a $200 gift card upon installation!

Support the St. Vincent Nurses today as they continue to strike for a fair contract! https://action.massnurses.org/we-stand-with-st-vincents-nurses/

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Listen to the episode of Maximilian Alvarez's "Working People" podcast regarding the late Kroger grocery worker Evan Seyfried here.

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Sam and Emma host Amanda Montell, linguist and host of the Sounds Like A Cult podcast, to discuss her recent book Cultish: The Language of Fanaticism, on the social role of cults, how it has changed, and the influence it has on our language today. They start off by looking at the discourse around cults, the vague label it takes in the media, and how that flimsy definition helped push Amanda towards exploring the cult-like elements of all types of social relationships. Montell dives into the problems in the typical view of cults and their members, exploring the relationship between cultural turbulence, faith, and the desire for easy solution through community that birthed both the ages of cults in the 20th century, and the more recent renaissance of cultish languages. Next, they cover the overlap between the protestant capitalist ethic and the spirit of cultish organizations, pushing individualism, ambition, self-improvement, and entrepreneurship, touching on the specific capitalization on the language of female independence, from the use of Tupperware in the 50s to today’s multi-level-marketing and holistic health schemes. Diving into the importance of language, Amanda, Sam, and Emma look at the influence it can have on how we think and how cultish language capitalizes on this, working to psychologically separate, gaslight, and discipline those involved, before they wrap up the interview looking at what this can teach us about our current political moment, with cult-like behavior coming to define elements of our discourse and the para-social relationships that are central to social media. Sam and Emma conclude the free half by discussing the US Military’s lackluster apology for one of countless civilian slaughters by the US drone program, and watch an Iraq Veteran attempt to hold GWB somewhat accountable for his wars.

And in the Fun Half: Sam and Emma chat with Mindy from Ohio about her personal experiences with cult-like coercion, Ronald Raygun discusses the relationships between religion, juice, and cults, and the crew talks about the continued failures with handling COVID, particularly when it comes to GA and Mississippi, as well as the governments’ responses. They also look at the recent abuses at the border with the influx of Haitian refugees, before talking reconciliation and the bipartisan bill, and Josh and the Psychedelic Quaker call in to chat vaccines, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Check out Matt’s show, Left Reckoning, on Youtube, and subscribe on Patreon!

Subscribe to Matt's other show Literary Hangover on Patreon!

Check out The Letterhack’s upcoming Kickstarter project for his new graphic novel! https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/milagrocomic/milagro-heroe-de-las-calles

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Subscribe to Brandon's show The Discourse on Patreon!

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Follow the Majority Report crew on Twitter:

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Direct download: 9_20_The_Fanatic_Language_Of_Cults_W__Amanda_Montell-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:16pm EDT

It's Casual Friday! Sam and Emma host Astra Taylor, co-founder of the Debt Collective and author of the recent book Remake the World: Essays, Reflections, Rebellions, to discuss the 10-year anniversary of Occupy Wall Street. Then Sam and Emma are joined by Heather Digby Parton, proprietor of Hullabaloo and contributing writer at Salon.com, to wrap up the week in news. Astra, Sam, and Emma dive into the start of the Occupy movement, ten years ago today, as a response to the call issued by Adbusters and the failure of the US Government to provide any reciprocity or repercussions for the 2008 financial crisis. Astra reflects on the initial general assemblies and working groups that worked to determine why they were there and what their demands should be, as well as the skepticism that they’d last beyond the first night with the mass police presence in NYC. They expand on this discussion, exploring how the role of police brutality served to somewhat bolster the public view around the movement and helped jumpstart the spread of the movement well beyond just NYC or even the US, even serving to turn the political tide against the Clinton neoliberalism. They discuss the diversity of ideology in the movement, even if it was driven by an anti-establishment ethos, and how that served to help create this open and strong picture of the 99%, before wrapping up with how the movement was eventually forced out of Zuccotti Park and looking at the lasting impact on the progressive left Occupy ultimately had.

Then Digby comes on to chat about what we have learned from the CA Recall, particularly in terms of boosting turnout by running against Trump no matter the election, and she, Sam, and Emma also cover the role of the centrist Dems within he general infrastructure shenanigans going on in Congress. Then in the Fun Half, Ronald Raygun calls in to chat about pegging tactics and Sam’s wood, Jake from the Bay Area talks appealing to liberals, Ben Shapiro struggles with California not being Texas, and Clarence Thomas offers some incredibly weird words on the new role of the SCOTUS, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Support the St. Vincent Nurses today as they continue to strike for a fair contract! https://action.massnurses.org/we-stand-with-st-vincents-nurses/

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Check out Matt’s show, Left Reckoning, on Youtube, and subscribe on Patreon!

Subscribe to Matt's other show Literary Hangover on Patreon!

Check out The Letterhack’s upcoming Kickstarter project for his new graphic novel! https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/milagrocomic/milagro-heroe-de-las-calles

Check out Matt Binder’s YouTube channel!

Subscribe to Brandon's show The Discourse on Patreon!

Check out The Nomiki Show live at 3 pm ET on YouTube at patreon.com/thenomikishow

Check out Jamie’s podcast, The Antifada, at patreon.com/theantifada, on iTunes, or at twitch.tv/theantifada (streaming every Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday at 7pm ET!)

Follow the Majority Report crew on Twitter:

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@EmmaVigeland

@MattBinder

@MattLech

@BF1nn

@BradKAlsop

Read Astra and Jonathan Smucker's piece in New York Magazine "Occupy Wall Street Changed Everything" here.

Members can watch here.

Direct download: 9_17_Casual_Friday_w__Astra_Taylor__Heather_Digby_Parton-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:56pm EDT

Emma hosts Dave Zirin, sports editor at The Nation, to discuss his recent book The Kaepernick Effect: Taking A Knee, Changing the World. Emma starts off by weighing in on former Olympic gymnast McKayla Maroney's excoriating testimony in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee yesterday, where she specifically implicated the FBI and Congressionally established committees in enabling Larry Nassar's vicious abuse of young women and girls on the Olympic team and at Michigan State University.

Then Emma and Dave dive into discussing Colin Kaepernick's seismic effect on social justice demonstrations, a ripple effect from kneeling on the sideline during the national anthem at NFL games all the way to the massive protest movements last summer in the wake of George Floyd's death at the hands of Derek Chauvin. Dave sets the scene by prefacing how Kaepernick came about the act of kneeling, by interfacing with NFL player and veteran Nate Boyer on how to convey the solemnity of the occasion while respectfully dissenting, and how that didn't matter to the people hell bent on vilifying him no matter the context. They then dive into the real juxtaposition of Kaepernick's taking a knee in the name of racial justice in America, contrasted with Officer Derek Chauvin's knee on the neck of George Floyd, and how that symbolism really animated the demonstrations of last summer in Dave's experience. Dave then tackles the civic religion of football and team sports, and how those connections, in the place of other public squares and communal connections, partially due to the atomization of labor, leave sports teams and stadiums as some of the last vestiges of the public square for many communities. Dave specifically notes this in the context of the NFL, especially in terms of the Super Bowl, one of the last events, he believes, that represents any sort of monoculture in the United States in the present day, despite maybe presidential elections. Emma and Dave then unpack some of the demonstrations, from the professional, college, and high school level, that emerged from Kaepernick kneeling, the repercussions it had for the demonstrators, the coaches, and the schools, and what impact he believed that extension of the protests had, both positive and negative. They close out the conversation by discussing some of the watered down efforts the NFL and other leagues have taken to address "inequality" and how those have essentially supplanted supporting legitimate forms of protest, all at the expense of front-liners like Kaepernick, safety Eric Reid, and wide receiver Kenny Stills, who to this day are still unemployed by an NFL team as a result of their sacrifice to the cause, while also outlining the progress that players have made by speaking the only language owners understand: that the NFL is a labor force they need to pacify to some extent, because if they don't the money can run out. This, as Dave ends on, really only lays bare the fallacy of attempting to divorce politics from sports: with these types of labor and social dynamics at play, it simply isn't possible.

In the second half, Emma is joined by Matt and Brandon, and they dive into Joe Biden completely forgetting the Australian Prime Minister's name (it's Scott Morrison, not the "fella from down under") Grant Stinchfield losing his shit on NewsMax when a veteran guest dares to critique Trump, the Daily Wire bros dishing their takes on how Barack Obama ruined rock n' roll music (???), a blast from the past news report the Daily Show dug up about some Michiganders' opposition to a seatbelt ordinance in 1984, and Dave Rubin trying his best to flaunt his comedic chops by pretending to be downing shots of tequila "off-air" to assuage his misery that Larry Elder lost the recall. Plus, your calls and IM's!

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Direct download: 9_16_The_Kaepernick_Effect_W__Dave_Zirin-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:13pm EDT

Sam and Emma host Craig Whitlock, investigative reporter at the Washington Post, to discuss his recent book The Afghanistan Papers: A Secret History of the War. Sam and Emma first touch upon the resounding victory for Gavin Newsom in the California recall election from last night, and discuss Newsom's nationalizing of the recall/pinning the results to the "shadow president" for the Republicans (Trump) as a telegraph of the political strategy going forward into 2022.

Then Emma and Sam are joined by Craig, who starts out by discussing how him and the Washington Post obtained the Afghanistan Papers, the trove of documents the Post obtained via the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) that serve as the basis for the book, and how the book timed up perfectly with Biden's announcement of the withdrawal of troops in August, as well as the context behind the "Lessons Learned" project run through a little known federal agency called the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) that was the source of the lion's share of the notes and transcripts that comprised the papers. Craig goes deeper into describing the testimony from the interview transcripts of "Lessons Learned", citing how many past, present, and current military officials considered the war in Afghanistan "much worse than you think", and that "we didn't know what we were doing" in terms of strategic goals in Afghanistan. Craig goes so far as to report that former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld had no appreciable strategy for the war in Afghanistan beyond "chasing terrorists". Sam and Emma dive deeper into the idea that these transcripts and notes were intentionally hidden by the Bush, Obama, and Trump administrations, noting that the SIGAR reports that were publicly disclosed were significantly edited and sanitized. Craig then goes back to the early 2000's, stating that there was a pretty clear game plan for the first 60 days of the war, but that there was no recognizable strategy or timetable for what the United States was doing occupying Afghanistan, especially when George W. Bush made it clear that this was not a "nation-building" project to begin with. The emphasis was also very clearly on Iraq over Afghanistan, to the point where Rumsfeld asked Bush to meet with the commander of U.S. forces in Afghanistan as well as the commander in Iraq. Bush only wanted to meet with the Iraq commander, and didn't even know who the Afghanistan commander was, and didn't want to meet with him anyways. Craig then pivots to the Obama years, where the Administration very clearly wanted to continue the war without calling it a war, so as to not step on the toes of their allies whose presence in Afghanistan would violate some of their own war-making laws and practices if it was called a war by their allies. Not wanting to call it a war, but not being accurate enough to call it a "peacekeeping mission", the Obama administration landed on the clunky "non-conventional war effort" to split the difference. Afterwards, Craig discloses the combustible report that the Bush Administration furiously attempted to cover up, that former Vice President Dick Cheney was almost killed in a suicide bombing at Bagram Air Base in Afghanistan, and how this pattern of attempting to spin every negative outcome into a positive one throughout the war persisted across every presidential administration in the 21st century. They end on the warped and strange arc of former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn's career, how he was a widely respected military official until his full throated embrace of Trump and QAnon stifled that perception, as well as Craig hoping that previous, current, and future administrations will learn from the mistakes of the past 20 years, but doesn't have too much hope because, well, Bush and Rumsfeld didn't learn from the mistakes of Vietnam outlined in, you guessed it, another trove of documents that made clear how badly we were losing a protracted war: The Pentagon Papers.

In the Fun Half, Sam gives a brief primer on the fight over taxation between the House and the Senate Dems in the reconciliation mockups going around the Hill, the crew checks in on the House and Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearings where in the House Ilhan Omar grills Secretary of State Blinken over the drone strike that may have killed a foreign aid worker instead of an ISIS-K operative, and in the Senate Idaho Senator Jim Risch gets to more pressing matters, namely: who the heck is pressing the button that controls when Biden talks? Then the crew check in on Ben Shapiro melting down over Cara Delevingne's "Peg the Patriarchy" look at the Met Gala, to which Ben feels the great need to describe what pegging means to him. And FINALLY the crew has the honor of dissecting Tucker Carlson's fascination with Nicki Minaj's cousin's friend's balls after his COVID vaccination (Tucker corrected the record to reflect it was Nicki's cousin's friend, not cousin), Tucker's quest to get him on the show, and we get a real time dispatch from the Trinidad and Tobago Health Minister over whether this dude's balls actually swelled post-vax. Plus, your calls and IM's!

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Direct download: 9_15_The_Secret_History_Of_The_War_On_Terror_W__Craig_Whitlock-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:54pm EDT

Sam and Emma host Adam Tooze, Professor of History at Columbia University and author of the Chartbook newsletter on Substack, to discuss his recent book Shutdown: How Covid Shook the World's Economy, tracing the development of the pandemic and its shockwaves from January 2020 to January 2021. Professor Tooze first reflects on the collective difficulty in processing those twelve months, and how he came to write this book, before he, Emma, and Sam jump all the way back to the start of last year and dive into the mistakes in the original response from the Chinese government, and the massive impact their eventual tactics had on their economy. Next, they reflect on the US’s and much of Europe’s near-immediate botching of their response, completely overshadowing any initial failures of Xi Jinping’s regime and clearly expressing lacking elements of cultural consciousness in the US when it came to masks and social responsibility. Sam jumps on this element, exploring the relationship between cultural consciousness and experience when it comes to responding to pandemics, before they move on to discuss the role of minority media circles, driven by conspiracy, and Emma dives into the role of individualism and atomization in driving the individual skepticism that helps this catch fire. They wrap up the interview by looking back to parallels with the recovery from the 2008 financial crisis, looking at how the 2010 election saw an attempt to push the US back to normalcy and away from the redistribution and social welfare they had set up over the crisis, as well as the important reminder that aid to big businesses had not and would not stop over that time. Prof. Tooze uses this to emphasize the importance of investment in technology as a key was to move US culture forwards, looping in both climate and pandemic policy, before Sam and Emma conclude the free half with a CA recall discussion.

And in the Fun Half: Nomiki joins Sam and Emma as they dive into the discourse on AOC’s Met Gala appearance, following a brief but very necessary explanation of what it even is for Sam, taking on the elements of performativity, and where they stand, particularly when the performance, debatably, fell short. Next, they get a free Masterpiece lesson on journalism from karaoke journalist Michael Tracey (both in that he performs mostly for crowd engagement and that he uses a karaoke machine) on Covid regulations at Connecticut College, before Terrell from Conn College, calls in to give his own perspective. They also chat CA recall and what rhetoric Dems should push moving into the midterms, plus, your IMs!

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Direct download: 9_14_Covids_Complete_Shakeup_Of_The_Global_Economy_W__Adam_Tooze-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:50pm EDT

Sam and Emma host Samuel Moyn, Professor of History at Yale University, to discuss his recent book Humane: How the United States Abandoned Peace and Reinvented War, on how the evolving face of the American Empire has changed the way we perceive war, and what we can do to get the conversation back on track. Starting all the way back in the mid-19th Century, Professor Moyn dives into the first Geneva Convention and the attempt by the Swiss to make war more humane, as well as the response by some like Leo Tolstoy who worried that it might, in fact, further legitimize war. He, Sam, and Emma then situate the role of America in all of this, jumping off of the massacres of the Vietnam War and the changes both in Geneva law – focused around civilians and collateral damage – and in the perspective of the US military, that it inspired, before moving back to how the two World Wars and transatlantic combat put the US at the warfront of the western empires, locking them into brutal wars to “keep the peace” ever since. Next, they look into why the backlash to the brutalities of Vietnam was so much more severe than that of the war on terror, situating the former within a pre-existing anti-war movement, and then jump into the role of Barack Obama in really cementing the ideology of the “humane” war through public declarations of both the need for constant warfare, and the need for humane warfare. They wrap up the interview with a conversation on the role of technology in bolstering the Rumsfeldian light warfare, and summarize the evolution of, and what we could see next from, the American empire. Emma and Sam also touch on Manchin’s mumbling maneuvers to avoid getting too into the numbers of the Infrastructure Package, despite his recent complaints about the numbers.

And in the Fun Half: Gabe from Ontario calls in to get out the vote for the NDP in the upcoming Canadian election, Sandy from Ontario boosts that message before getting a warm thank you for her incredible gift to the MR studio, and Nicholas from St. Louis converses with Sam and Emma on the differences in pushing for individual lifestyle changes (veganism) and pushing for actual policy change. The MR crew also explores the social (rather than immune) boost Joe Rogan got from ivermectin, discusses the recent and growing legitimization of George W. Bush and his administration’s war crimes, and reflects on the disasters of Rudy Giuliani past, present, and future. They wrap up the fun half with Tucker Carlson finally speaking on a topic he has expertise in (lying and using your power to protect the powerful) and the progression of recent anti-Mask Mandates, plus, your calls and IMs!

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It's Casual Friday! Sam hosts Ryan Grim, D.C. Bureau Chief at The Intercept, to discuss his recent bombshell scoop Heather Bresch, Joe Manchin's Daughter, Played Direct Part In EpiPen Price Inflation Scandal and round out the week in news. Ryan and Sam jump into a quick discussion of Biden’s recent vaccine mandate announcement, and speculate on the role it can play in bolstering Biden and Democrats' support going into the midterms with a large majority of Americans both already vaccinated and supportive of a mandate. They dive particularly into the culture war narrative currently driving politics and how that could both help and hurt Democratic midterm success, before touching on what is to be expected with COVID rates. Grim then dives into his scoop on the Manchin family, starting with Joe Manchin’s recent attempt to cut down the infrastructure budget and discussing what the budget actually means when it comes to spending, before moving onto the scandal breaking around Manchin’s daughter, Heather Bresch, and wife, Gayle. Ryan sets up the corruption starting with Heather’s faked diplomas from West Virginia University that helped her reach the office of COO, then President and CEO of Mylan Pharmaceuticals and her mother’s role as a lobbyist for the association of school boards, before he and Sam dive into Bresch’s makeshift monopoly, of both supplier and distributor, of EpiPens alongside Pfizer, resulting in over a 500% increase in price, and a Mylan scheme to force their consumers to choose between literal death or spending mass amounts of money on multi-EpiPen packages, all while Gayle Manchin helped secure requirements for schools to purchase their own supplies of EpiPens. They round out the interview by exploring how Dem leadership can turn these metaphorical scandal lemons into an infrastructure lemonade, and Sam dives a little deeper into Biden’s new vaccine mandate.

And in the second half of the show, Matthew Film Guy joins Sam as they reminisce on culture and comedy in the wake of 9/11, before they move onto the effect of 9/11 on general American culture, discussing the shift to the Right in mainstream media and pop culture in the early aughts and what direction today’s artists might shift mainstream political culture, and Matt gives his suggestions. Sam also touches on the deplorable laughter at a boy discussing the death of his grandmother in a Tennessee school board meeting, Rep. Katie Porter’s callout of Joe Manchin and centrist Dems, and Ben Shapiro’s commitment to replacement theory, even when it comes to statues. They also cover Crowder’s return to being a horrible person on YouTube, plus, your IMs!

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Direct download: 9_10_Casual_Friday_W__Ryan_Grim__Film_Guy_Matthew-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00pm EDT

Sam hosts Russ Feingold, President of the American Constitution Society and former United States Senator from Wisconsin, to discuss the legacy 9/11 has had on the American national security state, and what to expect going forward, to discuss the legacy 9/11 has had on the American national security state, and what to expect going forward. Senator Feingold starts off by jumping back to the first reports of the attacks trickling in nearly twenty years ago, and what his experiences on Capitol Hill were like as flight 93 approached DC. Then, he and Sam get into the political response in each branch of the US government, starting with George W. Bush’s response, developing from what Senator Feingold saw as one of the greatest presidential speeches, immediately following 9/11, to, within days, capitalizing on the horror to progress the conservative agenda around both the Iraq War and with the Patriot Act with his “axis of evil” speech. Sam and Russ explore how the Patriot Act was brought to the floor, recalling why Senator Feingold was the only Senator at that time to vote against the bill, including the elements in the bill that clearly had nothing to do with terrorism alongside the conservative exploitation of the moment to bolster their run to take back the house in 2002. Next, the jump into the similar role played by Democrats in approving the Iraq War – outside of those like Feingold and Wellstone – and what it took for them to come around on it, including how resistance to the war bolstered Obama’s 2008 run. They then jump into the years under Obama, and how his deference to the FBI and military allowed the progression of the Military State to continue to infringe on the liberties of citizens and non-citizens alike, before they wrap up the interview with a conversation on the developments of that we have seen in the role of SCOTUS over the last two decades, moving from the failures of Bush v. Gore in 2000 to the obstructionism of McConnell and the build of the current Court. Sam concludes the free half with a review of the Greg Gutfeld comedy hour hitting all of the key conservative comedy pieces, including wives that hate their husbands, ethnicity jokes, and laughing at whatever Donald Trump says.

And in the Fun Half: Brandon and Matt join as they take on Matt Walsh’s absurd take on the feminization of football, Stephanie from Montgomery calls in to chat social policy as crime reduction, and O’Reilly foreshadows his emergence as the most important whistleblower yet, unfortunately still sticking to blowing Islamophobic dog whistles. Next, the MR crew has an inspired discussion on liberty and freedom, before chatting about Ivermectin and the Left, and the role of Laura Ingraham’s “Biden Bucks,” plus, your calls and IMs!

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Sam hosts Paul Sabin, professor of history at Yale University and director of the Yale Environmental Humanities Program, to discuss his recent book Public Citizens: The Attack On Big Government and the Remaking of American Liberalism, on how the US went from eras defined by government action under FDR through LBJ, to Reagan and Clinton coming together across the aisle to end the “era of big government.” Professor Sabin starts us off in the Fifties and early Sixties with the government's managerial role in brokering between businesses and the labor industries, and the rise of liberals speaking out against the unaccounted power in politics; they walk through the roles of folks like Ralph Nader, Jane Jacobs, and Rachel Carson and how they turned on government planning, taking on their efficiency particularly when it comes to their relationships with sectors such as the auto industry. After a little background on Nader’s libertarian, albeit, progressive, roots, and how they gave birth to all sorts of NGOs, such as the National Resources Defense Council (NRDC), which attempted to keep public interest behind the wheel of government. Next, they look into the jumpstart on the turn against government with the Nixon administration and how it was bolstered by liberal attempts to get the government to buckle down, with procedural interventions such as FOIA, unfortunately, undermining the trust in government, particularly as Nader and co. pushed back against the supposedly successful liberal regime under Carter. Lastly, Paul and Sam turn towards the Reagan and Clinton years, and they debate the role of Clinton in marking the end of big government, as he promised the end of said era, before they wrap up the interview by discussing the rhetorical failures by liberals in attempting to have the government-run “efficiently” rather than run with “good platforms.” Sam concludes the fun half with some updates on Texas’ take on Roe v. Wade, alongside Greg Abbott’s new and improved plan to eliminate rapists.

And in the Fun Half: Sam discusses his internal issues and the problematic nature of procedural hindrances to digestion (he got food poisoning), the MR crew discusses NYC education COVID policy, as well as the fight AND flight conflict of COVID deniers. They also discuss Fox’s Brian Kilmeade objections to giving a horse drug a bad name, Lauren Windsor’s continued brilliance in duping Republican officials into spilling party tea, and expand both on Gov. Abbott’s turn against sexual assault, and Elon Musk’s response to his proclaimed support for Texan social policy. They wrap up the fun half with a conversation on how culture war dominates discourse over material benefit, particularly in the context of discussing Texan abortion law, plus, your IMs!

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The MR Crew are off for Rosh Hashanah today (happy New Year for all who celebrate!), but Sam doesn't leave you hanging-he sits down with Erwin Chemerinsky, Dean of the University of California, Berkeley Law School, to discuss his recent book Presumed Guilty: How the Supreme Court Empowered the Police and Subverted Civil Rights, as well as the recent developments at the Supreme Court.

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Today our annual repeat of a compilation of labor speeches from FDR, Mario Savio, John Lewis, & more.

Also, Bernie reading from the speech that sent Debs to jail.

Direct download: Labor_Day_Audio_2021.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:30am EDT

It's Casual Friday! Sam and Emma host Heather Digby Parton, contributing writer at Salon.com, to wrap up the week in news, from the Texas abortion law's overturning of Roe v. Wade and its civil-bounty policy, to the upcoming cut off of federal unemployment benefits. Heather, Sam, and Emma start off by looking at the developments of the Supreme Court as an institution, paying particular attention to the increased use of shadow dockets since the start of the Trump Presidency, and continuing into Biden’s, before generally walking through the anti-democratic and unilateral nature of the Court, and how the Democrats have refused to take on their excesses of power. Next, they explore potential paths to take in restoring and protecting Roe v. Wade, including how SCOTUS could fight back against legislative codification or capitalizing on the foolishness and destructive capacity of the “bounty” civil suits to get the Texas law overturned, before turning to how Democrats have to try to bolster their support going into the 2022 elections. They also discuss the importance of the Trump Presidency in today’s courts, the role of the Manchins and Sinemas moving forwards, as now Roe v. Wade hangs in the balance alongside the infrastructure package, and the incoming unemployment drop-off that will put millions of Americans on the financial brink as the pandemic still rages. They wrap up the interview with some previews for the 2022 election cycle, and Sam and Emma cover their fundraising effort for Afghan refugees, the destruction of Hurricane Ida, and the absurdity of SCOTUS’ procedural argument.

And in the Fun Half: Sam, Emma, and the MR crew celebrate the end of summer with a Sun’s out Guns out fundraiser for Afghan refugees, featuring Sam’s lovely graphic tank from Ronald Raygun and a multitude of double-barreled performances from our host. Ronald Raygun calls in to talk about the classification of Afghan refugees as “parolees,” and how we can still push the government to accept more and more of them. Mike from Winnipeg talks plant-based eating, Josh from KC explores corruption and charter schools, we get a colorful conversation with Hunter Biden, and look at the crashing of the Texas abortionsnitch site, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Direct download: 9_3_Casual_Friday_W__Heather_Digby_Parton-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:18pm EDT

Emma hosts James Risen, Senior National Security Correspondent at the Intercept, to discuss his recent piece "A War's Epitaph: For Two Decades, Americans Were Told One Lie After Another About What They Were Doing In Afghanistan", on how bad the “good war” has been since it began. James and Emma walk through the US’s failed twenty-year involvement in what was essentially another country’s civil war, how it began, and the countless mistakes made along the way which were inevitably covered up. They begin with the first involvement in the region with the Bush Administration’s invasion and propping up of the Karzai Presidency, which almost immediately fell to rampant corruption as US funding flowed through a Karzai-backed heroin trade, emphasizing the shell of a government that we had set up. Risen also touches on how the lack of genuine investment from either the local government or their US backing set the stage for the almost immediate collapse following the military exit, before moving onto the Obama years, and what his commitment to his “good war,” through mass investment in the preexisting corruption and the development of his collateral damage drone program, really meant. James and Emma conclude the interview by looking at how the major players in Afghanistan have developed to where they’re at now, before Emma wraps up the first half with a discussion on the countless horrors stemming from last night’s Supreme Court decision, as well as the lacking response from the Biden Administration, and Gov. Kathy Hochul's wonder at the “once in a thousand years” natural disaster that we’ve somehow been seeing with increasing frequency.

And in the Fun Half: Emma, Brandon, and Matt discuss the horrors of Hurricane Ida, Matt’s flooding, and Sam from NoLa gives a bit of the southern perspective after the storm left, and extreme heat came in. They also discuss supposed-naturalist Joe Rogan’s pharmaceutical-heavy solution to catching COVID, Mike from PA’s guest suggestion, and debate the filmmaking legacy of M. Night Shyamalan, before discussing Candace Owens’ COVID skepticism coming back to bite her, and Tucker and Dave Rubin's projection of personal shortcomings onto AOC, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Sam and Emma hosts Tim Higgins, Wall Street Journal reporter and CNBC contributor, to discuss his recent book Power Play: Tesla, Elon Musk, and the Bet of the Century, on how Elon Musk sells the future, and how much of that vision can actually be guaranteed. They jump off from JB Straubel’s invention that helped Elon popularize high-end electric vehicles (EVs), reflecting on the 20th-century EV attempts by GM and Toyota, and why they fell apart, before touching on why Tesla’s focus on the high-end price points was central to their success. Next, they dive into where Tesla’s production has been lacking, particularly with Elon’s self-driving cars and other fantastical promises, and Tim looks into the validity of Theranos comparisons. He, Sam, and Emma also touch on the biggest threats to Tesla in the EV market, at what age a startup truly matures into a real company, and what it means that such a long-shot investment has a massive financial backing in the industry, before Sam explores what shorting the stock would take, and the crew talks the dangers of letting a single man shape the future of an entire industry. Sam and Emma also touch on SCOTUS letting Roe v. Wade slip through the cracks in Texas with SB-8, setting the road for a massive fight for reproductive rights ahead, as well as the (hopefully) official end of fighting in Afghanistan, and the importance of the Courts moving forwards.

And in the Fun Half: The MR Crew walks through Dave Rubin’s legal expertise (mostly based on big-word usage), D from NYC calls in to defend Elon Musks’ many classic talents, including engineering and following through on his own previous claims, and DJ Cold Case gets Sam into the social security zone on the recent fear-mongering on the well running dry. They also touch on the ever-increasing role the Supreme Court has begun to play in making drastically consequential political decisions. They round it out with some classic Fox out-foxing of other journalists as Jeanine Pirro employs the classic “ignore and walk away” tactic, and they discuss the incredibly racist scandal around a Texas school board, CRT, and a Black principal, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Direct download: 9_1_Elon_Musk__Billionaire_Marketer_W__Tim_Higgins-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:13pm EDT

Sam and Emma host Richard Alba, Distinguished Professor of Sociology at the Graduate Center at the City University of New York (CUNY), to discuss his recent book The Great Demographic Illusion: Majority, Minority, and the Expanding American Mainstream, on the failure of the Majority/Minority model, and the demographics are destiny approach. They start off by reflecting on how recent the belief in the power of majorities has been emphasized in social science, before Prof. Alba walks through the history of this discourse, looking back to the mid-20th-century expansion of mainstream whiteness to include Irish, Italian, and Jewish people, as well as the importance of ethno-racial mixing in blurring these boundaries. Next, he, Sam, and Emma explore how the fixed nature of demographic boundaries fails to reflect the fluidity of both identity and definition among people, as well as the influence of maintaining the racialized underclass of white supremacy has on the shifting boundaries. They also touch on the polarizing nature of Majority/Minority discourse, and its contribution to racial anxiety among white people, as well as the variety of variables that influence the influx of mixed folks in the recent census including reconfiguring the ethno-racial definition process. They wrap up the interview by touching on social policies that can help encourage assimilation towards equality, particularly focusing on economic and social inequality, and how Professor Alba would respond to those on the right that consistently push white replacement theory. Sam and Emma also touch on recent and impending SCOTUS decisions, resulting in a potential 750k household evictions over the next six months, and potentially seeing Texas overturn Roe v. Wade.

And in the Fun Half: Sam finds solace and solidarity in a school board pranking, Steven Crowder has trouble connecting with a guest’s story on racism, for some reason, and Carrie Prejean Boller continues her entrance onto the political stage through Fox and the far-right after her “canceling” for homophobic Miss California comments. The MR crew also discusses mask mandate prohibitions and the DOE’s Civil Rights Division’s plan to take them on, the Right’s politicization of sports with vaccination requirements, Critical Race Theory and Tax Codes, Tucker Carlson's mommy issues, and screen time policy on both the household, and federal levels, plus, your IMs!

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Sam's back this week as him and Emma host infectious disease specialist  Dr. MarkAlain Dery, infectious disease physician and epidemiologist at Access Health Louisiana and host of the daily NoiseFilter Podcast, to discuss the fallout from Hurricane Ida making landfall in Louisiana, the evacuation efforts, and what it means for hospitals battling COVID-19 at the same time. Calling in from New Orleans City Hall, Dr. Dery describes the development of this perfect storm; following a massive uptick in Delta cases throughout the south and with hospitalizations still on the rise, despite already being at capacity, Hurricane Ida hit Louisiana immediately knocking out power and causing medical emergencies throughout New Orleans. He also dives into the lessons that the city had learned from Katrina, with improved infrastructure around levies and roofing, and looks into the evacuation attempt in the city. He, Sam, and Emma also look forward to how the viral pandemic will continue to develop after ravaging the south, with Dr. Dery looking at unvaccinated pockets throughout the country and the political games being played by Republican governors as the largest threats, as well as the likely developments of more and more strains as global vaccine rates remain low. They wrap up the interview with a discussion on the importance of responsible public health communication from both representatives and the mainstream media. Sam and Emma also look into the developments in the Afghanistan Evacuation, the U.S.’s resumption of killing civilians in the region, and the failure of the U.S. infrastructure to prepare hospitals for the pandemic and Hurricane Ida (if only there was an infrastructure package that was properly supported).

And in the Fun Half: Sam gives an update on approving his Suns out Guns out license, the MR crew discusses the stirrings of the covid horrors as schools begin to reopen as well as the incredible culpability of the legitimate media that is “just asking questions” around vaccine skepticism. They also touch on some stories of regret on this coverage, including from a chiropractor in North Dakota, and Emma takes on the sapping of collective consciousness from public health issues in our “me” society. Josh from Chicago keeps the EmMajority Report alive with a fantasy football segment, Jake the Teacher discusses the chaos in the NYC school system’s handling of Covid, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Direct download: 8_30_Hurricane_Ida_Batters_Louisiana_W__Dr._Markalain_Dery-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:08pm EDT

It's Casual Friday! Emma hosts Alex Pareene, contributing editor at The New Republic and author of The AP newsletter on Substack, to wrap up the events of the week. Emma starts off with some righteous indignation towards former Trump National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster saying to resident CNN Pentagon stenographer Jim Sciutto that the ISIS-K attacks in Kabul may have been a setup by the Taliban to make the Americans look bad. Anything to beat that war drum! Then, Emma and Alex get into how the media framing of the withdrawal most likely has a significant hand in Biden's approval ratings dipping, while buttressing a narrative that the "way" that this withdrawal is transpiring could look any less chaotic and fraught. They both acknowledge the reality that the mainstream press is unwilling to and, surprisingly, that Biden and his national security team is: War is tragic and chaotic, losing a war is the same, and that's what happened: the U.S. lost this war and needs to evacuate, the cost notwithstanding. They both reflect on their relief and general surprise that Biden has not bent to the narratives being constructed by the media and politicians on both sides of the aisle for the sake of maintaining the position of withdrawal at basically all costs. Alex partially attributes this to Biden's stubbornness borne fully out of his "Senate brain". They also remark on hypothetically what Trump would've done while he was president if push came to shove, and how it definitely doesn't square with his public remarks. They then touch upon the Supreme Court striking down the CDC's eviction moratorium, how to combat what's essentially an unaccountable judicial legislature, and the right's bizarre turn towards hawking ivermectin to their constituents as a COVID treatment. Pretty suspect that they're casting aspersions on a free vaccine but are cool with recommending to their voters they pay for a Merck-produced horse dewormer! Emma ends the first half by watching Biden hang his head at his press conference, fully perturbed by Peter Doocy's excessive nattering. Even Doocy can't make Biden change his mind on the withdrawal!

And in the second half, Emma is joined by Lance of The Serfs TV to discuss the snap elections going on in Canada on September 20th. Lance provides a primer on Canada's parliamentary electoral system, as well as what's at stake for Trudeau, Trudeau's party the Liberals, the Conservatives, and the more progressive NDP. He continues to explain Trudeau's bristling at working with other parties, his desire to get back into a Liberal majority as a result, and how he has a strong tendency to maintain appearances and optics on thorny issues like public assistance and First Nations relations, while actively combatting them in less visible ways. Lance then continues to break down the election projections coming out of Canada's own 538, 338, why to trust the seat projections by party over total vote projections, the more peripheral parties and their outlooks heading into September, Lance's own work in assisting indigenous NDP candidates get elected to Parliament, and what is most likely in store for Canada as September 20th gets closer and closer.

And in the Fun Half, Emma, Matt and Bradley discuss what's going on with the Line 3 pipeline protests in St. Paul, Minnesota, Jenna Ellis accusing Biden of treason for something her former boss Trump literally did (negotiate with the Taliban), Illinois Congressman Adam Kinzinger going on CNN's airwaves to lay blame at the feet of both Trump and Biden for the failures of the withdrawal (think you're missing a few presidents there Adam buddy!), and Trump himself calling into Hannity last night to rant about how stupid the people he literally hired, namely McMaster and John Bolton, are for how they handled Afghanistan while again, it can't be stated clearly enough, they literally worked for him, when he was the literal President of the United States. Plus, your IM's!

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Direct download: 8_27_Casual_Friday_w__Alex_Pareene__Lance_from_The_Serfs_-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:48pm EDT

Emma hosts Orville Vernon Burton, Professor of Pan-African Studies, Sociology, Anthropology, and Computer Science at Clemson University, as well as civil rights attorney Armand Derfner, to discuss their recent book Justice Deferred: Race and the Supreme Court, on the progressions, and regressions, of the SCOTUS’ relationship to racial justice. Professor Burton and Derfner start us off by bringing us back to the first full century of this countries history, looking at how the Supreme Court of the 19th Century worked alongside the settler-colonial regime as they approved the removal of Native folks from their own land, and upheld rulings on slavery, all stemming from concepts of “ownership” that bolstered our systems of white supremacy, discussing on the Dred Scott and Lone Wolf decisions alongside treaties and cases on disenfranchisement as key examples. Emma, Armand, and Orville use this first century of SCOTUS cases to show the clear politicized role of the Court, dating back to their inception, even resulting in seemingly ahistorical decisions that sided with public opinion over critical thinking. Next, they jump up to the more recent courts, post-1970, as they supported the US’ slide into neoliberalism after forty years of progressive decisions, looking into the slow deconstruction of the Voting Rights Act, looking into how the courts of recent years both align with the original courts, in their ahistorical accounts and differ from them, particularly with the growing divide with public opinion. Lastly, they work through the middle period, from the 1930s to the 70s, and how the courts of these decades, particularly under Chief Justices Hughes and Warren, saw important decisions, even under conservative justices, emphasizing states’ responsibilities alongside their rights. Emma rounds out the free half with disturbing videos from another anti-mask PTC to James Carville making a relatively reasonable point.

And in the Fun Half: Brandon, Emma, and Matt explore the problematic nature of deference to a system that has had more ex confederates than Black jurists (SCOTUS), Amber from Northern Virginia expands on the local organizing of the Right, looking into trans inclusivity policy in her state, and famously anti-war and anti-monarchy Tucker Carlson hosts the prince of war crimes Erik Prince to improv some Afghanistan tactics, using the classic journalist tactic of “yes, and-ing” your guest. Spocko from San Fran chats repercussions for falsified COVID documents, and Brandon and Dave from Jamaica emphasize how this cannot focus on punitive measures of imprisonment. They also chat Mike McKevinMcCarthy and positive coercion, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Emma hosts Karen L. Cox, Professor of History at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, to discuss her recent book No Common Ground: Confederate Monuments and the Ongoing Fight for Racial Justice, on the history and reckoning over confederate monuments in the US. Professor Cox brings us back to the 1890s as the end of reconstruction and the southern occupation are marked by a massive uptick in the construction of these symbols of white supremacy alongside increased racial violence, lynchings, and attempts to legalize segregation and disenfranchisement. She and Emma then dive into the “lost cause” ideology that drove this re-development, looking at how journalists like Edward Pollard and groups such as the United Daughters of the Confederacy and the KKK established a massively ahistorical disinformation campaign throughout the south, with confederate monuments playing a central role in a literal sense, as they became the focal point of community social life, being erected in town squares and at courthouses. Karen and Emma then progress into the 20th century, looking at how the 1915 Birth of a Nation continued this reignition of racial violence and the role class played in the issue, before they dive into the next wave of monument erections in the 50s and 60s, discussing the murder of Sammy Younge in Tuskegee, Alabama and the changes in white supremacist rhetoric. They round out the interview with the final wave of monuments in the 2000s following a decade of legalized disenfranchisement with gerrymandering, looking at how the symbols of the “lost cause” have slowly been disconnected from actual southern heritage as well as how and why the recent reckoning over the issue has become central to American racial discourse. Emma wraps it up with the infrastructure developments and is reminded by Lindsey Graham and Kayleigh McEnany how calm cool and collected Trump’s four years were in comparison to Biden’s first.

And in the Fun Half: Dennis Prager reminds us that we can’t trust our doctors, since it was really our hearts and souls that went through four years of medical school, and Dimmy Jore gives us the ivermectin pitch straight from the horses’ ass as he incorporates it into his M4A blame game, and the MR crew, alongside Danny from ATL, discuss what to do with the US military complex, and why anti-war stances are continuously demeaned by the mainstream media. Dave in Minneapolis informs us on the upcoming St. Paul Line 3 protest, Tony Blair gives us his phony flair, and Kerry from Columbus talks OH senate election. They also chat sports, Tebow or not Tebow, and get a glimpse into a blissfully young and ignorant (rather than horribly middle-aged and ignorant) Charlie Kirk, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Direct download: 8_25_The_Reckoning_Over_Confederate_Monuments_W__Karen_L._Cox-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:06pm EDT

Emma hosts Jon N. Hale, Associate Professor of Education Policy, Organization, and Leadership at the University of Illinois, to discuss his recent book The Choice We Face: How Segregation, Race, and Power Have Shaped America's Most Controversial Education Reform Movement, on the misrepresentation of the “school choice” debate at the behest of the profit motive. Professor Hale gives Emma the run down, stemming all the way back to the responses to Brown v. Board, of how the concept of “school choice” was birthed from the liberal desire to have segregation, without appearing as a segregationist, building up to the Zelman v. Harris case that approved public funding for vouchers in 2004. Next, he and Emma dive into how terms like “taxpayer” and “bussing” allowed for liberals to simply object to the interference in the “educational marketplace,” looking at how this neoliberal theory hooked into the Republican Party of the 60s, 70s, and 80s, providing the privilege to design how our school system should look to the white and wealthy when Brown v. Board was supposed to make it more equitable, before the Clintons and moderate Dems of the 90s cemented it as the system of American education. With the Gatesian influence on education in the 2000s, Emma and Jon look into how the profit motive and the drive of “efficiency” have seen a complete deflation of the American public school system over the last century, resulting in Eric Adams’ recent pitch for a 300:1 student to teacher ratio, before they touch on the inflammatory effects of the pandemic on the institution. They round out the interview by touching a little more on recent organizing for charter schools, both from white communities and communities of color, what a world that commits entirely to either public schooling OR school choice would look like, and how teachers unions have consistently been construed as the villain of the story. Emma wraps up the first half by touching on the “mod squad’s” obstructionism on behalf of their wealthy suburban constituents.

And in the Fun Half: Nomiki joins as the MR crew discusses the necessary emphasis on self-determination in addressing the future of foreign policy in Afghanistan, requiring a turn away from neoliberal foreign relations and an over-reliance on elite NGOs. Teacher Lauren calls in to discuss her experiences with charter schooling and what documentaries she feels appropriately get at the issues, JD Vance pulls some Islamophobic fear-mongering right out of his ass live on Tucker Carlson, Donna Shalala calls out centrist Dems obstructionism, and Pradeep calls in from up north to remind any Canadian listeners to register to vote. The crew hits on some key pop culture issues for millennials (whether Harry Potter was ever cool, the NFC East, and Applebees), plus, your calls and IMs!

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Direct download: 8_24_Reframing_The_School_Choice_Debate_W__Jon_N._Hale-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:16pm EDT

Emma hosts Dr. Nikki Usher, professor of journalism in the College of Media at the University of Illinois, to discuss her recent book, News for the Rich, White, and Blue: How Place and Power Distort American Journalism, on the troubles of both the supply and demand sides of mainstream US media. Dr. Usher and Emma use the recent media coverage on the Afghanistan withdrawal as a jumping-off point on how the media isn’t like the other girls (or the rest of us), and, frankly, loves the divide, before they into the importance of looking at the supply side of new media, as its much easier to control what your newsroom and news output look like than it is to control how it's received. Nikki and Emma look into how the current state of news media has bolstered the biggest institutions, thus limiting the geographical and financial access to the industry (largely to upper-class folks in DC and NYC), and what younger generations are doing to push back against this continued homogenization of newsrooms. Next, Dr. Usher moves into the importance of drawing from local pools of experience, not just major cities media operatives, and how that differs from engaging with the current liberal romanticization of local news outlets, and then she and Emma round out the interview with a discussion on the developments in media over the last few years, particularly in the context of their coverage of BLM and last summer’s protests, and where it still fails, particularly in its complete commitment to upholding the opinions and reporting of the US Police State, from the Pentagon’s pushback on the Afghanistan withdrawal to trusting Police Depts. to report on their own controversies. Emma wraps up the first half with updates on vaccination approval (the ever-important stamps from the FDA and DJT) and the Nabisco strike.

And in the Fun Half: Emma, Matt, and Bradley chat about how entertainment’s reflections on real-life events, even when altered, can inspire important discussions, Cameron from MS asks the crew for their least favorite alt-right talking point, and they also look into the attempt by conservatives to balance wanting to BE the Taliban with their fear of Islam. Phil from the Chicago suburbs calls in to outline his new Charlie Kirk x Thomas Sankara impression (thankfully with no example) the crew chats Current Affairs and why cooperative workspaces, just like people having access to healthcare, ARE indeed part of the leftist agenda, Alex from NY gives his daily EmMajority Report matchups, plus, your calls and IMs!

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It's Casual Friday! Emma is joined by Benjamin P. Dixon, host of The Benjamin Dixon Show, to wrap up a big week in news. Benjamin and Emma dive right into the really heavy events of the last week in Afghanistan and how Biden has at least proved his ability to hold strong under media pressure. Emma and Ben dive into the investments that have driven the National Security journalism over the past week, and why, although Biden is anything but an antimilitarist, we should stand behind his ability to push back against military contractors and stand strong in his stance on Afghanistan withdrawal, before juxtaposing that with the added pressure we must apply to get his administration to cancel student loan debt, now that we know he’s got the legal ability to do so. Reflecting on the reactionary nature (in a good way when it comes to getting him to do what we want) of Biden and his administration, Emma and Ben move onto discussing developing booster shots amidst severe global vaccine apartheid and mask mandates as republican dig into PTA grassroots organizing, before moving onto what Haiti’s rebuild could look like following the recent disaster. Emma wraps up the free half with Lt. Gov. Dan “Sacrifice Your Grandma” Patrick’s Fox drop-in to blame vaccination rates on Black folks.

In the second half of the show, Emma is joined by Dan from the Internet, host of the Power Report and Audioface podcasts, to discuss the California recall effort, and why, despite Gov Newsom's utterly problematic policy record, the effort would only work to boost Republican ability to undo any progress in CA. And in the Fun Half, Matt takes over as co-host of the EmMajority Report to cover the recent allegations on the Minnesota GOP after their Chairwoman Jennifer Carnahan's relationship with Bitcoin entrepreneur, alleged child-trafficker and Republican super donor Tony Lazzaro came to light, even as Tucker Carlson and the New York Post stand strong behind him, plus, your IMs!

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Direct download: 8_20_Casual_Friday_W__Benjamin_P._Dixon__Dan_From_The_Internet_-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:31pm EDT

Emma hosts Hahrie Han, director of the SNF Agora Institute and Professor of Political Science at Johns Hopkins University, to discuss her recent book Prisms of the People: Power & Organizing in Twenty-First-Century America, that she co-authored with Elizabeth McKenna and Michelle Oyakawa. Hahrie situates her relationship with organizing, starting as a child of Korean immigrants in Texas, growing as she became involved in student activism, and eventually being juxtaposed with the electoral work she put in on campaigns in the 90s. Emma and her jump into the importance of self-determination, walking through her first-hand experiences in fights against SB1070, Prop 206, and even a fight for higher minimum wages in Arizona, and looking at the importance of having short terms goals in building towards a larger-scale project. They wrap up the interview reflecting on why recent movement campaigns have failed to capitalize on lingering inspiration, and explore the case study of the activism that got us prohibition. Emma wraps up the first half by discussing Sam’s vacation and touching on Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Milley’s response to the media fulling buying into US intelligence’s clamor for continued power in the Middle East.

And in the Fun Half: The MR crew are joined by Brandon Sutton as always, to discuss sick day tactics, and Dave from Jamaica gives his own input to inspire Brandon to go full Foucault. Next, they jump into the Islamophobic fear-mongering around refugee acceptance, from Stinchfields and Hannitys to Bill Mahers and Sam Harrises, Alex from NY returns with two fun fueled matchups, before Brian from AZ engages with Bill Maher’s religion takes, and reflects on the 9/11 attackers calling him devil by name (??). They also cover some of Bill O’Reilly’s takes on American Marxism (aka Disney going woke) and Dinesh D’Souza gives credit to the Taliban where it’s due, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Sam and Emma host Spencer Ackerman, author of the Forever Wars newsletter on Substack, to discuss his recent book Reign Of Terror: How The 9/11 Era Destabilized America And Produced Trump. Sam, Emma, and Spencer jump off of a Charlie Kirk nativist clip to dive into the start of the war on terror as the rebirth of white replacement theory, starting with domestic attacks on Muslim Americans post-9/11 and giving way to Trump. They look into how the war on terror turned the enemies into those escaping the conditions we created, diving particularly into the parallels between the anti-sharia law policy passed in thirty different states and the current debates on Critical Race Theory in kindergarten, helping to create this apparatus of suspicion treating immigration as the vector of a national security threat. Next, Ackerman walks through the mutation of the political tool of the war on terror through the Bush years, bringing in a torture regime and normalizing violent nativism in policy, and ultimately being reaffirmed and reinforced by Obama’s attempts at “humanizing” it through drone strikes, before working through how Trump was able to capitalize on the tool. They wrap up the interview by looking into the importance of public pressure on the security apparatus, pushing Biden to end the license for US presidents to use this tool. Sam and Emma also cover general updates on the situation in Kabul as the US evacuates Afghanistan, and the state of the Delta variant as Texas Gov. Abbott has a breakthrough case get through three vaccinations.

And in the Fun Half: Twigs from New Mexico calls in to discuss the importance of MR and TMBS in converting him from libertarianism, Josh from Chicago ponders where US imperialism will go next, and the WH press corps takes on the true populist stance of maintaining our military presence in Tajikistan. The MR crew spectates the continuing Fox & Frenemies beef between Kilmeade and Doocy as one worries about his career and the other about his livelihood, and Ryan from NH discusses why the left should stand stronger behind the withdrawal, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Sam and Emma tackle a major week in news, starting with the fall of Kabul to the Taliban and the Biden administration's lackluster, finger-pointing response. They start by taking a bird's eye view of the fall of Kabul by going back to the beginning, when Congresswoman Barbara Lee (D-CA) was the sole person to vote against the Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF) in Afghanistan, and how far, or how little, we've come since then. Afterwards, they turn to Biden's remarks he delivered yesterday regarding what's ensued in Afghanistan in the last few weeks, noting that Biden struck the right tone, but some of the substance, namely in terms of Biden's continued adherence to American empire, was lacking. They continue combing through some of Biden's remarks, where he states firmly that the objective was not to nation build in Afghanistan, but to prevent a terrorist attack like that of 9/11 from happening again and to locate and kill Osama Bin Laden, a contention that does seem to be maximize the supposed successes of the invasion while notably minimizing the severe civilian casualties and atrocities that befell the Afghan people as a result, as well as the notable incursion into the Afghan people's everyday life for over 20 years. Biden then went onto say that he had to adhere in part to the deal that the Trump Administration struck to draw down troops by May 1st 2021 at the earliest, or risk further escalation of the conflict, as well as conceding that, in an effort to supply candor to the American people, Biden and the Administration were startled by how quickly Kabul fell. Sam and Emma, while giving some credit to Biden for his delivery and his marginally less hawkish approach to the war than Obama while he was serving as Vice President, don't buy this excuse from Biden, given that there's seemingly no universe where he didn't know that this was coming, and to completely shift blame onto Prime Minister Ashraf Ghani, who fled the country as a result of the invasion, and the Afghan military, completely excludes the role of the American military in this debacle. They end on observing how some of the members of the media responded to the remarks, with Nicolle Wallace making a shockingly cogent point regarding how people and the members of the press might have disproportionate responses to the remarks, while Tucker Carlson pivots to his favorite thing: blaming the P.C. mob for literally any world event.

And in the fun half, the gang is joined as always on Tuesday afternoons by Nomiki Konst. The whole MR crew discuss at length the tragic story of Leslie Laurenson, a 58-year old British man who died of COVID very recently, and who, due to numerous influences online, notably the commentary of Bret Weinstein, refused to get the vaccine and was actively skeptical of them as a result. Sam, Matt, Nomi, and Emma dissect the fraudulence and cowardice of Weinstein's positions, where him and his cohort essentially propagate lies and misinformation but, when push comes to shove in terms of real and tangible outcomes as a result of their rhetoric, they shy away from any semblance of accountability and crow that people should know better than to take them *that* seriously. And finally, the gang would be remiss if they didn't cover Chris Cuomo's return from vacation and his hasty inability to truly own up to his complicity in advising his disgraced brother Andrew while actively covering his tenure as Governor when ostensibly fawning praise was in order, but never when Governor Cuomo actually had to face the music. The gang discuss how CNN botched the handling of this and how they could've initiated a real recusal for Chris with some teeth, as well as Chris's dissembling on air basically amounting to "I NEVER advised my brother, but when I DID advise him, I was SORRY about it. He's my BROTHER after all." They end on the curious phenomenon of the younger Cuomo brother searching his name to lambast other reporters that say mean things about him, as he did to Tori Bedford of GBH in 2018 and to Nomi herself a while back as well. Plus, your IM's!

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Direct download: 8_17_The_Fall_Of_Kabul_And_Bidens_Response__Whats_Next_-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:52pm EDT

Sam and Emma host Elizabeth Tandy Shermer, Associate Professor of History at Loyola Chicago University, to discuss her new book Indentured Students: How Government-Guaranteed Loans Left Generations Drowning In College Debt, which tackles the exploitative nature of US student loan programs dating back to their origin, setting up the generational wealth and debt divides we see today. After situating the crisis within the contexts of tuitions in the 60s, 80s, and today, Sam, Emma, and Elizabeth jump off of the first work-study programs introduced in the 60s, and how their nature was tied deeply to the Civil Rights Act. They dive into higher education as a battleground for a desegregated society, particularly following the success of Soviet science, with the Higher Education Act following the CRA in an effort to promote the enrollment of women and people of color, especially after the addition of Title IX in ’72. Next, they look at how the US student loan program found its structure in New Deal housing programs, which, while appearing progressive, ultimately put a product that cannot be repossessed, with the only guarantee going to bankers, into a “social welfare” program, bolstering the preexisting generational wealth and debt stratification. They conclude the interview by looking at the role of college, both in terms of their exploitation of students and how the US State has slowly shifted more and more responsibility their way, even as they become central in the progression of US medical technology, before they move onto what Biden could do in the latter stage of his presidency, including looking into both the preexisting policy initiatives in the Infrastructure package, and the potential of a College for All bill presenting a public competitor. Sam and Emma round out the free half by reflecting on the US failure that was the Afghanistan war, and the attempt of the US media and politicians to present this as anything but another “Saigon Moment.”

And in the Fun Half: The MR crew discusses the behind the scenes stupidity and exploitation of Venture Capitalism, the fear-based relationship between the Biden Administration and the concept of immigration – even when it comes to Afghani refugees – and reflect on the roles of Trump and Pompeo in the Afghanistan pull out. John from AZ calls in to explore the relationship between inflation and wages, and Bill from MI jumps delves into the effect of wage stagnation on teachers, especially as the Republican war on Critical Race Theory picks up, before the staff admires the beauty of Timba.On.Toast’s dive into the deep end of Tim Pool’s inner functioning. They also touch on Dennis Prager’s takes on child abuse, Dave from Jamaica talks imperialism and Afghanistan, and Ian from FL calls in from Matt Gaetz’s district to chat about the impossibility of changing Pensacola politics, plus, your calls and IMs!

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It's Casual Friday! Sam and Emma host Ben Burgis, columnist at Jacobin, host of Give Them An Argument With Ben Burgis, and author of Canceling Comedians While the World Burns: A Critique of the Contemporary Left, to cover the top stories of the week. Ben, Sam, and Emma start off with a discussion on the developments in Afghanistan as the Taliban sweeps through, taking up control as the US evacuates, before they jump back to the decisions that led us there. They walk through the original choice to invade Afghanistan, rather than work with a Taliban surrender and find ways to diplomatically get their hands on Osama Bin Laden, only to pull resources out and move towards Iraq within a year and a half, keeping Afghanistan on the border of disarray for well over a decade until we let it fall back into Taliban hands. Sam and Ben look into the unlikelihood of US leaders learning from the failures of military intervention, before they move onto discussions of what Republicans have constituted as “authoritarian” and how that has changed over the last two decades, largely as a function of what party is implementing the policies. Starting with the post-9/11 Bush-era policy, and working through reactions to Obama’s handling of Ebola, Sam, Ben, and Emma explore how Republicans have sponsored countless invasive policies only to draw the line at one life-or-death vaccine. After discussing the importance of both recognizing and implementing legitimate coercion in the face of the pandemic, they wrap up the interview by touching on the developments on the infrastructure and reconciliation bills, and the state of progressive leverage heading into the final votes. Sam and Emma round out the first half with updates on the Delta variant, as Fl, OR, AR, MS, and LA all reach record hospitalizations, while MTG and Republicans continue to tout misinformation and Americans are forced out of hospitals.

And in the Fun Half: Sam drums up some beef with old colleagues Tom Scharpling and Jon Benjamin, Louie Gohmert pours one out for the birds (but the “one” is “fossil fuels” and “for the birds” is “on the birds”), and Emma trashes on radio as Sam defends the medium made for his face. Next, the crew admires Bar Rescue’s Jon Taffer’s willingness to focus on Bars, and let other people worry about his employees well being, as he and Laura Ingraham promote treating our workforce like dogs while the pandemic ramps up. The show gets two Joshes (from MD and PA, respectively) to give updates on the state of their states, and the latter inquires about the potential of fiction authors coming onto the show. They also discuss factors that promote new variants and get some high-level important ideas, plus, your calls and IMs!

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sunsetlakecbd is a majority employee owned farm in Vermont, producing 100% pesticide free CBD products. Great company, great product and fans of the show! Use code Leftisbest and get 20% off at http://www.sunsetlakecbd.com. And now Sunset Lake CBD has donated $2500 to the Nurses strike fund, and we encourage MR listeners to help if they can. Here’s a link to where folks can donate: https://forms.massnurses.org/we-stand-with-st-vincents-nurses/

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Direct download: 8_13_Casual_Friday_W__Ben_Burgis_-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:16pm EDT

Emma hosts Dr. Abdul El-Sayed, writer of The Incision newsletter on Substack, to discuss his recent book Medicare For All: A Citizen's Guide, that he co-authored with Dr. Micah Johnson, which explores the story of M4A through three parts: a diagnosis and history of the problem, the policy behind M4A, and the politics around it. Emma and Dr. El-Sayed first cover the general structure of our healthcare industry, with a particular focus on the roles of copays and deductibles in garnering profits for insurance companies, while also being the cause of around two-thirds of US bankruptcies, before they walk us through the history of the discourse on national health insurance. Starting with the 1900s progressive era, Abdul and Emma discuss the partnership between Baylor hospital and a local teachers union that was the blueprint for our current structure, eventually becoming Blue Cross Blue Shield, the WW2 wage freeze that initiated employer benefits, as well as the political fights for nationalized health insurance, including Truman in the 40s, Ted Kennedy’s push under Nixon, and LBJ’s success establishing medicare. After digging into the big adversaries for a single-payer system, looking at the lobbying groups led by doctors in the earlier 20th Century, and the coalescence around insurance agencies and big pharma as small business practices have become less and less common, Emma and Dr. El-Sayed look into the destructive capacity of the localized monopoly model under health insurance, and the drastic growth in efficiency, affordability, and prevention that we would see under a monopsony model. They round out the interview by looking at M4A’s recent step into mainstream politics, and unpack the shortcomings of the contemporary arguments against it. Emma wraps up the first half by covering the devastating developments of the delta variant, the continued pushback against mask mandates, and Dan Crenshaw’s frustration with election truthers.

And in the Fun Half: Matt and Brandon join Emma as they chat about Mike Lindell’s symposium, both the Zoom crashes and MyPillow coupon booms, and the thought process that might be behind his mass bounty to disprove his election fraud data. They also look into Tucker’s victim-blaming, standing by known retaliator Andrew Cuomo as he faces controversy Fox news hosts are all too familiar with (sexual assault and hiding covid deaths), as well as Andrew Yang’s attempted union between UBI’s stability, and cryptocurrencies complete instability. Weston from Sacramento explores our employers’ desires to get us back to work, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Sam and Emma host Carol Leonnig, national investigative reporter at the Washington Post, to discuss her recent book she co-authored with Phillip Rucker, I Alone Can Fix It: Donald J. Trump's Catastrophic Final Year. They begin by stepping off Leonnig’s and Rucker’s previous work A Very Stable Genius, and how they were able to secure a sit down with Trump following his complete bashing of their last book. They look into his continued desire for an audience, not to mention an audience of his audience, and the maintenance of his three primary beliefs in his final year: that the 1/6 rioters were genuinely loving people, that BLM protesters were a clear existential threat, and that he, Donald Trump, was the clear winner of the 2020 election. Delving into the ladder, Sam, Emma, and Carol explore how Trump was able to convince both his base and himself of the election fraud, before moving onto his mishandling of the Coronavirus pandemic from the very start. They discuss his strategy of focusing on the battleground of the daily news cycle, taking every problem as a PR crisis, even as those close to him attempted to steer him towards practically tackling the pandemic to save his reelection. Carol then goes deep into the pressure on journalists, when it comes to Trump, to find the truth behind the truth, looking into what he and his administration actually believe, and why they genuinely take the actions they take, looking particularly into his clearing of Lafayette Square for a biblical photo op. They round out the interview by looking deeper into his administration, his enablers, and those that attempted to control his impulses, as well as the effect of his first three years on emboldening the worst of him. Sam and Emma conclude the free half by summarizing the vote-a-rama that took place on reconciliation, and Fox & Friends’ realization that socialism is, indeed, popular.

And in the Fun Half: Emma, Sam, and the MR crew chat about the over-saturation of media critique, the importance of a large-scale audience for MR, and follow up yesterdays “Ligma” variant discussion with an exploration of some of the worst, and best, of MR IMs. Then, a dear MR Discord Moderator calls in for some carpentry tips (surprisingly not asking Emma of Nazareth), before Sam and a caller talk civics versus ethics, and Chris from Minneapolis follows up a discussion on the Senate Dem’s performative vote against “defund the police” by exploring what localities are actually doing, not just saying. Lastly, they look into the mob of parents chanting “child abuse” (unfortunately, not at themselves) at a Franklin, TN school board meeting on masks, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Direct download: 8_11_Trumps_Disastrous_Final_Year_As_President_w__Carol_Leonnig_-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:42pm EDT

Sam and Emma host Nick Estes, host of The Red Nation Podcast, to discuss his recent book Red Nation Rising: From Bordertown Violence To Native Liberation, on the relationship between policing and surveillance, and Native communities in the US, both inside and out of reservations. Nick, Emma, and Sam begin with the recent assaults of native folks that instigated the founding of Red Nation, and what the role of Bordertowns, lying just outside of reservations, plays in the policing of indigenous communities, before Nick Estes walks us through the relationship between Black and Native communities reaching back deep into the 20th Century, exploring Minneapolis as a meeting ground in the 1960s with the Soul Patrol and American Indian Movement attempting to police the police and keep their community members safe. Next, Emma and Nick look into how the current Line 3 pipeline protests, alongside previous pipeline violence such as DAPL, expresses the direct parallels between the “us versus them” mentality that police take when confronted with communities of color, regardless of urban or rural environments, and the military strategy that leads these coalitions of law enforcement agencies, with national guard policy currently promoting lethal force in protection of pipeline infrastructure. Estes wraps up the interview touching on the book as a primer for the tools to understand the role of capitalism and state intervention on behalf of industry in this exploitation and violence, the continued claiming of native lands, and the parallels between international fights for decolonization. Sam and Emma conclude the free half with an update on Cuomo’s resignation and infrastructure progress.

And in the Fun Half: Nomiki Konst joins Sam and Emma to say goodbye to our first Black, Jewish, Muslim, Lesbian, AND Disabled governor, as they chat about Cuomo's departure and his potential replacements, including Kathy Hochul, Letitia James, and Tom Suozzi. Next, they move onto discussions on Biden’s handling of the pandemic and mask efficacies, admire Bill Hemmer’s clear dedication to German philosophy, and Mike Lindell continues to Mike Lindell. Sam and Nomiki debate the correlations between anti-science rhetoric and general misogyny, racism, and toxic masculinity from the alt-right, and they give a quick rundown on potential features of the reconciliation package, plus, your IMs!

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Sam and Emma host Milton Allimadi, publisher of The Black Star News and the author of Manufacturing Hate: How Africa Was Demonized In Western Media, to discuss the exploitative and racist depiction of African people and governments in US media coverage, before moving on to exploring the current conflict in Ethiopia in the Tigray region. They begin with Allimadi’s work on the African narrative created by US Journalists at the New York Times during decolonization that helped build a violent, impoverished, and chaotic image of Africa, emphasizing Africans as brutal and tribal, and establishing this image of the continent for the century moving forwards. Milton, Sam, and Emma look into how NYT clout dominated this discourse so heavily that Allimadi struggled for years coming out of Columbia to get his work published, before they begin to unpack the historical context for the current conflict between Ethiopia and Tigray. They discuss the history of military leadership following the fall of Haile Selassie, and the antagonistic relationship between the Ethiopian government and regions of Tigray and Eritrea, igniting a three-way conflict that would only begin to shift as the Eritrean-Ethiopian War came to a close, and began to center the Tigray region as Ethiopian and Eritrean forces invaded from either side. They discuss the land and independence-based rationale for the war, the devastating famine created by the Ethiopian blockade, and the role of the war on the greater continental and international levels, with PM Abiy Ahmed recently turning to China for infrastructural aid. Emma and Sam round out the first half by covering the continued rampant spread of the Delta variant as the US tries to get its act together to push back, and look into what this week might mean for the Infrastructure bill.

And in the Fun Half: Emma, Sam, and the MR crew cover the developments in the Colonial Pipeline spill, with the gas company, stunningly, incredibly underestimating the actual devastation caused by the leak, Matt discusses the role of Jury nullification in helping prohibit legal action against protesters or for minor drug offenses, and they watch Maria Bartiromo take Senator Cramer to task on the lack of racism in the infrastructure bill, until he finally fights her off by reminding her of the big bad shadow coming in from the East – China. Riley from ND calls in to show appreciation for the Cramer coverage and look into the GOP’s attempt to capitalize on their misinformation about Critical Race Theory in school board elections, Gorfalax and Sam dive into the role of Trump’s (still standing) tariffs and how they bolster monopoly, and the crew covers Joe Rogan’s reiteration of the age-old fear mongering behind public health provisions, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Sam and Emma are joined Derek Davison & Dan Bessner, co-hosts of the American Prestige Podcast. Derek and Dan start off by summarizing the first (almost) 200 days of the Biden Administration’s foreign policy in comparison with their original goals, looking into the continued establishment of liberal internationalism in his cabinet alongside his (slightly delayed) execution of Trump’s plan to withdraw troops from Afghanistan. They look into this tactic for hegemonic stabilization, with the U.S. drawing back from smaller conflicts on the world stage as we turn towards great power conflicts and competition with China, before Sam works backward with them, recalling the Project for a New American Century and the strategy of managing the small fires that break out on the international stage in order to ensure no challenge to U.S. hegemony. Sam, Dan, and Derek then discuss the continued drive for American universalism, particularly in contrast with the current Chinese presence on the world stage, that seems to be closer to embracing a multipolar world that coexists rather than the U.S. “city on a hill” tactic. They wrap up the interview by discussing the foreign policy legacy of the Trump Administration, touching on the Iran Nuclear Deal, the industrialization of drone warfare following Obama, as well as the complete restructuring of American discourse into stratified world views bringing out an epistemological crisis in the absence of consensus. Sam and Emma also talk about the Conservative anchor talking point on not giving medical recommendations, just giving recommendations not to listen to medical recommendations.

And in the Fun Half: Aamon Hawk joins the MR crew to discuss his incredible Sam/Crowder horror short, his cinematic inspirations, and how he got into animation, as Sam basks in his stardom. Then, Emma and Sam analyze the conservative claim that migrants are the cause of rising infection rates in Florida, somehow jumping over the border states Texas, Arizona, and New Mexico, and Tucker Carlson somehow (yet completely unsurprisingly) forgets the contents of the infrastructure bill in a rant, only correctly stating that it lacked features to “move the bums out” and “clean them”… whatever that means. They also touch on Kyrsten Sinema’s continued implementation of the five D’s (dodge, duck, dip, dive, and dodge) in discussing the possibility of taking a vote on actual policy, and Emma once against displays her killer "Pirate Amy Goodman" impression, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Direct download: 8_6_-_Casual_Friday_w__Derek_Davison_Dan_Bessner__Aamon_Hawk_-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:48pm EDT

Emma hosts writer Jess McHugh to discuss her recent book Americanon: An Unexpected U.S. History In Thirteen Bestselling Books, which focuses on the books that shaped and grew the myth of American Exceptionalism over the last couple of centuries. Beginning with the Old Farmer’s Almanac and Webster’s Dictionary, Jess and Emma walk through how these instructional books found their way into a majority of early American homes, working to construct an image of an ideal American – a republicanized, rural, man with familial, nationalistic, and northern values. Jess McHugh also discusses the web of elite men that connected these works to the ruling and political class, before they continue, chronologically, down the line of the creation of this American mythos, looking into the works of Betty Crocker to generate pride in domestic resignation for women, emphasizing their role in helping generate strong and patriotic men, particularly during the war effort. Next, McHugh and Emma explore how this birthed a genre of self-help books aimed at women in the later 1900s, and the interesting note that these two women-oriented projects aligned with the first and second waves of feminism. They round out the interview with discussions on how these works, while reinforcing a figure of American exceptionalism, worked to ignore and other minority figures n society, from the McGuffy Readers’ ignoring of the existence of indigenous folks in the espousing of Frontier Values, or how “Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Sex but Were Afraid to Ask” presented progressive, but continued to reinforce heterosexual and white supremacist notions of sex. After they reflect on the role of stories to help us grapple with and ignore problematic elements of our national identity, Emma reflects on DeSantis’s fear baiting whataboutism on Covid, while Florida still maintains a rate of 20% of new U.S. Covid cases.

And in the Fun Half: Brandon and Matt join as Emma works to beat the “former Cuomosexual” allegations, the crew covers Bill Gates’s affiliation with Jeffrey Epstein, that was, of course, fully business (never mind the certain businesses Epstein was involved in), and Tucker Carlson’s role in Viktor Orbán’s nationalist convention. Dave from Jamaica calls in to discuss funding models for media, and how the government can step in without influencing coverage, and Chi Chi from Tennessee continues the conversation on the role of media in bolstering the left, and reflects on the beauty and legacy of Michael Brooks. They wrap up the fun half by admiring the expertise of Meghan McCain on nepotism, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Sam and Emma host Matthew Cortland, Senior Fellow at Data for Progress, to discuss Supplemental Security Income restorative/legislative efforts, and right to repair activist Louis Rossmann to discuss the change in right to repair laws after Biden's competition executive order was signed into law. Sam, Emma, and Matthew cover the structural differences in disability social securities, such as SSI versus SSDI, and the importance of SSI in helping folks without income. They then move onto the crippling drawbacks to SSI, stemming both from the US’ cultural aversion to social safety nets and recent targeting from the right, including a maximum monthly supplement at a rate well below the poverty line and absurd qualifications that prevent disabled folks from saving assets for a rainy day or accepting help from friends unless they are willing to sacrifice their social security, before discussing what legislators are working to bolster SSI, and what number to text to push Schumer to include it in reconciliation (SIGN SSI NOW to 50409). Next, Louis Rossmann hops on to chat about the importance of the right to repair, how the issue is wrapped up in monopoly and anti-trust discussions, and what the fight for repair has looked like over the last decade. They cover the importance of the Massachusetts automotive right to repair bill, and the role of federalism in helping achieve targeted advancements in the accessibility of schematics and parts on a greater scale. Sam and Emma also chat Cori Bush success, Nina Turner disappointment, and developments in the new Biden eviction moratorium.

And in the fun half Sam and Emma are joined by Sean McElwee, Founding Executive Director of Data for Progress, to discuss the disappointing results for Nina Turner in Ohio's 11th Congressional District primary. Sean and the gang specifically looks into the importance of not giving the democratic establishment material for bad faith attacks that draw away from policy discussion – because the dark money will almost always be there to capitalize on it. Sam and Emma expand the importance of knowing that power will always push back, and emphasize the importance of taking on battles where progress can actually be made, before watching Asa Hutchinson’s awkward backtracking on his previous anti-vax mandate legislation, and Ben Shapiro’s failure to understand how contagion works. They also chat with Oscar from NoLa on DACA, and another caller takes the wrong route to addressing transphobia and problematic comments from Vaush, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Sam and Emma host journalist Ross Barkan, writer of the Political Currents by Ross Barkan newsletter on Substack, to discuss his recent book The Prince: Andrew Cuomo, Coronavirus, and the Fall of New York, which covers the rollercoaster of Governor Andrew Cuomo's legacy since the start of the pandemic. They start with a mention of the recent report from Attorney General Letitia James's Office confirming myriad instances of sexual harassment by the governor, before they backtrack to start at the beginning of his legacy in working with his father, former Governor of New York Mario, who helped him to achieve a high ranking position in the Clinton administration. Ross, Emma, and Sam explore how Mario’s administration reflected many qualities of Andrew’s, including a combative relationship with the left, and set the stage for Andrew’s clamor for power in New York State. This was followed by multiple terms in which he sought to bolster moderate and Republican power in the State Senate, through the creation of the Independent Democratic Conference to create a bipartisan majority, shifting progressive Democrats out of power. They explore the development of Andrew’s role on the national stage, from a middling governor with mediocre approval ratings to a pandemic hero, over the course of the first year of the pandemic as he stood in juxtaposition with President Trump – all despite largely taking on similar positions are the offset, including undermining the value of testing and underemphasizing the risk – before they move onto the crumbling of his pedestal following the reports on his coverup of mass deaths in nursing homes, and the recent reports regarding his sexual harassment. They wrap up the interview looking forward at the potential impeachment of Cuomo, or if he might continue to run for a fourth term if he holds onto office, before Sam and Emma conclude the first half with an update on Cori Bush’s protest of the lifting of the eviction moratorium as the pandemic reaches another peak.

And in the Fun Half: Nomiki joins Sam and Emma as they delve a little deeper into the official report regarding Andrew Cuomo’s sexual harassment, and what it might look like moving forwards, particularly given Cuomo’s track record of successfully avoiding repercussions (see: the Moreland Commission), and discuss the possibilities in who could fill his seat, before they look into the insanely Cuomo-typical PowerPoint defense he levied against today’s reports. They also cover Matt Walsh’s “owning property is slavery” argument and its complementary “everything is the holocaust” discussion Republicans are having around the pandemic, Manchin and Graham’s bipartisan effort in boosting Covid spread in Congress, and developing debates around the infrastructure bill(s), plus, your calls and IMs!

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Direct download: 8_3_Cuomos_Reign_Over_New_York_w__Ross_Barkan_-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:53pm EDT

Sam and Emma host David Dayen, Executive Editor at The American Prospect, to discuss the White House and Congress's inability to keep the federal eviction moratorium from lapsing, leaving thousands of renters' livelihoods in the balance. Beginning with Trump’s initial implementation of the moratorium, Dayen walks through the extensions leading up to the Supreme Court decision that found, while permissible for now, the moratorium had no grounds to be extended one more without congressional approval, all leading up to a lack of action by the Biden Administration until the final days of the moratorium. David, Emma, and Sam delve into this primary failing of the administration to either take action themselves – or at least prepare the legislature on some level for a vote on the matter – as well as the swift cop-out by Democratic House leadership to immediately shift the blame back onto Biden, before moving onto the complete disarray of American social services, as emphasized by the failure to distribute the tens of billions of dollars allocated for rental assistance. After looking into how the concept of “precedent” has prevented taking action, regardless of permanence, to genuinely help people, Sam, David, and Emma discuss the relationship between the progressive caucus and Democratic leadership, the importance of AOC’s and Cori Bush’s pressure, even if it only shifts Democrats inches, and why a mutually adversarial relationship is necessary to push their co-party members further to the left. Sam and Emma look further into AOC and Bush’s response to the House’s failure to act on the moratorium, and how the leadership has begun to push back on them.

Then in the Fun Half: Benjamin P. Dixon of The Benjamin Dixon Show joins from the road as he gives on-the-ground updates on the OH-11 special congressional election, Nina Turner’s chances, and John from SA calls in later to touch on a few final numbers from the race. The MR crew discusses road trips, their favorite highways, Jeff from GA calls in from NY to discuss the failures of the legislature and the pride held in the senate of that very element, and AOC comes out to say that the progressives have put their foot down when it comes to getting two bills passed for infrastructure. Lastly, chairman of the OK GOP, John Bennett, recalls the harrowing beginnings of the Holocaust with Jewish folks being told to stay safe and not shop in grocery stores without a mask, before the crew admires Dave Rubin’s commitment to taking on big tech as he announces his departure from the grid in order to plan his destruction of Twitter, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Direct download: 8_2_-_Eviction_Moratorium_Finger-Pointing_w__David_Dayen_-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:37pm EDT

Sam and Emma host Alex Pareene (@pareene), staff writer at The New Republic and co-host of the podcast The Politics of Everything, to wrap up this week's events before Matthew Film Guy (@langdonboom) drops by afterwards! Alex, Emma, and Sam explore the lingering effects of Donald Trump, starting with the developments on the Jan. 6 commission and touching on the failure of his Texas Senatorial endorsement, before they discuss how the lingering shadow of Trump will help boost Democratic engagement at the polls in 2022, while the lack of him actually running won’t necessarily draw out his full base. They, then, move onto the delays in the Portman-Sinema infrastructure bill, highlighting Sinema’s love for theatrics and a good photo-op, and how her role in bipartisanship, despite her performance, doesn’t have the same security of being a Dem in a red state, like Manchin, or with deep political roots in their state, like Joe Lieberman. Next, they take suggestions from Robert Rector’s piece admitted that just giving money to poor people helps solve poverty, and reflect on the success of the pandemic payments in doing the same. Sam and Emma wrap up the first half with the continued absurd performance of Republican outrage over pandemic protections, and Joe Biden’s response to a question on vaccine mandates.

And in the Fun Half: Matthew Film Guy joins once again to cover the most important topics in film today, from the impact of the pandemic on independent filmmaking (including the release of Black Bear, edited by him!) to drawing more youthful audiences to the theater. He also gives his top cinema recommendations, including, Breaker Morant, Lost Horizon, and Lee Chang-Dong’s Poetry, with Emma, Matt, and Bradley (after Sam drops out) touching on their recent cinema takes and the role of the ever eccentric Nicholas Cage in pop culture. Sam rejoins partway through as Emma covers Alan Dershowitz reminding Laura Ingraham that the constitution, indeed, does not cover anything regarding vaccinations, and Meghan McCain’s discussion on nepotism (definitely not from experience though). Sam and Emma round out the fun half with J**** D***’s continued targeted misogyny, and how his clamor for reactionary views has led him to become a person that should, in his own words, be disqualified from polite society. Plus, your IMs!

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Direct download: 7_30_Casual_Friday_w__Alex_Pareene_and_Matthew_Film_Guy_-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:46pm EDT

Emma hosts Martin Sherwin, University Professor of History at George Mason University, to discuss his recent book Gambling With Armageddon: Nuclear Roulette From Hiroshima To The Cuban Missile Crisis, on how war on the international stage changed when we entered the nuclear age. They begin with the moments in the climax of the Cuban Missile Crisis, and how, despite Kennedy, Castro, and Khrushchev being viewed as the main actors, the world came minutes from nuclear warfare without any of them knowing, calling into question any level of control in this crisis. Then, Emma and Martin bring us back to the bombing of Hiroshima, and how the United States could’ve put a stop to them by denouncing them, but instead legitimized them and instilled them as a symbol of American supremacy, before looking into Eisenhower’s role in putting nuclear devices at the forefront of warfare post-WWII, centering them in the arms race with the USSR and using the CIA for outlying reformist (aka Communist to the US) governments – thus setting the stage for the Bay of Pigs. Sherwin gets into the vast differences in worldviews that pulled our relationship with Cuba in all sorts of directions, from Kennedy’s use of Cuba to posture in the lead-up to his election, forcing his hand in the Bay of Pigs conflict, and ensuring he must act in the Cuban Missile Crisis, to the countless war hawks advising him. He concludes the interview reflecting on the importance of overlapping views on the conflict between Khrushchev and Kennedy in bringing it to a close, and how close we came to nuclear warfare despite that. Emma rounds out the first half by touching on Nancy Pelosi’s maintenance of college loan debt as a social mobility tax, working up her best libertarian excuses to take it out of Biden’s hands.

And in the Fun Half: Emma, Brandon, and Matt talk about the CDC’s need for a new face for their messaging, Chris from Seattle discusses what influence the left can take from the 80s PSA crash test dummies, and Brandon waxes poetic on what might be necessary to move leftism into mainstream common sense logic. Next, Emma gets her way as the fun half shifts to sports, looking into the NFL’s vaccine conundrum and the sect of athletes sticking to their anti-science staff, before they move onto intra-Italian-American antagonism as Chris Cuomo takes on a New York chef’s new exclusive rules against vaccinated consumers. Cory from Indianapolis gives a couple updates on continued police abuse and brutality, Brian from the Poconos touches on the right’s new election audit, and Brandon nails the take on great yard sign debate, plus, your calls and IMs!
 
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Sam and Emma host Matt Stoller, Director of Research at the American Economic Liberties Project and author of the Substack newsletter Big, to discuss the state of antitrust reform in the U.S., as well as the Biden administration's recent antitrust-heavy appointments to the DOJ and FTC. They begin with the state of Biden’s presidency and how he has shown his populist roots (outside of fundraising), appointing Lina Khan and Jonathan Kanter to the FTC and DOJ, respectively, in an attempt to take on the concentrated power dominating – and hindering – our economy. They also touch on the importance of antitrust regulations in a self-sustaining economy, how our competition with China is used to prevent going after big tech in a wholesale manner, and the absurdity of considering supply chains and monopoly law as outside of the political realm. Stoller, Emma, and Sam then get into how the current state of leftist ideology doesn’t consider trade as inherently political, ignoring reformation that can have material impact in governance, instead, digging their feet into an anti-government stance, before wrapping up the conversation on what to expect from Biden’s Administration moving forwards, and why democrats should move towards anti-trust regulations as an easy (and impactful) win in the public eye. Sam and Emma wrap up the first half by exploring the developments in the Daniel Hale whistleblowing case, and checking in on the Jan. 6 select committee hearing’s affirmation of the disgusting events of the insurrection attempt.

And in the Fun Half: Zachary from Birmingham calls in to join continue the discussion Stoller started in the first half, which Bro Flamingo picks up on, touching on why he finds still the left as the more productive players in active governance, even if they could do more. They also touch on why the liberal superiority complex, while annoying, is not a primary issue in the discussion around masking, before Emma takes on the moral posturing of the classic “in this house” liberal platitudes sign, no matter how much they truly believe that immigrants are real and no science is illegal. The MR crew also looks into the continued chaos around conservatives coverage of the vaccine, and their refusal to let go of undermining public health before basking in the glory of Matt Gaetz being accosted during a press conference with MTG, and discussing the white supremacy ingrained in the mythos and policy that built America with Adam from Tiwa lands in NM. We say one more goodbye to Brendan, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Direct download: 7_28_-The_State_of_Antitrust_Policy_w__Matt_Stoller_-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:52pm EDT

 

Sam and Emma host Rosa Brooks, law professor at Georgetown University, to discuss her recent book Tangled Up In Blue: Policing in the American City, and her experiences as a part-time volunteer reserve police officer in Washington, D.C. Professor Brooks discusses how she came to the topic; following her work on “How Everything Became War and The Military Became Everything,” she picks up on the trail of the normalized violence of American policing and looks into the behind-the-scenes elements of how officers grapple with and make sense of their role. Beginning with the academy, Brooks walks through how the culture of policing emphasizes danger, defense, and discipline – exploring how police overstate the threat to their livelihood in the line of duty, encouraging the use of force whenever deemed necessary. Next, she, Sam, and Emma talk about the changes in the academy over the last half-decade, both as reforms slowly trickle in and younger generations begin to take hold of departments, how we can assess the success of reforms and consent decrees during a period in which crime has continued to drop (wow maybe crime CAN be a product of policing), and why even police acting within legal and constitutional guidelines engage in incredibly harmful behavior. They round out the interview with a conversation on why Rosa feels reform must be embraced, and why the conversation on policing should be focused on imagining new systems of safety, rather than on budgetary punishments of police departments. Emma and Sam conclude the show by admiring Republicans dealing with the whiplash of trying to backpedal on their own lies, and Sam addresses rumors regarding his concealed arms and the lack of his guns being out, despite the sun being out.

And in the Fun Half: Nomiki Konst joins Sam and Emma as they discuss conservative commentators succumbing to francophilia amidst their hatred for woke athletes, Meghan McCain’s horror over someone holding Tucker Carlson accountable (she might be next!), and Nomiki catches some flack for her invite to the McCain dinner party. They also cover the conservatives' double backing on their double backing on their vaccine hesitancy, the destructive capacity of Democrats clinging to power, and the influence of the money behind right-wing commentary. The fun half gets wrapped up with discussions on dropping crime alongside rising conservative discussion about crime, and some reflecting on today’s interview on policing and defunding the police, plus your calls and IMs!

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Emma hosts Tom Zoellner, Professor at Chapman University and political editor at the Los Angeles Review of Books, to discuss his recent book “Island on Fire: The Revolt That Ended Slavery in the British Empire,” on the Jamaican rebellion of 1831 and the abolition of slavery in the British Empire. Professor Zoellner situates us between the Haitian revolution and the U.S. Civil War, centuries into the institution of slavery in the Caribbean with the drive for manumission beginning to bubble over, before touching on how British slavery came to the island, with Oliver Cromwell’s claiming of colonies, such as Jamaica, from other European empires. Next, he and Emma delve into the progression of abolitionist action in Jamaica from the 18th to 19th Centuries, with Tacky’s Rebellion setting the stage for the success of Baptist and Methodist missionaries in establishing a movement of enslaved peoples’ organization and self-determination. They, then, move onto the role of Sam Sharpe, an enslaved Jamaican who capitalized on the growing literacy and religious solidarity among his fellow slaves by organizing the 1831 general strike that would grow into the rebellion, and how his tactics reflect those used by rebellious groups throughout history, before he was executed by the British colonizers in 1832. Zoellner wraps up the interview by looking into how the news of the rebellion eventually reached London and resulted in the determination that the institution of slavery was simply no longer worthwhile, and how, despite the only reparations going to slaveholders, the abolition of slavery in the British Empire saw celebration by abolitionists across the western world. Emma concludes the first half with discussions on Donald Trump’s claim to vaccine fame and Rep. Cliff Bentz’s attempt to blame rising forest fires on the buildup of all that darn wood that never used to be there!

And in the Fun Half: Dave from Jamaica expresses his frustration with the failure of history classes to appropriately teach the Jamaican rebellion and how its causes are reflected today, and engages the MR crew in a discussion on how this can be combatted across the globe. They touch on NYC’s new vaccination requirements, the rampant rates of the delta variant, and inquire as to what it would actually take for the U.S. to properly address the pandemic, before the episode moves into some good schadenfreude as Matthew of Philly gives an update on a win for Amazon employees and the crew admires one citizen’s accosting of Tucker Carlson as an incredibly enjoyable, even if not productive, clip from this weekend. Warren from Toronto calls in to talk sports, culture war, and progressivism, and Matt Walsh defends his daughters’ honor from dishonorably serving with honor for an honest imperialist cause, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Sam and Emma host Ari Rabin-Havt, the former Legislative Director and Chief Policy Advisor to Senator Bernie Sanders, to discuss the prospects of the Senate bipartisan infrastructure bill, as well as the budget reconciliation bill that's supposed to follow it. Then, David Feldman (@David_Feldman_) joins the show in the fun half! Emma, Sam, and Ari discuss the continuous consternation among the Portman-Sinema gang of 10+5, why the timeline has pushed the reconciliation bill into the issue of the infrastructure package, and get into the numbers of it, how they might change, and why the CBO’s role in setting the numbers will have to be worked around. They get into bipartisan fetish shaming, why the moderates are fighting an impossible game as Republicans continue to find new parameters and make-or-break issues, before rounding out the infrastructure discussion by touching on how democrats can ensure they spend what they need to, Schumer using last weeks vote to try to force Republican’s hand and get their amendments into the bill, and what he’s looking to do get into moving this process forwards. Lastly, they talk filibuster and the Sinema-Manchin shield that helps Dems avoid hard votes. Then, the ever emotionally intelligent David Feldman, of the David Feldman Show, joins to discuss the childish nature of marching for M4A, the importance of anonymous donation – such as his most recent gift to the Michael Brooks Legacy Foundation – and why Jimmy Dore, the true everyman moron that always gets it right, nailed his three-dimensional diarrhea on the American oligarchy, before Feldman connects this back to the march for M4A, and why the true oligarchs (AOC and the Squad) are the real reason M4A hasn’t come to pass.

And in the Fun Half: Emma and Sam cover the Biden Administration’s bolstering of Cuban sanctions, and Mick Wallace’s kick-ass speech at the EU on the hypocrisy of the West when it comes to Cuba. They also touch on Missouri’s Supreme Court expansion of medicare, Mike Lindell’s clear-cut data on election fraud, and Byron calls in from Seattle to take on Emma and Sam’s stance on lobbying because of all those progressive corporations it would stymy from stopping climate change. We finally get the big reveal of our new crew member, Bradley, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Direct download: 7_23_Casual_Friday_w__Ari_Rabin-Havt_and_David_Feldman_-_Freebie.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:49pm EDT

Emma hosts Van Gosse, Professor and Associate Chair of History at Franklin & Marshall University, to discuss his recent book “The First Reconstruction: Black Politics in America from the Revolution to the Civil War,” on the political role of Black folks before their constitutional emancipation, and how their pre-Civil War work has been erased over time. Beginning with the Revolutionary War, Professor Gosse walks through how emancipation did not start in 1863, but began in the north immediately following independence – even including enfranchisement for both Black taxpayers and women, with 10 of 13 colonies having no racial bar for voting at the time of the Dred Scott decision. He and Emma look into the different forms of emancipation following the revolution, and how northern New England saw a judicial, rather than gradual, emancipation, with Black people holding party offices, working polls, and taking part in patronage, before they touch on how white folks in New England would look to Black voters for validation of the Wigs’ fight for manumission. Next, Van and Emma move onto the roles of Black constituencies in different states, with Philly serving as the center for free Black folk in the north and Black New Yorkers engaging in a massive multi-decade political project in the early 1800s to take on a drastically more political role. They conclude the interview with disenfranchisement as a tactic to rally white voters, the white-washing project in US history to obscure Black folks’ role in fighting for progress, and explore the problematic nature of a progressive view of history. Emma rounds out the first half by watching Biden cling to his childhood dream of bipartisanship at his CNN Town Hall.

And in the Fun Half: The crew discusses their most conservative takes, from gun ownership to modern art to the grandmother fashion aesthetic, Republicans’ embrace over impending biblical disasters, and Ben Shapiro defends the billionaire space race with the popularly known fact that Jeff Bezos pays like allll of the taxes and totally self-funds, despite Jeff himself admitting that the money came from Amazon workers. Then, Nick from Japan calls in to talk taking on tech with more than just anti-trust, the crew discusses Emmanuel Acho emerging as the newest inflammatory sports personality, and whether Bitcoin has the capabilities of world peace, or if the aggregation of mass amounts of wealth maybe isn’t conducive to peace and equity, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Sam hosts Heidi Boghosian, the executive director of the A.J. Muste Memorial Institute, to discuss her recent book, “I Have Nothing To Hide: And 20 Other Myths About Surveillance and Privacy.” They explore the importance of taking action as individuals, fighting for the autonomy to reveal information to who we want to, and how the government keeps tabs on more of us than we think. After a quick discussion on self-censorship, Sam and Heidi explore the developments in the surveillance state since 9/11, including the normalization in the population through deputization of community members and neighbors through programs like TIPS, and how that has progressed with mass technological developments at home, such as Amazon Ring. They discuss how this served to set up the recent case around the Pegasus app, and the surveillance of activists and journalists seeking to undermine ideas and stories that might challenge the status quo, before looking into how government agencies can get around legal restrictions on data collection by outsourcing to private companies. They conclude the interview with why metadata, even anonymous, can say a lot, and what we can do to turn the tide. Sam also touches on Jeff Bezos’ multimillion-dollar space race reenactment, with personally tailored costumes, and the absurdity of the celebration of the launch as American exceptionalism.

And in the Fun Half: The right has suddenly begun a switch on vaccine skepticism, only a few hundreds of thousands of deaths into the pandemic, though Marjorie Taylor Green and Laura Ingraham, unsurprisingly, didn’t get the message. Then, Ren from Oregon calls in to expand on data tracking of metadata, the crew discusses a Candace Owens v. MTG presidential run, Dave Rubin wants to relive the start of the pandemic, and Tim Pool comes to King Louis XVI’s defense in the face of the French Revolution. Emily from Colombus calls in to discuss the developments on the horrors of residential schools in the US, and Josh from Houston recalls his favorite of Michael’s personal deconstructions, this one of Sam Harris, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Sam and Emma host Cristina Beltran, Associate Professor and Director of Graduate Studies at New York University, to discuss her recent book, Cruelty As Citizenship: How Migrant Suffering Sustains White Democracy, on the project of whiteness that has built the United States, and why the backlash to a changing racial consciousness in the US has seen a focus on immigration policy. Professor Beltran walks through the history of this project and how the American experiment was grounded in a civic duty that drove displacement and segregation. Beginning with the settler-colonial drive westward and the duty of individuals to claim space and build it up as their own, she explores how this civic role continued to build up this concept of white democracy, before moving into the segregation era and how, through public enforcement, segregation became a democratic project for white citizens. After the fall of Jim Crow in the 60s, the only remaining population that could be vocally dominated under the rule of law became the migrant population. Emma, Sam, and Cristina explore how this logic of domination is ingrained in the western idea of citizenship, to rule and be ruled, and discuss the tyrannical pleasure promoted by it, before they look into the absence of a sharing mentality in American culture, and how these elements of the American psyche result in zero-sum views of freedom, representation, and citizenship. They conclude with a greater discussion on the relationship between Latinx voters and immigration policy, and Sam and Emma begin reflecting on the joy and beauty of Michael Brooks.

And in the Fun Half: The MR Crew dedicates the second half of today’s show to remember the wonder and positivity that the late Michael Brooks brought to countless lives. Lisha Brooks, Bhaskar Sunkara, Joshua Kahn Russell, Djene Bajalan, and Wosny Lambre join to celebrate the hilarity, empathy, intelligence, love, and humanity that Michael spread wherever he went, sharing stories from his days at MR and TMBS, from personal and professional perspectives, and reflecting on the growth he encouraged in himself and those around him. Josh from Chicago and Ronald Raygun also call in to share their Michael tales and favorite impressions, plus your calls and IMs!

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Sam and Emma host Dr. Michael Osterholm, the Director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota, to discuss the state of COVID-19 as it stands here in the States and around the world. Dr. Osterholm walks through the dual pandemics facing the globe right now – the one we have at home in the U.S. being tacked with vaccines, and the raging one going on in countless largely unvaccinated countries with no resources to take it on – and looks at the current spikes occurring internationally, including Tokyo, Iran, South Africa, and countless more. Then, he, Emma, and Sam explore the three main concerns with the Delta variant – including rises in infection rates, illness severity, and evading immune protection from vaccines or infection – they walk through differing mask efficacies, and how the patterns of this pandemic drastically differ from the pandemic of 1918. Lastly, the three of them look into how focusing on boosting the currently vaccinated population, while a legitimate concern, is not as important in preventing the further progression of variants as helping to bolster vaccination rates in countries with no pandemic infrastructure. Emma and Sam wrap of the first half by touching on the right’s reprehensible disinformation campaign around COVID, from Alex Berenson’s presence on Tucker Carlson and Ron DeSantis’ destructive role as, you know, Governor of Florida.

And in the Fun Half: Meghan McCain says #NotALLfoxhosts, defending Fox’s vaccine coverage on the grounds that one host admitted to getting vaccinated, Sam looks into Joe Biden’s response to Facebook’s COVID misinformation and the importance of anti-trust solutions in pushing back on big tech, and Pradip from India picks up on the discussion of slavery as economically unviable and spitballs some takes on welfare. Then, Guy from Quebec chats political strategy in Canada versus the U.S., Fabio from Colombia calls in to inquire about the best debaters on the Left, the crew discusses the violent gap between American opinions on right of return for Cubans versus Palestinians, and Sam gives us one of his best name-drops yet. Kovidh from Iran calls in to discuss anti-imperialism, propaganda, and international left strategy, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Direct download: 7_19_-_The_State_of_the_Virus_w__Dr._Michael_Osterholm_-_MR_Live_-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:44pm EDT

Sam and Emma host David Dayen, executive editor at the American Prospect, on his upcoming Infrastructure newsletter, “Infrastructure Summer,” and the recent developments with Biden’s legislative agenda. They begin with a discussion on the current state of the Infrastructure Package, its emphasis on “human” infrastructure over brick and mortar spending, and the thought process behind Sen. Schumer potentially forcing a test vote next week. They look into the Democrats’ classic revenue-versus-spending problem, furthered by the complete Republican opposition to any tax hike, and the importance of emphasizing the return on the investments in the citizenry with human infrastructure and by taking on prescription drug prices. They additionally touch on rumors around dropping the medicare age (and its unlikelihood), and explore Biden’s recent executive order tackling anti-trust and anti-monopoly issues in an expansive manner – even taking on prescription drug companies – before looking into what Biden has been failing to do, and what to look for moving forward. Emma and Sam also touch on the boost of the child tax credits, what Dems should do to capitalize on their popularity moving forwards, and the staff bids Brendan farewell after four great years, and Sam drops a few hints on who might be coming in to make up for his absence.

And in the Fun Half: Alacrity from Alabama makes the return he’s been waiting for as he takes on minimum wage, Terry from Indiana calls in to deliver a wholesome thank you, and Brent from Michigan gets a little airtime to rant against conservative outrage against Critical Race Theory. Then, the crew chats about Sam’s political roots, before looking into Tucker Carlson’s – from his first notes of inspiration talking about Bill O’Reilly’s facade in the face of Fox viewers to taking on the mantle of crying “race war.” Grant Stinchfield uncovers the big conspiracy occurring in the networks of the military-industrial complex (woke Marxism) as Emma speculates on the potential implications of this for a non-binary bay of pigs, and Sam admires Erik Finman, Prophet of the grift, and his new “Freedom Phone,” plus, your calls and IMs!

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Support the St. Vincent Nurses today as they continue to strike for a fair contract! https://action.massnurses.org/we-stand-with-st-vincents-nurses/

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Direct download: 7_16_21__Casual_Friday_w__David_Dayen_-_MR_Live_-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:48pm EDT

Emma hosts Jim Freeman, director of the Social Movement Support Lab, to discuss his new book, "Rich Thanks to Racism: How the Ultra-Wealthy Profit From Racial Injustice," to discuss the hidden strategies behind systemic racism in America. Freeman walks through his concept of strategic racism and how the U.S. Government refuses to properly address policies that result in racialized violence and inequity due to the economic benefits for the ultra-wealthy. Looking at organizations like ALEC and the Heritage Foundation, and individuals such as Charles Koch and Bill Gates, Emma and Jim walk through how neoliberal policy has followed the interests of private actors. They look at the recent movement to privatize education through charter schools and vouchers as a unifying development for billionaires writ large, bringing together Gates and Koch, despite their vastly different public personas, and completely devastating the public educate systems in poorer Black and brown communities, and discuss the role of the carceral state in both financially benefitting capitalists with slave labor and maintaining docility to the status quo. Freeman also looks into how the brutally violent suppression tactics of the criminal justice system serve as a blueprint for both immigration policy and the military-industrial complex, before Emma and he round out the interview with the importance of reframing the conversation around the structural reinforcement of profit despite pain and recognizing the importance of widespread solidarity and coalition. Emma finishes up the show by focusing on the absurd coverage of the Cuba protests among the right, ignoring the horrors of the multi-decade-long U.S. embargo that has maintained economic sanctions through an international pandemic and, unsurprisingly, going straight for the Bay of Pigs pt. 2.

And in the Fun Half: Emma, Brandon, and Matt discuss Newsmax’s weird centering of baseball and football in a rant on the U.S.’s impact on the geopolitical realm, Spike Lee going full bitcoin bro in his politics and carnival barker in his fashion sense, and Dogecoin founder Jackson Palmer’s thread on the inherently pro-capitalist nature of crypto. Next, the crew covers Candace Owen’s new talk show and her pitch of communism being the true infection of Covid-19, before Dave from Jamaica discusses the false promise of the 21st-century space race, and Robert from Louisiana gives an anti-welfare argument possibly more confusing and condescending than the actual U.S. welfare system, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Sam and Emma host Spencer Headworth, professor of Sociology at Purdue University to discuss his recent book, “Policing Welfare: Punitive Adversarialism in Public Assistance,” on how welfare law enforcement has crippled public assistance programs. Professor Headworth begins by walking through what the U.S. sees as welfare, focusing on public assistance like TANF and SNAP, rather than social security or disability insurance, reinforcing the stigmatism of the “deserving” versus “undeserving” poor. Spencer then walks Emma and Sam through his research that led him to the role of federally mandated welfare investigators, and how he highlighted the investigative units in five states to look into both their roles within the welfare state at large and within the state’s incarceration rates and overall socioeconomic status. They also walk through the devastating influence of community reporting in welfare fraud, pitting neighbors against neighbors, and how welfare recipients sacrifice their fourth amendment rights at the hands of investigators’ surveillance practices, before looking into how these enforcement units serve to reinforce the stigmatization of welfare recipients while, themselves, furthering the money lost through public “assistance.” After briefly covering how these bipartisan policies came through the neoliberal consensus around ending welfare and taking on crime in the 80s and 90s, they round out the interview by touching on the role of race in these investigations. Emma and Sam round out the free half by covering the absolute failure of the Democrats to capitalize on the contradiction of McConnell’s pseudo-pro vaccine stance while simultaneously promoting and bolstering the anti-vax Trumpian wing of his party.

And in the Fun Half: Sam and Emma reflect on the failures of means-tested welfare systems, and the fraud that’s baked into them, before touching on some big developments to the Infrastructure Bill, including updates on the ultra-important lowering of the medicare availability age and Republicans maybe coming around to helping their constituents now that they realize it could make China look bad. G.W. Bush reflects on his um feminist (?) occupation of Afghanistan, driven home by the slaughter of citizens regardless of gender, and the crew covers some criticism of the show’s engagement with alt-right figures like Crowder and Dave Rubin, and why engaging with folks outside of the Left, both the bring them over and to bring them down, has been incredibly important to the Majority Report. Stephanie from Minnesota calls in to discuss how the mainstream left tends to leave behind queer folks and people of color in their rescue missions from the alt-right, providing a depth of insight with her own experiences is leaving those depths of the web behind, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Sam and Emma host Ari Berman, writer at Mother Jones and author of Give Us the Ballot: The Modern Struggle for Voting Rights in America (2015), to discuss the restrictive voting bill making its way through the Texas State Legislature in a special session called by Governor Abbott, which has led Texas Democrats to leave the state to avoid meeting a quorum for the vote. They discuss the trajectory of the voting rights struggle since Ari wrote his book, the amount of laws like this going through statehouses across the country, the "godfather of redistricting" Richard Hofeller, John Roberts's lifelong crusade against the Voting Rights Act, Republicans "institutionalizing the Big Lie", what Ari would do if Joe Biden asked him how to bring federal voting rights legislation home through this Congress ahead of the President's big speech today in Philadelphia, and how filibuster reform is what all of these discussions run through.

And in the fun half, former Trump State Department spox Morgan Ortagus gets her Asian countries mixed up when coining her catchphrase "the Genocide Olympics" on Fox News, Dave Rubin wonders aloud why no towns in Africa have been wiped out due to COVID, a NewsMax interview gets weird when Rob Finnerty asks a medical doctor "...why should vaccines...get in the way of nature?" House Minority Leader and Martin Luther King acolyte Kevin McCarthy sermonizes with Dave Rubin (in a repeat appearance on the program) about how the late Reverend would despise Critical Race Theory, and Maria Bartiromo wonders aloud with the former President as to why Ashli Babbitt was shot "climbing out of a window" on January 6th (????) Plus, your calls and IM's!

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Sam and Emma host author Elinor Cleghorn to discuss her new book, “Unwell Women: Misdiagnosis and Myth in a Man-Made World” on how healthcare and medical treatment have underserved women and their health needs. They start the conversation by discussing Elinor’s personal experiences that brought her to this topic, focused on years of dismissal and misdiagnosis focused on her reproductive system before she was officially diagnosed with an autoimmune disease, and how this reflects the dynamic around gender and sex in the medical industry. Then, Cleghorn walks Sam and Emma through a long history of the development of the medical practice, including the Hippocratic authors filtering their interpretation of symptoms into diagnosis through social roles and reproduction, the influence of religious myths, such as the creation story of Adam and Eve, on altering the view of female bodies, and how developments around women’s health in the 19th Century were constantly dominated by abusive medical practices and experimentation on enslaved women, with the former continuing well into the 1900s. Emma and Sam round out the free half with a discussion on the firing of a contemporary issues teacher for assigning a Ta-Nehisi Coates article within the greater cultural context of conservatives screaming “anti-white agenda” despite the actual underlying power dynamics in U.S. education.

And in the Fun Half: Donald Trump Jr. gives a chaotic update of his top 25 State rankings, including a little Texas bump mid-speech, Gregory from OK calls in to announce his candidacy for HD-26 in the Oklahoma State House of Representatives, and Rami from Atlanta delivers the devastating news to Yaron and Libertarian’s everywhere that private company-led research tends to be quite biased. After Sandy calls in from Ontario to cover the inhuman hypocrisies of Justin Trudeau on the welfare of Indigenous Canadians, Sam and Emma look into Rick Scott’s policy outlines on “no woke stuff” and “having great values,” and Walter Shaub worries about how Hunter Biden’s art sales might cause a path for presidential bribery, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Direct download: 7_12_The_Historical_Misogyny_of_Medicine_w__Elinor_Cleghorn_-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:09pm EDT

Sam and Emma host Pascal Robert of the This is Revolution podcast to discuss the Moïse assassination in Haiti as a product of neoliberalism and colonialism, before they touch on the US’s foreign policy role in the Caribbean, and what Eric Adams’s Democratic primary victory means for progressive democrats moving forward. Emma, Sam, and Pascal start with the context for the Western occupation of Haiti, starting with the Haitian Revolution that forced the French, Spanish, and British armies off of the Island after centuries of brutal enslavement and abuse under settler-colonialism, with attempts by the French to reclaim the country continuing into the 19th Century. Next, Robert walks us through the U.S.’ role as one of the biggest beneficiaries of Haitian independence, with the Louisiana Purchase stemming as a direct result, and how we took advantage of the continued inequality and lack of colonial power with an occupation of Haiti from 1915-34, extracting what resources we could, and a return to colonial practices under neoliberalism, with U.S. backed Dictators as the only leaders with any prolonged stay in office since the Regan administration. They wrap up the interview by looking into how the assassination of Moïse came to be, stemming from conflict with a largely non-Haitian Oligarchical class that the U.S. likely could not stand by any longer, and Pascal Roberts discusses the importance of the Black and Creole middle classes in how the country moves forwards. Sam and Emma round out the first half with Steve Schmidt’s return to his strategy of using terrorism to turn a profit – first with 9/11, and now 1/6.

And in the Fun Half: Loudnie from Montreal calls in to explore the roles of the US and UN in Haiti over the last couple of decades, Ellis from FL asks a few questions on the upcoming infrastructure bill that don’t quite have answers, and Sam and Emma watch Tucker Carlson hit all of his favorite topics, from the Nationalistic hubris he and Jesse Waters show in the face of the mass displacement and genocide of Indigenous Americans, to declaring that promoting the vaccine is Eugenics (but not the kind he supports) just months after declaring that giving the vaccine to poor folks but not wealthy was also Eugenics. Then, Alacrity from Alabama explains why slavery was wrong actually because it WASN’T useful to Capitalists, despite all of the free labor, since it delayed the technological developments of the Industrial Revolution, which was funded by profits from… the slave trade, Josh from Chicago looks into the wins the left had in NY Primaries, even outside of the DSA, and Nancy Pelosi does whatever she can to avoid promoting medicare or party unity, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Direct download: 7_9_Casual_Friday_w__Pascal_Robert_-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:20pm EDT

Emma hosts political reporter David Freedlander to discuss his new book, The AOC Generation: How Millennials Are Seizing Power and Rewriting the Rules of American Politics, on the young insurgent left in American politics and how grassroots political organization is bringing material change to communities across the country, before he and Emma give a debrief on the NYC Democratic primary. Beginning with AOC’s 2015 election, Freedlander walks through how her experiences as a disillusioned millennial with a commitment to engaging with on-the-ground organizing put her in the perfect position to take on the two-headed monster of Crowley’s NYC political machine and the DNC, and then he touches on how she and the rest of the squad, despite a lack of internal political clout, have been able to frame the conversation around progressive policies. Next, he and Emma explore the continued pushback by establishment Dems on progressive action, such as Hakeem Jeffries’ super PAC launched to combat the Justice Democrats, before they look into Eric Adams’ success in the NYC Mayoral primary. David and Emma explore both the contradictions of framing oneself as both “tough on crime” and the “reform candidate,” and how still this seems to be reflective of Adams’ political past, from pitching using spyware on children while also campaigning against stop-and-frisk, and then move on to the lessons the left can learn from the NY Democratic Primary, such as ensuring an early, well-organized coalescence around a progressive leader. Emma rounds out the first half by covering updates on the Surfside disaster and looking into Fox’s rampant war on vaccines as the Delta variant surges.

And in the Fun Half: Matt and Brandon join Emma to discuss Tucker Carlson’s and Matt Walsh’s continued insistence on watching children think about sex, and jump off of Ben Shapiro’s “Conservative Values in Film” by exploring the progressive emphasis on social justice in “God’s Not Dead 2.” Matt from Philly offers perhaps too good-faith of a take on converting anti-abortion activists, the crew looks into the drawbacks and occasional successes of “Debate Me Bro” culture before covering Q-Anon’s deep faith in the anti-Establishment duo of notorious political outsiders Donald Trump and JFK Jr. and Mike Lindell reaches Charlie Kelly levels of off-the-rails conspiracy theorizing, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Sam and Emma host Slate's Justice and Courts writer Mark Joseph Stern to dive into last week's SCOTUS rulings on voting rights restrictions and then Brian Concannon from Project Bluelight, joins to discuss Haitian Prime Minister Jovenel Moïse's assassination. Emma, Sam, and Mark pick up their discussion from last week on the heels of two massive SCOTUS decisions centering on free and fair elections. They first touch on Justice Roberts’s 40 year battle against Section 2 of the VRA, coming to a close in Brnovich v DNC where the Court ruled that disparate impact cannot apply to forms of voting (absentee and early) that were not present during the 1982 writing of the law. Next, they explore the Americans for Prosperity v Becerra ruling that takes on the only regulations left by Citizens United, overturning the disclosure requirement, before Stern looks forward from these decisions towards the conservative Court’s target of campaign finance laws. Brian Concannon then joins to help us contextualize the assassination of Haitian President-turned-Dictator Moïse within both Haitian domestic politics and as a result of centuries-long destructive intervention and by the U.S. Emma and Sam round out the first half by previewing Sam’s debate with Yaron Brook, and admiring JD Vance’s ability to prove mainstream media wrong about “reasonable” conservatives once again.

And in the Fun Half: Libertarian and Chairman of the Board at the Ayn Rand Institute Yaron Brook joins to debate Sam on the validity and possibility of free markets, where the internet came from (sorry Al Gore), why the correlation between the development of capitalism and the triangle slave trade actually DIDN’T build immense wealth for the Global North, because it also destroyed the South, and whether or not every-day citizens should be responsible for the knowledge of the experts they are advised by, and if society should mitigate mistakes that people make. Then, the crew reflects on the conversation, before pondering the deeper reasons that folks like Tucker Carlson’s and Matt Walsh’s desire to watch children, TX Gov challenger Allen West reminds us of the horrors of Marx’s ultimate weapon of… progressive income tax, plus, your IMs!

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Sam and Emma are back from the July 4th holiday with Smithsonian curator Jon Grinspan, author of his latest book The Age of Acrimony: How Americans Fought to Fix Their Democracy, 1865-1915 on the last time partisanship was the primary driver in American democracy. Grinspan, inspired by the precedence for our modern political era that he found in the Gilded Age, looks into how the post-Reconstruction era saw a crisis of democracy in the shadow of boosted political partisanship and party identification. He walks through the mass public participation in the wake of the Civil War, with politics acting as a central sphere of public life that saw campaign marches and public elections, involving – on the social level – even those without suffrage. Emma, Sam, and Jon next explore how the contentious 1977 election of Rutherford B. Hayes saw voters start to turn their back on Reconstruction policies as voter disenfranchisement starts to spring up in the South, and elites in the North rebrand politics as a private, subtle matter in order to discourage the working class, including freed Black folks and immigrants, from political involvement. They round out the interview by reflecting on the lessons for the modern era, remembering that these crises of democracy - even when clouded by partisanship, political violence, and distrust - have been worked out of before. Emma and Sam finish off the first half by discussing two big upcoming stories, including the impact of this holiday weekend on COVID rates, and the continuing Republican fight against a comprehensive infrastructure package before they chat about Donny Deutch’s nightmare situation of Americans dreaming less of labor and focusing more on the quality of their lives.

And in the Fun Half: Nomiki Konst joins Sam and Emma as they keep holiday workers at the Haslet, TX Walmart in their mind after their consumer’s rousing performance on the 3rd, and then they enjoy Fox’s Clay Travis point out how their viewers’ outrage is reflective of the horrible state of politics in our country that makes us so willing to get outraged by outrageous culture war. Oochie Wally calls in to tackle last week’s Crypto Fascist and racists’ incessant pathologizing of any Black demographical statistic that they could use to mislead the public. Eli in the Netherlands gets the crew into a discussion of institutional schooling and alternatives, before they watch Trump finally extend a hand to the “good hardworking people” that don’t pay taxes on the company car (his CFO). Then, Joanna from Queens discusses how AOC has become Tim Pool’s ultimate cock block, and Noah from the Crowder Mug Club speaks on his intimate relationship with Stephen’s true self and why following science is basically stupid, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Sam hosts Pulitzer Prize-winning Yale Historian David Blight to discuss his recent biography of Frederick Douglass, Frederick Douglass: Prophet of Freedom, and how the Reconstruction era lives on in our contemporary politics. Sam and Blight take a deep dive into Frederick Douglass the orator and the ways his politics and activism altered between radical and pragmatism. Then Sam and Blight place Douglass in the larger historical context of reconstruction and post-reconstruction and how we are still living in the political reality forged after the Civil War.

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Direct download: BLIGHT_ReAir_JULY_5_-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:52pm EDT

Sam hosts Heather "Digby" Parton to discuss the week's top stories, including the infrastructure negotiations, SCOTUS decisions to gut voter rights, and more. Then, WGA East Executive Director Lowell Peterson joins to discuss the unionization efforts at MSNBC Digital. Digby and Sam start off the show by looking back to the start of their careers in the wake of the 2000 election, 9/11, and the Iraq War. They reflect on the disturbing legacy Donald Rumsfeld leaves behind, focused on his role in the deaths of hundreds of thousands of Iraqi citizens, and how he and the Republican machine used 9/11 as the perfect jumping-off point for bombing the Middle East, before remembering somewhat more fondly the absurdity of conservative culture war around France’s pushback to the attacks. After looking deeper into how today’s Republican authoritarianism stems from the legacy of the Bush Administration, Lowell Peterson of the WGA joins to discuss the recent boom in media unionization. He and Sam look into the unionization effort at MSNBC Digital, and the irony of listening to a supposedly pro-union company explain why collective bargaining is good everywhere but under their roof. Sam also cover’s the development in yesterday’s SCOTUS decisions, and the dark shadow rising over the future of getting money out of politics and democracy as a whole.

And in the Fun Half: Andy Kindler joins to provide an industry perspective on Ben Shapiro’s analysis of conservative values in film. They explore the fundamental importance of choice in the pro-life film, A Quiet Place, the view that we exist beyond our earthly bodies as expressed in Soul, and the general right-wing theme of overcoming our social context… even when that context is capitalism. Then, Sam covers the Exxon leak, exploring the disturbing behind-the-scenes of fossil fuel executives ensuring the US Senate stays in line with their interests, and a green Kyrsten Sinema offers up a perfect take on today’s issues facing… Kyrsten Sinema, plus, your IMs!

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Direct download: 7_2_21_Casual_Friday_w__Digby__Lowell_Peterson__Andy_Kindler_-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:31pm EDT

Sam hosts Mark Joseph Stern, staff writer at Slate covering law and the courts, joins Sam to discuss the biggest cases of the recent Supreme Court term, and the implications of the rulings on cases like TransUnion v. Ramirez and Cedar Point Nursery v. Hassid. They start with a discussion on SCOTUS’ ruling against Union Organizing on California Farms, deciding that businesses must be compensated for any union leader setting foot on their property, and how the laws struck down stem from Caesar Chaves’ union organizing in the 60s and 70s attempting to give migrant workers the possibility of banding together. Mark and Sam look into how the current conservative court is taking on the responsibility of determining what is and isn’t considered harm, and, unsurprisingly, seem to be much more concerned with what could be a burden on private property and enterprise than what could be considered harming individuals or workers. In particular, they explore how the Roberts court is tossing the concept of judicial restraint to the side in favor of allowing businesses the freedom to use our information as they please (as long as it doesn’t go too wrong), and ensuring states have the right to kick people out of their houses. They also touch on how American political discourse ignores the responsibility of the court’s decisions when it comes to their real-world repercussions, and look forwards to the last few impending cases of this term. Sam rounds out the first half by reflecting on the legacy of one Donald Rumsfeld and how hundreds of thousands of civilian lives could still be around had this moment come around a couple of decades earlier.

And in the Fun Half: Matt, Matt, Brendan, and Brandon run the show, starting the testosterone-led half of the show off with some Hulk Hogan talk, and Dave from Scranton calls in to chat culture war on the online web of the Right. Then, Chris from MI centers the opioid epidemic in a discussion on the neoliberal culture in healthcare and the crew chats NYC mayoral mayhem before moving on to the behind the scenes debacles at “free speech” social media platforms Gab and Parler that caused their relationships to the Trumps to fall through. They field calls from Finn and Mark, covering some fun Crowder factoids and the best way to sell medicare for all to a conservative, and then Matt and Brandon deep dive into the continued chaos unfolding from the Jan 6th insurrection. Plus, your calls and IMs!

 

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Sam hosts Tim Jackson, University of Surrey professor of sustainable development, and author of the book Post Growth: Life after Capitalism on what a world can look like after the fall of the free market and our incessant chase for endless growth. Professor Jackson traces his vision from his original work for the British Government, “Prosperity without Growth,” which outlines more of a policy and data-driven approach, to his recent work that seeks to paint a more accessible vision of a world that leaves behind the myth of endless growth and more effectively centers societal wants and needs. Jackson also contextualizes this pushback against rampant economic growth, with a focus on the failures of GDP, within greater mainstream history – from Robert Kennedy to Greta Thunberg – and explores the importance of redistribution and equity to social prosperity. They also touch on the more abstract elements, discussing the importance of recognizing and learning from natural limitations and how capitalism hinges on constant unhappiness, before Prof. Jackson, drawing from Hannah Arendt, explores how care work and the feeling of having contributed lasting impact on one’s community are central to his project. Sam rounds out the half by digging into the Five’s attempt to sidestep a discussion on the current failures of U.S. infrastructure by hitting on some classic culture war talking points.

And in the Fun Half: Sam and the crew cover the anything-but-fun reversal of Bill Cosby’s sexual assault case, Karun from India calls out Sam’s failure to properly address Black on Black crime statistics from the racial science perspective, and Nick from CT points out the contradictions in Fox’s attempt to prove that the issues are not with private infrastructure while they try to encourage more privatization of infrastructure. Ben Shapiro and the supposedly apathetic right apparently can’t stop caring about sexuality in sports, Joe Manchin’s voting bill is in complete disarray, Meghan McCain thinks we all deserve a POW father and love for our flag, and Sam reflects on the highs and lows of his early acting career, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Sam and Emma host Jules Boykoff, Pacific University professor of politics and government, former US Olympian and author of NOlympians: Inside the Fight Against Capitalist Mega-Sports in Los Angeles, Tokyo, and Beyond, to discuss the Olympics industrial complex and the growing international movement for ending the development of Olympic complexes. They walk through the history of the games as an elite affair, originally created by a French Baron and now a multibillion-dollar corporate industry, and how the International Olympics Committee is able to capitalize on public money and the role of their athletes to make huge material gains for themselves and corporations at the expense of local infrastructure and participating athletes. Professor Boykoff delves into the particularly brutal role the Olympics have in displacing low-income folks in every city they move to, and how this helped spur DSA LA’s housing work to move towards establishing the NOlympics project. Jules, Emma, and Sam also look into the history of local protests against the Olympics, and how NOlympics seeks to change these from momentary uprisings to a global movement to end the Olympics as they exist. Emma and Sam round out the first half reflecting on the legacy of anti-imperialist and U.S. Senator Mike Gravel, exploring his biggest moments on the political stage.

And in the Fun Half: Tony from Illinois calls in for advice on the best tactics to push Medicare for All in conservative entrenched areas, Mitt Romney plays off the Big Lie as more of a Big Game, comparing U.S. Politics to Wrestling and perhaps explaining his commitment to his heel persona, and Marjorie Taylor Green garners the Sarah Palin comparison as Sam wonders aloud why Bernie has never gotten the birtherism argument pushed against folks like AOC and Obama (it’s pretty obvious). Then, Tucker Carlson rallies up white fear, pushing a conspiracy of white genocide, Dan Crenshaw eyes up an age-old dog whistle on Black activism in sports, and Ben from NY reflects on the few lessons learned from the FTV project. They wrap up the fun half by discussing YouTube’s algorithms and the importance of building anti-trust infrastructure, and looking into the growth of the Delta variant of COVID alongside vaccine fear-mongering, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Direct download: 6_28_The_2021_Olympics_is_a_Moral_Hazard_w__Jules_Boykoff_-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:32pm EDT

Sam and Emma host Ryan Grim, DC Bureau Chief at the Intercept, to discuss this week's top stories including the bipartisan infrastructure deal, Pelosi and Schumer's play for reconciliation bills, and more, plus, legendary comedian David Cross joins in the Fun Half. Ryan helps walk Emma and Sam through what these second hundred days of Biden’s administration might look like; they explore how the Senate schedule will play out with the recent developments in the bipartisan Infrastructure Bill and what the reconciliation process might look like. Next, they look into the Republican’s obstruction options and how the gang of ten deal with reconciliation just down the line has put Mitch McConnell in a tough spot, before they look into how the recent developments have eased a bit of the pressure on the bipartisan nuts like Manchin and Sinema, and what Manchin’s voting bill might look like. Ryan, Emma, and Sam also cover progressives’ role in the matter, how Bernie’s 6 trillion marker has given the Democrats more wiggle room, and AOC’s position on voting without a reconciliation bill at the ready. They round out the interview touching on taking a structural view of U.S. politics and how Biden might actually serve a transformative role if the neoliberal hegemonic order is really coming to a close. Emma and Sam also cover the massive impact vaccinations have had in lowering COVID death rates and spectate Biden’s bipartisan deal announcement.

And in the Fun Half: Body Language Expert David Cross joins Sam and Emma to look into the elements of the H3 debate that were previously left unsaid. He walks us through Stephen Crowder’s petulancy, segregationist gesticulation, and inclination towards the fantastical when it comes to debating real-world issues. Then, Mitt Romney gets jealous of Sinema’s and Manchin’s bipartisan spotlight, Tucker Carlson sites another racial scientist in his crusade against Critical Race Theory, and Dick Morris explores he and his friends’ sexual inclination towards their mothers in a vulnerable interview on Fox. They round out the fun half with the absurdity of Joy Reid coming at Laura Ingram for wanting to defund the military, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Direct download: 6_25_Casual_Friday_w__Ryan_Grim__David_Cross_-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:31pm EDT

Emma hosts Haggai Matar, Executive Director of +972 Magazine, to discuss the new Israeli governmental coalition, PM Naftali Bennet's role within it, and how its formation will impact the occupation in East Jerusalem. They pick up on their conversation earlier this year, digging into Netanyahu’s ousting and how it came to be; they explore Bibi’s shift from outwardly pro-two-state solution to spending 12 years in power entrenching the country into the occupation and dismantling peace negotiations, and how he managed to build his cult of personality. Then, Matar walks us through the recent coalition that brought an end to Bibi’s reign, looking into the diverse range of ideologies – from Naftali Bennet’s far-right Yamina party to communist and Palestinian Islamist parties – and how, despite Bennet’s position of power, the coalition is still bound to the left. They also discuss how Mansour Abbas’ United Arab List and the Israeli left managed to capitalize on Netanyahu’s ousting, using the moment to finally garner actionable clout in Israeli politics, before Haggai and Emma look into the future of the left and the fight for Palestinian liberation in Israel. Emma rounds out the free half by exploring the viral smackdown of Matt Gaetz by General Willey over Critical Race Theory hysteria, Matt looks into the historical relationships between the military and Right-Wing Populism, and Joe Biden solves gun control by giving more money to the guys with guns

And in the Fun Half: Emma, Brandon, and Matt chat Blue’s Clues conspiracies, and go even further into fiction with a discussion on who the right wing’s theoretical ringer would be in a debate. Then, Tony from TX calls in to discuss the absurdly outsized influence that Police Department’s have on local politics, giving particular experience from his Texas organizing, and the crew talks OAN trying to rescue political executions from the fringes of American politics and how the hell they even get funding in the first place. An out of frame Andrew Giuliani defends his father’s law license as he rants against the refusal to abide by a “jury of one’s peers” in not letting a quintet of corrupt rodents rule on the case, the group explores Meghan McCain’s aggressive questioning of Bernie and whether or not he had a responsibility to go further in defense of the squad, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Sam and Emma host Patrick Radden Keefe, staff writer at the New Yorker and author of Empire of Pain: The Secret History of the Sackler Dynasty, on how the family behind Perdue Pharma and Oxycontin built their fortune on opioid addiction and pharmaceutical marketing. Beginning with the origin of the Sackler dynasty, Keefe walks us through how Arthur Sackler’s combination of Draper-esque marketing spirit with pharmaceutical knowledge established the blueprint that the family would take forwards into the development of Oxycontin. They also cover the in-depth manipulation of the perception of the drug, particularly among medical experts, as the Sackler family capitalized on professional misconceptions regarding the potency of oxycodone, allowing them to push non-scientific addiction statistics. Beyond discussions of the Succession-type family dynamics and lack of empathy prevalent with the Sacklers, Patrick, Emma, and Sam also explore the failures of the system at every possible check, from the DOJ, DEA, and FDA to the entirety of Congress, and how many of these instances can be traced back to the Sackler fortune. They conclude the interview touching on the copious legal battles, in every state and at almost every level of court, that the Sackler family and Purdue Pharma are currently facing, and try to tackle how big their blood fortune actually is. Emma and Sam round out the free half with a discussion on NY primaries, including India Walton’s big win in Buffalo, looking to become the city’s first woman or socialist mayor, and a smaller chat on how NYC progressives’ chances are shaping up in the mayoral race and a few city council races.

And in the Fun Half: Sam gets vulnerable and flexes his performance art muscles as the crew walks through some lingering talking points from Crowder’s great debate escape, before Tim Pool reminds us how the entire event was really about Sam and him. Then, Matt from PA calls in to explore the violent grip that figures on the online alt-right have on much of the public, obscuring any economic alignment they might have with the left through an emphasis on culture war, and John from San Antonio looks into socialist progress in NY and SA City Council, and reflects on how Bernie could’ve better managed to represent his socialist identity to the public. The fun half is wrapped up by admiring Dave Rubin’s claim to the political tutelage of one Glenn Greenwald, and Meghan McCain’s insistence on US fealty to the Catholic Church, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Sam and Emma host Duke University Economist Sandy Darity to discuss his latest book, From Here to Equality: Reparations for Black Americans in the Twenty-First Century on addressing the racial wealth gap in America. After covering the modern state of the stratification, they look into the origins of the racial wealth gap, stemming from the establishment of the union in 1776 and the federal policy that redistributed indigenous lands to white families as a part of the settler-colonial project. Then, Professor Sandy Darity walks through how U.S. policy promoting white wealth accumulation went from land acquisition to homeownership as we moved into the 20th century, how federal housing policies and the GI Bill saw the continuation of this stratification, and why these issues caused by federal policy must be solved with federal policy. They follow that up with a discussion on the failures of universal socialist policy in addressing the wealth divide, and why solutions such as direct cash are more effective than indirect attempts such as college investments, before touching on the nation’s failure to “de-confederatize,” and why an educational project is a necessary part of the reparation program. The interview is rounded out by covering the theoretical divisiveness of reparations, whether or not it interferes with class-focused socialist projects, and they look into the slow but sure rise in reparation support among white Americans. Emma and Sam finish off the free half with the expansion of medicare that occurred during the pandemic, and look into Sinema’s excuse that democracy means we shouldn’t pass legislation.

And in the Fun Half: Sam and Emma bask in the glory of Stephen Crowder’s pitch-perfect performance in the H3 debate, surpassing even the crew’s wildest dreams, and thank Crowder and his staff for the unwavering support of the MR program. Walking through the highlights, Sam and Emma touch on Crowder’s “we don’t know who you are” excuse (which he made sure to back up with research on who Sam is), Sam attempts to normalize podcast hosts wielding samurai swords, and the crew tries to comprehend Crowder’s best blows, from to name dropping Noam Chomsky among conservatives that won’t debate Sam to uhh calling Sam a woman. The fun half finishes with a fantastic call from Brandon from NC, certified Louder with Crowder Mugholder, covering why Crowder’s fanbase would, indeed, like to see him debate Sam Seder, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Sam and Emma host Stephen Wertheim, Director of Grand Strategy at the Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft, to discuss his recent New York Times Opinion Essay, "Sorry, Liberals. But You Really Shouldn’t Love NATO," on NATO's lost sense of purpose and the US's role in the European region under Biden and moving forward. They start with a discussion of the original purpose of NATO, to deter the growing Soviet Union, and how that changed and expanded following the dissolution of the USSR in 1991. Wertheim discusses how, although now in the absence of credible threats, the US took initiative to bolster NATO and their global hegemony, and he and Sam walk through the original domestic opposition to NATO as serving to further alienate Russia, and how that has all but disappeared in the most recent rounds of expansion despite that fear being all but confirmed. Moving into the recent decade, Sam and Stephen look into how recent NATO rhetoric has continued to expand out of the EU, now focusing on China as a growing threat, and they look into the possibility of the EU taking on the brunt of defense responsibility and the benefits for both Europe and the US of such a course of action. Emma and Sam round it out with a tale of two pitties, as, even if he didn’t cheat, Republicans still see Mike Pence as a traitor and Ron Johnson finds out how brutal it is out there, getting raucously booed at a local Juneteenth rally.

And in the Fun Half: Sam and Emma get giddy as they hype up Sam’s crashing of the Crowder debate, hosted by the H3 podcast, edging the audience for a solid thirty minutes as they walk through the hypothetical scenarios that could’ve occurred on today’s filming. Then, Dan from the Upper West Side calls in to tackle large scale discussions of culture and the left, how some groups are replicating elements of capitalism within their communities, and offers up his critique on Leftist shows such as MR focusing too much on reformism and electoral politics instead of centering leaders working to build community self-determination and systems of mutual aid in preparation for future crisis and inevitable collapse. The crew also touches on the massive anti-Bolsonaro protests in Brazil, how Charlie Kirk’s aging body is finally catching up with his mind, and LJ from MI calls in to chat about Dimmy Jore and the dumb-dumb left before Nick from Japan explores his experiences in countering conspiracy indoctrination in loved ones, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Sam and Emma host Alex Pareene, staff writer at the New Republic, to discuss the week's top stories including Biden's first foreign policy trip to the G7, Manchin's voting rights bill, and the endless revolving infrastructure negotiations.  Alex, Emma, and Sam start with the Manchin leak, in which he requests some quid pro quo help from his favorite billionaires, and look into Roy Blunt’s response to the call out and McConnell’s role in inspiring Manchin’s bipartisan fetish, before they touch on Manchin finally acknowledging that the 60-vote filibuster threshold was, indeed, not ordained by God, and ponder the question of where the leak came from. They also touch on the ancient neoliberal contradiction of public-private partnerships, and the important role Bernie Sanders is taking on in the infrastructure negotiations. Sam and Emma round out the first half by discussing MSNBC’s refusal to voluntarily recognize the recently announced union and contextualize it within a greater movement of media unions, and then take a look at Tucker Carlson’s masterful attempt to both back away from and further circulate his claim regarding FBI informants on Jan 6th.

Then Jason Myles and Pascal Robert of This is Revolution join to discuss the paradox of the new Juneteenth holiday, the limits of racial democracy in the face of wealth inequality, Biden's black trauma gravy train, the black voting bloc superstructure and patronage network, and more.

And in the Freebie Friday Fun Half: Louie Gohmert wants answers on FBI involvement in January 6 but no investigation or commission, Barbara Lee and Ilhan Omar speak about ending the 200 AUMF, Roy Blunt's dialectical determinism, plus your IMs!

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Future Hindsight: Join host Mila Atmos this week as she talks with Alec Karakatsanis, founder of the non-profit Civil Rights Corps and author of Unusual Cruelty: the Complicity of Lawyers in the Criminal Justice System.  Available wherever you get your podcasts or at futurehindsight.com

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Emma hosts today's Majority Report featuring a recent interview Sam recorded with Harvard history professor Annette Gordon-Reed on her new book, On Juneteenth, which explores the Texas roots and national consciousness of the holiday celebrating the end of slavery in the South. Beginning in the 1500s, Gordon-Reed walks us through the arrival of slavery in Texas with Spanish settlers, and its development as an Enslaver’s Republic as it broke away from Mexico and U.S. slaveholders ventured into the state to capitalize on the protection of the industry. Then, they discuss Gordon Granger’s arrival in Texas on June 19, 1865, to enforce the Emancipation Proclamation, and the active and direct removal of status from former slave owners and deliverance of autonomy to Black freed folk, before they move into the violence of reconstruction in Texas and the South. Professor Gordon-Reed then walks through the importance of Juneteenth since the arrival of Granger, with the purchasing of what would become Emancipation Park in Houston as a grounds for celebration directly following it, why this day, in particular, took off as a celebration of manumission, and how Juneteenth has come into more widespread popularity. They round out the discussion by touching on Gordon-Reed’s experience as one of the first Black students at her elementary school following Brown v. Board. Emma concludes the first half by watching Biden get stumped by U.S. history once again and come out against interference in foreign elections before she looks into Andrew Yang’s horrifying and violent dehumanization of homeless and mentally ill New Yorkers.

And in the Fun Half: Emma and Matt explore the absurdity of Q anon leadership, driven home by their lack of awareness on the 69/420 connection, and look into the history between Nicholas Wade, who propagated recent Covid Lab Leak theories, and Tucker Carlson’s favorite racial “scientist” (eugenicist), Charles Murray. Dave from Jamaica calls in to highlight the violent ridiculousness of relying on IQ, drawing direct parallels to those that see a correlation between ejaculatory capabilities and intelligence, before he jumps into the discussion of Andrew Yang’s property-over-people politics and the pro-police panic setting in amid misleading statistics from major cities. Then, the crew watches Dave Rubin compare the lack of an existential threat due to climate change to the lack of an existential threat in… Armageddon, and, after a little sports talk, Phil from Chicago calls in to discuss the threat the Thacker Pass project poses to indigenous communities in NV, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Sam and Emma host Kate Aronoff, staff writer at the New Republic, to discuss her new book, Overheated: How Capitalism Broke the Planet -- And How We Fight Back, on how we got to this stage in the climate crisis and policy solutions needed to slow climate change in the coming decades. They cover a bit of background, taking on the effect of Right-wing think tanks and oil money on bolstering the role of the fossil fuel industry as a part of the U.S. identity, pushing the “crisis” element to the side and working to undermine cross-racial solidarity among the industrial working class. Aronoff explores the failures of the policy focus on carbon pricing, allowing Republicans to build up the perfect blueprint for striking down any potential policy, before Sam and Emma explore her takes on moving towards a sustainable future, focusing on investments in a workforce that incentivize a shift towards renewable energy while bolstering the country’s economy and identity. They round out the interview with a discussion of Green New Deal reforms in Europe, and the importance of recognizing U.S. oil exports as central to our carbon footprint. Then, Sam and Emma appreciate John Yarmuth’s choice to stand by Ilhan Omar and the squad after Democratic leadership threw them to the side in the face of racialized misogyny from the Right, chat about Mitch McConnell’s tactics for taking on the reconciliation bill, and discuss the recent Manchin zoom leaks.

And in the Fun Half: Brandon, Emma, and Sam talk through Manchin’s zoom leak, covering how he plans to maneuver around filibuster reform, how Dems keep avoiding hard decisions, and how that can change moving forwards, then watch Bishop William Barber take on Manchin’s failure to stand up for the WV working class. Tucker Carlson whips up some conspiracy theories about the role of coconspirators in the Jan 6th conspiracy and how the FBI was secretly the conspirators this entire time, then Ivory Hecker’s attempt to vocalize objection to Fox’s favoring of marketing over news is undermined by some truly horrible Project Veritas editing, Stephanie from MN calls in to discuss the Republicans’ turn on the teacher’s union, and Republican Chris Pringle stunningly has to do more research on Critical Race Theory before he can really answer questions on his proposed bill to ban it. Hannity discusses the horrors of progressive migration to FL with DeSantis, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Tushy: Hello Tushy 3.0 doesn't just clean your butt with a precise stream of fresh water. It cleans itself, with the Smart Spray automatic nozzle. It attaches to your existing toilet - No electricity or extra plumbing needed - cutting toilet paper use by 80% paying for itself in a few months. Defeat swamp ass. Go to hellotushy.com/majority to get 10% off plus free shipping.

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Sam and Emma host David Roediger, American Studies professor at the University of Kansas, to discuss his latest book, The Sinking Middle Class: A Political History, on the relatively recent phenomena of centering the middle class in political rhetoric and how both parties use it as a cudgel to beat back progressive policy. They walk through the development of the “middle class” designation as a largely European concept that began to shift in the US as the Cold War developed and the American relationship to class was forced into the public eye. Roediger then explores how the neoliberal turn of the post-Cold War era saw the term take off in political discourse, boosted by Stanley Greenberg’s sway on the Clinton administration, as a way to appeal to white voters without actively discussing race. Next, they look into how the middle class is used in contemporary politics, with both parties coalescing around a definition during the early 2010s, and decentering the discussion of poor Americans, before touching on the role of SocDems, like Sanders and Warren, and how they must work to simultaneously address class and racial justice issues, and whether or not this appeal to total universality is actually as dangerous as centrist Dems might want you to think. They round out the free half with a conversation on the judicial confirmation process, looking into how supposedly liberal lawyers such as Neal Katyal bolster Mitch McConnell’s obstructionist strategies in order to garner favor among conservative judges.

And in the Fun Half: Nomiki Konst joins in for the most painful meninist hour as the crew covers Jimmy Dore’s monetization of misogyny and sexual harassment, and Thomas calls into debate about men’s rights – but like just from his perspective not with actual facts and figures. Next, Fox and Friends try to flip the script on teachers being good for our children, Mitch McConnell yanks off Manchin’s fig leaf of bipartisanship, exposing the horrors underneath, Kowalski in NE calls in with an agriculture report, and Marjorie Taylor Green finally recognizes the incomparability of the Holocaust, even if the Dems are still kinda national socialists in her mind. Plus, your calls and IMs!

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quip: quip mouthwash kills bad breath germs, helps prevent cavities, and leaves you feeling fresh thanks to a formula that gives your mouth everything it needs • Their 4X concentrate has fluoride, xylitol, and CPC, but they left out the artificial colors and stinging alcohol you’ll find in a lot of other rinses.That’s $5 off a Mouthwash Starter Kit, which includes a Refillable Dispenser and a 90-dose supply of quip’s 4x concentrated formula, at getquip.com/majority5.

Subscribe to Discourse Blog, a newsletter and website for progressive essays and related fun partly run by AM Quickie writer Jack Crosbie. https://discourseblog.com/

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Sam and Emma host author Clint Smith, staff writer at the Atlantic, to discuss his new book, How the Word is Passed: A Reckoning with the History of Slavery Across America on how the legacy of slavery has been passed down and obscured through generations of storytelling, and the manner in which this manifests in modern society. They walk through the sites that Smith visits in his book – from Monticello, looking at how the stories of Thomas Jefferson perfectly encapsulate the cognitive dissonance of how Americans view ourselves, to Angola Prison as a symbol of modern enslavement literally build upon a plantation – and how the heirloom of ideology is passed down through every element of our society, through education, through infrastructure, and certainly through community policing measures. Smith explores his experiences at a Sons of Confederate Veterans celebration, and the importance of elevating empirical historical facts in making space for activists and organizers to express contemporary racism as carrying the remnants and residues of these systems through all elements of American society. Susan Collins helps Sam and Emma round it out with a discussion on her killer renewable energy tax, ensuring that those aiding our environment pay their fair share to use the roads.

And in the Fun Half: Sam and Emma check in on the NYC Mayoral Race and how Eric Adams’ suggestion of a 400:1 student to teacher ratio might actually not be a good idea, then Dave Rubin bombs because of Big Tech and the Liberal Agenda and Dana Bash forgets to even acknowledge AOC’s comments before hitting on her CNN bipartisanship talking points in response, plus, your IMs!

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Sam and Emma host David Sirota, founder of and editor at The Daily Poster, to discuss the tough developments around progressive hopes for the Biden Administration, including bipartisan dead-ends, bad-faith attacks on Ilhan Omar, and the possibilities of filibuster reform in the Senate. Sam, Emma, and David touch on the power of narcissistic spotlight syndrome, and how it presents differently from Manchin to Sinema, before they look into the Manchin human shield theory and how Democrats manage to hit the emotional core of the donor class without working the rules to get things done. They chat about how the party of “hope and change” is seemingly afraid of making actual structural change, how the role of the federal government in spearheading progress has all but disappeared, and what the best tactic is to bring the Left into the discussion of Manchin’s niche view of bipartisanship. They round out the discussion on how democratic leadership’s continued vilification of Ilhan Omar spotlights the party’s hypocrisy, choosing to hide their own stances on tough issues over centering genuine policy change. Then, Andrew Callaghan, creator of Channel 5, joins to discuss his chaotic documentation of the fringes of America, from the connections between the wellness community and Q-anon, to conspiracies around the deaths of celebrities like Prince and Kobe. They end on discussions of exploitation in the media industry, and Andrew enquires about Crowder’s cringe and cold feet.

And in the Fun Half: Sam and Emma talk about getting cops off the street without boosting the surveillance state, why the country reopening has seen a boom in demand reasonably not met by supply, and watch Ryan Grim stick by his leftist roots and provide Emily Jashinsky with free education on WWII. Tucker Carlson then continues his discomforting obsession with AOC, particularly around the topics of fertility and womanhood, and Dave Rubin shows off his arts and crafts skills, constructing a perfect straw man, before Sam ponders a debate with Ben Shapiro on his roles as the King of the Jews and quick-talking fascist and Fox & Friends draws the line from Critical Race Theory to… China. Emma and Sam finish it off with Ron Paul’s BitCon speech on the entertainment of the pandemic, and the unsurprising fact that a Bitcoin convention promoting these beliefs resulted in a COVID outbreak, plus, your IMs!

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Direct download: 6_11_Casual_Friday_-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:37pm EDT

Emma hosts Astra Taylor, activist, and member of the Debt Collective, to discuss her new book Remake the World: Essays, Reflections, Rebellions on how we can and must organize around each other to help lift ourselves out of the confining and isolating world that has only been exacerbated by the brutality of 2020. They look into the metaphor of conspiracy, stemming from its original meaning of “to breath together,” and how the U.S. government, since well before the pandemic, has constricted the organizing ability and space of workers and the left. They begin with the conspiracy doctrine, which prohibited workers from organizing starting in the colonial era, before looking into why conspiracy theories (in the modern sense) have taken such a hold on the Right, with capitalism helping to monetize confusion and conspiracy stemming from the center of power. Astra explores the devastating fact that we cannot fact-check ourselves out of this problem, and how collective action from the left is the only way to combat growing isolation, insecurity, and inequality before rounding out the discussion by reflecting on the lessons of the Occupy movement and the importance of messy organizing. Then, Emma gets into the Democrats’ unsurprisingly maddening choice to turn their back on Ilhan Omar, choosing to invite more violence against her over backing her completely balanced critique of Israeli and U.S. terrorism, and Mitch McConnell juggles Trump’s role in the party with maintaining his political course and continuing to fundraise.

And in the Fun Half: Brandon and Matt join Emma to chat early 2000s tv dramas before Andrew from Illinois calls in to give his takes on Manchin’s games from someone deeply embedded in West Virginian politics, and Dewey from Chicago jumps off that conversation to lead to crew into a discussion of potential Democratic ploys for the 2022 midterms. Next, JD Vance and Tucker Carlson bring out the dog whistles, Ben Shapiro finally finds a reason to crack down on the use of the N-word, and anti-vaxxers find inspiration in perspiration. Connor from NJ looks to the stars in discussing the growing technocratic surveillance state sponsored by SpaceX, the crew looks into the “look what you made me do” logic of policing, and Nancy Pelosi and co. jump on the bandwagon of using ingrained Islamophobia to bolster their own standing at the expense of Ilhan Omar, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Direct download: 6_10_What_It_Takes_to_Remake_the_World_w__Astra_Taylor_-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:31pm EDT

Sam and Emma host John B. Judis, Editor-at-Large at Talking Points Memo, to discuss his new book 'The Politics of Our Time: Populism, Nationalism, Socialism,' on the political movements in America so far in the 21st century and what conflicts and influences they might have on one another in the coming decades. They walk through the thin ideology of populism as creating a dichotomy between “the people” and “the elite,” how these definitions can (and do) diverge between the Left and Right with someone like Trump combining pro-domestic industry rhetoric with anti-union and anti-immigrant policy, and get into a debate around the questionable importance and morality of the Left recognizing nationalism, and whether that line gets drawn at the border, at citizenship status, or elsewhere. Next, they look into the rebirth of U.S. socialism under the Scandinavian model before Judis explores how socialism and populism have grown together in U.S. history, and gives us his takes on why the kids aren’t alright with capitalism. Sam and Emma round out the first half with discussions on how the internalized trauma from the U.S. healthcare system has contributed to vaccination hesitancy, and unpack Judis’ conflation of Left populism and pure Right-wing nationalism and whether his takes on the failures of Left-wing anti-nationalism were exaggerated or not.

And in the Fun Half: After reflecting further on the interview, Sam and Emma chat with born-again leftist Jason on his libertarian indoctrination, escaping the hate-spiral chokehold of the online alt-right, and how, particularly when it comes to issues such as the Great Gay Cake Debate, libertarian logic begins to crumble with any scrutiny. Then, Louie Gohmert chimes in with his thoughts on the effects of stars and space rocks on our Earthly environment as Emma ironically nails the status of Mercury retrograde, Jean from Springfield discusses the danger of falling into the nationalist trap of disguising culture war as class analysis, and Tom McDonald, fresh off his first trip to Sandals Jamaica (judging by the haircut at least), struggles with both rhyme and reason as he forces more culture war references into three and a half minutes than any angry Canadian could ever imagine. AOC finds the cracks in Manchin’s shield of bipartisanship and the staff gives out their book recommendations, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Sam and Emma host Henry Farrell, SNF Agora Professor of International Affairs at Johns Hopkins, to discuss his new paper "Rechanneling Beliefs: How Information Flows Hinder or Help American Democracy," taking on the state of American democracy in historical context, and looking into how our current crisis has developed and what we can do to reverse it. They cover the basics, such as what democracy actually is, and look into how the self-reinforcing elements of democracy have begun to break down as our shared belief systems and faith in democracy have become more stratified than ever. Farrell walks us through a variety of ways that these issues can be countered on the particular level, reinforcing a less partisan environment and making it more difficult for any party to assert long term control, and how this focuses on the importance of bipartisan consequences rather than allowing emphasis on bipartisan support to consistently undermine any actual change. Lastly, they discuss the role of Fox News in the social media ecosystem, and why the EU could serve as a model for unifying anti-trust laws with broader principles on privacy and information flow to help stymy the malignancy of fake news. Sam and Emma touch on how Obama’s insistence that Republicans will see the light is representative of a refusal to acknowledge this democratic crisis, and celebrate the senate passing a New York State anti-trust bill.

And in the Fun Half: Nomiki Konst joins Sam and Emma in debating how far Biden is really willing to go in getting nothing done, and what Kamala Harris could possibly have benefitted from telling Americans to tell migrants to go home, before Ronald Raygun calls in to give us his thoughts on the latter. They discuss developing protests as Jacob from Alabama covers the success of the Miner’s strike despite brutal arrests and the continuing trend of automobile attacks, and look into the Border Patrol’s use of a helicopter to deter Line 3 pipeline protesters in Minnesota. Lance from the Serfs helps us dig into the horrors of the residential school system in Canada and the importance of the Land Back movement in finding at least a base level of reparations. Then, Sam, Emma, and Nomiki push back on the absurdity of Republicans crusading against Critical Race Theory while being unable to point towards anti-white (lol) consequences from any law, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Direct download: 6_8_Fixing_the_Cratering_US_Democracy_w__Henry_Farrell_-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:18pm EDT

Sam and Emma host Adam Weinstein, Research Fellow at the Quincy Institute, to explore the status of the US withdrawal from Afghanistan, and what the region might look like moving forwards. They look into why the Pentagon might want a quick withdrawal now that they are committed to withdrawing at all, and whether or not U.S. contractors will choose to linger beyond the military’s time in the country before Weinstein walks us through the Afghan Security Force’s capacity, and the intelligence community’s concerns about not having as robust of a surveillance state in the region. They round out the discussion by examining the history of the conflict as a 40-year civil war, how the U.S.’s role in anti-soviet jihad is responsible for much of the destabilization that has occurred, and the fantasy of a clean counter-insurgency. Sam and Emma unpack Manchin’s bootlicking of bipartisanship even as republicans continue to restrict voting on the state level, and really really try to think about the Senate glass as half full.

And in the Fun Half: Angus King finally falls on the right side of the filibuster-or-democracy debate, Tucker Carlson hits us with the age-old “if homeless people really wanted houses they would buy them” argument, and Milo Yiannopoulos discusses giving queer folk something to be proud of this June (him going straight). Next, Mike from Omaha explores the antisemitic conspiracy theory at the roots of the conservative war against Critical Race Theory, before Sam chats about his own experiences with conservatives rallying against the Jews, and how the far-Right maintains this antisemitism while publicly claiming parallels to Jews in Nazi Germany. Sam and Emma look into the fact that Donald Trump might not put his pants on like the rest of us, and Ben from NY calls in to chat about the 2022 NY governor race while Sam boosts the importance of pressing Cuomo and State Senators on the upcoming NY Medicare for All Bill, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Sam and Emma host Heather "Digby" Parton, proprietor of the wönderblog Hullabaloo and Salon.com contributor, to discuss the week's top stories, including Biden's bipartisan fetish President Manchin and the filibuster, and more. They explore the Democrats’ plan to make June the month of failure, using the filibuster as part of their ass-covering project, and Biden’s lack of leverage over Manchin, before moving on to how the Republicans have been mastering the obstructionist blueprint for decades. Next, they touch on the futures of the voting, infrastructure, and (now singular) reconciliation bill, and how Manchin remains the bar for Biden to put a bill up for a vote. Sam and Emma then watch Lara Trump bust the theory of Trump’s August Inauguration, and Sam hypothesizes how Q stans will work around her comments (it’s easy, just delay it a month!).

And in the Fun Half: Dagen McDowell declares government-run healthcare dead (ironically enough), because, obviously, we ALL have healthcare, and Glenn Greenwald doesn’t quite understand just wanting healthcare. Sam, Emma, Brendan, and Matt discuss how Donald Trump is working to sustain his base to ensure the role of presumptive nominee in 2024, and look into how PC culture has begun to interfere in the papal labor market before Rudolph Giuliani blows them away with HisPillows, and slippers, and more! Then, Kiester from FL rebuts Mike from Miami’s Gillum takes, Jeff from LA calls in to discuss the horrors of insurance copay policy, and the crew watches George P. Bush’s baptize himself in all Trump’s glory as he prepares his run for Texas AG, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Direct download: 6_4_Casual_Friday_w__Digby__Andrew_Callaghan_-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:13pm EDT

Sam hosts Emory Professor of Law Dorothy A. Brown to discuss her new book, The Whiteness of Wealth: How the Tax System Impoverishes Black Americans – and How We Can Fix It, on the myriad ways in which race is coded into our tax systems, reserving benefits and breaks for white families across the board. Dorothy and Sam discuss the difficulty of tracking racially disparate tax policy when the IRS refuses to track data on race, and how she came to look into race and taxation. They explore how family tax policies since the early 1900s have explicitly served white folks – from reserving benefits for single wage households, to how the free transfer of wealth has let wealthy white families separate death from taxes – and how 529s and student loans act to ensure Black Americans pay more, and earn less, in going to college. Next, they look into how tax subsidies reinforce the racist housing market, privileging homeowners in white neighborhoods over tenants and homeowners in Black communities, and how this has created more demand on the income of Black folks to support the housing of their families. Sam then gets some free accounting help as they dissect how the Democrats’ discussion on raising the SALT deduction cap provides meaningless benefits for the wealthy. Lastly, Sam and Emma round out the show by discussing the transition back into the Brooklyn office, before they admire Kyrsten Sinema's dedication to avoiding hard decisions on the Senate floor.

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Sam and Emma host professor of African American studies Carol Anderson to discuss her latest book The Second: Race and Guns in a Fatally Unequal America on how the right to bear arms has been a means to suppress black Americans. Anderson details how black Americans throughout history have organized to defend themselves against state violence and racist uprisings. Anderson notes that black Americans' efforts to arm themselves were constant and well-founded given the violence perpetrated against them, however, they could never out-arm the white citizens who wished ill on them. Sam and Anderson then discuss the Black Panthers' open carry efforts to "police the police" and how "gun control" in California began as a means to disarm Bobby Seale and Huey Newton. Anderson wraps the conversation by discussing contemporary laws surrounding gun control, police brutality, and the discrepancy between gun carriers like Phalando Castile and Kyle Rittenhouse.

And in the Fun Half: Biden is hopeful because of soap ads with interracial couples, what's productivity and will remote work change anything, tokenism in the modern GOP, Tucker Carlson says unvaccinated Americans are subject to "Medical Jim Crow," the politics of inclusion, Ben Domenech's complete misunderstanding of the Cold War, John Kennedy's vacuous reelection campaign video, plus your calls and IMs!

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Sam and Emma are back from their Memorial Day break to discuss the top stories kicking off this week, from the anniversary of the Tulsa Massacre to the Texas Democrats' exit, and what we hope Democrats have learned from the failures of the January 6th commission. They begin by exploring the rising tensions, bolstered by the KKK and SCOTUS decisions, that led up to the 1921 Tulsa Massacre on Black Wall Street, then they look into the culmination of Republicans' decades-long crusade against the vote – from the staunch refusal to support an investigation into the January 6th coup attempt to the current wave of voting-restriction bills. Sam and Emma discuss the Texas Democrats' decision to walk out of the House, sacrificing the discussion of their initiatives for the sake of the enfranchisement of their constituents, how it can be a lesson for national Democrats who actually have a majority, and why taking on the unconstitutional nature of the filibuster must be the next step in the Senate. The duo rounds out the first half with a discussion of the leaked Biden memo on unilateral immigration reform.

And in the Fun Half: Nomiki Konst joins as the crew looks into the reemergence of the NY Health Act's Single-Payer system, first introduced in 1992, how a weakened Cuomo in an election year provides the perfect storm for NY to forge a path for a progressive agenda, and Nomiki explores multiple layers of the Dianne Morales clusterf*ck in the lead up to the NYC Mayoral primary. Next, they respond to the H3 Podcast's call for a Seder-Crowder debate, hopefully without Stephen's parental supervision this time, and delve a little deeper into the "discourse" that occurred at the Patriot Roundup "Coup"-Anon Conference. Emma emphasizes the importance of recognizing the commonality of Lab Leaks worldwide in a responsible discussion of the emerging possibility of the Wuhan Lab Leak, plus your IMs!

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Direct download: 6_1_News_w__MR_Crew_-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:47pm EDT

Sam hosts Alex Pareene, staff writer at the New Republic and host of The Politics of Everything, to discuss Manchin's stand on the filibuster, the sclerotic senate democrats, and Schumer's plan for filibuster reform all comes down to the June calendar.  Matthew Film Guy joins in the second half to discuss Amazon's purchase of MGM, how shows work now in the streaming age, and why Reality Bites is the essential Gen X movie.

And in the (Freebie Friday) Fun Half: Marjorie Taylor Greene debuts a Mexican accent but gives up on it, what's old is new again: 00s talking points about gays are now used to dehumanize trans people, conservatives are offended they can't hate with impunity, plus your IMs!

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Future Hindsight Podcast: This episode of Majority Report is brought to you by the civic engagement podcast Future Hindsight. Join host Mila Atmos this week as she talks to Mark Rank, a poverty expert and the author of Poorly Understood: What America Gets Wrong About Poverty. Check it out at FutureHindsight.com

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Direct download: 5_28_Casual_Friday_w__Alex_Pareene__Matthew_Film_Guy_-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:47pm EDT

Sam and Emma discuss the top stories of the week including ongoing infrastructure negotiations, some wins for climate activists, and democrats lining up a legislative agenda post-filibuster.  Sam and Emma breakdown the recent memo from Judge Amy Berman Jackson and Bill Barr's role in not charging Trump following the Mueller report, in which Barr's justification of foregoing charges was his own opinion. The two round out the first hour of the show explaining how climate activists are working their way around the worst instincts of fossil fuel corporations, and how the Biden administration is still greenlighting drilling projects.

And in the Fun Half: the Gaza ceasefire doesn't end the Palestinian expulsions, a young black republican from Arizona is running to defeat AOC, Trump doesn't want to crush the dreams and fears of his UFO believer supporter, voting and then holding left candidates accountable, Jamie Dimon and JP Morgan collected nearly $1.5B in consumer overdraft fees, plus your calls and IMs!

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Direct download: 5_27_News_w_MR_Crew.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:14pm EDT

Sam and Emma host Yale professor of history Elizabeth Hinton to discuss her new book America on Fire: The Untold History of Police Violence and Black Rebellion Since the 1960s and the importance of recasting what were once considered "riots" as rebellion, and how the original framing of those events helped elected officials stall on civil rights.

And in the Fun Half: Dave Rubin continues his identity waltz to oblivion, relitigating the Trump impeachment trial, why the right loves Majorie Taylor Greene, reactionaries cannot stand the slow march of cultural acceptance of different people, does atheism have utility for the left, the cycle of punishment after incarceration, balancing communication with policy, plus your calls and IMs!

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Sam and Emma host trans activist and law professor Dean Spade to discuss his book Mutual Aid: Building Solidarity During This Crisis (and the Next) on what we learned about collective action through the Covid-19 pandemic and how to better prepare for the next one. They explore what mutual aid is, why solidarity, not charity, is necessary to make up for the failures of the system, and how, beyond meeting material needs, mutual aid helps build connections and mobilize communities to work for and exercise self-determination, setting up long term systems of care for the future. Then, Spade chats about the challenges of anarchist organizing, the importance of understanding leaderships that produce mutuality and participation, rather than concentrated power in individuals, and what a successful post-transformative society would look like. They also delve into Sam’s comparison to union organizing and how mutual aid is deeply embedded throughout the histories of marginalized communities worldwide. Sam and Emma also chat infrastructure bill, and Fox returns to its roots and recenters the Black on Black crime narrative.

And in the Fun Half: Sam and Nomiki swap radio horror stories, passivity is the norm on police reform, Rick Santorum says the left's cancel culture is taking over the entire culture, Tucker Carlson adds another peg to the Replacement Theory board, Ron DeSantis passes a bill for Donald Trump to get back on Twitter, why Andrew Yang can fumble the bag and continue to grow his brand, how the crew plans to vote in the NYC Mayoral race, plus your IMs!

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Sam and Emma host Heather McGhee, a senior fellow at Demos, to discuss her new book The Sum of Us: What Racism Costs Everyone and How We Can Prosper Together on how the legacies of slavery and systemic racism hurt all Americans in material ways. They explore her concept of “drain pool politics,” in which white Americans started to vote away their own public benefits in response to desegregation, and its historical grounding in the white elite breaking up working-class solidarity by targeting Black and Brown folks at the expense of poor whites. They delve deeper into the effect of this “zero-sum” view of race in America that is used to distract and divide with manufactured cultural grievances, and what kind of work needs to be done, like building solidarity through organizing and confronting race, to begin to change the American consciousness. Then, Sam and Emma unpack Liz Cheney doing her best to dance around the connection between Trump’s election fraud claims and the current wave of voting bills, all while accidentally tying everything back to the 2000 election.

And in the Fun Half: Michael from Miami calls in to give out much deserved congratulations to Sam and Emma before exploring potential Democratic challengers in the Florida Senatorial race, the crew explores the coverage of the Wuhan origins of Covid-19 and the undertones of anti-science and anti-China rhetoric, and John from California provides much-needed information and resources around the current political devastation in Burma. Next, Ruben from El Paso discusses the potential universal college option, and Marjorie Taylor Green finds solidarity with the “second class” citizens of the Holocaust – or at least the "rational" sect of the Jews. Finally, Robert Gates does some wonderfully dishonest blame-shifting onto the Palestinians and the “Arab States” for the sustained violence in the region, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Sam and Emma host Ben Dixon of the Benjamin Dixon Show to talk about the top stories of the week and shifting tides of leftist activist authority in U.S. politics, then Ben Burgis, author of Canceling Comedians While the World Burns, joins to discuss his critique of the current American left. Ben Dixon explores how the greater activist sway in U.S. politics has totally changed the discourse around Israel’s apartheid regime, helping shift the Biden administration’s stance on ceasefire and ensuring that Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib can’t be isolated by the Democratic party for speaking out, before moving onto the blatant Republican obstruction of January Sixth commission and how that could undermine centrist dems’ consistent excuses on bipartisan support. Then, the ladder Ben gives us an argument on how Cancel Culture™ is holding back the left by undermining solidarity and reinforcing carceral logics, and what can be done in terms of breaking up social media to help, before he and Sam explore the greater progression of the left from its niche in the early aughts to the today’s constant performances of social activism.

And in the Fun Half: Louie Gohmert warns all of the many Bernie or Bust Billionaires of the gulags and lack of managerial duties in their future, Sam and Emma are forced to double-check Kevin McCarthy’s vax stats, and Chris Doocy incredulously lists off oddly incorrect COVID statistics. Then, Sam and Emma explore the Squad’s vote on the capitol police budget, plus, your calls and IMs!

 

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sunsetlakecbd is a majority employee owned farm in Vermont, producing 100% pesticide free CBD products. Great company, great product and fans of the show! Use code Leftisbest and get 20% off at http://www.sunsetlakecbd.com. And now Sunset Lake CBD has donated $2500 to the Nurses strike fund, and we encourage MR listeners to help if they can. Here's a link to where folks can donate: https://bit.ly/STVincentNurses

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Direct download: 5_21_Casual_Friday_w__Ben_Dixon__Ben_Burgis_-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:43pm EDT

Emma hosts today’s Majority Report, featuring an interview Sam recorded with Jonathan Daniel Wells, University of Michigan Professor of History, on his latest book “The Kidnapping Club: Wall Street, Slavery, and Resistance on the Eve of the Civil War.” They explore slavery's deep ties to the financial centers of the North, NYC in particular, even after slavery laws began to change. Centering on the southern ties of Wall Street and Tammany Hall, Jonathan and Sam talk about the horrors of the Kidnapping Club, a collection of NY Police, Judges, Slave Catchers and US Marshals who trafficked free Black folk from the North into Southern captivity regardless of fugitive status, and how Black abolitionists such as David Ruggles fought and organized to push back against their reign of terror. Next, Emma reviews Tim Ryan’s passionate performance on the floor, and how he found a way to be stunned by Republicans’ refusal to engage in bipartisanship over January 6th and climate change and looks into Ted Cruz’s claim that Biden is sabotaging Netanyahu’s apartheid regime by… selling them $700 million in arms.

And in the Fun Half: Dave from Jamaica calls in to chat about the success of right-wing Israeli propaganda before Fox’s Katie Pavlich and Dan Bongino give us some perfect examples of what he was talking about, forcing Geraldo Rivera of all people into the anti-War Crime camp. Emma and Matt dig into the tired “human shield” excuse for Israeli slaughter, and how refusing Palestinians any chance of self-governance or freedom has engendered Hamas's control of the region. Then, Andrew Giuliani fudges his political resume, citing the first decade of his life as central to his time spent in politics, and the Cuomos show off their own take on NY political dynasties, plus, your calls and IMs!

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Sam and Emma host epidemiologist Dr. MarkAlain Dery and host of the Covid Noise Filter podcast to discuss the state of the pandemic, including vaccine effectiveness, the new CDC mask guidance and the agency’s litany of failures during the covid pandemic, and why not achieving herd immunity is not the end of the world.

And in the Fun Half: inside baseball on rhetoric to convince American Jews on Israel policy, miners striking for the 9th week in Alabama, the media’s cultural level does not address societal ills, Katie Porter brings out the whiteboard to illustrate the Pharma fantasy about research and development of new drugs, big progressive wins in the Pennsylvania democratic primaries, the January 6 commission is further proof that Trump remains the center of conservative universe, plus your calls and IMs!

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Sam and Emma breakdown the latest development in Gaza, how the media and Democrats are drawing lines in a new Israel-Palestine narrative, and the reaction from the global community. Sam also gives a rundown of the Supreme Court's decision to hear Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization and what it could mean for Roe v. Wade and the 2022 midterm elections.

And in the Fun Half: Sam shows off his newest listener gift a Flowbee from Japan, the NYC progressive farm system is barren, Glenn Beck and Dave Rubin mix their metaphors about yellow stars and nazis, is John Oliver a bellwether for your typical democrat, making the distinction between eco-terrorism and eco civil disobedience, would Biden remove the filibuster if he could, plus your IMs!

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Direct download: 5_18_Is_Unwavering_Democratic_Support_for_Israel_Finally_Ending_-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:22pm EDT

Sam and Emma host historian Aviva Chomsky to discuss her latest book Central America's Forgotten History: Revolution, Violence, and the Roots of Migration on the history of extraction, exploitation, and the root causes behind migration from the Northern Triangle to the southern US border, as well as why the American empire bears much of the responsibility for the region's sustained destabilization.

And in the Fun Half: how we talk about politicians and sex workers, the new mask discourse, Israel destroying the media infrastructure in Gaza is about punishment, Alan Dershowitz remains one of the worst living Americans, Dan Bongino uses facts and logic to the best of his ability, Ricky Schroeder know for playing a cop and little Lord Fauntleroy harasses Costco, plus your IMs!

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Sam and Emma host Daniel Levy, president of the US Middle East Project, and Noah Kulwin, co-creator of the Blowback podcast, to explore two of the US’ messiest and most destructive long-term foreign policy relationships in Israel and Cuba, respectively. Daniel joins to discuss the attacks in Gaza, how commitment to Israeli impunity has undermined a future of a feasible Israeli state, and how raising consciousness around white supremacy has helped discourse in the US to begin to shift, even as the Biden administration gives the green light to continued Israeli violence. Sam and Emma delve into the roles of Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib in changing tides in Congress, then, Noah Kulwin unpacks the myths of the conventional narrative around the Cuban revolution and Cuba's relationship with the US. He explores how the 1959 revolution acted as a second war of independence, separating them from the neocolonial systems of the US, and the devastating effects of the proceeding embargo and total isolation forced on Cuba by the US, particularly after the fall of the USSR.

And in the Fun Half: Brian from Kansas explores the serious racism in Israel, even within its own borders, MTG yells into the void about… AOC and diapers? Ronald Raygun joins to talk about growing consciousness around the Israel occupation of Palestine, and Matt Walsh engages in the erasure of his peers and claims that white supremacy does not exist. Next, a Proud Boys leader finally sees the injustice of Donald Trump in all the wrong ways, and Ben from NY calls in to get Sam and Emma’s perspectives on the NYHS curriculum. Plus, your calls and IMs!

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Direct download: 5_14_Casual_Friday_w__Daniel_Levy__Noah_Kulwin_-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:58pm EDT

Sam and Emma host James R. Skillen, professor at Calvin University joins to discuss his new book This Land is My Land: Rebellion in the West on the history of how conservatives have used public lands as a pitch to stoke resentment of federal law and play out their libertarian fantasies.

And in the Fun Half: Bari Weiss's moral depravity, violent suppression in Myanmmar, Andrew Yang is a cipher for NY's conservative Jewish community, Newsmax anchor chides Jewish Democratic voters for not supporting their "home country," some insight from an orthodox Jewish caller on any "other" group, plus your calls and IMs!

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Sam and Emma host founder and senior correspondent at the Intercept Jeremy Scahill to discuss his new series Empire Politician on how Biden is the manifestation of US foreign policy over the past 50 years, including Biden's relationship to the intel community, the on-going apartheid efforts in Israel and more.

And in the Fun Half: Steven Crowder edits Sam out of a video about left violence and vitriol, why political scientists need to be cautious sharing research online, Tucker Carlson reminds his audience he thinks they're dumb as hell, amending the For the People Act in the Senate, Palestinian writer speaking out against Israeli apartheid is forcibly removed from his home, Israel's trajectory is continued oppression of Palestinians and isolation, somehow a question about Force the Vote, a caller explains how she got into politics through Majority Report, a truther says MR comedy guest David Feldman wrote copy for the CIA ad, plus your calls and IMs!

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Check out Joshua Kahn Russell's friend, activist and organizer Casey Harrell who is raising money to treat his ALS diagnosis.

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Sam and Emma host legal scholar and human rights activist Noura Erakat to discuss Israel's latest assault on Palestinians in Jerusalem's Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood and the larger colonial apartheid project carried out by Israel since its inception and the United States's blank check to Israel.

And in the Fun Half: Nomiki Konst introduces MR to her co-host Arun Chaudhary, whose new show premiers next Monday! Red state governors explain why they need to shut off federal UI, what is happening with the GOP leadership, why Israel has to be a one-state solution, winning the NY mayoral Democratic primary, Ron Kuby speaking up for Steven Donziger, plus your IMs!

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Sam and Emma host journalist Cory Doctorow to discuss his new book “How to Destroy Surveillance Capitalism” on the issue of tech monopolies, antitrust laws, and what we can do to reign in Facebook and Google. They explore big tech’s self-portrayal as mind manipulators, how their power comes from a historically cooperative relationship between the government and monopolies, and Doctorow dissects how increased interoperability and expansive antitrust laws can begin to break up this relationship. Then, Sam and Emma talk Republicans getting out to suppress the vote, and watch Texas Representative Rafael Anchia explain the unsurprisingly racist relationship between purity and voting laws to a somehow surprised Briscoe Cain.

And in the Fun Half: The group chats horrible bosses, cancel culture’s cross-species impact, and monopolies as a natural endpoint of capitalist accumulation, before Ryan from NJ helps unpack the unemployment myths Fox has been peddling. Next, Coop calls in to explore the democratization of Brooklyn’s energy grid, Adam from NY talks progressive chances in purple districts, and Sam and Emma watch David Litt jump on Newsmax’s Monday blues. Plus, your calls and IMs!

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Sam and Emma host Heather Parton, columnist at Salon.com and proprietor of “Digby’s Hullabaloo,” and talk with attorney Steven Donziger about the criminal conspiracy that Chevron has been enacting against him. Heather, Sam, and Emma delve deep into the chokehold Donald Trump has over Republican fealty, and what (and who) this might affect in the coming midterms. Then, Steven Donziger recounts the ongoing attempt to force him into jail as part of a greater conspiracy to continue imperialist exploitation of indigenous folks in Ecuador and elsewhere. Emma, Sam, and Steven explore how Chevron has been using a private prosecutorial regime and a network of corrupt judges to force criminal contempt and RICO charges on him, with the aim of undermining an Ecuadorian Supreme Court decision defending Indigenous people’s human rights.

And in the Fun Half: Sam and Emma encourage ICE agents to resign in protest of Biden’s immigration policy, they explore Tucker Carlson’s manipulation of VAERS as part of the broader anti-vax disinformation campaign, and Charlie Kirk recoins tragedy of the commons. Next, Laura Ingraham and Dinesh D’Souza rage against BrainPOP, exploring how Moby the educational robot is undermining the American family unit, and the Utah GOP come together to express their dearest grievances - beyond Mitt Romney - from the cancellation of dixie to “taxed enough already!” Plus, your calls and IMs!

 

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sunsetlakecbd is a majority employee owned farm in Vermont, producing 100% pesticide free CBD products. Great company, great product and fans of the show! Use code Leftisbest and get 20% off at http://www.sunsetlakecbd.com

Check out Joshua Kahn Russell's friend, activist and organizer Casey Harrell who is raising money to treat his ALS diagnosis.

Subscribe to Discourse Blog, a newsletter and website for progressive essays and related fun partly run by AM Quickie writer Jack Crosbie. https://discourseblog.com/

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Direct download: 5_7_Casual_Friday_w__Digby__Steven_Donziger_-_pub.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:02pm EDT

Sam and Emma host Ian Millhiser, Vox senior correspondent, to discuss his new book, “The Agenda: How a Republican Supreme Court Is Reshaping America,” and how conservative control of the courts could impact democratic government for years to come. They chat about coming out of a decade defined by congressional inaction and judicial activism, how the SCOTUS is seeking to defang congressional delegation abilities and boost (certain) religious exemptions, and how republicans have embedded their roots of minority rule in all levels of the court system. Next, Fox News hosts Ron DeSantis’s assault on enfranchisement, McConnell’s dedication to obstruction, and the positives and… more positives of Biden waiving the vaccine patents.

And in the Fun Half: Emma explores the NHL’s refusal to hold Tom Wilson accountable, Andrew from Chicago gives domestic insight into evangelical politics, and the group sees first-hand Israeli excuses for forced Palestinian exile. Montana Gov. Gianforte promotes deprivation for the sake of dignity, the CIA tries to rebrand from puppet dictators to millennial girl bosses, and Caitlyn Jenner and her community’s fight and flight are triggered by the mere existence of poverty. Lastly, the group shares their favorite James O’Keefe disinformation attempts, plus, your calls and IMs!

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