FEATURING ROBERT WEISSMAN - Donald Trump's executive orders are fomenting mass panic and chaos at all levels of American society. One of his orders that has not garnered as much attention, is his demand that for every new regulation that a federal agency proposes it will have to offer up two that need to be removed. Trump has characterized regulations as hampering our economy. But in fact regulations are in place to protect the public, and calling them "protections" might be more accurate. Regulations require our drinking water and air to be clean, and our infrastructure to be safe even if it costs corporations more to do so. Regulations protect consumers from predatory corporate practices, and require pharmaceutical companies to rigorously test drugs before selling them to the public. In weakening regulations, Trump wants to strengthen corporations at the expense of public safety and security. How exactly does that "Make
FEATURING RAHUL MAHAJAN - Intelligence agency staffers and elected officials alike are expressing shock over the promotion of White House chief strategist and one-time head of the right-wing Breitbart News, Steve Bannon, to oversee US national security policy. Donald Trump has appointed Bannon to the National Security Council, which is the highest level inter-agency group on national security. The move comes with demotions of the Director of National Intelligence and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. It is apparently unprecedented to have a political advisor to the President get a permanent seat the National Security Council. Meanwhile one of Trump's first foreign policy moves just days into his tenure was to approve a US raid in Yemen that was planned many months earlier under President Obama. The raid resulted in 30 Yemenis killed including 10 women and children. Among the dead was an 8-year old girl who was
FEATURING DEEPA IYER - While Donald Trump wasted no time in enacting and enforcing his ban on Muslims from certain countries, the mass grassroots opposition to Trump's policies also wasted no time in mobilizing. Thousands of people gathered at major airports around the country over the past weekend demanding that those individuals with legal resident permits or valid visas who were detained by Homeland Security be allowed in to the country. At the same time, two federal judges ruled separately on Trump's Muslim ban executive order, granting a temporary stay on enforcement. As a result, most if not all of those who were detained have been let back in. But the fight is far from over. Trump has dug his heels in and many of his fellow Republicans are with him. Fore more information visit www.deepaiyer.com and follow Deepa at twitter.com/dviyer. Deepa Iyer, Senior Fellow at the Center for Social Inclusion
FEATURING JENNIFER CLARK - Republicans have long contended that there is widespread voter fraud in US elections so they can justify suppressing the votes of primarily people of color, youth, and the disabled. Now they have someone in the White House who is openly claiming that he lost the popular vote because there were "millions who voted illegally." Donald Trump appears to not understand the simple distinction between people who might be registered to vote in two different states, and those who might actually vote twice. In his justifications of voter fraud he has often cited a Pew Research report on double voter registrations, and has assumed that the results means there is voter fraud. By that same standard his daughter Tiffany Trump, his Treasure Secretary pick Steve Mnuchin, and his chief strategist Steve Bannon, must be committing Trump-style voter fraud as it has now emerged that they are all
FEATURING LES LEOPOLD - Donald Trump has sparked a strong resistance to his racist policies such as the Muslim ban, the crackdown on sanctuary cities, and the border wall. But his economic policies seem to sown confusion. He has stacked his cabinet with Goldman Sachs and Exxon Mobil executives, but he has also canceled the Transpacific Partnership, an agreement hugely unpopular with unions and championed by the Democratic Party. He has also given lip service to ending the outsourcing of jobs. American workers are so desperate to improve their financial prospects that those who voted for Trump maybe willing to sell the rest of us out in exchange for promises of good jobs. Progressives then, ignore the ills of pro-corporate neo-liberal capitalism at our peril. Find more about Les' book at http://runawayinequality.org, and read his article on Common Dreams HERE. Les Leopold, director of the Labor Institute in New York and author
FEATURING RONTEL BATIE - Donald Trump seemingly can't nominate anyone in his cabinet who is actually qualified for the job. His choice of Labor Secretary is no exception. Fast food CEO Andy Puzder will sit through confirmation hearings at the Senate in a few days. Puzder is distinguished by his singular aversion to labor rights. According to the labor rights group, Fight for $15, "cashiers and cooks at Puzder’s restaurants announced thirty-three complaints filed with state and federal agencies." Puzder faces charges of not paying his workers, forcing them onto public assistance programs, refusing to entertain even modest pay raises, and ignoring sexual harassment claims. Find more at www.nelp.org. Rontel Batie, Federal Advocate with the National Employment Law Project.
FEATURING GRETCHEN GOLDMAN - With a climate denier in the White House and a de facto gag order on federal agencies in place, scientists around the country, many of whom rely on federal funding, are finding themselves increasingly politicized. Rogue tweets from employees of the National Parks Service and NASA have revealed a deep frustration among those who advocate for truth and facts. Now, across the country there is a move afoot to organize a March for Science in Washington DC and many other other cities. As of this recording the newly formed March for Science Facebook page has garnered nearly a quarter of a million "likes" in just days. Find more information at www.ucsusa.org. Gretchen Goldman, Research Director for the Center for Science and Democracy at Union of Concerned Scientists.
FEATURING GEORGE LAKOFF - A majority of Americans are experiencing shock, anger, and disgust at the way in which our new President's first week in office has unfolded. The lies and hypocrisy, the fixation on crowd sizes, the war with the media, and the diplomatic disaster with Mexico, have us cringing in collective shame. But, in a report from a small town in Michigan, the Guardian newspaper reported that Trump's popularity among his core supporters was still strong and that many of them did not consider his first week a disaster. How does Trump do it? Find more at www.georgelakoff.com. George Lakoff, Professor of the Graduate School In Cognitive Science and Linguistics at the University of California at Berkeley, Director of Center for the Neural Mind & Society. He has written several books including Don't Think of An Elephant, which was just republished, Moral Politics, and The Political Mind.
FEATURING GEORGE LAKOFF - A majority of Americans are experiencing shock, anger, and disgust at the way in which our new President's first week in office has unfolded. The lies and hypocrisy, the fixation on crowd sizes, the war with the media, and the diplomatic disaster with Mexico, have us cringing in collective shame. But, in a report from a small town in Michigan, the Guardian newspaper reported that Trump's popularity among his core supporters was still strong and that many of them did not consider his first week a disaster. How does Trump do it? NOTE: This is the Extended version of this interview, available only to our subscribers, or to rent or buy. George Lakoff, Professor of the Graduate School In Cognitive Science and Linguistics at the University of California at Berkeley, Director of Center for the Neural Mind & Society. He has written several books including Don't Think of
FEATURING LAURA CARLSEN - Donald Trump on Wednesday signed yet more executive orders, trying to fulfill, at least in name, some of the biggest campaign promises he made to his voters such as building a wall on the US border with Mexico. He specified, "a contiguous, physical wall or other similarly secure, contiguous and impassable physical barrier." House Speaker Paul Ryan has estimated that the wall will cost $8-12 billion, but the MIT Tech Review puts the figure closer to $40 billion. Trump had promised his supporters that he would get Mexico to pay for the wall but Mexico's current and former presidents have soundly rejected that. Now Trump claims US tax payers will foot the bill initially but eventually be reimbursed. How exactly that will happen, the President has not specified. Meanwhile, border crossings by immigrants are at a 40-year low. Laura Carlsen, Director of the Americas Program of