Political Misfits

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Political Misfits brings you news, politics and culture ‒ without the red and blue treatment. We aim to facilitate constructive conversations that take new looks at the stories and topics that mean a lot to us, including corporate misconduct, anti-war efforts, climate change, political hypocrisy, poverty, pop culture, electoral politics and much, much more. Political Misfits airs live daily Monday through Friday from 12-2 p.m. EST and is broadcast on 105.5 FM in Washington, DC, 102.9 FM in Kansas City, Missouri, and to 35 countries on signals such as FM, digital DAB/DAB+ (Digital Radio Broadcasting), and HD-Radio. The show is also made available globally live on SputnikNews.com and is distributed as a podcast shortly after broadcasting on iTunes, iHeartRadio, Spreaker and more. About us: Hosts Bob Schlehuber and Michelle Witte bring different backgrounds to Political Misfits, but arrive with a mutual curiosity and compassion. Bob is an artist, producer and organizer; someone who works to create conversations that bring together broad and diverse individuals, organizations and ideas. Bob produced the radio show By Any Means Necessary on Radio Sputnik for the past three years; now, he's bringing his commitment to understanding and addressing housing, homelessness, public safety, education, health, workforce development, civility, mutual understanding, and international peace and conflict resolution to Political Misfits. Michelle is a committed explorer, observer and documentor of our big, beautiful planet and the strange creatures that inhabit it. A long-time writer, teacher and journalist, she returned to the US after ten years overseas with a broader perspective on American politics and culture and our impact on the world. Michelle gets fired up about justice and injustice, responsible travel, good books and bad movies, animal rights, baking and long-distance hikes.

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    • Feb 26, 2022 LATEST EPISODE
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    Latest episodes from Political Misfits

    Eyes On Ukraine: Military Action, Sanctions, Protests and Diplomacy

    Play Episode Listen Later Feb 26, 2022 110:22

    Our first guest, Jim Jatras, retired former U.S. diplomat and GOP Senate foreign policy adviser, joins the show to talk about what is happening on the ground in Ukraine militarily and diplomatically. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said he was ready to discuss a “neutral status” for his country. Russia said it was ready to send a delegation to Minsk, but of course, as these statements are being made, people are fighting and dying in Ukraine. They talked about the scale of Russia's military operation in Ukraine and the burgeoning protests in the region. Next, John Ross, author, economist, and senior fellow of the Chongyang Institute at Renmin University of China, joins the show to discuss the wave of sanctions the US has imposed. They talk about the immediate economic impact in Russia and elsewhere. Also, India is apparently trying to establish a rupee payment mechanism to trade with Russia - if other countries do this as well, does it eventually affect the value of the dollar overall?Kimberly Dvorak, investigative journalist, talks about the possible outcomes from Russia's military engagement in Ukraine. They talk about whether Ukraine will become a divided state: Ukraine on the West and parts of Eastern Ukraine join Russia. The Misfits also talk about the impact the war in Ukraine will affect domestic politics and the 2022 midterm elections.For the last segment, Jacqueline Luqman, co-host of By Any Means Necessary which can be heard M-F 2:00p to 4:00p ET on Radio Sputnik, calls in to join the conversation to talk about what it means to fight for peace at a time of open conflict. There's a lot of pressure right now in the West to take a side - and pressure to accept the idea that to be on the side of ordinary Ukrainians watching this horror play out is to be on the side of the US and NATO. Luqman points out that while Russia is striking Ukraine, Israel has been dropping bombs in Gaza for years with no sanctions from the West.

    Russia's Special Military Operation In Ukraine

    Play Episode Listen Later Feb 25, 2022 112:20

    Peter Oliver, journalist and RT correspondent in Berlin, joins the show to talk about how Russia launched what it is being referred to as a special military operation in Ukraine last night, with the stated goal of demilitarizing and denazifying the government there. Michelle and Peter talk about how diplomacy has failed to resolve security concerns long held by Russia, which has escalated tension and led to military conflict. Mark Sleboda, international affairs and security analyst, joins the show to talk about Russian President Vladimir Putin's early morning announcement and the sanctions against Russia that followed. They talked about how Western sanctions target Russia which include freezing Russia's financial assets. They discuss the potential impact it could have on businesses and individuals living in the region and how much pain will be felt beyond Russia's borders? Dan Lazare, journalist and analyst, meets up with the Misfits to talk about the economic state of flux now that Russia has moved into Ukraine, Will there be a global energy shock? They also talk about the Russian electorate. How do Russians feel about military action and occupation of Ukraine? Does it help Putin with voters? And what will Putin decide to do with Western parts of Ukraine once the breakaway republics are secured? The Misfits sign off for today. We will be back tomorrow in this space to bring you the latest news and analysis.Till tomorrow…

    How Will Sanctions Imposed by the U.S. and Allies Impact Russia?

    Play Episode Listen Later Feb 23, 2022 111:17

    At the top of the show, George Szamuely calls in to break down reaction to the sanctions the U.S. announced on Tuesday. They also talk about opposition within the Republican Party as Senator Lindsay Graham (R-SC) is calling for Russia's economy to be destroyed, while Donald Trump praises Putin for being a canny operator. Next, Ford Fischer, a primary source documentarian whose works include Oscar, Emmy and Golden Globe-winning films and editor-in-chief of News2Share (@N2Sreports), calls in to talk with the Misfits about the truckers Freedom Convoy that is leaving from different parts of the U.S. and rolling into DC. Protesters say they plan to jam the beltway outside of DC today, and converge at the U.S. Capitol by March 1, 2022. Then, Kevin Gosztola, journalist, writer for Shadowproof.com and co-host of the podcast Unauthorized Disclosure, joins the show. They talk about the recent announcement that Kyle Rittenhouse is launching a “Media Accountability Project." Rittenhouse has also filed lawsuits against reporters, saying he was defamed and wants to help others in his situation. Rittenhouse is the man who shot and killed two people during racial justice protests in Wisconsin in 2020, but who was found not guilty by virtue of having acted in self defense, the jury concluded.John and Michelle also discuss with Gosztola the litigation resulting from the opioid crisis. The Wall Street Journal reports that Purdue's Sackler family has increased their opioid settlement offer to as much as $6 billion. The new settlement offer comes after the company's prior Chapter 11 bankruptcy plan was overturned. For the last segment, Paul Wright, executive director of the Human Rights Defense Center and the editor of Prison Legal News and Criminal Legal News magazines, joins the show to talk about the crisis at New York's Rikers Island jail that houses thousands of people awaiting trial in New York City. Last month, news broke that over 2,800 guards were conspiring to skip work for so-called “sick leave” at any given time. On some days, as many as 35 percent of guards called in sick, claiming diarrhea or just not bothering to call in at all. This is a crime called time and attendance fraud, and it resulted in the city paying out millions of dollars in overtime for other guards to cover the missed shifts. In the meantime, prisoners missed more than 7,000 medical appointments because there was nobody to escort them.

    The World Watches as Russia Recognizes DPR and LPR as Independent From Ukraine

    Play Episode Listen Later Feb 23, 2022 111:30

    Austin Pelli, co-host of Fault Lines which can be heard on Radio Sputnik 7:00a -10:00a ET Monday through Friday, calls in to update the Misfits about the breakup of the Freedom Convoy in Ottawa over the weekend. Austin reports that over 70 trucks were towed,150 arrests were made and most people were taken to the city limits and asked not to return. There were no deaths or serious injuries, according to Austin. They also talked about the bank seizure of donations and bank accounts held by protestors. Mark Sleboda, reporter and foreign affairs analyst, joins the show to break down the latest in Eastern Europe. They talk about the geopolitical significance of Russia officially recognizing the independence of Donetsk and Lugansk Republics. They also talk about whether or not a larger incursion past DPR and LPR into Ukraine could ensue and what impact this could have on global oil prices and inflation. Next up is longtime educator and activist Dr. Bill Ayers, who is a former professor of education at the University of Illinois at Chicago where he held the titles of Distinguished Professor of Education and Senior University Scholar and specialized in teaching social justice, urban educational reform, narrative and interpretive research, and children in trouble with the law. Ayers joins the conversation to discuss the recent recall in San Francisco of three of the city's school board members. The ousted members were recalled primarily over the closure of schools and other covid-related restrictions. Ayers explains that the recall was sponsored by a few billionaires costing $1.9 million. Recalls are often utilized as a political mechanism that takes advantage of low-voter turnout, resulting in an election result that does not necessarily reflect the will of the general electorate, according to Ayers.For the top of the last hour, Miranda Devine, reporter at the New York Post, Daily Telegraph and the author of the bestselling book “Laptop From Hell,” joins the Misfits to talk about the latest development out of the Hunter Biden corruption investigation. They talk about what was Hunter Biden doing in China and Ukraine. They also talk about Hunter's spending habits and what the federal probe is looking into, particularly Biden's finances, taxes and business dealingsFor the last segment, Jeremy Kuzmarov joins the program. He's the Jay P. Walker Assistant Professor of American History at the University of Tulsa. He's also managing editor of Covert Action Magazine, and the author of three books, most recently “The Russians Are Coming–Again: The First Cold War as Tragedy, the Second as Farce.” He joins the show to talk about how the media is describing events unfolding in Ukraine. They talk about reports over the weekend that Russia is preparing a “kill list” and a full blown invasion of Ukraine. The question that the Misfits discuss with Kuzmarov is why are we being asked, yet again, to just take the government's and the media's account of all that is actually happening in the region?

    Drifting Deadlines, UK's Official Secrets Act and Covid Immunity

    Play Episode Listen Later Feb 19, 2022 110:53

    Austin Pelli, co-host of Fault Lines, which you can hear every day, Monday through Friday from 7:00a-10:00a ET on Radio Sputnik, calls in from Ottawa to give the Misfits an update on an anticipated crackdown by police to clear protesters from the Canadian capital. It has been widely reported that law enforcement is preparing to clear the capital over the weekend, and protesters say they plan to remain in place. Austin told the Misfits that two leaders of the Freedom Convoy were arrested this morning.Mark Sleboda, international relations and foreign affairs analyst, joins the show to break down the latest developments out of Ukraine. They talk about Secretary of State Antony Blinken's speech to the United Nations Thursday warning of a possible “false flag operation.” Blinken said Russia or pro-Russian Ukrainians could allege a provocation that would then give them cause to enter Ukraine. Dr. Kenneth Surin, Professor Emeritus of literature and professor of religion and critical theory at Duke University, joins the show to talk about the recent UK law called the Official Secrets Act that is used to prosecute anybody accused of leaking classified, sensitive, or national security information, including journalists. It's a law that American prosecutors have often said they would like to see in the United States. UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson's conservative government is now poised to greatly expand on the Official Secrets Act to allow the government to prosecute and jail whistleblowers and journalists. Ted Rall, award-winning political cartoonist, columnist, author whose his latest book is "The Stringer," and co-host of the DMZ America podcast with Ted Rall & Scott Stantis, joins the show to talk about the recent ruling by a New York state judge ordering Donald Trump and his children Ivanka and Donald Trump Jr. to testify in depositions within three weeks. The court order relates to New York state's investigation into the Trump organization's business practices. Then, the Misfits talk with Ted about Elon Musk tweeting that he's being harassed by the SEC trying to “chill” Musk's right to free speech. Finally, Michelle and John ask Ted about rising inflation and recent reports that sixty percent of Americans are living paycheck to paycheck with little to no savings to fall back on.Dr. Iyabo Obasanjo, professor of public health at the College of William & Mary in Williamsburg, VA. joins the show to discuss the impact of hybrid immunity to COVID-19. They discuss the science, where it stands now on natural immunity versus vaccine-induced immunity, and whether one form of immunity is notably more effective than the other. They talk about how federal guidelines will adapt to rising rates of immunity.The Misfits close Friday's show with Stories of the Weird.We sign off till Tuesday.

    Russia's Red Line, Freedom Convoy Crackdown, Spoofing and Scalping

    Play Episode Listen Later Feb 17, 2022 111:58

    Jim Jatras, former US diplomat and former senior foreign policy advisor to the Senate Republican leadership, joins Michelle Witte and John Kiriakou to discuss the expulsion of the US deputy ambassador from Russia and the accusations Ukraine and Russia are exchanging of cease-fire violations, as the US secretary of state addresses the UN Security Council on the crisis. Chris Garaffa, editor of TechForThePeople.org, breaks down the Future of Tech commission's recent recommendations on limiting data collection, and the need for more forceful action on privacy violations. They also discuss new legislation to protect childrens' privacy online and Google's plans to (pretend to) protect your privacy. Robert Hockett, Edward Cornell professor of law and a professor of public policy at Cornell University, gets into the Justice Department's investigation of short selling on Wall Street. He also helps explain the ramifications of the Canadian government's new emergency powers as they relate to private banking and breaks down what the about face of the Trump Organization's accounting firm means. Austin Pelli, cohost of Fault Lines, reports from Ottawa, where a crackdown on the anti-mandate trucker convoy is underway. Protestors appear to be unconcerned with the threats of arrest, and promise the protest will continue.

    Russia Withdrawal, Convoy Coup? Ethiopia Ends SOE and Sea Level Rise

    Play Episode Listen Later Feb 16, 2022 110:43

    At the top of the show, our guest is Dr. David Oualaalou, an International geopolitical consultant, global speaker, author, veteran & former international security analyst in Washington, DC. He's the host of “Geopolitics in Conflict” on YouTube, Locals & Rumble, and founder of Global Perspective Consultingheadquartered in Dallas, TX. His latest book is "The Dynamics of Russia's Geopolitics: Remaking of the Global Order." He joins John and Michelle to break down the latest in Ukraine. The head of Russia's delegation to the OSCE said this morning that the Russian bottom line is that Ukraine cannot and must not join NATO. But, we already know that France and Germany opposed Ukrainian membership in NATO, and all member countries have to vote unanimously to accept a new member. It remains unlikely that Ukraine would be eligible or become a member of NATO anytime soon, according to Dr.Oualaalou. Pandemic related mandates remain in effect until March as protests in Ottawa continue. Austin Pelli, co-host of Fault Lines, which you can hear every day, Monday through Friday, from 7:00a -10:00a ET on Radio Sputnik, called in from Ottawa to give the Misfits a breakdown of what's happening on the ground. Austin says that protesters are preparing for an escalation by law enforcement over the weekend in an effort to motivate protestors to clear the capital space truckers have occupied since mid-January. Leila Mechoui, journalist and co-host of the Red Star Radio podcast, also called in from Ottawa. The Misfits to talk about speculation that a group of protesters are preparing for a coup to overthrow the Canadian government. “The only people talking about overthrowing the government is the government,” Leila said.Next, Tina Landis, environmental and social activist and the author of the book "Climate Solutions Beyond Capitalism," joins Michelle and John to talk about a report on potential sea level rise issued Tuesday by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, warning that sea levels will rise as much in the next 30 years as much as they did in the previous hundred. That means seas a foot higher, or as much as a foot and a half higher in the Gulf of Mexico on the coasts of Louisiana and Texas. Morgan Artyukhina is a writer and news editor at Sputnik's Washington, DC, bureau, focusing on international and breaking news, as well as covering military technology, the expanding neoliberal police state, and the ongoing struggles against it in the US and around the globe. Morgan meets up with John and Michelle in studio to talk about how Ethiopia's parliament yesterday voted for an early end to the country's six-month-long state of emergency, indicating that the bloody conflict between the government and Tigrayan rebel forces was easing.For the last segment, Sarah Sax joins the show. Sarah is an environmental journalist, with a focus to uncover the social, economic, and environmental forces driving large-scale land-use change and environmental injustice, with a focus on climate justice, gender, land and indigenous rights, and agricultural commodities. John and Michelle talk with Sarah about a hydroelectric plant slated to be built in the Pacific Northwest on sacred tribal land owned by the Yakama tribe.

    Russia Watch, Protest Persists, Tribal Jail Deaths and Amazon Union Vote

    Play Episode Listen Later Feb 16, 2022 111:53

    For the first segment, Austin Pelli, co-host of Fault Lines - which you can hear every day Monday through Friday, from 7:00a-10:00a ET here on Radio Sputnik, calls in from Ottawa, Canada to give us an on-the-ground perspective covering the Freedom Convoy. Austin describes the scene as being friendly and festive. Ottawa police have been supportive of the protest, and participants in the convoy are compliant with law enforcement. Each weekend, more people show up to the protest, yet pandemic mandates are slated to be lifted by the end of February.Next, Kimberly Dvorak, award-winning investigative journalist, calls in from Virginia to talk with Michelle and John about the latest development in Russia over tensions in the Ukraine. There are a great number of developments on Ukraine today: President Putin met this morning with Germany Chancellor Olaf Scholz, which was after Scholz met with Ukrainian President Zelenskyy. Both sides stressed economic ties, and Scholz said that Europe's borders are inviolable. Putin, for his part, said that he does not want or seek war in Europe. At the bottom of the first hour, John Kane, Mohawk activist, educator, producer and host of the Let's Talk Native podcast, and co-host of Resistance Radio on WBAI Pacifica Radio NY, joins the show to talk about the Interior Department reviewing deaths in custody of native people at tribal detention centers overseen by the department. According to an investigation published last summer, at least 19 men and women have died in these detention centers since 2016.Terry Collingsworth, executive director of International Rights Advocates and labor/human rights attorney specializing in trade and international labor rights issues, joins Michelle and John to talk about the National Labor Relations Board's findings about how Amazon has treated union organizers in its warehouses and what it has been ordered to do. The Board's findings follow after Amazon workers in Alabama voted for a second time whether or not to unionize. During the last hour, Bruce Fein, former associate deputy Attorney General of the United States and a renowned constitutional scholar, catches up with the Misfits to discuss a recent court decision regarding Sarah Palin. A New York judge yesterday said that he will dismiss a lawsuit brought against the New York Times by Republican former vice presidential nominee and Alaska governor Sarah Palin. He said that Palin's legal team did not prove a key element of the case, that the New York Times intended “actual malice.” But in a very unusual decision, the judge said that he will allow the jury to continue deliberating over a verdict, and that he will dismiss that verdict once it has done so. This seems like an easy win for the Times. But, the judge seems to be preparing for an inevitable appeal and he wants both his own reasoning and the jury's reasoning on the record, according to Fein.For the last segment, Dan Kovalik, labor attorney, human rights activist, and author whose latest book is called "Cancel This Book: The Progressive Case Against Cancel Culture," joins the show to talk about the latest out of Honduras. The United States yesterday formally requested the arrest and extradition to the US of former Honduran President Juan Orlando Hernandez. The Justice Department accuses the former president of trafficking drugs into the United States. His brother Tony was convicted of trafficking last year and sentenced to life without parole. The Honduran Supreme Court will meet today to decide whether to extradite Orlando Hernandez. Orlando Hernandez is not new to corruption. There have been credible, serious reports that he was a major drug trafficker going back to 2015.

    Ukraine Watch, Ottawa Occupied, No War Wing of the GOP and Russiagate

    Play Episode Listen Later Feb 14, 2022 111:24

    Mark Sleboda, foreign affairs and policy analyst, joins the show at the top of the hour to break down the latest from diplomatic talks over the weekend. Today, President Putin met with Foreign Minister Lavror and Defense Minister Shoygu to talk about de-escalation. Shoygu said that Russian troops are about to finish their military drills and will soon return to their permanent bases. Ukrainian President Zelenskyy is asking the US for proof of Russian intentions because the US insistence that a Russian invasion is imminent is spreading panic in the country. Even airlines are canceling flights to Ukraine because they can't get insurance to operate them.Then, Austin Pelli, co-host of Fault Lines, which you can hear every day Monday through Friday, from 7:00a-10:00a ET here on Radio Sputnik, calls in from Ottawa, Canada, to give us an on-the-ground perspective covering the Freedom Convoy. Austin says that protesters are peaceful, keeping the streets clean and salted, contrary to media accounts of Confederate flags and trash.Leila Mechoui, journalist and co-host of the Red Star Radio podcast, also called in from Ottawa. Leila talks about who is supporting the protest and those who remain opposed. She says that the Trudeau administration is planning to lift pandemic-related mandates as soon as February 28, but Trudeau is not saying that it has anything to do with pressure from protesters. Truckers protested a specific issue, and now that issue may be resolved soon.Next, Daniel Mc Adams, executive director of the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity, joins John to talk about the rising populist anti-war conservatism that is ascending within the GOP. John and Daniel discuss the primary season and the competitive Senate races. The redrawing of districts following the 2020 census and which senators are up for election will have an impact on how many and who turns out to vote this November.For the last segment, Kevin Gosztola, journalist, writer for Shadowproof.com and co-host of the podcast Unauthorized Disclosure, joins the show. Remember Russiagate? John and Kevin discuss the recent news that Justice Department Special Prosecutor John Durham filed a motion on Friday related to potential conflicts of interest in connection with the case of Clinton campaign lawyer Michael Sussman, who has been charged with lying to the FBI. Sussman allegedly told the FBI that he was not acting on Hillary Clinton's behalf when he gave the FBI documents that supposedly linked the Trump campaign to a Russian bank. But records show that he later billed the Clinton campaign for doing exactly that. The limited information that Durham has released so far indicates that nothing about Russiagate was true.

    CIA Data Mining, Fracking Earthquakes, and Truckers Protest Persist

    Play Episode Listen Later Feb 11, 2022 112:21

    George Szamuely, columnist and senior research fellow at the Global Policy Institute, joined John and Michelle during the first hour to break down the latest developments from a very tense session yesterday between British Foreign Minister Liz Truss and Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov.For the next segment, Guy McPherson, scientist, professor emeritus of natural resources, ecology and evolutionary biology at the University of Arizona, joined the show to talk about the recent increase in earthquakes in Texas, which saw twice as many earthquakes in 2021 compared to the year prior, according to research by the Bureau of Economic Geology at the University of Texas at Austin. The Misfits ask McPherson why fracking causes earthquakes and how dangerous they are. Recent earthquakes are a result of wastewater disposal wells, a byproduct that results from drilling for natural gas that induces earthquakes, McPherson said.At the top of the last hour, Andalusia K. Soloff is a multimedia journalist, documentary filmmaker, and graphic novelist based in Mexico City who specializes in state violence, migration, indigenous land struggles and gender-based murders in Latin America. She joins the show to shed light on the assassinations of journalists in Mexico. Six weeks into 2022, five journalists have been murdered in Mexico, the deadliest year for journalists there in over a decade. Between 2000 and 2021, Mexico saw the murder of 145 journalists. Soloff explains that many of the murders follow reporting on corruption cases involving local politicians and drug cartels. Many journalists, especially those in border towns like Tijuana, are in fear of their lives yet remain committed to reporting on crime and corruption.KJ Noh, is a global justice activist, writer, teacher, and a member of Veterans for Peace, joins Michelle and John to talk about what, if anything, results from the Quad meeting today in Australia. Foreign ministers of a bunch of NATO allies have been doing the rounds between Kiev and Moscow, with Secretary of State Antony Blinken in Asia meeting with leaders from Australia, Japan and India in the Quad format. Blinken is then headed to Fiji and then back on US soil in Hawaii. The Misfits close the show with Friday's Stories of the Weird, not to be missed. We sign off till Monday…

    Inflation Surge, Harm Reduction Bill and Interest Rate Swipes

    Play Episode Listen Later Feb 10, 2022 113:18

    At the top of the first hour, Zachary Siegel, freelance journalist and a journalism fellow at Northeastern University's Health in Justice Action Lab, joins John and Michelle to talk about Biden's Harm Reduction Bill. The measure is not without controversy. A provision provides funding for things like needle exchange programs for individuals suffering from drug addiction. Many Republicans have voiced opposition to the $30 million health care bill. Zachary explains why the bill should pass and why it matters, and points out that the goal should be to focus on reducing the demand for opioids as they are potent relievers of emotional and physical pain.Then, the Misfits were joined by Dr. Jack Rasmus. He's a professor in both the economics and political science departments at St. Mary's University, where he focuses on economic inequities. He's most recently the author of the book "Epic Recession and Global Financial Crisis." He joins Michelle and John to discuss the latest report that dropped today indicating a surge in inflation. Dr. Rasmus points out that the recent spike in price inflation for fuel, meat and baked goods is a result of price gouging by monopolistic corporations. It is more about corporate greed than the narrative of supply shortages.Next, Dr. Peter Kuznick called into the show. He's a professor of history and director of the Nuclear Studies Institute at American University in Washington, and he's an expert on 20th century history. He's the author of many books, including "The Untold History of the United States" and "Beyond the Laboratory: Scientists as Political Activists in 1930s America." Dr. Kuznick came on the show to discuss the historical context of NATO expansion into Eastern Europe and how we got to the recent tensions with Russia regarding Ukraine.Ron Clewer, Illinois market president for Gorman & Company and affordable housing advocate, joined John and Michelle for the last segment of the show to talk about the recent escalation of home prices, as well as falling supply and lack of affordable housing. Clewer does not see the market turning back anytime soon, and says not only will the market continue to see a rise in demand for housing, but that the building of affordable housing is a workforce solution. The Misfits close the program with a reminder to join us tomorrow, because it's Friday's Stories of the Weird!

    Eyes on Ukraine, McConnell vs RNC and Yemen Humanitarian Crisis

    Play Episode Listen Later Feb 9, 2022 113:55

    At the top of the show, Peter Oliver, RT correspondent, calls in from Berlin to break down the latest news out of Russia as NATO continues to move toward Ukraine. Peter sheds light on the impact that preemptive sanctions could have on the region. The Normandy quartet of leaders (Germany, Russia, Ukraine and France) meets tomorrow. Stay tuned to this channel for further updates. Next, Danaka Katovich, national organizer for Code Pink, a women-led grassroots organization working to end U.S. wars and militarism, joins the show to talk about the Biden administration's continued engagement in drone attacks and shipping military aid to Yemen. The warfare has caused a humanitarian crisis as civilians continue to get killed in the crossfire. The humanitarian situation on the ground is dire as there is not enough food, water and medical supplies, Danaka said.During the last hour of the show, we are joined by Chris Garaffa, editor of TechForThePeople.org, to talk about a story by Vice News reporting on new facial recognition spyware that the Los Angeles Police Department is using to track the homeless. ODIN Intelligence is offering police forces the capability of identifying and compiling searchable information on homeless people in communities, in order to address "problems" such as “degradation of a city's culture,” “reduction in property values,” “poor hygiene (using streets as a restroom),” and “unchecked predatory behavior,” among others.John and Michelle close the program with a conversation about House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's newfound support for a stock ban for lawmakers and judges. And, Amazon is planning to offer health care services billed, and Amazon Care, oh my!The Misfits sign off till tomorrow….

    Macron in Moscow, US Digital $, Ottawa SOE and Covid Mandates

    Play Episode Listen Later Feb 7, 2022 112:28

    Dr. Kenneth Surin, Professor Emeritus of literature and professor of religion and critical theory at Duke University, joins Michelle and John at the top of the show to discuss today's diplomatic meetings set to ease tensions in Ukraine involving French President Emmanuel Macron in Moscow and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz at the White House. Next, Bill Mew, leading digital ethics campaigner and CEO of cyber incident firm The Crisis Team, joins to discuss the proposed digital dollar. Why now? Why would the US need a digital dollar with so many digital currency options on the market, such as Bitcoin and Ethereum? A digital dollar that functions over an app could bring competition for banks that offer bank account transaction services and debit cards, according to Mew.With talks between the United States and Iran on the JCPOA in their final phase, the US announced that it would restore sanctions waivers that would allow Russian, Chinese, and European companies to do nonproliferation work that would make it more difficult for Iran to use its nuclear sites for weapons development. Mohammad Marandi, professor of English literature and Orientalism at the University of Tehran, joins Michelle and John to talk about the possible outcomes from the negotiations. For the last segment, Dr. Iyabo Obasanjo, professor of public health at the College of William & Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia, joins the Misfits to talk about Covid restrictions in light of new data indicating a fall in infection rates while hospital ICUs remain at capacity. The Misfits sign off till Wednesday. Join us then to go against the grain, and keep organizing!

    Snyder's Sex Scandal, CNN's Glass House, Hunters of Color and Robot Dogs

    Play Episode Listen Later Feb 5, 2022 113:28

    Dan Lazare is the author of the recent "The Velvet Coup: The Constitution, The Supreme Court and Decline of American Democracy." He joins at the top of the first hour to break down the latest CNN controversy. The company's president, Jeff Zucker, was forced to resign after an affair with another CNN executive. Star host Jake Tapper jumped into the fray in support of Zucker, saying that when fellow anchor Chris Cuomo was fired a few months ago, he decided to burn his bridges by reporting Zucker's affair, which violated CNN's HR rules. Then, Tapper called his colleague Chris Cuomo a terrorist.For the next segment, Lydia Parker, founder and executive director of Hunters of Color, joins Michelle and John to talk about HOC's recent change.org petition that is seeking a broader investigation of the Peter Spencer killing in rural western Pennsylvania. Lydia also explained the challenges that people of color encounter while engaging in outdoor activities in an environment where 97% of private land is occupied by white property owners. Lydia emphasizes HOC's motto: "The outdoors is for everyone."Chris Garaffa, editor of TechForThePeople.org, catches up with Michelle and John at the top of the second hour to talk about the latest cyber news. The FBI did indeed buy access to the powerful Pegasus spyware, saying it wanted to “stay abreast of emerging technologies and tradecraft.” But don't worry, it was never used. They just wanted to test and evaluate it. Chris explains how the spyware has been acquired and used against journalists and protest movements. Then, the Misfits discuss the new robot dogs recently developed by the Department of Homeland Security.George Szamuely is a senior research fellow at the Global Policy Institute. He was a frequent columnist with the Taki's Top Drawer pages of the New York Press. Szamuely has also written for Antiwar.com, Counterpunch, and the Center for Research and Globalization. He joins Michelle and John to discuss the recent change in tone from the mainstream media stressing there's an imminent threat of war in Ukraine. Ukrainian officials have said: "let's not panic, we don't think this is true." A reporter at the Guardian, Shaun Walker, ran some US claims about Russia moving blood supplies closer to the Ukrainian border. Turns out the source was unreliable, and officials from Ukraine are saying it simply isn't a true account of what's happening on the ground.The Misfits close the show with 'Stories of the Weird.' Till next week...

    US Raid in Syria, Meta Stock Slides, Freedom Convoy and Migrants in Mexico

    Play Episode Listen Later Feb 3, 2022 112:28

    Kevin Gosztola, journalist, writer for Shadowproof.com and co-host of the podcast Unauthorized Disclosure, joins Michelle and John at the top of the show to talk about how the White House walked back rhetoric after repeating that Ukraine was in “imminent” danger of a Russia invasion. This follows Biden's comments about a “minor incursion.”Juan Jose Gutierrez, immigration lawyer and executive director of the Full Rights for Immigrants Coalition, joins John and Michelle to talk about the latest status of Joe Biden's immigration promises from the campaign trail. Biden promised to end a Trump-era policy called the Migrant Protection Protocols. Since Biden has been in office, numerous migrants have been held in a detention center in Mexico.Next, Nicholas Davies, independent journalist, researcher with Code Pink and author of "Blood On Our Hands: The American Invasion and Destruction of Iraq," calls in to discuss the latest killing of an ISIS leader in Syria. During the night, the United States launched a special forces raid outside of Idlib, Syria, killing the leader of ISIS, Abu Ibrahim al-Hashimi al-Qurayshi. Twelve other people were killed, including four women and six children. Adriana Garriga Lopez is an associate professor of anthropology at Kalamazoo College in Michigan, associate faculty of the Brooklyn Institute for Social Research, anthropologist and multidisciplinary artist. She joins us for the last segment of the show to talk about gentrification overrunning the real estate market in Puerto Rico and the impact that a new tax haven law is having on the displacement of native Puerto Ricans and their cultural rights.Join us tomorrow for more breaking news and ‘Stories of the Weird.'

    Russia Watch, Peter Spencer and the Washington Commanders

    Play Episode Listen Later Feb 3, 2022 111:03

    Peter Oliver, journalist and RT correspondent in Berlin, joins Michelle and John at the top of the show to discuss the latest developments from Ukraine, as well as Germany banning the German-language Russian RT broadcast.Next, Teresa Lundy, communications strategist and principal at TML Communications, talks with Michelle and John about the recent story published in New York Magazine regarding the Black Lives Matter Global Network Foundation's missing money mystery.Ted Rall is an award-winning political cartoonist, columnist, and author, his latest book is "The Stringer," and is co-host of the podcast DMZ America. You can find his work at www.rall.com. Ted meets up with the Misfits to talk about the latest news out of New York. The Albany County New York DA said this morning that former Governor Andrew Cuomo would not be charged in the criminal case involving allegations that he groped a former aide in the Executive Mansion in 2020. Cuomo lost his job and his reputation over the allegation, but he apparently won't lose his freedom.For the last segment, Tim Stevens, Chairman and CEO of the Black Political Empowerment Project (B-PEP) based in Pittsburgh, joined the show to talk about the killing of Peter Spencer. An immigrant from Jamaica, Spencer lived in Pittsburgh, and was invited to join his white colleagues in the woods and was found dead a few hours later. No one has been charged with Spencer's murder.Michelle and John close with conversation about Tom Brady retiring and the new name for the Washington team. Oh please, are they really going to call themselves the Washington Commanders?

    Talks Over Ukraine Continue, the Freedom Convoy Keeps Trucking, and All Federal Prisons Remain in Lockdown

    Play Episode Listen Later Feb 2, 2022 112:13

    We begin with Mark Sleboda, international affairs and security analyst, who joins the show during the first segment to break down the latest in Ukraine. Hungary and Ukraine expand their deal on gas imports to alleviate dependence on Russian natural gas. Mark points out that the “lethal aid” which the Western alliance has provided Ukraine since 2014 has been used by Ukrainians to kill fellow Ukrainians. John and Michelle ask Mark about the UK, Poland, and Ukraine working on a trilateral security pact.Next, Paul Wright, managing editor of Prison Legal News and executive director of the Human Rights Defense Center, joins John and Michelle to discuss the latest news that all federal prisons are in a nationwide lockdown today following the murder of two prisoners at the US penitentiary in Beaumont, Texas. The dead are apparently both members of the MS-13 street gang. The BOP is in disarray and stressed over multiple factors, including the latest gang incident and having trouble finding people to hire and keep on staff. John explains that the eligibility to be a prison guard is remedial and problematic, which is exacerbating the problem of hiring qualified prison workers.For the first segment in the second hour, we are joined by Jon Jeter, author and two-time Pulitzer Prize finalist with more than 20 years of journalistic experience. He is a former Washington Post bureau chief and award-winning foreign correspondent on two continents. Jon catches up with the Misfits to talk about the impact of the pandemic economy and recent news from the New York Times highlighting Paycheck Protection Program fraud and missing money. More resources should have been given to workers who create consumer demand rather than fund a trickle-down economics approach to stimulus that emerged, which supplies the rich and draws down on the consumer, according to Jeter.For the last segment, Keean Bexte is on the ground in Ottawa, Canada. He's reporting on the latest developments from the Freedom Convoy, and checked in with Michelle and John to talk about the truckers protest over the weekend. Keean clarified their demands: since the Justin Trudeau administration implemented pandemic mandates, ten to fifteen percent of truckers lost their jobs. The convoy is demanding an end to all pandemic related mandates. The group has amassed a whopping $10 million. Keean says the convoy has enough cash to idle at the capital of Ottawa for about two and half years.Michelle and John end the program by sharing news about the killing of Peter Spencer, a Jamaican immigrant living in Pittsburgh who went on a trip in the woods with his white coworkers and was discovered dead a few hours later. No charges have been filed. More about this story on tomorrow's broadcast.

    Eyes on Ukraine and Indigenous Tribes Win Victories in California and Virginia

    Play Episode Listen Later Feb 1, 2022 112:11

    At the top of the show, Dr. Kenneth Surin: Professor Emeritus of literature, religion and critical theory at Duke University joins to talk about the escalating tensions in Ukraine and how the UK and US continue to fan the flames in the region.For the next segment, John Kane: Mohawk activist and educator, producer and Host of the Let's Talk Native Podcast, and co-host of Resistance Radio on WBAI Pacifica Radio NY joins John and Michelle to talk about a recent story involving a California redwood forest that's officially been returned to a group of Native tribes.During the second hour, Daniel Mc Adams: Executive Director of the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity. And co-Producer/co-Host, Ron Paul Liberty Report which can be heard on YouTube. Daniel served as the foreign affairs, civil liberties, and defense/intel policy advisor to U.S. Congressman Ron Paul MD (R) TX from 2001 to 2012. Daniel joined the Misfits to talk about the GOP and Trump's latest speech over the weekend in Texas. Daniel points out that Democrats live in illusion over the rising support of working class Hispanics, Many of whom voted for Trump after hearing Biden, during his campaign threatened to end oil drilling in the region.Next on the show, A month ago, the Virginia State Water Control Board handed the Mountain Valley Pipeline, a crucial permit for crossing streams and wetlands. But last week, the federal Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals rescinded the approval the pipeline had won from the U.S. Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management to build across a section of the Jefferson National Forest in Giles and Montgomery counties in Virginia. To talk about this victory with Michelle and John they were joined by Rose, a volunteer for Appalachians Against Pipelines. Rose explained that it took several direct action protests to win the reversal and stall the development of the pipeline.The Misfits sign-off till tomorrow.

    Ukraine Tensions, SCOTUS Pick and Harris in Honduras

    Play Episode Listen Later Jan 29, 2022 111:29

    At the top of the show: Mindia Gavasheli, Bureau Chief, Washington DC for Sputnik Radio stops by to discuss the crisis in the Ukraine and the fallout from Biden's call to Ukraine's Zelensky. It seems CNN and the Ukrainian governments spectacularly failed to get their story straight. CNN's reporting on what some Ukrainian sources said about Biden's call has earned a rebuke from the White House - and caused some high placed reporters to back away while a couple of others are standing by their source. Aaron Good: political scientist and host of the American Exception podcast on Patreon. His doctoral dissertation is going to published by Skyhorse in April under the title 'American Exception: Empire and the Deep State' joins John and Michelle to discuss Xiomara Castro inauguration yesterday in front of a cheering crowd that included Vice President Kamala Harris. She pledged closer US-Honduran ties and assistance in combating corruption and undocumented migration. Gregg Mosson: state and federal court litigator in private practice in Maryland, at Mosson Law, LLC, and author of “Employee Rights in Maryland: A Concise Guide” joins the Misfits during the second hour to discuss the SCOTUS horserace. Joe Biden is going to get a chance to nominate a justice to the Supreme Court, and he has pledged to nominate a black woman to the position. Justice Kamala Harris?For the last segment Dan Kovalik: author, human rights and labor lawyer. His most recent book is “No More War: How the West Violates International Law by Using ‘Humanitarian' Intervention to Advance Economic and Strategic Interests” talks about Vice President Harris in Honduras and what's the state of US-Honduran relations right now?Its Friday time for News of the Weird. The Misfits sign off with a delicious story about a hairy tongue and Super Bowl performers asked to dance for no dollars. Till next time, happy weekend!

    Truckers Protest, LA Covers Up, CIA Experiment in Denmark Revealed?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jan 28, 2022 112:02

    Peter Oliver, RT foreign correspondent, joins Misfit hosts Michelle Witte and John Kiriakou to discuss Washington's written response to Russia's security concerns and the state of negotiations over Ukraine. Tina Desiree Berg, host of the podcast District 34 and reporter for status coup, breaks down Los Angeles' efforts to cover up its homelessness problem ahead of the Super Bowl, and California's ongoing housing and homelessness crisis. Keean Bexte, editor in chief of The Counter Signal, brings an update on the trucker convoy making its way across Canada to protest vaccine mandates. Sputnik News journalist Morgan Artyukhina reports live from a rally outside the White House to protest war with Russia. Chris Garaffa, web developer, technologist and security and privacy consultant, reviews the weak state of regulations governing how our private data is stored and protected by the corporations that collect it, and offers some suggestions as to who might be behind the internet outage in North Korea this week.The Misfits also discussed reports of a secret CIA research program in Denmark, noted some new support for political prisoner Leonard Peltier, and bashed the NFT hype – again.

    US Energy Promises, Redistricting Fights, Interest Rate Hikes

    Play Episode Listen Later Jan 26, 2022 111:38

    Jim Jatras, deputy director of the American Institute in Ukraine, a former US diplomat, and former senior foreign policy advisor to the Senate Republican leadership, discussed the possibilities for a diplomatic solution in Ukraine, how the US could secure an energy supply for Europe, and what subpoena powers Congress does and should have. .Richard Wolff, professor emeritus of Economics at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, a visiting professor in the graduate program in International Affairs of the New School University, and host of the weekly show Economic Update, talked about the actual value of reading Federal Reserve tea leaves, what impact coming interest rate hikes will have, and who in government actually has the power to stop inflation and why they won't use it. Tom Fitzpatrick, former long-time New York City judge, discusses why 82-year-old Nancy Pelosi would run for Congress again, what former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's weight says about his political ambitions, and the redistricting fights that will play out in federal court. Levi Rickert editor and publisher of Tribal Business News; and founder, publisher and editor of Native News Online, broke down the Biden administration's scorecard so far with tribal governments and what battles remain. The Misfits also talked about New York Mayor Eric Adams' new anti-crime program, the unending misery of NFTs, and royals scamming Spotify.

    Unity on Ukraine? SCOTUS Takes on Affirmative Action

    Play Episode Listen Later Jan 25, 2022 111:54

    International affairs and security analyst Mark Sleboda joins Misfit hosts John Kiriakou and Michelle Witte to discuss the newfound “unity” US President Joe Biden has supposedly achieved among European powers in facing down Russia. Mohammad Marandi, professor of English Literature and Orientalism at University of Tehran, updates us on the status of talks between Iran and Western powers on the country's nuclear program, and identifies the stumbling blocks in the way of any new accord. Author and journalist Dan Lazare breaks down the shambolic reaction of the US legal system to mask mandates and asks how much former President Donald Trump should fear the investigation into his election pressure in Georgia. He also outlines the affirmative action cases soon to be heading to the Supreme Court. Paul Wright, executive director of the Human Rights Defense Center and editor of Prison Legal News and Criminal Legal News magazines, discusses the punitive use of solitary confinement and “communication management” in prisons, and talks about what it would take to reform the Bureau of Prisons.

    Ukraine, Protest in Washington, and the Celebrity Court Chronicles

    Play Episode Listen Later Jan 25, 2022 110:45

    At the top of the show, Michelle and John connect with Dr. Kenneth Surin, Professor Emeritus of literature and professor of religion and critical theory at Duke University, to talk about the latest developments in Ukraine. The US press today is shouting from the rooftops about “100,000 Russian troops massing on the Ukraine border.” The 100,000 have always been there. They are about 160 miles away from the border, closer to Belarus than to Ukraine. It is highly unlikely the Western alliance would act preemptively, in a serious way, before anyone fires a shot. Until someone actually makes a move, it's a game of ‘smoke and mirrors,' according to Dr. Surin.Ford Fischer, a primary source documentarian who has worked on Oscar, Emmy and Golden Globe-winning films, and editor-in-chief at n2sreports, covered the protests this weekend in Washington. Friday was the March for Life, then Sunday was the Defeat the Mandate rally. Ford talked about the group Patriot Front, a far right group that tried to co-op the event. Many in the March for Life crowd were offended by Patriot Front. The Defeat the Mandate rally on Sunday consisted of a more right of center non-violent crowd. Ford described the scene as more positive than the recent protest at the Capitol. Michelle and John also talked with Ford about Twitter not making a distinction between reporters and hate groups when censoring and canceling accounts.At the top of the second hour, Mohamed Elmaazi, journalist and contributor to numerous outlets including Jacobin, The Canary, The Grayzone, and The Dissenter, joins the show to talk about the latest possible outcomes for Julian Assange. Today was a narrow victory for Assange at the British High Court. The High Court refused to grant Assange leave to appeal to the British Supreme Court.Margaret Kimberley, editor and senior columnist at Black Agenda Report and author of the book "Prejudential: Black America and the Presidents,” joins Michelle and John to talk about celebrity lawsuits, including Alec Baldwin and former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin, the latter of whom is suing the New York Times, saying that the paper defamed her in a 2017 editorial that incorrectly asserted a link between her political rhetoric and a 2011 mass shooting that left six people dead. Oh, and let's not forget about the Stormy Daniels case. So much to talk about…The Misfits close with sharing a story about a 75-year-old Frenchman who set out to cross the Atlantic Ocean alone in a specialized rowboat and has gone missing after activating two distress signals, according to his team. His boat was found on Friday - his body has not been. Jean-Jacques Savin in 2019 successfully crossed the Atlantic in an orange barrel-shaped capsule. Let's wish the best for him….

    A Narrow Victory for Assange

    Play Episode Listen Later Jan 24, 2022 15:58

    Journalist Mohamed Elmaazi discusses today's High Court decision in the extradition case of Julian Assange.

    Ukraine Talks, IRS Facial Recognition, Cyber Warfare and Airstrikes in Yemen

    Play Episode Listen Later Jan 21, 2022 111:37

    At the top of the show, Michelle and John talk with Chris Garaffa, editor of TechForThePeople.org. The IRS will soon implement a program whereby taxpayers will have to use facial recognition software to access their taxes.They are using a third-party company, ID.me, plagued with well-documented problems. Chris warns that such software is an invitation for hackers. Anyone in the database is at risk of identity theft. More on the cyberwar front: weapons like IPegasus software created in Israel are used by governments to attack states and individuals through their phones. You don't even have to click the link, warns Chris.Next, Steven Donziger, lawyer, writer, former journalist and environmental advocate currently known for leading an unrelenting 24 years legal battle against Chevron Corporation related to its contamination of the Ecuadorian rainforest, joins to talk about Exxon. Steven describes an obscure Rule 202 that allows corporations to go on a fishing expedition for incriminating evidence. They are able to question individuals under oath and demand access to documents even before any legal action is filed against them. Exxon wants to use the provision to force California officials to travel to Texas to be questioned by the firm's lawyers about what the company describes as “lawfare” – the misuse of the legal system for political ends.Michelle and John caught up on all the latest developments with RT correspondent Peter Oliver. Talks in Geneva closed with nothing agreed upon. The US decision to send Stinger missiles to Ukraine seems to be a provocative one. After all, Stingers turned around the Afghan war against the Soviets. Russia suggested military deployment to Venezuela and Cuba remain an option. During the second hour, John Feffer, director of Foreign Policy in Focus at the Institute for Policy Studies, joins us. John's latest book, "Songlands," the third and final novel in the Splinterland Trilogy, is out now. John and Michelle discuss the latest lethal airstrikes in Yemen that knocked out the internet. According to Save the Children, this is a war that had gone somewhat quiet for a while, but has really heated back up again over the past week, with both the Houthis and the Saudi and US backed forces launching strikes. Not surprising, says Feffer, that neither the Washington Post or the New York Times' mentioned the extent of the US role in this war.Lee Camp is a comedian, activist, journalist, host of the show “Redacted Tonight” on RT America, and author of the recent book, “Bullet Points & Punch Lines.” Lee joins for the last segment to talk about the insane amount the US spends on police. Spending on police is greater in the US than the amount any other nation spends on their entire military. The only military budgets that are greater than what the US spends on police are China and the US. John and Michelle ask Lee about the recent government papers that deem RT and Sputnik News as networks of propaganda. John mentions the history of Voice of America, which was hatched by the CIA.The Misfits sign off, till next week…..

    Ukraine Talks, ‘Minor vs. Major' Incursion, Black Mold or Crickets is Cause of Havana Syndrome

    Play Episode Listen Later Jan 21, 2022 111:33

    For the first segment, Peter Oliver, RT correspondent and friend of the show, joined us from Geneva. Ukraine is the top story around the world. Secretary of State Antony Blinken met with his British, French, and German counterparts in Berlin in preparation for his meeting Friday with Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov. John and Peter discuss their role in the talks. CIA Director Bill Burns is also in Berlin on the heels of a meeting in Moscow with President Putin. Also, how will Russia respond to sanctions? Would there be ways around them?In the second segment, John caught up with commentator and political cartoonist Ted Rall. They talked about Biden's marathon press conference that the White House promoted. Multiple public opinion polls this week show Biden mired at about a 41 percent approval rating, the lowest of any modern president at the one-year mark of his presidency besides Donald Trump, who was a few points lower. Biden came out strongly against what he called Republican obstructionism on his legislative agenda, he predicted a Russian invasion of Ukraine, and he said that he could still get his agenda passed by breaking it up into a series of smaller bills. The next segment features Dr. Mikhail Kogan, Medical Director at the George Washington Center for Integrated Medicine, associate professor of medicine at George Washington University and founder and executive director of the AIM Health Institute, a Washington, DC-based nonprofit delivering integrated services to the vulnerable. The latest is that Russia and China are not the culprits behind the Havana Syndrome plaguing diplomats. There is mounting evidence that an allergic reaction to black mold is a contributing factor, according to Dr. Kogan.It's Thursday, and that means it's time to talk a little about the week in sports. We're joined by Austin Pelli, the cohost of Sputnik's News's Fault Lines, which you can hear every day, Monday through Friday. The games were blowouts. ESPN is saying that the NFL's decision to expand wildcards in the playoffs has created bad football. This seemed to be the case last weekend. John and Austin then talk about Caitlyn Jenner, formerly Bruce Jenner, telling Fox News that trans women should not compete in sports with women who were born women. This has been increasingly controversial, especially in college sports. It seems that we're getting to a point where this issue is coming to a head. How should it be handled? Austin says it is complicated, that segregation in sports is unfortunate, but each group needs their own category for sports to remain fair for all athletes.

    Ukraine Talks Continue, Omicron Restrictions Lifted, Energy Inflation Surge and Crash Alert: 18-Year-Olds Driving Semis

    Play Episode Listen Later Jan 20, 2022 112:34

    Alexander Mercouris, editor-in-chief at The Duran and writer on international affairs with a special interest in Russia and law, talks with John and Michelle about the latest developments in the Ukraine. The United States keeps saying that war in Ukraine is imminent and that the West wants to deescalate tensions. Meanwhile, the CIA is training Ukrainian paramilitary troops in North Carolina.In the third segment, Robert Hockett, Edward Cornell Professor of Law and a Professor of Public Policy at Cornell University in New York, senior counsel at Westwood Capital and a fellow of The Century Foundation, joins the show to break down the surge in energy inflation. Robert says that the seven year high in oil has been spiked by speculators in the futures market. The disappointment from the Build Back Better and the Green New Deal legislations that are stalled in the Senate dampens expectations for robust economic growth.Kevin Gosztola, journalist, writer for Shadowproof.com, and co-host of the podcast Unauthorized Disclosure, joins the Misfits to discuss how the Biden administration is planning a ‘reset' ahead of the 2022 midterms. A key failure is a lack of focus explaining policy: how does new legislation benefit voters and why should people care? A two party system solidifies the status quo, according to Kevin. In our last segment, Richard Becker, author of "Palestine, Israel and the U.S. Empire,” talks about Yemen. The West remains unaware and complicit in understanding the human right atrocities carried out with drone strikes in Yemen. The United States and Saudi Arabia have been embattled in Yemen since after 9-11. Yemen is important to the United States because defense manufactures are in the business of supplying the weapons, according to Richard.

    Ukraine Talks Continue This Week and How Dems Plan to Reboot Ahead of Midterm Elections

    Play Episode Listen Later Jan 19, 2022 112:04

    Returning from a holiday weekend, John and Michelle unwrap a busy weekend in the news with a focus on developments in the Ukraine and how Democrats will recalibrate in preparation for the midterm elections after suffering a year of legislative losses. Michelle and John talk with Peter Oliver, RT correspondent, as he joins to discuss Antony Blinken flying to Kiev today, next stop Berlin, then ending the week in Geneva to de-escalate tensions with Russia. Peter explains that the narrative that Russia is preparing a ‘false flag' in Ukraine is media clickbait. In the next segment, Ariel Gold, co-executive director of Code Pink, speaks about what it means to have AIPAC shepherding money through the US political system and whether Benjamin Netanyahu has a political career worth salvaging with a plea deal. It's Art and Music Tuesday: John Hinckley, who infamously tried to assassinate US President Ronald Reagan in 1981, is forming a band. Hinckley has used music as part of his therapy and rehabilitation. Once Hinckley was released from St. Elizabeth's Hospital in Washington, DC a few years ago, the government dropped all remaining restrictions on him. So, who knows? You might see him in a club in Williamsburg, VA sometime soon.For the final segment, Dan Kovalik, author and human rights labor lawyer, calls in to talk about the nationwide decline in union membership at a time when the staff of the DNC forms a labor union.

    SirhanSirhan, the GOP prepares for midterms and POTUS 2024 Why is inflation spiking? CIA Trains Ukraine paramilitary

    Play Episode Listen Later Jan 15, 2022 113:02

    Michelle opens with the Supreme Court yesterday blocked the Biden administration's vaccine or testing mandate for large employers. Michelle mentions an NPR's interview with a business owner who was relieved that the mandate was struck down, not because he didn't believe in vaccines, but because so many businesses are still in chaos over all the other pandemic fallout. John shares with listeners an article from Yahoo News about the CIA training Ukrainian paramilitary. Then, Aaron Good, political scientist and host of the American Exception podcast on Patreon. His doctoral dissertation is going to published by Skyhorse in April under the title 'American Exception: Empire and the Deep State' joins the Misfits. Aaron explains Newsom's decision not to release Sirhan Sirhan, alleged assassin of Robert Kennedy Jr. Good points out that the autopsy, witness accounts and a second shooter clears Sirhan yet Establishment Democrats have long been opposed to Sirhan's release. Next, John and Michelle are joined by Eugene Craig, Republican strategist and former vice-chair of the Maryland Republican Party they delve into likely contenders for the 2022 midterms and 2024 run for president. No Trump 2.0 in 2024 Trump would prefer a role such as, Speaker of the House instead. No long campaign because you do not need to be a member of congress to be Speaker. Not likely because some Republicans will be opposed and certainly all Democrats.Mitch McConnell remains important to Republicans as an effective leader while Kevin McCarthy is a shell of leadership abilities. Former governor of Maryland Larry Hogan, a moderate Republican, not likely to run for president. Hogan does not want to risk a loosing campaign running for POTUS yet he's likely to run for Senate. Steve Grumbine, Founder and CEO of the nonprofits Real Progressives and Real Progress in Action. He's host of the podcast Macro n Cheese. He's also a leading activist and evangelist for Modern Monetary Theory. Talks with the Misfits about what's behind the story of spiking inflection. The severity of the surge will wane once supply chains catch up. Opportunistic monopolies are exploiting the pandemic and raising prices. Last, the misfits look ahead to all that Prince Andrew, formally known as the Duke of York, has to look forward to.

    DCPD Drug Database Dungeon; Biden vs. the Filibuster; A More Just Drone War

    Play Episode Listen Later Jan 14, 2022 113:48

    First up, RT correspondent Peter Oliver describes the situation in Ukraine as dire. Russia is making it clear that Ukraine joining the Western Alliance is unacceptable and a non-starter for negotiations. Russia has indicated a willingness to deploy military to Venezuela and Cuba if tensions with the United States continue to escalate, prompting a possible second Cuban Missile Crisis.Garland Nixon, co-host of the Critical Hour on Radio Sputnik and also a retired police officer, stopped by to talk about Washington DC's Metropolitan Police Department's database of alleged drug gang members. A story in The Intercept recently noted that the database has almost tripled in size over the past eight years, and nearly nine out of ten entries with a race listed are Black people, who make up 46 percent of D.C.'s population. Garland explains that many who are listed in the database have no idea until arrested. In federal prison, those on the list are precluded from early release and other penalties. Once on the list, it's nearly impossible to be freed from the database dungeon.Next, Ted Rall, an award winning political cartoonist, columnist, author and co-host of the DMZ America podcast with Ted Rall & Scott Stantis, calls in to discuss Biden's filibuster fall out. Biden, after years of supporting the filibuster, does a 180 degree turn. Ted prognosticates: what happens when Dems lose in the midterms and the GOP holds the majority? Biden knew he did not have the votes, then he set an unreasonable deadline and it failed. They also discuss an effort to placate progressive voting rights, which many protested in Georgia. Additionally, Foreign Affairs is making the case for a more "just drone war." Drone attacks can be more "just" if fewer people are killed. Ted emphasized that flying drones over foreign air space assassinating targets is an invasion and an act of war.Paul Wright, executive director of the Human Rights Defense Center, editor and publisher of Prison Legal News and Criminal Legal News magazines, meets up with the Misfits over the current chaos at Rikers Island Jail. The New York Times reported inmates at New York City's notorious Rikers Island Jail have been staging "fight nights" where prisoners are forced to fight each other, with the victor winning a cigarette. Paul says that the problematic jail's population has decreased from 20,000 to 7,000 in recent years. Prisoners remain at risk not only from guards, they are at risk when seeking medical care from physicians with suspended licenses who remain eligible for employment at jails and prisons across the country.

    DOJ's New Domestic Terrorism Unit; NATO and Russia; Biden in Atlanta; Colleges Collude Over Student Aid and Surging Inflation

    Play Episode Listen Later Jan 13, 2022 112:55

    Michelle and John open with a discussion about who is taking a big part of the blame for surging inflation - spoiler alert: its lower income folks receiving unemployment and stimulus checks. Meanwhile, the Fed plows trillions of dollars into bond buying programs. Coleen Rowley, former senior FBI agent and renowned whistleblower, joins the Misfits to talk about the Department of Justice's new Domestic Terrorism Unit - a reaction to the breach of the Capitol. Coleen gives context by citing several examples of domestic terrorist incidents with higher fatalities than January 6, 2020 which did not result in creating a new FBI unit.The Biden administration announced that private insurers will have to cover the cost of at-home COVID-19 tests. Bill Honigman is a retired emergency physician and California State Coordinator and Healthcare Issue Team Coordinator for Progressive Democrats of America (PDA). He breaks down the challenges to receiving the actual reimbursement. Why is every solution for Americans to spend more of their limited free time filling out forms to try to keep from being gouged by private companies? Later on, John and Michelle catch up with David Swanson, executive director of World Beyond War, to talk about the latest developments with NATO and conflict zones around the world. David explains it's possible the West cares more about Ukraine joining the EU more than concerns over joining NATO. John points out that the direct link between EU membership and increased well-being for the population is questionable. Hungary joined the EU, and that isn't what happened.David Shultz, professor of political science and legal studies at Hamline University, explains a lawsuit filed in an Illinois federal court that universities engaged in price fixing and unfairly limited aid by using a shared methodology to calculate applicants' financial need. David explains the civil suit against the universities alleges colluding that benefits the university as a business. The collusion means students are unable to strike more competitive deals with colleges before deciding where to attend.

    Dems Battle over Filibuster, Voting Rights, Space Junk, Covid 19 Lab Leak Controversy. Latest Developments in the Middle East

    Play Episode Listen Later Jan 12, 2022 111:43

    Democrats are flipping out over the filibuster. Jim Kavanagh, editor of the Polemicist, joins to talk about why. President Joe Biden does not have the votes needed to pass a filibuster carveout for voting rights. In Georgia, some progressives protest Biden's speech on voting rights legislation. Dr Erika Nesvold, co-founder of the JustSpace Alliance, discusses StarLink's space junk problem, private versus public space exploration and governing outer space. Who is going to pay to pick up all the stellar trash?Laith Marouf, activist, multimedia consultant and producer, brings us up to date on developments in the Middle East. There's unhappiness in Israel with Prime Minister Naftali Bennet, and Lebanon's economy has yet to hit bottom, with no international help in sight. In their Politics of Art segment, the Misfits discuss the illegal antiquities trade and why the Museum of the Bible in Washington, DC, has been hollowed out.

    Ukraine, Kazakhstan and Omicron, Oh My! Plus, Teachers Vs Dems

    Play Episode Listen Later Jan 11, 2022 112:58

    Misfits John Kiriakou and Michelle Witte speak to international security analyst Mark Sleboda about the negotiations underway between Russia, Europe and the United States over Ukraine. What's actually being discussed might be much more specific than the generalities the mainstream focuses on. Mustafa Santiago Ali, vice president of environmental justice, climate, and community revitalization at the National Wildlife Federation, joined to discuss the future of the Build Back Better agenda and what Congressional Democrats could be doing to rally support for their policy priorities ahead of the midterm elections. Journalist and author Dan Lazare helped break down the violence in Kazakhstan and the way Russia's involvement has been spun. He also brought an update on nuclear negotiations with Iran and discussed the role of the NYPD in New York politics. In the Miss the Press segment, John and Michelle dissected the typical American myopia when it comes to the foreign affairs and relationships of other countries, and scoffed at American politicians accusing other countries of maintaining spheres of influence.

    Ghislaine Maxwell Verdict; 2021 Year-In-Review; 2022 Predictions

    Play Episode Listen Later Dec 31, 2021 112:56

    Dr. Peter Kuznick, professor of history and Director of the Nuclear Studies Institute at American University, join us to talk about what year did 2021 most resemble historically in either US or global history, how we are moving from a unilateral to multi-polar world as U.S. hegemony is challenged, the state of global economic inequality, the ongoing response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the looming catastrophe brought forth by anthropogenic climate change, and what changes we could see in 2022 to tackle challenges facing humanity. Jacqui Luqman and Sean Blackmon, hosts of By Any Means Necessary on Radio Sputnik, join us to talk about the most important stories covered on their show in 2021, including the trial and verdict of Derek Chauvin, the indictment of Igor Danchenko and the collapse of the Russiagate conspiracy theory, the continuity we saw between the Biden and Trump administrations, particularly concerning immigration, the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan, and billionaires in space. Medea Benjamin, anti-war and anti-torture activist and the co-founder of Code Pink, and Monica Cruz, host and reporter with BreakThrough News, join us to talk about the positive stories that have come out of the pandemic, which saw people help out their neighbors and strangers through mutual aid and organizing, the possibility of a return to labor power, the end of the war in Afghanistan, and what we need to keep doing to change the world through people power.John Kiriakou, co-host of The Backstory on Radio Sputnik, talks to us about what's in and out in 2022 with the Great Procrastination taking the place of the Great Resignation, meme stocks versus troll philanthropy, the great Tesla recall, and the prospects for peace on the Korean peninsula.The Misfits also talk about the trial of the Ghislaine Maxwell trial, where the jury delivered a guilty verdict on five out of six counts related to sex trafficking, whether there will be further repercussions for others related to this scandal, and look back to a year of protests and political movements locally and across the globe.

    Ghislaine Maxwell Trial; Omicron Sweeps Through Washington, DC; Ethiopia & The Horn Of Africa

    Play Episode Listen Later Dec 29, 2021 113:42

    Aaron Good, political scientist and host of the American Exception podcast on Patreon, joins us to talk about the Ghislaine Maxwell trial and how it could be considered something of a distraction to redirect people's attention away from the larger function she and Jeffrey Epstein may have been serving for the national security state. We talk about the connections to the intelligence apparatus of the U.S. and how these agencies always serve the interests of the rich and a transnational core of power that acts without impunity. Morgan Artyukhina, writer and news editor at Sputnik News, talks to us about the reports that the COVID-19 Omicron variant is sweeping through the Washington, DC region, with an average of 1,192 new cases per day over the past seven days, and 169 cases per 100,000 people as of Monday, making it the highest-risk place in the nation for covid infections. We talk about the measures, or half measures, put in place to allegedly mitigate this crisis here and in the country and how it seems that limiting contagion has taken a back seat to vaccinations. Eugene Puryear, journalist, author, activist, politician, host at Breakthrough News, and author of "Shackled and Chained: Mass Incarceration in Capitalist America,” joins hosts Michelle Witte and Bob Schlehuber to talk about the situation in Ethiopia and the Horn of Africa, how the TPLF has been pushed back to the Tigray region and the chances of finally resolving this conflict. We also talk about the evolving media coverage and how it seems that the pro-TPLF stance is slowly being discarded, and about the history of U.S. involvement in the Horn of Africa. Femi Ayanbadejo, certified nutritionist, human performance expert, NASA technology transfer partner, founder and CEO of HealthReel, a digital self-health assessment and education platform, and former NFL running back and special teams player, talks to us about the legacy of NFL legend Joe Madden, COVID-19 and the NBA, Shohei Ohtani winning the Male Athlete of Year award, and the ongoing MLB lockout.

    Settlement Expansion In Golan Heights; Voting Rights Bills; Gender Economic Inequalities & Aging

    Play Episode Listen Later Dec 28, 2021 113:46

    Richard Becker, author of "Palestine, Israel and the U.S. Empire," joins us to talk about Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett announcing that Israel intends to double the number of settlers in the occupied Golan Heights with a multimillion-dollar plan meant to further consolidate Israel's hold on the territory it captured from Syria more than 50 years ago. We talk about how the Trump administration's moves in the region gave the green light for these moves, and how the Biden administration has not walked back any of the support for further expansion of settlements in the Golan, the West Bank, and East Jerusalem despite widespread international condemnation. We also talk about the still unfolding stories of spies within the Council on American-Islamic Relations who were paid by anti-Muslim groups in the U.S.Greg Palast, independent journalist on corporate malfeasance and labor, and author of “The Best Democracy Money Can Buy,” talks to us about the two bills before the Senate to protect the right to vote: the Freedom to Vote Act, which permits all voters to cast mail-in ballots in federal elections and also makes Election Day a federal holiday, among other measures; and the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act, which would impose pre-clearance procedures for states that want to change the way voting is done in their states, and the uphill battle these bills face in Congress.Jon Jeter, author, two-time Pulitzer Prize finalist and former Washington Post bureau chief, joins us to talk about about a report on why older women face greater financial hardships than older men, along with 30 percent of women over age 65 reported feeling very or somewhat worried about their financial situation, how these discrepancies increase when taking class and race as factors, and what could be done to ensure dignity for our aging population. We also talk about the Office of National Drug Control Policy subsidizing major network TV shows in exchange for helping push War on Drugs propaganda in the late 1990s, and the tragic police shooting in Los Angeles that killed an innocent bystander.

    Michigan Kidnapping Trial; Desmond Tutu Remembered; COVID-19 Booster Controversy

    Play Episode Listen Later Dec 27, 2021 113:14

    Ted Rall, award-winning political cartoonist, columnist, co-host of the DMZ America podcast, and author whose latest book is "The Stringer," joins us to talk about the trial of the men accused of conspiring to kidnap Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer, where five of the accused filed a 20-page motion this weekend asking for the indictment to be dismissed on the grounds that they were entrapped, and how this has been a common practice by the authorities that was constantly used in the Global War on Terror. We also talk about the case of 15-year-old Ethan Crumbley, who faces 24 counts of first-degree murder, along with manslaughter charges against his parents, and the ongoing chaos in the airline industry as the Omicron variant sweeps the country. Bill Fletcher, Jr., longtime trade unionist, writer and a past president of TransAfrica Forum, talks to us about the legacy of Desmond Tutu, who passed away this weekend. We talk about his important work fighting against apartheid, the impression he made on those he met and how he inspired others to fight for justice. We also talk about how his work has informed activism in Palestine, where there are parallels with the South African experience, and in the United States in the fight against segregation, classism, and sexism.Tina Desiree Berg, host of the podcast District 34 and reporter for Status Coup, joins us to talk about Joe Biden embracing “Let's Go Brandon” in a White House phone call over the weekend, the divisions among conservatives after Trump looked to take credit for the development of the COVID-19 vaccines under the project name Operation Warp Speed and coming out pro-booster, which has anti-vaxxers seeing red. We also talk about the controversy over the efficacy of boosters and whether we should reassess our approach to controlling the pandemic to mitigation or outright eradication of the virus, which seems more difficult every day, as well as plans by Israel to to double its settlements in the Golan Heights.

    Amazon & Law Enforcement; Cryptocurrencies & Insider Trading; FBI Surveillance of Protests

    Play Episode Listen Later Dec 24, 2021 111:34

    Chris Garaffa, web developer, technologist, security and privacy consultant, joins us to talk about how Amazon is tipping off the FBI to investigate its own employees or sellers on its platform under the guise of sniffing out counterfeit goods and protecting intellectual property, but conveniently forgetting that its own business model promotes the sale of counterfeits by its goal to sell goods at the lowest price. We also talk about the requirement for all kinds of employees to be constantly connected and have data plans on their phones that constitute a tax on low wage and gig-economy workers, and how internet connectivity should be treated like right.Steve Grumbine, founder and CEO of the nonprofits Real Progressives and Real Progress in Action and host of the podcast Macro n Cheese, talks to us about the intersection between cryptocurrencies and corruption, how some lawmakers that have a vested interest in crypto have taken a very lax approach at its regulation, and how this also opens the door to insider trading on this very speculative commodity. We also talk about Guns N' Bitcoin, a community for the growing movement to ensure an endless source of untraceable firearms. Sara Dady, immigration attorney and former Democratic congressional candidate for Illinois' 16th district, joins us to talk about how the FBI deployed surveillance teams inside Portland protests last year by deploying informants, conducting video surveillance, tailing protesters, what this means for our First Amendment rights and how this could be considered a violation of the Fourth Amendment. We also talk about Proud Boys member Matthew Greene pleading guilty to conspiring with other members to stop Congress from certifying the Electoral College vote, what this means for the January 6 investigation, and revelations that vaccine skeptic Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) owns stock in three major vaccine makers. Behailu Assefa, managing director at ASC Engineering Service, talks to us about the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam, how it will impact Sudan and Egypt as the Nile River that flows north through both countries is what is to be dammed in Ethiopia, and how we could reach a peaceful solution to this impasse.

    The Future of Energy, Water, and Power on the Horn of Africa

    Play Episode Listen Later Dec 23, 2021 17:08

    Biden's COVID Plan; Broadus & Stand Your Ground Laws; MPD & Accountability

    Play Episode Listen Later Dec 23, 2021 115:14

    Dr. Yolandra Hancock, board-certified pediatrician and obesity medicine specialist, joins us to discuss Biden's new plan to battle the Omicron variant as it sweeps the nation and has people on their toes as we officially enter the winter season. We talk about the plan to distribute 500 million tests by next month and whether this timeline will be sufficient to make a dent in the spread of the virus. We also talk about how workers are not being financially protected by temporary closures of businesses during this spike after emergency assistance was discontinued a few months ago, and how this may lead to people taking more risks to ensure their financial needs, further worsening the spread. Dr. Caroline Light, is a professor and researcher at Harvard University specializing in gender, critical race and ethnic studies, and author of "Stand Your Ground: A History of America's Love Affair with Lethal Self Defense.” Michael Harriot is a senior writer at TheRoot.com, where he covers the intersection of race, politics, and culture. They both join us to talk about the case of DJ Broadus, who was killed by Gardner Fraser in Florida in February 2018 after being shot four times at close range, twice after he had fallen to the ground, and how Fraser was not charged with homicide due to “stand your ground” laws in place in that state. We talk about the evolution of these laws, the intersection of class and race in these cases, and what could be done to change them.Ray Baker, political analyst and professor at Towson University, and Nookie Bishop, host of the Digital Gumbo Podcast, join hosts Michelle Witte and Bob Schlehuber to talk about the legal maneuvers the Washington, DC Metropolitan Police Department is engaged in to keep its officers of their force who have been charged with misconduct, DUIs, domestic abuse, and indecent exposure. We also talk about Kamala Harris's exchange with Charlamagne tha God and the ensuing meltdown, the end of the Kellogg's strike and how people are praising it as a huge win for workers, and the Democrats' indifference to the failure of the passage of the “Build Back Better” plan.

    Justice for DJ Broadus Delayed, Not Forgotten

    Play Episode Listen Later Dec 22, 2021 20:17

    Sudan Protests Continue; TPLF Retreats From Afar & Amhara; Civilians & War

    Play Episode Listen Later Dec 22, 2021 112:56

    Morgan Artyukhina, writer and news editor at Sputnik News, joins us to talk about the news from Ethiopia, where the leader of the TPLF has announced a withdrawal of their forces from the northern states of Afar and Amhara, which marks a major pause of a year long war that saw them fail to violently take control of the country away from the Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed. We talk about whether this is a full retreat or whether they are only reorganizing for another offensive, the use of drones in this conflict, and whether we will see full resolution of the war. Niemat Ahmadi, President of the Darfur Women Action Group, tells us about the situation in Sudan on the third anniversary of the start of popular uprisings that ousted longtime leader Omar al-Bashir from power and continued against the transitional government. We talk about the actions that civilians can now take against the military, the truce with the civilian head of the transitional government Abdalla Hamdok, the role of women in the revolution, the work of the Sudanese diaspora, and the prospects for a full return to a civilian government. Donna Davis, political consultant, political organizer and co-founder of Black Lives Matter Tampa, talks to us about reports of a coordinated campaign by Spanish-language media in Florida to attack Vice President Kamala Harris, allegations that there is a GOP campaign behind it, and the valid criticism of Harris's performance.Dan Lazare, journalist and writer, joins us to talk about the more than a billion dollars worth of gold seized by the Bank of England owned by the government of Venezuela which could be used to alleviate poverty in the country and combat the coronavirus pandemic, and how sanctions enacted by rich countries in order to “promote democratic change” have disastrous effects on populations. We also talk about a report on civilian casualties by the New York Times, how an ex-ante approach on civilian risks could give pause to conducting disastrous wars, and the unfolding disaster in Afghanistan as its people face severe food shortages and the West remains steadfast in isolating the country.

    Boric Wins Chile Election; Rampant Corruption In Congress; Omicron Spikes In DC

    Play Episode Listen Later Dec 21, 2021 114:01

    Luis Gárate, journalist and director of Comunicambio, an independent news media organization based in Perú, joins us to talk about results of the presidential run off election in Chile over the weekend, which brought a resounding win to a leftist former student organizer Gabriel Boric over right wind candidate José Antonio Kast. We also talk about Boric's campaign, pinning the blame for stratification and poverty on the neoliberal system brutally implemented in the 1970s and his promises to end it in the country, how Chile is undergoing deep political polarization and specific domestic issues that may make challenging the hegemonic system internationally a difficult proposition, and how the pushback from the U.S. and local elites may hamstring his domestic proposals. Lucy Komisar, investigative journalist focusing on corporate and financial corruption on thekomisarscoop.com, joins us to talk about a recent report that pored over financial disclosures from members of Congress and their connections to Wall Street that found that dozens of congresspeople and hundreds of staffers violated conflicts-of-interest laws, from investments in healthcare companies, military contractors, cryptocurrencies, and using non-public information as insider trading for their benefit. We also talk about Nancy Pelosi's response about the ethics of allowing lawmakers to trade stocks while in office, using the “free market economy” justification, and what could be done to fix this. Parisa Norouzi, executive director of Empower DC, joins hosts Michelle Witte and Bob Schlehuber to talk about Washington D.C. schools closing as the omicron variant of COVID-19 slams the Capital region, with D.C. reporting the highest single-day total of new coronavirus cases since March 2020, and Maryland reporting that 1,257 people had been hospitalized with the virus, more than double the rate of 581 people this time last month. We also talk about the impacts of destroying homeless encampments by DC Mayor Muriel Boswer as DC's cold winter is around the corner, and how foreign investments across the United States are dramatically changing the real estate landscape and making access to affordable housing even more difficult.

    Rampant Corruption in Congress

    Play Episode Listen Later Dec 20, 2021 15:16

    Corporations Hoarding Housing Stock; Humanitarian Crisis in Prisons; Global Rise Of The Right

    Play Episode Listen Later Dec 17, 2021 113:40

    Ron Clewer, Illinois market president at Gorman & Company and affordable housing advocate, and Paul Jones, president of the Columbia Heights Village Tenant Association, join us to talk about America's real estate industry and its domination by huge global corporations who have taken advantage of the post-housing crisis and liquidity crisis of 2010 by hoarding housing stock in the country and making it even more difficult for middle and working-class people to purchase a home. We talk about a case in Tennessee where corporations take advantage of legal loopholes to purchase homes, how they behave like slumlords, and we look at alternatives to the for-profit housing model. Chelsea Moore, policy manager for Dream Corps Justice, joins us to talk about the mass incarceration crisis in the U.S., which has in places reached the level of a humanitarian crisis. We talk about a case in Alabama, where the Department of Justice concluded that the constitutional rights of the inmates were being violated everyday at every prison, how one of the solutions put forward by the state was to build even more prisons using federal stimulus money, how the solution to crime is not to warehouse humans for an extended period of time, and how we should address the root causes of crime and focus on actual rehabilitation in prisons.John Feffer, director of Foreign Policy in Focus at the Institute for Policy Studies, talks to us about how the far right continues its spread globally, with xenophobic and nationalist parties becoming more prominent in many countries, what could be the drivers of this, and what could be done to push back against this wave. We also talk about the tensions between the Ukraine, the U.S., NATO, and Russia, and what could be done to defuse them and reach a peaceful settlement. Michael Sampson, member of the national leadership of the National Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression and co-host of Redspin Sports, joins us to talk about Jacksonville Jaguars coach Urban Meyer, fired after going 2-11 to start his NFL coaching career, and his incident with kicker Josh Lambo.

    The Mass Incarceration Crisis

    Play Episode Listen Later Dec 17, 2021 16:34

    Native Identity & Belonging; Organizing In The Gig Economy; COVID & DC Schools

    Play Episode Listen Later Dec 16, 2021 113:17

    Ruth Anna Buffalo, member of the North Dakota House of Representatives and first Native American Democratic woman elected to the North Dakota Legislature, and citizen of the Mandan, Hidatsa and Arikara Nation, joins us to talk about a report revealing that that there has been an 86.5 percent growth in the Native population in the US between the 2010 and 2010 census, with more people self-identifying as indigenous. We talk about the implications of these changes, and how there could be some positive outcomes from this, as it could signify growing political power, but also the issues associated with quantifying and assigning identity, which delves into a long standing and complex issue dealing with the concept of race, belonging, and culture that has its roots with the dispossession and disenfranchisement of native communities in the U.S.Matthew Telles, Instacart driver and organizer, joins us to talk about news that the company DoorDash is opening a new location in New York City, where it's moving away from the contractor model and designating its workers as full time employees in the subsidiary company known as DashCorps. We talk about how this could be considered a small victory for workers, since they will now be entitled a guaranteed wage, albeit a low one, and benefits usually denied to gig workers in the industry across the country, and whether we will see similar moves in other app-based companies. Jamal Muhammad, host of the Luv Lounge radio show and the Old School Lunch Bag Mix on Square 1 radio, and Bomani Armah, hip-hop artist and educator, join hosts Michelle Witte and Bob Schlehuber to talk about thousands of students getting sick with COVID-19 and more quarantined just days before the winter break, as D.C. Public Schools is dealing with a coronavirus outbreak, and a new bill introduced in Oklahoma that takes aim at the 1619 Project and which looks to dictate how the history of slavery is taught across the state.

    Haiti Gas Explosion; VP Harris Corporate Whitewashing & Immigration; Political Polarization

    Play Episode Listen Later Dec 16, 2021 112:06

    Kim Ives, editor of the English section of Haiti Liberté, joins us to talk about the terrible tragedy that took place in Haiti this week, where at least 62 people have been killed and dozens injured after a tanker transporting gasoline exploded in Cap-Haitien, how fuel shortages played a role in this incident, with people lining up to collect fuel directly from the truck, and how precarity can lead people to take more risks to secure essential supplies. We also talk about new reports related to the assassination of President Jovenel Moise, and how he allegedly kept lists of prominent politicians and public figures that were connected to the drug trade and how this may have played a part in his killing. Maru Mora Villalpando, founder of La Resistencia, community organizer and immigrant activist, talks to us about the new proposal spearheaded by Vice President Kamala Harris, where she announced that corporations like Pepsi and Cargill will make multi-billion dollar investments in Central America to allegedly “solve” the root causes of immigration there. We talk about how this is neither a novel nor the right solution to the issue, since this further entrenches the cycle of labor exploitation for companies that have already been there and have either eroded or destroyed labor and environmental regulations that, in fact, may be one of the main drivers of immigration. Shane Stranahan, co-host of Faultines on Radio Sputnik, joins hosts Michelle Witte and Bob Schlehuber to talk about a new study published by Cornell University which argues that we may be at an actual “tipping point” where no issue imaginable can unite Republicans and Democrats again, with political polarization at an all-time high. We talk about the methodology used and how constraints on framing issues within a two-party system and our economic paradigm can reinforce current political deadlock and undermine potential avenues for cooperation. Bryan Weaver, founder and executive director of Hoops Sagrado, talks to us about Steph Curry of the Golden State Warriors breaking records, Enes Kanter Freedom's political postures, and widespread sexual harassment in the Washington Football Team workplace.

    Responding To The Omicron Variant; Privacy Apps & Surveillance; Cover-Up In Kabul Strike

    Play Episode Listen Later Dec 14, 2021 113:00

    Dr. Iyabo Obasanjo, professor of public health at College of William & Mary in Williamsburg, VA, joins us to talk about the response to the new COVID-19 Omicron variant, which is rapidly spreading around the world and just made landfall in the U.S. We talk about how there has not been a consistent response to Omicron across the board, and whether it really is more contagious than the Delta variant. We also talk about how we will have to learn with spikes and new variants in the foreseeable future, how healthcare costs keep rising in the U.S., and what could be done about it. Alan MacLeod, senior staff writer for MintPress News, author, journalist, media analyst and member of the Glasgow University Media Group, joins us to tell us about the intersection of Silicon Valley, the national security state and the Open Technology Fund, which bills itself as an independent provider of privacy apps, but is actually funded and controlled by the United States Agency for Global Media, a government body responsible for overseeing U.S.-funded state media outlets overseas, including Radio Free Europe and Radio Liberty, and how these apps are used to advance U.S. interests abroad and destabilize governments they consider to be enemies. David Swanson, activist, journalist, radio host and author of the book "Curing Exceptionalism," talks to us about how the Pentagon "cover-up" in the Kabul drone killing of a family continues, with the news that no U.S. troops will be punished for deadly Kabul strike, how impunity is rampant in the military, and war crimes accusations only apply to our opponents. We also talk about the strike force Talon Anvil, which operated in Syria from 2014 to 2019 and is responsible for countless civilian deaths and how the burden of responsibility gets shifted across the board. Roz White, award winning actress, joins hosts Michelle Witte and Bob Schlehuber to talk about the play “Seven Guitars,” and the journey of each of the characters through the music, through the hope, and through the pain that links them all together.

    Operation Whistle Pig; Back Channels and War Fever In Ukraine; Israel & The UAE

    Play Episode Listen Later Dec 14, 2021 112:28

    John Kiriakou, co-host of The Backstory on Radio Sputnik, joins us to talk about the curious case of Operation Whistle Pig, where a reporter was contacted by a potential source, only to be revealed later that this “source” was actually planting information and had mined data on the reporter in order to vet her. We talk about how the FBI eventually got involved and eventually revealed a wide web of surveillance that goes beyond this particular case, and how this story up-ends perceptions about whistleblowing, the objectives of certain leakers, and how government agencies deal with cases like these. Dan Kovalik, author and human rights and labor lawyer, joins us to talk about the annoying tensions between the U.S., Russia, Ukraine, the EU and NATO, and how we sometimes need to look beyond the bluster portrayed in the media, which has been inflating the risks over a war in the region. We talk about how despite the media bombast which has portrayed Biden and NATO standing fast in their demands in the region, there has been a recognition of grievances by Russia and the rebel regions despite Ukraine requesting more Western involvement. We also talk about the school shooting in Oxford, Michigan, and the legal fallout so far, and the labor struggle at Kellogg's, where workers are continuing their strike after failed negotiations with management.Mitchell Plitnick, political analyst, writer and president of ReThinking Foreign Policy, joins hosts Michelle Witte and Bob Schlehuber to talk about the ongoing negotiations over the nuclear deal with Iran taking place in Vienna, the ups and downs that have seen them almost fall apart, but that now seem to be taking a more positive note. We also talk about the visit of Israeli PM Naftali Bennett to the United Arab Emirates, as the two countries seek to deepen ties following the Abraham Accords and will likely discuss Iran's nuclear program, as well as the Israeli government labeling six Palestinian NGOs as terrorist groups and how this is yet another effort to destroy Palestinian civil society.

    Ethiopian Forces Gain Ground; German Minister Issues Threats; Assange Closer to Extradition

    Play Episode Listen Later Dec 10, 2021 114:19

    Julian Assange at risk of extradition as judge sides with U.S. How the U.S. prosecutes whistleblowers under the pretext of national security.Nebiyu Asfaw, co-founder of the Ethiopian American Development Council, joins us to talk about the ongoing situation in the conflict in Ethiopia, as the Ethiopian National Defense forces have been able to make gains against the Tigray People's Liberation Front and have now recaptured Kombolcha and Dessie, along with a host of other towns across the Amhara state, including the UNESCO World Heritage Site called Lalibela. We talk about the work that the Ethiopian diaspora in the U.S. has done to reveal the truth about the conflict despite widespread media disinformation that has sided mostly with the TPLF narrative, the importance of independent voices to understand the situation on the ground, and what needs to be done to ensure that peace is achieved in this conflict. Peter Oliver, journalist and RT correspondent in Berlin, talks to us about inflammatory policy statements by the new German government about current tensions related to NATO, nuclear weapons, Russia, Ukraine, and China, with the incoming Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock stating that there would be a high price to pay for any invasion of Ukraine, that Germany was considering boycotting the Beijing Olympics, and contemplating a nuclear armed Germany in the future. We also talk about the certification of Nord Stream 2 under the new German government, and whether this project will languish in this new government, as well as Biden's phone call with President Putin and whether there is any real possibility of an invasion of Ukraine and a regional conflict. Kevin Gosztola, journalist, writer for Shadowproof.com and co-host of the podcast Unauthorized Disclosure, joins hosts Michelle Witte and Bob Schlehuber to discuss the case of Julian Assange, which now sees him closer to being extradited to the U.S. over hacking allegations and violations of the Espionage Act after a U.K. judge sided with the U.S. in an appeal over concerns of his mental health and potential imprisonment in the U.S., and how this is a reality check of the U.S. government's commitment to free speech and a free press as the Biden administration holds a democracy summit at the White House.

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