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Politics

Focusing on issues, not tweets, Raw Story and AlterNet’s Joshua Holland and Liz Preza talk politics with academics, newsmakers and progressive journalists.

Episodes

Joshua Holland kicks off this week's show with a look at how Tucker Carlson's pro-Russia propaganda is so shameless that it might make the Kremlin's own masters of spin blush. 

We'll then be joined by Ilya Yablokov, a professor of journalism and digital media at The University of Sheffield, to talk about how Putin's "partial mobilization" is changing the way Russians see the Ukrainian conflict. 

And finally, we'll catch up with Michigan Advance Editor-in-Chief Susan Demas to get some insights into how the race for Michigan governor went from one of the GOP's best pick-up opportunities to one in which they are poised for a drubbing. 

 

Playlist

  • Kirsty MacColl: "In These Shoes"
  • Nané: "Always On My Mind"
  • Brandi Carlile: "Space Oddity"

 

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This week, Joshua Holland kicks off the show with a look at two cases in which right-wingers tasked with upholding the law appear to be targeting their political adversaries with dubious prosecutions. 
 
Then we're joined by Scott Hechinger, a veteran public defender and executive director of the advocacy group Zealous, to help us sort fact from fiction in the debate over cash bail reform. Contrary to a lot of lazy media narratives, the policy, which once enjoyed very broad support across the ideological spectrum, has been correlated with a reduction in recidivism and Scott explains why. 
 
Finally, we talk midterms and a Republican Party that appears to be trying its best to lose them with Salon columnist and OG blogger Heather "Digby" Parton. 
 
Playlist
The Pretenders: "Angel of the Morning"
Nina Simone: "Sinnerman"
Angelina Jordan: "Suspicious Minds"
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This week, fresh off of his victory in a closely watched special election in New York's 19th district, Pat Ryan (D-NY) joins us to talk about how Democrats can take back the mantle of freedom and the GOP's "political malpractice" in pushing deeply unpopular abortion bans at a moment when they could win control of Congress. 
 
Then, a related segment as progressive messaging guru Anat Shenker-Osorio talks to us about how to cut through right-wing propaganda by leading with your values--and warns that the Democrats are failing miserably in coming up with a coherent narrative on policing and safety. 
 
Playlist
Rihanna: "Desperado"
Jetta: "I'd Love to Change the World (Matstubs Remix)"
Amy Winehouse: "Some Unholy War"
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This week, Joshua Holland kicks off the show with a look at how far-right leaders use public money to cause real hardship for real people in service of propaganda campaigns.
 
Then we're joined by Greg Sargent from The Washington Post to discuss the latest courtroom drama over the search of Mar-a-Lago, the tantrums MAGA has been throwing in response to Trump's constant incitement and why this is all very bad for his party as we race toward the midterms. 
 
And finally, Slate's Mark Joseph Stern will run down why Florida Governor Ron DeSantis's election police squad's first, highly selective arrests for "voter fraud" are likely to blow up in his face. 
 
Playlist
Allen Halloween: "Crescer"
Veronika Fischer with Panta Rhei: "Nachts"
Verdena: "Trovami un modo semplice per uscirne"
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This week we are joined by Jesse O’Connell, senior vice president of education policy at The Center for American Progress, to talk about the student debt relief plan unveiled by the Biden administration this week. It's a much bigger deal than you might have been led to believe and it's causing a meltdown among those who hate seeing the government actually help ordinary people. 
 
Then we'll speak with Alec Karakatsanis, the executive director of Civil Rights Corps and author of the Alec's Copaganda Newsletter, about how police agencies, prison companies and their unions leverage sophisticated PR operations to shape how the media covers crime and ultimately how the public views the issue. 
 
Playlist
Poe: "Hey Pretty"
Garbage: "I Think I'm Paranoid"
Luna: "Bonnie and Clyde"
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Joshua Holland kicks this week's show off with a rant about the over-the-top coverage of Liz Cheney's easily predicted primary defeat in a party that has become slavishly devoted to Dear Leader--coverage that pushed a generational effort to combat climate change off of the front page.

And then we'll be joined by Sarah Posner, whose beat is the religious right. Sarah has been monitoring the disturbing reaction to the FBI's low-key execution of a search warrant at Mar-a-Lago in the Evangelical Christian media, which has featured a mishmash of conspiracy theories, whataboutism and calls for retribution. 

Playlist
Ol' dirty bastard: "Baby I Like It Raw"
Melania: "Brand New Key"
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This week, Joshua Holland kicks off the show with a look at the dangerous but also totally ridiculous tantrum the entire right is throwing in response to a search warrant being executed at Mar-a-Lago -- and the Republican propaganda that's fueling it.
 
Then we are joined by journalist and legal analyst Marcy Wheeler to talk about the overlapping investigations that appear to be closing in on Trump and his inner circle and to give her best estimate of what the FBI's action at Mar-a-Lago might portend. 
 
And then we have some rare good news as David Roberts from Volts tells us why the climate provisions of the Democrats' Inflation Reduction Act represent a game-changer not only for the country but perhaps for the planet. 
 
Playlist
Nichelle Nichols: "Know What I Mean"
Delta Spirit: "People C'mon"
The Analogues: "Sexy Sadie"
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This week, Joshua Holland kicks off the show with a look at the rapidly-expanding scandal surrounding security officials scrubbing their texts from the January 6 coup attempt. 
 
Then we're joined by Salon's Amanda Marcotte to talk about the Kansas abortion referendum--an earthquake that shook the religious right and may have given Democrats a roadmap for beating back the authoritarian right's assaults on our liberties.
 
Finally, we speak with Jackson Hurley, political director for Voters of Tomorrow, about what inspires and worries young voters--and whether they will turn out for the 2022 midterms. 
 
Playlist
Patti Smith: "Redondo Beach"
MoNa a.k.a Sad Girl: "Girls It Ain't Easy"
Shawn Colvin: "This Must Be the Place"
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This week, we embrace a rare good week in America!
 
Joshua Holland kicks off the show looking at a new study which found that the sanctions regime enacted against Russia by Ukraine's allies is doing much more damage to Vladimir Putin's economy than many observers believe. 
 
Then we speak with WaPo's Paul Waldman about the surprising deal on climate and prescription drug prices that West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer announced this week. Democrats' chances of holding control of Congress in November were already looking a lot better before the announcement. Will this prove a game-changer? 

And then we are joined by historian Ruth Ben-Ghiat, author of Strongmen: Mussolini to the Present, to talk about the January 6 Committee hearings and a bunch of new reporting that reveals that Trump and those in his inner circle may not be above the law after all. 

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This week, Joshua Holland kicks off the show looking at a new analysis of Americans' average life expectancy, which declined in 2021 for the second year in a row. There are some interesting demographic details to that story, which follows other public health analyses that revealed a growing life expectancy gap between red and blue states. 
 
Then we're joined by Thomas Zimmer, a historian at George Washington University, who argues that while there is a consensus among experts that American democracy is teetering on the brink of collapse, that reality is being obscured by outdated journalistic standards, Democratic leaders desperately trying to restore a bygone status quo and widespread belief in right-wing propaganda painting progressives as extreme. 
 
Playlist
Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings: "Stranger To My Happiness"
Bruce Springsteen: "Viva Las Vegas"
Pierrot: "Safety Dance"
 
 
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