I’m a bad host… a very bad host. I was just too tired last night to write this blog entry, letting you know who was on the show and giving you links to find out more about who they are and what we talked about. So now, I get to pull double duty again!
So, we’ll make this quick (as I still have to post tonight’s show and blog!)
Since Florida politics is all over the news today, I called on my former colleague (and favorite political reporter in Florida), Jim DeFede. He’s an investigative reporter for CBS-4 here in Miami, and a contributor to the Daily Beast, where he recently wrote a piece introducing the rest of the country to Marco Rubio. (We here in Florida sincerely apologize for that one!) Jim and I filled the rest of you in on the heinous education bill that the GOP-led Florida legislature passed, and talked about the challenges facing Charlie Crist. (Note: one of Jim’s predictions came true today, but for that, you’ll have to read Thursday’s blog and listen to the podcast!)
After a news update from Talk Radio News Service‘s Ellen Ratner (and some stalling due to phone problems in Los Angeles), I finally connected with Crooks & Liars founder John Amato to talk news and politics….
**Podcast audio finally posted***
I only have a few minutes before air time, but wanted to let you know who’s on the show today, and give you links to follow up on what you hear!
BTW, here’s the video we’ll be talking about:
I’ll chat with Ted Deutch, who’s running in a special election to fill our favorite former Congressman (Robert Wexler)’s seat. The election is today, so if you’re in his district here in Florida, get out and vote today!
I’ll be joined by the acting CEO of the National Council for Adoption, talking about the very sad story of the young boy who was sent back to Russia. I’ll speak with Jason Leopold of Truthout about the wikileaks video fallout and the realities of war.
And we’ll deal with the coal mining tragedies.. not only the mine that exploded in W VA this week, but a story that will blow your mind, from Micheal Stinson.
And, of course, your calls at 866-87-RANDI.
And then, I’ll move over to www.radioornot.com for my show beginning at 6pm, with Brent Budowsky talking possible Supreme Court nominees.
Teachers are sadly underpaid and in every state in the nation, education budgets are being cut under the strain of budget woes. Republicans in Congress are complaining about paying unemployed citizens compensation and helping with their COBRA payments, crying that we don’t have the money to pay for it. But where were their complaints when George W. Bush lied us into Iraq or waged war on Afghanistan? I haven’t noticed them denying President Obama the funds he’s requesting to keep these wars going either. But helping our fellow citizens get through the toughest economic times in generations? That they have a problem with.
Seriously. Look at the money we’ve spent to kill people and turn a good percentage of the world’s population against us. At the time I’m writing this blog, the numbers were staggering: Iraq: $717,084,866,999 (and I say at the time of this writing, because the counter at www.costofwar.com doesn’t stop.. it’s already thousands more!). In Afghanistan, we’ve already spent $265,105,570,999… and counting. Just think if we could stop the counters cold, and return that money to the people who are paying the bill… us.
Tonight’s show began with a conversation with Karen Aronowitz, president of United Teachers of Dade, the teachers union for Miami-Dade County. The teachers and parents and kids of our state are being screwed by the Republican-dominated Florida legislature, who last week passed a new education bill that would eliminate tenure, tie a teachers’ compensation to standardized test scores, ignore all special degrees and certifications, and other provisions that educators warn could make Florida one of the least friendly states in America for public schools teachers. Florida is already in the bottom half of the nation for teacher salaries, according to NEA’s annual Rankings & Estimates report. This will make it even worse!
I also spoke with Noah Gray, a senior at Miami Palmetto Senior High School, who is already an award-winning documentarian and was out covering a teacher’s rally at Miami’s Tropical Park.
Read up on this legislation. Governor Charlie Crist (yes, the same guy who’s battling it out with the heinous Marco Rubio for the Republican nomination to run for the US Senate) has until Friday to either veto or sign the bill. Call his office at 850-488-4441 or 850-488-7146 or email him and demand that he do the right thing and veto the bill!
In the second hour, we talked about the sick realities of war. Last week, we spoke extensively about the “Collateral Murder” video that was posted on wikileaks. Tonight, I was joined by Iraq war veteran Josh Stieber, who served in the same company as the ground troops who showed up on the video after the shooting.
And we finished the show with my favorite activist, David Swanson, who’s helping to lead the charge to get our representatives in Washington to deny President Obama the $33 billion he’s asking for to escalate the war in Afghanistan. Click here for the official whip list, and get dialing!
Ahh Thursday nights. I love them, as they start my weekend.
Since having the employment ax fall on me in late January with the demise of Air America radio, I’ve been working harder than ever. Moving my show earlier in the evening has allowed me to get to bed earlier… but it’s made my life more hectic. And since I have no regular paycheck coming in, let’s just say the stress level is higher than usual. So, I take Fridays off! (Although I usually use the day to do all the stuff I need to do but didn’t have time to get to during the week…)
Anyway, we finish up most Thursday nights with some laughter, courtesy of John Fugelsang. He joins me in the second hour on Thursday nights when he can, and he makes us laugh about things that wouldn’t elicit laughter when other people discuss! So, as always, I thank Fugelsang for getting my weekend started on an up note!
Tonight’s show began with a conversation with a pretty amazing woman. Regina Thomas spent many years representing the people of Georgia in the state assembly, House and Senate before challenging incumbent Blue Dog Congressman John Barrow in 2008. Unfortunately he won that time.. but with our help, she’ll unseat him this time. Regina has been endorsed and embraced by the Blue America PAC, which is run by Crooks & Liars, DownWithTyranny, and Digby’s Hulabaloo. If you want to find out why you should help Regina, listen to our interview (click the player at the top of the post), and read this piece from DWT’s Howie Klein.
All week, we’ve been talking about the DC appeals court ruling on Net Neutrality. Tonight, I spoke with Tim Karr, campaign director of FreePress.net and SavetheInternet.com. Again, listen to the interview, and visit the sites and take action…
And with that, I’m ready for the weekend. Talk to you Monday!
War is ugly. I mentioned the other night that I thought it was a barbaric practice and solves no problems… ever.
With the wikileaks release of the “Collateral Murder” video, the truly heinous nature of what happens in war is brought right to our laptops, and we should all be sickened by what we see. But keep in mind that, although we rarely get to see examples like this up close and personal, these things happen more often than we’d like to admit.
Yesterday, I called on independent journalist Dahr Jamail, who spent nine months in Iraq during un-embedded, reporting on his website about what was really happening there. We scheduled an interview for tonight. Today, while perusing truthout.org, I found this piece he wrote about the video and the reality of war– “Iraq War Vet: ‘We Were Told to Just Shoot People, and the Officers Would Take Care Of Us’” . It is a must-read. And our conversation tonight about it is a must-listen!
Truthout‘s Jason Leopold will also joined in the conversation. We spent quite a while talking about the video and its ramifications. We then moved on to a story Jason wrote today, “Obama Administration Authorizes CIA to Kill US Citizen.”
We started the show with Bruce Raynor, President of Workers United, who represent the employees of Hugo Boss in Cleveland, who is threatening to shut down the factory on April 27 and move their operations to Turkey or Eastern Europe!
Seriously, if you missed the show earlier tonight, click the player at the top of the page and listen. The subject matter in this show is too important to be ignored.
And, just in case you haven’t yet seen it, brace yourself and watch it now:
I couldn’t fall asleep last night, and I couldn’t figure out why until I started talking on tonight’s show. That’s when I mentioned that last night, upon learning of the “Collateral Murder” video, I couldn’t watch it. I said that I didn’t want to see the killing. But after the show, while uploading the podcast and doing my usual after-show work, I realized that I couldn’t not watch it…
So, I braced myself and watched the horrors of war. I talked a bit about it tonight, but the guests I had hoped to have on to discuss what went down weren’t available tonight. So be sure to tune in tomorrow night, as I’ll be joined by Dahr Jamail, an independent journalist who went to Iraq in 2003 to cover the war, unembedded. He has since become world renowned for documenting the human cost of the Iraq war.
But there was no lack of topics to discuss tonight.
For years now, I’ve been talking about the issue of net neutrality, and how important it is to keep the internet open. Well, today, a federal appeals court in Washington DC ruled that the FCC “lacked the authority to require broadband providers to give equal treatment to all Internet traffic flowing over their networks”. Uh, yeah. The court said that the FCC doesn’t have the power to regulate the internet.
My friend Dan Patterson happens to be the guy in charge of digital platform development for ABC News Radio. I called on him to talk about why this is so important. While I had him on the phone (he was outside of the Apple Store, going in to buy a keyboard for his new iPad), I asked him to explain what was so great about that new gadget too…
After a news update from Ellen Ratner of the Talk Radio News Service, we moved on to the big story of the day– the mine explosion in West Virgina.
Although all the major media outlets are covering the sad story of the 25 dead miners and the 4 whose fates are still unknown, the real story is the Massey Energy – parent company of Performance Coal Co. – and its owner, Don Blankenship. Blankenship is not only one of the more heinous owners who doesn’t give a damn about his employees and their safety, the community in which his mines are located or the effect of his company’s operations on the environment, but he also uses his massive fortune to buy judges and politicians.
Blogger Karoli who’s done such great work on health care reform, has a new blog up at Crooks & Liars, and she gave us a good look at Blankenship and why we shouldn’t be surprised there was such a disaster at one of his mines.
We also spoke about her newest piece on a guy named Mark Jacoby, a GOP operative who is actually the only person in recent years ever convicted of voter registration fraud (eventhough his peeps tried to assert those charges on the innocent folks at ACORN). He’s apparently up to his old tricks…
Tomorrow, as mentioned earlier, I’ll be joined by journalist Dahr Jamail, and we’ll have our regular Wednesday visit from Christy Harvey of the Center for American Progress… Talk to you then!
**Updated Monday night… podcasts are now posted. Click on the player above for my regular show, and click here to hear today’s Randi Rhodes Show (with me)***
It’s another marathon Monday, as I’ll be filling in for Randi Rhodes this afternoon, then doing my show too!
It’s baseball’s opening day, Tiger Woods returns to the golf course, and it’s Easter Egg Roll day at the White House. No, Randi Rhodes isn’t attending any of those events. But she will be on Joy Behar‘s show tonight, so be sure to tune in.
I’ve been keeping busy for the past few months. After the demise of Air America, I moved my show to a new time (6-8pm ET/3-5 PT) and do it online. You can watch and/or listen at the newly re-designed RadioOrNot.com.
There’s lots to talk about today!
As Californians recover from the earth’s rocking and rolling, they may need something to calm their nerves. This November, they’ll decide whether or not to legalize marijuana. California was the first state in the nation to allow medical marijuana and, now that they’ve gathered the signatures necessary, the “Regulate, Tax and Control Cannabis Act of 2010” will be on the ballot!
Details are still surfacing on the Hutaree militia group. The more we learn about them, the more we should all realize that terrorists come from many different religions and races. You might remember the outrage by the right in April of 2009 when the DHS released a report on right wing extremist groups. This is exactly what they were warning about.
It’s not only Islamic extremists we should worry about, as these crazies are “Christian” wackos. Frank Schaeffer, author of “Crazy for God” and “Patience with God” who helped to start the evangelical right movement as the son of its founder, will also join me today to talk about his latest missive on the Hutaree militia group.
There’s plenty more to discuss today too… Justice Stevens will retire before the end of President Obama’s first term, we got more information on who is in the tea party, President Obama takes on right wing talkers, the comedy show that IS Michael Steele, financial reform…. you get the idea.
Plus, in recent weeks, we’ve seen some great examples of political theater, with CodePink getting in on the act with their attempted citizens arrests of Karl Rove, and their fake press release from AIPAC calling for the end of new settlements on the West Bank.
But the best examples of great activism via political theater come from The Yes Men, whose new film “The Yes Men Fix The World” was just released on DVD on Friday (April Fools Day!). The Yes Men- Andy Bichlbaum and Mike Bonanno will join me on my show tonight at around 6:30pm ET!
Just talk about the heinous activities of the Catholic church. Wow.
Well, when you talk about abortion or religion, you’re going to get people to disagree with you. But, in my opinion, the Catholic church has been complicit in the molestation and rape of children for way too long, and it must stop. And the fact that the Vatican has only responded by attacking the NY Times for their coverage of the scandal makes it all the more despicable.
I got some nasty email and tweets, and I feel sorry for the people who are defending the church on this one. I spoke about the hypocrisy of organized religion in general and the problems within the Catholic church with comedian John Fugelsang tonight. I know, that sounds like a non-sequitor, but when you find out about John’s parents religious backgrounds, you’ll understand why he was the perfect person to have this conversation with!
In the first hour, I checked in with David Dayen who writes the news for FireDogLake. We talked about yesterday’s baffling announcement by President Obama on offshore drilling, plus the fact that the Bush administration’s wiretapping program has been ruled illegal, and what that might mean for a CA Congressional race.
And Lisa Derrick, who writes the La Figa blog at FireDogLake joined me to talk about lots of stories that are sort of news, but sort of not… it’s the intersection between news, entertainment and pop culture. Lisa will be liveblogging tonight’s debut of the new Faux News/faux interview show hosted by Sarah Palin, “Real American Stories.” Although I’d rather be watching “Grey’s Anatomy,” I’ll join Lisa at FireDogLake.com, for as long as I can take it!
For those of you who celebrate it, have a very Happy Easter! I’ll be back Monday at our regular time… but I hope you’ll join me a little earlier, as I guest host the Randi Rhodes Show Monday from 3-6pm ET too.
I’ve often said we’d be much better off if we could just get the politics out of government. Unfortunately, that’s not going to happen any time soon…
In recent years, Republicans have been better at political theater than the Dems, but some on the left are catching up. The Yes Men have been doing great political theater, mostly in the climate change arena. (Their latest film “The Yes Men Fix The World” is out today on DVD.)
The women of Code Pink have been active in this arena too, but recently seem to have learned a thing or two about the theater aspect of activism.
Earlier this week, Code Pink co-founder Jodie Evans attempted a citizens arrest of Karl Rove, as he began his book tour in Los Angeles:
And just last week, Code Pink issued a very real looking fake press release from AIPAC saying that they had reversed their policy and called on Israel to freeze all future settlements.
Jodie Evans joined me last night on the program to talk about those actions, and the other work Code Pink is doing.
I was also joined by Gotta Laff who, along with her partner Paddy, writes the great blog The Political Carnival. We discussed a few of the stories she covered yesterday, including the new Faux News TV show with Sarah Palin and their attempted hijacking of LL Cool J and Toby Keith interviews, the craziness that is Michelle Bachmann, Eric Cantor’s lies, and a lot more.
And in hour two, we talked about the Obama administration’s latest triangulation measures, this time lifting the three decades long ban on offshore oil drilling. Yesterday’s announcement came just a month after the president announced he’d free up over $8 billion in loan guarantees for the construction of new nuclear power plants.
Last weekend was the 31st anniversary of Three Mile Island. Harvey Wasserman, one of the founders of the No Nukes movement who is now a senior advisor to the Nuclear Information & Resource Service and Greenpeace USA, penned “YOU are Now Paying for the Next Three Mile Island,” joined me to talk about the latest flip in energy policy.
It’s a Tuesday that felt like a Saturday to me. That’s only because school’s out this week, so I have
my kid under foot. And my sister is in town for a photography event called After Dark. So, today, my daughter Alison and I headed down to South Beach where she was a model. My sister promised to turn her into a mermaid and a fairy. ‘Nuff said!
I’ll post the pictures when I get them back. In the meantime, here’s one I took with my cell phone while we were waiting… (Yes, there’s a reason my sister is the photographer, and I’m the broadcaster!)
Thankfully, I had a couple of great guests lined up for tonight’s show!
There’s certainly been no shortage of Sarah Palin in the news lately… from her incendiary rhetoric on the road to her odd choice of clothing at the McCain rally. But definitely as disturbing, if not more, is the news that TLC (owned by parent company Discovery Communications, who also owns the Discovery Channel!) will pay over $1 million per episode for a new show to be called Sarah Palin’s Alaska!
The fact that Discovery, who’s always done such fine wildlife-focused work (they even own Animal Planet!) would build a show around this woman who gets off on shooting wolves from helicopters is a travesty.
Defenders of Wildlife sent out an email today, urging readers to send Discovery Communications a loud and clear message about this show.
Alaska blogger and broadcaster Shannyn Moore joined me tonight to talk about all the Sarah Palin stuff that just seems to get odder and more reprehensible by the day.
In hour two of tonight’s show, I spoke-for the first time- with blogger/broadcaster Bob Cesca! I’ve read his stuff on Huffington Post and his awesome blog for quite some time now, but tonight was the first time we’ve spoken. The time flew by as we talked about radio and media in general, health care, the student loan bill that was passed with reconciliation, Sarah Palin (just can’t get away from her), Morning Joe, and a whole lot more.
We also talked about Teabonics!.. Click here to see examples of some of the signs displayed at the teabagging rallies.
Hear the show by clicking on the player at the top of this post, or watch me talking into the mic on the video page! If you’re enjoying the show, I hope you’ll tell your friends about it. And come back tomorrow night, from 6-8pm ET! I’ll be speaking with Christy Harvey of MicCheckRadio and the Center for American Progress, GottaLaff of The Political Carnival, and Harvey Wasserman who’ll explain how you and I are paying for the next Three Mile Island.