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Feb 132012

Ian Dury and the Blockheads with a good description of today’s show.


Sex and Drugs

Those santimonious hypocrites posing as the religious righteous on their high horses can go fuck themselves, and they soon may have to do so.  Hey guys – you take away our birth control, you will never get laid again.

Hey Marco Rubio, I’m talking to you with your sanctimonious Religious Freedom Protection Act of 2012.

I called Rubio’s office this morning on the show and asked why he hates women.  This pandering piece of horrible legislation would allow ANY business or corporation to refuse its employees coverage for birth control based on their personal religious beliefs or moral convictions.

I asked if they’d put an exemption in for the Church of Scientology so they wouldn’t have to cover psychiatry and psychiatric meds.  How about the Jehova’s Witnesses who don’t believe in blood transfusions.  Should they not be required to provide insurance coverage for that for their employees?

And what about the Christian Scientists, who don’t believe in using doctors at all?

This isn’t about others putting their beliefs on the Catholics/ anti-choice people; it’s about the Catholics / anti-choice assholes pushing their beliefs on us.  It’s not about religion, it’s about stupidity..  And they want to impose their stupidity on the rest of us.  No, thanks.

It’s about them not wanting you to have sex and drugs, I guess.

Rock and Roll

Congratulations to Adele! It’s great to see real music win accolades from across all styles.  Bruce rocked it.  “We Take Care of Our Own”  speaks to the moral conscience of this country.  Hey GOP and the 1%, listen to Bruce.

Also on the show today, I was joined by David Dayen of FireDogLake news who brought us up to date on the shitty foreclosure fraud settlement deal.

And as she does every Monday, Nicole Belle of Crooks and Liars joined in with Fools on the Hill -  the Sunday talking head shows…

Another Sunday, another day of Republicans telling us that their extremist views are the norm, all polls to the contrary.

Like Peggy Noonan, who calls the “left of the Democratic base” *extreme*. Why? For supporting reproductive rights. No, seriously.

On the issue of reproductive rights, Mitch McConnell—who really needs to lay off the Botox—tells Bob Schieffer that any employer should be able to deny contraceptive services. I seriously can’t wrap my head around the notion that we must re-litigate contraception services. But again, never let it be said that there isn’t anything Republican Party wouldn’t do to appeal to the one percent. Even if it’s the one percent of the population who wants to deprive women of contraception (and the therapeutic medicinal value of many contraceptive drugs).

Rick Santorum got into the fray as well on contraception. He told David Gregory that lack of insurance coverage wouldn’t deny women access to birth control. They could just pay for it, doncha know? Of course, he doesn’t explain how women living in reduced circumstances now, thanks to Republican Party policies, are supposed to pay for it.

Speaking of paying for contraception, Paul Ryan told George Stephanopoulos that the Obama administration’s compromise to say that religious employers wouldn’t have to pay for contraceptive coverage but the insurance companies would was nothing more than an “accounting gimmick.” Hard to argue the point, but considering that the entire Bush administration was nothing more than accounting gimmicks to hide the burgeoning deficit, thanks to tax cuts and two wars in the Middle East, not to mention his own ridiculous budget proposal, I’d say that Ryan shouldn’t throw stones.

But I don’t want you to think that it was nothing but conservatives slut-shaming women for having sexual lives. Jack Lew, the new White House Chief of Staff, had to really talk down David Gregory from demanding the austerity measures here in the US that have worked oh-so-well across Europe. David Gregory, happy member of the DC Village Elite, comfortably ensconced within the one percent, thinks that the only answer for America is to reduce the services we give to the poor and elderly.

And if there’s time, George Soros wins the award for the most obvious soundclip—which not one member of the media will admit that they know and never acknowledge with their guests: Republicans are cynically hurting the American economy for political gain.

Sep 062011

A busy day for me, as I’m guest hosting the Randi Rhodes Show again today (through Thursday)… So, let’s get right to it.

On both shows, we’ll address President Obama’s Labor Day preview of what he’ll give us on Thursday by way of a jobs plan.  And we’ll look at Teamsters’ chief James Hoffa’s speech at yesterday’s labor rally featuring the president in Detroit and how Fox blew it all out of proportion.

On my show this morning, I’ll talk with listener Susan Shaffer about two things she brought to my attention.  The first having to do with Sen. Marco Rubio’s widely reported comments about Social Security and Medicare weakening people by taking responsibility away from families and churches – and how they seem to have come directly from Franklin Graham!

The main reason I invited Susan on this morning is to talk about a project she launched: The Postcard Project to Help Stop the Tar Sands Keystone Pipeline. Basically, she wants us to swamp the White House with postcards (especially those with oil spill photos) over the next couple of months to get them to kill this proposed pipeline.

In hour two, GottaLaff joins from The Political Carnival with these stories and more:

CNN fails to post video of Rick Perry floating idea of raising Medicare age to “69 or 70?

Quickie- Flashback 2005: ACORN and Rick Perry passed a bill together

PhotOH! If you don’t understand what the Tea Party means when they say “we want our country back”…

VIDEO: Tar Sands Pipeline Protests Fail to Move White House

Sarah Palin ignores comedian’s “special needs” joke at tea party event (ADDED: Video of her speech) (I have my Palin short version)

Details on today’s Randi Rhodes Show coming soon…  To get you started, Richard Eskow of the Campaign for America’s Future will join in at 3:30ET to talk about “Labor day: A Day to Rest, Remember, and Act – for ‘Entitlements’ and Jobs“.

A brilliant op-ed by former GOP staffer Mike Lofgren appeared at on Saturday and immediately went viral.  He’ll join me at 4:30 ET to talk about “Goodbye To All That: Reflections of a GOP Operative who Left the Cult“.

And our friend Brad Friedman of Brad Blog is all over the news today for his explosive two-part series for Mother Jones: “Exclusive Audio: Inside the Koch Brothers Seminar”.  He’ll tell us about it at 5:30 ET today…

Oct 262010

That’s what it looks like. Lauren Valle was trying to present Rand Paul with the “Republicorp Employee of the Month Award” as he was getting out of his car last night to enter the studios of Kentucky Education Television for the debate with Jack Conway.  Rand Paul’s thugs tackled her and stomped on her shoulders and head.  See the video for yourself…

What’s even uglier are some of the comments on this right wing blog, who defend the violence!

A quick shout out to KagroX, who this morning tweeted “Freedom of Speech for Juan Williams. Oh, hold on, I have to step on the head of someone with a sign I don’t like.”

This year’s debates are quite ugly too. Last night, CNN held the final Florida gubernatorial debate of the season, between criminal Rick Scott and ConservaDem Alex Sink. I suppose I have to hand it to Sink for trying to stick up for herself in what appeared to be a Scott-favored q and a session, but she came across as a bit catty. That said, she was trying to get the moderators to acknowledge that Rick Scott refused to sit for even one newspaper editorial board, and she garnered the endorsements of every single paper in Florida… something they seemed quite happy to ignore.

The moderators were CNN’s John King and the St. Pete Times’ political editor Adam Smith, who will join me on today’s show.

We’ll also take a look at Amendments 5 and 6 – Fair Districts Florida, with campaign chair Ellen Friedin.  This is not just a Florida issue, by the way.  Gerrymandering and the way districts are drawn affect everyone, and other states would be well advised to mount similar campaigns.

In hour two, after the news from TRNS, it’s time for Gotta Laff from The Political Carnival!  Today, we’ll discuss these stories and more:

Sarah Palin gets underwear (!) from… Sheriff Arpaio

Marco Rubio skips photo op with Sarah Palin

Black GOP Candidates Accuse Party of Ignoring Them

VIDEO- O’Donnell: “We saw a spike in the polls [the] day that some people had a prayer meeting for me”

Sharron Angle dodges the press… again

Joe Miller: I’m you, too. Um, Joe? No, you’re not.

Reporter gets kicked out of Joe Miller “meet and greet”

And yes, by the way, today’s Michele Bachman-Tarryl Clark debate will stream live at 1:30pm ET here (via ):

Watch live streaming video from theuptake at
Oct 252010

We have just over a week before election day, and things are getting nastier by the minute. On today’s show, I’ll be joined by one of the few progressive heroes in Congress – Raul Grijalva – who is in serious danger of losing his seat.

On Thursday, Grijalva’s Tucson office was evacuated Thursday when a staffer opened an envelope containing a plastic bag of white powder and two pieces of paper with swastikas written on them. Nice, huh?  Yes, it’s ugly out there…

But we’ll start the show with Jason Leopold of Truthout, who spent the weekend poring over the 400,000 documents released by wikileaks on Friday.

At 5pm EST Friday 22nd October 2010 WikiLeaks released the largest classified military leak in history. The 391,832 reports (‘The Iraq War Logs’), document the war and occupation in Iraq, from 1st January 2004 to 31st December 2009 (except for the months of May 2004 and March 2009) as told by soldiers in the United States Army. Each is a ‘SIGACT’ or Significant Action in the war. They detail events as seen and heard by the US military troops on the ground in Iraq and are the first real glimpse into the secret history of the war that the United States government has been privy to throughout.

The reports detail 109,032 deaths in Iraq, comprised of 66,081 ‘civilians’; 23,984 ‘enemy’ (those labeled as insurgents); 15,196 ‘host nation’ (Iraqi government forces) and 3,771 ‘friendly’ (coalition forces). The majority of the deaths (66,000, over 60%) of these are civilian deaths.That is 31 civilians dying every day during the six year period. For comparison, the ‘Afghan War Diaries’, previously released by WikiLeaks, covering the same period, detail the deaths of some 20,000 people. Iraq during the same period, was five times as lethal with equivallent population size.

Please donate to WikiLeaks to defend this information.

Obviously, with 400,000 documents, there’s a lot to digest.  One way is by logging in to the Warlogs site.

The other is to check out what The Bureau of Investigative Journalism site dedicated to them.  From

And if it’s Monday, it’s “Fools on the Hill” with Nicole Belle of Crooks and Liars.  Here’s what’s on tap for today:

First up is former Joint Chief of Staff chairman Gen. Hugh Shelton tells Christiane Amanpour where he stands on DADT by using the rather dumbfounding logic that the US has never been defeated in war by an army that included openly gay soldiers.  No, seriously.

I guess that Gen. Shelton got a personal assurance that every member of the Viet Cong was straight.

Pat Toomey, whose lead over Joe Sestak in basically within the margin of error,  took the day off on Saturday presumably to prepare for his appearance on Fox News Sunday.  It might have been a little more productive if Toomey bothered to read the CBO reports on the effects of extending the Bush tax cuts.  Unless, of course, he knew he was lying when he told Chris Wallace that it’s not clear that extending the tax cuts would add trillions to the deficit.  Sometimes, pictures say more than words, so I direct you to graph after graph that show how devastating the Bush tax cuts and Republican policies in general have been to the economy.

And proof #2350 that the media doesn’t want citizens to be focused on real issues comes from The Chris Matthews Show, which spent all of 19 seconds on the issue of rigged electronic voting machines.

And then finally, because I don’t know if we’ll have time, here’s Jon Stewart talking to Larry King about both the strengths and ultimately, the evils of Fox News and CNN.

And here’s the Rick Scott deposition video I promised I’d post.  How anyone can vote for this real-life crook and liar is beyond comprehension…

Oct 182010

Just when you though politics couldn’t get any weirder, the Aqua Buddha returns, in all his chubby, wet glory.

Actually, we have Jack Conway to thank for bringing back this very strange aspect of the very strange Rand Paul’s past.  First, here’s Conway’s latest ad:

Last night, the topic led off the debate between the two guys hoping to represent Kentucky in the US Senate… it was fireworks from the first word:

And poor, insulted “Dr.” Paul wouldn’t shake Attorney General Jack Conway’s hand at the end of it…

Yikes. Although my favorite line of the evening came from Conway, who said “I’m always amused to get a lesson about the Constitution from a self-certified opthamologist!” Just 15 days to go…

Down here in Florida, we also have our fair share of crazy, and one of the craziest is running for Congress against incumbent Ron Klein in the 22nd District… where I’m currently living! Not only is Allen West certifiable (he’s the one who claims to have a higher security clearance than President Obama), but now he seems to be using the Outlaws for security…

Joy-Ann Reid of The Reid Report will join me in the first hour of today’s show to talk about West and other Florida candidates and issues, as today marks the start of early voting here in the Sunshine state.

As always, we’ll start hour two with a news update from TRNS.  And since it’s Monday, Nicole Belle of Crooks & Liars joins in for “Fools on the Hill,” our weekly discussion about the Sunday talking head shows.

Listen live 10-noon ET, or check back later for the podcast!

Oct 122010

How do you do a radio show when you’re feeling flu-ish? Invite the Awesome Bob Cesca and Gotta Laff to be your guests!  OK, Laffy was already scheduled (she’s on with me every Tuesday morning), but Bob Cesca is certainly coming to the rescue.

For readers not in the know, Bob Cesca’s Awesome Blog! Go! is here, and you also read him on Huffington Post.  He’s no stranger to radio either; he and Elvis Dingeldein host a weekly podcast too.  We’ll talk about whatever comes up, though I’m sure we’ll hit on the fact that Richard Shelby is blocking the nomination of Peter Diamond to sit on the Fed’s Board of Governors because he’s not qualified!  The fact that Diamond was Ben Bernanke’s teacher and he won the Nobel Prize for Economics this week doesn’t change that!

Laffy sent along these topics to discuss today:

A gaunt Dick Cheney is back on the road, vows more appearances

VIDEO: Carly Fiorina after a shot of tequila. Ayayay!

Did Marco Rubio’s campaign pay kid’s tuition?

Is Jan Brewer ill, unable to complete a four-year term?

Newt Gingrich: Former “Food Stamps Party” member

Handy Dandy Chart of Radical Republican Agenda

AUDIO: Sharron Angle claims an American city that no longer exists is under Sharia law

VIDEO- ClusterFox U: GOP’s Ed Gillespie lapses into Palinspeak, uses “refudiated” to make a point

Handy Dandy Chart of Radical Republican Agenda

AUDIO: Sharron Angle claims an American city that no longer exists is under Sharia law

VIDEO- ClusterFox U: GOP’s Ed Gillespie lapses into Palinspeak, uses “refudiated” to make a point

And, in response to Christine O’Donnell’s claim that the witchy woman is “you”, Gotta Laff brings us the latest “Blunt”:

And just because we can, here’s Lawrence O’Donnell’s interview with SC’s Democratic nominee for the US Senate, Alvin Greene…

Oct 052010

We will be doing just that on today’s show.  Political cartoonist, columnist and war correspondent Ted Rall is my first guest this morning.  His new book, The Anti-American Manifesto explicitly calls for a violent revolution. Seriously!

Rall also recently returned from a trip to Afghanistan.  We’ll delve into that mess, as well as the mess here at home that prompted his writing of the Manifesto.  It should be a fascinating conversation.

My friend David Swanson reviewed Rall’s book recently and, I must admit, I agree more with Swanson than Rall on this one, but it’s definitely worth the discussion!

In hour two, it’s our weekly get together with The Political Carnival‘s Gotta Laff.  There’s much to talk about, including the controversy over Saturday’s One Nation march & rally crowd size.  It seems that the trolls on the right just like screwing with the facts.

Oct 042010

I think I’m the happiest unemployed radio personality around.  I regularly get to guest host The Randi Rhodes Show.  And today I got to fill  in for Thom Hartmann!

Seriously, next to having my own show again, nothing could be better.

Thom is in the middle of a move to Washington DC, but late last night they realized that the new studio wouldn’t be ready for today’s show. So, I awoke this morning to an email asking if I was available.  Duh!

So, after my show (and after pulling out an old interview with Ralph Nader to run during the second hour so I could prep and get the technical issues sorted out), I segued into Thom’s show.

My first guest was Thom Hartmann himself. He told us about the reasons for his move from Portand to DC, and his experience Saturday at the One Nation Working Together rally.

My favorite activist, David Swanson, gave us his impression of Saturday’s event as well.  Later on in the show, we got a call from Rev. Jesse Jackson who, apparently, had been listening and wanted to thank us for taking about the event.

Crooks and Liars’ Nicole Belle joined me — a little later than we usually do it on Mondays — for our “Fools on the Hill” segment, deconstructing the Sunday talking head shows.  Here are her comments and links to the segments we talked about:

First, we’ll go to Rand Paul and Jack Conway debating on Fox News Sunday.  Paul’s campaign people have been very careful to limit his air time after several disastrous appearances that showed just how extreme his views are.

He was fairly careful on the show.  He did claim that he supported raising the age of Social Security eligibility if he’s elected.

To be sure, that is one way to address Social Security.  Of course, it’s not the smartest way, which is to remove the cap entirely or to prevent Congress from raiding SSI to pay for spending elsewhere, either of which would ensure SSI’s solvency forever.  But is anyone surprised by the least effective solution being proposed by a Republican?

Sticking with Fox, we had some lovely pearl clutching by the Fox News Watch Panel (their alleged media watchdog show) over Obama’s interview with Rolling Stone Magazine, in which he labeled Fox “opinion media”, much like the Hearst propaganda of the ‘20s and ‘30s.

The golden age of an objective press was a pretty narrow span of time in our history. Before that, you had folks like Hearst who used their newspapers very intentionally to promote their viewpoints. I think Fox is part of that tradition… it is part of the tradition that has a very clear point of view. It’s a point of view that I disagree with… It’s a point of view that is ultimately destructive for the long-term growth of a country that has a vibrant middle class and is competitive in the world.

Listen how Jim Pinkerton conflates the channel with its viewers and claims that the President said that Fox viewers are destructive to the country.  And then because the fallback position is to say, “well, liberals do it too!” he brings up Daniel Schorr, because Schorr wrote a factually accurate report that Goldwater was planning a trip to Germany to see some right wing German fans at a former Hitler retreat.

Rich Lowry boils it down to a ridiculous syllogism of “liberals hate Fox. Obama is a liberal, ergo he hates Fox”.  It’s not a propaganda channel, we just have an irrational hatred of it.

And as long as we’re on media navel-gazing, Chris Matthews and his panel looked at the advent of the new media in politics. Not surprisingly, they missed the picture altogether.  Matthews traces the rise of the new media with Drudge during the Clinton years.  They acknowledge that traditional media knew about the Lewinsky story but held on to it because the story had not been vetted.  But once Drudge broke that dam, the traditional media didn’t get taken over by the new media, they abdicated their roles to basically emulate new media.  Vetting went out the window to be able to scoop the competition.  The directive to be fair was given up for opinion media.  In short, the traditional media became bloggers.   It’s hard to hear on the audio, but Dan Rather gives a tentative warning about how the new media can also send out lynch mobs to destroy the credibility of reporters  or shape the narrative of the story and get away with it, something that Tweety and John Harris of Politico completely don’t pick up on.

And now to someone who actually does get it: Sen. Bernie Sanders.

Bernie told  Bob Schieffer that Republicans are more interested in gaining power than helping the country. Now while that rates a big “duh” from us, Bob Schieffer just can’t quite believe that Sanders would be that blunt.

And then finally, we come to This Week. As in past weeks, Christiane Amanpour decided to go against the headline of the week and do a more in-depth look at an issue.  Unfortunately, her framing of the issue of choice this week could have been a little more reasonably done.  The chyron for the debate was “Should Americans Fear Islam?” Given the amount of violence being done in this country and the irrational outrage by the likes of Pamela Geller for the Park51 Community Center, I’d say that Muslims have a hell of a lot more to fear here than Americans do of Islam in general.

Billy Graham’s son Franklin appears on the panel to be on the “yes, fear the Muslims” side.  And the surviving parents of 9/11 victims appeared on both sides of the issue.  For a segment titled in such an inflammatory way, it was actually a very good segment and one that everyone should see in its entirety.

And Gotta Laff of The Political Carnival joined in to talk about the story brewing about Marco Rubio and his relationship with health care lobbyist Amber Stoner.

And I got to talk with a bunch of Thom’s listeners.  Today was not only fun, but truly an honor.

Sep 152010

In an election year that’s supposed to be deadly for Dems, the Republicans seem to be the ones going down, so to speak. As much as they hate the “Democrat” party, they seem to ignore the bigger picture: that by nominating candidates like Sharron Angle, Rand Paul, Joe Miller and now Christine O’Donnell, they’ve given us a nice big wet kiss. Or, for O’Donnell’s sake, a somewhat satisfying hand job.

On today’s show, we’ll delve into the opinions of Delaware’s Republican Senatorial candidate, and the rest of yesterday’s primary results with Ellen Ratner of the Talk Radio News Service, Christina Bellantonio of Talking Points Memo, and Keauna Gregory of the Progressive Change Campaign Committee (who endorsed and worked very hard for yesterday’s victory in NH of Ann Kuster over Katrina Lantos Lieberman Swett).

At the top of hour two, Congressman and Florida Democratic Senate candidate Kendrick Meek will be my guest.

And just in case you’re wondering about today’s headline, it’s from the song “Sodomy” from the Broadway Musical “Hair” and is dedicated to Christina O’Donnell…. See why in the videos below:

(h/t to Huffington Post for the Politically Incorrect videos)

And thanks to The Rachel Maddow Show and Talking Points Memo for this one:

Apr 152010

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!)

We started the show last night as we do most Wednesdays, with Christy Harvey of the Center for American Progress, and a discussion of some of the stories she shares with us at

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….

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