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DemocracyNow! headlinesOne Billion Rising: Eve Ensler & Taína Asili Mark V-Day and Campaign to End Sexual Violence
Fri, 14 Feb 2020 08:47:18 -0500
This Valentine's Day, people around the world are taking to the streets to protest violence against women and girls. From the Philippines to India to Italy to Bolivia, thousands of women in more than 100 countries will reclaim public space through dance and performance as part of a global movement called One Billion Rising. The movement takes its name from the shocking statistic that one in three women across the planet will be beaten or raped during her lifetime. One Billion Rising started on Valentine's Day 2012 and has continued to grow every year since. Participants say they won't stop dancing until violence against all women — cis, transgender and those with fluid gender identities — has ended. We speak with Eve Ensler, the award-winning playwright and author of "The Vagina Monologues." She is the founder of V-Day and One Billion Rising. We're also joined by Taína Asili, a Puerto Rican singer, filmmaker and activist whose song is the One Billion Rising anthem.
Rep. Rashida Tlaib: Trump's "Racist" Plan Would Legalize the Theft of Palestinian Land
Fri, 14 Feb 2020 08:42:20 -0500
We continue our conversation with Congressmember Rashida Tlaib of Michigan, the first Palestinian-American woman elected to Congress. She responds to President Trump's Middle East plan, under which Israel would gain sovereignty over large areas of the occupied West Bank, Jerusalem would be under total Israeli control, and all Jewish settlers in the occupied territory would be allowed to remain in their homes. Tlaib says the plan was formulated with a "racist lens" that ignores Palestinian lives and aspirations. Tlaib says she wants people "to know what the human impact is of taking people's land, taking people's livelihood away from them."
Detroit Overtaxed Residents by $600M, Causing Foreclosure Crisis. Residents Are Now Fighting Back.
Fri, 14 Feb 2020 08:20:17 -0500
In Detroit, a showdown between progressive lawmakers and the city is taking on racist housing policies that robbed African Americans in Detroit of their homes and widened the racial wealth gap. On Thursday, the Coalition for Property Tax Justice announced a class-action lawsuit against the city of Detroit, Wayne County and the state of Michigan in response to unfair property tax foreclosures. One in four Detroit properties have been subject to property tax foreclosure, a level comparable only to tax foreclosure rates during the Great Depression. According to legal experts, many of the foreclosures were caused by illegally inflated property taxes that violated the state's Constitution, which says that no property can be assessed at more than 50% of its market value. Detroit is now 80% African-American, and 40% of the city's residents live below the federal poverty line. But as downtown Detroit becomes increasingly gentrified, thousands of the city's longtime residents, mostly African-American families, have lost their homes to foreclosure for property taxes they should not have been paying in the first place because the poverty tax exemption excuses those in poverty from paying. From Detroit, Michigan, we're joined by Democratic Representative Rashida Tlaib of Michigan, who has worked on this lawsuit from before the time she entered Congress, and Bernadette Atuahene, a professor at IIT, Chicago-Kent College of Law, and research professor at the American Bar Foundation. She is a member of the Coalition for Property Tax Justice, and her forthcoming study, to be published in the UC Berkeley Law Review, is titled "Predatory Cities."
The Corporate Media Is Directly Profiting from Mike Bloomberg's Rise as He Spends Fortune on TV Ads
Fri, 14 Feb 2020 08:14:51 -0500
Billionaire Democratic presidential candidate Mike Bloomberg is rising in the polls in the wake of the Iowa caucuses and New Hampshire primary. Democracy Now! co-host Juan González speaks with us about Bloomberg's approach to campaign spending, the administration's policies during his three terms as mayor of New York City and the scores of lawsuits filed against Bloomberg and his company. "It's amazing to me that Michael Bloomberg is getting as much attention as he is," González says.
Headlines for February 14, 2020
Fri, 14 Feb 2020 08:00:00 -0500
Senate Passes Resolution Limiting Trump's War Powers Authority, Attorney General William Barr Criticizes Trump's Tweets, Bloomberg Criticized for Falsely Blaming 2008 Crisis on End of Redlining, Top Wall Street Executives on Biden Guest List for Manhattan Fundraiser, Ex-Ohio State Wrestler Says Rep. Jim Jordan Begged Him to Cover Up Sexual Abuse, Last Month Was Hottest January on Record, Indigenous Anti-Pipeline Blockades Cripple Canada's Rail Transportation, Intercept: Canadian Fossil Fuel Company "Bought" Oregon Sheriff Department Unit, Judge Temporarily Blocks Microsoft-Pentagon Contract After Amazon Lawsuit, McClatchy Files for Bankruptcy, 17 Arrested Amid Wildcat Strike by UC Santa Cruz Graduate Students, Trump Admin Faces Outcry over Plan to Weaken National Environmental Policy Act
Did Amy Klobuchar Send an Innocent Teenager to Life in Prison? Questions Mount over Her Record as DA
Thu, 13 Feb 2020 08:48:24 -0500
After a surprising third-place finish in the New Hampshire primary, Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar is attempting to gain ground in the national polls. But Klobuchar is also facing mounting scrutiny over her record as a district attorney in Minnesota. The Minneapolis NAACP, Black Lives Matter Twin Cities and other racial justice groups recently called on Klobuchar to suspend her presidential campaign following a shocking investigation by the Associated Press. The AP report centered on the case of Myon Burrell, an African-American teenager who was sentenced to life in prison over the 2002 murder of 11-year-old Tyesha Edwards. Klobuchar led the case against Myon Burrell when she was Hennepin County's district attorney, but the AP report says she may have mishandled the case and that Burrell could be innocent. The Associated Press report shows how prosecutors had no DNA or fingerprints tying Burrell to the murder and that they relied on jailhouse informants, some of whom have since recanted their testimonies. Burrell has always maintained his innocence. On the campaign trail, Klobuchar has cited the jailing of Burrell as one of her achievements and brought up the conviction during a debate in September. We speak with Nekima Levy Armstrong, civil rights attorney, activist, head of the Racial Justice Network and former president of the Minneapolis chapter of the NAACP. "It's shocking at this point that Amy Klobuchar is still in the race for president of the United States, given the significance of Myon Burrell's case," she says.
The Wet'suwet'en Fight Against New Pipeline Spreads Across Canada with Blockades & Occupations
Thu, 13 Feb 2020 08:32:00 -0500
A major anti-pipeline struggle continues in Canada, where protests have broken out across the country in solidarity with Wet'suwet'en land defenders whose sovereign land in northern British Columbia was raided last week and over the weekend by Canadian police. Dozens were arrested in the days-long raid of unceded indigenous territories, where hereditary chiefs have been in a protracted battle to protect their land from the construction of TransCanada's 400-mile, $4.7 billion Coastal GasLink pipeline. The raids took place about 700 miles north of Vancouver and sparked outrage across the country. In Ontario, a Mohawk solidarity protest has shut down the Canadian National Railway for days, halting travel for tens of thousands of passengers. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau called for a quick resolution to the protests on Wednesday. In New York, protesters on Wednesday gathered for a sit-in outside the United Nations headquarters in solidarity with Wet'suwet'en land defenders. For more, we go to Wet'suwet'en territory, where we're joined by land defender and matriarch Molly Wickham. Her clan, the Gidimt'en Clan, was raided last week by 60 heavily militarized officers with assault rifles and dogs. And in Toronto, we're joined by Pamela Palmater, Mi'kmaq lawyer and member of the Eel River Bar First Nation in New Brunswick. She is the chair in indigenous governance at Ryerson University.
"Traumatizing from the Get-Go": Weinstein Trial Exposes Flawed Approach to Sexual Assault Cases
Thu, 13 Feb 2020 08:20:36 -0500
We continue our conversation about the trial of alleged sexual predator Harvey Weinstein, ahead of the scheduled start of opening arguments today. Weinstein is facing five felony charges, based on accusations brought forth by two women in the case, and, if convicted, could face up to life in prison. Last week, one of his accusers, Jessica Mann, broke down and went into an apparent panic attack during questioning from Weinstein's lawyers, forcing the judge to adjourn proceedings for the day. Mann was made to read past emails to a boyfriend, in which she disclosed she had been sexually assaulted before meeting Weinstein. She accuses Weinstein of raping her in New York and Los Angeles and said she had an "extremely degrading" relationship with him. We speak with Louise Godbold, the executive director of Echo, which provides training to trauma survivors and those who support them. The organization is hosting a conference for trauma survivors, including Weinstein survivors, next month called "And Still We Rise," a reference to the Maya Angelou poem.
Time's Up for Harvey Weinstein? Closing Arguments Begin in Rape Trial in NYC
Thu, 13 Feb 2020 08:10:28 -0500
Closing arguments are scheduled to begin Thursday in the trial of disgraced Hollywood mogul and accused sexual predator Harvey Weinstein. The jury is expected to begin deliberating on Tuesday. Weinstein faces five felonies based on accusations by two women and, if convicted, could face up to life in prison. The trial comes more than two years after initial accusations against the film producer were published in The New Yorker and The New York Times, fueling the #MeToo movement that swept Hollywood and beyond. Since then, over 100 women have accused Weinstein of rape, sexual assault and sexual harassment. During the trial, six women told the jury in graphic detail about how Weinstein had sexually assaulted them. Weinstein did not testify, but his lawyers described the sexual encounters as consensual and repeatedly attempted to discredit the claims of the women. While the trial centers on the accusations of two women, many other women who say they were victimized by Weinstein have attended the trial. For more, we speak with J. Clara Chan, media and politics reporter at The Wrap, where she's been covering the Weinstein trial extensively.
Headlines for February 13, 2020
Thu, 13 Feb 2020 08:00:00 -0500
Attorney General William Barr to Testify Before House Judiciary Committee, Confirmed Cases of Coronavirus Skyrocket in Hubei, China, Bloomberg Would Pay Billions Less Under His Tax Plan Than Sanders', U.N. Releases List of 100 Companies Linked to Israeli-Occupied West Bank Settlements, Mexico: Outrage over Murder of 25-Year-Old Ingrid Escamilla, Former Guatemalan Presidential Candidate Sentenced to 15 Years by U.S. Court, 2010 Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill May Have Been 30% Bigger Than Thought, New York Has Highest Number of Premature Deaths from Out-of-State Air Pollution, El Paso Walmart Shooter Pleads Not Guilty to 90 Criminal Charges, In Victory for Students, Court Rescinds $2.5M Settlement over UNC's Confederate Statue
South Bend Politician: I Worked with Pete Buttigieg. He Did Not Respect Black Residents' Struggles
Wed, 12 Feb 2020 08:50:16 -0500
2020 presidential candidate and former mayor of South Bend, Indiana, Pete Buttigieg has surprised many with his strong showings in Iowa and New Hampshire, two of the country's whitest states. But as the race moves on to South Carolina and Nevada, Buttigieg continues to poll extremely low with African-American voters. His own former constituents are condemning his treatment of the black community in South Bend during his time as mayor, calling out systemic racism in the police force. During Buttigieg's tenure, black residents were 4.3 times more likely to be arrested for possessing marijuana than white people. We speak with Henry Davis Jr., a South Bend city councilmember since 2008, as well as legendary feminist scholar Barbara Smith, co-founder of the Combahee River Collective.
Meet the Journalist Who Exposed Bloomberg's Racist Defense of Targeting Black & Brown Youth
Wed, 12 Feb 2020 08:40:40 -0500
"#BloombergIsRacist." That's the hashtag that's trending on Twitter since audio of remarks made by 2020 Democratic presidential hopeful and former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg surfaced earlier this week. In the clip from the 2015 Aspen Institute, Bloomberg is heard defending the New York City Police Department's controversial "stop-and-frisk" policies, saying, "Ninety-five percent of your murders and murderers and murdered victims fit one MO. You can just take the description, xerox it and pass it out to all the cops." He continues, "They are male minorities, 15 to 25. That's true in New York. It's true in virtually every city." Bloomberg issued a statement Tuesday saying, "I inherited the police practice of stop-and-frisk, and as part of our effort to stop gun violence it was overused. By the time I left office, I cut it back by 95%, but I should've done it faster and sooner. I regret that and I have apologized." But Bloomberg didn't just inherit stop-and-frisk. During his tenure, use of the practice increased sevenfold. At its height, there were nearly 700,000 stops in 2011 compared to around 100,000 in 2002. The vast majority of those stopped were black or Latino. Bloomberg defended stop-and-frisk as recently as 2019, only apologizing for the practice publicly in November, shortly after entering the presidential race. We speak with the journalist who unearthed the 2015 audio of Bloomberg, Benjamin Dixon, the host of "The Benjamin Dixon Show" and podcast. Dixon is the co-founder of the TheNorthStar.com, the revitalized abolitionist newspaper of Frederick Douglass.
Feminist Scholar Barbara Smith on Identity Politics & Why She Supports Bernie Sanders for President
Wed, 12 Feb 2020 08:22:09 -0500
We speak with the legendary African-American feminist scholar Barbara Smith. She is a founder of the Combahee River Collective and of Kitchen Table: Women of Color Press. Barbara Smith recently wrote a column in The Guardian newspaper titled "I helped coin the term 'identity politics'. I'm endorsing Bernie Sanders." Her latest book is "Ain't Gonna Let Nobody Turn Me Around: Forty Years of Movement Building with Barbara Smith."
Bernie Sanders Wins New Hampshire Primary with Key Support from Youth Voters
Wed, 12 Feb 2020 08:09:49 -0500
Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont has won the New Hampshire primary a week after he won the popular vote in Iowa. As of Wednesday morning, with 89% of precincts reporting, Sanders has 25.8% of the vote, narrowly beating former South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg, who is at 24.4%. Senator Amy Klobuchar placed third with nearly 20% of the vote. Both Senator Elizabeth Warren and former Vice President Joe Biden received under 10% of the vote, after seeing their support plummet in recent weeks and months. At a celebration in Manchester, Bernie Sanders said his victory in New Hampshire is the beginning of the end for Donald Trump. As the results of the New Hampshire primary came in, two more Democratic candidates dropped out: Senator Michael Bennet of Colorado and entrepreneur Andrew Yang, who campaigned for a universal basic income. For more on the New Hampshire primary and what comes next in the presidential race, we speak with John Nichols of The Nation.
Headlines for February 12, 2020
Wed, 12 Feb 2020 08:00:00 -0500
Bernie Sanders Wins New Hampshire Primary, Andrew Yang and Michael Bennet Drop Out of Presidential Race, Federal Prosecutors Quit Roger Stone Case Amid Fight with DOJ Officials, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas Rejects Trump's Middle East Plan in U.N. Speech, Trump Conditionally Approves Peace Deal with the Taliban, WHO Warns Coronavirus Poses "Grave Threat" to World, Opposition Leader Juan Guaidó Heckled and Protested Upon Return to Venezuela, Report: 40% of Guatemalan, Honduran & Salvadoran Migrants Fled After Relatives Killed, WSJ: ICE & CPB Use Cellphone Location Data from Games, Apps to Arrest Immigrants, Sudan's Omar al-Bashir to Face Genocide Charges at the ICC, Judge Approves T-Mobile & Sprint Merger, Fire Erupts at ExxonMobil Refinery in Louisiana, UC Santa Cruz Graduate Students Strike to Protest Unaffordable Housing Costs
Molly Crabapple: Bloomberg Is a Billionaire Republican Who Terrorized Black & Brown Youth
Tue, 11 Feb 2020 08:46:52 -0500
Polls open Tuesday in New Hampshire for the first primary of the 2020 presidential cycle. The Democratic candidates have been criss-crossing the state in the days leading up to the vote, which has even more significance this year following the muddled results of the Iowa caucuses. We continue our conversation with Arnie Arnesen, a longtime radio and TV host in New Hampshire and a former New Hampshire legislator; Norman Solomon, co-founder and national coordinator of RootsAction.org, which is supporting Bernie Sanders; and we are joined in New York by Molly Crabapple, an artist, writer and activist who recently published a series of sketches from her time on the campaign trail with Sanders in Iowa and New Hampshire.
Despite Corporate Media's "War on Bernie," Sanders Rides Wave of Support into New Hampshire Primary
Tue, 11 Feb 2020 08:38:23 -0500
Polls have opened in New Hampshire for the first primary of the election season. The vote comes eight days after the still-disputed Iowa caucuses, where both Senator Bernie Sanders and former South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg claimed victory. Both candidates have asked for a partial recanvass of the results. We speak with Arnie Arnesen, a longtime radio and TV host in New Hampshire and a former New Hampshire legislator, and Norman Solomon, co-founder and national coordinator of RootsAction.org, which is supporting Bernie Sanders.
Who Can Beat Trump? After Iowa Caucus Debacle, Stakes Increase for New Hampshire Primary
Tue, 11 Feb 2020 08:26:50 -0500
As voters head to the polls in New Hampshire for the nation's first presidential primary, we speak with Arnie Arnesen, a longtime radio and TV host in New Hampshire and former Democratic gubernatorial candidate.
Trump's New Budget Funds Endless War & Nuclear Weapons While Slashing Aid to Poor & Hungry Americans
Tue, 11 Feb 2020 08:13:58 -0500
President Trump unveiled his 2021 budget request Monday, proposing massive cuts to Medicaid and food stamps while increasing spending on the military and his border wall. The $4.8 trillion budget would slash Environmental Protection Agency spending by more than a quarter while allocating $18 billion for Trump's newly established Space Force. Trump is also requesting billions more for nuclear weapons, including a new submarine-launched nuclear warhead. Experts and Democratic lawmakers warn that increasing the nuclear stockpile will increase the likelihood of nuclear war and defy international agreements. Democrats are expected to reject the budget. We speak with Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative journalist David Cay Johnston. "If you want endless wars, dirty air, and you think that the poor and hungry in America are getting too good of a deal, this is a budget for you," he says.
A Victory for Vulture Funds: Puerto Rico's Unelected Financial Control Board Strikes Debt Deal
Tue, 11 Feb 2020 08:10:29 -0500
Puerto Rico's financial control board has struck a deal with bondholders to shed about $24 billion from its general obligation debt. The deal announced Sunday will cut the island's outstanding general obligation debt from $35 billion to about $11 billion; however, the island would have to pay about $3.8 billion upfront. The agreement will still need to be approved by Puerto Rico's Legislature. Puerto Rico's financial control board filed for bankruptcy in 2017 to attempt to restructure $129 billion in debt. The board, which is often referred to as "La Junta," is an unelected board that runs much of Puerto Rico's economic affairs and has for years been plagued by corruption allegations. We speak with Democracy Now! co-host Juan González.
Headlines for February 11, 2020
Tue, 11 Feb 2020 08:00:00 -0500
New Hampshire Voters Head to Polls for First Primary of 2020, Coronavirus Death Toll Tops 1,000, with Over 42,000 Confirmed Cases, Chuck Schumer Calls for Investigation into Trump's Retaliation-Motivated Firings, DOJ Reviewing Ukraine Info from Giuliani, DOJ Charges 4 Chinese Military Hackers in 2017 Equifax Breach, El Salvador President Bukele and Armed Officers Confront Lawmakers over Military Funding, Fears Mount for 5 Activists Detained in Philippines, Sinn Féin Scores Major Victory in Ireland, Syrian and Turkish Forces Step Up Attacks as 100,000s Face Humanitarian Disaster, Massive Locust Swarms Threaten Crops, Livelihoods Across East Africa, Anti-Pipeline Protesters Arrested as They Successfully Block Major Transportation Sites, Seattle City Council Votes to Ban Winter Evictions, Sacred Site in Arizona Destroyed for Construction of Trump Border Wall, South Dakota Anti-Trans Bill Fails to Advance, Manhattan DA Considers Reopening Investigation into Murder of Malcolm X, Puerto Rico Financial Control Board Reaches Deal on Island's Debt
"Our Very Existence Is the Resistance": An Hour w/ AOC, Ayanna Pressley, Rashida Tlaib & Ilhan Omar
Mon, 10 Feb 2020 08:13:12 -0500
On Friday, Democracy Now! co-host Nermeen Shaikh sat down for a rare joint interview with the Squad, the group of four freshmen Democratic congresswomen who have taken Capitol Hill by storm: Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts, Rashida Tlaib of Michigan and Ilhan Omar of Minnesota. Omar and Tlaib are the first Muslim women elected to Congress. Omar is a former refugee from Somalia, and Tlaib is the first female Palestinian-American member of Congress. Ayanna Pressley is the first African-American woman elected to Congress from Massachusetts. Ocasio-Cortez was just 29 years old when she took office last year, making her the youngest woman ever to serve in Congress. Born to a mother from Puerto Rico and a father from the South Bronx, Ocasio-Cortez — or AOC — has emerged as one of the most popular lawmakers in the country. Last week, Ocasio-Cortez and Pressley boycotted President Trump's State of the Union address, Tlaib walked out during the speech, and Omar stayed for the speech, saying, "My presence tonight is resistance." Nermeen Shaikh spoke with the four politicians at an event organized by The Rising Majority at Howard University.
Headlines for February 10, 2020
Mon, 10 Feb 2020 08:00:00 -0500
Coronavirus Deaths Soar as First U.S. Citizen Succumbs to Disease, Iowa Dem. Party Officially Gives Buttigieg the Lead as Candidates Prepare for New Hampshire Vote, Trump Budget Seeks Boost to Military and Nuclear Spending, Cuts to Social Programs and EPA, Two U.S. Soldiers Killed in Afghanistan, Trump Fires Key Impeachment Figures Following Acquittal, Thai Soldier Kills 29 People in Shooting Rampage, Brazilian Police Kill Hitman Suspected of Involvement in Marielle Franco's Assassination, Temperature Reaches Record-Breaking 65 Degrees in Antarctica, Extinction Rebellion Activists Demand New York Divest from Fossil Fuels, Georgetown University Divests from Fossil Fuels, Major Pro-Labor Bill Passes House, Trump Organization Benefiting from Secret Service Stays at Lavish Trump Properties, New York Suing Trump Admin over "Global Entry" Ban, Parent Involved in College Admissions Scandal Receives Nine Months in Prison, Indigenous Peoples and Allies Fight Against Incursion of Canadian Police, Last Locked-Up Member of the MOVE 9, Chuck Africa, Is Released from Prison, "Parasite" Makes Oscar History, Winning Top Honors, Despite Overall Lack of Diversity
Human Rights Watch: 200 Salvadoran Asylum Seekers Killed, Raped or Tortured After U.S. Deportation
Fri, 07 Feb 2020 08:48:52 -0500
A shocking new report says at least 200 Salvadoran asylum seekers were either killed, raped or tortured after being deported from the United States back to El Salvador. Human Rights Watch found that some 138 people deported to El Salvador were murdered by gang members, police, soldiers, death squads or ex-partners between 2013 and 2019. The report says most of the victims were killed within two years after being deported, by the same perpetrators the asylum seekers had fled from. From Denver, Colorado, we speak to Clara Long, senior researcher for Human Rights Watch. And joining us from El Salvador, we speak to "Arturo," a Salvadoran national who was deported back to El Salvador after living in the United States for 19 years. He asked for his real identity to be concealed for safety.
Laurie Garrett: World Can't Let Racist Attitudes Impact Handling of Coronavirus Outbreak
Fri, 07 Feb 2020 08:32:10 -0500
The Chinese doctor who warned the government about a possible coronavirus outbreak has died after contracting the virus while working at Wuhan Central Hospital. Thirty-four-year-old ophthalmologist Li Wenliang warned his fellow medical workers about coronavirus on December 30. He was then investigated by police and accused of "making false comments." His death has sparked a wave of anger and outrage in China, where the hashtag "We want freedom of speech" went viral on Chinese social media site Weibo this week. The death toll from the coronavirus has now topped 630 people in China, with more than 31,000 confirmed cases worldwide. The central Chinese government has ordered officials in Wuhan, the epicenter of the outbreak, to round up and quarantine all infected residents. Residents are being ordered to report family members who show symptoms of the virus to authorities. Pulitzer Prize-winning science writer Laurie Garrett says, "China is doing things that really no other nation on Earth could do" to contain the spread of the virus, including quarantining tens of millions of people. We spoke with Garrett just days before the whistleblower doctor died.
Risk of Nuclear War Rises as U.S. Deploys a New Nuclear Weapon for the First Time Since the Cold War
Fri, 07 Feb 2020 08:12:26 -0500
The Federation of American Scientists revealed in late January that the U.S. Navy had deployed for the first time a submarine armed with a low-yield Trident nuclear warhead. The USS Tennessee deployed from Kings Bay Submarine Base in Georgia in late 2019. The W76-2 warhead, which is facing criticism at home and abroad, is estimated to have about a third of the explosive power of the atomic bomb the U.S. dropped on Hiroshima. The International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) called the news "an alarming development that heightens the risk of nuclear war." We're joined by William Arkin, longtime reporter focused on military and nuclear policy, author of numerous books, including "Top Secret America: The Rise of the New American Security State." He broke the story about the deployment of the new low-yield nuclear weapon in an article he co-wrote for Federation of American Scientists. He also recently wrote a cover piece for Newsweek titled "With a New Weapon in Donald Trump's Hands, the Iran Crisis Risks Going Nuclear." "What surprised me in my reporting ... was a story that was just as important, if not more important, than what was going on in the political world," Arkin says.
Headlines for February 7, 2020
Fri, 07 Feb 2020 08:00:00 -0500
Trump Lashed Out at "Evil" Lawmakers Who Voted to Impeach Him, Sanders and Buttigieg Virtually Tied with 100% of Iowa Precincts Reporting, Buttigieg Campaign Moves to Cut Ties with Head of Data Company That Contracts with ICE, Chinese Doctor Who Raised Alarm of Coronavirus Has Died, Trump Says Pentagon Killed Leader of al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, Israeli Forces Kill 3 More Palestinians Amid Growing Protests, Canadian Police Raid Indigenous Wet'suwet'en Protest Camp, 20 Miners Trapped in Underground Mine in Zimbabwe, Brazilian Judge Declines to Pursue Charges Against Glenn Greenwald, El Salvador Says It Is Not Ready to Receive Asylum Seekers Sent from U.S., ICE Agent Shot Man in Face in Brooklyn, Alleged El Paso Walmart Shooter Charged with Federal Hate Crimes, Prada to Agrees to Promote Diversity Within Company After Blackface Controversy
Erasing History: The National Archives Is Destroying Records About Victims of Trump's ICE Policies
Thu, 06 Feb 2020 08:51:19 -0500
Last month, the National Archives and Records Administration apologized for doctoring a photo of the 2017 Women's March to remove criticisms of President Trump. The shocking revelation that the agency had altered the image was first reported in The Washington Post. In an exhibit called "Rightfully Hers: American Women and the Vote," the National Archives had displayed a large image of the first Women's March. But signs referencing Trump had been blurred to remove his name — including a poster reading "God Hates Trump" and another reading "Trump & GOP — Hands Off Women." Other signs in the photo referencing female anatomy were also blurred. The National Archives initially stood by its decision to edit the photo, telling The Washington Post that the changes were made "so as not to engage in current political controversy." For more, we turn to a historian who says this was only the latest example of "a great and growing threat to our nation's capacity to protect and learn from history." The National Archives reportedly is allowing millions of documents, including many related to immigrants' rights, to be expunged. We speak with Matthew Connelly, professor of history at Columbia University and principal investigator at History Lab. His recent piece for The New York Times is headlined "Why You May Never Learn the Truth About ICE."
Chaos Continues in Iowa as Democrats Mistakenly Award Delegates for Bernie Sanders to Deval Patrick
Thu, 06 Feb 2020 08:34:28 -0500
Results from Monday's Iowa caucuses continue to trickle in, with 97% of precincts reporting as of Thursday morning. Senator Bernie Sanders and former South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg are now in a virtual tie. Sanders maintains a lead in the popular vote, but Buttigieg has a slight advantage in what's known as the "state delegate equivalent" race. Buttigieg has 26.2% of state delegate equivalents, while Sanders is at 26.1%. The New York Times is now predicting Sanders has a greater chance of winning overall, in part because of the Vermont senator's overwhelming strength in satellite caucuses. Responding to widespread criticism for the inexplicably slow reporting process, Democratic officials have attributed the chaos in Iowa to a newly created app built by a little-known firm called Shadow, which has financial ties to the Democratic establishment as well as the Buttigieg campaign. For more, we speak with Chris Schwartz, chair of the Black Hawk County Board of Supervisors in Iowa and state co-chair for Bernie 2020.
Historian: With Impeachment Acquittal, the GOP Has Given Trump a Blank Check to Do Anything He Wants
Thu, 06 Feb 2020 08:12:47 -0500
The U.S. Senate has acquitted President Trump of two impeachment charges in just the third presidential impeachment trial in U.S. history. Trump was accused of abusing power and obstructing Congress to aid his re-election campaign by pressuring Ukraine to investigate his political rival Joe Biden. Every Democratic senator voted to remove President Trump from office, but they were joined by just one Republican: Senator Mitt Romney of Utah, who supported impeaching Trump on abuse of power. Romney became the first senator ever to vote against his own party's president in an impeachment trial. President Trump responded on Twitter by hailing the vote as "the country's Victory" and described the impeachment effort as a hoax. He also tweeted a video claiming Mitt Romney was a secret Democratic asset. Donald Trump Jr. called for Romney to be expelled from the Republican Party. While the impeachment trial is over, the probe of President Trump's actions could continue. On Wednesday, House Judiciary Chair Jerry Nadler said the House will likely subpoena former national security adviser John Bolton. We speak with Manisha Sinha, professor of American history at the University of Connecticut and a fellow at the Radcliffe Institute at Harvard University.
Headlines for February 6, 2020
Thu, 06 Feb 2020 08:00:00 -0500
U.S. Senate Acquits Trump of Two Impeachment Charges, Iowa Caucus: Sanders & Buttigieg Virtually Tied with 97% of Precincts Reporting , Newborn Baby Becomes Youngest Person Diagnosed with Coronavirus as Death Toll in China Hits 560, Human Rights Watch: 138 Salvadoran Asylum Seekers Killed After Being Deported from U.S., DHS: New York Residents Can No Longer Participate in Trusted Traveler Programs , Jair Bolsonaro Introduces Bill to Clear Way for Mining, Oil Extraction in Brazilian Amazon , Nicolás Maduro: Trump Taking U.S. Toward "High-Level Conflict with Venezuela" , Thousands Protest in Algeria for 50th Consecutive Week Demanding President's Resignation, Israeli Troops Shoot Palestinian Teen to Death in Protest Against Trump's Middle East Plan, Hundreds of Greenpeace Climate Activists Shut Down BP Headquarters in London, Search Underway for Possible Mass Grave of African Americans Killed in 1921 Tulsa Massacre , California Governor Posthumously Pardons Gay African-American Civil Rights Leader Bayard Rustin
Publisher Agrees to Boost Latinx Representation After Backlash to Whitewashed Novel "American Dirt"
Wed, 05 Feb 2020 08:47:29 -0500
We look at the massive backlash and criticism against the novel "American Dirt" as a movement led by Latinx writers declares victory, demanding more representation in the publishing industry. Dignidad Literaria, or literary dignity, formed in response to the controversial immigration novel "American Dirt." The author, Jeanine Cummins, who is not Mexican, received a seven-figure advance for the book, and it was chosen for Oprah's Book Club. But its critics say "American Dirt" exploits and misrepresents Mexico and the experience of Mexican migrants. Critics also say the novel completely erases the voices of Central Americans. On Monday, the leaders of the literary dignity movement celebrated a successful meeting in New York City with the book's publisher, Macmillan, the owner of Flatiron Books. The publisher agreed to expand Latinx representation in its staff and its publications. The campaign is also calling for an investigation into discriminatory practices in the publishing industry at large. We speak with two co-founders of Dignidad Literaria: in Los Angeles, Myriam Gurba, Chicana writer, podcaster and artist, who wrote the first viral review of "American Dirt" that ignited criticism of the book, and in New York City, Roberto Lovato, award-winning journalist and author of the forthcoming book "Unforgetting: A Memoir of Revolution and Redemption."
Roberto Lovato: Dems & GOP Share Same Playbook on Immigration, Foreign Policy & Corporate Domination
Wed, 05 Feb 2020 08:35:31 -0500
President Trump delivered his 2020 State of the Union address to a joint session of Congress on Tuesday. The speech reprised many of the themes of Trump's 2016 campaign, including demonization of immigrants. We continue our discussion with Lee Fang, investigative journalist at The Intercept, and Roberto Lovato, author of the forthcoming book "Unforgetting: A Memoir of Revolution and Redemption." About 10 Democrats skipped the speech and a few more walked out while it was in progress, but Lovato says the Democratic establishment doesn't differ with Trump on many key issues. "Nancy Pelosi may have ripped the speech, but they both draw from the same playbook on issues like immigration, foreign policy, corporate domination. Trump knows that," Lovato says.
In State of the Union, Trump Celebrates Hate & Xenophobia While Touting "Great American Comeback"
Wed, 05 Feb 2020 08:26:02 -0500
President Trump delivered his third State of the Union address Tuesday night, just a day before the Republican-controlled Senate is expected to vote to acquit him in the third presidential impeachment trial in U.S. history. Trump's speech, which focused heavily on the economy and immigration, sounded at times like a campaign rally, with Republican lawmakers chanting "Four more years!" He never once mentioned his impeachment trial. Prior to the speech, Trump refused to shake House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's hand, and once the speech was over, Pelosi was seen on television ripping up her copy of Trump's remarks. She later called the speech a "manifesto of mistruths." Several Democrats, including Congressmembers Rashida Tlaib, Tim Ryan, Seth Moulton and Bill Pascrell, walked out during Trump's address. Some Democrats boycotted the night altogether, including Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts, Maxine Waters of California, Al Green of Texas, Hank Johnson of Georgia, Steve Cohen of Tennessee, Earl Blumenauer of Oregon and Frederica Wilson of Florida. We're joined by Lee Fang, investigative journalist at The Intercept, and Roberto Lovato, author of the forthcoming book "Unforgetting: A Memoir of Revolution and Redemption" and co-founder of the campaign #DignidadLiteraria, which seeks to elevate the voices of Latinx writers in U.S. literature. At the State of the Union address, Trump was "throwing red meat to his base," Fang says. "It was clear, from anyone watching this: This was a campaign rally speech — Trump previewing his election message for 2020."
Sanders & Buttigieg Lead in Early Iowa Results After Faulty App Leads to Catastrophe at Caucus
Wed, 05 Feb 2020 08:10:15 -0500
The final results of Monday's Democratic Iowa caucuses remain unknown, with 71% of precincts reporting the final tallies of the first 2020 presidential contest. Senator Bernie Sanders is leading in the popular vote, while former South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg has a narrow lead of 26.8% of precincts — the state delegate equivalent traditionally used to determine the winner — followed by Sanders with 25.2%. Sanders won the popular vote in both the first and second rounds of voting, followed by Buttigieg and Senator Elizabeth Warren. Former Vice President Joe Biden placed fourth, followed by Senator Amy Klobuchar. It is unclear when full results will be released and how the reporting problems will impact the Democratic race. Democratic officials cited problems with a newly created app built by a firm called Shadow that was supposed to help precincts report results. The Democratic Party in Nevada was also planning to use the app during its upcoming caucuses but abandoned that plan on Tuesday. We speak with Lee Fang, a reporter with The Intercept. His new piece is titled "New Details Show How Deeply Iowa Caucus App Developer Was Embedded in Democratic Establishment."
Headlines for February 5, 2020
Wed, 05 Feb 2020 08:00:00 -0500
Partial Results from Iowa Caucus Show Buttigieg Leading in Delegate Count, Democrats Boycott & Walk Out of Trump's State of the Union Address, Death Toll of Coronavirus Approaches 500, Report: Israel Pushes U.S. to Recognize Moroccan Sovereignty over Occupied Western Sahara, Magnitude 5.0 Earthquake Rattles Puerto Rico, Canadian Court Dismisses Indigenous Challenge to Trans Mountain Pipeline, Homelessness Among School-Age Children Hits Decade-Long High, HBO Max Picks Up Documentary "On the Record", Judge Reverses Convictions of No More Deaths Volunteers
Can Bernie Sanders Defeat Trump? Jacobin's Bhaskar Sunkara & The Atlantic's David Frum Debate
Tue, 04 Feb 2020 08:31:09 -0500
After a chaotic night in Iowa, the focus of the Democratic race has now shifted to New Hampshire. Senator Bernie Sanders is leading in most New Hampshire polls a week ahead of the state's primary. While Sanders has been surging in popularity across parts of the country, the Democratic Party establishment is openly expressing concern that the self-described democratic socialist could win the nomination. While Bernie Sanders faces attacks from the corporate wing of the Democratic Party, many of his supporters say he is the candidate best suited to beat Trump in November. We host a debate with two guests who have different views on Sanders's electability. David Frum is a staff writer at The Atlantic and the author of "Trumpocracy: The Corruption of the American Republic." In 2001 and 2002, he served as a speechwriter for President George W. Bush and was credited with helping write Bush's famous "axis of evil" line. Frum's recent article is titled "Bernie Can't Win." Bhaskar Sunkara is the founding editor and publisher of Jacobin and the author of "The Socialist Manifesto: The Case for Radical Politics in an Era of Extreme Inequality." Sunkara's recent piece in The Guardian is titled "Sanders is leading the pack in Iowa — and that's good news for Democrats."
Chaos in Iowa: Caucus Results Delayed, But Bernie Sanders' Internal Data Shows He May Have Won
Tue, 04 Feb 2020 08:10:20 -0500
The Iowa Democratic Party delayed releasing results from Monday's caucuses after uncovering inconsistencies in the reporting of data. Caucuses were held in 1,600 precincts across the state on Monday, but many precincts had trouble reporting the delegate totals to the state Democratic Party. Part of the blame was placed on a new smartphone app designed to help precinct chairs tabulate and report the vote. Early Tuesday morning, Bernie Sanders's campaign released internal caucus numbers from 40% of the precincts in Iowa showing the Vermont senator was in first place with nearly 30% of the final count vote. According to the data released by the Sanders campaign, former South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg placed second with about 24.5% of the vote, followed by Senator Elizabeth Warren with 21%. Former Vice President Joe Biden placed a distant fourth with 12%, just beating Senator Amy Klobuchar. For more on the chaos in Iowa, we speak with John Nichols, national affairs correspondent for The Nation and host of the podcast "Next Left." He's been reporting on the ground in Iowa and just wrote the piece "How to Figure Out Who 'Won' the Iowa Caucuses."
Headlines for February 4, 2020
Tue, 04 Feb 2020 08:00:00 -0500
Delay in Iowa Democratic Primary Results Causes Confusion, Mixed Messages, Final Arguments Made in Impeachment Trial of President Trump Ahead of SOTU, Hong Kong Medical Workers Demand Border Closure as Coronavirus Claims Life of Hong Kong Man, Leaked Audio Shows Iran Knew It Downed Ukraine Jet Despite Early Denials, Syrian and Turkish Forces Escalate Attacks as Turkey Suffers First Losses from Direct Combat, Massachusetts Prisoners Allege Violent Retaliatory Abuse by Guards, Trial Begins For Ex-CIA Software Engineer Accused of "Vault 7" Leak, Weinstein Rape Accuser Breaks Down During Harsh Questioning, Shooting at Texas College Campus Kills 2; One Dead in California Bus Shooting, Maryland Voters Go to Polls in Primary for Elijah Cummings's Congressional Seat, "American Dirt" Publisher Agrees to Increase Latinx Representation Thanks to Dignidad Literaria Campaign
Laurie Garrett on How Trump Has Sabotaged America's Response to the Coronavirus Pandemic
Mon, 03 Feb 2020 08:47:09 -0500
As the coronavirus outbreak continues to spread, the United States has declared a public health emergency and is barring foreign nationals who have recently traveled to China from entering the country. So far, there are 11 confirmed cases of the virus in the U.S. The virus has claimed at least 361 lives in China. A 44-year-old man in the Philippines became the first casualty of the disease outside of China Saturday, and over the weekend the number of confirmed cases worldwide rose to at least 17,205 across more than two dozen countries, with most of those cases occurring in China. U.S. citizens who have visited Hubei province, the epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak, will be quarantined when re-entering the country. Questions are being raised about the handling of the disease by Chinese authorities, who critics say delayed their response and downplayed the severity of the problem. The local Red Cross in Hubei has also come under fire for failing to distribute essential medical supplies to the hospitals which need it most. Meanwhile, Chinese and Asian communities in countries including France and Canada say they have been the target of increased racism because of the outbreak. We speak to Laurie Garrett, former senior fellow for global health at the Council on Foreign Relations and a Pulitzer Prize-winning science writer.
ACLU: Trump Is Expanding His Racist Travel Ban, This Time Targeting Africans
Mon, 03 Feb 2020 08:38:06 -0500
The Trump administration has expanded its contested travel ban to six additional countries — most of which are African nations. Under the new restrictions, nationals of Nigeria, Eritrea, Myanmar and Kyrgyzstan will no longer be able to obtain visas to live and work in the U.S., while Sudan and Tanzania will no longer be able to participate in the diversity visa lottery program. The ban, commonly referred to as the "Muslim ban," already affects citizens from Iran, Libya, Syria, Yemen, Somalia, Venezuela and North Korea. The expansion is expected to affect more than 350 million people. Democrats say they will challenge the new ban and are expected to introduce the NO BAN Act in Congress soon. The latest travel ban takes effect February 22. We speak to Omar Jadwat, director of the ACLU's Immigrants' Rights Project.
"A Grand Tragedy": Democrats Slam Republican Stonewalling in Senate Impeachment Trial
Mon, 03 Feb 2020 08:30:04 -0500
The Republican-controlled Senate appears poised to acquit President Trump in just the third impeachment trial in U.S. history, with a final vote on the two articles of impeachment scheduled for Wednesday. On Friday, the Senate voted 51 to 49 against calling witnesses to the Senate trial. Just two Republican senators supported calling for witnesses and collecting new evidence: Mitt Romney of Utah and Susan Collins of Maine. Without new witnesses, Republicans have cleared the biggest hurdle in their drive to acquit President Trump on the two impeachment charges, which relate to his withholding of military aid to Ukraine in return for that country launching investigations into his political rivals. The final vote in the Senate is scheduled for 4 p.m. on Wednesday, a day after President Trump gives his State of the Union address. To talk more about the impeachment trial, we are joined by John Nichols of The Nation. He is the author of many books, including "The Genius of Impeachment: The Founders' Cure for Royalism." John Nichols joins us from Des Moines, Iowa, where he is covering the Iowa caucuses.
As Bernie Sanders Surges Ahead of Iowa Caucus, DNC Under Fire for Changing Rules to Help Bloomberg
Mon, 03 Feb 2020 08:10:33 -0500
The Iowa caucuses take place today, kicking off the official start of the 2020 presidential election season. Democratic presidential candidates spent the weekend making last-minute pitches to voters at rallies across Iowa. Meanwhile, the Democratic National Committee is facing criticism for overhauling its rules, opening the door for billionaire former New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg, who is running a self-funded campaign, to take part in the next debate. This comes as fear is growing among some Democrats that Bernie Sanders might win the nomination. Politico reports a small group of DNC members have begun discussing a proposal to increase the role of superdelegates to give the party establishment more say in who becomes the nominee. From Des Moines, Iowa, we're joined by John Nichols, The Nation's national affairs correspondent and host of the podcast "Next Left." He's covering the Iowa caucuses on the ground and recently wrote the piece "The DNC's Move to Accommodate Bloomberg Stirs Outrage in Iowa."
Headlines for February 3, 2020
Mon, 03 Feb 2020 08:00:00 -0500
GOP Refuses to Call Witnesses in Impeachment Trial, Paving Way for Trump's Acquittal, Iowa Caucuses Kick Off 2020 Elections as DNC Loosens Rules to Let Bloomberg into Debates, Trump Expands Racist, Anti-Muslim Travel Ban, Coronavirus Claims First Victim Outside of China as Death Toll Tops 360, Hospitals in Syria Targeted as 100,000s of Civilians Forced to Flee, Palestinian Authority Cuts Ties with U.S. and Israel over Trump Middle East Plan, Iraqi Protesters Slam Appointment of Establishment Prime Minister-Designate, Dept. of Defense: U.S. Dropped 7,500 Bombs on Afghanistan in 2019, 6 Indigenous Leaders Killed in Nicaragua Biosphere Raid, Second Mexican Butterfly Conservationist Killed, Australia: Dozens of Koalas Killed at Timber Plantation, Activists Storm NYC Subways and Landmarks to Protest Excessive Policing, Cost of Public Transportation
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