Jeffrey Feldman, expert on language and framing, critiques the Obama team’s handling of the health care battle; Sam Barry tries to teach PBC to play the harmonica; and your humble host reports on his recent “stay-cation” in the Bay Area. Dr. Feldman is author of Outright Barbarous: How the Violent Language of the Right Poisons American Democracy, so he is not surprised by the mob mentality at town hall meetings; but his is surprised that Obama and the Democrats have lost control of the “debate”, partly by failing to define their plans, including the “public option”. Sam Barry is a funny guy with a funny book, How to Play the Harmonica and Other Life Lessons. You can learn a little about playing harmonica, and some harp experts like Lee Oskar, Bob Dylan, Charlie Musselwhite and Norton Buffalo. PBC reports on 5 days of “stay-cation” in San Francisco, including Alcatraz, a wacky tour on an amphibious duck, the new California Academy of Sciences, a dinner cruise on the Bay, an A’s baseball game, and the Great America theme park. Here’s a special offer for PBC listeners from Hornblower: $99 special for 2 on their Champagne Brunch Cruise (discount code PMT26), Alcatraz Discovery Lunch Cruise (discount code PMT12) or Supper Club Cruise (discount code PMT37). Restrictions apply. Offer expires 9/15/09, valid for new bookings only, max 20 guests; can’t be combined with other offers or gift certificates, not valid on special events or dinner dance cruises, tax and gratuity additional.
Scott Horton on Karl Rove, the US Attorneys scandal and the Siegelman case, torture investigations, wiretapping and the 4th Amendment; film producers Leslie and Andrew Cockburn talk about the mortgage meltdown; and Gary Chew reviews “In The Loop”.
Horton writes for Harpers magazine and The Huffington Post and teaches law at Columbia. He dissects the lies in Rove’s op-ed in the Wall Street Journal and explains the law related to executive privilege, and the conflict of interest of White House Counsel Greg Craig in negotiating the unusual terms of Rove’s “interview” with the House Judiciary Committee.
Horton says a special prosecutor will be named on August 24 to investigate torture, but it’s unclear if s/he will have the freedom to pursue the deciders who were truly responsible for Bush’s torture regime. The Cockburns have just released American Casino, a feature documentary about the martgage mess, and have sharp comments on predatory lending and the Obama team’s failure so far to rein in the abuses and prosecute the thieves.
And our movie critic Gary Chew reviews the new satire, In The Loop.
Philip Giraldi, former CIA and DIA officer, on US/Israel relations, AIPAC, wiretapping and Rep. Jane Harman. This is the third installment of Boiling Frogs interviews co-hosted with Sibel Edmonds, and is quite explosive.
Giraldi, a self-described conservative who was critical of the Bush administration on many issues, is equally critical of Obama and Democrats who are influenced by AIPAC. Giraldi gives background and details on the interception of Rep. Harman’s phone conversation with an Israeli: she agreed to intervene on behalf of two Israelis caught spying on the US, and in return hoped they would help her win the chairmanship of the House Intelligence Committee.
Giraldi is a member of the American Conservative Defense Alliance, and contributing editor at The American Conservative magazine. He has a regular column, Smoke & Mirrors, on Antiwar.com.
Progressive think-tanker Andrea Batista Schlesinger, author of The Death of Why, and Deron Lovaas from NRDC. Schlesinger is on leave as executive director of the Drum Major Institute to work on the re-election of Mayor Bloomberg in New York (which produced an initial onlsaught of “Why?s” from PBC) and serves on the board of The Nation magazine.
Her book is a fascinating look at how our ghetto-ized media and opinion journalism reduce the quality of our thinking and decision-making. She has a great story of her incoherent exchange with Lou Dobbs on CNN. Deron Lovaas, senior energy analyst at Natural Resources Defense Council, details a new study on energy policy and our vulnerability to increases in the cost of oil and gas. Check out his blog.
The Battle over Healthcare: Progressive Democrat Tim Carpenter, media critic Jeff Cohen, and mad-as-hell-Dr. Gene Upham. Carpenter is the National Director for Progressive Democrats of America, and his current priorities are the Wiener amendment to substitute single payer language in the House bill, and support for the Kucinich (House) and Sanders (Senate) measures to enable single payer at the state level. Cohen, media critic, co-founder of FAIR and author of Cable News Confidential, offers smart criticism of Democrats and allied netroots groups that compromised too much too fast, and the way the corporate media has amplified the lies of demagogues. And MD Gene Uphoff of Portland tells why he favors single payer, and invites you to join him and the Mad As Hell Doctors for their care-avan from Portland to Washington DC that starts Sept. 8. They can use your financial support, if you are in a position to assist.
Investigative journalist Jason Leopold updates Holder’s plans for limited torture investigations; musician David Ippolito leads a grassroots effort to pressure Holder to do more; and Jim Motavalli warns of untested nano-products. Read Leopold’s excellent reporting on BushCo crimes and ObamaCo’s failure to investigate and enforce the laws. Jason also has the exclusive that White House Counsel Greg Craig may be on the way out, and details Craig’s coziness with Karl Rove and other Republicans. Ippolito is the NYC musician, and is running a commercial on MSNBC that starts out with the graphic “Torture is Wrong” and includes part of his song “Resolution“. His story is inspiring, and he needs your help! Motavalli, senior writer for E The Environmental Magazine, says nanotechnology has much to offer, but that nanoproducts like sunscreen don’t disclose the nanocontent, and have not been tested.
Thom Hartmann, Rep. Joe Sestak, and Gary Chew’s review of the new documentary, The Cove. Thom is my favorite progressive radio host, and we talk about his departure from Air America as well as the ideas in his newest book, Threshold: The Crisis of Western Culture. Thom argues that we are facing economic challenges, global warming, and population growth, and we have some disagreement about imigration policy. Pennsylvania Democrat Joe Sestak, the retired 3-star Navy admiral, announced that he will challenge nouveau-Demo Arlen Specter in the Senate primary next year. Sestak is very smart, he listens, and responds with thoughtful comments, not just rehearsed sound bites. He earns high marks for pledging to restore the constitution and end illegal domestic surveillance, and for critical thinking about Afghanistan and other foreign policy issues. Gary Chew, our official film reviewer, says “The Cove” is a moving documentary about dolphin slaughter in Japan, and I get to tell my story of an amazing encounter with a group of dolphins while sailing in the Caribbean.
NSA whistleblower Russell D. Tice, who was the first to report that journalists were targeted by illegal domestic wiretapping and surveillance, joins us for the second installment of the Boiling Frogs interview series, co-hosted by Sibel Edmonds. Tice tells us he was briefed on more than 200 “black” programs over his 20+ years in US intelligence, and expresses deep concern that Bush-era surveillance may have compromised many of our political leaders. For more information, go to 123realchange.blogspot.com We plan to post a new Boiling Frogs interview on Tuesdays.
Obama’s disappointing health insurance reform; a new group called Progressives for Immigration Reform; Tommy Panik on Larry Craig’s new consulting firm; and an obit on Rev. Ike. In our first segment, Dr. Len Saputo and Byron Belitsos talk about their book, “A Return to Healing: Radical Health Care Reform and the Future of Medicine” and about their frustrating efforts to educate lawmakers about the major reforms we need, but are unlikely to get. www.areturntohealing.com PBC challenges Leah Durant, executive director of “Progressives For Immigration Reform” who uses progressive language to support right wing reform proposals. www.progressivesforimmigrationreform.com PBC gets a rare in-studio report from his in-depth undercover low-budget investigative reporter, Tommy Panik, fresh from Palin’s Quitfest in Alaska. Tommy has the scoop on disgraced ex-Sen. Larry Craig’s new consulting gig. And PBC notes the passing of the founder of God’s Greed Squad, Rev. Ike