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Show Details for the week of December 1st, 2014

Posted by themonitor on December 1, 2014


On The Monitor this week:

  • The Secret Lists that Swiped the Senate – an interview with Greg Palast
  • The Keystone XL Pipeline and the Race for What’s Left – an interview with Michael Klare

More about this week’s guests:

Greg Palast has been called the “most important investigative reporter of our time – up there with Woodward and Bernstein” (The Guardian).  Palast has broken front-page stories for BBC Television Newsnight, The Guardian, Nation Magazine, Rolling Stone and Harper’s Magazine.

Palast is the author of the New York Times bestsellers Billionaires & Ballot Bandits, Armed Madhouse , The Best Democracy Money Can Buy and the highly acclaimed Vultures’ Picnic, named Book of the Year 2012 on BBC Newsnight Review.

His books have been translated into two dozen languages.

His brand new film of his documentary reports for BBC Newsnight and Democracy Now! is called Vultures and Vote Rustlers.

Palast is known for complex undercover investigations, spanning five continents, from the Arctic to the Amazon, from Caracas to California, using the skills he learned over two decades as a top investigator of corporate fraud.

From GregPalast.com:

Statistics guru Nate Silver simply can’t understand why every single legitimate poll indicated that Democrats should have gotten 4% more votes in the midterm elections than appeared in the final count.

The answer, Nate, is “Crosscheck.”

No question, Republicans trounced Democrats in the Midterm elections.  But, if not for the boost of this voter-roll purge system used in 23 Republican-controlled states, the GOP could not have taken the US Senate.

It took the Palast investigations team six months to get our hands on the raw files, fighting against every official trick to keep them hidden.

Michael Klare is a writer, teacher, and public speaker who studies issues of war and peace, resource competition, and international affairs. As the Five College Professor of Peace and World Security Studies, based at Hampshire College, he teaches courses on resource politics, contemporary conflict, and world affairs. Klare has written fourteen books and hundreds of essays on these and related topics; a strong believer in the need for public debate and discussion, he also appears regularly in the media and in public to express his views on critical issues. His most recent book is The Race for What’s Left: The Global Scramble for the World’s Last Resources

From Mother Jones: A controversial bill to approve construction of the Keystone XL oil pipeline failed in the US Senate Tuesday (11/18) evening. It received 59 “aye” votes, just shy of the 60 needed to send the bill to President Obama’s desk. The fight isn’t over yet; Republicans have said they plan to prioritize approving the pipeline once they take control of the Senate next year.

Recent articles:

Tomgram: Michael Klare, The New Congress and Planetary Disaster – Posted by Michael Klare at 8:00AM, November 18, 2014.

Tomgram: Michael Klare, Washington Wields the Oil Weapon – Posted by Michael Klare at 8:03AM, October 09, 2014.

Posted in Climate Change, DOJ, Elections, Greg Palast, Oil, Oil Spill, Radio Shows | Leave a Comment »

Show Details for the week of November 10th, 2014

Posted by themonitor on November 10, 2014


On The Monitor this week:

  • Despite the Democrats shalacking in the midterms the Minimum Wage is Four for Four…in “Red States.” We talk to Peter Davis about the issue.
  • As Veteran’s Day approaches, why do we keep thanking the troops? We discuss the topic with Rory Fanning.

More about this week’s guests:

Peter Davis  is a campaign activist for Time for a Raise campaign, a project of Ralph Nader’s Center for the Study of Responsive Law. He and Ralph Nader just co-wrote a letter to Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi which states: “Buried underneath the coverage of the Democrats’ second midterm ‘shalackin’ in a row is a stark public sentiment that provides a path forward for your caucuses during the upcoming lame duck session. Despite the Republican wave, a minimum wage raise passed in every state in which it was on the ballot. These were not coastal blue states: the four 2014 minimum wage ballot initiatives ­­– for Alaska, Arkansas, Nebraska, and South Dakota — ­­passed in Republican-dominated states which all elected Republican senators alongside the initiative. If your caucuses were to uniformly and exuberantly push for a minimum wage raise in the upcoming Congressional work session, it would transition the national media narrative away from Republican momentum in the never-­ending horse race and towards whether the new Congressional leadership will be responsive to the public sentiment and needs of American workers.” See the full letter.

In August, Nader wrote the piece “Democrats Are Doomed (Unless They Make the Minimum Wage the #1 November Election Issue).”

Nader’s latest book is Unstoppable: The Emerging Left-Right Alliance to Dismantle the Corporate State. Earlier this year, Nader’s office hosted a conference on left-right alliance. See video of the conference here.

Rory Fanning walked across the United States for the Pat Tillman Foundation in 2008–2009, following two deployments to Afghanistan with the 2nd Army Ranger Battalion. He is a housing activist living in Chicago, Illinois and the author of the forthcoming book, Worth Fighting For: An Army Ranger’s Journey Out of the Military and Across America (Haymarket, 2014).

 

Quote:

“Last week, in a quiet indie bookstore on the north side of Chicago, I saw the latest issue of Rolling Stone resting on a chrome-colored plastic table a few feet from a barista brewing a vanilla latte. A cold October rain fell outside. A friend of mine grabbed the issue and began flipping through it. Knowing that I was a veteran, he said, ‘Hey, did you see this?’ pointing to a news story that seemed more like an ad. It read in part:  “This Veterans Day, Bruce Springsteen, Eminem, Rihanna, Dave Grohl, and Metallica will be among numerous artists who will head to the National Mall in Washington, D.C. on November 11th for ‘The Concert For Valor,’ an all-star event that will pay tribute to armed services.

Concert For Valor? That sounds like something the North Korean government would organize,’ I said as I typed Concertforvalor.com into my MacBook Pro looking for more information… As I read, my heart sank, my shoulders slumped. Special guests at the Concert for Valor were to include: Meryl Streep, Tom Hanks, and Steven Spielberg. The mission of the concert, according to a  press release, was to ‘raise awareness’ of veterans issues and ‘provide a national stage for ensuring that veterans and their families know that their fellow Americans’ gratitude is genuine. Former Secretary of Defense Robert Gates and former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Admiral Michael Mullen were to serve in an advisory capacity, and Starbucks, HBO, and JP Morgan Chase were to pay for it all. ‘We are honored to play a small role to help raise awareness and support for our service men and women,’ said HBO chairman Richard Plepler. Will the ‘Concert for Valor’ mention the trillions of dollars rung up terrorizing Muslim countries for oil , the ratcheting up of the police and surveillance state in this country since 9/11, the hundreds of thousands of lives lost thanks to the wars of George W. Bush and Barack Obama? Is anyone going to dedicate a song to Chelsea Manning , or John Kiriakou , or Edward Snowden — two of them languishing in prison and one in exile — for their service to the American people? Will the Concert for Valor raise anyone’s awareness when it comes to the fact that, to this day, veterans lack proper medical attention, particularly for mental health issues, or that there is a veteran suicide every 80 minutes in this country? Let’s hope they find time in between drum solos, but myself, I’m not counting on it.”

Recent Articles:

Rory Fanning, Why Do We Keep Thanking the Troops?

Friendly? All Deaths Are Shameful in a War That Shouldn’t Be

Posted in 9/11, Afghanistan, Armed Forces, Cost of War, Democracy, Economic Inequality, Elections, Iraq, Jobs, Minimum Wage, Radio Shows, The Economy, The Supreme Court, Wall Street | 1 Comment »

Show Details for the week of September 15th, 2014

Posted by themonitor on September 15, 2014


On The Monitor this week:

So much is being said and written about ISIS (ISIL/IS) but very little context of Iraq’s history is given. This week we spend the show looking at that history: A detailed look at Iraq from 1991 to the present with Abbas Kadhim.

Also, mentioned towards the start of the show is a story confirming the use of the Hannibal Directive – this was a topic of a recent interview with Richard Silverstein. Read the story here: http://electronicintifada.net/blogs/rania-khalek/israeli-officer-admits-ordering-lethal-strike-own-soldier-during-gaza-massacre

More about this week’s guest:

Dr. Abbas Kadhim is a Senior Fellow at the Institute for Gulf Affairs, specializing in Iraq, Iran and Shi’a Studies. He is also a Fellow at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies. He is was a Visiting Scholar at Stanford University (2005 – 2013). He earned his Ph.D. from the University of California, Berkeley in 2006.

His recent publications include: “Reclaiming Iraq: the 1920 Revolution and the Founding of the Modern State,” Austin: The University of Texas Press (2012); The Hawza under Siege: A Study in the Ba‘th Party Archive, Boston: Boston University Institute for Iraqi Studies (2013); Handbook of Governance in the Middle East and North Africa, London: Routledge (2013); “Efforts at Cross-Ethic Cooperation: the 1920 Revolution and Iraqi Sectarian Identities,” International Journal of Contemporary Iraq Studies, vol. 4, issue 3, 2010; “Forging a Third Way: Sistani’s Marja‘iyya between Quietism and Wilāyat al-Faqīh, in Iraq, Democracy and the Future of the Muslim World, edited by Ali Paya and John Esposito, Routledge, July 2010; “Beyond the Oil Curse,” Iraq’s Wealthy State and Poor Society,” in Bob Looney (ed.), Handbook of Oil Politics, London: Routledge, 2012; and “Opting for the Lesser Evil: US Foreign Policy Toward Iraq, 1958-2008,” in Bob Looney (ed.) Handbook of US Middle East Relations, London: Routledge, 2009.

His book translations include Shi‘a Sects (Firaq al-Shi‘a): A Translation with an Introduction and Notes, London: Islamic College for Advanced Studies Press (2007); Wahhabism: A Critical Essay, by Hamid Algar (Arabic Translation), Köln, Germany: Dar al-Jamal (2006); and Runaway World: How Globalization is Reshaping our Lives, by Anthony Giddens (Arabic Translation), with Dr. Hassan Nadhem, Beirut: (2003).

He is currently engaged in a long-term project documenting the 1991 Uprising in Iraq, and a research project examining the Ba’ath Party Archives hosted by the Hoover Institution, Stanford University.

Posted in 2001: Repercussions, Arab Spring, Arab World, Armed Forces, CIA, Cost of War, Dictatorship, Economic Inequality, Elections, Empire, Iran, Iraq, Kurdistan, Sept. 11, Syria, The New Middle East, UN Resolutions, War Reporting | 2 Comments »

Show Details for the week of April 7th, 2014

Posted by themonitor on April 7, 2014


On The Monitor this week:

The first interview was supposed to be with Suzanne Massie but there was in issue with the recording of the interview so that will be played on next week’s show. Instead we opened the phone lines and took listener calls.

Below are details of the second segment:

  • USA Today reports: “The Supreme Court took another step Wednesday toward giving wealthy donors more freedom to influence federal elections. The justices ruled 5-4, in a decision written by Chief Justice John Roberts, that limits on the total amount of money donors can give to all candidates, committees and political parties are unconstitutional. The decision leaves in place the base limits on what can be given to each individual campaign.” Citizen United 2.0: The Supreme Court expands the definition of ‘money as speech’ – an interview with Robert Weissman

 

 

Robert Weissman is president of Public Citizen, which notes in a statement: “Today, in McCutcheon v. Federal Election Commission, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down limits on the aggregate amounts people can donate to candidates, political parties and political committees. Demonstrations that Public Citizen helped organize are scheduled to take place throughout the country in response.” For more information, visit: citizen.org/mccutcheon and moneyout-votersin.org.

Quote: “Today’s U.S. Supreme Court ruling in McCutcheon v. Federal Election Commission strikes a devastating blow at the very foundation of our democracy. This is truly a decision establishing plutocrat rights. The Supreme Court today holds that the purported right of a few hundred superrich individuals to spend outrageously large sums on campaign contributions outweighs the national interest in political equality and a government free of corruption. In practical terms, the decision means that one individual can write a single check for $5.9 million to be spent by candidates, political parties and political committees. Even after Citizens United, this case is absolutely stunning. It is sure to go down as one of the worst decisions in the history of American jurisprudence. Until today, nobody could contribute more than $123,000 total in each two-year election cycle to political candidates and parties. Citizens United allowed Big Business to spend literally as much as it wants – predominantly in undisclosed contributions filtered through the likes of Karl Rove’s Crossroads GPS and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce – distorting our elections. But Citizens United money can go only to outside groups. Now McCutcheon removes meaningful limits on the total amount an individual can directly contribute to candidates, political parties and political committees. … There are literally only a few hundred people who can and will take advantage of this horrendous ruling. But those are exactly the people our elected officials will now be answering to. That is not democracy. It is plutocracy. Today’s reckless Supreme Court ruling threatens so many of the things we love about our country. No matter what five Supreme Court justices say, the First Amendment was never intended to provide a giant megaphone for the wealthiest to use to shout down the rest of us. Our only hope of overturning this McCutcheon travesty — along with Citizens United — is if millions of Americans band together in saying ‘Enough!’ to plutocracy. We couldn’t face a starker choice: Accept rule by the few, based on wealth. Or join together to protect and reclaim our democracy – the notion that We, the People decide. Today, people across the nation will be responding with protests to this outrageous decision. We, the People insist that our government and our country remain of, by and for the people – all the people, not just those few who have amassed billions in wealth. A vibrant movement for a constitutional amendment to overturn Citizens United and reclaim our democracy has emerged since the 2010 issuance of that fateful decision. The demonstrations today – unprecedented as a same-day response to a Supreme Court decision – are just the latest manifestation of how that movement is now exploding across the country. We refuse to cede control of our country and our government to amoral multinationals and morally comprised plutocrats.”

Posted in Democracy, Elections, Obama, The Supreme Court | Leave a Comment »

Show Details for the week of December 2nd, 2013

Posted by themonitor on December 2, 2013


On this week’s show:

  • House prices are going up. Sounds like a good thing, right? The picture is a little more complicated than it appears. We talk about it with Laura Gottesdiener
  • Honduras has just completed its election cycle. In 2009, the country’s left-of-center President Mel Zelaya was overthrown in a military coup that was heavily supported (and, according to Zelaya, organized) by the United States government. After six months and a lot of political repression, the coup government was re-established with an election that almost the entire hemisphere — except, you guessed it, the United States — rejected as illegitimate. Four years later Honduran voters went to the polls again but the result is in dispute. We discuss the election with Mark Wiesbrot

More about this week’s guests:

Laura Gottesdiener is a journalist, social justice activist, and author of A Dream Foreclosed: Black America and the Fight for a Place to Call Home published by Zuccotti Park Press. She is an associate editor for Waging Nonviolence, and she has written for Rolling StoneMs. magazine, The Arizona RepublicThe New Haven Advocate, The Huffington Post, AlterNet, and other publications. She lived and worked in the People’s Kitchen during the occupation of Zuccotti Park. Gottesdiener just wrote the piece “The Empire Strikes Back, How Wall Street Has Turned Housing Into a Dangerous Get-Rich-Quick Scheme — Again,” which states: “You can hardly turn on the television or open a newspaper without hearing about the nation’s impressive, much celebrated housing recovery. Home prices are rising! New construction has started! The crisis is over! Yet beneath the fanfare, a whole new get-rich-quick scheme is brewing…Wall Street’s foreclosure crisis, which began in late 2007 and forced more than 10 million people from their homes, has created a paradoxical problem. Millions of evicted Americans need a safe place to live, even as millions of vacant, bank-owned houses are blighting neighborhoods and spurring a rise in crime. Lucky for us, Wall Street has devised a solution: It’s going to rent these foreclosed houses back to us. In the process, it’s devised a new form of securitization that could cause this whole plan to blow up — again.”

Mark Weisbrot is co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research, in Washington, D.C. He received his Ph.D. in economics from the University of Michigan. He has written numerous research papers on economic policy, especially on Latin America and international economic policy. He is also co-author, with Dean Baker, of Social Security: The Phony Crisis (University of Chicago Press, 2000).

He writes a weekly column for The Guardian Unlimited (U.K.), and a regular column on economic and policy issues that is distributed to over 550 newspapers by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services. His opinion pieces have appeared in the New York Times,Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, and almost every major U.S. newspaper, as well as for Brazil’s largest newspaper, Folha de Sao Paulo. He appears regularly on national and local television and radio programs. He is also president of Just Foreign Policy.  He recently wrote the piece “South American Governments Should Support Hondurans’ Rights To Sovereignty and Free Elections

Posted in Economic Inequality, Economy, Elections, Honduras, Sub-Prime Loans, The Economy, The Fed, The Market, Wall Street | Leave a Comment »

Show Details for the week of April 1st, 2013

Posted by themonitor on April 1, 2013


This week’s show:

During the past week, more than 30,000 Americans have signed a petition urging a Nobel Peace Prize for U.S. Army Private Bradley Manning, the whistleblower who was arrested nearly three years ago on charges that he provided an enormous quantity of classified documents to WikiLeaks. The petition, addressed to the Norwegian Nobel Committee and posted online, already includes several thousand comments from signers who explain why they want a Nobel Peace Prize to be awarded to Manning. Joining us to talk about this is Jeff Cohen.

As the pressure continues towards possible armed conflict with Iran, we talk with Flynt Leverett about his new book, written with Hillary Mann Leverett, called Going to Tehran: Why the United States Must Come to Terms with the Islamic Republic of Iran.

More about this week’s guests:

Jeff Cohen

Jeff Cohen is Co-founder of the online group RootsAction.org, which launched the petition for a Nobel Peace Prize for Manning on March 25.

Quote: “If we begin from the original intentions for the Nobel Peace Prize, then an obvious top candidate is Bradley Manning, a young soldier and whistleblower who risked life in prison to inform Americans and the world about U.S. execution of, and preparation for, seemingly endless war. It’s not mere rhetoric to suggest that Private Manning has been — in the words of Alfred Nobel’s will — ‘the person who shall have done the most or the best work for fraternity between nations, for the abolition or reduction of standing armies . . .’”

Jeff Cohen is founding director of the Park Center for Independent Media at Ithaca College, where he is an associate professor of journalism. He is a former political pundit on national TV and the author of “Cable News Confidential: My Misadventures in Corporate Media.”

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Flynt Leverett

Flynt Leverett is a senior fellow at the New America Foundation in Washington, D.C. and a professor at the Pennsylvania State University School of International Affairs. From March 2002 to March 2003, he served as the senior director for Middle East affairs on the National Security Council. Prior to serving on the NSC, he was a counterterrorism expert on the State Department’s Policy Planning Staff, and before that he served as a CIA senior analyst for eight years. Since leaving government service, Leverett served as a visiting fellow at the Brookings Institution’s Saban Center for Middle East Policy before becoming the director of the Geopolitics of Energy Initiative in the American Strategy Program at the New America Foundation. He has published opinion pieces in many high-profile venues, including The New York TimesPOLITICO, and CNN, and contributes frequently to Foreign Policy.  He has been interviewed about Iran and its geopolitics on leading public affairs programs around the world, includingCharlie RoseThe NewsHour with Jim LehrerEmpire and Riz Khan (Al Jazeera English), Viewpoint(Abu Dhabi Television), Spotlight (Russia Today) and Washington Journal (C-Span), as well as in leading publications such as Der Spiegel and Le Monde. Along with Hillary Mann Leverett, he was featured in the PBS Frontline documentary, “Showdown With Iran”, and profiled in Esquiremagazine.

You can read a detailed review of the book here

Posted in Arab Spring, Armed Forces, Bradley Manning, CIA, Elections, Empire, Iran, Iraq | 1 Comment »

Show Details for the week of February 18th, 2013

Posted by themonitor on February 18, 2013


This week’s show takes a look at the latest from Egypt and the history of assassinations by US administrations.

  • Egypt at another Cross Roads, an interview with Adil Shamoo
  • American Assassination for Dummies, an interview with Mark Ames

More about this week’s guests:

Adil E. Shamoo

Adil E. Shamoo is an associate fellow of the Institute for Policy Studies, a senior analyst for Foreign Policy in Focus, and the author of Equal Worth – When Humanity Will Have Peace. He is a biochemist with an interest in biomedical ethics and foreign policy. He is currently a professor at the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at the University of Maryland. His website is www.forwarorpeace.com

Article:

Egypt at Another Crossroads

Quote:

Egypt is rapidly approaching its most acute political and economic crisis since the 2011 revolution that swept dictator Hosni Mubarak from power.

Poverty is at an all-time high of 25 percent, with youth unemployment at a record 40 percent. Foreign currency reserves are on a rapid decline. President Mohamed Morsi is losing the most important commodity he possesses — the people’s confidence and trust. Conditions seem ripe for either a new uprising from below or a new military coup from above.

Instead of cementing his new regime’s democratic credentials, Morsi has undermined the legitimacy of his rule in word and deed.

==============================================

Mark Ames

Mark Ames is a writer known for his work as a Moscow-based expatriate American journalist and editor. He is Senior editor at NSFW CORP, a new publication based in Las Vegas, and founding editor of the defunct satirical Moscow newspaper The eXile and author of Going Postal: Rage, Murder and Rebellion: From Reagan’s Workplaces to Clinton’s Columbine.

Article:

American Assassination for Dummies


Quote:

It’s hard to have a serious conversation about America’s drone assassination policy when no one seems to have a basic grasp of recent history. This cultural amnesia epidemic is starting to get me down— which is partly my fault for paying more than two minutes’ attention to Twitter at a single go.

The problem starts with Reagan, as problems so often do. Most people on the left take for granted that Reagan’s executive order 12333 “banned assassinations” — which is not just a false interpretation, but really awful mangling of one of the dark turning points in modern American history.

That same ignorance of the history of assassination policy runs right through today, with the repetition of another myth: That President Obama’s extrajudicial drone-assassinations of American citizens is “unprecedented” and “radical” and that “not even George Bush targeted American citizens.”

The truth is a lot worse and a lot more depressing.

Posted in 9/11, Arab Spring, Assassination, Bush, CIA, Department of Homeland Security, Dictatorship, DOJ, Drones, Egypt, Elections, FISA, Obama | Leave a Comment »

Show Details for the week of February 11th, 2013

Posted by themonitor on February 11, 2013


This week’s show follows up on the Don Siegelman case and examines the financial troubles the US Postal Service is facing. Our guests are Dana Siegleman, Parker Griffith and Jeff Musto

More about this week’s guests:

Dana Siegleman and Parker Griffith

Dana Siegelman is the daughter of imprisoned former AL Governor Don Siegelman who was convicted of an implied quid pro quo, that is an inferred bribe, or a bribe without explicit proof of agreement or self-enrichment scheme.  He was never accused of benefiting, at all. As Republican Attorney General of Arizona and co-Chair of the John McCain Presidential Campaign Grant Woods explained, “They indicted Siegelman because they couldn’t beat him fair and square.” His daughter Dana is now working on a campaign to get clemency for Don Siegleman.

Quote: “Nine years ago, the Bush Administration went after my father when he was Alabama’s governor. He was the first governor to endorse Al Gore for president and speak out against Bush. GOP operatives in Alabama and Washington D.C. struck up a plan to bring my dad down in the media, essentially crippling his chances for reelection and setting the stage for a prosecution that would strip him of his lifelong earnings, his law license, his ability to run for public office, and most importantly, his freedom.”

Parker Griffith is the former U.S. Representative for Alabama’s 5th congressional district, serving from 2009 until 2011. He is a member of the Republican Party, having switched from the Democratic Party on December 22, 2009 but lost the Republican primary and his term ended in January 2011.

Quote: “Karl Rove’s hands are all over this. This is absolutely, one of the most unjust things I’ve ever encountered. The Karl Rove southern strategy is a racist strategy, it pits people against one another, it splits us apart and he was very successful in vetting judges.”

Related Websites: http://www.donsiegelman.org

http://free-don.org/

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Jeff Musto

Jeff Musto is researcher and spokesperson for the Center for Study of Responsive Law, founded by Ralph Nader in 1968. In this role he works on a variety of projects, including the preservation of the U.S. Postal Service by preventing further Post Office closings, service cuts, and job cuts; the benefits of a financial speculation tax and other revenue generating proposals; the expansion of the posting of government contracts online; and the impacts of the conservatorship of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, among others. Prior to his work with the Center, he worked with the U.S. Public Interest Research Group.

Nader recently wrote in response to the Post Office’s announcement that it would be closing on Saturdays: “Postmaster General Donahoe would have us believe that this is one of many tough decisions that must be made to save the USPS, but nothing could be further from the truth. These are the decisions that are made by a leader without a clue and without a sense of what it takes to right the ship. He has ignored calls to implement ways of expanding postal services, many of which have been urged by the Postal Regulatory Commission. The USPS’s financial crisis has primarily been caused by a congressional mandate, coming from the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act of 2006, that the USPS prefund the next 75 years of retiree health benefits in just a decade, by 2016. This is something that is not required of any other federal government agency or private corporation. Not to mention that there is no actuarial justification for such an accelerated schedule to prefund this future obligation. PAEA effectively forces the USPS to prefund retiree health benefits for some of its future employees who haven’t even been born yet!   “As a result, the USPS pays at least $5.5 billion each year into a fund for 75 years of future retiree health benefits in addition to paying $2.6 billion for the employer’s share of insurance premiums for the Postal Service’s current retirees. On top of this, according to reports from the USPS’s Inspector General, the USPS has overpaid $80 billion dollars to the Civil Service Retirement System and the Federal Employees Retirement System which the federal government refuses to return.”If Congress were to reverse PAEA and return the billions owed to the USPS, the U.S. Postal Service would not be facing a financial crisis.” Jeff has been on the show before talking about this issue.

Posted in Democracy, DOJ, Elections, GOP Corruption, Post Office | Leave a Comment »

Show Details for the week of January 28th, 2013

Posted by themonitor on January 28, 2013


This week is one of two opportunities you have to support The Monitor during this Winter Pledge Drive at KPFT. Please call 713 526 5738 during the show to pledge your support.

Our guest this week is Greg Palast.

Greg Palast is the author of Billionaires and Ballot Bandits (out on September 18), Vultures’ Picnic and the New York Times bestsellers, Armed Madhouse and The Best Democracy Money Can Buy.

freezefromreel.jpg

Palast turned his skills to journalism after two decades as a top investigator of corporate fraud. Palast directed the U.S. government’s largest racketeering case in history–winning a $4.3 billion jury award. He also conducted the investigation of fraud charges in the Exxon Valdez grounding.

Following the Deepwater Horizon explosion, Palast set off on a five-continent undercover investigation of BP and the oil industry for British television’s top current affairs program, Dispatches.

Palast is best known in his native USA as the journalist who, for the Observer (UK), broke the story of how Jeb Bush purged thousands of Black Florida citizens from voter rolls before the 2000 election, thereby handing the White House to his brother George. His reports on the theft of the 2000 and 2004 US elections, the spike of the FBI investigations of the bin Ladens before September 11, the secret State Department documents planning the seizure of Iraq’s oil fields have won him a record six Project Censored awards for reporting the news American media doesn’t want you to hear. “The top investigative journalist in the United States is persona non grata in his own country’s media.” [Asia Times.] He returned to America to report for Harper’s Magazine.

During this Pledge Drive we have copies of Billionaires and Ballot Bandits available to you for a pledge of $100. Call 713 526 5738 or pledge securely online at www.kpft.org

Posted in Democracy, Dictatorship, DOJ, Economic Inequality, Elections, Greg Palast, KPFT, Obama, Race, Radio Shows, Vulture Funds | Leave a Comment »

Show Details for the week of January 21st, 2013

Posted by themonitor on January 21, 2013


  • Meet the new economy, same as the old economy? An interview with Richard Wolff
  • Republicans and Democrats Unite for Former Governor Don Siegelman’s Clemency- An interview with Dana Siegleman

More about this week’s guests:

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Richard D. Wolff is Professor of Economics Emeritus, University of Massachusetts, Amherst where he taught economics from 1973 to 2008. He is currently a Visiting Professor in the Graduate Program in International Affairs of the New School University, New York City. He also teaches classes regularly at the Brecht Forum in Manhattan. He recently wrote and article titled “How the rich soaked the rest of us – The astonishing story of the last few decades is a massive redistribution of wealth, as the rich have shifted the tax burden.”

Wolff is author of several books. I strongly suggest you read them all but perhaps start with “Capitalism Hits the Fan: The Global Economic Meltdown and What to Do About It.” He is professor of economics emeritus at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst and currently a visiting professor in the Graduate Program for International Affairs at the New School University in New York City. http://www.capitalismhitsthefan.com

Website:

Professor Richard D. Wolff | Economics Professor

Twitter:

http://twitter.com/#!/profwolff

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Dana Siegleman

Dana Siegelman is the daughter of imprisoned former AL Governor Don Siegelman who was convicted of an implied quid pro quo, that is an inferred bribe, or a bribe without explicit proof of agreement or self-enrichment scheme.  He was never accused of benefiting, at all. As Republican Attorney General of Arizona and co-Chair of the John McCain Presidential Campaign Grant Woods explained, “They indicted Siegelman because they couldn’t beat him fair and square.” His daughter Dana is now working on a campaign to get clemency for Don Siegleman. 

Quote: “Nine years ago, the Bush Administration went after my father when he was Alabama’s governor. He was the first governor to endorse Al Gore for president and speak out against Bush. GOP operatives in Alabama and Washington D.C. struck up a plan to bring my dad down in the media, essentially crippling his chances for reelection and setting the stage for a prosecution that would strip him of his lifelong earnings, his law license, his ability to run for public office, and most importantly, his freedom.”

Website: http://www.donsiegelman.org

http://free-don.org/

Posted in Bankruptcy, Banks, Debt, Democrat Corruption, Economic Inequality, Economy, Elections, GOP Corruption, Obama, Radio Shows | 2 Comments »

 
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