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Political talk without the boring parts—featuring the writers, activists and artists who shape the week in news. Hosted by Jon Wiener and presented by The Nation Magazine. Political talk without the boring parts—featuring the writers, activists and artists who shape the week in news. Hosted by Jon Wiener and presented by The Nation Magazine.

Political talk without the boring parts—featuring the writers, activists and artists who shape the week in news. Hosted by Jon Wiener and presented by The Nation Magazine. Political talk without the boring parts—featuring the writers, activists and artists who shape the week in news. Hosted by Jon Wiener and presented by The Nation Magazine.
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Political talk without the boring parts—featuring the writers, activists and artists who shape the week in news. Hosted by Jon Wiener and presented by The Nation Magazine. Political talk without the boring parts—featuring the writers, activists and artists who shape the week in news. Hosted by Jon Wiener and presented by The Nation Magazine.








“Chasing an Elusive Centrism is Ridiculous”: Frank Rich on politics, plus Erwin Chemerinsky on Matt Whitaker and Laura Carlsen on the Caravan

Frank Rich finds lessons for Democrats in the midterms: seeking “the political center,” as recommended by New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristoff, running on “clean-government themes and promises of incremental improvement to the health care system rather than transformational social change,” is “ridiculous.” Frank writes about politics for New York Magazine and is executive producer of VEEP on HBO. Also: Trump’s appointment of a new acting attorney general, Matt Whitaker: is it legal? He...


A Blue Wave for Progressives and Women—With Some Heartbreakers: John Nichols and Joan Walsh on the Midterms, plus Andy Robinson on Brazil

Tuesday night was a good night for progressive Democrats, John Nichols argues—and Democratic control of the House will bring an epic change to Washington politics—starting with a return to Constitutional principles and an insistence that the president is subject to the rule of law. Also: women won unprecedented victories in the midterms. Joan Walsh analyzes the feminist insurgency that will bring almost a hundred women to the House of Representatives in January—including the first two Muslim...


Women Voters and the Midterms: Katrina vanden Heuvel, Joan Walsh, and Cecile Richards; plus Ari Berman on vote suppression and Gary Younge on the Midwest

Women voters—and candidates—are mobilized as never before for next week’s midterms: Joan Walsh and Cecile Richards report from across the country at a Nation event introduced by publisher and editor Katrina vanden Heuvel. Joan is the magazine’s National Affairs Correspondent and Cecile recently stepped down as head of Planned Parenthood after leading the organization since 2006\. Also: the Democrats are focusing now on voter mobilization and turnout, while the Republicans are at work on...


We Have a Problem With White Men: They Support Trump—Kai Wright, plus Jill Lepore on Trump and History and Michael Kazin on Hubert Humphrey

62 per cent of white men voted for Trump, 31 per cent for Clinton. Kai Wright has our analysis--he’s host of WNYC’s podcast The United States of Anxiety, and he’s also a columnist for The Nation. It’s easy to get confused by the crosscurrents of misogyny and racism and xenophobia, he argues; they are not discrete issues, but rather “the interlocking tools of white men’s minority rule.” Also: Trump’s place in American history: Jill Lepore of the Harvard history department and the New Yorker...


Can Progressive Momentum Transform The Democratic Party? Jeff Cohen, plus Sasha Abramsky on Arizona and Joan Walsh on Georgia

What lessons have the Democrats learned from the disaster of 2016? Jeff Cohen talks about the progressives’ fight to win the party away from dependence on corporate contributions—and instead to mobilize the grassroots. Jeff is one of the co-authors of “Democratic Autopsy—One Year Later” at Also: Arizona is a red state, ground zero for Trump’s anti-immigrant politics, but it’s changing. Sasha Abramsky has returned from Tucson, with a report on how and why the Democrats seem...


Women’s Anger—and Kavanaugh’s Rage: Rebecca Traister, plus David Cay Johnston on Trump’s tax crimes and John Nichols on impeaching Kavanaugh

Rebecca Traister sees in the Kavanaugh hearings a typical case where women’s anger was marginalized or made to sound hysterical or infantile or threatening—but men’s anger was taken to be valid and righteous. But that is changing, she argues: women’s anger increasingly is “in the beating heart of many political and social movements.” Her new book is Good and Mad: The Revolutionary Power of Women's Anger. Also: David Cay Johnston talks about the “Mountain of Tax Cheating” by Donald Trump, as...


Yes We Have an Activist Community Fighting Kavanaugh: Joan Walsh, plus D.D. Guttenplan on a new radical majority and Michelle Chen on the Fight for $15

Joan Walsh explains why we lack confidence in the re-opened FBI background check into Kavanaugh’s past, and talks about the activists who are fighting the nomination, and the senators who need to be told “do not vote for this man.” Plus: D.D. Guttenplan talks about some alternatives to those old white Republican men who shouted and pouted at the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing last week–his new book is “The Next Republic: the Rise of a New Radical Majority.” And while the eyes of the...


The Kavanaugh Hearings Have Been an Outrage From the Beginning: John Nichols on the hearings, plus Sasha Abramsky on Voting Rights in Florida and Bryce Covert on Universal Basic Income

The Judiciary Committee confirmation hearings for Brett Kavanaugh have been an outrage, even before the recent “allegations of sexual misconduct.” John Nichols comments. Also: Florida will vote in November on restoring voting rights for felons, and polls show the measure is likely to pass. Sasha Abramsky reports on the campaign and its significance. Plus: universal basic income—government payments to help keep people out of poverty: is that a better idea than a government job guarantee?...


Michael Moore: From Obama to Trump: "Fahrenheit 11/9"

Michael Moore talks about his new documentary, "Fahrenheit 11/9," opens Friday May 21 across America--It's a passionate argument about how the Democrats helped pave the way to Trump's election, and a call to arms to change our politics and vote on Nov. 9.


The Case Against Kavanaugh: Katha Pollitt; plus Harold Meyerson on the Financial Crisis and Mouin Rabbani on Oslo

Katha Pollitt considers the arguments made by Brett Kavanaugh’s defenders in response to the charges that he sexually assaulted a 15-year-old when he was 17, and the evidence supporting Christine Blasey Ford, his accuser. Also: On the 10th anniversary of the financial crisis, Harold Meyerson argues that the recovery was a disaster all over again—and that we are still suffering from its political consequences. Harold is Executive Editor of The American Prospect. Plus: 25 years ago, President...


Fighting Climate Change—and Donald Trump: Bill McKibben plus Steve Phillips on moderate Republicans and Atossa Araxia Abrahamian on the inequality industry

As world leaders (except for Trump) gather in San Francisco this week for the Global Climate Action Summit, Bill McKibben comments on California’s new law mandating 100 per cent clean electricity by 2045—and on the next task: keep oil and gas in the ground. Also: Should Democratic strategy focus on winning the votes of moderate Republicans? Steve Phillips points to one key factor: there aren’t that many of them. Steve is the author of the New York Times best seller, 'Brown Is the New White:...


We’re at a “Which Side Are You On” Moment: Randi Weingarten, plus Mark Hertsgaard on climate politics and David Cole on Kavanaugh

In Oklahoma and West Virgina and Missouri, teachers have led amazingly successful battles against Republican budget-cutting and tax breaks for the wealthy. Although the Supreme Court’s Janus decision sought to cripple the ability of public sector unions to engage in politics, recent polls show that unions are more popular than ever. Randi Weingarten comments on the big picture of unions and politics – she’s president of the American Federation of Teachers, with 1.7 million members in more...


Melania Trump: Hero of the People? Amy Wilentz, plus Katha Pollitt on the Politics of Motherhood and Lee Saunders on Unions after Janus

Amy Wilentz takes up the vital question, is Melania Trump a hero of the resistance—or an accomplice of evil? Is she edging “ever closer to open contempt for him,” as New York Times columnist Frank Bruni argues, and finding “increasingly clever ways to show it”? Or is she sticking with her role as wife to a racist tyrant with a clear history of infidelity, and lots of cash? Also: how mothers and pregnant women are discriminated against and punished – here at home, and around the world. Katha...


Centrism Is Not the Answer! Gary Younge; plus Todd Gitlin on 1968 and Farah Griffin on Aretha

Centrism lost for the Democrats in 2016, and it will lose again in 2018, Gary Younge argues: the party needs not just to oppose Trump, but also to put forward an alternative vision that can earn the support of working-class Americans. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has shown how to do it, running on a program of tuition-free higher education, Medicare for all, and a federal jobs guarantee. Plus: Trump’s 1968 – and ours. In August 1968, 50 years ago this week, young antiwar demonstrators fought the...


Refugees, Immigrants, and Donald Trump: Viet Thanh Nguyen; plus Anna Deavere Smith on the school-to-prison pipeline and Rachel Kushner on women in prison

One of the defining features of Trump’s politics has been the way he’s appealed to hatred and fear of refugees and immigrants. Viet Thanh Nguyen talks about refugee lives, and refugee writers. He’s the author of the novel The Sympathizer—it won the Pulitzer prize—and editor of the new book The Displaced: Refugee Writers on Refugee Lives. He’s also the recipient of a MacArthur Foundation “genius” grant—and he’s a refugee himself, arriving from Vietnam with his family in 1975, when he was 4...


A Golden Age for News Media under Trump? John Nichols; plus Harold Meyerson on Politics around Kavanaugh and Nomi Prins on Trump and Economic Entropy

The Age of Trump, despite the opportunities it brings to investigative journalism, is hardly a “golden age”, John Nichols argues: cutbacks and layoffs have crippled the nation’s news media—not just in covering the White House, but state and local government as well. The New York Daily News provides a vivid example of the crisis. Also: The Democrats need to retake control of the Senate if they are to have a chance of preventing Trump from transforming the Supreme Court into a right-wing...


Is Trumpism Fascism? Katha Pollitt; plus Mike Lux on Political Strategy and Harold Meyerson on Jonathan Gold

Katha Pollitt is not happy with leftists calling Trump a “fascist” – maybe there’s a better term for his attacks on democracy, which have a lot in common with authoritarian leaders in Russia, Turkey, Egypt, Hungary, Poland, and other places. The foundation for all of them: austerity, pushed by the big banks and right-wing parties, which creates the economic anxiety that fuels racism and anti-immigrant sentiment. Plus: left politics can win all over the country, not just in New York City and...


After Trump’s Worst Week: Joan Walsh; plus David Cole on Brett Cavanaugh and Michael Kazin on Jimmy Carter

A week ago Trump returned from his disastrous press conference with Putin in Helsinki to face a firestorm of criticism. Joan Walsh reviews the political landscape this week, when a significant minority of Republicans disagree with Trump on Putin – but nevertheless “approve” of his presidency. On the Democratic side, he tumultuous week has further energized candidates and voters for the fall elections. Also: Some questions for Brett Kavanaugh, Trump’s Supreme Court nominee: David Cole, legal...


Trump and Putin: Separating the Surreal From the Sensible—Katrina vanden Heuvel; plus John Nichols on Kavanaugh and Adam Winkler on Corporate ‘Rights’

Katrina vanden Heuvel argues that Trump’s meeting with Putin in Helsinki on Monday might have brought progress on nuclear arms control and conflict reduction in Syria; but when Trump argued that the US and Russia were “both . . . responsible” for Russian interference in the 2016 election, he squandered the opportunity—outlined in the “Common Ground” open letter published in The Nation, and signed by two dozen prominent figures including Gloria Steinem, Noam Chomsky, John Dean, Governor Bill...


Is Trump Crazy? Would Pence Be Worse? Amy Wilentz on Trump, Jane Mayer on Pence, and E.J. Dionne on America After Trump

Amy Wilentz comments on the mental and emotional status of the president, as analyzed by 27 psychiatrists in The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump, a book edited by Bandy X. Lee. The book was number four on the New York Times bestseller list. Also: Would Pence be worse? Jane Mayer of The New Yorker reports—she interviewed more than 60 people in search of answers, including Pence’s mother. Several say he’s wanted to be president at least since high school. Plus: America After Trump: E.J. Dionne...