Category Archives: economics

Dean Baker

Dean Baker co-founded The Center for Economic and Policy Research in 1999. His areas of expertise include housing and macroeconomics, intellectual property, Social Security, Medicare and European labor markets. Before that, he worked as a senior economist at the Economic Policy Institute, and was an assistant professor at Bucknell University. He has also worked as a consultant for the World Bank, the Joint Economic Committee of the U.S. Congress, and the OECD’s Trade Union Advisory Council. He is frequently cited in economics reporting in major media outlets, including the New York Times, Washington Post, CNN, CNBC, and NPR. He writes a weekly column for the Guardian Unlimited (UK), the Huffington Post, TruthOut, and his blog, Beat the Press, features commentary on economic reporting.

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He is the author of several books, including Rigged: How Globalization and the Rules of the Modern Economy Were Structured to Make the Rich Richer; Getting Back to Full Employment: A Better Bargain for Working People; The End of Loser Liberalism: Making Markets Progressive; and The Conservative Nanny State: How the Wealthy Use the Government to Stay Rich and Get Richer. He was last our guest on Nov. 15, 2017.

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Publications mentioned in this edition of Forthright Radio include:

Frontline: The Warning   https://www.pbs.org/wgbh/frontline/film/warning/

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U.S. consumers to be hurt by tariffs by Doug Palmer  https://www.politico.com/story/2018/09/18/consumers-tariffs-trump-china-795159

Lehman anniversary: The five most surprising consequences by Kim Gittleson   https://www.bbc.com/news/business-45478670

Ten years on from the financial crash, we need to get ready for another one by Robert Skidelsky      https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/sep/12/crash-2008-financial-crisis-austerity-inequality

Ten Years After The Financial Crisis, The Contagion Has Spread To Democracy Itself by Zach Carter  https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/financial-crisis-10-years-later-ben-bernanke-hank-paulson-timothy-geithner_us_5b9d7dc8e4b04d32ebf92396

Four Reasons Why Los Angeles’s Upcoming Public Banking Ballot Initiative is a Huge Deal  by Pheonix Goodman  https://truthout.org/articles/why-los-angeles-upcoming-public-banking-ballot-initiative-is-a-huge-deal/

To Stop the Next Financial Crisis, We Need Public Ownership of Banks—Now  by Thomas Hanna  https://truthout.org/articles/to-stop-the-next-financial-crisis-we-need-public-ownership-of-banks-now/

Donald Trump’s currency confusion continues by Jeffrey Frankel https://www.theguardian.com/business/2018/sep/21/donald-trump-currency-confusion-continues

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Mary Beth Pfeiffer – LYME: THE FIRST EPIDEMIC OF CLIMATE CHANGE

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Our guest on this edition of Forthright Radio is award winning investigative journalist, Mary Beth Pfeiffer. Her latest book is LYME: THE FIRST EPIDEMIC OF CLIMATE CHANGE (Island Press, 2018). Over the years, we have interviewed numerous guests on different aspects of Lyme Disease. None of them has gone into such depth, nor been so global in scope, nor addressed so critically and effectively the issues of, not only Lyme Disease, but other tick-borne diseases, of which there are an ever expanding number recognized – but as importantly, investigating the politics and economics of the science and medical guidelines, which have defied logic, common sense, medical ethics or compassion. As you will hear, there are elements of a darker age – some say, An Inquisition, in the current state of governmental, university and medical research, funding and protocols.

Mary Beth Pfeiffer has been an award-winning investigative journalist for three decades, who has specialized in social justice, environmental and health issues. In addition to her latest book, LYME: THE FIRST EPIDEMIC OF CLIMATE CHANGE, she is also author of Crazy in America: The Hidden Tragedy of Our Criminalized Mentally Ill, which is a critically acclaimed look at treatment of the mentally ill in prisons and jails in the United States.

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Borrelia burgdorferii’s corkscrew shape allows it to penetrate into heart muscle and to cross the blood-brain barrier, as well as other organs. Lyme carditis can be deadly, as are deaths by suicide of some Lyme sufferers.  And like that other “Great Imitator” spirochete, Syphilis, it can cross the placenta to infect the fetus, causing miscarriage and congenital health problems.

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Ixodes scapularis, the host of the Lyme spirochete, thrives in modern human altered environments and the warming, more humid weather patterns of climate change.lyme-disease-symptoms.png

Tick-borne diseases are on the rise in many parts of the world.

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Long lived for an arachnid, ticks need only  feed once during each of their life cycles, which may span 3 years. The Lyme spirochete actually increases the fertility, viability and longevity of the ticks. At least one tick species can reproduce without fertilization from males.

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Although the “bulls eye” rash, erythema migrans, is the only definitive symptom considered diagnostic for Lyme Disease, according to a CDC study of 150,000 cases, it appeared in only 69.2% of patients. What about the other 30%?

10 points about suing the architects of Lyme policy—as a task force meets to review it              https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/10-points-about-suing-the-architects-of-lyme-policy_us_5a2764bbe4b0650db4d40bb5

Lyme bug stronger than antibiotics in animals and test tubes. Now study people. https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/lyme-bug-beats-antibiotics-in-animals-and-test-tubes_us_59fa4fdbe4b09afdf01c4023

Larry Hancock- Creating Chaos: Covert Political Warfare from Truman to Putin Carey Gillam – $289 Million Monsanto Glyphosate/Cancer Damages Verdict

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In the first sement, we speak with researcher and author, Larry Hancock, about his very timely book, CREATING CHAOS: COVERT POLITICAL WARFARE FROM TRUMAN TO PUTIN. In our second segment, we welcomed back researcher and award winning author of the also very timely book, WHITE WASH: THE STORY OF A WEED KILLER, CANCER, AND THE CORRUPTION OF SCIENCE, Carey Gillam, to get her impressions of the historic jury verdict on August 10, 2018 ordering Monsanto to pay $289 million dollars to former Benicia School District groundskeeper, Dewayne “Lee” Johnson, for it’s negligence and acting with malice or oppression regarding their herbicides, Roundup Pro and Ranger Pro.

Following service in the U.S. Air Force, Larry Hancock’s career in computer/communications and technology marketing allowed him to become a consultant on strategic analysis and planning studies. With seven books in print, Larry Hancock’s most recent works include an exploration of long term patterns in covert action and deniable warfare (Shadow Warfare), the effectiveness of national command authority and command and control practices (Surprise Attack) and (together with Stuart Wexler) the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr. (The Awful Grace of God: Religious Terrorism, White Supremacy, and the Unsolved Murder of Martin Luther King, Jr.). His latest book, CREATING CHAOS: COVERT POLITICAL WARFARE FROM TRUMAN TO PUTIN, published by OR Books.  Our interview ends at 32:23.

http://www.orbooks.com/catalog/creating-chaos-by-larry-hancock/?utm_source=ForthrightRadio&utm_medium=interview&utm_campaign=Chaos

Our interview with Carey Gillam begins at 32:24.

Carey Gillam is a veteran journalist, researcher and author, who has more than twenty-five years’ experience in the news industry covering corporate America. Since 1998, Carey Gillam’s work has focused on digging into the big business of food and agriculture. As a former senior correspondent for Reuters’ international news service, and a current contract researcher and freelance writer, she specializes in finding the story behind the spin–uncovering both the risks and rewards of the evolving new age of agriculture. Her areas of expertise include biotech crop technology, agrichemicals and pesticide product development, and the environmental impacts of American food production. She is currently Research Director for the nonprofit U.S. Right to Know. Her book, WHITE WASH: THE STORY OF A WEED KILLER, CANCER, AND THE CORRUPTION OF SCIENCE, is published by Island Press.

She has been awarded this year’s Rachel Carson Book Award by the Society of Environmental Journalists, as well as the 2018 Independent Book Publishers Award.

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Dewayne “Lee” Johnson and his sons

The interview we did on March 21, 2018 can be heard here:    https://forthright.media/2018/08/11/carey-gillam-white-wash-the-story-of-a-weed-killer-cancer-the-corruption-of-science/

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Dewayne Johnson reacts to the verdict at the superior court of California in San Francisco. Photograph: Josh Edelson/AFP/Getty Images

Articles cited in this interview can be found here:

One man’s suffering exposed Monsanto’s secrets to the world  https://www.theguardian.com/business/2018/aug/11/one-mans-suffering-exposed-monsantos-secrets-to-the-world

Bayer Takes the Hit After Monsanto Loses Roundup Cancer Trial https://www.organicconsumers.org/news/bayer-takes-hit-after-monsanto-loses-roundup-cancer-trial

 

Bayer Shares Plunge After Monsanto Weed Killer Ruling – WSJ

 

CAREY GILLAM – White Wash: The Story of a Weed Killer, Cancer, & the Corruption of Science

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Congratulations to Carey Gillam for receiving the prestigious Rachel Carson Book Award by the Society of Environmental Journalists, as well as the 2018 Independent Book Publishers Award.

1-aqfz2aL5Sw67eiCuU2Z8AA.jpegDewayne “Lee” Johnson with his two sons.

On Friday August 10, 2018, a jury in San Francisco’s Superior Court of California rendered an historic verdict in the civil trial of Dewayne Johnson v. Monsanto, finding that Monsanto’s glyphosate based weedkillers, including Roundup, caused his non-Hodgkin lymphoma, and that the corporation failed to warn him of the health hazards from exposure. Additionally, the jury found that Monsanto “acted with malice or oppression, and that its weed killers contributed “substantially” to Mr Johnson’s terminal illness..”

The jury deliberated for three days before finding that Monsanto had failed to warn Johnson and other consumers of the cancer risks posed by its weedkillers. It ordered Monsanto to pay $289 million – $39 million in compensatory and $250 million in punitive damages. Monsanto has said it would appeal the verdict.

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Johnson’s case, filed in 2016, was fast-tracked for trial, due to the severity of his non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, a cancer of the lymph system, that he alleges was caused by Roundup and Ranger Pro, another Monsanto glyphosate herbicide.
A former pest control manager for a California county school system, Johnson, 46, applied the weedkiller up to 30 times per year.
Johnson was the first of more than 4 ,000 people suing Monsanto in state and federal courts around the country, claiming their cancers were caused by glyphosate-based Roundup. Johnson’s case was particularly significant, because a judge allowed his team to present scientific arguments. The verdict came a month after a federal judge ruled that cancer survivors, or relatives of the deceased, could bring similar claims forward in another trial. Glyphosate is the world’s most widely used herbicide.

Over the course of the four-week trial, jurors heard testimony by statisticians, doctors, public health researchers and epidemiologists, who disagreed on whether glyphosate can cause cancer.
Brent Wisner, a lawyer for Johnson, said jurors for the first time had seen internal company documents “proving that Monsanto has known for decades that glyphosate, and specifically Roundup, could cause cancer.”
Jurors saw internal emails from Monsanto executives that demonstrated the corporation repeatedly ignored experts’ warnings, sought favorable scientific analyses, and helped to “ghostwrite” research that encouraged continued usage.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in September 2017 concluded a decades-long assessment of glyphosate risks and found the chemical not likely carcinogenic to humans. But the World Health Organization’s cancer arm in 2015 classified glyphosate as “probably carcinogenic to humans.”
In a written statement, the company said it was “sympathetic to Mr Johnson and his family” but it would “continue to vigorously defend this product, which has a 40-year history of safe use”.
“Today’s decision does not change the fact that more than 800 scientific studies and reviews – and conclusions by the US Environmental Protection Agency, the US National Institutes of Health and regulatory authorities around the world – support the fact that glyphosate does not cause cancer, and did not cause Mr Johnson’s cancer,” it added.
Pharmaceutical group, Bayer, completed it’s $66 billion takeover of Monsanto in June.

In this edition of Forthright Radio, originally broadcast in March 2018, and then rebroadcast in late June as the trial was about to begin, researcher and author, Carey Gillam, discusses what her years of investigation reveals about Glyphosate and how science is done in determining the safety of agricultural products.

images.pngOur guest today is veteran journalist, researcher and author, Carey Gillam, who has more than twenty-five years’ experience in the news industry covering corporate America. Since 1998, Carey Gillam’s work has focused on digging into the big business of food and agriculture. As a former senior correspondent for Reuters’ international news service, and a current contract researcher and freelance writer, she specializes in finding the story behind the spin — uncovering both the risks and rewards of the evolving new age of agriculture. Her areas of expertise include biotech crop technology, agrochemicals and pesticide product development, and the environmental impacts of American food production. She is currently Research Director for the nonprofit U.S. Right to Know. Her book, WHITE WASH: THE STORY OF A WEED KILLER, CANCER, AND THE CORRUPTION OF SCIENCE, is published by Island Press.

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cited with permission from https://peperperspective.com/2016/12/01/our-food-is-not-the-same-as-50-years-ago/

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cited with permission from https://peperperspective.com/2016/12/01/our-food-is-not-the-same-as-50-years-ago/

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Some of the articles cited in this interview are:

Farmers vs. Monsanto: Glyphosate Showdown Comes to U.S. Court in San Francisco https://www.organicconsumers.org/blog/farmers-vs-monsanto-glyphosate-showdown-comes-us-court-san-francisco

Roundup Causes Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma, Scientist Says in Federal Court   https://www.organicconsumers.org/blog/roundup-causes-non-hodgkin-lymphoma-scientist-says-federal-court

Monsanto’s Cancer Fight Judge Pictures Weed Killer Showers      https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-03-14/monsanto-judge-pictures-weed-killer-showers-amid-cancer-debate

Federal judge halts Monsanto warning label requirement in California      https://www.politico.com/story/2018/02/27/federal-judge-halts-monsanto-warning-label-requirement-in-california-687912

Glyphosate gets EU renewal      https://www.politico.com/newsletters/morning-agriculture/2017/11/28/glyphosate-stays-in-the-eu-picture-032826

Here’s the Worst, Anti-Science Idea of the Week from the Republican Congress https://www.motherjones.com/politics/2018/02/lamar-smith-united-nations-glyphosate-monsanto-roundup-congress/

Dicamba drift puts natural areas at risk, environmental groups warn     http://www.stltoday.com/news/science/dicamba-drift-puts-natural-areas-at-risk-environmental-groups-warn/article_8e4b0c3e-11dd-5bc0-9871-e16c5a28fb59.html

‘Catastrophe’ as France’s bird population collapses due to pesticides      https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/mar/21/catastrophe-as-frances-bird-population-collapses-due-to-pesticides

Senators Rebuke EPA Plan To Let Kids Handle Pesticides Again      https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/senators-rebuke-epa-plan-to-let-kids-handle-pesticides-again_us_5aa943f5e4b0f7a689ce9b11

Scientists Sue EPA Over ‘Attempt To Delegitimize Science’       https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/scientists-sue-epa-scott-pruitt_us_5a68a218e4b0dc592a0e87f0

Scott Pruitt’s First Year Set The EPA Back Anywhere From A Few Years To 3 Decades     https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/pruitt-one-year_us_5a610a5ce4b074ce7a06beb4

George Monbiot – OUT OF THE WRECKAGE: A NEW POLITICS FOR AN AGE OF CRISIS

In his latest book, OUT OF THE WRECKAGE: A NEW POLITICS FOR AN AGE OF CRISIS, and drawing from many decades of a very interesting life in many different parts of the world, George Monbiot explores the question, how can we rebuild our society, outlining how both democracy and economic life can be radically reorganized from the bottom up.

1170913-George-Monbiot-Quote-Progress-is-measured-by-the-speed-at-which-we.jpgOUT OF THE WRECKAGE: A NEW POLITICS FOR AN AGE OF CRISIS is published by Verso.

george-monbiot-409985.jpgThese are some of his articles cited in this interview:

How a violent land seizure story led to my ‘death’ in Brazil  https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/dec/31/land-seizure-death-brazil-george-monbiot

America’s new revolutionaries show how the left can win  https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/jul/11/america-left-alexandria-ocasio-cortez-new-york-primary

Donald Trump was right. The rest of the G7 were wrong    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/jun/13/trump-nafta-g7-sunset-clause-trade-agreement

I have prostate cancer. But I am happy   https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/mar/13/prostate-cancer-happy-diagnosis-operation

Through my cancer, I have found the key to a good life     https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/may/08/my-prostate-cancer-surgery-key-to-good-life

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Henry Giroux – American Nightmare: Facing the Challenge of Fascism

In this edition of Forthright Radio, originally broadcast on June 6, 2018, our guest is McMaster University Professor, Henry Giroux, who has been our guest numerous times over the years. His latest book, which just came out from City Lights Publishing, is American Nightmare: Facing the Challenge of Fascism. It is A far-ranging critique of the rise of authoritarianism and white nationalism in the US, and the consequences for democracy.

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Henry A. Giroux currently holds the McMaster University Chair for Scholarship in the Public Interest. He is a prolific writer of books, sometimes more than one a year, and articles which appear in numerous online and print publications, as well as scholarly journals. His books include: AMERICA AT WAR WITH ITSELF; DISPOSABLE FUTURES: VIOLENCE IN THE AGE OF SPECTACLE; Hearts of Darkness: Torturing Children in the War on Terror (Paradigm, 2010); Zombie Politics and Culture in the Age of Casino Capitalism, THE VIOLENCE OF ORGANIZED FORGETTING and many, many others.

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The ideal subject of totalitarian rule is not the convinced Nazi, but people for whom the distinction between fact and fiction, true and false, no longer exists.” Hannah Arendt

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James Redford – Happening: A Clean Energy Revolution

In this edition of Radio Goes to the Movies film maker, James Redford, discusses his film, Happening: A Clean Energy Revolution.  It will be opening the BZN International Film Festival on June 7 in the Crawford Theater at the Emerson Center for Arts & Culture at 7pm, and he will be attending.

ac17-DEC-Clean-energy.jpgJames Redford embarks on a colorful personal journey into the dawn of the clean energy era as it creates jobs, turns profits, and makes communities stronger and healthier across the US. Unlikely entrepreneurs in communities from Georgetown, TX to Buffalo, NY reveal pioneering clean energy solutions while James’ discovery of how clean energy works, and what it means at a personal level, becomes the audiences’ discovery too.

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Reaching well beyond a great story of technology and innovation, “Happening” explores issues of human resilience, social justice, embracing the future, and finding hope for our survival.

On June 8, at 10a.m. in the Hager Auditorium of the Museum of the Rockies, he’ll be joining area luminaries in a discussion, Designing for a Clean Energy Revolution in Montana: Design & Construction Experts on the Leading Edge.

Lindsay Schack of Love Schack Architecture is one of the first certified designers in Montana for the Passive House Institute US. She is a licensed architect in Montana, Idaho, and Wyoming, an adjunct instructor at MSU’s School of Architecture and founding board member of Passive House Rocky Mountains.
Lindsey Love of Love Schack Architecture is an expert in natural materials and construction methods. She built her own hybrid straw bale home in Teton Valley, Idaho and strives to coordinate healthy, holistic design in high performance building assemblies.
Kyle MacVean of Harvest Solar is proud to get up and work for the sun every day. He’s worked in the solar industry for over 10 years and lived in an off-grid, straw-bale house for six years—an experience which has taught him to never take energy for granted.
Susan Bilo serves on the Montana Renewable Energy Association’s Board of Directors and heads Green Compass Sustainability Consulting where she teaches and advocates for natural resource conservation, energy and water efficiency, electric vehicles, and solar-powered net zero energy buildings.
Jaya Mukhopadhyay, Ph.D., LEED AP, teaches courses on Environmental Control Systems at the Montana State University School of Architecture and has over 15 years experience in building energy modeling, energy codes, and assessment of commercial and residential energy performance.