Category Archives: Politics

Rebecca Traister – GOOD & MAD: The Revolutionary Power of Women’s Anger

Rebecca Traister is writer at large for New York magazine, whose latest book is GOOD AND MAD: THE REVOLUTIONARY POWER OF WOMEN’S ANGER, published by Simon & Schuster. . Her earlier books include ALL THE SINGLE LADIES, and the award winning BIG GIRLS DON’T CRY. Her work has been published in The Nation, The New York Times, The Washington Post and the New York Observer among other publications.5bca1ba93b365.image.jpg

John M. Barry – The Great Influenza: The Epic Story of the Deadliest Plague in History

This was the very first edition of what would become Forthright Radio. It was originally broadcast in November, 2004.  We spoke with John M. Barry, author of the book, THE GREAT INFLUENZA: THE EPIC STORY OF THE DEADLIEST PLAGUE IN HISTORY. 100 years ago, in 1918, as a war weary world sought to bring those years of horror we call World War I to an end, another horror arose – a new, virulent and highly contagious strain of influenza, which within, a year spread rapidly around the world. We’ll never know the exact number of those killed, but it is estimated that a minimum of 50 million, and as many as 100 million died. At today’s population level, that would be between 150 million and 300 million dead worldwide. As we begin the annual flu season, our guest, John M. Barry, tells us what we know about this pandemic and warns of the possibility of such a global pandemic occurring again in our own time. But this is not just a history of a medical disease, his depiction of the politics of the war-time situation has disturbing foreshadowing of some of the same polarized dynamics with which we find ourselves grappling today, where truth is dismissed as an arbitrary term and “the force of an idea lies in it’s inspirational value. It matters very little whether it is true or false.” As Mark Twain put it so well, History doesn’t repeat itself, but it often rhymes. Although this interview was conducted in 2004, when George W. Bush was president, and we were 9 months into our invasion of Iraq, and the parallels to the Wilson administration are noted, some of those parallels seem even more pertinent today under the current administration.

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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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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

Matthew N. Lyons – Insurgent Supremacists: The U.S. Far Right’s Challenge to State & Empire

As we approach a year since the “Unite the Right” rally took place in Charlottesville, VA,  Truthout chose as their Progressive Pick, Insurgent Supremacists: The U.S. Far Right’s Challenge to State and Empire , by our guest, Matthew N. Lyons, in which he takes issue with the notion that the far right is a united force.

Matthew N. Lyons has been writing about right-wing politics for over 25 years. His work focuses on the interplay between right-wing movements and systems of oppression, and responses to these movements by leftists, liberals, and the state. He writes regularly for the antifascist blog Three Way Fight, and his work has also appeared in the Guardian, New Politics, and other publications.

He contributed the title essay to the book Ctrl-Alt-Delete: An Antifascist Report on the Alternative Right . He is coauthor with Chip Berlet of Right-Wing Populism in America , and author of Arier, Patriarchen, Übermenschen: die extreme Rechte in den USA (Aryans, Patriarchs, Supermen: The Far Right in the USA [Unrast Verlag, 2015]).

Insurgent Supremacists: The U.S. Far Right’s Challenge to State and Empire is published by PM Press.

 

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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