2008 Program Archive

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December 28th, 2008
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Sharon Locke is an Australian human rights activist presenting an eye-witness account of the siege on Gaza by Israeli aircraft. Ms. Locke is a member of Free Gaza, a group of human rights defenders from Lebanon, the UK, Poland, Canada, Spain, Italy and Australia who are present in Gaza and are witnessing and documenting the current Israeli attacks on Gaza. Due to Israel's policy of denying access to international media, human rights defenders and aid agencies to the Occupied Gaza Strip, many of these Human Rights Defenders arrived in Gaza with the Free Gaza Movement's boats. Free Gaza boats have broken Israel's siege of Gaza five times in the past four months.

Daniel Levy on the Israeli perspective regarding the siege on Gaza. Mr. Levy is a Senior Fellow and Director of the Middle East Policy Initiative of the American Strategy Program at the New America Foundation. He was the lead Israeli drafter of the Geneva Initiative and directed policy planning and international efforts at the Geneva Campaign Headquarters in Tel Aviv. Previously, Mr. Levy served as senior policy adviser to former Israeli Minister of Justice, Yossi Beilin, and under the Barak government he worked in the prime minister s office as a special adviser and head of the Jerusalem Affairs unit. He was a member of the Israeli delegation to the Taba negotiations with the Palestinians in January 2001, and of the negotiating team for the Oslo B Agreement from May to September 1995, under Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin. As a Senior Fellow and Director of the Middle East Policy Initiative at the New America Foundation, Mr. Levy seeks to encourage thought-provoking debate and offer strategic solutions for resolving the long-running conflicts in the Middle East, core among them the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. He has published extensively in a broad range of publications including Ha aretz, The Jerusalem Post, The Boston Globe, United Press International, The American Prospect, the International Herald Tribune, The Evening Standard (London), and the blog TPMCafe.

Dr. Sumit Ganguly on the potential for war between India and Pakistan. Dr. Ganguly holds the Rabindranath Tagore Chair in Indian Cultures and Civilizations at Indiana University in Bloomington. He has previously been on the faculty of James Madison College of Michigan State University, Hunter College of the City University of New York and the University of Texas at Austin. He has also taught at Columbia University in New York City. He has also been a Fellow and a Guest Scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, DC and a Visiting Fellow at the Center for International Security and Cooperation at Stanford University. His most recent books are Fearful Symmetry: India and Pakistan Under the Shadow of Nuclear Weapons (co-authored with Devin Hagerty) and More Than Words: U.S.-India Strategic Cooperation Into the Twenty-First Century. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, New York and the International Institute of Strategic Studies, London. His forthcoming book is India Since 1980.

Bruce Fein on the admissions by Vice President Cheney regarding support for torture and the recent Senate Armed Service Committee report on the subject of harsh interrogation. Mr. Fein is a constitutional lawyer who formerly served as associate deputy attorney general under the Reagan administration, general counsel of the Federal Communications Commission, research director for the Joint Congressional Committee on Covert Arms Sales to Iran, and member of the American Bar Association's Task Force on Presidential signing statements. He has authored several volumes on the United States Supreme Court, the United States Constitution, and international law, helped write the articles of impeachment for President Nixon and President Clinton, and is frequently cited by the New York Times, The Financial Times, The Washington Post, Newsweek, and other national publications. Democrats and Republicans continue to invite him to tesify before Congress and administrative agencies. Bruce Fein is the author of a new book, entitled "Constitutional Peril: the Life and Death Struggle for Our Constitution and Democracy." This book attacks the various policies of the Bush administration and the failure of Congress to uphold its constitutional responsibilities as a check on the executive branch.

Dr. Robert Fitrakis on the suspicions surrounding the death of Republican operative Michael Connell. Dr. Fitrakis is a Political Science Professor and an election reform and voting rights activist, who earned his Ph.D from Wayne State University. He is the Executive Director of the Columbus Institute for Contemporary Journalism and Editor of the Columbus Free Press. Dr. Fitrakis co-authored What Happened in Ohio? A documentary record of theft and fraud in the 2004 election and has authored or co-authored ten other books. In the course of his work on election integrity, Dr. Fitrakis has been recently focused on the activities of Michael Connell, described as Karl Rove's IT guru, and who was recently killed when the small aircraft he was piloting "ran out of gas" and crashed.
 

December 21st, 2008
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Gary Aguirre on the Bernie Madoff scandal and the failure of the SEC to properly regulate and therefore prevent one of the biggest swindles in American history. Mr. Aguirre headed a major SEC investigation of one the world's largest hedge funds for insider trading and market manipulation. He testified in 2006 before a US Senate committee regarding the risks hedge funds pose to the capital markets and the failure of the regulatory system to contain those risks. Last year, he assisted a Senate committee in drafting a bill to regulate hedge funds. He holds two law degrees, including an LL.M. in securities regulation and international law. His articles are published in academic and professional journals, including one on Enron's collapse which won national honors. His forthcoming book will focus on the risks hedge funds pose to the capital markets. Aguirre has been an outspoken critic of the SEC, saying that "We can't have two sets of securities laws, one set for those with political connections or those with the right contacts, and another set for the rest of us. When evidence points the SEC to powerful people, the umpire is looking the other way when he ought to be calling the violation."

Michael Lind on the effort by Southern senators to undermine the northern auto industry. Michael Lind is the Whitehead Senior Fellow at the New America Foundation. He is the author of a number of books, including Made in Texas: George W. Bush and the Southern Takeover of American Politics and What Lincoln Believed. His ground-breaking study of American grand strategy, The American Way of Strategy: U.S. Foreign Policy and the American Way of Life was published by Oxford University Press in October 2006. Mr. Lind has been an editor or staff writer for The New Yorker, Harper s Magazine, and The New Republic. From 1991 to 1994, he was executive editor of The National Interest. Mr. Lind has written for The Atlantic Monthly, Prospect (U.K.), The New York Times Magazine, The Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, The Financial Times, and other leading publications. In a new article published at Salon.com, Michael Lind suggests that the South is engaged in a form of renewed civil war as it's Senators oppose a bail-out for the North's auto industry, while they give subsidies to foreign manufacturers making cars with non-union workers in their states.

Dr. Robert Bell on the Obama green agenda. Dr. Bell is a Professor of Management and Chairman of the Economics Department at Brooklyn College of the City University of New York. He is the author of THE GREEN BUBBLE Waste into Wealth; the New Energy Revolution. He was the featured speaker at the Fast 50 awards ceremony at the Paris Bourse, November 2007; the inaugural speaker, the HEC-Deloitte Club of Energy and Finance, La Maison des polytechniciens, Paris, November 2007.

December 14th, 2008
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Professor Albert Alschuler on the controversy over Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich. Professor Alschuler joined the Northwestern Law faculty after serving as the Jack N. Pritzker Distinguished Visiting Professor of Law in spring 2005. Prior to that, he was a professor at the University of Chicago School of Law. He is a graduate of Harvard Law School and specializes in criminal justice. He has written on topics including plea bargaining, sentencing reform, privacy, search and seizure, civil procedure, jury selection, legal history, legal ethics, confessions, courtroom conduct, William Blackstone, Oliver Wendell Holmes, American legal theory, and other topics, most of them in the area of criminal justice. He has recently been commenting on the legal troubles of Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich.

Dr. Harley Shaiken on the fate of the US automotive industry. Dr. Shaiken is Chair of the Center for Latin American Studies at the University of California, Berkeley. He also also shares an appointment with the program in Social and Cultural Studies in the Graduate School of Education. He studies labor and globalization, with a focus on auto manufacturing.

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Dan Howes is business columnist and associate business editor of The Detroit News, specializing in the automotive industry. From 1999 to January 2003, he was based in Germany as The News' European correspondent and automotive columnist, reporting from more than 20 countries on three continents. Before heading to Europe, Howes was senior automotive writer and an investigative and projects reporter on the business desk. He came to Detroit in 1993 from The Roanoke Times in Virginia, where he covered business, politics and higher education. Mr. Howes is the winner of multiple International Wheel Awards for column writing; a four-time winner of Northwestern University's Medill award for general markets coverage; and a three-time finalist for the prestigious Gerald Loeb Awards, including an honorable mention for commentary in 2007.

Robert Scheer on the fate of the Los Angeles Times and print journalism. Mr. Scheer is a journalist, author and columnist, whose work has been published across the country for the past 30 years. In 1993 he launched a nationally syndicated column based at the Los Angeles Times, where he was named a contributing editor. That column ran weekly for the next 12 years and is now based at the San Francisco Chronicle. After leaving the LA Times, Robert Scheer founded the award-winning Truthdig, a web magazine that provides expert in-depth coverage of current affairs as well as other content assembled from a progressive point of view. Robert Scheer has written eight books, with his latest being "The Pornography of Power: How Defense Hawks Hijacked 9/11 and Weakened America."

December 7th, 2008
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Stephen Coll on the Mumbai attacks. Mr. Coll is a writer for The New Yorker and author of the Pulitzer Prize- winning Ghost Wars: The Secret History of the CIA, Afghanistan, and Bin Laden, from the Soviet Invasion to September 10, 2001. He is president of the New America Foundation, a public policy institute in Washington, D.C. Previously he served, for more than twenty years, as a reporter, foreign correspondent, and ultimately as managing editor of The Washington Post. He is also the author of On the Grand Trunk Road, The Deal of the Century, and The Taking of Getty Oil. Coll received a 1990 Pulitzer Prize for explanatory journalism and the 2001 Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award for outstanding international print reporting and the 2000 Overseas Press Club Award for best magazine reporting from abroad. Ghost Wars, published in 2004, received the Pulitzer for general nonfiction and the Arthur Ross award for the best book on international affairs. His latest book is "The Bin Ladens: an Arabian Family in the American Century."

Steve Clemons on the team Obama is assembling for his administration. Mr. Clemons is Senior Fellow and Director of the American Strategy Program at the New America Foundation. The American Strategy Program at the New America Foundation aims to promote a new American internationalism that combines a tough-minded realism about America's interests in the world with a pragmatic idealism about the kind of world order best suited to America's democratic way of life. Mr. Clemons also is the force behind the popular blog, The Washington Note, and he writes frequently on matters of foreign policy, defense, and international economic policy. His work has appeared in many of the major leading op-ed pages, journal, and magazines around the world. He has served as Executive Vice President of the Economic Strategy Institute, Senior Policy Advisor on Economic and International Affairs to Senator Jeff Bingaman (D-NM) and was the first Executive Director of the Nixon Center. Before coming to the New America Foundation, Mr. Clemons served for seven years as Executive Director of the Japan America Society of Southern California, and co-founded with Chalmers Johnson the Japan Policy Research Institute, of which he remains Director. He is also a Board Member of the Global Policy Innovations Program at the Carnegie Council on Ethics and International Affairs and a member of the board of the Citizens for Global Solutions Education Fund.

Dr. Martha Olney on the indebtedness of America. Dr. Olney is Adjunct Professor of Economics at the University of California, Berkeley and is a nationally recognized distinguished teacher. She is recipient of the Distinguished Teaching Award from U.C. Berkeley, the Jonathan Hughes Prize for Excellence in Teaching Economic History from the Economic History Association, and the Distinguished Teaching Award from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, and was recognized in 2007 by the Stavros Center for Free Enterprise and Economics Education of Florida State University as one of the nation s Great Teachers of Economics. She is the author or co-author of several economics textbooks. Her research interests are consumer spending and indebtedness.

November 30th, 2008
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Dr. Stephen Cohen on the Mumbai attacks. Dr. Cohen is a Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution who specializes in the study and analysis of India, Pakistan and South Asian security and nuclear proliferation issues. He was previously Professor of Political Science and History, and Founder-Director of the Program in Arms Control, Disarmament, and International Security, University of Illinois-Urbana. He was a Member of the Policy Planning Staff, U.S. Department of State (1985-87). He is the author of a number of books, including "The Idea of Pakistan" and "India: emerging power."

Chris Fair on the Mumbai attacks. Dr. Fair is a Washington, DC-based analyst of South Asian political and military affairs at the USIP s Center for Conflict Analysis and Prevention. Prior to joining USIP in April 2004, she was an associate political scientist at the RAND Corporation. Much of her research has been concerned with security competition between India and Pakistan, Pakistan s internal security, analyses of the causes of terrorism, and U.S. strategic relations with India and Pakistan. Her new book is "Cuisines of the Axis of Evil and Other Irritating States: A Dinner Party Approach to International Relations, " in which Dr. Fair tells how she has eaten her way through some of the world's most troubled regions. The book has been described by terror expert Peter Bergen as "laugh-out-loud-funny; a shrewd primer on some of the more unsavory regimes the world has to offer, and a savory rendering of their cookery. Chris Fair by turns channels Richard Holbrooke, Steven Colbert, and Elizabeth David as she whisks up up a truly original contribution in the field of international relations and cook books.

Winslow Wheeler on the new Defense team and the prospects for reform. Mr. Wheeler worked on national security issues for 31 years for members of the U.S. Senate and for the U.S. General Accounting Office (GAO). In the Senate, Wheeler worked for Jacob K. Javits, R-N.Y., Nancy L. Kassebaum, R-Kan., David Pryor, D-Ark., and Pete V. Domenici, R-N.M. While at the GAO, Wheeler directed comprehensive studies on the U.S. strategic-nuclear triad and the air campaign of Operation Desert Storm. Both studies found compelling evidence that prevailing conventional wisdom about the performance of both U.S. and foreign weapons systems, such as Soviet strategic nuclear delivery systems and U.S. high tech tactical weapons, was highly inflated and unsupported by the evidence available in the Department of Defense. In 2002, Wheeler authored an essay, under the pseudonym "Spartacus," about Congress' reaction to the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorists attacks, entitled "Mr. Smith Is Dead: No One Stands in the Way as Congress Lards Post-September 11 Defense Bills with Pork." When Senators complained about Wheeler's criticisms, he was invited to resign from his position with the Republican staff of the Senate Budget Committee. He is now a senior fellow and director of the Straus Military Reform Project at the Center for Defense Information. Wheeler is the author of The Wastrels of Defense: How Congress Sabotages U.S. Security."

November 23rd, 2008
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Dr. Richard Parker on the economy and associated politics. Dr. Parker teaches economics and public policy at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government, where he's also Senior Fellow at the Shorenstein Center. An Oxford-trained macroeconomist, he writes frequently for newspapers and magazines, including the New York Times, Washington Post, LA Times, Boston Globe, Chicago Tribune, Atlantic Monthly, Harpers, The Nation, American Prospect, Foreign Affairs, Le Monde, International Herald Tribune, and the Times of London. His most recent book is the award-winning intellectual biography of the late economist John Kenneth Galbraith, entitled "John Kenneth Galbraith: his life, his politics, his economics." In it, he traces not only the life and career of America's most famous and most widely read economist, but the complex and often subtle interaction of politics, economics, and economic theory since the 1930s. Princeton historian Sean Wilentz called the book "the best progressive history I've read in twenty years." Parker has worked in journalism, politics, and the private sector. He's a cofounder of Mother Jones, former managing editor of Ramparts, and currently serves on the editorial board of The Nation. He's also been a political advisor to Presidential candidate George McGovern and senators Ron Dellums, Edward Kennedy and John Glenn among others. In the early 1980s, he helped build Greenpeace from 2,000 to 600,000 members, helped Norman Lear launch People for the American Way, as well as working with the Sierra Club, the ACLU and others. Last Wednesday, Richard Parker chaired a forum at Harvard's Institute of Politics with Nobel Prize winner Joseph Stiglitz, entitled "Financial Re-Regulation: the Economics and the Politics."

Dr. Said Sheikh Samatar on the Somali pirates. Dr. Samatar is Professor of African history at Rutgers University and the editor-in-chief of the independent journal "Horn of Africa." He has published 40 articles and six books on Somalia, including his most recent, "Somalia: a Nation in Turmoil."

Dr. William Boone on the US Senator race in Georgia. Dr. Boone is a political science professor and Dean of Graduate Studies at Clark Atlanta University in Atlanta, Georgia. He is a recognized expert on all things political in the state of Georgia and has been closely following the Senatorial race there.

 

November 16th, 2008
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Katie Connolly on the inside with the McCain campaign. Ms. Connolly is a reporter for Newsweek magazine who covered the McCain campaign. Prior to becoming a Newsweek reporter, Connolly studied at Harvard, receiving a Masters in Public Policy from the Kennedy School of Government. Prior to that, she worked for the Australian government in politcal and foreign affairs. Ms. Connolly's reporting on the McCain campaign is part of a Newsweek special seven-part in-depth look behind the scenes of the campaign, entitled "Secrets of the 2008 Campaign." She was part of a special team of reporters who were granted year-long access on the condition that none of their findings would appear until after election day. "Secrets of 2008 Campaign" is now available on newsstands and online at Newsweek.com.

Mark Benjamin on what President Obama may do in terms of investgating torture conducting by the Bush administration, and how Bush may pre-empt them via pardons. Mr. Benjamin is an award-winning investigative reporter with Salon.com s Washington bureau. Since 2001, Benjamin has focused on national security issues with an emphasis on the plight of returning veterans and detainee abuse. He has been hailed for exposing problems caring for veterans at Walter Reed starting in early 2005 and also obtained for Salon the Army s entire Abu Ghraib investigative files. Benjamin has been a consultant for CBS 60 Minutes, a freelance on-air reporter for CNN and has appeared on all of the major television networks. His investigative reporting techniques have been chronicled in the Nieman Reports for The Nieman Foundation for Journalism at Harvard University. Benjamin is the winner of a Raymond Clapper Memorial Award for the best reporting from Washington, a Fourth Estate Award from the American Legion, a Mental Health Media Award from the National Mental Health Association, an Outstanding Media Coverage award from the National Gulf War Resource Center, a GLAAD Media Award for Outstanding Digital Journalism, a Project Censored award and was twice a finalist for both the Online News Association s Online Journalism Awards. He has an article at Salon on the forthcoming Obama adminisration plans to investigate the Bush administration's use of torture and the liklihood that the outgoing president will issue many blanket pardons on his way out the door.

Dan Neil on the state of the automobile industry. Mr Neil is an automotive columnist for the Los Angeles Times, who won the Pulitzer Prize for Criticism in 2004. The Pulizter board praised his: "one of a kind reviews of automobiles, blending technical expertise with offbeat humor and astutue cultural criticism." Prior to coming to the Los Angeles Times, Mr. Neil wrote for the New York Times, Autoweek magazine Car and Driver, among others. Besides the Pulitzer prize, Dan Neil has also won the Ken Purdy Award for Excellence in Automotive Journalism, from the International Motor Press Association, 2001. His work was selected for Houghton Mifflin's Best American Sports Writing, 2002.

November 9th, 2008
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David Sirota on Obama's progressive political mandate. David Sirota is a political organizer and nationally syndicated newspaper columnist and bestselling author, who has worked in state and national politics all over America. His column runs weekly in the Denver Post, San Francisco Chronicle, and Seattle Times, as well as in other newspapers. He is a senior fellow at the Campaign for America's Future and the founder of the Progressive States Network both nonpartisan research institutions. His first book, Hostile Takeover, was a New York Times bestseller. His new book, widely acclaimed, is "The Uprising: an Unauthorized Tour of the Populist Revolt Scaring Wall Street and Washington." He has a new article out urging Barack Obama to implement a progressive agenda for America.

Michael Lind on the Obama presidency, the changing political landscape and the future of the Republican part. Michael Lind is the Whitehead Senior Fellow at the New America Foundation. He is the author of a number of books, including Made in Texas: George W. Bush and the Southern Takeover of American Politics and What Lincoln Believed. His ground-breaking study of American grand strategy, The American Way of Strategy: U.S. Foreign Policy and the American Way of Life was published by Oxford University Press in October 2006. Mr. Lind has been an editor or staff writer for The New Yorker, Harper s Magazine, and The New Republic. From 1991 to 1994, he was executive editor of The National Interest. Mr. Lind has written for The Atlantic Monthly, Prospect (U.K.), The New York Times Magazine, The Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, The Financial Times, and other leading publications. In a new article published at Salon.com, Michael Lind suggests that Barack Obama may join Washington, Lincoln and Franklin Delano Roosevelt on the short list of American presidents who... presided over the refounding of the United States, what Lind calls "the fourth republic."

Max Blumenthal on how Obama's presidency may activate right-wing extremists in the United States. Max Blumental is an award winning journalist and videographer whose work has appeared in The Nation, Salon, The American Prospect the Washington Monthly, The Daily Beast and other publications. He is a fellow at the Nation Institute and a research fellow for Media Matters for America. His blog is maxblumenthal.com. For the past four years he has covered right-wing political movements in America. His YouTube videos have received over a million hits. He has a new article out on how the election of Barack Obama may energize the extreme right.

November 2nd, 2008
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Joe Conason on the presidental election. Joe Conason is a journalist, best-selling author and political commentator. He is National Correspondent for The New York Observer and a weekly columnist for the Oberver and for Salon.com. He is the Director of the Nation Institute's Investigative Fund and the former Investigative Editor for The American Prospect magazine. His books include Big Lies: The Right-Wing Propaganda Machine and How It Distorts the Truth and Raw Deal: How the Bush Republicans plan to Destroy Social Security and the Legacy of the New Deal. His most recent book is It Can Happen Here: Authoritarian Peril in the Age of Bush. His writing and reporting have appeared in many publications, including Harpers, The Guardian, The Nation, and The New Republic. He was a regular guest on The Al Franken Show.

Ron Suskind is a Pulitzer Prize-winning author and journalist, whose coverage and analysis of the Bush administration has been acclaimed for its unique insight. Suskind was the senior national-affairs writer for The Wall Street Journal from 1993 to 2000. He is currently a distinguished visiting scholar at Dartmouth and writes for various national publications, including the New York Times Magazine and Esquire. In 2004, two-weeks before the November election, Ron Suskind published, in the New York Times Magazine, what is now recognized as perhaps the seminal article on the inner workings and psychology of the Bush adminstration, entitled "Without a Doubt: Faith, Certainty and the Presidency of George W. Bush." He is the author of a number of books, including the best-sellers "The Price of Loyalty: George W. Bush, the White House and the Education of Paul O'Neill" and "The One Per-Cent Doctrine." His new book is "The Way of the World," which breaks important news, including an account of how the Bush White House tasked the CIA to forge a document linking Saddam's Iraq to 9/11 and that the Bush administration knew well in advance of the invasion that there were no WMDs in Iraq. In the midst of the current financial meltdown, Suskind has developed a kind of Unified Theory of Everything, which purports that the same Bush/Cheney ideology that led to war and ruined America's strategic position internationally is also the central factor which has led to financial catastrophe and devastated America's standing in world's economy.

Jane Mayer on the selection of Sarah Palin as the Vice Presidential nominee. Ms. Mayer is the co-author of two best-selling narrative non-fiction books, LANDSLIDE: THE UNMAKING OF THE PRESIDENT, 1984-1988, and STRANGE JUSTICE: THE SELLING OF CLARENCE THOMAS, both of which received glowing reviews, and the latter of which was a finalist for the National Book Award. She is a Washington-based staff writer for The New Yorker, specializing in political and investigative reporting. Before that, she was a senior writer and front page editor for The Wall Street Journal, as well as the Journal's first female White House correspondent. Her new book, a New York Times best-seller, is "The Dark Side: The Inside Story of How The War on Terror Turned into a War on American Ideals," described as "a chronicle of one of the most disturbing chapters in American history, one that will serve as the lasting legacy of the George W. Bush presidency." Jane Mayer has a current article in the New Yorker which tells the story of how Governor Sarah Palin came to be Vice Presidential nominee on the McCain ticket.

October 26th, 2008
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Robert Kuttner on what President Obama will face, if elected. Robert Kuttner is the co-founder and coeditor of The American Prospect, a Boston Globe columnist, a media commentator, and a contributor to many publications. Robert Kuttner was formerly an assistant to the legendary I.F. Stone, a chief investigator for the Senate Banking Committee, Washington Post staff writer, economics editor for The New Republic and wrote a column for Business Week for 20 years. Kuttner's decades-long intellectual and political project has been to revive the politics and economics of harnessing capitalism to serve a broad public interest. His books include Everything for Sale, The End of Laissez-Faire and his recent The Squandering of America. Robert Kuttner's latest book, his eighth, is Obama's Challenge: America's Economic Crisis and the Power of a transformative presidency. The prominent Harvard economist Richard Parker has said of Obama's Challenge: "This is a vitally important book which shows the sheer magnitude of the challenge an Obama presidency will face. Obama must confront enormous damage that's been done over the past 40 years by heedless business deregulation, careless globalization, massive deficits, environmental neglect, arrogant unilateral use of military power, an increasingly regressive tax system, and most importantly, a relentless denigration of the value of government itself by those in the highest public offices. These extraordinary problems require an extraordinarily gifted leader--and Kuttner is willing here to affirm that Barack Obama might well be that person, offering us the map by which President Obama (and we) might chart a truly tranformative presidency."

David Freeman on California Proposition 7. David Freeman is a leading authority on the production, management and delivery of energy to large populations. He has had the ear of federal officials since the days of JFK and helped bring about the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) under Nixon. He headed the Tennessee Valley Authority, the nation's largest nuclear program, under Jimmy Carter. From New York to Los Angeles, Freeman has headed agencies and utilities companies, continually working to make utilities more environmentally safe, more efficient, and more cost-friendly to the customer. He is currently president of the commission overseeing the Port of Los Angeles. David Freeman is the author of "Energy: The New Era" and "Winning Our Energy Independence (and Energy Insider Shows How).

Joe Bageant on the disaffected white poor and working class who so often vote against their own interests. Mr. Bageant is the author of the critically acclaimed book ""Deer Hunting with Jesus: Dispatches from America's Class War," which has been described by the American Prospect as Informative, infuriating, terrifying and scintillating." Joe Bageant writes an online column, available at his webstie, www.joebageant.com, that has made him a cult hero among gonzo-journalism junkies and progressives. He was featured in the BBC/Owl documentary The Vision: Americans on America, in which he comments on America s long history of religious fundamentalism. Until recently he worked as a senior editor for the Primedia History Magazine Group. Bageant and his wife recently downsized their lives in America so that Joe could spend half the year in Belize, where he writes and sponsors a small development project with the Black Carib families of Hopkins Village. Mark Crispin Miller says of "Deer Hunting with Jesus:" this book sheds a devastating light on Bush & Co.'s notorious 'base,' i.e. America's white working class, whose members have been ravaged by the very party that purports to take their side. Meanwhile, the left has largely turned them out, or even laughed at their predicament. Of their degraded state and, therefore, ours Joe Bageant writes like an avenging angel.

 

October 19th, 2008
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James Bamford is an acclaimed journalist specializing in national security issues. He is the author of the bestselling books "Body of Secrets," "The Puzzle Palace" and "A Pretext for War: 9/11, Iraq and the Abuse of America's Intelligence Agencies." His writing includes investigative cover stories for The New York Times Magazine, the Washington Post and the Los Angeles Times Magazine. His work has appeared in many other publications, nationally and internationally. His reporting in Rolling Stone, entitled "The Man Who Sold the War," won the 2005 National Magazine Award. He was formerly an investigative producer for ABC s World News Tonight with Peter Jennings and a distinguished visiting professor at the University of California at Berkeley. His new book, just out with some blockbuster revelations, is entitled "The Shadow Factory: inside the ultra-secret NSA, from 9/11 to spying on America."

David Cay Johnston is a Pultizer Prize-winning New York Times investigative reporter who has spent his 40-year career exposing collusion between government officials and private sector entities as they enrich the rich and ignore consequences for middle-class laborers and the poor. In his remarkable career, in which he has won many awards, including the Pulitzer and the George Polk Award, he has hunted down a killer the police failed to catch, exposed LAPD abuses, caused two television stations to lose their licenses over news manipulations, and revealed Donald Trump s true net worth. He has uncovered so many tax dodges that he has been called the de facto chief tax enforcement officer of the United States. His last book, Perfectly Legal, was a New York Times bestseller and honored as Book of the Year by the journalism organization Investigative Reporters and Editors. His most recent book, Free Lunch: How the Wealthiest Americans Enrich Themselves at Government Expense (and Stick You With the Bill), is a broad examination of shocking collusion and unfairness, ranging from subsidies for professional sports stadiums to secret payouts to multinational corporate chief executives. Free Lunch has special relevance today in light of our current economic calamity and the massive bail-outs for Wall Street, in which, as Johnston's title says, the wealthiest Americans have enriched themselves at government expense and stuck you with the bill.

October 12th, 2008
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Robert Baer on US foreign policy in the Middle East and his new book, "The Devil We Know." Robert Baer spent twenty years running agents from inside the CIAs Directorate of Operations, from 1976 to 1997, working against Hizballah, Al-Qaeda, and other terrorist organizations. He was considered by Seymour Hersh as "perhaps the best on-the-ground field officer in the Middle East." Robert Baer is the author of two New York Times bestsellers: Sleeping with the Devil, about the Saudi royal family and its relationship with the United States; and See No Evil, which recounts Baer's years as a top CIA operative. See No Evil was the basis for the acclaimed film Syriana, which earned George Clooney an Oscar for his portrayal of Mr. Baer. Robert Baer writes regularly for Time.com and has contributed to Vanity Fair, the Wall Street Journal, and the Washington Post. He is considered one of the world's foremost authorities on the Middle East. His new book, just out, is "The Devil We Know: Dealing with the New Iranian Superpower."

Dr. James Galbraith on the economic crisis facing America and the world, and his new book, "The Predator State." Dr. Galbraith teaches economics at the LBJ School at the University of Texas, Austin, at which he is also the Director of "The Inequality Project." Galbraith serves as Chair of the Board of Economists for Peace and Security. He writes a column called "Econoclast" for Mother Jones, and occasional commentary in many other publications, including The Texas Observer, The American Prospect, and The Nation. His new book is "The Predator State: how conservatives abandoned the free market and why liberals should too." Nobel Prize winning economist Dr. Joseph Stiglitz has said of this book, "The Predator State shows how to break the spell that conservatives have cast over the minds of liberals (and everyone else) for many years." Sidney Blumenthal says of Dr. Galbraith, "Where others are lost groping in the shadows, James K. Galbraith sees the big picture. His writing is like a torch that guides us through the cave of the present into the light."

October 5th, 2008
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Nomi Prins on the economic crisis and bail-out. Nomi Prins is a journalist, and a Senior Fellow at Demos, a public policy think tank based in New York City. Nomi writes and speaks on economic policy, Wall Street, social security, and the political/regulatory environment Her books include Other People s Money: The Corporate Mugging of America, based on her extensive international finance career which fueled this devastating expose into corporate corruption, political collusion and Wall Street deception. and Jacked: How Conservatives Are Picking Your Pocket (Whether You Voted for Them or Not), covers her trip around America talking to people about their wallets and lives; card by card, issue by issue. Her articles have appeared in The New York Times, Newsday, Fortune, Mother Jones, Slate.com, The Guardian UK, The Nation.com and The American Prospect. Before becoming a journalist, she served as a managing director of Goldman Sachs in New York from March 2000 to March 2002. Prior to that position, she ran the analytics group at Bear Stearns, London from February 1993 to February 2000.

Susan Jacoby on the Vice Presidential debate. Susan Jacoby is the author of eight books, most recently Freethinkers: A History of American Secularism, which was named a Notable Book of 2004 by The Washington Post Book World and The Times Literary Supplement. Her new book, just published, is "The Age of American Unreason." Susan Jacoby began her career as a reporter at the Washington Post and has been featured in a number of media outlets, including Bill Moyer's PBS television program.

Scott Horton on the newly revived US Attorney firing scandal. Mr. Horton is a writer, analyst and attorney known for his work in international law, human rights and the law of armed conflict. He is a professor at Columbia Law School, the author of over 100 articles and is a contributing editor at Harpers in legal affairs and national security. His Harpers weblog, No Comment, is highly regarded and covers issues ranging from American law and politics to international affairs.

September 28th, 2008
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Roger Morris on the increasingly alarming situation in Pakistan. Roger Morris served on the senior staff of the National Security Council under Presidents Johnson and Nixon until resigning over the invasion of Cambodia. An award-winning investigative journalist and historian, he is the author of several books, including "Richard Milhous Nixon: The Rise of an American Politician." His history of U.S. policy and covert intervention in South Asia and the Middle East, entitled "Shadows of the Eagle," will be published by Knopf.

Dr. Robert Pollin on the economic crisis. Dr. Pollin is the Political Economy Research Institute's founding Co-Director and Professor of Economics at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Professor He is the author of the books "Contours of Descent: U.S. Economic Fractures and the Landscape of Global Austerity" and "The Macroeconomics of Saving, Finance, and Investment. Pollin's main areas of research are financial macroeconomics and political economy. Professor Pollin is actively engaged in economic policy work, serving as a consultant on living wage proposals in a number of U.S. cities. Some of that work is presented in THE LIVING WAGE: BUILDING A FAIR ECONOMY (co-authored with Stephanie Luce, paperback edition 2000), and in the two studies included in the PERI Web site, for the cities of New Orleans and Santa Monica, California. Other work in the area of economic policy includes serving as a consultant to the United Nations Development Program in Bolivia and as a member of the U.S. Government's Capital Formation Subcouncil of the Competitiveness Policy Council.

INTERVIEWED WITH

Dr. Michael Pereleman is a Professor of Economics at California State University at Chico. He is the author of twenty highly-regarded books on economics, society and politics, including Class Warfare in the Information Age, The Natural Instability of Markets, The Pathology of the U.S. Economy, and Steal This Idea. His most recent book, "The Confiscation of American Prosperity: From Right-Wing Extremism and Economic Ideology to the Next Great Depression," has taken on a dramatic prescience in light of the economic crisis and bail-out. In that book Dr. Perelman shows that in the last three decades there has been a conscious and directed redistribution of wealth in America, from the poor and middle-class to the wealthy, which has been greater than occured during the Russian and Chinese communist revolutions combined. Dr. Pereleman's forthcoming new book, "The Invisible Handcuffs," deconstructs Adam Smith and turns the "miracle of the maketplace" on its head. Dr. Pereleman's blog is "Unsettling Economics: a progressive look at economics and the rest of the screwed up world."

Bruce Fein on America's post-consitutional crisis. Mr. Fein is a constitutional lawyer who formerly served as associate deputy attorney general under the Reagan administration, general counsel of the Federal Communications Commission, research director for the Joint Congressional Committee on Covert Arms Sales to Iran, and member of the American Bar Association's Task Force on Presidential signing statements. He has authored several volumes on the United States Supreme Court, the United States Constitution, and international law, helped write the articles of impeachment for President Nixon and President Clinton, and is frequently cited by the New York Times, The Financial Times, The Washington Post, Newsweek, and other national publications. Democrats and Republicans continue to invite him to tesify before Congress and administrative agencies. Mr. Fein will be speaking at a forum entitled "Democracy in Distress: Addressing the Legacy of Abuse of Power" at the Museum of Contemporary Art in downtown LA on Oct. 1st at 7:00. The forum will be hosted by the Common Cause institute. Bruce Fein is the author of a new book, entitled "Constitutional Peril: the Life and Death Struggle for Our Constitution and Democracy." This book attacks the various policies of the Bush administration and the failure of Congress to uphold its constitutional responsibilities as a check on the executive branch.

September 21st, 2008
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Dr. James Galbraith on the economic crisis facing America. Dr. Galbraith teaches economics and a variety of other subjects at the LBJ School at the University of Texas, Austin, at which he is also the Director of "The Inequality Project." Galbraith serves as a Senior Scholar of the Levy Economics Institute and as Chair of the Board of Economists for Peace and Security. He writes a column called "Econoclast" for Mother Jones, and occasional commentary in many other publications, including The Texas Observer, The American Prospect, and The Nation. His new book is "The Predator State: how conservatives abandoned the free market and why liberals should too." Nobel Prize winning economist Dr. Joseph Stiglitz has said of this book, "The Predator State shows how to break the spell that conservatives have cast over the minds of liberals (and everyone else) for many years."

INTERVIEWED WITH

Robert Kuttner is co-founder and co-editor of The American Prospect magazine, as well as a Distinguished Senior Fellow of the think tank Demos. He was a longtime columnist for Business Week, and continues to write columns in the Boston Globe. His magazine writing has appeared in The New York Times Magazine and Book Review, The Atlantic, The New Republic, The New Yorker, Dissent, Columbia Journalism Review, and Harvard Business Review. Robert Kuttner is the author of a number of books, Everything for Sale: The Virtues and Limits of Markets (1997). The book received a page one review in the New York Times Book Review. Of it, the late economist Robert Heilbroner wrote, "I have never seen the market system better described, more intelligently appreciated, or more trenchantly criticized than in Everything for Sale." His other books include The End of Laissez-Faire (1991); The Life of the Party (1987); The Economic Illusion (1984); and Revolt of the Haves (1980). Robert Kuttner's latest book, his seventh, is The Squandering of America, exploring the political roots of America's narrowing prosperity and the systemic risks facing the U.S. economy. He is working on a new book on the challenge of regulating global capitalism.

Dr. Philip Butler on McCain's fitness for holding the office of President of the United States. Dr. Butler is a 1961 graduate of the United States Naval Academy and a former light-attack, carrier pilot. In 1965 he was shot down over North Vietnam where he spent eight years as a prisoner of war. He is a highly decorated combat veteran who was awarded two Silver Stars, two Legion of Merits, two Bronze Stars and two Purple Heart medals. After his repatriation in 1973 he earned a PhD in sociology from the University of California at San Diego and became a Navy Organizational Effectiveness consultant. He completed his Navy career in 1981 as a professor of management at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California. Phil then founded Camelot Enterprises, a management seminar, professional speaking and consulting services business. As a professional keynote speaker he told his dramatic and inspirational story of how POW's were able to survive and succeed. Today Phil has retired as a speaker and mentors business and organization leaders. He serves as a trustee for the Big Sur Land Trust, a Docent at Point Lobos State Reserve, and is a peace and justice activist with Veterans for Peace.

Nate Silver on the presidential polling. Mr. Silver is the main force behind the polling analysis website "Fivethirtyeight.com," which has become a "go to" political information source and has been cited for the accuracy of its commentary and predictions by Chuck Todd and others. His principal occupation has been as a writer, analyst and partner at a sports media company called Baseball Prospectus, and he sees a similarity between political and sports analysis. "Both baseball and politics are data-driven industries," he says. 'But a lot of the time, that data might be used badly. In baseball, that may mean looking at a statistic like batting average when things like on-base percentage and slugging percentage are far more correlated with winning ballgames. In politics, that might mean cherry-picking a certain polling result or weaving together a narrative that isn't supported by the demographic evidence." His website is named after the number of electors in the electoral college and is all spelled out: www.fivethirtyeight.com."

September 14th, 2008
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Senator Lincoln Chafee on the Presidential race and his decision, as a life-long Republican, to support Barrak Obama. Senator Chafee served in the United States Senate as the Republican senator from Rhode Island from 1999 to 2007. He was the only Republican in the Senate to have voted against the use of force in Iraq. He is pro-choice, in favor of gay rights, pro-environment, and opposes the death penalty. After being defeated for re-election in 2006, he left the Republican party and became an independent. Currently, he is a distinguished visiting fellow at Brown University, and he has been mentioned as a candidate for governor of Rhode Island in 2010. He has endorsed Barrak Obama for President of the United States and is involved in the J-Street Project, a pro-Israel peace lobby. He is the author of a new book, "Against the Tide: How a Compliant Congress Empowered a Reckless President," described as a behind the scenes look into what happened as catastrophic decisions were taken by an extremist president, while the congress abdicated it's oversight responsibilities. In this book, Chafee sounds a wake-up call to all Americans, by challenging our government to strive, as Abraham Lincoln once articulated, to elevate the condition of men.

Michael Lind on the presidential race. Mr. Lind is the Whitehead Senior Fellow at the New America Foundation. He is the author of a number of books, including Made in Texas: George W. Bush and the Southern Takeover of American Politics and What Lincoln Believed. His ground-breaking study of American grand strategy, The American Way of Strategy: U.S. Foreign Policy and the American Way of Life was published by Oxford University Press in October 2006. Mr. Lind has been an editor or staff writer for The New Yorker, Harper s Magazine, and The New Republic. From 1991 to 1994, he was executive editor of The National Interest. Mr. Lind has written for The Atlantic Monthly, Prospect (U.K.), The New York Times Magazine, The Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, The Financial Times, and other leading publications.

Dr. Nouriel Roubini on the economic crisis facing the United States. Dr. Roubini is an internationally known expert in the field of international macroeconomics. He is a Professor of Economics at New York University s Stern School of Business and is also the co-founder and Chairman of Roubini Global Economics LLC, an economic and geo-strategic information service named one of the best economics websites in the world by Business Week, Forbes, the Wall Street Journal and The Economist. The website url is www.rgemonitor.com. Dr. Roubini served as a senior adviser to the White House Council of Economic Advisers and the U.S. Treasury Department; has published numerous policy papers and books on key international macroeconomic issues; and is regularly cited as an authority in the media. He received his Ph.D. in Economics at Harvard University, and was previously a faculty member at Yale University.

September 7th, 2008
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Gloria Steinem on Republican Vice Presidential nominee Sarah Palin. Gloria Steinem is an American feminist icon, journalist, author and women's rights advocate. She is the founder and original publisher of Ms. magazine, and was an influential co-convener of the National Women's Political Caucus. She is one of America's pre-eminent public intellectuals and is know worldwide for her work on gender, racial, and other civil inequity issues. She is co-founder of the Women's Media Center and the author of numerous books, many of them classics, including "Outrageous Acts and Everyday Rebellions," "Revolution from Within" and "Moving Beyond Words." Her latest book is "Doing Sixty and Seventy." She had an op-ed published last week in the Los Angeles Times regarding Republican Vice Presidential Nominee Sarah Palin.

Michael Cohen on the Democratic and Republican conventions. Mr. Cohen is a senior research fellow at the New America Foundation and the author of Live From the Campaign Trail: The Greatest Presidential Campaign Speeches of the 20th Century and How They Shaped Modern America. He has served as a speechwriter for Senator Chris Dodd and former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Bill Richardson, and has volunteered for a number of Democratic presidential campaigns. He blogs regularly on Campaign Stops at the New York Times' website.

Shannyn Moore on Sarah Palin. Ms. Moore is the top rated progressive radio broadcaster of Anchorage, Alaska and pioneered the political talk radio for women in the 49th State. Born and raised in Homer, Alaska, Shannyn grew up hunting, commercial fishing, and living a rural lifestyle. She attended seminary in Seattle and is known from her radio program as a progressive liberal, who is at the same time a fiscal conservative and a Constitutionalist critical of both political parties. On her program, she has interviewed Republican Vice-Presidential Nominee Governor Sarah Palin numerous times, as well as many other figues on the American political scene. She has appeared as a guests on numerous radio and television programs in the US and Canada. She resides in Anchorage.

August 31st, 2008
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Steve Clemons on the Democratic convention and related foreign policy issues. Steve Clemons is Senior Fellow and Director of the American Strategy Program at the New America Foundation. The American Strategy Program at the New America Foundation aims to promote a new American internationalism that combines a tough-minded realism about America's interests in the world with a pragmatic idealism about the kind of world order best suited to America's democratic way of life. Mr. Clemons also is the force behind the popular blog, The Washington Note. Mr. Clemons writes frequently on matters of foreign policy, defense, and international economic policy. His work has appeared in many of the major leading op-ed pages, journal, and magazines around the world. He has served as Executive Vice President of the Economic Strategy Institute, Senior Policy Advisor on Economic and International Affairs to Senator Jeff Bingaman (D-NM) and was the first Executive Director of the Nixon Center. Before coming to the New America Foundation, Mr. Clemons served for seven years as Executive Director of the Japan America Society of Southern California, and co-founded with Chalmers Johnson the Japan Policy Research Institute, of which he remains Director. He is also a Board Member of the Global Policy Innovations Program at the Carnegie Council on Ethics and International Affairs and a member of the board of the Citizens for Global Solutions Education Fund.

Ambassador Peter Galbraith on American politics and the Georgia/Russia conflict. Ambassador Galbraith is a former United States diplomat. Ambassado Galbraith worked for Senator Claiborne Pell of Rhode Island, and served on the staff of the United States Senate Foreign Relations Committee from 1979 to 1993, where he published many reports about Iraq and took a special interest in Kurdistan. In 1993, he was appointed U.S. Ambassador to Croatia by President Bill Clinton. He later served as United Nations ambassador in East Timor. He taught at the National War College (1999, 2001-2003). Galbraith favors the independence, real or de facto, of Kurdistan, and has worked with Kurdish leaders, including Jalal Talabani and Massoud Barzani, toward that end. In 2003, he resigned from U.S. government after 24 years of service in order to be able to criticize U.S. Iraq policy more freely. He is currently senior diplomatic fellow at the Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation. His most recent book is The End of Iraq: How American Incompetence Created a War Without End (2006), which argues that the U.S.'s "main error" in Iraq has been "wishful thinking" and advocates acceptance of a "partition" of Iraq into three parts as part a new U.S. "strategy based on the reality of Iraq." He was a personal friend of former Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto who was assassinated in Pakistan in December of 2007.

Phil Giraldi on the Ron Suskind book and the Russia/Georgia conflict. Giraldi was, for 17 years, a CIA operations officer specializing in counter-terrorism, who served in Europe and the Middle East. He now works in the private sector with Cannistraro Associates doing security consulting and he writes a column in the American Conservative on international security issues. Giraldi was one of the few who early-on expressed concern in his column and elsewhere that those who brought us the war with Iraq--the neocons--were focusing considerable attention on Iran. He reported in 2005 that Vice President Cheney had tasked StratCom to develop a plan of attack, utilizing conventional and nuclear forces, against that country. He has a new column at Antiwar.com, entitled "Clueless In Gaza," on the complete failure of Bush's public diplomacy.
 

August 24th, 2008
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Ari Berman on the Democratic convention. Mr. Berman is a contributing writer for The Nation, covering national politics, focusing on the 2008 presidential election. He is also an Investigative Journalism Fellow at The Nation Institute and is currently in Denver covering the Democratic Convention. His articles about the presidential race may be read at www.thenation.com.

John Ackerman on the increasing problem of crime and police corruption in Mexico. Dr. Ackerman is a professor at the National Autonomous University of Mexico's Institute for Legal Research in Mexico City. His writing has appeared in a number of publications, including the Washington Post and the San Francisco Chronicle.

Azziz Huq on Attorney General Mukasey's effort to radially expand the power of the FBI, including the power to initiate investigations without probable cause. Mr. Huq directs the Liberty and National Security Project at New York University's Brennan Center for Justice. He graduated summa cum laude from both the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (1996), and Columbia Law School (2001). Mr. Huq clerked for Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg during the October 2003 Term of the Supreme Court He is a 2006 recipient of the Carnegie Scholars Fellowship and has published scholarship in the Columbia Law Review, the Yearbook of Islamic and Middle Eastern Law, and the New School's Constellations Journal. He has written for a number of publications, including The Legal Times and the American Prospect. He has worked with the International Crisis Group in Pakistan, Afghanistan and Nepal on legal and constitutional reform issues. He is co-author of Unchecked and Unbalanced: Presidential Power in a Time of Terror, which has just been published in a new paperback edition.

August 17th, 2008
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Dr. Anatol Lieven on the Russian/Georgian conflict. Dr. Lieven is a British author, journalist, policy analyst and professor. He is presently a Bernard L. Schwartz fellow and American Strategy Program fellow at the New America Foundation, where he focuses on US global strategy and the War on Terrorism. He is the Associated Scholar of the Transnational Crisis Project and Chair of International Relations and Terrorism Studies at King's College London. Between 2000 and 2005, he was a Senior Associate for Foreign and Security policy at Carnegie Endowment for International Peace as Senior Associate for Foreign and Security policy in the Russia and Eurasia Center. Previously a journalist with the Financial Times covering Central Europe, with The Times of London covering Pakistan, Afghanistan, the former Soviet Union, and Russian. He was also with the International Institute for Strategic studies in London, serving as an expert on the former Soviet Union, and on contemporary warfare. He is the winner of the George Orwell Prize for Political Writing and the author of a number of books, including "Chechnya: Tombstone of Russian Power," "Ukraine and Russian: Fraternal Rivals," "America Right or Wrong: the anatomy of American Nationalism" and his latest is "Ethical Realism,' authored with John Hulsman.

interviewed with

Dr. Pavel Felgenhauer is a Moscow-based defense analyst, columnist and journalist. He previously served as researcher and senior research officer in the Soviet Academy of Sciences (Moscow) and received his Ph.D. from the Soviet Academy of Sciences in 1988. Dr. Felgenhauer has published numerous articles on topics dealing with Russian foreign and defense policies, military doctrine, arms trade and the Russian military-industrial complex. In the early '90's, he wrote for Moscow's Nezavisimaya Gazeta, as Defense Analyst and Defense Correspondent. He was later a member of the editorial board and Chief Defense Correspondent for a Moscow daily Sevodnya. Since May 1994, till Oct. 2005 Felgenhauer has published a regular column on defense in the English language local daily The Moscow Times. In July 2006 after being more than six years an independent defense analyst Felgenhauer joined the staff of Novaya Gazeta. Felgenhauer continues to provide regular comments on Russia's defense-related problems to many other local and international media organizations.

Patrick Cockburn on the too often ignored reality on the ground in Iraq. Patrick Coburn is the Iraq correspondent for The Independent of London. He has visited Iraq countless times since 1977 and was recipient of the 2004 Martha Gellhorn Prize for war reporting as well as the 2006 James Cameron Memoria Award. He is the coauthor, with his brother, Andrew Cockburn, of "Saddam Hussein: An American Obsession" and the author of "Getting Russian Wrong: The End of Kremlinology," "The Broken Boy" and "The Occupatoin: War and Resistance in Iraq," which was short-listed for a National Book Critics Circle Award in 2007. His new book is "Muqtada: Muqtada al-Sadr, the Shia Revival, and the Struggle for Iraq." Seymour Hersh as said of Patrick Cockburn: "Patrick Cockburn is, quite simply, the best Western journalist at work in Iraq today. And now he comes forward to warn us that the end game there is near, and we'd better pay much more attention to Muqtada al-Sadr. Cockburn takes us behind the clich s and half-truths to describe a complicated political operative who will play a huge role in the power struggle that is sure to come."

August 10th, 2008
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Dr. Dmitri Trenin on the rising conflict between Russian and Georgeia. Colonel Trenin is a senior associate of the Carnegie Endowment, the deputy director of the Carnegie Moscow Center and chair of its Foreign and Security Policy Program. He has been with the Center since its inception in 1993. From 1993-97, Mr. Trenin held posts as a senior research fellow at the NATO Defense College in Rome, a visiting professor at the Free University of Brussels and a senior research fellow at the Institute of Europe in Moscow. He served in the Soviet and Russian armed forces from 1972 to 1993, including experience working as a liaison officer in the External Relations Branch of the Group of Soviet Forces Germany and as a staff member of the delegation to the U.S.-Soviet strategic nuclear arms control talks in Geneva from 1985 to 1991. He also taught at the Defense University in Moscow. Mr. Trenin has authored a number of books, including Russia s Restless Frontier: The Chechnya Factor in Post-Soviet Russia and The End of Eurasia: Russia on the Border Between Geopolitics and Globalization. His latest is Getting Russia Right: He edited, with Steven Miller, The Russian Military: Power and Policy (2006).

Dr. Richard Parker on the state of the American economy. Dr. Parker teaches economics and public policy at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government, where he's also Senior Fellow at the Shorenstein Center. An Oxford-trained macroeconomist, he writes frequently for newspapers and magazines, including the New York Times, Washington Post, LA Times, Boston Globe, Chicago Tribune, Atlantic Monthly, Harpers, The Nation, American Prospect, Foreign Affairs, Le Monde, International Herald Tribune, and the Times of London. His most recent book is the award-winning intellectual biography of the late economist John Kenneth Galbraith, entitled "John Kenneth Galbraith: his life, his politics, his economics." In it, he traces not only the life and career of America's most famous and most widely read economist, but the complex and often subtle interaction of politics, economics, and economic theory since the 1930s. Princeton historian Sean Wilentz called the book "the best progressive history I've read in twenty years", while conservative William F. Buckley named it the "best biography of the 20the century," and Thomas Frank in the NY Times called it "an absolutely required read for anyone hoping to understand the world we live in today." Parker has worked in journalism, politics, and the private sector. He's a cofounder of Mother Jones, former managing editor of Ramparts, and currently serves on the editorial board of The Nation. He's also been a political advisor to Presidential candidate George McGovern and senators Ron Dellums, Edward Kennedy, and Edward Markey, among others. In the early 1980s, he helped build Greenpeace from 2,000 to 600,000 members, helped Norman Lear launch People for the American Way, as well as working with the Sierra Club, the ACLU and others. He currently serves as national president of Americans for Democratic Action, and is working on a new book: Nixon's Ghosts--How Richard Nixon Created the World We Live in Today, and What We Must Do About It. Dr. Parker was featured in a NY Times economist roundtable last week, assessing the depth of the economic problems facing America.

Dr. Susan Shirk on China, the Olympics and the promise and perils that China faces in its push towards modernity and respect in the 21st century. Dr. Shirk is the director of the University of California system-wide Institute on Global Conflict and Cooperation and professor of political science at UC San Diego. Shirk first traveled to China in 1971 and has been doing research there ever since. During 1997-2000, Shirk served as Deputy Assistant Secretary of State in the Bureau of East Asia and Pacific Affairs, with responsibility for China, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Mongolia. She founded in 1993 and continues to lead the Northeast Asia Cooperation Dialogue, an unofficial track-two forum for discussions of security issues among defense and foreign ministry officials and academics from the United States, Japan, China, Russia and the Koreas. Shirk served as a member of the U.S. Defense Policy Board, the Board of Governors for the East-West Center (Hawaii), the Board of Trustees of the U.S.-Japan Foundation, and the Board of Directors of the National Committee on United States-China Relations. Shirk s publications include her books, How China Opened Its Door: The Political Success of the PRC s Foreign Trade and Investment Reforms; The Political Logic of Economic Reform in China; and Competitive Comrades: Career Incentives and Student Strategies in China. Her new book is, China: Fragile Superpower: How China's Internal Politics Could Derail its Peaceful Rise, which is just out in a new paperback edition, with an Olympics-focus introduction.

July 3rd, 2008
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Dr. Raymond Zelinskis on a possible resolution of the long-standing open anthrax case. Dr. Zelinskis is the Director of the Chemical and Biological Weapons Nonproliferation Program at the Monterey Institute's James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies Dr. Zelinskis has worked at the U.S. Office of Technology Assessment, the United Nations Industrial Development Organization, and the Center for Public Issues in Biotechnology at the University of Maryland Biotechnology Institute. In 1993, Dr. Zilinskas was appointed a William Foster Fellow at the U.S. Arms Control and Disarmament Agency, where he worked on biological and toxin warfare issues. He worked with the United Nations Special Commission (UNSCOM) for seven months. He is the author of Biological Warfare: Modern Offense and Defense and is co-editor of the Encyclopedia of Bioterrorism Defense. Currently, Dr. Zelinskis is writing a book on the former Soviet Union's biological warfare program, including its history, organization, intent, and accomplishments, which will be published by Harvard University Press in late 2008 or early 2009.

interviewed with

Dr. Allan Pearson is the Director of the Biological and Chemical Weapons Control Program at the Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation where his work focuses on biological weapons, chemical weapons, and WMD proliferation. holds a Ph.D in Biology from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Prior to joining the Center, Pearson worked as a Global Security, Science and Technology Fellow at the American Association for the Advancement of Science and at the Nuclear Threat Initiative at the Department of Homeland Security. While at DHS, he worked on the Biological and Chemical Countermeasures Portfolio in the Science and Technology Directorate. Previously, Pearson was a Research Fellow at Harvard University's Medical School and a post-doctoral Research Fellow at the American Cancer Society. Pearson's work has been published and cited in numerous publications, including Nonproliferation Review, Nature, and Science. He is editor of the book Incapacitating Biochemical Weapons: Promise or Peril? (November 2007). Dr. Pearson has made a public call for a full investigation of the anthrax crimes in the aftermath of the suicide of microbiologist Bruce Ivins.

Zachary Roth on the presidential race, with a focus on John McCain's top foreign policy advisor, a highly placed neocon who was an Iraq war promoter and friend of conman Ahmed Chalabi. Zachary Roth is a freelance journalist and a contributing editor to The Washington Monthly. He has written for The New Republic, Slate, Salon, Guardian America, The New York Observer, and Columbia Journalism Review, among others. His latest reporting, featured at Talking Points Memo.com, shows that John McCain's chief foreign policy advisor, Randy Scheunemann, has a disastrous record of error and failure. He was an Iraq war advocate and architect, a member of the Project for a New American Century and a "close friend" and promoter of Iraq war con-man Ahmad Chalabi.

Dr. Pervez Hoodbhoy on the worsening situation in Pakistan. Dr. Hoodbhoy is professor of physics at Quaid-e-Azam University, Islamabad where has taught for over 34 years. He holds a Ph.D in nuclear physics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and is the recipient of the Abdus Salam Prize for Mathematics, the Baker Award for Electronics, Faiz Ahmad Faiz Prize for contributions to education in Pakistan, and the UNESCO 2003 Kalinga Prize for the popularization of science. He is a member of the Permanent Monitoring Panel on Terrorism of the World Federation of Scientists. Dr Hoodbhoy is involved in social issues as well, such as: women's rights, environment, education, and nuclear disarmament. He is author of "Islam and Science: Religious Orthodoxy and the Battle for Rationality", now in seven languages. He has produced and directed several documentary films that have been widely viewed on national television which deal with political, nuclear, and scientific matters. Dr. Hoodbhoy has written a new article, " Anti-Americanism in Pakistan and the Taliban Menace," available online at dawn.com.

July 27th, 2008
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Scott McClellan on the White House "permanent campaign" and "culture of deception." Mr. McClellan served as White House press secretary from 2003 to 2006. before that he served as the principal deputy White House press secretary and as traveling press secretary for the bush-Cheney 2000 campaign. Earlier in his career, Mr. McClellan served as deputy communications director in the Texas governor's office and campaign manager for three successful statewide campaigns. He is now a senior adviser to a global technology firm and communications strategist. His best-selling and controversial book is "What Happened: Inside the Bush White House and Washington's Culture of Deception."

Tim Shorrock on the privatization of American intelligence services and how spying on American citizens may have been more widespread than previously know. Mr. Shorrock is an independent journalist who has written for a long list of magazines and newspapers, including Mother Jones, The Progressive, The Nation, Harper's and others. His writings and many of his interviews are available at his website, www.timshorrock.com. Tim Shorrock has been writing about US foreign policy, national security and corporate globalization for over 25 years. His new book, SPIES FOR HIRE, is the first account of the massive outsourcing of US intelligence that has taken place over the past 10 years. The book also tackles the issue of domestic surveillance, which he has focused on in a series of articles recently published in Salon.com, the latest of which is entitled "Exposing Bush's Historic Abuse of Power," which reveals the White House's active use of system called "Main Core" to spy on American citizens.

Ambassador Chas Freeman on the state of American foreign policy, particularly in vital and volatile region of the Middle East. Chas Freeman is a former US Ambassador to Saudi Arabia. In addition, he has been a Distinguished Fellow at the United States Institute of Peace, Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs, a Distinguished Fellow at the Institute for National Strategic Studies, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs, Charge/Deputy Chief of Mission at the American Embassy in both China and Thailand, Director of Chinese Affairs for the Department of State. He is a member of the American Academy of Diplomacy. He is the recipient of many honors, including the Department of Defense Meritorious service (Desert Shield/Desert Storm), the CIA Medallion (Desert Shield/Desert Storm), the Distinguished Honor Award (Desert Shield/Desert Storm), and the Presidential Meritorious Service Award. Ambassador Freeman is currently Chairman of Projects International, Inc.; the President of the Middle East Policy Council; Co-Chair of the US-China Policy Council; and Vice Chair of the Atlantic Council. He is the author of "The Arts of Power: Statecraft and Diplomacy" and "The Diplomat's Dictionary." He served as an advisor to the Iraq study group.

July 20th, 2008
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Dr. Jared Bernstein on the state of the American economy. Dr. Bernstein is senior economist and director of the Living Standards Program at the Economic Policy Institute in Washington, DC. His areas of research include income and wage inequality, technology s impact on wages and employment, low-wage labor markets and poverty, minimum wage analysis, and international comparisons. Between 1995 and 1996, he held the post of deputy chief economist at the U.S. Department of Labor. He has published extensively in popular and academic journals, including The American Prospect and the Huffington Post, and he is the coauthor of eight editions of The State of Working America. He holds a Ph.D. in Social Welfare from Columbia University and has written a number of books, the latest of which, recently published, is "Crunch: Why Do I Feel So Squeezed (and Other Unsolved Mysteries)."

Gershom Gorenberg on Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama's tour of the Middle East. Mr. Gorenberg is an internationally acclaimed author and journalist based in Israel. He is a senior correspondent for The American Prospect, whose book The End of Days: Fundamentalism and the Struggle for the Temple Mount was described by the Washington Post as "a clear-eyed and compelling account of the messianists, would-be prophets, and adventurers who have fixed their sights on Jerusalem's holy places." His previous book, "Shalom, Friend: the Life and Legacy of Yitzhak Rabin" is considered to be a definitive biography of the fallen Israeli leader, who was slain by an Israeli settler extremist. Gershom Gorenberg's most recent book is "The Accidental Empire: Israel and the Birth of the Settlements." Publishers' weekly said of this book: "An essential guide to understanding Israel's own contribution to its current tragic situation." His writing is available online at The American Prospect website and his blog "South Jerusalem."

James Bamford on the recent FISA revision and the extent and capabilities of the US government to spy on the American people. Mr. Bamford is the author of the bestselling books "Body of Secrets" and "The Puzzle Palace" and has written extensively on national security issues, including investigative cover stories for The New York Times Magazine, the Washington Post and the Los Angeles Times Magazine. His writing has appeared in many other publications, including the Atlantic Monthly. His reporting in Rolling Stone won the 2005 National Magazine Award. He was formerly an investigative producer for ABC s World News Tonight with Peter Jennings. His most recent book is A Pretext for War: 9/11, Iraq and the Abuse of America's Intelligence Agencies. He has a new book to be published this fall, entitled "The Shadow Factory: inside the ultra-secret NSA, from 9/11 to spying on America." His 2006 Atlantic Monthly article, "Big Brother is Listening" is being featured again on their website, because of the recent FISA revision, signed into law last Friday, which permits warrantless wiretapping of international communications and provided immunity for the telecommunication companies which illegally wiretapped American citizens for the Bush administration.

July 6th, 2008
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Roger Morris on the presidential race, Condoleezza Rice and more. Roger Morris served on the senior staff of the National Security Council under Presidents Johnson and Nixon until resigning over Nixon's invasion of Cambodia during the Vietnam war. He holds a PhD from Harvard in Government. An award-winning investigative journalist and historian, he is the author of several books, including "Richard Milhous Nixon: The Rise of an American Politician" and "The Money and the Power: the Making of Las Vegas." His in-depth analyses of Donald Rumsfeld and Robert Gates are available online at Counterpunch and TomDispatch. His history of U.S. policy and covert intervention in South Asia and the Middle East, entitled "Shadows of the Eagle," will be published by Knopf this year.

Dr. Robert Jay Lifton on America's use of torture and the recent revelation that the techniques were copied from the Chinese communists of the 1950's. Dr. Lifton is one of America's most acclaimed psycholigists, known for his studies of the psychological causes and effects of war and political violence and for his theory of thought reform. Robert Jay Lifton is the author of many important works including The Nazi Doctors, winner of the Los Angeles Times book prize; and Death in Life: Survivors of Hiroshima, winner of a National Book Award, Destroying the World to Save It: Aum Shinrikyo, Apocalyptic Violence, and the New Global Terrorism and Superpower Syndrome: America's Apocalyptic Confrontation with the World) on the apocalyptic nature of Bush's "war on terror." This book describes the irony of superpower vulnerability, how a "quest for omnipotence" drives the Bush administration and how our occupations of Afghanistan and Iraq are "atrocity producing situations." Dr. Lifton was recently quoted in a New York Times article entitled "China Inspired Interrogations at Guantanamo," in which it is revealed that torture techniques used in Guantanamo were "copied verbatim from a 1957 Air Force study of Chinese Communist techniques used during the Korean War to obtain confessions, many of them false, from American prisoners."

Adam Isacson on the recent release of Ingrid Betancourt is Director of the Columbia program at the Center for International Policy, an independent research and advocacy organization in Washington DC, which monitors security and U.S. military assistance to Latin America and the Caribbean. He has produced numerous publications on the subject, including the "Just the Facts" website and series of reference books on U.S.-Latin American military cooperation. Adam Isacson's study of U.S. policy and accompaniment of Colombia's peace process has brought him to Colombia over thirty times, including twelve of the country's thirty-two departments. The project continues to monitor U.S. military assistance, to document its impact on Colombia's conflict and society, and to promote peaceful alternatives.

June 29th, 2008
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Colonel Lawence Wilkerson on the recent hearing in the House of Representatives with David Addington, Vice President Cheney's Chief of Staff and John Yoo, the legal author of the foundation of the Bush torture policy set. Colonel Wilkerson was Secretary of State Colin Powell's Chief of Staff at the Department of State from August 2002 to January 2005. But, Colonel Wilkerson's career with General Colin L. Powell goes back much further--to in March 1989 at the U.S. Army s Forces Command in Atlanta, Georgia as his Deputy Executive Officer. He followed the General to his next position as Chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, serving as his special assistant. Upon Powell's retirement from active service in 1993, Colonel Wilkerson served as the Deputy Director and Director of the U.S. Marine Corps War College at Quantico, Virginia. Upon Wilkerson s retirement from active service in 1997, he began working for General Powell in a private capacity as a consultant and advisor. In December 2000, Secretary of State-designate Powell asked Wilkerson to join him in the Transition Office at the U.S. State Department and, later, upon his confirmation as Secretary of State, Secretary Powell moved Wilkerson to his Policy Planning Staff with responsibilities for East Asia and the Pacific, and legislative and political-military affairs. In June of 2002, the Director for Policy Planning, Ambassador Richard Haas, made Wilkerson the Associate Director. In August of 2002, Secretary Powell moved Wilkerson to the position of Chief of Staff of the Department. In October of 2005, Colonel Wilkerson, after considerable soul searching, went public to tell the truth of what he knew: that Vice President Cheney had provided the "guidance" that led to America's torture disgrace in Guantanamo, Abu Ghriab and elsewhere; and that Secretary Powell's February 2003 presentation to the UN security council was "the lowest point" of his life; saying " I participated in a hoax on the American people, the international community and the United Nations Security Council."

Paul Helmke on the recent Supreme Court decision regarding the regulation of guns in Washington DC. Mr. Helmke is president of the Washington, DC-based Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, a position he has held since July 1, 2006. He is a former mayor of Fort Wayne, Indiana and a former president of The United States Conference of Mayors. The Brady Campaign is the nation's largest, non-partisan, grassroots organization leading the fight to prevent gun violence. Working with its dedicated network of Million Mom March Chapters, the Campaign is devoted to creating an America free from gun violence, where all Americans are safe at home, at school, at work, and in our communities. Their website is Bradycenter.org.

Judith Todd on Robert Mugabe and the situation in Nigeria. Judith Todd is a human rights activist and author who was born and raised in what is now Zimbabwe and focuses her activism on that country. She is the daughter of Sir Garfield Todd, the liberal colonial Rhodesian Prime Minister, who ran the country from 1953 to 1958. Judith Todd later became a heroine of the struggle to liberate Rhodesia from the minority rule of white supremacist Ian Smith' regime. For her efforts, she was jailed by Smilth in 1972, force-fed during a hunger strike and then forced out the country to spend eight years in exile in England. She returned to Zimbabwe shortly before independence was achieved in 1980, and soon realized that, far from being the solution to Zimbabwe's ills, Robert Mugabe and his ruling Zanu party were increasingly becoming a serious problem. As the country slid into economic and social decay, Todd had a front-row view from her position as director of an international aid agency, the Zimbabwe Project Trust. In 2003 she became one of hundreds of thousands of Zimbabweans stripped of their citizenship and thus their right to vote by the Mugabe regime. At present she lives, exiled again, in Cape Town, South Africa. Over the first 25 years of Mugabe's rule, she kept journals, notes and copies of letters and documents from which she has compiled an intensely personal account of life in Zimbabwe, published to worldwide acclaim in her book "Through the Drakness: A Life in Zimbabwe." The Economist picked this book as one of their 2007 "Books of the Year," describing it as "a harrowing tale of courage and betrayal by a white heroine of the liberation struggle against Ian Smith and who has been punished and stripped of her citizenship with extraordinary vengefulness by Robert Mugabe for speaking out about his regime's abuses of power."

June 22nd, 2008
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Robert Scheer on his new book "The Pornography of Power." Mr. Scheer is a journalist, author and columnist, whose work has been published across the country for the past 30 years. Between 1964 and 1969 he was Vietnam correspondent, managing editor and editor in chief of Ramparts magazine. From 1976 to 1993 he served as a national correspondent for the Los Angeles Times, writing on diverse topics such as the Soviet Union, arms control, national politics and the military. In 1993 he launched a nationally syndicated column based at the Los Angeles Times, where he was named a contributing editor. That column ran weekly for the next 12 years and is now based at the San Francisco Chronicle. Scheer also directs the Privacy Project at the Annenberg School. Robert Scheer can be heard on KCRW's political discussion program "Left, Right and Center." After leaving the LA Times, Robert Scheer founded Truthdig, a web magazine that provides expert in-depth coverage of current affairs as well as other content assembled from a progressive point of view. Truthdig has won both the juried Webby Award and People s Voice Award in the category of Best Political Blog. Robert Scheer has written eight books, including The Five Biggest Lies Bush Told Us about Iraq, co-authored with his son Christopher, and Playing President: My Close Encounters with Nixon, Carter, Bush I and Clinton--and How They Did Not Prepare Me for George W. Bush. His latest book, just published, is "The Pornography of Power: How Defense Hawks Hijacked 9/11 and Weakened America," described as "an impassioned call for a new way of thinking about national defense."

Matt Yglesias on his new book "Heads in the Sand." Mr. Yglesias is a popular political writer, analyst and blogger whose work as appeared in numerous publications, including the New York Times Magazine, the American Prospect, the Atlantic Monthly, Talking Points Memo and Slate. While a student at Harvard, from which he graduated magna cum laude, he was the editor-in-chief of The Harvard Independent, a weekly newsmagazine. Yglesias started blogging in early 2002, while still at Harvard, focusing mainly on American politics and public policy issues. Yglesias joined the American Prospect as a writing fellow upon his graduation in 2003, subsequently becoming a staff writer. Yglesias is one of the few bloggers whose work is cited regularly on both sides of the blogosphere, receiving frequent mentions from liberals such as Duncan Black and Kevin Drum, and also from conservatives, particularly Andrew Sullivan. In fact, Sullivan takes nominations on his blog for the Yglesias Award, a tongue-in-cheek honor "for writers, politicians, columnists or pundits who actually criticize their own side, make enemies among political allies, and generally risk something for the sake of saying what they believe." His father is screenwriter and novelist Rafael Yglesias. "Heads In the Sand: How the Republicans Screw Up Foreign Policy and Foreign Policy Screws up the Democrats" is Matt Yglesias' first book and has just been published. With "Heads In the Sand," Matt Yglesias provides a starting point for politicians, policy-makers, pundits and citizens alike to return America to its role as leader of a peace-loving and copperative international community.

June 15th, 2008
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Matt Taibbi on his book "The Great Derangement." Matt Taibbi is an investigative journalist, political writer and author. He currently works at Rolling Stone where he authors a column called "Road Rage" for the print version, and an additional weekly online-only column called "The Low Post". He is probably best known for his coverage of the 2004 US presidential election, and for his former editorial positions at newspapers the eXile, the New York Press, and the Beast. Recently, Taibbi has been a regular contributor to Real Time with Bill Maher. Matt Taibbi is the author of several previous books, including "Smells Like Dead Elephants: Dispatches from a Rotting Empire," "Spanking the Donkey: Dispatches from the Dumb Season" and "The Exile: Sex, Drugs and Libel in the New Russia." His new book, a bestseller, is "The Great Derangement: A Terrifying True Story of War, Politics and Religtion at the Twilight of the American Empire."

Kevin Phillips on his book "Bad Money: Reckless Finance, Failed Politics and the Global Criss of American Capitalism." Kevin Phillips an author and commentator, who focuses on politics, economics, and history. Formerly a Republican Party strategist, he held a senior position in the 1968 Nixon campaign and largely credited with the Republican "Southern Strategy," which has held that party mostly in power over the last four decades. Phillips is a regular contributor to the Los Angeles Times and National Public Radio, and is a political analyst on PBS' NOW with Bill Moyers. He is the author of 12 books which include "Wealth and Democracy: a Political History of the American Rich," "American Dynasty: Aristocracy, Fortune, and the Politics of Deceit in the House of Bush," and "American Theocracy: The Peril and Politics of Radical Religion, Oil, and Borrowed Money in the 21st Century. Kevin Phillip's new book is "Bad Money: Reckless Finance, Failed Politics, and the Global Crisis of American Capitalism."
 

June 8th, 2008
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David Sirota on the rising tide of populist "uprising" against the status quo and business as usual government practice. David Sirota is a political organizer and nationally syndicated newspaper columnist and bestselling author, who has worked in state and national politics all over America. His column runs weekly in the Denver Post, San Francisco Chronicle, and Seattle Times, as well as in other newspapers. He is a senior fellow at the Campaign for America's Future and the founder of the Progressive States Network both nonpartisan research institutions. His first book, Hostile Takeover, was a New York Times bestseller. His new book, widely acclaimed, is "The Uprising: an Unauthorized Tour of the Populist Revolt Scaring Wall Street and Washington," a virtual manual on how the people can take their country back, about which one reviewer said, ""After so many decades of fake populism--of revolts by the wealthy, red-state fantasies, and stock-picking grandmas--could we finally be looking at the real thing? In this compelling book, rooted in history but as contemporary as this morning's newspaper, David Sirota gives us reason to hope."

Vincent Bugliosi on his belief that President Bush should be indicted and tried for murder. Mr. Bugliosi is a former Los Angeles County Deputy District Attorney, who is well-known for his successfull prosecution of Charles Manson. Mr. Bugliosi went on to become a multiple best-selling author, with books including Helter Skelter, about the Manson trial . His other books include, "And the Sea Will Tell," "Outrage: the five reasons why OJ Simpsom Got Away With Murder," "No Island of Sanity: Paula Jones v. Bill Clinton - The Supreme Court on Trial," "The Betrayal of America: How the Supreme Court Undermined the Constitution and Chose Our President," and the monumental, "Reclaiming History: The Assassination of President John F. Kennedy," which took over 20 years to write. The Los Angeles Times called "Reclaiming History," a book for the ages." Vincent Bugliosi's new book is "The Prosecution of George W. Bush for Murder," which makes an inrefutable case that President Bush took this nation to war in Iraq under false pretenses a war that has not only caused the deaths of thousands of American soldiers, but also over 100,000 innocent Iraqi men, women, and children. In this passionate, reasoned and searing indictment, replete with incontrovertible evidence, George W. Bush is guilty of murder, a crime which, for Vincent Bugliosi, cries out for justice.

June 1st, 2008
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Ron Suskind is a Pulitzer Prize-winning author and journalist, whose coverage of the Bush administration is widely acclaimed. He was the senior national-affairs writer for The Wall Street Journal from 1993 to 2000. He is currently a distinguished visiting scholar at Dartmouth and writes for various national publications, including the New York Times Magazine and Esquire. He is the author of a number of books, including the best-sellers "The Price of Loyalty: George W. Bush, the White House and the Education of Paul O'Neill" and "The One Per-Cent Doctrine." He has a new book, as yet untitled, coming out this Summer. In 2004, two-weeks before the November election, Ron Suskind published, in the New York Times Magazine, what is now recognized as perhaps the seminal article on the inner workings and psychology of the Bush adminstration, entitled "Without a Doubt: Faith, Certainty and the Presidency of George W. Bush." This article described an administration with a messianic belief that they were "history's actors" who could, by the exercise of power alone, create reality according to their wishes. Now, the controversy surrounding former Bush Press Secretary Scott McClellan's book evokes memories of Ron Suskind's "The Price of Loyalty," in which Bush's Treasury Secretary Paul O'Neill went public wiith his grave concerns about the nature of the Bush administration.

Dr. Richard Falk on what are the implications of former White House Press Secretary Scott McClellan's comments about Bush's involvement in promoting the Iraq war. Richard Falk is professor emeritus of international law at Princeton University and distinguished visiting professor at the University of California, Santa Barbara. He is the author of more than 20 books including "The Costs of War: International Law, the UN, and World Order after Iraq." Quoting Dr. Falk, "as we see from today's news, even former White House spokesperson McClellan is admitting that the administration orchestrated events and information to push for the invasion of Iraq in defiance of the UN Charter. This amounts to an aggressive war. Attempts by citizens like George Monbiot to hold officials accountable stem from the fact that the governmental institutions have failed in their duty to hold such individuals accountable for violations of international law. The Center for Constitutional Rights formally urged the prosecution of Rumsfeld in Germany and France, but those cases were dismissed for political reasons. There were attempts to do citizen arrests against [then-Secretary of State Henry] Kissinger and other U.S. officials during the Vietnam War. Having structures to ensure accountability of government officials for international crimes of state are an elementary facet of a real democracy in our globalized world."

Professor Michael Greenberger on what is behind the tremendous run-up of gasoline prices. Professor Greenberger is the Director of the Center for Health and Homeland Security at the University of Maryland, which works on issues pertaining to natural and man-made disasters. He designed and currently teaches two courses focused on counterterrorism and emergency response: He is also a professor at the School of Law, teaching Constitutional Law and a seminar on Futures, Options and Derivatives at the Law School. In 1999, Professor Greenberger became Counselor to the United States Attorney General, and after that, the Justice Department's Principal Deputy Associate Attorney General, where he assisted in supervising the work of the Justice Department s Civil, Civil Rights, Environmental, Antitrust, and Tax Divisions. In 1997, Professor Greenberger became the Director of the Division of Trading and Markets at the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, with responsibility for supervising exchange traded futures and derivatives. He also served on the Steering Committee of the President's Working Group on Financial Markets, and as a member of the International Organization of Securities Commissions' Hedge Fund Task Force.

May 25th, 2008
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Cliff Schecter on the Presidential race. Mr. Schecter is a veteran campaign strategist, syndicated columnist and political commentator, whose work has been featured in a variety of publications including The Miami Herald, The American Prospect, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, The Fordham Urban Law Journal, The Sacramento Bee, The Huffington Post and Salon.com. Schecter was a pollster for the successful reelection of President Bill Clinton in 1996 and fundraiser for former Governor of Virginia Mark Warner in 2001. He has also consulted for the DNC and the DCCC. Additionally, Schecter has provided analysis on American politics for international diplomats, journalists, students and politicians as part of The State Department Bureau of International Information Programs. Schecter holds an MA in International Affairs from the Columbia School of International and Public Affairs and is currently receiving his Ph.D. in American History at American University. Cliff Schecter's new book is "The Real McCain: Why Conservatives Don't Trust Him and Why Independents Shouldn't," described by US News and World Report as "laying out a detailed blueprint for how Dems can mine presumed GOP presidential nominee Sen. John McCain's political and personal past--including already well-documented incidents of his temper -- to defeat him in the fall."

Winslow Wheeler on waste and fraud in government contracting. Mr. Wheeler worked on national security issues for 31 years for members of the U.S. Senate and for the U.S. General Accounting Office (GAO). In the Senate, Wheeler worked for Jacob K. Javits, R-N.Y., Nancy L. Kassebaum, R-Kan., David Pryor, D-Ark., and Pete V. Domenici, R-N.M. While at the GAO, Wheeler directed comprehensive studies on the U.S. strategic-nuclear triad and the air campaign of Operation Desert Storm. Both studies found compelling evidence that prevailing conventional wisdom about the performance of both U.S. and foreign weapons systems, such as Soviet strategic nuclear delivery systems and U.S. high tech tactical weapons, was highly inflated and unsupported by the evidence available in the Department of Defense. In 2002, Wheeler authored an essay, under the pseudonym "Spartacus," about Congress' reaction to the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorists attacks, entitled "Mr. Smith Is Dead: No One Stands in the Way as Congress Lards Post-September 11 Defense Bills with Pork." When Senators complained about Wheeler's criticisms, he was invited to resign from his position with the Republican staff of the Senate Budget Committee. He is now a senior fellow and director of the Straus Military Reform Project at the Center for Defense Information. Wheeler is the author of The Wastrels of Defense: How Congress Sabotages U.S. Security from the U.S. Naval Institute Press. The book has been the subject of commentary and interviews on 60 Minutes and numerous of media outlets. He has also authored a 2002 essay on Congress authorization of war against Iraq, The Week of Shame: Congress Wilts as the President Demands an Unclogged Road to War, and he wrote various commentaries on Congress and national security, which have appeared in The Washington Post, Government Executive, Defense Week, Barron s, Army Times and elsewhere.

Iraq Veteran Liam Madden on the meaning of Veteran's Day 2008. Liam Madden was a communications and electronics specialist with the Marines in Iraq. He co-founded the Appeal for Redress, a way in which individual service members can appeal to their Congressional Representative and U.S. Senators to urge an end to the U.S. military occupation. He left the military in January. Quoting Madden: "The notion that we have to keep funding the war to 'support the troops' is insulting the intelligence of the troops. Obviously if you keep funding a war based on lies -- treating the troops like pawns -- the troops will be stuck in Iraq. Without the funding, the troops would not be there; Bush would have to withdraw. "Congress is attempting to defuse the sentiment of a lot of people who want this war to end by giving the impression that Congress tried to end it when in fact that's not what the bill would have done. The entire argument between Bush and Congress has been a farce."

May 18th, 2008
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Senator Lincoln Chafee on his experiences in the US Senate, his observations on American politics today and his new day. Senator Chafee served in the United States Senate as the Republican senator from Rhode Island from 1999 to 2007. He was the only Republican in the Senate to have voted against the use of force in Iraq. He is pro-choice, in favor of gay rights, pro-environment, and opposes the death penalty. After being defeated for re-election in 2006, he left the Republican party and became an independent. Currently, he is a distinguished visiting fellow at Brown University, and he has been mentioned as a candidate for governor of Rhode Island in 2010. He has endorsed Barrak Obama for President of the United States and is involved in the J-Street Project, a pro-Israel peace lobby. He is the author of a new book, "Against the Tide: How a Compliant Congress Empowered a Reckless President," described as a behind the scenes look into what happened as catastrophic decisions were taken by an extremist president, while the congress abdicated it's oversight responsibilities. In this book, Chafee sounds a wake-up call to all Americans, by challenging our government to strive, as Abraham Lincoln once articulated, to elevate the condition of men.

Eric Schlosser on the spying by US corporations on farmworkers and their advocates. Mr. Schlosser is one of America's great investigative muckracking journalists. The winner of numerous awards, Eric Schlosser is currently a correspondent for the Atlantic Monthly. His first book, Fast Food Nation, which is widely considered a modern classic, was on the New York Times bestseller list for over a year and appeared on the bestseller lists of the Los Angeles Times, the San Francisco Chronicle, the Boston Globe, the Washington Post, USA Today, and Publishers Weekly, among others. His other books include "Reefer Madness: Sex, Drugs and Cheap Labor in the American Black Market," "Chew on This: Everything You Don't Want to Know About Fast Food" (co-authored by Charles Wilson) and "Americans." Schlosser has appeared on 60 Minutes, CNN, CBS Evening News, NBC Nightly News, and many more. He is currently at work on a book about the American prison system. He recently testified before congress about the corporate harrassment of farm workers and their advocates. On May 7, Eric Schlosser had an op-ed published in the New York Times, entitled "Burger, with a Side of Spies."

Ian Williams on the UN and Burma/Myanmar. Mr. Williams has written for newspapers and magazines around the world, including the Australian, The Independent, the New York Observer the Village Voice, the Financial Times and the Guardian. He is the UN correspondent for the Nation and The Tribune. He has been a pundit on the BBC, CNN, MSNBC, FOX, CBC, and others. Online, he writes for Salon, AlterNet and MaximsNews, among many others. He currently apppears several times a week in Comment is Free on Guardian Unlimited. He is the author of a number of books, including "The United Nations for Beginners," "Deserter: Bush's War on Military Families, Veterans and his Past, "The Alms Trade: Charaties past, present and future," and "Rum: a Social and Sociable History of the Real Spirit of 1776." He has recently written about the crisis in Burma/Myanmar. He joins us from Puerto Rico.

May 11th, 2008
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Walter Shapiro on the Presidential race. Mr. Shapiro is the Washington bureau chief of SALON, a position he has held since early 2006. Walter Shapiro is now covering his eighth presidential campaign. He recently completed a fellowship at the Joan Shorenstein Center for the People and the Press at Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government. From 1995 to the end of 2004, he was the twice weekly political columnist for USA TODAY. He is the author of "One-Car Caravan: On the Road with the 2004 Democrats Before America Tunes In," a chronicle of the early skirmishing for the presidential nomination. A long-time magazine writer, Shapiro spent the first four years of the Clinton administration writing a monthly column, "Our Man in the White House" for ESQUIRE. From 1987-93, he was a senior writer for TIME and was also their correspondent covering the 1992 Clinton campaign. At NEWSWEEK (1983-87), he was the lead political writer. He was a reporter for the WASHINGTON POST from 1979-83. Prior to joining the POST, he served as a White House speechwriter for President Jimmy Carter and a special assistant and speechwriter for Secretary of Labor Ray Marshall.

Dr. Josef Silverstein on the human tragedy in Burma/Myanmar. Dr. Silverstein is a distinguished emeritus professor of Political Science at Rutgers University. He is an expert on Myanmar and the author of "Burma: Military Rule and the Politics of Stagnation" and "Burmese Politics: the Dilemma of National Unity."

Dr. Stephen Cohen on the situation in Russian. Dr. Cohen is a scholar of Russian studies, well known in both Russian and American circles. He is a close personal friend of former Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev, advised former President George H.W. Bush in the late 1980s, helped Nikolai Bukharin's widow rehabilitate his name during the Soviet era, and met Stalin's daughter, Svetlana. He is professor of Russian Studies and History at New York University and has authored several books, including, Rethinking the Soviet Experience: Politics and History Since 1917 and most recently, Failed Crusade: America and the Tragedy of Post-Communist Russia. He is also a CBS News consultant and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. Dr. Cohen has a new article at The Nation, where he is also a contributing editor, entitled "The Missing Debate," which asks why aren't the presidential candidates talking about the impact of Russia on our national security.

May 4th, 2008
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John Marks on how the divide between "red" and "blue" political division affects the presidential race, and our lives as American. Mr. Marks is a former producer for 60 Minutes and former journalist for US News & World Report, and the author of REASONS TO BELIEVE: ONE MAN'S JOURNEY AMONG THE EVANGELICALS AND THE FAITH HE LEFT BEHIND. He also has a documentary, PURPLE STATE OF MIND (www.purplestateofmind.com). In REASONS TO BELIEVE, Marks reaches across sectarian lines to present the evangelical world from the inside out at a time when our country is increasingly divided over questions of faith, spirituality, morality and the very meaning of life. The Los Angeles Times has called John Mark's "Reasons to Believe:" a work of courageous investigative journalism as well as a memoir of startling self-reflection Marks writes with unfailing intelligence, insight and deep compassion

John Stauber on the mainstream media's use of former military spokesmen connected to the Pentagon as "independent analysts." Mr. Stauber is an investigative writer, public speaker and democracy advocate. He is also the founder of the non-profit, non-partisan Center for Media & Democracy and its newsmagazine PR Watch, He has served as the Center's executive director and has co-authored with Sheldon Rampton six books including the 2003 New York Times bestseller Weapons of Mass Deception: The Uses of Propaganda in Bush's War on Iraq ,Banana Republicans: How the Right Wing Is Turning America Into a One-Party State and The Best War Ever: Lies, Damned Lies and the Mess in Iraq. He has begun or worked with many non-profit public interest groups. He advises a number of organizations, including the Center for Food Safety, Iraq Veterans Against the War and the Media Education Foundation

David Freeman on the future of energy in the US. Mr. Freeman is a leading authority in the production, management and delivery of energy to large populations. He has had the ear of federal officials since the days of JFK and helped bring about the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) under Nixon. He headed the Tennessee Valley Authority, the nation's largest nuclear program, under Jimmy Carter. From New York to Los Angeles, Freeman has headed agencies and utilities companies, continually working to make utilities more environmentally safe, more efficient, and more cost-friendly to the customer. He is currently president of the commission overseeing the Port of Los Angeles. David Freeman's new book is "Winning Our Energy Independence (and Energy Insider Shows How).

April 27th, 2008 download

Kevin Phillips on his new book "Bad Money." Mr. Phillips is an author and commentator, who focuses on politics, economics, and history. Formerly a Republican Party strategist, he held a senior position in the 1968 Nixon campaign and largely credited with the Republican "Southern Strategy," which has held that party mostly in power over the last four decades. Phillips is a regular contributor to the Los Angeles Times and National Public Radio, and is a political analyst on PBS' NOW with Bill Moyers. He is the author of 12 books which include "Wealth and Democracy: a Political History of the American Rich," "American Dynasty: Aristocracy, Fortune, and the Politics of Deceit in the House of Bush," and "American Theocracy: The Peril and Politics of Radical Religion, Oil, and Borrowed Money in the 21st Century. Kevin Phillip's new book is "Bad Money: Reckless Finance, Failed Politics, and the Global Crisis of American Capitalism."

Raj Patel on the global food crisis and why so many are obese. Raj Patel is a scholar, journalist, activist, author and a former policy analyst for Food First, a leading food think tank. He has been a contributor to both The Los Angeles Times and The Guardian. His new book is "Stuffed & Starved: the Hidden Battle for the World Food System," which is about why the world experiences both obesity and hunger on a broad scale. Raj Patel received his PhD in Sociology from Cornell. He has been a visiting scholar at Yale and currently is at the Center for African Studies at the University of California, Berkeley. Patel worked at the World Bank, World Trade Organization and the United Nations -- he's also been tear-gassed on four continents protesting them. More recently he has lived and worked extensively in Zimbabwe and in South Africa. He was refused a visa extension by the the Mugabe regime for his political involvement with the pro-democracy movement. He has written a number of influential criticisms of various aspects of the policies and research methods of the World Bank and his website is www.stuffedorstarved.org

April 20th, 2008
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Sean Wilentz on Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, John McCain and the electoral college. Dr. Wilentz is the Dayton-Stockton Professor of History and Director of the Program in American Studies at Princeton University. He received his Ph.D. in history from Yale University. He is the author of a number of award-winning books on history, including "Chants Democratic," recently republished,. "In The Kingdom of Matthias," "The Key of Liberty" and others. His most recent book is "The Rise of American Democracy: Jefferson to Lincoln," published in 2005, and which won the Bancroft Prize and was a finalist for the Pulitzer. He has written some two hundred articles, reviews, and op-ed pieces for publications such as the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, the New York Review of Books, the London Review of Books, the American Scholar, the Nation, Le Monde, and Salon. A contributing editor at The New Republic, Wilentz writes widely on music and the arts as well as history and politics, and has received a Grammy nomination and, from the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers, a Deems Taylor Award for musical commentary. He is the historian-in-residence of bobdylan.com, the official Bob Dylan website. In 2006 he wrote an article about the George W. Bush presidency, titled "The Worst President in History?" which appeared in Rolling Stone magazine. Wilentz has been a prominent supporter of the presidential candidacy of Sen. Hillary Clinton.

Frances Kissling on the Pope's visit to the United States. Frances Kissling is the former president of Catholics for a Free Choice, an independent organization of progressive Catholics based in Washington, DC, Under Ms. Kissling s leadership, CFFC has become a leading force for change on gender, sexuality and reproduction. She was described in MS. Magazine as the Woman Who makes the Vatican Sweat. She has been a prominent spokesperson for progressive Catholic views at all Papal trips to the US was arrested while demonstrating at the Vatican Embassy during the 1987 Papal visit to that city.. Ms. Kissling is an out-spoken voice on issues of church and state, reproductive health and ethics, religious fundamentalism and Catholic church reform. Ms. Kissling has given formal presentations in Britain's House of Lords, debated the US bishops' spokesperson on abortion and brought thousands to their feet with an address at the 1995 Fourth World Conference on Women in Beijing. A prolific writer, Ms. Kissling has contributed to 7 books and authored more than 60 published articles and an equal number of op-eds. She is currently A fellow at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University where she is writing a book, How to Think about Abortion: Pro-choice Reflections on Rights and Responsibility.

Martin Welz is the Editor in Chief of the South African monthly investigative journal, Noseweek, which broke the fascinating story of a Taiwanese freighter with a shipment of guns bound for Robert Mugabe in Zimbabwe. The boat docked at a South African harbor. When the South African dock workers discovered that the arms were intended for Mugabe's use against the people of Zimbabwe, they heroically refused to unload the boat.

April 13th, 2008
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General William Odom on the situation in Iraq and why troops must be withdraw as quickly as possible. General Odom is a senior fellow and director of National Security Studies at Hudson Institute's Washington, D.C. office. He is also an adjunct professor at Yale University. As director of the National Security Agency under President Ronald Reagan from 1985 to 1988, he was responsible for the nation's signals intelligence and communications security. From 1981 to 1985, he served as assistant chief of staff for Intelligence, the Army's senior intelligence officer. From 1977 to 1981, General Odom was military assistant to the President's Assistant for National Security Affairs, Zbigniew Brzezinski. On the National Security Council staff, he worked on strategic planning, Soviet affairs, nuclear weapons policy, telecommunications policy, and Persian Gulf security issues. He graduated from the United States Military Academy in 1954, and received a Ph.D. from Columbia University in 1970. Earlier this month, on April 2nd, he presented testimony advocating rapid withdrawal of American troops from Iraq to the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations.

Lawrence O'Donnell on the troubled Democratic presidential nomination. Mr. O'Donnell is an MSNBC senior political analyst and a panelist on The McLaughlin Group. He was an Emmy winning producer of NBC s The West Wing. and a former contributing editor of New York Magazine and a former Democratic Chief of Staff of the United States Senate Committee on Finance and for the United States Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works. Mr. O Donnell has also served as Senior Advisor to Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan. He can be seen as an actor on HBO's hit series "Big Love." Mr. O'Donnell has a new piece out on both The Huffington Post and New York Magazine which forsees a possibly nightmarish deadlocked Democratic convention in Colorado.

Judith Todd on the increasing dire situation in Zimbabwe. Judith Todd is a human rights activist and author who was born and raised in what is now Zimbabwe and focuses her activism on that country. She is the daughter of Sir Garfield Todd, the liberal colonial Rhodesian Prime Minister, who ran the country from 1953 to 1958. Judith Todd later became a heroine of the struggle to liberate Rhodesia from the minority rule of white supremacist Ian Smith' regime. For her efforts, she was jailed by Smilth in 1972, force-fed during a hunger strike and then forced out the country to spend eight years in exile in England. She returned to Zimbabwe shortly before independence was achieved in 1980, and soon realized that, far from being the solution to Zimbabwe's ills, Robert Mugabe and his ruling Zanu party were increasingly becoming a serious problem. As the country slid into economic and social decay, Todd had a front-row view from her position as director of an international aid agency, the Zimbabwe Project Trust. In 2003 she became one of hundreds of thousands of Zimbabweans stripped of their citizenship and thus their right to vote by the Mugabe regime. At present she lives, exiled again, in Cape Town, South Africa. Over the first 25 years of Mugabe's rule, she kept journals, notes and copies of letters and documents from which she has compiled an intensely personal account of life in Zimbabwe, published to worldwide acclaim in her book "Through the Drakness: A Life in Zimbabwe." The Economist picked this book as one of their 2007 "Books of the Year," describing it as "a harrowing tale of courage and betrayal by a white heroine of the liberation struggle against Ian Smith and who has been punished and stripped of her citizenship with extraordinary vengefulness by Robert Mugabe for speaking out about his regime's abuses of power."

April 6th, 2008
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Scott Horton on Attorney General Mukasey, domestic spying and FISA. Scott Horton is a writer, analyst and attorney known for his work in international law, human rights and the law of armed conflict. Scott Horton served as counsel to Andrei Sakharov and Elena Bonner, among other activists in the former Soviet Union. He was hired by the Associated Press to represent Bilal Hussein, a Pulitzer Prize-winning photojournalist who was detained without charges by the US military for over a year. He is a professor at Columbia Law School and co-founder of the American University in Central Asia, and has also been involved in some of the most significant foreign investment projects in the Central Eurasian region. Scott recently led a number of studies of abuse issues associated with the conduct of the war on terror for the New York City Bar Association, where he has chaired several committees, including, most recently, the Committee on International Law. He is also a member of the board of the National Institute of Military Justice, the Andrei Sakharov Foundation, the EurasiaGroup and the American Branch of the International Law Association. He is the author of over 100 articles and is a contributing editor at Harpers in legal affairs and national security. His Harpers weblog, No Comment, is highly regarded and has been analyzing Attorney General Mukasey's shut-down of the Justice Department's Public Integrity Unit.

Interview with:

Glenn Greenwald on Mukasey's odd comments about 9/11 in a recent San Francisco speech. Mr. Greenwald is a best-selling author and popular columnist at Salon.com. Prior to becoming a journalist, he was a constitutional law and civil rights litigator in New York. Upon disclosure by the New York Times in December 2005 of President Bush's warrantless eavesdropping program, Greenwald became one of the leading and most cited experts on that controversy. In early 2006, he broke a story on his blog regarding the NSA scandal that served as the basis for front-page articles in the Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times and other newspapers, all of which credited his blog for the story. He is the author of the New York Times Bestselling books "How Would a Patriot Act?," a critique of the Bush administration's use of executive power and "A Tragic Legacy: How a Good vs. Evil mentality Destroyed the Bush Presidency," (just now available in paperback) which examines the role of Manichaean morality and the exploitation of the concept of the "enemy" during the Bush presidency and argues that President Bush's single-minded dependence on good vs. evil themes has rendered his presidency a failure. His new book is, "Great American Hypocrites: Toppling the Big Myths of Republican Politics." which exposes the systematic myth-making and hypocrisy of the Republican Party

Robert Dreyfuss on the reality of recent events in Iraq. Mr. Dreyfuss writes extensively on the Middle East, the war on terrorism, and national security for The Nation, The American Prospect, Mother Jones and Rolling Stone. He is a frequent commentator on NPR, MSNBC, and CNBC. His latest book is Devil's Game: How the United States Helped Unleash Fundamentalist Islam, the story of America s misguided efforts, stretching across decades, to dominate the strategically vital Middle East by courting and cultivating Islamic fundamentalism. He recently published an article in The Nation entitled "The Lessons of Basra" which described the abject failure of Malali's regime to subdue Muqtada al Sadr's militias. In this article, Robert Dreyfuss exposed what Bush described as a "defining moment" in Iraq as, in fact, Bush's "utter humiliation."

Ambassador Robert Keeley on Zimbabwe and Mugabe. Ambassador Keeley is a 34-year career veteran of the Foreign Service of the United States. He served three times as Ambassador: to Greece, Zimbabwe, and Mauritius. He has been Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs, in charge of southern and eastern Africa. In Washington he served as Congo (Zaire) desk officer, and as alternate director for East Africa. At his retirement, Keeley held the rank of Career Minister. He is the recipient of the Christian Herter Award from the American Foreign Service Association for "extraordinary accomplishment involving initiative, integrity, intellectual courage, and creative dissent." Other awards he has earned include the Superior Honor Award (for Cambodia), a Presidential Citation (for the Refugee Task Force), and a Presidential Distinguished Service Award (for Zimbabwe). He is a former President of the American Foreign Service Association. Ambassador Keeley has also served as President of the Middle East Institute in Washington, a private, non-profit educational and cultural institution founded in 1946 to foster greater understanding in the United States of the countries of the Middle East region from Morocco to Central Asia.

March 30th, 2008
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Joshua Holland and Raed Jarrar on the flare-up of violence and conflict in Iraq as Prime Minister Maliki attempts to take down the Basra militia of cleric Mugtada al Sadr. Joshua Holland is a senior writer and editor at AlterNet, where he heads the online magazine's Iraq special coverage. Based in New York, Holland is graduate of USC, a 2007 Project Censored Award winner and a recipient of a Schumann Foundation grant for Independent Journalism. Raed Jarrar is an Iraqi-born architect and a political analyst who moved to the US in 2005. He was the Director of the only door to door casualties' survey in Iraq in 2003, and then established a local Iraqi grassroots organization that carried out hundreds of reconstruction projects in ten Iraqi cities. Jarrar is currently the Iraq Consultant for the American Friends Service Committee facilitating meetings between Iraqi and US elected officials, and working on bringing Iraqi voices into the US debate. Raed's blog is "Raed in the Middle." Together Joshua Holland and Raed Jarrar have collaborated in numerous published articles providing original Iraq war coverage unique in American media. Their new article at Alternet.org is "Five Things You Need to Know about the Latest Violence in Iraq."

Dr. Michael Perelman on the mismanagement of the American economy and where it is leading. Dr. Perelan is Professor of Economics, California State University at Chico. He is the author of twenty highly-regarded books on economics, society and politics, including Class Warfare in the Information Age, The Natural Instability of Markets, The Pathology of the U.S. Economy, and Steal This Idea. His latest book is "The Confiscation of American Prosperity: From Right-Wing Extremism and Economic Ideology to the Next Great Depression," in which Dr. Perelman shows that in the last three decades, of mostly Republican presidents, there has been a greater redistribution of wealth in America than occured during the Russian and Chinese revolutions.

Nicholas Marsh on the international arms trade. Mr. Marsh is a research fellow at the International Peace Research Institute in Norway and an expert in the international arms trade. Nicholas Marsh has followed the story which broke last week about Efraim Diveroli, who at the age of 22 received a $200 million contract from the Bush administration to supply arms to the Afghan military. Questions were raised about Mr. Diveroli when it was discovered that he was supplying 40-year-old ammunition made in China and purchased through Hungary.

March 24th, 2008
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Dr. Susan Shirk on the conflict at protest in Tibet against Chinese domination, and the Taiwan/Mainland dynamic. Dr. Shirk is the director of the University of California system-wide Institute on Global Conflict and Cooperation and professor of political science at UC San Diego. Shirk first traveled to China in 1971 and has been doing research there ever since. During 1997-2000, Shirk served as Deputy Assistant Secretary of State in the Bureau of East Asia and Pacific Affairs, with responsibility for China, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Mongolia. She founded in 1993 and continues to lead the Northeast Asia Cooperation Dialogue, an unofficial track-two forum for discussions of security issues among defense and foreign ministry officials and academics from the United States, Japan, China, Russia and the Koreas. Shirk served as a member of the U.S. Defense Policy Board, the Board of Governors for the East-West Center (Hawaii), the Board of Trustees of the U.S.-Japan Foundation, and the Board of Directors of the National Committee on United States-China Relations. Shirk s publications include her books, "How China Opened Its Door: The Political Success of the PRC s Foreign Trade and Investment Reforms;" "The Political Logic of Economic Reform in China;" and "Competitive Comrades: Career Incentives and Student Strategies in China." Her new book is, "China: Fragile Superpower: How China's Internal Politics Could Derail its Peaceful Rise."

Dr. Drew Westen on what Presidential candidates are connecting better with the American electorate, and why. Dr. Westen is an author and professor of psychology at Emory University. Dr. Westin received his B.A. at Harvard University, an M.A. in Social and Political Thought at the University of Sussex (England), and his Ph.D. in clinical Psychology at the University of Michigan, where he subsequently taught for six years. For several years he was Chief Psychologist at Cambridge Hospital and Associate Professor at Harvard Medical School. His major areas of research are personality disorders, eating disorders, psychotherapy effectiveness, adolescent psychopathology, political psychology, and the interface of psychodynamics and neuroscience. His recently published book is "The Political Brain: the Role of Emotion in Deciding the Fate of a Nation." Howard Dean has said of "The Political Brain," ""Drew Westen is a must read ... we will win the Presidency if our candidate reads and acts on this book." Last week, in an article published at Huffington Post, Dr. Westen analyzed Presidential candidate Barack Obama's speech on race in America, delivered in the wake of the Reverend Jerrimiah Wright controversy, saying that it was an effective and important speech.

David Enders on the true state of affairs in Iraq and the testimony of the Iraq veteran Winter soldiers. David Enders is a freelance journalist and a co-founder of the Baghdad Bulletin, the first post-invasion attempt to set up an English-language news outlet in Iraq. Since the invasion, he has spent more than 18 months in Iraq and has written for Men's Journal, Mother Jones, and The Nation, as well as London's Sunday Times and other newspapers. His first book, "Baghdad Bulletin," was published by the University of Michigan Press. David Enders has blogged on his experiences in Iraq at the Pulitzer Center's website, as part of their Iraq Project. Last week he covered the Winter Soldier gathering, sponsored by Iraq Veterans Against the War, during which hundreds of veterans of both Iraq and Afghanistan presented testimony about the horrors of war, including atrocities which they had committed themselves or witnessed.

March 16th, 2008
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Dr. James Galbraith on the current dire state of the economy and where its going.Dr. Galbraith teaches economics and a variety of other subjects at the LBJ School at the University of Texas, Austin, at which he is also the Director of "The Inequality Project." Galbraith serves as a Senior Scholar of the Levy Economics Institute and as Chair of the Board of Economists for Peace and Security. He writes a column called "Econoclast" for Mother Jones, and occasional commentary in many other publications, including The Texas Observer, The American Prospect, and The Nation.

Scott Horton on the apparent politcal targeting of former New York Governor Elliot Spitzer. Mr. Horton is a writer, analyst and attorney known for his work in international law, human rights and the law of armed conflict. Scott Horton served as counsel to Andrei Sakharov and Elena Bonner, among other activists in the former Soviet Union. He was hired by the Associated Press to represent Bilal Hussein, a Pulitzer Prize-winning photojournalist who was detained without charges by the US military for over a year. He is a professor at Columbia Law School and co-founder of the American University in Central Asia, and has also been involved in some of the most significant foreign investment projects in the Central Eurasian region. Scott recently led a number of studies of abuse issues associated with the conduct of the war on terror for the New York City Bar Association, where he has chaired several committees, including, most recently, the Committee on International Law. He is also a member of the board of the National Institute of Military Justice, the Andrei Sakharov Foundation, the EurasiaGroup and the American Branch of the International Law Association. He is the author of over 100 articles and is a contributing editor at Harpers in legal affairs and national security. His Harpers weblog, No Comment, is highly regarded and has been analyzing the legal implications of the case of New York Governor Elliot Spitzer. He also has a feature article on the subject at The New Republic.

Fadel Gheit on the continuously upward trajectory of energy prices. Mr. Gheit is a graduate of Cairo University and New York University. He is currently Senior Vice President for Oil and Gas Research with Oppenheimer and Company in NYC. Mr. Gheit, who has a degree in chemical engineering, has more than 30 years of experience in oil and gas research. He has previously been with Mobil Oil and JP Morgan Company in New York. The New York Times describes as the "elder statesman" and one of the most respected oil analysits in the world.

March 9th, 2008
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Bob Mullholland on the presidential race, the role of the superdelegates and the important role California plays in the national race. Mr. Mullholland is campaign advisor to the California Democratic Party, has lots of opinions. And he's not shy about sharing them. Mulholland has been active with the Democratic Party for more than 30 years, managing a number of successful California campaigns and participating in presidential races. He has worked as a consultant to the British Labour Party, and appeared as a commentator on various TV shows, including "48 Hours," "The Today Show" "Larry King" and "Crossfire." A Vietnam veteran, Mulholland served with the 101st Airborne and was wounded in the Tet Offensive. His political insights are shared on Bob's Blog, hosted at cadem.org, the California Democratic Party website.

David Rose on the blundering role of the Bush administration in producing a deadly civil conflict in Gaza. David Rose is an author, investigative journalist and contributing editor at Vanity Fair. He has previously worked on the staffs of the Guardian, the Observer and BBC TV in England. He is the author of six books, most recently "The Big Eddy Club: The Stocking Stranglings and Southern Justice," which was published last year, and is an investigation into a miscarriage of justice in a Georgia serial murder case. He has an important piece out now in the new April 2008 issue of Vanity Fair, entitled "The Gaza Bombshell." This article reveals yet another self-defeating Bush Middle East debacle: part Iran-contra and part Bay of Pigs. With confidential documents, corroborated by outraged former and current U.S. officials, David Rose reveals how President Bush, Condoleezza Rice, and Deputy National-Security Adviser Elliott Abrams backed an armed force under Fatah strongman Muhammad Dahlan, touching off a bloody civil war in Gaza and leaving Hamas stronger than ever.

Dr. Jerrold Starr on the underlying issues of the McCain lobbyist scandal recently revealed in the New York Times. Dr. Starr is Director of Citizens for Independent Public Broadscasting (www.cipbonline.org); a Visiting Professor of Communication, University of California at San Diego; and author of "Air Wars: The Fight to Reclaim Public Broadcasting," published by Temple University Press, among many other works. This book "Air Wars" tells the story of the battle for a public TV station in Pittsburgh that media mogul Lowell "Bud" Paxson was seeking. Bud Paxon was a major contributor to the campaign of Senator John McCain for President in 2000. Lobbying for Paxon in this highly unusual effort to acquire a public station for commercial purposes was Vicki Iseman, whom the New York Times said had an affair with the Senator. Without commenting on the affair, Dr. Starr asserts that McCain broke the law in doing the quid pro quo bidding of the media mogul. According to well-documented reports, Paxson's family, company and law firm were contributing tens of thousands of dollars to McCain's campaign while McCain flew around on Paxson's private jet to rallies and to fundraisers on Paxson's yacht.

March 2nd, 2008
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Todd Gitlin on media coverage of the presidential race, with a focus on the NY Times possible "innoculation" of John McCain in their reporting of his "affair" with a communications lobbyist. Dr. Gitlin is a professor of Sociology at Columbia, political writer, novelist, and cultural commentator. He has written widely on the mass media, politics, intellectual life and the arts. He is the author of twelve books, including, most recently, The Bulldozer and the Big Tent: Blind Republicans, Lame Democrats, and the Recovery of American Ideals, Media Unlimited: How the Torrent of Images and Sounds Overwhelms Our Lives and The Twilight of Common Dreams: Why America Is Wracked by Culture Wars. He is a regular contributor to the popular blog Talking Points Memo.

Max Blumenthal on Pastor John Hagee's endorsement of Republican presidential candidate John McCain. Max Blumenthal is an award winning journalist whose work has appeared in The Nation, Salon, The American Prospect the Washington Monthly and other publications. He is a fellow at the Nation Institute and a research fellow for Media Matters for America. His blog is maxblumenthal.com. For the past four years he has covered right-wing political movements in America. Last july he covered a rally held by the Christian Zionist evangelical Reverend John Hagee in Washington, D.C. and his highly praised video report on that event, entitled "Raprure Ready," has been viewed by hundreds of thousands on YouTube.

Robert Bryce on a contrarian take on the future of energy. Mr. Bryce is one of America's foremost energy journalists. He recently resigned as the managing editor of Energy Tribune and a contributing writer for the Texas Observer. The author of Pipe Dreams: Greed, Ego, and the Death of Enron and Cronies: Oil, the Bushes, and the Rise of Texas, America's Superstate. His new book, just published, is "Gusher of Lies: the dangerous delusions of energy independence," an alternative and somewhat contrarian take on the promise of "energy indepedence," described in reviews as "meticulously researched, illuminating, high-order muckracking" and "a strong and much-needed dose of reality."

February 17th, 2008
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Fred Kaplan writes the widely regarded "War Stories" column in Slate. He is the author of the classic book The Wizards of Armageddon, and has written for the New York Times, the New Yorker, the Washington Post, the Atlantic Monthly, and other publications. He earned a Ph.D. from MIT, worked as a foreign policy aide on Capitol Hill, and spent decades as a Pulitzer Prize winning reporter in Washington and Moscow. His new book is "Daydream Believers: How a Few Grand Ideas Wrecked American Power" -- a book which explains why America's power is in decline, its foreign policy adrift, its allies alienated and its soldiers are trapped in a war that even generals regard as unwinnable.

Susan Jacoby is the author of eight books, most recently Freethinkers: A History of American Secularism, which was named a Notable Book of 2004 by The Washington Post Book World and The Times Literary Supplement. Her new book, just published, is "The Age of American Unreason." Susan Jacoby was featured last Friday on the Bill Moyer's PBS television program.

February 10th, 2008
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Ari Berman on the Presidential race. Mr. Berman is a contributing writer for The Nation, covering national politics, focusing on the 2008 presidential election. He is also an Investigative Journalism Fellow at The Nation Institute. His articles about the presidential race may be read at www.thenation.com.

Dr. Ellen Frank on the Bush budget. Dr. Frank is an economist with Rhode Island College's Poverty Instititute, which works to promote economic security for low- and moderate-income Rhode Islanders and equitable tax and budget policies through policy analysis, education and advocacy. Dr. Frank holds a PhD. in economics from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst and has taught economics at many colleges including Emmanuel, Wellesley, and Mount Holyoke. Her work has focused on how economic policies affect the prospects of ordinary households. She is a contributing editor to Dollars and Sense Magazine, a staff economist for the Center for Popular Economics, and has served on the Council on Monetary and Financial Policy at the Economic Policy Institute. Her book - The Raw Deal: How Myths about Deficits, Inflation and Wealth Impoverish America, published by Beacon Press in June 2004, argues for a return to strong pro-employment fiscal policy in the U.S.

Alex de Waal on the war taking place in Chad. Dr. de Waal is a researcher, writer and activist on African issues. He is a fellow at the Global Equity Initiative at Harvard University and the director of the Social Science Research Council program on AIDS and social transformation. In addition, he is a director of Justice Africa in London. In his career, he has studied the social, political and health dimensions of famine, war, genocide and the HIV/AIDS epidemic, especially in the Horn of Africa. He has been at the forefront of mobilizing African and international responses to these problems. Dr de Waal received his PhD in social anthropology from Oxford University, with his thesis being a study of the famine of 1984-5 in Darfur, Sudan. In 2004, Alex returned to his earliest research interest, Darfur. During 2005-06 he was seconded to the African Union Mediation team for the Darfur conflict and remains closely involved with the search for a lasting solution to the crisis in Darfur. Alex de Waal's blog is "Making Sense of Darfur."

February 3rd, 2008
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Jacob Weisberg on the presidential race. Mr. Weisberg is the editor in chief of Slate.com. He previously worked for The New Republic and New York Magazine. He was a contributing writer for The New York Times Magazine, a contributing editor to Vanity Fair, and a columnist for the Financial Times. Weisberg is the originator of Slate's "Strange Bedfellows" and "Ballot Box" political columns and the inventor of the Bushisms series. He is also the author, with Robert Rubin, of In an Uncertain World. Weisberg s first book, In Defense of Government, was published in 1996. His new book, just published, is "The Bush Tragedy,"

Cuauhtemoc "Temo" Figueroa on the "black/brown divide" in the support for Barack Obama. Temo Figueroa is the National Field Director for the Obama for America Presidential Campaign. Before joining the campaign last January, Mr. Figueroa was the Assistant Political Director for the American Federation of State, County and Municipal (AFSCME) employees union, based in Washington D.C. He previously served as Director of Policy and Communication for the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC). Temo Figueroa began his career in Washington as a Legislative aide to the late U.S. Representative George E. Brown, Jr of San Bernardino. He has managed many political and union organizing campaigns across the country. Mr. Figueroa is a native of California. He is a graduate of UCLA and Harvard's Kennedy School of Government.

Dr. Theodore Lowi on Bush's "signing statements" and on the neocons. Dr. Lowi has been the John L. Senior Professor of American Institutions at Cornell University since 1972. He received his doctorate at Yale in 1961, served on the Cornell faculty from 1959 to 1965 and on the political science faculty at the University of Chicago between 1965 and 1972. His primary fields are American government, political institutions and public policy. Recent research and writing commitments include the politics of globalization, a critical history of the American Democratic party, and a long-term project with an Italian collaborator to develop a conceptual approach to political theory that is one part thesaurus/encyclopedia and one part methodology through use of the computer to develop a cross-tabulational approach to concepts. He is also completing, with colleague Isaac Kramnick, The Norton Anthology of American Political Thought. Leisure time is devoted, in collaboration with co-authors, to keeping two American government textbooks up to date. Other recent books include The End of the Republican Era (1996); La scienza delle politiche (1999; forthcoming in English) and The Personal President -- Power Invested, Promise Unfulfilled (1985). Elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1972, Lowi is recipient of honorary degrees from Oakland University, SUNY/Stony Brook, and the Fondation Nationale des Sciences Politiques of the University of Paris. He has served as president of the American Political Science Association, the Policy Studies Organization, and the International Political Science Association.

January 27th, 2008
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Congresswoman Barbara Lee on the Obama victory in South Carolina. Congresswoman Lee has been a Democratic member of the United States House of Representatives since 1998, representing California's 9th congressional district and is the first woman to represent that district. Congresswoman Lee is the First Vice-Chair of the Congressional Black Caucus and Co-Chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus. She was the only person in either chamber of Congress who voted against the authorization of use of force following the September 11, 2001 attacks. Congresswoman Lee has endorsed Senator Barack Obama for President.

Ruy Teixeira on the state of play in the Presidential race. Dr. Teixera is a Joint Fellow at the Center for American Progress and The Century Foundation. He is the author of five books, over a hundred articles, both scholarly and popular, and a weekly online column, Public Opinion Watch. His book "The Emerging Democratic Majority," written with John Judis, generated praise across the political spectrum, from George Will on the right to E.J. Dionne on the left, and was selected as one of the best books of 2002 by The Economist magazine. Dr. Teixeira holds a Ph.D. in Sociology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He has been a visiting fellow at the Brookings Institution where he wrote the book, The Disappearing American Voter, now a standard reference work on voter turnout. He has also been affiliated with the Progressive Policy Institute, the Economic Policy Institute and The Century Foundation. In 2000, he published "America's Forgotten Majority: Why the White Working Class Still Matters," a widely-cited and controversial work credited with being a strong influence on the Gore campaign and selected as one of the best books of the year by the Washington Post.

Chuck Lewis on the lies of the Bush administration that led to war. Mr. Lewis founded the Center for Public Integrity in 1989 and served as its executive director until December, 2004. He is now the president of The Fund for Independence in Journalism. During his tenure at the Center, Lewis wrote or co-wrote several of the Center's books and studies that systematically track political influence, including The Buying of the President 2004, The Corruption Notebooks, The Cheating of America, The Buying of the President 2000, The Buying of the Congress and The Buying of the President. Described by the Village Voice as "the Paul Revere of our time," Lewis was awarded a MacArthur Fellowship by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation in 1998. The Center for Public Integrity has just released a major study of the statements of Bush administration officials in the run-up to the Iraq war, entitled "Iraq - the War Orchestrated Deception on the Path to War." This study has identified 935 false statements by high-level officials, which pushed the public towards war.

January 20th, 2008
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Walter Shapiro on the latest in the Presidential race. Mr. Shapiro is the Washington bureau chief of Salon, a position he has held since early 2006. Walter Shapiro is now covering his eighth presidential campaign. He recently completed a fellowship at the Joan Shorenstein Center for the People and the Press at Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government. From 1995 to the end of 2004, he was the twice weekly political columnist for USA Today. He is the author of "One-Car Caravan: On the Road with the 2004 Democrats Before America Tunes In," a chronicle of the early skirmishing for the presidential nomination, published by PublicAffairs in November 2003. A long-time magazine writer, Shapiro spent the first four years of the Clinton administration writing a monthly column, "Our Man in the White House" for Esquire. From 1987-93, he was a senior writer for Time and was also the magazine's correspondent covering the 1992 Clinton campaign. At Newsweek (1983-87), he was the lead political writer. He was on the reporting staff of the Washington Post from 1979-83. Prior to joining the POST, he served as a White House speechwriter for President Jimmy Carter and a special assistant and speechwriter for Secretary of Labor Ray Marshall.

Doug Henwood on what appears to be a looming economic recession in America. Mr. Henwood is the editor of the Left Business Observer, which he founded in 1986. Henwood is also a contributing editor of The Nation and does a weekly program on New York Radio. He is the author of the books "The State of the USA Atlas," "Wall Street:how it works and who for" and "After the New Economy."

Roger Lowenstein on Fed chief Ben Barnanke. Mr. Lowenstein is an American financial journalist, who reported for the Wall Street Journal for more than a decade, including two years writing its influential "Heard on the Street" column.. Lowenstein has authored three books, Buffett: The Making of an American Capitalist, When Genius Failed: The Rise and Fall of Long-Term Capital Management, and Origins of the Crash. He has written for many publications, including Smart Money and The New York Times. Lowenstein is a regular book reviewer for the The New York Times and has written a number of major articles and cover stories for the The New York Times Magazine including "Subprime Time," from last November and "The Education of Ben Bernanke," today's cover story in the New York Times Magazine.

January 13th, 2008 download

Gloria Steinem on the US presidential race and matters related. Ms. Steinem is the United States' most influential, eloquent and revered feminist more than three decades after founding Ms. magazine. A devoted activist and writer, Steinem continues, as she has for more than thirty-five years, to travel nationally and internationally and speak about gender, racial, and other civil inequity issues. She is the author of numerous books, many of them considered classics, including "Outrageous Acts and Everyday Rebellions," "Revolution from Within" and "Moving Beyond Words." Her latest book is "Doing Sixty and Seventy" and she is working with Jane Fonda to create a radio network for women. She had an op-ed published last week in the New York Times regarding her analysis on the race for the United States Presidency.

Gideon Levy on Bush's visit to the Middle East. Mr. Levy is an Israeli journalist who writes for Ha'aretz and is the former spokesman for Shimon Peres. Gideon Levy's writing is highly praised and noted for their keen analysis, insight and understanding of the Israeli as well as the Palestinian perspectives. He has been covering Bush's diplomitic mission to Israel.

Mark Schmidt on the presidential race. Mark Schmidt is a Senior Fellow at the New America Foundation, with expertise in American politics and specializing in developing new approaches to finding the balance between money and expression in the political process. He is a noted voice on reform of the political process and an authority on campaign finance and congressional procedure. He has written extensively on budget and tax policy, and on the history and role of ideas in politics. He writes monthly column, The Out Years, in The American Prospect. He has also written for The New Republic, The Financial Times, and many other publications, and has contributed chapters to numerous books. In 2003, he launched The Decembrist, which was named one of the five best political blogs in 2004 by Forbes, and is a frequent contributor to the widely read blog, Talking Points Memo. Before joining the New America Foundation, Mr. Schmitt was Director of Policy and Research at the Open Society Institute, and served for seven years in the U.S. Senate as a speechwriter and later as Policy Director for Sen. Bill Bradley. He was also a senior policy advisor on Bradley s 2000 presidential campaign. Schmitt serves on the boards of the Center for Policy Alternatives and the Proteus Fund. He is working on a book on the emergence of strong political parties in the United States.

January 6th, 2008
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Muthoni Wanyeki on the state of affairs in the troubled African nation of Kenya in the violent and chaotic aftermath of what appears to be a highly questionable election. Ms. Wanyeki is the executive director of the Kenya Human Rights Commission, a non-governmental organization. She is also a columnist for the weekly newspaper The East African.

David Sirota on the US Presidential race, Democratic and Republican, and matters related. Mr. Sirota is a political journalist, New York Times bestselling author of Hostile Takeover: How Big Money and Corruption Conquered Our Government--And How We Take It Back and a nationally syndicated newspaper columnist. He is a senior fellow at the Campaign for America's Future and a board member of the Progressive States Network. He writes a weekly, nationally syndicated column for Creators Syndicate which was launched in the Fall of 2007 and which now appears in The Denver Post, The San Francisco Chronicle, The Seattle Times, The Idaho Statesman and others. Sirota is a senior editor at In These Times magazine, and is working on his second book, due out in the Spring of 2008. He has been profiled in Newsweek and the Rocky Mountain News and is widely known for his reporting on political corruption, globalization and working-class economic issues often ignored by both of America's political parties. The New York Times has called him a "populist rabble-rouser" with a "take-no-prisoners mind-set," while the Philadelphia Daily News labeled him "a progressive powerhouse." The American Prospect said Sirota is "the kind of pundit you'd like to have on your side in a knife fight and wouldn't want to cross in a dark alley." David Sirota will be appearing in person with John Dean at the Hammer Museum in Westwood, in the Hammer Forum this coming Tuesday night at 7pm. It's free and open to the public. There will be ample seating.

John Dean on the state of what he describes as our "broken government," the Presidential race and matters related. Mr. Dean became Counsel to the President of the United States in July 1970 at age thirty-one. Prior to that, John Dean was Chief Minority Counsel to the Judiciary Committee of the United States House of Representatives, the Associate Director of a law reform commission, and Associate Deputy Attorney General of the United States. He served as Richard Nixon's White House lawyer for a thousand days. John Dean, a best-selling author, writes on the law, government, and politics, and he recounted his days in the Nixon White House and Watergate in two books, Blind Ambition (1976) and Lost Honor (1982). He has authored 8 books in total, including the best-sellers "Worse Than Watergate: The Secret Presidency of George W. Bush." and "Conservatives Without Conscience." His latest, another best-seller, is "Broken Government: How Republican Rule destroyed the Executive, Legislative and Judicial Branches." His forthcoming book, out in 2008, will be about Barry Goldwater. John Dean will be appearing in person with David Sirota at the Hammer Museum in Westwood, in the Hammer Forum this coming Tuesday night at 7pm. It's free and open to the public. There will be ample seating.

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