January 5 - Markets Tank with Greece Poised to Leave the Euro; The Weaponization of Finance; The GOP 114th Congress; 80% White, 80% Male and 92% Christian

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Part 1

We begin with today’s 331 point plunge of the Dow Jones together with the Euro falling to a nine-year low against the dollar as investors react to falling oil prices and the prospect of Greece leaving the Eurozone. Dimitri Papadimitriou, the President of the Levy Economics Institute and a Professor of Economics at Bard College joins us to discuss the upcoming January 25th election in Greece that is likely to bring the anti-austerity left-wing Syriza Party to power sparking fears that Greece will reject terms of the EU, ECB and IMF bailouts and exit from the euro.

dimitri

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Part 2

Then we look into the interesting addition to the Eurasia Group’s just-published top ten geopolitical risks of 2015; that is the “weaponization of finance”. Daniel Drezner, a professor of International Politics at Tufts University and a nonresident Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution joins us to discuss his article in The Washington Post “The Most Interesting Geopolitical Risk of 2015” and the use of finance as a weapon that is arguably more potent than the Pentagon’s nuclear arsenal and carrier battle groups; the power of the U.S. Treasury to use the carrot of access to capital markets and the stick of economic sanctions.

 

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Part 3

Then finally as the 114th Congress which is 80% white, 80% male and 92% Christian, prepares to open for business on Tuesday, we examine the likely impact of full GOP control of Congress and whether there will be more stalemate in Washington with a president trying to defend his policies and legacy and a new Republican majority who have spent the last six years trying to destroy Obama’s presidency. Ira Shapiro , who spent 12 years in the U.S. Senate as Counsel to the Majority Leader and is the author of “The Last Great Senate: Courage and Statesmanship in Times of Crisis” joins us to discuss whether Speaker Boehner and Majority Leader McConnell can move from a policy of obstruction to the practice of governing.  

 

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