Author Archive

Burt Cohen

CulturePodcastPopulismRacism

It’s a puzzling mystery why so many working class people in the midwest go for Trumpism. Some answers are in Imagining the Heartland; White Supremacy and the American Midwest  by anthropologist authors Britt Halvorson and Joshua Renoit. It examines the

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Civil LibertiesHistory That Matters NowPodcastProtests & Resistance

It was a crime to even be a member of the “One Big Union.” But even Helen Keller was a member of the IWW, the Industrial Workers of the World. On this show, Ahmed White talks about his new book

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JusticePodcast

“Nothing in this story makes sense,” but it’s all too real. So says today’s guest Jordan S Rubin whose new book is titled Bizarro: The Surreal Saga of America’s Secret War on Synthetic Drugs and the Florida Kingpins It Captured.

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Podcast

The pressure to prevent active curiosity is a serious threat to democracy. Our guests today are authors Perry Zurin and Dani Bassett whose new book is Curious Minds, The Power of Connection. The push is on by the Trumpist right

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Central and South AmericaEnvironmentPodcast

From a vaunted Latin American “pink wave,” Colombia’s new president Gustavo Petro and vice president Francia Marquez realized that even with socialised profits, more extraction does not equal more wealth. In fact as the Insitute for Policy Studies’ John Feffer

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Fascism on the RiseInternational NewsPodcastReligion

India enjoys a greatly romanticized image; you may think of Gandhi or the Beatles visit there. The reality  is open repression and violence against the large Muslim minority.   Prime Minister Narendra Modi will soon visit America and his Hindu

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Foreign AffairsMilitary and Defence PolicyPodcastWar

Bush’s lies gave Trump moral scaffolding; today Americans believe big lies. On this show Thanassis Cambanis, a reporter who was in Iraq at the invasion, details the harm Bush and Cheney did to America. Even Russia gained power from our

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Economic IssuesEnvironmentPodcast

We may accept today’s economic system as just part of the natural order; but in truth capitalism started with overt violence. Centuries later it has morphed into what our guest calls Mute Compulsion. And now here we are, faced with

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EnvironmentPodcastTake Action

Fun attracts people but let’s face it: environmentalists tend to be a dour bunch. Saving the planet is after all serious stuff. Average working people can get turned off. But what about dark comedy? We’ve seen where it works. On

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DemocratsFreedomIsrael & PalestinePodcastRacism

When Republicans win power, they use it. Obama tried bipartisanship. There was little, if any, perceptible change. In the following campaign in 2016, Trump said “I made a promise to the forgotten men and women of this country that I

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Foreign AffairsMilitary and Defence PolicyPodcastWar

Shock and Awe was launched on this date by then President George W Bush. Over a hundred thousand Iraqis died along with 4,000 Americans. But what about the veterans today? On this rebroadcast, author Kelly Denton-Borhaug talks about  her book

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Civil LibertiesJusticePodcast

It’s a systemic problem: what is “reasonable,” what is acting “in good faith” when America’s police violate citizens rights or even kill them? As of now, police are protected, enjoying expanded immunity which no one else has. In this show

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Military and Defence PolicyPodcastWar

Authoritarians that they are, it’s not a huge surprise today’s Trump/DeSantis Republicans are pro-Putin. But as noted historian Michael Kazin points out, some alleged leftists are linking up with the far right on the war in Ukraine. Though there’s a

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CulturePodcastSexuality

On the first half Wellesley  Professor of American Studies and author Michael P. Jeffries talks about his new book Black and Queer on Campus, the unexpected possibilities and challenges which remain. And on part two, noted feminist Amanda Marcotte talks

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Economic IssuesFiscal PolicyPodcastPopulism

The unchecked power of the Federal Reserve claims its current, never ending rate hike strategy is about curbing inflation. It is not, according to our guest today, economics professor Clara Mattei. That we have become so used to it we

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Fascism on the RiseFreedomPodcast

There’s a science to the demise of democracy. On this show, Vanderbilt University political historian Eli Merritt talks about the new book he edited: How to Save Democracy; Inspiration and Advice from 95 World Leaders. It’s about the knowledge and

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CultureGunsPodcast

So many mass shootings; how did the gun culture become so powerful? Look to the Civil War. Militarily devastated, the Confederate culture transformed guns into a totem. In this revealing discussion, U of Wisconsin-Madison professor Nick Buttrick reveals the roots

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PodcastProtests & ResistanceWar

Despite current assumptions, “protests can win even as they appear to lose.” So says Notre Dame professor emeritus David Cortright in his new essay in The Nation. On this show, we show how there are two superpowers on the planet:

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Podcast

There used to be some 50 military contractors, now it’s more like five.  Merger mania. And we’re playing right into what China wants. And we’re still pouring money into one of the most costly weapons ever, the F 35, which

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Economic IssuesForeign AffairsPodcast

How big do you think Pakistan is? Would you guess over 200 million people? It’s a  nuclear armed power, deeply in debt, with a few rich powers and the military in control. On this show Murtaza Hussain fills in what

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Civil LibertiesDemocratsJusticePodcast

The Trumpist right today has had no small success erasing the productive history of liberalism. Today’s guest is author, lecturer, and journalist for The Washington Monthly David Masciotra who in this show talks about the renewed interest in Ted Kennedy,

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JusticePodcast

Though most of us never see it, instead of doing ethical justice, there’s a whole factory system routinely, intentionally turning injustice into revenue. On this show law professor, lawyer, and advocate for impoverished children and adults author Daniel Hatcher describes

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Central and South AmericaJusticePodcastRacism

Children have fewer filters: when they see and experience injustice they’re not scared  to draw pictures of the truth. In her new book Drawing Deportation Art and Resistance among Immigrant Children author Silvia Rodriguez Vega tells of the human creativity

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DemocratsPodcastTake Action

Is the US is merely a procedural, but not a substantive democracy? On part one, Franklin and Marshall history professor Van Gosse asks: what are the factors why we lack more actual democracy? And on part two, The Nation’s national

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Foreign AffairsMilitary and Defence PolicyPodcastWar

Private Security Firms; just part of doing business, right? Blackwater was America’s version in Iraq; The Wagner Group is Russia’s today in Ukraine and Africa. Atrocities in the Donbass region of Ukraine? Russia cynically said, that’s not us, it’s “little

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International NewsJusticePodcastRacismWar

All refugees lives are threatened equally, so why are Ukrainians handed the welcome mat as it is denied to most others? On this show, Columbia University Professor and co-author Helen Benedict shares what she’s found in the new book Map

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National PolicyPodcastPresident Biden

Despite the obvious divides, both sides in today’s fierce split may actually share a lot in common and can be pulled together for a better America by something traditional called Civic Republicanism. On this show, Washington Monthly Editor in Chief

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Israel & PalestineMiddle East NewsPodcast

Suddenly in 2023, the aspiration of  being the only democracy in the middle east is unraveling itself from within. With its turn to the far right, antidemocratic political Zionism is overpowering traditional spiritual and cultural Zionism. On this show, The

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Podcast

In her CounterPunch essay, Medea Benjamin co-founder of CodePink writes of surprisingly good things that happened in 2022. On this show, she cites many genuinely positive developments and some hopeful wake-up calls. Give a listen!

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DemocratsPodcastPopulism

How did so many blue collar regions go from Obama 2012 to Trump 2016? Our guest today Robin Johnson, himself of the mid-west, says Thomas Franks was wrong judging and dismissing this demographic; Democrats can win them back if we

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