Mon, 25 June 2012
This week on The Breakdown, Richard airs a panel discussion on the financial reform that he participated in at the Take Back the American Dream Conference along side New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman and leading homeowner rights activist, Tracy Van Slyke.
Next, Richard speaks with Medea Benjamin, founder of CodePink, about her efforts to stop the United States predator drone bombing campaigns in Afghanistan and Pakistan.
Then, Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-IL) talks to Richard about why progressives should line up behind Democrats in November--and push them to make the right decisions in the struggle over fiscal policy in December.
Finally, Richard hears from Ethan Rome, Executive Director of Health Care for America Now, a national group that helped pass the Affordabel Care Act and is now helping defend it. Rome affirms that regardless of the Supreme Court's decision about the constitutionality of the individual mandate, Health Care for America Now will continue to fight with grassroots pressure across the country to preserve and strengthen health care reform.
Mon, 11 June 2012
First, Richard breaks down the week's news - and a lot of them were not that good. Republican incumbent Scott Walker won the gubernatorial recall election in Wisconsin, and delivered a typically misleading victory speech about taking on "special interests," which seems to be his euphemism for unionbusting. Republicans defeated a law mandating equal pay for women in Congress. Mika Brzezinski of Morning Joe had the good sense to ridicule them for it. And former President Bill Clinton undermines Democratic messaging again with an interview on CNBC where it sounds an awful lot like he thinks the Bush tax cuts for the top 2% should be extended.
Next, Richard talks with David Shuster, Emmy Award-winning journalist and host of Take Action News, about a scoop he made just days before the Wisconsin recall election revealing that Scott Walker is being targeted by the federal "John Doe" investigation for misuse of public funds. Up until Shuster's scoop, only Walker's aides have been indicted. Shuster received word from former federal prosecutors involved in the case that Walker was the subject of the investigation as well -- and may soon be indicted.
Richard also got the chance to chat with legendary Texan country music artist, activist and commentator, Richard "Kinky" Friedman. Kinky speaks colorfully about the problems facing the country and offers is own brand of no-nonsense, Texan-style solutions.
Finally, Richard analyzes the post-presidential career of Bill Clinton. Richard thinks that in recent years Clinton has all-too-often used his perch in recent years to do the bidding of ConservaDems and the rich. His recommendation: Clinton should hang up his cleats and retire from politics.
Mon, 4 June 2012
This week on The Breakdown, Richard breaks down the week's biggest economic and political developments--from how government austerity is keeping unemployment high to the latest on the Wisconsin gubernatorial recall election.
In the news clips, this week Mayor Bloomberg announced a new program banning large-sized soda. The benevolence of the Mayor's dictatorship is continuing, and it means that you can't carry a 20 ounce Dr. Pepper. Richard also examined the upcoming gubernatorial recall election in Wisconsin. Governor Scott Walker has a plan to divide and conquor the unions, forgetting that the union members are citizens and taxpayers of the state of Wisconsin as well. Richard also addressed the jobs report and President Obama's reaction to it, and how the GOP controlled Congress has done nothing to return construction workers back to work.
Richard spoke with David Dayen of firedoglake about the economic climate, including a conversation about the direction the government should take, echoing the concern about the Democrat's lack of a good economics plan. While the Republican's economic plan is extreme, when compared against no economic plan it may win out.
Speaking of the Wisconsin recall election, which is taking place Tuesday, June 5th, we have interviews this week with Melissa Ryan of the New Organizing Institute, who is on the ground in Wisconsin for the election, as well as Amanda Terkel of the Huffington Post, who has been covering the election. They offer some very interesting insights into the election and how Scott Walker has been undermining the livehoods of his constituents.
To wrap up this week's episode of The Breakdown, Richard had an opportunity to talk to two leaders of the Home Defenders. The Home Defenders are organizing homeowners who are underwater on their mortgages. Since 15.7 million homeowners owe more on their homes than they paid for them, this is a huge political block that could have a loud voice in the upcoming election.