What was the "Pink Tide" in Latin America?

We speak with René Rojas about the rise of the “Pink” left in Latin America from the late 1990s to the present. We discuss how this movement differs from the socialism of the 1960s and 1970s, what limitations the “Pink Tide” faced, and what the future holds for the Latin American left. René Rojas teaches sociology and political science at Hobart and William Smith Colleges. His research is on neoliberal development and politics in Latin America, where he spent years as an activist.

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Why the Democrats keep losing (and why the 'Blue Wave' is no sure thing)

We speak with Professor Jack Rasmus about the 2008 financial crisis and the upcoming mid-term elections. Dr. Rasmus teaches economics and politics at St. Mary’s College in California. He is the author of various books, including ‘Obama’s Economy: Recovery for the Few‘. Rasmus is the host of the weekly radio show, Alternative Visions, on the Progressive Radio Network, and has written articles for various magazines, including ‘Z‘ magazine, ‘Against the Current‘, ‘In These Times‘ and others.

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Music by Podington Bear

The economics of writing for a living: in conversation with Teddy Wayne

We speak with novelist Teddy Wayne about the economics of writing. We discuss where to live and how to pay rent, the death of reading, and how to get your kids into books. Teddy Wayne is author of Loner, The Love Song of Jonny Valentine, and Kapitoil. He is the winner of a Whiting Writers’ Award and an NEA Creative Writing Fellowship.

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Music by Podington Bear

The Fall and Rise of the Labor School

We speak with William S. Cossen about the history and importance of Labor Schools. William S. Cossen is online book review editor for the Society for Historians of the Gilded Age and Progressive Era. He is currently working on his first book, Making Catholic America: Religious Nationalism in the Gilded Age and Progressive Era. He is a high school teacher in Georgia (and three-time Jeopardy champion).

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Intro/Outro music by Podington Bear

“The idea that some lives matter less is the root of all that is wrong with the world.”

We speak with Basav Sen about energy insecurity, the ways in which climate change disproportionately hurts poor people, and why we may need to abandon capitalism if we want to save the world. Basav Sen is the Climate Justice Project Director for the Institute for Policy Studies. His work focuses on climate solutions at the national, state, and local level that address racial, economic, gender and other forms of inequality.

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The Special Relationship: Cuba and Africa

We speak with Netfa Freeman about Fidel Castro’s impact on Africa. We talk about the origins of the relationship, the development of the Pan-African movement, and the reasons why America remains fixated on overthrowing Cuba’s socialist government. Netfa Freeman was Director of the Institute for Policy Studies Social Action & Leadership School for Activists (SALSA) from 2000 to 2010 and is now the coordinator for events of the other IPS projects. His writings have been published in Black Star NewsBlack Commentator, and Black Agenda ReportPambazuka NewsGlobal Research, and beyond.

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Intro/Outro music by Podington Bear

What if we didn't have the biggest military budget in the world?

We speak with Lindsay Koshgarian about all of the things we could have if we cut the military budget (and why it’s so big in the first place). Lindsay Koshgarian is the program director of the National Priorities Project at the Institute for Policy Studies.

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Should we be fighting for Universal Basic Income?

We speak with Darren Baxter about Universal Basic Income. We discuss the costs and benefits of UBI, who supports it, and under what circumstances it might lead to a more equal society. Darren Baxter is a researcher at the Institute for Public Policy Research, the UK's leading progressive think tank.

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Video: Evoking the 1930's: Italy's Turn Right

Tobias Campbell has created a short video for our interview with Vito Laterza on Italy’s new government. He has done an outstanding job, we hope you enjoy this.

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A Tropical Trump? 2018 Brazilian Election Update

Brazilians go to the polls in less than a month. We speak with Daniela Mussi about the top candidates, the attempted assassination of poll leader Jair Bolsonaro, and the legacy of the dictatorship. Daniela Mussi is a post-doctorate researcher at the University of São Paulo and editor of October Magazine.

Presidential frontrunner Jair Bolsonaro

Presidential frontrunner Jair Bolsonaro

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STRIKE! What the abolition movement looks like in 2018

We speak with Toussaint Losier about the 2018 national prison strike. Toussaint Losier is an assistant professor in the W.E.B. Du Bois Department of Afro-American Studies at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. He is co-author of Rethinking the American Prison Movement with Dan Berger and preparing a book manuscript titled War for the City: Black Liberation and the Consolidation of the Carceral State.

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(Re)Discovering Frantz Fanon

This week we speak with Christopher J. Lee about the revolutionary writer Frantz Fanon. Christopher J. Lee is a professor at Lafayette College and is the author of Frantz Fanon: Toward a Revolutionary Humanism (Ohio University Press, 2015) and edited the new, annotated version of A Soviet Journey (Lexington Books, 2017).

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Not a new episode. Just thought we'd share something beautiful...

A new Tom Waits song. It’s a cover of the Italian classic. You can read more about it here.

One fine morning
I woke up early
o bella ciao, bella ciao
bella ciao, ciao, ciao
One fine morning
I woke up early
to find the fascists at my door

Oh partigiano
take me with you
bella ciao, bella ciao
goodbye, beautiful
oh partigiano
please take me with you
I’m not afraid anymore

And if I die
a partigiano
bella ciao, bella ciao
goodbye, beautiful
Bury me
up on that mountain
beneath the shadow of the flower

So all the people
the people passing
bella ciao, bella ciao
goodbye, beautiful
So all the people
the people passing
will say: “What a beautiful flower”

This is the flower
of the partisan
bella ciao, bella ciao
bella ciao
this is the flower
of the partisan
who died for freedom

this is the flower
of the partisan
who died for freedom

Are things really getting worse? Jeremy Lent on Steven Pinker.

This week we speak with Jeremy Lent about Steven Pinker’s new book Enlightenment Now. Jeremy Lent is author of The Patterning Instinct: A Cultural History of Humanity’s Search for Meaning, which investigates how different cultures have made sense of the universe. He is founder of the nonprofit Liology Institute, dedicated to fostering a sustainable worldview.

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Orientalism and Education Reform in Egypt

We speak with Maged Mandour about education reform in Egypt. We discuss why the middle class supports these types of policies, the corrosive role that orientalism plays in Egyptian political life, and the real reason the government fears the Muslim Brotherhood. Maged Mandour graduated from Cambridge with a Masters in International Relations. He is a political analyst and the columnist of “Chronicles of the Arab Revolt” on openDemocracy. He is also a writer for Sada, the online journal for Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.

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Evoking the 1930s: Italy's sharp right turn

We talk with Vito Laterza about Italy's new government. We discuss the rise in violence against migrants in recent months, the increasing isolation of the Roma community, and the emergence of a coordinated international far-right social media strategy. Vito Laterza is associate professor in development studies at the University of Agder, Norway. He is an anthropologist and political analyst working on the crisis of capitalism, inequalities, race and class, and Africa and the West.

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Note: the case of the coastguard ship not allowed to land has resolved after several more days of stalling, here is a link that updates listeners on how it ended:

https://news.sky.com/story/italy-allows-migrants-to-disembark-ship-10-days-after-rescue-in-mediterranean-sea-11482640

 

There's no going back: the battle for abortion rights in Argentina

We speak with Celeste Fierro about the fight for legalized abortions in Argentina. We discuss the increasingly radical feminist movement, the role the Pope played in trying to defeat the bill to legalize abortion, and how capitalism and patriarchy are both barriers to emancipation. Celeste Fierro is an activist with Junas y a la Izquierda, a feminist organization in Argentina’s Socialist Workers Party (MST).    

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Photo credit: Facebook @JuntasYaLaIzquierdaCba

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The rise of authoritarian capitalism in Hungary

We talk with Gábor Scheiring about the changes Hungary has undergone over the last eight years. We discuss how countries slide towards authoritarianism, the failures of the liberal elite, and what West Virginia has in common with rural Hungary. Gabor Scheiring works as a research fellow at the University of Cambridge. As co-founder of a local progressive green party he was elected to the Hungarian Parliament in 2010, serving as shadow minister of finance for his party. 

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