Deconstructed

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Come 2021 the Democrats are likely to find themselves in control of the Presidency and the House but not the Senate — meaning Mitch McConnell will be in a position to block any ambitious legislation from the new administration. But as Trump has shown us, there’s a lot a president can do without congress. Robert Hockett and Demond Drummer from New Consensus and Dave Dayen from the American Prospect join Ryan Grim to discuss just how much Biden can do on his own.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
The circular firing squad over the Democrats’ underperformance in congressional races has already begun. Party leaders are blaming “the squad” and other left-wing figures for their talk of “defunding the police.” Meanwhile, progressives blame the establishment for refusing to adopt a more ambitious platform. Chuck Rocha, the head of Solidarity Strategies, and Jonathan Smucker, founder of Pennsylvania Stands Up, join Ryan Grim to discuss the debate.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
November 3rd, 2020 was supposed to be the Democrats’ moment of glory: polls predicted a comfortable victory for former Vice President Joe Biden, as well as gains in both the House and Senate. Instead, Biden seems set to eke out a narrow win while his party loses House seats and fails to gain control of the upper chamber. Congresswoman Ilhan Omar and Texas Democratic House candidate Mike Siegel discuss what happened.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
Women across the U.S. found themselves suddenly drawn to politics after the shock election of Donald Trump four years ago. On this week’s podcast, Ryan Grim speaks to three such women: Candace Valenzuela and Julie Oliver in Texas, and Annie Weaver in Pennsylvania, about how that day changed their lives and the course it set them on over the last four years.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
Donald Trump and Joe Biden met for their final debate before the 2020 election on Thursday night. Trump continued his recent attacks on Biden’s son Hunter and his foreign business dealings, while Biden went after Trump’s mismanagement of the Covid-19 pandemic. Who got the best of the encounter? Rising host Krystal Ball and former Deconstructed host Mehdi Hasan join the show to break down the debate.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
Republicans appear set to confirm Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court. Ryan Grim talks to Ilyse Hogue of NARAL Pro-Choice America about the last 50 years of right-wing legal activism. Then Luther Lowe, Senior Vice President for Public Policy at Yelp, breaks down what could become the biggest antitrust case since Microsoft.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
When President Trump abruptly reversed an order penalizing the Chinese telecom company ZTE for selling to North Korea and Iran in 2018, it confused almost everyone. Why was the get-tough-on-China-president suddenly caving to their demands? As The Intercept’s Lee Fang and Mara Hvistendahl found out, the story behind Trump’s move on ZTE sheds new light on the role of lobbyists and foreign interests at the highest levels of his administration’s decision-making. And it involves a figure most Americans, even in his home state, have never heard of: Eric Branstad, son of former Iowa governor Terry Branstad.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
Wordpress entry text: A Georgia senator compares herself to Attila the Hun. An Alaska senate challenger brags about fighting a bear. While the president’s Covid diagnosis has dominated the headlines, local and state races have been getting interesting, and on this week’s podcast DC Bureau Chief Ryan Grim breaks them down with the Washington Post’s Dave Weigel. Then, Pennsylvania’s Lieutenant Governor, John Fetterman, clears up some myths about mail-in voting.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
A special message from Deconstructed host Mehdi Hasan. Mehdi talks to Intercept DC Bureau Chief Ryan Grim about where he's headed and what's next for the podcast.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
Julian Assange's impending extradition to the United States could set a dangerous new precedent in international law by allowing powerful governments to demand the handing-over of foreign journalists who publish information they deem damaging to their interests. Ryan Grim discusses the Assange case with Kevin Gosztola of Shadowproof. Then, Dana Gottesfeld describes the plight of her husband Martin, a hacker and human rights activist currently serving time at a prison in Indiana, similar to the one Assange could end up in.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
Fears are growing, stoked by the president’s own comments, that he will refuse to peacefully leave office should he lose the election in November. How concerned should we be, and what can we do to make sure we’re prepared? Joshua Geltzer, Georgetown law professor and a former member of President Obama’s National Security Council, joins Mehdi Hasan to discuss.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
As the US economy was spiralling out of control in 2008 and 2009, economist James Galbraith predicted that an insufficiently large stimulus would lead to a prolonged recession. He was right, and today he has a different set of economic prescriptions to address the economic crisis brought on by Covid-19. If Biden wins, will he listen? Senior politics editor Nausicaa Renner talks to Galbraith about his recent piece for The Intercept.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
Progressive candidates won big in this week’s Rhode Island primaries, thanks in large part to an array of left-wing organising groups that have sprung up there in the last few years to promote candidates for state and local office. One of the week’s winners was Cynthia Mendes, who defeated the State Senate Finance Chair. Ryan Grim talks to Mendes about her victory. Then, Daniel Denvir of Reclaim Rhode Island explains the organising strategies that made it happen.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
This week all eyes were on a pair of hard-fought Democratic primaries in Massachusetts. Senator Ed Markey staved off a primary challenge from Joe Kennedy III, while the progressive mayor of Holyoke, Alex Morse, lost his bid to replace Congressman Richard Neal. Morse was dogged by allegations of sexual misconduct levelled at him by the Massachusetts College Democrats, which he was unable to shake off even after they were shown by The Intercept to be an unfounded smear campaign. Markey and Morse were both backed by the youth-led climate group Sunrise Movement. Sunrise leaders Evan Weber and Alex O’Keefe join Ryan Grim to discuss the lessons of this week.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
QAnon is a far-ranging conspiracy theory that alleges, among other things, that a patriotic Trump supporter (or supporters) embedded in the highest levels of the U.S. government has been using internet forums to send coded messages to the American public about a secret plan to arrest and/or execute a global cabal of child-torturing, blood-drinking, satan-worshipping pedophiles. Despite its self-evident implausibility, the mantle of QAnon has been taken up by a huge number of mostly right-wing Americans, including a shocking number of Republican politicians. Guest host Ryan Grim talks to Aída Chávez and the Daily Beast’s Will Sommer about the future of Q.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
This week, The Democrats broadcast their nominating convention from Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic it was a largely virtual affair, with generally well-reviewed speeches from leading party figures like Barack and Michelle Obama, the Clintons, and Elizabeth Warren. Other than a speech by Bernie Sanders and a 1-minute cameo by Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, though, the party’s left wing was largely shut out. Missouri congressional candidate Cori Bush and Pod Save America co-host Tommy Vietor join Mehdi Hasan to discuss the convention and the prospects for Democrats in the Fall.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
It’s been two years since the peak of public outcry over the Trump administration’s decision to begin separating the children of unauthorized migrant families from their parents. Yet the massive crisis that policy spawned remains arguably the darkest chapter in Donald Trump’s very dark presidency. MSNBC correspondent Jacob Soboroff has been back and forth from the border and central America covering the family separation saga since it began, a story he chronicles in his new book Separated.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
Deep down, are humans really selfish, brutal, and cruel? For much of the last century the most famous experiments in social science, from the Stanford prison experiment to the Stanley Milgram electric shock study have purported to prove that we all have a monster lurking just behind a carefully crafted social veneer.In his new book Humankind: A Hopeful History, Dutch historian and author Rutger Bregman aims to shed new light on this idea by examining the latest social science research, knocking over some of the discipline’s sacred cows in the process. The book offers hopeful answers to anyone looking for a way forward in this era of political turmoil and confusion.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
This week’s Democratic primaries in Kentucky, New York, and Virginia saw a number of progressive challengers defeating moderate or establishment rivals. Of particular note were the victories of two insurgent candidates in New York: Jamaal Bowman, who defeated 16-term incumbent Eliot Engel, and Mondaire Jones, who triumphed over a crowded field in the 17th district to become one of the first openly gay black men ever elected to congress. Jones joins Mehdi Hasan to discuss his victory. Then, Intercept DC Bureau Chief Ryan Grim joins Mehdi to place this week’s elections in historical context.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
The United States has by far the world’s largest military budget, accounting for 15% of all federal spending, and nearly half of all discretionary spending. Presidents of both parties have repeatedly failed to bring the Pentagon budget under control. Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont has been one of the loudest voices in congress arguing for substantial cuts; his senior foreign policy adviser, Matt Duss, joins Mehdi Hasan to make the case for defunding the Pentagon.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
In the wake of global protests over the killing of George Floyd by a Minneapolis police officer, a movement to redirect public resources away from traditional policing and towards community-oriented systems of public safety has taken hold around the country. What are advocates of “defunding the police” really arguing for, and could it work? Black Lives Matter co-founder Patrisse Cullors joins Mehdi Hasan to discuss the future of policing in the United States.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
President Trump has seized on the nationwide protest movement that followed the death of George Floyd at the hands of a Minneapolis police officer to advance his most authoritarian political instincts. This week he threatened to deploy the military to cities whose leaders were unable to contain the violence themselves. Could this be an inflection point in his presidency? And is it time to finally use the F-word in discussing Trump? Fascism scholar Ruth Ben-Ghiat joins Mehdi Hasan to discuss.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
The U.S. passed a tragic milestone this week, becoming the first country in the world to record 100,000 deaths from Covid-19. Is there an end in sight? Is this the new normal? Yale epidemiologist Gregg Gonsalves joins Mehdi Hasan to discuss where we go from here.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
Attorney General William Barr has emerged as the shrewdest and most effective member of the Trump administration, weaponizing the Department of Justice to protect the president and his allies while threatening his enemies with legal retribution. He has made it clear that in sharp contrast to the traditionally independent role of the AG, he is willing to serve as Trump’s enforcer, providing a facade of legal propriety to the president’s election-year political maneuverings. What does this mean for the future of American politics? How bad could things get if Trump secures a second term this November? Emily Bazelon — Yale research fellow, staff writer for New York Times magazine, and host of Slate’s Political Gabfest — joins Mehdi Hasan to discuss.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
Over the weekend, Tesla CEO Elon Musk took to Twitter to voice his frustrations about the ongoing Covid-19 lockdown in Alameda County, California. The billionaire entrepreneur threatened that he would take his auto factory to another state if it was not allowed to reopen immediately. On Monday he announced that he would be resuming production at the facility in contravention of the lockdown. By Wednesday morning, the county had caved to Musk, announcing that his factory would be allowed to resume production under government supervision. After Musk’s initial tweet threatening to leave the state, California Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez took to Twitter herself, saying succinctly, “F*ck Elon Musk.” She added: “So much of the clash our state is experiencing with the tech/Silicon Valley companies is of our own making. We let gig companies violate labor laws for over a decade. We subsidized Tesla as they operated with severe safety issues & actively union busted. They got used to it… It’s time that all companies, no matter how cool, abide by the same laws.”Lorena Gonzalez discusses the situation with Musk and Tesla. Then, tech and labor reporter Jack Crosbie joins Mehdi to give the backstory on the cultish billionaire.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
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Podcast Details

Created by
The Intercept
Podcast Status
Active
Started
Nov 20th, 2020
Latest Episode
Nov 20th, 2020
Release Period
Weekly
Episodes
111
Avg. Episode Length
33 minutes
Explicit
No
Order
Episodic
Language
English

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