Elections

Local, state and national election coverage on KBOO community radio

Holding Obama's Feet to the Fire

program: 
Locus Focus
program date: 
Tue, 01/20/2009

The day after Barack Obama's historic inauguration as president of the United States we'll look at how much has changed in the United States and what still needs to change in the days, months and years ahead.

Locus Focus host Barbara Bernstein is joined by guests John Cavanagh, director of the Institute for Policy Studies, and Ajamu Baraka, executive director of the US Human Rights Network.

54:56 minutes (25.15 MB)

Old Mole Variety Hour for January 19, 2009

program date: 
Sun, 01/18/2009

On this program, the Moles look forward to the Obama presidency, back to the messages of Martin Luther King Jr., and to how the Nixon presidency is selectively remembered in the film Frost / Nixon.  Hear the whole show by clicking on the arrow above, or individual segments by following their links below where you can find more information  about each piece:

1.  John Nichols, correspondent for The Nation, talks with the Mole's Bill Resnick about where history might drive Obama.

2.  "What Would King Tell Obama?" -- an article by Michael Honey read by Tom Becker. 

47:40 minutes (27.28 MB)

Obama, Race, and Class

program date: 
Sun, 01/18/2009

What does the Obama presidency mean, symbolically and politically, for issues of race and class?  Malik Miah comments in this article from Against the Current.  The Old Mole's Jan Haaken reads it for us. 

8:14 minutes (4.71 MB)

John Nichols from the Inauguration

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program date: 
Sun, 01/18/2009

From the streets of Washington, D.C. on the eve of the Inauguration, John Nichols, a correspondent for The Nation Magazine, talks with the Old Mole's Bill Resnick about Barack Obama and how history may drive him into more progressive action than he has foreseen.  

16:07 minutes (9.23 MB)

Special Programming: Public Affairs

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Air date: 
Tue, 01/20/2009 - 12:00pm - 5:00pm

More special programming on the Inauguration of Barack Obama as President of the United States.

Special Programming: Public Affairs

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Air date: 
Tue, 01/20/2009 - 11:00am - 12:00pm

A national call-in show hosted jointly by WPFW-Pacifica in Washington and KGNU in Boulder Denver. The program will include reports from people on the scene at the inaugural site, special guests and analysis, and call-ins from listeners coast to coast, border to border.

Special Programming: Public Affairs

Categories:
Air date: 
Tue, 01/20/2009 - 8:00am - 11:00am

Live from Washington D.C. coverage of the Inauguration of Barack Obama as President of the United States. Hosted by Democracy Now!

Democracy Now!

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Program: 
Democracy Now!
Air date: 
Tue, 01/20/2009 - 7:00am - 8:00am

A special program focusing on the Inauguration of President Barack Obama.

Barbara Dudley on Expectations for Obama

Categories:
program: 
Locus Focus
program date: 
Tue, 01/13/2009

     A look back at the worst 8 years of our life and a look ahead into what we hope will be a better future. Guest Barbara Dudley and Locus Focus host Barbara Bernstein explore several themes as we we look forward to Barack Obama's inauguration next week: What are you looking forward to in the Obama administration? What do you fear will or will not happen? What opportunities now exist that have been suppressed for so long to make what we have been working for a reality?

54:44 minutes (25.06 MB)

Shockin n Rollin

 Once again, Digby nails it.

The fundamental purpose of the shock doctrine is to use crisis to push through unpopular and unjust "solutions" that favor the wealthy. We are seeing this battle take shape on several fronts. The right is working feverishly to discredit the New Deal at the same time that outside groups of so-called elder statesmen are lining up to screech about the deficit and entitlements. All of this obscures the real source of the current problem and obstructs the president's ability to do what's necessary to solve it.

If Obama were to succeed in fixing the economy, re-regulating the financial system, enacting health care and a modern environmental and energy policy, the right would be discredited for a couple of generations --- and the wealthy would lose many of their unfair advantages under a fair and equitable system. They not only do not want to take that chance, they also see this crisis as an opportunity to bury liberal economics and end the government programs that ensure a stable and prosperous society with a vast middle class. The stakes are huge for both sides.

This gets back to something we've touched on repeatedly over the years on the Abe and Joe show: the decades-long -- and largely successful -- endeavor by the monied class to undo the New Deal. As Digby notes, it's no accident that we're seeing an attempt in the news media to discredit the efficacy of the New Deal even as the President-elect and prominent economists like Paul Krugman call for a new, FDR-esque reinvestment in old and new infrastructure.

This has been going on for some time. The marginal personal and corporate income tax rate topped out in the World War II era at 94%, and with a few exceptions, has been in decline ever since. At the height of the Depression, in the late 1930s, the highest bracket was in the low 70% range. And during both crises -- depression and war -- we spent like drunken sailors and obtained solid results. And after the war, we kept on taxing and spending like the New Deal Democratic nation we were -- flaming leftists by today's standards. Hell, under Ike, the quintessential conservative of his age, the highest rate was over 90%.

But here's the thing. Consider what we did during that postwar era*.

We sent millions of ex-GIs to college. We built the interstate highway system. We rebuilt our conquered enemies. We built the most extensive public university system in the history of humanity. We put people on the moon. We saw sea changes in race and gender relations. We birthed history's first truly large-scale, educated middle class. We witnessed a riotous explosion of culture, as every imaginable tradition and heritage collided.

And people got rich. Lots of them. While paying high taxes.

But more importantly to the monied class -- and I think that these would-be assassins of the New Deal are oblivious to this, perhaps willfully so -- the middle class of the postwar era had money to spend on the products made by the monied class. Our ownership elite owes its exalted status to the fact that we and our parents and grandparents all spent money in the industrial economy.

So the attempt to bury the New Deal, organized labor, and the very notion of liberal Keynsian economics, is self-defeating. If you kill the middle class, there's no one to buy your useless crap. Now is the time to whip out that well-tuned sense of irony I've been urging you to develop.

Now is also the time to contact Obama and urge him to do the right thing with his economic policy. It's time to rebuild the middle class and invest in schools and solar power plants and high-speed trains and universal health care. It's time to bury conservative supply-side economic dogmatism for a good long time.

-A

* Yes, we also kept military spending at wartime levels. Yes, we started striking devil's bargains with brutal men in exchange for their nations' resources. Yes, we built an arsenal of doomsday weapons. Yes, we meddled ceaselessly all over the world. Yes, we presided over the maturation of the brutally exploitative global capitalist system. Yes, we waged cynical wars in far-flung places, both overt and covert. Yes, we perpetuated the global subjugation of the non-European peoples. Yes, we allowed the wholesale corporate acquisition of the wheels of government. Yes yes yes. I deny none of it. But we also did the stuff I said.

 

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