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Best of the Left - Leftist Perspectives on Progressive Politics, News, Culture, Economics and Democracy

Progressive Talk

Expertly-curated progressive politics, news, and culture produced by leftist humans, not algorithms or AI. This is an award-winning podcast that dives deeply into a wide range of national and international issues facing society and governments. We draw from hundreds of sources of progressive news and commentary. Est. 2006. Save time by listening to a range of perspectives on a focused topic in each episode and be introduced to new sources you will not have come across on your own!

Location:

Washington, DC

Description:

Expertly-curated progressive politics, news, and culture produced by leftist humans, not algorithms or AI. This is an award-winning podcast that dives deeply into a wide range of national and international issues facing society and governments. We draw from hundreds of sources of progressive news and commentary. Est. 2006. Save time by listening to a range of perspectives on a focused topic in each episode and be introduced to new sources you will not have come across on your own!

Language:

English


Episodes
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#1641 Green Energy and Public Transport: Feeling blue and seeing red about the inevitable messiness of transitioning to a low-carbon economy

7/12/2024
Air Date 7/12/2024 From solar scams to controversial congestion pricing and the smart grid that's needed to connect it all, we look at the messy and difficult path to a low-carbon future. Be part of the show! Leave us a message or text at 202-999-3991 or email Jay@BestOfTheLeft.com Transcript BestOfTheLeft.com/Support (Members Get Bonus Shows + No Ads!) Join our Discord community! KEY POINTS KP 1: When solar power leaves you feeling burned - Today, Explained - Air Date 1-2-24 KP 2: How can we develop new energy technologies and get them deployed at scale - The Energy Gang - Air Date 3-5-24 KP 3: This is what's REALLY holding back wind and solar - DW Planet A - Air Date 6-2-23 KP 4: How to fix clean energy’s storage problem - VOX - Air Date 4-27-23 KP 5: How can we develop new energy technologies and get them deployed at scale Part 2 - The Energy Gang - Air Date 3-5-24 KP 6: The Lost Subways of North America - 99% Invisible - Air Date 5-21-24 KP 7: NYC Congestion Pricing Advocates Slam Hochul for Halting Plan to Reduce Emissions, Fund Transit - Democracy Now! - Air Date 6-25-24 KP 8: Comptroller on Congestion Pricing's Indefinite Pause - The Brian Lehrer Show - Air Date 6-17-24 (54:25) NOTE FROM THE EDITOR On how to make the case to Biden to step aside DEEPER DIVES (1:01:35) SECTION A: ENERGY POLICIES (1:20:31) SECTION B: THE INTENTIONAL SOLAR SCAM (1:36:14) SECTION C: PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION MUSIC (Blue Dot Sessions) SHOW IMAGE: Description: Photo of a smoggy traffic jam on a highway, taken from the middle of the lane behind the cars. Cars' brake lights are visible. Credit: “World Class Traffic Jam: Jersey Turnpike Version” by b k, Flickr | License: CC BY-SA 2.0 | Changes: Slight crop

Duration:01:52:13

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#1247 The Fight for the Four Freedoms (FDR vs. Libertarianism) (Throwback)

7/9/2024
Original Air Date: 2/5/2019 Today we take a look at the history of FDR's "Four Freedoms" and "Economic Bill of Rights" that laid the groundwork for the fight for economic freedom for all that continues to this day. Be part of the show! Leave us a message or text at 202-999-3991 or email Jay@BestOfTheLeft.com BestOfTheLeft.com/Support (Get AD FREE Shows and Bonus Content) Join our Discord community! SHOW NOTES Ch. 1: Harvey Kaye, "The Fight for the Four Freedoms" - Book TV - Air Date 5-11-14 Harvey Kaye examines the progressivism of the Roosevelt-era and argues that a reminder of the "four freedoms" could address today's political and social issues. Ch. 2: What Ted Cruz Doesn't Get About 'Freedom' - @Thom_Hartmann - Air Date 7-21-16 Thom talks about Ted Cruz's speech at the Republican Convention and compares his definition of 'freedom' with the way it was described by Franklin D. Roosevelt. Ch. 3: An Overdue Second Bill of Rights Part 1 - Progressive Faith Sermons w @RevDrRay - Air Date 10-7-18 F.D.R. recognized that the original bill of rights would not be enough to make all American’s truly free and proposed an economic bill of rights. Of the eight amendments he proposed in 1944, seven are still waiting to be implemented. Ch. 4: Fighting for the Four Freedoms - @BillMoyersHQ And Company - Air Date 4-15-14 Historian Harvey J. Kaye talks about how FDR was able to mobilize Americans to create "the strongest and most prosperous country in human history." Ch. 5: Libertarian Definition of "Freedom" is Freedom in Name Only - Majority Report (@MajorityFM) - Air Date 8-1-13 Explaining that libertarian thinking doesn't incorporate the existence of economic coercion Ch. 6: An Overdue Second Bill of Rights Part 2 - Progressive Faith Sermons w @RevDrRay - Air Date 10-7-18 Ch. 7: Bernie Sanders & FDR's Second Bill of Rights - Berniementum - Air Date 8-12-15 President FDR's Second Bill of Rights speech - January 11, 1944 Sen. Bernie Sanders speech at the National Press Club - Mar. 9, 2015 Music - "There is Romance" by Imcompetech Ch. 8: Fight for the Four Freedoms What Made FDR & the Greatest Generation Truly Great (w: Harvey J Kaye) - Majority Report (@MajorityFM) - Air Date 9-9-15 University of Wisconsin Professor Harvey J Kaye author of Fight for the Four Freedoms: What Made FDR and the Greatest Generation Truly Great, explains Ronald Reagan and the great pushback against a progressive America Ch. 9: An Overdue Second Bill of Rights Part 3 - Progressive Faith Sermons w @RevDrRay - Air Date 10-7-18

Duration:01:01:04

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Bonus Sample #311 Primal Scream of Catharsis

7/7/2024
Air Date: 7-7-24 Today, Jay!, Amanda, Deon and Erin discuss: - Some stuff that we planned and A LOT more that we did not. REFERENCES: The Cause That Turned Idealists Into Authoritarian Zealots 'Extreme wealth as power must be regulated’: 31-year-old heiress is letting 50 strangers give her $27 million fortune away The Baffling Disaster Unfolding at the Washington Post The Democratic Governor Whose Message Can’t Be Beat Best of the Left #1247 The Fight for the Four Freedoms (FDR vs. Libertarianism) The Fight for the Four Freedoms Join our Discord Server Leave a message at 202-999-3991 Produced by: Jay! Tomlinson Thanks for listening! Visit us at BestOfTheLeft.com Follow at Twitter.com/BestOfTheLeft Like at Facebook.com/BestOfTheLeft Contact me directly at Jay@BestOfTheLeft.com Review the show on Apple Podcasts!

Duration:00:18:09

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#1640 China Explained: From Cars to Computer Chips, Communism to Carbon Emissions, the South China Sea to Space, and Clinton to Biden

7/5/2024
Air Date 7/5/2024 China is an undeniable force in the world relating to several major political issues and to address their influence without a deep understanding of the history, context, and current dynamics would be to invite 100 years of humiliation. Be part of the show! Leave us a message or text at 202-999-3991 or email Jay@BestOfTheLeft.com Transcript BestOfTheLeft.com/Support (Members Get Bonus Shows + No Ads!) Join our Discord community! KEY POINTS KP 1: Joe Biden's Radical Worldview - More Perfect Union - Air Date 6-27-24 KP 2: Why China Doesn't Identify with the West, Explained - Siming Lan - Air Date 9-23-22 KP 3: Has China's Belt and Road Initiative been a success? - Financial Times - Air Date 10-30-23 KP 4: Why China Isn't the Problem - Our Changing Climate - Air Date 5-5-23 KP 5: The Escalating Sino-Philippine South China Sea Dispute Explained - TLDR News Global - Air Date 6-26-24 KP 6: Why China's Economy is Finally Slowing Down - Wendover - Air Date 3-21-24 KP 7: Our New Global Economy - Johnny Harris - Air Date 12-20-23 (1:04:13) NOTE FROM THE EDITOR On how Joe Biden can become a hero in the wake of his debate with Trump DEEPER DIVES (1:12:51) SECTION A: CHINA'S ECONOMIC FOREIGN POLICY A1: Kidnappings and ghost towns on China’s Belt and Road: 10 years of Xi Jinping’s masterplan | Dispatch - The Telegraph - Air Date 9-7-23 A2: Has Africa gained from China's infrastructure plans? - Focus on Africa - Air Date 10-20-23 A3: China-Africa Relations in the Era of Great Power Competition - The China in Africa Podcast - Air Date 5-9-24 SEE FULL SHOW NOTES (1:37:10) SECTION B: THE EV WARS (1:59:44) SECTION C: TECH AND SPACE RACE (2:14:44) SECTION D: ESCALATING TENSIONS MUSIC (Blue Dot Sessions) SHOW IMAGE: Description: An illustration of a darkened, draped Chinese flag, with its 5-star pattern, close up. Credit: "China flag" by The Digital Artist, Pixabay | Pixabay License |Changes: Added dark overlay

Duration:02:54:11

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#1639 Migrants and Refugees on Fortress Earth: Our politicized, fortified, industrialized borders in the US and Europe

7/2/2024
Air Date 7/2/2024 Border security around the world continues to take turns for the dark and dystopian as right-wing sentiment against migrants and refugees continues to escalate to the extreme. Be part of the show! Leave us a message or text at 202-999-3991 or email Jay@BestOfTheLeft.com Transcript Air Date 7/2/2024 Border security around the world continues to take turns for the dark and dystopian as right-wing sentiment against migrants and refugees continues to escalate to the extreme. Be part of the show! Leave us a message or text at 202-999-3991 or email Jay@BestOfTheLeft.com Transcript BestOfTheLeft.com/Support (Members Get Bonus Shows + No Ads!) Join our Discord community! KEY POINTS KP 1: First Illinois Latina Rep. Praises Biden's New Immigration Executive Order But Slams Border Shutdown - Democracy Now! - Air Date 6-20-24 KP 2: EU Border Enforcement, Part 1 - It Could Happen Here - Air Date 6-4-24 KP 3: Migrants & Refugees, the Pope & Volkswagen - Last Week Tonight with John Oliver - Air Date 5-26-24 KP 4: Tunisia, EU scrutinized for harsh treatment of migrants along route from Africa to Europe - PBS NewsHour - Air Date 8-7-23 KP 5: Why Are Migrants Becoming AI Test Subjects? With Petra Molnar - Your Undivided Attention - Air Date 6-20-24 KP 6: EU Border Enforcement, Part 2 - It Could Happen Here - Air Date 6-5-24 KP 7: Why Are Migrants Becoming AI Test Subjects? With Petra Molnar Part 2 - Your Undivided Attention - Air Date 6-20-24 (52:45) NOTE FROM THE EDITOR On our summer membership drive DEEPER DIVES (57:32) SECTION A: POLITICIZATION OF THE BORDER (1:19:47) SECTION B: BRUTAL BORDER ENFORCEMENT (1:36:40) SECTION C: BORDER INDUSTRIAL COMPLEX (1:48:14) SECTION D: MIGRANT STORIES SHOW IMAGE: Description: Composite graphic showing a deep blue ocean with the gold stars of the EU flag. On the horizon, a faded US flag is behind concertina wire fencing. In the center, a long boat full of refugees floats on the water. Credit: Composite Design by A. Hoffman. | Composite imagery via Pixabay | Photo: “P52 Migrants 19 July 2015 03” by Oglaigh na hEireann, Flickr. License: CC BY 2.0 Changes: Cropped and reduced opacity

Duration:02:06:35

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Bonus Sample #310 - The Torment Nexus

6/30/2024
Air Date: 6-30-24 Today, Jay!, Amanda, Deon and Erin discuss: - the baffling trend of tech companies using cautionary tales from dystopian fiction as a blueprint for what to create next - how the people who build or champion tools of oppression never think those same tools will inevitably be turned on them - the use of drones as first responders, and the long term effects this has had on the residents - a different perspective on how to think about the end - humanity's seeming inability to think about longterm repercussions of technology before we put something into use REFERENCES: What Is 'Torment Nexus?' The 'Man-Made Horrors' Trope Explained Author of cautionary tale about Torment Nexus creates tech company to build Torment Nexus ‘Snow Crash’ Author Neal Stephenson Is Building a ‘Free Metaverse’ Called Lamina1 The Age of the Drone Police Is Here Watch a swarm of cyborg cockroaches controlled by computers Are We Doomed? Here’s How to Think About It Join our Discord Server Leave a message at 202-999-3991 Produced by: Jay! Tomlinson Thanks for listening! Visit us at BestOfTheLeft.com Follow at Twitter.com/BestOfTheLeft Like at Facebook.com/BestOfTheLeft Contact me directly at Jay@BestOfTheLeft.com Review the show on Apple Podcasts!

Duration:00:14:56

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#1638 AI: From Killer Apps to Killer Robots, the Present and Future of Artificial Intelligence Spans the Spectrum

6/28/2024
Air Date 6/28/2024 AI, like all new technologies, won't be all good or all bad. In fact, my favorite understanding of emerging technologies is that they often bring simultaneous utopia and dystopia, though many tend to focus on the benefits while only discovering the drawbacks later. Be part of the show! Leave us a message or text at 202-999-3991 or email Jay@BestOfTheLeft.com Transcript BestOfTheLeft.com/Support (Members Get Bonus Shows + No Ads!) Join our Discord community! KEY POINTS 1: We’re already using AI more than we realize - Vox - Air Date 2-28-24 2: AI is a Lie. - Linus Tech Tips - Air Date 6-13-24 3: What Is an AI Anyway? | Mustafa Suleyman - TED - Air Date 4-22-24 4: How to Limit the Threat of "Killer Robots" and Autonomous Weapons That Are Changing Warfare - Global Dispatches - Air Date 3-13-24 5: How Much AI Regulation Is The Right Amount? - FiveThirtyEight Politics Podcast - Air Date 6-13-24 6: How AI causes serious environmental problems (but might also provide solutions) | DW Business - DW News - Air Date 4-29-24 7: Why Are Migrants Becoming AI Test Subjects? With Petra Molnar - Your Undivided Attention - Air Date 6-20-24 8: Big Tech AI Is A Lie - Tina Huang - Air Date 4-30-24 (1:07:12) NOTE FROM THE EDITOR On the nature of misalignment between AI and human wellbeing Article: This article is OpenAI training data DEEPER DIVES (1:16:18) SECTION A: MORE CURRENT USES OF AI (1:44:54) SECTION B: POTENTIAL USES OF AI AND THE ETHICS WE NEED TO CONSIDER (2:08:00) SECTION C: REGULATING AI MUSIC (Blue Dot Sessions) SHOW IMAGE Description: Graphic showing a human hand and a digital pixilated hand reaching out toward each other with arching digital lines coming from the center of each hand. Credit: “Digitization Particles Hand” via geralt, Pixabay | Pixabay License | Changes: Expanded

Duration:02:21:19

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#1590 Red Caesar and Project 2025: A fascist fever dream by the Claremont Institute and the Heritage Foundation (Throwback)

6/25/2024
Original Air Date: 10/23/2023 The people who want to pull the country in directions that are only supported by a small minority of the population have to develop very intricate plans to have any hope of succeeding. This is the story of the latest plan to establish unchecked rule to implement unpopular policies supported only by the far right. Be part of the show! Leave us a message or text at 202-999-3991 or email Jay@BestOfTheLeft.com BestOfTheLeft.com/Support (Members Get Bonus Shows + No Ads!) Join our Discord community! SHOW NOTES Ch. 1: ‘The endgame of election denial is that we shouldn't have elections’: Authoritarianism expert - The ReidOut - Air Date 10-6-23 Donald Trump has ramped up his violent rhetoric in recent weeks. Meanwhile, a Fox host has urged the U.S. towards civil war and claimed that voting does not work. Ch. 2: Violent Authoritarianism: How Did This Become the GOP? - Keeping Democracy Alive with Burt Cohen - Air Date 11-23-21 Pat Buchanan was ahead of his time. He used the KKK’s David Duke to breed a new nativist religious nationalism, based on fear of liberalization. On this show, political science professor Joseph Lowndes sheds light on how the Republican Party got here Ch. 3: Analyzing The Dark Roots Of Modern Conservatism - The Majority Report w/ Sam Seder - Air Date 10-15-23 Emma hosts John S. Huntington, professor of history at Houston Community College, to discuss his recent book Far-Right Vanguard: The Radical Roots of Modern Conservatism. Ch. 4: How Often Do YOU Think About the Roman Empire? - Wisecrack - Air Date 10-16-23 The real reason TikTok is crazy for ancient Rome If you’re even a little bit online, you know that the men love ancient Rome. This isn’t new: The civilization has loomed large in the Western imagination ever since its catastrophic collapse. Ch. 5: The Conservative Plan to Take Over the Country Part 1 - Leeja Miller - Air Date 9-26-23 Project 2025 is the terrifying plan set out by conservatives to take over the government. But it's radical, and it doesn't align with what most Americans want. Which is why we have to make sure this plan never happens. Ch. 6: The GOP’s "Red Caesar" New Political Order Plan Marches Forward - The Thom Hartmann Program - Air Date 10-3-23 A Trump supporter just displayed exactly how stochastic terrorism works. Ch. 7: The Conservative Plan to Take Over the Country Part 2 - Leeja Miller - Air Date 9-26-23 Ch. 8: Think Tanks: How Fake Experts Shape the News - Tom Nicholas - Air Date 5-13-23 A video about how billionaire-funded right-wing “think tanks” such as the Heritage Foundation, Adam Smith Institute, Manhattan Institute, and Institute of Economic Affairs manipulate the news to spread their propaganda

Duration:01:01:44

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Bonus Sample #309 Of Kidults and Puppets

6/23/2024
Air Date: 6-23-24 Today, Jay!, Amanda, Deon and Erin discuss: - The Kidult trend in depth (since we had to cut it short last time) - A right-wing attempt at a puppet-based kids show to draw in young viewers early - How Nanalan' - a kids puppet show from the 90s - is helping some Millennials with reparenting REFERENCES: Adults Are Spending Big on Toys and Stuffed Animals—for Themselves Kidults - do you have one in your life? PLAYBACK The UK’s adults-only soft play, ball pits, Lego nights, museum sleepovers & holiday camps where grown-ups play like kids 'Gus Plus Us' Offers a Glimpse of Texas Filmmaking’s Conservative Future What is Bentkey? 'She Is the Icon of All That Is Joyful in the World Nanalan' on YouTube Join our Discord Server Leave a message at 202-999-3991 Produced by: Jay! Tomlinson Thanks for listening! Visit us at BestOfTheLeft.com Follow at Twitter.com/BestOfTheLeft Like at Facebook.com/BestOfTheLeft Contact me directly at Jay@BestOfTheLeft.com Review the show on Apple Podcasts!

Duration:00:23:26

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#1637 Shifting Populations, Shifting Politics: The European elections show a shift toward the hard right over fears of immigration and scarcity

6/21/2024
Air Date 6/21/2024 The European elections could have been worse but they weren't great. Shifting politics among mainstream parties is legitimizing far-right policies at the same time as people's concerns over immigration is being reflected in a willingness to vote for far-right parties. Be part of the show! Leave us a message or text at 202-999-3991 or email Jay@BestOfTheLeft.com Transcript BestOfTheLeft.com/Support (Members Get Bonus Clips and Shows + No Ads!) SEE FULL SHOW NOTES Join our Discord community! KEY POINTS KP 1: Clear Shift Toward the Far Right Anti-Immigrant Nationalists Gain Ground Across Europe - Democracy Now! - Air Date 6-11-24 KP 2: Europe Slides to the Right Unpacking the EU Parliamentary elections. - UNFTR - Air Date 6-15-24 KP 3: How the EU Parliament Voted This Year - The Brian Lehrer Show - Air Date 6-12-24 KP 4: Does the economy matter to the far right? - Business Beyond - Air Date 5-31-24 KP 5: How Deep Does Right Wing Extremism Go In The Republican Party With Teddy Wilson - The Muckrake Political Podcast - Air Date 6-11-24 KP 6: What is behind the rise of the far-right in Europe - Al Jazeera English - Air Date 6-11-24 KP 7: Far Right Surges in European Elections - Pod Save The World - Air Date 6-12-24 KP 8: Europe Slides to the Right Unpacking the EU Parliamentary elections Part 2 - UNFTR - Air Date 6-15-24 (49:23) NOTE FROM THE EDITOR On the snowball effect of factors leading to a rightward shift in politics DEEPER DIVES (56:56) SECTION A: THE EU STRUCTURE AND ELECTION RESULTS (1:05:58) SECTION B: IMMIGRATION AND THE CULTURE WAR (1:24:12) SECTION C: THE PLAYBOOK AND MESSAGING OF THE FAR RIGHT SHOW IMAGE: Description: Photo of European Parliament off-center, shifted right. Credit: “European Parliament Strasbourg Hemicycle” by Diliff, Wikimedia | License: CC BY-SA 3.0 | Cropped

Duration:01:48:30

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#1460 The Growing Threat of Minority Rule (Throwback)

6/18/2024
Original Air Date: 12/11/2021 Today we take a look at the many structures of American government that tilt to favor minority rule and conservatism which, in our case, is one and the same. Some structures like the Senate and the filibuster were intentionally designed to give extra weight to the minority while others like gerrymandering and the influence of large-dollar political donors were, well, I suppose they were designed for about the same reason but just in a different way. Be part of the show! Leave us a message or text at 202-999-3991 or email Jay@BestOfTheLeft.com BestOfTheLeft.com/Support (Members Get Bonus Shows + No Ads!) Join our Discord community! SHOW NOTES Ch. 1: Lawrence Lessig on Unrepresentative Democracy - Network for Responsible Public Policy - Air Date 10-1-21 Ch. 2: Why Wyoming Has More Power Than California in the Senate - AJ+ - Air Date 10-14-20 Ch. 3: Perpetual Minority Rule with David Faris - Battleground with Amanda Litman and Faiz Shakir - Air Date 6-10-21 Ch. 4: Biden's DOJ is SUING Texas For Their Brazenly Discriminatory Gerrymandering - The Humanist Report - Air Date 12-7-21 Ch. 5: Andrew Perez on the Filibuster - CounterSpin - Air Date 6-18-21 Ch. 6: A To-Do List for Senate Democrats - Amicus With Dahlia Lithwick - Air Date 7-17-21 MEMBERS-ONLY BONUS CLIP(S) Ch. 7: Chauncey DeVega On Why Democracy Might Not Survive - The Muckrake Political Podcast - Air Date 12-7-21 FINAL COMMENTS Ch. 8: Final comments on public policy, human nature and Cold War talking points Produced by Jay! Tomlinson Visit us at BestOfTheLeft.com

Duration:01:07:14

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Bonus Sample #308 Let the Kids (and Adults) Play

6/16/2024
Air Date: 6-16-24 Today, Jay!, Amanda, Deon and Erin discuss: - The importance of unsupervised playtime for children and why it's disappearing - The roots and consequences of over-scheduling kids and why it's so hard to cut back - The rise of the "Kidult" REFERENCES: Parents: Keep Out! - Hidden Brain The Fine Art of Underscheduling Adults Are Spending Big on Toys and Stuffed Animals— For Themselves Let Grow Play Club Chasing Childhood documentary Join our Discord Server Leave a message at 202-999-3991 Produced by: Jay! Tomlinson Thanks for listening! Visit us at BestOfTheLeft.com Follow at Twitter.com/BestOfTheLeft Like at Facebook.com/BestOfTheLeft Contact me directly at Jay@BestOfTheLeft.com Review the show on Apple Podcasts!

Duration:00:17:59

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#1636 The Supreme Court Is In Bad Shape. Like, Really Bad. And SCOTUS Is Going To Take Us All Down With Them

6/14/2024
Air Date 6/14/2024 We're in the middle of Supreme Court opinion season, which is not going well for non-extreme conservatives in the country, at the same time as scandal, corruption, and justices Thomas and Alito's refusal to recuse in the face of clear bias is reaching a modern peak. Call or text 202-999-3991 or email Jay@BestOfTheLeft.com Transcript BestOfTheLeft.com/Support Join our Discord community! KEY POINTS 1: Opinionpalooza A Bad June Rising At SCOTUS Part 1 - Amicus 2: How The Mifepristone Case Reached SCOTUS - Amicus 3: Way Too Close Insane SCOTUS Case Could've Sunk The Country w Mark Joseph Stern - The Majority Report 4: Fact-Checking the Supreme Court - 99% Invisible 5: The IVF Decision We Should Have Seen Coming - Amicus 6: SCOTUS Flag Neighbor Exposes Alito’s BS Story- The Majority Report 7: Delegitimize The Court - Contempt of Court (1:03:35) NOTE FROM THE EDITOR On some of Alito's finer absurdity Articles: Alito says the Supreme Court’s fake ethics code allows him to be unethical The Republican Party's man inside the Supreme Court The Supreme Court's new voting rights decision is a love letter to gerrymandering DEEPER DIVES (1:14:19) SECTION A: DO FACTS MATTER? (1:45:47) SECTION B: POLICING MEDICAL CARE (2:15:48) SECTION C: THE REPUBLICAN COURT WE’VE ALL WAITED FOR (2:42:24) SECTION D: SCOTUS IS A FLAWED SYSTEM Description: Photo of the U.S. Supreme Court building with an ominous red filter. An image of golden, uneven scales of justice sits on top. Credit: Composite design by A. Hoffman. / Photo: “The Supreme Court” by Glenn Beltz, Flickr | License: CC BY 2.0 | Changes: Overlaid with red and imagery as part of composite. / Illustration: “Uneven scales of justice” via TheDigitalArtist, Pixabay.

Duration:03:06:04

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#1635 Democracy on the Decline: The US is not alone in facing threats to democracy, others countries are showing how democracies fail

6/11/2024
Air Date 6/11/2024 Democracies don't break all of a sudden in a moment of crisis, they fail slowly over time and only by knowing the warning signs and responding effectively to the threat before it's too late can the worst be averted. Call or text at 202-999-3991, email Jay@BestOfTheLeft.com Transcript BestOfTheLeft.com/Support (Members Get Bonus Shows + No Ads!) Join our Discord community! KEY POINTS 1: Why and Where is Democracy in Decline? - TLDR News 2: Is Democracy Under Threat? - Tufts University 3: The decline of American democracy won't be televised - Vox 4: How Republicans are fueling Russia and China_s global effort to undermine democracy - Velshi 5: How Republican Attorneys General are Undermining Voting Rights - Democracy Docket 6: Democracy vs. Autocracy: An Unproductive Dichotomy - Marxist Project 7: When Democracy Breaks: Final Thoughts with Archon Fung, David Moss and Arne Westad - Democracy Paradox 8: Protecting Voting Rights with Eric Holder - Why Is This Happening? 9: Rich Logis Escaped the Trump - MAGA Cult -- Heed His Warnings About Its Power and Extreme Danger to America - Chauncey DeVega Show 10: "The President of Forgetting" - Dastardly Cleverness in the Service of Good (1:03:29) NOTE FROM THE EDITOR Those who defend authoritarians against criticism during D-Day commemoration Conservatives Angry at Biden’s Anti-Nazi D-Day Speech Fighting Trump on the Beaches DEEPER DIVES (1:09:52) SECTION A: DISSECTION OF DEMOCRACY (1:31:56) SECTION B: INTERNATIONAL DEMOCRACY (2:09:54) SECTION C: THE CULT OF TRUMP (2:36:47) SECTION D: DEMOCRACY IN ACTION IMAGE: Description: Black and white photo of a person holding a homemade sign that says “Fighting for Democracy” Credit: “For Democracy” by Alisdare Hickson, Flickr | License: CC BY-SA 2.0 | Change: Cropped

Duration:03:09:59

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Bonus Sample #307 Uncertain and Powerless

6/9/2024
Air Date: 06-09-24 Today, Jay!, Amanda, Deon and Erin discuss: - how focusing on the "politics" of an event trivializes the impact that event has on real people - the detrimental effects combining the daily news grind and the prioritization of profits forces has on news coverage - how keeping news coverage light and ignoring the effects of neoliberalism leaves desperate people vulnerable to fascism - the way history is repeating itself when it comes to news media not treating a demagogue's rhetoric as the emergency it is - the difference between symbolic beliefs vs factual beliefs REFERENCES: Why Americans Hate the Media The Media Still Doesn’t Grasp the Danger of Trump Don’t Believe What They’re Telling You About Misinformation Join our Discord Server Leave a message at 202-999-3991 Produced by: Jay! Tomlinson Thanks for listening! Visit us at BestOfTheLeft.com Follow at Twitter.com/BestOfTheLeft Like at Facebook.com/BestOfTheLeft Contact me directly at Jay@BestOfTheLeft.com Review the show on Apple Podcasts!

Duration:00:13:06

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#1634 Abortion as the Tip of the Iceberg: the fight for privacy, bodily autonomy, and functional democracy after Dobbs overturning Roe v Wade

6/7/2024
Air Date 6/7/2024 Banning abortion is wildly unpopular and also one of the primary motivators for the group most strongly supporting the Republican Party and Donald Trump, the Christian Right, which has transformed both the party and politicians into extremists made in their own image, threatening the lives and health of millions and sacrificing democracy in the process. Leave us a message or text at 202-999-3991 or email Jay@BestOfTheLeft.com Transcript BestOfTheLeft.com/Support (Members Get Bonus Clips and Shows + No Ads!) Join our Discord community! KEY POINTS 1: Abortion and Reproductive Rights - Lectures in History 2: Abortion and the erosion of privacy - The Weeds 3: Digital surveillance and reproductive rights - Technically Optimistic 4: Anti-abortion hardliners want restrictions to go farther. It could cost Republicans - Consider This 5: Abortion and Reproductive Rights Part 2 - Lectures in History 6: Rakeen Mabud on Greedflation, Rachel K. Jones on Mifepristone - CounterSpin 7: Abortion and the erosion of privacy Part 2 - The Weeds 8: Digital surveillance and reproductive rights Part 2 - Technically Optimistic (57:00) NOTE FROM THE EDITOR On the abuse produced by abortion restrictions DEEPER DIVES (1:02:40) SECTION A: CRIMINALIZING ABORTION (1:21:07) SECTION B: ABORTION EXTREMISM OF THE REPUBLICAN PARTY (1:36:40) SECTION C: ABORTION IN THE LEGAL SYSTEM (1:53:45) SECTION D: WHAT IS THERE TO DO? SHOW IMAGE: Description: A person dressed in a red cape and white conical bonnet with a red sash over their nose and mouth (referencing the Handmaid's Tale) stands outside the U.S. Supreme Court at dusk holding a cardboard sign with the words "This is NOT fiction." Credit: Photo by Tyler Merbler, Flickr | License: CC BY 2.0 | Changes: Cropped

Duration:02:23:12

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#1633 Fights for Fair Pay, Journalism vs Sensationalism, Billionaire Bailouts, and Addiction Capitalism: Sports are a Microcosm of the Ills of Society

6/4/2024
Air Date 6/4/2024 The problems that arise within the systems of sports are the same problems we all face everywhere which makes them a good lens through which to understand the mechanisms of broader society. Fair pay, both journalism and addictive games functioning under capitalism, and benefits for billionaires all resonate far beyond the bounds of the players, owners and fans of sports clubs. Be part of the show! Leave us a message or text at 202-999-3991 or email Jay@BestOfTheLeft.com Transcript BestOfTheLeft.com/Support (Members Get Bonus Clips and Shows + No Ads!) Join our Discord community! KEY POINTS KP 1: Pay for Play Part 1 - University of Iowa KP 2: What the historic $2.8 billion settlement to pay NCAA players means for college sports - PBS NewsHour KP 3: Pay for Play Part 2 - University of Iowa KP 4: Sports Media has changed forever. - Brett Kollmann KP 5: Dan Le Batard Tells Stephen A. Smith He Hates What He and Skip Bayless Did to Sports Media - LeBatardShow KP 6: Report Finds That Sports Owners Use Their Teams To Avoid Millions In Taxes - MSNBC Reports KP 7: The Sports Stadium Scam - Robert Reich KP 8: The gambling problem in sports - The Current (1:01:43) NOTE FROM THE EDITOR On the value of sports to building community DEEPER DIVES (1:06:18) SECTION A: PAY FOR PLAY A1: Yahoo’s Ross Dellenger: What NCAA Suit Settlement Means for Paying Players - The Rich Eisen Show A2: "Amateurism Is Dead" - The Rich Eisen Show A3: Pay for Play Part 3 - University of Iowa (1:23:57) SECTION B: STADIUMS, OUR GREAT FOLLY (1:40:18) SECTION C: SPORTS JOURNALISM (1:59:15) SECTION D: SPORTS GAMBLING SEE FULL SHOW NOTES SHOW IMAGE: Description: A grocery store display of Coca-Cola soft drinks stacked in the shape of a basketball and “NCAA!”. Credit: “Coca Cola NCAA Cases Display” by Mike Mozart, Flickr | License: CC BY 2.0 | Changes: Cropped

Duration:02:22:03

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Bonus Edition #305 Solved It! Conspiracy Theorists, Comment Sections, and Trump

6/2/2024
Air Date: 6-2-24 Today, Jay!, Amanda, Deon and Erin discuss: - How one MIT study used AI to reduce belief in conspiracy theories - How a new AI tool is attempting to make comments sections less awful - Some advice from Korea's litigious political environment on how to deal with Trump BestOfTheLeft.com/Support (Members Get Bonus Shows + No Ads!) REFERENCES: America’s Worst Time Zone Chatbots can persuade conspiracy theorists their view might be wrong The AI That Could Heal a Divided Internet South Korea Has a Warning About Donald Trump’s Trial Join our Discord Server Leave a message at 202-999-3991 Produced by: Jay! Tomlinson Thanks for listening! Visit us at BestOfTheLeft.com Follow at Twitter.com/BestOfTheLeft Like at Facebook.com/BestOfTheLeft Contact me directly at Jay@BestOfTheLeft.com Review the show on Apple Podcasts!

Duration:00:17:42

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​#1134 Unnatural Disasters (Hurricanes and Humans) (Throwback)

5/31/2024
Original Air Date: 9/19/2017 Today we look not so much at hurricanes and the climate science behind them (though we touch on that as well) but focus more on what we can see more clearly when it’s illuminated by so-called “natural” disasters, the structural inequality and legacies of decision-making that make these disasters worse than they need to be BestOfTheLeft.com/Support (Members Get Bonus Shows + No Ads!) Be part of the show! Leave us a message or text at 202-999-3991 or email Jay@BestOfTheLeft.com Show Notes Act 1: Mark Hertsgaard: It's not politics, it's science - Start Making Sense from @TheNation - Air Date 9-13-17 Act 2: What is environmental racism and environmental justice? - #PoliticallyReactive with @wkamaubell and @harikondabolu - Air Date 9-7-17 Act 3: Breaking News Consumer's Handbook: U.S. Storm Edition - On The Media - Air Date 9-1-17 Act 4: Disasters call attention to inequalities if we care to notice - CounterSpin (@FAIRmediawatch) - Air Date 9-1-17 Act 5: Preventing future floods with data and regulation - @DecodeDC - Air Date: 09-14-2017 Act 6: The Human Causes of Natural Disasters - Popaganda from @BitchMedia - Air Date 12-8-16 Act 8: Dr. Michael E. Mann on attribution science and the tactics of inaction and delay - Bradcast from @TheBradBlog - Air Date 9-13-17 (Music from Blue Dot Sessions) EDUCATE YOURSELF: We will not be silenced. Stand up for a strong NEPA! (Earth Justice) Trump CEQ rolls out plans for swift NEPA reviews (Governors' Wind & Solar Energy Coalition) US people of color still more likely to be exposed to pollution than white people (The Guardian) Christine Todd Whitman: How Not to Run the E.P.A. (New York Times) Boston Communities Unite to Democratize Their Economy (Next City) Written by BOTL Communications Director, Amanda Hoffman

Duration:00:54:42

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#1632 SiliCON Valley: The False Promises, Enshittification Economics, and Misguided Adventures of the Twits of Tech

5/28/2024
Air Date 5/28/2024 Today we look at the most disappointing yet most idolized false heroes of our day, the titans of tech and the zany hijinks they've been getting up to recently. Leave us a message or text at 202-999-3991 or email Jay@BestOfTheLeft.com Transcript BestOfTheLeft.com/Support (Members Get Bonus Clips and Shows + No Ads!) Join our Discord community! KEY POINTS 1: When a tech company like OpenAI doesn't get the dark message at the heart of science fiction 2: How Peter Thiel Got Rich | The Class Room ft. Second Thought 3: Google's Sundar Pichai on AI-powered search and the future of the web 4: Elon's Reputation is Hurting Tesla 5: Crypto’s crown prince in court 6: The Entire OpenAI Chaos Explained 7: Scarlett Johansson's Open AI voice fight shows the need for consent in tech 8: Fascism and the Failure of Imagination SEE FULL SHOW NOTES 1:03:38 NOTE FROM THE EDITOR On the misplaced excitement in private corporations pushing big technological advancements 1:09:33 DEEPER DIVE A: THAT WORD YOU KEEP USING… 1:36:58 B: SiliCON VALLEY, emphasis on the CON 1:53:05 C: MICROSOFT THE DESTROYER 2:10:35 D: THANK YOU FOR YOUR SERVICE SHOW IMAGE: Description: Composite image where the faces of Sam Altman, Peter Thiel, Sam Bankman-Fried, and Elon Musk are seen through an overlay of stock prices and a growth chart arrow. Credits: Composite by A. Hoffman. Photos: 1) "Open AI co-founder & CEO Sam Altman" by TechCrunch, Flickr | CC BY 2.0 ; 2) "Peter Thiel" by Gage Skidmore, Flickr | CC BY 2.0 ; 3) "Sam Bankman-Fried" by Cointelegraph, Wikimedia Commons | CC BY 3.0 ; 4) "Elon Musk Presenting Tesla's Fully Autonomous Future" by Steve Jurvetson, Wikimedia Commons | CC BY 2.0

Duration:02:21:32