Day: August 22, 2018

Background Briefing: August 22, 2018


A Veteran Investigator on the Trump Administrations Unprecedented Sleaze

We  begin with Jack Blum, a veteran of U.S. Senate investigations who uncovered the Lockheed bribery scandal the B.C.C.I bank scandal and the CIA-Contra cocaine connection.  A Washington lawyer who is an expert on white-collar crime and international tax evasion, he spent 14 years as a staff attorney with the Senate Anti-trust Subcommittee and the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and joins us to discuss the scandals swirling around Trump and an administration that is breaking all prior historical records in Washington in terms of corruption, compromise, chicanery and sleaze.  As the law closes in on Trump from several directions with his former campaign chairman convicted, along with his deputy campaign chairman pleading guilty, and his former National Security Advisor awaiting sentencing, together with a former campaign advisor, and his personal lawyer and fixer pleading guilty and implicating Trump as a co-conspirator, we will assess what it will take to end this criminal regime which is looting the country and weakening its standing in the world. But while a majority of Americans feel some relief that justice is on the way, a third of the country inside the alternative universe of Trump’s base remain unaware of what is happening as Fox News ignores what happened on Wednesday and blares out headlines about a young woman missing in Iowa who they allege was murdered by an undocumented immigrant whose lawyer says he is in the country legally.


How Wednesday’s Events Affect the Timeline of the Trump-Russia Story

Then we get an update on the comprehensive timeline of the Trump-Russia story at and examine how the latest convictions of Manafort, and Cohen’s guilty plea and apparent cooperation with prosecutors, will affect the timeline. The author of the timeline, Steven Harper, a professor at Northwestern University and a regular contributor to The American Lawyer, joins us to discuss whether Mueller’s secret and silent investigation which Trump publicly and persistently trashes, is in the home stretch as the dots are being connected and the threads of investigations appear to be coming together.


The Need to Stop Talking About Climate Change and Start Talking About Climate Damage

Then finally we  speak with a leading authority on the production, management and delivery of energy to large populations, David Freeman, the former head of the TVA, New York Power, the LA DWP and state energy czar of California who is the author of “All Electric America: A Climate Solution and the Hopeful Future”. He joins us to discuss Trump’s peculiar affection for “beautiful” coal and his hatred of what he calls “windmills”, as well as the need for environmentalists to get their act together and stop talking about climate change and start talking about climate damage.