Background Briefing: August 22, 2019


“The Chosen One” Is Losing It

We begin with the growing concern that Trump is becoming unhinged following Wednesday’s rambling diatribe on the south lawn of the White House where he looked up to the heavens and declared himself the chosen one. One of the first to sound the alarm about Trump, Lance Dodes, who was a clinical professor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School and is a contributor to the book assessing President Trump “The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump: 37 Psychiatrists and Mental Health Experts Assess a President”, joins us to discuss how Trump’s recent pronouncements show his cognitive abilities are deteriorating.  While it is clear Trump’s extreme narcissism is such that this empty man does not love anyone but himself and has no real relationships with people, his need to be all-powerful and all-loved and the fact that he can’t stand being challenged, is becoming dangerous since he thinks of himself as a dictator and it’s all about him and no one else matters. Furthermore, with Trump in this psychotic-like state, the more he is pressed and you challenge him, the more it becomes apparent how disorganized and empty he is. And when that emptiness is exposed, he flies into a disorganized rage which, given his role as commander-in-chief, could be catastrophic


Bolsanaro’s War on the Amazon

Then with Brazil’s major cities chocking from smoke-filled air due to fires in the Amazon which the country’s dimwitted fascist leader blames on NGO’s, we will speak with journalist and author Alexander Zaitchik, who recently returned from Brazil and wrote the investigative piece for The Intercept and Pulitzer Center, “RAINFORESTS ON FIRE: On the Front Lines of Bolsonaro’s War on the Amazon, Brazil’s Forest Communities Fight Against Climate Catastrophe”.  


 Trump Tries to Get Putin Readmitted to the G8

Then finally, with Trump heading for the G-7 meeting in France after making a pitch to have Russia re-admitted to the G-8, we discuss our president’s slavish fealty towards Putin who he continually wants to reward by lifting sanctions which the rest of the G-7, Japan, Germany, Britain, France, Italy and Canada opposeSteven Pifer, who served as U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine and special assistant to the president and senior director for Russia, Ukraine and Eurasia on the National Security Council, joins us to discuss how the popularity in Russia of Ukraine’s new leader, the Jewish “servant of the people” who is dismantling the power of the oligarchs, has Putin rattled.