Day: October 6, 2020

Background Briefing: October 6, 2020


Trump Stiffs Needy Americans and Struggling Businesses to Get Barrett on the Court

We will begin with Trump’s announcement today that he is no longer interested in getting another stimulus bill to needy unemployed Americans and struggling businesses but instead has instructed Mitch McConnell to concentrate on getting Amy Coney Barrett seated on the Supreme Court. This, on the same day the Chairman of the Fed issued a warning that too little stimulus support “would lead to a weak recovery, creating unnecessary hardship for households and businesses.” Robert Hockett, who has first-hand experience working with the Federal Reserve Bank of New York and drafted Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s “Green New Deal” and is a Professor of Law and Public Policy at Cornell University, joins us to discuss this moment of economic madness and malevolent priorities. The author of the new book Money From Nothing Or, Why We Should Stop Worrying About Debt and Learn to love the Federal Reserve, we discuss how Wall Street is taking a dive as the worsening pandemic will depress the economy further while China and the rest of the world leaves the U.S. behind.


Our Mussolini Gasps For Air While Projecting Strength Over a Virus he Claims to Have Conquered

Then we examine the sad theatre of the absurd on the White House lawn last night as a president pumped full of oxygen strolls from the helicopter to the balcony where he takes off his mask and stands Mussolini-like in a frozen pose quietly gasping for breath in an attempt to project strength over a virus he claims to have conquered. John Barry, a professor at the Tulane University School of Public Health and author of The Great Influenza: The Story of the Deadliest Pandemic in History, joins us to discuss his op-ed at The Washington Post “History tells us what a virus can do to a president.”  


On Corruption in America

Then finally we speak with Sarah Chayes who was a special advisor to the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and a reporter who covered the fall of the Taliban for NPR and is the author of the new book On Corruption in America: And What is at Stake. She joins us to discuss the corrupt networks that government officials, key private sector interests and out-and-out criminals weave to maximize their power and profits at the expense of the public.