Day: January 17, 2021

Background Briefing: January 17, 2021


Mounting Evidence the Attack on the Capitol Was an Inside Job

We begin with mounting evidence that the storming of the capitol on January 6 was an inside job, not just with police and military joining the mob, but with Trump officials inside the government deliberately stymying efforts to protect and defend the capitol along with members of congress sympathetic to anti-government cults and white supremacists. Michael Greenberger, the director of the Center for Health and Homeland Security at the University of Maryland, joins us to discuss the role of Congressman Nunes’ protegees in key roles inside the DOD and Chad Wolfe at DHS who stepped down the day after the riot. We also assess the observation that Speaker Pelosi is unlikely to have gone out on a limb to publicly announce there is an investigation underway into members of congress who may have facilitated a “reconnaissance” of the capitol by organizers of the attack the day before they broke into the House and Senate chambers looking for lawmakers to arrest and possibly assassinate, unless there was something to it.


The Merging of the Left and Right in Conspiracy and Alienation

Then we speak with Quinn Slobodian, a Professor of History at Wellesley College where he teaches histories of modern Europe, International history, social movements and the intellectual history of neoliberalism. He joins us to discuss his article at The Boston Review “Coronapolitics from the Reichstag to the Capitol” and the phenomenon of diagonal movements that trade in both familiar and novel fantasies about elite control, attacking allegedly totalitarian authorities including the state, Big Tech, Big Pharma, big banks, climate science, mainstream media and political correctness. This merging of the left and right in conspiracy and alienation is characterized by the woman who was shot dead by Capitol Police leading the attempt to capture lawmakers, she voted for Obama but ended up dying for Trump.


Right Wing Funding of Politicians Who Championed Insurrection

Then finally we look into the funding of right wing politicians who championed the insurrection and promoted the challenge against Biden’s election such as Senators Hawley and Cruz who, along with QAnon’s gun-toting Congresswoman Boebert, have been the main beneficiaries of money from the Club For Growth which in turn is funded by right wing billionaires, Richard Uihlein and Jeffrey Yass.  Sheila Krumholz, the executive director of the nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics, joins us.