Day: May 30, 2021

Background Briefing: May 30, 2021


With Democracy Under Attack Around the World, Could Turkey See the Reversal of That Trend?

We begin with the possible reversal of a global trend in which democracies are undermined by authoritarian leaders who destroy democratic institutions, corrupt the rule of law and install themselves as strongmen leaders. This has happened in Russia and is happening in Hungary and the Philippines and elsewhere. But it seems that Turkey’s wannabe dictator could be an exception to this rule due to a Mafia boss turned whistleblower’s revelations of corruption and criminality among Erdogan’s top cronies which has shaken the country and riveted the population via social media which circumvents Erdogan’s state-controlled media. Joining us for an update on the political disinfectant of truth to power underway in Turkey is Merve Tahiroglu, the Project On Middle East Democracy’s Turkey Program Coordinator who was born and raised in Istanbul and is a fellow with the National Endowment for Democracy’s Penn Kemble Forum on Democracy for 2020-21. We discuss the likelihood that Biden’s meeting with Erdogan at the upcoming NATO summit will be testy since the scandal-plagued leader of a NATO country who is buying Russian military equipment while implicated in drug trafficking and organized crime, does not have his partner in crime Donald Trump protecting him anymore.


The Democrats Should Prioritize Defending Democracy at Home and Abroad

Then we speak with John Nichols, the Washington Editor of The Nation whose latest book is The Fight for the Soul of the Democratic Party: The Enduring Legacy of Henry Wallace’s Anti-Fascist, Anti-Racist Politics about his article at The Nation “Bipartisan is How Republicans Say Sucker.”  We discuss McConnell’s pretense at negotiation while vowing that “One hundred percent of my focus is on stopping this new administration” and the need for the Democrats to unite around the struggle to defend democracy at home and abroad.


Lessons From The New Deal For Today

Then finally we speak with Eric Rauchway, distinguished professor of history at the University of California, Davis about his latest book, just out, Why the New Deal Matters. He joins us to discuss the New Deal’s triumph over domestic fascism and the similar challenges Biden faces with a Republican party in the thrall of the leader of a failed coup who wants to cheat and lie his way back into power.