Background Briefing: June 19, 2023

Can the GOP Convince American Voters That Biden’s Government Has Been Captured by Marxists and Communists?

We begin with what appears to be the Republican talking point for the 2024 election which is to convince voters that the American government under Joe Biden has been captured by Marxists and communists and that “cultural Marxism” has infiltrated and infected American society in the form of “wokeness” to the point it threatens the American way of life. We assess how the new Red Scare Trump is reviving will play with the electorate since Trump’s political mentor and lawyer was Roy Cohn who was at Senator McCarthy’s side when there was a Communist lurking under every bed in America in the 1950s. Joining us from Canada is Tanner Mirrlees, professor of communications and digital media studies at the University of Ontario Institute of Technology whose research focuses on the political economy of digital technology and cultural industries, militarism and media, and work and labor in the digital age. He is the author of a number of books, including most recently, Hearts and Mines: The US Empire’s Culture Industry.


Blinken and Xi Jinping Agree on the Need to Stabilize US-China Relations

Then we look into Secretary of State Blinken’s visit to Beijing where he met with the Foreign Minister as well as Wang Yi, China’s top foreign policy official, finishing up with a 35 minute meeting with Xi Jinping in which both sides agreed on the need to stabilize US-China relations. Joining us is Andrew Nathan, Professor of Political Science at Columbia University. His teaching and research interests include Chinese politics and foreign policy, the comparative study of political participation and political culture, and human rights. He is the author of a number of books including The Great Wall and the Empty Fortress, and China’s Transition; The Tiananmen Papers.


The Scathing DOJ Report on the Minneapolis Police

Then finally we examine Friday’s blistering report from the Department of Justice on racial discrimination and excessive force by Minneapolis police from a probe that began the day after the white police officer was convicted of murdering a black man George Floyd. Joining us is David Schultz a Professor of Political Science at Hamline University and the University of Minnesota School of Law. He is the author of 30 books, most recently American Politics in the Age of Ignorance: Why Lawmakers Choose Belief Over Research. We discuss his article at Counterpunch, “Policing in Minneapolis and Across Minnesota: What Two Reports Say.”