May 29, 2018

Where Are The 1500 Missing Kids?
Autocrats Prefer Rigged Elections to Outright Dictatorship
4645 People Died in Puerto Rico From Hurricane Maria, Not 64

Program Notes

We begin with Trump’s false claim, along with his tweet that the Democrats are protecting MS-13 thugs, charging that the Democrats are behind what he calls a “horrible law” separating children from their parents at the border when it is his “zero tolerance” policy that is doing it. Wendy Young, the Executive Director of KIND, Kids In Need of Defense, the leading organization for the protection of unaccompanied children who enter the U.S. immigration system alone, joins us to analyze what is going on following reports of 1,500 kids missing inside the Health and Human Services’ Department of Refugee Resettlement. We will look into whether the thousands of kids separated from their parents inside the system are being properly tracked, let alone taken care of, and assess whether the so-called “sponsors” taking these kids out of Federal custody are not human traffickers who are exploiting them for cheap or slave labor as indicated by a case of 8 children forced to work on an egg farm

Then we  go to the U.K. to speak with Nic Cheeseman, a professor of democracy at the University of Birmingham who has researched elections in more than 8 countries around the world including Ghana, Kenya, Malawi, and Nigeria. He is the co-author of a new book “How to Rig an Election” and we  discuss how more and more despots around the world choose to have elections that offer the pretense of democracy rather than to rule as dictators. With recent rigged elections in Russia, Turkey and Venezuela examples of this trend, we examine what can be done to restore meaning into democratic processes and prevent autocrats from claiming victories in elections they have rigged for themselves.

Then finally we look into the report just released by a group of independent researchers at Harvard who have found that 4,645 people died in Puerto Rica during Hurricane Maria and its aftermath in stark contrast to the official total of 64. Luis Martinez-Fernandez, a professor of history at the University of Central Florida who lives and teaches in Orlando, Florida which has one of the world’s highest concentrations of Puerto Ricans, joins us to discuss the absurdity of the official death toll and how the neglect following the devastation by Maria continues.

Wendy Young | Nic Cheeseman | Luis Martinez-Fernandez