Monday, June 30, 2008

Memo To Obama: Enough of the Battered Wife Syndrome

I have supported Obama's candidacy since John Edwards departed the race. I still believe it was the right thing to do given the flawed alternative Hillary Clinton represented. To nominate Clinton would have been tantamount to rewarding poor judgment (Iraq) and bad behavior (race baiting). So I did some phone banking, donated to Obama's campaign and will continue to support his candidacy against John McCain. To elect McCain would be a calamity.

However, Obama's campaign has in recent days demonstrated the same chronic pathology of the Democratic Party itself: battered wife syndrome. Yes, I know the rationale is that Obama had to move to the center for the general election campaign. I understand that is inevitable and to some degree necessary. And I am willing to cut Obama some slack. Power without principle is barren and principle without power is futile and I appreciate the delicate balance. I also appreciate that as the first black nominee of a major political party Obama is walking a tightrope.

However, Obama's retreat on FISA resembles Bill Clinton's despicable calculation about welfare reform in 1996: removing an issue from the table and playing not to lose regardless of the human consequences. I don't want the standard bearer of my party to play not to lose when it comes to my civil liberties.

It's also bad politics. Jon Tester prevailed in his 2006 Montana senate campaign against Conrad Burns while opposing the Partiot Act! And Montana isn't exactly known for their latte drinking limousine liberals. They're plenty of civil libertarian minded people in America who would applaud Obama if he stood up for principle and opposed this corporate fascist legislation. FISA is corporate welfare and get out of jail free cards for the telecommunication companies. But the Democrats are so damn scared of the big bad elephant that their standard bearer ducks and covers when it's time to stand up and be counted! Or is Obama's stance appeasement for Democrats such as Jay Rockefeller, their ranking member on the Senate Intelligence Committee and a shameless whore for telecommunications money? Either way it's inexcusable.

Today, Obama again demonstrated battered wife syndrome and fearfully distanced himself from Wesley Clark. Clark merely had the temerity to suggest that McCain's history as a POW, while meriting our respect doesn't qualify him to be commander and chief. Clark didn't question McCain's patriotism or his service to his country like Republicans did to war veteran John Kerry in 2004. Wesley Clark is arguably the most effective surrogate the Democratic party has on national security issues and Obama allowed the McCain campaign to take him out!

It seems when Democrats are in a tight race their battered wife syndrome surfaces because they don't want to lose on the margins. And when the political winds are at their back Democrats become cautious because they don't want to blow a lead. We've seen this from Democratic nominees before. The stakes for America and the world are too high for Dukakis, Gore and Kerry redux. And what if you do win as expected Senator? As president, will you duck and cover as soon as the conservatives have a bug up their butts or disavow fellow Democrats like Wesley Clark who dare to challenge Republicans about their weak national security credentials? You're better than that. Act like it.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Renegade Justice: An Interview With Former U.S. Attorney David Iglesias

David Iglesias is the prototype twenty first century Republican: charismatic, Hispanic, an evangelical Christian and a captain in the Navy Reserve who served for many years in the Navy’s Judge Advocate General Corps (“JAG”). In 1998, Iglesias campaigned to become Attorney General of New Mexico against the heavily favored Patricia Madrid. He nearly pulled off an upset and the Republican Party took notice. In 2000, Iglesias paid his party dues and worked for George W. Bush’s election.

As a reward, President Bush nominated Iglesias in 2001 to be the United States Attorney from the District of New Mexico. His sponsor was longtime Republican Senator Pete Domenici. The position of U.S. Attorney has served as a springboard for many political careers and Iglesias appeared to be on the fast track. Highly regarded by his peers, Iglesias served as chairman of a committee of U.S. Attorneys that advised former Attorney General John Ashcroft about border and Immigration issues. The Justice Department had also given his office high marks for performance.

However, as the first installment of the just released Department of Justice Inspector General report illustrates, professionalism took a back seat to political prerogatives when it came to personnel decisions. A pervasive culture of hyper-partisanship at the Justice Department ultimately cost David Iglesias and nine other U.S. Attorneys their jobs last year. It also resulted in a metastasizing scandal that forced Bush loyalist Alberto Gonazles to resign as Attorney General.

David Iglesias became persona non grata in the Republican Party when he resisted political pressure while carrying out the responsibilities of his office. One example was his cautious evidenced based approach while prosecuting voter fraud. Specifically, Republicans feared that the votes of minorities and the poor in New Mexico could adversely affect their candidates in what had become a polarized state. Al Gore defeated George Bush in New Mexico by a mere 366 votes in 2000. Hence, Republicans viewed prosecuting voter fraud as a means of suppressing Democratic turnout in elections that could be decided on the margins. Iglesias dutifully investigated voter fraud and found virtually nothing to prosecute, angering the White House.

Another example involved a public corruption investigation against powerful Democratic New Mexico state legislator Manny Aragon. In 2006, while Iglesias took a measured evidenced based approach to investigating Aragon; Republican Congresswoman Heather Wilson was in a tough re-election fight against New Mexico’s Democratic Attorney General, Patricia Madrid. The same candidate Iglesias lost to in 1998. Republicans hoped that an indictment filed against Aragon prior to Election Day would make Madrid appear professionally lax as New Mexico’s Attorney General. However, Iglesias didn’t believe the case was ready and didn’t want to undermine the investigation or chances of conviction by filing an indictment prematurely.

The events that followed are well known. Both Representative Wilson and Senator Domenici inappropriately telephoned Iglesias hoping to persuade him to indict Aragon. Iglesias didn’t budge and he was asked to resign on December 7, 2006. Six of his colleagues with similar experiences were also asked to resign on the same day and a political firestorm engulfed the Bush Administration, his Attorney General and the entire Republican Party. Domenici, his reputation and legacy forever tarnished opted not to seek re-election this year because of poor health. Congressman Wilson hoped to replace Domenici in the Senate but she lost the Republican primary on June 3rd.

Iglesias memorialized his experience with his new book, In Justice: Inside The Scandal That Rocked The Bush Administration (Wiley & Sons). Former Ambassador Joseph Wilson had the following praise for Iglesias’s book:
“In justice is a chilling tale of the subversion of the Constitution for political purposes. What was done to David Iglesias and his colleagues constitutes complete and utter disregard for the role of law that underpins our great republic. Americas will rightly be appalled and Republicans ashamed at this abuse of power.”
Iglesias agreed to podcast interview with me over the telephone about his book and the scandal that made him an important historical figure. Our conversation was just over sixteen minutes. Please refer to the flash media player below.

This interview can also be accessed at no cost via the Itunes store by searching for the Intrepid Liberal Journal. Also, I apologize for my voice coming in on the low side. I was using a new headphones/microphone set and it underperformed. Thankfully, David's voice comes through loud and clear. But you may have to turn up the volume some to hear my questions.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

FISA and The Democrats

I am a loyal and committed Democrat. However, my first loyalty is to our Constitution. Unquestionably, the Democratic Party's capitulation to the Bush Administration with respect to the FISA protocol is a disgrace. My favorite Democrat, Wisconsin Senator Russ Feingold issued the following statement about it on June 19th:
“The proposed FISA deal is not a compromise; it is a capitulation. The House and Senate should not be taking up this bill, which effectively guarantees immunity for telecom companies alleged to have participated in the President’s illegal program, and which fails to protect the privacy of law-abiding Americans at home. Allowing courts to review the question of immunity is meaningless when the same legislation essentially requires the court to grant immunity. And under this bill, the government can still sweep up and keep the international communications of innocent Americans in the U.S. with no connection to suspected terrorists, with very few safeguards to protect against abuse of this power. Instead of cutting bad deals on both FISA and funding for the war in Iraq, Democrats should be standing up to the flawed and dangerous policies of this administration.”
Refer to the YouTube video below for another scathing perspective from George Washington University Law Professor Jonathan Turley.

Note how Turley describes the capitulation as a form of immunity for the Democratic Party's leadership which looked the other way during the worst of the Bush Administration's civil liberty abuses in recent years. While I support the Democratic Party, their current generation of leadership is an abysmal failure and needs to be jettisoned forthwith. In the meantime, we must pressure the party leadership as much as possible to move in a more civil libertarian direction. Click here to contact your representative in the House and here to lobby your Senators. This is important.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Shari'a and The Muslim World: An Interview With Author Noah Feldman

Shari’a is a code of law based on the Koran. In the Muslim world, many want to replace corrupt autocratic regimes with the Shari’a and establish traditional Islamic states. Western countries regard the Shari’a as a threat. Islamic parties are winning elections on it. Militants have used the Shari’a to justify acts of terrorism. Meanwhile, secular minded people find their most severe provisions repugnant.

In his latest book, The Fall and Rise of the Islamic State (Princeton University Press), Noah Feldman tells the story behind the populist movement in the Muslim world to establish the Shari’a. Feldman addresses questions about why the Shari’a is popular in spite of its harsh code and whether the Islamic state can succeed.

He also explains how the classical Islamic constitution governed and was legitimized by law. Feldman argues that prior to the reforms of the modern era, the Shari’a operated under an effective system of checks and balances between scholars who interpreted the law and executive power.

Knowing the history of the Shari’a itself is important for context and Feldman’s book covers the promising beginnings of the traditional Islamic constitution and its downfall in the Ottoman Empire. Throughout the book, Feldman contends that if the Shari’a is combined with modernized institutions, successful Islamic states based on law and justice can be established.

Muhammad Qasim Zaman, author of The Ulama In Contemporary Islam, had the following praise for Feldman’s book:
“Scholarly and sophisticated yet highly accessible, this book makes an extremely important contribution to contemporary discussions of both Muslim politics and Islamic law. Feldman’s work provides a historical depth that has often been lacking in studies of law and constitutionalism in modern Muslim societies.”
Feldman is not without his critics however. In a recent article for The New Republic, Leon Wieseltier writes,
“Feldman is shilling for a soft theocracy--for other people, naturally. This is, among other things, hypocritical. Don't Muslims, too, have the right to sin?”
Noah Feldman is a professor at Harvard Law School and a contributing writer for the New York Times Magazine. He is also an adjunct senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations and the author of three previous books: Divided by God, What We Owe Iraq and After Jihad.

Feldman agreed to a podcast interview with me over the telephone about his provocative book. Among the topics we discussed was Sharia’s history, women’s rights in Muslim society, geopolitics, how Barack Obama's candidacy was being received in the Muslim world and I also specifically asked him to respond to Leon Wieseltier’s critique. Our conversation was approximately twenty-eight minutes. Please refer to the media player below.

This interview can also be accessed at no cost via the Itunes store by searching for the "Intrepid Liberal Journal."

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

The Man Who Should've Been President Endorsed Our Next President

Yesterday, the person who should have been president endorsed the candidate who will hopefully be our next president. Al Gore was never a great speaker but no political figure in America today enjoys more gravitas and prestige.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Grieving For Tim Russert

Unless hermetically sealed in a dungeon you know that Tim Russert sadly died from a heart attack yesterday at the age of 58. Death is an egocentric experience for survivors. When loved ones or public figures pass on it's human nature to think about our own mortality and even grieve over people we've never met. And so I find myself grieving over the passing of Tim Russert. Yes Russert was integral to a corporate media I’ve come to despise but somehow I always cared about what he said while others were easy to tune out.

Tim Russert represented a new breed of journalist I’m not comfortable with: someone who crossed over from the world of politics. Legendary sports broadcaster Howard Cosell used to derisively refer to the "jockocracy" of former athletes who crossed over to sports journalism as "analysts" but added little value at the expense of professionalism. That's often been my feeling about people such as Tony Snow and George Stephanopolous who cashed in on their celebrity and exploited the corporatization of broadcast media.

On the surface, Russert seemed to personify this new breed. Watch video of New York Governor Mario Cuomo's iconic speech at the 1984 Democratic National Convention and you'll see his smiling adviser Tim Russert sitting in the front row. Russert was an insider’s insider having served as Chief of Staff to New York’s legendary cerebral Senator, Daniel Patrick Moynihan. How could such a man ever represent the people while covering the establishment?

And yet this new breed as represented by Tim Russert turned out to be a throwback to a bygone era. He relentlessly held the powerful accountable for their words and deeds. Russert first won my respect in 1992 when he grilled independent presidential candidate Ross Perot. At the time I didn’t watch Meet the Press regularly. I grew up watching ABC’s This Week With David Brinkley and regarded Russert as an unworthy upstart.

If you think back, at one point it seemed plausible that Ross Perot might prevail over a weak incumbent in George Herbert Walker Bush as well as a young embattled governor from a small state in Bill Clinton. Russert however skillfully exposed Perot as being out of his depth as well as illustrating a temperment not suitable for the presidency. Prior to that interview the media was consumed by Perot’s spell and Russert broke through in a way lifelong professionals hadn’t.

And so whenever Russert fell short I was instinctively more critical because I expected more from him. When someone establishes a threshold of excellence they have the burden of not falling below the standard they’ve set. And I always expected more from Tim Russert.

The shallow mediocrity of today’s media has become routine: horserace questions at the expense of substance, celebrity hype and regurgitation of the propaganda machine from the powerful in order to maintain access and preserve corporate interests. General Electric owns NBC so naturally their news division and Russert himself were not immune to those prerogatives and it frustrated me because I knew this smart guy with working class roots from Buffalo had to know better.

For example, Tim Russert consistently regurgitated the propaganda that Social Security was on the abyss, a position advocated by corporate interests represented in the media who wanted to privatize it. As Media Matters noted in December 2004:
“Media outlets and personalities, like NBC's Tim Russert, have generally repeated the Bush administration line that Social Security 'faces a crisis.' In fact, Social Security assets are not projected to be exhausted until 2042, at the earliest -- hardly the dire emergency the administration and the media portray. And even if no changes are made, tax income at that point would still cover 73 percent of costs, and the system could still pay out 68 percent by 2078.”
And as the Washington Bureau Chief of NBC News, Russert was complicit with the rest of the corporate media for failing to challenge the Bush Administration’s rationale for war. This exchange between Russert and Bill Moyers during a PBS documentary last year angered the hell out of me:
BILL MOYERS: What do you make of the fact that of the 414 Iraq stories broadcast on NBC, ABC and CBS nightly news, from September 2002 until February 2003, almost all the stories could be traced back to sources from the White House, the Pentagon, and the State Department?

TIM RUSSERT: It's important that you have a-- an oppos-- opposition party. That's our system of government.

BILL MOYERS: So, it's not news unless there's somebody-

TIM RUSSERT: No, no, no. I didn't say that. But it's important to have an opposition party, your opposit-- opposing views.
In a post at the time, I wrote:
“How the hell does any reporter justify allowing a political party to interpret the truth? Political parties are not about truth. Political parties are self-serving entities dedicated to obtaining and maintaining power. Since the Democrats were spineless and didn’t provide an alternative dialogue, Pincus and Russert believe they should be excused from doing their jobs? Ridiculous. Yes, Republicans were feculent and irresponsible while Democrats were feckless and cowardly. All the more reason for the press to do their job and relentlessly pursue the truth.”
The Pincus I refer to in that post is longtime Washington Post national security reporter Walter Pincus. I expected more of people such as Pincus and Tim Russert. Nevertheless, Russert was superior at holding the Bush Administration accountable for their lies and misdeeds afterwards.

We’ve all seen the famous clip of Dick Cheney telling Russert Americans would be regarded as liberators in Iraq. Russert was infinitely more thorough than his colleagues at preparing for interviews and challenging presidential aspirants. As Republican nominee John McCain recalled:
“I once told him I haven't had so much fun since my last interrogation at prison camp.''
Barack Obama couldn’t be considered a serious candidate until he went one on one with Russert. Hillary Clinton’s ultra cautious staff knew that Tim Russert could not be ducked. You were not presidential timber if you avoided Tim Russert.

Personalities at NBC such as Chris Matthews and Keith Olberman have come under scrutiny for sexist remarks regarding Hillary Clinton this election season. Russert managed to be tough and hold Clinton accountable on issues such as the war or NAFTA without disrespecting her gender. As a man, a father, husband, brother and son, Russert wasn’t compelled to belittle women. Nor was he going to disrespect the first viable female presidential candidate by taking it easy on her. So many in the media struggled with the right protocol for covering Hillary Clinton’s candidacy while Russert simply remained a tough, thorough and fair professional.

Perhaps, Russert’s greatest legacy is cultural. His references to his father as “Big Russ” helped promote the ideal standards for fathers, sons and husbands: accountability, devotion to one’s family, respecting our wives and mothers, an optimistic work ethic and appreciation for our dads.

Tomorrow is Father’s Day and I grieve for Russert’s father who suffered the worst parental nightmare: outliving their children. How sad for Russert’s own son poised to celebrate Father’s Day following his graduation at Boston University to lose his Dad. For the rest of his life Father's Day will bring pangs of pain and I'm in pain just thinking about it.

I know that every Sunday morning I’m going to miss Tim Russert. This campaign it's become routine for me to go online and play some snippet of daily analysis from Russert. Now, every time I watch some pseudo journalist ask one horserace question after another in some short sound bite interview I will feel his absence.

Thankfully, I still have my own Dad to call on Father’s Day and talk about politics and life with. Nobody should ever take that for granted.

Sunday, June 08, 2008

John McCain's Friend Phil Gramm

With the drama of the Obama/Clinton race finally over we can focus on the sharp contrasting platforms and personalities of Barack Obama and John McCain.

An old cliché is that we can judge people by the company they keep. McCain’s camp has vigorously tried to scare people about Obama’s associations. Well, if you’re a hard working wage earner consider John McCain’s friend Phil Gramm. In 1996, John McCain endorsed former Texas Senator Phil Gramm’s quest for the presidency. As a Senator, Gramm was the Chairman of the Senate Banking Committee and worked hard to promote the interests of banks and credit card companies at the expense of wage earners and small business entrepreneurs.

Gramm is currently one of five campaign co-chairs for John McCain. One can surmise that Gramm, who fancies himself an expert on economics, will have a major influence and perhaps a senior position in a McCain administration. Gramm was also an advocate of undermining the 1977 Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) that mandated depository banks to contribute housing and small business loans in poorer communities to help people join the middle class. During the 1990s, the CRA under President Bill Clinton was actually enforced and helped raise the standard of living of people who needed it most.

Instead, John McCain's friend preferred to deregulate the financial services industry and promote predatory lending practices that enriched the wealthy at the expense of working people. Gramm is a classic practitioner of class warfare waged from the top. Furthermore, elitists have even scapegoated the CRA about the current mortgage housing crisis and look upon Phil Gramm as their ally on the inside. To learn more about the CRA and how it is being scapegoated, listen to my recent podcast interview with economist Jared Bernstein by clicking here.

Today, Phil Gramm is the vice chairman of a U.S. division of Zurich-based financial powerhouse UBS and as Newsweek reports:
“UBS has recently written off huge losses in subprime-mortgage-based securities, and last week liberal bloggers noted that Gramm was a registered UBS lobbyist on mortgage-securities issues until at least December 2007.

NEWSWEEK has learned that UBS is also currently the focus of congressional and Justice Department investigations into schemes that allegedly enabled wealthy Americans to evade income taxes by stashing their money in overseas havens, according to several law-enforcement and banking officials in both the United States and Europe, who all asked for anonymity when discussing ongoing investigations. In April, UBS withdrew Gramm's lobbying registration, but one of his former congressional aides, John Savercool, is still registered to lobby legislators for UBS on numerous issues, including a bill cosponsored by Sen. Barack Obama that would crack down on foreign tax havens. ‘UBS is treating these investigations with the utmost seriousness and has committed substantial resources to cooperate,’ a UBS spokesman told NEWSWEEK, adding that Gramm was deregistered as a lobbyist because he spends less than 20 percent of his time on such activity. Hazelbaker said the McCain campaign ‘will not comment on the details … of ongoing investigations and legal charges not yet proved in court.’”
As a liberal blogger, I am especially proud how Newsweek acknowledged that, “last week liberal bloggers noted that Gramm was a registered UBS lobbyist on mortgage-securities issues until at least December 2007.”

We liberal bloggers must remain vigilant in the pursuit of truth and relentlessly remind people of what John McCain and his supporters are really about. McCain will try to portray himself as a maverick reformer and change agent. Facts are stubborn things though as Ronald Reagan used to stay. McCain’s longtime relationship with Phil Gramm suggests that a McCain presidency would represent more corporatism and class warfare waged from the top.

Saturday, June 07, 2008

Help Save Children From Leukemia

Allow me to take a moment and divert from my standard political blog writing. I realize fellow activists who visit this site are currently consumed by the presidential election and the grand issues at stake this political season. However, we should not overlook other life and death issues that too easily escape our attention. Cancer is a silent killer responsible for the deaths of millions. We all know friends or family who have contracted this insidious disease. Specifically, Leukemia is among the cruelest and often targets the young.

The niece of a good friend of mine was diagnosed with Leukemia last year. The impact on her family has motivated my friend to help raise money for the Pediatric Leukemia Fund at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center. This fund supports the research of doctors so children such as my friend's niece have a better chance of surviving.

You can make a donation online with your credit card by clicking here.

Another option is to attend a New York City fundraising event starting at 6pm on June 25th at Eamonns Bar and Grill, located at 9 East 45 Street between Madison & Fifth Avenues. At this event, my friend will raffle off framed photographs from Antarctica and Africa.

The cost of one raffle ticket is $25, and there is no limit to the number of tickets you may purchase. All the money raised from the raffle will go to the charity. You may purchase as many tickets as you like. My friend will bring a list of people who have made online donations so she can give you your raffle tickets upon arrival (e.g., if you donate $100 online beforehand, you will be given 4 raffle tickets at Eamonn's).

Eamonn's is kindly allowing their space to be used with a regular cash bar, and the raffle will take place at 7:30pm. To win you must show up.

Lives are at stake, so please spread the word to as many people as you can.

Sunday, June 01, 2008

Chronicling The Uprising: An Interview With David Sirota

The centrifugal force in American politics today is the establishment’s failure to deliver prosperity and security. In 2006, Americans voted for a change of direction in Iraq and economic policies at home. Instead, President Bush’s “surge” in Iraq was enabled by a feckless congress as fuel prices soared, the cost of healthcare kept spiraling out of control and corporate CEOs continued to enjoy the benefits of a twenty-first century Gilded Age. Senseless privatization, predatory crony capitalism, political corruption, incompetence and corporate greed have combined to put the American Dream out of reach for people who work hard and play by the rules.

Indeed, a self-gelding plutocracy machine of ineptitude currently governs America. We’re not respected abroad and institutions designed to protect working people at home no longer function properly. Nobody on the Right or Left is satisfied with our immigration policy. Young people are not properly educated to compete in a global economy while too many senior citizens are forced to choose between paying for medication and buying food. Young men and women are dying to sustain two failed military occupations in Iraq and Afghanistan. Meanwhile, our over extended military has been forced to resort to a back-door draft as America fails to rebuild after Hurricane Katrina.

Is it any wonder that Americans across the political spectrum are yearning for change? In his provocative new book, Uprising: An Unauthorized Tour of the Populist Revolt Scaring Wall Street and Washington, (The Crown Publishing Group), David Sirota investigates whether populist outrage can be harnessed into a unified and enduring political movement. Sirota’s spent a year traveling the country and his book chronicles uprisings across America’s ideological and cultural spectrum.

He closely observed progressive netroots bloggers, workers at union halls in Albany and Seattle as well as the Minutemen’s headquarters at the California-Mexico border. Sirota also obtained close up access to the epic struggle over tax policy with Montana’s Governor Brian Schweitzer, his Democratic allies in the legislature and their ultra conservative anti-tax government-hating adversaries. He later traveled to Washington D.C. to learn how newly elected anti-establishment Senators Sherrod Brown of Ohio, Jon Tester of Montana and Bernie Sanders of Vermont are reconciling their populist objectives within a culture that abhors change.

From the Workers Family Party in New York State to the Lou Dobbs program on CNN, and the protest industry struggling to end the Iraq War, David Sirota provides readers with his close up observations and analysis of an angry country fed up with the status quo. Thomas Frank, author of What’s the Matter With Kansas had the following praise for Sirota’s book:
“After so many decades of fake populism-of revolts by the wealthy, red-state fantasies, and stock-picking grandmas-could we finally be looking at the real thing? In this compelling book, rooted in history but as contemporary as this morning’s newspaper, David Sirota gives us reason to hope.”
David Sirota is a frequent guest on several national news programs, including Comedy Central, The Colbert Report and MSNBC’s Countdown With Keith Olberman. After years of working in the trenches of political campaigns on capital hill, including then Congressman Bernie Sander’s staff, he became a journalist and nationally syndicated columnist. Two years ago, his book Hostile Takover was a New York Times bestseller.

Sirota blogs regularly at Credo Action and is currently on a book tour. He is scheduled to appear in New York City on Monday June 2nd @ 45 Bleecker Street between 9:00PM and 10:00PM as well as The Strand Book Store @ 11th Street and 4th Avenue from 7:00PM to 8:00PM on Tuesday, June 3rd.

Sirota agreed to a podcast interview with me over the telephone about his book and observations of the populist movement in America. Our conversation was approximately twenty-three minutes. Please refer to the flash media player below.

This interview can also be accessed at no cost via the Itunes Story by searching for the “Intrepid Liberal Journal.”