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Who better to press the pillow over the gasping face of Chavismo in Venezuela? Elliot Abrams, whose machinations in Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador have led citizens of those countries to migrate north to seek asylum in the USA for decades. Elliot Abrams, who escaped felony charges for aiding the illegal arming of the Nicaraguan Contras by pleading to misdemeanor charges instead. Elliott Abrams who, like the Bay of Pigs invasion, is a leftover from an earlier administration. Since his pardon by Bush he'd been wearing a mustache and working at a Cinnabon store, just waiting for his next opportunity to cover up a massacre and lie to Congress.

In a Moment of Truth, Jeff Dorchen reheats today's leftover plate of US imperial disasters, from Nixon's hand in the Bay of Pigs invasion to DC's role in snuffing out whatever was left of the Bolivarian revolution in Venezuela.

Read the transcript here

 


Episode 894

Anti Up

Apr 2 2016
Posted by Alexander Jerri

On April 2nd in Rotten History...

On this day in 1863 – (153 years ago) — in Richmond, Virginia — capital of the Confederacy during the US Civil War — bread riots broke out in the center of town as thousands of people broke into shops and looted food, clothing, and other merchandise. The rioters, mostly women, were angered by the same shortages of bread and other staples that were making similar riots a common occurrence across the American South that spring. Hungry troops on both sides of the Civil War had been stripping local farms of their crops and livestock during their movements from one battle to the next. To make matters worse, runaway inflation was making Confederate currency increasingly worthless. In Richmond, the Confederate president, Jefferson Davis, came out and pleaded with the rioters to disperse. He even threw them the money he had in his pockets. But the rioters ignored Davis until he finally called in the militia and threatened to have them open fire on the crowd.

On this day in 1982 – (34 years ago) — Argentina launched an amphibious invasion of a nearby South Atlantic archipelago known to the Argentines as the Islas Malvinas, and to the British as the Falklands. These cold, windswept islands — where less than three thousand people lived mostly by fishing and sheep farming — had been ruled by Britain for some 150 years, but Argentina had never given up its own claim to them. And now, Argentina’s ruling military junta had ordered an invasion in the hope of distracting that country’s increasingly discontented populace from their economic woes and lost civil liberties. The Argentine generals were gambling that the Brits would not use military force to keep the islands — and at first, it seemed that their bet would pay off, as the Argentine invaders met little resistance from the islands’ tiny self-defense force, bolstered by a few dozen British troops. But when British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher sent a major naval task force to retake the islands, it led to a war that lasted more than two months, killed some nine hundred people, and ultimately caused the downfall of the Argentine junta. The Falklands remained firmly in British hands — and Port William, the territory’s busiest ship harbor, remains heavily mined to this day.

Rotten History is writtern by Renaldo Migaldi.

Posted by Alexander Jerri
894lineup

Listen live from 9AM - 1PM Central on WNUR 89.3FM or stream at www.thisishell.com

 

9:10 - Author Chloe Taft examines Bethlehem, PA's post-industrial bet on casino gambling.

Chloe is author of From Steel to Slots: Casino Capitalism in the Postindustrial City from Harvard University Press.

 

10:05 - BYP100's Janaé Bonsu presents a plan and a path to economic justice for Black America.

Janaé is one of the authors of the BYP100 report Agenda to Build Black Futures.

 

10:35 - Journalist Michelle Chen reports on the hidden work and low wages of Miami's hotel housekeepers.

Michelle wrote the article Spring Break’s Cleanup Crew for Slate.

 

11:05 - Robin Yassin-Kassab and Leila Al-Shami explore the political and social landscape of revolutionary Syria.

Robin and Leila are authors of Burning Country: Syrians in Revolution and War from Pluto Press.

 

12:05 - The Hopleaf's Michael Roper follows the corporate takeover of craft beer to neighborhood bars.

Michael will explain how distrubutors and franchises are capitalizing on the cache of craft beer's limited supply.

 

12:45 - In an omni-lingual Moment of Truth, Jeff Dorchen says, 'Je Suis Pissed Off.'

Found this phrase in a tweet by Hollywood creep Chuck Woolery, hopefully just a coincidence!

 

Posted by Alexander Jerri

Here is what Chuck is reading to prepare for Saturday's show:

From Steel to Slots: Casino Capitalism in the Postindustrial City - Chloe E. Taft [Harvard University Press]

Agenda to Build Black Futures - Black Youth Project 100

Spring Break’s Cleanup Crew - Michelle Chen [Slate]

Burning Country: Syrians in Revolution and War - Robin Yassin-Kassab, Leila Al-Shami [Pluto Press]

Episode 893

Assembly Required

Mar 26 2016
Posted by Alexander Jerri

On This Day in Rotten History...

On this day in the year 752 – (1,264 years ago) – in Rome, Pope Stephen II died of a stroke just three days after being elected to succeed the former Pope Zacharias. To this day, Stephen II holds the record for the shortest time in office of any Catholic pope.

On this day in 1812 – (204 years ago) – the city of Caracas, Venezuela, was struck by two major seismic tremors within a half hour. The earthquakes leveled the city, along with five nearby towns, and killed some fifteen to twenty thousand people. The tremors were so severe that they created a new lake and permanently changed the courses of several rivers and streams in the area. Since Venezuela was fighting its war of independence at the time, local representatives of the Spanish crown viewed the earthquakes as divine punishment for the colonial rebellion — and the Catholic archbishop of Caracas pronounced the deadly cataclysm “terrifying, but well-deserved.”

On that SAME DAY in 1812 – (again, 204 years ago) – the Boston Gazette published a political cartoon that ridiculed how electoral districts in the state of Massachusetts had been redrawn in such a bizarre and contorted way as to benefit candidates of the state party organization led by Governor Elbridge Gerry. Noting that the long, strange, twisting boundaries on the map of one new district made it resemble the shape of a salamander, the cartoonist labeled it a “Gerry-mander,” after the governor and party boss. The name stuck, and more than two hundred years later, “gerrymandering” remains a favorite practice of party leaders and politcos across America who seek to create inpenetrably “safe” electoral districts for their favored career legislators.

On this day in 1969 – (47 years ago) –  having suffered for months from severe depression and paranoia after his novel The Confederacy of Dunces was rejected by two major publishers, the author John Kennedy Toole committed suicide by running a garden hose from his car’s exhaust pipe into the car. It was almost ten years later that his mother finally managed to browbeat the famous novelist Walker Percy into reading her dead son’s unpublished manuscript. Percy was wowed, the book was published in 1980, and Toole was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for fiction in 1981, twelve years after his death.

On this day in 1998... read more

Posted by Alexander Jerri
893lineup

Listen live from 9AM - 1PM Central on WNUR 89.3FM or stream at www.thisishell.com

 

9:10 - Author Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor explores the revolutionary potential of the #BlackLivesMatter movement.

Keeanga is author of From #BlackLivesMatter to Black Liberation from Haymarket Books.

 

10:05 - Writer Sarah Kendzior reports on the tabloid spectacle of Trump's campaign through the Midwest.

Sarah wrote the recent articles Who won the Midwest? Not the people who live in it for the Globe and Mail and Trumpmenbashi: What Central Asia’s spectacular states can tell us about authoritarianism in America for The Diplomat.

 

10:35 - Live from São Paulo, Brian Mier sees a coup emerging from Brazil's current political crisis.

Brian will be talking about the Brasilwire piece Overthrowing Dilma Rousseff: It’s Class War, and Their Class is Winning and his own most recent writing Rio Olympics: A City within a City.

 

11:05 - Mark and Paul Engler explain why strategic nonviolence is the future of political protest.

Mark and Paul wrote the new book This is an Uprising: How Nonviolent Revolt Is Shaping the Twenty-First Century from Nation Books.

 

12:05 - Writer Shiyam Galyon highlights the revolutionary work Syrians are doing in between bombs.

Shiyam is author of the article Syrian Protests Bloom During Lull in Bombings posted at Warscapes.

 

12:45 - Jeff Dorchen laughs in the face of Death, or rather in the faces of other people's Deaths.

This is maybe about Garry Shandling. Or maybe about Rob Ford. Hopefully not about Phife Dawg.

Episode 892

Blind Spot

Mar 19 2016
Posted by Alexander Jerri

On This Day in Rotten History...

On this day in 1687 – (329 years ago) – the French explorer Robert de La Salle was murdered by his own men. For more than twenty years, La Salle had led expeditions deep into parts of North America never before seen by Europeans — up the Saint Lawrence, through four of the five Great Lakes, and down the Illinois and Mississippi Rivers to the Gulf of Mexico. After claiming the Mississippi watershed for France, and naming it “Louisiana” after King Louis XIV, La Salle finally led some two hundred colonists in a doomed attempt to establish a settlement on the Gulf of Mexico. The party was plagued by sickness, shipwrecks, pirates, and Indian attacks until only thirty-six men remained. Fed up with La Salle’s arrogance and never-ending demands, a group of the men lured him into an ambush and killed him. The street at the center of Chicago’s downtown financial district is named after him.

On this day in 1866 – (150 years ago) – A British sailing ship named the Monarch of the Seas departed from Liverpool, England, bound for New York with 738 passengers aboard. It was never seen again. Four months later, one of its lifeboats washed up on the west coast of Ireland, containing several decomposed and unidentifiable human bodies. Two weeks after that, a bottle was found on a beach in Cornwall, containing a handwritten message. Dated May 2, the note read in part: “Monarch of the Seas, left Liverpool 19th March . . . no wind, short of provisions and no water.”

On this day in 1958 – (58 years ago) – an oven explosion at a third-floor textile plant in downtown Manhattan caused a massive fire at the Monarch Underwear Company, located on the loft floor just above. Dozens of garment workers, mostly women, jumped from windows into fire rescue nets. In the panic, six of the workers missed the nets, hitting the sidewalk instead. When firefighters managed to get inside the building’s upper floors, they found charred bodies piled near doorways and windows, and under work benches. Twenty-four people were dead and another fifteen were seriously injured. One woman survived the blaze by hiding inside a metal storage cabinet. The building was located just three blocks from the former site of the Triangle Shirtwaist Company, where another fire had killed 145 people in 1911.

Posted by Alexander Jerri
892lineup

Listen live from 9AM - 1PM Central on WNUR 89.3FM or stream at www.thisishell.com

 

9:10 - Policy researcher Paul Pillar explains why Americans misunderstand the rest of the world.

Paul is author of Why America Misunderstands the World: National Experience and Roots of Misperception from Columbia University Press.

 

10:05 - EPA whistleblower Marsha Coleman-Adebayo exposes regulatory failures in Flint and beyond.

Marsha is an EPA whistleblower, and wrote the recent pieces Water crises like Flint's will continue until the EPA is held accountable for the Guardian and McCarthy and Snyder to Testify before House Oversight Committee on the Poisoning of Flint’s Children for Black Agenda Report.

 

10:35 - Organizer Beverly Bell profiles the life and legacy of assassinated environmental activist Berta Cáceres.

Beverly wrote Why Was Berta Cáceres Assassinated? for Other Worlds.

 

11:05 - Writer Thomas Frank explores the continuing failures of liberal politics and the Democratic party.

Thomas is author of the new book Listen, Liberal: Or, What Ever Happened to the Party of the People? from Metropolitan Books.

 

12:05 - Journalist Andrew Cockburn dives into America's profitable/ineffectual election-industrial complex.

Andrew wrote Down the Tube: Television, turnout, and the election-industrial complex for Harper's magazine.

 

12:45 - In a Moment of Truth, Jeff Dorchen punctures the bubble of middle-class self-satisfaction.

Fleece vest futures are falling fast!