Prior to the Institute for New Economic Thinking, Rob Johnson served as Chief Economist of the US Senate Banking Committee and a DIrector at Soros Fund Management. He also worked in the music and film industries (Exec Producer, Oscar winning doc, Taxi to the Dark Side). “The concentration of wealth and power that created a twin crisis of representation – in politics and in expertise – set the stage for Donald Trump’s election victory, and has put America’s founding principles at risk.”
According to the Southern Poverty Law Center, “The number of hate groups in the United States rose for a second year in a row in 2016 as the radical right was energized by the candidacy of Donald Trump.” Of a spike in reported incidents of “hate” violence, SPLC reports, “37% of them directly referenced either President Trump, his campaign slogans, or his infamous remarks about sexual assault.” CHIP BERLET has investigated hate groups, theocratic fundamentalism, civil liberties violations, police misconduct, surveillance abuse, other anti-democratic phenomena.
In this podcast, I go solo. Rather than interviewing others, I share with you the best of the work I do to help organizations develop more engaging narratives and tell better stories. Learn why narrative is uniquely powerful as well as the recipe for a good story – whether in a Hollywood screenplay or a one-to-one conversation.
Currently organizing where he grew up in Lancaster PA (as a Menonite), he was involved with Occupy Wall Street and has a lot to say about what worked and what we can learn from what didn’t. Example: The rituals of assembly ended up standing in for strategy, becoming an end rather than a means. Smucker questions the left’s tendency to identify as “the righteous few”, where purity can become an obstacle to amassing enough power to win. He doesn’t use the term “activist” because he believes that (self-)identification separates fighting for peace and justice from the rest of life, and creates an us which can leave out others. Insightful stuff.
Originally Aired April 2012
CHRIS MOONEY wrote the best-selling THE REPUBLICAN WAR ON SCIENCE in 2005. This book asks a deeper question. Does science have anything to teach us about why? And it turns out science does. Political parties reflect psychological needs – GOP wedded to certainty, Dems to novelty – and there lies at least one root of our divide.