FREE FORUM

 

“Terrence McNally consistently goes for the long ball.”

Robert Wright, The Moral Animal; The Politics of God.

“…Grounds for hope, rays of light, and a damn fine hour of radio.”

Daniel Goleman, Emotional Intelligence; Ecological Intelligence.

 

Free Forum explores the lives, work and ideas of individuals I suspect hold pieces of the puzzle of a world that just might work. We look at new, innovative and provocative approaches to business, environment, health, science, politics, media, and culture – all based on the fact that I believe we can do better and I want to find out how. Guests include Michael Lewis, Atul Gawande, Temple Grandin, Nicholas Kristof, Cornel West, Arianna Huffington, Craig Venter, and Father Greg Boyle. Recorded from 1996-2014, Progressive Voices streams the most memorable interviews weekly. Podcast are, of course, available any time.

 

You can browse podcasts below, search by name of guest in the Search window at the top of the site, or check the alphabetical list of guests here.

 

  • ELIE MYSTAL of The Nation on Trump’s legal options, How Biden reverses Trump’s orders, and the Supreme Court

    I talk with ELIE MYSTAL, Justice Correspondent at The Nation magazine. We look through a legal lens at Trump’s fraud claims and his obstruction of an effective transition, at the question of what it will take for Biden to reverse Trump’s executive orders and rules, and finally we talk about the Supreme Court. You can learn more at thenation.com

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  • MILTON BENNETT-The Cult of Trump -72M Americans voted for four more years

    More than 72 million Americans voted for Donald Trump. 72 million voted for his incompetence, racism, ignorance, cruelty, criminality, and for his disastrous handling of the pandemic. Here’s my 2018 conversation with MILTON BENNETT, an expert on culting behavior. He spells out the methods Trump uses – consciously or unconsciously – to turn his followers into a cult, impervious to contrary influence and united in defense of their aims and their leader.

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  • ROB JOHNSON-Relief – but no congratulations. Dems must be bolder.

    It looks as if Joe Biden will win a very tight electoral college victory against arguably the worst president in history in the midst of a deadly pandemic and crippled economy the incumbent has bungled disastrously. How could this election even be close? ROB JOHNSON, Executive Director of the Institute for New Economic Thinking (INET), and I talk about how we got here and what it’s going to take to move forward. As long as both parties depend on Wall Street and the 1% for funding, our real challenges – climate change, restoring the middle class, healthcare, systemic racism, etc.- will never truly be dealt with.

    https://www.ineteconomics.org/

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  • CHICAGO CONSPIRACY TRIAL – JON WIENER -What does it have to tell us?

    JON WIENER’S 2006 book, Conspiracy in the Streets: the Extraordinary Trial of the Chicago Eight has been re-released to sync with release of the film, The Trial of the Chicago Seven. Written and directed by Aaron Sorkin, its ensemble includes Sacha Baron Cohen as Abbie Hoffman, Eddie Redmayne as Tom Hayden, and Frank Langella as Judge Julius Hoffman. Jon and I will talk about the film. We’ll talk about the Trial. We’ll talk about the attitudes and excesses of Mayor Daley and the Nixon administration and the parallels with 2020. With mass protests and brutal retaliation. A compromised justice department doing the President’s bidding. We will talk about this moment – how different and how similar is it to the 60s? What did we learn? What can we do better?

    https://jonwiener.com/

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  • ALEX KEYSSAR-Why Do We Still Have the Electoral College?

    The US hold only one national popular vote – for President and Vice President – and The Republican party has won that national vote only once since 1988, that’s 32 years. Yet they’ve held the presidency 12 of those years. Under the two most recent popular vote losers / electoral college winners, we’ve suffered 9/11, wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, the 2008 recession, the monstrously failed response to the pandemic, and a devastated economy. I believe that minority rule sickens democracy. The electoral college is anti-democratic. I talk with ALEX KEYSAR about his new book, WHY DO WE STILL HAVE THE ELECTORAL COLLEGE?

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  • JON WIENER, Set the Night on Fire: L.A. in the Sixties

    Even folks who live here, as I have since 1975, may have little idea of the central role Los Angeles played in the culture and politics of the 1960s. Too often LA is portrayed as surfing, Hollywood, and gogo dancing – think Gidget, Beach Boys, 77 Sunset Strip. Wiener and co-author, Mike Davis (City of Quartz) offer a “movement history” featuring early Black Power, the Watts uprising, the Chicano Moratorium, and LA’s star turn as a locus of the anti-war, gay lib, and women’s movements, as well as a driving force of much of 60’s counterculture. Wiener and I both arrived here for the first time in 1969 and this conversation is a lot of fun.

    Recent Posts

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  • 60s.2.0 Meets OK Boomer – Necessary Allies

    My 20-minute commentary calls for Millennials and Boomers with shared values to forge a movement large enough, creative enough, diverse enough, and powerful enough to successfully confront the critical problems we face. 60s.2.0 – 21st century tech in the service of the best of ‘60s values – meets OK Boomer – the impatience of the young with the failures of the old. “If the challenges we face are big enough to turn us against each other, then they must be big enough to bring us together.”

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  • ROBERT FRANK, best-selling economist – UNDER THE INFLUENCE: Putting Peer Pressure to Work

    We often think social contagion yields negative consequences – teens smoke because other teens smoke, for example. However, in his latest book, UNDER THE INFLUENCE: Putting Peer Pressure to Work, ROBERT FRANK makes the optimistic case that the economics of social contagion could solve our most critical problems — from climate change to income inequality – as well as the Covid-19 pandemic. There’s evidence: As VOX’s Ezra Klein points out, in the face of the coronavirus, “social pressure has driven perhaps the single fastest behavioral transformation in human history.”

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  • ELIE MYSTAL of The Nation on Racial Justice and the Trump-Barr Assault on Rule of Law

    The Trump-Barr Justice Department is actively working for the President and his election campaign. The militarization of local police over the past decade mixed with a population that owns a lot of guns and a culture of systemic racism and anti-immigrant passion has produced a dangerous brew.
    I talk with ELIE MYSTAL, justice correspondent at The Nation magazine about the movement for racial justice and the Trump-Barr assault on the constitution and the rule of law. You can learn more at thenation.com

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  • PAUL HOWARD, director, INFINITE POTENTIAL: Life & Ideas of DAVID BOHM

    Who is DAVID BOHM? A physicist who reconciled Einstein’s theory of general relativity and Neils Bohr’s quantum theory. A seeker whose scientific insight of implicate order and cosmic wholeness echoes the consciousness of oneness in Eastern philosophy. Welcome when a virus has forced us to acknowledge our shared vulnerability I talk with PAUL HOWARD, Producer/director of the new documentary, INFINITE POTENTIAL: The Life and Ideas of DAVID BOHM. You can learn more and watch the trailer at infinitepotential.com.

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