Washington Update Radio

 

Scott Draughon

Andrew Kreig

Washington Update is a weekly radio series of live radio programs heard nationally on Fridays. Co-hosts are MTL Radio Network founder Scott Draughon, left, and Justice Integrity Project Executive Director Andrew Kreig. The show is on break during the rollout of the book Presidential Puppetry by co-host Andrew Kreig.

Guests are listed below. For questions, call toll-free: (866) 685-7469 or email radio@mytechnologylawyer.com. Mac users need “Parallels.” To listen live or by archive, visit radio.

 

 

Recent Guests

Dick Russell and Jesse Ventura

Jesse Ventura, the author, former wrestler and former Minnesota governor,  spoke June 14 about his latest book, DemoCrips and ReBloodLicans: No More Gangs in Government. The book, co-authored with Dick Russell, is available here .

Ventura was Minnesota's governor from 1999 to 2003 after election as an independent following careers as a famed pro wrestler and member of the U.S. Navy Underwater Demolition Team 12, the precursor to SEALs). The former professional wrestler has also been an actor in such films as: The Running Man (1987) and Predator (1987). 

He is the author or co-author of such previous books as: I Ain't Got Time to Bleed: Reworking the Body Politic from the Bottom up (2000), Quotations of Chairman Jesse (2000), Do I Stand Alone?: Going to the Mat Against Political Pawns and Media Jackals (2001), Jesse Ventura Tells It Like It Is: America's Most Outspoken Governor Speaks Out About Government (2002), The New Prohibition: Voices of Dissent Challenge the Drug War (2004).

 

Ron Unz, guest on June 7, is publisher of the American Conservative, a Washington-based opinion magazine. He is a theoretical physicist by original training and a software developer by profession. Unz is the creator of the UNZ.org content-archiving website.

Unz also has interests in public policy issues. In the past, he served as founder and chairman of English for the Children, a nationwide movement to dismantle bilingual education. He is a prolific writer who has been widely profiled, as in the 1999 cover story shown at right by the New Republic magazine.

The website contains further background information on Unz, together with a collection of many of his published writings and several major media profiles. The UNZ.org system also contains a parallel collection of his published writings, including numerous television and video clips. In 1994, he was an unsuccessful gubernatorial candidate as a Republican in California. He is a graduate of Harvard University, and pursued doctoral studies at Stanford University. 

 

James C. Goodale, one of the nation's most battle-tested First Amendment experts, warns May 25 that President Obama "surely" will exceed the 1970s abuses of Richard Nixon "as the worst president ever on issues of national security and press freedom." Goodale is author of a new book, Fighting for the Press: The Inside Story of the Pentagon Papers and Other Battles. He was New York Times general counsel during its fight with the Nixon administration to publish the Pentagon Papers.

His Times op-ed May 21 "Only Nixon Harmed a Free Press More summarized recent revelations about the Obama Justice Department. "The search warrant filed to investigate the Fox News reporter James Rosen proved as many had suspected: President Obama wants to make it a crime for a reporter to talk to a leaker," Goodale wrote. "Until President Obama came into office, no one thought talking or e-mailing was not protected by the First Amendment."

The book is "The most detailed and honest inside account yet of the fight to publish the Pentagon Papers by the uncompromising lawyer in the middle of it," according to Seymour Hersh, a Pulitzer Prize investigative journalist. "This history could not come at a more important time."

Other news coverage on his author's website includes a New York Magazine analysis, Is Obama Really As Bad As NIxon When It Comes To Targeting The Press?" by Joe Coscarelli.

Nick Friedman, guest on March 17, is the president and co-founder of College Hunks Hauling Junk. With CEO and Co-Founder Omar Soliman, he co-authored, Effortless Entrepreneur: Work Smart, Play Hard, Make Millions (Random House, 2010). In college, Nick started the business with Omar, his childhood best friend, in a beat up cargo van. It has grown to over 40 franchise locations nationwide.

Nick was recently named Top 30 Entrepreneurs in America Under 30 by INC Magazine, was named on the same list as Mark Zuckerberg, founder of Facebook as the 30 Most Influential CEO's Under 30 by Under30CEO.com. Nick was a Kauffman Foundation Empact 100 Honoree, was listed as one of the Top 35 Entrepreneurs Under 35 on Bisnow.com, and is a two-time Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award Finalist. Nick has been featured in numerous business books and textbooks, as well as Forbes, Fortune and on the AOL Homepage. Nick was also recently featured in a Newsweek story entitled 'College Kid to Millionaire.' His company was recently named #156 on the INC 500 List of Fastest Growing US Companies. He has been profiled numerous times on CNN, MSNBC, CBS, NBC, FOX News, and has appeared twice on the Oprah Winfrey Show.  He received his bachelors degree in economics from Pomona College in California, where he competed for four years on the Men's Varsity Basketball Team, won the Pomona College Coach's Award, was named to the NABC Academic Honor Roll, and was designated a Pomona College Scholar.

Sambonn Lek, a famed Washington, DC bartender and philanthropist, shared May 10 his inspirational life story. After arriving in the United States in 1974 as a refugee from Cambodia, he became one of the best-known, liked, and respected professionals in Washington's hospitality industry. Lek received many awards as head bartender at the historic Mayflower-Renaissance Hotel. Washingtonian Magazine named him as the city's "best bartender," for example. The worldwide Marriott chain, owners of the Mayflower, once named him as employee of the year. He made news this in 2013 within the Beltway by moving to a new locale, the Hamilton Crowne Plaza Hotel

Aside from his warmth and flair as a famed bartender, he has been the tireless founder of Sam's Relief Inc., a charity helping Cambodians following the genocide during the 1970s. Lek's proudest accomplishments, as he told Washington Postprofile writer, are personal. Lek wrote friends and Sam's Relief donors on the occasion of his departure from the Mayflower:

When turning points occur in a person’s life, it is only natural to reflect on all the events that have brought them to that moment. Today, as I look back, I think about people like you who have been with me throughout my journey.  I first came to the United States in 1974, just a year and a half before the communist takeover of Cambodia. I had $300 in my pocket, my beautiful wife Nara Sok Lek at my side, and a fervent belief in the American dream in my heart.... 

Finally, among the most dear to my heart, is the work behind the Sam Relief, Inc., which we founded in 1999. So far, we have built 27 schools, 345 wells, 100 tons of rice to Angkor Children Hospital at Siem Reap and provided University scholarships all for needy children in Cambodia.

Seth Rosenfeld, guest on May 3, was awarded the 2013 Ridenhour Book Prize for Subversives: The FBI’s War on Student Radicals and Reagan’s Rise to Power.

Rosenfeld tells the gripping story of FBI surveillance, illegal break-ins, infiltration, planted news stories, poison-pen letters, and secret detention lists that dominated the government agency for decades and laid the foundation for the Reagan era.

Rosenfeld has won the Ridenhour Book Prize for his masterful and seamless braiding of investigative research and storytelling dexterity to depict an American government that used its vast resources for partisan political gain under the cloak of protecting the nation from a nebulous external threat. (Photo at left: Heidi Elise Benson.)

Richard Sammon, senior associate editor of the Kiplinger Letter, forecasts on May 3 the impact of the sequester based on an in-depth Kiplinger report this week to members. "Nearly everyone who deals with Uncle Sam will share the pain of the sequester – those automatic spending cuts in federal programs," Sammon and his colleagues say. "The real world impact? Longer waits for help from bureaucrats. Dried-up business for contractors and suppliers of everything from pens to planes. Closed national parks and monuments. And delayed trials in the U.S. Court system – maybe even for the Boston Marathon bombing suspect." The Kiplinger Letter answers key questions about the sequester, and forecasts how and when it will play out.

The Kiplinger Letter was founded in 1923 and is published by Kiplinger Washington Editors, Inc., a family-owned publisher. It forecasts the economy, foreign affairs, government, trade, politics, labor, health, science, consumer buying trends, etc.

Sammon has been a full time national political reporter in Washington D.C. since 1990. He covers the White House, Congress, national politics, elections, defense and several other issues. He has been an editor with Kiplinger since 1999. He is a past president of the National Press Club and served for several years on its Board of Governors. During his term, Sammon presided over many of the club's trademark and nationally broadcast luncheons featuring speeches and Q&A sessions with prime ministers and presidents and national figures in the government, arts and entertainment, business, science and politics. He has spoken often to visiting groups, business and trade conventions and college groups about presidential and congressional politics and the state of affairs in official Washington. Prior to working at Kiplinger, Sammon worked for nine years as a senior reporter for Congressional Quarterly, providing daily coverage of the U.S. Senate, including floor debate, the Senate leadership and legislative action.

 

Dr. Paul Craig Roberts, an author and former Reagan assistant Treasury secretary and Wall Street Journal associate editor, described on April 19 his column decrying manipulation of the gold markets by the Obama administration. "Update to the Update: The Attack on Gold" argued on April 16, "The orchestrated attack on bullion in the paper gold market took the spot prices of gold and silver down on Friday and Monday, but actual physical purchases rose during this period. The sales were of paper claims, not of real metal. The demand for physical possession of bullion rose so strongly that large wholesalers such as www.tulving.com and large retailers such as Gainesville Coins reported sold out items."

Also on the radio show, Roberts will discuss his latest book, The Failure of Laissez Fair Capitalism. Roberts remains a defender of Reaganomics while criticizing more recent Republican economic strategies. Additionally, he has written extensively in recent years opposing historic cutbacks in the nation's civil liberties. One such column two years ago was, Truth Has Fallen and Has Taken Liberty With It, for example. He wrote on that theme:

Americans have bought into the government’s claim that security requires the suspension of civil liberties and accountable government. Astonishingly, Americans, or most of them, believe that civil liberties, such as habeas corpus and due process, protect “terrorists,” and not themselves.

Roberts co-authored with Lawrence M. Stratton, The Tyranny of Good Intentions: How Prosecutors and Bureaucrats Are Trampling the Constitution in the Name of Justice. Among his interviews and essays on prosecutorial misconduct are his 2008 piece for Truth in Justice, It Does Happen In America: The Political Trial Of Don Siegelman.

Jeanne Bishop

 

Jeanne Bishop described on April 19 her work as a Chicago public defender and also as an opponent of gun proliferation, the death penalty, and excessive sentences. An adjunct law professor, she brings several unusual experiences to her work. Her sister and brother-in-law were murdered two decades ago by an unknown person in what became one of Chicago's leading murder mysteries in many years. Authorities leaked erroneous information and theories to the media for months on false trails. Meanwhile, Bishop resigned her job at one the nation's leading law firms to pursue a career in county's public defender office. She sought to weather the tragedy through her religious faith and by an enhanced commitment to human rights. Ultimately, her sister's killer was identified as a teenage thrill-killer from their suburb of Winnetka, and not the kind of street killer or assassin that authorities had suggested to the media as most likely. She and law professor Mark Osler, author of the 2009 book Jesus on Death Rowchallenge the death penalty based on religious principles. They have lectured in nine states on the topic. Their next appearances are March 26 and 28 in Boulder, CO and Austin, TX at churches, where they will undertake mock death penalty trials. Osler, a former federal prosecutor, teaches at University of St. Thomas Law School and leads the Association of Religiously Affiliated Law Schools.

Bishop is an adjunct law professor at Northwestern University, and the volunteer treasurer of the non-profit group Murder Victims’ Families for Human Rights. In February 2013, she published a front-page Huffington Post column calling for more gun control following the shooting death of Hadiya Pendleton, a Chicago child who had helped celebrate President Obama's inauguration just two weeks previous to her death. Her other efforts include advocating legislation to prevent gun violence. Two other two major projects are advocacy against the imposition of life without parole sentences for juvenile offenders, and against “over-sentencing” in drug cases.

 

Arun Chaudhary, the nation's first official White House videographer, described on April 12 his experiences recounted in his book: First Cameraman: Documenting the Obama Presidency in Real Time. Now an independent social media professional, Chaudhary chronicles his time capturing behind-the-scenes moments of the president and his administration. From the early months of the 2008 campaign and through the first two and a half years of the Obama administration, he had a unique perspective on the president of the United States. "I'm sort of like President Obama's wedding videographer," he explains,"if every day was a wedding with the same groom but a constantly rotating set of hysterical guests." Some of the moments Chaudhary captures are small, like the president throwing warm-up pitches deep inside Busch Stadium in St. Louis before the All-Star game, as Amazon.com summarizes his book: Some are intensely emotional, as when Obama comforts a grieving teenager whose father had died in a devastating tornado. And some are just plain bizarre—like getting thrown out of the Indian parliament by his belt, or being trapped in a White House bathroom while Obama conducts a YouTube town hall on the other side of the door. Film and politics have been intertwined ever since the first Edison reels rattled in projection halls a century ago. But with the advent of new technologies and a new public that is hungry for images of their leaders, Chaudhary has been in the right place at the right time to participate in the interplay of film and politics at the very highest level. His entertaining and eye-opening book—which includes stories and images of key players such as Barack and Michelle Obama, Joe Biden, and Hillary Clinton, among others—gives readers a unique view of their government and their president in these historic and challenging times.

 

Former Congressman Bob Ney kicked off the show's seventh season March 22 by responding to questions raised by his new book, Sideswiped: Lessons Learned Courtesy of the Hit Men of Capitol Hill. Ney, a Republican, served six terms in the House before the corruption scandal involving former Washington lobbyist Jack Abramoff. Ney spent 11 months in prison after pleading guilty to accepting gifts from Abramoff.

Ney, a native of the mountainous and heavily Democratic region on Ohio's border of West Virginia, represented Ohio's 18th congressional district in the U.S. House of Representatives as a Republican from 1995 until Nov. 3, 2006, when he resigned. Ney pled guilty to charges of conspiracy and making false statements. From 2001 to 2006, Ney was chairman of the House Administration Committee. As chair of that committee, he oversaw operations in the Capitol complex and was sometimes known as the "Mayor of Capitol Hill." In April 2009, Ney began "Bob Ney Radio Show," a talk show on West Virginia radio station WVLY (AM).

Ney describes a culture of greed, backstabbing, and corruption that eventually destroyed his career. Ney describes his rise through politics, his vulnerabilities, and lessons from his downfall for others.

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Mark Osler, a law professor in Minnesota, discussed April 5 his book, essays, and lectures that cite a Christian basis for opposing on the the death penalty. He currently serves as the head of the Association of Religiously Affiliated Law Schools. His book, Jesus on Death Row (Abingdon, 2009) challenges the death penalty based on the experience of Christ as a criminal defendant. Osler and Chicago public defender Jeanne Bishop have presented the sentencing trial of Jesus in nine states.

Osler is a professor of law at the University of St. Thomas Law School in Minnesota, and a former federal prosecutor in Detroit from 1995 to 2000. He served as lead counsel in Spears v. United States, where the U.S. Supreme Court accepted his position that sentencing judges could categorically reject a 100:1 ratio between crack and powder cocaine in the federal sentencing guidelines. His work fighting overly harsh crack sentences was also portrayed in the film American Violet, where he was the basis for the character of Professor Joe Fisher. He has testified as a sentencing expert in Congress and before the U.S. Sentencing Commission. He has authored over 30 academic articles, and writes regularly for CNN, the Huffington Post, Sojourners, and the Minneapolis Star Tribune. He earned his law degree from Yale, where he was a senior editor of the Yale Law Journal. Among his recent artcles are forthcoming chapters in a new book, "Victims: Transforming the Death Penalty Debate" and "Talking to Each Other in the Dark: The American Abolition Movement and The Christian Opportunity" (with Jeanne Bishop). These chapters will appear in Ashgate Press’s forthcoming volume, New Voices about Capital Punishment (2013).

 

 

 

Mark Mazzatti, a Pulitzer-winning national security correspondent for the New York Times, will describe his new book, The Way of the Knife. In 2009, he shared a Pulitzer Prize for reporting on the intensifying violence in Pakistan and Afghanistan and Washington’s response, and he has won numerous other major journalism awards, including the George Polk Award (with colleague Dexter Filkins) and the Livingston Award, for breaking the story of the CIA's destruction of interrogation videotapes. Mazzetti has also written for the Los Angeles Times, U.S. News & World Report, and The Economist. He lives in Washington, D.C. 

Here is the book's description by the publisher: Mazzatti provides the untold story of that shadow war: a campaign that has blurred the lines between soldiers and spies and lowered the bar for waging war across the globe. America has pursued its enemies with killer drones and special operations troops; trained privateers for assassination missions and used them to set up clandestine spying networks; and relied on mercurial dictators, untrustworthy foreign intelligence services, and proxy armies. This new approach to war has been embraced by Washington as a lower risk, lower cost alternative to the messy wars of occupation and has been championed as a clean and surgical way of conflict. But the knife has created enemies just as it has killed them. It has fomented resentments among allies, fueled instability, and created new weapons unbound by the normal rules of accountability during wartime. Mark Mazzetti tracks an astonishing cast of characters on the ground in the shadow war, from a CIA officer dropped into the tribal areas to learn the hard way how the spy games in Pakistan are played to the chain-smoking Pentagon official running an off-the-books spy operation, from a Virginia socialite whom the Pentagon hired to gather intelligence about militants in Somalia to a CIA contractor imprisoned in Lahore after going off the leash.

At the heart of the book is the story of two proud and rival entities, the CIA and the American military, elbowing each other for supremacy. The CIA, created as a Cold War espionage service, is now more than ever a paramilitary agency ordered by the White House to kill off America’s enemies—in the mountains of Pakistan and the deserts of Yemen, in the tumultuous civil wars of North Africa and the chaos of Somalia. For its part, the Pentagon has become more like the CIA, dramatically expanding spying missions everywhere. Sometimes, as with the raid that killed Osama bin Laden, their efforts have been perfectly coordinated. Other times, including the failed operations disclosed here for the first time, they have not. For better or worse, their struggles will define American national security in the years to come.

 

Dick Russell and Jesse Ventura

Jesse Ventura, the author, former wrestler and former Minnesota governor, is scheduled June 14 to discuss release in paperback of his latest book, DemoCrips and ReBloodLicans: No More Gangs in Government. The book, co-authored with Dick Russell, is available here .

Ventura was Minnesota's governor from 1999 to 2003 after election as an independent following careers as a famed pro wrestler and member of the U.S. Navy Underwater Demolition Team 12, the precursor to SEALs). The former professional wrestler has also been an actor in such films as: The Running Man (1987) and Predator (1987). 

He is the author or co-author of such previous books as: I Ain't Got Time to Bleed: Reworking the Body Politic from the Bottom up (2000), Quotations of Chairman Jesse (2000), Do I Stand Alone?: Going to the Mat Against Political Pawns and Media Jackals (2001), Jesse Ventura Tells It Like It Is: America's Most Outspoken Governor Speaks Out About Government (2002), The New Prohibition: Voices of Dissent Challenge the Drug War (2004).

 

Zena Crenshaw-Logal is co-founder and Executive Director of National Judicial Conduct and Disability Law Project, Inc., a nonprofit legal reform organization. Prior to working full time as a legal reform activist beginning in 1998, Zena was a civil trial attorney, having graduated from Northwestern University School of Law in Chicago, Illinois.

Zena has authored multiple online and print articles on grassroots advocacy, First Amendment issues, democracy, and the administration of justice in America.

Her publications include “The Official End of Judicial Accountability Through Federal Rights Litigation: Ashcroft v. Iqbal,” 35 Am. J. Trial Advoc. 125 (Summer 2011), and Exploring the Vitality of Stare Decisis in America. (Universal).

 

 

Recent Guests

Rebecca MacKinnon

Rebecca MacKinnon Cover

Rebecca MacKinnon spoke Dec. 6 about how Internet users should understand and monitor Internet governance debates occurring in December in Dubai at an important International Telecommunications Union conference. She is a journalist and activist whose work focuses on the intersection of the Internet, human rights, and foreign policy. As a Senior Fellow at the New America Foundation, she is developing new projects focused on holding technology companies accountable to universally recognized human rights standards on free expression and privacy. As a Bernard L. Schwartz senior fellow from September 2010 to August 2012, she examined U.S. policies related to the Internet, human rights, and "global Internet freedom."

Her first book, Consent of the Networked, was published in January 2012 by Basic Books. In 2012 she was named Hearst Professional-in-residence by Columbia Journalism School and listed by the Columbia Journalism Review as one of “40 women who changed the media business in the past 40 years” primarily due to her role as cofounder of Global Voices Online (globalvoicesonline.org) an international citizen media network. She also serves on the Boards of Directors of the Committee to Protect Journalists and the Global Network Initiative, a multi-stakeholder organization that advances corporate responsibility and human rights in the technology sector. Fluent in Mandarin Chinese, MacKinnon worked as a journalist for CNN in Beijing for nine years, serving as CNN’s Beijing Bureau Chief and Correspondent from 1998-2001 and then as CNN’s Tokyo Bureau Chief and Correspondent from 2001-03. From 2004-06 she was a Fellow at the Joan Shorenstein Center on the Press and Public Policy Research Fellow and the Berkman Center for Internet and Society, both at Harvard. In 2007-08 she served on the faculty of the University of Hong Kong's Journalism and Media Studies Centre, where she taught online journalism and conducted research on Chinese Internet censorship. In 2009 she continued her research and writing as an Open Society Institute Fellow, then spent the first half of 2010 as a visiting fellow at Princeton's Center for Information Technology Policy. She received her AB magna cum laude from Harvard College.

 

 

Gene Gaines, president of the Gaines Group and a co-founder of the Washington, DC metro chapter of the Internet Society, described on Nov. 29 his fears regarding the Internet's stemming from a global conference in Dubai in December to discuss proposals to put part of Internt governance under United Nations control. Gaines said the proposal before an International Telecommunications Union (ITU) conference is part of a long-running goal of incumbent telcos and governments around the world to stifle the kind of low-cost innovation United States development of the Internet has made possible. "This is not a new story," Gaines says, "and actually has been developing for 20 years, though few in the U.S. (particularly in our government) cared either about Europe or the rest of the world."

Gaines, with more than four decades experience in relevant technologies, is a strong supporter of the position of Internet pioneer, Dr. Vinton Cerf.Cerf, the ordinarily diplomatic co-author of the basic protocol for Internet data (known to many as one of the “fathers of the Internet”), denounced the proposed new rules to Reuters as hopeless efforts by some governments and state-controlled telecom authorities to assert their power. “These persistent attempts are just evidence that this breed of dinosaurs, with their pea-sized brains, hasn’t figured out that they are dead yet, because the signal hasn’t traveled up their long necks,” said Cerf (shown at right in a Wikipedia photo) to Reuters.

Gaines continued: "Cerf has been quietly pushing back for years, and the quote of his above is just a reasonable response to the latest developments at the ITU." The Wall Street Journal published an alarming commentary this week, The U.N.'s Internet Sneak Attack. In it, columnist L Gordon Crovitz wrote, "Created in 1865 as the International Telegraph Union, the ITU last drafted a treaty on communications in 1988, before the commercial Internet, when telecommunications meant voice telephone calls via national telephone monopolies. Next week the ITU holds a negotiating conference in Dubai, and past months have brought many leaks of proposals for a new treaty. U.S. congressional resolutions and much of the commentary, including in this column, have focused on proposals by authoritarian governments to censor the Internet. Just as objectionable are proposals that ignore how the Internet works, threatening its smooth and open operations.  Having the Internet rewired by bureaucrats would be like handing a Stradivarius to a gorilla."

TU Secretary-General Secretary-General Hamadoun Touré has positioned himself as a compromise negotiator between United States and international interests, and has downplayed frictions. He told Reuters that even though updates to the treaty could be approved by a simple majority, in practice nothing will be adopted without near-unanimity. “Voting means winners and losers. We can’t afford that in the ITU,” said Touré, a former satellite engineer from Mali who was educated in Russia. Touré predicted to Reuters that only “light-touch” regulation on cyber-security will emerge by “consensus,” using a deliberately vague term that implies something between a majority and unanimity. He rejected criticism that the ITU’s historic role in coordinating phone carriers leaves it unfit to corral the unruly Internet, comparing the Web to a transportation system.

 

Joe Lauria, United Nations correspondent for the Wall Street Journal, described on Nov. 1 said flood damage in the Metro New York City region, the political fallout, and rumors that a movement is underway within the United Nations to assert control over the Internet.

Lauria is an author, foreign affairs correspondent and investigative reporter. A journalist for more than 20 years, he is part of the Sunday Times of London's investigative unit and also covers the UN for the Johannesburg Star. With former U.S. Senator and presidential candidate Mike Gravel, he is co-author of A Political Odyssey (Seven Stories Press), a look at America's defense industry and false threats.

Paul Kangor

Paul Kangor Cover

Paul Kengor, Ph.D. spoke Oct. 4 on his latest book, The Communist. It describes Frank Marshall Davis as a Communist friendly with the Obama family in Hawaii, and an important influence on the future president. Kengor is a bestselling author whose works include Dupes: How America's Adversaries Have Manipulated Progressives for a Century; God and Ronald Reagan; God and George W. Bush; God and Hillary Clinton; and The Crusader: Ronald Reagan and the Fall of Communism. His articles have appeared in USA TODAY, the New York Times, and many academic journals. A professor at Grove City College, Kengor is a frequent commentator on television and radio. Kengor earned his bachelor's degree and Ph.D. from the University of Pittsburgh and his master's from American University. Further details are available from Amazon.com (http://www.amazon.com/The-Communist-Paul-Kengor/dp/1451698097Growing Up Frank), and in an Oct. 3 column in The Blaze, a conservative web publication that has reported extensively on Kengor's allegations. The most recent edition of The Blaze reports that an audio version of the president's memoir, Dreams from My Father, deletes references to Davis.

 

Craig Unger

Craig Unger Cover

Craig Unger discussed Oct. 11 his new book, Boss Rove: Inside Karl Rove's Secret Kingdom of Power. It was published Sept. 4 with this announcement: The epic 2012 presidential contest between President Barack Obama and Republican candidate Mitt Romney represents the stunning comeback of GOP boss Karl Rove, the brilliant political operator whose scorched-earth partisanship infamously earned him the moniker "Bush's Brain" and provoked some observers to label him as dangerous to American democracy.

How, after leaving the Bush administration in disgrace, did Rove rise again, and what does it mean that he is back in power? As background, Harper's contributing editor Scott Horton published this Q&A: Boss Rove: Six Questions for Craig Unger. Ungeris the author of the New York Times bestselling House of Bush, House of Saud. He appears frequently as an analyst on CNN, the ABC Radio Network, and other broadcast outlets. The former deputy editor of The New York Observer and editor-in-chief of Boston Magazine, he has written about George H. W. Bush and George W. Bush for The New Yorker, Esquire, and Vanity Fair. He lives in New York City.

John M. Perkis

John Perkins Hoodwinked Cover

Best selling author John Perkins reprised his latest book, Hoodwinked: An Economic Hit Man Reveals Why the World Financial Markets Imploded -- and What We Need to Do to Remake Them. Its overview focuses on how Perkins has seen the signs of today's economic meltdown before: The subprime mortgage fiascos, the banking industry collapse, the rising tide of unemployment, the shuttering of small businesses across the landscape are all too familiar symptoms of a far greater disease. In his former life as an economic hit man, he was on the front lines both as an observer and a perpetrator of events, once confined only to the third world, that have now sent the United States—and in fact the entire planet—spiraling toward disaster.

Here, Perkins pulls back the curtain on the real cause of the current global financial meltdown. He shows how we've been hoodwinked by the CEOs who run the corporatocracy—those few corporations that control the vast amounts of capital, land, and resources around the globe—and the politicians they manipulate. These corporate fat cats, Perkins explains, have sold us all on what he calls predatory capitalism, a misguided form of geopolitics and capitalism that encourages a widespread exploitation of the many to benefit a small number of the already very wealthy. Their arrogance, gluttony, and mismanagement have brought us to this perilous edge. The solution is not a "return to normal."

But there is a way out. As Perkins makes clear, we can create a healthy economy that will encourage businesses to act responsibly, not only in the interests of their shareholders and corporate partners (and the lobbyists they have in their pockets), but in the interests of their employees, their customers, the environment, and society at large. As chief economist at a major international consulting firm, John Perkins advised the World Bank, United Nations, IMF, U.S. Treasury Department, Fortune 500 corporations, and countries in Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the Middle East. He worked directly with heads of state and CEOs of major companies. His books on economics and geo-politics have sold more than 1 million copies, spent many months on the New York Times and other bestseller lists, and are published in over 30 languages. John is a founder and board member of Dream Change and The Pachamama Alliance, nonprofit organizations devoted to establishing a world our children will want to inherit, has lectured at more than 50 universities around the world, and is the author of books on indigenous cultures and transformation, including Shapeshifting, The World Is As You Dream It, Psychonavigation, Spirit of the Shuar, and The Stress-Free Habit. Details

 

Greg Palast

Greg Palast Vote

Greg Palast described his latest book, a warning about voting fraud in the 2012 elections. It is entitled: Billionaires & Ballot Bandits: How to Steal an Election in 9 Easy Steps. It and his recent column, 7 Ways to Beat the Ballot Bandits, provide guidance for reducing the odds of what he regards as extreme vulnerability of voters to electronic fraud.

Last year, he published, Vultures Picnic: In Pursuit of Petroleum Pigs, Power Pirates, and High-Finance Carnivores. The New York Times-bestselling author of Armed Madhouse offered in it a globetrotting, Sam Spade-style investigation that blows the lid off the oil industry, the banking industry, and the governmental agencies that aren't regulating either.

The author of the New York Times bestseller, The Best Democracy Money Can Buy, Palast is best known in his native USA as the journalist who, for the Observer (UK), broke the story of how Jeb Bush purged thousands of Black Florida citizens from voter rolls before the 2000 election, thereby handing the White House to his brother George. His reports on the theft of election 2004, the spike of the FBI investigations of the bin Ladens before September 11, the secret State Department documents planning the seizure of Iraq's oil fields have won him a record six 'Project Censored' for reporting the news American media doesn't want you to hear. 'The top investigative journalist in the United States is persona non grata in his own country's media.' [Asia Times.] He returned to America to report for Harper's Magazine. Details.

 

Jerome Corsi

 

The two-time No. 1 New York Times bestselling author Dr. Jerome Corsi will discuss his latest book The Great Oil Conspiracy: How the U.S. Government Hid the Nazi Discovery of Abiotic Oil from the American People. Its publisher describes it as a shocking investigation revealing why greedy oil companies are lying to the American people.

Dr. Jerome CorsiCorsi is senior staff reporter for World Net Daily, where he works as an investigative reporter. In 2004, Corsi co-authored the #1 New York Times bestseller, Unfit for Command: Swift Boat Veterans Speak Out Against John Kerry. The success of Unfit for Command permitted Dr. Corsi to devote full time to writing. In the past five years, he has published five New York Times bestselling non-fiction books. In August 2008, he published The Obama Nation: Leftist Politics and the Cult of Personality, which was a #1 New York Times bestseller for a month and remained on the NYT bestseller list for 10 weeks. His most recent non-fiction book, America for Sale: Fighting the New World Order, Surviving a Global Depression, and Preserving USA Sovereignty debuted on the New York Times bestseller list on Nov. 1, 2009. For nearly 25 years, beginning in 1981, Corsi worked with banks throughout the United States and around the world to develop financial services marketing companies to assist banks in establishing broker/dealers and insurance subsidiaries to provide financial planning products and services to their retail customers. He is a frequent guest on talk radio shows nationally and has made repeated television appearances on Fox News, MSNBC, CNN News and Fox Business News.

It argues that no legal authority has ever verified Obama's legal eligibility to be president, that glaring inconsistencies, blackouts, and outright fabrications in his life narrative have generated widespread doubts, and that, in fact, a compelling body of evidence says Obama is not a natural-born citizen as is required of all presidents by Article 2, Section 1, of the Constitution. Details.

 

Lamar Waldron

Lamar Waldron Watergate

Lamar Waldron reveals his research on what's been omitted in one of Washington most dramatic intrigues. Watergate: The Hidden History: Nixon, The Mafia, and The CIA is an 816-page documentation of his theme:

While Richard Nixon's culpability for Watergate has long been established—most recently by PBS in 2003—what's truly remarkable that after almost forty years, conventional accounts of the scandal still don't address Nixon's motive. Why was President Nixon willing to risk his reelection with so many repeated burglaries at the Watergate—and other Washington offices—in just a few weeks? What motivated Nixon to jeopardize his presidency by ordering the wide range of criminal operations that resulted in Watergate? What was Nixon so desperate to get at the Watergate, and how does it explain the deeper context surrounding his crimes?

Watergate: The Hidden History reexamines the historical record, including new material only available in recent years. This includes thousands of recently declassified CIA and FBI files, newly released Nixon tapes, and exclusive interviews with those involved in the events surrounding Watergate—ranging from former Nixon officials to key aides for John and Robert Kennedy. This book also builds on decades of investigations by noted journalists and historians, as well as long-overlooked investigative articles from publications like Time magazine, the Los Angeles Times, and the New York Times.

Lamar Waldron's historical research and nonfiction books have won praise from Publishers Weekly, Vanity Fair, the Boston Globe, the San Francisco Chronicle, and major publications in Europe. His groundbreaking research has been the subject of two prime-time specials on the Discovery Channel, produced by NBC News. He Has been featured on CNN, the History Channel, Geraldo Rivera, Fox News, and television specials in England, Germany, Japan, and Australia. Called "the ultimate JFK historian" by Variety, Waldron's previous book is being produced as a major motion picture for Warner Brothers by Leonardo DiCaprio's Appian Way.

 

 

Aug. 30

Jesselyn Radack

Jesselyn Radack Traitor Cover

Jesselyn Radack, one of the nation's most prominent protesters against government ethics violations, describes her memoir, Traitor: The WhistleBlower and tthe "American Taliban." Radack is currently the director of National Security and Human Rights at the Government Accountability Project. She was one of the attorneys who represented National Security Agency whistleblower Thomas Andrews Drake, with whom she won the 2011 Sam Adams Awards for Integrity in Intelligence. They also both won the 2012 Hugh M. Hefner First Amendment Award. She is a former ethics adviser to the Department of Justice who came to prominence after she disclosed to her superiors that the FBI committed serious ethics violations and potential fraud on the courts. This was by covering up how their interrogation of John Walker Lindh was without an attorney despite his parents' retention of counsel. Lindh, caught up in the war after working with the Taliban when it was a recipient of United States government aid in 2001, was dubbed "The American Taliban" after his capture during the invasion of Afghanistan. His case was the first major terrorism prosecution after 9/11.

Anthony Lewis, now retired after decades as the lead New York Times columnist on legal affairs, wrote of her book: "This is a riveting -- and chilling -- account of how far the Bush Administration's Justice Department will go to destroy a critic." Her memoir has been well-received by other experts and readers also, as indicated here.

Radack served on the D.C. Bar Legal Ethics Committee from 2005-2007. From 2006 until 2008, she represented government contractors blowing the whistle on fraud in the reconstruction of Iraq. Radack was born in Washington DC and attended Brown University. She was elected to Phi Beta Kappa in her junior year and graduated magna cum laude in 1992 as a triple major with honors in all three majors. Since 1983 when Brown began tracking such data, only one other student has received honors in three concentrations. Radack graduated from Yale Law School and joined the Justice Department through the Attorney General Honors Program, where she practiced constitutional tort litigation from 1995–1999 and then worked in the Department's newly created Professional Responsibility Advisory Office from 1999-2002, when she resigned under pressure after protesting what she regarded as a major fraud on the courts insisted upon by her superiors.

 

Don Mann

US Navy Seal

Don Mann discussed on Aug. 30 his impressive military career and new book: The U.S. Navy Seal Survival Handbook: Learn the Survival Techniques and Strategies of America's Elite Warriors. The book, co-authored by Ralph Pezzullo, is already into its second printing by Skyhorse Publishing just a week after the first printing. Mann will discuss his views on another book about the SEALs creating controversy before its publication. A Time writer described it this way in a column posted on Mann's "Frogman" site: Bin Laden Raid SEAL Author Faces Double Jeopardy. No Easy Day: The Firsthand Account of the Mission That Killed Osama bin Laden is slated to go on sale Sept. 4. The author is listed as "Mark Owen," the pen name of Matt Bissonnette, 36, who retired from the Navy last summer, after a career that saw him earn five Bronze Stars and a Purple Heart.

Mann's career included stints as: corpsman; SEAL Special Operations technician; and SEAL (Survival, Evade, Resistance, and Escape) instructor, to name a few. He has been profiled in the pages of Sports Illustrated, the Wall Street Journal, Men's Fitness, Outside, National Geographic Adventure, Fortune, Forbes, the New York Times, and the Washington Post. His book, Inside SEAL Team Six: My Life and Missions with America's Elite Warriors, was a New York Times bestseller. He lives in Williamsburg, Virginia. With 150 color photographs, the new guide includes life-saving information on: making weapons and tools; finding water; hunting wildlife for food; making shelters; signaling; sea survival. Comments about his new book include:

"While Don describes skills that are critical to survival, what you really gain from reading this handbook is a sense of the attitude required to be successful in the harsh environments in which America's secret warriors thrive."
—John Wright, US Air Force and DoD SERE Trainer.


 

Aug. 23

Joel GIlbert

Joel Gilbert

Joel Gilbert discussed on Aug. 23 his controversial documentary on President Obama, Dreams from My Real Father. Gilbert and his film argue that the president's biological father was Frank Marshal Davis, not Barack Obama, Sr.

Gilbert is an American film director, writer, and musician. Through his production company, Highway 61 Entertainment, Gilbert directed and produced four documentary feature films on Bob Dylan's music and career. Gilbert appeared in these films as interviewer, and performs on the film soundtracks. In 2007, Gilbert released a controversial political documentary called, Farewell Israel: Bush, Iran and the Revolt of Islam, a history of Islamic-Jewish relations from the 7th Century to today. Gilbert's 2010 release entitled, Atomic Jihad: Ahmadinejad's Coming War for Islamic Revival and Obama's Politics of Defeat, was featured at the CPAC Conference in Washington D.C. and was a winning film at the Hudson Institute Film Festival in New York City on May 31, 2010. Gilbert also released, Paul McCartney Really Is Dead: The Last Testament of George Harrison, due out September 1, 2010, which is narrated by secret audio tapes purported to have been made by George Harrison.

 

 

Aug. 16

Peter Janney

 

Author Peter Janney, reared in a CIA family, described Aug. 16 how he has solved one of the nation's most important murder mysteries. The title of his 560-page book gives more than a clue: Mary's Mosaic:The CIA Conspiracy to Murder John F. Kennedy, Mary Pinchot Meyer and Their Vision for World Peace. Peter Janney Cover

Meyer, the beautiful mother of Janney's best friend while he was growing up in McLean, Virginia, had a torried affair with then-President Kennedy following her divorce from one of the nation's highest-ranking CIA officers, Cord Meyer. Her ex-husband's job was to manage the nation's media behind-the-scenes. In love with Kennedy, she sought to influence his foreign policy in her own ways.

Her unsolved murder in 1964 has remained highly controversial and unsolved despite -- or perhaps because of -- her position in the nation's thought-leader circles. Her brother-in-law was Newsweek Washington Bureau Chief Ben Bradlee, who undertook a mission immediately after her death to find her still-secret diary to ensure its contents were not disclosed. Janney grew up in Washington, D.C. during the Cold War era of the 1950s and 1960s. His father, Wistar Janney, was a senior career CIA official.The Janney family was intimately involved with many of Washington's social and political elite. His 568-page book is extensively footnoted and inevitably draws on vast previous commentaries and court records. This includes the trial of a black laborer man tried for Meyer's murder and acquitted,and records involving the JFK assassination. The seven-member Warren Commission concluded in 1964 that former Marine Lee Harvey Oswald assassinated the president by himself in 1963 with no known conspirators. A Boston Globe feature entitled, Peter Janney on JFK confidante Mary Pinchot Meyer's death is one of relatively few mainstream newspaper treatments so far of the incendiary topic and well-crafted book. For obvious reasons (that include the effort of the Post's top editor to purloin the victim's diary instead of to report it), the topic is sensitive no matter what the qualifications of the author and extent of his research.

The introduction is by Dick Russell, a longtime investigative reporter whose best-sellers includes books on the Kennedy assassionation. He endorses the Janney book as answering many riddles. Russell himself appeared on the show July 5 to discuss his latest book co-authored with former Minnesota Gov. Jesse Ventura, DemoCRIPS and ReBLOODlicans: No More Gangs in Government.

 

Don and Dana Siegelman

 

Dana Siegelman, 27, daughter of former Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman, appeared Aug. 16 to describe progress on the nationwide petition her father's supporters have launched to obtain a presidential pardon.

Dana, at right with her father, has recently written and spoken eloquently about why presidential action is justified to redress his 2006 federal convictions on corruption charges. "I am putting all my hope in this last effort to free my dad and restore justice," she says. "Five years ago, my dad, Don Siegelman, was taken away in handcuffs and shackles. Many came to see his case as a travesty of justice. It has been a tumultuous struggle within the court system and a huge blow to our faith in government. He has lost his reputation, practically all his assets, and his freedom."

"I desperately need your help to free my father," she continues. "Please sign this petition to President Obama asking him to restore justice and pardon my dad!" A petition to President Obama for pardon or commutation of sentence is here via Change.org, along with further background.

 

Aug. 9

Thomas W. Hazlett

 

Dr. Thomas W. Hazlett on Aug. 9 describes his latest research into how government spectrum policy is affecting the way we live and work. He is a professor of law & economics and serves as Director of the Information Economy Project at George Mason University School of Law. He is also a columnist for the New Technology Policy Forum hosted by the Financial Times. He previously held faculty appointments at the University of California at Davis, Columbia University, and the Wharton School, and in 1991-92 served as chief economist of the Federal Communications Commission. He has published widely in academic and popular journals on the economics of the Information Sector. He has provided expert testimony to federal and state courts, regulatory agencies, committees of Congress, foreign governments, and international organizations. His book, Public Policy Toward Cable Television, was co-authored with Matthew L. Spitzer (MIT Press, 1997).

One of his recent columns is "The iPhone Turns Five," published by the Wall Street Journal Online June 26. In it, he argues: Forget the shouting about 'open' or 'closed' systems. The magic is in the dynamics of platform competition. This illustrates one of his longstanding themes as one the nation's most influential and widely published scholars on how markets best function in the high-tech communications sector.

 

Aug. 2

Thomas A. Drake

 

Thomas Andrews Drake shared on Aug. 2 his expert insights on privacy, government spending, and national security issues. He is a former senior executive of the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA), decorated United States Air Force and United States Navy veteran, computer software expert, linguist, management and leadership specialist, and whistleblower. For years, he has advised against about threats to taxpayers, privacy and the democratic process raised by wasteful national security spending. Among such venues was a recent forum on privacy issues organized by the free-market Cato Institute in Washington, DC.

He is the 2011 recipient of the Ridenhour Prize for Truth-Telling and co-recipient of the Sam Adams Associates for Integrity in Intelligence (SAAII) award. As further indicated by his Wikipedia profile: In 2010 the government alleged that he 'mishandled' documents, one of the few such Espionage Act cases in U.S. history. His defenders claim that he was instead being persecuted for challenging the Trailblazer Project. On June 9, 2011, all 10 original charges against him were dropped. He rejected several deals because he refused to "plea bargain with the truth." He eventually pleaded to one misdemeanor count for exceeding authorized use of a computer. Jesselyn Radack of the Government Accountability Project, who helped represent him, called it an act of "Civil Disobedience." Prosecutors wanted Drake to plead guilty, but he refused. He believed that he was innocent of the charges against him. The government wanted him to help prosecute the other whistleblowers. He refused this as well.

He later explained his motivations to the Ridenhour Prizes organization: "I did what I did because I am rooted in the faith that my duty was to the American people" . . . "I knew that you did not spy on Americans and that we were accountable for spending American taxpayer monies wisely."

Wayne Allyn Root

 

Wayne Allyn Root appears on Aug. 2 to discuss Mitt Romney's just-completed foreign trip and the Tea Party's Texas primary victory this week in the U.S. Senate race and its implications for November. Root is a former Presidential candidate, the 2008 Libertarian Vice Presidential nominee, and a Tea Party favorite. He is proud to describe himself as "The ultimate Capitalist Evangelist": a blue-collar S.O.B. (son of a butcher) turned small businessman, entrepreneur, CEO, home-school dad, and citizen politician. Also, he is a talk show host, best-selling author, business speaker, and TV/radio commentator on the topics of business, economics, entrepreneurship, and politics. He is a regular guest on Fox News Channel, as well as hundreds of national and local radio shows across the USA, with over 1,000 media appearances annually. Wayne's opinions reach tens of millions of Americans as a regular columnist and commentator for many of the most popular political and business web sites- including FoxNews.com, Newsmax.com, TownHall.com, TheBlaze.com, DailyCaller.com, Breitbart.com, PersonalLiberty.com, and many more. He also writes regularly for The Washington Times. He is the best-selling author of seven books. But Wayne is a businessman first and foremost. He runs multiple businesses, and serves as spokesman for numerous national and international companies, including a global precious metals company and law firm. An economist, Wayne also serves as Senior Economic Advisor to a global financial education company. He serves on numerous Boards of Directors. Wayne is also well known in the television and media industries. Wayne started his career as an anchorman and host of five shows for CNBC (then known as Financial News Network). He has hosted, starred and produced many television shows. Today he is a producer of the highest-rated television show on Travel Channel, "Ghost Adventures."

A native New Yorker and graduate of Columbia University, this capitalist evangelist proudly resides in Nevada, a state with zero personal & business income tax. He is proud to be the only Nevadan to ever run on a major U.S. Presidential ticket. He was appointed by the Governor of Nevada to the Judicial Selection Commission in 2010. His web site is ROOTforAmerica.com.

 

 

July 19

Madeline Drexler

Madeline Drexler

Madeline Drexler, an award-winning journalist specializing in public health, medicine, and science, spoke July 19 about her research findings. "Why Your Food Isn't Safe," published by Good Housekeeping last fall, is one of her recent successes. The Society of Professional Journalists will honor Drexler July 20 at National Press Club with its annual Public Service in Magazine Journalism award for the story, whose reporting was so powerful that it prompted reforms the same week it was published. The U.S. Department of Agriculture declared all "Big Six" strains of deadly E. coli bacteria "adulterants" — a move she and Good Housekeeping strongly recommended in this article. The magazine said: This means that starting in March 2012 certain food producers (such as beef producers) will have to test for these strains and, if they are found, destroy the batch or cook it to kill the bacteria. (Before, people had to fall ill — even die — before the contaminated food was tracked down.)

Drexler edits Harvard Public Health Magazine. Also, she is a senior fellow at the Schuster Institute for Investigative Journalism at Brandeis University. Food safety, biosecurity, and pandemic preparedness are topics she has covered widely in recent years. Her book Emerging Epidemics: The Menace of New Infections (Penguin, 2010) is an update --with new material on SARS, H1N1 influenza, and innovative approaches to global pandemic preparedness -- to her 2003 book Secret Agents: The Menace of Emerging Infections (Penguin), both of which have received wide critical praise. Drexler's work has appeared in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Nation, The Los Angeles Times, The American Prospect, The New Republic Online, USA Today, The Journal of Life Sciences, Nieman Reports, Harvard Magazine, and many other national publications.

 

Jason Peuquet

 

Jason Peuquet, also interviewed July 19, is research director for the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, which is part of the Fiscal Policy Program at the New America Foundation. He works on a wide array of budgetary issues and conducts research on budget and economic policy. In particular, he has recently worked on examining the economic recovery, defense and non-defense spending, structural health care reforms, as well as the overall federal budget. His focus is: At the end of 2012 and the beginning of 2013, several policies are set to take effect that would reduce deficits and debt, but in untargeted and abrupt ways. At the same time, lawmakers much not extend these policies without offsets. A smart and gradual debt reduction plan can be the solution. Peuquet attended George Washington University. He graduated summa cum laude with a bachelor's degree in economics and international affairs.

Dr. Justin Frank

Obama on the Couch

Dr. Justin A. Frank, a psychoanalyst who comments on political leaders, described his two recent best-sellers, Obama on the Couch (2011) and Bush on the Couch (2004). Frank is a graduate of Harvard Medical School who is a clinical professor in the department of psychiatry at George Washington University Medical Center. He emphasizes that his views are solely his own. Those in his field sometimes attract criticism for any attempt to use their analytic expertise on public figures who are not their patients. He aptly drew on a different tradition in his field, and visualized how some in the public wanted more commentary. The Boston Globe said of his most recent book:

Obama on the Couch is a fascinating read. Frank approaches this virtual analysis meticulously, closely reading both of Obama's memoirs, combing through speeches and journalistic accounts of Cabinet meetings. The president's puzzling insistence on seeking compromise even with political opponents who have sworn resistance, Frank writes in a tongue-in-cheek diagnosis, is evidence of "obsessive bipartisan disorder." And his chapter on how Obama's critics see him – the psychology, or even pathology, behind some of their complaints – is masterful.

 

July 5

Dick Russell and Jesse Ventura

Dick Russell discussed his hard-hitting new book co-authored with Jesse Ventura: DemoCrips and ReBloodLicans: No More Gangs in Government. The book, available here, argues that both major parties are incompatible with the desires of the nation's Founders, have failed the public, and should be abolished.

Russell's eight books have ranged from natural history to the assassination of President Kennedy. Among them are the New York Times best-seller American Conspiracies: Lies, Lies, and More Dirty Lies That The Government Tells Us, was co-authored with former Minnesota Governor Jesse Ventura. Russell's magazine writing and personal energies have primarily focused on the environment. Even before BP's Gulf oil spill in 2010, he warned about "the crisis impacting the world's fisheries and oceans." His books include the 2008 best-seller, Don't Start the Revolution Without Me, also co-authored with Jesse Ventura.

In 2008, Russell published On the Trail of the JFK Assassins, his second book examining the conspiracy behind the death of President Kennedy. Russell was a consultant on the web-based documentary film, "The Warning," and was featured in a National Geographic documentary on whales. Click for full bio and contact details.

 

June 28

Robert Keith Gray


A close friend to five pRobert Keith Grayresidents, Robert Keith Gray will discuss June 28 his new book Presidential Perks Gone Royal, published in June and excerpted by the New York Post, among other places, in
Air apparent; The unfair advantage of the president's plane. Among those endorsing his book are former Reagan Administration Secretary of Energy John Herrington, a former chairman of the Harcourt, Brace, Jovanovich publishing company. Herrington said:

Bob Gray has been a Washington powerhouse from Eisenhower to Obama, with longtime personal knowledge and experience from inside the White House and the Oval Office. He deftly leads the reader on a tour of the Royal Kingdom that has grown up around the American President. This is one of the most important books of this political season. A must read for all Americans.

Bob Gray was Appointments Secretary to the President and member of Eisenhower's Cabinet. He was active in the campaigns of Richard Nixon, Senator Barry Goldwater, Senator Eugene McCarthy, Governor Ronald Reagan and Vice President George Bush. Gray served as National Communications Director of the Reagan/Bush campaign and Co-Chairman of Reagan's 1981 Presidential inaugural. A well-known lobbyist and Worldwide Chairman of Hill and Knowlton, he founded Gray and Company, the only public affairs firm listed on the New York Stock Exchange. He remains active in public affairs.

Jeffrey Silva

 

The prominent telecom, media and technology senior analyst Jeffrey Silva discusses on June 28 the nation's shortfall of usable commercial spectrum for commercial wireless services, and what that means for App-hungry consumers and business that hope to expand. Among recent developments is an effort by the Federal Communications Commission to broker an interference settlement between satellite and land-based users of the 2.3 GHz band. This seemingly resolves a decade-long battle at the FCC and frees more spectrum for the SmartPhone operations of AT&T, the largest land-based owner of spectrum in the band.

Silva is a senior analyst for Medley Global Advisers (MGA), which is described as the leading global provider of macro policy intelligence service —for the world's top hedge funds, institutional investors, and asset managers. Its services and global network cover G20 plus Emerging Markets, Central Banks & Geopolitics, Global Oil & Energy Markets and Telecommunications. Silva, who publishes expert analytic reports, joined MGA in 2009 after a 26-year career as a leading telecom-high tech policy journalist and commentator. He served most recently as Washington Bureau Chief of RCR Wireless News, where he tracked telecom and high-tech policy matters pending before Congress, the Federal Communications Commission, the administration, courts, state governments and state regulatory agencies. Previously, he had stints with the Washington Post, The Washington Times, The Springfield (Va.) Times, the National Captioning Institute and the Voice of America. He holds a B.S. cum laude in communications from the University of Tennessee.

 

 

June 14

Paul Dickson

Paul Dickson Bill Veeck Cover

Paul Dickson, author of more than 60 books and hundreds of magazine articles, will discuss June 14 his latest: Bill Veeck: Baseball's Greatest Maverick. Relying on primary sources, including more than a hundred interviews, Dickson has crafted a richly detailed portrait of an American original: baseball impresario and innovator, independent spirit and unflinching advocate of racial equality, Bill Veeck.

Veeck (1914–1986) was born into baseball. His sportswriter father became president of the Chicago Cubs, and Bill later worked for owner Phil Wrigley, rebuilding Wrigley Field to achieve the famed ambience that exists today. In his late twenties, he bought into his first team, the American Association Milwaukee Brewers. As World War II intensified, Veeck volunteered for combat duty, enduring a leg injury that led to a lifetime of amputations and silent suffering. On returning, he bought the Cleveland Indians in 1946—the first of four midwestern teams he would own, preceding the hapless St. Louis Browns (1951–53) and the Chicago White Sox (twice, 1959–61 and 1975–81).

Though foiled in an earlier plan to bring Negro League players to the majors, in the summer of 1947, Veeck integrated his team on field and off, signing Larry Doby, the American League's first black player, and hiring the first black public relations officer, trainer, and scout. A year later, he signed the legendary black pitcher Satchel Paige, who helped win the 1948 World Series—Cleveland's last championship to this day. His promotional genius was second to none, endearing him to fans in every city, while his feel for the game led him to propose innovations way ahead of their time. Veeck's deep sense of fairness helped usher in free agency, breaking the stranglehold owners had on players; indeed, he was the only owner to testify in support of Curt Flood during his landmark reserve clause challenge.

Bill Veeck brings fully to life a transformational, visionary figure who spent a lifetime challenging baseball's and society's well-entrenched status quo. It is essential reading for any fan and anyone with a fascination for twentieth-century America. Dickson has written on a variety of subjects, from ice cream to kite flying to electronic warfare. He now concentrates on writing about the American language, baseball and 20th century history. His most recent titles include Drunk: The Definitive Drinker's Dictionary, The Dickson Baseball Dictionary, Sputnik: The Shock of the Century and Slang: A Topical Dictionary of Americanisms.

 

Gov. Buddy Roemer

 

2012 Presidential candidate Buddy Roemer June 14 recapped lessons learned from his just-ended, 17-month campaign and the next steps he envisions to bring the nation urgently needed reform of politics, including special interest corruption.His May 31 statement said:

After 17 months of a wonderful campaign, the lack of ballot access in all 50 states makes the quest impossible for now. We ran like we would serve – Free to Lead. To protect that freedom, we fully disclosed every contribution. We accepted no contributions above $100. We accepted no PAC money, no Super PAC money, no corporate money, and no lobbyist money. We assumed no debt and we end this campaign with money in the bank. Once again, we ran like we intended to serve. We received contributions averaging less than $50 each from thousands and thousands of Democrats, Republicans and Independents in all 50 states.

We were not included in a single one of the 23 nationally televised GOP debates, and yet received 7% of the popular vote in a national poll conducted just a few weeks ago.

With thanks to his family, supporters and staff, the four-term Congressman and two-term Louisiana governor continued:

America is a nation at risk. Job prospects are inadequate. Trade is neither smart nor fair. The tax code is unreadable and, I say, un-American. The budget is unsustainable. Small business must be re-vitalized. Energy has no strategy. Healthcare is not healthy. Banks are still too big to fail, and comprehensive immigration reform is a fantasy.

As I am no longer a candidate for president, I am free to pledge a good portion of the rest of my life to enacting campaign reform in the halls of Congress and the corridors of the White House. Instead of using my right to the floor of Congress to lobby for corporate clients, I will lobby for the American people who want reform....Again, thank you for standing with me. Don't give up. Don't lose hope. Together, we will continue to reform our country and make America great once again. We are just getting started.

He served four terms in Congress from 1981-1988 as a Democrat, and was Louisiana's Governor from 1988-1992, switching in mid-term to the Republican Party. During his tenure, he enacted reforms that cut unemployment by approximately half, balanced the state budget every year, linked teachers' pay to performance, established education accountability standards, confronted unions, and signed campaign finance reform legislation. Since leaving public office, Governor Roemer has served as CEO of Business First Bank, a business community bank that did not take bailout money from the federal government. He lives in Baton Rouge with his wife, Scarlett, and is the father of three children. He received his undergraduate degree from Harvard College and his MBA from Harvard Business School.

 

 

Recent!

Lindsay Markel

 

Lindsay Markel discussed June 7 her work focusing on criminal and social justice issues, such as wrongful convictions. She is a 2008 graduate of Brandeis University, where she is currently the assistant director of the Schuster Institute for Investigative Journalism. Through the Institute's Justice Brandeis Innocence Project, Markel and other staff and student research assistants use journalistic methods to investigate likely wrongful convictions in which exoneration won't hinge on a DNA test. In November, she co-authored an article for the Boston Globe Magazine, Failing the DNA test. She and Michael Blanding described why Massachusetts is one of only two states in the country without a law granting prison inmates the right to test DNA evidence that might prove their innocence.

Markel, 26, also provides supporting research for other major investigations, as well supervising student research assistants, and overseeing Freedom of Information Act public records requests. Brandeis Magazine profiled her in its spring 2012 issue in a column entitled, A Quest for Justice, illustrated by the photo at left by Michael Lovett of Brandeis outside a Massachusetts prison.

Bob Martin

Veteran Alabama journalist Bob Martin discusses the longstanding federal prosecution of former Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman following a U.S. Supreme Court ruling June 4 denying further review of Siegelman's 2007 convictions on corruption charges.

Martin is Editor and Publisher of the Montgomery Independent, located in the state's capital city, and holds the same titles at the Millbroook Independent, located in nearby community.

Michael K. Bohn

Michael K. Bohn Cover

Author Michael K. Bohn on May 24 discussed how current developments in golf and baseball reflect traditions. After following a distinguished military career serving two Presidents in the White House, his latest book is Heroes & Ballyhoo: How the Golden Age of the 1920s Transformed American Sports. His other books include Money Golf, 600 Years of Bettin' on Birdies (2007), The Achille Lauro Hijacking, Lessons in the Politics and Prejudice of Terrorism (2004), and Nerve Center, Inside the White House Situation Room (2003). As a freelancer, he writes sports features for the McClatchy newspaper chain, which has thirty papers across the country, and the McClatchy-Tribune News Service, a news wire that serves 1,200 newspapers and magazines around the world. Also, he contributes sports reporting and features articles to the Connection Newspapers, a group of nineteen newspapers in Northern Virginia. His books and recent journalism are available here.

Bohn was a primary contributor and on-screen personality for the 2010 History Channel documentary, "The President's Book of Secrets." He acted as a program consultant for, and appeared in, two BBC Television documentaries about crisis management in the White House, one in November 2002 and the other in April 2003. Also, he appeared in a July 2003 special, "The White House at War," a joint ABC News, New York Times, and Discovery Channel project; and in a 2004 German public TV special, "Palaces of Power."

A career naval intelligence officer, from 1968 to 1988, he twice served the Presidents. During 1970-72, he was a Military Social Aide to President Nixon. He helped manage White House social events ranging from afternoon coffees to Tricia Nixon's wedding. During the second Reagan administration, Bohn was the Director of the White House Situation Room. He organized the flow of critical information into the White House and National Security Council throughout the Middle East kidnappings and international terrorism of the mid-1980s. He wrote daily summaries of world events for the President, Vice President and senior White House officials. After retirement from the Navy in 1988, he joined Booz Allen & Hamilton and managed multi-million dollar contracts with the federal government for five years.

Fox News "Power Play" regular commentator Garland Nixon May 24 predicted how vice presidential nominees will likely affect the U.S. Presidential election in November.

Nixon is a Washington based political commentator following a distinguished career in law enforcement. He is a longtime host on WPFW-FM and on Montgomery County's cable station, as well as a college journalism adjunct professor in communications. Earlier, he rose to the rank of major in Maryland's state public safety system.

Scott Horton

 

Scott Horton described on May 17 current issues in human rights. He is a New York attorney known for his work in emerging markets and international law, especially human rights law and the law of armed conflict. He lectures at Columbia Law School. A life-long human rights advocate, Scott served as counsel to Andrei Sakharov and Elena Bonner, among other activists in the former Soviet Union. He is a co-founder of the American University in Central Asia, where he currently serves as a trustee, and has been involved in some of the most significant foreign investment projects in the Central Eurasian region.

Scott recently led a number of studies of abuse issues associated with the conduct of the war on terror for the New York City Bar Association, where he has chaired several committees, including, most recently, the Committee on International Law. He is also a member of the board of the National Institute of Military Justice, the EurasiaGroup and the American Branch of the International Law Association and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. He was a partner at Patterson, Belknap, Webb & Tyler until January 2007, when he left to write a book on private military contractors and to manage a project on that subject for Human Rights First. Since April 2007 he has also been a legal affairs and national security contributor to Harper's magazine and the author of a regular opinion column for the American Lawyer.

Rachael Marcus

Lydia Beyoud

Two accomplished young professionals excited to enter the field of investigative reporting shared their perspectives May 17. Lydia Beyoud, at right, is a graduate fellow at the Investigative Reporting Workshop in Washington, D.C. and is completing her master's degree in Broadcast Journalism and Public Affairs at American University in Washington, D.C. She is a graduate of Portland State University in Portland, Ore., where she obtained a bachelor's in international studies with a Middle East and North Africa focus. Lydia has been an associate producer of Latin Pulse Podcast, has contributed articles to the Oregonian newspaper and the Middle East Journal, interned at Portland Monthly magazine, and has published literary translations with Words Without Borders.

Rachael Marcus, at left, works at the Center for Public Integrity, a nonprofit, nonpartisan investigative news center as an American University Fellow. She is currently working towards her Master's degree in journalism at American University. A graduate of Reed College in Portland, Ore., Rachael majored in political science with a focus on international relations. Before joining the center, she interned for the Portland Mercury, an alternative newsweekly, and freelanced for several local newspapers and magazines in her hometown of Laguna Beach, Calif. and Portland, Ore.

Charles Lewis

 

Charles Lewis, a nationally prominent investigative reporter for three decades, described May 3 the documentary Investigating Powerthat premiered April 26 at the National Press Club in Washington, DC. The film provides insights from 26 of the most distinguished United States reporters and editors of the past half century. It illustrates what its creators call key "Moments of Truth" from the past half century involving: McCarthyism, Civil Rights, Vietnam War, Watergate, Corporate Power and 9/11. The Investigative Reporting Workshop at the American University School of Communication produced the film in a project taking four years.

Lewis is executive editor of the Workshop, which is at the forefront of a movement to provide non-profit or web-distributed reporting. This is to fill part of the gap left by traditional newspapers and broadcasters. Lewis has been a national investigative journalist for more than 30 years, including as a CBS 60 Minutes producer. A best-selling author, he founded four nonprofits in Washington, including the Center for Public Integrity. The Workshop is funded by foundations and individuals. It is based on the following concepts devised by Lewis and his colleagues, and widely shared elsewhere these days by experienced journalists:

At this critical juncture in the history of American journalism, as the news media and the nature and extent of original reporting itself undergo a very difficult transformation, we must reflect on the inherent, incalculable value of original, independent reporting in our nation and in the world. Facts are and must be the coin of the realm in a democracy, for government "of the people, by the people and for the people," to quote President Abraham Lincoln in his Gettysburg Address, requires and assumes to some extent an informed citizenry….

However, the number of full-time, independent reporters has been drastically decreasing. Since 1992 we have lost approximately one-third of the nation's newspaper reporters and editors in the United States, from 60,000 editorial employees to about 40,000 in 2009.

Lewis is a tenured professor of journalism and since 2008 the founding executive editor of the Workshop. He left a successful career as an investigative producer for ABC News and the CBS News program 60 Minutes and began the Center for Public Integrity from his home, growing it to a full-time staff of 40 people. Under his leadership, the nonpartisan Center published roughly 300 investigative reports, including 14 books, from 1989 through 2004, and was honored more than 30 times by national journalism organizations. His fifth and last co-authored book with the Center staff, The Buying of the President 2004, was a New York Times bestseller.

 

 

Coming Soon!

Dr. Justin Frank

Obama on the Couch

Dr. Justin A. Frank, a psychoanalyst who comments on political leaders, returns to the show to speak about his two recent best-sellers, Obama on the Couch (2011) and Bush on the Couch (2004). Frank is a graduate of Harvard Medical School who is a clinical professor in the department of psychiatry at George Washington University Medical Center. He emphasizes that his views are solely his own. Those in his field sometimes attract criticism for any attempt to use their analytic expertise on public figures who are not their patients. He aptly drew on a different tradition in his field, and visualized how some in the public wanted more commentary. The Boston Globe said of his most recent book:

Obama on the Couch is a fascinating read. Frank approaches this virtual analysis meticulously, closely reading both of Obama's memoirs, combing through speeches and journalistic accounts of Cabinet meetings. The president's puzzling insistence on seeking compromise even with political opponents who have sworn resistance, Frank writes in a tongue-in-cheek diagnosis, is evidence of "obsessive bipartisan disorder." And his chapter on how Obama's critics see him – the psychology, or even pathology, behind some of their complaints – is masterful.

Stewart Pinkerton

Stewart Pinkerton

Stewart Pinkerton, the longtime deputy managing editor of Forbes Magazine, is the author of The Fall of the House of Forbes: The Inside Story of the Collapse of a Media Empire. The well-reviewed history is described as follows: Forbes: the legendary name in finance journalism. Synonymous with wealth, grand excess, glamour, and fun as well as style, insight, gossip, and hard-nosed reporting, the media empire and the family behind it form a remarkable story that has never been told. Now, veteran journalist Stewart Pinkerton reveals the hidden machinations, disastrous decisions, and personal foibles of a century-old dynasty that rose to glittering heights and crashed just as spectacularly.

Writing from an insider's perspective and first-hand sources developed over his twenty years as a writer and editor at Forbes, Pinkerton takes us to the ritualized formal lunches inside the mansion-like headquarters at 60 Fifth Avenue in Manhattan; the lavish advertiser parties on board the family yacht, The Highlander; the sybaritic private life of Malcolm Forbes and the family's increasing discomfort with its patriarch; and the glory days of the magazine, with its news-making stories, high-rolling expense accounts, and bar-setting standards for anyone who aspired to wealth and its trappings. But as the media business changed, Forbes was slow to react, and found itself burdened by Malcolm's immense personal expenses, Steve Forbes's bumbling, self-financed presidential campaigns, and the family's hubris and hesitation in the face of reality. A series of devastating business decisions and an internecine struggle for power forced the sale of the Faberge eggs, the vintage toy collection, the homes, the private island, the yacht, and finally the sale of 40% of the company itself to outside investors…a collapse of shocking speed after decades of unsurpassed success. A compelling narrative account of a powerful family's dysfunction, The Fall of the House of Forbes is a parable of capitalism at its best and worst, and a metaphor for the current state of digital turmoil in media.

Tracie McMillan

 

Tracie McMillan will discuss her :new book, The American Way of Eating. Her first-person, undercover report describes the food industry's working poor and the lessons for consumers. Reared in a blue-collar family in Michigan, the author harvested grapes and peaches, cut garlic, and worked further up the food chain at Walmart's and Applebee's. She recounts such hardships as injury, heatstroke, identity theft and sexual assault, as well as multiple examples of exploitation by employers.

"Along the way," her publisher's announcement says, "she asked the questions still facing America a decade after the declaration of an obesity epidemic: Why do we eat the way we do? And how can we change it? To find out, McMillan goes beyond the food on her plate to examine the national priorities that put it there. With her absorbing blend of riveting narrative and formidable investigative reporting, McMillan takes us from dusty fields to clanging restaurant kitchens, linking her work to the quality of our meals—and always placing her observations in the context of America's approach not just to farms and kitchens but to wages and work."

McMillan is a Senior Fellow at the Schuster Institute for Investigative Journalism at Brandeis University, and has won several national awards, including the Harry Chapin Media Award and the James Aronson Award for Social Justice Journalism, and has been recognized by the James Beard Foundation, for my work on these topics. Lambasted by Rush Limbaugh in March 2012 in what she described to Forbes as "totally bizarre," her work has appeared in a wide range of publications including the New York Times, Harper's, Slate, Saveur, Salon and Gastronomica.

Bruce DeSilva

Bruce DeSilva Cliff Walk

Bruce DeSilva has published a second highly regarded crime thriller, Cliff Walk, following his first best-seller, Rogue Island. A native of Rhode Island who began his career at the Providence Journal, DeSilva will discuss his transition from New England journalist to a successful fiction writer. The book's description is:

Prostitution has been legal in Rhode Island for more than a decade; Liam Mulligan, an old-school investigative reporter at dying Providence newspaper, suspects the governor has been taking payoffs to keep it that way. But this isn't the only story making headlines…a child's severed arm is discovered in a pile of garbage at a pig farm. Then the body of an internet pornographer is found sprawled on the rocks at the base of Newport's famous Cliff Walk.

At first, the killings seem random, but as Mulligan keeps digging into the state's thriving sex business, strange connections emerge. Promised free sex with hookers if he minds his own business—and a beating if he doesn't—Mulligan enlists Thanks-Dad, the newspaper publisher's son, and Attila the Nun, the state's colorful Attorney General, in his quest for the truth. What Mulligan learns will lead him to question his beliefs about sexual morality, shake his tenuous religious faith, and leave him wondering who his real friends are.

A Washington Post reviewer wrote in May:

Cliff Walk actually betters Rogue Island. The latter dealt with arson in a run-down Providence neighborhood as well as the fading days of the Dispatch. (DeSilva's 40-year career as a journalist included a stint as an investigative reporter for the Providence Journal.) Rendered with pitch-perfect repartee and a keen sense of newsroom politics and personalities, the often-
hilarious scenes at the paper sometimes upstaged the central action.

 

 

Other Recent Guests

Jonathan Kay

 

NeJonathan Kay wspaperman Jonathan Kay discussed April 12 his new book, Among the Truthers: A Journey Through America's Growing Conspiracist Underground. Its promo says: "Throughout most of our nation's history, the United States has been bound together by a shared worldview. But the 9/11 terrorist attacks opened a rift in the collective national psyche: Increasingly, Americans are abandoning reality and retreating to Internet-based fantasy worlds conjured into existence out of our own fears and prejudices."

He and his book reject the 9/11 Truth movement, which he calls "merely one segment of a vast conspiracist subculture that includes many other groups."

Kay is a managing editor, columnist and blogger at Canada's National Post newspaper. His freelance articles have appeared in such publications as The New Yorker, The New York Times, Harper's, Commentary magazine, Salon, Reader's Digest and Newsweek. He is a visiting fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies in Washington, D.C. His first book, The Volunteer, co-authored with Michael Ross, became a top-ten bestseller in 2007.

 

Brett Tollman

 

Utah attorney Brett Tolman, active in the petitions on behalf of Iowa businessman Shalom Rubashkin, described his reasons April 5. Tolman brings expert experience as former legal counsel to the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee and as U.S. attorney for Utah, nominated in 2006 by President Bush. He is a widely published author currently co-chairing his firm's white-collar crime practice at his Salt Lake City-based firm, Ray Quinney & Nebeker P.C. Here are excerpts from a letter that he co-signed with six former U.S. attorneys general, three from each major party, along with other senior former officials of the Justice Department:

[T]he prosecution of Mr. Rubashkin has been characterized by an unusual level of aggressiveness, if not overzealousness....Now having been convicted of various bank fraud-related offenses, and despite a jury determination that Mr. Rubashkin did not commit the offenses for personal gain and did not personally profit from his conduct, and despite his extraordinary family circumstances (10 children, including a severely autistic 16-year-old son) and exceptional history of charity and good works, the government is seeking a sentence of life imprisonment -- the functional equivalent of the sentences meted out to the likes of Bernard Madoff, 9/11 terrorists, mafia kingpins and similarly culpable defendants.

 

William Eyre

William Eyre, Ph.D., is the author of The Real ID Act, a first-of-its-kind book describing government surveillance in the United States. Speaking on April 5, Eyre warns that federal laws and procedures announced as anti-terrorism measures have far-reaching, sinister implications for ordinary citizens and for the nation's democratic process. He says:

"Thousands of pages of statutes and arcane regulations relate to citizens' privacy. Their overwhelming volume and complexity prevent most of us--including legislators who vote on it and press who report on it--from ever having read or understood but a small portion of it. Very few persons have attained the complex, multi-disciplinary educational and experiential background requisite for adequately comprehending this abstruse subject. Oftentimes, the average citizen does not even recognize something as being a surveillance tool or its presence eludes his or her attention."

Eyre is an expert on global information security, surveillance and privacy. He was the first interdisciplinary doctoral graduate in Information Security from Purdue University's Center for Education and Research in Information Assurance and Security (CERIAS). CERIAS is the first and most respected of its kind in the world. Dr. Eyre's studies encompassed international terrorism, cryptography, biometrics, cybersecurity, and computer forensics. Click here for book details.

 

Henry Scott

Henry Scott Cover

Also on April 5, Henry Scott discussed his new novel London Comfort: An American Idol's Dangerous Real World Adventure. The thinly disguised fiction portrays celebutante London Comfort, a seemingly brainless Hollywood celebrity who finds herself in the truly brainless world of Washington when a judge sentences her to community service as a White House tour guide. The country is being led by a moronic President, John Edsel, who welcomes the visiting leader of the nation of Georgia at a formal ceremony but confuses the visitor's country with the state of Georgia. Comfort finds that her old coke-filled nights with Hollywood party boys are tame compared to what she finds in the White House -- a world just as exploitive but vastly more dangerous. Appalled, she enlists her black female security guard and an earnest young Secret Service agent to topple the President.

Scott says, "The book is about the intersection of sex and politics, which, in the Western world, had seemed a uniquely American obsession until Silvio Berlusconi came along. And even then, it's interesting that his sexual misadventures were the least of Berlusconi's problems. Publicity about all of them might well have forced the resignation of a U.S. President. The book also is, in part, a look at Americans' fascination with celebrity to the exclusion of competence. As it turns out, there was more to London Comfort than her fans first imagined. An interesting question is why do we always want to elect inexperienced celebrities (Barack Obama would fit in that camp) instead of sober and experienced public officials? We've fallen for the "outside the Beltway" argument, which makes sense to some degree, but not totally. I'd rather see Americans focus on reforming Washington so there's less influence-peddling and corruption in DC and so that we can comfortably re-elect competent and experienced politicians."

The author is a former journalist at newspapers in North Carolina (the Raleigh Times and Charlotte Observer) and Connecticut (the Hartford Courant) and has worked as a business executive at the New York Times (Vice President, New Media/New Products), Out Publishing (President) and Metro New York (Publisher). His Shocking True Story: The Rise and Fall of Confidential, 'America's Scandalous Scandal Magazine', was published by Pantheon in 2009. Two novels are being published by the Pine Forest Press. For details, visit Amazon.com.

 

This Year -- Now on Archive!

Dan Christiansen

 

Dan Christensen, editor and founder of the Broward Bulldog, will speak March 29 about his latest findings on the 9/11 disaster. He has co-authored with author Anthony Summers this month hard-hitting columns co-published by MSNBC and the Bulldog. They were: Classified documents contradict FBI on post-9/11 probe of Saudis, ex-senator says. It quoted former Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Bob Graham (D-Florida), co-chair of the joint congressional investigation of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, as saying the FBI did not inform his panel or a separate investigation co-chaired by Keane, about suspicious contacts between Saudi citizens living in Florida and some of the 9/11 hijackers. Other Christiansen-Summers work included: Saudi who left Fla. before 9/11 considered bin Laden a 'hero,' informant told FBI in '04. Another published by the Bulldog was by Summers colleague Robbyn Swan: New questions about FBI probe of Saudis' post-9/11 exodus.

Christensen is one of South Florida's most experienced reporters. He founded the not-for-profit Broward Bulldog in 2009. As an investigative reporter for the Miami Herald in 2006, Christensen reported how state judges and clerks had hidden hundreds of often newsworthy civil and criminal court cases from public view. Those stories also established that prosecutors and judges in Miami had falsified the public docket to protect informants. The stories led directly to unanimous Florida Supreme Court opinions in 2007 and 2010 that banned those practices. Christensen reported similar stories in 2003-2004 for the Miami Daily Business Review about excessive secrecy in the federal courts in which judges suppressed all information about newsworthy terror and drug cases. The executive director of the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press later called Christensen "the nation's leading journalist on an issue of tremendous First Amendment importance: the increasing trend toward secrecy in our nation's courts." His stories in 2005 about the private business dealings of the Broward County Sheriff sparked a federal corruption investigation that landed Ken Jenne in prison in 2007.

In 2000-2001, Christensen's reporting on a deadly gun-planting conspiracy and cover-up by Miami police officers led to more than a dozen federal indictments. Convictions and reform followed, including the establishment of a long-sought Miami civilian police review panel. Christensen earned undergraduate and graduate degrees in political science and urban studies at the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla.

Peter Schiff

 

Financier, author and recent GOP U.S. Senate candidate Peter Schiff March 15 described his economic and political views, including remarks at an Economic Summit March 14 organized by The Atlantic in Washington, DC. "We need to spend a lot less on education," said Schiff, CEO and chief global strategist for Euro Pacific Capital. Reductions should include what he called "worthless liberal arts degrees." Schiff is a regular on cable financial shows and predicted much of the housing and related financial collapse of 2008. Videos and news articles about the conference are available also on the Atlantic website and through such other news organizations as C-SPAN. Its Summit Examines Ways to "Fix" U.S Economy was one of 12 segments it produced and that are available for free viewing here. Schiff, a radio host for the 10 a.m. to noon Peter Schiff Show, is the author of five books published by John Wiley & Sons. Crash Proof 2.0: How to Profit From the Coming Economic Collapse was published in February 2007 and appeared on both the New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestseller lists.

 

Doug Waller New Photo

 

Douglas Waller, author of Wild Bill Donovan, returned to the show March 8 to discuss the CIA's 65th anniversary this year and the changes since Donovan created its precedessor organization. President Roosevelt made Donovan the nation's top spy in World War II. Waller describes Donovan as "a mythic figure whose legacy is still intensely debated." Donovan directed the Office of Strategic Services (the country's first national intelligence agency and predecessor of today's CIA. Just published in paperback, the book Wild Bill Donovan describes how he introduced the nation to the dark arts of covert warfare on a scale it had never seen before.

Separating fact from fiction, Waller investigates the successes and the occasional spectacular failures of Donovan's intelligence career. Waller is a veteran magazine correspondent, author and lecturer. His five previous books on the military and foreign policy include the best-sellers, The Commandos and Big Red, and the critically acclaimed biography of General Billy Mitchell, A Question of Loyalty. Details.

 

Lori Andrews

Lori Andrews Cover

Author Lori Andrews discusses on March 3 her latest book, I know Who You Are and I Saw What You Did: Social Networks and the Death of Privacy. In January 2008, the ABA Journal listed her as a "Newsmaker of the Year," describing her as "a lawyer with a literary bent who has the scientific chops to rival any CSI investigator." She is an internationally recognized expert on emerging technologies. She has created a Social Network Constitution. On March 23, 2012, she and Professor Richard Warner will host a free conference in Chicago on Internet Privacy, Data Aggregation, and Social Networks. Her path-breaking litigation about technologies caused the National Law Journal to list her as one of the "100 Most Influential Lawyers in America." In 2002, she won the National Health Law Teachers Award. In 2005, she was made an Honorary Fellow of the American College of Legal Medicine for her "distinguished achievement in the field of legal medicine."

Professor Andrews is a distinguished professor of law at IIT Chicago-Kent; director of IIT's Institute for Science, Law and Technology; and an associate vice president of IIT. She has been a visiting professor at Case Western Reserve University School of Law and at the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University. She received her B.A. summa cum laude from Yale College and her J.D. from Yale Law School.Andrews is the author of 10 non-fiction books, including Genetics: Ethics, Law and Policy, Future Perfect: Confronting Decisions About Genetics and The Clone Age: Adventures in the New World of Reproductive Technology. She is the author of more than 150 articles on health care policy, biotechnology, genetics and reproductive technologies. She is also the author of three mysteries involving a fictional geneticist. Research on her latest novel took her from the White House to an institute for tropical biology in the jungles of Vietnam. She uses her fiction to address the social issues she covers in her legal work and teaching.

 

Harold Evans

 

Sir Harold Evans, guest on Feb. 23, authored My Paper Chase: True Stories of Vanished Times, a follow-up to an earlier memoir. "A jaw-dropping social history," commented critic Andrew Marr. "The best education possible in what true journalism's all about." Evans was the editor of the Sunday Times and the Times (and earlier of the Northern Echo and assistant editor of thHarold Evanse Manchester Evening News). A graduate of Durham University, he has written a number of best-selling histories. He followed the late Alistair Cooke in commentaries on America for the BBC. He holds the British Press Awards' Gold Award for Lifetime Achievement of Journalists. In 2001, British journalists voted him the all-time greatest British newspaper editor. He was knighted in 2004.

His memoir, now in paperback, is described by the publisher as follows: Evans recounts the wild and wonderful tale of his newspapering and publishing odyssey, which took him from Manchester to London and finally to America. In England, he would become the editor of two of the most famous newspapers in the world, the Sunday Times and The Times of London; crack England's biggest spy scandal; expose the cause of the world's worst air crash of its time, involving the DC-10; and uncover one of the greatest health scandals of the century. Then it would be on to New York, where he would begin all over again as a book publisher, acquiring the memoirs of Colin Powell, Marlon Brando, Henry Kissinger, Richard Nixon – and the unknown Barack Obama. Click for details.

Bev Harris

Bev Harris Black Box Voting Cover

Bev Harris, author of Black Box Voting: Ballot-Tampering in the 21st Century, is scheduled for Feb. 23 to discuss recent revelations of irregularities in the GOP Maine Presidential caucus -- and the secret problem of voting machine fraud. She began writing on the subject of electronic voting machines in October 2002. Her investigative journalism has since been cited in The New York Times (three times), and on CBS, Fox News, and CNN.

In writing Black Box Voting, Harris spent over two thousand hours researching voting machines, and interviewed hundreds of witnesses including many election officials and even voting machine programmers who work directly for the firms that build these machines. During the course of writing Black Box Voting, Harris discovered that one of the largest voting machine companies, Diebold Election Systems, had committed a massive security breach, leaving thousands of sensitive voting system program files on an unprotected Web site. These files have now triggered a national investigation and activism movement to restore clean, trustworthy voting systems. Details: BlackBoxVoting.org.

Erin Siegel

 

Investigative journalist Erin Siegal appears Feb. 16 on Washington Update radio as she calls for reform of pervasive corruption in international adoption based on her research for her new book, Finding Fernanda. Siegal describes how adoption offers hope to millions but is complicated by pervasive corruption that the average American has few effective ways to thwart. Siegal, a fellow at the Schuster Institute for Investigative Journalism at Brandeis University tracked how a Tennessee family's attempt to adopt through a Guatemalan agency led to heart-rending allegations of child kidnapping and a massive scandal. Siegal provides the story through both its powerful human dimensions in a case study and in its wider implications: From 2003-2008, 20 percent of the 100,000 children adopted by United States families came from Guatemala—widely considered to have had the worst international adoption improprieties over the longest period of time. More than one source has referred to the business of adoption between Guatemala and the United States as "the perfect crime." Until now, no one has provided a full picture of how it takes place. The Miami Herald raved: "Heavy-duty investigative reporting and compelling personal testimony,"and the book has been named 2012 winner of the James Madison Freedom Award. Siegal's writing and photography have been published in such publications as the New York Times, Time magazine, Newsweek, Mother Jones, Rolling Stone, and more. She has collaborated on projects with NGOs, such as the Urban Justice Center, Human Rights Watch, and the United Nations. Finding Fernanda is Siegal's first book, with details at Amazon.com and www.erinsiegal.com.

Greg Palast

 

Greg Palast Feb. 9 discussed his new book, Vultures Picnic: In Pursuit of Petroleum Pigs, Power Pirates, and High-Finance Carnivores. The New York Times-bestselling author of Armed Madhouse offers a globetrotting, Sam Spade-style investigation that blows the lid off the oil industry, the banking industry, and the governmental agencies that aren't regulating either. This is the story of the corporate vultures that feed on the weak and ruin our planet in the process -- a story that spans the globe and decades. For Vultures' Picnic, investigative journalist Greg Palast has spent his career uncovering the connection between the world of energy (read: oil) and finance. Palast shows how the International Monetary Fund, World Bank, World Trade Organization, and Central Banks act as puppets for Big Oil. With Palast at the center of an investigation that takes us from the Arctic to Africa to the Amazon, Vultures' Picnic shows how the big powers in the money and oil game slip the bonds of regulation over and over again, and simply destroy the rules that they themselves can't write-and take advantage of nations and everyday people in the process. Author of the New York Times bestseller, The Best Democracy Money Can Buy, Palast is best known in his native USA as the journalist who, for the Observer (UK), broke the story of how Jeb Bush purged thousands of Black Florida citizens from voter rolls before the 2000 election, thereby handing the White House to his brother George. His reports on the theft of election 2004, the spike of the FBI investigations of the bin Ladens before September 11, the secret State Department documents planning the seizure of Iraq's oil fields have won him a record six 'Project Censored' for reporting the news American media doesn't want you to hear. 'The top investigative journalist in the United States is persona non grata in his own country's media.' [Asia Times.] He returned to America to report for Harper's Magazine. Details.

Peter Van Buren

Peter VanBuren

Author Peter Van Buren described on Feb. 2 his new book, We Meant Well, the day after his talk before the McClendon Group at the National Press Club in Washington, DC. As summarized in a recent column by the Project on Government Overshight (POGO), Interview: Foreign Service Officer Peter Van Buren on Reconstruction Failures in Iraq: The U.S. wasted billions upon billions of dollars in Iraq on poor contracting practices, but very few insiders are willing to talk about it. Foreign Service Officer Buren is an exception. He served with the Foreign Service for over two decades and worked as a Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT) leader in Iraq. In September 2011, he released a book about his experiences, titled: We Meant Well: How I Helped Lose the Hearts and Minds of the Iraqi People. After the book's publication, the State Department suspended Van Buren's security clearance indefinitely.

POGO interviewed Van Buren about the contracting waste he witnessed in Iraq, the mistakes the U.S. is still making in Afghanistan, and of course, whistleblower protections. POGO: "The Commission on Wartime Contracting found that the U.S. has wasted $31 billion to $60 billion in Iraq and Afghanistan on contracting. Do you think we've learned any lessons here?" Peter Van Buren: "The mistakes certainly aren't over—we continue to make the same ones in Afghanistan."

Amanda Smith

Cissy Patterson

The dramatic, history-making dynasty of the Patterson-Medill—McCormick family cames to life in the papers of a new biography by Amanda Smith, the featured guest Jan. 19. She authored Newspaper Titan: The Infomous lie and Monumental Times of Cissy Patterson, the acclaimed biography of the owner of the most important Washington, DC newspaper of her era. Also, she was the globetrotting sister and cousin of the press lords controlling the largest circulation papers in New York City and Chicago. Smith created what is aptly termed "the galvanizing story of Eleanor Medill (Cissy) Patterson, celebrated debutante and socialite, scion of the Chicago Tribune empire, and the twentieth century's first woman editor in chief and publisher of a major metropolitan daily newspaper, the Washington Times-Herald. The book is summarized this way: "She was called the most powerful woman in America, surpassing Eleanor Roosevelt, Bess Truman, Clare Boothe Luce, and Dorothy Schiff. Cissy Patterson was from old Republican stock. Her grandfather was Joseph Medill, firebrand abolitionist, mayor of Chicago, editor in chief and principal owner of the Chicago Tribune, and one of the founders of the Republican Party who delivered the crucial Ohio delegation to Abraham Lincoln at the convention of 1860."

"Here is her twentieth-century Washington: its politics and society, scandals and feuds, and at the center -- the fierce newspaper wars that consumed and drove the country's press titans," the book summary states. Patterson took the Washington Times-Herald from a chronic tail-ender in circulation and advertising, ranked fifth in the town, and made it into the most widely read round-the-clock daily in the national's capital, deemed by many to be "the damndest newspaper to ever hit the streets." Amanda Smith was born and raised in New York City. She graduated magna cum laude from Harvard College. She is the editor of Hostage to Fortune: The Letters of Joseph P. Kennedy. Smith lives in Washington, D.C., with her husband and two children. Click here for readers reviews and sales details at Amanda Smith Books and Amazon.com.

John J. Donohue

 

Stanford Law School Professor John J. Donohue III Jan. 12 describes his important new study charting the fairness of the death penalty. He analyzed 205 murders in Connecticut from 1973 to 2007 eligible for the death penalty out of a total of some 4,686 murders overall. Donohue, at left, found that nine death sentences resulted, with just one actual execution. He concluded that the process "raises a serious question as to whether the state's death penalty regime is serving any legitimate social purpose." His "Capital Punishment in Connecticut, 1973 to 2007." Overall, the state's record of handling death-eligible cases represents a chaotic and unsound criminal justice policy that serves neither deterrence nor retribution. New York Times columnist Lincoln Caplan extolled the study last weekend in The Random Horror of the Death Penalty.

He has been one of the leading empirical researchers in the legal academy over the past 25 years. He is an economist as well as a lawyer and is well known for using empirical analysis to determine the impact of law and public policy in a wide range of areas, including civil rights and antidiscrimination law, employment discrimination, crime and criminal justice, and school funding. He is the C. Wendell and Edith M. Carlsmith Professor of Law at Stanford, and previously was a member of the law school faculty from 1995–2004. Before rejoining the Stanford Law School faculty in 2010, he was the Leighton Homer Surbeck Professor of Law at Yale Law School. He recently co-authored Employment Discrimination: Law and Theory with George Rutherglen. Earlier in his career, he was a law professor at Northwestern University as well as a research fellow with the American Bar Association. Additionally, he clerked with Chief Justice T. Emmet Clarie, of the U.S. District Court of Hartford, Connecticut. He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, editor of the American Law and Economics Review, and the current president of the American Law and Economics Association. Full biography here.

Bob Graham

Bob Graham

Retired Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Bob Graham, our guest Dec. 22, the author of Keys to the Kingdom, a highly praised spy thriller that he wrote in part to raise concerns about national security dangers for the country that he was foreclosed from describing except in a format he's described as 40 percent fiction, 40 percent fact and the rest a mixture. Graham is the former two-term Governor of Florida and he served eighteen years in the United States Senate. He was recently appointed by President Obama to co-chair the Bipartisan National Commission on the BP oil spill, and was also appointed by President Obama to Chair the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission. Bob Graham has also been a regular contributor to National Public Radio's Morning Edition, a frequent guest on CNN, Fox, and MSNBC News, and has written opinion editorials for the New York Times, Washington Post Financial Times, Chicago Tribune, Boston Globe, Miami Herald, and many other newspapers and magazines. Bob and his wife Adele reside in Miami Lakes, Florida.

An overview of his book is as follows: Shortly after an explosive op-ed piece about the 9/11 investigation appears in the New York Times, its author, former Senator and Co-chair of the 9/11 Congressional Inquiry Commission John Billington, is murdered near his Florida home. Bob Graham is the former two-term Governor of Florida and he served eighteen years in the United States Senate. He was recently appointed by President Obama to co-chair the Bipartisan National Commission on the BP oil spill, and was also appointed by President Obama to Chair the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission. Bob Graham has also been a regular contributor to National Public Radio's Morning Edition, a frequent guest on CNN, Fox, and MSNBC News, and has written opinion editorials for the New York Times, Washington Post Financial Times, Chicago Tribune, Boston Globe, Miami Herald, and many other newspapers and magazines. Bob and his wife Adele reside in Miami Lakes, Florida. Details.

Jonathan Miller

 

Jonathan Miller, featured guest Dec. 15 and on Sept. 1, is a former two-term elected treasurer of Kentucky and a co-founder of "No Labels," a new national civic group that unveiled Dec. 13 a plan for major changes in Congress, such as a plan to require the president to answer questions on a monthly basis on the floor of the Senate and House. Founded last fall, No Labels seeks to create better government by reducing political partisanship, primarily at the House and Senate.The group convened with 1,000 founders in New York City last December, and has since made news by announcing thCompassionate Community Coverat 60 percent of House members, more Democrats than Republicans, failed to schedule town hall meetings during the August recess.

Miller, a Democrat and attorney, retired in March as Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear's Cabinet Secretary of Finance and Administration. He created a personal website called "The Recovering Politician." Miller is the author of the critically-acclaimed The Compassionate Community: Ten Values to Unite America. In his nearly two decades of public service, his other senior positions in state and federal government include work as deputy chief of staff of the U.S. Department of Energy, and legislative director for Congressman Jim Cooper (D-TN). He founded Students for Al Gore for President in 1988, revived College Democrats of America in 1989, served as a Deputy Political Director for the Clinton/Gore 1992 presidential campaign, and chaired the Kentucky Democratic Party in 2007. He practices law in Lexington, KY, and blogs for the Huffington Post and his own Recovering Politican site.

 

On Deck

Ron Suskind

 

Ron Suskind authored Confidence Men: Wall Street, Washington, and the Education of a President, a well-regarded new book exploring the hidden history of Wall Street and the White House. He describes it as follows: Success comes down to a single, powerful, quintessentially American concept: confidence. Both centers of power, tapping brazen innovations over the past three decades, learned how to manufacture it. Until August 2007, when that confidence finally began to crumble. In this gripping and brilliantly reported book, Ron Suskind tells the story of what happened next, as Wall Street struggled to save itself while a man with little experience and soaring rhetoric emerged from obscurity to usher in "a new era of responsibility." It is a story that follows the journey of Barack Obama, who rose as the country fell, and offers the first full portrait of his tumultuous presidency. Wall Street found that straying from long-standing principles of transparency, accountability, and fair dealing opened a path to stunning profits. Obama's determination to reverse that trend was essential to his ascendance, especially when Wall Street collapsed during the fall of an election year and the two candidates could audition for the presidency by responding to a national crisis. But as he stood on the stage in Grant Park, a shudder went through Barack Obama. He would now have to command Washington, tame New York, and rescue the economy in the first real management job of his life.
Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist Ron Suskind introduces readers to an ensemble cast, from the titans of high finance to a new generation of reformers, from petulant congressmen and acerbic lobbyists to a tight circle of White House advisers—and, ultimately, to the president himself, as you've never before seen him. Based on hundreds of interviews and filled with piercing insights and startling disclosures, Confidence Men brings into focus the collusion and conflict between the nation's two capitals—New York and Washington, one of private gain, the other of public. Details.

Jerome Corsi

 

Dr. Jerome R. Corsi will discuss his controversial best-seller, Where's the Birth Certificate? The Case that Barack Obama is Not Eligible to be President. The two-time No. 1 New York Times bestselling author Corsi argues that no legal authority has ever verified Obama's legal eligibility to be president, that glaring inconsistencies, blackouts, and outright fabrications in his life narrative have generated widespread doubts, and that, in fact, a compelling body of evidence says Obama is not a natural-born citizen as is required of all presidents by Article 2, Section 1, of the Constitution. Details.

Dr. Jerome CorsiCorsi is senior staff reporter for World Net Daily, where he works as an investigative reporter. In 2004, Corsi co-authored the #1 New York Times bestseller, Unfit for Command: Swift Boat Veterans Speak Out Against John Kerry. The success of Unfit for Command permitted Dr. Corsi to devote full time to writing. In the past five years, he has published five New York Times bestselling non-fiction books. In August 2008, he published The Obama Nation: Leftist Politics and the Cult of Personality, which was a #1 New York Times bestseller for a month and remained on the NYT bestseller list for 10 weeks. His most recent non-fiction book, America for Sale: Fighting the New World Order, Surviving a Global Depression, and Preserving USA Sovereignty debuted on the New York Times bestseller list on Nov. 1, 2009. For nearly 25 years, beginning in 1981, Corsi worked with banks throughout the United States and around the world to develop financial services marketing companies to assist banks in establishing broker/dealers and insurance subsidiaries to provide financial planning products and services to their retail customers. He is a frequent guest on talk radio shows nationally and has made repeated television appearances on Fox News, MSNBC, CNN News and Fox Business News.

 

Fall Guests

 

Stuart Weisberg

Stuart Weisberg discussed on Dec. 15 Barney Frank's announcement to retire from Congress at the expiration of his term. Weisberg authored the first biography of the Massachusetts Democrat, the 2009 book, Barney Frank: The Story of America's Only Left-Handed, Gay, Jewish Congressman. "Not many Congressmen are worthy of a book, but Stuart Weisberg s carefully researched and authoritative account proves that Barney s life and career are indeed the stuff of fine biography," according to a book blurb by longtime Washington pundits Cokie and Steven Roberts. Weisberg is an attorney who spent ten years as staff director and chief counsel for the House Government Operations Subcommittee on Employment and Housing. He directed the subcommittee s lengthy investigation in 1989 of what came to known as the HUD scandal. During the Clinton administration, he served as chair of the Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission, an independent federal adjudicative agency. He lives in Bethesda, Maryland.Details.

James Case

 

James Case called on Dec. 8 for much-increased U.S. tariffs as the best answer for the questions posed by his new book, Why Can't Obama Fix the Economy? "The Earth's resources are rapidly being exhausted," Case argued. "The preJames Case Coversent century will witness lasting shortages of food, water, jobs, energy, and more. Economists have no clue how to deal with any of the above, beginning with the current job shortage."

He drew on his experience to argue that the most influential economics are relying on outmoded Keynesian or free-market theories. Case has a varied career in business and government. He has worked in government, agriculture and higher education, as well as the oil, aircraft and beverage industries. In each, he says he has seen the so-called 'laws of economics' violated with impunity. Among his posts, he was an engineer at McDonnell Aircraft, a mathematician at the Federal Trade Commission, an economist at the American Petroleum Institute and a professor of mathematics at several universities.

John M. Perkis

John Perkins Hoodwinked Cover

Best-selling author John Perkins described on Dec. 1 his latest book, Hoodwinked: An Economic Hit Man Reveals Why the World Financial Markets Imploded--and What We Need to Do to Remake Them, which was released in paperback in November. Its overview focuses on how Perkins has seen the signs of today's economic meltdown before: The subprime mortgage fiascos, the banking industry collapse, the rising tide of unemployment, the shuttering of small businesses across the landscape are all too familiar symptoms of a far greater disease. In his former life as an economic hit man, he was on the front lines both as an observer and a perpetrator of events, once confined only to the third world, that have now sent the United States—and in fact the entire planet—spiraling toward disaster. Here, Perkins pulls back the curtain on the real cause of the current global financial meltdown. He shows how we've been hoodwinked by the CEOs who run the corporatocracy—those few corporations that control the vast amounts of capital, land, and resources around the globe—and the politicians they manipulate. These corporate fat cats, Perkins explains, have sold us all on what he calls predatory capitalism, a misguided form of geopolitics and capitalism that encourages a widespread exploitation of the many to benefit a small number of the already very wealthy. Their arrogance, gluttony, and mismanagement have brought us to this perilous edge. The solution is not a "return to normal."

But there is a way out. As Perkins makes clear, we can create a healthy economy that will encourage businesses to act responsibly, not only in the interests of their shareholders and corporate partners (and the lobbyists they have in their pockets), but in the interests of their employees, their customers, the environment, and society at large. As chief economist at a major international consulting firm, John Perkins advised the World Bank, United Nations, IMF, U.S. Treasury Department, Fortune 500 corporations, and countries in Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the Middle East. He worked directly with heads of state and CEOs of major companies. His books on economics and geo-politics have sold more than 1 million copies, spent many months on the New York Times and other bestseller lists, and are published in over 30 languages. His Confessions of an Economic Hit Man (70 weeks on the New York Times bestseller list) is a startling exposé of international corruption. His The Secret History of the American Empire, also a New York Times bestseller, details the clandestine operations that created the world's first truly global empire. John is a founder and board member of Dream Change and The Pachamama Alliance, nonprofit organizations devoted to establishing a world our children will want to inherit, has lectured at more than 50 universities around the world, and is the author of books on indigenous cultures and transformation, including Shapeshifting, The World Is As You Dream It, Psychonavigation, Spirit of the Shuar, and The Stress-Free Habit. Details

James Otto

 

James Otto Dec. 8 described his cutting-edge lawsuit alleging that two health care companies are exploiting gaps in U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) enforcement to illegally hire more than 200 job-seekers under the HB-1 visa program. The suit Beasley v. Molina Healthcare, Inc. filed in April claims the companies illegally fired 225 highly trained American workers replaced by foreign workers, thus violating civil rights law forbidding job decisions on the basis of national origin. Otto is developing new legal theories to protect American workers and green card-holders from national origin discrimination. In addition to the suit, he notes a pattern whereby Obama administration leaders curry favor with foreigners and U.S. businesses to undermine U.S. workers. Otto, a former Marine Corps officer in the 1970s, is an attorney based in Northridge, CA, is developing new legal theories to protect American workers and green card holders from national origin discrimination. "On December 7, 2011," Otto says, "Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, through the U.S. Embassy in India, announced that the State Department has authorized the U.S embassy to allow the admission of a limitless number of foreign workers into the U.S. to take jobs that millions of unemployed Americans could and would do. He says such problems are bipartisan, as illustrated in Dec. 7 testimony here in testimony before the Senate Committee on Finance by Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner in favor of expanding the H-1B visa program, offered to highly skilled professionals and students to live and work in the United States and by comments by Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) also endorsing expansion. Details.

Charles J. Shields

 

Charles J. Shields discussed on Nov. 17 And So It Goes, the first biography of the visionaryKurt Vonnegut, best-selling novelist Kurt Vonnegut. Shields described why "Vonnegut resonates with readers of all generations from the baby boomers who grew up with him to high-school and college students who are discovering his work for the first time." A Huffington Post review said: "This book fills a much-needed gap, since very little seems to be known about the late Kurt Vonnegut, despite his immense popularity over almost five decades."

Shields also wrote, Mockingbird: A Portrait of Harper Lee, the bestselling biography of Harper Lee, and I Am Scout: The Biography of Harper Lee. He grew up in the Midwest and taught in a rural school in central Illinois for several years. He has been a reporter for public radio, a journalist, and the author of nonfiction books for young people. He and his wife live near Charlottesville, Virginia. Click here for Amazon.com book details.

Guido George Lombardi

 

Guido George Lombardi Nov. 10 analyzed Italy's debt crisis and its impact on Europe and the United States. Also, he will describe the importance of a major snafu involving leaders of France and Israel, as well as the recent trip to the United States by French presidential candidate Marine Le Pen that he helped organize. The leader of the National Front Party is shown with him below at her Nov. 2 speech at the National Press Club, part of her successful multi-state tour. Lombardi is Executive Director of the North Atlantic League, which promotes Marine Le Pen and guido Lombardipositive foreign relations between Italy, Israel, and the United States. In addition, he has become one of the leaders of Tea Party Italy, which has brought the values of small government and more personal freedom to Italy.

Lombardi is a former executive director of the International Council for Economic Development. He has more 30 years of business, political, and academic experience. His first book, "Liberta' e Progresso Economico" (Freedom and Economic Progress) was critically acclaimed by Italian academics and political leaders, and was received by His Holiness Pope John Paul II. His follow up work "The Value Matrix," earned him high praise from American business leaders such as Donald Trump and Slimfast CEO Daniel Abraham. Lombardi has consulted for political parties in Italy for over 30 years including those in Italy's current ruling coalition. Lombardi For more information, click here for personal details and here for North Atlantic League information.

Marine Le Pen

 

Marine Le Pen spoke Nov. 2 at the National Press Club in an exclusive interview reprised on the show as part of her United States tour in November as she builds support for her 2012 race to become president of France. She called the euro "an idiotic currency" and said she would push for a return toMarine Le Pen the franc if elected next April. She said the world economic system "seems to me to be completely out of control." A member the European Parliament and the leader of the National Front Party in France, she said the euro "is producing poverty, unemployment, de-industrialization, an explosion of inequality and everywhere, despair." She called also for France to withdraw from Libya, and curtail immigration. Update co-host Andrew Kreig helped arranged the talk, and is shown at right shortly before her Press Club speech. Her U.S. senior strategic advisor, Guido Lombardi, is at left in the photo by his daughter, Lejia. Shortly afterward, the room filled with about 50 journalists, including a half dozen television crews. Le Pen's visit to Washington included visits with Congressmen Ron Paul (R-TX), a 2012 GOP presidential candidate, and Rep. Joe Walsh (R-IL). She was mobbed by the French press during her visit, as described here. An attorney, she is the youngest daughter of the French politician, Jean-Marie Le Pen, former president of the FN. Her aim is to expand the political influence of the FN and transform it into a "big popular party that addresses itself not only to the electorate on the right but to all the French people."

David Stewart Burr Cover

 

David O. StDavid Stewartewart, a noted historian and legal scholar, speaks Oct. 27 about his latest book, American Emperor: Aaron Burr's Challenge to Jefferson's America, which is released in paperback this week. After practicing law for more than 25 years, Stewart turned to writing history (though he still practices law). His first book, The Summer of 1787: The Men Who Invented the Constitution, was a Washington Post bestseller and won the Washington Writing Award as Best Book of 2007. Two years later, Impeached: The Trial of President Andrew Johnson and the Fight for Lincoln's Legacy, was a Davis-Kidd Bestseller and was called "by all means the best account of this troubled episode" by Professor David Donald of Harvard. David's latest work, American Emperor, exams Burr's remarkable Western expedition, an undertaking that shook the nation's foundations at a time when those foundations were none too solid.

David also is president of the Washington Independent Review of Books, an online book review. Click for details.

Garland Nixon Oct. 20 defended the economics of protecting low-wage employees in an era a deficit-reduction. Nixon is a Washington based political commentator. He is a regular on the Fox Business News Monday evening show, "Follow the Money." He is a longtime host on WPFW-FM and on Montgomery County's cable station, as well as a college journalism adjunct professor in communications. Earlier, he rose to the rank of major in Maryland's state public safety system.
Gov. Buddy Roemer

Republican businessman and 2012 GOP Presidentail candidate Buddy Roemer was featured guest Oct. 13. He served four terms in Congress from 1981-1988 and was Louisiana's Governor from 1988-1992. During his tenure, he enacted reforms that cut unemployment by approximately half, balanced the state budget every year, linked teachers' pay to performance, established education accountability standards, confronted unions, and signed campaign finance reform legislation.

Since leaving public office, Governor Roemer has served as CEO of Business First Bank, a business community bank that did not take bailout money from the federal government. He lives in Baton Rouge with his wife, Scarlett, and is the father of three children. He received his undergraduate degree from Harvard College and his MBA from Harvard Business School.

Bob Edgar

Common Cause President Bob Edgar Oct. 6 described new developments in his non-partisan watchdog group's revelation that Supreme Court Associate Justice Clarence Thomas did not comply with legal requirements to disclosure his wife's income. Between 2003 and 2007, Virginia Thomas, a longtime conservative activist, earned $686,589 from the Heritage Foundation. Beyond that, Common Cause seeks an investigation of both Thomas and fellow Justice Antonin Scalia for attending policy retreats.at what Common Cause describes as "secretive political strategy sessions sponsored by Koch Industries, a multi-billion dollar conglomerate that has invested millions of dollars in political campaigns and causes." Details.

Lillian McEwen

Lillian McEwen, our guest on Sept. 22, is an author and retired federal judge whose powerful memoir describes in DC Unmasked & Undressed how she overcame an abusive childhood in the nation's capital to find happiness, including a tempestuous three year romance in the mid-1980s with future Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas. McEwen was born, raised and educated in Washington, D.C. Her stellar legal career spans decades in the city as a prosecutor, counsel on Capitol Hill, a criminal defense attorney, a law professor, and finally as a United States federal administrative law judge. She retired from her judgeship in 2007 and still lives in D.C. She has one adult daughter.

The publisher's synopsis: In a riveting, brutal, raw, sexually-driven memoir, retired Washington D.C. Federal Judge Lillian McEwen reveals the obsessions and vulnerabilities that drive us all. She disrobes Washington D.C. establishment and puts readers in bed with the men and women who make policy for the Unites States of America. With breathless courage, McEwen draws readers through a punishing childhood and through intoxicating layers of survival and a life lived. With grace and honesty, she reminds us all of the human condition and the reality that we cannot move through this world without being survivors of something. Book details.

Jan Goodwin

 

Jan Goodwin, guest on Sept. 15, in August won first-place among 400 entries in the annual Clarion competition for national magazine articles. She won for "Broken Promises," a riveting Ladies Home Journal article about seekers of U.S. political asylum. In a rare accomplishment in the magazine world, Goodwin won a second Clarion this year, for a separate article about substandard VA care for female veterans, published by Good Housekeeping.

Jan Goodwin in AfghanistanThe path-breaking foreign correspondent and Mideast cultural expert has authored two books: Price of Honor: Muslim Women Lift the Veil of Silence on the Islamic World (2003); and Caught in the Crossfire (1987). The former examines how Islamic extremism affects the lives of Muslim women. For research, she travelled to 10 countries. For Caught in the Crossfire, an account of war-torn Afghanistan, the former executive editor of the Ladies Home Journal travelled for three months in 1985 with the Afghan Resistance behind enemy lines during the Soviet-Afghan war. A scene is portrayed below left as she worked in disguise because of a death threat by Soviets against foreign reporters. On return, she testified before Congress on Soviet carnage and human rights violations. She has published in many major magazines, and is a contributing editor at several. Also, she is a Senior Fellow at the Schuster Institute for Investigative Journalism at Brandeis University, and reported on "Defending Our Daughters," an award-winning Lifetime documentary. Details.

James Hirsen

 

James Hirsen described Sept. 15 how Libyan dictator Moammar Kadafi third son, Saadi, was a financier of a Hollywood production company that announced $100 million in 2009 to use for new film projects. Hirsen, an author, law professor and Newsmax Hollywood correspondent, published a column reporting: "In addition to funding from Saadi, Natural Selection was backed by various private equity groups both domestically and internationally." Hirsen today will draw on the larger lessons: "As is fairly typical with regard to Hollywood funding," he wrote, "there weren't a whole lot of people who seemed to care whether or not the source of the seed money might be coming from a notorious Middle East regime." For details, tune in to today's show and visit his site. Hirsen, J.D., M.A. in Media Psychology, is a New York Times best-selling author, commentator, media analyst and law professor. Hirsen is a pundit for NewsMax.com and author of the weekly column, "The Left Coast Report," where he takes a humorous poke at the politics of Hollywood. In his New York Times best-selling book, Tales from the Left Coast, Hirsen demonstrates just how huge the political gap between Hollywood and the public really is. In his most recent book, Hollywood Nation, Hirsen shows how Hollywood elites have been blurring the lines between news and entertainment, and he reveals how the New Media are leading a counterattack against the liberal assault that is coming from East Coast newsrooms and Left Coast studios.

Jonathan Miller

 

Jonathan Miller, the featured guest on Sept. 1, is a former two-term elected treasurer of Kentucky and a co-founder of "No Labels," a new national civic group. Founded last fall, No Labels seeks to create better government by reducing political partisanship, primarily at the House and Senate.The group convened with 1,000 founders in New York City last December, and has since made news by announcing thCompassionate Community Coverat 60 percent of House members, more Democrats than Republicans, failed to schedule town hall meetings during the August recess.

Miller, a Democrat and attorney, retired in March as Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear's Cabinet Secretary of Finance and Administration. He created a personal website called "The Recovering Politician." Miller is the author of the critically-acclaimed The Compassionate Community: Ten Values to Unite America. In his nearly two decades of public service, his other senior positions in state and federal government include work as deputy chief of staff of the U.S. Department of Energy, and legislative director for Congressman Jim Cooper (D-TN). He founded Students for Al Gore for President in 1988, revived College Democrats of America in 1989, served as a Deputy Political Director for the Clinton/Gore 1992 presidential campaign, and chaired the Kentucky Democratic Party in 2007. He practices law in Lexington, KY, and blogs for the Huffington Post and his own Recovering Politican site.

 

Two-Edged Sword

Donald W. TuckerSecurity expert Donald W. Tucker July 14 described his autobiogaphy, The Two-Edged Sword. It is described as: "a grim, gutsy, raw in-your-face first-hand account of what it was like to be Black and work as an undercover agent for the Federal Bureau of Narcotics (now called the DEA), and United States Secret Service from 1961-1990—some of the toughest years in this country’s history of Civil Rights." Tucker was reared in a postage-stamp apartment that housed five children and four adults on Chicago's Southside. A football scholarship to the University of Iowa served as his ticket to a better life. In 1961 he received his B.A. in sociology and was immediately hired as an undercover agent for the Chicago Federal Bureau of Narcotics. His positions included U.S. Marshal for Arizona and as chief security office for the nation’s federal courts, supervising a $150 million annual budget. He also coordinated the investigation of the bombing of the Federal Courthouse in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Tucker returned to Arizona in March 1996, and in January 1997, he started Tucker Investigations and Protective Services. Click for details.

Michael J. Kerrigan

Michael J. Kerrigan July 7 discussed his book Politics With Principle: Ten Characters with Character whom he portrays as exemplifying virtue in public life. One of them is former Massachusetts State Senate President William Bulger, brother of accused Boston mob leader and murderer James “Whitey” Bulger. Kerrigan described his reasons, his other selections -- who include other nationally prominent civic leaders -- and his passion for chronicling what he regards as under-appreciated lessons he has learned in the nation’s capital. Kerrigan is an advocate, author and public speaker. He has over 33 years of Washington experience working closely with the government, political, corporate, and technology sectors. He is the founder and principal of Kerrigan & Associates, Inc., a Washington-based management consulting and advocacy firm focused on creating business opportunities in the private-public sector. Details.

W. Joseph Campbell

Dr. Joseph Campbell on "Getting it Wrong"

W. Joseph Campbell, Ph.D. June 30 discussed his book, Getting it Wrong: Ten of the Greatest Misreported Stories in American Journalism. His book brings to the surface some of the most important and misrepresented stories of the century reported in the news. Campbell’s book addresses and dismantles prominent media-driven myths. These are stories about or by the news media that are widely believed but which, on close examination, prove apocryphal. In a fascinating exploration, Campbell describes how myths like these feed stereotypes, deflect blame from policymakers, and overstate the power and influence of the news media. Among these “myths” is the supposedly outstanding coverage of New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina. Campbell is a tenured professor in the School of Communication at American University in Washington, D.C. Campbell entered journalism education after more than 20 years as a newspaper and wire service journalist, a career that took him across North America and to West Africa, Europe, and Asia. He joined the AU faculty in 1997 and has since written five books As a sample of reviews of his latest, Commentary magazine said: "It may be the best book about journalism in recent memory; it is certainly the most subversive." Details.

Jack Fuller

 

Jack Fuller, former Tribune Companies president, June 16 discussed lessons drawn from his four decades in journalism and recounted in his insightful book, What is Happening to News? In answering the question, the veteran newsman reaches deep into psychology and other social studies to suggest that news is changing because the audience is changing. Here is the context he provides: Across America, newspapers that have defined their cities for over a century are rapidly failing, their circulations plummeting even as opinion-soaked Web outlets like the Huffington Post thrive. Meanwhile, nightly news programs shock viewers with stories of horrific crime and celebrity scandal, while the smug sarcasm and shouting of pundits like Glenn Beck and Keith Olbermann dominate cable television. Is it any wonder that young people are turning away from the news entirely, trusting comedians like Jon Stewart as their primary source of information on current events? Click here for book details from the publisher or from Amazon.com. Fuller is a Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist who is the author of seven novels, as well as News Values: Ideas for an Information Age, also published by the University of Chicago Press.

 

Dr. John Mayo

 

Dr. John Mayo of Georgetown University on June 9 described the United States regulatory changes that were highlighted in a major annual conference the university launched June 6. Mayor, former dean of Georgetown’s McDonough School of Business, this week hosted its first conference on U.S. regulation, organized by the Center of Business and Public Policy that he leads in addition to his research and teaching work. White House regulatory “czar” Cass R. Sunstein keynoted the conference by providing highlights of the Obama administration’s agenda to eliminate needless business regulation that does not meet cost-benefit tests. Sunstein’s formal title is administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA), summarized the program in a recent column for the Wall Street Journal, “21st-Century Regulation." Professor Mayo has held a number of senior administrative positions at Georgetown including a term as the dean of the McDonough School of Business from 2002-2004. Additionally, he has been the chief Economist, U.S. Senate Small Business Committee (Democratic Staff) and has served as an advisor and consultant to both public and private agencies, including the U.S. Department of Justice, the Federal Trade Commission, the U.S. Department of Energy, AT&T, MCI, Sprint, Verizon, the Tennessee Valley Authority and Oak Ridge National Laboratory. Professor Mayo also serves as the Executive Director for the Center on Business and Public Policy, which he founded on in 2002.

A videotape of its conference, “The Evolution of Regulation: Lessons and Opportunities,” is on the website. The conference drew scholars from as far as the United Kingdom and California, and packed the lecture hall to capacity. Dr. Mayo's research interests lie in the areas of industrial organization, regulation and antitrust, and, more generally, the application of microeconomics to public policy. He is the author of numerous book chapters and monographs, and is the co-author of a comprehensive text, "Government and Business: The Economics of Antitrust and Regulation."

 

Margaret (Peggy) Sands Orchowski, Ph.D, discussed on June 2 her book Immigration and the American Dream: Battling the Political Hype and Hysteria. It explores vital, controversial and historical issues regarding immigration law that are rarely discussed openly within Washington’s establishment. A longtime journalist and research scholar, Dr. Orchowski traces the history of U.S. immigration laws since colonial days. It explains the perplexing paradox of global migration that makes immigration so emotional. She is the congressional correspondent for Hispanic Outlook on Higher Education, a national bi-monthly magazine.

Previously, she was bill analysis editor at Congressional Quarterly in Washington, DC and a reporter for the Associated Press in Peru. Other posts have included journalist assignments in Argentina, Switzerland and her hometown newspapers in Santa Barbara, CA. Peggy speaks four languages and lived and worked for 10 years abroad. Click for book details .

John Kelly

 

The distinguished former network newsman and CIA officer John Kelly May 26 analyzed Obama administration prosecutions of suspected leakers within national security agencies. The crackdown includes spy charges against former National Security Agency (NSA) analyst Thomas Drake. Drake faces trial June 13 on charges of spying, lying to agents and obstructing justice after leaking secrets about government waste. Kelly questions the public benefit of such all-out Justice Department prosecutions. He has decades of experience in such sensitive matters after working on cutting-edge stories as an NBC and CBS network news correspondent beginning in the 1960s, and then as a CIA officer during the Indochina war. Kelly stepped forward in the 1970s in on-the-record comments to syndicated columnist Jack Anderson decrying wasteful spending during the Vietnam War that hurt both taxpayers and military personnel. He later returned to journalism, including Watergate coverage that brought him into contact with such confidential sources as Martha Mitchell and such presidential defenders as Diane Sawyer, an aide at the Nixon House at that time. Kelly plans to discuss lessons from such controversies relevant to current prosecutions of leakers.

Kelly hopes also that insiders and the public alike replace the term “whistleblower” with a name that underscores that such actions are by “taxpayer friends” and “patriots.” Kelly directs John Kelly & Associates Public Relations, a strategic consultant for businesses and non-profits. Previous employers have included NBC News, CBS News, the State of New York and the CIA. With experience including cutting-edge stories on the 1960 Kennedy Presidential campaign, he has reported exclusives about Cuban militants planning Castro's overthrow, Soviet espionage, Mafia crime, the Viet Nam War, and Watergate. He volunteers for several cultural and other civic organizations. These groups include the Justice Integrity Project legal reform group. Click here for biographical details.

James Hirsen

Arnold Schwarzenegger

James Hirsen, the NewsMax Hollywood correspondent May 26 describes his recent column, “How Arnold as Able to Keep His Secret.” He exposes one of Hollywood’s best-kept secrets: How a child born outside the family was kept hidden from family, friends and the press for 10 years. Hirsen’s column explores how Schwarzenegger fended off the rumors and story of an illegitimate child that was first reported by the National Enquirer in 2001. Hirsen further explains the fading coverage of the scandal. He ascribes it to the financial implications that may involve Schwarzenegger and American Media Inc.

This is a twisted and true story of betrayal, mystery, and finally confession, Hirsen says. Hirsen, who holds both a J.D.and an M.A. in Media Psychology, is a New York Times best-selling author, commentator, media analyst and law professor. Sought-after for his expertise in the entertainment industry, media psychology, current events and cultural matters, Hirsen has appeared on the O’Reilly Factor, Fox & Friends, Your World with Neil Cavuto, the Glenn Beck Show, CNN’s People in the News, Hardball with Chris Matthews, CNN Headline News’ Showbiz Tonight, the BBC, and numerous other television programs. Details.

William Eyre

 

Security expert William Eyre, Ph.D. May 5 explainedThe Real ID Act, his first-of-its-kind book describing government surveillance in the United States enabled by post 9/11 laws. The book warns that anti-terrorism measures have far-reaching, sinister implications for ordinary citizens and for democracy. Eyre chronicles what he calls the government’s unconstitutional abridgement of individual rights in times of war and national emergency from 1798 to the present. He emphasizes the perpetual and Orwellian “Global War on Terror,” the war that will never end. He examines also construction of privacy as a right and what he calls the ultimate in rights destruction: TSA’s molestation and naked picture-taking of citizens.

Eyre is the first interdisciplinary Ph.D. graduate in Information Security from the CERIAS center at Purdue University. At Purdue, his studies included international terrorism, biometrics, cryptography and computer forensics. He currently works in information security in the intelligence community. His book was published in April by LFB Scholarly Publishing. For more details and to order the book, kindly click: Details.

Political media strategist, filmmaker, and author Jason Killian Meath on April 28 discussed his unique photo-essay book, Hollywood on the Potomac. Meath’s lifetime in filmmaking and politics results in a first-of-its-kind book documenting the intersection of political leaders and the world’s biggest celebrities. The book features over 200 photographs, some never before published, drawn from the nation’s archives. Meath was director of marketing communications at the Republican National Committee under then-RNC Chairman Barbour. This was during an historic time in American politics -- the 1994 election tsunami that changed the balance of power in Congress. Meath’s experiences include helping launch the nation’s first political television network: GOP-TV. Currently, he is president of the Washington, DC-based consultancy Xenophon Strategies, Advertising & Advocacy, a leading PR and communications company. Also, he is the president of Cicero Media, a political media consulting firm. Details: www.jasonkillianmeath.com .

Build Up Nigeria Project Founder Reno Omokri, an expert on the just-concluded Presidential elections in Nigeria, described on April 21 that progress in holding elections by Africa’s most populous and resource-rich nation. “The election was free, fair and credible,” he said, saying that rioters in the heavily Muslim north should accept official results. Totals showed that incumbent President Goodluck Jonathan, a Christian from the south, prevailed over the opposition, including second-place finisher Gen. Muhammadu Buhari, a Muslim from the north. Omokri’s group and a consultancy affiliated with Joe Trippi and Associates, were active in the election. He believes such high-tech methods helped make the elections transparent and otherwise fair. For the show, Omokri expanded on the views he provided April 19 at a unique forum on the elections featuring high-ranking government officials and other opinion-leaders, covered by the Justice Integrity Project in a column, “Experts Debate Nigerian Election Fairness.”

 

Author Dave Kindred drew on his stellar career as a Washington Post reporter April 14 to describe his book Morning Miracle: A Great Newspaper Fights for Its Life. Drawing on 45 years of reporting, Kindred was granted unprecedented access to the Post newsroom and all its top executives. His study provides what he and his publisher, Doubleday, call “an up-close-and-personal study of the ambition, enthusiasm and commitment to excellence that is at the heart of world-class daily journalism.” But he describes also “the cold truth that the industry’s glory days are over.” Kindred has reported and written for newspapers and magazines since he was 18. His work has won the Red Smith Award, sports journalism’s highest honor, as well as a National Headliner award for general-interest columns. He is the author of 10 books. For more on Morning Miracle, visit Amazon.com.

Josh Margolin spoke April 7 about his book published the previous month, The Jersey Sting: A True Story of Crooked Pols, Money-Laundering Rabbis, Black Market Kidneys, and the Informant Who Brought It All Down. Margolin and his co-author Ted Sherman were top reporters at the Newark Star-Ledger in 2009 when they covered the 46-defendant New Jersey corruption case that helped propel former U.S. Attorney Chris Christie in 2009 to his state's governorship. Margolin is now a senior reporter covering law enforcement and national security at the New York Post after years writing one of New Jersey’s best-known political columns for the Star-Ledger. In this interview, he described controversies surrounding law enforcement methods used in the action, including use of a confidential informant who had committed a $50 million bank fraud to lure local politicians into compromising themselves by accepting money that authorities have characterized as bribes in winning a number of convictions, while also losing some cases.

 

Author and entertainer Larry Wilde shared insights on March 31 that he’s drawn from many of the world’s greatest comedians. He is a motivational speaker and authored the landmark book, Great Comedians Talk About Comedy. The book is a unique study of comic genius. An Amazon.com reader review says: "The selection is absolutely mind-boggling: Woody Allen, Milton Berle, Shelly Berman, Jack Benny, Joey Bishop, George Burns, Johnny Carson, Maurice Chevalier, Phyllis Diller, Jimmy Durante, Bob Hope, Dick Gregory, George Jessel, Jerry Lewis, Jerry Seinfeld, Danny Thomas and Ed Wynn." Wilde's 53 books have sold more than 12 million copies worldwide. His quips often appear in Reader's Digest.

Larry's most recent book, When You're Up To Your Eyeballs in Alligators, is the result of years of research, and the basis for his acclaimed motivational programs. He is an active prosletizer for comedy and its such benefits as wellness. He led an effort for designation of April as "National Humor Month, and founded the Carel Institute of Humor. Details.

 

Former U.S. Ambassador to Nigeria John Campbell on March 17 analyzes what happens if Nigeria’s 2011 Presidential elections fail. Nigeria, the United States’ most important strategic partner in West Africa, is in trouble, according to the former ambassador. He is a research fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) and author of the important new book, Nigeria: Dancing on the Brink. A preview says: "While Nigerians often claim they are masters of dancing on the brink without falling off, the recent vacuum in government authority, the upcoming 2011 elections, and escalating violence in the delta and the north may finally provide the impetus that pushes it into the abyss of state failure." But, says Campbell, "state failure is not inevitable nor is it in the interest of the United States."

He provides concrete policy options to allow the United States to play a positive role in Nigeria’s political, social, and economic development. Campbell calls for international pressure to ensure that April’s Presidential elections are conducted in a fair and credible fashion. “The April elections have the potential to exacerbate the country’s problems if they are not free, fair and credible,” he says. “But, if the elections do command popular legitimacy, there is the opportunity to reverse Nigeria’s downward spiral. So, the stakes are high.” Details.

 

Henry Scott on March 10 discusses his new book, Shocking True Story: The Rise and Fall of Confidential. An accomplished journalist and media entrepreneur, Scott will describe what prompted him to undertake a decade-long effort to document for the first time the inside story of the pioneering 1950s magazine, Confidential. The magazine boasted that it, “Tells the Facts and Names the Names” about such celebrities as Marilyn Monroe, Joe DiMaggio, Bing Crosby, John Wayne, Rock Hudson and Kim Novak.

The author is a longtime journalist who has worked at newspapers as varied as the weekly Butner-Creedmoor (NC) News, published in what was once was "the world's mule capital." He also has served as a business executive at the Hartford Courant and New York Times. He is former president and editorial director of Out, "America's quality gay and lesbian magazine." Also, he launched and served as publisher of Metro New York, a 330,000-circulation free daily in New York City. For details on his book, visit: Amazon.com.

Dr. Mark Feldstein, a renowned investigative reporter and now professor, March 3 discussed his book Poisoning The Press: Richard Nixon, Jack Anderson and the Rise of Washington’s Scandal Culture. Feldstein’s publisher describes the book as, “The disturbing story of an unprecedented White House conspiracy to assassinate a journalist” as well as “the larger tale of the bitter quarter-century battle between the postwar era’s most embattled politician and its most reviled newsman.” For nearly 20 years, Feldstein was on the other side of the camera as an on-air correspondent, specializing in investigative reporting at CNN, ABC, NBC and local TV stations in Phoenix, Tampa and Washington, DC. His work has won more than 50 journalism awards, including broadcasters’ most prestigious prizes. A member of the faculty at the George Washington University, he has lectured and taught at many universities. Details.

Libertarian leader and spokesman Wayne Allyn Root on Feb. 24 discussed controversies in Wisconsin and around the nation as governors address budget shortfalls. A regular guest on Fox News, Root is a former anchorman and TV host on Financial News Network (now known as CNBC) and the author of seven books on sports, gambling, business and politics. His most recent book, “The Conscience of a Libertarian: Empowering the Citizen Revolution with God, Guns, Gambling & Tax Cuts,” is now in paperback. He is heard on hundreds of conservative talk radio stations across USA, with more information his website.

Louis Manzo, a former candidate for the Jersey City mayor’s post, on Feb. 24 described his federal appeals court victory underscoring that only elected officials, not candidates, can be accused of bribery under the Hobbs Act. Manzo is a defendant in a case that helped propel the original federal prosecutor Chris Christie into New Jersey’s governorship. Federal courts have twice dismissed the most serious corruption charges against Manzo. Manzo, 56, is a former New Jersey state assemblyman who ran unsuccessfully as a Democrat in 2009 for the mayoralty of Jersey City, NJ. He lost his party’s primary and then became one of 46 defendants whose indictment on corruption charges was announced by federal authorities on July 23, 2009.

 

Douglas Waller on Feb. 10 describes his newbook, Wild Bill Donovan. President Roosevelt made Donovan the nation's top spy in World War II. Waller describes Donovan as “a mythic figure whose legacy is still intensely debated.” Donovan directed the Office of Strategic Services (the country’s first national intelligence agency and predecessor of today’s CIA. In announcing the book, the Free Press said: Donovan introduced the nation to the dark arts of covert warfare on a scale it had never seen before. Separating fact from fiction, Waller investigates the successes and the occasional spectacular failures of Donovan’s intelligence career. Waller is a veteran magazine correspondent, author and lecturer. His five previous books on the military and foreign policy include the best-sellers, The Commandos and Big Red, and the critically acclaimed biography of General Billy Mitchell, A Question of Loyalty. Details.

 

Should the Justice Department investigate Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas for failing to comply with an annual legal requirement that he disclose his wife’s income? That’s a question for Common Cause Vice President Mary Boyle Feb. 3 as she describes during the noon (EST) show her non-partisan watchdog group’s revelation that he has never complied with legal requirements to disclosure his wife’s income. Between 2003 and 2007, Virginia Thomas, a longtime conservative activist, earned $686,589 from the Heritage Foundation. Beyond that, Common Cause seeks an investigation of both Thomas and fellow Justice Antonin Scalia for attending policy retreats.at what Common Cause describes as "secretive political strategy sessions sponsored by Koch Industries, a multi-billion dollar conglomerate that has invested millions of dollars in political campaigns and causes." Details.

 

TrendCorp Africa CEO and President Uzo Udemba, a longtime leader in the TV, Internet and energy businesses in Africa’s most populous country and its surrounding nations, Jan. 27 described how the company was developing opportunities also in the region’s burgeoning film industry. Also, he described how TrendsCorp. Chairman, Dr. Pat Utomi, the Social Democratic Mega Party candidate for president in Nigeria’s elections in April, will visit Washington, DC to describe his presidential campaign themes advocating job growth and political reform. Utomi is confirmed to be a speaker Feb. 16 at the National Press Club and at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), which hosted him in 2008 for a major speech about his CSIS-funded research on China’s growing involvement in Nigeria’s economy.

Andrew Jay Schwartzman, senior vice president and policy director at the Media Access Project, Jan. 20 describe the implications of recent controversial decisions by the Federal Communications Commission to approve Comcast’s acquisition of NBC Universal. “Too many confusing articles about the FCC/DOJ approvals of the Comcast/NBC Universal deal?” he wrote. “Although there are some good things in the conditions which were attached, you can read MAP's statement expressing disappointment here.” Details.

 

Dr. Brian Palmer of Uppsala University in Sweden Jan. 13 described the influence of Karl Rove on Swedish politics as an advisor to the governing Moderate Party. Palmer co-authored a Swedish-language book, “George W. Reinfeldt: The art of making a political extreme makeover.” The book describes how Sweden’s political right, including Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt, have created an image of moderation, much as did U.S. President George W. Bush during his 2000 campaign. Palmer and his co-author and Per-Anders Forstorp wrote a 2008 newspaper column describing a visit by Rove to Sweden that year. They said the trip’s purpose was to help conservatives reconfigure their public image in ways predicted by George Orwell and implemented successfully, in their view, by President Bush.

 

Timbro Media Institute Executive Director Roland P. Martinsson on Jan. 6 dismissed as unpersuasive evidence published by the Justice Integrity Project suggesting that Karl Rove’s Swedish consulting work might play a role in ongoing law enforcement probes of WikiLeaks on both sides of the Atlantic. Martinssoncalled also for the United States government to prosecute WikiLeaks for hurting Western security and embarrassing government officials. Further, he expressed confidence that the Swedish justice system is investigating WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange fairly for potential misconduct in unprotected sex with two women. Critics describe the manhunt as a gimmick to smear the defendant and bring him to Sweden for extradition to the United States. The Connecticut Watchdog column published last week, “Rove Suspected of Role In Swedish WikiLeaks Probe,” attracted a large number of domestic and international readers as well as several conservative critics. Rove and Martinsson co-authored a political column in Expressen, a major tabloid.

Bruce DeSilva, author of the highly regarded new crime thriller Rogue Island, describes it Dec. 30. A native of Rhode Island who began his career at the Providence Journal, DeSilva discusses his transition from New England journalist to a successful fiction writer. His first book is summarized as follows: "Liam Mulligan is as old school as a newspaper man gets. His beat is Providence, Rhode Island, and he knows every street and alley.

He knows the priests and the prostitutes. He knows the politicians and the mobsters, who are pretty much one and the same." Publishers Weekly named Rogue Island as one of the best debut novels of 2010. Kirkus Reviews wrote of his book, “The smallest state bursts with crime, corruption, wisecracks, and neo-noir atmosphere in Bruce DeSilva's blistering debut.” Details.

As the movie Casino Jack launched nationally, a former client of Republican lobbyist Jack Abramoff revealed on Dec. 23 why he has remained friendly with the notorious lobbyist. Isidro Garza, Jr. is the former Kickapoo Tribal Council representative with the Kickapoo Lucky Eagle Casino, the only legalized gambling facility in Texas. Garza says his friend Abramoff has taken more than his share of blame -- and has the promise for making important positive contributions to society after his release from a halfway house in December, the final stage of his imprisonment. Casino Jack describes itself as a dramatized version of a true story. “Jack did so much work without charging us," Garza says. "He worked very hard to use his contacts in Washington to help the Kickapoo Tribe get the casino off the ground, and he did a lot of good."

Joe Lauria, United Nations correspondent for the Wall Street Journal, Dec. 16 said most of his fellow UN correspondents are delighted with the revelations from secret U.S. documents released by WikiLeaks and its partners from its recent stash of 250,000 secret papers. He said the leaks tend to confirm U.S. intelligence-gathering of a kind suspected of all major nations, but hard to prove. Lauria is an author, foreign affairs correspondent and investigative reporter. A journalist for more than 20 years, he is part of the Sunday Times of London's investigative unit and also covers the UN for the Johannesburg Star. With former U.S. Senator and presidential candidate Mike Gravel, he is co-author of A Political Odyssey (Seven Stories Press), a look at America’s defense industry and false threats.

Craig Corrie Dec. 16 described his efforts with his wife Cindy to use a civil lawsuit this year against Israel's military as a means to investigate the 2003 death of their daughter, Rachel. A student on leave from Evergreen State University in Olympia, WA, she was killed in the Gaza Strip by a military-operated Catapillar bulldozer during a peaceful sit-in to prevent the demolition of the home of a Palestinian family. Since then, her letters about peace, justice, fear for safety in Gaza, and human dignity have echoed widely in theaters and public readings. Her family and supporters established the Rachel Corrie Foundation for Peace and Justice to continue her hopes.

Garland Nixon Dec. 2 defended the economics of protecting low-wage employees in an era a deficit-reduction. Nixon is a Washington based political commentator. He is a regular commentator on the Fox Business News Monday evening show, “Follow the Money.” He is a longtime host on WPFW-FM and on Montgomery County’s cable station, as well as a college journalism adjunct professor in communications. Earlier, he rose to the rank of major in Maryland’s state public safety system.

Alexander Kragie, vice president of the Coalition for Green Capital, Nov. 18 described how it’s gaining traction here across party lines, as exemplified by its high-powered and political diverse conference in Washington previewing the next Congress.

The coalition's goal is market-based development of green technologies - jump-started with government-backed, low-interest loans to overcome special obstacles in financing. “The business potential for clean energy investment is staggering,” he said. “The focus, from a government perspective, needs to be on lowering the cost of clean as opposed to raising cost of existing generation.”

 

Stacie D. Rumenap, president of the DC-based advocacy group Stop Child Predators, Nov. 4 criticized as inadequate a Federal Trade Commission decision issuing a warning to Google for collecting emails and passwords from unsecured networks with its Street View cars. She described the warning as too little protection for children and their families while also conceding that current regulations may be inadequate for stronger action. Earlier, she was deputy director for the American Conservative Union, the nation's oldest and largest conservative grassroots issue-advocacy organization and executive director of U.S. Term Limits and the National Center for Growth.

 

Ron Winter, an award-winning journalist, military commentator and Republican political strategist, on Nov. 4 provided his analysis of election results in Connecticut on a special edition of MTL's Republican grassroots series. Winter's return followed his Oct. 28 Update appearance describing his new consumer book, Granny Snatching, about his fight against relatives to help his 92-year-old widowed mother live at home with dignity. Winter seeks national legislation to prevent similar abuses. Winter, a college adjunct professor and former investigative reporter at the Hartford Courant, regularly writes and speaks on the military and politics. In 1966, Winter joined the Marines and fight in Vietnam as a helicopter crewman and machine gunner. He flew 300 combat missions and was awarded 15 Air Medals, Combat Aircrew Wings, and the Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry. Details on book availability.

 

New Jersey journalist Melissa Hayes described the acquittal Oct. 28 of a local mayor in a nationally important corruption case that’s part of the reform credentials of New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie. The 46-defendant “Bid Rig III” indictments last year helped propel the Republican former New Jersey U.S. attorney to the state’s governorship.

Hayes wrote stories here and here. At trial, the defendants attacked the main prosecution witness Solomon Dwek, a brothel owner who committed a $50 million bank fraud. Dwek obtained leniency from prosecutors because he enticed candidates or office-holders into suspicious conversations. Hayes covers Jersey City and Hudson County for the Jersey Journal.

Bill Barnes, the Democratic nominee for Senate in Alabama, Oct. 14 and 21 shared his views on explosive recent campaign developments. Barnes is a Vietnam vet now practicing law, and seeks the Senate seat held by Republican Sen. Dick helby. Barnes wants campaign finance reform, decrying recent gambling-related official corruption arrests and foreign money now disrupting Alabama politics. He focuses also on job outsourcing, and cleaning up the Gulf oil disaster safely.

Jim Baldauf, president of Association for the Study of Peak Oil and Gas, Oct. 14 provided highlights of its ASPO-USA convention in the nation's capital. It featured Baldauf, former Energy and Defense Secretary Dr. James Schlesinger, and others predicting new job losses because most major oil exporting nations are at their supply peaks. Baldauf is a Texas oilman with modest holdings and lifelong environmentalist. Baldauf cites the BP Gulf oil disaster, drought in Russia at up to 130 degrees, and massive flood-devastation in Pakistan as evidence that 2010 is the worst year for the environment in recorded history. “I would submit that all of these tragedies are due to Peak Oil,” Baldauf says.

 

James L. Merriner, author of the new book Ponzi-dot-Gov, Sept. 30 escribed how government officials are facilitating the looting of bankruptcy assets remaining from the recent $3.65 billion Ponzi scheme by imprisoned Minnesota financier Thomas J. Petters.

Merriner, author of a five previous books and a longtime political journalist, has documented how federal authorities are helping politically well-connected bankruptcy lawyers feast on assets from Petters-controlled companies, which include Polaroid. Merriner’s theme focuses upon Minneapolis attorney Douglas A. Kelley, a former federal prosecutor, Senate staffer and Petters attorney who is now also the court-appointed receiver and U.S. trustee for the Petters assets. Merriner portrays the federal courts as permitting Kelley to steer those assets to his firm and his cronies without normal due process. Merriner's book is previewed on his website. His work was also instrumental for the research behind, The Second Fraud, a documentary film also being released this fall.

 

Libertarian leader Wayne Allyn Root on Sept. 23 describes the 20-point economic recovery plan he announced the previous day. It includes a one-year federal income tax moratorium. A best-selling author, he was the Libertarian Vice Presidential nominee in 2008, and is now a favorite to be 2012 nominee for President.

Root advocates an American citizen revolution for smaller government; lower taxes; reduced government spending and entitlements; school choice; and more freedom. A self-made millionnaire living in Nevada, he is a former anchorman and TV host on Financial News Network (now known as CNBC) and the author of seven books on sports, gambling, business and politics. His most recent was in 2009, “The Conscience of a Libertarian: Empowering the Citizen Revolution with God, Guns, Gambling & Tax Cuts.” Details:

Longtime Washington, DC news commentator and civic leader John Edward Hurley spoke Sept. 16 on the implications of this week’s primary defeat of the Mayor Adrien Fenty despite heavy support from the Washington Post. Also, Hurley described highlights from his quarter century leading the McClendon Group speaker society at the National Press Club to host important voices often regarded as too controversial for other news coverage. The group has hosted such speakers as U.S. Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX), former CIA analyst Ray McGovern and author Jerome Corsi, with the latter co-author of books critical of Democratic President candidates John Kerry and Barack Obama. Former U.S. Rep. Cynthia McKinney (D-GA) spoke Sept. 22 on Mideast war issues.

 

Former New Jersey legislator Louis Manzo described Sept.9 his experiences defending himself in one of the nation’s most important large-scale political corruption cases of recent years. The 46-defendant "Bid Rig III" corruption case propeled its original federal prosecutor Chris Christie into New Jersey’s governorship in 2009. An investigative report published by Update co-host Andrew Kreig Sept.9 documented how authorities equipped bank swindler and brothel owner Solomon Dwek with taxpayer funds to spread through New Jersey campaigns in hopes of compromising Democratic candidates like Manzo. This created pre-election scandals helping the Republican Christie. Dwek committed a $50 million bank fraud and ran a Caribbean cruise ship brothel before he worked out a leniency deal with authorities. A federal judge last spring dismissed the most serious charges against Manzo as unfounded. But the government is appealing and the defendant says his life is ruinied.

Corporate turn-around expert William Procida, left, and hedge fund founder Thane Ritchie were Sept. 2 guests as they provided first-hand accounts of federal court irregularities in Minnesota that they claim victimize lenders and investors in one of the largest Ponzi schemes in U.S. history. They said they were speaking out against federally orchestrated injustices hurting the fraud victims of Minnesota businessman Thomas J. Petters. The latter’s Ponzi scheme discovered in 2008 caused estimated damages of $3.65 billion - including to lenders and investors in such Petters-controlled companies as Polaroid, Sun Country Airlines and the distributor Fingerhut. Ritchie claims more than $220 million in loans and interest at serious risk. "I’ve never seen a criminal’s attorney be a receiver,” Procida says of disputed court orders that made former Petters defense attorney Douglas Kelley receiver and also the U.S. trustee. The court also gave Kelley “judicial immunity,” thereby limiting victim oversight of his controversial decisions.

 

Dick Russell on July 1 said the Gulf oil catastrophe is far worse than commonly believed and the worst natural disaster in recorded history. His seven books have ranged from natural history to the assassination of President Kennedy. His most recent, the New York Times best-seller this spring American Conspiracies: Lies, Lies, and More Dirty Lies That The Government Tells Us, was co-authored with former Minnesota Governor Jesse Ventura. Russell’s magazine writing and personal energies have primarily focused on the environment. Even before BP’s Gulf oil spill, he has warned about “the crisis impacting the world's fisheries and oceans.” His books include the 2008 best-seller, Don't Start the Revolution Without Me, also co-authored with Jesse Ventura. In 2008, Russell published On the Trail of the JFK Assassins, his second book examining the conspiracy behind the death of President Kennedy. Russell was a consultant on the web-based documentary film, "The Warning," and was featured in a National Geographic documentary on whales.Click for full bio and contact details.

 

Bruce Fein on July 1 criticized DOJ Solicitor General and Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan for what he called her “ridiculous” arguments extending presidential power and endangering historic U.S. civil rights. Fein authored the book American Empire Before the Fall in June. His legal career has included the high-level Reagan administration posts of Justice Department associate deputy attorney general and Federal Communications Commission general counsel. During his radio interview, he also described Kagan positions that he said have the potential to help swing the court toward a dangerous cutback in the right of due process that's been fundamental to anglo-american law for hundreds of years. Also, Fein noted his book’s themes that U.S. foreign policy must revert to the nation’s founding goal of avoiding foreign wars and other entanglements. He has worked for major conservative think tanks and a principal in a government affairs and public relations firm, The Lichfield Group, in Washington, D.C. He is a resident scholar at the Turkish Coalition of America and co-founded the American Freedom Agenda. Details.

John Kelly on June 24 brings to a discussion of the week's top stories his extraordinary experience as a globe-trotting newsman with NBC and CBS TV and wartime CIA officer. He directs John Kelly & Associates Public Relations, and also the Justice Integrity Project, which investigates government misconduct in Washington. Earlier, Kelly worked with Chet Huntley and David Brinkley at NBC News and Walter Cronkite at CBS. He's reported exclusives about Albert "The Boston Strangler" DeSalvo, Cuban militants planning Castro's overthrow, Soviet espionage, Mafia crime, the Vietnam War and Watergate. "The two most abused things in Vietnam," Kelly was quoted in media reports as saying, "are the American G.I. and the U.S. taxpayer's dollar." Details.

 

Brent Budowsky, interviewed June 24, is a former senior aide for Democratic Capitol Hill leaders, and now a commentator and consultant. He served in senior congressional staff positions, including for former Sen. Lloyd Bentsen. He worked extensively on the Intelligence Identities Protection Act, and was Legislative Director to Rep. Bill Alexander, then-Chief Deputy Majority Whip. His recent columns for The Hill include, “The GOP is blowing it,” “Now is Obama’s moment of truth” and "The Kagan Retreat." He's an excerpt:

The nomination of Elena Kagan to replace Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens, the legal lion of liberals for a generation, is the latest retreat by Democrats that reveals how conservatives in Washington differ from liberals, and why liberalism remains in retreat no matter how many elections Democrats win.

Hedge fund analyst and author Richard Vigilante on June 3 attacked federal regulatory incompetence and Wall Street greed. Vigilante is communications director of the $3 billion hedge fund Whitebox Advisors and co-author with fund CEO Andrew Redleaf of Panic, subtitled, The Betrayal of Capitalism by Wall Street and Washington. The book argues that the 2008 financial crash was driven by crony capitalism and other bad ideas by investment advisors and regulators, not mistakes. Vigilante is the author of a half dozen books, and has served as editorial director of Regnery Publishing and as an editor of National Review.

Former Senate Commerce Chairman Larry Pressler on May 20 discussed his New York Times op-ed article published that morning entitled, The Technicality Generation. Pressler, a Republican from South Dakota and the first Vietnam veteran elected to the Senate, condemned politicians who inflate their service records. He said their reliance on technicalities breeds a culture of corruption among the governing elite that hurts the nation in other ways. For example, the former Rhodes Scholar and Harvard Law graduate argued that he's seen many Vietnam draft avoiders who have attained high office over-compensate by unnecessary U.S. military spending and overseas conflicts. He said he voted for President Obama on his promise to end the Iraq War within a year, and has been deeply disappointed that promise has not been fulfilled.

Criminal justice professor Dr. Dan Denny on May 13 vigorously defended the civil rights of Bernard Kerik, the former New York police commissioner who begins a four-year prison term on Monday after a highly controversial prosecution. Denny, a retired Army officer now teaching at East Central University in Oklahoma, said of Kerik's conviction: I have never witnessed a more blatant disregard for the rule of law or the United States Constitution....shameful, absolutely shameful!!! Dr. Denny teaches criminal justice at East Central University in Oklahoma. He retired from the U.S. Army Reserve at the grade of major, and spent his entire career as a military police officer.

 

Author, former Reagan assistant Treasury secretary and Wall Street Journal associate editor Paul Craig Roberts described on May 6 why he is retiring from writing because of the nation’s appalling decline in civil rights protections. This spring Roberts published, Truth Has Fallen and Has Taken Liberty With It, saying:

Americans have bought into the government’s claim that security requires the suspension of civil liberties and accountable government. Astonishingly, Americans, or most of them, believe that civil liberties, such as habeas corpus and due process, protect “terrorists,” and not themselves.

Roberts discussed also the book he co-authored with Lawrence M. Stratton, The Tyranny of Good Intentions: How Prosecutors and Bureaucrats Are Trampling the Constitution in the Name of Justice. Among his interviews and essays on prosecutorial misconduct are his 2008 piece for Truth in Justice, It Does Happen In America: The Political Trial Of Don Siegelman.

Timothy Lynch is director of the Project on Criminal Justice at the Cato Institute in Washington, DC and has become a leading voice in the battle for civil liberties and the Bill of Rights. He edited the 2009 book In the Name of Justice, which argues: "America's criminal codes are so voluminous that they now bewilder not only the average citizen but also the average lawyer....This situation has many people wondering whether the American criminal justice system has become dysfunctional." He has published artices in the New Yorik Times, the Washington Post, the Wall Street Journal and the National Law Journal, and has appeared on PBS, Fox News and C-SPAN, among other venues. Radio interview date TBA.

Wnslow Wheeler

Winslow T. Wheeler, a leading critic of federal waste, on April 22 urged suspension production of the F-35 fighter. Wheeler, author of America's Defense Meltdown: Pentagon Reform for President Obama and the New Congress, described the nation’s most expensive military procurement as producing fighters deeply flawed. Wheeler worked on national security issues for 31 years for the U.S. Senate and General Accounting Office (GAO). In the Senate, he was the first and apparently last Senate staffer to work simultaneously on the personal staffs of a Republican and a Democrat. His books include The Wastrels of Defense: How Congress Sabotages U.S. Security. His essays include: Save the Economy by Cutting the Defense Budget. He is director of the Straus Military Reform Project at the Center for Defense Information and a research fellow at the Independent Institute.

Bennett L. Gershman, a law professor and author of Prosecutorial Misconduct, April 15 called for greater accountability for prosecutors. He described prosecutors as the most powerful of public officials, and among the least accountable to the public. Gershman was trained as a prosecutor for six years in the 1970s under New York City District Attorney Frank Hogan, who urged his staff not to prosecute unless they were convinced of guilt. Gershman said, “There are too many officials that pursue the goal of winning as opposed to doing the right thing.” Gershman is one of the original faculty members at Pace Law School.

Charles G. Brown, West Virginia's former attorney general, on April 8 attacked what he calls high-risk, low-cost dental treatment subjecting low-information consumers to risk of mercury poisoning.

Brown is now national litigation counsel for Consumers for Dental Choice (CDC ). He said “two-tiered dentistry” hurts patients from the military and others with scant information or power to select their dentists, such as the disabled, Native American and other low-income groups who don't know enough to avoid mercury. Also, Brown drew on his experience in West Virginia to attack what he called lax enforcement of safety rules there, leading to the Massey Energy mine explosion killing at least 25 miners on April 5.

Country music artist Clay Canfield on March 25 described his performance that day at a protest outside the White House against the slaughter of wild horses for meat. Canfield, who recorded the smash hit Wild Horses, is working with Animal Welfare Institute to seek protective legislation in Congress. So are his friends actor/director Kerry Wallum, another guest on the March 25 Update, and actor/singer Willie Nelson.

Former Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman on March 11 disputed Karl Rove’s denial in his new memoir of involvement in Siegelman’s prosecution on corruption charges.

Siegelman, Alabama’s governor from 1999 to 2003 and his state’s most prominent Democrat for years, says his conviction in 2006 on corruption charges was part of plot within the Bush Justice Department to target Democrats by a 7:1 ratio nationwide on official corruption charges.

Rove, who reiterated denials in his memoir, Courage and Consequence, has been invited to a future edition of the program. A second program guest March 11 was Richard Heidel, a friend of former New York Police Commissioner Bernard Kerik described Kerik's federal judge as abusing his authority during Kerik’s four-year sentencing Feb. 18 on corruption charges.

Longtime Boston litigator and civil rights expert Harvey Silverglate on Jan. 28 discussed his pioneering new book Three Felonies A Day: How the Feds Target the Innocent. He said the average professional in the United States is unaware that he or she has likely committed several federal crimes each day. Why unaware? Modern federal criminal laws have exploded in number, and have become impossibly broad and vague. Silverglate has been a litigator for four decades.

Ken AulettaKen Auletta, New Yorker columnist and author of 11 books, on Jan. 7 discussed his latest best-seller, Googled: The End of the World As We Know It . Using Google as a proxy for the larger digital revolution, Auletta shared the secrets of Google's success and described why that success threatens traditional media. Auletta has written the "Annals of Communications" column for the New Yorker since 1992, and has been described by the Columbia Journalism Review as “America’s premier media critic.”

Joan Biskupic, USA Today Supreme Court reporter, on Dec. 17 described her pioneering full-scale biography American Original: The Life and Constitution of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia. The book is the first to combine the life-story and public impact of the court’s most provocative justice. Her biography is augmented by exclusive interviews. The author has covered the Supreme Court since 1989, and wrote the 2005 biography Sandra Day O’Connor.

Richard Wolffe, an MSNBC analyst, on Dec. 17 responded to questions about his book Renegade: The Making of a President, the first account of the campaign.

The book was based on the author’s work as a Newsweek correspondent covering Obama for 21 months, with many exclusive interviews with Obama and top aides, providing unparalleled access.

The Rev. Walter E. Fauntroy, former Washington, DC Congressman (1971-1990), on Nov. 19 advocated expanded health care as a basic civil right. At age 76, the retired pastor of the New Bethel Baptist Church in Washington, D.C. described his life's work as advocating public policy that "declares Good News to the poor, that binds up the broken-hearted and sets at liberty them that are bound."

A close friend of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Fauntroy helped organize the iconic Alabama civil rights marches. Their brutal disruption by police in March 1965 shocked the public and federal authorities into introducing the Voting Rights Act of 1965. That law enabled widespread black voting in the Deep South for the first time since Reconstruction.

Steve LeVine, Business Week Washington correspondent, on Nov. 19 described how he drew on his 11 years work in the former Soviet Union to author Putin’s Labyrinth: Spies, Murder, and the Dark Heart of the New Russia.

The book focuses upon dissenters to Prime Minister Vladimir Putin. LeVine suggested how six suspicious deaths of dissenters and others reveal longstanding patterns in Russian government. Levine previously wrote The Oil and the Glory.

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