​#1112 So, this whole Russia thing, right?

Air Date: 6-16-2017

Today we take a high-level look at the Trump/Russia controversy and examine how we should and shouldn’t be reacting to it.

​Show Notes

Ch. 1: Opening Theme: A Fond Farewell - From a Basement On the Hill

Ch. 2: Act 1: Manchurian candidate or useful idiot? - Intercepted (@theintercept) - Air Date 3-1-17

Ch. 3: Song 1: Дискотека Авария - Малинки (feat. Ж. Фриске)

Ch. 4: Act 2: A theory on how Trump got involved politically with Russia - The Ezra Klein Show - Air Date 6-6-17

Ch. 5: Song 2: 007 (From "From Russia With Love") - The City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra

Ch. 6: Act 3: Chomsky With U.S. History of Overthrowing Govts, Outrage over Russian Hacking Claims is Laughable - @DemocracyNow - Air Date 04-04-17

Ch. 7: Song 3: Blue Girl - A-Set

Ch. 8: Act 4: James Comey: 'No Doubt' Russia Interfered in 2016 Election, 'No Doubt' Russian Govt. Was Fully Aware - Majority Report (@MajorityFM) - Air Date: 06-09-17

Ch. 9: Song 4: Nothing Is Good Enough (Instrumental) - Aimee Mann

Ch. 10: Act 5: Why Liberals are Falling for Fake News About Russia - On the Media - Air Date 6-2-17

Ch. 11: Song 5: The Love You Save (May Be Your Own) - Joe Tex

Ch. 12: Act 6: Legitimate concerns about Russia shouldn't lead to mass hysteria - The Zero Hour w: @RJEskow - Air Date 6-3-17

Ch. 13: Song 6: The Bathtub (feat. The Lost Bayou Ramblers) - Dan Romer & Benh Zeitlin

Ch. 14: Act 7: Is It a Mistake Focusing So Much Attention on Russia? - @Thom_Hartmann - Air Date 03-05-17

Ch. 15: Song 7: People, Turn Around - Delta Spirit

Ch. 16: Act 8: Masha Gessen on how the left has fallen into a Russia conspiracy sphere - The Ezra Klein Show - Air Date 6-6-17

Ch. 17: Song 8: Hide the Truth - Chronicle

Ch. 18: Act 9: Yes, The Russia Scandal Is Actually A Scandal - @theyoungturks - Air Date 05-13-17


Ch. 19: Explaining how campaigning on progressive ideas leads to victory - Steven from the People's Caliphate of Birmingham, UK

Voicemail Music: Loud Pipes - Classics

Ch. 20: Final comments asking for thoughts on the state of the left

Closing Music: Here We Are - Everyone's in Everyone

Produced by Jay! Tomlinson

Thanks for listening!

Visit us at BestOfTheLeft.com

Check out the BotL iOS/Android App in the App Stores!

Follow at Twitter.com/BestOfTheLeft

Like at Facebook.com/BestOfTheLeft

Contact me directly at [email protected]

Review the show on iTunes and Stitcher!

Showing 4 reactions

  • Jay Tomlinson
    commented 2017-08-10 08:08:29 -0400
    Unsurprisingly, that article makes a handful of interesting points but also some completely absurd accusations based on flagrantly wrong interpretations of Greenwald quotes and motivations.

    The most glaring I feel compelled to point out is this, they quote Glenn: “It’s hard, for instance, to imagine any group that has done more harm, and ushered in more evil, than the Bush-era neocons with whom Democrats are now openly aligning,”

    And interpret that quote this way: “His construction that “it’s hard … to imagine” any worse faction than the neocons is especially telling.”

    Do you see the problem there? Glenn is clearly describing the ACTIONS of the neocons and the article writers interpretation is to boil that down to the group itself regardless of actions, allowing them to continue with this: “However dangerous or rancid figures like Steve Bannon or Michael Flynn may be, the possibility that they could match the evil of the neocons is literally beyond the capacity of his brain to imagine.”

    Again, Glenn was describing the ACTIONS of a group of people who held a massive amount of power for long stretches of time in recent decades whereas the alt-right and the Bannon crowd came to only partial power a handful of months ago. So, no, there is no conflict in saying that the alt-right is completely rancid AND that they have clearly not “done more harm, and ushered in more evil, than the Bush-era neocons”.

    And as an aside, it’s also important to note the over-the-top snideness of the “beyond the capacity of his brain to imagine” comment which itself was another misinterpretation of a quote. “Hard… to imagine” ≠ beyond the capacity of one’s brain to imagine. The writer is clearly on a mission to discredit and any cost here.

    So, after that wild misrepresentation (amid an article in which the writer castigates Greenwald for misrepresenting the motivations of others), it was unsurprising for the next paragraph to begin with this sentence: “A second source of Greenwald’s sympathy for the nationalists is their populism.”

    A which point I said “Oh, fuck you” to the article writer in disgust. As I said, the article makes a handful of worthwhile points but it’s also a flagrant hit job filled with poisonous nonsense that doesn’t deserve to be part of a thoughtful and nuanced conversation.

    Next time you send me an article make sure it’s better than that one.
  • T Moshi Ren-Tsu
    commented 2017-08-09 10:54:33 -0400
    Look, I absolutely love Greenwald on some stuff (Laura Poitras gets top billing, but his work on Citizenfour was crucial and legitimately epic, and his Brazil stuff is very insightful on a near neighbor we don’t know well enough), but he’s been getting it flagrantly wrong on Trump-Russia for a while now. This article is a good summary of what’s gone awry with him and the Intercept in that regard. As far as jumping to conclusions, this article also highlights that awful twitter “conclusion” that Glenn jumped to about neocons as worst of the late 20th century. I agree they’re bad, but he has a weird blindness there. http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer/2017/08/the-alt-right-and-glenn-greenwald-versus-h-r-mcmaster.html?utm_source=tw&utm_medium=s3&utm_campaign=sharebutton-b
  • Jay Tomlinson
    commented 2017-07-28 13:47:57 -0400
    What exactly are they getting wrong? Your thoughts on them “minimizing” is just a judgment call, not a matter of right and wrong. All I’ve heard them say on the topic is to distinguish between what facts we actually have and what unfounded conclusions people are willing to jump to. Those conclusions may turn out to be right but that doesn’t justify jumping to them without substantiation and that seems to be the stance The Intercept has been taking the whole time. Jumping to conclusions is what loses a person or organization their credibility, not proceeding cautiously and only following confirmed facts.
  • T Moshi Ren-Tsu
    commented 2017-07-28 13:05:59 -0400
    Well, that bit from the Intercept hasn’t aged well, has it? From Trump giving the game away on Syria, to the revelations about Don Jr, those guys are getting it wrong and minimizing WAAAYY too much on Trump-Russia. And they keep getting it wrong in the same suspicious fashion. I love some of the stuff they do; but they simply aren’t credible on this stuff. Do better, don’t give those shills airtime on things where they aren’t trustworthy.
Sign up for activism updates