Yavapai College Update — Podcast January 26, 2015

The Yavapai College Ten Year Capital Improvement Plan a Year Later: Have the Verde Valley’s Concerns Had Any Impact? Mike Cosentino and Gary LaMaster welcome Bob Oliphant and Ruth Wicks back to discuss recent developments in the struggle over local autonomy in the Yavapai College planning process. There’s some good news — local community involvement in the work of the Verde Valley Community College Citizen Advocates, the Yavapai College Administration’s reversal of a decision to close the Sedona campus, and the formation of two new committees by the College to address local concerns. The bad news is that the 10-year plan passed by the College Governing Board is still largely in effect, the Sedona Film School is still gone, and the nursing program is still moving to the Prescott Valley. Overall, however, the prospects are much improved from last year, and the fat lady has still not sung her final number.

Posted in Education, Education Policy, Interviews, Local Politics, Podcasts, Public Education | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Terrorism: a Realistic Assessment — Podcast January 19. 2015

Terrorism: Making Sure That the Cure Isn’t Worse Than the Disease. Mike Cosentino, Gary LaMaster, and Steve Williamson look at the varied definitions of terrorism, the difficulties confronting the U.S. and other Western governments in their attempts to come to grips with so-called asymmetric warfare, and the appeal of Islamic fundamentalism to young Muslims in the failed states of the Middle East and the ghettos of Western Europe. Fear-mongering, right-wing demagoguery, and profiteering by defense corporations in the West, the collapse of post-colonial dictatorships, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and sectarian proxy wars between Saudi Arabia and Iran in the Middle East — there are plenty of reasons to think that terrorism as we currently define it is more a symptom than a cause of what ails us.

Posted in Democratic Governance, Department of Homeland Security, Domestic Terrorism, Foreign Affairs, Foreign Policy, Homeland Security, International Terrorism, Middle East Policy, Military, National Security, Palestinian/Israeli Conflict, Podcasts, Propaganda, Surveillance Programs, U.S. Armed Forces | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Senate Select Committee’s Study of the CIA’s Detention and Interrogation Program — Podcast January 12, 2015

Is This REALLY Who We Are? How Torture Became Enhanced Interrogation, and Moral Depravity Became Official U.S. Policy: Mike Cosentino, Gary LaMaster, and Steve Williamson evaluate the 576 page summary of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence’s still unreleased Study of the Central Intelligence Agency’s Detention and Interrogation Program. Who authorized the program, who carried it out, what was done to whom, and for how long, and why it was kept secret from almost everybody inside and outside the U.S. Government. It makes for some pretty shocking reading, even knowing what we already knew before it was released.

Posted in Foreign Affairs, Foreign Policy, Government, Intelligence Agencies, Military Policy, National Security, Podcasts | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Fair and Balanced: the Trivialization of American Journalism — Podcast January 5, 2015

Not What You Want to Know, but What You Need to Know? Not Any More: Mike Cosentino, Gary LaMaster, and Steve Williamson look at the dismal state of current American media reporting. Consolidation of ownership, 24/7/365 news cycles, infotainment and the ratings wars, competitive cost-cutting, and the economic advantage of lies over the truth: is it any wonder that the American public has no idea what’s really going on in the world?

Posted in Disinformation, Investigative Journalism, Journalism, LIberals and Conservatives, Mass Media, National Politics, Podcasts, Political Lies | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

2014: Democratic Perspective’s Year in Review — Podcast December 29, 2014

Looking Back AND Forward: Democratic Perspective’s 2014 in Review. Mike Cosentino, Gary LaMaster, and Steve Williamson review the most prominent themes of Democratic Perspective’s broadcasts in 2014. From the growing inequality in income and wealth in the U.S. to dark money and phony Republican scandals in national politics, to the looniness of the Arizona mid-term elections, and their legislative consequences, 2014 was a banner year for dysfunctional politics that may unfortunately prove to be a harbinger of worse things to come.

Posted in Affordable Care Act, Anti-Federalism, Anti-Gay Discrimination, Arizona Economy, Arizona Politics, Bigotry, Capital Accumulation, Capitalism, Citizens United, Civil Rights, Class Conflict, Conservatives and Reactionaries, Constitutional Issues, Corruption, Dark Money, Democratic Governance, Department of Veterans Affairs, Domestic Extremism, Economic Policy, Economic Theory, Government, Immigration, Income Inequality, Jobs and Employment, Journalism, Law Enforcement, LGBT Issues, Localist Movement, Marriage Equality, Mass Incarceration, Middle East, Middle East Policy, National Politics, National Security, Nullification, Paul Gosar, Podcasts, Political Action Committees, Political Contributions, Political Lies, Political Polarization, Racism, Scandal Mongering, Supreme Court, Unemployment, Veterans' Issues | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

Paul Lenze Interview — Podcast December 22, 2014

ISIS, ISIL, The Islamic State: Who Are They, What Do They Want, And How Big a Threat Are They? Democratic Perspective’s Gary LaMaster and Steve Williamson discuss the impact of the Islamic State on Middle Eastern politics, and on United States’ and European foreign policy with Dr. Paul Lenze, Professor of Politics and International Affairs at Northern Arizona University

Posted in Foreign Affairs, Foreign Policy, International Relations, Interviews, Middle East, Middle East Policy, Military Policy, National Security, Palestinian/Israeli Conflict, Podcasts | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

Israel and the Palestinians: the Fulcrum of Conflict in the Middle East — Podcast December 15, 2014

The U.S. As Honest Broker, the Oslo Accords, the Peace Process, the Two-State Solution: Does ANY of This Still Make Sense Today? Democratic Perspective’s Mike Cosentino, Gary LaMaster and Steve Williamson consider the history of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and what appear to be the diminishing prospects for a just peace, and the final resolution of a 66 year-old stalemate.

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