Impeachment Reveals the Politics of Empire

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Dec 06 2019 117 mins   1
On today's episode of Loud & Clear, Brian Becker and John Kiriakou are joined by Ben Norton, a journalist with The Grayzone and co-host of the Moderate Rebels podcast, and Sputnik News analyst and producer Nicole Roussell.

Friday is Loud & Clear’s weekly hour-long segment The Week in Review, about the week in politics, policy, and international affairs. Today they focus on the 2020 race, Hillary Clinton’s latest weird attacks on Bernie Sanders, Pete Buttigieg’s history in Iraq with the infamous firm McKinsey, YouTube demonetizing Moderate Rebels and The Grayzone, and the hysterical but light-on-facts report from the Organization of American States on Bolivia’s presidential vote.

Impeachment hearings continued this week, but that wasn’t the most interesting political news. Joe Biden took the opportunity yesterday to call an Iowa farmer “fat” and “a damn liar” when the man asked him about Hunter Biden’s role in a Ukrainian energy company. And the media are now telling us that Pete Buttigieg is “surging” in California, where the latest polls have him going from 10 percent to 6 percent and then back up to 12 percent. Meanwhile, the same media largely ignore the fact that Bernie Sanders is leading the race in California. Jim Kavanagh, the editor of, joins the show.

The American Legislative Exchange Council, a far-right group made up of conservative state lawmakers from around the country, is meeting this week in Scottsdale, Arizona. The purpose of the meeting is to come up with cookie-cutting right-wing legislation that members can sponsor in whatever state they come from. Think abortion, cutting food stamps, corporate taxes, and other Republican memes. Well, the group is being sued because the meeting violates Arizona’s “open meetings law,” which mandates that meetings of any public entity be open to the public. Brian and John speak with David Armiak, the research director at the Center for Media and Democracy.

At least 15 people were stabbed in a Baghdad square yesterday as Iran militia supporters clashed with anti-government and anti-Iran protestors. Protests against corruption and in favor of economic reform have worsened in Iraq, despite the fact that Prime Minister Adil Abd al-Mahdi resigned last week. The United Nations and human rights observers say that more than 460 people have been killed and more than 20,000 wounded, the vast majority of them by military and police forces. Eugene Puryear, the host of By Any Means Necessary, which is on every day from 2:00-4:00 pm here on Sputnik Radio, joins the show.

Every major city in France was shut down yesterday in a massive general strike called after unpopular French President Emmanuel Macron announced that he would combine 42 separate public pension plans into one national system. The French people don’t trust him to do that and, as a result, transportation was paralyzed, schools were closed, and protest leaders said they were willing to keep the strike going into next week. Gilbert Mercier, Editor in Chief of News Junkie Post and the author of “The Orwellian Empire,” joins Brian and John.

It’s Friday! So it’s time for the week’s worst and most misleading headlines. Brian and John speak with Steve Patt, an independent journalist whose critiques of the mainstream media have been a feature of his site Left I on the News and on twitter @leftiblog, and Sputnik producer Nicole Roussell.