Independent investigative journalism, broadcasting, trouble-making and muckraking with Brad Friedman of BradBlog.com. Originating on Pacifica Radio's KPFK 90.7FM in Los Angeles and syndicated coast-to-coast and around the globe! NOW FIVE DAYS A WEEK!
'BradCast' 8/2/2021 (The 4th Surge and Callers on Why They Finally Got Vax'd...or Still Haven't)
On today's 'BradCast': Senate Democrats released the text of their landmark, bipartisan $1 trillion infrastructure bill. We break down the details, released over the weekend, for the package that is to be paired with a much larger, $3.5 trillion Democrats-only bill that can be passed in the Senate with a simple majority vote. BOTH bills must be passed in the Senate before House Speaker Nancy Pelosi will allow either to come to the floor in the U.S. House. If Biden and Dems can pull both packages off, it would be a remarkable achievement, and the largest investment in America since The New Deal. The COVID Delta variant continues to wreak havoc across the nation among the unvaccinated, and anger is rising among the vaccinated as all must pay a shamefully high price for the idiocy of the unvaxxed. Florida leads the nation in infections and hospitalizations, with more new COVID infections than at any time during the pandemic, forcing hospitals to cancel non-emergency surgeries. FL GOP Gov. Ron DeSantis barred private companies from requiring vaccinations for customers or employees. Sadly, the decision to get vaccinated often comes too late for many vaccine-refusers who are now dying from COVID. We open up the phone lines to hear from longtime vaccine holdouts who finally decided to get inoculated. Also today: Rightwing ideologue Rep. Elise Stefanik (NY), the third highest-ranking House Republican, hilariously proves she is clueless that Medicare is 'socialized' healthcare.
'BradCast' 7/30/2021 (Guest: Brynn Tannehill, author of 'American Fascism')
On today's 'BradCast': Blockbuster new reporting reveals that in December 2020, Donald Trump ordered the Justice Department to make the false, unprecedented public declaration that the 2020 election was 'corrupt', even though there was no evidence to support such a claim, and that he and Republicans 'would take care of the rest.' The acting AG's staff refused, but documented Trump's attempt to overturn the 2020 election and handed it over to Congress. While Trump's pathetic attempt to stay in power failed, that may not be the case in the near future. A growing chorus of respected scholars, pundits, former Republicans, and many more are sounding the alarm that the Republican Right is becoming more and more autocratic and fascistic in advance of the 2022 mid-terms, warning that the 'Pro-Democracy coalition is sleep walking' into the 2022 election and 'the stakes couldn't be higher.' U.S. Navy veteran and national security expert BRYNN TANNEHILL, author of the chilling, insightful new book, 'American Fascism: How the GOP is Subverting Democracy,' expands upon that dire wake-up call. Tannehill explains the history and rise of competitive autocracy around the world (when one party wins an election and then changes the rules so they can never be removed from power) and how the Republican Party has evolved to embrace every more authoritarian, fascistic, and autocratic ideals, as GOP-controlled states even now are changing the rules of elections before the 2022 and 2024 elections. Tannehill also offers concrete actions that every voter can take to protect and defend our democracy. Also today: The Justice Department enforced federal law, ordering the IRS to turn Trump's tax returns over to congressional investigators.
'BradCast' 7/29/2021 (TX voting rights battle; AZ 'audit' update; Biden unveils new vax incentives)
On today's 'BradCast': The Justice Department has issued new guidelines, warning states that the DOJ will enforce federal laws governing post-election audits and voting rights. GOP-controlled states are enacting a wave of new voter suppression measures, and Republicans across the country have noticed that the grifters running the clown show 'audit' of the Maricopa County, AZ 2020 election are pulling in millions of dollars from gullible GOP donors, and have decided they would like some of that sweet 'audit' theater cash in their own states. Texas state Democratic representatives testified to a House Oversight Committee hearing about the necessity of passing federal voting rights reform legislation, and their decision to leave the state in order to block passage of a massive new voter suppression bill in the state legislature. Democratic Texas State Rep. Senfronia Thompson offered moving testimony about her and her family's personal experiences with Jim Crow voter suppression laws in the Lone Star State, underscoring why we must continue the fight to protect voting rights and defend democracy. With COVID surging again thanks to the fast-spreading Delta variant and those who have refused to get vaccinated, President Biden announced new initiatives to increase the nation's vaccination rate and save lives. The new initiatives include paying the unvaccinated $100 to get their shots, expanding federal reimbursement for employees and employees to take time off from work, and requiring federal workers and contractors to get vaccinated or face regular testing and other restrictions. Plus Desi Doyen has our latest 'Green News Report.'...
'BradCast' 7/28/2021 (Guest: John 'Bamboo Ballots' Brakey on Arizona 'audit' theatre)
On today's 'BradCast': A bipartisan group of U.S. Senators on Wednesday reached a deal on a $1 trillion traditional infrastructure plan to upgrade the nation's roads, bridges and broadband Internet, but final passage is far from certain. AP notes that if adopted, the bill would be one of 'the most significant long-term investments in nearly a century, on par with building the transcontinental railroad or the Interstate highway system.' The Biden Administration will reportedly require all civilian federal workers to get a COVID vaccine or submit to regular testing. In the ongoing Maricopa County, Arizona 'audit' clown show, new reports suggest that former Republican Sec. of State Ken Bennett, the Republican state senate's liaison, was locked out of the 'audit' after he shared with the press partial results that support the accuracy of the original tally. Election integrity and transparency advocate JOHN BRAKEY, Director of the Arizona-based AUDIT-USA, who is assisting Bennett, explains the latest troubling news about what is going on with the 'audit' - - now in its third round - - and why it appears to be falling apart. Brakey debunks the waves of false and nutty allegations promoted by Republicans and grifters trying to get gullible, disinformed GOP donors to cough up more money. He also discusses whether the AZ 'audit' exercise is helpful or harmful to the overall cause of legitimate election integrity, as Republicans call for similar 'audits' of the 2020 results in states across the country...
'BradCast' 7/27/2021 ('A Cancer on Our Constitutional Republic' -- House Select Committee on 1/6 Capitol Riot holds its first hearing)
On today's 'BradCast': More tragic stories are emerging of unnecessary, preventable deaths from COVID among those who refused to get vaccinated, including young people. Florida now leads the nation in new COVID infections, hospitalizations, and deaths, followed by Arkansas, Missouri, Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama, now labeled as areas of 'high transmission' due to the wildly transmissible Delta variant, and nearly all thanks to those who have rejected the free COVID vaccines. The CDC adjusted course to address the surge, issuing new guidance that all people, vaccinated and unvaccinated, should wear masks in indoor public spaces, and recommended masking indoors for school staff and K-12 students in the new school year. In Washington, D.C, the new U.S. House Select Committee on the January 6th Attack on the U.S. Capitol held its first public hearing, formed after Republicans negotiated and then reneged on creating a bipartisan, independent blue ribbon commission to investigate the attack. We air extended clips of the riveting, disturbing, and often emotional testimony of four U.S. Capitol and D.C. Metro Police officers, who each risked their lives -- some very nearly dying -- that day to protect the Capitol and its occupants, plus excerpts of statements from congress members on the panel. Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) said, 'If those responsible are not held accountable...if Congress does not act responsibly, this will remain a cancer on our constitutional republic.' Plus Desi Doyen has our latest 'Green News Report.'
'BradCast' 7/26/2021 (Guest: Ian Patton of Long Beach Reform Coalition
On today's 'BradCast': More tragic stories continue to roll in from COVID vaccine deniers who realize, too late, that their denialism was ill-considered. Many of their reasons for rejecting the vaccine are based on misinformation spread by power hungry and/or ignorant politicians and celebrities. From a state lawmaker in Missouri to a rightwing radio host in Tennessee, to a 34-year old anti-vaxxer in Los Angeles. Those who survived say they now regret their denialism. The families of those who didn't survive are now wishing their loved ones had taken the vaccine, and hope that you will do so, if you haven't already. If telling these heart-breaking stories helps save even one life, we're happy to keep doing so on air. As COVID continues to surge across the nation, thanks in part to the vaccine refuseniks, more vaccine mandates are being instituted - in New York City, California, and the federal Dept. of Veterans Affairs. California's state election recount laws allow any voter to request a hand-count of any race, as long as they pay for it. But the law also allows counties to charge arbitrary prices to do so. IAN PATTON, co-founder and executive director of the Long Beach Reform Coalition, explains why his group is suing the Los Angeles County Registrar for charging them an unprecedented, exorbitant price for a tiny recount. L.A. County's costly new electronic voting system utilizes Voting Centers rather than neighborhood precincts, making recounts extremely expensive, rendering public oversight of elections nearly impossible. The future of election recounts could hinge on this lawsuit, as more counties across the US adopt the Voting Center model.