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Impeachment sends a message about who we are as a country and what we will accept and abide. The rule of law demands action. Refusing to take action is normalizing atrocity. Lawlessness must be confronted regardless of the outcome, as a matter of principle and conscience. Fighting only the battles that you know you will win is a sure way of ensuring you lose; preemptive surrender, in a rapidly consolidating autocracy, is permanent surrender. The American people have suffered enough under Trump; they should not have to suffer due to Pelosi’s capitulation as well. We all deserve better than this.
|Mar 14, 2019|
Like Trump Tower Moscow, which was supposed to be the tallest building in Europe with a penthouse for mass-murderer Putin and an Ivanka Trump branded spa, the White House was another monument for Trump, in a long list of monuments he's built for himself over the years, and one that would help him and his family continue to live above the law.
|Mar 06, 2019|
Brexit and Trump are the Same Crime: The Carole Cadwalladr Interview
We are thrilled to welcome Carole Cadwalladr to Gaslit Nation. Carole is an investigative journalist who breaks major stories on the Kremlin and Mercer-backed Brexit vote, revealing a cast of nefarious characters that were also behind the election of Donald Trump. Her brave reporting, which won her the Orwell Prize and makes her a target of hit pieces, has uncovered the growing vulnerability of elections in a time of kleptocracy.
|Feb 27, 2019|
We break down decades of intertwined corruption in both the US and the UK and urge officials to seek actual accountability, because time is running out. Kleptocracy anywhere is kleptocracy everywhere, and it is ordinary citizens who pay the most painful price.
|Feb 20, 2019|
Lessons from Ukraine Five Years After the Revolution
Ukrainian journalist Nataliya Gumenyuk, the head of the independent media network Hromadske TV, co-founded by a journalist - Mustafa Nayyem - that launched the EuroMaidan revolution with a Facebook post, looks back on lessons from Ukraine for the West. The discussion includes important insights for understanding international conflicts generally, like Ukraine and Venezuela, by focusing on the people caught in the middle and resisting seeing the world as a geopolitical chessboard. Gumenyuk shares how, while covering the 2016 election in the U.S., she knew Trump would win. And she provides advice for Americans and journalists living in a political climate similar to Ukraine's given the Putin-puppet in power, enrichning himself and his family.
|Feb 13, 2019|
The Trump Brand of Death
This week, we discuss the continued economic, environmental, and psychological fallout of the government shutdown, and speculate on what’s in store later this month. We have a long discussion about the horrific forced separation of migrant children and parents at the US-Mexico border, which both violates the UN’s Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide and is reminiscent of the worst racist abuses of America’s past. For a family, especially kleptocrat princess Ivanka, that likes to brand everything, their most enduring brand will be the deaths their administration has caused. We talk about how rampant income inequality has created a level of plutocrat seemingly immune from legal consequence, and how plutocracy is the new manifest destiny. We debate whether the Mueller probe targets are really all that worried about imprisonment. Finally, we discuss the adult Trump children, their various criminal acts, the urgency of removing Jared Kushner from office, and how Don Jr should turn himself in because his father couldn’t care less what happens to him.
|Feb 06, 2019|
Roger Stone: Democracy's Undertaker
Welcome to a very angry episode of Gaslit Nation! The government may be back open, but the US is not out of danger – we are merely in the eye of the hurricane as damage from the shutdown mounts and Trump threatens both another shutdown and a scheduled “national emergency.” Sarah and Andrea discuss the toll the shutdown took on workers and how the broader ambition of the GOP – to strip the US down and sell it for parts – continues unimpeded. We note how female representatives like Nancy Pelosi and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez grasp the stakes and are acting as responsible leaders while Congress and the justice system, on the whole, continues to fail citizens.
We rejoice in the indictment of the grotesque Roger Stone but wonder why it took forty years to stop him, and we break down the exploitative synergy between Stone, Wikileaks and the mainstream media. We wonder yet again how many indicted campaign associates it takes for someone to arrest the remaining complicit players who are actively abusing executive power (like Trump and Kushner) or who are building worldwide fascist movements (like Bannon). Finally, we take a long look at the citizen uprising in Venezuela, its exploitation by both the Trump administration and the Kremlin, and the promotion of harmful Russian state propaganda by members of Congress. Kleptocracy should be acknowledged as an obvious enemy of justice, and it is disappointing to see those who purport to represent the people instead parrot the rhetoric of a mafia state.
|Jan 30, 2019|
Coalition of Corruption
We breakdown Trump's war on America in the form of the longest government shutdown in our nation's history, the urgent case for
|Jan 24, 2019|
The Comey Effect
This isn’t just a shutdown – it’s a hostile restructuring. As the longest shutdown in US history drags on, Sarah and Andrea discuss the incredible toll it’s taken on workers, the economy and national security. We discuss the apocalyptic vision of much of the GOP elite, including rapture-fiend Mike Pompeo and nuke-lover Trump, and how their destructiveness ties into the current goals of the shutdown. We also discuss the NYT non-revelation that Trump is a Russian asset (see every damn episode of Gaslit Nation for more on that, folks!) who is being investigated by the FBI, and ask yet again why the FBI didn’t do anything earlier. Andrea explains how “The Comey Effect” is the new butterfly effect. We also discuss Ivanka helping pick the leader of the World Bank, the yellow vest protests in Europe, the latest attacks on Andrea’s sister from acting Attorney General Whitaker (!) and more.
|Jan 16, 2019|
We continue examining the diastrous fallout of the government shutdown and the toll it’s taken on unpaid federal workers, national parks, and public safety. We debunk the myth that Trump did not understand what the shutdown would entail and argue that this is exactly what he and his camp have wanted: controlled chaos that allows him and other operatives to more easily strip the country down and sell it for parts. With Trump raising the prospect of a “national emergency," we stand on the precipice of something we’ve dreaded for a long time, and that in other settings has been how dictators consolidate power – by fabricating a massive crisis and exploiting it with a show of force. We discuss how the urgent threats of climate change and technological surveillance culture make the rising authoritarianism of the present distinct from that of decades before.
Gaslit Nation also endorses Rep Rashida Tlaib’s move to “impeach the motherfucker” and we lay out the reasons why: emoluments, obstruction of justice, and high crimes and misdemeanors among them. (And now, the House does not need to wait for Mueller to start the hearings.) We discuss how our generation of women is finally in Congress and how the wealthy white male media can’t handle their truth. Finally we conclude with the latest on Ukraine-Russia tension and the historic significance for believers and nonbelievers alike of Constantinople granting the Ukrainian Orthodox Church independence from Moscow.
|Jan 09, 2019|
Cabinet of Horrors
There is treason in the treasury, nepotism in the government, and corruption everywhere – it may be a new year, but it’s the same sad story for the US! This week Sarah and Andrea discuss the cabinet shakeups that have left our government in the hands of a criminal syndicate bound by blood, marriage, and guilt; the retirement of James Mattis and what it means for US foreign policy, especially in Russia and Ukraine; the explosive Buzzfeed expose on how the Treasury was compromised by the Kremlin in 2015 with the help of complicit American employees, and how whistleblowers were the only people punished; the disturbing background of the Secretary of the Treasury Steve Mnuchin and his ties to international kleptocrats; and the strange spy saga of Paul Whelan.
We discuss 2020 presidential contenders, and Andrea comes out early with her 2020 pick – but we both endorse one thing, and that is impeachment! Welcome back to Gaslit Nation – the podcast where women don’t have to be likeable at all!
|Jan 04, 2019|
Festivus Special: Mueller's Low Hanging Fruit
At Gaslit Nation, every week is Festivus because we have so manygrievances to air! Our Feat of Strength is that we survived 2018. This week, Sarah and Andrea’s Airing of Grievances includes an in-depth look at Russian spy Maria Butina and her NRA “lover” Paul Erickson; a recap of the many criminal acts of Michael Flynn and some speculation as to why he may be eluding punishment; and a long, hard look into the way the mainstream media has covered – or shall we say covered up – the Trump-Russia case, sometimes at the behest of mafia operative and propagandist Paul Manafort.
|Dec 19, 2018|
Individual One: The New Name of the GOP
It’s another wild week in the United States of America, where any child can grow up to be Individual One! Actually, that’s not true, you have to choose a life of crime and complicity, and this week’s Gaslit Nation discusses what’s new for the indicted (Michael Cohen, Paul Manafort), the people who failed to stop them (James Comey), the accomplices (John Kelly, Nick Ayers), and the new guy who will likely let everyone walk, Iran-Contra style (William Barr). Sarah and Andrea discuss how extreme wealth and corruption of the justice system have created a stratified class that can in a sense do no wrong -- because no one will punish them for the wrong they’ve done! We also weigh in on the crisis in France, the role of social media in political protest, and the ongoing fallout from the murder of Jamal Khashoggi.
|Dec 12, 2018|
Kleptocracy World Order
In this week’s Gaslit Nation, Sarah and Andrea express their ongoing frustration about last week’s deja news avalanche of stories about corruption that remains unpunished. As America, the land of collective amnesia, realizes yet again that Trump is a Russian asset following the confessions of Michael Cohen, Sarah and Andrea discuss what it means for brazen, blatant criminals to go caught but unpunished.
|Dec 05, 2018|
Gaslit Nation Featurette: Pass a Law
In this special episode of Gaslit Nation, Andrea interviews her mother Tanya Chalupa who championed the child carseat law and the seatbelt law in California, as well as working on other child safety bills. She explains how to get a law passed even if, as she was, you're an outsider with very little experience.
And yes, the big news of Manafort Monday is broken down - the explosive Guardian scoop - and Russia's escalation of its invasion of Ukraine. Next week, we'll be back to unpack the latest developments of these stories and more. There's never a slow news week in Gaslit Nation.
|Nov 28, 2018|
Happy Thanksgiving: We're Grateful for Canvassers
Happy Thanksgiving, Gaslit Nation listeners! Sarah and Andrea are hosting a feast of interesting (and terrifying) commentary from folks around the US as they welcome winners of the Gaslit Nation Get Out the Vote contest onto the show. Our special guests – Valerie Carzello (@ScullyBully) of South Burlington, Vermont, Catherine Snyder (@catherinecritz) of Fayetteville, Arkansas, and Brian Covey (@hidvorak) of Seattle, Washington discuss their experiences as activists in the 2018 election, the outcome of the midterms in their states, and their dreams for the future. Sarah and Andrea are very grateful not only to the contest winners but to everyone who helped get out the vote in this record-breaking midterms, which not only resulted in important wins for progressive candidates but demonstrated a massive rise in civic engagement that will extend well into the future.
Our contest winners stayed on the line to discuss the latest news, including the wildfires in California and the terrible response of the Trump administration to climate change, the latest in the Khashoggi case and the relationship of malevolent millennials MBS and Jared Kushner, and voter suppression in Georgia and the rest of the US.
Since it’s Thanksgiving, Sarah and Andrea would like to thank everyone who has made Gaslit Nation a surprise hit. We would not be able to keep the show going without you. We are an independent, largely donor-funded podcast, and we are offering extra material to those who subscribe at $10/month or more. (You can sign up here.) We're about to post a Q & A session where we answered reader questions about authoritarianism, activism, art, and Axl Rose, so check that out if in you’re in that donor group! We look forward to doing more Q & As and bringing you more bonus features in the future.
We will publish a special Gaslit Nation Featurette next week then we'll be back to our regular episodes in December. Have a great holiday break!
A special note: Since the audio of this episode is less than ideal, we'll post a transcript of this episode on our Patreon page.
|Nov 21, 2018|
The Blue Wave Continues: Kansas Rising
In this episode of Gaslit Nation, Sarah and Andrea are still way too excited about the midterm elections! The Blue Wave turned out to be a slow motion river flowing through the country and reshaping the political map in the process.
We talk about the new winners and losers as well as the battles over voter suppression in Georgia and Florida and how it’s not partisan to count all the damn votes. We also wave
Also not safe: our national reputation, as Trump cozies up to Putin
In sum, this was another deranged and horrendous week but finally, there’s a crack of light in the kleptocratic darkness, and it’s up to the American people to keep that light shining through!
|Nov 14, 2018|
Midterms Special: The Blue Wave Has Begun
The midterms are over and the results are…decidedly mixed! Sarah and Andrea discuss the historical night from their perspectives in Andrea’s blue trifecta of New York and Sarah’s red nightmare hellhole – er, trifecta – of Missouri. If you are a happy progressive living in a newly blue state or a frustrated progressive living in a newly red state or anything in between, this is the show for you!
We discuss the issues at stake: voter rights, civil rights, climate change, the Mueller probe, the balance of power in Congress, and more. Andrea jubilantly discusses the power of political organizing and sees positive prospects for 2020 so long as we don’t get complacent; Sarah bleakly discusses how the GOP manipulates outcomes and her fears for the future. It’s like Leslie Knope and April Ludgate have a podcast on rising authoritarianism!
But regardless where we live or what we see coming, Andrea and Sarah both are thrilled to see such massive civic engagement, especially among our audience. Thank you to everyone who participated in our canvassing challenges and who helped get out of the vote! We discuss the historical wins of candidates from marginalized communities, new ballot measures that support human rights, and Democratic control of the House. This is a tumultuous time and no matter what happens, we are here to cover it for the long run.
|Nov 08, 2018|
Gaslit Nation Featurette: Every District
We're excited to share this important discussion with Every District, a grassroots fundraising and data-driven effort to turn state governments blue. Regardless of the results of the 2018 midterms, we have a long way to go to rebuild our democracy. As we've covered before on Gaslit Nation, in our interview with Future Now, the battleground is in the states. Affordable health care, voting rights, a fair living wage are just some of the fundamental issues decided by our local representatives. Led by Karl Rove, the far-right has been so effective at dominating at the state level that they're scarily close to being able to call a constiutitonal convention and rewrite our constitution. Every District is in it for the long-haul to reverse this trend, and successes include the big blue sweep in Virginia in November 2017. We urge you to listen to this fascinating discussion with Nicole Hobbs and Drew Morrison, the co-founders of Every District, about what's at stake and the path forward towards creating a more progressive union before it's too late.
Nicole and Drew recommend checking out Mobilize America for important actions you can take now through election day - November 6th - to get out the vote (#GOTV). Make sure you have a plan to vote on Tuesday and before you head to the polls check out Ballot Ready to read up on what will be on your ballot so that you can make the most informed decisions. And if you want to support 20 local candidates in this homestretch, Every District is collecting donations for key races - 100% of the donations go to the campaigns to help them turn out voters.
We will post our next episode on Wednesday November 7th to discuss the election results. Until then, happy #GOTV and voting!
|Nov 03, 2018|
Halloween Special: The Kathy Griffin Interview
Welcome to the Gaslit Nation Halloween Special, which is not so different than a regular Gaslit Nation episode due to the 24-7 horror show we call the Trump administration!
This week, Andrea and Sarah discuss the horrific extremist threats and violence of the past week as well as the constant encroaching repression of the administration’s extremist policies. We once again encourage everyone to get out and vote on November 6. Remember that a vote does not only help an individual candidate, but shapes the balance of power in Congress, determining what laws are passed. You are not only voting for yourself, but to help protect the rights of vulnerable Americans as well as preserve the integrity of our democracy. So vote!
This week’s guest on Gaslit Nation is comedian Kathy Griffin, who has been a target of the Trump administration ever since she posed for a photo holding up a Trump mask covered in ketchup, leading to her being labeled a terrorist by Trump and his supporters. We at Gaslit Nation do not condone this photo in any way – but neither does Kathy Griffin, who immediately apologized for the picture and who routinely condemns political violence. The administration’s treatment of Griffin, combined with its countenance of actual violent extremists, sheds light on serious threats to our national security as well as to freedom of speech. While the MAGAbomber cruised around the country threatening citizens but was ignored as a legitimate threat, Griffin was put on the Interpol list, interrogated by the FBI, and blacklisted by Hollywood.
|Oct 31, 2018|
A Foreign Policy for the Left: Put Gas Station Dictatorships Out of Business
We call on a strong foreign policy for the left, one that's driven by turning America into a world leader of renewable energy to finally put gas station dictatorships like Putin's oil-rich Russia and MSB's Saudi Arabia out of business. It's far past time to confront the heinous human rights crimes of these regimes that kill journalists, kill and torture LGBTQ people and opposition leaders. By doing so, we will confront other urgent man-made dangers – the catastrophic effects of climate change.
|Oct 25, 2018|
The Media Industry Is Complicit, and Good Journalists Pay the Price
This week on Gaslit Nation we discuss the media: the systemic failures of an economically and morally bankrupt industry dominated by rich white men, and the bravery and creativity of journalists who struggle not only within this system, but with a much more severe threat –an international alliance of kleptocrats who murder journalists with impunity. We continue our conversation about the assassination of slain journalist Jamil Khashoggi and reflect on other unpunished recent killings like the attempted Skripal poisoning in the UK. Why does the West do nothing when autocrats murder writers and dissidents so brazenly? Why isn’t the West hitting autocrats where it hurts them most – in their bank accounts?
|Oct 17, 2018|
Robert Mueller Will Not Save You
Goodbye checks and balances, hello authoritarian shitshow! In the latest Gaslit Nation, Sarah and Andrea discuss the demolishment of checks and balances now that the independence and integrity of the judiciary are gone – joining a legislature that has been, in the words of Senator Patrick Leahy, reduced to little more than an arm of the Trump White House. As we predicted, this was a historic week for America, one that will be remembered as a turning point toward consolidated autocracy. So speak while you can still speak, and vote while you can still vote.
We discuss the aftermath of the Kavanaugh confirmation, the tattered future of the Mueller investigation, the possible compromise of the FBI, and the transnational crackdown on journalists who document corruption and speak up against repressive governments. In one week, Saudi Arabian journalist Jamal Khashoggi went missing and was allegedly murdered in the Saudi Arabian embassy in Turkey, and Bulgarian journalist Viktoria Marinova was murdered in a Bulgarian border town, making her the third high profile journalist to be murdered in the EUthis year. Both had critiqued the repression and corruption of their countries.
These are also dangerous times for US journalism, as Trump continues his attack on the free press and his dehumanization of anyone who dares criticize him. We discuss the dark future of a world run by a transnational crime syndicate seemingly held in check by no one. Many of our worst fears have been realized; those baselessly claiming a “deux ex Mueller” was coming were severely mistaken.
What we have, in the end, are ourselves and each other to save – along with what’s left of our country. We end the episode with an interview with Sydette Harry, a writer whose prescient analysis of the weaponization of digital media should have been heeded years ago, and whose advice on how to survive in an autocratic political landscape should be heeded now.
A Special Announcement from Gaslit Nation
Thank you to everyone who participated in the Crush the Midterms Challenge. We asked you to create a plan on CrushTheMidterms.org, tweet your plan to @gaslitnation, and from those that we received we chose a winner -- @indigoiis -- who will be sent a signed copy of Sarah’s New York Times bestselling book, The View from Flyover Country: Dispatches from the Forgotten America. If you participated and didn’t win yet, the contest continues, a new winner announced every week, through election day, November 6th. So send us your Crush the Midterms plan if you haven’t already. We’re also introducing a new contest, the 1,000 Doors Challenge. Join Andrea in a moonshot goal of knocking on 1,000 doors between now and election day. It’s a big goal, but striving for it could help make a difference in the most important midterms in our nation’s history. Tweet a photo of yourself canvassing to @gaslitnation and the winner, chosen on November 6th, will get a signed copy of Sarah’s book and an invitation to come on our show as a special guest. A group of Harvard students created a great YouTube series called Resistance School, and their basic explainer video of how to knock on doors to get out the vote shows just how easy and fun this effective outreach strategy can be!
|Oct 10, 2018|
Kavanaugh Catastrophe and the Death of Checks and Balances
In this week’s episode of Gaslit Nation, Sarah and Andrea discuss the Kavanaugh hearings, the pathological lying and enabling of the GOP, Trump’s attacks on the FBI and its investigation of Kavanaugh, and the continuing erosion of our republic’s checks and balances.
|Oct 03, 2018|
The American Crisis: The View from Flyover Country, Part 2
In episode 6, Gaslit Nation continues its look at the decades of American crises that gave rise to Trumpism and paved the way for Russian interference in our democracy.
|Sep 19, 2018|
The American Crisis: The View from Flyover Country, Part 1
In part one of a two-part interview, Andrea talks to Sarah about income inequality, the loss of the "American dream," and the inspiration for her NYT bestseller The View from Flyover Country.
This episode is sponsored by:
Audible -- Go to audible.com/GASLIT for a free 30 day trial and your first book is free.
SunBasket -- Go to sunbasket.com/GASLIT for $35 off your first order
|Sep 03, 2018|
Computer Scientist Barbara Simons on Hacking, Paper Ballots, and Securing U.S. Elections
Sarah and Andrea interview Barbara Simons PhD, a computer scientist who specializes in election security, to answer the question on everyone’s mind: can our voting machines be attacked? Were they attacked in 2016? What’s in store for the midterms, and what can we, as citizens, do to protect our democracy? Plus a news recap, including Oleg Sentsov's 100th day on hunger strike protesting the treatment of political prisoners in Russia (#FreeSentsov), Omarosa's receipts, and Manafort's endless trial.
|Aug 21, 2018|
Robert Mueller and the Iron Triangles
In the final installment of our three-part series looking back at the 2016 election, we get into the hacking, the recount, the trail of dead Russians, and Robert Mueller's prescient Iron Triangles report, which predicted something like the Trump administration way back in 2011.
|Aug 07, 2018|
Harry Reid, Access Hollywood, and the Comey Chameleon
What a week to be talking about the 2016 election! Amid the arrests of various Russian agents for hacking or otherwise influencing the U.S. election, here we are with the second in a three-part series in which Sarah Kendzior and Andrea Chalupa look back at what was going on during that year, what signs were there, the media's misplaced focus on Clinton's emails, and how to ensure the 2018 midterms aren't a repeat of 2016.
|Jul 23, 2018|
Manafort, Wikileaks, and Trump's Long Bromance with Putin
Welcome to Gaslit Nation, a podcast to help cut through the noise in the most important midterm election year of our lives. The last most important election year of our lives was 2016, a gaslit election. In the first three episodes of Gaslit Nation, Sarah Kendzior and Andrea Chalupa take listeners back through that year. First up, we reflect on the surreal warning signs of Brexit, the fascist pageantry of the Republican Convention in Cleveland, and the Trump team’s open deference to the Kremlin—because it’s all still relevant today.
|Jul 09, 2018|
Welcome to Gaslit Nation
Gaslit Nation is a bi-monthly podcast from DAME magazine that cuts through the noise of the news cycle to help listeners gain a sense of control in an out- of- control world. Hosts writers Sarah Kendzior and Andrea Chalupa are women whose voices are part of the larger zeitgeist transforming civic engagement across the country.
|Jun 19, 2018|