Economic Update: The US Political Right in Anger and Mourning

[S11 E06] New

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On this week's show, Prof. Wolff presents updates on the radical policies of Berlin's city gov't and its Die LInke Party; why raising minimum wage to $15/hour is too little, too late; how bans on evictions and utility shut offs fight Covid-19; and lastly, he argues for the urgent need for a changed China policy. On the second half of the show, Wolff interviews Prof. Arlie Hochschild on her 10 year study of the US political right.

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About our guest: Arlie Hochschild is the author of nine books including, most recently, Strangers in Their Own Land: Anger and Mourning on the American Right, a New York Times best seller and finalist for the National Book Award. A documentary film is underway in which respondents are being interviewed about the events of January 6th in Washington D. C.

Learn more about Prof Wolff's new book, "The Sickness is the System: When Capitalism Fails to Save Us from Pandemics or Itself," now available. Visit us at

"Richard Wolff in his new book examines frightening and anti-democratic configurations of corporate power, offering not only a blueprint for how we got here, but a plan for how we will rescue ourselves and create new models of economic and political justice.” - Chris Hedges

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Showing 1 comment

  • Sonny Wiehe
    commented 2021-02-16 23:51:10 -0500
    Ms. Hochschild seems like a nice enough social scholar who truly wishes to explain the alarming "river wide rift between our two political parties in order to find common ground for all of us to move forward upon. However her presentation was far from the “treat” promised by our fawning host. To the contrary, it was a babbling and incoherent presentation of the alleged origins of the fomenting anger within the political right. If this is her goal (I couldn’t tell), then it appeared to me that either she is interviewing the wrong people…or not understanding what they are telling her. For a brief moment I thought she was going to make a cogent point by explaining the distinction between a “complaint” among the far right and a bonafide “grievance”. But, alas, she failed elaborate in the slightest—- much less crack this potential nugget for her audience. Perhaps she does this in her book, but I have no faith that her book does any better at explaining this distinction then did her talk. However, playing out that potential argument in my own mind, it seems any distinction made in order to trace legitimate origins of anger would actually be a moot point in this current political climate.

    In my opinion “Trumpism” is not “lightning in a jar” as one of her interviewees explains, but rather simply populist lightning itself. It’s polarized power attached itself in 2016 to the only lightning rod which gave the illusion (for better or for worse) of not being firmly planted in a political swamp. I feel that populist “lightning” will continue to try and attach itself to any loftier “ism” that comes down the pike (with or without Trump) until the “grievance” Ms. Hochschild obliquely alluded to is resolved. In this sense, the phenomena becomes a matter of basic physics, not politics.

    I look forward to a future effort by Ms. Hochschild to clearly make her point to the masses for God only knows where that lightning will strike next if not properly grounded.

    Sonny Wiehe
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