Words Matter podcast

Words Matter

Katie Barlow

American politics is undergoing seismic changes that will alter the course of history. At Words Matter, we believe that facts, evidence, truth and objective reality are necessary and vital in public discourse. Our hosts and guests have broad experience in government, politics and journalism -- this gives them a unique ability to explain recent events and place them in historic context. Together, with fellow journalists, elected officials, policy-makers and thought-leaders, they will analyze the week's news and get at the real truth behind all the distracting headlines. New episodes released Mondays. Produced and recorded out of The Hangar Studios, NYC.

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264 Episoder

  • Words Matter podcast

    American's Mission Statement read by Senator John F. Kennedy

    12:49

    On July 4th we celebrate the birth of the American Experiment. The Declaration of Independence -- written in the Spring of 1776 by a 33 year old Thomas Jefferson -- is America’s mission statement. And like all mission statements, the words represented not what we were, but what we aspired to be. In fact, the author himself was a gifted writer, but a deeply flawed person who – like his country -- did not embody the ideas and ideal of that document.For more than two hundred and forty years, the story of America has been the struggle between those who want to move us close to the words of our mission statement – and those who want to stop them.It is often forgotten that the Declaration itself was meant to be spoken. In 2004 the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library released a previously unknown 1957 recording of then-Senator Kennedy reading the Declaration of Independence in New York on July 4th.So this week to honor Independence Day -- And to remind ourselves that as a country must continue the struggle to turn America’s founding words into reality – we give John F. Kennedy’s reading of the Declaration of Independence the final word.Support this show http://supporter.acast.com/words-matter. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
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    Barack Obama's Eulogy for the Honorable Reverend Clementa Pinckney

    41:41

    On June 26th 2015 President Barack Obama delivered the eulogy at the funeral of the Reverend Clementa C. Pinckney, the senior pastor of the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston and a South Carolina State Senator.Reverend Pinckney and 8 other Black church members had been murdered a week earlier during Bible Study in a racially motivated mass shooting perpetrated by a white supremacist. The Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church is one of the oldest Black churches in the United States, and it has long been a center for organizing events related to civil rights. Founded in 1816, the church played an important role in the history of South Carolina, during slavery and Reconstruction, during the civil rights movement of the 1950s and 60s and in the Black Lives Matter movement. It is the oldest African Methodist Episcopal Church in the South, often referred to as "Mother Emanuel". Rev. Pinckney, was a well known activist who had held rallies after the shooting of Walter Scott by a white police officer two months earlier, in nearby North Charleston. As a state senator, Reverend Pinckney had pushed for legislation requiring police to wear body cameras.The Reverend and his church were targeted because of their history and role in civil rights activism. With a rousing eulogy and a chorus of “Amazing Grace,” President Barack Obama called on the country to honor the nine victims of the South Carolina church massacre by working toward racial healing.He said that included removing the Confederate battle flag from the South Carolina State House grounds.“It’s true, the flag did not cause these murders,” The President said, but “we all have to acknowledge the flag has always represented more than just ancestral pride. For many, black and white, that flag was a reminder of systemic oppression and racial subjugation. We see that now.”“By taking down that flag,” he said, “we express God’s grace.” But I don't think God wants us to stop there.“On July 6, 2015, the South Carolina Senate voted to remove the Confederate flag from display outside the South Carolina State House. Make no mistake - the protests we have seen in the last month are a continuation of that struggle. And none of us can stop - none of us should rest until we dismantle and remove every symbol and every fact of the systemic oppression and racial subjugation that President Obama described in his eulogy of Reverend Pinckney. Support this show http://supporter.acast.com/words-matter. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
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    American History Tellers -- Lindsay Graham Interview

    36:56

    Not THAT Lindsay Graham. This week we profile one of our favorite podcasts American History Tellers. The Cold War, Prohibition, the Gold Rush, the Space Race. Every part of your life -the words you speak, the ideas you share- can be traced to our history, but how well do you really know the stories that made America? American History Tellers will take you to the events, the times and the people that shaped our nation. And they'll show you how our history affected them, their families and affects you today. Hosted by Lindsay Graham (not the Senator). From Wondery, the network behind Tides Of History, History Unplugged, Fall Of Rome and Dirty John.And check out Lindsay's latest podcast -- American Elections: Wicked GameSubscribe on Apple Podcasts, Spotify or wherever you got your podcasts. American Elections: Wicked Game http://wondery.fm/AmericanElectionsWMSupport this show http://supporter.acast.com/words-matter. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
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    President John F. Kennedy on Civil Rights

    18:14

    This week we highlight presidential leadership and one of the most important civil rights speeches ever delivered by a sitting American president.By June of 1963, John F. Kennedy has been president for nearly two and a half years.While Kennedy had long privately expressed his deep moral objections to the treatment of black people in American society and indicated support for New federal legislation. His public comments ranged from cautious moderate criticism to a 1950s version of “both sides-ism” but were mostly nonexistent.In June of 1963, however the man and the moment met.Alabama Governor George Wallace’s staged photo op defiance of federal law by standing in the school house doorway had lasted less than 90 minutes. On June 11th 1963 two black students were peaceful enrolled at the University of Alabama under the protection of a federalized Alabama National Guard commanded by US Marshals under the direction of the Department of Justice and the Attorney General of the United States.Kennedy’s advisors recommended and Fully expected that the president would NOT address the American people that evening. With a little less than 18 months until to the 1964 elections, the President’s legislative agenda and his political future depended upon the votes Southern Democrats in Congress and those of their politically unforgiving constituents. The President had other ideas. Kennedy saw a way to exercise moral leader on an issue where he had to that point failed. He would request Network Television airtime to address the nation on the issue of civil rights. The facts and statistics on racial inequality in the United States described by President Kennedy to the American people that evening had even never been acknowledged by a President before - much less spoken in such a detailed and direct language. In a telegram to the White House after watching the President’s remarks in Atlanta with other civil rights leaders, the Reverend Dr Martin Luther King Jr. described the address as ONE OF THE MOST ELOQUENT, PROFOUND,AND UNEQUIVOCAL PLEAS FOR JUSTICE AND FREEDOM OF ALL MEN, EVER MADE BY ANY PRESIDENT.Dr King knew that Kennedy was moved by his now famous “Letter from Birmingham Jail” - written just weeks before. To President Kennedy and many Americans Dr. King’s letter was more than than a spirited defense of civil disobedience. It was an indictment of white indifference.As you listen to the speech, you will hear Kennedy echoing King’s “Letter”The President rejects the idea that Black Americans should have to wait for equality. "Who among us," Kennedy asks the American people, "would then be content with counsels of patience and delay?"Support this show http://supporter.acast.com/words-matter. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
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    ENCORE: Hill Women - with Cassie Chambers

    26:39

    Our guest this week is a writer, lawyer, speaker and an advocate. Cassie Chambers grew up in Eastern Kentucky, graduated from Yale College, the Yale School of Public Health, the London School of Economics, and Harvard Law School, where she was president of the Harvard Legal Aid Bureau, a student-run law firm that represents low-income clients.Cassie received a Skadden Fellowship to return to Kentucky to do legal work with domestic violence survivors in rural communities.In 2018, Cassie helped pass Jeanette’s Law, which eliminated the requirement that domestic violence survivors pay an incarcerated spouse’s legal fees in order to get a divorce.Her new book, Hill Women: Finding Family and a Way Forward in the Appalachian Mountains, celebrates the amazingly resilient women in her family and the beloved mountain culture that helped shape her.Support this show http://supporter.acast.com/words-matter. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
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    ENCORE: FDR on Democracy with Professor Harvey Kaye - Part 2

    1:10:48

    This week we welcome back historian and sociologist Harvey J. Kaye for Part 2 of our discussion of his important book FDR on Democracy: The Greatest Speeches and Writings of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt.Harvey J. Kaye is Professor Emeritus of Democracy and Justice Studies and Director of the Center for History and Social Change at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay.An award-winning author and writer, he has written 9 books – including:Take Hold of Our History: Make America Radical Again (2019)Thomas Paine and the Promise of America (2005)The Fight for the Four Freedoms: What Made FDR and the Greatest Generation Truly Great (2015) “Why Do Ruling Classes Fear History?” and Other Questions (1996)Follow Professor Kaye on Twitter @harveyjkayeSupport this show http://supporter.acast.com/words-matter. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
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    SpyTalk: Shots in the Dark

    56:10

    Jeanne Meserve looks into the mysterious directed-energy attacks on officials in Washington with Mark Zaid, lawyer for CIA and State Department victims. Then Ronen Bergman, author of a groundbreaking book on Israeli assassination operations, talks with Jeff Stein about the effect of Mossad’s hits on Iran’s nuclear scientists and uranium facilities. Last but hardly least, Jeanne talks at length with technology venture capitalist Gilman Louis about his work with the CIA and the perils of losing the race on artificial intelligence to America’s adversaries.Each week, we’re bringing you a new episode of one of our favorite podcasts, Deep State Radio.Deep State Radio, hosted by David Rothkopf, produces new episodes 2-3 times per week and brings together top experts, policymakers, and journalists from the national security, foreign policy, and political communities. You can subscribe to the podcast on Apple, Spotify or wherever you get your podcasts.If you become a member of the DSR Network, you’ll receive benefits such as ad-free listening via private feed, discounts to virtual events and Deep State Radio Swag, and access to the member-only Slack community. This is one of the most closely followed podcasts among the people influencing the most important decisions in Washington and worldwide today. You can learn more by visiting thedsrnetwork.com. Listeners to Words Matter will receive 25% off of the regular membership price. Use code wordsmatter at checkout.Support this show http://supporter.acast.com/words-matter. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
  • Words Matter podcast

    ENCORE: FDR on Democracy with Professor Harvey Kaye - Part 1

    1:12:25

    This week we welcome historian and sociologist Harvey J. Kaye for Part 1 of our discussion of his important book FDR on Democracy: The Greatest Speeches and Writings of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt.Harvey J. Kaye is Professor Emeritus of Democracy and Justice Studies and Director of the Center for History and Social Change at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay.An award-winning author and writer, he has written 9 books – including:Take Hold of Our History: Make America Radical Again (2019)Thomas Paine and the Promise of America (2005)The Fight for the Four Freedoms: What Made FDR and the Greatest Generation Truly Great (2015) “Why Do Ruling Classes Fear History?” and Other Questions (1996)Follow Professor Kaye on Twitter @harveyjkayeSupport this show http://supporter.acast.com/words-matter. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
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    SpyTalk: A CIA Spy in Syria, and US Responses to Russian, Chinese and Other Adversary Hacking

    54:33

    This week, in the debut edition of the SpyTalk podcast, co-host Jeff Stein talks to the Washington Post’s Joby Warrick about an extraordinary CIA operation in Syria, as told in his new book, Red Line. Jeff and co-host Jeanne Meserve also discuss the Biden administration’s recent expulsion of suspected Russian spies, then Jeanne talks with former NSA Director and Cyber Command chief Admiral Mike Rogers about Chinese, Russian and other hackers’ infiltration of U.S. computer networks.Support this show http://supporter.acast.com/words-matter. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
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    A Tribute to Walter Mondale

    51:37

    Walter Frederick "Fritz" Mondale (January 5, 1928 – April 19, 2021) was a politician, statesman, diplomat, and lawyer who served as a U.S. senator from Minnesota from 1964 to 1976 and as the 42nd vice president of the United States from 1977 to 1981 under President Jimmy Carter.. In 1984 he was the Democratic Party's nominee for president of the united states.As a Senator, Mondale had been the primary sponsor of the Fair Housing Act of 1968 – transformative legislation that outlawed the Refusal to sell or rent a dwelling to any person because of their race, color, religion or national origin.Walter Mondale was the first vice president to have an office in the White House and established the concept of an "activist Vice President." He began the tradition of weekly lunches with the president, which continues to this day. More importantly, he expanded the vice president's role from figurehead to presidential advisor, full-time participant, and troubleshooter for the administration. Subsequent vice presidents have followed this model.[38In 1984 he made history as the Democratic presidential nominee when he selected New York Congresswoman Geraldine Ferraro as his running mate. Making her the first woman on a national ticketIn August of 2019, we had the honor and privilege of spending some with former Vice President Mondale as Joe Lockhart and I traveled to Minneapolis to interview him for Words Matter. Joe had served in a senior position on Mondale’s 1984 Presidential Campaign and as far as Walter Mondale was concerned - that made him part of the family, literally.They had kept in touch over the years. The former Vice President regularly held events and get togethers with his former staffers where ever he traveled - and Joe had always attended no matter how busy he was. At 91, Mondale was still very sharp and as always polite, courteous and inquisitive. He asked about Joe’s wife and children by name and remembered small details about their last visit that Joe himself had forgotten. He wanted to understand all he could about how podcasts worked, how many people listened, and why they were popular.What impressed me most about him were his humility, self awareness and introspection. While most politicians can muster faux humility – during a campaign – that was not what Walter Mondale was all about. As with everything else - he was sincere and genuine. Mondale was brutally honest and realistic about why his 1984 campaign had been soundly defeated. Even with the microphones turned off, he was complimentary of former Presidents Reagan and George HW Bush - And unlike like most politicians- he took full responsibility (even for things that were not his fault) for the historic loss to Ronald Reagan. As we got ready to leave, the former Vice President was the embodiment of Minnesota Nice - he thanked us for making the trip, told us how much he enjoyed the interview, made Joe promise to send his regards to his family and even asked if we were all set with ride to airport. As he walked us to the elevator - he shook my hand and gave Joe a hug and told us both to “keep up the good fight”. Last weekend - just days before his passing Walter Mondale sent a final message to his staff:Dear Team,Well my time has come. I am eager to rejoin Joan and Eleanor. Before I Go I wanted to let you know how much you mean to me. Never has a public servant had a better group of people working at their side!Together we have accomplished so much and I know you will keep up the good fight.Joe in the White House certainly helps.I always knew it would be okay if I arrived some place and was greeted by one of you!My best to all of you!FritzWith that let’s listen to Joe Lockhart’s interview with the late, great former Vice President - Walter Mondale. Support this show http://supporter.acast.com/words-matter. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.

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