Here And There with Dave Marash

AP's Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative reporter MItch Weiss revealed in March how Federal, State and local law enforcement had ignored years of reports of physical, psychological, and economic abuse of converts to the Word of Faith Fellowship in Spindale, North Carolina.  Among the charges, worshippers are overworked, underpaid and kept virtual prisoners.  Now, Mitch has a follow-up report, showing that the religious cult has been bringing young Brazilians to their compound and treating them even worse.  Now, the Feds, state and local officials are definitely on the case. 

Direct download: HT_083117_Weiss_POD.mp3
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The San Luis Valley of southern Colorado is beautiful, a hammock between 2 major ranges of the Rocky Mountains, and prosperous, with some ranching but more farming of potatoes and...--this is the 21st century-- quinoa.  But it has a problem: not enough water.  The Rio Grande can only supply so much and underground aquifers are dropping.  The solution, the Golden Rule of Nursery School -- learning to share.  Kelsey Cody of the University of Colorado, Boulder, has been keeping a scholarly eye on the life-lessons and political-lessons being learned in the shadow of the Rockies. 

Direct download: HT082917CodyPOD.mp3
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Yemen may be the most unfortunate country on earth, beset by civil war and devastating air attacks, a famine that could starve millions, and the worst cholera outbreak ever reported...up to half a million already infected.  And things are getting worse: land and air attacks are more frequent than ever, and the coalitions that comprise the 2 sides are coming apart and still more people are being killed.  Oh, and the US is firmly on the side of the Saudi and Emirati invaders, the people UN officials call the worst child-killers on earth.  AP Cairo Correspondent Maggie Michael has been covering the story from the beginning. 

Direct download: HT0828MichaelPOD.mp3
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The Islamist radicals of ISIS have been almost entirely expelled from the Old City of Western Mosul.  But the costs of this military victory have been enormous…as many as 40,000 civilians killed, an estimated one million people made homeless, and between a quarter and a half of buildings reduced to rubble.  How to help Mosul recover, the RAND Corporation analyst Shelly Culbertson has put in a year refining a plan.  It starts with supplying basic needs…food, shelter, security…and then considers restoration of police and health care and other public services, and allowing displaced people to return to their homes. 

Direct download: HT082417CulbertsonPOD.mp3
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When the Iraqi-led allied assault on the city of Mosul, Iraq, to expel the Islamic State from its biggest base city began, predictions were, it would take 3 or 4 months.  But after it took 5 months just to take East Mosul, and the casualty count among Iraqi forces was reaching unsustainable levels, the strategy for taking West Mosul was changed.  American-supported Air strikes and Iraqi ground force shelling with artillery and mortars was stepped up, and damage to property and civilians soared.  Photo-journalist Ivor Prickett covered the story in depth.

Direct download: HT082317PrickettPOD.mp3
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NM Gov. Susana Martinez says the way to grow jobs is to cut corporate taxes and cut back on environmental law enforcement.  That’s exactly the opposite from what’s happening in the neighboring state of Colorado.  Guess which state shows rapid economic growth, and has tough laws regulating methane…and which state has the worst methane plume in the western hemisphere.  Well, at least it’s easier to identify NW NM from space….even if our economy is still in the ICU.  Rebecca Moss of the Santa Fe New Mexican gives us the story.

Direct download: HT082217MossPOD.mp3
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Are you in deep trouble with your people, because your economy is disintegrating and criminal violence is amok on your streets and your clumsy political manipulations are as stupidly obvious as they are anti-democratic?  Want fast relief?  Get Donald Trump to threaten you and become a global martyr in waiting.  AP Andean bureau chief Joshua Goodman on the big favor America’s President did for Venezuela’s dictator, Nicolas Maduro..and why the Trump scarecrow might not save Maduro’s political future. 

Direct download: HT082117goodmanPOD.mp3
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The pattern is all too clear.  The Federal Department of Justice files criminal charges against some of the biggest brand name financial institutions on Wall Street, and winds up settling for money taken from innocent shareholders, while letting the people who dreamed up or passed along the scams that helped crash the economy go unpunished.  Pulitzer Prize winner Jesse Eisinger’s new book The Chickenshit Club shows – this injustice is no accident.  The toughest time for white collar criminals was when George W Bush was President…under Barack Obama prosecution became negotiation and bosses and their companies got more protection than citizens. 

Direct download: HT0817EisingerPOD.mp3
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In 2016 voters in New Mexico emphatically rejected Donald Trump, and by giving Democrats majorities in both houses of the State Legislature, rejected Republican Governor Susana Martinez’ 6 years of economic austerity.  In Kansas, in 2017, Republican Governor Sam Brownback’s hard-line austerity program was rolled back by opposition from within his own party.  Analyst Kim Rueben of The Brookings Tax Policy Center at the Urban Institute explains what happened…and what it might say about a newly developing mindset among American voters…paying taxes for services you want and need may be acceptable, after all. 

Direct download: HT081617RuebenPOD.mp3
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What one investigative reporter can do.  Thomas Brennan of The War Horse.com broke the story of the widespread cyber-stalking of female US Marines, by male US Marines and revealed a command that had been asleep at the switch.  Our guest Elliot Ackerman, who fought alongside Thomas Brennan as Marines in Fallujah, Iraq, has taken Thomas’s reporting a big step further: the need to tame the so-called “battle of the sexes” to protect the integrity and effectiveness of the men and women of the armed service uniquely focused on the literal battlefield. 

Direct download: HT081517AckermanPOD.mp3
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