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Robert Scheer is editor in chief of the progressive Internet site Truthdig. He has built a reputation for strong social and political writing over his 30 years as a journalist. He conducted the famous Playboy magazine interview in which Jimmy Carter confessed to the lust in his heart and he went on to do many interviews for the Los Angeles Times with Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan, Bill Clinton and many other prominent political and cultural figures. He is currently a clinical professor of communications at the University of Southern California's Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism. Scheer has written nine books, and his latest, "The Great American Stickup: How Reagan Republicans and Clinton Democrats Enriched Wall Street While Mugging Main Street" (Nation Books), was released on September 7, 2010. Scheer was raised in the Bronx, where he attended public schools and graduated from City College of New York. He studied as a Maxwell Fellow at Syracuse University and was a fellow at the Center for Chinese Studies at the University of California at Berkeley, where he did graduate work in economics. Scheer is a contributing editor for The Nation as well as a Nation Fellow, and is a former national correspondent for the Los Angeles Times. He has also been a Poynter Fellow at Yale, and was a fellow in arms control at Stanford.
SHARE Sunday, August 25, 2019 The Latest Victim in the Crucifixion of Julian Assange
The case of Ola Bini, a Swedish data privacy activist and associate of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, has been shrouded in mystery since his arrest in Quito, Ecuador, on April 11. He was detained on the same day Assange was forcibly removed from the Ecuadorian Embassy in the United Kingdom, inevitably raising questions about whether Bini was being held because of his connection with Assange.
SHARE Saturday, July 13, 2019 U.N. Report Condemns Torture of Assange
Despite the profound journalistic importance of the work Assange and whistleblower Chelsea Manning have done, the two have been smeared, persecuted and imprisoned in an effort to "shoot the messenger," which effectively distracts from their revelations and works to undermine their credibility.
(5 comments) SHARE Saturday, June 8, 2019 All Americans Have Blood on Their Hands
Shortly after Truthdig columnist Danny Sjursen left the Army, where he spent 18 years on active duty and rose to the rank of major, he sat down with Editor in Chief Robert Scheer for an interview about life after the military and a discussion about the conclusions he drew throughout his military career.
(3 comments) SHARE Saturday, April 27, 2019 What's Really Behind Julian Assange's Arrest
Assange's arrest is about national security reporting, the criminalization of source-journalist relationships involving leaking and, more broadly, an "attempt to criminalize investigative reporting," Shapiro argues. The Nation contributor also notes the courage behind Manning's decision to return to jail rather than take further part in the government investigation into Assange.
(5 comments) SHARE Saturday, March 9, 2019 Liberals Are Digging Their Own Grave With Russiagate
Putin's first mission is to pull Russia back together. And you could argue he did so in too many authoritarian ways; historians will have to sort that out. But for Putin, the restoration of Russia as a stable, prosperous order at home and a great world power abroad, that was his historic mission, written on the wind, so to speak.
(6 comments) SHARE Sunday, December 16, 2018 Is California About to Execute an Innocent Man?
The State of California may be about to execute an innocent man. Due to the passage of Prop. 66, which dramatically shortens the death penalty appeals process, Cooper's execution could be expedited without his ever receiving a fair hearing -- this is in one of the bluest states in the country.
(3 comments) SHARE Friday, December 7, 2018 Wall Street's Corruption Runs Deeper Than You Can Fathom
Signed into law as the U.S.A. Banking Act of 1933, the legislation had been crucial to safeguarding the financial industry in the wake of the Great Depression. But with its repeal in 1999, the barriers separating commercial and investment banking collapsed, creating the preconditions for an economic crisis from whose shadow we have yet to emerge.
(1 comments) SHARE Sunday, November 25, 2018 The Future of the Planet Looks Like "Wall-E"
The story has been lost in the miasma of Donald Trump's scandal-ridden presidency, but its implications for the U.S. and much of the West cannot be overstated. In April, after ending imports of 24 kinds of scrap last year, Beijing announced that it would be extending its ban to dozens of other materials.
(7 comments) SHARE Sunday, November 18, 2018 The Biggest Threat to Free Speech No One Is Talking About
Since the repeal in June of Obama-era rules guaranteeing net neutrality, websites like Truthdig, Democracy Now!, Common Dreams and more risk being pushed into an internet slow lane that could severely hamper their readership, if not drive them out of business entirely. It may be the most urgent threat to the First Amendment no one is talking about.
SHARE Sunday, October 28, 2018 Some of Our Biggest Cheerleaders for War Are Not Who You Think
Rubin explores what it means to be a patriot with an unabashed authoritarian in the Oval Office -- one who regularly targets professional athletes for refusing to stand during the National Anthem: "Veteran friends I know, both on the left and the right ... [are all] somewhat disgusted by the way that [they're] used as political props."
(1 comments) SHARE Saturday, October 20, 2018 The Disastrous "War on Terror" Has Come Home
we are very much living in a tech panopticon -- one in which our purchasing habits, individual data and even physical movements can be tracked without our knowledge. What does this mean for the future of personal privacy? How has the "war on terror" radically altered the ways we fight crime, and in what ways might the state use the increasingly sophisticated tools at its disposal to abuse its authority?
(4 comments) SHARE Saturday, August 4, 2018 Can America Ever Cure Its Obsession With Wealth?
Scheer and Greenfield discuss the decline of America's meritocracy, the impact of venerating wealth as a positive value and how our wealth obsession led to the election of Donald Trump. Greenfield also explains what she calls "the influence of affluence, the aspiration, and, in a way, the kind of aspirational hunger, kind of disease, kind of perpetual dissatisfaction, that we really see among so many people."
(5 comments) SHARE Wednesday, July 4, 2018 Nomi Prins on the Banks That Run the World (Audio and Transcript)
The banking meltdown happened because these banks were allowed to become too big to fail. That was the whole significance of Glass-Steagall from the Great Depression: don't ever let them be too big, don't ever let them commingle investment banking with the federally secured deposit of ordinary people; that wall -- they get rid of the wall, they become too big to fail, and then we have to bail them out.
(3 comments) SHARE Sunday, May 6, 2018 Trump's Shameful Choice of "Bloody Gina"
When it comes to bullying, Gina Haspel, whose confirmation hearing begins Wednesday, is the real deal, and The Donald is a pussycat by comparison. Whom has he ever waterboarded? Haspel has done that and a lot worse. Whether or not the Senate confirms Haspel, the very fact of her nomination defines Trump as a fatally callous leader totally contemptuous of basic human rights and the rule of law.
(2 comments) SHARE Saturday, September 23, 2017 Actor and Activist James Cromwell on the Consequence of "Doing Nothing"
Cromwell explains how his activism has opened his eyes to inequities in the American justice system. "It's very difficult as a white, middle-class, privileged individual to empathize with what black people go through every day," he tells Scheer. "They experience this incredible oppression."