As the mass shooting in Parkland, Florida, reignites the debate on guns,we update the “Gun Rights and Gun Control” episode of Truth Politics and Power, produced after a gunman murdered dozens in Las Vegas last fall. Host Neal Conan delves into the history of the debate between gun rights and gun control with UCLA constitutional law specialist Adam Winkler, author of “Gun Fight: The Battle over the Right to Bear Arms in America.” The Founding Fathers required every adult white male to own a musket, and bring it to musters where it was inspected and registered. On the next Truth Politics and Power, how aduty for community self defense evolved into an individual right to bear arms and how the laws changed with both weapons technology and the rise of the National Rifle Association. Plus a conversation on restrictions on research into guns and gun deaths.
For more than half a century, Presidents based major decisions on a deliberative process that invited input from all the government agencies concerned. In the next Truth, Politics and Power, a critic describes President Trump’s styleas “sultanism,” with impulsive decisions based on personal relationships rather than the interagency process. In a conversation with George Washington’s fifth great-grand nephew,host Neal Conan learns why our first president rejected political ties of blood or friendship and why many of his successors were not so meticulous. “Family Ties at the White House”, next Truth, Politics and Power.
While the FBI is no stranger to political controversy, the bureau is now the target of an unlikely attack. President Trump and his allies have launched a campaign to discredit the FBI…and, by extension…the Russia Investigation headed by former FBI director Robert Mueller. In “Presidents, Politics and the FBI”, host Neal Conan speaks with former FBI Agent Asha Rangappa about declassified memos, smoking guns and the culture of the bureau. Plus NPR’s Ron Elving on the political history of the FBI from gangbusters to Watergate, and Garrett Graff, on how the bureau’s changed since 9/11.
In his address to the World Economic Forum in Davos, President Trump turned to a slogan he trumpeted during his campaign and his inaugural address to describe American trade policy. “America First”. Host Neal Conan asks whether the slogan more accurately describes a nationalist revision of American foreign policy that threatens to make the world more chaotic and more dangerous. Plus we revisit interviews on the original AmericaFirst movement, when the famous aviator Charles Lindberghcampaigned to keep the US on the sidelines of the Second World War and on the issue that underlies much debate on US foreign Policy since the 1890s – intervention.
Turkey’s escalation in it’s war against US backed Kurdish fighters puts the United States on a collision course with a NATO ally and offers a window into the contradictions of U.S. Middle East policy in a post ISIS Syria. For Syria’s Kurds, it means being caught in between President Erdogan’s plan to eliminate a “mortal enemy”, and President Trump’s overarching goal in the region … to confront Iran.
A year ago, as Donald Trump took office as the 45th President of the United States, many compared elements of his campaign with fascism. This week, we invite you to revisit the Inaugural Edition of “Truth, Politics and Power,” where host Neal Conan asked whether it was fair or accurate to use terms like fascist, Nazi or make direct comparisons to Adolph Hitler. A year later, the conversations with Hitler biographer Volker Ullrich and historian Robert Kagan resonate with the tumultuous events of President Trump’s first year in power.