Goodbye checks and balances, hello authoritarian shitshow! In the latest Gaslit Nation, Sarah and Andrea discuss the demolishment of checks and balances now that the independence and integrity of the judiciary are gone – joining a legislature that has been, in the words of Senator Patrick Leahy, reduced to little more than an arm of the Trump White House. As we predicted, this was a historic week for America, one that will be remembered as a turning point toward consolidated autocracy. So speak while you can still speak, and vote while you can still vote.
We discuss the aftermath of the Kavanaugh confirmation, the tattered future of the Mueller investigation, the possible compromise of the FBI, and the transnational crackdown on journalists who document corruption and speak up against repressive governments. In one week, Saudi Arabian journalist Jamal Khashoggi went missing and was allegedly murdered in the Saudi Arabian embassy in Turkey, and Bulgarian journalist Viktoria Marinova was murdered in a Bulgarian border town, making her the third high profile journalist to be murdered in the EUthis year. Both had critiqued the repression and corruption of their countries.
These are also dangerous times for US journalism, as Trump continues his attack on the free press and his dehumanization of anyone who dares criticize him. We discuss the dark future of a world run by a transnational crime syndicate seemingly held in check by no one. Many of our worst fears have been realized; those baselessly claiming a “deux ex Mueller” was coming were severely mistaken.
What we have, in the end, are ourselves and each other to save – along with what’s left of our country. We end the episode with an interview with Sydette Harry, a writer whose prescient analysis of the weaponization of digital media should have been heeded years ago, and whose advice on how to survive in an autocratic political landscape should be heeded now.
A Special Announcement from Gaslit Nation
Thank you to everyone who participated in the Crush the Midterms Challenge. We asked you to create a plan on CrushTheMidterms.org, tweet your plan to @gaslitnation, and from those that we received we chose a winner — @indigoiis — who will be sent a signed copy of Sarah’s New York Times bestselling book, The View from Flyover Country: Dispatches from the Forgotten America. If you participated and didn’t win yet, the contest continues, a new winner announced every week, through election day, November 6th. So send us your Crush the Midterms plan if you haven’t already. We’re also introducing a new contest, the 1,000 Doors Challenge. Join Andrea in a moonshot goal of knocking on 1,000 doors between now and election day. It’s a big goal, but striving for it could help make a difference in the most important midterms in our nation’s history. Tweet a photo of yourself canvassing to @gaslitnation and the winner, chosen on November 6th, will get a signed copy of Sarah’s book and an invitation to come on our show as a special guest. A group of Harvard students created a great YouTube series called Resistance School, and their basic explainer video of how to knock on doors to get out the vote shows just how easy and fun this effective outreach strategy can be!