Daily Kos presents Daily Kos Radio. Progressive politics, news & talk hosted by Contributing Editor David Waldman

We got our regular fix on the polling and punditry today, thanks to our first post-Sandy visit with Greg Dworkin. And though things are winding down and the cleanup is beginning, Sandy still dominated the conversation. Both Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan staged "storm relief" events, and both were panned in the press for it, including detailed coverage of how work was stopped in order to make sure the candidates would arrive in time to be photographed packing donations. Meanwhile, the Red Cross has been pretty clear that money is what's needed, and in-kind donations actually hamper relief efforts. But whatever! At any rate, it gave us the chance to observe that when it comes time to campaign, the Republican mantras about local voices making local choices goes down the drain. Central command says we need soup photos, so you're getting soup! Sounds familiar, eh?

Direct download: October_31_2012_56.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 11:44am EST

Our first post-Sandy show, at least from where we're sitting. We rounded up some of the most dramatic stories, discussed the pros and cons of Twitter's ability to spread news from peer-to-peer, noted Mitt Romney's insistence that private relief and state-based emergency management would be preferable to FEMA, and discussed the traditional media's strange obsession with attacking Nate Silver's Five Thirty Eight methodologies in the middle of the storm's onslaught. People are weird, man.

Direct download: October_30_2012_56.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 11:22am EST

Hurricane Sandy is rolling in, but we made it on the air for our Monday show. And that means a double shot polling update from Greg Dworkin and Steve Singiser. The storm preoccupied us, of course, and there's even a polling impact, since many polling firms are East Coast operations, plus there could be days on end when most of the Northeast is unable to answer their phones. So we may be flying partially blind into Election Day. Also discussed: Suprise! A top Romney advisor really does own a shipyard; the millions of dollars of Romney campaign funds being spent with consulting firms owned by or employing Romney campaign aides; the weirdness that ensues when "outside auditors" are asked to evaluate their own tax advice to their corporate clients; and just a little bit about Matt Stoller's controversial article arguing for progressives to walk away from voting for Barack Obama. (Hint: I'm not doing it.)

Direct download: October_29_2012_56.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 11:40am EST

It's Friday again, and that means we're down to one full business week left before election day. We checked in with Greg Dworkin for our daily polling & punditry update, then were joined by Andrew Jones (aka sluggahjells) for a wide-ranging discussion of politics & media, including the effects on both the campaign and governance of living inside one media bubble or another. Finally, we dove into an insidious little trick of accounting that's coming into widespread use in several states that has the effect of letting your boss pocket the taxes he's withholding from your paycheck! Strange but true!

Direct download: October_26_2012_56.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 11:53am EST

Hey, did you know that the Navy isn't really smaller now than at any time since 1917? It was actually smaller in 2007, but apparently that's been lost to the mists of time. Oh well, Mitt was only off by 90 years. Cut him a little slack! After that little fact check, we welcomed Greg Dworkin for our regular morning polling check up, and a discussion of the punditry's love for narrative that seems to be driving the Romney "momentum" story that's otherwise totally unsupported by any actual data. We also caught up on the Richard Mourdock meltdown in Indiana (and connected the dots with the "thinking" of Todd Akin). From there, we wandered into gun policy, the recent gun violence, and the challenges of "enforcing the laws we already have" in an era of changing technology. Finally, the acknowledgment that across-the-board sequestration won't happen gave us a chance to talk about how Congress can rewrite its own rules, how that might impact the drive to get the Senate to change its filibuster rules, and why the favored narrative that says the filibuster promotes compromise might really be entirely backwards.

Direct download: October_25_2012_56.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 12:20pm EST

Today's burning question: How did ABC News write a story that actually totalled the current inventory of Army and Marine bayonets without answering even the admittedly dumb question of whether there are fewer now than there were in the past? Well, I guess that just goes to prove that data isn't smart all by itself. Thankfully, there was some smarter data to be had, when we checked in for our regular regimen of poll watching with Greg Dworkin. In the second hour, Armando joined us to interview author Chuck Thompson about his book Better Off Without 'Em: A Northern Manifesto for Southern Secession. Finally, we wrapped up with a sneak preview of an upcoming issue: the new Washington consensus that automatic, across-the-board sequestration is no longer accepted as a Very Serious tool for Very Serious people. Why? Because as Congressional observers will tell you (and told you at the time) Congress lives by different rules, where there's nothing automatic about "automatic" triggers.

Direct download: October_24_2012_56.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 12:06pm EST

Post-debate wrap, of course, with Greg Dworkin & Armando. How nutty was Romney's antiquated view of foreign and military policy? Strange enough to make us raise Smedley Butler's name in casual conversation. Talk about your throwbacks, though some would argue we never really left that era behind. Seriously, though. Path to the sea? And counting ships as the sole metric of naval strength? What's next, counting cans of spinach? Plus we dive back into the world of Republican voter registration criminality and the growing trend of bosses harassing their workers with political coercion. And sadly, there's been another round of multiple shooting incidents, plus one bizarre shooting story, that once again have the NRA folks out hoping that if we all squint just right, we'll see things their way.

Direct download: October_23_2012_56.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 11:54am EST

We're pre-gaming the debate once again, and there's no better or more reality-based way to do that than to get your Monday Double Shot of polling roundups, with Greg Dworkin & Steve Singiser. What's up with Gallup? How about those likely voter screens? How do they account for early voting and same day registration? For tonight's debate, will the 50th anniversary of the Cuban Missile Crisis play a role? Which candidate would you rather have had with his finger on the button in 1962? And here's a question: Why so much media interest in the mechanics and methodolgies of polls, which don't count, but so little interest in mechanics and methodologies of voting rights and voter access, which does count? The arrest of a Republican operative in Virginia last week, on charges of dumping completed voter registration forms, matches exactly the m.o. employed in years and years of previous Republican schemes in multiple states. And curiously, they're all traceable to the same Republican consultant: Nathan Sproul. When are they going to get serious and arrest this guy?

Direct download: October_22_2012_56.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 11:45am EST

A fine Friday news roundup, with a dash of polling from Greg Dworkin. What's up with that Gallup poll? Should you be freaking out? (Answer: No.) Mitt Romney is 18 days from overturning decades of precedent on financial disclosure. The Republican Ohio Secretary of State apparently thinks the Supreme Court can go screw itself. An arrest is finally made in Virginia on Republican election shenanigans. And in the Wisconsin Senate race, ALEC poster boy Tommy Thompson accuses Tammy Baldwin of being soft on Iran, even while he's underwriting Iranian uranium mining!

Direct download: October_19_2012_56.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 11:58am EST

Greg Dworkin returned from a short absence to go over the polls with us, and survey the post-debate landscape, plus answer the lingering question of why national polling still matters, even though we elect our presidents state-by-state, through the Electoral College. And what defines the post-debate landscape today? The binder. Tagg Romney wanting to punch the President. "Five point" jobs plans that have no points in them, and three studies that "support" the plan, but actually don't. And the amazing ability of conservatives to connect poverty and gun violence, but still refuse to see the connection between access to health care and mortality. All this can only exist in a world full of isolated information bubbles, of course. And we can't be sure whether the relentless march of technology is freeing us from that bubble, or just making it easier to build newer, smaller ones. Ah, life!

Direct download: October_18_2012_56.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 11:36am EST

Post-debate discussion with Andrew Jones (aka sluggahjells) and our loyal UK listener, Gideon! The format. The moderation. The questions. The curious avoidance of the word "Massachusetts." The Rose Garden transcript. And... THE BINDER. Plus the latest voter suppression scheme at work in Virginia, and the emergence of red flags raised at VMI as the Romney campaign hatched its plans for Mitt's "major foreign policy" address there earlier this month. Multiple topics, multiple voices, from multiple continents! A great post-debate show!

Direct download: October_17_2012_56.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 11:34am EST

It's debate day, so it's a big day for pre-gaming. We were without Greg Dworkin today, but the publication of the latest Daily Kos/SEIU State of the Nation poll gave us the opportunity to highlight the differences between analyzing an unfavorable poll and "unskewing" one (i.e., cheating). Then a meandering stroll through the news, including the launch of Glenn Beck's line of jeans, the absurdity of Rep. Joe "You Lie!" Wilson (R-SC) complaining about the inappropriateness of President Obama's campaign accusing Mitt Romney of lying, and Rep. Darrell Issa's stretch in comparing the Benghazi attacks to President Bush's "mission accomplished" moment. Finally, we returned to the story of Mitt Romney's time at the head of Bain & Company's consultancy with the Russian government, and wondered why being a top advisor to the Yeltsin administration gets no mention from a campaign that admits it's lacking in foreign policy experience. Is it just that he's reluctant to accept the Cold War-era implications? Or is it that given the chance to construct a free market economy from the ground up, Romney instead opted to reconstruct a much more familiar (and personally profitable) kind of crony capitalism?

Direct download: October_16_2012_56.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 11:38am EST

It's debate week again, so it's a great time for a Monday Double Shot of polling & punditry roundups from Greg Dworkin and Steve Singiser. Freakouts always go better with a little inoculation of reality and the long view, right? Hour two today took us on a "Connect the Dots" stroll down Memory Lane. Or as Republicans would have it, down the Memory Hole. What connects today's focus on the latest Bain plunder target, Sensata, with supply-side economics, the 2009 Obama stimulus program, the 1993 Clinton stimulus program, Medicare, Social Security, and the Republican proclivity for betting against America and constantly claiming our country is an unlivable hellhole? Listen in and find out!

Direct download: October_15_2012_56.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 11:40am EST

It's VP Debate Night, but we're still untangling the fallout of the last debate. And now that things have calmed down some, we were glad to have Greg Dworkin back with us to take us on a tour of the polling landscape. From there, it was on to an exploration of new frontiers for the show--specifically science and space. This week saw the successful launch and docking of the first private, unmanned resupply mission to the International Space Station, pulled off by SpaceX and its Dragon cargo vessel. A great leap forward? A victory for privatization at the expense of a once-inspiring public endeavor? Aaron Oesterle (aka FerrisValyn) joined us for a discussion, and raised some thought-provoking questions and issues about an area that used to border on science fiction, but are going to become part of our everyday reality in the near future. Privatization is everywhere these days, and that led us to wrap up with a detour into prison privatization in particular, and the peculiar dangers of letting hyper capitalists (and future locust capitalists) lead the effort to privatize an entire economy all at once, as with Bain & Co. and the former Soviet Union. Now I have a headache! But what a set of issues to sort out next week!

Direct download: October_11_2012_56.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 12:18pm EST

It's a veritable sideshow shooting gallery of Republican jerks today. There's one-time billionaire and now just mega-millionaire David Siegel and his crazy-ass, plagiarized email threatening to fire employees if Obama wins reelection. West Virginia Senate candidate John Raese, who just up and decided a river needed to be diverted and have a waterfall in it because he wanted one, but construction permits were terrorism, so screw it. Utah Representative Jason Chaffetz, whose registered no recognition at all when his empty-headed reliance on scripted talking points was lampooned before his very eyes by Soledad O'Brien on CNN. The new just-say-whatever strategy coming out of the Romney campaign. And finally, newly-crowned King of the Sleazebags, Tennessee Congressman and (soon-to-be-former) doctor Rep. Scott DesJarlais, revealed by his own tape recording to have knocked up one of his patients, then pressured her to have an abortion... before later running for office as a pro-life Teabagger.

Direct download: October_10_2012_56.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 12:09pm EST

Setting aside the widespread polling panic, we let our eyes wander to stories of the absurd, like those from Arkansas Republicans coming out in favor of slavery, which in turn took us to Tim Griffin, voter caging, Neal Horsley's admissions of bestiality, creationism. But eventually we came around to the polls, starting with Pew's numbers from yesterday, leading into Markos's analysis of the latest PPP polling numbers, illustrating the difference between legitimate analyses of methodology and the crackpot practice of "unskewing" the numbers with magic. Also: Kevin Drum's "Hack Gap" and what it might tell us about liberals vs. conservatives, and the slow creep of "Leadership PACs" into SuperPACs.

Direct download: October_9_2012_56.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 2:04pm EST

It's Monday of the Vice Presidential Debate Week, but all the talk is still about last week's Presidential contest. And, strangely, Big Bird. We checked in with our polling experts, Greg Dworkin and Steve Singiser, for updates on the data, and where the races are headed, both at the top of the ticket and downballot around the country. In the second hour, more "dot connecting," in a reading on the "wisdom" of free markets and cost-benefit analyses, plus a roundup of Roll Call's Top 10 most vulnerable Members of Congress.

Direct download: October_8_2012_64.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 12:40pm EST

Things always return to the mean, they say. And two days after the debate, the traditional media appear to be catching on to the unsupportable paradox of "winning" a debate on style while losing it on substance. Add to that the latest admission from Romney that he was "completely wrong" in his infamous 47% comments, and it looks like we're right back where we started from. Greg Dworkin joined the show for his regular polling and punditry roundup, and special guest Andrew Jones (aka sluggahjells) sat in for a wide-ranging and fun Friday finale.

Direct download: October_5_2012_64.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 12:27pm EST

Well, we're post-debate on meeting number one, and we talked reactions, snap polling, and historical trends with Greg Dworkin. But it wasn't all debate, all the time. We dove into the tax-exempt status of political churches, revisited the below-the-radar problem of "cost-benefit analysis" of agency rules and regulations, and the coming fiasco of their application to regs that stand in the way of the financial services industry bilking even more out of your pockets and the pockets of your neighbors. Oh yeah, and then we went back to the debate!

Direct download: October_4_2012_64.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 12:42pm EST

It's debate day, which is to say that it's time for the traditional media to tell you that there might possibly be some news later on, so just stay tuned. And if there isn't any, we'll make some up. Greg Dworkin rounded up the real, already-happened news in today's polling segment. We took calls from Tomtech on his low-cost, grassroots ad campaigns in Texas, and OllieGarkey on the dangers and nuances of mixing politics and religion. And finally, we peeked in on the wingnuts frolicking in fantasy land, with their claims that "abortions" are frequently performed on women who aren't even pregnant, and that an already-circulated 2007 videotape of then-Senator Barack Obama saying non-controversial stuff is somehow, suddenly, the worstest thing ever, not to mention a perfectly valid reason for white dudes to do Amos & Andy impressions on the air.

Direct download: October_3_2012_64.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 11:52am EST

It's a guest hat trick today, with segments featuring Greg Dworkin on the latest polling & punditry news, Meteor Blades (Tim Lange) on Romney's hackneyed foreign policy attacks, and Armando Llorens on the the latest from the Commonwealth Court in the Pennsylvania voter ID case. And of course, we have a good laugh at Scott Brown's deer-in-the-headlights-gets-booed-by-the-audience debate moment, as well!

Direct download: October_2_2012_64.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 12:13pm EST

We've got our traditional Monday Double Dose of the polling & punditry roundup with Greg Dworkin and Steve Singiser. And Mitt Romney obliges us once again, by opening his mouth. This time he's upset that President Obama "misunderstands" American values. Like stealing pension funds and telling supporters their hometown pride cookies look like crap! It was all a fine set-up for a reading of Steven Pearlstein's "I am a job creator: A manifesto for the entitled." Pretty much the elite's whiniest carping in a nutshell!

Direct download: October_1_2012_64.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 12:02pm EST

1