Join Jim and Greg as they welcome House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Michael McCaul’s vow to get answers on the Biden administration’s debacle in Afghanistan. McCaul says the administration has been stonewalling on providing documents on how U.S. intelligence was so wrong on the advance of the Taliban, the deadly attack on U.S. service members outside the Kabul airport, and much more. They also shudder as a new report shows the U.S. is dangerously deficient in producing new weapons to replace the many munitions we’re sending over to Ukraine. In other words, if the U.S. got involved in sustained military action, we could run out of key weapons in less than a week. Finally, they shake their heads as Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s solution to the wave of street vendor robberies is to tell them not to conduct business in cash.

What Happened with Southwest Airlines?

 

Just so no one has expectations, I don’t know what happened with Southwest Airlines and its disaster over the holidays. But it was a huge disaster concerning the most basic part of their business. It would be as though a restaurant forgot to buy food. It would be like a shoe manufacturer forgetting to provide for laces. It would be like an airline not having airplanes to fly. Oh, wait.

Now, so far as I can tell, there are no public explanations. Except that some pilot, a backbencher probably wanting to score points for the pilots’ union, complained publicly and loudly that Southwest has lost its way by letting accountants run the airline. Does anyone really believe this to be the cause? Anyone besides the lazy and uneducated masses that form the body of j-urinalysts, that is? Having a sudden collapse that prevents flights from being scheduled doesn’t sound like a result of penny-pinching.

Join Jim and Greg as they serve up two good martinis and a very bad one. First, they cheer House Republicans for making good on their promise to pass legislation repealing funding for 87,000 new IRS agents and building a campaign issue against every Democrat who voted against it – which was all of them. They also shudder at the Biden administration’s attempts to demonize gas stoves as increasing the odds of developing asthma and other ailments, but they are glad to see the intense pushback that appears to have forced the government to back down. Jim also notes an annoying and tedious tactic employed by Democrats on issues like this. Finally, they not only wonder about the health of our aviation sector after today’s major computer problem triggered a ground stop across the nation, but are increasingly sure Transportation Sec. Pete Buttigieg is simply not up to the job.

As we enter the New Year, Dennis Kneale takes a contrarian view of the McCarthy Mess, dives into media ignorance on the #TwitterFiles, and asks “Wealth Wizard” Ed Butowsky to explain his surprisingly bullish outlook for investing in 2023.

Put a smile on your face! Things are looking up!

This year brings an extra edition of the Martini Awards! Today, Jim and Greg offer up their choices for biggest political liabilities in both parties. Then they discuss the best non-political story of 2022 and their favorite personal stories of the year.

It’s media day in our year-end Three Martini Lunch awards and Jim and Greg have plenty to say about how things were covered – if they were covered at all.  Specifically, they look at the stories the mainstream media covered far too much, the ones they conveniently ignored because they didn’t fit their narrative, and they highlight what they saw as the best stories of 2022.

Join Jim and Greg as they discuss only good things today! First, Jim describes his wide-ranging interview with Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin about his plans for the coming year, what issues matter most, and whether he’s thinking about running for president. They also welcome the Supreme Court issuing a temporary stay that keeps the “Remain in Mexico” policy in place until a formal decision is in place. Finally, they dive into why “Die Hard” is obviously a Christmas movie and share other thoughts about what makes it such a great film.

Join Jim and Greg as they welcome a get-tough approach on China. They applaud Wisconsin Rep. Mike Gallagher warning Americans to get rid of the TikTok app because it’s basically a data harvesting tool of the Chinese Communist Party. They also groan as twice as many Americans described the economy in negative terms, 65 percent said the economy is headed in the wrong direction, and more than half expect it to get worse in 2023. Finally, they slam ABC’s Martha Raddatz for accusing Republicans of creating the border crisis by slamming President Biden’s policies – instead of the open border policies themselves.

Up this week: Dennis leads off with #TheTwitterFiles and asks Washington Democrat insider Lanny Davis whether Twitter went too far. He also interviews The New York Post’s longtime “Media Ink” columnist, Keith J. Kelly, to ask why the media are going all-crickets on the story.

And the latest on the arrest in the Bahamas of accused crytpo-scammer Sam Bankman-Fried. Why is the SEC leading this case when it lacks any oversight of cryptocurrencies? Maybe the real aim is to silence the mop-headed 30-year-old so he can’t talk about Democrat donations and the access it brought.

Ricochet.com Editor-in-Chief Jon Gabriel is in for Jim. Join Jon and Greg as they fume over yet another Senate Republican surrender on spending – choosing to support a bill to fund the government through September instead of a short-term bill that would give the incoming GOP House majority much more leverage on how our tax dollars are spent. They also roll their eyes as the Cambridge Dictionary redefines “man” and “woman” to accommodate the transgender agenda. Finally, they react to indicted FTX Founder Sam Bankman-Fried arguing he can’t stay in jail because of his vegan diet and his struggles with Attention Deficit Disorder.

This week on “The Learning Curve,” Cara and Gerard talk with Magatte Wade, the founder & CEO of Skin Is Skin and an advocate for African dignity and prosperity. Her forthcoming book is The Heart of the Cheetah. She shares her journey from Senegal in West Africa to America, and how she came to experience the power of free enterprise to promote upward mobility and human dignity on her native continent. She describes some of the regulatory practices in both Africa and America that either help or hinder economic activity and prosperity.

Stories of the Week: For over a century, educators have used the Carnegie Unit, a time-based measurement of student progress. But now the Carnegie Foundation is seeking alternatives that more accurately reflect content mastery. In New Hampshire, the president of the American Federation of Teachers filed a lawsuit against the education commissioner to block Education Freedom Accounts, which were created in 2021 to help eligible parents afford private school.

Join Jim and Greg as they welcome the news that FTX Founder Sam Bankman-Fried is facing a truckload of fraud charges and luggage thief Sam Brinton is out at the Department of Energy. They also groan as inflation is still at an annoying 7.1 percent year-over-year. And while the growth of inflation is slowing, the administration and its media allies keep trying to make us believe the problem is over. And they shake their heads as the man who ran the 2020 Bernie Sanders campaign says the senator would probably take a hard look at a 2024 race for the White House if President Biden does not run again.

This week on Hubwonk, host Joe Selvaggi talks with transit advocate and expert Chris Dempsey about ways in which structural change in the MBTA’s safety oversight can be reformed to improve performance, engender greater trust amongst the region’s riders, and reduce transportation congestion in our growing economy.

Guest:
Christopher Dempsey is a transportation advocate and former co-founder of No Boston Olympics, which formed in opposition to Boston’s 2024 Summer Olympics bid. He was a Democratic candidate for Massachusetts State Auditor for the 2022 election. From 2017 to 2021, Dempsey was the Director of Transportation for Massachusetts, a statewide advocacy coalition fighting for safe, reliable, and sustainable transportation. As Assistant Secretary of Transportation for Governor Deval Patrick, he co-founded MassDOT’s Open Data program, which made the MBTA the first agency on the East Coast to share real-time data with third-party developers that created smartphone apps for bus and train arrivals. He currently serves an elected member of Brookline Town Meeting and chairs the Brookline Transportation Board. In 2014, Dempsey, along with Liam Kerr and Kelley Gossett, co-founded No Boston Olympics, which successfully led opposition to Boston’s 2024 Summer Olympics bid. Influenced by this work and collaboration with organizers in other cities fighting Olympic bids, he co-authored No Boston Olympics: How and Why Smart Cities Are Passing on the Torch with Smith College economist Andrew Zimbalist.

This week on JobMakers, host Denzil Mohammed talks with Julianne Zimmerman, managing director at Reinventure Capital, lecturer on Social Entrepreneurship at Tufts University (and named to Forbes’ 2022 “50 Over 50” list). Julianne sees first-hand how immigrants collaborate with the U.S.-born to create meaningful inventions that solve real problems – but how rhetoric, policy, and an outdated system can shut them out. Julianne now heads a firm that invests solely in companies led and controlled by Black, Indigenous, people of color and female founders. She discusses why she believes it is crucial that we work together to bring about much-needed social and economic change, and resist efforts to close ourselves off – as you’ll hear in this week’s JobMakers.

Guest:

This week Dennis leads off with the Georgia run-off and the Twitter Files, asking the $64 Question, “Where is the media outrage on election interference?”

Then Vivek Wadhwa, the Silicon Valley author, Harvard academic, and friend of Elon Musk lets loose with startlingly blunt criticism of his old friend. According to “The Vivver,” Musk is partying too much, is surrounded by idiots giving him bad advice, and is taking too many drugs that are “eating away his brain.”

Jim and Greg welcome the 14-year prison sentence handed down to former attorney and cable news darling Michael Avenatti for his crimes of corruption and they warn supporters of both parties not to fall in love with celebrities who happen to say a couple of things you agree with. They also slam Senate Republicans for being way too helpful in passing the Democrats’ lame duck agenda. That strategy apparently includes passing an omnibus spending bill instead of a short-term bill that would give the new House GOP majority much more leverage on appropriations. Finally, as former National Security Adviser John Bolton weighs a 2024 presidential run, they don’t believe his candidacy would go anywhere or be decisive in derailing President Trump.

 

Join Jim and Greg as they serve up three crazy martinis today. First, they roll their eyes as the Never Trump crowd who turned our to be never conservative feverishly insists other Republicans like Ron DeSantis must be opposed just as vigorously. Jim also walks through Sam Bankman-Fried’s thoroughly unbelievable explanation for the collapse of FTX. And they have no idea why Cochise County, Arizona, is refusing to submit election results when there is no controversy over the voting in that county and the holdout will potentially harm other GOP candidates.

 

This week on JobMakers, host Denzil Mohammed talks with Joséphine Erni, Innovation Lead at Swissnex in Boston and New York, and immigrant from Switzerland. She explains how building collaborations between the highly entrepreneurial Swiss and the world’s biggest market, the U.S., gives rise to incredible innovations that benefit the world. She shares how Swissnex, the world’s first “science consulate,” has connected these two parts of the world in innovation, entrepreneurship, academia and the arts since 2000, as well as how they go about fostering collaborative ideas, research and businesses that mutually benefit both countries. She also emphasizes why being open to diversity brings creative solutions, as you’ll hear in this week’s JobMakers podcast.

Guest:

Join Jim and Greg as they cheer Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis for blasting Apple’s nauseating practices of silencing American voices it disagrees with and groveling before the Chinese government by making it harder for protesters there to get their messages out. They also groan as the crisis in Haiti is on the brink of collapse and the Biden administration fails to get other nations to take the lead on the response. And they discuss whether Kevin McCarthy will have the 218 votes needed to become speaker after at least two GOP members say they won’t back him on the House floor come January.