Moyers & Company Previous Broadcasts

The Conscience of a Compassionate Conservative (Episode #329H)

KQED World: Sat, Jul 26, 2014 -- 7:30 AM

Arthur C. Brooks says that despite the heated rhetoric of the far right, the compassionate conservatism once touted by George W. Bush isn't dead. It's alive and well at the conservative American Enterprise Institute - AEI - where Brooks became president in 2009. Residing now at the top of the conservative pecking order in Washington, Brooks advises Republican leaders in Congress and spreads AEI's message to a wider audience. His specialty, as Newsweek describes it, is "translating ideas from policy speak into soaring moral prose." One of his key ideas: the endgame of free enterprise is not to preserve wealth but to create opportunity for the poor.
This week, Moyers and Brooks engage in a lively exchange over the safety net, which Brooks supports for the very poor, and a hike in the minimum wage, which he opposes. "The problem with the minimum wage is that it hurts the people it's supposed to help," he claims. "It's the worst way to try to wipe out the unemployment scourge that we have in this country. We don't have a low wage problem. We have an unemployment problem in the bottom 50%. America has left the bottom behind. And we have a conspiracy - we have a left wing politically that talks about solutions, but has no implementable answers that actually help poor people. And we have a right wing that traditionally doesn't even talk about poverty."
Moyers presses Brooks on why companies like Target, McDonald's and Walmart don't pay a living wage to their employees who then have to rely on public programs to support themselves - in Walmart's case, about $4000 per worker. Brooks argues the market doesn't support higher wages and agrees that the country needs public policies that make work pay for those who perform it. While "free enterprise is a system of institutions and cultural values that respect the individual," he says, "it has no hostility" toward the idea of government or a safety net.
Once a classical musician who took his French horn on the road with the fabled guitarist Charlie Byrd, Arthur Brooks taught economics, government and social entrepreneurship at Syracuse University. He is the author of hundreds of articles and 10 books, including his most recent, "The Road to Freedom: How to Win the Fight for Free Enterprise."

Repeat Broadcasts:

  • KQED 9: Sun, Jul 27, 2014 -- 4:30 PM
  • KQED World: Sun, Jul 27, 2014 -- 11:30 AM
  • KQED World: Sun, Jul 27, 2014 -- 3:00 AM
  • KQED Plus: Sat, Jul 26, 2014 -- 4:00 PM
  • KQED World: Sat, Jul 26, 2014 -- 12:00 PM

The Crusade Against Reproductive Rights (Episode #328H)

KQED World: Sat, Jul 19, 2014 -- 12:00 PM

Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court's landmark decision establishing a woman's right to an abortion, was issued more than 40 years ago, but conservatives and the religious right have been crusading ever since to have it overturned. Despite consistent public opinion to the contrary, they have patiently and relentlessly campaigned against the ruling. Their efforts are finding some success. Two major decisions and a surprise emergency ruling by the Supreme Court this last session limited health insurance coverage for contraception and gave protesters increased rights to demonstrate outside abortion clinics. Several states - especially in the South - and in the name, they say, of women's health, have passed regulations that creatively use technicalities to limit access to clinics.
Bill Moyers talks about the politics of reproductive freedom with Cecile Richards, president of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America and the Planned Parenthood Action Fund. For nearly a century, Planned Parenthood has been the leading advocate for reproductive health care in the US, with 69 affiliates nationwide, operating more than 700 health centers. Cecile Richards has been an organizer of low-wage janitors, hotel and health care workers, the founder of the Texas Freedom Network, which defends civil liberties and religious freedom in her native state, and a deputy chief of staff to the Democratic leader in the House, Nancy Pelosi.

Repeat Broadcasts:

  • KQED World: Sun, Jul 20, 2014 -- 7:00 PM
  • KQED World: Sun, Jul 20, 2014 -- 11:30 AM
  • KQED World: Sun, Jul 20, 2014 -- 3:00 AM

Is The Supreme Court Out of Order? (Episode #327H)

KQED World: Sat, Jul 12, 2014 -- 7:30 AM

The latest session of the US Supreme Court - just ended - was especially contentious, with important decisions on the separation of church and state, organized labor, campaign finance reform and birth control, among others, splitting the court along its 5-4 conservative/liberal divide. What's more, critics increasingly question whether the court is as corrupted by the influence of big money as the US Congress that sits just across Capitol Hill.
On the other hand, nearly two-thirds of the court's decisions this term were unanimous - the first time that's happened in more than 60 years. But there's more to that seeming unanimity than meets the eye: in some instances, conservative justices went along but expressed their wish that the court had gone even further to the right, and many believe that some of the decisions might simply be a preliminary step toward a more significant breaking of legal precedent in years to come.
All of these nuances are best assessed by two experienced and knowledgeable reporters for whom the Supreme Court has been both their beat and the target of their interpretive skills. They talk with Bill Moyers on this week's program.
Linda Greenhouse covered the Supreme Court for The New York Times for 30 years and still writes a bi-weekly column on the law for that newspaper. She is a lecturer, senior research scholar and the Knight Distinguished Journalist in Residence at the Yale Law School.
Dahlia Lithwick is a National Magazine Award winner and a senior editor at, where she writes the website's "Supreme Court Dispatches" and "Jurisprudence" columns. Currently, she is working on a book about the four women who have served as Supreme Court justices.

Repeat Broadcasts:

  • KQED World: Sun, Jul 13, 2014 -- 7:00 PM
  • KQED World: Sun, Jul 13, 2014 -- 11:30 AM
  • KQED World: Sun, Jul 13, 2014 -- 3:00 AM
  • KQED Plus: Sat, Jul 12, 2014 -- 4:00 PM
  • KQED World: Sat, Jul 12, 2014 -- 12:00 PM

Grassroots Grow Against Greed (Episode #326H)

KQED World: Sat, Jul 5, 2014 -- 7:30 AM

* This Fourth of July weekend, as the US celebrates independence and democracy, Moyers & Company pays tribute to the champions of grass roots action fighting against the moneyed interests trying to buy and control government. These populists are seeking real change - not from the right or the left but from the bottom up. One of their most articulate spokesmen is writer and commentator Jim Hightower, who travels the country preaching the gospel of populism. A former congressional aide and two-term agriculture commissioner of his native Texas, he is the author of several books of progressive wit and wisdom and edits a newsletter, "The Hightower Lowdown." Hightower tells Bill, "There is a growing rebellion and an increasing awareness among different groups fighting different battle that they are connected. People are beginning to get together and see their common interest." He adds, "There is a greater power that is building up in the countryside, simmering, bubbling in different places and that's going to come together."
* Following Hightower's conversation, a documentary spotlights the recent Rising Voices for a New Economy conference in Washington, DC, at which 1100 grass roots members of the National Domestic Workers Alliance (NDWA) and the National People's Action Together (NPA) rallied to learn organizing methods and put truth to the power of government and corporate America. According to NDWA director Ai-jen Poo, "The interests and forces that we're up against are so very powerful that we can't afford not to build a movement that is as inclusive and is broad and as deep as it can possibly be." NPA director George Goehl agrees but cautions that it means, "All of us bending towards each other. It means all of us giving up some control and some of what we would love to have be at the center of the fight so we could collectively have more power."

Repeat Broadcasts:

  • KQED World: Sun, Jul 6, 2014 -- 7:00 PM
  • KQED 9: Sun, Jul 6, 2014 -- 4:30 PM
  • KQED World: Sun, Jul 6, 2014 -- 11:30 AM
  • KQED World: Sun, Jul 6, 2014 -- 3:00 AM
  • KQED Plus: Sat, Jul 5, 2014 -- 4:00 PM
  • KQED World: Sat, Jul 5, 2014 -- 12:00 PM
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