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    A National Emergency that Isn’t: Trump Says “I Didn’t Need to Do This”

    Loud & Clear
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    On today's episode of Loud & Clear, Brian Becker and John Kiriakou are joined by Jacqueline Luqman, the co-editor-in-chief of Luqman Nation, which livestreams every Thursday night at 9:00 p.m. on Facebook, and Sputnik News analyst and producer Walter Smolarek.

    Friday is Loud & Clear's weekly hour-long segment The Week in Review, about the week in politics, policy, and international affairs. Today they focus on Trump's announcement today that he'll sign the funding bill and a national emergency, the ongoing coup attempt in Venezuela, and Amazon pulling out of putting a headquarters in New York City.

    Amazon yesterday abruptly announced that it was canceling plans to open a second headquarters site in the Queens borough of New York City. The move came amid what the company said was an unexpected backlash from lawmakers, union leaders, and progressives angry over huge tax breaks and incentives that the state offered the company. Brian and John speak with Gabi Silva, an organizer with Damayan and the Scamazon Coalition as well as a resident of Queens.

    Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez has called a snap general election for April, continuing a period of turmoil as the territorial conflict over Catalonian independence continues to weigh on the country's politics. Sanchez suffered a major defeat earlier this week as opposition parties banded together to defeat his budget. The new election is expected to reveal even further fragmentation of the country's political landscape. Sputnik news analyst and producer of this show Walter Smolarek joins the show.

    A Washington DC developer has resorted to intimidation and displacement tactics to force residents from their homes in the city's Brookland Manor. Developer Mid-City Financial stands to receive $47 million to reduce the affordable housing stock and increase the number of luxury units available in Northeast Washington. And the company is using hardball tactics to do that. Brian and John speak with Yasmina Mrabet, a housing organizer with LinkUp, a community group organizing with tenant associations around the city.

    The Wall Street Journal reported yesterday that the Chinese government is in talks with Venezuelan opposition leaders to safeguard its investments in the country. The Journal says that Chinese economic officials are worried about the $20 billion that Venezuela owes China, as well as its investments in the Venezuelan oil industry. Chinese officials, however, called the reports "fake news" and said that no such discussions had taken place. This is just one front in the global battle for control of Venezuela's oil assets following U.S.-backed Juan Guaidó's appointment of parallel boards of directors for the country's main petroleum corporations. Andy Brennan, a journalist with Asia Times and CGTN in Beijing, joins the show.

    It's Friday! So it's time for the week's worst and most misleading headlines. Brian and John speak with Steve Patt, an independent journalist whose critiques of the mainstream media have been a feature of his site Left I on the News and on twitter @leftiblog, and Sputnik producer Nicole Roussell.

    We'd love to get your feedback at radio@sputniknews.com

    immigrant rights, Budget, national emergency, government shutdown, Donald Trump
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