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Robert Scheer
Robert Scheer has built a reputation for strong social and political writing over his 30 years as a journalist. His columns appear in newspapers across the country, and his in-depth interviews have made headlines. He conducted the famous Playboy magazine interview in which Jimmy Carter confessed to the lust in his heart and he went on to do many interviews for the Los Angeles Times with Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan, Bill Clinton and many other prominent political and cultural figures.

Between 1964 and 1969 he was Vietnam correspondent, managing editor and editor in chief of Ramparts magazine. From 1976 to 1993 he served as a national correspondent for the Los Angeles Times, writing on diverse topics such as the Soviet Union, arms control, national politics and the military. In 1993 he launched a nationally syndicated column based at the Los Angeles Times, where he was named a contributing editor. That column ran weekly for the next 12 years and is now based at

Scheer can be heard on his new podcast “Scheer Intelligence” and the radio program "Left, Right and Center" on KCRW, the National Public Radio affiliate in Santa Monica, Calif. He is currently a clinical professor of communication at the University of Southern California's Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism. Scheer has written ten books, including "Thinking Tuna Fish, Talking Death: Essays on the Pornography of Power"; "With Enough Shovels: Reagan, Bush and Nuclear War"; "America After Nixon: The Age of Multinationals"; "The Five Biggest Lies Bush Told Us about Iraq" (with Christopher Scheer and Lakshmi Chaudhry); "Playing President: My Close Encounters with Nixon, Carter, Bush I and Clinton--and How They Did Not Prepare Me for George W. Bush"; "The Pornography of Power: How Defense Hawks Hijacked 9/11 and Weakened America"; "The Great American Stickup: How Reagan Republicans and Clinton Democrats Enriched Wall Street While Mugging Main Street"; "How the United States Got Involved in Vietnam"; and "Cuba: An American Tragedy". Scheer's latest book is "They Know Everything About You: How Data Collecting Corporations and Snooping Government Agencies are Destroying Democracy" (Nation Books, February 2015).

Scheer was raised in the Bronx, where he attended public schools and graduated from City College of New York. He was Maxwell Fellow at Syracuse University and a fellow at the Center for Chinese Studies at the University of California at Berkeley, where he did graduate work in economics. Scheer is a contributing editor for The Nation as well as a Nation Fellow. He has also been a Poynter Fellow at Yale and was fellow in Stanford's arms control and disarmament program.

Entries by Robert Scheer

California Democratic Party Chair John Burton On Campaign Finance And The Election (Audio)

(0) Comments | Posted July 22, 2016 | 11:42 PM

John Burton is the chair of the California Democratic Party, and he has over three decades of experience working in the California government. On this week’s episode of Scheer Intelligence, he joins Truthdig Editor in Chief Robert Scheer in a discussion of the current election and the...

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Et tu, Bernie?

(0) Comments | Posted July 12, 2016 | 11:43 PM

What an embarrassment for Bernie Sanders and those, myself included, who thought he would not descend so cravenly into the swamp of political sellout.

It is one thing to hold one’s nose and vote for Hillary Clinton as the lesser evil. It is quite another to suddenly...

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Larry Gross And The Formation Of The Gay Community

(0) Comments | Posted July 8, 2016 | 9:54 PM

In this week’s Scheer Intelligence Robert speaks with author and academic Larry Gross about how“invisible” closeted gay men and women came, over the course of the middle and late 20th century, to form a community that wielded political power.

A former dean at USC’s Annenberg School for Communication...

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Barbara Williams And 'The Hope In Leaving'

(0) Comments | Posted June 25, 2016 | 1:45 AM

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On this week's episode of Scheer Intelligence, Robert Scheer sits down with acclaimed Canadian actress, musician and author Barbara Williams. She discusses her memoir, "The Hope in Leaving," and describes her tough childhood as the daughter of...

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Anthony Davis and the Repercussions of a Football Career

(1) Comments | Posted June 10, 2016 | 10:03 PM


In this week's Scheer Intelligence podcast on KCRW, Robert Scheer speaks with former USC football player Anthony Davis about living with the brain injuries Davis sustained during his celebrated career.

Co-author with Jeremy Rosenberg, a USC assistant dean, of the 2014 book "

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Sandy Tolan: Children of the Stone

(0) Comments | Posted May 27, 2016 | 11:54 AM


In this episode of Scheer Intelligence Robert sits down with journalism professor Sandy Tolan to discuss his new book about the creation of a music school for children in the West Bank.

Children of the Stone: The Power of Music in...

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Jodie Evans: A Codepink Disrupter

(0) Comments | Posted May 13, 2016 | 6:11 PM


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In this episode of Scheer Intelligence, Robert Scheer sits down with activist Jodie Evans to discuss her organization's efforts to move the United States away from military conflict as well as the origins of her activism.

Jodie Evans, along...

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Eddie Conway: Making Real News After Prison

(0) Comments | Posted April 29, 2016 | 3:38 PM

In this week's "Scheer Intelligence," Robert Scheer sits down with former Black Panther Eddie Conway to hear about how he helped fellow prisoners organize for reform while serving a nearly 44-year term sentence for a murder he didn't commit.

Conway also talks about his disbelief upon being released from prison...

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Scheer Intelligence: Jason Leopold and the power of FOIA

(1) Comments | Posted April 16, 2016 | 12:42 AM

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In this episode of Scheer Intelligence, Robert Scheer sits down with journalist Jason Leopold to discuss how he has used the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) again and again to obtain previously undisclosed government documents.

Vice News reporter...

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Scheer Intelligence: Rev. Madison Shockley and the Meaning of Christianity

(0) Comments | Posted April 1, 2016 | 3:49 PM

In this week's "Scheer Intelligence," Robert Scheer sits down with Rev. Madison Shockley, an African-American who leads a predominantly white Christian church, to discuss the Shockley family's history with racism and what it means to be Christian today.

In their conversation, Shockley, who heads the Pilgrim United Church of Christ...

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Scheer Intelligence: Thomas Frank and "The New Liberal"

(0) Comments | Posted March 18, 2016 | 3:08 PM

In this week's Scheer Intelligence, Truthdig Editor-in-Chief Robert Scheer sits down with journalist Thomas Frank to discuss his new book, "Listen, Liberal," about how the Democratic Party abandoned the American working class.

Journalist Thomas Frank has written several books, including the acclaimed "What's the Matter with...

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Scheer Intelligence: William Binney and Blowing the Whistle On the NSA

(6) Comments | Posted March 11, 2016 | 5:31 PM

In this week's "Scheer Intelligence," Truthdig Editor-in-Chief Robert Scheer sits down with William Binney, a former National Security Agency official turned whistleblower, to discuss the fight between Apple and the U.S. government over access to Americans' cellphone data.

Binney spent over 30 years at the National Security Agency as a...

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Scheer Intelligence: D. Watkins and 'The Beast Side'

(0) Comments | Posted March 4, 2016 | 2:53 PM

In this episode of Scheer Intelligence, Robert Scheer interviews author, professor and activist D. Watkins, who steered his life's path from the drug trade and jail through college and graduate school, to a successful career as a writer, professor and role model for African American youth.

D. Watkins is...

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Scheer Intelligence: Ron Kovic and the Continuing Struggle for Veterans

(1) Comments | Posted February 19, 2016 | 6:29 PM

Robert Scheer sits down with Vietnam veteran, author and peace activist Ron Kovic to discuss what we have learned and not learned about the lessons of war since his time in combat in Vietnam.

While serving as a Marine in the Vietnam War, Ron Kovic suffered...

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Scheer Intelligence: Nomi Prins and the Washington/Wall Street Connection

(6) Comments | Posted February 12, 2016 | 4:26 PM

This week's KCRW podcast "Scheer Intelligence" features Truthdig editor and host Robert Scheer in conversation with Nomi Prins, author, journalist and former investment banker, who explains the culture of Wall Street and its influence on government.

Prins worked as a managing director at Bear Stearns and Goldman Sachs for several...

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Scheer Intelligence: Jill Stein - Presidential Candidate

(5) Comments | Posted February 8, 2016 | 1:59 PM

In this episode of Scheer Intelligence, Robert Scheer sits down with potential Green party presidential candidate, Jill Stein, to discuss her plans and why she thinks the Green Party is more relevant than ever.

Though former physician and previous Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein has not formally locked up...

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The NFL's Brain Damage

(5) Comments | Posted February 5, 2016 | 3:40 PM

As a recently suffering Oakland Raiders fan, I greeted the death of Kenny "The Snake" Stabler with a cocktail of fond memories of being in the Pasadena Rose Bowl Stadium delirium as he led the Raider Nation to victory in the 1977 Super Bowl.

But it's a cocktail laced...

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Scheer Intelligence: Ralph Nader, the Voice Against Corporate Power

(0) Comments | Posted January 22, 2016 | 2:13 PM

Ralph Nader became a consumer advocate while taking on the automobile industry with the groundbreaking book, Unsafe at Any Speed. Fifty years later, he continues to speak out against the outsized influence corporations have on American politics and life.

It's estimated that three-and-a-half million lives have been saved on American...

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Hillary Blames Bernie for an Old Clintonite Hustle, and That's a Rotten Shame

(434) Comments | Posted January 19, 2016 | 10:15 AM

The Clintons have no shame, that much you can count on. That stupefying arrogance was on full display in the most recent presidential campaign debate when Hillary Clinton countered Bernie Sanders' charge that she was compromised by her close ties to Goldman Sachs and other rapacious Wall Street interests with...

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Scheer Intelligence: Tom Dine on Israel and Peace in the Middle East

(5) Comments | Posted January 8, 2016 | 3:44 PM

This week, Robert Scheer sits down with Tom Dine, currently the senior policy advisor at Israel Policy Forum, but best known as the head of AIPAC (American Israel Public Affairs Committee), a powerful pro-Israel lobbying organization from 1980-1993.

Robert and Tom discuss some of the highs and lows in a...

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