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GRITtv: Jeff Sharlet’s The Family

Who exactly were the “Founding Fathers” of the United States of America? Were they the political leaders who established the prolific Declaration of Independence? Were they patriots and leaders of the American Revolution who later went on to framing one of the greatest pieces of writing in America; the United Stated Constitution?

Or were they something never really described in our history textbooks? A “family” that waged spiritual wars in the guise of American pursuits? The Family, written by Jeff Sharlet, recounts the story of businessmen and an immigrant preacher they followed who together built a global network of fundamentalists and achieved enormous political power. Sharlet argues that this power has been used to manipulate national and foreign policies that have preserved for generations, even now.

In Sharlet’s interview, Laura Flanders discusses his alternative views of conventional American fundamentalism. He also speaks about how American fundamentalism has impacted the economics of globalization and use of war past and present.

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Laura Flanders

Laura Flanders

Laura Flanders, author, and host of RadioNation on Air America Radio, has built a reputation for courageous investigative journalism coupled with compassion and a sense of humor. In writing her last book, Blue Grit, she traveled the country reporting on grassroots success stories and broadcast live to over 150 radio stations from community centers in places including Helena, Salt Lake City, New Orleans, Miami, Las Vegas, and Milwaukee. In her television appearances (Lou Dobbs, Larry King Live,) on radio and in her many books (including Bushwomen: Tales of a Cynical Species) and articles (The Nation and others,) Flanders calls for a new politics of fairness, equality and citizen action. Articulating the human dimension of American communities in trouble, her programs have become destinations for those seeking the skills and the will to make a difference. Flanders is a regular contributor to the Nation Magazine and CNN. Before joining Air America, where she was part of the original lineup, and hosted “The Laura Flanders Show” for three years, Flanders was the founding host of the award-winning “Your Call” weekday mornings on public radio, KALW in the Bay Area and CounterSpin, the radio show of the mediawatch group, FAIR.