Bill Moyers Is Back!

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It didn't take Bill Moyers long to realize that his premature retirement was premature. This weekend marked his return to public television with a new show, Moyers & Company, little more than 20 months after the final airing of Bill Moyers' Journal.

For some people, returning from retirement would raise questions about whether, while they were away, the world passed them by. But the world is, if anything, more congenial than ever to Moyers' sensibility. Moyers is a progressive with a populist streak, and he has long taken more seriously than most journalists one famous rendering of the journalist's mission: to comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable. So the upheaval on the left that preceded his return--the Occupy movement, with its legacy motif of "the one percent"--has nicely set the stage for him.

In his first show he takes full advantage, looking at the Occupy movement, and its motivating grievances, from various angles. Especially illuminating is his interview with Jacob Hacker and Paul Pierson, authors of Winner-Take-All Politics. It starts at the 6:30 mark in the video below. Don't miss the jarring animated graphic at the nine-minute mark.

For other video segments--including some that weren't broadcast--go to billmoyers.com.

[Postscript: I remembered after posting this that the final installment of Bill Moyers' Journal, in the spring of 2010, had featured a segment on a grassroots protest movement in Iowa that offers interesting parallels with, as well as contrasts with, the Occupy movement. Here's that segment.]

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Robert Wright is the author of, most recently, the New York Times bestseller The Evolution of God and a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. He is a former writer and editor at The Atlantic. More

Wright is also a fellow at the New America Foundation and editor in chief of Bloggingheads.tv. His other books include Nonzero, which was named a New York Times Book Review Notable Book in 2000 and included on Fortune magazine's list of the top 75 business books of all-time. Wright's best-selling book The Moral Animal was selected as one of the ten best books of 1994 by The New York Times Book Review.Wright has contributed to The Atlantic for more than 20 years. He has also contributed to a number of the country's other leading magazines and newspapers, including: The New Yorker, The New York Times Magazine, Foreign Policy, The New Republic, Time, and Slate, and the op-ed pages of The New York Times, The Washington Post, and The Financial Times. He is the recipient of a National Magazine Award for Essay and Criticism and his books have been translated into more than a dozen languages.

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