Streams

Farai Chideya

Political Contributor

Farai Chideya appears in the following:

Happy Birthday, Big Brother! Orwell's '1984' Turns 60

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Sixty years ago, George Orwell's dystopian masterpiece 1984 was published and imagery like Big Brother, Room 101, and the "thought police" entered the vernacular. It's a book that has resonated with the public, playing off the fear of government surveillance and encroachment on individual rights. Orwell's pessimistic vision didn't come to pass by 1984, but we turn to BBC arts correspondent Lawrence Pollard to discuss how the book is relevant today.

From the cinematic version of the book, here's an explanation of war:

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Doctors to Schools: It's Your Job to Prevent Bullying

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

In July, the American Academy of Pediatrics will come out with a new statement on how to prevent childhood bullying. They suggest that schools adopt a program in which children are encouraged to reach out to victims and isolate bullies. Can schools really make bullying uncool? Dr. Robert Sege, one of the lead authors on the policy, joins The Takeaway with his big ideas.

For parents and teachers looking for advice on how to deal with bullying, head to today's New York Times to read Perri Klass's article, At Last, Facing Down Bullies (and Their Enablers).

When you're done listening to Dr. Sege, check out The Takeaway's past coverage on childhood bullying and teen psychosis.

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George Mitchell's Road Map to Mideast Peace

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

U.S. Special Envoy for the Middle East George Mitchell is in Jerusalem today for meetings with Israeli leaders. Yesterday he called for "immediate" peace talks between the Israeli and Palestinians. That comes on the back of President Obama’s speech in Cairo last week where he made clear his wish for a two-state solution to the conflict and the end of Israeli settlement building in the West Bank. The BBC's Diplomatic correspondent Jonathan Marcus joins us with his analysis.

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Car Troubles: Court Blocks Chrysler Sale To Fiat

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Thanks to the protest of a group of Indiana-based debt holders, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a stay on the deal to sell Chrysler to Italian carmaker Fiat. The stay of proceedings allows the Court to consider whether to hear the objections of three Indiana state funds and consumer groups. Many industry watchers saw this deal as Chrysler's best chance to avoid liquidation. Joining us to look at how the Court will proceed — and if this will force Chrysler to fold— is Michael de la Merced, business reporter with our partner, The New York Times.

For more, read Michael de la Merced's article, Supreme Court Delays Sale of Chrysler to Fiat, in the New York Times.

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Get Smart! The Next Generation of Smartphones Is Here

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

The iPhone is getting cheaper. Yesterday Apple announced it was slashing the price of the current iPhone in half just as it launches a new version, which is the third new model since 2007. This comes days after Palm launches it's so-called "iPhone killer," the Palm Pre. New York Times personal technology editor Sam Grobart helps us navigate the buying frenzy.

Watch an ad for the iPhone 3G S below.

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Hey, Marlboro Man, the FDA Is the New Sheriff in Town

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

This week the Senate is expected to pass a bill to give the Food and Drug Administration the power to regulate tobacco products. The bill does not ban cigarettes, nor does it restrict sales to consenting adults; it largely concentrates on marketing. Terms like "low tar" and "light" are gone, the Surgeon General's warnings will get much larger and brighter-colored, and except for menthol, there will be no more flavored cigarettes. To talk us through the details of the bill, we turn The Takeaway's Washington correspondent Todd Zwillich.

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Paying for Justice? How We Elect Judges

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that judges must recuse themselves from ruling on cases that involve individuals who have spent money to help put the judge on the bench. It sounds like a fairly straightforward ruling. But the decision raises larger questions of just how we elect and appoint judges in this country. For a look at the tricky process of electing judges, The Takeaway talks to Adam Liptak, Supreme Court Correspondent for our partners The New York Times, and to Tom Phillips, a lawyer with Baker Botts in Austin, Texas, who served as the Chief Justice of the Texas Supreme Court from 1988 to 2004.

"Whenever you treat a judge the same way you treat other officials that have a different position in office, you tend to confuse within the public's mind, and perhaps even in the judge's mind, the very different roles that different officers in the government perform."
— Attorney Tom Phillips on reforms in appointing judges

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A GM Worker: From the Frontlines of the Bankruptcy

Thursday, May 28, 2009

With GM likely to declare bankruptcy on June 1st, autoworkers are gearing up for another round of bad news. How are the workers bracing themselves? The Takeaway talks to Will Marcum, who works on full-sized trucks for GM in Pontiac, Michigan.

For more of Will Marcum's thoughts on GM listen to his earlier interviews on The Takeaway.

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What Does Supreme Court Diversity Mean?

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Of the 110 U.S. Supreme Court justices in history, only eleven have been Catholic. But if Judge Sonia Sotomayor is confirmed as the newest member on the bench, there will be six Catholic judges on the bench at once. That begs the question: What does diversity on the Supreme Court mean? Is it about race, religion, or gender? Or should it be about something bigger? The Takeaway talks to Nadine Strossen, the former President of the ACLU who is currently a professor at New York Law School. Also joining the conversation is John Allen, the senior correspondent for the National Catholic Reporter.

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Buying a Senate Seat? More Questions for Sen. Burris

Thursday, May 28, 2009

There's yet another chapter in the tale of ousted Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich and the Senate seat left vacant by Barack Obama. Secretly taped phone conversations between then State Senator Roland Burris and the disgraced former governor's brother were released to the U.S. Senate Ethics Committee yesterday. Burris, now a senator, still claims that he was not involved in any plan to funnel money to Blagojevich in return for the Senate seat. Rob Wildeboer is a reporter for Chicago Public Radio and he has been following the story closely.

Sen. Burris has been making adamant denials of any wrongdoing:

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"Slow Parenting": The Noble Savage in the High Chair

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Are modern parents adopting the idea of the child as a noble savage? Slow parenting, free-range parenting, I-don't-give-a-darn parenting -- this new approach is gaining popularity in reaction to the hovering of so-called "helicopter" parents. The basic premise is to leave your kids alone and let them develop at their own pace. Are parents taking pride now in being labeled a bad parent? Lisa Belkin is a contributing writer for The New York Times Magazine and she writes about this new trend in parenting in this weekend's issue.

Want to hear more? Listen to our interviews with Ayelet Waldman and Heather B. Armstrong.

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The Koreas: So Close, So Uneasy

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Yesterday, North Korea's official news agency warned of a “powerful military strike” on South Korea if it searched the North’s ships. This came the same day that the North said that it no longer considers itself bound by the terms of the armistice that ended war between the Koreas five decades ago. New York Times reporter Martin Fackler wrote about a dramatic shift in how South Koreans are viewing their northern neighbors. He joins The Takeaway from Seoul.

For more, read Martin Fackler's article, S. Koreans Express Fatigue With a Recalcitrant North, in today's New York Times.
"If South Korea were to go in there an rebuild it, and take it over like West Germany did to East Germany two decades ago, the bill would be enormous. North Korea is so far behind, and I think South Koreans are balking at the prospect of doing that themselves."
—Martin Fackler of the New York Times on relations between North and South Korea

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Bust A Move with Young MC

Thursday, May 28, 2009

It's been 20 years since the classic dance floor jam, Bust a Move, flooded the airwaves and became an instant classic. The Takeaway talks to the song's creator, Young MC, and host Farai Chideya takes on a trip down memory lane to relive a moment in 1989.

Transcript:

Farai Chideya: Alright, you know it. You were wearing those parachute pants and those kinda-like shiny shoes that you thought were so fly. And you know that — especially if you're black — you had some sort of texturizer in your hair. You were listening to Bust A Move by Marvin Young or Young MC. Now this proud papa has a song that is 20 yrs old. That song is old enough to go to the club. Crazy, huh Marvin?

Young MC: Yes, Farai. This song is old enough to go to the club; get in all sorts of trouble.

FC: Definitely. I mean, your song is a classic dance floor jam. And so, I want you, I'm going to call you Marvin or Young or Young MC. Marvin is the name that your friends call you, Young MC is how most of us know you. So Young, take me back to where you were and who you were 20 years ago when this song hit the airwaves. ...(more)

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Who'll Take the Title? The NBA and Stanley Cup

Thursday, May 28, 2009

We're getting into crunch time for both the NBA and the NHL. It's the conference finals for the NBA, with LeBron James and his Cleveland Cavaliers on the brink of elimination; they trail the Orlando Magic 3-1. Meanwhile, in the Western Conference, the Los Angeles Lakers took a 3 - 2 series lead over the Denver Nuggets last night. Over in the National Hockey League, Detroit and Pittsburgh will open the Stanley Cup finals this Saturday in Detroit. For more we turn to The Takeaway's sports contributor Ibrahim Abdul-Matin.

For more of Ibrahim's thoughts on sports, read his blog post, The NBA Finals: Will Kobe See LeBron There?

Watch Red Wing Darren Helm score last night's game-winning goal in the video below.

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Securing Your Cyber World

Thursday, May 28, 2009

This week President Obama will unveil a much anticipated report on his plans to make the internet secure. He is also likely to name his new cyber-security czar. James Lewis consulted with the administration on this report and he joins The Takeaway to discuss the threats to our cybersecurity. James Lewis is a Senior Fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, where he is director of the center’s Technology and Public Policy Program.

Watch this clip from the 1995 movie Hackers to learn exactly how hackers operate.

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Iran's Facebook Election

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Some 30,000 people showed up to hear a speech by Mir Hussein Moussavi, a reformist candidate for the Iranian presidency -- and they hadn't been paid, fed or bussed in, tactics used by the incumbent President Mahmoud Ahmedinejad. The supporters showed up mainly thanks to the campaign taking place on Facebook. The social networking tool is rocking the campaign so much that the Iranian government blocked access to it last Saturday; restoring it yesterday. For more on the new campaign tools and an analysis of the Iranian election, we turn to Jon Leyne, the BBC's correspondent in Tehran.
"There's some smart people running this country. Whether they're running it in the best interest of the country and the best interest of the Iranian people, that one can dispute heavily."
—BBC correspondent Jon Leyne on Iranian elections.

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Restructuring the Carmakers: What It Means for Consumers

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Both GM and Chrysler will be restructuring their businesses under bankruptcy protection. After GM announced that it failed to convince bondholders to a debt-swap, the U.S. automaker appears heading towards insolvency. That could mean the federal government will get a 70% ownership stake in a post-chapter 11 General Motors. And Chrysler ended a marathon hearing in bankruptcy court Wednesday as it tries to get approval to sell its assets to Italian automaker Fiat. For the details of how two such large-scale bankruptcies work and what the aftermath could look like, The Takeaway talks to New York Times auto reporter Micheline Maynard and bankruptcy expert John Pottow, Law Professor at University of Michigan.

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Who is Sonia Sotomayor? Personal Views

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor grew up in the projects in the Bronx, then went on to Princeton and Yale Law School before working as a Manhattan DA and then a federal judge. Yale Law Professor and novelist Stephen Carter was in Sotomayor's law school class, now he teaches some of her opinions in her own classes. He'll join John and Farai to share his professional—and personal—perspective on the nominee. Also joining the conversation is Jenny Rivera who clerked for Sotomayor in 1993 and is now a law professor at the City University of New York Law School.

Click here for a slideshow of pictures from Sotomayor's life.

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Supreme Court Fashions

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

One of the many issues the new Supreme Court Justice will have to address is what to wear. A lace jabot like Sandra Day O'Connor? Something more... modern? The Takeaway talks to Susan Scafidi, a law professor at Fordham Law School who writes the blog Counterfeit Chic. ...(And click here for a photo gallery of judicial fashions)

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China's Role in North Korea's High-Stakes Game

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

North Korea continues to raise the stakes in its game of nuclear poker, conducting a second nuclear test in as many days on Tuesday. Meanwhile, a South Korean newspaper has reported that U.S. spy satellites have detected signs that North Korea has started up its nuclear plant again. The international community has condemned Pyongyang's nuclear ambitions. But the only country with real clout over North Korea is China: the nation is North Korea’s neighbor and main trading partner. To find out China's take on the North Korea situation, The Takeaway talks to John Pomfret, author of Chinese Lessons: Five Classmates and the Story of the New China. He writes the blog Pomfret’s China on the Newsweek/Washington Post website.

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