Professional athletes in just about every sport imaginable are sprinting to new records: passing more accurately, throwing faster, jumping higher, swimming further. But there's one thing in sports that just hasn't changed: the free throw. Basketball players are simply no better at hitting that shot from the line than they ever were. John Branch from our partner The New York Times has been looking into why.
During her first trip to the Middle East as Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton announced yesterday that the U.S. will be sending two high-level envoys to Syria. This is the latest sign that the Obama administration is willing to engage Damascus on issues of regional and international concern. The two envoys are Jeffrey Feltman (acting assistant secretary of state) and Daniel Shapiro (a senior White House official). They may visit Syria today for "preliminary conversations". To learn what these new envoys will face, we are joined by Richard Murphy, former U.S. ambassador to Syria and former assistant secretary of state for the Near East.
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Over the past few years a rash of food-related illnesses caused by everything from tomatoes to spinach to peanut butter has sparked nationwide concern over food safety. Conventional wisdom has always said you can assure your food is safe by buying organic. But New York Times reporter Kim Severson did some digging and she found that organic certification has nothing to do with food safety.
Listen to the full Takeaway segment with Kim Severson here
When judges have received campaign contributions from interested parties in a case, should they recuse themselves? Caperton v. A.T. Massey Coal Co. goes before the U.S. Supreme Court today to answer that question. Adam Liptak, Supreme Court correspondent for The New York Times, joins Farai and John with a look at the case and how the system of electing judges influences the justice system.
The President of the West African Nation of Guinea-Bissau was shot and killed yesterday by renegade soldiers. The soldiers blamed the President for the bomb blast that killed his main rival, the army chief of staff, the day before. To unravel the twisted tale, we are joined by Will Ross, the BBC's West Africa correspondent in Accra, Ghana.
A rising tide of violence stemming from Mexico’s drug war has sent thousands of Mexican nationals fleeing across the border to the United States. Some of them go home, but thousands more say they cannot without fear of reprisal. Understandably, the number of Mexicans seeking asylum in the United States has skyrocketed in the past year. We’re joined by Carlos Spector an immigration attorney in El Paso, Texas, who has been helping people flee the violence.
Here is raw footage of Mexican troops being deployed to the border city of Ciudad Juarez, the country's most dangerous drug city.
Last month, President Obama sent a secret hand-delivered letter to Russia's President Dmitri Medvedev. It was an offer: the U.S. would back off from deploying a new missile defense system in Eastern Europe, if Moscow would help deter Iran from developing long-range weapons. Moscow has not responded to the letter, but many people see this as an effort to reset the relationship between the U.S. and Russia. New York Times reporter Peter Baker wrote a front page story on this and he joins us now.
Cuban President Raul Castro replaced eight cabinet ministers yesterday in a shake-up that ousted politicians linked to Fidel Castro. This move could signal a new era for Cuba. To talk about Cuba's future we are joined by James Painter, Latin American analyst for our partners, the BBC.
Bad sportsmanship took an ugly turn as Pakistani gunmen attacked a bus carrying the Sri Lankan cricket team on its way to play in the Pakistani city of Lahore. At least five Pakistani policemen protecting the team's bus were killed, while seven cricketers and their assistant coach were injured. For more we turn to Schwaib Hassan, the BBC's Pakistan correspondent, who joins us from Karachi.
The global markets took a trip down memory lane yesterday, unfortunately not in a good way. The S&P dropped to its lowest level since November of 1996. The Dow fell below 7,000 for the first time since 1997. The FTSE 100 to a it lowest level in 14 years in dollar terms. Japan's Nikkei slid near its lowest point in 26 years. Michael Hunter, markets reporter for the Financial Times joins us with his take on the gloom-and-doom economy.
"We will in many ways, I suspect, start looking back to early March and late February of 2009 as, perhaps, the beginning of the end. — Michael Hunter of the Financial Times on the state of the economy
British Prime Minister Gordon Brown begins an official visit to the United States today. He’ll be the first European leader to meet President Obama in the White House. And on the agenda — you guessed it —the global financial crisis. Joining The Takeaway to tell us what Britain’s embattled Prime Minister will be saying to our new President is Philip Stephens, Associate Editor of the Financial Times.
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