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The Takeaway

McConnell Changes Tune On Earmarks

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), once a man who backed the practice of earmarks, and used them for many projects in his state of Kentucky, made a surprise announcement on the issue yesterday. He said that he will support a moritorium on earmarks. Does the Senator's reversal signal the influence of those in the Tea Party, who have called for an end to pork-barrel projects?  

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The Takeaway

This Week's Agenda: Lame-Duck Congress, Bipartisan Meetings, Potential Israeli Settlement Freeze

Monday, November 15, 2010

The 110th Congress begins its lame duck session today, and the question remains: how much can lawmakers get done before the new members step in? Charlie Herman, economics editor for The Takeaway and WNYC looks at how this session of Congress handles the Bush tax cuts, "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," and the new START treaty.

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The Takeaway

NFL Playoffs Moving Down the Field

Monday, November 15, 2010

The NFL playoffs are getting closer, and that means wins and losses mean a lot more. Wall Street Journal sportswriter Nando Di Fino joins us to talk about recent developments: The Chiefs' recent losing streak, the Cowboys defeating the Giants, and some promising signs from the Atlanta Falcons and the New England Patriots. 

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The Takeaway

Can Washington Cut the Deficit?

Friday, November 12, 2010

Love them or hate them, the co-chairs of the National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform have released their draft proposals to slow the quickly growing national debt. Many politicians say the ideas will never, ever be approved by any future Congress. With proposals that call for major cuts in domestic and military spending, bumping the age to qualify for (decreased) Social Security benefits, and a simplified but much broader tax base with fewer exemptions, the plan is guaranteed to be unpopular among politicians and voters alike. But as unpalatable as these notions are to politicians, is it time to start getting serious about painful cuts?    

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The Takeaway

Buy a Truck, Get an AK-47

Friday, November 12, 2010

It's not like seat-heaters, a fancy sound system, or other car purchase options/ad-ons, but Nation's Trucks in Sanford, Fla. does offer a deal if you purchase a truck: buy one, get an AK-47. Technically, to get your semi-automatic with your vehicle, you have to jump through all the usual hoops of buying the weapon according to state laws. But Nick Ginetta, the general sales manager at the dealership who acknowledges it is in effect a publicity stunt, hopes he'll get a few more customers than usual.

 

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The Takeaway

Homeland Security Reaching Out to Muslims in America and Beyond

Friday, November 12, 2010

In his speech in Jakarta earlier this week, President Obama addressed Muslims across the world, seeking to reassure them that they are not the enemy. "America is not," he said, "and never will be, at war with Islam." But while President Obama reaches out to Muslims across the world, the federal government is trying to make sure Muslim communities here at home get the same message.

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The Takeaway

Top of the Hour: Republicans Get to Work, Morning Headlines

Friday, November 12, 2010

A week after they cleaned up in the midterm elections, the Republicans are trying to establish their goals. But with Tea Party candidates among their ranks, the GOP might have some divisions to grapple with first. 

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The Takeaway

Top of the Hour: Pains of Cutting the Deficit, Morning Headlines

Friday, November 12, 2010

Now that we've had a peek at the deficit commission's suggestions, how do both political parties and the public find common ground on making cuts? 

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The Takeaway

Top of the Hour: Remembering Vets as Vets Remember, Morning Headlines

Thursday, November 11, 2010

On Veterans' Day, we take a look at a growing library of over 70,000 veterans who have served our country. 

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The Takeaway

UK's Loss of Famous Painting Might Be US's Gain

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Famous painter JMW Turner's work, "Modern Rome — Campo Vaccino," is considered part of the British identity. So when budget cuts in the U.K. threatened to send Turner's masterpiece to highest bidder — the J. Paul Getty Museum Los Angeles — the Brits began an effort to try and raise $50 Million to keep the "national treasure" in its native land. 

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The Takeaway

Mystery Missile? UFO? Watch the Video and Tell Us

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Monday evening residents near Lost Angeles, California saw something strange shoot into the sky, leaving a squiggly, smoky tail in its path. Some wondered if it was a missile launch, but after local military didn't take responsibility for the mystery incident, questions remain. Experts have mused that it might have been merely a jet, seen departing from a strange angle, while others wondered if it was a ballistic launched from a submarine. What do you think? Take a look at the CBS News video and tell us your theory. 

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The Takeaway

Who's To Blame For The Gulf Oil Spill? Maybe Nobody

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

President Obama's commission to investigate the causes of the Gulf oil spill revealed their results yesterday, and it seems that they couldn't find anyone specifically to blame. Fred Bartlit, lead counsel on the investigation, said "We have not seen a single instance where a human being made a conscious decision to favor dollars over safety." While the commission says it agrees "90 percent" with BP's own report on the explosion and spill — does the public need someone to blame for all of this?

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The Takeaway

Louisiana's Angola Prison: Where Rehabilitation Includes a Rodeo

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

They wear black-and-white striped shirts in a Western style, and compete for cash prizes in the "convict poker tournament." But the men participating in Louisiana Staten Prison's annual rodeo are merely volunteering to take part in a 40-year tradition. Prison administration officials say is a healthy part of the prisoners' rehabilitation — offering convicts a chance to see their families, who pack the stadium. Some call the event exploitation. 

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The Takeaway

This Week's Agenda: Republicans' Next Steps, Obama in Asia

Monday, November 08, 2010

After the beating Democrats took in last week's mid-term elections, all eyes, including those of our managing producer, Noel King, will be looking at what the GOP's initial moves will be this week. She'll also look at President Obama's continued trip through Asia, along with Charlie Herman, business and economics editor for The Takeaway and WNYC Radio.

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The Takeaway

Zora Neale Hurston's Singing Voice

Monday, November 08, 2010

Zora Neale Hurston may have been an incredible writer, but she wasn't a bad singer either. How do we know? Thanks to a team of archivists who hauled a huge "portable" disc recorder around Florida in the 1930s, we can hear Hurston singing old songs about working-class black Americans during Jim Crow segregation. 

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The Takeaway

What Book Would You Write For Your Child?

Friday, November 05, 2010

After she became pregnant with her daughter, Tanya Simon went looking for books to share with the new member of her family. That's when she realized: there weren't very many fictional young black heroines in children's literature. So Simon sat down with friend Victoria Bond and wrote a story she thought her daughter would enjoy: "Zora and Me."

The book, which tells a fictional account of a young Zora Neale Hurston as a girl detective in her Florida hometown, was the kind of young adult literature Simon wished existed for her daughter. We're asking listeners: What book would you write for your own children? Is there a group or a person who you feel is underrepresented, or a story you think is missing from the bookstore shelves?

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The Takeaway

Jobs Report Offers Encouraging Numbers

Friday, November 05, 2010

Today the Labor Department reported 151,000 new jobs added to the economy — the most in five months. Some are saying this could be a sign that the country's financial situation is improving, and that the private sector could finally be gaining traction again. We're joined now by Wall Street Journal reporter Kelly Evans, who says it might help the labor market finally lift off. 

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The Takeaway

A Takeaway Listener and Tea Party Member Says GOP is Hijacking the Movement

Friday, November 05, 2010

David Sloan, an early Tea Party member, wrote to The Takeaway on Thursday that he fears the Tea Party is being co-opted by the Republican Party. We wanted to speak more with him about what his particular fears were, and where he draws the lines of difference between the Republican agenda and his own. 

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The Takeaway

General Motors Goes Public (Again)

Thursday, November 04, 2010

Today "Government Motors" gets to be General Motors again, when the company announces its initial public offering. It's a cautious success story — the company had a $2.1 billion proffit this quarter. But is it the right time to go public? We speak with Paul Eisenstein, publisher of The Detroit Bureau, which covers the auto industry, for more.

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The Takeaway

Can Democrats and Republicans Get Along?

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

President Obama said today that he wants to build consensus with the Republicans who swept Tuesday's midterm elections. Now that he has a divided Congress to reckon with, the president said that Democrats and Republicans need to find ways to compromise. But, he said, there are some principles where neither side will ever budge.

How would you bridge the divide with the other side? If you're a Democrat, how could you find common ground with Republicans (and vice versa)?

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