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The Takeaway

Health Care Changes Go Into Effect Today

Thursday, September 23, 2010

President Obama signed his historic health care reform bill into law back in March, and now, six months later, three key provisions in the bill take effect: 

  • There will no longer be a lifetime cap on health insurance.
  • Parents can now keep their child under their plan until they are 26 years old.
  • Insurance companies can no longer refuse coverage for children with pre-existing conditions.

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The Takeaway

Lady Gaga and Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Lady Gaga has taken it upon herself to become an advocate for gay rights, especially for those serving in the military, by becoming extremely vocal in having 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell,' repealed.

But is Lady Gaga the right person for the job, and is she someone gay service men and women want?

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The Takeaway

How the Media Went Gaga Over Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Just two weeks ago, advocates for the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell had something to be optimistic about.  After nearly two decades of fighting what they think of as a fundamentally flawed, bigoted, and unjust policy by the nation’s military, it finally seemed as if the federal government was catching up to their way of thinking.  Flying in the face of the foot dragging and lip service campaign that has been the Obama administration’s effort to repeal the policy, a federal judge ruled DADT unconstitutional, saying the policy violated the rights of gays and lesbians in uniform and had a “direct and deleterious effect” on the military.  Four days later, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid announced that he would include a provision to allow the Defense Department to end the policy in a defense spending bill that would be voted on the following week.

Republicans, of course, cried foul.  The stage was set for yet another exhausting and bitterly partisan brawl in the Senate.  A number of political observers said that the Democrats had a good shot of repealing DADT this time around.  And then something peculiar happened.

 

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The Takeaway

What Constitutes 'Rich' in America

Friday, September 17, 2010

What does it mean to be poor or rich in America?  We asked our listeners that question and we got a lot of feedback.  Listeners like Allan from Woonsocket, Rhode Island texted us:

"I feel rich by knowing that rich or poor is a state of mind." 

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The Takeaway

What's in the Small Business Bill?

Friday, September 17, 2010

The small business bill championed by President Obama and Democratic legislators is — after months of languishing in the Senate — moving through Congress. Expected to be easily passed by the House, the aid package includes $12 billion in tax breaks as well as $30 billion in government-backed loans for small businesses. Proponents estimate it may create as many as 500,000 jobs.

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The Takeaway

The Personal Toll of the Great Migration

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Why don't we talk more about the Great Migration, a time that saw six million African Americans leave the South in search of work and freedom? Our own Celeste Headlee is, herself, a product of this slow, leaderless shift that occurred over the course of six decades. She shares her family's story.

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The Takeaway

Bleak Forecast for New US Poverty Rate

Thursday, September 16, 2010

The Census Bureau will release its annual Income, Poverty and Health Insurance Coverage report today and the expectations are grim.

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The Takeaway

One Listener's Story from the Great Migration

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Between the 1910s and 1920s an unprecedented social change occurred in the United States when six million black Americans left the South and headed North and West in what came to be known as the Great Migration. Yesterday, we asked listeners to share their stories of the Great Migration. Della Beaver shares her family's story of why her parents moved from South Carolina to Chester, Pennsylvania, and what it was like to travel back to the South to visit their relatives.

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The Takeaway

Uncertainty for the GOP After Tea Party Candidates Win Big In Primaries

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Last night's primary elections set the stage for the nation's general elections with seven states and the District of Columbia heading to the polls. Once again, the viability of the Tea Party was the central question in several races on the Eastern seaboard.. While several Republican insurgent candidates won big last night, their victories over establishment candidates muddle the G.O.P.'s chances of retaking the Senate in November.

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The Takeaway

In Uncertain Economy Some Investors Flock to Gold

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

While the economy flailed this summer, gold prices hit a record high. WNYC reporter Lisa Chow has been reporting on the growing trend of gold investments and talks about who is investing in gold and why.

 

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The Takeaway

What Does it Mean to Be 'Rich' in America?

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Washington correspondent Todd Zwillich breaks down the politics behind the Bush-era tax cuts, made during a time of budget surplus, and the proposals to allow the cuts to expire on individuals making more than $250,000 a year. Are there political agendas here? Also, chief economist for the Concord Coalition, Diane Lim Rogers, discusses the economics of this debate. Will this benefit middle class America and, in turn, stimulate the economy or will it negatively affect small business owners that are in the $250,000 income bracket that will lose their tax break?

We asked our listeners: What does it mean to be rich these days anyway? The tax code says it's $250,000 a year. How much do YOU think you have to earn to be considered rich?

 

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The Takeaway

Anger at Incumbents on the Last Day of Primaries

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Across the country, today’s primary elections are the final round before November’s general election. When the last seven states take to the polls, they will close this season's intra-party jockeying and complete the story of how the political narrative of “anti-incumbent anger” is really playing out in voting booths nationwide.  

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The Takeaway

This Week's Agenda: Congress Returns, Primaries Nationwide, Mid-East Peace Talks Round 2

Monday, September 13, 2010

Both the House and Senate head back into session this week, and the decision whether or not to extend the Bush-era tax cuts will be high on the agenda. Takeaway's economics editor Charlie Herman and National Journal managing editor Terence Samuel look at what else Congress has to look forward to

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The Takeaway

Evangelical Minister: We Need More Moderate Voices

Friday, September 10, 2010

Pastor Terry Jones announced last night that he cancelled his plans to hold a Quran-burning in Gainesville, Fla. Instead, he will fly to New York to meet with Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, who is proposing to build an Islamic Cultural Center and mosque near ground zero.

Yesterday we spoke with another evangelical Christian minister from Gainesville — Dan Johnson, minister at Trinity United Methodist Church in Lower Manhattan — who was opposed to the burning. He said, "I think this country is more eager now than ever to hear moderate voices, and they're tired of... being taken hostage by people on the fringes so much.”

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The Takeaway

Florida Pastor Ends Campaign to Burn Qurans

Friday, September 10, 2010

Few legal boundaries stood between Florida Pastor Terry Jones and his plans to burn copies of the Quran on Saturday, the ninth anniversary of the September 11th attacks.

While most of the world voiced dismay at Pastor Jones' political statement, fearing it would incite violence and radicalize religious extremists overseas, Jones argued that was demonstrating against what he calls the extremism of Islam. Yesterday, the pastor decided to call off his campaign to burn the sacred text after reaching what he said was an "agreement" to meet with the people planning an Islamic cultural center and mosque near ground zero.

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The Takeaway

Evangelicals, Muslims, and 'Burn a Quran Day'

Thursday, September 09, 2010

Of all the commemorations of September 11th planned for this weekend, Pastor Terry Jones' "Burn A Quran Day" is almost certainly proving the most inflammatory. Jones has announced that with others, he will host a Koran-burning at the "Dove World Outreach Center" in Gainesville, Fla. this weekend. Jones has made international news with his planned action, drawing the ire of everyone from Muslims to Gen. David Petraeus, who says the Pastor's event will endanger U.S. troops abroad. The event has also brought out critics from within his own Evangelical Christian faith.

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The Takeaway

The History of the Civil Rights Movement and the Women Who Inspired It

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Consider the history of the civil rights movement, but set aside for a moment the well-known stories from men: those of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Emmett Till, Medgar Evers and Andrew Goodman. If we examine the movement through the eyes of the women there at the time, what would the story sound like? 

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The Takeaway

Obama to Propose Tax Break for Businesses

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Midterm elections are now less than two months away, and this week President Obama’s agenda is all about the economy. In Milwaukee on Monday, the president said, “I am going to keep fighting, every single day, every single hour, every single minute, to turn this economy around, and put our people back to work.”

In Monday's speech, the president proposed a $50 billion plan to invest in infrastructure across the country—from roads to railways and runways—as well as an expansion of the tax credit for research and experimentation.

Today, in Cleveland, the president will give another speech on the economy, and one of the major initiatives he’s expected to propose would allow businesses to write off 100 percent of their new investments in equipment and plants all at once—rather than over a number of years, which is how businesses can currently deduct investment expenses. The idea is that this would be an incentive for businesses to start immediately investing in goods they need, and hiring more workers.

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The Takeaway

Obama to Congress: Fix Roads, Add Jobs

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

President Barack Obama is talking about the economy all week. Yesterday, he delivered a jobs speech before a whooping crowd in Milwaukee, Wis., where he called on Congress to swiftly approve a new stimulus plan: one that would devote at least an additional $50 billion to upgrade the nation's infrastructure.

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The Takeaway

Paying Big Bucks to Land an Unpaid Internship

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

It's the end of summer, and that means that businesses around the country are being emptied of their interns. Early this summer, they arrived with their youth and their ambition. As the air turns crisp, they go home, leaving behind neatly stacked piles of folders, well organized databases, and, perhaps, a good impression.  

But a small group of those interns left something else behind: a wad of cash. Today, a growing number of young people – or their parents – are paying thousands of dollars for the privilege of working an unpaid internship.

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