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Obama

The Takeaway

Listeners Respond: How to Spend $50 Billion on Infrastructure

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

All morning we've been talking about President Obama's plan to spend $50 billion on infrastructure to stimulate the economy. Takeaway listeners have some of their own ideas about the money would best be spent.

Brandolon from Dallas says:

"Biking, walking, and mass transit infrastructure, for example, would reduce reliance on the automobile, and thus the dept that comes along with it—auto loans, payday loans to pay car notes and gas, etc. All that money goes to banks and bank execs who are more likely to invest it in other nations than our own. That rationale should be key in the decision-making process."

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Transportation Nation

Obama: Infrastructure, Transportation Equals Jobs

Monday, September 06, 2010

(Marketplace) We mark this holiday by noting that there are millions of people in this country who wish they were laboring. We have the highest unemployment rate for a Labor Day in almost 30 years. Labor Day 1982 saw a 10.1% jobless rate. Today, it's 9.6%.

President Obama was in Milwaukee today -- endorsing another $50 billion in government infrastructure projects.  It will all be paid for by ending a tax break for oil and gas companies, he said.  More from Marketplace's John Dimsdale.

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World Weekly with Gideon Rachman

Iraq, the Middle East, Nigeria and Mexico

Friday, September 03, 2010

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The Takeaway

The Mechanics and Theater Behind Mideast Peace Talks

Thursday, September 02, 2010

Since the Six-Day War in 1967, American presidents have tried long and hard to encourage peace in the Middle East. After he helped ink the Camp David Accords, former President Jimmy Carter insightfully warned that peace would not come easily. "The questions that have brought warfare and bitterness to the Middle East for the last thirty years will not be settled overnight," he said. Now, six presidencies and thirty years later, lasting peace has yet to be achieved.

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The Takeaway

Do We Care About the President's Iraq Speech?

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

President Obama addressed the country last night, marking the official end of U.S. combat operations in Iraq. Balancing his own former opposition to the war with congratulating the troops required Obama, a gifted orator, to thread several rhetorical needles, but a larger question remains: do people care what Obama had to say about Iraq?

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The Takeaway

Official End of Combat in Iraq, But What's Next for Iraqis?

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Today marks the formal end of the United States' combat mission in Iraq, after almost eight years. There are now fewer than 50,000 troops left in Iraq — all serving in non-combat roles. The Obama administration has pledged to withdraw all troops by October 2011. But many are now asking questions about what Iraq's future holds. What kind of presence will the U.S. have there in the coming years and is it realistic for the country to fully support itself by the end of next year?

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The Takeaway

A Nuclear Iran May Be Further Away than Previously Thought

Friday, August 20, 2010

It's a simple question with an infinitely complicated answer: what happens if Iran is able to build a nuclear weapon?

Russia is expected to deliver low-enriched uranium to Tehran to bring the Bushehr reactor, Iran's first nuclear power station, online. And the U.S., Israel and other nations are reportedly on alert, as hawks are calling for the bombing the reactor before the fuel is loaded into it.

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The Brian Lehrer Show

Housing Summit

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Barbara Kiviat, writer for Time Magazine, discusses the Obama housing summit and the current attempts to fix the housing market.

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WNYC News

Obama Clarifies Remarks on Islamic Cultural Center

Sunday, August 15, 2010

The president this weekend expanded on a statement he made Friday evening when he said that Muslims have the same right to freedom of religion as everyone else in America.

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Transportation Nation

The Highway Trust Fund: Big Wheel, Keep on Turning

Friday, August 13, 2010

Perpetual Motion by Norman Rockwell(Matt Dellinger, Transportation Nation)  Stephen B. Goddard, in his (very excellent) book Getting There, aptly compared the Highway Trust Fund to a perpetual motion machine. Devised in 1956 to pay for the Interstate Highway System, the HTF, as it’s often abbreviated, pooled gas taxes and other automobile-related revenues and spit them right back out as construction money for more highways, the presence of which encouraged more driving and therefore more revenue, and so on.  As Goddard tells it, the HTF was more of an engineering marvel than the roads it built: “It satisfied those who wanted spending linked to revenues, those opposed to diversion [of gas tax monies to non-highway purposes], and congressmen, who would now have one less vote to justify at election time.”

The magical self-feeding road beast did its thing for fifty years, but now, as transportation writer Yonah Freemark laid out last week, it’s become a much more complicated mechanism.

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WQXR News

Obama Approves $600 Million for Border Security

Friday, August 13, 2010

The new border security bill will fund more agents and surveillance equipment along the border.

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The Brian Lehrer Show

Todd Purdum on D.C. Dysfunction

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Todd Purdum, national editor of Vanity Fair, went to Washington to figure out just why things are so dysfunctional. He profiles the Obama West Wing in the latest issue.

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WQXR News

Deportations Rise Under Obama Administration

Thursday, August 05, 2010

The U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) is on track to deport or expel some 400,000 illegal immigrants this year. That's 8 percent more than ICE expelled under the Bush administration in 2008.

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The Takeaway

Agenda: Slowing Economy, BP's Dispersants, and Obama's Birthday

Monday, August 02, 2010

We look ahead this week to birthdays, oil in the Gulf and unemployment numbers. On Wednesday, President Barack Obama turns 49; former White House correspondent Helen Thomas turns 90 on the same day. Besides birthdays, there will hopefully be another cause for celebration down on the Gulf coast: BP may have found a way to permanently seal the well that has gushed roughly 184 million gallons of oil into the Gulf of Mexico.

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Transportation Nation

President Drives A Volt

Friday, July 30, 2010

From the White House Press Pool:

Hamtramck, Mich.
GM plant
1:15 pm

Your pooler will send Chrysler plant report shortly but breaking news from second stop is that POTUS just drove  (after consultations w Secret Service and Robert Gibbs' voiced hope that the electric Volt had an airbag)

He stepped excitedly into a Black Chevy Volt, behind the wheel, buckled himself in and haltingly drove perhaps 10 feet at a crawling speed. "Pretty smooth," he concluded.

Presidents don't get to drive themselves anywhere, and Press Secretary Robert Gibbs confirmed this was a highly unusual though not unprecedented opportunity for Obama.

Gibbs said he believes the last time Obama drove was 3-4 months ago, when he drove a Dodge Charger at a Secret Service training facility (off-camera and hopefully much faster).

BTW: The Volt Will Cost $41,000 .  Times Op-Ed Calls it "GE's Electric Lemon."

--Andrea Bernstein, Transportation Nation

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World Weekly with Gideon Rachman

Cameron, Afghan aid and Iran's nuclear programme

Thursday, July 22, 2010

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The Takeaway

Listeners Respond: Firing Shirley Sherrod

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Yesterday we spoke with Shirley Sherrod about her forced resignation from the USDA after an edited online video suggested she had withheld aid to a white farmer because he was white. Many listeners commented on the role of the media in this incident and the current state of the race discussion in the U.S., while a few said she deserved to be fired.

Mike from Denver writes on The Takeaway website:

"I'm concerned that this is becoming a new trend of retaliatory racism, where ultra-right wing conservatives in the media take snippets out of context that result in people wrongly losing their jobs."

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WQXR News

Obama, Netanyahu Talk Middle East Peace

Tuesday, July 06, 2010

President Barack Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu made a point to demonstrate a warm relationship and pledged concrete steps to revive Mideast peace efforts with Palestinians when they met Tuesday in Washington.

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The Takeaway

Drawing (More) Parallels Between Obama and Lincoln

Monday, July 05, 2010

The fact that comparisons can easily be drawn between our country's sixteenth and forty-fourth president is nothing new. People have been comparing Abraham Lincoln and Barack Obama for years. With the country currently divided over our two wars; groups of powerful opponents organizing against the president throughout the country; and tough political issues coming at Obama from all directions, the similarities between the two presidents seem difficult to ignore.

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The Takeaway

Robert Byrd's Passing and the Elena Kagan Confirmation Hearings

Monday, June 28, 2010

Senate confirmation hearings for Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan begin today. But this news was overshadowed by the death this morning of Sen. Robert Byrd. 

Takeaway Washington correspondent, Todd Zwillich looks at the record of Sen. Byrd and previews the Kagan hearings, along with Jamal Greene, associate professor of law at Columbia Law School and former law clerk for Justice Stevens.

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