Todd Zwillich

Washington Correspondent, The Takeaway

Todd Zwillich appears in the following:

Farewell Michael

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Across the nation yesterday fans stopped mid-workday to bid farewell to Michael Jackson. In a funeral fit for a King of Pop, the Jackson family was joined by celebrities, lifelong friends, and orators, with Jackson's golden coffin on the stage at the Staples Center in Los Angeles. Thousands of fans were there; millions more watched on television and the internet. Joining us to talk about it is Alessandra Stanley, a New York Times television critic.

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Unrest in China Disrupts a Summit in Italy

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

As Han and Uighur Chinese battle each other in a flare up of ancient ethnic tensions, the flashpoint city of Urumqi in China's Xinjiang province has been filled with Chinese soldiers trying to quell the violence. The unrest, which may be the worst since the Cultural Revolution, prompted Chinese President Hu Jintao to leave the G8 meeting in Italy to attend to the situation. For the latest, The Takeaway is joined by Ted Plafker, a correspondent in the Beijing Bureau of The Economist who is in Urumqi, China, and Yuwen Wu, the editor of the BBC's Mandarin service.

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Obama to Medvedev: We're in the Same Boat, Comrade

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

During his recent visit to Russia, President Obama made a point of repeating that the U.S. and Russia have many common interests. Do the U.S. and Russia have the same goals on the global level? Or are the former Cold War rivals still ideologically at odds? To help answer those questions, The Takeaway turns to Strobe Talbott, President of the Brookings Institution and former Deputy Secretary of State in the Clinton administration. He is also the author of The Great Experiment: The Story of Ancient Empires, Modern States, and the Quest for a Global Nation.

"There is this deep, deep resentment, festering resentment about the United States. The Russians have a real case of the 'Rodney Dangerfield Syndrome' – they just feel they don't get enough respect, and they're going to stomp their feet and get more. That's their tactic."
—Strobe Talbott, president of the Brookings Institution on U.S. relations with Russia

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Live from L.A., for the Michael Jackson Memorial Service

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Josh Rogosin, an independent public radio producer, has been staked out at the Staples Center in Los Angeles since way before the dawn. He's been talking to fans and mourners who have begun to fill the streets of downtown Los Angeles in preparation for Michael Jackson's memorial service. The Takeaway joins Josh on the street along with fans from across the nation; we also talk to Aaron Flournoy, a waiter at Bennigan's in Jackson's hometown of Gary, Indiana.

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Michael Jackson's Complex Legacy

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

As fans across the world await the memorial service for Michael Jackson, The Takeaway takes a moment to discuss his legacy as a legend, a performer and as an African American man from Gary, Indiana. We are joined by Steven Gray, reporter for Time Magazine, who wrote Michael Jackson and the Black Experience for Time.

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The Future of Advertising

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

As much as the world of journalism is having to react and evolve quickly due to the proliferation of blogs and social networking sites like Twitter taking over much of the fast-paced reporting, so too does the world of advertising. In the face of technological advances like TiVo, which allow viewers to fast forward over their very bread-and-butter, ad agencies and the companies they represent are having to get very creative to capture consumers' attention. To discuss the brave new world of 30-second spot- free advertising, we turn to advertising consultant and former chairman of ad agency BBH, Cindy Gallop.

Click through for transcript

Here's how one company is handling the change in advertising:

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In the Eyes of the Pope, Profit as Sin

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Tomorrow President Obama heads to Italy for the opening of the G8 summit. He will meet with Pope Benedict, who has just issued a new encyclical calling for a new financial world order. In the paper, called "Charity in Truth," the Pope draws on traditional Catholic teaching in rebuking the profit-at-all-costs mentality of the global economy. Greed is a mortal sin, after all. For more, The Takeaway talks to David Willey, Rome correspondent for our partners the BBC.

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Mortality and Morality: The Remains of Michael Jackson

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Michael Jackson will be buried this morning at the Forest Lawn cemetery in Los Angeles. The cemetery is a famous resting spot, but Jackson apparently wanted to be buried at his beloved Neverland Ranch. Joining The Takeaway to discuss whether we should defer to the dead when it comes to disposing of their mortal remains is Randy Cohen, The Ethicist for The New York Times Magazine and author of the Moral of the Story Blog.

For more, read Randy Cohen's blog entry, Michael Jackson’s Body, in The New York Times.

"The physical presence of the dead is very, very meaningful for the living simply to grasp the idea that death has occurred."
— New York Times Magazine columnist Randy Cohen

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Energy Use: Keeping Down with Your Neighbors

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

It's widely believed that if you knew how much energy you used every day, you'd be more motivated to cut back. But what if you also knew how much your neighbors used? Would you be even more careful not to hog resources? The city of Sacramento is experimenting with an energy awareness system in the hopes that it will push residents to conserve energy. It's a start-up project by a company called Positive Energy. The Takeaway is joined by the mind behind that company, and a professor of social psychology at Arizona State University, Robert Cialdini.

"When we send them the information that says 'You're doing better than your neighbors,' we put a smiley face emoticon next to the information."
— Robert Cialdini of Arizona State University on encouraging energy conservation

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The Changing Relationship with Russia

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

During their meeting in Moscow, Presidents Obama and Medvedev hammered out a deal to limit nuclear arsenals. Non-proliferation is the key to Obama's desire to limit arms, but when talking nukes with Russia, is it just the same old song-and-dance between the former Cold War enemies? Can the United States' relationship with Russia change? The Takeaway turns to the BBC's Defense and Security Correspondent Rob Watson and Mark Kramer, Director of the Cold War Studies Project at Harvard University and a senior fellow at Harvard’s Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies for their analysis.

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Sarah Palin's Supporters Speak Out

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

For the most of the punditocracy, Sarah Palin’s resignation as Governor of Alaska last Friday remains a mystery. But for those on Team Sarah, her move was the right one. Joining us to discuss why Sarah Palin's move makes sense is blogger Jimmie Bise, founder of Sundries Shack, and Marjorie Dannenfelser, President of the Susan B. Anthony List and co-founder of its project Team Sarah.

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Ethnic Tension in Northwest China Erupts into Riots

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

In the northwest corner of China, rival protesters took to the streets again on Tuesday, defying the Chinese government's efforts to lock down the province after clashes between Muslim Uighurs and Han Chinese left over 150 people dead and more than a 1,000 injured. The authorities imposed curfews, cut off cellphone and Internet services and sent armed police officers into neighborhoods in the Xinjiang province. For more we turn to Shirong Chen, China Editor for the BBC.

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Obama in Moscow: What Can He Accomplish?

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Yesterday Presidents Barack Obama and Dmitri Medvedev signed a preliminary agreement to reduce the world's two largest nuclear stockpiles by as much as a third. Today President Obama continued to mend U.S.-Russian relations by meeting with Prime Minister Putin and former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbechev. He also reached out to the Russian people, delivering a speech at the New Economic School in Moscow. Joining The Takeaway to gauge if President Obama has succeeded in rebooting our relationship with Russia isSusan Eisenhower. Granddaughter of President Eisenhower, in her own right she is a leading expert on Russia. Susan Eisenhower is the President of the Eisenhower Group. She also serves as Chairman of the Eisenhower Institute’s Leadership and Public Policy Programs. Susan Eisenhower famously broke from the Republican Party last year to endorse then candidate Barack Obama.

"There is a group of people who are in power today who only dimly remember the Cold War and even the Soviet Union."
— Susan Eisenhower, granddaughter of President Eisenhower, on the U.S. relationship with Russia

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Hackers vs. Your Social Security Number

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Your social security number is now a part of almost every form, including health insurance paperwork and the application for your library card. In fact, researchers reporting in this week's issue of the journal the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences used public data (hello, Facebook) to predict the first five digits of a person's social security number. And they got it right, on the first try, 44 percent of the time. With more on the dangers of our less-than-private individual identification system, The Takeaway is joined by privacy expert Peter Swire.

You can read more about the PNAS study by heading to the web site of our partners, The New York Times, and checking out today's article, Social Security Numbering System Vulnerable to Fraud, Experts Say.

"We have a known system that's leading to a lot of identity theft and will lead to a lot more identity theft. We probably have to suck it up as a society and get to a new system."
—Ohio State University professor Peter Swire

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On scene with the President in Russia

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

President Obama is in Moscow where he is working to renew U.S. relations with Russia. The President met with Prime Minister Vladimir Putin as well as President Dmitri Medvedev. Now he has just wrapped up a speech at the New Economic School. His words were meant to reach the entire nation of Russia. To find out whether the words are resonating from Moscow to Khabarosk we turn to Clifford Levy, The New York Times Moscow Bureau Chief.

Click through for a transcript of the President's speech

Here is part one of the President's address:

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The King of Pop: In Memoriam

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Michael Jackson will be laid to rest this morning in Los Angeles in a private ceremony in the Hollywood Hills. The funeral is for family and friends only, but at LA's Staples Center thousands of his fans are gathering to say their goodbyes to the King of Pop. Over 16,000 lucky fans were able to get tickets to the service, while many thousands of devoted fans are expected to line the streets surrounding the arena. Joining The Takeaway from outside the Staples Center is Josh Rogosin, independent public radio producer and downtown Los Angeles resident. Also joining the conversation is Belinda Luscombe, Time Magazine's editor-at-large, who wrote much of the magazine's Jackson coverage.

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Former Bush Official Leads Challenge to Prop 8

Thursday, July 02, 2009

Ted Olson, Solicitor General under President George W. Bush, argues this week in California courts against Proposition 8, the voter-approved ban on gay marriage. He spoke with The Takeaway's Washington Correspondent Todd Zwillich about his motivation for taking the case and discusses why he feels gay couples shouldn’t be the political football they've become in recent years.

“Why in the world wouldn’t we want gay citizens who want to live together in a peaceful, harmonious, stable relationship to have the opportunity to call themselves married?”
— former Solicitor General Theodore Olson

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[Web Special] Franken, the Blue State Senator: A John and Todd Sing-a-long

Thursday, July 02, 2009

John Hockenberry and Todd Zwillich perform a classic tune to mark the (eventual) resolution of the U.S. Senate election in Minnesota.

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Painkillers: Should Vicodin and Percocet Be Banned?

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Pain medication is one of the marvels of the modern age. But as Americans buy billions of doses of acetaminophen each year, the risk of misuse increases. More than 400 people die and 42,000 are hospitalized every year in the United States from overdoses of the drug. Yesterday a federal advisory panel recommended banning some popular prescription drugs – including Vicodin and Percocet – because of safety concerns. For more we turn to New York Times science writer Donald McNeil.

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Fresh From the Farmers' Market

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

As summer hits its stride, the nation’s farmer’s markets are filling up with fresh-from-the-farm produce. Peaches, blueberries, beets, lettuce, and okra are all in season. New York Times food writer Melissa Clark and Taja Sevelle from Urban Farming, a national nonprofit group dedicated to growing food in abandoned spaces, join The Takeaway for a look at the season's most delicious food. Garlic scape pesto anyone?

Want to find a farmers' market near you? Head over to Local Harvest And if you want to find out what's in season in your neck of the woods, check out this Peak Season Map

Chamomile Simple Syrup

Makes about one cup

• 1 cup water
• 1 cup sugar
• 1 big handful rinsed chamomile flowers

Put water and sugar in a pan and bring to a boil. Add chamomile flowers. Reduce heat and simmer for five minutes. Let cool. Strain.

Serving suggestions: Brush syrup on pound cake. Add to iced tea. Macerate any type of berry in a few tablespoons of syrup.

Garlic Scape Pesto

Makes about 1 cup

• 10 garlic scapes, finely chopped
•1/3 cup finely grated Parmesan
•1/3 cup slivered almonds
•About 1/2 cup olive oil
•Sea salt

Put the scapes, 1/3 cup of the cheese, almonds and half the olive oil in a food processor (or use a blender or a mortar and pestle). Blend all the ingredients. Add the remaining oil and, if you want, more cheese. If you like the texture, start eating. To thin, add more oil, a tablespoon at a time. Season with salt.

You can store the pesto in the refrigerator for up to a week or saved in the freezer for up to two months.

Serving suggestions: Add to pasta. Dress a tomato salad. Brush on toast for bruschetta.

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