Poor Economy Hits Younger and Older Workers

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Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Poor Economy Hits Younger and Older Workers

In the current economy, both younger and older people are finding it harder to get, or keep, a job. According to BusinessWeek, only 46 percent of people aged 16 to 24 had jobs last month – that is the lowest number since the government began tracking it in 1948. We look at the role of age in the workplace with Beth Kobliner, Takeaway contributor and author of "Get a Financial Life: Personal Finance in Your Twenties and Thirties." We also speak with 25-year-old Harvey Cummings, laid off from his job as a middle school band teacher in June; and 65-year-old Jackie Goldenberg, who was laid off from the financial services industry two years ago, and cites her age as the primary reason she lost her job.

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Takeouts: Insurance, Recaps and Trials

  • Washington Takeout: Julie Mason, of The Washington Examiner, talks about a report by the American Health Industry Plans that says insurance premiums will rise if senate legislation passes.
  • Sports Takeout: Ibrahim Abdul-Matin recaps Monday Night Football and Monday Night Baseball.
  • Business Takeout: New York Times reporter Louise Story looks at the first criminal trial tied to the economic collapse.

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Hillary Clinton in Moscow

As a presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton mangled Russian President Dmitry Medvedev's name during a debate a year and a half ago. Now, as Secretary of State, she is in Moscow speaking with Medvedev himself, looking for Russian action on Iran and nuclear disarmament after the United States dropped plans last month for a missile defense "shield" that had long irked Moscow.

Masha Lipman, a researcher and journalist with the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace in Moscow, joins us to explain how Russians view Clinton's visit.

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George Soros Donates Some Green to Research Green

Over the weekend, it got a lot easier to be green ...or at least, research green energy. Stacy Palmer, editor of The Chronicle of Philanthropy, joins us to talk about George Soros' $1 billion pledge to fund clean energy technologies, which he hopes can reduce global climate change.

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Frontline: Afghanistan and 'Obama's War'

The photo of the flag raisers on Iwo Jima has long been an emblem of U.S. efforts in World War II; photos from My Lai still represent the Vietnam war for many. After eight years, however, there is still no single image that has defined the Afghan war. A new PBS/Frontline documentary, "Obama's War," contains footage and images of the war that hasn't been seen on American television screens until now.

The film begins with the death of a U.S. marine, Lance Corporal Seth Sharp, who is cut down by Taliban fire during a battle in Helmand province last summer. We speak with Seth's father, Ric Sharp, and Danfung Dennis, the photojournalist who captured the footage, about the power of images in the Afghan war. Martin Smith, co-director of "Obama's War," also joins us.

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Military Women Show Their Might in Counterinsurgency

Proportionately, more female soldiers work in counterinsurgency in Iraq and Afghanistan than in other parts of the military. So what's behind the numbers, and how can the military best use women for those operations? We look at the military jobs women may be better at than their male counterparts with Army Reserve Maj. Paula Broadwell, researcher at the Center for Public Leadership; and retired Army Sgt. Genevieve Chase, founder of American Women Veterans.

“I think that men recognize the invaluable contributions women make. That’s not to dismiss the challenges that exist for women in the military. There’s still cases of rape and sexual harassment, but I think it comes down to educating men on the value of women in their units and then enforcing discipline and standards as far as their behavior.”
—Army Reserve Maj. Paula Broadwell, researcher at the Center for Public Leadership, on the increased roles for women in the U.S. military

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Takeouts: Republicans, Stimulus, Listener Reactions

  • Washington Takeout: Julie Mason of The Washington Examiner talks about bickering in the Republican party. 
  • Business Takeout: New York Times reporter Louise Story on where the money from the second stimulus package will go. (Yes, we're likely to see a second one soon).
  • Listener Takeout: Listeners react to our coverage of President Obama's being awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

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Doing the Math on Health Care Reform Costs

The Congressional Budget Office signed off on the math in the Senate Finance Committee's health care overhaul bill, saying the legislation will reduce the deficit and save taxpayer money overall. But not so fast: The insurance industry did its own calculations and says consumers will be hit with a whopper of a pricetag. So who do consumers believe? And how do you figure out the cost of health care ten years from now? As the Senate Finance Committee prepares to vote on its bill today, we look at the science and politics of calculating the cost, with former CBO director Alice Rivlin and New York Times reporter David Herszenhorn.

Feeling wonky? Read the CBO's analysis of the Finance Committee's bill and compare it to the analysis from America's Health Insurance Plans, which says the Senate Finance bill will rack up extra costs for consumers. [PDF, 592k]

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Can al-Qaida Continue Terrorist Operation With Little Money?

President Obama continues to consult with his war advisors on Afghanistan, looking to focus efforts on the primary adversary, al-Qaida, rather than the Taliban. But now a senior U.S. government official says al-Qaida is in severe financial trouble. David Cohen, who monitors terrorist funding at the U.S. Treasury Department, said in a speech last night that al-Qaida’s influence was waning because of a lack of funds. He said the U.S. and its allies had successfully cut off the group’s sources of funding by targeting its donors. We talk with Bob Ayers, international security analyst, about whether or not al-Qaida can continue a terrorist operation with little money.

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A Quart of Milk, a Loaf of Bread ... and Childhood Obesity?

A wave of obesity blamed (at least in part) on kids slurping cheap slushies and scarfing chips from local convenience stores has the Los Angeles City Council considering an unusual proposal: limiting the development of new corner stores in South L.A. Is the council's proposed moratorium a smart way to address a public health epidemic? Or is it an unfair attack on the convenient storefronts that serve low-income neighborhoods, where big chain grocery stores don't dare to enter?

We speak to public health expert Dr. Deborah Cohen; Lark Galloway-Gilliam, the executive director of a nonprofit health policy and education organization in South Los Angeles; and Jeff Lenard, the spokesperson for the National Association of Convenience Stores.

"The problem is that we have too many food cues that make us hungry, and make us eat too much. People were designed to overeat."
—Public health expert Dr. Deborah Cohen, on the danger that the kinds of cheap, highly processed foods usually available in convenience stores pose to public health

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Financial Troubles for al-Qaida

Continuing our conversation about whether or not the Obama Adminstration is looking to focus war efforts in Afghanistan on al-Qaida, rather than the Taliban, we talk with Loretta Napoleoni in London. She is an expert on international terrorist financing and author of the book "Rogue Economics."

“Fighting this war in Afghanistan may not be the best option. Maybe we have to fight the war somewhere else, where the Taliban are raising money — which is, of course, in the streets of our city, where they are selling heroin that is supporting this new army of Taliban.”
—Loretta Napoleoni, expert on international terrorist financing and author of the book "Rogue Economics"

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