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*Feed Updating Issue

July 17th, 2014

Update: It turns out that there was glitch in the feed from our hosting company and a software conflict with our editor that was causing a problem with our feed. The issue has been about 80% resolved. While shows are now updating and episode descriptions are clear of any “jibberish” (aka HTML code), links within the episode descriptions will not be active for now. We anticipate that this will be cleared up within the next several days and all feeds will be functioning 100% properly once again by then. In the meantime if you would like to follow any links that are mentioned in the show please find them here on our website.

July 10th, 2014

      We apparently have been having problems with the show’s feed and it has caused our episodes in some apps to stop updating. We apologize for any inconvenience and are working hard to resolve the problem. We hope to have it resolved within the next few days. Please remember that you can always subscribe to us in iTunes or check out our website at www.itnshow.com to get the very latest information and updates about our episodes and show.


Speaker Cruz, Ukraine and More…

July 31st, 2014

     The president has asked Congress for $3.7 billion to deal with the border crisis of unaccompanied minors coming across our southern border. The senate had proposed their own $2.7 billion bill, and the House proposed a smaller $659 million proposal which seemed headed for passage until Texas Senator Ted Cruz seemed to convince a large portion of Tea Party Republicans in the house to withdraw their support for the bill. This afternoon, house leadership, facing a lack of sufficient votes, was forced to pull the bill.

In this episode we discuss both the direct and indirect causes of the crisis and the politics involved in it as both sides of the aisle see them. We also give an update on the crisis in Ukraine, where actions have ratcheted up this week after a new round of Russian sanctions was imposed by the US and the EU. We also discuss the interesting development of Australia sending an armed police team to the crash site of #MH17. Is this something that could aggravate an already tense situation?

Carol Williams’ article on Australia sending armed police to secure the crash site of #MH17 can be found by clicking here.


President John Wayne

July 28th, 2014

     Recent events throughout the world have tested America’s influence over world events and the extent to which we can influence them. There has been a lot of the criticism of both action taken and action not taken, most of which has fallen squarely on President Obama’s shoulders. The president’s opponents have accused him of being cowardly and leading from behind, for example. Are these legitimate criticisms? Are there actions the US can take in these conflicts that will both show our resolve and keep them from escalating further? Or have this administration’s strategies been more sound than they appear?

In this episode we discuss the Obama administration’s role in global crisis such as Ukraine and Syria and whether or not the criticisms of them are justified. We also pose the larger question, just how do Americans like their presidents?


Immigration Reform is Dead - Rebroadcast

July 24th, 2014

     One year ago the US Senate passed a bill that would grant 11-12 million undocumented immigrants legal status and a pathway to citizenship to this country. The bill never made it out of the House and comprehensive immigration reform has stalled ever since. The defeat of Majority Leader Eric Cantor, who was pro reform, has doomed passage of any kind of a bill this year. President Obama has vowed to use executive authority to move reform forward, but a history of executive orders has created bad blood with House Republicans and an emerging crisis on the southern border is threatening to put any progress on this issue out of reach.

In this rebroadcast of an earlier episode we discuss the immigration debate, the emerging crisis on our southern border and pose the question, in 2014, what should America’s philosophy toward immigration be?

Time stamps for this episode:

Immigration 2:57


Going to Get Worse Before it Gets Better

July 21st, 2014

     The world is shocked over the tragic downing of Malaysian Airlines Flight 17 over the skies of eastern Ukraine. Many world leaders have pleaded with Russian president Vladimir Putin to exert influence over Russian separatists operating in the region to bring hostilities with the central government in Kiev to an end. These please have gone largely ignored.

In this episode we explore the vital national security interest that Ukraine represents for Vladimir Putin and the Russian Federation, and discuss why a peaceful resolution to this conflict may be a ways off.

This episode is a bit of a milestone for In the News – our 100th episode. The show has changed a lot over the course of the last 100 episodes. I talk a little bit about the impetus for the show, the evolution of the show to this point and how I hope it will continue to grow going forward.

Time stamps for this episode:

Ukraine 0:00

A few words about our 100th Episode 52:58


Earmarks and Filling Potholes

July 17th, 2014

     Earmarks were once considered to be what greased the wheels of government. They have been done away with but is our political system more corrupt without them than it was with them?

The Highway Trust Fund is set to run dry this summer. The president sent a 4-year $302 billion proposal to Congress earlier this year but was deemed DOA by Congress. Instead, the House has approved a 1-year $10 billion bill that is paid for by so called “pension smoothing.”

What is pension smoothing and who decides what sources of funding are “workable” and what are “unworkable” when it comes to bills in Congress today? And have the elimination of earmarks made the funding gimmicks more common and the problem of money in government more insidious?

 


Lawsuits and Impeachment

July 14th, 2014

     Article II, Section 4, of the Constitution says “The President, Vice President and all civil Officers of the United States, shall be removed from Office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason, Bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors.” But what exactly are “high crimes and misdemeanors?” It’s believed that the Founding Fathers left the wording deliberately vague trusting subsequent generations to know impeachment-level offenses when they saw them.

Speaker of the House John Boehner recently announced that he is bringing a lawsuit against the president for his failure to “faithfully execute the laws of this country.” Specifically, by issuing too many executive orders. But is the lawsuit more about stemming the calls for impeachment than it is about executive orders? In this episode we discuss whether this president’s actions have risen to level of impeachment and whether the Founding Father’s trust in our judgment have proven misplaced.


Ukraine, Immigration and More

July 10th, 2014

     We apparently have been having problems with the show’s feed and it has caused our episodes in some apps to stop updating. We apologize for any inconvenience and are working hard to resolve the problem. We hope to have it resolved within the next few days. Please remember that you can always subscribe to us in iTunes or check out our website at www.itnshow.com to get the very latest information and updates about our episodes and show.

In this episode we discuss the continuing crisis on our southern border. The President has asked Congress for $3.7 billion to help address the issue. But will Republicans in Congress help the president solve a problem that they see him as largely responsible for? Will these children ultimately be sent back to their countries or will they be allowed to stay? We discuss these questions and the broader immigration debate.

Tensions in Ukraine had been rising between the central government in Kiev and pro-Russian separatists in the east. But the last week or so has seen an apparent change in calculation by Moscow. Pleas from separatists for military support have gone ignored by Moscow and the week was capped off by a phone call by President Putin to President Obama to wish him a happy 4th of July. In this episode we discuss the details of the change in tone by Moscow.

Time stamps for this episode:

Show Issues 0:00

Immigration 10:20

Ukraine 45:45


The Hobby Lobby Verdict and Freedom of Religion

July 7th, 2014

     Last week the Supreme Court found that for-profit corporations can be protected under the first amendment and religious freedom grounds. They ruled that a closely held corporation, Hobby Lobby Stores, can be exempted from the contraceptive coverage mandate under Obamacare. Many reproductive-rights advocates argued that the verdict infringes on the religious freedoms of Hobby Lobby’s employees. The question we pose in today’s episode is at what point does one person’s religious rights become oppressive to another’s?

We also discuss a new Pew Research pole that attempts to categorize the Americans into more groups than just liberal and conservative. I took the poll and discuss the results that place me into a group called the “Faith and Family Left.”

The Pew Research pole can be found by clicking here. Take a moment to take the poll and share the results with us on our Twitter and Facebook pages.


Immigration Reform is Dead

July 3rd, 2014

One year ago the US Senate passed a bill that would grant 11-12 million undocumented immigrants legal status and a pathway to citizenship to this country. The bill never made it out of the House and comprehensive immigration reform has stalled ever since. The defeat of Majority Leader Eric Cantor, who was pro reform, has doomed passage of any kind of a bill this year. President Obama has vowed to use executive authority to move reform forward, but a history of executive orders has created bad blood with House Republicans and an emerging crisis on the southern border is threatening to put any progress on this issue out of reach.

In this episode we discuss the immigration debate, the emerging crisis on our southern border and pose the question, in 2014, what should America’s philosophy toward immigration be?


Back to Iraq - Rebroadcast

June 30th, 2014

     The president has announced that a small group of military advisors will be heading back to Iraq to help that country stave off an incursion made by the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, or ISIS. He says however, that no combat troops are being sent. But how definitive is that statement? If the US is faced with the prospect of all the modest gains we have achieved over the last 12 years being undone, will troops be sent in then? In this rebroadcast of an earlier episode we take a look back at the Iraq war and discuss why the conflict in Iraq may not be completely behind us.


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