President Obama spoke today on the unravelling situation in the Middle East. Bottom line, the U.S. won’t send combat troops. American Apparel founder Dov Charney has been accused of sexually harassing his employees, choking a store manager, and holding meetings in his underwear. Now he’s been ousted by his own board of directors. Two senators have proposed reducing the FAFSA student aid form from 108 questions to just two. Author Laurel Braitman started studying madness in animals after her dog Oliver attempted suicide. And another California Supreme Court justice is stepping down.
FROM THIS EPISODE
President Obama addressed the country today to talk about what the U.S. plans to do about the unravelling situation in the Middle East. The President has come under increased criticism lately for not doing more to stop the Sunni extremist group ISIS from taking over large sections of Iraq. In his speech, Obama said the US will send 300 military advisors to Iraq to help the country’s security forces. But he won’t send combat troops.
American Apparel founder and CEO Dov Charney got ousted by his own board of directors because of an ongoing misconduct investigation. Charney has long been one of fashion’s most controversial figures: accused of sexually harassing his employees, choking a store manager, and holding meetings in his underwear. Meanwhile, American Apparel’s finances have faltered. Its share price has been below one dollar since early this year, and now bankruptcy is a possibility.
More than 20 million students are expected to fill out FAFSA -- the Free Application for Federal Student Aid -- this year: 108 questions spread over 10 pages. And 72 pages of instructions. Now two U.S. senators have proposed reducing the form to the length of a postcard with just two questions.
Barmak Nassirian, independent policy analyst
Humans aren’t the only living creatures to deal with mental illness. After biologist Laurel Braitman’s dog started to have visions -- and possibly even attempted suicide -- she delved into the animal kingdom’s own struggles with madness. The issues range from parrots who won’t stop plucking their own feathers to stressed-out polar bears that compulsively swim in circles.
The highest court in California is about to undergo a major change. Supreme Court Justice Marvin Baxter announced yesterday that he won’t seek reelection in November. In April, Joyce Kennard, the other longest serving Justice, announced that she won’t come back to the court, either. And Governor Brown replaced Justice Carlos Moreno, the only Latino on the court, with Goodwin Liu in 2011. This means the Governor will most likely end up appointing three of the seven Justices.
More From Press Play with Madeleine Brand
The decline of American manufacturing During the presidential campaign, Donald Trump called out a steel manufacturer for closing a plant in Indiana and moving it to Mexico. The plant still closed and jobs were lost. We speak with a reporter who spent a year documenting the closing of the plant, and tells the story of one woman who worked her way up to supervisor and then had to train her Mexican replacement.
Why is it so hard to publish stories critical of powerful men? One of the main reasons the Harvey Weinstein stories didn’t get out sooner was that the Hollywood press couldn’t -- or wouldn’t -- publish them. KCRW’s Kim Masters has a story about another big executive: Amazon’s Roy Price.
Can Kevin de Leon unseat Sen. Dianne Feinstein? California Senate President Pro Tem Kevin de Leon announced his challenge to Senator Dianne Feinstein. He is capitalizing on a fury in the state against the president, and painting Feinstein as too accommodating of Trump.
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