President Obama is in Beijing this week, where he announced a new visa policy between the U.S. and China. What could the deal mean for Southern California? Also, what’s fueling the boom of Chinese investment in downtown Los Angeles? Then, we dig into the fan frenzy surrounding the podcast “Serial.” Next, the director “The Decent One,” a new documentary about Heinrich Himmler, discusses the ordinary life of a war criminal. And finally, a big legal fight is unfolding over mayonnaise. What qualifies the gooey white condiment as mayonnaise, versus a generic spread?
FROM THIS EPISODE
President Obama is in Beijing at the APEC summit of Pacific Rim leaders this week, where he announced a new visa policy between the U.S. and China. We break down the details of the deal, and what it could mean for Southern California.
With changes to visa rules, we may see more Chinese people living in Southern California in the coming years. But Chinese money has already arrived in a big way -- especially in downtown Los Angeles. Last year, the Chinese invested nearly $1 billion in L.A. real estate. In the last five years, Chinese investment in L.A. has doubled. What’s driving the boom?
The podcast “Serial” debuted two months ago and has already attracted some 1 million listeners and sits at the top of the iTunes podcast chart. It has also inspired a listener frenzy. There’s a subreddit group devoted to solving the 15-year-old murder at the heart of “Serial,” and a Slate podcast about “Serial;” yes, a podcast about a podcast. What’s behind the phenomenon?
The new documentary The Decent One captures the ordinary life of a man who committed unspeakable acts. It’s about Heinrich Himmler, head of the SS and architect of the Holocaust. The film is based on a freshly discovered trove of letters and journal entries by Himmler and his wife, which provide a window into what Himmler was thinking as he carried out the Final Solution.
Vanessa Lapa, director of “The Decent One.”
A new lawsuit is set to rock the condiment world. It’s all about mayonnaise. But wait -- is mayonnaise the same thing as mayo? And if it doesn’t contain eggs, can you still call it mayo? And does it still taste delicious on fries? Unilever, maker of Hellmann’s Mayonnaise, would say “no” to all but the last question on that list. They’re suing the makers of Just Mayo, a spread that replaces eggs with peas. We find out what’s at stake.
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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