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FROM THIS EPISODE

We start with a look at President Obama’s new $4 trillion budget; will his bid to focus on income inequality pay off? Then, a new study sheds fresh light on the housing bubble and the great recession, challenging some of our common wisdom about it -- we hear from one of the authors. In our weekly television roundup, we talk about the Super Bowl halftime show, the return of The Americans, and more small screen news. Then, author Alexandra Fuller discusses her new divorce memoir, Leaving Before the Rains Come. And finally, the rise and fall of Lululemon’s founder Chip Wilson, who announced he’s resigning today.

Banner Image Credit: Chuck Hagel

Producers:
Andrew Walsh
Christian Bordal
Matt Holzman
Jolie Myers
Anna Scott

Income Inequality and Messaging 9 MIN, 11 SEC

President Obama released his latest budget today, $4 trillion all told. His domestic proposals include what he’s been calling “middle class economics,” or tax hikes on wealthier Americans and lower taxes for middle income families. It’s part of a broader White House focus on income inequality. Republicans, however, are pushing back; Wisconsin Republican Paul Ryan criticized the proposal and called it “envy economics.” Is the stage set for a big fight?

Guests:
Jonathan Alter, MSNBC (@jonathanalter)

Rethinking the Housing Bubble 6 MIN, 34 SEC

The President didn’t use the words “recession” or “housing bubble” in his budget speech this morning. But what happened to the U.S. economy only a few years back is certainly on the minds of lawmakers as they lay out our financial future. A new study sheds fresh light on the housing bubble and the great recession, challenging some of our most common assumptions about the causes. We hear from one of its authors.

Guests:
Antoinette Schoar, MIT

More:
Changes in Buyer Composition and the Expansion of Credit During the Boom

Missy Elliot’s Super Bowl Win, and Other TV News 9 MIN, 36 SEC

Seattle Seahawks fans are emerging from mourning today, the day after the New England Patriots took home the Super Bowl, 28 to 24. But the real winner in all this might just be... Missy Elliott? She was the surprise guest during the game’s halftime show. We talk about the spectacle, the Super Bowl commercials, and this week’s other small screen news in our weekly TV roundup.

Guests:
Michael Schneider, Indiewire / Variety (@Franklinavenue)
Andy Greenwald, Grantland (@andygreenwald)

Alexandra Fuller and “Leaving Before the Rains Come” 14 MIN, 51 SEC

Alexandra Fuller had an extremely unconventional childhood in southern Africa, which she describes vividly in her first bestselling memoir, Don’t Let’s Go to the Dogs Tonight. A civil war raged, tropical diseases were common, dangerous hippos lurked in nearby waters, and her family had more than its fair share of tragedy. So when a dashing American river guide arrives on the scene and they fall in love, Alexandra believes he will save her from the unrelenting chaos of her African life. And he does -- until their marriage begins to fall apart. She chronicles how things disintegrated in her new memoir, Leaving Before the Rains Come.


Alexandra Fuller at KCRW

Guests:
Alexandra Fuller, author, 'Leaving Before the Rains Come'

Lululemon’s Controversial Founder Steps Down 9 MIN, 28 SEC

The clothing maker Lululemon is known for hundred-dollar yoga pants, its cult-like following... and the frequent gaffes of company founder Chip Wilson. Or at least, it was. Wilson resigned today from the company's board of directors. He built an international empire on stretchy, fitted athletic wear, opening more than 250 stores around the world since 1998. But two years ago, Wilson also turned a recall of overly see-through yoga pants into a public relations nightmare with comments about women’s bodies. And that wasn’t his only problem. We hear more about Wilson’s rise and fall, and what’s next for him and Lululemon.

Guests:
Amy Wallace, Los Angeles Magazine (@msamywallace)

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