Today we start with a panel discussion about America’s disappearing middle class. A new report says that less than half the population is now middle class; what does it mean for the future? In our weekly web and digital news roundup, Xeni Jardin discusses the heavily criticized new toy Hello Barbie. Then, the second installment of our two-part look at drones; this time, the ethics. And finally, the rise, fall and purchase of K-Cups.
FROM THIS EPISODE
According to a new report from the Pew Research Center, America has reached a tipping point when it comes to the middle class. For the first time in decades, slightly less than half the population is now middle class. That’s because more Americans have moved into the upper or lower income brackets, leaving fewer people in the middle. We get a primer on the study and an up close look at what it means for people in cities
Drones are now very much a part of how we think about warfare. Between civilian casualties and the issue of waging war without ever sending an army into a country, there are many moral and ethical questions when it comes to drone warfare. We heard yesterday about the international rules or lack thereof when it comes to drones. Today, how the United States went from being dubious about armed drones to mounting hundreds of drone attacks each year.
MQ-9 Reaper, a hunter-killer surveillance UAV
Photo: US Air Force Staff Sgt. Brian Ferguson/USAF Photographic Archives
Sarah Kreps, Cornell University
You’re probably familiar with K-Cups, those plastic containers that deliver caffeine in whatever flavor you want. Those little pods made Keurig Green Mountain Coffee a brand beloved by consumers, until those consumers turned on the company. Because aren’t all those K-Cups bad for the environment? And is the K-Cup coffee actually good? Private equity to the rescue! A European firm bought the Green Mountain Coffee company this week for nearly $14 billion. We look at the rise, fall and purchase of Keurig.