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Medicare and Social Security are issues in the presidential campaign. With younger workers paying benefits for the elderly, who are better off, are they also issues that will divide generations of Americans? Also, an Afghan attack hits the aircraft of a top US general, and tax exempt groups supposedly promoting "social welfare" are the major source of anonymous contributions to this year's campaigns.

Banner image: President Roosevelt Signs the Social Security Act on August 14, 1935.

Christian Bordal
Evan George
Katie Cooper

Making News Afghan Attack Hits Aircraft of Top US General 7 MIN, 32 SEC

The chair of America's Joint Chiefs of Staff had to leave Afghanistan later than scheduled today. His C-17 transport plane was disabled by rockets or other projectiles fired by insurants outside the heavily fortified Bagram Airfield. Rich Oppel is in Kabul for the New York Times.

Richard Oppel, New York Times

Main Topic Is the US Facing Generational Warfare? 32 MIN, 32 SEC

The Obama and Romney campaigns are battling over Medicare and, less openly, the so-called "Third Rail of Politics:" Social Security. In 1940, there were 159 workers for every elderly recipient of Social Security, plenty of younger people to pay benefits for the old. An aging population has radically changed that. Now, those 159 workers have dwindled to only three, and they're paying for their parents' Medicare and Social Security. In the meantime, the elderly have become better off than their children and grandchildren. Is this a recipe for generational warfare? Is there a need to reform the social programs before it's too late?

Nick Gillespie, Reason.com and Reason TV (@nickgillespie)
Nancy Altman, Social Security Works (@ssworks)
Margot Sanger-Katz, New York Times (@sangerkatz)
Andrew Kohut, Pew Research Center (@pewresearch)

Reporter's Notebook Nonprofits Groups and Dark Money in the Presidential Campaign 10 MIN, 43 SEC

In the case called Citizens United, the US Supreme Court took the limits off campaign contributions as long as the sources of money were made public. Since then, so-called super PAC's have received a lot of attention and so have their donors. But now it turns out that the super PAC's are being outspent by "social welfare" groups which don't have to reveal where their money is coming from. Kim Barker reports on campaign finance for ProPublica.

Kim Barker, author, 'The Taliban Shuffle'; ProPublica (@kim_barker)


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