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FROM THIS EPISODE

One lesson from Superstorm Sandy: low-lying urban centers are vulnerable to the consequences of climate change. What will it take to prepare for the next one? Also, income stagnation is a real threat to the American Dream. We hear about that and about the few who have not just achieved it but gone beyond.

Banner image: Remnants of rides at FunTown Amusement Pier rest on the shoreline three days after Hurricane Sandy came ashore in Seaside Heights, New Jersey. Photo by Steve Nesius/Reuters

Producers:
Christian Bordal
Caitlin Shamberg
Evan George
Sonya Geis

Main Topic Is Superstorm Sandy a Wake-Up Call? 23 MIN, 10 SEC

During this year's presidential campaign, there's been almost a dead silence on climate change. New York's Governor Andrew Cuomo says it's time to start paying attention. He warns that an old infrastructure is now at risk from new weather patterns and he wants to prepare for the next one. Scientists say it's about time. Should beach houses become things of the past?  Should low-lying city pavement be turned into sponges to accommodate flooding?

Guests:
Michael Oppenheimer, Princeton University
Dan Kottlowski, AccuWeather (@accuweather)
Guy Nordenson, Princeton University

Making News Life Gets Back to Normal for Some in Manhattan 7 MIN, 22 SEC

President Obama is back on the campaign trail, playing catch-up with Mitt Romney while visibly keeping track of disaster recovery. In parts of Manhattan, things are beginning to look almost normal, according to Matt Flegenheimer, transportation reporter for the New York Times.

Guests:
Matt Flegenheimer, New York Times

Reporter's Notebook Wealth, Income and the Presidential Campaign 19 MIN, 53 SEC

As Obama and Romney argue about taxes and spending, healthcare and immigration, they're "obscuring" what is "arguably the nation's biggest challenge." "For the first time since the Great Depression, middle-class families have been losing ground for more than a decade." David Leonhardt, Washington Bureau Chief for the New York Times, calls it, "income stagnation."

Middle-class income stagnation is the result of many factors, including the digital revolution, globalization and educational attainment.  That's meant a decline in upward mobility and "the American dream" -- but not for everybody. There's a new generation of people as rich as the so-called "robber barons" of the late 19th century. Journalist Chrystia Freeland has profiled them in her book, Plutocrats: the Rise of the New Global Super Rich and the Fall of Everyone Else.

Guests:
David Leonhardt, New York Times (@DLeonhardt)
Chrystia Freeland, Canadian Parliament (@cafreeland)

Plutocrats

Chrystia Freeland

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