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FROM THIS EPISODE

The income gap between the rich and the poor makes America comparable to some banana republics. What are the causes? What needs to be done? Also, Iran releases one of three imprisoned American hikers, and as President Sarkozy continues to deport the Roma from France, the European Commission is asked to retaliate with legal action.

Banner image: People hold signs as they participate in a 'Rebuild America-Jobs, Justice and Peace' march in the downtown area August 28, 2010 in Detroit, Michigan. Photo: Bill Pugliano/Getty Images

Producers:
Gary Scott
Karen Radziner
Darrell Satzman

Making News Iran Frees One of Three Imprisoned US Hikers 7 MIN, 38 SEC

Iran has released one of three American hikers, held for more than a year and accused of spying after they strayed across the Iraq-Iran border. Sarah Shourd is now free on $500,000 bail. Borzou Daragahi reports from the Middle East for the Los Angeles Times.

Guests:
Borzou Daragahi, Financial Times (@borzou )

Main Topic Is Income Inequality a Threat to the Middle Class? 36 MIN, 37 SEC

One hundred years ago, in the era of Robber Barons, the richest 1% of Americans had 18% of the nation's income. The income tax, labor unions and the New Deal leveled things out but, since the 1970's, the income gap has been growing again and now it's wider than ever. Are the very rich just the top of a healthy middle class, or is the economy a zero-sum game with top earners refusing to let their wealth trickle down? We hear a debate that underlies the issues being raised in this year's midterm campaigns. 

Guests:
Timothy Noah, journalist and author (@TimothyNoah1)
Diana Furchtgott-Roth, former Chief Economist, US Department of Labor
Paul Pierson, Professor of Political Science, UC Berkeley
Bill Bishop, Daily Yonder

Winner-Take-All Politics

Jacob S. Hacker

Reporter's Notebook EU Threatens France over Roma Deportations 6 MIN, 24 SEC

Since July, France has deported more than 1000 Roma to Romania and Bulgaria. Today, it deported another 230. The European Commission is being urged to take legal action against the government in Paris, and today the EU Justice Commissioner used very strong language to denounce the expulsions. Who are the Roma? What does President Sarkozy's law-and-order crackdown have to do with cutbacks in entitlement spending? John Lichfield is Paris correspondent for the Independent of London.

Guests:
John Lichfield, Paris Correspondent, Independent of London

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