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FROM THIS EPISODE

On Labor Day 2010, the union movement is becoming a toothless tiger.  As the recession evolves into the New Economy, will organized labor be left in the "dustbin of history?" Also, President Obama launches an economic offensive at a Labor Day rally, and on TV between now and November, it'll be all political attack ads all the time. We hear how both parties are refining this year's clichés. (Tonight's 7pm rebroadcast of this program pre-empts Which Way, LA?)

Banner image: A job seeker carries a dosier of resumes to show potential employers at a career fair in Denver, Colorado. Photo: John Moore/Getty Images

Producers:
Gary Scott
Karen Radziner
Sonya Geis

Main Topic It's Labor Day, Where's Organized Labor? 34 MIN

The first Labor Day was in 1894, but in 2010, union membership in the private sector is 7.2% and declining. Two years into the Great Recession, 15 million Americans are unemployed. Recovery is underway and companies are making money.  But they're not hiring. If the labor movement were stronger, could it turn things around, or do the benefits unions won for their members discourage business from creating new jobs? Do public sector unions put taxpayers on the hook? Would everybody be better off if middle class America could afford American products?

Guests:
Derek Thompson, The Atlantic (@DKThomp)
Harold Meyerson, Washington Post (@haroldmeyerson)
Bill George, Professor of Management Practices, Harvard Business School
Ed Luce, Financial Times

True North

Bill George

Reporter's Notebook Campaign Ad Preview: Here Come the Midterm Elections 9 MIN, 12 SEC

Between Labor Day and November, television advertising will be monopolized by attack ads against Republicans and Democrats. Self-described masochist Walter Shapiro has watched some 75 recent commercials for candidates of both parties. The senior correspondent for PoliticsDaily.com says neither party has come up with a breakthrough.

Guests:
Walter Shapiro, Yahoo News and Columbia Journalism Review (@waltershapiroPD)

Making News Obama Launches Economic Offensive at Labor Day Rally 7 MIN, 46 SEC

President Obama plans an offensive this week on the economy. One bill he's pushing would eliminate capital gains on some small business investments and accelerate $55 billion in tax cuts for companies that make what he calls "job-creating investments." Michael Hirsh is senior editor at Newsweek magazine and author of Capital Offense, a new book on the 30-year history behind the ongoing crisis in the economy.

 

 

Guests:
Michael Hirsh, National Journal (@michaelphirsh)

Capital Offense

Michael Hirsh

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