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FROM THIS EPISODE

In the 70 years since Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the "ultimate weapon" has not been used again. But nine nations now have them, and the US and Russia are "modernizing" their massive arsenals. Is "mutually assured destruction" making us safer or more at risk?

Also, President Obama unveils his plan to cut carbon emissions. On today’s Talking Point, in lavish surroundings this weekend, wealthy conservatives auditioned GOP candidates for what they call a "civil rights movement."  Some reporters were allowed in — if they agreed to certain conditions.

Photo: A nuclear fireball lights up the night in the United States nuclear test Upshot-Knothole Badger on April 18, 1953. (National Nuclear Security Administration Nevada Site Office Photo Library

Producers:
Christine Detz
Charlotte Duren
Evan George

Obama Unveils Plan to Cut Carbon Emissions 6 MIN, 30 SEC

President Obama's political advisors say he's decided that climate change will be as important to his legacy as healthcare. Accordingly, new EPA regulations he's announcing today are the toughest ever — if they can survive court challenges and political opposition.

 

Ethan Zindler is head of Policy Analysis with Bloomberg New Energy Finance.

Guests:
Ethan Zindler, Bloomberg New Energy Finance (@EthanALL)

Thinking about the "Unthinkable": the Prospect of Nuclear War 33 MIN, 12 SEC

It's been 70 years since the US became the first nation to drop an atomic bomb. So far, it's the only one. But how long will that last? Today there are some 16,000 nuclear weapons in nine countries, and they're many times more powerful than those used against Japan. Despite arms reduction agreements, the US and Russia still have massive arsenals, and now both countries are “modernizing” their stockpiles — ostensibly for defensive purposes. But each side suspects the other of thinking offense -- as memories the more than 100,000 people who died in Hiroshima and Nagasaki fade into the past.

Guests:
Lisbeth Gronlund, Union of Concerned Scientists (@UCSUSA)
Michaela Dodge, Heritage Foundation (@MichaelaTHF)
Hans Kristensen, Federation of American Scientists (@nukestrat)
Paul Shinkman, US News & World Report (@PaulDShinkman)

More:
Gronlund on the birth of the nuclear age
Union of Concerned Scientists on hair-trigger alert, close calls with nuclear weapons
Dodge on what Russian intermediate-range nuclear forces mean for the US
Federation of American Scientists on nuclear weapons
Shinkman on Thornberry, Cold War-era weapon could mean danger for near future

Behind the Koch Brothers' Donor Network Rebrand 10 MIN, 21 SEC

A group of wealthy Republicans plans to spend almost $900 million during next year's presidential campaign, in what it's calling a “civil rights movement.”  At a lavish oceanfront resort in Southern California this weekend, billionaires Charles and David Koch gathered 450 other mega-wealthy contributors to audition GOP candidates for president.  Matea Gold, of the Washington Post, was allowed to attend — after agreeing to certain conditions. She has more on what the candidates had to say -- Donald Trump not included.


Scott Walker was one of the GOP candidates invited to attend

Guests:
Matea Gold, Washington Post (@mateagold)

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