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FROM THIS EPISODE

John McCain is accusing Barack Obama of "socialism." Obama says McCain has "run out of ideas." What does "socialism" really mean? Will Cold War rhetoric work in the campaign of 2008? Also, stock markets fall globally while OPEC cuts production, and a breakthrough in early detection of 15,000 genetic diseases. 

Socialism in America

Albert Fried

Producers:
Frances Anderton
Katie Cooper
Christian Bordal

Reporter's Notebook New Way to Test Embryos for Genetic Diseases 8 MIN, 8 SEC

Genetic research has discovered some 15,000 diseases that travel through generations.  Since 1989, it's been possible to screen embryos for 350 of these hereditary conditions, but the process takes almost a year and is very expensive. Now, British scientists are claiming a breakthrough, new testing that can detect almost all genetic diseases in just a few weeks. The new process, called "karyomapping," has been developed at London's Bridge Centre, a fertility clinic.  The Director is Professor Alan Handyside.

Guests:
Alan Handyside, Director, Bridge Centre

Making News Stock Markets Fall Worldwide while OPEC Cuts Production 6 MIN, 11 SEC

"This is beyond volatile; it is chaotic." That was the assessment of one top economist as stock markets around the world plunged today while the price of oil and even gold declined sharply. Peter Cohan is President of Peter S. Cohan & Associates, a management-consulting and venture-capital firm.

Guests:
Peter Cohan, President, Peter S. Cohan and Associates

Main Topic 'Socialism' and Political Rhetoric, Past and Present 34 MIN, 30 SEC

Barack Obama wants to raise taxes on incomes over $250,000 and use part of the money for tax credits on all workers, even those who don't earn enough to pay income tax. John McCain says that borders on "socialism" and crowds cheer. In 2001, McCain voted against the Bush tax cuts he now wants to extend, saying the benefits went the "the most fortunate among us at the expense of middle-class Americans." But the progressive income tax has been redistributing income for almost 100 years. The Bush Administration, proudly conservative, is nationalizing banks; the auto and nuclear industries want guaranteed government loans. Meantime, Communist Russia and China are looking like free-marketeers. Does the word "socialism" still have the political force it did during the Cold War? Are McCain's charges likely to stick?

Guests:
Albert Fried, Retired Professor of History, State University of New York
Rea Hederman, Senior Policy Analyst, Heritage Foundation
Gerald Prante, Senior Economist, The Tax Foundation
Joe Conason, Investigative Fund

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