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FROM THIS EPISODE

In next week's State of the Union speech, President Obama plans to discuss the growth of income inequality, a potential cause for crisis, not just in the US, but all over the world. We hear how it's being addressed from the World Economic Forum in Switzerland to the world of Wall Street. Also, new hope after the Syria peace talks were on verge of crumbling, and the late Daniel Pearl's final story.

Banner image: lecercle

Producers:
Andrea Brody
Liyna Anwar
Evan George

Main Topic Harsh Truths about Income Inequality 36 MIN, 45 SEC

The world's 85 richest people control as much wealth as the poorest 3.5 billion. That's according to a study by the humanitarian group, Oxfam — and it's caught the attention of the movers and shakers at this week's World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. With the US leading the way, the gap is growing between the rich and the rest, provoking stark warnings about social stability. We hear how income inequality got to be on the agenda for the rich and powerful at Davos. How did the very rich get that way? Will they ever share their wealth willingly, or is greed a form of addiction?

Guests:
Max Lawson, Oxfam International (@Oxfam)
Nathaniel Hendren, Harvard University (@HarvardEcon)
Tim Harford, Financial Times (@TimHarford)
Sam Polk, Groceryships (@SamPolk)

Today's Talking Point Finishing Daniel Pearl's Last Story 7 MIN, 8 SEC

Twelve years ago yesterday, Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl drove off for an interview in Karachi, Pakistan and never came back. A month later, the FBI received a video ending with Pearl's killer holding his decapitated head. Pearl's friend and colleague spent years determining who the murderer really was. Asra Nomani is author of Standing Alone: An American Woman's Struggle for the Soul of Islam. She's also co-director of the Pearl Project.

Guests:
Asra Nomani, Pearl Project (@asranomani)

Standing Alone

Asra Q. Nomani

Making News New Hope after Syria Peace Talks Were on Verge of Crumbling 7 MIN, 45 SEC

The Geneva II Syrian peace talks were scheduled to start today, but a dispute over preconditions almost scuttled the process. Now, representatives of President al-Assad and opposition leaders have agreed to meet tomorrow. It's not yet clear if they'll be "in the same room." Laura Rozen is in Geneva for Al-Monitor, a website that covers the Middle East.

Guests:
Laura Rozen, Al-Monitor (@lrozen)

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