Presidential Leadership and Conflict Resolution
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Presidential Leadership and Conflict Resolution

President Obama brought the policeman and the professor together for some "conflict resolution" last night. What did the "beer summit" accomplish?  Is a similar strategy working with Congress?  Will it help to achieve the goals of foreign policy? Also, good news in the worst recession since the Great Depression, and a rush of new car buyers burned up a billion dollars in cash for clunkers in less than a week. Congress has extended the program in just one day.


Banner image: Police Sergeant James Crowley (2nd R), shares a beer and speaks with Professor Henry Louis Gates, (2nd L), alongside President Obama (R) and Vice President Biden (L) on the South Lawn of the White House. Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images

Making News

Good News in the Worst Recession since the Great Depression ()

The US economy shrank again in the second quarter of this year, but only by one percent. That can be regarded as good news in the worst decline since the Great Depression. Sudeep Reddy is economics reporter with the Wall Street Journal.

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Main Topic

The Beer Summit: Race and Reconciliation ()

Civil rights leaders applauded Barack Obama for saying the Cambridge police "acted stupidly." The police union demanded an apology. President Obama invited Professor Gates and Sergeant Crowley to have "a drink at the end of the day…for a friendly, thoughtful conversation." Crowley says there were no apologies, but no tension either and that "two gentlemen agreed to disagree on a particular issue." A spokesman for Gates says, "The differences are not that far apart… we learned some things and we can make important changes." Did last night's "Beer Summit" start to clear the air about racial profiling? Did it quell the media firestorm over the President's comment? What did it reveal about the leadership style of a former community organizer facing Congressional partisanship and intractable conflicts all over the world?

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Reporter's Notebook

'Cash for Clunkers' Gets More Cash ()

"Cash for Clunkers may have run out of cash, but America's consumers haven't run out of clunkers." That's from Democratic Congressman Ed Markey of Massachusetts, on extending a popular program that ran out of money sooner than anybody expected. It took only a week for eager consumers to burn up a $1 billion in federal money by collecting rebates on 250,000 new cars; it took less than a day for the Congress to come up with another $2 billion. Dana Hedgpeth is a financial reporter for the Washington Post.

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