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Can Bird save their scooters in Santa Monica? 9 MIN, 14 SEC

Santa Monica is in the process of selecting vendors for a new scooter program that it hopes to launch in September. Last Friday, a committee suggested Uber and Lyft get the deal -- not Bird or Lime, the two scooter companies that have been in Santa Monica since the start. Unhappy about the move, Bird has turned off all its scooters in Santa Monica, and it’s encouraging riders to protest at City Hall. The City Council will announce vendors on August 30.

Guests:
David Estrada, chief legal officer, Bird Rides

Why did Paul Manafort's defense team not call a witness on his behalf? 7 MIN, 12 SEC

It’s day 11 of Paul Manafort’s tax and bank fraud trial. On Monday, the prosecution rested its case. Today, the defense did the same, without calling a single witness. Final arguments are scheduled for Wednesday.

Guests:
Josh Gerstein, Politico (@joshgerstein)

More:
Manafort trial Day 11: Defense rests without calling witnesses

The case for getting white people to voluntarily desegregate public schools 9 MIN, 19 SEC

It’s been more than 60 years since Brown v. Board of Education, and research shows that children of all races learn better in integrated schools. But today, most kids will start classes in schools that are highly segregated. Schools in America have been increasingly segregated since the 90s. We find out why, and hear from an activist who says it’s up to white parents -- like her -- to voluntarily desegregate.

Guests:
Courtney Mykytyn, Founder of Integrated Schools
Patricia Gandara, UCLA (@CRPatUCLA)

Honey is just bee vomit -- and other fun facts about bees 13 MIN, 21 SEC

Most food relies on bees -- fruit, vegetables, nuts, and plants that animals eat. They’re all pollinated by the hard-working bee. But bees are dying, and their hives are disappearing. No one really knows why. Pesticides and climate change are chief suspects. Bees now have to be sent around the country to pollinate crops, such as the immense almond crop in California. We talk about the role of bees in the world, and what’s at stake if their numbers continue to plummet.

Guests:
Thor Hanson, conservation biologist, and author “Buzz: The Nature and Necessity of Bees”

Why TV writers' rooms are shrinking 9 MIN, 41 SEC

The writers’ room is changing in fundamental ways. With the arrival of the gig economy, there are shorter jobs, so-called “mini writers’ rooms,” two or three weeks of work, and no guarantees. Some people are happy with that change, while some are frustrated.

Guests:
Joy Press, author, “Stealing the Show: How Women Are Revolutionizing Television” (@Joypress)

More:
Is This the End of the TV Writers’ Room as We Know It?

CREDITS

Image of a honey bee pollinating a daisy by Joe Black.

Host:
Madeleine Brand

Producers:
Sarah Sweeney
Michell Eloy
Amy Ta
Christian Bordal
Quinn O'Toole
Yael Even Or

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