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On this week's trip to Asia, President Obama will try to make up for lost time, despite continued preoccupation with the Middle East and Russia's threat to Ukraine. Can he reassure allies about trade relations and mutual defense without antagonizing China? Also, the Justice Department outlines new clemency plan for nonviolent prison inmates. On today's should we all be on the payroll of Google, Facebook and Twitter? 

Banner image: President Barack Obama (R) and Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe (C) walk out after a private dinner at Sukiyabashi Jiro restaurant in Tokyo April 23, 2014. Photo: Yuya Shino/Reuters

DOJ Outlines New Clemency Plan for Non-violent Prison Inmates 7 MIN, 50 SEC

The Justice Department today announced guidelines for what could be a large-scale grant of clemency for non-violent drug offenders in federal prisons. On Monday, Attorney General Eric Holder gave a hint of what was to come. "There are still too many people in federal prison who were sentenced under the old regime – and who, as a result, will have to spend far more time in prison than they would if sentenced today for exactly the same crime. This is simply not right." Sari Horwitz covers the Justice Department for the Washington Post.

Sari Horwitz, Washington Post (@SariHorwitz)

America's Balancing Act in Asia 33 MIN, 1 SEC

After creating high expectations three years ago, President Obama is finally getting around to the so-called "pivot to Asia." Troubles with Congress, the Middle East and Ukraine have distracted attention from the region that's key to the future of the global economy. In the meantime, Japan, South Korea, the Philippines and other US allies are worried about the power of China, a country the US can't afford to antagonize. On this week's trip to four Asian countries, can the President clear up confusion about his military intentions and the prospect of a major trade agreement?

Michael Green, Center for Strategic and International Studies / Georgetown University (@CSIS)
Sudeep Reddy, Wall Street Journal (@Reddy)
Lori Wallach, Public Citizen (@PCGTW)
Gideon Rachman, Financial Times (@gideonrachman)

Green on navigating Asia's troubled waters (NYT op-ed)
Public Citizen on Trans-Pacific Partnership
Rachman's 'Zero-Sum Future: American Power in an Age of Anxiety'

Zero-Sum Future

Gideon Rachman

Should Digital Networks Pay Us for Our Info? 10 MIN, 10 SEC

book.JPGJaron Lanier was a pioneer of virtual reality. He sold a start-up to Google and helped Walmart, Fannie Mae, banks and hedge funds learn to use computerized information. He's now working on several projects for Microsoft. All that has made him a uniquely authoritative critic of the digital economy he has helped to create. Last year in Who Owns the Future he argued that Google, Facebook and Twitter should be paying all their users for making those companies rich. Since then, we've learned more about the downside of "Big Data." Who Owns the Future is now out in paperback and Lanier joins us in our studios in Santa Monica.

Jaron Lanier will be at Pages Bookstore in Manhattan Beach tonight, April 23, at 7pm.

Jaron Lanier, Computer systems expert and author of "You Are Not a Gadget : A Manifesto and Who Owns the Future?"

Who Owns the Future?

Jaron Lanier

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