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For years, General Motors ignored defects in ignition systems until deaths and injuries forced the issue of auto safety into the open. Since then, there’s been a record number of highly publicized recalls by GM and other companies, too.  But sales of new cars have gone through the roof. So, where’s the backlash?  Where does that consumer confidence come from?  Are new cars that much safer than old ones? When the average car in America is 11 years old—how many dangerous vehicles are still on the road? Also, the jihadist Islamic State that now controls much of Iraq has trapped at least 40,000 members of the Yazidi sect, who are taking refuge on Mount Sinjar. And, the 69th anniversary of the first atom bomb.

Banner Image: General Motors automobile mural; credit: Toban Black

Islamist Advance in Iraqi Kurdistan Sparks New Humanitarian 6 MIN, 29 SEC

The jihadist Islamic State that now controls much of Iraq has trapped at least 40,000 members of the Yazidi sect—one of that country’s oldest minorities. Men, women and children have taken refuge on Mount Sinjar, where they face slaughter if they go down and dehydration if they stay where they are. That’s according to Martin Chulov, reporting from Beirut, Lebanon for Britain’s Guardian newspaper.

Martin Chulov, The Guardian (@martinchulov)

Why is America's auto industry back despite millions of recalls? 33 MIN, 45 SEC

General Motors has begun the process of compensating victims of faulty ignition systems that led to an avalanche of auto recalls.  But, despite reports of deaths and injuries—and publicity over the recalls--GM is still America’s number one automaker and sales are at pre-recession levels.  Maryann Keller is an independent auto analyst and author of, Rude Awakening: the Rise, Fall and Struggle for Recovery of General Motors."

Maryann Keller, veteran independent auto analyst
Scott Burgess, Detroit Editor of Motor Trend magazine (@AutoCritic)
Mike Spector, Wall Street Journal reporter investigating auto recalls
Jessica Caldwell, Senior analyst for automotive research company Edmunds.com (@jessicarcaldwell)

On the 69th Anniversary of the Atomic Bombing, A Look at The Current State of the US Nuclear Arsenal 9 MIN, 16 SEC

Sixty-nine years ago today, the US dropped an atomic bomb on Hiroshima, Japan.  Three days later, it dropped another on Nagasaki.  Since then, Russia and 7 other countries have developed nuclear weapons, but none has ever been used in warfare.  We hear about their destructive potential and get an update America’s arsenal.

Tom Collina, Ploughshares Fund (@TomCollina)

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