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Almost 16 million Americans are unemployed, more than the populations of 46 of the 50 states. Should a second stimulus put checks in the mail? What about tax credits for employers who create new jobs? Will developing markets overseas lead to more or less employment in the US? Also, President Obama agonizes over Afghanistan, and the Obama White House recruits Republicans to support the "public option."

Banner image: Pamphlets sit on a table during a job fair in Arcadia, California. Photo: David McNew/Getty Images

Making News President Obama’s Options in Afghanistan 7 MIN, 43 SEC

The war in Afghanistan turned eight years old today, and President Obama, in the words of the New York Times, is "agonizing…about what to do next." With public anxiety on the increase, some experts think he's being forced to choose between two alternatives, neither of which can work. A veteran of Capitol Hill, Winslow Wheeler is Director of the Straus Military Reform Project at the Center for Defense Information.

Winslow Wheeler, Center for Defense Information

Main Topic Is a 'Jobless Recovery' Not a Recovery after All? 37 MIN, 6 SEC

Healthcare reform and Afghanistan are getting the headlines, but President Obama's biggest challenge could be creating jobs. The US economy needs 100,000 new jobs every month just to keep up with growth in the population. Instead, more than 200,000 a month are disappearing. Despite talk about economic "recovery," unemployment's at 9.8 percent, the highest in more than 25 years. Full employment isn't likely again until 2017. We hear what it's like to get laid off and how hard is it to get re-hired. What happened to that economic stimulus money? What can the government do now? Instead of promoting a quick fix, should the focus be on new jobs with long-term usefulness to American society?

Sudeep Reddy, Wall Street Journal (@Reddy)
Peter Goodman, New York Times / International Business Times (@petersgoodman)
Ellen Hartnett, temporary employee
Bradford Jensen, Associate Professor of International Business and Economics, Georgetown University

Past Due

Peter Goodman

Reporter's Notebook Obama Enlists GOP Governors in Healthcare Debate 6 MIN

The Obama White House is reaching out to prominent Republicans for support on healthcare reform. Former Senate Leader Bill Frist of Tennessee, George Bush’s Health and Human Services Secretary Tommy Thompson and California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger are among them, as is former Republican, now Independent, Michael Bloomberg, Mayor of New York. Meantime, some conservative Democrats have warmed to a "public option," not provided by Washington but by the 50 states. They didn’t think to do it all by themselves. Ceci Connolly reports on national health policy for the Washington Post.

Ceci Connolly, National Health Policy Reporter, Washington Post

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