June 17th Show : Blog Of The Nation In our first hour, the political junkie and NPR's Audie Cornish on the trial of William Jefferson, and Afghan Star. In our second hour, author Bill Wasik explains how to go viral, and Ambassador Jack Pritchard on North Korea.
NPR logo June 17th Show

June 17th Show

A flash mob in Paris, France. (We'll talk with the inventor of flash mobs about viral culture in today's second hour). MIGUEL MEDINA/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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Political Junkie: The Cold Cash Case, An Albany Coup And Letterman's Apology To Palin
Today on the Political Junkie, Ken Rudin looks at the week in political news, including David Letterman's apology to Sarah Palin (and her daughters), and Sen. John Ensign's (R-Nev.) affair. And we'll talk with NPR reporter Audie Cornish about opening arguments in the case of former congressman William Jefferson, who is on trial for federal corruption charges after federal agents found $90,000 in cash in his freezer.

Afghan Star
In this country, millions tune in and vote for the next American Idol. And in Afghanistan, a similar contest has Afghans voting for the next Afghan Star... but the singers literally risk their lives for stardom. In a new film, director Havana Marking documents the journey and the risks that four contestants take to become Afghanistan's next pop star. Marking, along with Jahid Mohseni, the T.V. show's executive producer, talk about the effect the Afghan Star contest is having in Afghanistan.

How To Go Viral
News, gossip, scandal, and video zip across the internet like wildfire, and then, faster than the speed of broadband, the story dies. Bill Wasik, author of And Then There's This and inventor of the flash mob, talk about how stories live...and die...in viral culture.

Nuclear Tests, Missiles And Imprisoned Journalists; Should You Worry About North Korea?
At the White House yesterday, President Barack Obama warned that a nuclear-armed North Korea is a "grave threat" to the world. Ambassador Jack Pritchard, a top aide in several administrations' negotiations with North Korea, talks about why North Korea is pushing back now.