July 1st Show : Blog Of The Nation In our first hour, what's safe in this economy?  In our second hour, captured by the Taliban, and Rick Atkinson.
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July 1st Show

In our second hour, author Jere Van Dyk talks about his book "Captive: My Time as a Prisoner of the Taliban." Zalgai hide caption

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In our second hour, author Jere Van Dyk talks about his book "Captive: My Time as a Prisoner of the Taliban."


Is Anything Safe in this Economy?
In many states and towns,  July 1st marks the first day of the new budget year and the beginning of deep cuts in jobs, pensions and public services from schools to police departments.  College students marched in California because of proposed tuition hikes and budget cuts, while firefighters in Florida protested layoffs there.  Government workers have been laid off in more than two dozen states as tax revenue plummeted during the recession.  Neal Conan looks at the effect of cuts across the country, and what some states are doing to maintain basic services.

Why All The Fuss About Thurgood Marshall?
This week, the Senate Judiciary committee conducted hearings on the nomination of Elena Kagan to the Supreme Court.  Senators quizzed her on social issues, executive power, and her views on the role of a judge. They pressed her repeatedly on her mentor, and one of the heroes of American jurisprudence, Justice Thurgood Marshall.  Some Republicans described Marshall in stark terms — calling his philosophy "not mainstream".  Today, we'll talk with a former Marshall law clerk and with NPR's Nina Totenberg about the legacy of Justice Marshall, and why he's been a controversial figure in these hearings.

Captured by the Taliban
In 2008, Jere Van Dyk set off from Kabul, Afghanistan, to write the authoritative book on the Taliban.  He never imagined he'd be taken as their prisoner.  That February, he became only the second American journalist captured by the Taliban.  He was kidnapped while traveling the mountainous no-mans-land  between Afghanistan and Pakistan's tribal frontier.  It's a region no Western reporter had been able to cross, and a possible hiding place of Osama Bin Laden.  Van Dyk spent forty-five days with his captors, never sure if he'd be beheaded or let go. He shares his experience, and talks about his book, Captive: My Time as a Prisoner of the Taliban.

Award Winner Rick Atkinson
Rick Atkinson is the rare military reporter with a military historian's perspective. He grew up in a military family on bases all over the world, which gives him a unique vantage point among military journalists. He recently added another prize to his crowded shelf of accolades that already includes several Pulitzers: the 2010 Pritzker Military Library Literature Award for Lifetime Achievement in Military Writing. Journalist and author Rick Atkinson talks about his work, and his way of using war to write about people and character.