February 17th Show : Blog Of The Nation Today's Talk of the Nation: the Congressional debate over funding public broadcasting, Oscar-nominated documentary Inside Job, the protests taking place in the Kingdom of Bahrain, and a study that links global warming with extreme weather events.
NPR logo February 17th Show

February 17th Show

Sesame Street, with its iconic star Big Bird, may be one the public broadcasting programs that could lose government funding, under budget cuts proposed by House Republicans. Matt Sayles/AP Images hide caption

toggle caption
Matt Sayles/AP Images

Public Broadcasting

As Congress and the White House seek to reduce the federal deficit, one of the key areas that has come under the microscope is funding for public broadcasting. Host Neal Conan is joined by Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), who supports federal funding for public broadcasting, and Rep. Doug Lamborn (R-CO), who thinks it should be eliminated. Tom Rosenstiel, director of the Pew Research Center's Project for Excellence in Journalism, will provide context of the role of public broadcasting in the media landscape.

Oscar Docs: Inside Job

In the run-up to the Academy Awards, we continue our series of conversations with the directors of the five Oscar-nominated documentary films. For Inside Job, filmmaker Charles Ferguson spoke to financial insiders, politicians and journalists to discover the truth behind the economic crisis of 2008. The global financial meltdown has resulted in lost homes and jobs for average Americans. Ferguson blames a financial industry that he says corrupted government and academia to rake in enormous profits.


The latest protests in the Middle East are taking place in the Kingdom of Bahrain. The tiny archipelago of islands is ruled by a Sunni monarchy, despite Shiites making up the majority. Host Neal Conan speaks with Michael Slackman who's covering the story for the New York Times. He'll explain why thousands are taking to the streets, and why the government is returning fire. NPR foreign correspondent Deborah Amos will broaden the conversation and explain how there are other Sunni run countries in the Persian Gulf with Shia majorities.

Global Storming

For years many scientists have said that as the planet heats up, weather will become more and more extreme. So far it's been difficult to pin climate change to any particular storm, but scientists from Oxford University have attempted to do exactly that. Host Neal Conan talks with NPR Science Correspondent Richard Harris about this new study and extreme weather events.