July 20th: What's On Today's Show : Blog Of The Nation In the first hour of Talk of the Nation, the political junkie talks about the week in politics, including the debt ceiling debate. In the second hour, the complicated relationship between police and reporters, and why many veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan miss war.
NPR logo July 20th: What's On Today's Show

July 20th: What's On Today's Show

Police officers stand outside the News International offices in east London on July 10, 2011, as police inquiries continue into the News of the World phone hacking scandal. In the second hour, guests talk about the often complicated relationship between police and reporters. CARL COURT/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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The Political Junkie
The Senate's Gang of Six reemerged with a compromise package to address the debt, complete with $3.7 trillion in cuts over the next decade. It won the praise of President Barack Obama, and although Majority Leader Eric Cantor didn't endorse the plan, he called it "an improvement over previous discussions." Still, the clock is ticking to the August 2nd deadline and many people are scrambling to prepare for the fallout from a possible government default. Host Neal Conan and political junkie Ken Rudin talk with Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour about what his state is doing to prepare for a possible sudden drop in federal dollars. They'll also speak to Barbour about the 2012 GOP primary field and recap the week in politics.

The Complex Relationship Between Cops And Reporters
Allegations of bribery and collusion brought down London's News of the World and the ended the careers of two top officials at Scotland Yard. The close ties between British police and tabloid reporters have drawn attention to the complex relationship between the people charged with fighting crime and those who report on it. The culture of police reporting is very different in the U.S., but it poses its own set of challenges with leaks, questionable sources, corruption cases and held stories. Host Neal Conan talks with Kelly McBride, former police reporter, and Charles Ramsey, Police Commissioner of the Philadelphia Police Department, about how the often complicated relationship between police and reporters.

Missing War
Nearly 1,500 U.S. soldiers have been killed in Afghanistan since the war began in 2001. A report from the United Nations says nearly that many Afghan civilians died between January and June of this year alone. For those who have not fought and faced death side-by-side with fellow service members, it's difficult to imagine that anyone could miss the experience of war. In a piece in The New York Times, Sebastian Junger, the author of War and co-director of the documentary Restrepo, argues that civilians need to understand troops' complex feelings about war or "we won't do a very good job of bringing these people home and making a place for them in our society." Host Neal Conan talks with Junger about his piece, "Why Would Anyone Miss War?"