Sharpening the Cutting Edge

On October 4, 1957, America’s cold war arch-rival, the Soviet Union launched Sputnik — the first spacecraft to orbit the Earth. The United States went ballistic with envy and fear. President John F. Kennedy announced America would go to the moon, and marshaled American science to that, and much more. The US economy flourished.

On January 31, 2006, George W. Bush sounded a new alarm in his State of the Union address. This time it is global competition challenging the United States, he said, and he outlined a new initiative to respond. But is it enough?

Craig Barrett, chairman of Intel, and others talk about the challenge to American competitiveness, now.


Craig Barrett, Chairman of Intel

Shirley Ann Jackson, President of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Michael Lemonick, Senior writer, Time magazine

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Nov 26, 2015
This photo taken July 31, 2012 shows a "tiny" house April Anson built in Portland, Ore. For the past couple of months, 33-year-old Anson and her friends have been planning, measuring, sawing and hammering their way toward completion of what might look like a child’s playhouse. (AP)

Tiny houses, micro-apartments. They’re hot. Americans are downsizing.

Nov 26, 2015
Jewel performs in the On Point Studio on Tuesday, September 22, 2015. (Liz Gillis / WBUR)

Singer-songwriter Jewel asked “who will save your soul”? Now she’s talking about saving her own. We’ll talk to Jewel.

Nov 25, 2015
Three of baker Renee McLeoud's delicious pies, on display in the WBUR studios. (Robin Lubbock/WBUR)

Bring your appetite! We’re gathering around the radio table with three chefs and new Thanksgiving recipes.

Nov 25, 2015
President Barack Obama, accompanied by Pulitzer Prize winning Iowa writer Marilynne Robinson, arrives to the State Library of Iowa in the Ola Babcock Miller Building, Monday, Sept. 14, 2015, in Des Moines. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

On the day before Thanksgiving, we talk with Marilynne Robinson – one of America’s greatest authors, thinkers, moralists — about fear and hope in a hard, frightening time.

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