90.9 WBUR - Boston's NPR news station
Top Stories:
PLEDGE NOW
Week In The News: Biden In Beijing, Pension Reforms And Nelson Mandela

Biden in Beijing. Public pensions under the gun. Mandela gone – our Weekly news roundtable goes behind the headlines.

U.S. Vice President Joe Biden, left, chats with his Chinese counterpart Li Yuanchao before heading to their luncheon at the Diaoyutai State Guesthouse in Beijing, China Thursday, Dec. 5, 2013. (AP)

U.S. Vice President Joe Biden, left, chats with his Chinese counterpart Li Yuanchao before heading to their luncheon at the Diaoyutai State Guesthouse in Beijing, China Thursday, Dec. 5, 2013. (AP)

Nelson Mandela over all the news this week.  South Africa’s great leader, emancipator, inspiration to the world, dead at 95 and celebrated as that rarest of figures – the moral hero.  In China, Vice President Joe Biden dances with Beijing over China’s expanded territorial claims.  Seeks to calm Japan, Korea.  In Detroit, a judge clears the way for bankruptcy and cuts to public pension plans.  Many cities take note.  We’ve got a train off the rails in New York.  Driver in a “daze.”  Healthcare.gov doing better.  The economy and job growth, too.  This hour On Point: our weekly news roundtable goes behind the headlines.

– Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Gideon Roseeditor of Foreign Affairs.

David Shepardson, Washington, D.C. bureau chief for The Detroit News. (@davidshepardson)

Jack Beatty, On Point news analyst.

From Tom’s Reading List

Detroit News: Detroit pension funds seek direct appeal of bankruptcy ruling — “The city’s pension funds and its largest union asked for permission Wednesday to appeal the city’s bankruptcy eligibility to the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, arguing the historic case needs to be heard by a higher court before retiree pensions are cut. The pension funds and the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees are trying to protect retiree pensions from cuts in a fight that could lead to the U.S. Supreme Court and avoid a ruling that could impact pensions in struggling cities nationwide.”

BBC News: US and China in ‘very direct’ air zone talks — “Talks in Mr Biden’s Asia trip have been dominated by a new air zone declared by China, which covers islands controlled by Japan in the East China Sea. China says its move is consistent with ‘international law and practice.’ China announced a new Air Defence Identification Zone (ADIZ) last month, and said aircraft flying through the zone must follow its rules, including filing flight plans. The ADIZ covers islands claimed and controlled by Japan, and a submerged rock claimed by South Korea.”

New York Daily News: MTA: Alert system for engineer was on wrong end of derailed Metro-North train — “The ‘alerter’ system sounds a warning after 25 seconds of inactivity from the engineer. It can activate the brakes automatically if the engineer doesn’t respond to the prompt in 15 seconds. That may have prevented disaster when engineer William Rockefeller apparently nodded off before the train approached a sharp curve near the Spuyten Duyvil station in the Bronx on Sunday morning — a bend that requires trains to slow down from a 70 mph limit to just 30 mph.”

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
ONPOINT
TODAY
Nov 21, 2014
President Barack Obama announces executive actions on immigration during a nationally televised address from the White House in Washington, Thursday, Nov. 20, 2014.  (AP)

The president throws down the gauntlet on immigration. Bloodshed and new tensions in Israel. Keystone fails. Our weekly news roundtable goes behind the headlines.

Nov 21, 2014
Laura Ingalls Wilder, an American  writer and novelist, at age 27. Her "Little House" series is a beloved semi-autobiographical take on her childhood in the Western American plains. (South Dakota State Historical Society )

A big new look at the legacy of Laura Ingalls Wilder and the woman behind the Little House.

RECENT
SHOWS
Nov 21, 2014
Laura Ingalls Wilder, an American  writer and novelist, at age 27. Her "Little House" series is a beloved semi-autobiographical take on her childhood in the Western American plains. (South Dakota State Historical Society )

A big new look at the legacy of Laura Ingalls Wilder and the woman behind the Little House.

 
Nov 21, 2014
President Barack Obama announces executive actions on immigration during a nationally televised address from the White House in Washington, Thursday, Nov. 20, 2014.  (AP)

The president throws down the gauntlet on immigration. Bloodshed and new tensions in Israel. Keystone fails. Our weekly news roundtable goes behind the headlines.

On Point Blog
On Point Blog
The Explicast, Episode Six: What Does A White House Press Correspondent Do?
Friday, Nov 21, 2014

We turn to White House Press Correspondents all the time for news, but we’ve never really wondered how they gather their information. Fortunately, our guest host Jessica Yellin had time to sit down with The Explicast to explain.

More »
Comment
 
Our Week In The Web: November 21, 2014
Friday, Nov 21, 2014

We offer a panel of hand-drawn digital sheep, and wonder how to best lead the rest of you to programs that matter.

More »
2 Comments
 
The Explicast, Episode Five: What Is Net Neutrality?
Friday, Nov 14, 2014

The Explicast dives into tech policy territory with a quick look at the real meaning of a complicated bit of tech policy known as ‘Net Neutrality.’

More »
2 Comments