The debate over raising the debt ceiling has largely taken place in the halls of Congress and the White House briefing room. But there is another front in the battle — a war on the air. Advocacy groups from each side of the issue are spending millions on commercials.
Last week, Moody's Investor Service became the first of the big three rating agency's to put the United States' credit rating on watch for possible downgrade. Today, it suggests that the country should save itself further headaches by getting rid of the debt ceiling altogether.
We tackle health claims galore on the podcast this week.
First up is an ad campaign from the California Milk Processor Board aimed at saving long-suffering men from the tyranny of premenstrual syndrome. Really? Yep. The remedy: regular doses of milk for the women in their lives. The milk board cites research that suggests taking a lot of calcium may help reduce the symptoms of PMS. We check it out.
As Rosa Hendrix puts it, she got "stuck" in a nursing home for six years. So when the 88-year-old woman was finally able to move out, she looked around her new one-bedroom apartment and had some stark things to say about what makes a home.
"A home means to me where you are not in prison. Where you don't have to have somebody to tell you what you can do, when you can do it and how you can do it," she says.
These days, many conservatives argue that slashing the nation's debt should be lawmakers' top priority as they try to revive the U.S. economy. Adding too much debt has eroded consumer confidence, they say, and paying it down would help jump-start growth.
But economists say the relationship between government debt and the weak economy isn't so clear.
Addressing the deficit has become a central focus of economic policy in Washington, and politicians like House Speaker John Boehner often talk about the deficit and unemployment in the same breath.
There's a spirited and civil debate on Tell Me More today about the divisive issue of abortion — with particular focus on, as host Michel Martin says, data showing that "while black women make up about 13 percent of the U.S. female population, they account for 30 percent of abortions performed in the U.S." (Michel cited Guttmacher Institute figures.)
The group that advises the U.S. government on vaccination thinks some new vaccines may not be worth the cost.
In 2009, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices, or ACIP, decided it's not cost effective to routinely vaccinate boys for human papillomavirus, though they do recommend the vaccine for girls. Now the group is struggling to decide whether infants and toddlers should get costly new vaccines to prevent a form of meningitis caused by bacteria.
Have you ever wanted to put a Facebook friend on autopilot?
Make them think you care without the time commitment of leaving a meaningful birthday message or the trouble of reading their ranting comments. A "like" here, a comment there — just enough to make it believable?
Well, Pepys Inc. has what you've been looking for. E-Breaux is part of the company's suite of Web solutions called e-Geaux (beta).