Until the beginning of this month, Donald Berwick served as administrator for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Dr. Berwick's nomination got caught up in the partisan politics that accompany passage of the health care law, and he took office under a controversial recess appointment. His mission was to make the centers more efficient, to cut costs and to deliver more patient-centered care. On his way out of office, he said that as much as a third of the money spent on Medicare and Medicaid is wasted.
This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan in Washington. About 5,000 U.S. troops remain in Iraq, and they will all leave by the end of this month. Yesterday, President Obama marked the end of the nearly nine-year-long war as a campaign promise kept. He stood beside Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki yesterday and reflected on the costs and said U.S. troops will leave with their heads held high.
Host Michel Martin checks in with Michelle Rhee, the former chancellor of Washington, D.C. Public Schools. As chancellor, she made a number of controversial changes that were both applauded and denounced. A year ago, she started StudentsFirst, a group formed in response to increasing demands for a better public education system in America.
For freshman college students, it's the end of first semester. For many first generation college kids, grades, work and money are already a struggle. In fact only 15 percent complete their degrees within 6 years. Host Michel Martin and a panel of moms and education experts discuss how parents can help their students succeed.
Andy Shallal, owner of the popular Busboys & Poets restaurants in the D.C. metro area, is much more than a restaurateur. The latest Washington Post Magazine chronicles how Shallal promotes his political interests, while creating a successful business model. Host Michel Martin speaks to Shallal.
More than 2 million children currently attend charter schools, and that number is growing. But not everyone thinks the move away from public schools is best for students. Host Michel Martin speaks with one critic, Natalie Hopkinson. She's a contributing editor for The Root, and has two kids attending schools in the Washington, D.C. area.
In the FX TV series Louie, comic Louis C.K. plays a divorced father of two struggling to balance his comedy career with being a single dad. The show, which has just been picked up for a third season, is often based on events that have happened to C.K. in his own life.
Originally published on Tue December 13, 2011 4:07 pm
The overwhelming majority of Latino voters believe that the Republican Party ignores them or is outright "hostile," and that nominating Hispanic Sen. Marco Rubio as a vice presidential candidate might do little to change it, according to a national poll released Monday.
The December survey, conducted by impreMedia and the polling group Latino Decisions, is the first to test the popularity of the freshman senator from Florida with America's Hispanics.