AirTalk for May 20, 2011

Mercer 18149
The Israeli government is vehemently criticizing aspects of President Obama’s latest peace plan. In his speech about Middle East issues Thursday, Obama reiterated that Israel and Palestine should live side by side in separate states based on the 1967 borders that existed before the Six Day War. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu rejected this, stating that “Those borders are not defensible” and a Palestinian state must not come “at Israel’s expense.” Netanyahu is scheduled to be at the White House today, for what’s bound to be a tense meeting with Obama. We’ll talk with Jacob Dayan, the Consul General of Israel, about Israel’s negative reaction to Obama’s stated policy and what comes next.
Mercer 18140

L.A. Zoo considers privatization plan

Since its opening in 1966, the Los Angeles Zoo has been owned and operated by the city. Now, LA’s top administrator says the taxpayer-funded animal attraction should be turned over to a private manager. Chief Administrative Officer Miguel Santana pitched the idea saying that the combination of spiraling employee costs and years of deep budget cuts, could cripple the beloved institution. But not everyone’s happy with the plan. Leaders of SEIU 721, which represents about 230 zookeepers and other workers, want to make sure any change wouldn’t be at the expense of the workers or the lions and tigers and bears. How would the proposed private/public partnership work? Is it easier to raise money for the zoo, if it’s privately run? Can the zoo survive without it?
Mercer 18142
Happy Friday! Or Rapture Eve, we could call it. You've seen the billboards around town -- warning Judgment Day is upon us. This latest doomsday prophecy comes courtesy of a California Christian radio broadcaster, Harold Camping, who launched the ad campaign after he did some number crunching to divine the date of the end of the world. Funnily enough, it's not the first time he's predicted the end is nigh. Nor is he the first person to do so. What is our endless fascination with Armageddon and doomsday? What do you think of these billboards and the campaign? Is it just a laugh? Does it cause any worry or anxiety? Does it bug you, or maybe inspire you?
Mercer 18160
KPCC film critics Andy Klein and Tim Cogshell join Larry to review the week’s new film releases including Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, Midnight in Paris, Bloodworth, Earthwork, The Big Uneasy, How to Live Forever and more. Claudia Puig also brings us the best films at Cannes 2011. TGI-FilmWeek!
Mercer 18137
In 1967, Peter Bart made a risky decision to leave his job as a reporter at the New York Times and go to work at Paramount with his friend, the legendary Robert Evans. As inexperienced as they were, the two of them set about to breath new life into the studio of Hitchcock, Wilder and DeMille. When Bart left Paramount in 1975, the studio had completed a remarkable run with such films as The Godfather, Rosemary's Baby, Harold and Maude, Love Story, Chinatown, Paper Moon, and True Grit. But sex, drugs, management infighting, runaway budgets and even the Mafia provided Bart with plenty of chaos and company turmoil during his years at Paramount. This is the stuff of Peter Bart’s new book “Infamous Players,” a story told from the unique vantage point of 5 decades in the movie business.
Find an archived Episode: