The Madeleine Brand Show for March 3, 2011

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The DROP program: why some cops are getting pensions and pay at the same time

With all the talk of cutbacks and pension reform, a little known program that's part of the police and fire department benefits has yet to come under scrutiny. KCET's SoCal Connected examines DROP - Deferred Retirement Option Plan - in a story airing Thursday night. The program allows senior public safety officials to postpone their retirement for five years while still collecting their pension and wages. Reporter Judy Muller joins us to talk about her investigation.
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Measure G would roll back pension benefits for new public safety workers

KPCC reporter Frank Stoltze joins us to break down Measure G, the LA city ballot measure that would roll back pension benefits for future public safety hires from a possible 90 percent of top income to just 70 percent of income. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa met with union leaders from LA's police and fire unions Wednesday to negotiate.
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Does the iPad 2 offer anything new? Marketplace Tech Report's John Moe parses the reviews. Another tech manufacturer, Lenovo, has a prototype to watch your every move. Sound creepy? The laptop tracks where your eye is going on the screen and reacts accordingly. Finally, winners and tiger blood. Charlie Sheen is burning up the twitter-sphere. Since he registered @charliesheen Tuesday, he has gained 1.2 million Twitter followers.
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Pro football players are in talks with owners about a new contract, which expires at midnight tonight. The head of the NFL players' union may recommend that the players de-unionize. Meanwhile, the owners are saying, no, don't go non-union on us. Could anything be more unexpected or confusing? We get the lowdown from NPR sports guy, Mike Pesca.
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