The Madeleine Brand Show for December 16, 2011

Article 32 Military Hearing Held For Bradley Manning At Fort Meade

Bradley Manning in court, a look back at Wikileaks

Bradley Manning is in court today at a hearing that will determine whether he should be court-martialed. As a private in the Army, Manning is accused of leaking classified information to Wikileaks, information that top U.S. officials said put U.S. national security in danger. Hundreds of thousands of documents were made public. So, what happened? What was the fall-out? Steve Clemons, editor at large at The Atlantic, reviews the fallout of these leaked documents.
Christopher Hitchens

Christopher Hitchens dies at 62

He was an essayist, a provocateur and always unpredictable. Christopher Hitchens died late yesterday of pneumonia, after a battle with cancer. He was 62. Hitchens wrote several books, including his June 2010 memoir, "Hitch-22." He also wrote for Reason, Vanity Fair, Slate, The Nation and occasionally did stand up comedy.
Ke$ha Performs In Concert In Madrid
Ever heard of the linguistic phenomenon called "vocal fry"? It's when someone's speech drops to a lower register and creates a hoarser, creakier sound. Think of the singing of Britney Spears or Ke$ha, or perhaps the actress Aubrey Plaza, who plays April on the show "Parks and Recreation." Vocal fry was once considered a speech disorder. But a new study from Long Island University found it is wide spread in female college students.

Rent a tree – a new Christmas tradition?

Real or fake? It's the age-old question many families face every time they have to pick out a Christmas tree. Do you buy a real one and feel the guilt of cutting down a precious resource that you're just going to toss on the curb? Or do you buy a reusable plastic tree and face the carbon footprint it took to make the fake evergreen? You could buy a potted Christmas tree but it very well could die under your care. Another option has sprung up: renting a real, live, potted tree. The tree is delivered and then picked up after Christmas. It's eventually planted by professionals in places that need trees.

Weekend Alibis to drum up your holiday spirit

Need an alibi this weekend? Consider embracing all things festive and check out Santa's Cool Holiday Film Festival - vintage films will show at four theaters in L.A. - or try a performance of "Christmas 4 Bukowski" at Zombie Joe's Underground theater in North Hollywood. And if you're heading east, all the better. Time will fly at the Major League Dreidel spin-off in New York. Head to the Knitting Factory in Brooklyn to check out the topsy-turvy tournament.

Celebrity photographer Annie Leibovitz' "Pilgrimage"

You know these photos: Whoopi Goldberg in a bathtub of milk. Demi Moore naked and pregnant on the cover of Vanity Fair. John Lennon curled around Yoko Ono.
Boll weevil monument
Rico Gagliano and Brendan Francis Newnam, hosts of The Dinner Party, join Madeleine for their weekly booster shot of cultural news. This week: a town in Alabama has a monument to the boll weevil. Also, Santa's delivery schedule demands a lot: according to calculations, he must deliver about 365,000 presents a second. Plus, listening to loud music could be making you drink more.
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