The Madeleine Brand Show for December 19, 2011

Mercer 10223

Death of North Korea's leader brings hope, fears of instability

Thousands of North Koreans mourned the death of their "dear leader" Kim Jong Il Monday. His son, Kim Jong Un, will succeed him as the leader of the secretive communist country. South Korea's military is on high alert as analysts weigh what this could mean for relations on the divided peninsula and with the rest of the world.
Speaker Boehner Speaks To Press After House GOP Meeting

House GOP expected to reject Senate payroll tax break proposal

House Republicans are expected to reject a plan to extend the payroll tax-break approved by a bipartisan vote in the Senate over the weekend. House Speaker John Boehner announced Republicans in the House would vote against the proposal Monday. Boehner is calling on Senate leaders to negotiate an alternative bill before legislators leave for the holidays.

Christmas book ideas for kids

Still looking for gifts for the little ones in your life? Maybe a book? Children's librarian Mara Alpert has suggestions on her favorite books of the year.

Goodnight .... iPad?

Many of us grew up reading "Goodnight Moon" with the cow jumping over the moon and the red balloon. But in our tech-heavy world, you wonder if you'd still be able say good night to the old lady whispering "hush" or the bowl of mush.
New York Jets v Denver Broncos

Quarterback Tim Tebow sparked a meme that is spreading around the country

While most NFL stars jump around or dance after a big win, Denver Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow's likes to drop to one knee, put his head on his fist and pray. It's a move that's been dubbed "Tebowing," and it's catching on across the country. Fans are striking the pose in front of famous monuments, at graduation ceremonies – one man even proposed while Tebowing. Pictures of these moments are posted to a site called

Kristy Edmunds will take UCLA Live in new, avant-garde directions

Kristy Edmunds was recently named the executive and artistic director of UCLA Live. The performance series has been struggling financially with state budget cuts to the UC system. Edmunds says she hopes to turn that around by taking the series in a bold new direction. She comes to L.A. after working four years as the artistic director of the Melbourne International Arts Festival in Australia and many years in the Portland arts scene. Edmunds has built her reputation by working with avant-garde artists and companies, so she's sure to have a tough balancing act filling seats with an eye to innovation.
SNL does Kim Jung Il

From Team America to SNL, Kim Jung Il was a prime target for parody in the west

North Korean leader Kim Jung Il was a brutal dictator, one who brought untold suffering to his people. Here in the West, he was also one of the most made-fun of dictators. Everyone from 30 Rock to SNL to South Park creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone have parodied Kim Jung Il. Steve Proffitt has a quick look at the lighter side of the dear leader.
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