Rundown 7/2822:23
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Why so Few Mortgages Are Modified

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Under a government program that debuted in March, only 200,000 of 3.5 million people facing foreclosure this year have been able to get their loans adjusted to more affordable monthly payments. Officials at the Treasury Department are meeting with mortgage servicers today to demand they do more to help struggling homeowners. We speak with Renae Merle, staff writer for the Washington Post.

Chinese Immigrants in the U.S.

This month, the state of California issued a formal apology for past discrimination against Chinese immigrants. It's a story told in the book, "Driven Out: The Forgotten War Against Chinese Americans," by Jean Pfaelzer, which we first broadcast when the book came out in 2007.

Tagging Trash

Ever wonder what really happens to that plastic yogurt container you put in the recycling bin? An experiment that will take place in Seattle next month might shed some light. Researchers will be tagging thousands of pieces of trash with special sensors and tracking their movements through the waste stream in an attempt to find out where garbage really goes. Our guest is Assaf Biderman, associate director of the SENSEable City Laboratory at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Gates in Iraq

Defense Secretary Robert Gates is visiting Iraq a month after U-S forces pulled out of the country's urban areas. Despite the withdrawal, American troops are still active in some of the more dangerous cities in Iraq. The BBC's Gabriel Gatehouse was with the U-S troops during a recent patrol in Mosul.

Brad Washburn

The late Brad Washburn was a mountain climber, a surveyor, and a mountain photographer whose pictures are now considered art. He was also a groundbreaking director of Boston's Museum of Science. We speak with author David Roberts about the life of the man he considers "The Last of His Kind."

Music from the Show

  • Sigur Ros, "Nybatteri"
  • Herbie Hancock, "Watermelon Man"
  • Charles Mingus, "Open Letter to Duke"
  • Moby, "Inside"
  • The Doors, "Peace Frog"
  • Radar Bros., “Mountains”

This program aired on July 28, 2009.

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