Too often, migrants and refugees are viewed as "other" - not like us. In recent days Donald Trump Jr. compared the Syrian refugee problem to a bowl of Skittles
In this episode, Leonard Doyle of the International Organization for Migration walks us through the worldwide crisis of tens of millions of displaced people, from families fleeing from war and terrorism to young men and women who overstay their visas in search of a better life. We look at the definitions of these terms - so often glossed over in our discussions of the crisis.
Using personal stories and speaking from years of experience working with migrants, Leonard makes a powerful case for all of us to see migrants as people like ourselves. This is the first small step we can take in responding immense humanitarian challenge.
"When you say the word 'migrant' people tend to have an image in their head," Leonard tells us. That may be a negative image "because there is so much toxic discourse about them from our quite opportunistic political leaders."
Established in 1951, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) has offices in more than 100 nations and works with governments and non-governmental organizations to promote humane and orderly migration, for the benefit of all.
The movement of peoples from much of Africa, West Asia and The Middle East “is the global phenomenon of our time," says Leonard. "It's kind of the last flick of the globalization monster in a way. We had free trade in global goods and services. This is the bit they didn't plan very well... But people aren't stupid. They watch television and see a better lifestyle happening somewhere else. We've kind of empowered them with our globalized media and globalized trade."
A summit of world leaders at The United Nations this week put the migrant crisis more firmly on the global agenda. In his address to the U.N. General Assembly, President Obama called the refugee and migrant crisis "a test of our humanity."
This episode also considers the views of voters in the U.S. and other nations who are fearful that the rising numbers of immigrants from nations with distinctly different cultures could lead to lower wages, rising unemployment and higher crime. Dismissing or marginalizing their concerns can lead to to populist anti-immigrant rage.
Join Richard, Jim and Leonard for a lively and often moving conversation.
Get ready for slower economic growth and de-globalization, says investor and writer Ruchir Sharma.
Ruchir invited us to his New York office, where he is the head of emerging markets and chief global strategist at Morgan Stanley Investment Management. He is also the author of "The Rise and Fall of Nations: Forces of Change in the Post-Crisis World."
Our interview looks at Ruchir's rules for spotting political, economic and social change. They include:
"What's very apparent and under-appreciated is the major drop off that we've seen in the world's working age population growth rate," Ruchir tells us. "I think that is a major drag on global economic growth currently."
On New Year's Eve, journalist and former Parade Editor-in-Chief Janice Kaplan made a promise to herself to be grateful during the coming year and look on the bright side of whatever happens.
As we find out in this episode, it made a big difference to her life. Janice discovered that how she feels has less to do with events than with her own attitude and perspective on life.
Her recent book "The Gratitude Diaries" began after a survey she had done found that 94% of Americans thought people who are grateful live richer lives. But less than half those surveyed say they practiced gratitude on any regular basis.
"It struck me that we have this great big gratitude gap," Janice tells us on "How Do We Fix It?" If we change our attitude, she says, "we're going to be a lot happier."
- Say thanks to someone you love. It's easy to forget to appreciate your partner and your family. But the daily practice of saying something positive can transform almost any relationship.
-Gratitude is an attitude, but it's also a daily practice. Each day write down something that you are grateful for.
- Express gratitude at work. Many of us feel unappreciated at work, but we can change that for ourselves and our colleagues. The start of the work week is a great time to tell fellow workers that they matter to you.
- At family dinners or when you are putting your kids to sleep at night, ask your kids what they were grateful for today. This can become part of what families do and how they think about their lives.
How much do you know about money? Many of us make simple mistakes that cost us hundreds, if not thousands of dollars a year.
From "nap-time activists" and mommy bloggers to a "stroller march" on Washington, Moms Clean Air Force is using creative and highly effective ways to advance their cause to get dangerous pollutants out of the air.
In this "How Do We Fix It?" episode we speak about solutions with the group's National Field Director, Gretchen Dahlkemper, a Pennsylvania mom who became an activist - fired up about the threat to her children's health. Her daughter has asthma. So for her this campaign is personal.
"I think the more that we connect the average citizen with their elected officials, the better off our entire system is going to be," says Gretchen. "We have forgotten that we can pick up the phone and call our elected officials."
Moms Clean Air Force fights back against climate change, fossil fuel, methane leaks and other issues that cause health problems. But this movement of mothers is about more than the environment and childrens' health. It's also a way of revitalizing our democracy.
"That to me is one of the key solutions to eliminating this huge partisan divide that we're seeing in the country right now," says Gretchen.
Following on from our recent episodes about high schools and playdates, this week we explore children's learning, technology and play with three "How DO We Fix It?" guests.
Science evangelist Ainissa Ramirez explains why all young kids are fascinated by science. But school often gets in the way of exploration and curiosity. Ainissa explains how parents and other caregivers can spark interest in science.
Psychology professor Abigail Baird shares insights and tips for parents about a healthy balance between computers, mobile devices and children's play. Toy industry and play consultant Richard Gottlieb has creative and - yes - playful ideas about technology, behavior and learning.
The obesity rate is 52% in Brownsville, Texas - far higher than the national average. Nearly one in three residents has diabetes - three times the rate elsewhere. Brownsville also has a very high rate of poverty where more half the residents are not covered by health insurance.
This city and other largely hispanic communities along the U.S. - Mexico border are facing a health emergency.
Brownsville decided to tackle the crisis head on, with an innovative mix of public initiatives - including a new farmer's market, many miles of bike lanes, changes to zoning regulations, and a community-wide health challenge.
Our guest is obstetrician-gynecologist, Rose Gowen, a City Commissioner in Brownsville. We hear her personal story and what Brownsville is doing to transform itself into a more active, prosperous and healthy community.
"We have found here that even in the poorest among us they want to feel better and they want better for their family and they're willing to listen to options and ideas," says Rose.
"The difference that we've made is huge."
Remember when kids were allowed to play, usually without supervision, when did that change? When did play turn into a playdate?
Today many parents organize playdates. Play is arranged, supervised and has the parental seal of approval.
"I think we could add more diversity into how our children play with other children,"says our guest, Tamara Mose, Associate Professor of Sociology at Brooklyn College.
Tamara is the author of the new book "The Playdate: Parents, Children and the New Expectations of Play"
In this episode we look at how the shift to structured playdates reflects changes in parenting and class.
"Let's listen to our children's desires," Tamara urges parents. "I think we've lost the ability to do that because we're so afraid of everything our children interacts with.'
We discuss other solutions, including tips for successful playdates and being open a greater range of children from diverse backgrounds.
The release of nearly 19,000 e-mails from the Democratic National Committee rocked party leaders and forced the resignation of DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz.
We look at how this happened, why Russia was probably involved and how many other organizations, businesses and government agencies are at risk of cyber break-ins.
Adam Levin, co-founder of Credit.com and the online security firm IDT911 says the power grid and financial system are at risk. He warns of a possible "Cyber-geddon."
In this episode of "Fix It Shorts" Adam tells Richard and Jim how all of us can reduce our threat of identity theft and hacking attacks.
Adam Levin is a well-known expert on identity theft and credit and the author of "SWIPED: How to Protect Yourself in a World Full of Scammers, Phishers and Identity Thieves."
Improving America's high schools is an exceptionally complex and difficult task. But all across the country the most enlightened educators are working to narrow the gap between student achievement and the needs of an evolving workplace.
Our guest, Liz Willen, is editor-in-chief of the groundbreaking Hechinger Report. Using solutions journalism, data, stories and research from classrooms and campuses, Hechinger looks at how education can be improved and why it matters.
"The best high schools, whether they're charter or public, to me have a sense of purpose: A central idea and a team working together," Liz tells us in this episode of "How Do We Fix It?"
But there are scores of barriers to providing children with the education they need to succeed in later life. This learning gap between where we are and where the country needs to be is one reason why so many Americans feel disillusioned about the future.
"Kids are coming out of the high schools not ready for the jobs that are going to be available and often not ready for college level work."
⁃ How can we improve our STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) instruction? Half of all U.S. high schools do not offer calculus. Only 63% have courses in physics. These are 2 concrete solutions:
1. The Woodrow Wilson Foundation offers a teaching fellowship for people who have a background in STEM and would like to teach in “high-need” secondary schools.
2. P-TECH (Pathways in Technology Early College High School) is a partnership between IBM and the City University of New York. Students are taught core subjects as well as computer science. Graduates complete 2 years of college work. After graduation, alumni have the opportunity to get a job with IBM. P-TECH will be opening another 25 high schools over the next 3 years, stay tuned.
⁃ Why project-based learning can boost achievement and lead to greater engagement among high school students.
⁃ The need for more guidance counselors to help kids with psychological, social and academic issues.
⁃ The importance of role models in schools that struggle with violence and high drop out rates.
We also learn a fundamental lesson: Why one-size-fits-all solutions usually don't work.
Are opinion polls accurate? Did they miss the rise of Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders? Do they properly measure America's increasingly sharp political and cultural divisions? What's the difference between a well-designed poll conducted with careful methodology and a sloppy opt-in online survey?
Our guest is Gary Langer, an internationally recognized opinion researcher and longtime director of polling at ABC News. He has overseen and analyzed more than 750 surveys on a broad range of topics.
Gary has a passion for numbers and explains what listeners should know about polls. He tells us that surveys taken at least a year ago - when many pundits dismissed Trump as an outlier - clearly showed that his views on banning oversees Muslim visitors and building a wall along border with Mexico had substantial support among Republican voters. Trump led the GOP field throughout the lead-up to the primary season.
This show may very well save you money, boost your career and help you make smarter decisions.
Would Britain face lasting economic and political harm if it votes to quit the European Union in June 23rd's referendum? Our show looks at the case for Brexit.
How many times have heard somebody say that the political campaign has reached a new low? How much worse is the 2016 race compared to previous elections?
We asked Princeton University Professor, Sean Wilentz, to give us a history lesson.
In his latest book, "The Politicians and the Egalitarians" Sean makes the case for pragmatism, arguing that politicians serve the country best through the art of compromise.
On this episode, he tells us that "nasty, slimy stuff" is nothing new in Presidential campaigns, using the wild rhetoric of 1828 and 1860 as examples. But what is new this year, Sean argues, is hyper-partisanship, "where you cannot imagine the other side even existing. You want to obliterate them. You want to wipe them off the face of the earth."
The SOLUTIONS start with us.
How we talk about those we disagree with. Are you gleefully vilifying the opposition?
This podcast is all about how to have better habits and use them to be more productive in our projects, careers and everyday lives.
We talk about to-do lists, email, mental models and making the most of our time with best-selling author,Charles Duhigg. His latest book is "Smarter, Faster, Better: The Secrets of Being Productive in Life and In Business." Charles is also the author of "The Power of Habit."
Medical errors are America's third largest cause of death. Only heart disease and cancer have a higher body count.
"Stuff happens," says homeland security expert and mom of three, Juliette Kayyem.
The government has got to find a better way to talk about the threat of terrorism and natural disasters. Most of us need to have a better plan to prepare.
"We talked in a way when people would either tune out or freak out," says Juliette of her time as a top official at The Department of Homeland of Homeland Security. "We are all in this together," she tells on this episode of "How Do We Fix It?"
Her new book is "Security Mom: An Unclassified Guide to Protecting Our Homeland And Your Home." The book is packed with common-sense ways to think about positively about a difficult subject.
The government shouldn't scare, but prepare. Pretending that America is invulnerable is both unrealistic and unhelpful to citizens.
Homeland security is not just about tragedy or terror, it's what all of us can do every day to keep ourselves strong, safe and prepared. Families should have a "72 on you" plan. If you call 9-1-1 in an emergency, don't assume help will come quickly. Have 72 hours of vital supplies, including non-perishable food, water, first-aid kit, flashlights and batteries.
Talk to your kids about how the family should stay in touch in an emergency. Copy important personal documents and put them on the cloud.
"You can get yourself prepared for almost any eventuality in a very small amount of time," says Juliette. "You're going to feel better being prepared for something rather than nothing."
"At the end of the day everybody is biased," says our guest, John Gable, founder CEO of AllSides. "You're biased by what you know. You're biased by what you know and you're biased by your entire human existence before then."
AllSides is unique in how it covers the news - displaying stories on its front page - from different points of view. It urges readers to "engage in civil dialog and discover a deeper understanding of the issues."
The left-hand column at AllSides has stories from liberal-leaning sites (New York Times, Huffington Post, Salon), the right column features conservative-leaning media coverage of the same event (Fox News, The Blaze). The centrist column plays things down the middle (USA Today, Christian Science Monitor).
"Part of what we do is help people understand that they are biased as well," says John.
With deep experience in technology and his former involvement in political campaigns, he understands how so many of live in a bubble - only listening to those we agree with. And why that's a threat to our democracy.
Take the "do
you live in a bubble?" quiz.
Learn why left or right are not our only political options.
John Gable urges us to read Neil Postman's ground-breaking 1985 book, "Amusing Ourselves to Death." The book looks at the impact of television and mass entertainment on our perceptions of politics and culture.
Too often, news coverage is all about clashes, controversies and contests. The way the media cover major events can have a profound impact on our view of the world.
In this episode, Jim and Richard - both journalists themselves - are joined by David Bornstein, who writes for the Fixes blog of The New York Times and is co-founder of SolutionsJournalismNetwork.org.
"The news tends to focus far more on what's wrong than on the credible efforts around the world of people who are trying to fix things, whether they are successful or not." David tells us.
"I think the main thing is that the problems scream and the solutions whisper. The problems are always clamoring for attention. Solutions, you really do have to be proactive and go look for them."
David says that solutions journalism focuses not just on what may be working, but how and why it appears to be working, or alternatively, why it may be stumbling. Using the best available evidence, it delves deep into the how-to’s of problem solving, often structuring stories as puzzles or mysteries that investigate questions like: What models are having success reducing the dropout rate in public schools? How do they actually work? What are they doing differently than others that are resulting in a better outcome?
Solutions Journalism network goes into newsrooms around the country, and trains editors and reporters on the imperatives of the "now what" aspect of reporting. Solutions journalism helps news organizations play a stronger role in the communities they serve.
With the approach of Earth Day, this show looks at the clean air, carbon-free case for nuclear power. And it challenges the view held by many environmentalists that the only way to save the planet is for all of us to get by with less.
Guest Michael Shellenberger is is coauthor of An Ecomodernist Manifesto, a which argues that human prosperity and an ecologically vibrant planet go hand-in-hand. In 2007, Michael received the Green Book Award and Time magazine's "Hero of the Environment."
His recent TEDx talk is "How Humans Save Nature." Nuclear power is an anathema to many of his fellow environmentalists, but Michael tells us its a crucial form of energy that "produces zero air and water pollution... There's no pollution that comes out of nuclear plants." He says that we can boost growth all over the world and still set aside more land for nature and wildlife. Michael makes argument that humans, who have caused so much destruction to the planet, have the ingenuity to save it.
Michael recently started a new group, EnvironmentalProgress.org and is the author of the book "Break Through: From the Death of Environmentalism to the Politics of Possibility." He calls on those who care about the future of the planet to reject the language of limits and embrace possibility and the aspirations of people around the world who strive to improve their standard of living.
You can't have too much of a really good thing. That's why we decided to invite Lenore Skenazy,founder of Free Range Kids, to make a welcome return to "How Do We Fix It?" She was a guest on an earlier show.
Lenore is the passionate and playful campaigner, who says most American kids don't have nearly enough unstructured free time, when they can be curious and engage the world on their own terms.
"Free time is unsupervised time," Lenore tells us. "It's not a parent sitting there saying 'oh, that was really good, or try it this way.' Sometimes you've got to do things that are really bad and try it the wrong way, because that's the creative process." Lenore says parenting styles have changed in the past 30 years, especially for many urban and upper-middle classes Moms and Dads. Risk avoidance seems more important than stimulating a child's imagination.
"Think back on your own childhood. Your parents loved you and they let you go. And it's a new thing not to give children any freedom."
From the Free Range Kids statement of where it stands: "Fighting the belief that are children are in constant danger from creeps, kidnapping, germs, grades, flashers, frustration, failure, baby snatchers, bugs, bullies, men, sleepovers and/or the perils of the non-organic grape."