The Political Landscape is a weekly conversation with National Journal writers, editors, and outside experts on the news of the day.
On this week’s show, drone strikes and data mining. How will drone strikes move forward with leadership changing in the CIA and Department of Defense? And for all the talk of data mining during the campaigns, did knowing that a potential voter shopped at Burlington Coat Factory actually help the campaigns come election day?
We’ll explore the future of U.S. drone strike policy with Atlantic writer Conor Friedersdorf, who been writing about the institutionalization of drone strikes in the U.S.
On Wednesday this week, Israeli officials announced that their forces had targeted and killed Ahmed al-Jabari, the military chief of Hamas, with an unmanned targeted drone strike.
As Michael Hirsh wrote in National Journal, "It has begun. The Obama administration’s permanent embrace of 'targeted killings' ... is setting a precedent for other nations."
Indeed, the number of U.S. drone strikes can be staggering. This year alone, the U.S. military has launched 333 drones in Afghanistan. That monthly average of 33 drone strikes is up from 24.5 just last year. Even more concerning to Friedersdorf is the 110 drone strikes the CIA launched under the 14 months of former CIA Director David Petraeus's leadership.
In part 2, we’ll discuss data mining with New York Times writer Charles Duhigg. Duhigg is the author of the book, "The Power of Habit," which revealed how Target, based on tracking customer's shopping habits, figured out that a teen girl was pregnant before her father did. Duhigg will explain what the Obama campaign did with the information gathered by 76 tracking cookies it had on barackobama.com in September, more than Best Buy had in a same period.
We’ll also talk to Professor Lisa Garcia Bedolla, who co-authored the book "Mobilizing Inclusion," which summarizes years of research on what makes for effective get-out-the-vote campaigns. She'll explain why providing voters with information about the candidates and issues may have little impact on voter turnout.
Check out last week's election recap episode, breaking down the Presidential, Senate, and House races.
Check out all episodes of the Political Landscape.
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