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This Week: Fiscal State of the Union
This Week
February 4, 2005

This week on NOW:

The President is challenging America to build an "ownership society," but critics say the rhetoric coming out of Washington is clever sloganeering that doesn't address important issues like what the President's plan for the Social Security crisis means for working Americans. David Brancaccio gets the perspective of civil rights crusader and regular NOW contributor Constance Rice, who says the real crisis is that too many Washington policies are shifting the financial risk from the wealthy to the working middle class. "None of it adds up. It's worse than fuzzy math," says Rice, a lawyer known for litigating major cases, involving police misconduct and employment discrimination. "I also have to wonder why they are tinkering with the last bedrock safety net that we have?"

Zainab Salbi is the founder and CEO of Women for Women International, a non-profit organization that helps women find opportunities in post-Saddam Iraq. Salbi gives David Brancaccio her thoughts on what the future may hold for Iraqi women as their country moves toward democracy and talks about the situation there. "Educated women. Working women. Women who are outspoken. Women who kept their old lifestyle. Kept on driving cars, kept on wearing their western clothing. They were all assassinated one by one." An Iraqi native who arrived in the U.S. at age 19, Salbi's experience with the Iran-Iraq War and later the Gulf War sensitized her to the plight of women survivors of war and led her to found Women for Women International at age 23. Under her leadership, the organization now assists women in 8 countries including Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Rwanda, Nigeria, Afghanistan, Colombia, Iraq and the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

In Depth

Social Security card

The Financial State of the Union

Debating Social Security Reform

Zainab Salbi
The Advancement Project's Constance Rice

Social Security History

Women for Women's Zainab Salbi

Women in the New Iraq

The World of Women

NOW Book List


Talk about immigration on the message boards.


Learn more about the issues discussed on NOW.

Read the complete transcript.

Streaming Video

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David Brancaccio talks with The Advancement Project's Constance Rice (12:34)

David Brancaccio talks with Women for Women International's Zainab Salbi (10:19)

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