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This Week: God and Government
This Week
September 26, 2003

This week on NOW:

Around the nation faith-based organizations are getting taxpayer money to help Americans in trouble. Supporters point out that these groups have been successful in housing the homeless, educating children and caring for AIDS patients, the elderly, and the disabled — often stepping in to help do a job that they say government social service agencies can't do alone. But critics contend that some of these faith-based programs are not only trying to help people with social services, but are also a vehicle to push religion on their vulnerable clients. NOW goes inside the faith-based initiatives debate with a look at Faith Partners, a Colorado church-based group that aims to help welfare families become self-sufficient.

On Wednesday, President Bush meets with President Pervez Musharraf of Pakistan, who the administration has called one of our closest allies in the war on terror. As Congress considers an $87 billion budget for reconstruction in Iraq — a package that will include aid to Pakistan — many wonder how much help Pakistan will be to US efforts in the Middle East. NOW's David Brancaccio talks to Bernard-Henri Levy, the esteemed French philosopher and accomplished author, who spent a great deal of time in Pakistan to research his most recent book, WHO KILLED DANIEL PEARL?

Bill Moyers interviews Peter G. Peterson, chairman of the Federal Reserve Bank of NY, former secretary of commerce under President Nixon, and chairman and co-founder of the Blackstone Group, an international investing and advisory firm. As a Republican, Mr. Peterson has been critical of the current administration for what he calls "a Republican leadership in complete control of our national government, [which] is advocating a huge and virtually endless policy of debt creation."

In Depth

Church scene

Separating church and state in U.S. history

Where do Americans put their faith? Religion statistics

Bernard-Henri Lévy
Timeline of U.S./Pakistan relations

French writer and philosopher Bernard-Henri Lévy

Piggy bank
NOW's eye on corporate reform

Tracking the cost of war in Iraq


Talk about the news on the message boards


David Brancaccio on an $87 billion bill


Learn more about the issues discussed on NOW

Read the complete transcript.


God and Government
Producer: William Brangham
NPR Correspondent: Daniel Zwerdling
Editor: Amanda Zinoman

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