We have been hearing stories of struggles in the job market and small triumphs this week on The Takeaway. We’re asking listeners to tell us their stories of how unemployment has affected their lives.
As the August 2 deadline to raise the debt ceiling draws closer, there's more talk about the dire economic consequences that will ensue if policy makers in Washington fail to reach an agreement on a budget plan. Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell says that a bipartisan agreement is not likely to happen, and has proposed a plan in which the president could increase the federal debt limit without Congressional approval.
As Washington battles it out over the deficit and the August 2 deadline to raise the debt ceiling, there is another important economic discussion happening across the country. Last week, the unemployment rate reached 9.2 percent, and by the end of this year money for many jobless benefits will disappear. As lawmakers haggle over the debt ceiling in Washington, are they failing to address the jobs crisis?
Rupert Murdoch’s British media empire remains under fire as allegations continue to unfold — not only about the now-shuttered News of the World, but about other media outlets within the company. The Sunday Times and The Sun, both British papers owned by Murdoch’s News International, are accused of attempting to hack Prime Minister Gordon Brown’s phone, bank account and family medical records, as well as paying bribes to members of Scotland Yard officers for information about members of the royal family.
U.S. Ambassador Robert Ford's visit to Syria has drawn the condemnation of the Assad regime. Ford visited the city of Hama, a center of anti-Assad sentiment, where pro-democracy activists greeted him with flowers and olive branches. Meanwhile, in Damascus, pro-Assad demonstrators hurled rocks and eggs at the U.S. Embassy, protesting Ford's visit.
Plans for the troop drawdown in Afghanistan are underway. The Defense Department announced that the first regiments to head home will be finishing their tours of duty this month, and won’t be replaced. But after nearly a decade of combat there, how much do we really know about Afghanistan and what this will mean for the country?
An execution scheduled in Texas today is making international headlines. Should Humberto Leal Garcia, Jr. die at the hands of the state, the U.S.'s diplomatic relations with Mexico could be adversely impacted, and possibly may violate the U.S.'s compliance with the U.N.’s Vienna Convention on Consular Relations. Garcia was convicted in 1994 of raping and killing a 16-year-old girl in Texas. He is a Mexican national and was not informed that he could access Mexican consular officials after his arrest. Garcia has been denied clemency from the state of Texas, but President Obama has asked that the Supreme Court weigh in on his case by today.
Cuts to entitlements like Medicare and Medicaid are continue to be used as bargaining chips as the debate over the budget rages on in Washington. Already some states have begun cutting back their Medicaid programs.
But a new study out today in the National Bureau of Economic Research shows that people on Medicaid see doctors more regularly, and are more financially stable and less depressed than the uninsured. These findings could be crucial selling points as lawmakers debate the effectiveness versus cost of the health program.
President Obama is selling his plan to pull troops out of Afghanistan by describing it as an opportunity to refocus on the domestic health of America. His term, "nation building at home" recalls the great American eras like the industrial and gilded ages. They eventually led to new railroads and highways, the infrastructure that powered us into the boom time of the 1950s.
Over our nearly decade-long war in Afghanistan, we've become accustomed to hearing stories of death and destruction—loss of life has become the price of this war. Former Foreign Service officer Patricia McArdle has written a story of re-birth and a second chance at life, based on her time in Afghanistan. Her new novel, "Farishta," tells the story of Angela Morgan, whose husband died in the bombing of the U.S. embassy in Beirut in 1983. After mourning for 20 years, Angela is sent to an isolated British Army compound in Afghanistan, and it's there that she is reborn.
Volatile food prices are making the survival of the small farmer in developing countries nearly impossible. As the developed world weathers the storms of rising food prices through sophisticated commodities markets, smaller operations in Latin America, Asia and Africa are left to the mercy of massive price fluctuations.
On Wednesday evening President Obama will unveil his exit strategy from Afghanistan. We’ll hear exactly how many of our troops will be coming home and when the U.S. military will hand over power to Afghan security forces. This comes nearly a decade after the first U.S. military campaign against Al-Qaeda and Taliban forces. There has been mounting political pressure on the president to instigate a significant withdrawal and many people are hoping this marks the closing chapter of the War in Afghanistan.
Students have been complaining about their teachers and principals, probably since the first schoolhouses opened. But in the Internet age, it's easy for students broadcast their frustrations publicly via social networks, and courts are now having to step in and define whether their online back talk is protected free speech.
UK authorities have arrested a 19-year-old under suspicion for his potential connection to the hacking group LulzSec. The group has claimed to have pulled off attacks on PBS, Sony and the Senate.
The group has a mischievous persona. It has set up a hotline for people to call in and suggest sites that should be attacked. The recorded voice that answers claims, in an exaggerated French accent, that "Pierre Dubois and Franvois Deluxe" are not available because they’re out hacking websites. Yesterday, they announced that they're teaming up with Anonymous, another hacking group with a deeper political bent.
The first big deadline for presidential candidates to report their campaign fund raising donations is approaching at the end of June.
Among the GOP hopefuls, Rep. Michelle Bachman (R-Minn) is getting a lot of attention for her past ability to turn big political statements into campaign cash. She welcomed a million dollar windfall into her campaign coffers the day after a 2008 appearance on "HardBall" with Chris Matthews, where she described the Obamas as anti-American. Many are calling these controversial statements and sloganeering "Money Blurting." But will Bachman’s blurts be enough to siphon donations away from the money making machine that is the Mitt Romney campaign and other candidates?
The White House and Congress are butting heads over who authorizes military action in Libya. The 60-day deadline for President Obama to get approval from Congress to go to war passed on May 20th.
Tuesday, the White House offered its first public argument on why the administration thinks it has not violated the War Powers Resolution. The White House Press Secretary said that President Obama’s actions are consistent with the War Powers Act. However, ten members of Congress, led by Representative Dennis Kucinich filed a lawsuit Tuesday, effectively asking a judge to order an end to U.S. involvement in the war.
As Republicans reacted to Monday's GOP debate, another candidate entered the fray. Jon Huntsman, former Utah governor and ambassador to China under President Obama, said that he will announce his candidacy for president. Huntsman only recently left his post as ambassador.
The banking industry, like basically all commercial industry, is always looking for ways to innovate their products and services. Take ATMs or the kind of innovation that allows customers to view the image of their check right on their banking receipt - those cost money to develop. And the banking industry has been lobbying to change the patent laws tied to these sorts of business innovations.
In China, factory workers and their families are speaking out about a growing public health scandal for the Chinese government. Mass lead poisonings are showing up in factory towns across the country. Lead is showing up in high levels in homes situated near factories, as well as in the blood of factory workers and their families.
Earlier this week, we told you that hackers had infiltrated Citibank’s security system and gained the sensitive account information of more than 200,000 of their customers. What we didn’t know then was that Citigroup officials had discovered the security breach three weeks earlier and failed to notify their customers.