The economic crisis in 2008 led to a massive overhaul of financial regulations. Journalist Robert Kaiser was given behind-the-scenes access to congressional reaction to the crisis. He saw that even with the threat of another Great Depression, Capitol Hill remained mired in dysfunction. NPR's Linda Wertheimer talks to Kaiser about his book, Act of Congress: How America's Essential Institution Works, And How It Doesn't.
The economy may be on the rebound, but many cultural institutions are still struggling to regain their financial footing. That's especially true for one of the country's most recognized museums — the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago. Known internationally for its research as well as its exhibits, the Field Museum must pay off millions in bond debt — and toe an ethical line as it does.
The Port of Baltimore recently completed a major expansion, which included building a 50-foot berth and dredging the channel. It's in anticipation of increased traffic following the completion of a project to widen the Panama Canal.
Credit Jonathan Blakely / NPR
A crane removes a container from a ship at the Port of Baltimore's Seagirt Marine Terminal on March 1.
This type of bulletproof whiteboard, produced by the Maryland company Hardwire, has been purchased by a Minnesota school district.
Credit Hardwire, LLC
Cold Spring, Minn., Police Chief Phil Jones (left) and Rocori School District Superintendent Scott Staska hold bulletproof whiteboards in April while announcing the school system's $25,000 investment in the shields.
A recent news item out of Minnesota caught our eye: "Bulletproof Whiteboards Unveiled at Rocori Schools."
Bulletproof what? Where?
That would be whiteboards, at the small central Minnesota Rocori School District, which will spend upward of $25,000 for the protective devices produced by a company better known for its military armor products.
Expanding trade abroad is a high priority for President Obama. This week, he nominated a trusted adviser named Michael Froman to become the next U.S. trade representative. Froman is currently deputy national security adviser for international economic affairs. NPR's Wendy Kaufman reports on the challenges he would face as trade representative.
The nation's unemployment rate hit a four-year low of 7.5 percent and the job market improved last month. Friday's news helped push the Dow Jones industrial average above 15,000 for the first time.
Was that a rational response?
Although the jobs report for April was positive, what triggered the market reaction was the fact that it was better than expected. Instead of 145,000 jobs created, as most economists predicted, the Labor Department says there were 165,000 new jobs.
The latest employment figures are out and they show gains in hiring. The Wall Street Journal's Sudeep Reddy joins host Michel Martin to talk about the report, and the millions of working Americans who still fall below the poverty line.
When it comes to bourbon, Tom Lix doesn't believe in age discrimination. Most bourbons might age in the barrel for eight to 12 years or more, but Lix figures his are ready to drink in less than a week.
Lix makes Cleveland Whiskey, a new brand of bourbon that exemplifies two major trends in American whiskey-making today: the desire to speed up the process and the effort to establish a local identity.
The Walt Disney Co.'s decision to end its apparel production in Bangladesh after more than 500 people died in the collapse of a garment factory complex has sparked fears of a mass exodus of Western retailers.