Trader Warren Meyers works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange on Friday. Stocks opened higher after the government reported a burst of hiring last month that sent the unemployment rate to a four-year low. But both the White House and congressional Republicans reacted to the news in less than celebratory fashion.
The February jobs report was just the latest proof that the economy doesn't really care how much it confounds the messaging strategies of Washington's political class.
News that the economy created 236,000 jobs last month and that the unemployment rate fell to 7.7 percent, its lowest level in more than four years, caught nearly everyone by surprise after economists forecast perhaps 171,000 new jobs.
For the first time, the Bulgarian National Assembly is expressing "regret" for deporting more than 11,000 Jews to German death camps.
The declaration passed today is truly bitter sweet, because while it calls the deportations a "criminal act," it also praises Bulgarian citizens and politicians for saving more than 48,000 Jews during the Holocaust.
As lawmakers in Washington continue to negotiate over immigration policies, they'll have to grapple with a fundamental disagreement about the link between immigrants and crime.
Elected officials from Pennsylvania to Arizona have argued that undocumented immigrants contribute to higher crime rates, but some social scientists tell a different story. They argue that first-generation immigrants actually make their communities safer — and they point to some of the nation's biggest cities as proof.
During a ceremony in the Roosevelt Room of the White House, John Brennan was sworn in as the director of the Central Intelligence Office by Vice President Joe Biden.
According to the White House, Brennan took his oath by putting his hand "on an original draft of the Constitution, dating from 1787, which has George Washington's personal handwriting and annotations on it."
The AP reports that with Brennan, President Obama's national security team is set for a second term.
Kim Rollins of Ontario, Canada, struggled with anorexia for more than 20 years. After starting deep brain stimulation 14 months ago, the 36-year-old says she's in recovery.
An X-ray of electrodes implanted in the brain of a Parkinson's patient at the Cleveland Clinic. Now deep brain stimulation like this is being tried experimentally in a few patients with chronic, serious anorexia.
Now for nightmare bacteria. They defy all our antibiotics, even our latest drugs. This week the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced that strains of these completely drug-resistant bacteria have quadrupled in the last decade or so, and the bugs have been lurking around in hospitals, hundreds of hospitals around the nation.
This is SCIENCE FRIDAY, I'm Ira Flatow. Here's some news to raise a glass to: the idea that red wine may help us live longer and healthier lives. Well, it got a new boost this week. According to a team of researchers, a compound found in the skin of grapes could be an antidote to aging by slowing down the process and even fending off disease and inflammation associated with getting old. It's the topic of a new study published this week in the journal Science.
This is SCIENCE FRIDAY. I'm Ira Flatow. By now I'm sure you've heard about the real-life nightmare of a Florida man named Jeff Bush. As he lay sleeping last week, a gaping hole opened beneath his home, swallowing him alive. His body was never found. The search has now been called off, and the sinkhole that devoured him is now his grave.
Left to their own devices, many seedless grapes would be puny and soft. But these Thompson seedless got pleasingly plump after a little girdling and hormone treatment.
Credit I Love Egg / Flickr.com
Giving that orange a run for its money, these red grapes clearly have been treated with a plant hormone, which makes them long and cylindrical. They "were so large, hard, and yummy that I had to re-read the package label a couple of times," Flickr user I Love Egg wrote about her grapes.
Credit Daniel M. N. Turner / NPR
Left to their devices, many seedless grapes would be puny and soft. But these Thompson seedless got pleasingly plump after a little hormone therapy and girdling.
Credit Courtesy of California Viticulure
Put a "girdle" on that vine: By scraping off a small section of the grapevine's trunk, a farmer in California hopes to fatten up the fruit growing at the top.
Credit California Agricultural Extension Service/University of California Agricultural Extension Service
A 1931 horticultural pamphlet from the University of California shows how girdling boosts grape size and quality.
On Wednesday, former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords and her husband, Mark Kelly, attended a news conference at the site of the 2011 attack in which she was shot, 12 other people were also wounded and six people were killed.
Oz the Great and Powerful. Say that name aloud and you will smile, I guarantee you: It will conjure up so many images, characters, actors, songs. Then hold that smile as long as you can, because you won't be doing much smiling at the movie called Oz the Great and Powerful, the so-called "prequel" to The Wizard of Oz from Disney Studios.
Leader from around the world have arrived in Venezuela to pay their final respects to President Hugo Chavez, who used his country's oil wealth to put in place his vision of socialism during 14 years in power. And this larger-than-life leader presumably will continue to inspire his followers. The Venezuelan government plans to embalm his body and keep it on display in a glass coffin.
It's been 10 years since the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq. That conflict drastically changed the lives of Iraqi women. On International Women's Day, host Michel Martin talks with Iqbal al-Juboori, about how the war affected her personally, and what it's like for women to live in a conflict zone. al-Juboori works to provide job training and life skills to women and their families in rural parts of Iraq.
Catholicism is reaching further into the developing world. Will the Church shift its focus to new concerns in those regions — like poverty, education and rural development? Michel Martin talks with Sister Simone Campbell, Father Patrick Ryan and Yale Divinity Professor Lanim Sanneh about whether the Church's priorities are changing.
Was Senator Rand Paul's 13-hour filibuster a smart political move or a total disaster? The Barbershop guys weigh in on that — and how Major League Baseball could be affected by Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez's death. Host Michel Martin checks in with writer Jimi Izrael, civil rights attorney Arsalan Iftikhar, sports writer Dave Zirin and columnist Mario Loyola.
Originally published on Fri March 8, 2013 12:47 pm
We don't know too much about a Nepalese man who's in medical isolation in Texas while being treated for extensively drug-resistant tuberculosis, or XDR-TB, the most difficult-to-treat kind. Health authorities are keen to protect his privacy.
But we do know that he traveled through 13 countries — from South Asia to somewhere in the Persian Gulf to Latin America — before he entered the U.S. illegally from Mexico in late November. He traveled by plane, bus, boat, car and on foot.
Originally published on Fri March 8, 2013 12:22 pm
North Korea responded to new U.N. sanctions aimed at starving its nuclear program by vowing to cut a Cold War-style hotline and scrap a nonaggression pact with the South.
State-run media said North Korea "abrogates all agreements on nonaggression reached between the North and the South ... and also notifies the South side that it will immediately cut off the North-South hotline."