All this week we've been hearing about the making of the Planet Money T-shirt, a global journey that's taken us from the United States to Indonesia, Bangladesh, Colombia and back to the States. The series raised big questions about the nature of the garment industry and the role the very clothes on our back play in the global economy. I'm joined now by Planet Money's Alex Blumberg to wrap up the project. And Alex, when you think about all these stories, is there one single biggest takeaway that you're left with?
France has sent troops to the Central African Republic after violence there flared between Muslim and Christian militias amid reports that the death toll from fighting had reached 280.
The Associated Press reports:
"[Mostly] Muslim armed fighters who have ruled the country since March hunted door-to-door for their enemies. Bodies lay decomposing along the roads in a capital [Bangui] too dangerous for many to collect the corpses."
Congressional budget committee leaders are working to pull together a budget deal by the end of next week. Republic Congressman Paul Ryan and Democratic Senator Patty Murray are reportedly discussing how to increase revenue without raising taxes.
A main provision of the agreement would be a partial easing of the next two spending sequesters. It was only in October that a deadlock over federal spending led to the first government shutdown in 17 years.
In this photo released Nov. 27, 2013, by International Atomic Energy Agency, a team of IAEA experts check out water storage tanks at the crippled Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant in Okuma, Japan. (Greg Webb/IAEA)
Inspectors from the International Atomic Energy Agency are praising Japan for making progress to stabilize the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant, which was crippled by an earthquake and tsunami nearly three years ago.
This week, the IAEA inspectors wrapped up a 10-day inspection of the plant, where the decommissioning process started a few weeks ago.
Here & Now’s Jeremy Hobson gets the latest from BBC Tokyo correspondent Rupert Wingfield-Hayes.
Originally published on Fri December 6, 2013 5:35 pm
When big food corporations try to horn in on Twitter conversations about TV shows and other pop culture fare, it usually doesn't work.
Remember when McDonald's tried to engage customers with the hashtag #mcdstories, only to have it turn into a way to share horror-story experiences at the fast food chain? Or when Snickers got busted for paying celebrities to tweet about its brand?
On Monday, HBO presents the premiere of Six by Sondheim, a new TV special that's part biography, part music-appreciation lesson and part performance piece. It's all about the life and music and lyrics of Stephen Sondheim, in which he explains, among many other things, how and why he became a musical theater composer and lyricist, and the inspirations for some of his most familiar songs. If you're new to the works of Stephen Sondheim, this TV special should entice you. If you're already a fan, it should delight you.
In the latest smog-related health scare in China, officials in Shanghai on Friday ordered schoolchildren to stay indoors, halted all construction and even delayed flights in and out of the city, which has been enveloped in a thick blanket of haze, reducing visibility in places to less than 150 feet.
NPR's Frank Langfitt reports from Shanghai that the commercial capital's Air Quality Index soared above 500 for the first time ever, according to government sensors. He says officials described the readings as "beyond index" — in layman's terms, off-the-charts awful.