Robby Richardson crafts handmade stirrups for Nettles Country in Madisonville, Texas. The company would like to hire more workers, but can't afford to.
Credit Andrew Burton / Getty Images
Employment is up, with most of the new jobs coming from small and medium-sized businesses, like this accessories store in Manhattan. But some owners of small businesses say they're still cautious about hiring.
Optimism is growing about the U.S. jobs market. Fewer people are applying for unemployment benefits, and hiring is up. The lion's share of new jobs are coming from small and medium-sized firms. But even if the economy comes roaring back, many small businesses aren't likely to hire with wild abandon.
"It's a huge commitment, when you're a very small firm, to add someone," says Kate O'Sullivan, director of content for CFO magazine. "And I think that the outlook is still not completely firm."
Joseph Kony's Lord's Resistance Army has been among the world's most brutal rebel forces for a quarter-century. But the Ugandan group received only sporadic international attention before this week, when an Internet video about Kony went viral. Here, Kony is shown in 2006 in southern Sudan.
The Justice Department is warning Apple and five big publishers that it may sue them for colluding to increase the price of electronic books.
The Wall Street Journal, which first reported the story, explains that Justice's concerns emerged as Apple released its first iPad. Essentially, the paper explains, they were afraid that Apple would do to them what it did to the recording industry, which is tie them to prices set by Apple.
Update 5:25 p.m.: Altria, the parent company of Phillip Morris, released a statement responding to the Surgeon General's report. "We agree with the Surgeon General and others that kids should not use tobacco products, and we share the common goal of keeping tobacco products out of the hands of kids," the statement reads, emphasizing that tobacco companies do not market directly to children. It says Phillip Morris has given states more than $55 billion in settlements over the last 15 years, but says states have not used the money to its full potential.
The entrance to the Museum of the Olympic Games in Olympia, Greece, is cordoned off last month, after two hooded thieves broke into the museum and made away with more than 70 ancient objects. The stolen loot included chariots, horses and a gold ring that was more than 3,000 years old. Greeks say such sites are vulnerable because of cutbacks that have reduced the number of guards.
Afghan female police officers are trained by Afghan police and NATO soldiers in eastern Afghanistan's Ghazni province on Sept. 12. In the culturally conservative country, women serving in the security forces say they face systemic sexual coercion and even rape by male colleagues.
Credit Aref Karimi / AFP/Getty Images
Afghan female police officers march at the Police Training Center on the outskirts of Herat province in western Afghanistan on Dec. 8.
Credit Punit Paranjpe / AFP/Getty Images
Afghan female cadets attend their graduation ceremony at the Military Training Center in Kabul, the Afghan capital, May 19. Some women say they joined the security forces in order to serve their country, but many say it's because the pay is better than working as a maid or teacher.
The sun-orbiting SOHO spacecraft captured this image of filaments erupting off the sun's surface and magnetic plasma blasting into space. The field of view of this image, seen in ultraviolet light, extends some 1.243 million miles from the solar surface.
Maya Rudolph spent seven seasons on Saturday Night Live and went on to star in the raunchy comedy Bridesmaids. Now she's exploring what's funny about parenting in the new movie Friends with Kids and the TV series Up All Night.
The Associated Press reports that International Atomic Energy Agency officials are concerned that Iran may be trying to cover up evidence related to nuclear weapons. That could fuel the debate over U.S. options for addressing Iran. Host Michel Martin talks with Democratic Senator Richard Blumenthal, who is on the Senate Armed Services Committee.
Ed Harris and Julianne Moore star as Arizona Sen. John McCain and Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin in the HBO made-for-TV movie Game Change, based on a book by John Heilemann and Mark Halperin about the 2008 presidential race.
Game Change has been attacked in advance by Sarah Palin, who recently said on Fox News, "Hollywood lies are Hollywood lies."
There are times when TV dramas about national politics and politicians deserve criticism, even ridicule, for their fast-and-loose narratives and characterizations. Recent miniseries about the Reagans and the Kennedys, loaded with unsubstantiated dialogue and action, are only two very fresh examples.
But Game Change — HBO's new take on the John McCain-Sarah Palin campaign — is entertaining, and commendable, precisely because it stays so close to the facts, not because it strays from them.
The New York Times writes this morning about a retired Pakistani Army brigadier's attempt to reconstruct what happened last May when U.S. Navy Seals killed Osama bin Laden at the al-Qaida leader's hideout in Abbottabad, Pakistan.
An enormous surge in the number of groups that "see the federal government as their primary enemy" and in some cases have militias as their "armed wings" continues, the Southern Poverty Law Center reports today.
Originally published on Thu March 8, 2012 12:01 pm
Update at 1:55 p.m. ET. The House Passes JOBS Act:
Saying that it shows the federal legislature can work in a bipartisan fashion, the Republican-controlled House passed the JOBS Act, which was supported by President Obama.
"It is a welcome sign that we can put our differences aside and work together to produce results to help boost the economy and get people back to work," House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., said, according to the AP.
Here's a stunning fact we came across as the anniversary of Japan's tsunami and nuclear disaster approaches. Of Japan's nuclear plants, only two of 54 reactors are currently active one year after the disaster. To talk about the implications of this, we've called Kenneth Cukier. He is Tokyo correspondent for The Economist magazine. He's on the line.
NPR's business news starts with allegations of price fixing on e-books.
The Justice Department is threatening to sue Apple and five major U.S. publishers for allegedly colluding to raise the price of digital books. The Wall Street Journal reports that Apple persuaded publishers, including Harper Collins, Penguin and Simon and Schuster, to change how they price their e-books before the launch of the first iPad in 2010.
Private creditors holding Greek bonds have until the end of today to participate in the largest sovereign debt restructuring in history. This means creditors must exchange the Greek government bonds they now hold for new ones that are worth far less. Some creditors are balking, since it means up to a 70 percent loss on their returns.