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Mall Santas Coached To Temper Kids' Expectations

Lynn Neary talks to Fred Honerkamp, a graduate from the Charles W. Howard Santa Claus School in Michigan and current mall Santa, about the spirit — and strategy — of playing Old Saint Nick in tough economic times.

Dems Form New Plan To Fund Payroll Tax Cut

Having tried and failed to come up with a way to pay for an extension of the payroll tax cut with a tax on millionaires, Senate Democrats came back with a new idea Monday: pay for it with the anticipated savings from ending wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

All I Want For Christmas: Less Debt?

Holiday shopping means lots of trinkets for loved one, but it can also mean lots of debt. To learn whether Americans should save more and spend less, host Michel Martin speaks with NPR's Senior Business Editor Marilyn Geewax and Princeton Professor Sheldon Garon. Garon's new book is Beyond Our Means: Why America Spends While the World Saves.
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Division Of Labor: DCentric's Elahe Izadi Talks About D.C. Unemployment

There are more jobs than residents in Washington, D.C., yet the city's unemployment rate continues to hover above the national average. DCentric's new series examines the disparity, and addresses the city's efforts to mitigate the issue.


Why Buy Toys When You Can Rent?

If you've shopped at a toy store recently, you know that you can easily spend hundreds of dollars on just a few items. So why not just rent the toys instead? Weekends on All Things Considered guest host Rachel Martin tells us how toy rental websites work.

Milwaukee's 'Misery Index': Infant Mortality

As the city lost industrial jobs, its infant mortality rate skyrocketed. In one particular ZIP code, one baby dies for every 59 that make it. That's a rate that's worse than in parts of rural China.

How Europe's Troubles Could Become Ours, Too

If Greece, Spain, Italy or other European governments were to suddenly default on their debts, European banks could find themselves holding worthless assets and becoming insolvent. That could lead to a global financial meltdown worse than the one in 2008.

Poor Economy Defers Small Idaho Town's Dream

Unemployment is especially stubborn in rural places. In central Idaho, the recession has left Fairfield struggling for survival. Not long ago, it was poised for growth, but this summer, unemployment topped 16 percent.