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Crunching The Job Numbers

Host Michel Martin is joined by NPR Senior Business Editor Marilyn Geewax to look at the latest jobs numbers. They talk about why businesses big and small aren't ready to make major hiring decisions yet — and whether that will change if politicians avert the so-called 'fiscal cliff.'
NPR

A Good Jobs Report Might Be Bad For The Jobless

An unexpected boost in hiring, with employers adding 146,000 jobs last month, might make it more difficult for Democrats to argue in favor of renewing benefits for the long-term unemployed. More than 2 million people who get extended jobless benefits may lose them in January if Congress doesn't act as part of discussions on the fiscal cliff.
NPR

Jobless Rate Drops In First Post-Election Report

The Labor Department reported Friday that the nation's unemployment rate fell to 7.7 percent in November as employers added 146,000 jobs. In October, the jobless rate was 7.9 percent. Analysts had predicted weaker numbers for November, partly because of the storm's aftermath.
NPR

Michigan Likely To Become A Right-To-Work State

The Michigan House and Senate have passed the legislation in different versions, and may take final action on the bills next week. Michigan could become the 24th state to say workers cannot be forced to pay union dues even if they work for a business or government employer with union representation.
NPR

South Carolina's Jim DeMint To Leave U.S. Senate

Republican Senator Jim DeMint announced Thursday that he is resigning his seat from South Carolina to become president of the right-leaning Heritage Foundation, a Washington think tank. What will his departure mean for the Senate and for South Carolina?
NPR

'Escape Fire' Exposes Flaws Of American Healthcare

In Escape Fire: The Fight to Rescue American Healthcare", director Matthew Heineman exposes what he sees as flaws in the U.S. healthcare system, such as a doctor who can spend just minutes with her patients to a soldier addicted to painkillers. Colonel Chester 'Trip' Buckenmaier III, of the U.S. Army Medical Corps, describes the military's efforts to swap pain pills for alternative therapies, like acupuncture and yoga.
NPR

Why A 'Fiscal Cliff' Failure Could Help The Economy

If President Obama and Congress can't make a deal this month, the economy could fall into recession while tax bills go up for nearly every American. On the other hand, it would do a lot to erase the nation's deficit.
NPR

To Catch A Suspect — On Pinterest

The social media site Pinterest is known as a place where people share recipes, crafts or fashion. But a new set of images have started showing up: mug shots. It's the result of one local police department's effort to get wanted notices in front of more eyeballs.
NPR

Tea Party May Be Losing Steam, But Issues Still Boil

While the movement loses popularity nationwide, it's still a force in the GOP. When it comes to fiscal cliff negotiations, however, Tea Party members in Congress seem resigned to the fact that any eventual deal will be one they won't like. That doesn't mean the Tea Party spirit can't be recharged.

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