Tuesday, February 14, 2012

  • "Real Despair" Sweeps Through Greece as Severe Austerity Measures Demanded by E.U.-IMF Cripple Nation

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    Greece continues to face political turmoil over a sovereign debt crisis that has embroiled the country for almost two years. On Monday, the Greek government said it would hold new elections in the face of massive demonstrations against a new austerity package that was approved on Sunday in exchange for a European Union-International Monetary Fund bailout. Under the austerity deal, Greece will fire 15,000 public sector workers this year and 150,000 by 2015. The minimum wage will be reduced by 22 percent, and pension plans will be be cut. As lawmakers voted, 100,000 people protested outside the Parliament building in Athens. Some protesters engaged in rioting, looting and setting fire to dozens of stores and buildings. Some 160 people were detained, and dozens were treated for injuries. To discuss the latest in Greece, we’re joined by Maria Margaronis, London correspondent for The Nation magazine. She was in Greece last week covering the economic crisis there. Margaronis says Greece faces an "impossible choice" "either to default on its loans by March, when it owes a massive loan payment, or to accept this desperate austerity program, which will further sink the economy... The Greek people have really had enough of this. People are exhausted and desperate. On the street in Athens, there’s a sense of everything breaking down." [includes rush transcript]

  • "All There Is": Love Stories from the StoryCorps Oral History Project with Founder Dave Isay

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    On this Valentine’s Day, we turn now to the voices of ordinary Americans talking about love. They are collected in a new book from the award-winning national social history project, StoryCorps. The book, "All There Is: Love Stories from StoryCorps," showcases the most memorable narratives from nearly 40,000 recorded interviews where love is the central theme interweaving two lives together. "I think one of the messages of StoryCorps is to remember to say the things to the people who you love today, and not to wait," says StoryCorps founder Dave Isay. We also air some of Isay’s favorite recordings about love, including this message from a husband to a wife as they look back on their life together in his final days with terminal cancer: "My dearest wife: This is a very special day. It is a day on which we share our love, which still grows after all these years. Now that love is being used by us to sustain us through these hard times. All my love, all my days, and more. Happy Valentine’s Day." [includes rush transcript]

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