NPR's Eric Westervelt scored an interview with Dutch Finance Minister Jan Kees de Jager. And Eric reports that he did not mince words.
The Netherlands and Germany, which have AAA credit ratings, hold great sway in whether Greece will receive a $170 million bailout from the European Union and the IMF. Without it, Greece would default on its debt and would almost certainly exit the monetary union. Eric asked Jager if Greece needed to do more beyond the tough set of austerity measures Parliament passed on Sunday and this is what Jager told him:
Originally published on Wed February 15, 2012 3:16 pm
Toyota and Ford won the most awards in the J.D. Power and Associates 2012 U.S. Vehicle Dependability Study, which came out today. Vehicles made by Toyota led the way with eight awards, while Ford models received three. In general, vehicle dependability was the best since the study first began in 1990, according to J.D. Power.
When immigrants face depression, therapy may not be the first option they explore for relief. When they do seek counseling, they often encounter a cross-cultural struggle to understand and be understood by American practitioners.
Israel blames Iran for attacks in the capital cities of India, Georgia and Thailand, further escalating Israeli-Iranian tensions. Washington Post columnist Jackson Diehl believes that Iranian leaders are exhibiting signs of desperation.
GOP presidential candidate Rick Santorum swept caucuses in Minnesota and Colorado and the Missouri primary, gaining considerable ground on Mitt Romney's primary lead. NPR's Ken Rudin and Dan Balz, of the Washington Post, recap the week in politics.
Chinese Vice President Xi Jinping, the heir apparent to the presidency, visited Muscatine, Iowa Wednesday. He spent a week with a family there in 1979 to learn about American agriculture. Des Moines Register reporter Kyle Munson discusses the relationships foreign leaders form with U.S. towns.
Originally published on Wed February 15, 2012 4:25 pm
The 2013 budget proposed by President Obama includes many cuts made to conform with new spending limits. But several arts and cultural institutions saw their allotment rise by about 5 percent in the proposed plan. The proposed spending of $1.576 billion — in a budget of $3.8 trillion — includes some good news for the Smithsonian Institution and the National Endowments for the Arts.
For the Newscast desk, Elizabeth Blair filed this report:
Part of President Obama's 2012 re-election strategy was to run against a do-nothing Congress. But congressional Republicans now appear determined to make that approach harder for him by coming to terms on some Democratic priorities.
Defense Secretary Leon Panetta says the military will focus more on Asia in the future. He says the Pentagon can absorb some budget cuts, but warns that they must not be too deep. He's shown here Tuesday on Capitol Hill, where he testified before the Senate Armed Services Committee.
President Obama's 2013 budget calls for a $5 billion competitive grant to get states to overhaul teacher evaluations and training programs. Also, the president recently gave 10 states waivers from some of the rules of the No Child Left Behind Act. Host Michel Martin speaks with NPR's Claudio Sanchez and Kentucky principal Tim Roy.