Originally published on Wed March 21, 2012 6:44 pm
ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:
We don't know how common the experience of Robert Collins was but in the age of social media, perhaps it was inevitable. Mr. Collins was a corrections officer in Maryland. He took a leave of absence after his mother died, and then reapplied for his job. And he had to go through a security interview.
During the interview, Mr. Collins was asked a question that he had never been asked before during the process. He was asked for his Facebook username and password. Robert Collins joins us from Towson, Maryland. Welcome to the program.
Quoting "a White House official," CNN and USA Today are reporting that in a speech tomorrow President Obama will push for fast-tracking the construction of the southern portion of the Keystone XL pipeline.
Now, one way governments raise money is by issuing bonds: you or your pension fund lend them the money, and they then pay a set amount of interest for a set amount of time, say 10 or 20 years. Well, Britain's finance minister, George Osborne, is reportedly ready to announce that the UK plans to issue a bond that only your great-grandchildren will be able to cash in. It matures in a hundred years.
Italy's next step in a crisis is at the top of NPR's business news.
Italian prime minister Mario Monti is trying to restructure the economy so his country has a better shot at paying its debts. Today, he sits down to negotiate with the country's powerful trade union leaders. Monti hopes to weaken legal protections that make it almost impossible to fire employees. He blames these rules for slow economic growth and high unemployment in Italy.