And as the president does that, the race for the Republican presidential nomination continues. Newt Gingrich and Mitt Romney are the leaders in the race for that nomination. They faced each other in a debate in Des Moines, Iowa Saturday night.
NPR's business news starts with Occupy Wall Street and West Coast ports.
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INSKEEP: Occupy protesters in cities up and down the West Coast are attempting to paralyze some of the nation's busiest ports today. Organizers say they expect thousands of demonstrators to turn out for what they're calling Wall Street on the Waterfront.
On this April 7, 2009, visit to Iraq, President Obama greets U.S. troops at Camp Victory in Baghdad. On Dec. 2, 2011, the base was handed over to the Iraqi government. All U.S. soldiers are to be gone from Iraq by year's end.
Cui Jinmin oversees an abandoned strip of unfinished highway in western China's Shaanxi province. Cui says the government stopped paying his workers in April and they went home in July.
Credit Frank Langfitt/NPR
Work on this $1.5 billion highway in western China's Shaanxi province mostly halted after the government ran out of money. China has spent large sums to help keep its economy growing in recent years, but many local governments now face big debt burdens.
As the U.S. and Europe have struggled with debt, China has seemed to be largely immune. This fall, the European Union even asked China for financial help, but China has a debt problem of its own.
Over the past several years, local governments have run up at least $1.5 trillion in bank loans for infrastructure projects intended to prop up the nation's economic growth. Analysts think much of that money will never be repaid.
It's not unusual for awful traffic conditions or incompetent driving to make some people really angry behind the wheel. But when enraged drivers actually lash out at others on the road, that's road rage — and experts say it can be a sign of deeper emotional problems.
The term road rage was coined in Los Angeles – a city long known for its epic freeway jams. Mike Shen got a taste of how bad it can get shortly after moving to L,A., when a woman viciously tailgated him on the freeway.
Many European parents, and some American ones, too, have long figured if they let their kids drink alcohol at home, they'd be less likely to go hog wild with their friends. But recent studies of teen drinking behavior don't bear that out.
That's unwelcome news in places like France, where these scientific developments are running head long into a culture that loves its wine.
People wait to see a career adviser at a training center operated by the New York Department of Labor in New York City. NPR and the Kaiser Family Foundation conducted a survey on the emotional, physical and financial effects of being without work for a year or more. Nearly 70 percent of respondents would like the government to offer more job training opportunities.
Millions of Americans wake up each morning without a job, even though they desperately want to work. It's one of the depressing legacies of the financial crisis and Great Recession.
NPR and the Kaiser Family Foundation conducted a poll of people who had been unemployed or with an insufficient level of work for more than a year. The results document the financial, emotional and physical effects of long-term unemployment and underemployment.