Melissa Block talks to E.J. Dionne of The Washington Post and Brookings Institution and Ramesh Ponnuru, senior editor at the National Review, about the showdown between Republican presidential contenders Rick Santorum and Mitt Romney in Michigan and Arizona ahead of those states' primaries, and the extension of the payroll tax cut through the end of the year.
This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Melissa Block.
ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:
And I'm Robert Siegel. Greece is anxiously awaiting a bailout from its European partners. One reason for the holdup - the Europeans say the Greeks aren't trying hard enough to reform. The Greeks say they've already implemented austerity measures so severe that they are destroying the country's middle class.
Joanna Kakissis has the story of one family in Athens.
The TV show The Simpsons is airing its 500th episode on Sunday. In its run, the show has aired more than 170 prime-time hours and had 23 seasons with hundreds of guest stars. Melissa Block and Robert Siegel offer a look back on the long-running animated series with insight from a few of the people who know it best: the writers.
China's economy sailed through the financial crisis unscathed — at least in the short run.
When the global crisis hit, the country's government-owned banks started lending out lots more money. The money came largely from the savings accounts of ordinary Chinese people. It went largely to finance big construction projects, which helped keep China's economy growing.
By 2009, after years of losses, the all-black football team at Manassas High School in inner-city North Memphis, Tenn., was known as 'Whipping Boy Manassas' — one of the worst teams in the entire state. The new documentary Undefeated, recently nominated for an Oscar, captures the team's following season, and the struggles of its coach and players, on and off the field.
Co-directors Dan Lindsay and T.J. Martin describe the team's recent history.
The northern plains, especially the Dakotas, are home to about half of the country's honey bee hives during the summer. It's been a good place for bees because they can gather nectar and pollen from so many wildflowers. But the landscape of the area is becoming less bee-friendly, and the consequences could be felt as far away as the almond groves of California, which depend on those same bees for pollination.
Melissa Block speaks with Eric Heginbotham — senior political scientist at RAND — about China's military capability today, how it's developed over time and what the Chinese make of ramped-up attention from the US.