International celebrity culture often feels like a very modern phenomenon, but the concept was not foreign to society in the 1860s, when there was one couple everybody wanted to meet: General Tom Thumb and his wife, Lavinia Warren. Both were famous because of their short stature — Lavinia was just 32 inches tall — and they toured the country as "curiosities." Their wedding in 1863 caused a national sensation that extended as far as the White House, where President Abraham Lincoln hosted a reception in their honor. Tom Thumb is now a household name, though most people have never heard of Lavinia.
The federal government plans to release new unemployment figures on Friday. Will July's numbers be as dismal as June's? All week, The Takeaway is speaking with experts, employers, and out-of-work Americans about unemployment-related issues. Today, we're discussing foreign workers. With unemployment hovering around 9.2 percent, why do so many seasonal employers choose to hire workers from outside the U.S.?
The new debt ceiling compromise comes with $2.1 trillion in cuts over the next decade. With the flailing economy and anemic job market, how will these cuts affect unemployment? When it comes to jobs, are there any sure-fire professions or regions of the country left? Beth Kobliner talks about what segments of the economy we can expect to expand in the new climate and what will suffer. In addition to being the author of "Get a Financial Life," Kobliner is also an appointee to the President’s Advisory Council on Financial Capability.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics will release the latest unemployment numbers on Friday. In anticipation of what could be discouraging news, we're kicking off a weeklong series about unemployment-related issues. Today we focus on the long-term unemployed. What can be done to get them back in the job market? Our guest says one solution is offering incentives to employers to hire the long-term unemployed over those who already have jobs.
This week, Movie Date is going out West by way of outer space. Kristen and Rafer take on the genre mash-up "Cowboys & Aliens," starring Daniel Craig and Harrison Ford. While audiences may have laughed at the movie's trailer, Kristen and Rafer say "Cowboys & Aliens" is no joke. (That's right, they're in agreement on this one — again.) Rafer says "Cowboys & Aliens" falls in the tradition of sci-fi classics like "Predator," and Kristen thinks it's "just a great Western."
Child sex slavery and human trafficking are crimes often associated with international criminals. But what if the people behind these heinous activities were actually our friends and co-workers? A new film called "The Whistleblower" tells a real story in which this is the case.
Every Friday, The Takeaway looks at the week's new film releases. Hitting the multiplexes this weekend is "Crazy Stupid Love" is a romantic comedy starring Steve Carell as a recent divorcé navigating the dating world, and Ryan Gosling as source of romantic advice. Also out is "The Smurfs," a combination live-action and animated movie, based on the '80s cartoon about tiny blue creatures. And "Cowboys and Aliens" is a western meets alien invasion flick, starring Daniel Craig, Harrison Ford, and Olivia Wilde.
We’ve been told repeatedly over the past several months that if the government fails to raise the debt ceiling by August 2, there could be dire consequences for the world economy. But many Americans are wondering: what does this have to do with us and our personal finances? If the government defaults on its debt, how will it affect our personal debt and investments?
When the bombing and shooting first broke out in Norway last Friday, no one knew the source of the attacks, but a small group of anti-Islamic bloggers in the U.S. were quick to blame Muslim extremists. In the end, a manifesto that Anders Behring Breivik — the man accused of carrying out the killing spree — posted online confirmed that he was not Muslim, but the opposite: an anti-Muslim extremist.
A 2011 poll conducted by Marist found that only 45 percent of respondents plan to take a vacation this summer. That’s the lowest number in the survey’s 11 year history. And only 35 percent of those who are planning getaways will be taking longer trips, as opposed to weekend jaunts. Why aren't more Americans taking vacations? And how does forgoing vacations affect both employers' and employees' bottom lines?
Ladies and gentleman, Kristen and Rafer stand united! Can you believe it? And on, of all movies...a superhero movie! It's true. Our oft-at odds Movie Date duo have rated "Captain America" a good date. Rafer calls it Norman Rockwellian. Kristen supports the "nobody" superhero theme.
This weekend two potentially big blockbusters are opening in theaters: "Captain America: The First Avenger," an action-packed comic book movie, and "Friends with Benefits," starring Justin Timberlake and Mila Kunis as two friends who try to have a casual physical relationship.
Apparently there's a big movie out this weekend, though Rafer and Kristen can barely remember what it is. Kidding! They both saw the new Harry Potter movie, as did The Takeaway's former Digital Editor Jim Colgan — a self-described fan who loves the books and movies equally. The three of them discuss the final big screen installment, ten years later, of J.K. Rowling's cultural phenomenon.
We're celebrating summer music here on The Takeaway. Throughout the month, we’ll be talking with different musicians about what songs say summer to them. Our guest today is New Jersey-raised and Brooklyn-based singer and songwriter Sharon Van Etten.
This evening, at 7 p.m. (PST), a ten-mile stretch of Los Angeles’s Interstate 405 — the nation’s busiest stretch of road — will close down until Monday morning. Bracing for the worst, Los Angelans are labeling the temporary shutdown "Carmageddon." But is it really an apocalyptic nightmare in the making? Or a virtual snow day to celebrate?
It's been 10 years since the first Harry Potter film, "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone," first debuted in cinemas, and 14 years since the novel first hit bookshelves. This weekend, the final installment of Harry Potter films, "Harry Potter and the Dealthy Hallows: Part 2," opens in theatres and — as is inevitable with a fanbase this immense and dedicated — anticipation for the film is high. It's already managed to sell out 2,000 screenings across the country.
Yesterday was a monumental day for the U.S. Women’s Soccer team. For the first time since 1999, the team earned a place in the World Cup Finals. The team earned their spot after winning a 3-1 match against France. On Sunday, the U.S. will go head-to-head with Japan, who also qualified for the finals yesterday, in a triumphant match against Sweden.
In the world of politics, we’ve come to expect many things from our presidential candidates: bus tours, baby kissing, political posturing, the occasional scandal, and of course, the candidate’s memoir.
It was a big weekend for the U.S. Women's Soccer Team, after a dramatic shootout victory against powerhouse Brazil propelled them to the World Cup's semi-final. The victory was yet another triumph for Team U.S.A. in a tournament that the country has traditionally dominated. Ever since the cup’s launch in 1991, the U.S. has either won or finished in the top three of the Women's World Cup.
Kristen and Rafer are having the debate of debates: Which kind of horrible boss could you stomach? That's the topic of one of this weekend's big expected box office earners, "Horrible Bosses." In yet another surprise for the Movie Date podcast, Kristen and Rafer agree! Again! Must be a full moon. Listen to find out whether our intrepid film watchers actually liked the film or not.