In the essay "The Myth of Sisyphus," philosopher Albert Camus — who would have turned 100 on Thursday — explored the nature of boring work. There's new psychological research into why people end up in boring jobs.
We tweet. We text. We email. But how often do we really write anymore? Not much, if you look at the business of selling pens — or "fine writing instruments," as shop owners call them. With their writing tools becoming obsolete, pen stores have folded, including a century-old shop in New York.
But despite the tech-heavy trends, a few old-fashioned pen stores are still holding on.
The new health care law will provide around $1 trillion in subsidies to low- and middle-income Americans over the next decade to help them pay for health insurance.
Johanna Humbert of Galien, Mich., was pleasantly surprised to discover that she qualifies for an insurance subsidy, since her current plan is being canceled. Humbert makes about $30,000 a year, so she'll get a subsidy of about $300 a month. The new plan is similar to her current one, but it will cost $250 — about half of what she pays now.
But where will the money come from to pay for subsidies like these?
In a global economy, does it make sense to allow workers to move freely?
Letting people go where the jobs are would improve the lives of millions around the world, some argue. But others say an influx of labor into the richest countries would devalue workers' worth and actually hurt more in the long run.
A group of experts recently took on this question in an Oxford-style debate for Intelligence Squared U.S. They faced off two against two on the motion "Let Anyone Take A Job Anywhere."
Weeks after denying labor's request to give union members access to health law subsidies, the Obama administration is signaling it intends to exempt some union plans from one of the law's substantial taxes.
A mysterious barge stacked with shipping containers is docked at a pier on Treasure Island in San Francisco Bay. It's owned by Google but Google isn't revealing the reason the barge is there. The barge has captured the imagination of people around the globe.
Originally published on Wed November 6, 2013 5:38 am
What makes an initial public offering a success? Twitter is going the old school route, pricing its shares modestly in hopes of a pop in early trading. The company will go public on Thursday, and the banks they've hired to help are some of the oldest and most well established in the country.
It's MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne.
STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:
And I'm Steve Inskeep. Today, President Obama meets some of the volunteers trying to sign up Americans for health insurance. The volunteers work in Texas, where the president is traveling.
MONTAGNE: The trip to Dallas is partly to raise money for Democratic Senate candidates, and partly the promote the new health care law. But in Dallas, it's hard to miss the current gap between that law's ambition and its current execution.