Rundown for 12/30

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The lawsuits against accused swindler Bernard Madoff are picking up steam in court. Tomorrow a federal judge in Manhattan presides over the civil case against Madoff, who is accused of running a $50 billion dollar ponzi scheme to defraud investors. The judge will decide whether to extend protections beyond direct investors to people who invested with Madoff through so-called feeder funds. And Madoff has been ordered to disclose by tomorrow how much he's worth. We speak with Peter Lattman, reporter for the Wall Street Journal.

Unemployment Figures
As U.S. unemployment figures continue to rise, we take a look back at how and why we began to calculate unemployment numbers, the genesis of unemployment insurance benefits, and how those systems have held up, or not, over the years. We speak to economic historian, Claudia Goldin, and former Clinton labor economist, Larry Katz, about the unemployment of yesteryear and about how our system for handling modern-day unemployment may be in need of a makeover. Both are Harvard professors.

Credit Crunch
Some economists wonder if there really is a credit crunch. We speak with Time business writer, Barbara Kiviat.

Lemon the Duck
In 2006, teacher Laura Backman and her kindergarten students welcomed Lemon the duck into their classroom with 3 other Pekin ducks. Lemon was different from her brothers and sisters, she couldn't sit up and balance herself and the vet discovered she had a neurological disability similar to Cerebral Palsy. Lemon is now the subject of a children's book, "Lemon the Duck," written by Laura Backman who now cares for Lemon full time.
Lemon the Duck's Website

Anne Sofie Von Otter
We revisit our conversation with mezzo-soprano Anne Sofie Von Otter. Her CD "Terezin/Theresienstadt" has been nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Classical Vocal Performance. As we learned when we spoke to her earlier this year, this was a particularly personal project for her; her father was a Swedish diplomat during World War Two, who was made aware of the Nazi atrocities, but was unable to get his superiors to act on what he knew.
Terezin/Theresienstadt Web site

This program aired on December 30, 2008.


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