National / International News
Statewide student-teacher ratios range from 10 students-per-teacher in Vermont to 23 in California, according to the Department of Education.What was the student-teacher ratio for United States public schools during the 2012-2013 school year?
Back in 2007, the FBI bugged the computer of a 15-year-old student who was suspected to be behind a number of bomb threats that hit Washington State High School.
So how did they do it? The FBI buried malware into a link that resembled a news report.
"It's not that difficult anymore," says Jonathan Zittrain, Professor of Law at Harvard University.
All you needed to have was an article persuasive enough for the suspect to click on and you're well on your way to delivering a package of tracking malware.
Now, the question is: Where should the government should draw the line?
Click the media player above to hear Jonathan Zittrain in conversation with Marketplace Tech host Ben Johnson.
Howard Schultz, CEO of Starbucks, has a new book entitled "For Love of Country: What Our Veterans Can Teach Us About Citizenship, Heroism, and Sacrifice." He and his co-author, Rajiv Chandrasekaran, a Washington Post reporter who covered the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, stopped by to discuss the book, as well as Starbucks' pledge to hire 10,000 veterans and their spouses within five years.
Schultz says his father's military service was one of the catalysts for this project, as well as getting to know former defense secretary Robert Gates, who is on the Starbucks board.
Says Schultz: "There would be a significant loss if we don't recognize the value that the military can bring to the business community and the American society at large. And this is just good business. This is not charity, this is not pity. This is the right thing to do for them and for us."
Audio from this interview is forthcoming.
McDonald’s hasn’t been doing so hot lately. Same-store sales dropped in the third quarter of this year, which helped drag profits down 30 percent. Its CEO said the company’s facing “formidable” headwinds.
Large ships don’t turn easily, but one of the changes the company’s announced is a more regional focus, breaking the country into four zones (instead of its old three) to better respond to the individual tastes of customers in different parts of the country.
But for years, McDonald’s succeeded with a "one size fits all" approach.
“When we look at what has made McDonalds a strong brand, it's consistency, convenience, affordability and strong fast service,” says Darren Tristano, with food-research firm Technomic.
However, he says diners today are more interested customization, like choosing what goes in their burrito at Chipotle.
This is especially important to millennials, says Andy Brennan, a food analyst at IBIS World.
“Millennials want something different,” he says. “They want to feel like things are customized toward them, they want the ability to choose, and they want high quality things, so unfortunately, McDonald’s doesn’t fit the bill for any of these requirements.”
“The marketplace today is increasingly dynamic and diverse,” Mike Andres, McDonald’s USA President said in a statement. “These changes will enable us to better leverage and support our local market management structure so that we are more nimble in response to and anticipation of the local customer needs and market conditions in a relevant and timely way.”
“The same things that worked nationally, don’t work nationally now,” agrees John Gordon, a food industry analyst with Pacific Management Consulting Group. He says a menu item like spicy chicken wings may play well with customers in Detroit, but miss with customers in Salt Lake City.
Gordon says this regional push is a small step for McDonald’s, but symbolic of the way it needs to decentralize—and a sign that bigger changes may be coming.
The Supreme Court is expected to announce this week whether or not it will hear the latest challenge to the Affordable Care Act—the King versus Burwell case. That case asks whether the Affordable Care Act should be taken literally. UPDATE: The court decided against hearing the challenge.
The ACA specifically grants insurance subsidies for policies bought on state exchanges. Now the question is: “Can the Internal Revenue Service say, 'All right, even for people who’ve purchased insurance through the federal exchange, they can also get the tax credit,'” says Miller Baker, a partner at McDermott, Will and Emery.
Another big ACA case involves something called the Origination Clause, which requires all tax bills have to start in the House of Representatives. This case could face long odds.
“I believe that there has only been one successful Origination Clause case in history, and that was over a century ago,” says Timothy Jost, a professor at Washington and Lee University Law School. Jost says opponents of the healthcare law will have to prove it’s a tax bill. And he says it did originate in the House, but was overhauled in the Senate.
There are other lawsuits that challenge specific aspects of the healthcare law—from contraception to the delay of the mandate for employers to insure their workers—but these aren't likely to overturn it, experts say.