America eats an astonishing 50 billion pounds of meat a year. And to get all that beef, pork and chicken takes a colossal amount of resources. 'Big Ag' takes a lot of licks for the way it goes about getting that meat on our tables. But Americans get pretty ornery anytime the price per pound raises even a penny. Maureen Ogle is the author of a new book all about that tenuous balance. It's called "In Meat We Trust: An Unexpected History of Carnivore America." She says the abundant resources of The New World set the table for America's meat entitlement mentality, and demand has led to the efficient, albeit much-maligned, system we have today.
"The system we have now has many flaws. I wouldn't want to live next to a hog confinement operation and I'm sure you wouldn't want to either. But the simple fact is, given the demand, the system we have is the least disruptive we can have. It' the least disruptive to the soil, it's the least disruptive to people, it's the least disruptive to the environment. It's not perfect, but the idea of doing what critics want us to do, which is to dismantle the existing system and then go back to small scale agricultural production, we can't do that and supply demand."
The nation used Twitter to mark the second inauguration of President Obama and to get information on the Boston Marathon bombing. But the year's most retweeted tweet was about the sudden death of a TV star.
The nation used Twitter to mark the second inauguration of President Obama and to get information on the Boston Marathon bombing, but the year's most retweeted tweet was about the sudden death of a TV star.
This final note today, in which we give thanks for the U.S. Department of Transportation.
The Federal Communications Commission voted 3 to 2 today to have a look at whether cellphones ought to be allowed on airplanes.
We've known that's been coming for a while now.
And the head of the FCC said even if they do approve cellphone use, it'll be up to individual airlines as to whether or not they'll allow them.
Here's where the Transportation Department comes in.
Secretary Anthony Fox rode to the rescue today. He said his department will have the final say, thank you very much.
So...there's hope yet.
Part discount grocer, part social service agency, the supermarkets limit membership to those who can prove they receive some form of welfare benefits. These stores, which are flourishing in Europe, sell food that's been rejected by grocers but is still perfectly edible and would otherwise end up in landfills.
Problems persist on the back end of HealthCare.gov, which must process accurate enrollment information so insurers can receive premium payments and start coverage for consumers. Reconciliation of the data just started this week, as time to fix problems is running out.
The most important lessons we learn about money don’t come from our accountants or our radios. They come from our family.
Each week, we invite someone to tell us about the money tips they inherited.
This week, we hear from indie rock musician Eleanor Friedberger.
She spent much of this year touring with her new album Personal Record, but she currently has nothing scheduled after December 20th until the following fall. "You have to be comfortable with not knowing when you're going to get paid next," says Friedberger.
Although her latest record is only the second under her name, she's been making a living through music for more than a decade as one half of the Fiery Furnaces with her brother Matthew Friedberger. She's managed this precarious financial situation in part by taking after her father. "He's a cheap guy, you know? I think some of my friends might describe me that way," she says.
She splurges on clothes -- "I probably get that from my mother" -- but in vintage stores, not Barneys. But she says she can't worry too much about money, or plan too much for the future, when income is unpredictable.
"I've had great years, and I've had bad years. I've had OK years, and I've had mostly years that I just get by," she says. "Which is good enough, considering I get to do something pretty great."
Suthep Thaugsuban says the supreme commanders of the army, navy, air force and police have agreed to meet him in a move likely to spark concerns of a possible coup.
The 16-year-old from a rich family got drunk and got behind the wheel of a pickup truck. There's been a lot of reaction to the news that he wasn't sentenced to prison, but will instead enter treatment and be on probation. Was his "affluenza" defense justified?
Jamaat-e-Islami leader Abdul Quader Mollah was hanged Thursday for crimes committed during the country's 1971 war of independence. He's the first person convicted by Bangladesh's International Crimes Tribunal to be executed.