Wealth & Poverty

Ways to Connect

The Federal Reserve has voted to keep interest rates where they are, but noted that "near-term risks" to the economy have diminished, a sign that a hike is on the horizon.

As was widely expected, the Federal Open Market Committee decided to keep the target for the federal funds rate at a quarter to a half percent. However, a statement released Wednesday afternoon sounded decidedly more optimistic about the economic outlook.

Episode 714: Can a Game Show Lose?

Jul 27, 2016

Imagine you're a contestant on the hit game show Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? You're on the final question for one million dollars. You think you might know the answer, but you're not certain. The spotlights are beating down on you, the dramatic music is playing, your hands are shaking with adrenaline. In this situation, you are not the only one freaking out. The show's producers are backstage sweating bullets over what you're going to do. It's their job to set up the rules just right, so that there's drama, tension, and the promise of a massive payout...

Episode 576: When Women Stopped Coding

Jul 22, 2016

Note: This episode originally aired in October, 2014.

Mark Zuckerberg. Bill Gates. Steve Jobs. Most of the big names in technology are men.

But a lot of computing pioneers, the ones who programmed the first digital computers, were women. And for decades, the number of women in computer science was growing.

But in 1984, something changed. The number of women in computer science flattened, and then plunged.

A Macon Library Battles For Funding Help

Jul 22, 2016

A 9-year-old taekwondo black belt prepared to break a board that his instructor held up. Other children sat nearby.


“3,2,1,” they said counting down in unison. The children cheered as he broke the board with his hand.


This didn’t happen at a dojo, but at the Shurling Library in East Macon where children watched a demonstration performed by a local taekwondo school. Libraries have become more than a place to check out books.

Episode 713: Paying for the Crime

Jul 20, 2016

* Note: This episode has depictions of violence and explicit language.

On November 2nd, 1983, Darrell Cannon was awoken by a pounding on his door. It was the Chicago police. They told him he was a suspect in a murder case, and they wanted him to confess that he was involved. When he didn't confess, the cops put him a car, drove him to a rural site, and tortured him. Darrell gave a confession that would land him in prison for more than 20 years.

Episode 712: I Want My Money Back

Jul 15, 2016

Sometimes you want your money back because you didn't get what you expected. Sometimes you want your money back because you changed your mind. Sometimes it's because someone stole your money. At one point or another, we have all thought: I want my money back!

Today on the show, we bring you three stories of people trying to get their money back.

Episode 711: Hooked on Heroin

Jul 13, 2016

When we meet the heroin dealer called Bone, he has just shot up. He has a lot to say anyway. He tells us about his career--it pretty much tracks the evolution of drug use in America these past ten years or so. He tells us about his rough past. And he tells us about how he died a week ago. He overdosed on his own supply and his friend took his body to the emergency room, then left.

Episode 710: The Brexit Break-Up

Jul 8, 2016

With Brexit, Britain is leaving the European Union. And the whole thing is kind of like a break-up. Divvying up the belongings. The banks. The regulatory agencies. The people. And, in any breakup, there are two sides of the story.

Today on the show, we hear both sides of the Brexit break-up: the people who voted 'Leave,' and the Europeans being left.

In June, U.S. employers added 287,000 jobs — a very strong number that provided some reassurance the economy is still on track.

The June hiring surge, reported Friday by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, far exceeded projections. Analysts had expected the economy to add some 170,000 jobs.

Episode 575: The Fondue Conspiracy

Jul 6, 2016

Note: This episode originally aired in October 2014.

The popularity of fondue wasn't an accident. It was planned by a cartel of Swiss cheese makers, which ruled the Swiss economy for 80 years.

On today's show: Swiss cheese. A story about what happens when well-meaning folks decide that the rules of economics don't apply to them — and got the world to eat gobs of melted fat.