On the face of it, the teacher's strike in Chicago is about money, job security and how teachers are evaluated. But it's also about the political pressure on teachers' unions to make concessions that not long ago would've been unheard of. Teachers' collective bargaining rights these days have taken a backseat to bare-bones budgets and to claims that unions are an obstacle to efforts aimed at improving the quality of schools. As NPR's Claudio Sanchez reports, all these elements have come together in Chicago.
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Here's some troubling news. Ice covering the Arctic Ocean has melted more dramatically this year than ever before. This year's loss of ice has exceeded the previous record by an area the size of Texas. NPR's Richard Harris reports.
It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne.
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And I'm Steve Inskeep.
Mitt Romney used the 9/11 anniversary to praise servicemembers and talk about his own views of national security. Democrats have been attacking the Republican nominee for president on foreign policy issues, so Romney went to the National Guard convention in Reno, Nevada, to defend himself. He flew all the way across the country and back in one day to deliver this speech. And NPR's Ari Shapiro listened in.
After a scandal, somebody finally gets rich for doing the right thing. It's NPR's business news.
A former banker, Bradley Birkenfeld, has just been awarded $104 million by the IRS. That is believed to be the largest amount ever paid to an individual whistle-blower. Birkenfeld told the IRS how a Swiss bank was helping thousands of Americans evade taxes, and was then thrown in jail.
It was four years ago this week that the big Wall Street investment bank Lehman Brothers declared bankruptcy. Its collapse sent shockwaves around the world and brought on the worst of the financial crisis. But the story didn't end there. Lehman Brothers is still in business - sort of.
Planet Money's Adam Davidson went to its offices in New York, and is here to tell us about it.
It's shaping up to be an important day for the European Union and the future of its currency. In the Netherlands, there is a parliamentary election that's expected to be a barometer of Dutch support for staying in the eurozone. Also this morning, a plan was unveiled to give the European Central Bank the power to supervise the big financial institutions in Europe. And, Germany's high court ruled that the European bailout fund is legal.
NPR's Jim Zarroli joins us now from Berlin to talk about this.
Here in the United States, a court has been considering the fate of an iconic fruit. And that's our last word in business today.
Forty-five years ago, the artist Andy Warhol created an album cover for the rock band The Velvet Underground, an album cover featuring a stylized banana. The Warhol banana has remained a popular image, moving from an album cover to iPhone covers.
It's MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep, with Renee Montagne. Let's get the latest, now, from North Africa, in the wake of attacks on U.S. diplomatic facilities in both Libya and Egypt. In Cairo, as we saw yesterday, protesters went over a wall and took down an American flag. The far more serious attack was against a U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, where we now know four Americans were killed, including the United States ambassador to Libya, J. Christopher Stevens.