Thousands of Americans marked the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington this Saturday. Host Michel Martin talks about the weekend's events and the political future of the civil rights movement with Democratic strategist Donna Brazile and former RNC chairman Michael Steele.
Where'd the phrase "Snake Oil Salesman" come from? It conjures up images of seedy profiteers trying to exploit an unsuspecting public by selling them fake cures.
(Check out the slideshow of Trump's various branded products above.)
Donald Trump spent Monday on the defensive -- as much as anybody with such a knack for self-promotion can actually be on the defensive.
Trump took to the airwaves to deny charges in a $40 million lawsuit filed by New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman. He is accused of fraud for allegedly helping to run a bogus for-profit university where students paid up to $35,000 for not much more than a series of seminars.
That's a lot of chicken scratch just to be associated with the Trump brand. But that's the point: His name, after all, is the real estate mogul’s trump card.
Sure, Trump is a billionaire. Forbes estimates he’s worth $3.2 billion. But in some ways you could call him cheap.
“I think he licenses his name to everything and anything that someone will pay him to do it,” says Hayes Roth, chief marketing officer at Landor, a branding firm. “He’s tried airlines, and he’s tried soda pop and he’s tried all kinds of things.”
Reality TV, women’s perfume, men’s cologne, chocolate designed like gold bars. The details of the deals are private, so it’s hard to know what’s succeeded and what hasn’t. But we do know Trump has declared corporate bankruptcy a number of times. Could that could that be why he rents his name so extensively?
No, says Roth. “I think he’s a born entrepreneur -- I think he’d do it whether he went bankrupt or not.”
For Trump, licensing is about more than cash.
“The other thing it does,” says Tim Calkins, a professor of marketing at Northwestern’s Kellogg School of Management, “it makes the Trump brand look even bigger.”
Calkins notes that many of Trump’s deals have run into problems, but the brand still conveys confidence.
“It doesn’t matter if you’re a senior citizen who has a dispute about a real estate deal, or if you’re the New York Attorney general,” he says. “He’s very, very quick to come back and say, ‘The problem is not with Trump, the problem is with you.’”
That attitude is what keeps the licensing deals coming. Market research firm Q Scores says 70 percent of Americans, age 6 and older, know Trump’s name.
When we talk about BATS and Direct Edge, “We’re really talking about the plumbing of the U.S. equities market,” says Adam Sussman, director of research for the TABB Group.
Like plumbing, these exchanges are mostly invisible. And, still important. If you trade online, Sussman says, “Some of your orders are being executed at BATS and some of your orders are executed at Direct Edge.”
So, why choose one over another?
It comes down to a couple things: stock price, the cost of making the trade, and the technology each exchange uses. “The incumbents and the challengers like BATS and Direct Edge, have all spent a ton of money on servers, co-location facilities etc, to be very competitive on the technology front,” says Joe Gawronski, president at Rosenblatt Securities.
Gawronski says all that technology makes for a more efficient market -- higher volumes, super-fast trades. But, it does have its shortcomings, as we saw last week when the Nasdaq broke. “Because human beings aren’t the ones in between every transaction and computers are,” he says, “if there’s bad code, that will run itself through the market and there will be problems.”
And problems with this plumbing cost a whole lot of money.
Sarah Murnaghan, now 11, had only weeks to live earlier this summer when a judge ordered that she be moved up a transplant waiting list. Her case sparked a review of national organ transplant policy. Now, she's recovered enough to soon be able to go home.
A stream of fiction and stories written by reclusive author J.D. Salinger will be published between 2015 and 2020, according to a new biography about the writer of The Catcher in the Rye, who died in 2010. Some of the books will reportedly revisit beloved Salinger characters such as Holden Caulfield.
CIA documents and interviews with former officials reveal more about how the U.S. gave the dictator intelligence that helped him during Iraq's 1980s war with Iran, Foreign Policy reports. The information was then allegedly used when Iraq deployed chemical weapons.
A college student getting help from his parents may be below the poverty line. The mother who earns $23,000 a year is not.
A college student getting help from his parents may be below the poverty line. The mother who earns $23,000 a year is not.
It looks like Donald Trump has landed back in the hot seat. New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman is suing the real estate mogul for fraud and violating consumer protection laws. The suit stems from complaints dating back to 2005 over Trump University, now known as the Trump Entreprenuer Institute, a school of sorts, to teach people the finer points of the real estate business.
The attorney general's office alleges that students, who paid anywhere from $1,500 - $35,000, would work with handpicked instructors to land real-estate deals. According to the lawsuit, once students entered the so-called university, they were encouraged to enroll in additional mentorships that cost tens of thousands of dollars. Students thought they’d meet Trump, but all they got was their photo taken with a life-size picture of the man. Trump’s lawyers say the case is politically motivated, and that really Schneidermann is just upset because Trump didn’t write a his campaign a big enough check when he was running for office.
Both for-profit or not-for-profit higher education institutions are facing more government scrutiny lately. There’s a lot of concern that schools are luring students in, getting their tuition, and then delivering a less than stellar product.
Last week, the Obama administration issued a proposal that would rate schools on some measures like graduation rate, debt, and earnings of graduates. If you believe what New York's attorney general is saying about Trump’s school, it’s pretty easy to guess where Trump Entrepreneur Institute would fall.
Also: Blaze near Yosemite continues to spread; orders for durable goods plunged in July; trial of former Chinese politician ends; Nelson Mandela nears his 100th day in a hospital.
The young singer's twerking at Sunday night's MTV Video Music Awards is getting tons of attention. Was her performance boring, offensive or great (or possibly all three)?
The feud continues between Time Warner Cable and CBS over how much the cable provider should pay the network to carry its shows. CBS has been dark since early August for millions of Time Warner customers. With the NFL football season starting Sept. 5, there’s pressure on both companies to work out their differences.
“If I am a customer and I’m a significant NFL fan, I’m going to start thinking about alternative platforms,” Brannon says.
Brannon says fans might switch to another cable provider. But Time Warner Cable spokesman Jon Gary Herrera says there’s no need for that.
“CBS is still delivered over the air for free in all these markets,” Herrera says.
So the cable company is offering some customers free antennas.
A CBS spokesman declined to speak on the record. But analyst Erik Brannon says the network is losing money -- possibly millions -- in payments from Time Warner Cable while its channels are dark.
“They’re giving up possible revenue,” he says, “holding out for more later.”
But with football season starting next week, Brannon says he doesn’t think either side can hold out for long.
Women make up about 16 percent of equity partners at big law firms -- a number that has barely budged in a decade. This despite the fact women graduate from law school in almost the same numbers as men. Women partners also earn on average just under $500,000 a year, while men earn $734,000, according to a recent survey of lawyers' compensation. Some female lawyers have had enough of these discrepancies, and they're pushing for change.
Women lawyers at top firms hate drawing attention to their gender. "We've been told for decades that if we talk about women's issues we're whining," says Victoria Pynchon, a litigator for 25 years and co-founder of a consultancy called She Negotiates. She says a new generation of women is realizing they can't get to the top just by working hard and following the rules.
"Women lawyers in these major law firms are saying good bye to all of that, and they are exercising power without being given the authority to do so," she says. "And this is something that men do without even thinking about it."
For example, she says at one large firm, when they vote for a new equity partner, women partners now come together to support the best female candidate.
That may sound like a small thing, but by bloc voting, they improve that candidate's chance of getting elected. Women at that firm didn't want to talk on the record because what they're doing is not official firm policy.
Some men within firms are also trying to change the status quo. Beth Kaufman heads the National Association of Women Lawyers. She says in-house attorneys at client companies are on the case as well.
"One general counsel raised her hand and said I'm just going to call up my law firms and say I want you to have 30% of your equity partners women within some reasonable amount of time," Kaufman says.
But even if you become a partner, that doesn't necessarily mean you'll become a top moneymaker. Marla Persky is currently general counsel for a global pharmaceutical firm. Next year she's starting a company to teach female lawyers how to be financially savvy -- knowledge she says many sorely lack.
"With everything, you've got to follow the money," says Persky. "At the heart of power and influence within firms is the ability to make rain. You've got to be able to bring in clients."
When women do more of that, she says, both their compensation and status within firms will increase.
The huge fire is threatening some of San Francisco's power and water services. Southern California Public Radio has put together a multimedia tool to follow the fire and the fight to bring it under control.
Greece's finance minister announced that the economically blighted nation might need around $13 billion to keep itself afloat, setting up the possibility of a third bailout.
Despite the nearly $320 billion that has poured into Greece in two previous bailouts, the Greek economy continues to get smaller. While some of its neighbors in the euro zone have clawed their way out of recession, the Greek economy shrank by 4.5 percent in the second quarter.
"Will it get the third bailout? A decision will be made in the fall, but the answer is probably yes," says Marketplace's Stephen Beard from London. "The cost of letting Greece go to the wall in terms of losses on its government bonds and the contagion effect are probably too horrendous for the rest of the euro zone -- and Germany, in particular -- to contemplate."
We talk from time to time on Marketplace Tech about the "Internet of Things" -- the world where every thing is connected together, from appliances to cars to us. The concept can be a bit abstract, but Kevin Roose, writing for New York Magazine, makes it more concrete. For a week he plunged in to the Internet of Things and tells Marketplace Tech's Mark Garrison why the future is almost here.
At a recent cocktail event hosted by the Centre for Social Innovation in New York, crickets were on display everywhere. Their constant chirps provided a faint soundtrack for the evening and reminded those mingling why they had come: Outside, crickets may be pests; in this room, they were dinner.
“There’s a golden opportunity here,” says organizer Aruna Handa, founder of Toronto-based food company Alimentary Initiatives, who is passionate about the global benefits of eating insects. “We just have to figure out how to convince people to give it a try.”
Eat more bugs. That’s Handa’s mission and the message of a recent United Nations report. The world’s growing population needs protein. But beef, pork and chicken eat up valuable resources. Insects offer protein that can be farmed at a fraction of the price.
“They require less water, they require less space and they require a small amount of food,” says University of Georgia entomologist Marianne Shockley.
The challenge is getting squeamish consumers to eat them -- and entrepreneurs to raise them. On a pedestal in the room, thousands of crickets hopped around inside a clear plastic contraption about the size of a vacuum cleaner -- kind of a steampunk Habitrail. It’s a prototype for a compact cricket farm.
“This piece would farm about 2,500 crickets every eight weeks,” explains creator Jakub Dzamba, the event’s featured speaker. He says a farm this size is an easy, cheap way to provide enough protein for two full meals a week.
Giving a tour of his creation, Dzamba paused to tend to it. A rebel cricket escaped, prompting him to dart in and tape up the breach. “I think I found the leak,” he says.
The U.N.’s Food and Agriculture Organization estimates that two billion people -- mostly in Asia and Africa -- already eat insects regularly. Typically, the bugs are either ground into flour or cooked whole and tossed into a variety of dishes.
But to make an impact on global nutrition and the environment, many more people will have to get over deep reservations about eating insects.
The New York crowd on this night bought tickets to a cricket-eating event, so they’re bolder than most.
“I’ve been told it tastes like popcorn,” says Michelle Catanzaro, laughing uncomfortably while eyeballing a raw cricket on a skewer. “I don’t know. I guess it’s a little off-putting just looking at that one, but I’m down.”
After finally popping it in, she pronounced it “actually quite good.”
I visited the buffet table for a taste of what Cookie Martinez made with the critters. She is normally a baker, which means tonight’s assignments posed some unusual challenges. The crickets she got for the event came frozen, but as they thawed, Martinez realized they were still alive. Chasing her ingredients around the kitchen was a new experience, but she managed.
For tonight’s event, crickets got gourmet treatment, winding up in a spread on crostini, inside sweet almond brittle and in a falafel-like ball on a skewer, which Martinez dubbed a “kribab.” I first tried a cricket on its own, or as Martinez playfully described it, cricket sashimi.
It has the crunch and somewhat unsettling gooey center you might expect. The taste is slightly nutty. That characteristic makes it a nice addition to the almond brittle and works well in the “kribab.” The overall flavor is mild, which means bug chefs can incorporate crickets into a variety of dishes without overpowering them.
But many people have trouble getting past eating something with legs and eyes. Insect-farming supporters point to more subtle ways to blend insects into food. Dried crickets can be ground into flour and made into any number of foods. Chapul is a start-up company using cricket flour to make energy bars targeting a sustainability-conscious crowd. The product has a flavor similar to other energy bars and only a close examination of the packaging reveals them as a cricket product.
Enthusiasts of insect eating remind skeptics that eating raw fish was unthinkable for many people just a couple decades ago. But now sushi is a globally popular dish.
That kind of widespread acceptance doesn’t seem likely, but bug believers—including the U.N.—say if even a few more people eat just the occasional insect, the world will be better fed and better off.
Ready to try cooking with insects in your own kitchen? Longtime bug chef David George Gordon offers these recipes from his latest book, “The Eat-a-Bug Cookbook, Revised: 40 Ways to Cook Crickets, Grasshoppers, Ants, Water Bugs, Spiders, Centipedes, and Their Kin.” He says he often gets his crickets from Fluker Farms. (Photos by Chugrad McAndrews)
Yield: 6 servings
Orzo, a rice-shaped pasta, gets its name from the Italian word for barley, but we all know that orzo looks exactly like juvenile bugs. Needless to say, it’s a perfect complement for crickets, especially three- or four-week-old nymphs, which are of a comparable size. At this stage in life the young crickets lack wings and ovipositors, the chitinous tubes through which the adult females pass their eggs. Their limbs are skinny, so there’s no need to remove them before cooking. Likewise for the antennae, which, at less than a quarter of an inch, should pose no obstacle to enjoying this meal.
3 cups vegetable broth
1 cup orzo
1/2 cup grated carrot
1/4 cup finely diced red bell pepper
1/4 cup finely diced green bell pepper
1 tablespoon butter
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 cup chopped yellow onion
1 cup frozen two- or three-week-old cricket
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
1. Bring the broth to a boil, then stir in the orzo.
2. Continue boiling the orzo until it is tender, about 10 minutes; drain any extra liquid, then quickly add the carrot and red and green peppers. Mix evenly and set aside.
3. In a separate skillet, melt the butter and add the garlic, onion, and crickets. Sauté briefly until the onions are translucent and the garlic and crickets have browned.
4. Combine the cricket mixture, including any liquid, with the orzo and vegetables, top with the parsley, and serve.
Deep-Fried Tarantula Spider
Yield: 4 servings
2 cups canola or vegetable oil
2 frozen adult Texas brown, Chilean rose, or similar-sized tarantulas, thawed
1 cup tempura batter (page 84)
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1. In a deep saucepan or deep-fat fryer, heat the oil to 350°F.
2. With a sharp knife, sever and discard the abdomens from the two tarantulas. Singe off any of the spider’s body hairs with a crème brûlée torch or butane cigarette lighter.
3. Dip each spider into the tempura batter to thoroughly coat. Use a slotted spoon or your hands to make sure each spider is spread-eagled (so to speak) and not clumped together before dropping it into the hot oil.
4. Deep-fry the spiders, one at a time, until the batter is lightly browned, about 1 minute. Remove each spider from the oil and place it on paper towels to drain.
5. Use a sharp knife to cut each spider in two lengthwise. Sprinkle with the paprika and serve. Encourage your guests to try the legs first and, if still hungry, to nibble on the meat-filled mesothorax, avoiding the spider’s paired fangs, which are tucked away in the head region.
1 medium egg
1/2 cup cold water
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1. To make the batter, beat the egg in a small mixing bowl until smooth. Slowly add the cold water, continuing to beat until evenly mixed. Add the flour and baking soda and beat gently until combined; the batter should be a bit lumpy.
2. Let the batter sit at room temperature while heating the oil.
Mark Garrison: At the Centre for Social Innovation in New York, they’re getting drinks and snacks ready for an event. The main course also provides a faint soundtrack to the evening.
Outside, these chirping crickets are pests. In here, they’re dinner. The crickets hop around in a clear plastic contraption about the size of a vacuum cleaner, kind of a steampunk Habitrail. It’s a prototype for a compact cricket farm. Jakub Dzamba created it.
Jakub Dzamba: This piece would farm about 2,500 crickets every eight weeks. Sorry, can I just, do you mind if I. . .
A rebel cricket is escaping. Dzamba darts in, taping up the breach.
Dzamba: I think I found the leak, though.
He says a farm this size is an easy, cheap way to provide enough protein for two full meals a week.
As people mingle, University of Georgia entomologist Marianne Shockley says bugs provide protein at a fraction of the cost of beef.
Marianne Shockley: They require less water, they require less space and they require a small amount of food.
All three are scarce in the developing world. Some cultures already eat insects, either ground into flour or whole. But many people feel like Caitlin Kelley.
Caitlin Kelley: Seeing the insect and its eyes and its legs, it’s just kinda those kinda gross aspects of insects.
Aruna Handa enjoys eating bugs. She organizes events like this to get squeamish consumers and entrepreneurs interested too.
Aruna Handa: There’s a golden opportunity here and we just have to figure out how to convince people to give it a try.
Like me. Cookie Martinez, normally a baker, shows me her cricket cuisine.
Crosstalk: I’ll try just a cricket, what would you call it, cricket. . . Cricket sashimi. You leave the legs on and everything? Everything, you take it all over. It’s crunchy. It’s not a bad little snack. Do I have any legs in my teeth? I feel like I have a leg in my tooth right now. You’re fine.
Bug believers, now including the U.N., say if enough people eat the occasional insect, the world will be better fed and better off. In New York, I'm Mark Garrison, for Marketplace.
American officials say there's little doubt the Assad regime used chemical weapons to kill scores of people last week. As U.S. Navy ships close in, analysts say it's likely that cruise missiles will be fired at Syrian "command and control" centers in coming days. The goal? Alter Assad's behavior.