September 12, 2008


Stories about people who take the law into their own hands, even when the line between enforcing the rules and breaking them gets kind of hazy.


Joe Kocur was a hockey enforcer for the Detroit Red Wings and the New York Rangers, back in the heyday of hockey's tough guys. Kocur talks to host Ira Glass about how a good enforcer keeps other players in line. If you want to read more stories about Joe Kocur's life as a hockey enforcer, it's all in a new book called The Bruise Brothers, about Kocur and his teammate (and fellow enforcer) Bob Probert. The book is only available at immortalinvestments.com. (5 minutes)

Act One

Hanging In Chad

Three guys who go by the names Professor So and So, Jojobean and YeaWhatever spend part of each day running elaborate cons on Internet scammers. They consider themselves enforcers of justice, even after they send a man 1400 miles from home, to the least safe place they can bait him: The border of Darfur. The three self-made enforcers tell Ira their story. For more on what they did, along with photos, maps and phone recordings, go here. (29 minutes)

Act Two

Now You SEC Me, Now You Don't

TAL producer Alex Blumberg reports on a peculiar Wall Street practice with a dirty-sounding name—naked short selling—and how one of Wall Street's main regulators, the chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission, doesn't seem all that interested in regulating anything. (20 minutes)

Alex's story is also going to be on NPR's new Planet Money podcast...which came about after our Giant Pool of Money show, the show Alex did on the mortgage;crisis with NPR's Adam Davidson. They're doing a couple new stories a week in the spirit of that show at npr.org/money.