David and Chana buy a toxic asset, from a guy named Wit Solberg, who used to work on Wall Street and now helps small banks who've been saddled with toxic assets. Turns out...it's hard to buy a toxic asset.
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In California, a kind of crybaby cottage industry has popped up around, of all things, the Americans with Disabilities Act—the federal law that requires all public places to meet a minimum level of accessibility. Some people make a living by suing business owners for not being up to code.
Producer Jane Feltes speaks with Adam Vickers, one of the owners of Vickers Music in the town of Douglas.
Hanco's and Henry's are two restaurants in Brooklyn that sell Vietnamese sandwiches and bubble tea. Their menus are identical, down to the order of the items, the layout, the fonts.
Why is it that Barbados and Jamaica faced almost identical financial crises, but now Jamaica is incredibly poor and Barbados is prospering? Alex Blumberg reports on the surprising strategy Barbados used to survive its crisis. Alex first learned about this story from a paper by Peter Blair Henry, the dean of the Stern School of Business at New York University.
Ira Glass speaks with a man named Daniel Johnson, who is in the K&R business. That's the kidnap and ransom business, where a company helps you negotiate to get back your loved one.
Ira talks about a friend who for years had a very trusted business partner and bookkeeper, until one day when he ran away with all of her money.
Host Ira Glass introduces the story of the New United Motor Manufacturing Inc., aka NUMMI. In 1984, General Motors and Toyota opened NUMMI as a joint venture.
The rise of NUMMI, or how one of the worst auto plants in America started producing some of its best cars, thanks to lessons learned from the Toyota production system.
Why did it take so many years for GM to begin implementing the lessons of NUMMI across the company? NPR Automotive Correspondent Frank Langfitt continues his story.
Adam Davidson and Alex Blumberg from our Planet Money team report on economic forecasts for 2010 and what they can and cannot accurately predict. Planet Money is a co-production of This American Life and NPR News.