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Planet Money
8:58 am
Fri March 15, 2013

A Surprisingly Uncontroversial Program That Gives Money To Poor People

William Thomas Cain Getty Images

Last year, a federal program called the Earned Income Tax Credit took about $60 billion from wealthier Americans and gave it to the working poor. And here's the surprising thing: This redistribution of wealth has been embraced by every president from Ronald Reagan to Barack Obama.

"This program worked," says Richard Burkhauser, an economist at Cornell University and the American Enterprise Institute. "And there's not a hell of a lot of these programs where you can see the tremendous change in the behavior of people in exactly the way that all of us hoped it would happen."

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World Cafe
8:17 am
Fri March 15, 2013

The Lone Bellow On World Cafe

The Lone Bellow.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Mon April 29, 2013 1:02 pm

Zach Williams, Kanene Pipkin and Brian Elmquist are The Lone Bellow. Although Williams, the principal songwriter and lead singer, is a native Georgian, the group found its soulful folk-rock sound in Brooklyn. The group recorded its self-titled debut album on the Lower East Side, yet the lyrical, foot-stomping songs could have easily come from the heart of Nashville.

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World Cafe
8:16 am
Fri March 15, 2013

Allah-Las On World Cafe

Los Angeles garage rockers Allah-Las.
Courtesy of the artist

The hazy garage rockers in Allah-Las are distinctly Californian, a group of guys whose lo-fi sound is a direct result of their low-key surroundings. Cool piece of trivia: three of the four men met while working at L.A.'s legendary Amoeba Records.

On today's studio session from World Cafe, the band performs three songs from its self-titled album, which was produced by retro-soul fetishist Nick Waterhouse.

The Two-Way
7:53 am
Fri March 15, 2013

Gasoline Pushed Consumer Prices Up Sharply In February

Handles on a gas pump in Brooklyn.
Jonathan Fickies Landov

Originally published on Fri March 15, 2013 9:05 am

Consumer prices jumped 0.7 percent in February from January, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports. The increase was fueled by a 9.1 percent surge in gasoline prices. Gas prices alone accounted for about two-thirds of the overall rise, MarketWatch says.

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The Two-Way
7:37 am
Fri March 15, 2013

More Problems Aboard Carnival Cruise Ships

The Carnival Dream docked in St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands, in December 2010.
Andy Newman AP

Originally published on Fri March 15, 2013 12:53 pm

For the past month, management at Carnival Cruise Lines has been in a nearly constant state of damage control.

In the past week alone, three of the cruise line's giant floating playgrounds have experienced embarrassing malfunctions that have at least inconvenienced, if not angered, many passengers.

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