RSS
10 things you need to know today: June 9, 2012
Obama backtracks, I'll Have Another drops out, Bradley Manning can't catch a break, and more in our roundup of the stories that are making news and driving opinion
 
A supporter of U.S. Army PFC Bradley Manning pickets in Phoenix: A judge refused to drop charges against the alleged secret-spiller in the WikiLeaks case.
A supporter of U.S. Army PFC Bradley Manning pickets in Phoenix: A judge refused to drop charges against the alleged secret-spiller in the WikiLeaks case.
Jack Kurtz/ZUMA Press/Corbis

1. OBAMA BACKTRACKS ON ECONOMY COMMENT
After getting loads of grief for saying in a Friday press conference that "the private sector is doing fine," President Obama quickly sought to limit the damage from his instantly regrettable soundbite. I'm "absolutely clear the economy is not doing fine," the president said. "The economy is not doing fine. There are too many people out of work. The housing market is still weak, too many homes underwater, and that's precisely why I asked Congress to start taking some steps that can make a difference." [Huffington Post]

………………………………………………………………………………

2. SPAIN MOVES TOWARD E.U. BAILOUT
Spain is expected to become the fourth country to seek assistance since Europe's debt crisis began, as analysts anticipate that the continent's fourth-largest economy will finally ask for a massive bailout from the E.U. this weekend. The anticipated request would come after Fitch Ratings cut Madrid's sovereign credit rating by three notches on Thursday, citing the banking sector's exposure to bad property loans and the failing Greek economy as contributing factors. [Reuters]
………………………………………………………………………………

3. U.N. MONITORS INVESTIGATE QUBEIR MASSACRE
United Nations monitors are investigating a massacre in the small farm hamlet of Qubeir that killed at least 78 people, including women and children. Opposition activists described a grisly scene in which government forces shelled the town and turned AK-47 rifles on people. "This has basically been a scorched-earth policy by whoever this was — they've killed the people, they've killed the livestock, they've left nothing in the village alive," said BBC correspondent Paul Danahar. [The New York Times]
………………………………………………………………………………

4. I'LL HAVE ANOTHER TO RETIRE 
Due to a swollen tendon, colt I'll Have Another will not be able to complete his bid for the Triple Crown in this weekend's Belmont Stakes race. More surprising, in a news conference on Friday, his trainer announced that the horse would be retiring from racing altogether. The horse won the Kentucky Derby on May 5 and the Preakness two weeks later, setting up a highly anticipated bid to become racing's first Triple Crown winner since 1978. [ESPNSB Nation]
……………………………………………………………………………

5. COURT MAINTAINS MANNING CHARGES
A military judge refused to dismiss any of the 22 charges against Bradley Manning for allegedly divulging state secrets to WikiLeaks. Col. Denise Lind rejected a defense claim that the government used unconstitutionally vague language in some of the charges. She also said she will postpone Manning's trial from November to January. Manning is charged with theft, fraud, violations of Army information security regulations, and aiding the enemy. [Associated Press
………………………………………………………………………………

6. PUTIN SIGNS HARSH ANTI-RALLY BILL
Despite earlier protest from the Presidential Human Rights council, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a controversial new bill into law that will impose heavy fines of more than $10,000 on people who organize or take part it unsanctioned demonstrations. The law, which multiplies existing financial penalties by a factor of more than 120, is a sign that Putin is cracking down on the anti-government street protests that have sprung up in response to his inauguration last month. [The New York Times]
………………………………………………………………………………

7. FACEBOOK ROLLS OUT APP CENTER
Facebook began rolling out its latest feature, App Center, to users in the United States on Friday. The center is a one-stop hub for the hundreds of apps like Draw Something, Instagram, and FarmVille that run on the social network. This is the first time that Facebook will begin offering paid apps to users, and the center will open with about 600 free and paid apps. The App Center is viewed as Facebook's big push into the domain of competitors like Apple and Google — one that investors hope will boost sales and make the company more profitable. [CNN]
………………………………………………………………………………

8. SANDUSKY TRIAL TO MOVE FORWARD
The trial of Jerry Sandusky, the former Penn State assistant football coach accused of sexually abusing boys, will move ahead on Monday. Judge John Cleland ruled against the defense's motion to have the charges dismissed. Cleland did not explain his reasoning. Sandusky, 68, will face 52 counts of abusing 10 boys over 15 years. Some of the alleged incidents took place on the Penn State campus. [Los Angeles Times
………………………………………………………………………………

9. SUICIDES AMONG U.S. TROOPS SURGES
In the first 155 days of the year there were 154 suicides among U.S troops — nearly one a day. The Pentagon and military officials studying the spike have found no apparent reason or developing trend. The Army convened its suicide prevention group this week to study the alarming numbers. [NBC News]
………………………………………………………………………………

10. NPR'S 'CAR TALK' PROGRAM WILL END
Tom and Ray Magliozzi, hosts of NPR's popular "Car Talk" program, will retire in September "after decades of dispensing automotive repair and driving advice laced with a side of wicked humor." Tom turns 75 this year and Ray is 63. The duo says it's time to "stop and smell the cappuccino." NPR will continue to broadcast the show with material curated from the best of the more than 1,200 episodes recorded by the Magliozzis. [Reuters]

 

THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER

Subscribe to the Week