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One of the biggest threats to global agriculture these days is a tiny, bright red weevil.

These little crimson devils eviscerate coconut, date and oil palms, and are native to South Asia. But thanks to globalization, and the fact that these tenacious buggers can fly up to 30 miles a day — over the last three decades they've spread to more than 60 countries from the Caribbean to Southern Europe.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

06/22/2017: Disagreement in the Fed over another rate hike

Jun 22, 2017

As of the late, Janet Yellen and co. had seemed keen on another rate hike, but the mood appears to be shifting. Diane Swonk of DS Economics stopped by to explain why there's some dissent among Fed members. Afterwards, we'll talk about why the major banks are required to take "stress tests," and then look at how America's productivity rate is doing. 

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Tony Wagner

Politicians love to talk about the national debt and especially the deficit. But as different factions jockey for their plans and policies, things can start to get confusing. Whose plan is going to cost more? How important is it to be "deficit-neutral"? How does the debt ceiling factor into all of this?

On this week's Make Me Smart, we asked "The Budget Guy," Stan Collender, about  it all. He says don't worry if you don't get it, you're not alone.

How to prevent a financial crisis

Jun 22, 2017

The Federal Reserve is releasing the first part of its annual stress tests for big banks today. All of the major banks are expected to pass this year, which is good news if you want to see the U.S. financial system survive a future crisis. The test applies to more than 30 of the biggest banks in the country, and aims to ensure that banks have enough cash reserves to withstand a severe global recession like the 2008 financial crisis.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Let's ask why some of the nation's biggest energy companies say they're willing to support the fight against climate change. They say they are willing to be taxed for the pollution they create.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

For the hundreds of rural U.S. hospitals struggling to stay in business, health policy decisions made in Washington, D.C., this summer could make survival a lot tougher.

For NBA stars, branding goes beyond the court

Jun 22, 2017
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Andy Uhler

Remember these commercials?

The shoes were Nikes, but to basically every kid in America, they were "Air Jordans."

Michael Jordan was, and still is, the brand. His net worth today is $1.3 billion.

The lucrative partnership is an example of how Nike leveraged an athlete's popularity to sell shoes. Back then, what mattered most was Jordan being a great player. Nowadays, how good you are on the court is only one factor in a star athlete's earning potential.

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David Brancaccio

It feels like America is more divided than ever before.

Surveys even show that the country's major political parties have very unfavorable views of each other. But maybe we need to reframe the cause of some of the polarization happening in our country.

06/22/2017: The rise of cryptocurrencies

Jun 22, 2017
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Marketplace

Uber is looking to the future after investors pushed CEO Travis Kalanick to resign. But with old lawsuits still trailing the company, we'll discuss whether Uber can truly move forward and if an IPO is in its near future. Afterwards, we'll look at Tesla's scramble to keep up in the self-driving car race, and then talk about the surge in cryptocurrency prices over the last few months.

06/22/2017: America's great divide

Jun 22, 2017
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Marketplace

In just a few hours, we should have a draft of the Senate's health care overhaul. But even though it hasn't been officially released, parts of the bill have been leaking. On today's show, we'll discuss some of the reforms the measure calls for, which will outline how much power states would have and how Medicaid could change. Afterwards, we'll chat with Guardian reporter Chris Arnade about how divisions in America may not necessarily have to do with a liberal-conservative construct, but with those who left their hometowns vs. those who stayed. 

If you think of a company as a sports team — let's say, basketball — then Uber is at a point where the players are still on the court, but the coaches and general manager are gone, the arena is filled with jeers and the owner's hair is on fire.

The documentary, “Abacus: Small Enough To Jail,” tells the story of a family-owned bank in New York’s Chinatown — the only U.S. institution to face criminal fraud charges in the wake of the subprime mortgage crisis.

How did a little-known bank come to take the fall for a financial nightmare that so many multi-billion dollar corporations played a role in? And what can the Abacus case teach us about how American consumers are prioritized and protected by the federal government?

GUESTS

Spirits company Diageo is buying Casamigos, the tequila company co-founded by George Clooney, in a deal that values the company at up to $1 billion. The actor founded the company in 2013 with longtime friend Rande Gerber.

Diageo will make an upfront payment of $700 million for Casamigos, with another $300 million to follow if it hits sales targets.

Casamigos "has delivered impressive growth," Diageo says in a news release, "reaching 120,000 cases in 2016, primarily in the U.S." The company says the tequila brand is expected to top 170,000 cases by the end of this year.

Used to be if you wanted some hand-hewn dreamcatcher earrings or a wallet made of duct tape, there was one place to go: Etsy. The e-commerce website brought artisan-crafted products to customers around the world. It launched with four employees in 2005 and grew into a $1.6 billion public company. But now Etsy’s laying off 15 percent of its staff, the second round of cuts this year. Its problems seem to stem back to when the company let the mass-produced sell alongside the homespun.

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