(CNN Student News) -- January 27, 2011
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THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
VAL, CNN STUDENT NEWS IREPORTER: Hi, I'm Val.
NATALIE, CNN STUDENT NEWS IREPORTER: Hi, I'm Natalie.
HALLIE, CNN STUDENT NEWS IREPORTER: Hi, I'm Hallie.
NATALIE: And you're watching CNN Student News.
VAL AND HALLIE: Take it away, Carl! Hey, wait up!
CARL AZUZ, CNN STUDENT NEWS ANCHOR: Thanks, y'all! That was a cool introduction. Thank you to everyone for tuning in to CNN Student News. First up today, we're making good on a promise we made yesterday to bring you this:
U.S. PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: In fact, to every young person listening tonight who's contemplating their career choice, if you want to make a difference in the life of our nation, if you want to make a difference in the life of a child, become a teacher. Your country needs you.
AZUZ: President Obama, speaking directly to you during Tuesday night's State of the Union address. We promised you highlights, and we've got 'em. To set the scene a little bit, the president gave his speech to a Congress that tried to display unity in a couple ways. Members of different political parties sat together; usually doesn't happen during these speeches. And a lot of House members wore special ribbons to honor the victims of a recent shooting.
As for the speech itself, the president pushed for bigger investments in clean energy. He proposed a freeze on some government spending, and set a goal to hire thousands of new teachers, as you heard, by the end of the decade. President Obama's vision for how the country will move forward is a path that he says America has taken before.
OBAMA: The first step in winning the future is encouraging American innovation. None of us can predict with certainty what the next big industry will be or where the new jobs will come from. Thirty years ago, we couldn't know that something called the Internet would lead to an economic revolution. What we can do -- what America does better than anyone else -- is spark the creativity and imagination of our people. We're the nation that put cars in driveways and computers in offices; the nation of Edison and the Wright brothers, of Google and Facebook. In America, innovation doesn't just change our lives; it is how we make our living.
AZUZ: Republican Representative Paul Ryan gave the official response to the State of the Union. The Wisconsin congressman said his party wants to work with the president and Democrats to help turn around the country's economy. Representative Ryan also talked about the idea of limited government and his belief that if the government has a smaller role, it could be more effective. He said the president's approach to the role of government hasn't worked.
REP. PAUL RYAN, (R) WISCONSIN: The president and the Democratic leadership have shown, by their actions, that they believe government needs to increase its size and its reach, its price tag and its power. Whether sold as stimulus or repackaged as investment, their actions show they want a federal government that controls too much, taxes too much, and spends too much in order to do too much.
TOMEKA JONES, CNN STUDENT NEWS: Today's Shoutout goes out to Mrs. Marshall's humanities classes at Grand Canyon Prep in Tempe, Arizona! What describes the amount of money by which a government's spending exceeds its income? Is it: A) Capital expenditure, B) Deficit, C) Securities or D) Gross Domestic Product? You've got three seconds -- GO! When a government spends more than it makes, it has a deficit. That's your answer and that's your Shoutout!
AZUZ: Well, one government agency is predicting that the U.S. will have a deficit in 2011. A big deficit. In a report that came out yesterday, the Congressional Budget Office -- or CBO -- forecast that the U.S. government will spend $1.5 trillion more than it makes this year. The CBO says one reason for that deficit is the deal that Democrats and Republicans passed late last year to extend a set of tax cuts. Another reason for the prediction: the country's slow economic recovery.
AZUZ: One part of the economy that has made a bit of a comeback is the stock market. The Dow Jones Industrial Average, which offers an idea of how the whole stock market is doing, finished yesterday just below 12,000 points. It hasn't been that high in two-and-a-half years.
The stock market is one kind of economic indicator. The unemployment rate is another. It includes people who are out of work, but who are still looking for work. What it doesn't take into account is folks who are underemployed. They have jobs, but these jobs aren't full-time, or they're not jobs that take advantage of all the workers' abilities. Mary Snow introduces us to one underemployed American and his efforts to find work.
MARY SNOW, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It's hard to find signs the economy is improving by looking at this line that goes on and on and on. Some 2,000 people waited in the cold to apply for 250 jobs at a new hotel opening in New York.
EARL NEWKIRK, JOB SEEKER: It made me think of what it must have been like during the Depression, people standing out there waiting for soup.
SNOW: 38-year-old Earl Newkirk waited four-and-a-half hours to get inside with more than 600 people ahead of him. Once inside...
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: If anyone has an application filled out, you can step on over.
SNOW: ...More lines. The Morgans Hotel Group held this job fair for its new hotel, The Mondrian Soho that is opening in March. Newkirk is hoping to land an event planning position similar to his part-time job in catering, but much different from the full-time job he lost last April, working for New York City's Social Services Department.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're going to call you in a moment.
SNOW: After hours of waiting, Newkirk's moment of truth.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What steps do you take to make sure the work you've done has been done correctly?
NEWKIRK: I'm very detail oriented.
SNOW: Newkirk says this group interview was some of the most contact he's had with employers since starting his job search.
SNOW: How many resumes would you say you've sent out?
NEWKIRK: A thousand.
SNOW: A thousand?
SNOW: Because Newkirk works part time, he doesn't collect unemployment. Economists point out that counting part-time workers changes the jobless picture.
WILLIAM RODGERS, FMR. CHIEF ECONOMIST, U.S. DEPT. OF LABOR: People are focused on the 15 million Americans who are unemployed, actively searching. But we have another 9 million Americans who are working part time, but want to work full time.
SNOW: And that hope for full-time work is keeping Newkirk trying what he can to land a job. He says emotions are a luxury, that he must focus on getting a job. But he couldn't hold back tears talking about the impact this has had on his younger sisters.
NEWKIRK: They both felt so bad, so for Christmas, they gave me money. This is, I mean, it is... I'm not going to cry on camera. Really, not good. Not good.
SNOW: Have you gone through savings?
NEWKIRK: Pretty much.
SNOW: Earl Newkirk says that's the first time he's gotten emotional since he was laid off last April, that he's just trying to stay focused. There is some hope, though, in December's jobless report. It shows that the hospitality industry actually gained jobs last month. Mary Snow, CNN, New York.
AZUZ: More than a thousand people are getting together at a conference in Davos, Switzerland, trying to work on solutions to problems that affect the world's economy, like debt, climate change and health care. At the Davos conference, world leaders meet with economic experts and heads of major corporations. Some critics say that there's been a lot of talk at past Davos conferences, but not a whole lot of action. Organizers say that's why this year's agenda focuses more on solutions.
Is This Legit?
JOHN LISK, CNN STUDENT NEWS: Is this legit? In Latin, the root word "ped" means foot. Legit! That's why someone who travels on foot is called a pedestrian.
AZUZ: All right, you have heard the arguments against texting while driving. What about texting while walking? A New York state Senator says pedestrians who get distracted could be injured or killed. He's proposed a new law that would fine someone $100 for using an electronic device while crossing the street. One recent study backs up his idea. It says emergency room visits due to distracted walkers are up. Some people aren't on board with these kinds of proposals, though. In Arkansas, heavy criticism knocked down a bill that would have outlawed walking with headphones in both ears. And in California, a state Senator who supports distracted driving laws, says distracted pedestrian laws aren't necessary because pedestrians pose less of a risk to other people.
AZUZ: We know that not a lot of y'all are gonna say, "Oh man, this is a great idea! I'm guilty; ticket me, officer!" But, do you see a benefit to this kind of law? And if this were to pass and you were caught talking on the phone or texting or listening to music while crossing the street, how would you defend yourself? That's what we're asking today at CNNStudentNews.com!
Before We Go
AZUZ: All right, you know that question, "what one thing would you bring if you were stuck on an island," that game people play? Well, if you were stuck on this island, you wouldn't have to bring a piano. It's already got one! This is a musical, maritime mystery. Nobody knows how the piano popped up on this little sandbar near Miami, Florida. And authorities say unless it becomes a problem for wildlife, they're not gonna move it.
AZUZ: A problem between a piano and wildlife? I just hope they can reach an a-chord. We think knowing how the piano got there is a key issue, so head to Facebook.com/CNNStudentNews and tell us your ideas on how it got there. Today's sign-off line comes from Victoria on our Facebook page: "today's news is tomorrow's history." And we're history. See ya!