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1:03 am
Wed September 25, 2013

Your Government Shutdown Questions, Answered

If Congress can't come to an agreement to fund the government, there will be a shutdown on Oct. 1.
J. Scott Applewhite AP

Originally published on Mon September 30, 2013 4:29 pm

There's a showdown underway in Congress.

The Republican-controlled House has voted to keep the government running only if the Affordable Care Act is defunded, and the Democratic-controlled Senate isn't likely to go along with that plan. If the two sides can't resolve their differences by Oct. 1, the U.S. government will shut down.

We asked you what you wanted to know about the potential government shutdown, and journalists from NPR's Washington Desk tracked down the answers:

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Middle East
12:31 am
Wed September 25, 2013

Examining Britain's Position On The Crisis In Syria

Originally published on Wed September 25, 2013 1:25 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

When President Obama chose diplomacy over military action in Syria, some feared that could actually bolster Assad. We posed that question earlier this morning to Britain's Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg, who led his country's delegation to the U. N. General Assembly. Clegg told us the threat of military strikes forced Assad's hand, and he said Britain and the U.S. will work to threaten military consequences in a U.N. resolution, even if the Russians are pressing hard against that.

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Middle East
12:23 am
Wed September 25, 2013

Iran, U.S. Can Manage Differences, Rouhani Tells U.N.

Originally published on Wed September 25, 2013 1:25 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. Good morning. I'm David Greene.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And I'm Steve Inskeep. President Obama never did meet Iran's president Hasan Rouhani at the United Nations, as many expected. But Iran's new president gave a speech calling for results-oriented talks to clear up concern about what he called Iran's peaceful nuclear program. NPR's Michele Kelemen was there.

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Politics
11:45 pm
Tue September 24, 2013

House GOP Group Forces Boehner To Choose Sides

Originally published on Wed September 25, 2013 1:25 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And Senator Cruz spoke against Obamacare all night in the Senate, but can't actually prevent a Senate vote. The Senate is considered likely to approve a bill that funds the government - including the Affordable Care Act.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

But that does not end the story, because the House passed a bill that defunds Obamacare. It would be up to Democrats to find some agreement with House Speaker John Boehner that avoids a government shutdown.

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Business
11:35 pm
Tue September 24, 2013

Moroccan Women Have 'Greater Opportunities' In Business

Originally published on Wed September 25, 2013 1:25 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And let's meet a businesswoman now who has risen to prominence in a country in North Africa where women have not exactly had it easy. In Morocco, women are often in poverty and illiterate, and they face a restrictive legal code. The government has over the last decade given women more rights. It raised the marriage age and promoted more women in parliament. And among the educated elite in this Muslim country is a highly accomplished businesswoman and banker named Nezha Hayat. She recently came by our studio.

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Politics
11:35 pm
Tue September 24, 2013

Senate More Than Likely To Keep Obamacare Intact

Originally published on Wed September 25, 2013 1:25 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And I'm David Greene. Good morning. Let's catch up on the Senate's fight over Obamacare. A handful of Republican senators say they support a plan to deny funding to the Affordable Care Act. They want to attach that to a larger measure designed to keep the rest of the government running and avoid a partial shutdown at the end of the month.

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Sweetness And Light
10:44 pm
Tue September 24, 2013

Head Games: NFL Should Share Records About Concussions

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Wed September 25, 2013 8:15 am

Football is unique in that most players participate in only half the game — offense or defense.

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Environment
10:43 pm
Tue September 24, 2013

Wild Weather Tied To Unusual Jet Stream Activity

Goddard Space Flight Center Scientific Visualization Studio NASA

Originally published on Wed September 25, 2013 1:25 am

There has been a lot of extreme weather in the Northern Hemisphere this year, including the recent torrential rains in Colorado, flooding in Europe, bitter cold in Florida and a heat wave in Alaska. And scientists say all of it is related to some odd behavior by the powerful air currents called the polar jet stream.

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Around the Nation
10:43 pm
Tue September 24, 2013

Proposed Power Lines Tangle With Native American History

Four humanlike figures were painted in a cave in Washington hundreds or even thousands of years ago.
Colin Fogarty Northwest News Network

Originally published on Wed September 25, 2013 1:25 am

Imagine running power lines through a cathedral. That's how archaeologists describe what the Bonneville Power Administration proposes doing in the Columbia River Gorge in Washington state. The federal electricity provider is trying to string a new transmission line near a cave that contains ancient paintings, a site considered sacred by Native Americans.

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Planet Money
10:41 pm
Tue September 24, 2013

What Happens When Stores Let Customers Return Whatever They Want?

Originally published on Wed September 25, 2013 6:35 am

Sunny Pettinati walked into the L.L. Bean store in Yonkers, N.Y., clutching a plastic bag and looking a little embarrassed.

"I'm returning a sweater that I purchased, I think, about 10 years ago," she said.

The sweater had sat in a drawer, unworn, for years, and she was trying her luck with the store's famously lenient return policy.

It turned out to be painless. A few taps on the keyboard, and the saleswoman handed her a gift card worth the full value of the sweater.

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Afghanistan
10:40 pm
Tue September 24, 2013

U.S. Soldier Fights For Afghan Interpreter Who Saved His Life

Janis Shinwari is seen wearing his body armor in 2008. Shinwari, an Afghan interpreter who assisted U.S. forces, has been waiting three years for a visa to enter the United States. He is now in hiding in Afghanistan.
Matt Zeller

Originally published on Wed September 25, 2013 5:40 am

Army Capt. Matt Zeller had been told that his Afghan comrades would make a big show of hospitality. He'd read that the Afghan code of honor would mean protecting his life with their own. Sure enough, that's what his interpreter, Janis Shinwari, pledged to him when they met in April of 2008.

"I expected him to say it. I didn't think he'd make good on his promise within two weeks of my arrival," Zeller says. "Literally pick up a weapon and ... save my life," says Zeller.

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Health Care
10:36 pm
Tue September 24, 2013

Commander In Chief, Explainer In Chief Tout Health Care Law

President Obama joins former President Clinton to talk about the health care law, during the annual Clinton Global Initiative meeting Tuesday in New York.
Getty Images

Originally published on Wed September 25, 2013 6:18 am

President Obama's health care law has so far survived challenges in Congress and the courts. But its biggest test could begin next week. That's when the online marketplaces offering health care coverage to the uninsured are set to start signing people up. The question is, will they come?

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The Two-Way
8:09 pm
Tue September 24, 2013

With A Call For Prayer, Cruz Wraps Up Protest Against Obamacare

Sen. Ted Cruz's anti-Obamacare strategy seemed to fall flat Tuesday with many of his fellow Senate Republicans. They urged him to back down out of concern over a possible government shutdown next week.
C-SPAN.org screen shot

Originally published on Wed September 25, 2013 8:17 am

Update at noon ET. It's Over:

Saying that "it's fitting that this debate concludes with a prayer" because he believes Americans are pleading with Congress to defund President Obama's health care law, Republican Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas just wrapped up his marathon protest on the Senate floor.

Cruz began speaking just after 2:40 p.m. ET Tuesday and abided by Senate rules when he finished at noon today.

"The pleas from the American people," he said of what he sees as the public's opposition to Obamacare, "are deafening."

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Shots - Health News
7:15 pm
Tue September 24, 2013

Administration Touts Lower-Than-Expected Obamacare Premiums

Peter Lee, executive director of Covered California, the state agency running the state's new health exchange, announced the plans and prices that will be offered by private insurers on May 23.
Rich Pedroncelli AP

Originally published on Wed September 25, 2013 6:42 am

Premiums in the health insurance exchanges set to open next week will be lower than anticipated, the Obama administration announced Wednesday.

According to a report released by the Department of Health and Human Services, "premiums nationwide will ... be around 16 percent lower than originally expected," and 95 percent of uninsured people live in a state with average premiums that are lower than expected.

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Monkey See
2:05 pm
Tue September 24, 2013

'Trophy Wife' Is More Than Just A Pretty Face On ABC

Kate (Malin Akerman) pitches in alongside husband Pete (Bradley Whitford) on her stepson's soccer practice in ABC's Trophy Wife.
Danny Feld ABC

One of the strongest new sitcoms on TV this season has the worst name, but its title, Trophy Wife, was intended to be ironic. The show's creators, Sarah Haskins and Emily Halpern, are self-professed feminists who wanted to take on a type generally scorned in popular culture.

The show's eponymous character, Kate, is a reformed party girl trying to find her place in a family that includes a much older husband, Pete, his two ex-wives and three kids. When Kate inadvertently breaks Pete's nose, the situation is expertly handled by ex No. 1, an intimidating surgeon.

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All Tech Considered
12:52 pm
Tue September 24, 2013

Accessible Designs Could Help Us All — But Only If Firms Bite

Alex Blaszczuk used Google Glass to shoot this self portait.
Courtesy of Alex Blaszczuk

Here are the basics about Alex Blaszczuk: She lives in Manhattan. She's 26. She has a 20 pound cat. She's a third year law student at Columbia University. And about 18 months ago she broke her neck.

Blaszczuk sometimes jokes that she wishes she'd done it bungee jumping. At least then she says she would have a better story.

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Sports
12:52 pm
Tue September 24, 2013

Pirates Make It To Playoffs For The First Time In Since '92

Melissa Block talks to Jerry Micco, assistant managing editor for sports for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, about the Pittsburgh Pirates making the Major League Baseball playoffs for the first time since 1992.

The Salt
11:41 am
Tue September 24, 2013

Global Love Of Bananas May Be Hurting Costa Rica's Crocodiles

A Costa Rican banana worker carries a stalk of freshly harvested fruit on a plantation in Costa Rica, where many of the bananas that Americans eat are grown.
Kent Gilbert AP

Originally published on Fri September 27, 2013 9:22 am

Americans love bananas. Each year, we eat more bananas than any other fruit. But banana growers use a lot of pesticides — and those chemicals could be hurting wildlife. As a new study shows, the pesticides are ending up in the bodies of crocodiles living near banana farms in Costa Rica, where many of the bananas we eat are grown.

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The Two-Way
11:21 am
Tue September 24, 2013

Airbus Forecast: Asia-Pacific Air Traffic Set For Takeoff

Airbus hopes the global growth in air traffic will fuel demand for its giant A380.
Eric Feferberg AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue September 24, 2013 11:46 am

There will be more passenger flights in the Asia-Pacific than anywhere else in the world in the next 20 years, with the region accounting for a third of all new commercial aircraft orders, according to Airbus's latest Global Market Forecast.

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The Two-Way
10:58 am
Tue September 24, 2013

Golden Eagle Attacks Deer, A Photo Of An Epic Confrontation

A camera trap captures a golden eagle attacking a young sika deer at Lazovskii State Nature Reserve in the southern Russian Far East on Dec. 1, 2011.
Dr. Linda Kerley via WCS

Originally published on Wed September 25, 2013 6:06 am

For decades, circumstantial evidence has shown that golden eagles do indeed attack large mammals like deer and even bear cubs.

But in a paper published Monday in the Journal of Raptor Research, Linda Kerley of the Zoological Society of London and Jonathan Slaght of the Wildlife Conservation Society unveiled stunning images of an adult golden eagle attacking and killing a young sika deer, weighing 88 to 100 pounds.

The images were captured by a camera trap the researchers set up to study Siberian tigers in the Russian Far East.

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Parallels
9:56 am
Tue September 24, 2013

Brazilian President Lashes Out Over U.S. Spying

Not Happy: Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff addresses the 68th U.N. General Assembly in New York on Tuesday.
Shannon Stapleton Reuters/Landov

President Dilma Rousseff of Brazil was so angry about reports that the National Security Agency was spying on her and others in her country that she recently called off a high-profile visit to the U.S.

The Brazilian leader was still in a fighting mood Tuesday as she used her speech at the United Nations General Assembly to deliver a broadside against U.S. spying. She also called for civilian oversight of the Web to ensure the protection of data.

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Shots - Health News
9:47 am
Tue September 24, 2013

Lose Weight Before Trying Other Sleep Apnea Treatments

CPAP masks have become much more comfortable than in years past, doctors say. But most of the time, they're probably not the first thing to try for sleep apnea.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Tue September 24, 2013 11:06 am

So your snoring is driving your partner crazy. Does that mean you're destined for one of those awkward-looking sleep apnea masks?

Not so fast, doctors say. Many snorers don't have sleep apnea, which causes a person to frequently stop breathing for brief periods during sleep. It's a big cause of chronic sleepiness and has been linked to a variety of health problems. Sleep apnea can also make a sufferer miserable.

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The Two-Way
9:06 am
Tue September 24, 2013

NCAA Lifts Some Of The Sanctions Imposed On Penn State

Penn State football players run onto the field earlier this month in State College, Pa.
Gene J. Puskar AP

Originally published on Tue September 24, 2013 12:18 pm

Citing what it says has been "Penn State's continued progress toward ensuring athletics integrity," the NCAA said Tuesday that it is gradually restoring the football scholarships the school lost in the aftermath of the child sex abuse scandal involving former assistant coach Jerry Sandusky.

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Parallels
8:24 am
Tue September 24, 2013

Why Kenya Is An Inviting Target For Terrorists

Kenyans watch Monday as a plume of black smoke rises over the Westgate Mall, scene of a terrorist attack that left more than 60 dead. Kenya is a crossroads in East Africa, has many links to the West and has sent troops into Somalia. For all these reasons, the country was targeted by Somalia's al-Shabab militia group.
Ben Curtis AP

Originally published on Wed October 9, 2013 12:35 pm

Kenya has long been an African success story, a place that's been relatively stable, peaceful and prosperous despite being in a neighborhood rocked by major disasters for decades.

There's been endless civil war in Somalia, genocide in Rwanda and famine in Ethiopia. Yet these calamities have, by and large, not spilled over to Kenya, which has been the crossroads of East Africa, serving as a business, transportation and tourist hub.

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The Protojournalist
8:15 am
Tue September 24, 2013

Why Are Most Rampage Shooters Men?

A makeshift memorial hangs on a lamp post across the street from the Washington Navy Yard, on Sept. 20.
Carolyn Kaster AP

Originally published on Tue September 24, 2013 9:29 am

Aaron Alexis, the man who police say killed more than a dozen people at the Washington Navy Yard on Sept. 16, has joined a heinous parade of mass murdering shooters, nearly all men.

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The Two-Way
7:57 am
Tue September 24, 2013

Carnival's Earnings Hit By String Of Cruise Ship Problems

Part of the previously submerged, severely damaged right side of the Costa Concordia cruise ship is seen in an upright position last week after it was righted by salvage crews in Isola del Giglio, Italy.
Marco Secchi Getty Images

Originally published on Tue September 24, 2013 10:18 am

Miami-based Carnival Corp., the world's largest cruise operator, reported a third quarter profit nearly a third lower than a year ago following a series of embarrassing and deadly mishaps involving its ships.

Carnival turned a $934 million profit for the period June through August, down 30 percent from the same quarter in 2012.

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Parallels
6:55 am
Tue September 24, 2013

World Economic Growth Points To More Planes In Asian Skies

An Airbus A320 on display during Airshow China 2012 at China International Aviation Exhibition Center in Zhuhai on Nov. 13, 2012. Increasing prosperity and urbanization in China and elsewhere in Asia will drive the global demand for aircraft, Airbus said Tuesday.
Marina Lystseva ITAR-TASS/Landov

Originally published on Wed October 9, 2013 12:25 pm

The number of global megacities will grow from 42 today to 89 by 2032. The global middle class will more than double by then. And most of this growth will be in the Asia-Pacific region.

What does all this have to do with global aviation?

Airbus, which released the data Tuesday, says that to meet this demand nearly 30,000 new planes will have to be built over the next 20 years.

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Around the Nation
6:48 am
Tue September 24, 2013

Can Mass Shootings Really Be Stopped?

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

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Health Care
6:48 am
Tue September 24, 2013

Questions Rise As Health Care Exchange Draws Near

Originally published on Wed September 25, 2013 11:25 am

Enrollment in the Affordable Care Act health exchanges is set to begin Oct. 1. But many eligible Americans still have questions.

Tell Me More reached out to listeners via Facebook and Twitter in an attempt to help answer their questions about the law. Host Michel Martin spoke with Mary Agnes Carey, a senior correspondent at Kaiser Health News — a news service not affiliated with Kaiser Permanente.

On searching for other affordable care options

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Shots - Health News
6:28 am
Tue September 24, 2013

How Will Exchanges Change Options For Kids' Health Coverage?

I've got some more health care questions for you.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Tue September 24, 2013 10:53 am

As the scheduled launch of the state health insurance marketplaces on Oct. 1 approaches, many parents have questions about covering their children. Here are a few we got recently.

I am a divorced dad who has responsibility for maintaining my 15-year-old daughter's health insurance. It was easy when I was working and had a corporate health plan. Now that I am retired and covered by Medicare, I am looking for alternatives when the new exchanges open. Can I buy health insurance for just my underage daughter on these new exchanges?

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