NPR News

Pages

The Two-Way
2:23 am
Thu June 6, 2013

Spy Agency's Collection Of Phone Records Reopens Controversy

Your call may be monitored: The NSA has been given the OK to collect data about millions of Americans' phone calls (though not about the conversations).
Glen Argov Landov

Originally published on Thu June 6, 2013 9:16 am

(Most recent update: 2 p.m. ET)

Read more
Asia
12:52 am
Thu June 6, 2013

China's New President Lays Groundwork For Better Relations With U.S.

Originally published on Thu June 6, 2013 7:10 am

After years of distrust, China's government says it wants a new type of great power relationship with the United States. Chinese President Xi Jinping will begin trying to lay the groundwork Friday at a summit with President Obama in California, but just what kind of relationship does Xi want?

"He wants to challenge the Cold War mentality, which believes that the existing power and also the emerging power cannot have a relationship other than conflictual," says Cheng Li, a specialist in Chinese politics at the Brookings Institution, a Washington think tank.

Read more
Business
12:19 am
Thu June 6, 2013

Lenovo Holds Grand Opening For Its N.C. Assembly Plant

Johana Guardado assembles a laptop on Lenovo's new personal computer production line in Whitsett, N.C.
Leoneda Inge for NPR

Originally published on Thu June 6, 2013 3:14 am

Chinese computer maker Lenovo celebrated the opening of its first U.S. manufacturing plant in Whitsett, N.C., on Wednesday. The company is trying to boost its brand and U.S. market share. Other high-tech firms, including Motorola, have announced plans to manufacture in the U.S.

The Lenovo plant celebration was a patriotic affair. A large sign was on display featuring the American flag and the words "Assembled in the U.S."

Read more
The Record
12:19 am
Thu June 6, 2013

Country Music's Year Of The Woman

Miranda Lambert performing in April at the Academy of Country Music Awards, where she won best song, best record and best female vocalist for the fourth year in a row. The Lambert Effect has opened doors for many of the new hopefuls blending hard country sounds with feminist-aware attitudes.
Kevin Winter/ACMA2013 Getty Images for ACM

Originally published on Thu June 6, 2013 1:41 am

Read more
Movie Interviews
12:19 am
Thu June 6, 2013

Whedon Adapts 'Much Ado About Nothing' For Silver Screen

Originally published on Thu June 6, 2013 1:44 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Last year, Joss Whedon put the blockbuster in summer blockbuster. He's the writer-director of "The Avengers," that crew of Marvel Comics superheroes whose story led to a super box office: one and a half billion dollars worldwide. It offered action and also repartee, like this moment of confrontation between Robert Downey, Jr.'s Iron Man and Thor.

(SOUNDBITE OF MOVIE, "THE AVENGERS")

CHRIS HEMSWORTH: (as Thor) You have no idea what you are dealing with.

Read more
Law
9:54 pm
Wed June 5, 2013

Holder On The Hot Seat Over Leak Investigations

Attorney General Eric Holder testifies on May 15 before the House Judiciary Committee.
Brendan Smialowski AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu June 6, 2013 12:52 am

Attorney General Eric Holder has been a lightning rod for the president's fiercest critics during his four years in office. Lately, he's been back on the hot seat with a crisis of his own making: the Justice Department's aggressive stance toward reporters in national security leak cases.

Holder heads to the Senate on Thursday, where lawmakers are sure to demand an explanation.

Read more
Parallels
9:50 pm
Wed June 5, 2013

For Venezuelans, Kidnappings Are Simply Business As Usual

Kidnappings and other crime have infiltrated every aspect of daily life in Venezuela, especially the capital, Caracas, which was recently ranked the world's third most violent city.
Rodrigo Abd AP

Originally published on Thu June 6, 2013 3:18 pm

German Garcia-Velutini got into his car and left work one day. It took him 11 months to get home.

Kidnappers had nabbed the Venezuelan banker. His abduction is part of a problem that's been getting worse every year for the past decade in Venezuela, which belongs to a region riddled with crime and the most violent cities in the world.

Gracia-Velutini tells his story at an outdoor table at a hotel in Caracas, the capital, with a view of a mountainside that climbs into the clouds.

Read more
The Two-Way
2:00 pm
Wed June 5, 2013

IMF Admits 'Notable Failures' In Greek Bailout

The International Monetary Fund has admitted "notable failures" in the Greek bailout, saying in a report Thursday that despite the steps Greece's recession and unemployment problem were more severe than anticipated.

The report said the program had succeeded in keeping Greece within the eurozone and mostly prevented the country's economic troubles from spilling over to the rest of the region. "However," it said:

Read more
The Two-Way
1:26 pm
Wed June 5, 2013

Andrea, First Named Storm Of 2013 Season, Forms In Gulf

The National Hurricane Center is tracking Tropical Storm Andrea, currently in the eastern Gulf of Mexico, on its website.
NWS

Tropical Storm Andrea, the first named storm of the new hurricane season, has formed in the eastern portion of the Gulf of Mexico. Forecasters expect the storm to bring heavy rains to Florida before moving up the East Coast.

Read more
Science
1:19 pm
Wed June 5, 2013

Tiny, Ancient Tree-Dweller Was One of Earth's Earliest Primates

Artistic reconstruction of Archicebus achilles in its natural habitat of trees.
Xijun Ni Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology, Chinese Academy of Sciences

Originally published on Wed June 5, 2013 1:59 pm

The origin of the first primates — the group that includes humans, apes and monkeys — is thought to lie in the deep past, about 55 million years ago.

Fossils from that period are rare. But now, there's an exciting new one. It's called Archicebus achilles, roughly meaning "beginning long-tailed monkey." Actually, this creature lived before the monkeys we know of today, a mere 10 million years after the dinosaurs died out.

Read more
The Two-Way
12:48 pm
Wed June 5, 2013

DEA Arrests Scarsdale Mom In Massive Pot-Growing Scheme

A photograph taken on May 20, 2013, by the DEA Strike Force shows some of the marijuana plants the agency says were grown by a woman from a wealthy New York suburb, in a warehouse in the Queens borough of New York.
DEA AP

Originally published on Wed June 5, 2013 3:59 pm

Andrea Sanderlin, a mother who drives a Mercedes SUV and lives in a large Scarsdale, N.Y., home, is facing serious drug charges after federal investigators accused her of being the mastermind behind an operation growing nearly 3,000 marijuana plants in a warehouse in Queens.

Read more
The Two-Way
12:18 pm
Wed June 5, 2013

The Bradley Manning Trial: A Short(ish) Guide To Understanding The Case

Army Pfc. Bradley Manning (right) is escorted out of a courthouse in Fort Meade, Md., on June 25, 2012. His lawyer announced that Manning, who is accused of leaking classified information to WikiLeaks, had agreed to plead guilty to lesser charges.
Patrick Semansky AP

For the next 12 weeks, a military judge in Fort Meade, Md. will consider the case of Army Pfc. Bradley Manning. It's bound to be a complicated, long-running and often secretive process that kicked off on Monday.

Before we get too far into the court-martial, we wanted to put together a shortish guide to bring you up to speed on the trial.

Read more
The Salt
12:09 pm
Wed June 5, 2013

Amazon's Grocery Delivery: A Trojan Horse To Get In Your Door

Amazon has been testing its AmazonFresh delivery service in the Seattle area since 2007.
Joe Nicholson AP

Originally published on Wed June 5, 2013 2:16 pm

Amazon already delivers everything from toothpaste to televisions to your doorstep. Now, it wants to bring your berries and beer, too.

Read more
Shots - Health News
12:03 pm
Wed June 5, 2013

Court Says Some Morning-After Pills Must Be Available OTC Now

Originally published on Wed June 5, 2013 1:00 pm

A federal appeals court has dealt the Obama administration yet another blow in its quest to keep at least some age restrictions on the sale of emergency contraceptive pills.

Read more
Deceptive Cadence
12:02 pm
Wed June 5, 2013

The Cliburn Competition After Van

Chinese pianist Fei-Fei Dong, 22, performs at the 14th Van Cliburn International Piano Competition in Fort Worth, Texas. The Juilliard School graduate student is among six musicians chosen for the final round.
Ralph Lauer Cliburn Foundation

Originally published on Wed July 3, 2013 5:26 pm

Six finalists for the 14th Van Cliburn International Piano Competition were announced last night in Fort Worth, Texas. For the first time since its inception more than 50 years ago, the contest is taking place without its namesake. Cliburn died in February of cancer, and the competition is dealing with his loss and other changes as well.

Read more
Code Switch
12:00 pm
Wed June 5, 2013

The Force Is With The Navajo: 'Star Wars' Gets A New Translation

Star Wars has been translated into many languages — most recently, Navajo. Above, Princess Leia (Carrie Fisher) and Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) in a scene from the 1977 classic.
20th Century Fox Film Corp. AP

Originally published on Mon July 14, 2014 8:30 am

If you've ever wondered how to say "May the Force be with you" in Navajo, you're in luck. On July 3, a new translation of Star Wars will be unveiled on the Navajo Nation reservation in Arizona. The 1977 classic has been translated into many languages, and the latest effort is the brainchild of Manuelito Wheeler, director of the Navajo Nation Museum in Window Rock, Ariz.

Read more
Music Interviews
11:59 am
Wed June 5, 2013

'The Greatest Songs You've Never Heard,' Rescued From History

Tenor Douglas Bowles (left), pianist Alex Hassan and soprano Karin Paludan perform music from The Greatest Songs You've Never Heard in NPR's Studio 1.
Gabriella Demczuk NPR

Originally published on Fri July 5, 2013 10:19 am

Three for a Song is a performing trio with a love for the 1930s, during which some of the greatest songwriters who ever lived wrote music that would enter the canon of American popular song. But the group has recently added a quirk to its repertoire: performing songs that were never popular.

"You will always hear Burton Lane's 'How Are Things in Glocca Morra?' " says the trio's pianist, Alex Hassan, who is also a pop-music archivist. "But you will not hear an incredible torch song that he wrote for a 1935 MGM flick that never got made."

Read more
The Two-Way
11:11 am
Wed June 5, 2013

TSA Says It Won't Relax Carry-On Ban Of Knives, Other Items

A graphic released by the TSA earlier this year announced coming changes to the agency's Prohibited Items List, which it said would allow small knives. The TSA now says those items will remain banned from carry-on bags.
TSA

Originally published on Wed June 5, 2013 3:59 pm

Small knives, golf clubs, and other items that had been poised to be allowed in air passengers' carry-on luggage will instead remain prohibited, the Transportation Security Administration confirmed Wednesday. The reversal follows a review process in which the agency heard from passenger advocates, law enforcement, and others.

"After extensive engagement with the Aviation Security Advisory Committee, law enforcement officials, passenger advocates, and other important stakeholders, TSA will continue to enforce the current prohibited items list," the agency said in a statement.

Read more
Code Switch
10:31 am
Wed June 5, 2013

The First Lady, A Heckler And Public Dissent

The first lady was confronted by a heckler at a private event in Washington on Tuesday.
Evan Vucci ASSOCIATED PRESS

Originally published on Wed June 5, 2013 12:30 pm

When Michelle Obama squared off with a heckler at a private fundraiser last night, the racial context was hard to ignore: a white woman yelling at the country's most visible black woman and that same black woman offering a pointed response.

Read more
Shots - Health News
9:58 am
Wed June 5, 2013

Fat Doctors Make Fat Patients Feel Better, And Worse

Dr. Michael Fleming, past president of the American Academy of Family Physicians, considered himself obese when this photo was taken in 2004. He led efforts by doctors to lose weight.
Mario Villafuerte Getty Images

Originally published on Wed June 5, 2013 12:28 pm

People who are overweight or obese often feel like they're getting dissed by doctors.

So you'd think that a fat doctor would understand. Well, yes and no.

Patients are more apt to trust overweight doctors when it comes to diet advice, a study finds.

But they're also more likely to feel that the overweight doctor is judging them about their weight.

This contradictory bit of data is the latest to reveal the complex attitudes that doctors and patients have about weight and how best to deal with it.

Read more
It's All Politics
9:55 am
Wed June 5, 2013

5 Takeaways From Obama's Susan Rice Appointment

President Obama's choice of U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice as his next national security adviser is one way of reminding his conservative foes he can still confound them.
Bebeto Matthews AP

Originally published on Wed June 5, 2013 10:42 am

It wasn't exactly a surprise to hear that President Obama named U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice as his next national security adviser.

Almost as soon as it became clear that her role in the administration's Benghazi talking-points snafu meant Senate Republicans would never let her be confirmed as secretary of state if Obama nominated her, the possibility of her taking over from Tom Donilon as Obama's top national security aide was frequently mentioned.

Still, speculation is one thing; an actual appointment, another. So what to make of Rice's appointment?

Read more
The Two-Way
9:45 am
Wed June 5, 2013

Obama Names Susan Rice As New National Security Adviser

President Barack Obama announces a staff shakeup Wednesday, naming U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice (right) to replace the retiring Tom Donilon. He also nominated former White House aide Samantha Power (left) to succeed Rice at the U.N.
Alex Wong Getty Images

Originally published on Wed June 5, 2013 10:55 am

President Obama has announced his choice of U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice as the next national security adviser, an appointment that does not require Senate confirmation. Congressional Republicans have sharply criticized Rice for erroneous statements she made after the attacks on a U.S. diplomatic post in Benghazi, Libya, last September.

Read more
The Salt
9:29 am
Wed June 5, 2013

Keeping Hepatitis A Out Of Frozen Berries Starts At The Farm

Frozen berries have been implicated in a hepatitis A outbreak.
iStockphoto.com

The news from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that at least 49 people in seven states have gotten hepatitis A from eating organic frozen berries has given our smoothie-making some pause.

Frozen berries are full of health-promoting compounds; plus, they're convenient and delicious. So we wondered: Is there a way to keep all those positives, and hold the virus? We checked with food safety experts to find out.

Read more
The Two-Way
9:23 am
Wed June 5, 2013

Do You Care If Ball Players Use Steroids? Polls Say Fans Do

A fan raises his objections at the 2002 Major League Baseball All Star Game.
Andy Lyons Getty Images

Originally published on Wed June 5, 2013 3:58 pm

ESPN's big scoop of the day — that Major League Baseball "will seek to suspend about 20 players connected to the Miami-area clinic at the heart of an ongoing performance-enhancing drug scandal" — raises a logical question:

Do fans care?

PollingReport.com has collected the results of some surveys, including:

Read more
Parallels
8:12 am
Wed June 5, 2013

Myanmar's Aung San Suu Kyi Walks Fine Line In Her New Role

Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi has been under fire for working with the government on a number of issues. Here, she meets in March with protesters who oppose a copper mine backed by Chinese investors. She supports the mining project.
Khin Maung Win AP

Originally published on Wed June 5, 2013 1:19 pm

To her many admirers in the international community, Aung San Suu Kyi remains one of the world's best known democracy icons.

But in Myanmar, also known as Burma, she is now very much a politician who is being criticized for trying to cooperate with the former military rulers who kept her under house arrest for nearly two decades.

If you want to see the old, iconic Aung San Suu Kyi, just head to the bustling headquarters of her party, the National League for Democracy, or NLD, in Yangon, the country's largest city and former capital.

Read more
It's All Politics
8:06 am
Wed June 5, 2013

The Incredible Vanishing GOP Presidential Front-Runner

GOP presidential contenders wave to the crowd in Manchester, N.H., in 1980, before a debate. From left" Philip Crane, John Connelly, John Anderson, Howard Baker, Robert Dole, Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush.
AP

Originally published on Wed June 5, 2013 12:17 pm

It's ridiculously, absurdly early to talk about 2016 presidential politics. Only a fool would try to predict who will be the next Republican nominee just seven months after the last election for the White House.

Still, in most election cycles, the GOP would already have an obvious front-runner by now, one who would more than likely prevail as the party's pick.

Not this time.

"This will be the most open Republican nomination in 50 years," says Tom Rath, a former GOP attorney general of New Hampshire and a veteran of early state presidential politics.

Read more
Economy
7:46 am
Wed June 5, 2013

Toledo, Ohio: Chinese Investment Wanted

Originally published on Wed June 5, 2013 10:54 am

Mayor Michael Bell hopes Chinese investment will help revive his blue-collar city. He helped broker a deal to sell a chunk of Toledo's waterfront to Chinese investors. Host Michel Martin and Mayor Bell discuss investments with China and what he thinks President Obama and China President Xi Jinping can accomplish during their U.S. visit.

Business
7:46 am
Wed June 5, 2013

Hollywood Wants A Piece Of The Action In China's Movie Market

Originally published on Wed June 5, 2013 10:54 am

Box office receipts in China reached new highs last year, and American filmmakers want to tap into that market. Host Michel Martin speaks with Los Angeles Times reporter John Horn, about the growth of the Chinese movie market, and how Hollywood plans to cash in.

The Two-Way
7:37 am
Wed June 5, 2013

U.S. Soldier Pleads Guilty In 2012 Afghan Shooting Rampage

Staff Sgt. Robert Bales (left), the U.S. soldier who allegedly shot and killed 16 civilians in Afghanistan, at the National Training Center in Fort Irwin, Calif., on Aug. 23.
Defense Video and Imagery Distribution System AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed June 5, 2013 9:34 am

The United States soldier charged with the murder of 16 Afghan villagers entered a guilty plea on Wednesday during a court hearing at Joint Base Lewis-McChord in Washington state.

Staff Sgt. Robert Bales pleaded guilty to 16 counts of premeditated murder, The Seattle Times reports, but he pleaded not guilty to "attempting to impede an investigation into the case by damaging a laptop computer."

The Times adds:

Read more
Parallels
7:00 am
Wed June 5, 2013

A Small Farming Town Becomes Ground Zero In Syria's War

Syrian soldiers stand in the main square of the western city of Qusair. Government troops recaptured the town on Wednesday after rebels had held it for more than a year. It's seen as a significant victory for President Bashar Assad's government.
STR AFP/Getty images

Originally published on Wed June 5, 2013 7:50 am

Qusair is a sleepy farming town not far from my hometown. I passed through it many times as a child and never imagined it would one day make international headlines as the focal point of Syria's civil war.

I wish it had remained a quiet place defined by the many agricultural fields of wheat and barley, along with apricot and apple trees, all of them well-watered by the Orontes River.

Less than 10 miles from the Lebanese border, Qusair was a mixed town of Christians, Sunnis and Shiites. Not anymore.

Read more

Pages