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Middle East
1:17 am
Sat October 13, 2012

Border Incidents Ratchet Up Turkey-Syria Tensions

Originally published on Sat October 13, 2012 5:15 am

Weekend Edition host Scott Simon talks with NPR's Peter Kenyon and NPR's Kelly McEvers about the latest news in Turkey and Syria, where fighting from Syria's internal conflict has spilled across the border the two nations share.

Author Interviews
9:03 pm
Fri October 12, 2012

Michael Feinstein: What I Learned From The Gershwins

Composer and educator Michael Feinstein's new memoir is called The Gershwins and Me: A Personal History in Twelve Songs.
Gilles Toucas Courtesy of the author

Originally published on Sat October 13, 2012 6:38 am

Michael Feinstein, the singer and pianist known as the "ambassador of the Great American Songbook," has a serious pedigree to back up that title: a real-life connection to one of America's greatest songwriting teams. It's the subject of Feinstein's new memoir, The Gershwins and Me: A Personal History in Twelve Songs. (A CD of Feinstein singing those songs also comes with the book.)

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Shots - Health Blog
1:54 pm
Fri October 12, 2012

Vice Presidential Candidates Spar Over Medicare

Vice President Biden (left) and Republican vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan during Thursday's debate.
Saul Loeb AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri October 12, 2012 1:57 pm

It's hardly surprising that Thursday night's vice presidential debate in Danville, Ky., would feature a spirited debate about Medicare. GOP vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan is the author of a controversial Medicare proposal that Democrats have been campaigning against for more than a year now.

But fact checkers have raised some flags about some of the claims the candidates made.

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Space
1:08 pm
Fri October 12, 2012

For Sale: A Chunk Of Mars

A fragment of the meteor that crashed into Tissint, Morocco.
Mark Mauthner Heritage Auctions

Originally published on Tue October 23, 2012 9:31 am

Few things are as rare as a piece of rock that falls from outer space and crashes onto Earth.

Among the most prized of these meteorites are from Mars. Friday, scientists describe the latest one discovered: It's called Tissint, and this weekend you can buy a piece of it.

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It's All Politics
12:59 pm
Fri October 12, 2012

Bachmann Faces Competitive Re-Election Bid In Minnesota

Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., speaks during the Family Research Council Action Values Voter Summit last month in Washington.
Mandel Ngan AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri October 12, 2012 1:41 pm

More than a year after winning Iowa's Straw Poll for the GOP presidential nomination, and more than nine months after dropping out of that race, Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., is back on the campaign trail.

This time she's after a fourth term representing Minnesota's 6th Congressional District, and Bachmann's campaign is running into stiff competition.

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Pop Culture
12:59 pm
Fri October 12, 2012

Vice Presidential Debate Mirrors 'American Idol'

Vice President Biden and Republican Paul Ryan at Thursday night's debate.
Saul Loeb AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sat October 13, 2012 3:14 pm

The first two debates of the 2012 election cycle have had stratospheric viewership on TV. Critic Bob Mondello isn't surprised. He argues we've spent the last decade training the public to watch contests on television and then vote — think American Idol and Dancing with the Stars.

During the debates, networks all but beg us to kibitz in social media, which makes instant judgment universal. We're encouraged to watch for the purpose of reacting.

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Shots - Health Blog
12:28 pm
Fri October 12, 2012

Where You Live May Determine What Lives Inside Your Mouth

Scientists examined bacteria in the mouths of twins, and found that it's not as similar as they thought it would be.
Sharon Dominick iStockphoto

Lately, we've been learning more and more about the teeming masses of bacteria inside our bodies - essentially trillions of tiny organisms that make us sick and keep us healthy.

Now two scientists at the University of Colorado have dared to ask what kinds of bacteria lives inside our mouths. And they're finding some pretty surprising things in there.

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Movie Interviews
12:25 pm
Fri October 12, 2012

Publicist-Turned-Filmmaker Part Of A New Wave

Participant Media

Originally published on Tue October 16, 2012 1:39 pm

Nine years ago in Los Angeles, a young movie publicist stood on a film set and had a revelation.

"There was something chemical that happened to me on that set," Ava DuVernay tells NPR's Audie Cornish. "Something all came together for me then, and I thought maybe there could be a place for my story in this as well. And maybe I can get it done."

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The Two-Way
12:18 pm
Fri October 12, 2012

Embattled U.S. Speedskating Coach Responds To Resignation And Suspension

Originally published on Fri October 12, 2012 1:56 pm

A day after resigning under pressure from U.S. Speedskating, former head coach Jae Su Chun says he didn't report a tampering incident at an international meet last year to protect skater Simon Cho, who confessed to sabotaging a Canadian athlete's skate blade.

"I know I chose Simon over my own principles," Chun says in a written statement translated from Korean by a spokesman.

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World
12:06 pm
Fri October 12, 2012

Do Chinese Tech Firms Pose U.S. Security Threat?

Staff and visitors walk past the lobby at the Huawei office in Wuhan, China. Beijing has urged Washington to "set aside prejudices" after a draft congressional report said Chinese telecom firms Huawei and ZTE were security threats that should be banned from business in the U.S.
AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri October 12, 2012 12:59 pm

Over the past decade, Chinese companies have become major players in the global telecommunications market. This week the House Intelligence Committee issued a report that could interrupt that growth. The committee warned American companies not to do business with two of China's main telecom manufacturers, saying they posed a security threat.

Huawei Technologies is the miracle story of the Chinese high-tech industry, says telecommunications consultant Roger Entner.

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The Two-Way
11:07 am
Fri October 12, 2012

Deficit Tops $1 Trillion For Fourth Year

The figures are in for the federal government's fiscal 2012 and the deficit was $1.089 trillion, according to the Treasury Department and Office of Management and Budget.

That's less than the previous year's $1.297 trillion and is the third consecutive decline.

But it's also the fourth year in a row of a $1 trillion+ gap between spending and revenues.

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National Security
10:40 am
Fri October 12, 2012

Russia No Longer Wants U.S. Aid To Secure Nukes

Under President Vladimir Putin, Russia has been backing away from U.S. aid. Russia now says it does not want to extend a U.S. assistance program that has helped secure and dismantle nuclear weapons dating to the Soviet era. The program has been in place for two decades and has been considered a big success.
Yuri Kadobnov AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri October 12, 2012 12:59 pm

When the Soviet Union splintered two decades ago, one of the biggest U.S. worries was how to ensure that the vast Soviet arsenal of nuclear weapons was kept secure.

The American response was the Cooperative Threat Reduction program of 1992. The U.S. provided money and expertise to lock down and track weapons of mass destruction and make sure they stayed out of the hands of rogue regimes or terrorists.

The program has been hailed as a great success, with thousands of Soviet nuclear weapons dismantled over the years.

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Planet Money
10:18 am
Fri October 12, 2012

Remember The 14-Year-Old Who Bought A House? She Just Bought Another One

This is Willow's new house.
Shannon Moore

Originally published on Thu October 18, 2012 7:20 am

Willow Tufano became a homeowner earlier this year. This was newsworthy because Willow was 14 years old. She raised money to buy the house by selling stuff on Craigslist.

I spoke to Willow again last week and got an update. She's 15 now, and her life over the past few months was sort of surreal. She got caught up in two dramas: America's housing market and America's media circus.

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The Two-Way
10:07 am
Fri October 12, 2012

Shuttle Endeavour Begins 12-Mile Crawl To New Los Angeles Home

The space shuttle Endeavour is seen atop the Over Land Transporter after exiting the Los Angeles International Airport on its way to its new home at the California Science Center in Los Angeles
Bull Ingalls NASA

The Shuttle Endeavour began an incredible 12-mile journey through the streets of Southern California. The trip ends at its new home at the California Science Center.

Perhaps the AP put it best: In space, the shuttle traveled at a blazing 17,500 mph. But this final victory lap through narrow Los Angeles streets will proceed at 2 mph.

The AP adds:

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The Two-Way
9:58 am
Fri October 12, 2012

New Regulations Aimed At Black Lung Disease Appear To Be Stalled

Originally published on Sat October 13, 2012 7:37 am

Reporting by the Charleston Gazette this week suggests that the Obama administration's efforts to impose tough new limits on miners' exposure to coal dust have stalled.

The United Mine Workers Union suggests election year politics may be the reason.

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The Two-Way
9:37 am
Fri October 12, 2012

If Lance Armstrong Is Stripped, No One May Get His Tour De France Titles

Lance Armstrong, in the leader's yellow jersey, during the 2001 Tour de France.
Patrick Kovarik AFP/Getty Images

Two days after the United States Anti-Doping Agency's release of the evidence it says shows that cyclist Lance Armstrong was part of "the most sophisticated, professionalized and successful doping program that sport has ever seen," the head of the Tour de France has said the world's most famous race will officially have no winners of the seven Tours that Armstrong won if he is stripped of those titles.

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Shots - Health Blog
8:58 am
Fri October 12, 2012

Classroom Yoga Helps Improve Behavior Of Kids With Autism

Yoga is increasingly being used in classrooms across the U.S. to help kids behave and perform better in school.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Fri October 12, 2012 9:48 am

Researchers have found that kids with autism spectrum disorder who did yoga at their elementary school behaved better than kids with autism who weren't doing yoga.

The researchers surveyed teachers at a school in the Bronx who said a daily yoga program reduced the kids' aggressive behavior, social withdrawal and hyperactivity.

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It's All Politics
8:57 am
Fri October 12, 2012

7 Signals Stolen From The Running Mates' One-Game Playoff

Vice President Biden and Republican Paul Ryan at Thursday night's debate.
Saul Loeb AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri October 12, 2012 9:59 am

You may have noticed that the vice presidential debate took place on the same day as four crucial games in this year's baseball playoffs. In case you were distracted at all by the latter, here's some of what you may have missed:

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Science
8:44 am
Fri October 12, 2012

Prehistoric 'Kennewick Man' Was All Beefcake

Forensic artists think this is what Kennewick Man looked like.
Brittney Tatchell Courtesy of Doug Owsley

Originally published on Fri October 12, 2012 2:41 pm

For nearly a decade, scientists and Northwest tribes in Washington state fought bitterly over whether to bury or study the 9,500-year-old bones known as Kennewick Man. Scientists won the battle, and now, after years of careful examination, they're releasing some of their findings.

For starters, Kennewick Man was buff. I mean, really beefcake. So says Doug Owsley, head of physical anthropology at the Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History, and the man who led the study of the ancient remains.

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The Two-Way
8:32 am
Fri October 12, 2012

Remembering Andrew Brimmer, First Black On Federal Reserve's Board

Andrew Brimmer in 1970, when he was a Federal Reserve Board governor.
Hulton Archive Getty Images

Originally published on Fri October 12, 2012 8:40 am

A life well-worth noting has caught the attention of obituary writers:

-- "Andrew F. Brimmer, a Louisiana sharecropper's son who was the first black member of the Federal Reserve Board and who led efforts to to reverse the country's balance-of-payments deficit, died on Sunday in Washington. He was 86." (The New York Times)

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The Two-Way
8:07 am
Fri October 12, 2012

Castro 'Is Fine,' His Son Tells State-Friendly Blogger

A visitor watches pictures taken by Cuban photographer and cinematographist Alex Castro, son of former Cuban president Fidel Castro.
Alfredo Estrella AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri October 12, 2012 8:13 am

Fidel Castro's son, Alex Castro, is batting away rumors that his father, the former leader of Cuba, had died.

"The commander is fine, doing his daily things, reading, exercising," Alex Castro said.

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The Two-Way
7:50 am
Fri October 12, 2012

What's All This Malarkey About Malarkey?

Vice President Biden thought much of what his opponent said Thursday night was malarkey, and his face often showed what he was thinking.
Saul Loeb AFP/Getty Images

"With all due respect, that's a bunch of malarkey," Vice President Biden said during Thursday's debate as he challenged Rep. Paul Ryan's assertion that U.S. foreign policy has unraveled under President Obama.

A little later in the debate, Biden said Ryan's criticisms were "a bunch of stuff" — and when moderator Martha Raddatz asked "what does that mean?" he said, "we Irish call it malarkey."

Biden's use of the word has many asking: Where does it come from?

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World
6:58 am
Fri October 12, 2012

Nelson Mandela, Mother Teresa, And Now The EU?

Originally published on Fri October 12, 2012 7:46 am

Transcript

CELESTE HEADLEE, HOST:

This morning, the Norwegian Nobel Committee announced the winner of the 2012 Nobel Peace Prize and they chose the European Union.

THORBJORN JAGLAND: The European Union is currently undergoing grave economic difficulties and (unintelligible) social unrest. The Norwegian Nobel Committee wishes to focus on what it sees as the EU's most important result, the successful struggle for peace and reconciliation and for democracy and human rights.

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Election 2012
6:58 am
Fri October 12, 2012

Biden Debate Coach On VP's Performance

Originally published on Fri October 12, 2012 7:46 am

Transcript

CELESTE HEADLEE, HOST:

This is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. I'm Celeste Headlee. Michel Martin is away. Coming up, President Obama honored late labor and civil rights leader Cesar Chavez earlier this week but a new book questions whether the full story of his life and legacy isn't perhaps more complicated. That's in a moment.

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U.S.
6:56 am
Fri October 12, 2012

Casinos Not An Easy Bet For Local Governments

The MGM Grand Detroit is one of three resort casinos that have opened in the city since 1999.
Spencer Platt Getty Images

More states and cities are turning to casinos to generate revenue and plug budget holes.

The latest to try its luck is Maryland, where groups are waging an expensive campaign over a ballot question that will be put to voters next month. Proponents promise jackpots of jobs and funding for public schools, but analysts say the gamble doesn't always pay off at the levels promised for public coffers.

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The Two-Way
6:50 am
Fri October 12, 2012

Consumer Confidence Jumps To Pre-Recession Level, Survey Shows

"Black Friday" 2011 in Manhattan: Retailers hope to see shoppers out again in force this holiday season. If confidence stays high, they may get their wish.
Michael Nagle Getty Images

Originally published on Fri October 12, 2012 7:11 am

"U.S. consumer sentiment unexpectedly rose to its highest in five years in October as consumers became more optimistic about the economy in a possible boost to President Obama's reelection hopes," Reuters reports.

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Krulwich Wonders...
6:18 am
Fri October 12, 2012

Sun Goes Down. Up Comes A Mystery

minutephysics YouTube

Originally published on Fri October 12, 2012 6:53 am

Here's a question you probably didn't know was a question: Why is the sky dark at night?

My daughter asked me this about 10 years ago. We were looking up at the night sky, and she said, "There's lots of stars up there." And I said, "Yes."

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The Two-Way
5:30 am
Fri October 12, 2012

Panetta: 'Foreign Cyber-Actors Are Probing America's Critical Infrastructure'

U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta.
AFP AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri October 12, 2012 8:14 am

Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta delivered a policy speech that he said was a "clarion call" for Americans to take cyber security seriously. Attacks that can cripple a country, he said, are no longer theoretical.

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The Picture Show
5:11 am
Fri October 12, 2012

'Vintage Black Glamour' Exposes Little-Known Cultural History

That's Bananas: "Whether [Josephine Baker's] getting a pedicure or she's walking down the street or she's relaxing in a yard somewhere, I just love the variety of pictures of her," Gainer says. "The banana skirt is a part of who she was, it's the most famous thing, but it just annoys me when that's just the only thing. ... There was a lot more to her than that."
Michael Ochs Archives Getty Images

Originally published on Fri October 12, 2012 12:03 pm

I was scrolling through my Tumblr feed a year or so ago, when I saw a photo of Joyce Bryant. The caption said she was once dubbed the "black Marilyn Monroe" and was mentioned many times in Walter Winchell's gossip column.

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The Two-Way
4:36 am
Fri October 12, 2012

You Thought The VP Debate Was Feisty? Things Got Physical In California

Democratic Reps. Howard L. Berman and Brad Sherman face off in a debate.
YouTube

Originally published on Fri October 12, 2012 5:25 am

All eyes were on Vice President Joe Biden and Rep. Paul Ryan, last night. By all accounts, it was a political debate for the ages, full of barbs and fireworks.

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