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Around the Nation
3:18 pm
Thu June 25, 2015

Drop In Oil Prices Threatens Economy Of Tiny Texas Town

Originally published on Thu June 25, 2015 5:17 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

The Two-Way
11:26 am
Thu June 25, 2015

Congress Signs Off On Trade Bills, Handing Obama A Huge Win

Originally published on Thu June 25, 2015 2:14 pm

The U.S. House voted 236-138 Thursday to tie a bow on President Obama's package of trade-related legislation — giving him final approval on everything he wanted.

The Senate already had signed off on all of it, granting: 1) enhanced trade negotiation powers to the president, 2) aid for displaced workers and 3) trade incentives for sub-Saharan Africa.

Thursday's vote marked a stunning victory for Obama by clearing his path to completing the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership, a trade deal involving the United States, Japan and 10 other Pacific Rim nations.

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Shots - Health News
11:00 am
Thu June 25, 2015

Statehouse Fights Over Obamacare To Rage On Despite Supreme Court Decision

The Oklahoma State Capitol is one of many legal battlegrounds that remain for the Affordable Care Act.
Sue Ogrocki AP

The Supreme Court ruling in favor of the Obama administration means 6.4 million people won't lose subsidies that helped them afford health insurance.

But the historic ruling in King v. Burwell may be far from the last word on health overhaul.

Bills to advance or cripple the law in statehouses didn't come to a halt in the months that lawmakers awaited the Supreme Court decision. They may well smolder for months or years.

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The Two-Way
8:21 am
Thu June 25, 2015

Supreme Court Rules Obamacare Subsidies Are Legal

Supporters of the Affordable Care Act cheer outside the Supreme Court on Thursday after justices upheld the law's subsidies.
Jim Lo Scalzo EPA/Landov

Originally published on Thu June 25, 2015 11:04 am

Updated at 1 p.m. ET

The U.S. Supreme Court on Thursday handed the Obama administration a major victory on health care, ruling 6-3 that nationwide subsidies called for in the Affordable Care Act are legal.

"Congress passed the Affordable Care Act to improve health insurance markets, not to destroy them," the court's majority said in the opinion, which was written by Chief Justice John Roberts. But they acknowledged that "petitioners' arguments about the plain meaning ... are strong."

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It's All Politics
7:20 am
Thu June 25, 2015

What If The Supreme Court Had Gone The Other Way On Obamacare?

U.S. Rep. Ted Poe, R-Texas, speaks during a Tea Party Patriots rally against the Affordable Care Act in front of the U.S Supreme Court on March 4 in Washington, D.C.
Alex Wong Getty Images

Originally published on Thu June 25, 2015 10:50 am

This post was updated at 12:15 p.m. ET to reflect the Supreme Court's ruling.

The Supreme Court ruled Thursday that state-based subsidies under the Affordable Care Act are legal. A different decision could have affected the health care of millions of Americans. In King v. Burwell, the court chose to allow the exchanges set up under the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare, to many) to continue operating as-is. It could have ended the subsidies in most states allowing many lower-income Americans to afford the insurance offered through those sites.

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The Two-Way
5:03 am
Thu June 25, 2015

Thousands Of Cabdrivers Clog France's Roads To Protest Uber

An UberPop vehicle was overturned by French taxi drivers, who also clashed with riot police, during Thursday's protest of the app-based ride-hailing company.
Ian Langsdon EPA/Landov

Originally published on Thu June 25, 2015 2:29 pm

Taxi drivers in France formed virtual blockades around airports and key train stations Thursday, causing chaos in Paris and other French cities as part of a wide protest against the Uber ride-booking service, known in France as UberPOP.

Government and transportation officials urged travelers to take trains to many airports, as the roads around them were completely blocked.

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Business
4:43 am
Thu June 25, 2015

Business Groups Win After Senate Passes Fast-Track Trade Bill

Originally published on Wed July 1, 2015 11:49 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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NPR Story
3:09 am
Thu June 25, 2015

3 Economists Answer This Question: What Keeps You Up At Night?

Originally published on Thu June 25, 2015 10:01 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

The Two-Way
5:44 pm
Wed June 24, 2015

New York Agency Says Whole Foods Overcharged Customers In City

Originally published on Thu June 25, 2015 8:02 am

New York City's Department of Consumer Affairs announced an ongoing investigation into Whole Foods after finding the grocery store routinely overstated weights and therefore overcharged customers in the city for prepackaged food.

The overcharging ranged from 80 cents for a package of pecan panko to $14.84 for a package of coconut shrimp, the agency said in a statement. The agency's investigation looked at the city's eight Whole Foods stores.

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The Two-Way
2:50 pm
Wed June 24, 2015

Senate Passes Fast-Track Trade Legislation, 60-38

Originally published on Mon July 6, 2015 10:03 am

The Senate handed President Obama a huge victory Wednesday afternoon, giving him final approval of legislation that enhances his power to negotiate trade deals.

The bill needed just 51 votes, but passed 60-38, making it look almost easy.

But earlier this month, the legislation granting Trade Promotion Authority seemed likely to die because of fierce opposition from many Democrats and some Republicans. Various legislative maneuvers were employed to set back the measure.

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The Two-Way
2:40 pm
Wed June 24, 2015

OSHA Launches Program To Protect Nursing Employees

Originally published on Thu June 25, 2015 9:20 am

The federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) will announce Thursday that it's going to crack down on hospitals, for the first time ever, to prevent an epidemic of back and arm injuries among nursing employees.

Nurses and nursing assistants suffer more of those debilitating injuries than any other occupation, and those injuries are caused mainly by moving and lifting patients.

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The Two-Way
12:37 pm
Wed June 24, 2015

U.S. Slips In World Well-Being Rankings; Panama Is No. 1

Panama was found to have the most people with high well-being, and Afghanistan the least, in a new Gallup world index.
Gallup-Healthways Global Well-Being Index, 2014

Originally published on Wed June 24, 2015 1:17 pm

As a region, the Americas fare quite well in Gallup's new global index of personal well-being, but the U.S. fell from No. 12 to No. 23 worldwide. The top 10 includes Costa Rica, Belize, and Mexico.

Panama took the top spot for the second straight year in the Gallup-Healthways Country Well-Being report, with Costa Rica second. Switzerland was the top European country, in fourth. At No. 23, the U.S. is one spot behind Israel and one ahead of Canada.

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The Salt
10:32 am
Wed June 24, 2015

Survival Of The Greenest Beer? Breweries Adapt To A Changing Climate

The Smuttynose Towle Farm brewery in Hampton, N.H., has an invisible but tight envelope that keeps the interior temperature consistently cool or warm, prevents energy loss and ultimately saves money.
Courtesy of Smuttynose Brewing Company

Originally published on Mon July 20, 2015 9:35 am

When you hear the words "green brewery," you might picture gleaming solar panels or aerodynamic wind turbines. But the most valuable piece of technology at the $24 million headquarters of Smuttynose Brewing Co. on the seacoast of New Hampshire isn't quite as sexy.

"The place you have to start is the building envelope," says Smuttynose founder Peter Egelston.

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The Salt
10:09 am
Wed June 24, 2015

Genetically Modified Salmon: Coming To A River Near You?

AquaBounty's salmon (background) has been genetically modified to grow bigger and faster than a conventional Atlantic salmon of the same age (foreground.)
Courtesy of AquaBounty Technologies, Inc.

Originally published on Thu June 25, 2015 2:25 pm

While the debate over whether to label foods containing GMO ingredients plays out across the country, another engineered food has long been waiting to hit grocery stores: genetically modified salmon.

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Shots - Health News
9:19 am
Wed June 24, 2015

When Does Workplace Wellness Become Coercive?

Originally published on Thu June 25, 2015 10:37 am

Christine White pays $300 a year more for her health care because she refused to join her former employer's wellness program, which would have required that she fill out a health questionnaire and join activities like Weight Watchers.

"If I didn't have the money ... I'd have to" participate, says White, 63, a retired groundskeeper from a Portland, Ore., community college.

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NPR Story
4:11 am
Wed June 24, 2015

Confederate Flag Merchandise Is Delicate Topic For Retailers

Originally published on Fri June 26, 2015 12:55 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Health Care
3:09 am
Wed June 24, 2015

Calif. Health Officials Aid People Facing Astronomic Drug Bills

Originally published on Wed June 24, 2015 11:54 am

Copyright 2015 KQED Public Media. To see more, visit http://www.kqed.org.

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Every day for six months last year, Mikkel Lawrence stood over his bathroom sink in Northern California and took two pills that were very expensive.

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Around the Nation
3:09 am
Wed June 24, 2015

S.C. Retailers Caught In The Middle Of Renewed Debate Over Confederate Flag

Originally published on Wed June 24, 2015 8:06 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

The Salt
4:41 pm
Tue June 23, 2015

As Tastes Shift, Food Giant General Mills Gets A Makeover

Product developer Erin Schutt was part of a team that came up with a new line of frozen vegetables for General Mills' Green Giant brand.
Jim Zarroli NPR

Originally published on Fri June 26, 2015 12:54 pm

It's not just the Lucky Charms that are getting a makeover at General Mills. The company's announcement Monday that it is removing artificial colors and flavors from its cereal line is part of a much bigger overhaul at the food giant.

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All Tech Considered
4:33 pm
Tue June 23, 2015

What's Trending On Instagram? A Battle With Twitter

Instagram's latest update features curated photo collections and trending tags.
Instagram

Originally published on Tue June 23, 2015 5:35 pm

Consider yourself warned: Instagram rolled out an update Tuesday, and the photo-sharing app may be about to eat up a lot more of your time.

More substantial than other recent makeovers touting new filters, this change will transform Instagram into a stream of real-time updates from around the country. Following in the footsteps of Twitter and Facebook, Instagram wants to be a source for your news.

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The Two-Way
11:43 am
Tue June 23, 2015

Senate Votes To Advance The White House Trade Agenda

Originally published on Tue June 23, 2015 2:58 pm

The Senate voted 60-37 Tuesday to advance President Obama's trade agenda — setting up a big victory for the White House and a painful loss for labor unions.

This latest Senate vote clears away procedural hurdles for legislation granting Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) to Obama. That power allows the president to negotiate trade pacts and then put them on a so-called fast track through Congress. With TPA in place, Congress would take a simple yes-or-no vote on any trade deal, with no room for amendments.

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Business
9:55 am
Tue June 23, 2015

Airlines Vs. Airports: A Dogfight Over Fees Imposed On Fliers

A plane takes off from New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport on May 25. Airports want Congress to raise passenger fees to pay for improvements.
Trevor Collens AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue June 23, 2015 12:35 pm

You'd think everyone in the aviation industry would be on the same page about improving air travel. Surely they all want more modern aircraft and upgraded airports, right?

They do. But airlines and airports are in a political dogfight this summer over who should be getting more of your money for improvements.

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Europe
3:02 am
Tue June 23, 2015

Anti-Austerity Greek Government Yields Ground At EU Summit

Originally published on Tue June 23, 2015 12:16 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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U.S.
3:02 am
Tue June 23, 2015

How Fracking Is Fueling A Power Shift From Coal To Gas

Bill Pentak of Panda Power Funds (left), Plant Manager John Martin (center) and Construction Manager Rob Risher (right) stand in front of the construction site for the new Panda Liberty gas power plant in Towanda, Penn. The plant, expected to come online in early 2016, was deliberately sited on top of the Marcellus Shale to take advantage of the cheap, abundant gas.
Marie Cusick WITF

Originally published on Tue June 23, 2015 6:10 am

When you flip on a light switch, odds are, you're burning coal. But as the fracking boom continues to unleash huge quantities of natural gas, the nation's electric grid is changing. Power plants are increasingly turning to this low-cost, cleaner-burning fossil fuel.

Bill Pentak stands in the middle of a construction site, looking up at his company's latest project towering overhead — a new natural gas power plant.

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NPR Story
3:02 am
Tue June 23, 2015

Musicians Deny Requests To Allow Their Music To Be Streamed

Originally published on Tue June 23, 2015 6:10 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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The Two-Way
6:13 pm
Mon June 22, 2015

In The Battle Between Taylor Swift And Apple, Swift Didn't Fight Alone

Originally published on Tue June 23, 2015 11:51 am

Taylor Swift is no stranger to positive, even fawning, press coverage. Just this month, there was the story about teenagers using light-up bracelets from a Swift concert to flag down help when they were trapped inside their car after a crash. The headline from MTV read "Taylor Swift Saved Three Teens' Lives — Literally."

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The Salt
4:25 pm
Mon June 22, 2015

Local Food Is Still A Niche. Can It Grow Beyond That?

Elk Grove, Calif., is a suburb of Sacramento, about 15 miles from the city center. This 14-square mile view of the city was photographed on Apr. 23, 2015.
Courtesy of Planet Labs

Originally published on Tue June 23, 2015 8:40 am

Local food enthusiasts have been trying to make the case that buying food from farmers nearby supports local economies, boosts food security and is better for the environment.

But so far, "local" food still makes up a pretty small fraction of what Americans eat. And given that most agriculture in the U.S. is geared toward producing food crops — from corn to soybeans to almonds — for the global market, it doesn't seem likely that will change.

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Law
2:39 pm
Mon June 22, 2015

This California Raisin Grower Just Got His Day In The Sun

Raisin farmer Marvin Horne stands in a field of grapevines planted in 1918 next to his home in Kerman, Calif. Horne was elated by Monday's Supreme Court decision. "It's just an affirmation in our Constitution and the American way of life," he said.
Gary Kazanjian AP

Originally published on Wed June 24, 2015 2:13 pm

The Supreme Court on Monday struck down a Depression-era federal program aimed at stabilizing raisin and other commodity prices.

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The Two-Way
2:13 pm
Mon June 22, 2015

Greek Proposals Raise Hope Of Deal On Bailout

Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras arrives for a meeting with European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker before an EU summit in Brussels on Monday. He's hoping a new Greek proposal will end the deadlock on a bailout for Greece's economy.
Virginia Mayo AP

Originally published on Mon June 22, 2015 3:52 pm

Greece's finance minister says European leaders have, in principle, accepted a new proposal from Athens that could pave the way for another installment of a multibillion-dollar bailout. The move could stave off a Greek default on its debt obligations and avert an exit from the eurozone — at least for now.

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The Salt
1:58 pm
Mon June 22, 2015

Sans Artificial: General Mills Scrambles To Reformulate Lucky Charms

Brace yourself, leprechaun: General Mills wants to ditch the artificial colorings and flavorings in your Lucky Charms.
Mike Mozart Flickr

We hate to break it to you, Mr. Leprechaun, but someone really is after your Lucky Charms: General Mills.

Or more specifically, it's after the artificial colorings used to give the cereal its trademark rainbow-colored marshmallow shapes. General Mills on Monday announced it will remove artificial colors and flavors from all of its cereals.

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