NPR News

Business
3:03 am
Tue March 31, 2015

With 'Single-Stream' Recycling, Convenience Comes At A Cost

At Resource Management's Materials Recovery Facility, workers pull plastic bags, other trash and large pieces of cardboard off the conveyor belts before the mixed, single-stream recyclables enter the sorting machines.
Véronique LaCapra St. Louis Public Radio

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Author Interviews
3:02 am
Tue March 31, 2015

'Publicly Shamed:' Who Needs The Pillory When We've Got Twitter?

cover crop

Writer Jon Ronson has spent a lot of time tracking people who have been shamed, raked over the coals on social media for mostly minor — but sometimes major — transgressions. And he writes about some of them in his new book, So You've Been Publicly Shamed.

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Book News & Features
3:01 am
Tue March 31, 2015

'Wolf Hall' On Stage And TV Means More Makeovers For Henry VIII's 'Pit Bull'

Actor Mark Rylance, seen here as Thomas Cromwell in Masterpiece's Wolf Hall, views Cromwell as a survivor who knows how to manipulate power to his advantage. "He has the mind of a chess player," Rylance says.
Giles Keyte Playground & Company Pictures for Masterpiece/BBC

Before Hilary Mantel decided to write about him, Thomas Cromwell, the man at the center of her popular award-winning novels, wasn't a heroic figure. History and popular culture mostly depicted him as a bad guy, able and willing to do the king's bidding, whether right or wrong.

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Afghanistan
3:00 am
Tue March 31, 2015

The Ascent Of Afghan Women

Sandra Calligaro for NPR

Zahra Karimi Nooristani, 18, cautiously works her way down a rock face high above Kabul as her coach, Farhad Jamshid, guides her.

It is hazardous for his top female student to be rappelling here, not only because of the steep drop, but because she is using a frayed, nine-year-old rope handed down from the men's mountaineering team.

Another danger she faces is the prospect of her neighbors finding out she's climbing at all.

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National Security
2:59 am
Tue March 31, 2015

After Snowden, The NSA Faces Recruitment Challenge

Daniel Swann is exactly the type of person the National Security Agency (NSA) would love to have working for it. A fourth-year concurrent bachelors-masters student at Johns Hopkins University, the 22-year-old has a bright future in cybersecurity.

And growing up in Annapolis, Maryland, not far from the NSA's headquarters, Swann thought he might work at the agency, which intercepts phone calls, emails and other so-called "signals intelligence" from U.S. adversaries.

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NPR Story
2:58 am
Tue March 31, 2015

Indianapolis Mayor Weighs In On Religious Freedom Bill

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

NPR Story
2:58 am
Tue March 31, 2015

Indiana GOP To Revisit Controversial Religious Freedom Act

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

NPR Story
2:58 am
Tue March 31, 2015

Negotiations Over Iran's Nuclear Program Come Down To The Wire

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

Shots - Health News
2:58 am
Tue March 31, 2015

No Easy, Reliable Way To Screen For Suicide, Specialists Say

About twice a year, statistics suggest, a pilot somewhere in the world — usually flying alone — deliberately crashes a plane. The Germanwing flight downed last week may be one such case. But most people who fit the psychological profile of the pilots in these very rare events never have problems while flying.
Patrik Stollarz AFP/Getty Images

Even a careful psychiatric examination of the co-pilot involved in last week's Germanwings jetliner crash probably would not have revealed whether he intended to kill himself, researchers say.

"As a field, we're not very good at accurately predicting who is at risk for suicidal behavior," says Matthew Nock, a psychology professor at Harvard. He says studies show that mental health professionals "perform no better than chance," when it comes to predicting which patients will attempt suicide.

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The Two-Way
8:06 pm
Mon March 30, 2015

Venezuela Cuts Oil Subsidies To Caribbean Nations

Originally published on Tue March 31, 2015 2:28 am

Low oil prices are forcing Venezuela to cut a generous subsidy program to Cuba and a dozen other Caribbean nations.

Venezuela is Latin America's largest oil producer, and its economy depends heavily on oil exports. It's been been hit hard by the tumbling oil prices.

"Venezuela is in desperate straits. The oil sector has been deteriorating, and now with the slumping oil prices, they needed cash desperately," says Michael Shifter, the president of the Inter-American Dialogue, a Washington, D.C.-based group that studies the region.

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The Two-Way
7:05 pm
Mon March 30, 2015

Despite Protestation From Brazil, Trial For 840-Pound Emerald Will Continue

This 2008 file photo provided by the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department shows the so-called Bahia Emerald.
Anonymous AP

A trial about who owns a 840-Pound emerald will continue despite international protestations.

The ownership of the Bahia Emerald, as the massive rock is known, has been hotly contested for years. But in September, the stone became the subject of international controversy, when Brazil said all the ownership questions were irrelevant because the 180,000 carat, $372 million rock was illegally exported.

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The Two-Way
5:25 pm
Mon March 30, 2015

Pharmacists Group Votes To Discourage Members From Providing Execution Drugs

Originally published on Mon March 30, 2015 6:16 pm

The largest pharmacist association in the country has voted to discourage its members from participating in executions.

The move could make executions harder for states that have been ordering their drugs from compounding pharmacies. As we've reported, some states like Texas turned to the pharmacies after big pharmaceutical companies — under pressure from death penalty opponents — decided to stop selling their drugs to U.S. prisons.

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U.S.
4:08 pm
Mon March 30, 2015

Mass Tax Foreclosure Threatens Detroit Homeowners

Homeowners sit in a conference room in Detroit's Cobo Center while waiting for their cases to be heard to avoid foreclosure from tax debts in Detroit on Jan. 29. This year, Wayne County officials sent out 62,000 foreclosure notices to city homeowners behind on property taxes.
Paul Sancya AP

Originally published on Mon March 30, 2015 6:15 pm

In Detroit, tens of thousands of people are facing a deadline Tuesday that could cost some of them their homes. That's when homeowners have to make arrangements to either pay delinquent property taxes — or risk losing their home at a county auction.

When Detroit emerged from bankruptcy last year, it did so with a razor-thin financial cushion. It desperately needs every bit of tax revenue it can muster.

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Race
4:08 pm
Mon March 30, 2015

Fear Of The Black Man: How Racial Bias Could Affect Crime, Labor Rates

Originally published on Mon March 30, 2015 4:23 pm

NPR's Michel Martin speaks with professors Phillip Atiba Goff of UCLA and Harry Holzer of Georgetown University about how fears of African-American men are manifested in the criminal justice system and the labor market, and what that means for the broader African-American community.

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The Two-Way
3:55 pm
Mon March 30, 2015

California's Death Row, The Nation's Largest, Runs Out Of Room

Originally published on Mon March 30, 2015 4:17 pm

The country's largest death row has run out of room.

As NPR member station KCRW reports, that's because a legal fight has meant that the state has not put an inmate to death in nearly a decade, leaving more than 750 of them on death row in the state.

KCRW reports:

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The Two-Way
3:29 pm
Mon March 30, 2015

Airstrikes In Yemen Intensify, Hit Refugee Camp

Pakistani activists march in support of the Saudi government at a protest in Quetta on March 30, 2015. Pakistan is the latest country to join a Saudi-led coalition fighting Houthi rebels in Yemen.
BANARAS KHAN AFP/Getty Images

Saudi-led airstrikes intensified against Houthi rebels in Yemen. International aid agencies say one strike hit a camp for displaced people and refugees in the north of the country, killing at least 29 people and wounding many others.

Doctors Without Borders (MSF) says the strike hit the Al Mazraq refugee camp in an area controlled by the Houthis. The aid agency says at least 34 people were taken to a nearby hospital, and an additional 29 people were dead on arrival.

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Music
2:46 pm
Mon March 30, 2015

Review: Courtney Barnett, 'Sometimes I Sit And Think, And Sometimes I Just Sit'

Originally published on Mon March 30, 2015 5:51 pm

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

Law
2:46 pm
Mon March 30, 2015

Prosecution Rests Case Against Admitted Boston Marathon Bomber

Originally published on Mon March 30, 2015 4:23 pm

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

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

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Politics
2:46 pm
Mon March 30, 2015

Controversy Continues Over Indiana's Religious Freedom Restoration Act

Originally published on Mon March 30, 2015 8:00 pm

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

Goats and Soda
2:46 pm
Mon March 30, 2015

Why Are Chinese Artists Representing Kenya At The Venice Biennale?

In The Shame In Venice 2, Kenyan artist Michael Soi protests the makeup of his country's pavilion at the Biennale.
Courtesy of Michael Soi

Originally published on Mon March 30, 2015 9:23 pm

There's something sketchy at this year's Venice Biennale — the international art exhibition sometimes dubbed the Olympics of the contemporary art world.

When you come to the Kenyan pavilion, almost all of the artists will be ... Chinese.

The Biennale, one of the oldest and most important exhibitions of contemporary art in the world, takes place in Venice every two years. Thirty countries, including the U.S., have a permanent slot.

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Parallels
2:46 pm
Mon March 30, 2015

Cholita, An Abused Bear In Peru, Gets A New Home In Colorado

Cholita, an Andean bear, was abused in a circus in Peru and is now in a small zoo. An animal welfare group has now received permission to take Cholita to a wildlife sanctuary in Colorado, along with more than 30 former circus lions.
Courtesy of Animal Defenders International

Originally published on Mon March 30, 2015 6:48 pm

A badly abused Peruvian bear named Cholita is coming to a sanctuary in Colorado. Animal Defenders International announced that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service expedited the request and she will be on her way next month.

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NPR Ed
1:46 pm
Mon March 30, 2015

Revolving Door Of Teachers Costs Schools Billions Every Year

Nearly half of all beginning teachers will leave their classrooms within five years, only to be replaced by another fresh-faced educator.
LA Johnson/NPR

Originally published on Mon March 30, 2015 2:57 pm

Every year, thousands of fresh-faced teachers are handed the keys to a new classroom, given a pat on the back and told, "Good luck!"

Over the next five years, though, nearly half of those teachers will transfer to a new school or leave the profession altogether — only to be replaced with similarly fresh-faced teachers.

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It's All Politics
1:44 pm
Mon March 30, 2015

Money Rules: Candidates Go Around The Law, As Cash Records To Be Smashed

Would-be presidential candidates are ditching "testing the waters" and "exploratory committees" to hold onto unlimited and undisclosed cash for longer.
Mark Wilson Getty Images

This is Part One in an occasional series of features on campaign finance, called "Money Rules."

The hunt for big bucks is changing the way politicians run for president.

When a candidate finally admits he or she is a candidate, donors are limited to gifts of $2,700. (A donor can give an additional $2,700 if the candidate makes it through to the general election.)

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The Salt
1:41 pm
Mon March 30, 2015

Our Food-Safety System Is A Patchwork With Big Holes, Critics Say

Walking through the warehouse of food processor Heartland Gourmet in Lincoln, Neb., shows how complicated the food safety system can be. Pallets are stacked with sacks of potato flour, and the smell of fresh-baked apple-cinnamon muffins floats in the air.

Heartland Gourmet makes a wide range of foods — from muffins and organic baking mixes to pizzas and burritos. That means business manager Mark Zink has to answer to both of the main U.S. food safety regulators, the Department of Agriculture and the Food and Drug Administration.

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The Two-Way
1:39 pm
Mon March 30, 2015

Judy Woodruff Recalls Assassination Attempt On President Reagan

A Secret Service agent brandishes a submachine gun while agents and police subdue a gunman who shot President Reagan, his press secretary, a policeman and a Secret Service agent in Washington on March 30, 1981.
Ron Edmonds AP

Originally published on Mon March 30, 2015 3:08 pm

Thirty-four years ago today, John Hinckley Jr. tried to kill President Reagan.

Reagan was shot in the chest but made a full recovery. Three others, including press secretary James Brady, were wounded.

Veteran journalist Judy Woodruff, now with PBS Newshour, was then a reporter with NBC News. She tweeted her recollection of the events of the day:

Music
1:38 pm
Mon March 30, 2015

Art Pepper's Startling Intensity Captured On Live Recordings

Since 2006, Laurie Pepper, the widow of jazz saxophonist Art Pepper, has been releasing live recordings her husband made during the last years of his life. A new batch of these recordings from 1981 is out. Fresh Air jazz critic Kevin Whitehead says that Art Pepper played like he was making up for lost time.

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It's All Politics
1:28 pm
Mon March 30, 2015

Elizabeth Warren On Hillary Clinton And Running For President

Sen. Elizabeth Warren talked about 2016 to WBUR's Here & Now: "What I care about is that everyone who runs for president, who runs for any national office right now, talks about this core set of issues."
Manuel Balce Ceneta AP

Originally published on Mon March 30, 2015 2:19 pm

No one in politics today is hearing more calls from progressives to run than Elizabeth Warren, the popular and populist Massachusetts senator. Warren, though, denies any interest in the presidency and continued to do that Monday in an interview with Jeremy Hobson on WBUR's Here & Now.

"I'm out here fighting this fight," Warren said. "I'm fighting it every single day in the United States."

Asked if she wants to run, Warren said bluntly, "I do not."

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Joe's Big Idea
12:34 pm
Mon March 30, 2015

Want To Do A Little Astrophysics? This App Detects Cosmic Rays

Smart phones contain a silicon chip inside the camera that might be used to detect rare, high energy particles from outer space.
J. Yang/Courtesy of WIPAC

Originally published on Mon March 30, 2015 4:23 pm

Scientists in California are hoping to use your smart phone to solve a cosmic mystery. They're developing an app to turn your phone into a cosmic ray detector. If enough people install the app, the scientists think they'll be able to figure out once and for all what's producing the very energetic cosmic rays that occasionally hit the Earth.

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The Two-Way
12:29 pm
Mon March 30, 2015

Prosecution Rests In Case Against Admitted Boston Marathon Bomber

In this March 5, 2015 file courtroom sketch, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, center, is depicted between defense attorneys Miriam Conrad, left, and Judy Clarke, right, during his federal death penalty trial in Boston.
Jane Flavell Collins AP

After presenting emotional testimony about the the physical damage one of the bombs inflicted on 8-year-old Martin Richard, the prosecution rested in its case against admitted Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev.

NPR's Tovia Smith is inside the court room and she's been Tweeting about the trial. She reports:

After that testimony, Tsarnaev's defense attorneys did not have any questions, so the prosecution rested its case.

The AP reports:

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NPR Story
12:24 pm
Mon March 30, 2015

Hi-Tech Now An Essential Tool On Southwest Farms

Robots still haven't caught up to the precise hand/eye coordination of human hands. Here, a crew strips heads of iceberg lettuce, and gets them ready to be packed and shipped for Dole. (Kate Sheehy/KJZZ)

Much of the country’s fresh fruits and vegetables are grown in the Southwest and harvested by farm workers.

But these days, a successful harvest relies on a combination of three different factors: farming, technology and venture capitalism.

From the Here & Now Contributors Network, Kate Sheehy from the Fronteras Desk at KJZZ reports.

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