NPR News

The Two-Way
3:22 pm
Mon December 8, 2014

(Not) Eaten Alive: A Snake Tale, Made For TV

A still image from the Discovery TV special Eaten Alive, which angered some viewers after it aired Sunday.
Discovery

Originally published on Tue December 9, 2014 11:31 am

The outcome of an outlandish TV stunt Sunday night didn't go down well with many viewers, who say they were duped into expecting that the Discovery special Eaten Alive would actually portray a man being ingested by an anaconda.

But that didn't happen, forcing the network to defend the program today by saying it had been naturalist Paul Rosolie's "absolute intention to be eaten alive."

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Economy
3:06 pm
Mon December 8, 2014

Some Liberals And Tea Partiers Unite To Oppose Trade Deals

Protesters of varied stripes and political affiliations gathered outside the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative where negotiators from 12 nations were meeting to discuss the Trans-Pacific Partnership.
James Clark NPR

Originally published on Mon December 8, 2014 4:15 pm

When it comes to environmental regulations, taxes and the minimum wage, business groups generally object to President Obama's positions, while liberals support him.

But one issue blurs the usual political lines: trade.

Just last week, Obama told the Business Roundtable he would push to complete massive trade deals with both Asian and European nations. "If we can get that done, that's good for American businesses," he said.

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Parallels
2:40 pm
Mon December 8, 2014

Facing Threats From ISIS And Iran, Gulf States Set To Join Forces

A member of the Saudi border guards mans a machine gun at the border with Iraq in July. Since the so-called Islamic State launched its offensive this summer in Iraq, Saudi Arabia has sent thousands of troops to the region.
Faisal Nasser Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Tue December 9, 2014 9:17 am

Alarmed over rising threats in the Middle East and North Africa, the Gulf Cooperation Council is set to launch an unprecedented joint military command, according to regional officials and military analysts.

"At the moment, we are witnessing a new spirit," says Abdulaziz Sager, head of the Gulf Research Center, a think tank that focuses on the GCC, a six-member group of Arab monarchies.

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Around the Nation
2:39 pm
Mon December 8, 2014

Fallout From 'Rolling Stone' Story Changes Conversation At UVA

Originally published on Tue December 9, 2014 8:49 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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The Two-Way
2:12 pm
Mon December 8, 2014

Obama Administration Unveils New Limits On Racial Profiling

Originally published on Mon December 8, 2014 3:44 pm

The Obama administration released new guidelines today to ban racial profiling by federal law enforcement officers. The guidelines replace ones adopted by the Bush administration in 2003.

The new rules prohibit profiling based on race, ethnicity, national origin, gender, religion or sexual orientation and apply to federal officers, such as the FBI and Secret Service and any local law enforcement that work with them on task forces.

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The Two-Way
2:04 pm
Mon December 8, 2014

U.K. Lawmaker Apologizes For Playing 'Candy Crush Saga' At Hearing

King Digital Entertainment's online game Candy Crush Saga has millions of fans: British lawmaker Nigel Mills is among them.
AP

Originally published on Mon December 8, 2014 2:06 pm

If you dislike meetings, you might empathize with Nigel Mills. He's a British lawmaker who had to apologize after being caught playing Candy Crush Saga on his iPad during a hearing. (As far as we know, he wasn't sending invitations to his Facebook friends to join him.)

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The Two-Way
12:54 pm
Mon December 8, 2014

U.S. Boosts Security At Facilities Ahead Of 'Torture Report' Release

Originally published on Tue December 9, 2014 6:53 am

The U.S. has increased security of its facilities around the world ahead of the release Tuesday by the Senate of the executive summary of its report on the CIA's interrogation practices in the war on terrorism, White House spokesman Josh Earnest said today.

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NPR Story
12:51 pm
Mon December 8, 2014

In 'The Death of Santini' Pat Conroy Turns From Fiction To Memoir

Originally published on Mon December 8, 2014 12:12 pm

Readers of Pat Conroy‘s novels “The Prince of Tides” and “The Great Santini” are very familiar with his troubled family history, in particular his harsh military father But last year, Pat decided to step out from behind the guise of fiction and write a memoir: “The

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NPR Story
12:51 pm
Mon December 8, 2014

With The Cost Of Beef Up, Pasture Prices Rise, Too

Cattle take a drink from a tank filled by a windmill. Rancher Dave Wright was hoping to buy part of a neighboring ranch to expand his herd, but it sold for extreme prices. (Grant Gerlock /Harvest Public Media)

The U.S. beef herd is smaller than it has been in decades, thanks to drought and low cattle prices. But Midwest ranchers are eager to grow. And that has turned grass into a hot commodity.

From the Here & Now Contributors Network, Harvest Public Media’s Grant Gerlock has the story.

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NPR Story
12:51 pm
Mon December 8, 2014

Menu Calorie Count Mandate Adds Up To $5 Billion In 'Lost Pleasure'

The FDA estimates that consumers will suffer more than $5 billion in lost pleasure over a 20 year period due to the calorie counts that will soon be required of fast food chains, movie theaters and certain sit-down restaurants next year.

This new lost pleasure calculation is part of the new regulations that are geared to discourage people from eating junk food and curbing obesity.

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The Two-Way
12:23 pm
Mon December 8, 2014

End Fraternities' Suspension, UVA Urged Amid 'Rolling Stone' Fallout

Originally published on Mon December 8, 2014 1:00 pm

Three national organizations are calling on the University of Virginia to reinstate fraternities and sororities after an acknowledgment last week by Rolling Stone magazine of "discrepancies" in its story on gang rape.

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The Two-Way
12:21 pm
Mon December 8, 2014

2014 A Year Of 'Unspeakable Brutality' For Children In Conflict Zones

A Syrian Kurdish child looks through the fence of a refugee camp in the town of Suruc, Turkey, last month. The advance of Islamic State jihadists on Kobane has forced some 200,000 refugees to flee across the border to Turkey.
Aris Messinis AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon December 8, 2014 6:24 pm

The United Nations Children's Fund calls 2014 a devastating year for children, reporting that as many as 15 million young people are caught in conflicts in the Central African Republic, Iraq, South Sudan, the Palestinian territories, Syria and Ukraine.

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Shots - Health News
11:47 am
Mon December 8, 2014

Despite Decline, Elective Early Births Remain A Medicaid Problem

The proportion of elective early deliveries under Medicaid has declined but remains a problem.
Health Affairs

Originally published on Wed December 10, 2014 11:00 am

Nearly 9 percent of the births covered by Medicaid — or about 160,000 each year — were elective deliveries before 39 weeks of gestation. Early deliveries like those can lead to worse health outcomes for mothers and children and higher costs, according to a study published Monday.

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Music
11:01 am
Mon December 8, 2014

Steve Lacy's Monk Quartet, Solo Sax Albums Reissues

Originally published on Mon December 8, 2014 11:13 am

Fresh Air jazz critic Kevin Whitehead reviews two reissues featuring the late soprano saxophonist Steve Lacy — a live recording of a 1963 quartet that only played Thelonious Monk tunes, and later music for solo soprano. Monk was always Lacy's biggest influence.

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

The Two-Way
9:23 am
Mon December 8, 2014

Democratic Mayors Back Obama's Immigration Plan, Citing Economic Benefits

New York Mayor Bill de Blasio is hosting mayors from across the country to support President Obama's executive actions on immigration.
Mark Lennihan AP

Originally published on Mon December 8, 2014 12:50 pm

Short on the heels of a nonbinding House vote to block President Obama's executive action on immigration, some 20 Democratic U.S. mayors are meeting today in New York City to send a different message:

They want to help implement the president's plan.

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Shots - Health News
9:20 am
Mon December 8, 2014

Doctors Are Slow To Adopt Changes In Breast Cancer Treatment

New evidence on the effectiveness of medical treatments can take a long time to influence medical practice.
Damian Dovarganes AP

Originally published on Tue December 9, 2014 2:58 pm

Cancer doctors want the best, most effective treatment for their patients. But it turns out many aren't paying attention to evidence that older women with early stage breast cancer may be enduring the pain, fatigue and cost of radiation treatment although it doesn't increase life expectancy.

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The Two-Way
8:22 am
Mon December 8, 2014

Typhoon Death Toll Rises In Philippines, Though Devastation Less Than Feared

A Filipino man carries a dirty plastic sheet from his house after strong waves from Typhoon Hagupit battered a coastal village in Legazpi, Albay province, in the eastern Philippines, on Monday. Residents began trickling back to their homes after the local government said the typhoon has passed their province.
Aaron Favila AP

Originally published on Mon December 8, 2014 1:08 pm

At least 21 people are dead and more than a million others have been forced into shelters after Typhoon Hagupit hit the central Philippines this weekend, but the storm has spared the region the devastation of last year's Typhoon Haiyan.

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The Two-Way
7:48 am
Mon December 8, 2014

Bay Area Protests Turn Violent For Second Night In A Row

Protesters light a dumpster on fire, early Monday in Berkeley, Calif., as raucous demonstrations hit the streets of California for a second straight night in response to police killings in Missouri and New York.
Taylor Nitta AP

Originally published on Mon December 8, 2014 12:04 pm

Protests over police killings in Missouri and New York turned violent in Berkeley, Calif., for the second night in a row as demonstrators vandalized businesses and blocked traffic on a freeway.

"I did a few things that, you know, I'm not too proud of but, you know, I felt like it was all for a good cause at the time," protester Gary Leroy told KRON TV.

Protesters threw rocks and bottles at police, who responded with tear gas.

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NPR Ed
7:25 am
Mon December 8, 2014

Kids' Drawings Speak Volumes About Home

Examples of a family drawing assessment: A drawing from a child scored with minimal indicators of family dysfunction (top), and one from a child scored with elevated levels of family dysfunction (bottom).
W. Roger Mills-Koonce

Originally published on Mon December 8, 2014 10:10 am

When children reach 6 years old, their drawings matter.

Not because of those purple unicorns or pinstripe dragons but because of how kids sketch themselves and the very real people in their lives.

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Strange News
4:14 am
Mon December 8, 2014

Laughter Is The Best Medicine For Gulag Blues, Russia Tells Guards

Originally published on Mon December 8, 2014 5:44 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Shots - Health News
3:08 am
Mon December 8, 2014

Medicine's Subtle Art Gives A Man The Chance To Breathe Again

Bob Smithson, 79, can now hold his head upright and breathe on his own, thanks to a medication for myasthenia gravis.
M. Scott Brauer for NPR

Originally published on Tue December 9, 2014 2:57 pm

Bob Smithson had been in the critical care unit at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston for more than a week. He had a rare neuromuscular disease, and his 78-year-old body was being kept alive by tubes that delivered air to his lungs and food to his stomach.

Then Bob's wife, Pat, got some really disturbing news. The hospital's medical staff wanted Bob to have a tracheostomy, a surgical procedure that would carve a hole in his neck and allow doctors to keep him on a breathing machine indefinitely.

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Around the Nation
2:57 am
Mon December 8, 2014

Landrieu's Loss Flips Lingering Holdout Of Democrats' 'Solid South'

Originally published on Mon December 8, 2014 5:44 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Law
2:57 am
Mon December 8, 2014

Justice Department Moves To Further Rein In Racial Profiling

Originally published on Mon December 8, 2014 5:44 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Latin America
2:57 am
Mon December 8, 2014

Burnt Remains Of Missing Mexican Student Identified; 42 Still Not Found

Originally published on Mon December 8, 2014 5:44 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Politics
2:57 am
Mon December 8, 2014

Their Senate, Their Rules: GOP May Allow Blocking Of Nominees Again

Incoming Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., leaves a closed-door policy meeting at the Capitol on Dec. 2. McConnell says he wants to make the Senate work the way it used to, but not all Republicans are on board.
J. Scott Applewhite AP

Originally published on Mon December 8, 2014 11:28 am

Incoming Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell says one of his top priorities will be to make the Senate work the way it used to — which would include the use of filibusters to block presidential appointments. But would that improve the way the Senate works? Republicans will be debating that question behind closed doors Tuesday. Many were furious when Democrats eliminated the filibuster for nearly all confirmation votes last year — a change some called the "nuclear option." But now that the GOP will be in the majority, they're not all that eager to go back.

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Shots - Health News
2:57 am
Mon December 8, 2014

Old And Overmedicated: The Real Drug Problem In Nursing Homes

Antipsychotic drugs aren't necessary in the vast majority of dementia cases, gerontologists say. The pills can be stupefying and greatly raise the risk of falls — and hip fracture.
iStockphoto

Originally published on Wed December 10, 2014 4:32 pm

It's one of the worst fears we have for our parents or for ourselves: that we, or they, will end up in a nursing home, drugged into a stupor. And that fear is not entirely unreasonable. Almost 300,000 nursing home residents are currently receiving antipsychotic drugs, usually to suppress the anxiety or aggression that can go with Alzheimer's disease and other dementia.

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The Two-Way
2:57 am
Mon December 8, 2014

Oh, Snap! NASA Promises Best Photo Yet Of Faraway Pluto

NASA/ESA/M. Buie (Southwest Research Institute)

Originally published on Mon December 8, 2014 8:22 am

Humanity has snapped detailed portraits of planets and moons throughout our solar system. But there's one missing from the album: Pluto.

Although Pluto was discovered in 1930, it has remained stubbornly hard to photograph. The Hubble Space Telescope has taken the best pictures, and frankly, they stink.

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Shots - Health News
2:57 am
Mon December 8, 2014

When It Comes To Day Care, Parents Want All Children Vaccinated

According to a national poll on children's health, over 80 percent of parents believe all children in day care should be required to be up to date on their vaccines.
Alison Bruzek NPR

Originally published on Mon December 8, 2014 2:55 pm

There's been a lot of attention drawn to people who don't believe in vaccinating their children, but there are many more people who believe that vaccines are the best way to protect children from contagious disease. A recent poll shows just how concerned parents are about vaccines when it comes to putting their children in day care.

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NPR Story
2:57 am
Mon December 8, 2014

In Largest Transfer Since 2009, 6 Leave Guantanamo For Uruguay

Originally published on Mon December 8, 2014 2:37 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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The Two-Way
12:46 am
Mon December 8, 2014

Congress Clashes Over Release Of CIA 'Torture Report'

Senate intelligence committee chairwoman Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., is again defending her report on CIA torture methods, which was set to be released this week.
J. Scott Applewhite AP

Originally published on Tue December 9, 2014 7:06 am

Leaders on Capitol Hill are at odds regarding a report on CIA methods — including torture — used to extract information in the so-called war on terror.

Chairwoman of the Senate intelligence committee Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., has been fighting for the release of her 480-page executive summary of the report since April of this year, and it finally was scheduled for a reveal this week.

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