NPR News

Music Interviews
12:03 am
Sat September 22, 2012

Kid Koala: All Roads Lead To The Blues

Kid Koala's new album is titled 12 Bit Blues.
Corinne Merrell Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Sat September 22, 2012 8:35 am

Eric San, who goes by the name Kid Koala, plays the blues. But just as Kid Koala isn't a traditional blues name like Blind Lemon Jefferson or Doctor Ross the Harmonica Boss, he isn't a standard blues man.

Kid Koala is a DJ. Big turntables, fast hands, scratching old-fashioned vinyl records — the whole deal. Now, he's taken that DJ equipment and produced a "turntable blues" album titled 12 Bit Blues.

So how did a Canadian DJ discover the blues, exactly? San says it all happened in high school.

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It's All Politics
5:25 pm
Fri September 21, 2012

Romney's 2011 Tax Return Gives More Fodder To Critics Who Already Had Surplus

Mitt Romney waves to supporters as he arrives at a rally Friday in Las Vegas.
Julie Jacobson AP

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 5:34 pm

Mitt Romney's Friday release of his 2011 tax return puts that issue back in the headlines just when it had slipped largely off many people's radar screens.

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The Two-Way
4:34 pm
Fri September 21, 2012

Kickstarter Says It 'Is Not A Store' As It Revises Policy On Projects' Risks

A screengrab shows three highly funded Design projects currently on Kickstarter's site. The company's founder say they will require more information about the challenges potential entrepreneurs could face.
NPR

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 9:06 pm

Even as it has received praise for bringing innovative ideas to life, Kickstarter has been criticized for allowing creators to be a little fuzzy about their plans — and for providing little recourse to investors who become unsatisfied with the project they've supported. The site has now announced changes that it hopes will ease those troubles.

The biggest change is a new section called "Risks and Challenges," which requires potential entrepreneurs to list the obstacles they face, and how they plan to deal with them.

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The Record
4:17 pm
Fri September 21, 2012

Universal's Purchase Of EMI Gets Thumbs Up In U.S. And Europe

The catalog of The Beatles, which was owned by EMI, will be among the assets that the Universal Music Group gets to keep.
Jim Gray Getty Images

Originally published on Thu October 4, 2012 1:20 pm

And then there were three — record labels, that is. Regulators in the United States and Europe have approved the acquisition of EMI Music by Univeral Music Group. The combined label will own close to 40 percent of the world music market with a trove of acts that includes The Beatles.

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Science
4:05 pm
Fri September 21, 2012

Chimney Rock Becomes Newest National Monument

A large sandstone feature in southwestern Colorado, Chimney Rock became America's newest national monument on Friday.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 4:53 pm

President Obama named a new national monument on Friday: Chimney Rock in southwestern Colorado. With two sandstone spires soaring from a mesa, not only is Chimney Rock a spectacular place; it also provides a fascinating glimpse into the ancient people who lived in that region more than 1,000 years ago.

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Election 2012
3:41 pm
Fri September 21, 2012

In Wisconsin, Political Circus Leaves Voters Wounded

Heidi Accola works a stand at the farmers market in Baraboo, Wis. She runs a 1-acre organic farm with her husband, but she says they don't talk politics at home because it gets too heated.
Melissa Block NPR

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 4:53 pm

Wisconsin is a prime battleground state in this year's presidential election.

Republicans hope the pick of native son Paul Ryan as their vice presidential nominee will bolster their chances to turn the state red in November. Wisconsin hasn't voted for a Republican for president since 1984. Barack Obama won the state by a blowout 14 points in 2008. And a run of Wisconsin polls this week shows him widening his lead over Mitt Romney.

So what do Wisconsin voters have to say about their choices — and their mood?

Economic Strain

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Commentary
3:30 pm
Fri September 21, 2012

Week In Politics: The '47 Percent,' Senate Races

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 4:53 pm

Robert Siegel talks to regular political commentators, E.J. Dionne of The Washington Post and Brookings Institution, and David Brooks of The New York Times. They discuss Mitt Romney's "47 percent," new polls on the presidential race, and close Senate races.

The Two-Way
3:25 pm
Fri September 21, 2012

Touchdown: Space Shuttle Endeavour Lands In Los Angeles

The Space Shuttle Endeavour passes the Hollywood Sign and the Griffith Observatory as seen from Dodger Stadium Friday.
Mark J. Terrill AP

Originally published on Mon September 24, 2012 4:44 am

The Space Shuttle Endeavour has landed safely in Los Angeles, after giving admirers around the city a chance to take historic photos of its last flight.

"Amazing, amazing, amazing," Derek Johns, 41, told The Los Angeles Times. Johns took photos from a pier.

"I got chills," El Segundo councilman Dave Atkinson told the paper. "This is America at its finest."

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It's All Politics
3:11 pm
Fri September 21, 2012

Obama, Ryan AARP Appearances Show Politics' Third Rail Is Still Charged

President Obama spoke to AARP members via live video feed.
AARP livestream

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 3:59 pm

Separate appearances Friday by President Obama and Rep. Paul Ryan before an AARP meeting in New Orleans proved that the third rail of American politics, Medicare and Social Security collectively, is still very much electrified.

Speaking to a supremely friendly audience via live video feed from Virginia, where he was campaigning, Obama drew repeated applause and cheers with promises to defend Medicare and Social Security from Republican proposals that he said threaten the entitlement programs' ability to deliver the kind of benefits seniors have become accustomed to.

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Shots - Health Blog
3:00 pm
Fri September 21, 2012

Government Officials Retire Chimpanzees From Research

Federally funded chimps at the New Iberia Research Center in Louisiana will retire to either a lab in Texas or a chimp sanctuary in Louisiana.
Courtesy of the Humane Society of the United States

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 4:47 pm

One hundred ten chimpanzees will retire from biomedical research, the National Institutes of Health announced today. The move comes as some groups are pushing for a ban on all medical chimp research.

The NIH has been reviewing its chimp research since December. That's when a report from the Institute of Medicine said that there was almost no scientific need for doing biomedical research on chimps.

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Around the Nation
2:56 pm
Fri September 21, 2012

In Calif., Some Ex-Inmates Get Help In New Ways

Francesa Anello with the Los Angeles County Mental Health Department heads up mental health services for prisoners at the county jail. She's responsible for reintegrating released prisoners with mental illness back into the community.
Scott Shafer for NPR

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 4:53 pm

Under California's criminal justice realignment program, counties are taking over responsibility from the state for low-level felons. And that has affected how inmates with histories of mental illness move through the system even after they're released.

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NPR Story
2:56 pm
Fri September 21, 2012

Syrian Activists Protest, But Not Over Anti-Islam Video

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 4:53 pm

For the past year and a half, every Friday in Syria has been given a name. That's because every Friday, people protest against the government, and those protests get a title. This week's title? "Syrian sons and daughters of the Prophet Mohammed are being slaughtered." In other words: "To all you Muslims who are angry about the denigration of the Prophet Mohammed in some YouTube film? Don't forget about us."

NPR Story
2:56 pm
Fri September 21, 2012

U.S. Takes Iranian Opposition Group Of Terrorism List

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 4:53 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

And I'm Robert Siegel. It is a move sure to anger Iran. The Obama administration has decided to take an Iranian resistance group known as the MEK off a terrorism list. MEK stands for Mujahadin-e-Khalq. The group has been lobbying for this delisting for years and recently the group won a U.S. court case. The court ordered Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to make a decision on the MEK by October 1. NPR's Michele Kelemen explains.

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It's All Politics
2:50 pm
Fri September 21, 2012

GOP Senate Takeover Hopes Dim, But Too Early To Put On Ice

Republican Rep. Todd Akin and incumbent Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill debate Friday in Columbia, Mo. McCaskill had once been considered among the most vulnerable Senate Democrats until Akin made comments about "legitimate rape." The candidates were asked about Akin's controversial statement at the start of Friday's debate.
Jeff Roberson AP

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 5:58 pm

Republican dreams of taking control of the U.S. Senate in November have been declared all but dead over the past several days by prognosticators pointing to trouble facing the party in unexpected places.

Missouri and Indiana come to mind.

But don't count Senate race analyst Jennifer Duffy among them.

"I'm not ready to call this done and over," Duffy said of the GOP's push to pick up four seats, which would definitely tip the Senate balance of power. "We seem to be in some period of transition. Whether it's permanent or not, we'll know in a couple weeks."

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The Two-Way
2:17 pm
Fri September 21, 2012

Wide Gap Remains Between NFL And Refs; League Insists On Respect For Subs

Denver Broncos Coach John Fox yells at field judge Jimmy Buchanan during the Broncos' game against Atlanta Monday. Referring to the game, the NFL insisted that players and coaches give replacement referees, and the game, more respect.
Kevin C. Cox Getty Images

Originally published on Mon September 24, 2012 4:44 am

Despite complaints from NFL coaches and players, the league and its locked-out officials are no closer to reaching a deal than they were last week, according to reports. The two sides are separated by "significant and serious economic gaps," an anonymous source tells the AP.

A representative of the NFL Referees Association confirmed that talks had taken place, but he would not go into detail, the AP reports.

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Around the Nation
1:31 pm
Fri September 21, 2012

One Afghan Girl's Healing Journey To The U.S.

Arefa with her host family, sisters Jami Valentine (left) and Staci Freeman. Doctors in the U.S. have been treating Arefa's third-degree burns, and also performed skin-graft surgery for the top of her head. Each morning still requires a fresh dressing.
Gloria Hillard for NPR

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 8:09 pm

There is limited medical infrastructure in war-torn Afghanistan, so severely wounded children are sometimes brought to the U.S. for medical care. Doctors in America say that for one little girl, her struggle to stay alive for three years until finding her way from central Afghanistan to a hospital in Los Angeles is nothing short of a miracle.

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World Cafe
12:24 pm
Fri September 21, 2012

Band Of Horses On World Cafe

Band Of Horses.
Christopher Wilson Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Mon October 29, 2012 3:15 pm

Two years after the success of 2010's Grammy-nominated Infinite Arms, the twangy rock group Band of Horses just returned with a new album titled Mirage Rock.

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The Two-Way
12:19 pm
Fri September 21, 2012

Romney's 2011 Tax Return Shows He Paid At 14.1 Percent Rate, Campaign Says

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 4:53 pm

Mitt Romney and his wife Ann paid $1,935,708 in federal taxes last year on income of $13,696,951, an effective tax rate for the couple of 14.1 percent, the Republican presidential nominee's campaign just reported.

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Shots - Health Blog
11:29 am
Fri September 21, 2012

'Downton Abbey' And The History Of Medical Quackery

FDA

The third season of the television show Downton Abbey premiered in the U.K. last weekend, and if you're a dedicated follower like me, you'll know that medical tragedy is no stranger to the Crowley household.

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History
10:57 am
Fri September 21, 2012

Civil War Historian Drew Gilpin Faust On PBS

Historian Drew Gilpin Faust speaks onstage at the American Experience Death and the Civil War panel in July.
Frederick M. Brown Getty Images

Originally published on Thu November 8, 2012 9:57 am

This interview was originally broadcast on Jan. 9, 2008. Gilpin is featured in PBS's American Experience called Death and the Civil War. It premiered Sept.

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The Two-Way
10:52 am
Fri September 21, 2012

Please Tell Us Your Password Isn't 1-2-3-4

Try 1-2-3-4 and there's a fair chance you'll get in.
Kristian Dowling Getty Images

Be honest, now.

Is 1-2-3-4 the password to some of your supposedly secure accounts?

If so, as Nick Berry of the analysis firm Data Genetics told All Things Considered's Robert Siegel, you're definitely not alone. When it comes to bank cards, he says, "the single most common password is 1-2-3-4 and over 10 percent of all cards use that particular number."

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Politics
10:05 am
Fri September 21, 2012

Was Romney Right On Video Comments?

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

I'm Michel Martin and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. Coming up, we are going to talk more about those protests that have been spreading in the Muslim world connected to a provocative video that has now gone viral. We'll talk about whether this is about a clash of civilizations or values or something else.

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Faith Matters
10:05 am
Fri September 21, 2012

A Look At Islam And Free Speech

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

I'm Michel Martin, and this is TELL ME MORE, from NPR News. Coming up, we'll dig into our digital mailbox to hear from you about stories and interviews that caught your attention or provoked some push-back this week. That's BackTalk, and it's in just a few minutes.

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The Two-Way
8:51 am
Fri September 21, 2012

Rep. Maxine Waters Cleared By House Ethics Committee

Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., and her husband Sidney Williams at the Capitol Hill hearing today where it was announced that she's been cleared.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

After an investigation that lasted two years, the House Ethics Committee has cleared Democratic Rep. Maxine Waters of charges that she tried to influence regulators when a bank that her husband owns stock in went looking for a federal bailout in 2008.

Virginia Republican Bob Goodlatte, acting chairman of the ethics panel, announced the decision this morning.

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Krulwich Wonders...
8:49 am
Fri September 21, 2012

Getting Slower And Slower: How Slow Can You Go?

Vincent Liota

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 9:36 am

Before we go slow, let's go fast, so fast you can't go any faster. That would be light in a vacuum, traveling at 670 million miles per hour ...

Light, of course, can slow down. When light passes through water, it loses speed. A diamond is an even better speed bump. It can slow a beam of light by 40 percent.

But moving on, you and I are going pretty fast right now, though we don't notice. The planet we're on is zipping around the sun at 66,000-plus miles per hour ...

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It's All Politics
7:56 am
Fri September 21, 2012

The Voter Veto: On Controversial Issues, More Citizens Taking On Lawmakers

In March, Stacey Kargman-Kaye (left) and her partner, Sharon Gorenstein, with sons Asher, 13, and Ezra, 8, gathered at the Maryland Statehouse in Annapolis to witness the signing of a law recognizing same-sex marriage. On Nov. 6, Maryland voters will decide whether to overturn the new law.
Amy Davis MCT /Landov

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 11:22 am

If you didn't get your fill of the debate about the best ways to evaluate and compensate teachers from the strike in Chicago, you can now tune in to hear similar arguments in Idaho.

Voters there are going to decide the fate of three different state laws that would phase out tenure, offer financial incentives to top-performing teachers and strip teachers of collective bargaining rights.

All of these laws are being challenged by what are known as popular referendums: when citizens challenge laws that have already been passed by the legislature and signed by the governor.

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'It's All Politics': NPR's Weekly News Roundup
7:53 am
Fri September 21, 2012

It's All Politics, Sept. 20, 2012

Cliff Owen AP

Originally published on Mon September 24, 2012 9:25 am

September can't end soon enough for Mitt Romney, as a leaked video — and some disappointing poll numbers in swing states — add to his woes. Republicans, trying to win a Senate majority, get some surprise encouragement in Connecticut.

But new polling in Virginia is problematic, and news out of Indiana and Wisconsin brings cheers to Democrats.

Music Reviews
7:48 am
Fri September 21, 2012

Vince Guaraldi Didn't Just Play For 'Peanuts'

Vince Guaraldi had range, as well as an instrumental hit right when jazz was vanishing from AM radio.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 10:57 am

There must have been times in 1963, when Vince Guaraldi was riding high on his surprise hit "Cast Your Fate to the Wind," when he thought, "This is what I'll be remembered for." Not that he minded. He said taking requests for the tune was like signing the back of a check. The song's got a great hook tied to a poppy, uplifting chord sequence.

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It's All Politics
7:14 am
Fri September 21, 2012

Latest Fundraising Picture Shows Strong Month For Obama

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 11:21 am

Fundraising reports filed last night by the presidential campaigns show President Obama with a slight advantage in fundraising last month, while Republican Mitt Romney has the edge by some other measures.

Each candidate is raising money for his own campaign committee, plus his national party committee and a joint fundraising committee or two.

So what you see depends on what you look at.

In cash on hand, the overall Romney organization finished August with more than $168 million — that's $43 million more than the overall Obama organization.

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The Two-Way
7:11 am
Fri September 21, 2012

Here's Where And When To See Space Shuttle Endeavour Today In California

Endeavour passed by the Golden Gate Bridge today.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 3:28 pm

The last leg of space shuttle Endeavour's flight to its retirement home in Los Angeles began at 8 a.m. Pacific time today, NASA says.

And the space agency has put together a timetable for Endeavour's flybys that will give folks from San Francisco to Southern California a chance to see the shuttle aboard the jumbo jet that's carrying it to L.A.

Update at 4:25 p.m. ET. Touchdown:

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