NPR News

Election 2012
2:50 pm
Thu July 26, 2012

Romney Aims Tough Talk At China, And Obama

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney speaks during the national convention of the Veterans of Foreign Wars in Reno, Nev., on Tuesday. In the speech, Romney attacked the Obama administration's approach to China.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Originally published on Thu July 26, 2012 4:24 pm

President Obama's national security adviser visited China this week, just as Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney was attacking the administration's approach to that country.

"The cheating must finally be brought to a stop," Romney said Tuesday in a speech to the Veterans of Foreign Wars in Reno, Nev. "The president hasn't done it and won't do it, and I will."

China is the world's largest economy after the United States. It is one of the most important — and complicated — foreign relationships the U.S. has.

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Shots - Health Blog
2:50 pm
Thu July 26, 2012

Amid An AIDS Epidemic, South Africa Battles Another Foe: Tuberculosis

A mobile clinic set up to test students for HIV is parked near Madwaleni High School in Mtubatuba, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa on March 8, 2011. Parts of the South African province have HIV rates that are more than twice the national average.
Stephane de Sakutin AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu July 26, 2012 4:24 pm

The province of KwaZulu-Natal has emerged as the epicenter of South Africa's HIV epidemic. South Africa already has more people infected with HIV than any other country in the world, but parts of KwaZulu-Natal have HIV rates that are more than twice the national average.

Now in addition to HIV and AIDS, the province is also dealing with a major tuberculosis epidemic.

In the northeastern part of KwaZulu-Natal, dusty dirt tracks wind through pastures and fields of sugar cane. The hillsides are dotted with small huts made of cinder blocks and field stones.

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The Torch
2:24 pm
Thu July 26, 2012

Maroney Says She'll 'Make The Best' Of Competing On Broken Toe

"It was really fun to get out there and do my vault," McKayla Maroney said, after trying out the apparatus at the North Greenwich Arena in London Thursday. Maroney is coping with the lingering effects of a broken right toe.
John Cheng USA Gymnastics

Originally published on Thu July 26, 2012 3:42 pm

U.S.gymnast McKayla Maroney will compete in the London Summer Games, despite the lingering effects of a broken toe. Maroney, a gold medal contender, is the reigning world champion in the vault. Early reports suggested that Maroney broke her toe in London. But it appears that she merely tweaked an earlier injury.

On Twitter, NBC producer Alexa Ainsworth clarified that Maroney's toe "was broken before Classic and she just aggravated that here."

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Shots - Health Blog
2:23 pm
Thu July 26, 2012

Feds And Health Insurers Partner To Fight Fraud

Insurers and the federal government are teaming up to fight health fraud.
iStockphoto.com

The Obama administration is enlisting new allies to fight health care fraud: insurers.

Today the Departments of Health and Human Services and Justice announced a partnership with more than a dozen health insurers and industry groups to nip fraudulent schemes in the bud, instead of tracking down bad guys after the fact.

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Music Reviews
2:00 pm
Thu July 26, 2012

Ocean's 'Orange' Revolution

Frank Ocean performs onstage at the 2012 Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival in April.
Karl Walter Getty Images

Originally published on Thu July 26, 2012 4:35 pm

Born in New Orleans and still in his mid-20s, Frank Ocean has already written songs for major pop stars. He sang on the Kanye West/Jay-Z collaboration Watch the Throne, and he's been part of the tumultuous Los Angeles musical collective known as Odd Future. None of which quite prepares a listener for the beautifully moody music that dominates his new album, Channel Orange.

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World Cafe
1:46 pm
Thu July 26, 2012

Latin Roots: Cuban Rumba

Pedro Martinez performs at Juilliard.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu October 4, 2012 2:42 pm

Chicago-based journalist Catalina Maria Johnson hosts the 15th installment of World Cafe's Latin Roots music series. Johnson writes in Spanish and English for publications such as HOY, Revista Contratiempo, Gozamos and Nat Geo Music, and is a radio personality and host/producer for the radio program Beat Latino, which airs in Chicago, Mexico City and Berlin.

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World Cafe
1:30 pm
Thu July 26, 2012

Bright Moments On World Cafe

Bright Moments.
Kristianna Smith

Multi-instrumentalist Kelly Pratt has recorded and toured with bands like Coldplay, Arcade Fire, LCD Soundsystem and Beirut since 2006, but he's stepped into his own spotlight since forming the sunny pop band

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Mom And Dad's Record Collection
1:16 pm
Thu July 26, 2012

From Scorn For Zevon, A Father-Daughter Moment Is Born

Warren Zevon on the cover of Excitable Boy, the 1978 album which includes "Werewolves in London."
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu July 26, 2012 4:51 pm

All this summer, All Things Considered is digging into listeners' parents' record collections to hear about one song introduced by a parent that has stayed with you — for better or for worse.

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The Two-Way
1:06 pm
Thu July 26, 2012

After Uproar, USDA Walks Back 'Meatless Monday' Support

Steak.
Larry Crowe AP

It was likely something that the United States Department of Agricultural didn't put much thought into. In an internal newsletter detailing agency's "greening" efforts, there's information about new lightbulbs and locally bought fruits and vegetables.

But on page three of five, there's also a passage that encourages forgoing meat on Mondays.

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The Torch
1:06 pm
Thu July 26, 2012

In Kayla Harrison, U.S. Has Chance For Judo Gold, And A 'Comeback Kid' Story

Kayla Harrison, who is on the U.S. judo team, is going to the Olympics for the first time.
Melanie Stetson Freeman Christian Science Monitor/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu July 26, 2012 8:10 pm

Kayla Harrison, 22, is the best chance the United States has to win its first Olympic gold medal in the sport of judo. Like many of the world's best athletes, Harrison's road to London wasn't easy.

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The Two-Way
12:30 pm
Thu July 26, 2012

NPR Taps Lobbying Firm To Help Make Case On Public Funding

Originally published on Thu July 26, 2012 3:47 pm

Our colleague David Folkenflik reports for the Newscast Desk that:

"NPR has hired an outside lobbying firm to help make its case with lawmakers on Capitol Hill as some House Republicans seek to make deep funding cuts to public broadcasting.

"Recent disclosure forms show NPR has paid $10,000 to Navigators Global, a firm founded by Republican political figures including strategist and pundit Mike Murphy.

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It's All Politics
11:53 am
Thu July 26, 2012

Romney Backer Explains Why Obama's Wrong, Despite Her Firm's Gov't Contracts

Rebecca Smith, owner of A.D. Morgan, speaks Thursday at a Tampa, Fla., event to denounce President Obama's statements about small businesses. The event was organized by the Romney campaign. At left is Lou Ramos of Value Enterprise Solutions.
Daniel Wallace Tampa Bay Times/ZUMAPRESS.com

Originally published on Thu July 26, 2012 1:48 pm

Rebecca Smith owns a Tampa, Fla., construction-management firm that does a lot of work overseeing the building of schools and jails, and other projects for state and local governments.

But even though much of her firm's $80 million in annual revenue comes from contracts with government agencies, she says she was "disgusted" by President Obama's thesis that government had a significant role in her business achievements.

Obama's actual words, from a July 13 speech in Virginia, were:

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The Torch
11:29 am
Thu July 26, 2012

Video Clip Of London 2012 Opening Ceremonies Is Released

A scene from the London 2012 Opening Ceremony is seen in this screenshot, taken from a clip released Thursday.
YouTube

Originally published on Thu July 26, 2012 1:13 pm

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The Two-Way
11:29 am
Thu July 26, 2012

Ford Recalls 485,000 Escapes And Mavericks With Throttle Problems

Ford Escapes sit at a Ford dealership in east Denver.
David Zalubowski AP

Originally published on Fri July 27, 2012 10:16 am

Ford says that 485,000 Ford Escapes and Mavericks — which are sold in Europe — may have problems with its throttles.

The AP reports Ford issued a worldwide recall for model year 2001 through 2004 small sports utility vehicles "that are powered by 3-liter V-6 engines with cruise control."

The AP adds:

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The Two-Way
11:24 am
Thu July 26, 2012

Stories Of The Colorado Victims: Mom's Sure Her Daughter Stood Up To Gunman

Rebecca Wingo.
Facebook

Originally published on Fri July 27, 2012 8:56 am

As they're told, we'll point to some of the stories about the 12 people who died and the 58 who were wounded last Friday when a gunman opened fire at a movie theater in Aurora, Colo. As you see others, please share the links in the comment threads.

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The Fresh Air Interview
11:11 am
Thu July 26, 2012

Christopher Beha, On Faith And Its Discontents

Christopher Beha is an associate editor at Harper's magazine and the author of The Whole Five Feet.
Josephine Sittenfeld Tin House Books

Originally published on Thu July 26, 2012 2:15 pm

In the novel What Happened to Sophie Wilder, writer Charlie Blakeman runs into his former college love after 10 years and finds out that she has converted to Catholicism. Charlie can't make sense of her conversion, but as he finds out more about Sophie's past, he sees her life is more complicated than he previously thought. When Sophie once again disappears, Charlie sets out to discover what has happened to her.

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Shots - Health Blog
11:02 am
Thu July 26, 2012

How A 'Google Bomb' Improved Russia's HIV Drug Supply

Activist Alexandra Volgina (right) accepts the Red Ribbon Award at the 19th International AIDS Conference for her grassroots group Patients in Control, which has worked to improve HIV treatment programs in Russia.
Ryan Rayburn IAS

Originally published on Thu July 26, 2012 2:25 pm

In countries where censorship is part of daily life, speaking out against the government often requires innovative tactics. No one knows this better than Russian activist Alexandra Volgina.

A few years ago, Volgina, an HIV-positive mother from St. Petersburg, wanted the Russian Ministry of Health to fix their floundering HIV treatment program. So she launched a "Google bomb."

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The Two-Way
10:50 am
Thu July 26, 2012

Raúl Castro Says Cuba Is An Island Seeking Friendship, Even With U.S.

Cuba's President Raúl Castro speaks during celebrations marking Cuba's Revolution Day in Guantanamo, Cuba on Thursday.
Ramon Espinosa AP

Today, while Cuba celebrated Revolution Day, the 59th anniversary of an initial attack on the Moncada military baracks, President Raúl Castro made a rather surprising admission during his remarks.

According to Granma, the official newspaper of the Communist party, Castro said he was ready to mend relations with the United States.

Here's how Granma reports it:

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The Torch
10:26 am
Thu July 26, 2012

The Olympics Meet A Mall, And Make A Nightmare

The interior of London's Westfield Stratford City Mall measures some 1.9 million square feet. Many of them were recently walked by NPR's Tom Goldman.
Tom Goldman NPR

Y'know your local mall? The one you drive to whenever, or just as easily drive past? What would happen if you didn't have a choice — if you couldn't avoid going there? Would you walk right through without stopping and shopping? Or, a darker question: What if you could never get out?

Welcome to my Olympic nightmare.

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The Two-Way
10:12 am
Thu July 26, 2012

Justice Department Employees Cited For Nepotism In Hiring

Originally published on Thu July 26, 2012 1:37 pm

The Justice Department inspector general has uncovered what he calls illegal hiring practices at the federal agency. In a new report he cites eight employees for trying to find jobs for their children and other relatives.

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The Two-Way
9:03 am
Thu July 26, 2012

Oakland Police Radios Failed During Obama's Visit To City

A protester yelling at a line of police officers guarding an intersection near a fundraiser for President Obama at the Fox Theater in Oakland on Monday.
David Yee UPI /Landov

Originally published on Thu July 26, 2012 9:48 am

"A major portion of Oakland's troubled police radio system failed shortly after President Obama's visit on Monday, leaving many of the 100 officers assigned to handle presidential security unable to communicate as protesters roamed the streets, police said Wednesday,"

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Asia
8:23 am
Thu July 26, 2012

China Charges Bo Xilai's Wife In British Man's Killing

Originally published on Thu July 26, 2012 8:35 am

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

China announced today that it is prosecuting the wife of a disgraced party official for the murder of a British man. It's the latest sensational twist in the country's biggest political scandal in decades. NPR's Louisa Lim joins us now from Beijing. Louisa, could you bring us up to speed on this scandal and what the latest news is?

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The Two-Way
8:20 am
Thu July 26, 2012

Guilt First, Trial Later: Murder Charge For Chinese Politician's Wife

Gu Kailai, left, and her husband, Bo Xilai, in 2007. She's been charged with murder.
Kyodo Reuters /Landov
  • Louisa Lim, reporting for the NPR Newscast

China's Xinhua news agency ends its report this morning on the murder case against a prominent politician's wife with this remarkable passage:

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Shots - Health Blog
8:18 am
Thu July 26, 2012

'Calling My Children' And The Faces Of AIDS

David Binder

Originally published on Sat February 2, 2013 8:06 am

Photographer David Binder began documenting stories about AIDS in the late 1980s and became well known for humanizing the epidemic for various publications, including Life magazine and The Philadelphia Inquirer.

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Deceptive Cadence
7:52 am
Thu July 26, 2012

A Know-It-All's Guide To Olympic Music

Among all things official at the Olympics, like the flag, is music composed for the opening and closing ceremonies.
Tony Duffy Getty Images

Originally published on Thu July 26, 2012 4:24 pm

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The Torch
7:34 am
Thu July 26, 2012

Let's Catch Up: Egypt Rocks Pirate Brands, And Flag-Gate

Good morning, and welcome to "Day -1" of the 2012 Summer Olympics. That NASA-like designation is due to events already having begun in the soccer competition, before Friday's Opening Ceremony. Men's soccer begins play today.

Here are some stories that popped up overnight:

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The Two-Way
7:24 am
Thu July 26, 2012

Cheer Up Toronto, 16-0 Loss Isn't A Major League Worst

told the Toronto Star afterward. His team lost 16-0." href="/post/cheer-toronto-16-0-loss-isnt-major-league-worst" class="noexit lightbox">
Toronto Blue Jays pitcher Ricky Romero gave up eight runs in 1 1/3 innings Wednesday night. It was a "complete embarrassment," he told the Toronto Star afterward. His team lost 16-0.
Brad White Getty Images

Originally published on Thu July 26, 2012 1:03 pm

As bad as the players on the Toronto Blue Jays must feel about losing to the Oakland Athletics by a score of 16-0 Wednesday night, they can at least take comfort in knowing that other teams have suffered worse losses in the past.

As Yahoo Sports recounted:

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The Torch
6:39 am
Thu July 26, 2012

Olympic Glitch Riles North Korean Players Before Soccer Match [VIDEO]

Supporters of North Korea's women's soccer team were dismayed to see the start of Wednesday's match delayed, after a video screen displayed the South Korean flag next to photos of the North Korean players.
Graham Stuart AFP/Getty Images

It didn't take long for politics to enter the fray of Olympic sports. On Day One of preliminary competition, members of the North Korean women's soccer team staged a short protest after a mix-up with their national flag.

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The Two-Way
5:57 am
Thu July 26, 2012

Reports: Notebook From Colo. Shootings Suspect Arrived At School After Attack

A medical building on the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus in Aurora, Colo.
Joshua Lott Getty Images

Originally published on Thu July 26, 2012 12:48 pm

A "suspicious package" that the University of Colorado's medical school in Aurora says was delivered to the school on Monday was "a notebook sent through the mail by suspected killer James Eagan Holmes before [last] Friday morning's massacre," The Denver Post reports.

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