NPR News

The Two-Way
9:20 am
Thu May 17, 2012

Good News, Bad News: Japanese Economy Surges, But Likely Will Slow

In a classic example of "on the one hand, on the other hand" economic analysis, the word that Japan's economy grew at a strong 4.1 percent annual rate in the first quarter is being followed by cautionary talk of slower growth for the world's third-largest economy in coming quarters.

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The Salt
8:23 am
Thu May 17, 2012

How To Make Healthy Eating Easier On The Wallet? Change The Calculation

Dried beans and legumes are healthy and cheap.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Mon March 24, 2014 5:56 pm

If you're already a kale and lentils kind of person (we know there are a lot of frugal foodies out there) — you won't be surprised by this finding: According to a new study from some economists at the USDA, eating a healthy diet isn't necessarily more expensive than a diet loaded with sugar and fat. In fact, fruits and vegetables are often cheaper when you calculate the cost in a smarter way.

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The Two-Way
7:56 am
Thu May 17, 2012

Romney's $40.1 Million Haul In April Nearly Matches Obama's

Republican presidential contender Mitt Romney at a campaign event on Wednesday in St. Petersburg, Fla.
Edward Linsmier Getty Images

Originally published on Thu May 17, 2012 8:24 am

The campaign for GOP presidential contender Mitt Romney and the Republican Party together raised $40.1 million in April, just shy of the $43.6 million that President Obama and the Democratic Party took in.

This is the first monthly report since Romney effectively wrapped up the Republican presidential nomination. And because money is one way to keep score during a presidential campaign, the news is getting a great deal of attention from the political media this morning.

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The Two-Way
6:47 am
Thu May 17, 2012

Jobless Claims Held Steady Last Week; Back To 4-Year Low

Originally published on Thu May 17, 2012 8:25 am

There were 370,000 first-time claims for unemployment insurance filed last week, the same number as during the week before, according to the Employment and Training Administration.

So, after a spike to a range around 390,000 per week in April, claims have slowed again to a pace that's roughly the lowest since the spring of 2008.

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The Two-Way
6:36 am
Thu May 17, 2012

Activist Chen May Soon Have Passport, Be Able To Leave China

Chen Guangcheng just before he left the U.S. embassy in Beijing, on May 2.
U.S. Embassy Beijing Getty Images

Legal activist Chen Guangcheng has reportedly finished submitting applications to Chinese authorities and has been told that he and his immediate family could be issued passports within the next two weeks.

That would then allow him to come to the United States.

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The Two-Way
5:56 am
Thu May 17, 2012

Minorities Are Now Majority Of U.S. Births, Census Says

Originally published on Thu May 17, 2012 7:12 am

"For the first time, racial and ethnic minorities make up more than half the children born in the U.S," The Associated Press writes.

As USA Today adds, that news from the Census Bureau is "a sign of how swiftly the USA is becoming a nation of younger minorities and older whites."

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Around the Nation
4:58 am
Thu May 17, 2012

Student Discovers Mastodon Tooth In His Backyard

An Oklahoma teacher asked her fifth graders to each bring in a rock. One student brought in a stone that looked like a tooth. It turns out it was a tooth, according to the Muskogee Daily Phoenix. The tooth may up to 40 million years old.

Around the Nation
4:58 am
Thu May 17, 2012

Director John Waters Hitches A Ride With Indie Band

The Baltimore legend is known for his pencil-thin mustache, and for movies like Hairspray. He's said in interviews he enjoys hitchhiking. Recently, the band Here We Go Magic tweeted photos of him in their van.

Author Interviews
4:23 am
Thu May 17, 2012

'Patriot Of Persia' Revisits 1953 CIA Coup In Iran

Originally published on Thu May 17, 2012 4:58 am

Morning Edition's Steve Inskeep talks to journalist Christopher de Bellaigue about his book Patriot of Persia: Muhammad Mossadegh and a Tragic Anglo-American Coup.

Europe
2:29 am
Thu May 17, 2012

European Reaction To Greece

Originally published on Thu May 17, 2012 4:58 am

John Peet, Europe editor of The Economist in London, talks to David Greene about European reaction to heightened speculation that Greece may leave the eurozone. Next month, voters are likely to back parties that want to tear up the IMF-EU bailout deal.

Shots - Health Blog
1:30 am
Thu May 17, 2012

Alaska Targets An Old Foe: Tuberculosis

Dr. Michael Cooper
Alaska Department of Health and Social Services

Originally published on Thu May 17, 2012 6:36 am

Dr. Michael Cooper cringes when he thinks about the time he was a family practice doctor working in Kotzebue, Alaska.

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The Fracking Boom: Missing Answers
1:24 am
Thu May 17, 2012

Fracking's Methane Trail: A Detective Story

A natural gas drilling rig's lights shimmer in the evening light near Silt, Colo.
David Gilkey NPR

Originally published on Fri May 18, 2012 7:36 am

Gaby Petron didn't set out to challenge industry and government assumptions about how much pollution comes from natural gas drilling.

She was just doing what she always does as an air pollution data sleuth for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

"I look for a story in the data," says Petron. "You give me a data set, I will study it back and forth and left and right for weeks, and I will find something to tell about it."

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Afghanistan
1:15 am
Thu May 17, 2012

Afghan Justice: A Brief Trial, A Lengthy Sentence

Afghanistan is struggling to develop its court system, and public trials are still relatively rare. Here, an Afghan man named Mahmood (standing, right) listens to a court judge during his trial in the western city of Herat on Jan. 24. He had photos of NATO bases in Afghanistan and was sentenced to 16 years for spying for Iran.
AFP Getty Images

Originally published on Thu May 17, 2012 7:01 am

Handcuffed and wearing dark blue traditional clothes, the Afghan defendant enters the newly renovated court in the capital of Kunar province, about 5 miles from the border with Pakistan.

Members of the local community are waiting to witness the public trial of Abdul Wali, who is accused of manufacturing alcohol — a crime that carries a lengthy prison sentence in Afghanistan.

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Europe
1:14 am
Thu May 17, 2012

Not Your Cold War NATO: Alliance To Examine Itself

A NATO soldier aims his weapon during a gun battle in Kabul, Afghanistan, in April. NATO is holding a summit in Chicago this weekend, and discussing the future of the alliance is on the agenda.
Musadeq Sadeq AP

Originally published on Thu May 17, 2012 7:28 am

This weekend, about 60 heads of state and government, and thousands of others will descend on Chicago to attend a NATO summit. The gathering will focus on the alliance's involvement in Afghanistan — and ensuring a long-term commitment to the country.

But the meeting comes at a time of tension within NATO. Discussions will also include the future of NATO itself, and whether it can overcome its shortfalls.

Unilateral Action In Libya

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The Record
4:56 pm
Wed May 16, 2012

Go-Go Legend Chuck Brown Dies

Chuck Brown, known as the "Godfather of Go-Go," shown in 1987.
David Corio Redferns

Originally published on Tue September 18, 2012 5:48 pm

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The Two-Way
4:53 pm
Wed May 16, 2012

'Information' To 'Knowledge Agent': Google Changes The Way It Does Search

What a search result may look at on Google now.
Google

Originally published on Thu May 17, 2012 10:52 am

Google announced a big change in its approach to search today.

The search giant said the move was the first step in transitioning from an "information agent" to a "knowledge agent."

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Remembrances
4:30 pm
Wed May 16, 2012

Chuck Brown, 'Go-Go' Funk Pioneer, Dies

Originally published on Wed May 16, 2012 5:34 pm

The man known as the Godfather of Go-Go has died. Chuck Brown pioneered a musical style of percussion-heavy funk that was born in Washington, D.C. Brown died at age 75 after suffering from pneumonia. Robert Siegel has this remembrance.

The Two-Way
4:20 pm
Wed May 16, 2012

Video Evidence Helps Acquit Student in First Occupy Wall Street Trial

Occupy Wall Street protesters march through in an impoverished community in December 2011.
Spencer Platt Getty Images

Originally published on Wed May 16, 2012 4:32 pm

Alexander Arbuckle, the defendant in the first Occupy Wall Street case to go to trial, has been found not guilty after video of the incident he was involved in showed him breaking no laws. The Village Voice reports:

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It's All Politics
4:20 pm
Wed May 16, 2012

White House Sandwiches Followed By Snark, Disappointment, Warnings

President Obama's limo in what was, in part, the world's most impressive lunch run, Washington, May 16, 2012.
Pablo Martinez Monsivais AP

Originally published on Wed May 16, 2012 4:44 pm

President Obama and congressional leaders lunched at the White House Wednesday on sandwiches the leader of the free world purchased during a visit to a Washington, D.C., eatery where he met earlier in the morning with a group of small-business people.

Descriptions of the White House lunch meeting from those on the opposing red and blue teams aware of the details of the discussion made it sound like yet another meeting featuring the nation's top policymakers that you could have accurately described beforehand.

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The Two-Way
4:06 pm
Wed May 16, 2012

Violence Against Women Act Becomes Latest Controversial Measure In House

The House and the Senate are once again at odds: This time over a reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act.

The Senate passed a beefed-up version of the bill and the House removed those new protections in their version. With that, the conversation has shifted into the controversial areas of immigration and identity politics. The House debated the bill — H.R. 4970 — today and a vote could be scheduled for this week.

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All Tech Considered
3:45 pm
Wed May 16, 2012

'What Facebook Is Selling Is Us'

A worker sits in the Facebook office in Menlo Park, Calif. The amount of information Facebook learns about its users seems to have entranced Wall Street.
Jeff Chiu AP

Facebook's initial public offering is shaping up to be one of the largest in history. This morning the company told the Securities and Exchange Commission that it was expanding its offering ... again.

Now Facebook is planning to raise up to $16 billion from investors by taking a small slice of the company to the public. And it will likely be worth more than $100 billion on its opening day of trading. It could easily go higher.

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Animals
3:30 pm
Wed May 16, 2012

What Killed Orca Victoria? Some Point To Naval Tests

Orca L112, also known as Victoria, was 3 years old when she washed up on the Washington coast. An investigation into her death has been inconclusive.
Center for Whale Research

Originally published on Wed May 16, 2012 5:34 pm

Few people know the orcas of Puget Sound as well as Ken Balcomb.

A researcher with the Center for Whale Research on Washington state's San Juan Island, Balcomb has been studying the whales for more than 30 years.

It takes Balcomb only a few seconds of listening to the squeaks and whistles of underwater whale recordings to recognize the different pods of orcas.

In one recording, Balcomb identifies the group known as the L Pod — the family many people in the area are talking about right now.

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Shots - Health Blog
3:27 pm
Wed May 16, 2012

CDC Cuts Lead-Poisoning Limit For Kids

Don't rely on luck to keep kids safe from lead.
iStockphoto.com

Preventing the exposure of kids to lead is a great idea, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said today.

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The Two-Way
3:24 pm
Wed May 16, 2012

Chuck Brown, The Godfather Of 'Go-Go', Dies

Abby Verbosky NPR

Originally published on Wed May 16, 2012 3:55 pm

Chuck Brown, known as the "Godfather of Go-Go," a style of percussion-heavy funk pioneered in Washington, D.C., died Wednesday. His death was reported by The Washington Post, quoting his manager, and other local outlets confirmed his death with family members.

Brown had been hospitalized for pneumonia. He was 75.

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The Salt
3:22 pm
Wed May 16, 2012

Can Coffee Help You Live Longer? We Really Want To Know

Bring on the caffeine — maybe.
antwerpenR Flickr.com

Originally published on Wed May 16, 2012 6:49 pm

It seems like every day there's some new research about whether our favorite drinks are good for us. One day, science says a glass of red wine a day will help us live longer. The next day, maybe not.

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The Two-Way
3:17 pm
Wed May 16, 2012

Get Ready For Bike To Work Day (And Share Your Photos)

Three men stand with their penny farthing bicycles. Follow their example for Bike to Work Day, and take a photo of yourself and your bike. Then, post the photo to Twitter or Instagram, with the hashtag #NPRbike.
Hulton Archive Getty Images

Originally published on Wed May 16, 2012 4:11 pm

Bike to Work Day is this Friday, May 18. And that prompts a question: Do you bike to work? If so, you should prove it — by taking a photo of yourself with your bike. Then share the picture, and we'll consider it for NPR's Bike to Work Day gallery.

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Middle East
3:16 pm
Wed May 16, 2012

U.N. Presence Fails To Prevent Syrian Bloodshed

U.N. monitors in Syria leave their Damascus hotel on Wednesday on a mission. A day earlier, their U.N. colleagues were at the scene of a major clash in northern Syria that left more than 30 Syrians dead.
Louai Beshara AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed May 16, 2012 6:51 pm

There was a deadly clash in northern Syria on Tuesday, but it was different than many other such episodes over the past 14 months of the Syrian uprising.

This time, United Nations monitors were watching. The monitors are in Syria to keep an eye on the government forces and the opposition, who are supposed to be observing a cease-fire and opening a dialogue.

But the trouble Tuesday began with a funeral the northern Syrian town of Khan Sheikhoun.

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It's All Politics
3:11 pm
Wed May 16, 2012

Lugar's Last Race: Indiana Senator Doesn't Take Defeat Sitting Down

Sen. Dick Lugar, R-Ind., crosses the finish line of the 3-mile Capital Challenge charity race with Olympic marathoner Meb Keflezighi. It was Lugar's 31st race, and his last as a senator after he lost a primary challenge this month.
Javaun Moradi NPR

Originally published on Wed May 16, 2012 5:34 pm

The partisan divisions on Capitol Hill are numerous — but Wednesday morning, about two-dozen members of Congress did something entirely nonpartisan. They ran in a 3-mile race for charity, along with their staffs and teams from the executive and judicial branches and the media (including NPR).

The ACLI Capital Challenge is an annual tradition that dates back to 1981, and one senator has run the race every time: Dick Lugar, R-Ind. But Wednesday's race was also his last.

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Asia
2:41 pm
Wed May 16, 2012

U.S. Forces In Australia Draw Mixed Reaction

U.S. Marines are shown during a training exercise south of Darwin, Australia. Marines recently arrived in Australia as part of a move by the U.S. to place greater emphasis on Asia and the Pacific.
Glenn Campbell The Sydney Morning Herald/Fairfax Media via Getty Images

Originally published on Wed May 16, 2012 5:34 pm

Since a small contingent of Marines landed in the northern port town of Darwin last month, the U.S. has shown greater interest in using Australian military facilities as part of a larger effort to refocus its military capabilities in Southeast Asia and the western Pacific.

"We have no better ally or friend in the world than Australia, and we have no area in the world which is as important or dynamic over the next 50 years as the Asia Pacific," says Jeffrey Bleich, the U.S. ambassador to Australia.

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World Cafe
2:41 pm
Wed May 16, 2012

Bassnectar On World Cafe

Bassnectar's new album is Vava Voom.
Peter Samuels

Originally published on Thu August 16, 2012 10:09 am

Since beginning his "open-source" musical project in the 1990s, Lorin Ashton and his Bassnectar alias have become nearly superhuman. Bassnectar is associated with a community of devoted Bass Heads, several non-profit and charity organizations and shows of such epic proportions, they're called Bass Centers. Ashton describes his music as "the motion of [his] cells bouncing back at the world," and tens of thousands of people connect with it as a deeply human pursuit, as well. Last year, he sold out a New Year's Eve show attended by 10,000 fans.

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