NPR News

Million-Dollar Donors
3:57 am
Sat May 19, 2012

With Eye On Future, Billionaire Investor Bets On Paul

PayPal co-founder Peter Thiel, who has donated more than $2.5 million to a superPAC backing GOP presidential candidate Ron Paul, speaks at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., in October.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

Originally published on Sat May 19, 2012 9:19 am

In the race for the Republican presidential nomination, only one candidate remains to challenge presumptive nominee Mitt Romney: Texas Rep. Ron Paul.

Even Paul has said he will no longer campaign in states that have yet to hold their primaries. And Paul has always been considered a long shot to win. But that hasn't deterred many of his hard-core supporters, including the Silicon Valley billionaire who has bankrolled the superPAC backing Paul.

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Europe
3:56 am
Sat May 19, 2012

In Turkey, Debating A Women's Right To Bear Arms

A woman holds a photo of Guldunya Toren, an unmarried mother allegedly killed by her brothers for having a child out of wedlock, outside parliament in Ankara, Turkey, in 2004. Her case prompted huge protests and forced Turks to realize that the justice system often fails to protect at-risk women.
Burhan Ozbilici AP

Originally published on Sat May 19, 2012 9:09 pm

In Turkey, hundreds of women die each year at the hands of a husband or family member, in a society that critics say too often ignores violence against women. After years of frustration, one organization has shaken up the debate with a controversial proposal: arming women and training them to defend themselves.

Looking back, Yagmur Askin thinks perhaps she should have paid more attention on her wedding day, when her husband's family welcomed her by saying, "You enter this house in a bridal gown, and you'll leave it in a coffin."

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Politics
3:55 am
Sat May 19, 2012

Are 8 Heads Better Than 1 At Fixing Europe's Debt?

President Obama speaks with other G-8 leaders at Camp David in Maryland during the summit on Friday.
Getty Images

Originally published on Sat May 19, 2012 10:20 am

Camp David, in the Maryland hills outside Washington, D.C., is usually a place for the president and his family to get away from work, a wooded refuge with a swimming pool, tennis courts and a putting green.

This weekend, though, President Obama is bringing work with him to the camp — along with the leaders from most of the countries with the world's largest economies.

The Group of Eight is meeting in the rustic setting, but the agenda will be all business.

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Fresh Air Weekend
3:43 am
Sat May 19, 2012

Fresh Air Weekend: Audra McDonald, 'Weight Of The Nation'

Audra McDonald.
Michael Wilson Courtesy of Nonesuch Records

Originally published on Sat May 19, 2012 3:49 pm

Fresh Air Weekend highlights some of the best interviews and reviews from past weeks, and new program elements specially paced for weekends. Our weekend show emphasizes interviews with writers, filmmakers, actors, and musicians, and often includes excerpts from live in-studio concerts. This week:

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The Two-Way
11:58 pm
Fri May 18, 2012

In Historic Space Mission, Launch Is Only The First Test

SpaceX rocket Falcon 9 at Cape Canaveral in Florida was scheduled to launch Saturday morning, but aborted just before liftoff.
Roberto Gonzalez Getty Images

Originally published on Sat May 19, 2012 11:43 am

Moments after ignition, a privately funded spacecraft aborted its liftoff, delaying its mission to the International Space Station.

SpaceX's unmanned rocket had a one-second window to take off from Cape Canaveral in Florida on Saturday morning, and the failed launch means the next opportunity won't be until early Tuesday morning.

The founder of SpaceX, Elon Musk, had been tweeting from the company's California headquarters leading up to the scheduled launch time of 4:55 a.m. ET.

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Remembrances
4:34 pm
Fri May 18, 2012

Baritone Fischer-Diskau Was One Of Opera's Greatest

Originally published on Thu May 24, 2012 9:51 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

And we briefly note the passing of one of the world's great opera singers: German baritone Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau died today. He was 86. From his first recital in Berlin in 1947 until his retirement in 1992, Fischer-Dieskau is in demand at opera houses and concert halls the world over. He was especially known for his interpretations of Schubert songs, like this one from the song cycle "Winterreise" or "Winter Journey."

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "WINTERREISE")

Shots - Health Blog
4:20 pm
Fri May 18, 2012

Hepatitis C Cases In Rural Wisconsin Underscore Drug Link

iStockphoto.com

Yes, hepatitis C is big among baby boomers. And the feds are moving toward a recommendation that all of them get tested at least once for the infection.

But new hepatitis C cases are cropping up in young people, too, and some of them live in out-of-the-way places that haven't been hotbeds for the illness.

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The Two-Way
4:19 pm
Fri May 18, 2012

Fungus, Fruit Flies, Old Age: It's The End Times For NPR's AntCam

There is hope for mankind in their sacrifice.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Fri May 18, 2012 10:17 pm

Back in 1969, when Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin landed on the moon, there were no guarantees. There were no guarantees that they'd make it there and there were no guarantees that they could make it back home.

President Richard Nixon and his speech writer William Safire knew that. So, imagining a situation in which the American astronauts were doomed in an alien land, Safire drew up a plan to mark their inevitable demise in a dignified way.

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13.7: Cosmos And Culture
4:15 pm
Fri May 18, 2012

Let The Real Space Age Begin

The Falcon 9 SpaceX rocket stands ready for launch at the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.
John Raoux AP

Originally published on Fri May 18, 2012 5:14 pm

It was almost one year ago that the space shuttle Atlantis rose into the sky on a pillar of flame for the last time. The shuttle program ended forever with that mission. American astronauts were left to hitch rides on Russian space capsules, and American kids were left with no tangible direction forward for their dreams of a high-tech, space-happy future.

Tomorrow morning, the unmanned Falcon 9 rocket is scheduled to lift off from Cape Canaveral so that supplies can reach the space station.

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The Salt
3:26 pm
Fri May 18, 2012

U.S. Craft Beer Brewers Thrive, Despite Small Share Of The Market

A row of taps highlights specialty and imported beers at Brouwerij Lane, in Brooklyn, New York. Craft brewers have found a way to thrive, even as the U.S. economy struggles.
Bill Chappell NPR

Originally published on Tue May 22, 2012 9:35 am

It's a good time to brew beer in America. According to beer expert Julia Herz, U.S. brewing isn't just on the upswing, it's on top. "We're now the No. 1 destination for beer, based on diversity and amount of beers," she says.

But if you want to see the strength of America's beer industry, you may want to look past beverage giants like Anheuser-Busch and MillerCoors. According to the Brewers Association, nearly 2,000 American brewers operated during 2011 — the most since the 1880s.

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Middle East
2:51 pm
Fri May 18, 2012

In Change, Palestinians Now Seek High-Profile Visits

Egypt's grand mufti, Ali Gomaa (center, with scarf), visits the Al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem in April. The Dome of the Rock, which is part of the same compound, is shown behind him. Many Muslims have boycotted the site because Israel claims sovereignty. But Palestinian religious figures now say they welcome such visits, a move that has sparked controversy.
AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sun May 20, 2012 6:46 am

For decades, Muslims around the world have been unofficially boycotting Islam's third holiest site, the Al-Aqsa mosque Jerusalem.

Many Muslims believe that visiting legitimizes Israel's claim to the site, which also sits atop the holiest place in Judaism. The Palestinians, meanwhile, are seeking a state with a capital in east Jerusalem, where the mosque is located.

But Palestinian religious authorities at Al-Aqsa and Palestinian officials are now calling on Muslims to visit the shrine, a change that is creating controversy within the Palestinian community.

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It's All Politics
2:22 pm
Fri May 18, 2012

Haven't Registered To Vote Yet? They're Coming For You

Originally published on Fri May 18, 2012 4:34 pm

If you're eligible to vote but aren't registered yet, watch out. They're coming to get you!

Campaigns, political parties and interest groups are all mounting massive voter registration campaigns this year to influence the outcome of the November elections.

The target is the millions of Americans — the Pew Center on the States estimates that number is 51 million — who are eligible to vote but not registered. The belief is that even a relative few of these voters could swing the election results.

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Shots - Health Blog
2:16 pm
Fri May 18, 2012

Bail Granted For Indiana Woman Charged In Attempted Feticide

Bei Bei Shuai, seen in a file photo, was charged with murder in the Jan. 2, 2011, death of her 3-day-old daughter Angel Shuai, after eating rat poison.
Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Dept. AP

Originally published on Mon May 21, 2012 11:21 am

Bei Bei Shuai is a step closer to leaving jail for the first time since March 2011, when she was arrested for the murder of her 3-day-old daughter Angel.

The girl, who was delivered by cesarean section, died after Shuai's unsuccessful suicide attempt in December 2010, while she was pregnant.

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The Two-Way
2:07 pm
Fri May 18, 2012

On Two First-Class Seats, Olympic Torch Arrives In England

David Beckham holds the Olympic Flame as it arrives at RNAS Culdrose near Helston in Cornwall, England.
Matt Cardy Getty Images

Flanked — literally and figuratively — by British royalty, the Olympic torch was flown from Greece to England, where it will begin a final 70-day journey before the 2012 London Olympics.

The Telegraph reports that after a rainy ceremony in Greece, the torch was taken aboard British Airways Flight 2012. The paper adds:

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Around the Nation
1:36 pm
Fri May 18, 2012

Will Population Shifts Alter Immigration Debate?

Hispanic residents walk by a law office in Union City, N.J., specializing in immigration in March. Union City is one of the state's largest cities, and has a Hispanic population of more than 80 percent.
Spencer Platt Getty Images

The U.S. Supreme Court's expected ruling in June on Arizona's immigration law will set the blueprint for states where many officials say they face a crisis in trying to crack down on rising numbers of illegal residents.

Yet population changes and various research indicate that the great flow primarily of Latino illegal immigrants, which lasted at least two decades, ended several years ago.

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Energy
1:26 pm
Fri May 18, 2012

Pipeline Flip Turns U.S. Oil World 'Upside Down'

The U.S. oil boom has created a glut of crude in Cushing, Okla., a major oil storage hub. This sign dubs the city the "Pipeline Crossroads of the World."
Jeff Brady NPR

Originally published on Fri May 18, 2012 4:34 pm

For years, Cushing, Okla., has been on the receiving end of a 500-mile pipeline funneling oil from the Gulf of Mexico to the American heartland.

Starting this weekend, that pipeline will start moving crude in the other direction. That flow reversal could soon have implications at gas pumps around the country.

"For 40 years, crude oil flowed north," says Philip Verleger, a visiting fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics. "Today, oil flows south. It's as if we turned the world upside down."

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The Two-Way
1:08 pm
Fri May 18, 2012

What Facebook May Mean For Your Portfolio, Even If You Didn't Buy It

Facebook shares began trading on Nasdaq shortly after 11:30 a.m. on Friday.
Richard Drew AP

Originally published on Fri May 18, 2012 4:25 pm

Don't worry if you missed out on Facebook's initial public offering. Chances are, if you own shares in a broad-based index fund, you'll be holding onto some Facebook soon enough.

Facebook is such a huge offering -– with an initial market capitalization of more than $100 billion, it instantly becomes one of the 25 largest "cap" stocks — that it could have a distorting effect on some funds, at least in the short term.

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Middle East
12:52 pm
Fri May 18, 2012

Egypt's New President Could Come From Old Guard

Amr Moussa, a prominent figure during the rule of former President Hosni Mubarak, is the front-runner as Egyptians prepare to vote for president next week. He is shown here during a campaign event on the outskirts of Cairo on Wednesday.
Mohamed Abd El Ghany Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Fri May 18, 2012 4:34 pm

In Egypt's historic presidential race, opinion polls place the oldest candidate with the most political experience far ahead of his 11 rivals.

Many opponents try to portray Amr Moussa as a holdover from the hated regime of Hosni Mubarak. Moussa was Egypt's foreign minister under Mubarak and later the secretary-general of the Arab League.

Yet many voters believe he is the only candidate who can end the country's growing insecurity and economic problems.

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Shots - Health Blog
12:41 pm
Fri May 18, 2012

CDC Tells Baby Boomers To Get Tested For Hepatitis C

Dr. Paul J. Pockros, a liver specialist at Scripps Green Hospital in San Diego, talks with hepatitis C patient Loretta Roberts in Jan. 2011.
Lenny Ignelzi AP

When it comes to hepatitis C, things that happened to baby boomers back in the day can make all the difference.

One in 30 baby boomers is infected with virus, says the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. And most of them don't know it. So, the CDC is moving ahead with a proposal that all baby boomers (born between 1945 and 1965) get a blood test to check for the virus.

The current guidelines call for testing when someone has known risk factors.

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The Two-Way
12:31 pm
Fri May 18, 2012

Insurers Paid $479 Million In Claims For Dog Bites Last Year

Matthew Weins of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, Los Angeles, works with Daisy on a demonstration aimed at showing that even small dogs can jump high to bite.
Damian Dovarganes AP

With National Dog Bite Prevention Week set to start Saturday, the Insurance Information Institute wants Americans to know that:

-- Insurers paid $479 million in home owner insurance claims involving dog bites last year, up 16.1 percent from the year before.

-- The number of such claims rose 3.3 percent, to 16,292.

-- The average cost per claim grew by 12.3 percent from the year before, to $29,296.

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The Two-Way
12:26 pm
Fri May 18, 2012

President Of Malawi Vows To Overturn Gay Ban

President of Malawi Joyce Banda attends a protest against abuse of women in January 2012.
Thoko Chikondi AP

The president of Malawi vowed to overturn her country's ban on homosexual acts.

The BBC reports that President Joyce Banda made the vow in her first address to Parliament.

"Some laws which were duly passed by the August house... will be repealed as a matter of urgency... these include the provisions regarding indecent practices and unnatural acts," Banda said according to the BBC.

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The Two-Way
12:13 pm
Fri May 18, 2012

Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer Again A Crime Victim

Breyer in 2011
Steve Helber ASSOCIATED PRESS

Originally published on Fri May 18, 2012 1:08 pm

It was just this February when Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer's West Indies vacation home was broken into by a machete-wielding robber who stole $1,000. No one was hurt.

Now, the Washington Post reports that his D.C home was robbed of housewares:

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It's All Politics
11:56 am
Fri May 18, 2012

Romney Phones His Campaign Message Into Swing States

Following the release of what his campaign called his first ad of the general election, Romney participated in a "tele-town hall" with supporters in the swing states where the ad is running: Virginia, North Carolina, Ohio, and Iowa.

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Planet Money
11:25 am
Fri May 18, 2012

California's Facebook Windfall

Originally published on Sun May 20, 2012 9:21 am

Mark Zuckerberg is, among many other things, the highest-profile taxpayer on the planet today.

After today's Facebook IPO, Zuckerberg will owe nearly $200 million in California state taxes alone. That's "among the largest tax liabilities that a single individual has ever paid at a given point in time," says Jason Sisney of the California State Budget Legislative Analyst's Office.

Zuckerberg's profits will be taxed at a 10% rate in California. That's a much higher rate than in many other states.

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It's All Politics
10:57 am
Fri May 18, 2012

Negative Coattails: Could Obama Cost Arkansas Democrats The Legislature?

Arkansas Senate President Paul Bookout, a Democrat, speaks in the Senate chamber at the Capitol in Little Rock on April 5. In November, Arkansans will vote for every seat in the state Legislature.
Danny Johnston AP

Originally published on Tue May 22, 2012 1:53 pm

President Obama's performance in Tuesday's Arkansas primary won't be as embarrassing as what happened in West Virginia two weeks ago, when he gave up 41 percent of the vote to someone who happened to be sitting in a federal prison in Texas for embezzlement.

But it may well do more lasting damage to his party.

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It's All Politics
10:49 am
Fri May 18, 2012

'President Romney's' First Day In Office: All About Reversing Obama Per Ad

Romney "Day One" ad

Originally published on Fri May 18, 2012 11:23 am

Challenging an incumbent president means finding ways to narrow the stature gap between the Oval Office occupant and would-be president.

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The Two-Way
10:36 am
Fri May 18, 2012

House Approves Continuation Of Indefinite Detention For Terror Suspects

A unlikely coalition failed to derail the government's practice of holding terror suspects for indefinite periods of time.

Some Democrats and Tea Party Republicans put the issue to a vote through an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act that would have ended the practice but it ultimately failed, today, in the GOP-controlled house by a vote of 238 to 182.

The AP reports:

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Remembrances
10:30 am
Fri May 18, 2012

Fresh Air Remembers Donna Summer, Queen Of Disco

Donna Summer, pictured above in 1976, died Thursday at age 63. She had cancer.
Keystone Getty Images

Originally published on Fri May 18, 2012 1:34 pm

Donna Summer, the queen of disco, died Thursday at her home in Naples, Fla., after a long struggle with cancer. She was 63. Born LaDonna Andrea Gaines, she grew up in a large Boston family singing gospel music and became an icon of a powerful cultural movement, a celebrated sex queen and a staple of gay club life.

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World
9:57 am
Fri May 18, 2012

Why Does Hunger Still Exist In Africa?

Some of the world's fastest growing economies are in Africa. But hunger is still a widespread reality there, and will be a major topic at this weekend's G8 summit. Host Michel Martin discusses efforts to fight hunger on the continent with USAIDs Tjada McKenna and Mwiza Munthali of the advocacy group TransAfrica.

Politics
9:57 am
Fri May 18, 2012

Romney Says No To Super PAC Smear Campaign

Mitt Romney releases his first general election campaign ad. Plus wealthy GOP investors say their super PAC won't run a smear campaign connecting controversial pastor Jeremiah Wright with President Obama. Host Michel Martin discusses the latest political developments with Lenny McAllister of Politic365.com and author Michael Fauntroy.

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