NPR News

Pages

Wait Wait...Don't Tell Me!
6:00 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

Bluff The Listener

Originally published on Sat August 11, 2012 10:07 am

Transcript

CARL KASELL: From NPR and WBEZ-Chicago, this is WAIT WAIT...DON'T TELL ME!, the NPR News quiz. I'm Carl Kasell. We're playing his week with Roy Blount Jr., Amy Dickinson, and Tom Bodett. And, here again is your host, at the Merrill Auditorium in Portland, Maine, Peter Sagal.

PETER SAGAL, HOST:

Thank you, Carl.

(APPLAUSE)

SAGAL: Thank you everybody. Right now, it's time for the WAIT WAIT...DON'T TELL ME! Bluff the Listener game. Call 1-888-Wait-Wait to play our game on the air. Hi, you're on WAIT WAIT...DON'T TELL ME!.

Read more
Wait Wait...Don't Tell Me!
6:00 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

Prediction

Originally published on Sat August 11, 2012 10:07 am

Transcript

PETER SAGAL, HOST:

Now, panel, what will the Rover discover on Mars? Roy Blount Jr.?

ROY BLOUNT JR: Well it's kind of sad. We discover that Curiosity landed on the only cat on Mars.

(LAUGHTER)

(APPLAUSE)

SAGAL: Amy Dickinson?

AMY DICKINSON: Well, I've been looking for my car keys for a long time, so I'm hoping.

SAGAL: And Tom Bodett?

TOM BODETT: It'll find Waldo, the Beef, Carmen, San Diego and Obama's birth certificate.

(LAUGHTER)

(APPLAUSE)

Read more
Wait Wait...Don't Tell Me!
6:00 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

Who's Carl This Time?

Originally published on Sat August 11, 2012 10:07 am

Transcript

CARL KASELL: From NPR and WBEZ-Chicago, this is WAIT WAIT...DON'T TELL ME!, the NPR News quiz. I'm Carl Kasell, and here's your host, at the Merrill Auditorium in Portland, Maine, Peter Sagal.

(SOUNDBITE OF CHEERING)

PETER SAGAL, HOST:

Thank you. So much for the reserved New Englander thing. It's great to be here in Portland, which is the hipster capital of Maine.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: It's terrible now. The grizzled old lobstermen have to wear t-shirts saying, "My beard is not ironic."

(LAUGHTER)

Read more
Wait Wait...Don't Tell Me!
6:00 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

Opening Panel Round

Originally published on Sat August 11, 2012 10:07 am

Transcript

PETER SAGAL, HOST:

Right now, panel, time for you to answer some questions about this week's news. Amy, scientists have discovered that just like Americans in the 50s, dinosaurs once experienced what?

AMY DICKINSON: Oh wow. Just like Americans in the 50s, dinosaurs once experienced. Making out in the rec room? No.

(LAUGHTER)

DICKINSON: That's not it.

SAGAL: What are you guys doing down there? Hunting for prey, mom. Nothing.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Actually, technically, for Americans it started right after World War II.

Read more
The Torch
5:39 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

In World Record Time, Americans Take Gold In Women's 4X100 Relay

Carmelita Jeter of the United States receives the relay baton fom Bianca Knight of the United States on their way to winning gold in the Women's 4 x 100m Relay Final Friday.
Clive Brunskill Getty Images

Originally published on Fri August 10, 2012 5:51 pm

Carmelita Jeter made sure everyone understood what Team USA had just accomplished. She pointed toward the digital clock with the baton as it flashed a time of 40.82 seconds.

Jeter, Tianna Madison, Allyson Felix and Bianca Knight had just gotten a gold medal in the 4 X 100m relay and they did so while shattering the world record by a little more than half a second.

Read more
The Torch
4:57 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

Seeing The World Through The Olympic Rings [Infographic]

Artist Gustavo Sousa of Mother London depicts the world's population using only the five colorful rings from the Olympic logo rings.
Gustavo Sousa Screenshot from Oceaniaeuropeamericaasiaafrica

One of the most thought-provoking infographics of the Olympics has nothing to with sports at all.

Artist Gustavo Sousa of the group Mother London uses only the five rings of the Olympic logo to strip down global statistics and expose disparities across th world's continents.

Read more
The Torch
4:38 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

Gaming The Games: The Rules That Got Bent In London

Cameron van der Burgh of South Africa celebrates his gold medal in the men's 100m breaststroke. He later admitted that he took extra dolphin kicks during his swim, a violation of the rules.
Adam Pretty Getty Images

Originally published on Fri August 10, 2012 7:06 pm

The London Summer Olympics are winding down, and by most accounts, the games have been a success. There were plenty of "thrill of victory, agony of defeat" moments; big, enthusiastic crowds — although there were too many blocks of empty seats; and for those who like a helping of scandal served up at their Olympics, there was that, too.

It wasn't the usual scourge of doping. Instead, the London Olympics had incidents of bending the rules and ethics of sport.

Read more
It's All Politics
4:30 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

The Next Act For Newt Gingrich? It Could Be A TV Talk Show

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, accompanied by his wife Callista, speaks at a rally in Montgomery, Ala., on March 7.
David Bundy AP

Originally published on Fri August 10, 2012 4:55 pm

After serving as speaker of the House, publishing several historical novels and running for president, what's next for Newt Gingrich?

One possible third act, Gingrich told NPR staffers on Friday, could be sharing a television studio with his wife, Callista.

"We're kind of intrigued with the idea of doing a daily show, which would change our lives pretty dramatically," Gingrich said. "But if we do it, we want it to be closer to Regis and Kathie Lee than to Bill O'Reilly or Hardball."

Read more
It's All Politics
4:10 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

In New Ads Focused On Character, Obama And Romney Get Personal

Romney campaign ad

Originally published on Fri August 10, 2012 5:24 pm

The economy and jobs may be what voters say they're most concerned about.

Read more
The Two-Way
4:01 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

Time, CNN Suspend Fareed Zakaria's Column, After Plagiarism Claim

Fareed Zakaria.
Emmanuel Dunande AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon August 13, 2012 5:58 am

A little more than a week after a major plagiarism scandal brought down science wunderkind Jonah Lehrer, Time magazine said it was suspending Fareed Zakaria's column for a month.

Zakaria is an influential and respected commentator on foreign policy and also hosts a show on CNN called Fareed Zakaria GPS.

Read more
Remembrances
4:00 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

David Rakoff Saw The World In All Its Dark Beauty

David Rakoff, the author of Half Empty, Don't Get Too Comfortable and Fraud, was a frequent contributor to This American Life. He died Thursday at the age of 47.
Larry Busacca Getty Images

Originally published on Fri August 10, 2012 6:04 pm

When writer David Rakoff died Thursday at the age 47, he was barely the age he said he was always "meant" to be. In his 2010 memoir, Half Empty, he wrote, "Everyone has an internal age, a time in life when one is, if not one's best, then at very least one's most authentic self. I always felt that my internal clock was calibrated somewhere between 47 and 53 years old."

Rakoff died in New York City after a long struggle with cancer — an ordeal that he wrote about with sobering honesty and biting wit.

Read more
The Torch
3:46 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

U.S. Men's 400m Relay Team Claims Silver, As Bahamas Win Gold

Ramon Miller (left) of the Bahamas crosses the finish line ahead of Team USA's Angelo Taylor to win the 4x400m relay gold medal at the London 2012 Olympics.
Alexander Hassenstein Getty Images

Originally published on Fri August 10, 2012 4:18 pm

The Bahamas men's team has won the 4x400m relay, edging past a surprisingly quick U.S. team to take the gold medal. It was the first gold medal for any male athlete from the Bahamas. The quartet ran a time of 2:56.72, setting a national record. The U.S. set a season best of 2:57.05 to take silver.

Trinidad and Tobago took the bronze medal, just ahead of Great Britain.

The Bahamas led the race after the first lap, with the U.S. running in second. And the two teams' runners stayed ahead of the pack, extending their lead to make it a two-team race.

Read more
Middle East
3:40 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

Sunni Cleric Rises To Challenge Hezbollah In Lebanon

Sheik Ahmad Assir speaks to supporters at a tent encampment set up in protest against Hezbollah in Sidon, Lebanon. He accuses the Islamist militant group of using resistance against Israel as a smokescreen for another aim: advancing Iranian regional hegemony.
Mohamad al-Baba NPR

Originally published on Sun August 12, 2012 8:45 am

On a recent day, baffled motorists honked their horns and veered around the blocked entrance to a major street in Sidon. Now Lebanon's third-largest city, Sidon was once a flourishing Phoenician city-state on the Mediterranean.

The street was closed off by Sunni cleric Sheik Ahmad Assir, who erected a small tent encampment in protest against the country's most powerful military and political force, the militant Islamist group Hezbollah.

Read more
U.S.
3:38 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

Puedes Believe It? Spanglish Gets In El Dictionary

Spanglish, a mixture of English and Spanish, has been spoken for more than a century. A sign in Spanglish advertises a yard sale in Los Angeles in 2009.
Aurelio Jose Barrera Landov

Originally published on Fri August 10, 2012 4:47 pm

The Royal Spanish Academy — the official arbiter of the Spanish language — recently announced that it will add the word "Espanglish" to the 2014 edition of its dictionary. This is a big deal for the traditionally conservative academy, and it's a big deal for supporters who feel that mix of Spanish and English has officially been ignored for more than a century.

Read more
Monkey See
3:26 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

Can NBC Get Its Fall Shows Into The Olympic Spotlight?

Matthew Perry and Brett Gelman of NBC's Go On appear in a promo shot especially for the Olympics.
Justin Lubin NBC

Originally published on Fri August 10, 2012 4:47 pm

With the Olympics drawing to a close, NBC is looking especially golden. They have had two weeks of great ratings — including record highs. What better time than on the eve of the network's new fall season to rack up two weeks of record audiences? But what might seem a slam dunk for the network is anything but.

Read more
Books News & Features
3:11 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

'Age Of Desire': How Wharton Lost Her 'Innocence'

Edith Wharton moved to Paris in the early 1900s. Not long after, in 1913, after her affair with Morton Fullerton had ended, she divorced her husband of more than 20 years.
Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Yale University

Originally published on Fri August 10, 2012 4:47 pm

Jennie Fields was well into her new novel about Edith Wharton — and her love affair with a young journalist — when she heard that a new cache of Wharton letters had been discovered. They were written to Anna Bahlmann, who was first Wharton's governess and later her literary secretary. Bahlmann had never been considered a major influence on Wharton, but Fields had decided to make her a central character in her book, The Age of Desire, even before she heard about the letters.

Read more
Participation Nation
3:03 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

Treats For The Troops In Denver, Colo.

Lainey Hamrick, center, flanked by the folks she supports.
Courtesy of CSOT

Originally published on Tue August 14, 2012 11:59 am

Over the past several years, Lainey Hamrick and the volunteers at Colorado Supporting Our Troops have sent hundreds of care packages to members of the military in Afghanistan, Iraq and bases all over the world. In December, the group shipped 160 boxes of goodies overseas.

Read more
The Two-Way
3:01 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

VIDEO: Researchers Present Hard-To-Kill Robotic 'Earthworm'

A robotic worm.
MIT

Robots are cool to begin with, but today researchers at MIT, Harvard and Seoul National University unveiled one that will impress some and scare others.

Read more
The Salt
2:33 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

Some At-Risk Shark Species Are Ending Up In U.S. Soups

Click the image to see a full-size version. At least eight shark species, many endangered or threatened, were found in bowls of shark fin soup across the country.
Pew Environment Group

Sharks are some of the most feared and fascinating animals on the planet. They've had their own week of awareness-raising and celebration on the Discovery Channel for the last 25 years. But some say they are also delicious — as in the Chinese delicacy — shark fin soup.

Read more
The Torch
2:24 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

U.S. Breaks Through In Wrestling, As Burroughs Delivers Gold

Jordan Burroughs celebrates with the U.S. flag after defeating Iran's Sadegh Saeed Goudarzi in the men's 74kg freestyle gold medal match.
Yuri Cortez AFP/Getty Images

American wrestler Jordan Burroughs has won the first and only U.S. gold medal in his sport at the London Games, beating Sadegh Saeed Goudarzi of Iran. Burroughs, the reigning world champion at the 74kg weight, won a point in the first two periods to put a quick end to the men's freestyle match.

Goudarzi took silver with the loss, and the two bronze medals went to Russian Denis Tsargush, whom Burroughs defeated in the semifinals, and Sosan Tigiev of Uzbekistan.

Read more
Middle East
2:21 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

Egypt's Christians Form Their Own Brotherhood

Egyptian riot police sit in the shade by damaged buildings as people walk through debris from the aftermath of clashes on Aug. 1 between Christians and Muslims in Dahshour, on the outskirts of Cairo. The violence was sparked by a dispute between a Muslim and Christian over laundered clothing.
AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed August 15, 2012 8:11 pm

A former leader of the Muslim Brotherhood occupies Egypt's presidential palace, leaving many of the country's Coptic Christians deeply anxious about their future.

Now, a new group calling itself the Christian Brotherhood has emerged, vowing to stand up for the rights of Copts.

On a Cairo rooftop recently, members of the new Christian Brotherhood are debating how to respond to the first major outbreak of Muslim-Christian violence since President Mohammed Morsi came into office in June.

Read more
The Two-Way
2:07 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

7,500 Square Miles Of Pumice Floating In Pacific Is 'Weirdest Thing I've Seen'

This photo photo from the New Zealand Defense Force shows a handful of the rocks found floating in the South Pacific.
EPA /Landov

Nearly 300 miles long and about 35 miles wide, a floating raft of pumice in the South Pacific Ocean is "the wierdest thing I've seen in 18 years at sea," says Royal Australian Navy Lt. Tim Oscar.

He was aboard the Royal New Zealand Navy's HMNZS Canterbury on Thursday when the "amphibious support ship" investigated the phenomenon.

Read more
The Two-Way
2:05 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

Top New York ICE Officer Sues Napolitano For Discrimination Against Men

Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano.
T.J. Kirkpatrick Getty Images

The officer in charge of the Immigration and Customs Enforcement office in New York has filed a lawsuit against Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano.

James Hayes Jr. alleges that the department, under Napolitano, has been turned into a female-run "frat house" and that Napolitano promoted women because of friendship instead of merit.

The lawsuit alleges that Napolitano hired two friends who have tormented the men of the agency.

Read more
Remembrances
1:14 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

David Rakoff: 'There Is No Answer As To Why Me'

Originally published on Mon August 13, 2012 6:28 am

Writer and humorist David Rakoff, who died Thursday at the age of 47, wrote with a perfect balance of wit and gravity about the cancer that would ultimately take his life.

Rakoff developed a devoted following as a regular contributor to the public radio program This American Life. His books of essays include Fraud and Don't Get Too Comfortable. Rakoff's most recent book, Half Empty, won the Thurber Prize for American Humor in 2011.

Read more
Planet Money
1:05 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

How A Pasta Factory Got People To Show Up For Work

Robert Smith NPR

Originally published on Mon August 13, 2012 9:06 am

Zoe Chace and Robert Smith are reporting from European borders this week. This story is about the unofficial border within one country — the border that divides northern and southern Italy. This is the fourth story in a four-part series.

A decade ago, the Barilla pasta factory in Foggia, Italy, had a big problem with people skipping work. The absentee rate was around 10 percent.

Read more
The Salt
1:02 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

Consumer Group Files Suit Against Sweetener For Claiming It's 'Essential'

Spenda Essentials
NPR

Originally published on Mon October 15, 2012 10:06 am

Ok guys, reality check here: Nutella is not really a health food, POM Wonderful may be wonderful, but it doesn't necessarily prevent heart disease and... eating Splenda Essentials doesn't single-handedly make the pounds drop off.

Read more
Space
12:41 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

Martian Lab Made In Manhattan

Transcript

IRA FLATOW, HOST:

Speaking of Mars, Flora Lichtman is here with our Video Pick of the Week.

FLORA LICHTMAN, BYLINE: Speaking of Mars.

(LAUGHTER)

LICHTMAN: Speaking of Martians.

(LAUGHTER)

FLATOW: Well, I said it because you have a great Mars-related video.

Read more
Space
12:38 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

After 'Terror,' Mars Scientists Plan Exploration

Transcript

IRA FLATOW, HOST:

This is SCIENCE FRIDAY, I'm Ira Flatow. Unless you've been hiding under a rock on Mars, you know that last weekend NASA's Mars Science Laboratory safely made its way down to the surface of the Red Planet and now the Rover Curiosity sits, set up camp in Gale Crater.

So what'll it do now that it's there? Joining me now to talk about it is John Grotzinger. He's project scientist for the mission, professor of geology at Caltech. He joins me from the JPL Campus in Pasadena. Welcome back to the program.

Read more
Books
12:33 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

Catching Up With Tom Swift a Century Later

Science fiction hero Tom Swift has amazed children with his incredible inventions since combustion and electricity drove the nation into a new era. These stories captured a cultural love of science and inspired such famous figures as Steve Wozniak and Isaac Asimov — all while predicting new technologies decades in advance.

The Two-Way
12:32 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

California's Baking And The Power Grid's Being Tested

Will there be too much demand? Power lines near Redondo Beach, Calif.
Gerard Burkhart AFP/Getty Images

Southern California will be broiling through the weekend, as a heat wave that has brought record-breaking temperatures continues, the Los Angeles Times says.

That's why the managers of California's power grid have issued a "flex alert" to customers.

They're asking that residents:

-- "Turn off all unnecessary lights."

Read more

Pages