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12:54 pm
Wed June 27, 2012

'Who Gets What': Putting A Price On Human Tragedy

Public Affairs

Originally published on Thu June 28, 2012 11:56 am

When a tragedy like the Sept. 11 attacks or the Virginia Tech shooting strikes, shock and grief quickly give way to blame. And when it's time to figure out if and how victims should be compensated, lawyer Kenneth Feinberg's phone rings.

Over the past three decades, Feinberg has developed a unique specialty: overseeing compensation funds by doing the difficult, often contentious and politically charged work of figuring out who deserves payment — and often, how much they will receive.

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Election 2012
12:54 pm
Wed June 27, 2012

Presidential Campaigns Move Into High Gear

Originally published on Wed June 27, 2012 1:09 pm

With the Republican primary season completed, the presidential campaigns are buckling down for the months ahead. NPR's Ron Elving and political strategists Vin Weber and Anna Greenberg discuss the presidential race, key battleground states and what it will take for candidates Romney or Obama to win in November.

National Security
12:54 pm
Wed June 27, 2012

FBI Tracks Possible Military 'Insider Threats'

Originally published on Wed June 27, 2012 1:11 pm

The Pentagon and FBI have conducted more than 100 investigations into possible Islamist extremists inside the U.S. military in the wake of the 2009 shooting at Fort Hood, Texas. NPR's Dina Temple-Raston shares the latest developments and what the military is doing to prevent radicalization within its ranks.

The Two-Way
12:49 pm
Wed June 27, 2012

Puny Humans: Robot Plays Rock, Paper, Scissors With 100 Percent Accuracy

A robot hand playing rock, paper, scissor.
Ishikawa Oku Laboratory

We don't know what this says about the relationship between humans and robots. But researchers at the Ishikawa Oku Lab at the University of Toyko have developed a robot hand that can beat a human 100 percent of the time in a game of "rock, paper, scissors."

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The Two-Way
12:45 pm
Wed June 27, 2012

Here's How To Learn What The Supreme Court Says About Health Care

The U.S. Supreme Court, which will be in the news on Thursday.
Alex Wong Getty Images

Originally published on Wed June 27, 2012 1:15 pm

The biggest surprise Thursday morning at the Supreme Court will be if the justices do not issue their most-anticipated decision of the year — on the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act; the health care overhaul enacted in 2010.

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Shots - Health Blog
12:42 pm
Wed June 27, 2012

FDA Approves First New Weight-Loss Drug In More Than A Decade

Belviq, the first new prescription drug in years to help people lose weight, is expected to be available in four to six months.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Originally published on Thu June 28, 2012 11:34 am

For the first time in 13 years, the Food and Drug Administration has approved a new drug to help people lose weight.

The FDA gave the green light to Arena Pharmaceuticals to sell Belviq, or lorcaserin generically, a twice-a-day pill that suppresses appetite and appears to affect metabolism by influencing levels of the brain chemical serotonin.

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The Salt
12:00 pm
Wed June 27, 2012

Just What Your Summer Beer Needed, Frozen Foam

Kirin

Originally published on Wed June 27, 2012 12:05 pm

Apparently, it is just what it looks like — frozen foam, on a beer.

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Author Interviews
11:53 am
Wed June 27, 2012

Why Flying Is No Fun (And May Be More Dangerous)

Michal Krakowiak iStockphoto.com

After the airline industry was deregulated in 1978, flying changed considerably.

Some of those changes have improved commercial flying, but others have made the skies much less friendly, says journalist and airline veteran William J. McGee.

McGee's new book, Attention All Passengers, details how airlines are cutting costs through regional carriers, outsourcing airline maintenance, mishandling baggage and overbooking airplanes.

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Shots - Health Blog
11:41 am
Wed June 27, 2012

A Guide To The Cleanest And Filthiest U.S. Beaches

San Juan Creek meets the Pacific Ocean at Doheny State Beach in Dana Point, Calif. The poor water quality off Doheny State Beach put in a list of worst beaches in the U.S.
Reed Saxon AP

Originally published on Mon July 2, 2012 8:58 am

If you thought sharks were the scariest threat at the beach, you might consider the lowly bacteria lurking in shore waters instead.

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The Two-Way
11:24 am
Wed June 27, 2012

ACLU Will Defend KKK In Bid To Adopt Stretch Of Ga. Highway

Originally published on Wed June 27, 2012 12:08 pm

Considering it a First Amendment case, the American Civil Liberties Union of Georgia has decided to defend a chapter of the Ku Klux Klan in its bid to adopt a stretch of Georgia highway.

As Korva reported earlier this month, Georgia transportation officials turned down the group's request, saying "encountering signage and members of the KKK along a roadway would create a definite distraction to motorists."

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It's All Politics
11:24 am
Wed June 27, 2012

Where's The Bathroom? Half Of All State Lawmakers Will Be New On The Job

Originally published on Fri June 29, 2012 5:26 am

In the land of legislative freshmen, sophomores can be kings.

That's a dynamic that will play out around much of the country after the fall elections. Come January, about half the nation's roughly 7,400 legislators will be totally new on the job or have only two years' experience, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

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Remembrances
10:52 am
Wed June 27, 2012

A Laugh A Minute, On Screen And In Life

Originally published on Wed June 27, 2012 11:52 am

Nora Ephron, the essayist, novelist, screenwriter and film director, died Tuesday night in Manhattan. She was 71, and suffered from leukemia.

She's most widely known for films including Silkwood and When Harry Met Sally, which she wrote, and Sleepless in Seattle, You've Got Mail and Julie and Julia, which she wrote and directed. She also wrote many frank, humorous essays, some of which were collected in books.

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Election 2012
10:50 am
Wed June 27, 2012

What Issues Really Matter To Latinos?

Originally published on Wed June 27, 2012 2:45 pm

Transcript

VIVIANA HURTADO, HOST:

This is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. I'm Viviana Hurtado. Michel Martin is away. Coming up, a recent survey shows finances are the most common source of conflict for U.S. couples. We talked to one of our regular money coaches to help you and your significant other maybe avoid an argument before it starts.

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The Two-Way
9:43 am
Wed June 27, 2012

Violence In Syria Is As Bad, Or Worse, Than Before Ceasefire, U.N. Says

May 26, 2012: In this picture provided by the Syrian opposition's Shaam News Network, people watch the mass burial of victims in Houla.
AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed June 27, 2012 12:50 pm

From The Associated Press:

"The U.N.'s deputy envoy for Syria, Jean-Marie Guehenno, [has] told the U.N. Human Rights Council that the violence in Syria has 'reached or even surpassed' levels seen before the April 12 ceasefire agreement and that a six-point peace plan forged by his boss, U.N.-Arab League envoy Kofi Annan, 'is clearly not being implemented.' "

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Shots - Health Blog
9:36 am
Wed June 27, 2012

Feds Move To Curb Abusive Debt Collection By Nonprofit Hospitals

Deb Waldin testifies about her experience with a debt collector at a Minnesota hospital during a hearing led by Sen. Al Franken in St. Paul, Minn., in late May.
Minnesota Public Radio/Jeffrey Thompson

Deb Waldin was in agony when she arrived at the emergency room of Fairview Southdale, a nonprofit hospital in suburban Minneapolis. On a scale of 1 to 10, she says her pain was at 12.

She turned out to have kidney stones. But before she got the diagnosis, while she was still lying on a gurney waiting to see a doctor, she was approached by a debt collector from a company called Accretive Health.

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The Two-Way
9:19 am
Wed June 27, 2012

Contracts For Home Sales Rose Sharply In May

"Pending home sales bounced back in May, matching the highest level in the past two years, and are well above year-ago levels," the National Association of Realtors reports. The association says that:

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The Two-Way
8:13 am
Wed June 27, 2012

City Of Stockton's Looming Bankruptcy: Pictures Tell The Story

Among the projects that have helped put Stockton in the red: this downtown multiplex, which opened in 2003 and cost $15 million in public and private money.
Ian Hill KQED

Originally published on Wed June 27, 2012 9:19 am

Stockton, Calif., is on the verge of becoming the largest city in the nation to declare bankruptcy after its city council voted 6-1 Tuesday night to approve a spending plan that's essentially "a day-to-day survival budget," as the Los Angeles Times puts it.

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The Two-Way
7:41 am
Wed June 27, 2012

Orders For Durable Goods Rose In May

There was a 1.1 percent increase in new orders for so-called durable goods in May from April, the Census Bureau says. That's more than economists had forecast, Bloomberg News reports. According to Reuters, economists thought Census would say orders went up about 0.4 percent.

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The Two-Way
7:10 am
Wed June 27, 2012

Sign Of Peace: Queen Elizabeth Shakes Hand Of Former IRA Commander

Queen Elizabeth II shook hands with Deputy First Minister of Northern Ireland Martin McGuinness today in Belfast. McGuinness is a former senior member of the IRA.
Paul Faith WPA Pool/Getty Images

Something that was "unimaginable a couple of decades ago" happened today in Belfast, Northern Ireland, when Queen Elizabeth II shook the hand of former Irish Republican Army commander Martin McGuinness, NPR's Philip Reeves tells our Newscast Desk.

As Philip adds:

"McGuinness used to be a senior member of the IRA, the group that killed the queen's cousin, Lord Louis Mountbatten in 1979. ... The handshake signals times have greatly changed since the end of the conflict, which claimed more than 3,500 lives, though some tensions remain."

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The Two-Way
6:44 am
Wed June 27, 2012

On The Left, Rangel Survives; On The Right, Hatch Easily Wins

Rep. Charles Rangel, D-N.Y., at his victory party Tuesday night.
Spencer Platt Getty Images

Two high-profile, veteran lawmakers — one from the left side of the aisle and the other from the right — overcame primary challengers Tuesday. One had a much easier time than the other.

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The Two-Way
6:13 am
Wed June 27, 2012

'Epic' Wildfire Sends Tens Of Thousands Scrambling For Safety In Colorado

Flames from the Waldo Canyon Fire glowed on the western side of Colorado Springs, Colo., Tuesday night.
Bryan Oller AP

Originally published on Wed June 27, 2012 5:17 pm

"A firestorm of epic proportions" continues to threaten Colorado Springs, Colo., as more than 1,000 firefighters battle flames that by midday had forced more than 26,000 people to flee their homes.

It was local Fire Chief Rich Brown who called the inferno epic Tuesday night. Today, Lt. Jeff Kramer of the El Paso County Sheriff's Office said it's an event "that is certainly unprecedented in this city," The Denver Post reports.

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World
6:03 am
Wed June 27, 2012

Beyonce's Daughter Named Honorary Citizen Of Hvar

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne. Off the coast of Croatia is an island where the mayor dines with Eric Clapton, offers to rename an island Facebook Island if Mark Zuckerberg comes to visit, and just gave honorary citizenship to a celebrity baby. The baby is Blue Ivy, daughter of Beyonce' and Jay Z. Her name was apparently inspired by a tree covered in Blue Ivy at a resort on the island, Hvar. the mayor says the publicity has been great for tourism. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright National Public Radio.

Around the Nation
5:53 am
Wed June 27, 2012

Nordstrom Worker Accused Of Selling Stolen Items

A Nordstrom warehouse worker created a mini department store in his living room — displaying fancy watches and hand bags at very good prices. He even took orders. Police noticed him when he wore a bulky winter coat to work on a hot summer day and made lots of trips to his car.

Business
5:34 am
Wed June 27, 2012

FBI Op Targets Cyber Criminals Stealing Credit Cards

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Two dozen people on four continents have been charged with trafficking in stolen credit cards and bank account numbers. Eleven of the defendants were arrested in the U.S. They were caught after allegedly using a website set up by the FBI as part of a sting operation.

NPR's Jim Zarroli reports.

JIM ZARROLI, BYLINE: FBI officials said the arrests yesterday amounted to the largest coordinated international law enforcement action in history. It involved 13 countries in North America, Asia, Europe and Australia.

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Around the Nation
5:34 am
Wed June 27, 2012

Debby Unleashes Floods On Fla. Panhandle

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Linda Wertheimer.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

Debby has now weakened from a tropical storm to a tropical depression, but it's still bringing flash floods and the threat of tornadoes to Florida cities, including Tampa, Orlando and Jacksonville. Debby first formed in the Gulf of Mexico last weekend. Jessica Palombo of Florida Public Radio has more.

(SOUNDBITE OF RAIN)

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Business
4:25 am
Wed June 27, 2012

Limits Put On Nonprofit Hospital Debt Collection

Originally published on Wed June 27, 2012 5:34 am

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

Let's turn now to proposed rules to protect patients from abusive debt-collection practices, specifically at nonprofit hospitals. The rules come from the Treasury Department. They were required by the 2010 federal health law. Jenny Gold, of our partner Kaiser Health News, has more.

JENNY GOLD, BYLINE: When Deb Waldin arrived at the emergency room of Fairview Health Services, a nonprofit hospital system in Minnesota, on a scale of one to 10, she says her pain was a 12.

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Africa
4:13 am
Wed June 27, 2012

Egypt's Military Has More Power Than Civilian President

Originally published on Wed June 27, 2012 6:40 am

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Linda Wertheimer, in for Steve Inskeep.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

In Egypt, a small victory for civil rights: A court there suspended a decree that allowed the military to arrest civilians. Other moves to amass power by the ruling military council, including dissolving Egypt's elected parliament, are still in effect.

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Business
4:13 am
Wed June 27, 2012

Musical Based On Spice Girls To Open In London

Originally published on Wed June 27, 2012 6:55 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And our last word in business today is a blast from the '90s.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "SPICE GIRLS IF YOU WANNA BE MY LOVER")

SPICE GIRLS: (Singing) Yo, I'll tell you what I want, what I really, really want. So tell me what you want, what you really, really want. I'll tell you what I want...

MONTAGNE: The word is "Viva Forever." That's the name of a new musical based on songs from the Spice Girls, which, clearly, producers are hoping is what fans want - really, really want.

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Africa
4:13 am
Wed June 27, 2012

Can There Be Shared Power In Egypt?

Originally published on Wed July 4, 2012 10:48 am

"The election of muslim brotherhood presidential candidate Mohammed Morsi is another step in the balance of power counter-revolutionary process that many wrongly characterized as a revolution eighteen months ago.

Copyright 2012 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

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Around the Nation
4:13 am
Wed June 27, 2012

UVa Board Reverses Itself, Reinstates President

Originally published on Wed June 27, 2012 6:15 am

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Linda Wertheimer.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

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