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1:27 pm
Mon May 14, 2012

Teddy Roosevelt's 'Shocking' Dinner With Washington

Originally published on Tue May 15, 2012 9:35 am

In 1901, President Theodore Roosevelt invited African-American educator Booker T. Washington, who had become close to the president, to dine with his family at the White House. Several other presidents had invited African-Americans to meetings at the White House, but never to a meal. And in 1901, segregation was law.

News of the dinner between a former slave and the president of the United States became a national sensation. The subject of inflammatory articles and cartoons, it shifted the national conversation around race at the time.

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Shots - Health Blog
1:18 pm
Mon May 14, 2012

Jobs And College Pose Big Challenges For Young People With Autism

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Tue May 15, 2012 6:50 am

Times are tough for young people. Unemployment is high, and college costs are soaring.

For those who've been diagnosed with autism, the challenges of life after high school are even steeper, according to a study just published in the journal Pediatrics.

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Education
1:11 pm
Mon May 14, 2012

Third Grade A Pivotal Time In Students' Lives

Originally published on Mon May 14, 2012 1:52 pm

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan, in Washington. The age of eight or nine, when kids complete third grade, represents a key turning point. Up until then, children are learning to read. Afterwards, they read to learn. Many educators believe that kids who can't read should be held back, and several states use standardized tests. Kids who don't pass are automatically held back, or retained.

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Politics
1:07 pm
Mon May 14, 2012

The Job: Dig Up Dirt On Politicians

Originally published on Mon May 14, 2012 1:52 pm

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan in Washington. Every politician knows that a drunk driving charge or a secret lover can come back to haunt come campaign time, but so can an unfortunate turn of phrase in an interview decades-old, a now-outdated policy position, a master's thesis or even, as Mitt Romney learned this past weekend, high school pranks that may have gone too far.

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Intelligence Squared U.S.
1:01 pm
Mon May 14, 2012

Debate: Should College Football Be Banned?

A panel of experts faces off on the motion "Ban College Football" in an Oxford-style debate for Intelligence Squared U.S. on May 8.
Samuel LaHoz
  • Listen To The Full Audio Of The Debate
  • Listen To The Broadcast Version Of The Debate

Amid allegations of corruption and misconduct in college football programs, critics have questioned whether the schools are exploiting student-athletes in an attempt to make millions of dollars. And alarms have been raised about the risks of repeated head injuries.

But football supporters say the sport is unifying, it teaches life lessons to players and it offers chances to young men that they may not get elsewhere.

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The Two-Way
12:17 pm
Mon May 14, 2012

Seizing The American Dream: From Janitor To Ivy-League Graduate

Columbia University janitor Gac Filipaj give a thumbs up during the Columbia University School of General Studies graduation ceremony on Sunday.
Jason DeCrow AP

There are few stories as sweet as that of Gac Filipaj. He's a 52-year-old refugee who emmigrated from a war-torn former Yugoslavia to work as a janitor at one of America's premiere universities.

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It's All Politics
11:52 am
Mon May 14, 2012

Obama Campaign Questions Lessons Of Romney's Business Experience

Originally published on Tue May 15, 2012 9:10 am

President Obama's re-election campaign is attacking Mitt Romney's business experience, perhaps his strongest selling point as a candidate, in a new TV ad in five swing states.

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The Two-Way
11:36 am
Mon May 14, 2012

'Gay President,' Breast-Feeding Mom: Suddenly We're Talking About Magazines

TheDailyBeast.com/Newsweek

Every once in a while, many in the news business seem to rediscover something that's always been rather obvious:

Publishers will put provocative images on their magazines and newspapers — and now their websites — in order to create "buzz" and, they hope, attract readers.

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The Salt
11:29 am
Mon May 14, 2012

California's Genetically Engineered Food Label May Confuse More Than Inform

Protesters demonstrate against the production of genetically modified food in front of a Monsanto facility in Davis, Calif., in March. The local protest was not specifically about labeling.
Randall Benton MCT /Landov

Originally published on Fri May 18, 2012 6:03 pm

When Californians go to the polls in November, they will very likely have the chance to make California the first state in the nation to require labeling of genetically engineered food. That's according to California Right to Know, which filed a petition to force a statewide vote.

And the group is pretty confident it will succeed. "Polls show that nine out of ten California voters agree that they want labeling," Stacy Malkan, spokeswoman for the group, tells The Salt.

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Television
11:23 am
Mon May 14, 2012

Johnny Carson Gets The 'Masters' Treatment

Fifty years ago, Johnny Carson became the host of The Tonight Show.
NBC/Photofest PBS

Originally published on Mon May 14, 2012 12:15 pm

Johnny Carson walked away from The Tonight Show, after 30 years at the top of the late-night ratings, of his own volition. And except for a few fleeting TV appearances after he retired, he never looked back — and never went back. When filmmaker Peter Jones would send an annual letter to Carson, asking for his cooperation in a TV biography of him, the answer was always no. One year, Carson went so far as to explain why: Let the work, he said, speak for itself.

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The Two-Way
11:19 am
Mon May 14, 2012

FAMU Band Will Remain Suspended Another Year

Florida A&M Marching 100 Drum Major Robert Champion during a performance at halftime of the game against Howard University at Bragg Memorial Stadium on Oct. 8, 2011 in Tallahassee, Florida.
Don Juan Moore AP

The president of Florida A&M University said his school's Marching 100 band — which has been marred by a hazing scandal — will remain suspended through the 2012-2013 school year.

The Orlando Sentinel reports James Ammons informed the board of his decision during a teleconference today. The Sentinel adds:

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The Fracking Boom: Missing Answers
11:10 am
Mon May 14, 2012

With Gas Boom, Pennsylvania Fears New Toxic Legacy

NPR

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 9:55 am

In Pennsylvania, there's an industrial revolution going on. Battalions of drilling rigs are boring into the earth to extract natural gas from an underground layer of shale called the Marcellus formation.

And as the wells multiply all along the western end of the state, people worry they may be facing another toxic legacy.

The first one came from coal mining. All over the state, you can see bright orange rivers and streams. The aquatic life was killed by acidic runoff from abandoned mines.

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Economy
10:53 am
Mon May 14, 2012

Uneven Economy Evens The Field For Obama, Romney

An audience member decries President Obama's economic policies as Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney speaks during a February campaign rally in Atlanta.
Gerald Herbert AP

Originally published on Mon May 14, 2012 12:51 pm

As the election year began, conventional wisdom was pretty well set about the outcome of the presidential race. If the economy improved, President Obama would win. If not, he'd be a one-termer.

So what does it mean that many big economic indicators are moving sideways?

"Obama seems to be in that gray area," says Paul Pierson, a political scientist at the University of California, Berkeley. "The numbers are neither so good nor so bad that they give you a definitive answer."

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World
10:49 am
Mon May 14, 2012

In Mexico, Cartels Target Journalists

The spiraling drug violence is increasingly affecting journalists, in a country considered one of the most dangerous for reporters. Host Michel Martin speaks with Jose de Cordoba of The Wall Street Journal, and Carlos Lauria of the Committee to Protect Journalists. Advisory: This segment may not be comfortable for some listeners.

Around the Nation
10:49 am
Mon May 14, 2012

Is Jennifer Hudson's Tragedy All Too Common?

Jurors in Chicago recently reached a verdict in the murder case against William Balfour, the man accused of killing Oscar-winner Jennifer Hudson's mother, brother, and nephew. Host Michel Martin speaks with WBEZ reporter Natalie Moore about the elements of race, class, and violence in Chicago's South Side that came into play in the trial.

Your Health
10:42 am
Mon May 14, 2012

Pounding Away At America's Obesity Epidemic

In the United States, more than 78 million adults and 12 million children are obese.
Jessica Dimmock HBO

Originally published on Mon May 14, 2012 11:37 am

The numbers are staggering: One-third of Americans are obese; another third are overweight. Some 26 million Americans have Type 2 diabetes. An additional 79 million more are pre-diabetic. Thanks to these figures, the children of today have a good chance of becoming the first generation of Americans to die at younger ages than their parents.

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Remembrances
10:40 am
Mon May 14, 2012

Shooting Vietnam: Remembering Horst Faas

The sun breaks through dense jungle foliage as South Vietnamese troops, joined by U.S. advisers, rest after a cold, damp and tense night of waiting in an ambush position for a Viet Cong attack that didn't come, January 1965.
Horst Faas AP

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 9:47 am

Pulitzer Prize-winning photojournalist Horst Faas, who captured several iconic moments during the Vietnam War, died May 10. He was 79.

Haas was the chief of The Associated Press' Southeast Asia bureau from 1962 to 1974, where he covered the fighting and mentored dozens of young photographers who were sent out across Vietnam to capture images of the war's terror and inhumanity.

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The Two-Way
10:32 am
Mon May 14, 2012

Afghanistan: More Troubles, But U.S. Ambassador Sees Path Forward

Officials and mourners prepare to place the coffin of Afghanistan High Peace Council and former Taliban leader Arsala Rahmani in a grave earlier today, in Kabul.
Massoud Hossaini AFP/Getty Images

While U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan Ryan Crocker says there is a path toward relative stability in Afghanistan and away from a return to the kind of civil war that devastated the country in the early 1990s, the difficulties still facing that nation have been underscored by more violence:

-- CNN.com reports that "a bomb exploded inside a shop in the northern Afghanistan province of Faryab on Monday, killing nine people, according to the Afghan Interior Ministry."

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The Two-Way
9:25 am
Mon May 14, 2012

Dozens More Murdered In Mexico; Count Of Headless Bodies May Near 70

Morgue employees take in some of the bodies that were found Sunday.
Moises Castillo AP

Few headlines are more horrific than this:

"49 Headless Bodies Dumped In Mexican Town."

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The Fracking Boom: Missing Answers
9:23 am
Mon May 14, 2012

Science And The Fracking Boom: Missing Answers

Originally published on Mon May 14, 2012 1:27 pm

A technique called hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, has kicked off an energy boom in the United States. Fracking lets drillers unlock vast reservoirs of natural gas that were previously inaccessible. Over the past decade, about 200,000 gas wells have been drilled across the country.

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The Two-Way
8:55 am
Mon May 14, 2012

Baby Names: The Latest Partisan Divide?

The percentage of newborns given the trendiest names is much smaller than it was a generation ago.
Andre Panneton iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Mon May 14, 2012 9:27 am

Evan, Elizabeth, Rachel, Abigail and John all have something in common. They were born this spring at Fletcher Allen hospital in Burlington, Vt.

Around the same time, a group of babies named Paislee, Liberty, Rykan and Scottlynn were all born in and around North Platte, Neb.

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The Two-Way
8:47 am
Mon May 14, 2012

Sophia Is No. 1 Among Girls' Names; Mason Soars To Near Top Among Boys

Originally published on Mon May 14, 2012 11:53 am

Sophia has pushed Isabella off the No. 1 spot among most popular names for girls born in the U.S., the Social Security Administration says.

Meanwhile, Jacob remained atop the list of boys' names, where it's been since 1999.

But Mason "rocketed to number two" last year from the No. 12 spot in 2010.

Here are the top 10 for each gender, from the agency's website:

Boys

1. Jacob
2. Mason
3. William
4. Jayden
5. Noah

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The Two-Way
7:32 am
Mon May 14, 2012

Facebook's Zuckerberg Turns 28, With Billions Of Reasons To Celebrate

Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg, in black hoodie.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Happy birthday, Mark Zuckerberg.

Not only do you turn 28 today, but at the end of the week Facebook stock is due to go public for the first time.

The social networking giant is expected to be valued around $100 billion and Zuckerberg's worth will then be around $18 billion, as Wired magazine's Steven Levy said earlier today on Morning Edition.

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Around the Nation
6:52 am
Mon May 14, 2012

Pipe Shop Owner Fights For Free Expression

When Adam Spiegel rolls down the metal security doors at his Medford, Ore., store, a painting becomes visible. Officials told him to clean the graffiti or be fined. He tells the Mail-Tribune it's not graffiti: it's a mural. Some onlookers think the painting resembles a giant bong.

The Two-Way
6:49 am
Mon May 14, 2012

Yahoo CEO's Ousting Is Victory For Hedge Fund Pushing Change At Company

Nicholas Kamm AFP/Getty Images

Sunday's news that Yahoo CEO Scott Thompson was stepping down in the wake of questions about his credibility is being followed this morning with accounts about how this is a victory for an activist hedge fund that's been pushing for changes at the Internet search giant.

As the Mercury News reports:

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Business
6:34 am
Mon May 14, 2012

Yahoo CEO Out After Revelations Of Flawed Resume

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with a Mother's Day shakeup.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

INSKEEP: Yahoo says its CEO, Scott Thompson, is out, after a shareholder revealed an in accuracy on his resume. Mr. Thompson had claimed that he held two college degrees. In fact, he only had one. Thompson's resignation is a victory for an activist hedge fund that has been pressing for a shakeup in how Yahoo is run.

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Around the Nation
6:29 am
Mon May 14, 2012

Columbia University Janitor Graduates With Honors

Originally published on Mon May 14, 2012 8:48 am

When Gac Filipaj fled war-torn Yugoslavia in 1992, he became a refugee in New York. He took a janitor's job at Columbia University because it included free tuition. But he first had to learn English. After a dozen years, he received a bachelor's degree in classics over the weekend.

The Two-Way
5:49 am
Mon May 14, 2012

Reports: JPMorgan's Losses Could Top $4 Billion; Three Execs To Resign

Mark Lennihan AP

Originally published on Mon May 14, 2012 8:17 am

Three high-ranking executives, including one of the most powerful women on Wall Street, are expected to resign from JPMorgan Chase this week because of their roles in the $2.3 billion loss the bank recently suffered when some risky trades blew up in its face.

The Wall Street Journal, which broke that news, also reports that JPMorgan's losses from the "giant trading blunder" keep growing. It cites "people familiar with the situation," as its sources.

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Education
5:44 am
Mon May 14, 2012

Budget Woes Could Close Philly's Problem Schools

Philadelphia's school district plans to close a quarter of its school buildings in coming years to eliminate a huge budget hole. But parents and activists don't trust the decision-makers. Many of them suspect the plan is a ruse to force charter schools and privatization on the district.

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