Last year, the broadcast networks didn't do well at all when it came to new series development. We got ABC's clever Once Upon a Time, which was about it for the fall crop, until midseason perked things up with NBC's Smash. Otherwise, a year ago, all the exciting new fall series were on cable, thanks to Showtime's brilliant Homeland and FX's audacious American Horror Story.
Originally published on Fri September 14, 2012 3:46 pm
The intractable issues that led to the teachers' strike in Chicago are being argued about in states and school districts across the country.
The past decade has been a time of enormous ferment in education policy, with numerous new ideas and approaches being promoted by everyone from conservative think tanks to the well-heeled Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to Obama administration officials.
As the conflict in Syria rages on, an estimated 200,000 people have already fled to neighboring countries: to Turkey, Iraq, Lebanon and most of all to Jordan. Jordan's foreign minister, Nasser Judeh, says the country can't absorb anymore and that the 85,000 already there have strained Jordan's limited means. Those arrivals include most of the high-profile Syrian defectors, including former Prime Minister Riyad Hijab. All this raises serious questions about Syria-Jordan relations and broader Middle East politics.
Originally published on Thu September 13, 2012 2:56 pm
The three attacks on U.S. diplomatic missions this week have a common theme: all took place in countries where autocratic rulers were ousted last year and where new governments are still struggling to keep order.
Last year, many Americans were cheering on Arab Spring uprisings in Egypt, Libya and Yemen. Now the U.S. is the focus of violent anger over an anti-Islamic film produced in this country.
Originally published on Thu September 13, 2012 1:18 pm
After the attack that killed Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans in Benghazi, Libya, President Barack Obama said yesterday that the United States would "work with the Libyan government to bring to justice" the people involved.
Before comic W. Kamau Bell became host of the new weekly political humor show Totally Biased, which mixes standup, sketches and interviews,he had a one-man show called The W. Kamau Bell Curve: Ending Racism in About an Hour.
"If you bring a friend of a different race, you get in 2 for 1," he tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross.
When crossing from Uganda into Congo at the shabby border town of Bunagana, I encountered a broadly smiling man in a black leather jacket named Hamid Kashaisha.
He asked if I wanted to see the gorillas. I replied that it's guerrillas — with guns, that is — that I wanted to see: the M23 rebels who, for the past two months, had occupied a piece of real estate in eastern Congo larger than Delaware.
Originally published on Tue September 18, 2012 1:46 pm
Beef Products, Inc., the South Dakota company at the center of a firestorm this spring over its product labeled "pink slime" by critics, announced Thursday it is suing ABC News for defamation and $1.2 billion in damages.
BPI alleges that ABC reporters and hosts made 200 false statements over the course of a month about BPI's product, known in the industry as lean, finely textured beef (LFTB).
The NFL's Brendon Ayanbadejo has gone to three Pro Bowls and is a star on the field. But when he recently spoke out in favor of gay marriage, a prominent critic told him to stop talking and focus on football. Ayanbadejo joins host Michel Martin to talk about why he's committed to defending same-sex marriage.
The Census Bureau announced that 15 percent of Americans lived in poverty in 2011 — a slight drop from the year before. But income disparities continue to grow. Host Michel Martin talks with Harvard professor William Julius Wilson, author of the 1987 book The Truly Disadvantaged: The Inner City, the Underclass, and Public Policy.
Protests over a video insulting the Prophet Mohammad have spread throughout the Muslim world. Host Michel Martin discusses reactions and why it has elicited such anger with Al Jazeera's Abderrahim Foukara and Georgetown University Professor John Esposito. Advisory: This segment may be uncomfortable for some listeners.
And now about that new iPhone. Techies have long been speculating about what the device will look like and what it will do. Guessing right along with everybody else was Mario Armstrong. He's a digital lifestyle expert and a frequent guest on this program.
MARIO ARMSTRONG: Hey.
MARTIN: Welcome back.
ARMSTRONG: Thank you, Michel. Thanks for having me.
MARTIN: Tell us what you know. Are you in iPhone heaven?
Originally published on Thu September 13, 2012 3:19 pm
The past 24 hours have produced a few answers — but many more questions — about the anti-Islam film that became a flashpoint across North Africa and the Middle East this week.
NPR's Carrie Kahn reports on Morning Edition that The Innocence of Muslims was shot in Los Angeles County last August, under the title Desert Warriors. It's full of "choppy dialogue, bad acting and scenes of a buffoonish Muhammad," she says.
Originally published on Tue September 18, 2012 1:46 pm
UPDATE: 11:37 a.m. As expected, the New York Board of Health passed a rule banning sugary drinks like soda in sizes 16 oz. or larger at restaurants, concession stands and other eateries in an effort to combat obesity today. The ban is expected to take effect in March, but according to the Wall Street Journal, opponents are already considering a legal challenge to prevent that. It passed 8-0.
Originally published on Fri September 14, 2012 6:03 am
Update 8:21 ET. Two Slain Americans Identified:
Two of the security personnel who were killed Tuesday along with Ambassador Chris Stevens and Information Management Officer Sean Smith have been identified. They are Tyrone S. Woods and Glen A. Doherty, both security personnel who died helping protect their colleagues. Both men were former Navy SEALs, according to a statement from U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
A man in Japan wanted to make it into the Guinness book of world records. He considered trying to drink the most hot sauce, but settled on a spikier record. His hairdo — a mohawk — stands 3 feet, 8.6 inches high.
Companies like Google, General Mills and insurance giant Aetna are teaching yoga and meditation in the workplace to help combat stress. Now some business schools are teaching aspiring MBAs the techniques, as well. Reporter Lisa Napoli visited one school in Southern California offering mindfulness as a management skill.
Beginning next week, McDonald's plans to add calorie counts to its menu boards — both at drive-thrus and restaurant counters. Studies suggest that calorie boards alone don't change consumers' purchasing patterns. But consumers do seem to take note, and public health experts say it's one tangible step to helping consumers make healthier choices.
NPR's business news starts with a boost for the euro.
(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)
INSKEEP: Opponents of the European currency have been dealt a big setback in the Netherlands. The center-right Liberal Party, which favors remaining in the eurozone, won the most seats in yesterday's parliamentary elections.
And the attacks in Libya and elsewhere in the Arab world come in the midst of a presidential campaign. It became, in effect, a test of leadership for both the president and his Republican challenger. NPR's Ari Shapiro reports.
ARI SHAPIRO, BYLINE: President Obama learned Wednesday morning that Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other diplomats were killed in the Libyan city of Benghazi. When he spoke in the White House Rose Garden hours later, he didn't mention politics.