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Shots - Health Blog
5:33 pm
Mon September 10, 2012

Vaccine For Dengue Fever Shows A Glimmer Of Hope

A health worker in the Domincan Republic sprays insecticide between houses to stop dengue fever outbreaks this month.
Erika Santelices AFP/Getty Images

It's human nature to hope for positive results after spending months or even years conducting a research study. In well-designed studies, however, scientists identify in advance the criteria for success, so their optimism won't color their conclusions when the study is completed.

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U.S.
5:26 pm
Mon September 10, 2012

Army Aims To Use Words, Not Weapons, With Afghans

U.S. Army soldiers learn to play khosai, Afghanistan's full-contact national pastime, at Fort Campbell.
Blake Farmer for NPR

Originally published on Mon September 10, 2012 5:53 pm

The U.S. Army has been ramping up instruction in the languages of Afghanistan, even as troop levels in the country decrease in preparation for the U.S. troop withdrawal in 2014.

This year, key installations have added several hundred speakers of Pashto and Dari to their ranks, more than doubling the number of soldiers trained in the Afghan languages.

But it's not just the country's languages that are foreign to U.S. soldiers — it's the culture, as well.

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The Two-Way
4:37 pm
Mon September 10, 2012

Kabul's First Skate Park Suffers Tragic Loss In Weekend Attack

Khorshid during a Kabul skating event in 2012.
Skateistan

Originally published on Mon September 10, 2012 5:15 pm

Many times what happens far away ends up coded in numbers and officialdom.

Like this weekend, a blast near NATO headquarters in Afghanistan killed at least six. NPR's Dana Farrington noted that a suicide bomber blew himself up near the entrance of Camp Eggers, where many children who work on the streets set up to sell trinkets.

Today, we get the heartbreaking news that six of the dead were children and four of them were part of the Skateistan program.

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Shots - Health Blog
4:37 pm
Mon September 10, 2012

Mitt Romney's Shifting Stance On Health Care

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney talks about the Supreme Court's health care ruling near the U.S. Capitol in Washington in late June.
Charles Dharapak AP

Originally published on Mon September 10, 2012 5:26 pm

Mitt Romney seemed to make health care news in a Sunday interview on NBC's Meet the Press.

He said he might not want to repeal all of the Affordable Care Act.

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All Tech Considered
4:10 pm
Mon September 10, 2012

What Will Apple's Patent Case Mean For Phone Design?

These Nokia phones unveiled earlier this month are the first smartphones built for Windows 8.
Spencer Platt Getty Images

Originally published on Mon September 10, 2012 5:52 pm

A lot of thought goes into giving your smartphone a distinctive look and feel, from the shape of the speaker — square, round or oval — to where to put the buttons — side, front or back.

But industrial designers like Robert Brunner say he doesn't have a lot of room to be creative.

"Because you're really being so heavily driven on maintaining a minimal physical size," he says. "So you really get into this very fine envelope of a few millimeters that you have to work with."

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Asia
4:05 pm
Mon September 10, 2012

Candidates Criticize China; Presidents Show Caution

For more than three decades, presidential candidates have talked tough about China during the campaign season, but opted for more moderate policies as president. Republican nominee Mitt Romney, shown speaking in Colorado in July, accuses China of manipulating its currency in order to export its goods cheaply to the US.
Nicholas Kamm AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon September 10, 2012 5:26 pm

It has become a staple of U.S. presidential campaigns: Candidates talk about getting tough with China, only to adopt much more moderate positions once they are in office.

When Ronald Reagan ran against President Jimmy Carter in 1980, the challenger often blasted the incumbent for, in his words, "abandoning" Taiwan to establish diplomatic relations with China.

"There will be no more abandonment of friends and allies by the United States of America and I want very much to send that message," Reagan said.

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Education
3:49 pm
Mon September 10, 2012

Chicago Strike Emblematic Of Union Struggle

Chicago public school teachers picket outside William H.Wells Community High School on Monday.
Scott Olson Getty Images

Originally published on Tue September 11, 2012 8:06 am

The strike that shut schools in Chicago on Monday illustrates a larger, national trend: Teachers unions are having a harder time getting what they want.

For decades, teachers unions have been among the most powerful lobbying groups in nearly every state — and have been arguably even more powerful at the local level, where they've often been able to unseat school board members and even mayors who crossed them.

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Movies
3:32 pm
Mon September 10, 2012

The Straight-To-DVD World Of 'Mockbusters'

Paul Bales, David Rimawi and David Latt of The Asylum call their films "mockbusters."
Mike Digrazia

Originally published on Wed September 12, 2012 8:32 am

Dreamworks' animated movie Puss in Boots was a big deal. It won an Oscar, and its swashbuckling, sloe-eyed kitty was voiced by Antonio Banderas.

The meticulous computer-generated animation took four years and something like $130 million to make. But another cartoon, Puss In Boots: A Furry Tail, was hand-drawn in six months for less than $1 million. It went straight to DVD — one of the many low-budget productions riding the coattails of Hollywood blockbusters.

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Games & Humor
3:27 pm
Mon September 10, 2012

Test Your Clever Side With 'Another Thing'

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Mon October 15, 2012 12:57 pm

Each week, All Things Considered and Lenore Skenazy, author of the book and blog Free-Range Kids, bring you "Another Thing," an on-air puzzle to test your cleverness skills. We take a trend in the news and challenge you to help us satirize it with a song title, a movie name or something else wacky.

This week's challenge: A handful of private companies are taking reservations for space flights. That means that there may soon be a lot of tourists floating around — which, in turn, means a lot of mouths to feed.

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Election 2012
3:11 pm
Mon September 10, 2012

Voting Laws In Several States Remain Unsettled

In South Carolina, Pennsylvania and several other states, new voter ID laws are being challenged in court just eight weeks before the general election.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Mon September 10, 2012 5:26 pm

Eight weeks before the presidential election, new laws passed by Republican legislatures that concern who can vote and when remain in the hands of federal and state judges.

Among the cases: The Pennsylvania Supreme Court this week will hear an appeal to overturn that state's new voter ID law. An appeal is expected in a case involving early voting in Ohio. And a federal court is still considering whether South Carolina can go ahead with its new voter ID law.

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The Two-Way
3:04 pm
Mon September 10, 2012

GoDaddy Goes Down, Anonymous Member Takes Responsibility

GoDaddy logo.
GoDaddy

Originally published on Mon September 10, 2012 4:09 pm

The web hosting company GoDaddy has been experiencing severe outages today. Many of its members are complaining that their service is down.

How wide this outage spreads is hard to tell, but GoDaddy aknowledged it was having problems on its Twitter stream.

"We're aware of the trouble people are having with our site," it said. "We're working on it."

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Education
2:46 pm
Mon September 10, 2012

College Course Lumps Homosexuality, Rape, Murder

Franciscan University of Steubenville's Christ the King Chapel seen at dusk in this image taken in 1980, in Steubenville, Ohio.
Courtesy of David E. West

Originally published on Mon September 10, 2012 5:26 pm

The Franciscan University of Steubenville in Ohio faces questions about its accreditation because of a course description that links homosexuality with crimes like murder, rape and robbery.

The university's social work program offers the course, called SWK 314 Deviant Behavior. The course description reads: "The behaviors that are primarily examined are murder, rape, robbery, prostitution, homosexuality, mental illness and drug use."

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Shots - Health Blog
2:09 pm
Mon September 10, 2012

When Heat Kills: Global Warming As Public Health Threat

A man stands in a fountain in Washington Square Park on July 18, in New York City. Temperatures were expected in the upper 90's during another heat wave in the city.
Mario Tama Getty Images

Originally published on Thu September 13, 2012 10:26 am

The current poster child for global warming is a polar bear, sitting on a melting iceberg. Some health officials argue the symbol should, instead, be a child.

That's because emerging science shows that people respond more favorably to warnings about climate change when it's portrayed as a health issue rather than as an environmental problem.

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The Salt
2:03 pm
Mon September 10, 2012

Canada's Food Insecure Find Help, Community Through Facebook

A mural in the isolated city of Iqaluit, in Canada, where food insecurity is tied up with native culture, poverty, and high food prices.
ascappatura Flickr.com

Originally published on Wed September 19, 2012 3:09 pm

We've been giving a lot of virtual ink to the problem of food insecurity lately — the challenges people face when they frequently can't put enough food on the table. And sometimes it seems like an insurmountable problem.

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The Two-Way
1:38 pm
Mon September 10, 2012

AIG Stocks Drop, After U.S. Announces Sell-Off Plans

Over the weekend, the United States Treasury said it has plans to sell $18 billion worth of American International Group stocks. During the financial crisis in 2008, the government pumped $182 billion into AIG stock to keep it from collapsing.

Reuters reports, this morning, that AIG shares fell 1.5 percent because of the news. Reuters adds:

"AIG itself will buy back $5 billion of its own shares in the upcoming stock sale, with the rest of the shares going to the broader public.

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National Security
1:09 pm
Mon September 10, 2012

How 9/11 Changed How America Sees The World

Originally published on Mon September 10, 2012 2:51 pm

After the terror attacks on 9/11, a public opinion survey by the Chicago Council on Global Affairs showed widespread support for increased spending on national security and counterterrorism. A decade later, a new survey shows that "Americans have become increasingly selective about how and where to engage in the world."

Opinion
1:07 pm
Mon September 10, 2012

Op-ed: America Needs Strikes

Public school teachers in Chicago walked off the job Monday after failed contract negotiations with the city. Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel called the strike "unnecessary." In a piece for CNN.com, Chris Rhomberg, sociology professor at Fordham University, argues that America would be better off with more strikes.

Economy
1:04 pm
Mon September 10, 2012

The Housing Market: Have We Finally Hit Bottom?

Originally published on Mon September 10, 2012 2:51 pm

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan in Washington. After five years of plunging prices and spiraling foreclosures, maybe, just maybe, the bubble's stopped bursting. Home prices are beginning to rebound in many parts of the country. Recent reports show fewer foreclosures in several hard-hit states.

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Shots - Health Blog
1:01 pm
Mon September 10, 2012

Let Sleepless Babies Cry (For A While), If They Want To

Getting to no more tears.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Wed September 26, 2012 4:18 pm

When cranky babies won't sleep, is it OK to let them cry it out?

The short answer: Yes, within limits.

Many parents these days try to help their babies learn to sleep better by letting them cry a little.

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Television
12:41 pm
Mon September 10, 2012

Andrew Rannells: Gay And Serious In 'New Normal'

Andrew Rannells plays Bryan Buckley, a successful TV show producer and writer, in the new comedy The New Normal.
Frederick M Brown/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue September 11, 2012 10:23 am

After Andrew Rannells pitched himself for a starring role in NBC's The New Normal, the show's creator didn't call for a month.

"I was like, 'Oh my God, I've completely overstepped — I've over-Oprah-ed this,' " Rannells tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross. "I've ruined my chances of working with this man because I was too bold."

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Middle East
12:39 pm
Mon September 10, 2012

Syrian Activists Take On New And Riskier Roles

Rebel fighters take up position near the military airport outside the rebel-held town of Azaz in northern Syria on Aug. 21. In rebel-held towns like Azaz, activists are taking on new, risky roles as the uprising against Syrian President Bashar Assad continues.
Youssef Boudlal Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Mon September 10, 2012 6:58 pm

On a recent day in the northern Syrian town of Azaz, there's an edgy energy when a pickup truck armed with a heavy machine gun screeches to a halt.

Wild-eyed and high-flving, the young rebels in the truck are happy to be alive after they hit a government helicopter landing at an air base 8 miles outside Azaz.

This rebel-held town is under nightly attack. This lightly armed rebel crew races out to the air base every day to target regime aircraft from hidden sites in the olive groves.

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NPR Story
12:29 pm
Mon September 10, 2012

Lessons For College Students From 'The Zombie War'

Max Brooks World War Z is required reading for freshmen at St. Edward's University in Austin, Texas.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Tue September 11, 2012 2:26 pm

Several colleges and universities have adopted a common read program, where freshmen read the same book during the summer and discuss it once on campus.

Author Max Brooks' World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War is one of the less traditional books appearing on required reading lists. The book captures scenes from a global zombie apocalypse through a series of first-person accounts.

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The Two-Way
11:57 am
Mon September 10, 2012

FBI Arrests Trenton Mayor Over Corruption Probe

Trenton Mayor Tony Mack, left, is driven in custody into the federal courthouse in Trenton, N.J. on Monday.
Mel Evans AP

Originally published on Mon September 10, 2012 12:02 pm

The FBI arrested the mayor of New Jersey's capital city today, accusing him of corruption related to a bribery scandal.

The FBI alleges Tony Mack, the mayor of Trenton, accepted thousands of dollars in exchange for influence over a parking garage project. Federal authorities also arrested Mack's brother and a supporter.

NPR's Carrie Johnson filed this report for our Newscast unit:

"Federal prosecutors accuse all three men of taking part in a conspiracy to obstruct justice.

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Music Reviews
11:42 am
Mon September 10, 2012

The Forgotten Story Of Memphis' American Studios

"Son of a Preacher Man" was Dusty Springfield's debut on Atlantic. The entire album that spawned it, Dusty in Memphis, was recorded at American Studios.
Stan Meagher Getty Images

Originally published on Mon September 10, 2012 12:41 pm

Memphis has been a music town since anyone can remember, and it's had places to record that music since there have been records. Some of its studios — Sun, Stax and Hi — are well-known, but American Studios produced its share of hits, and yet it remains obscure. But that's all likely to change with Memphis Boys: The Story of American Studios, both a book and a CD out now.

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The Two-Way
10:49 am
Mon September 10, 2012

On The Campaign Trail: The Picture Of Joe Biden You Have To See

Vice President Joe Biden's talks to customers during a stop at Cruisers Diner in Seaman, Ohio on Sunday.
Carolyn Kaster AP

Originally published on Tue September 11, 2012 10:29 am

This past weekend was an odd one on the campaign trail. First, as NPR's Don Gonyea reported on Morning Edition, a muscled pizza man was so excited to see President Obama, he hugged him and picked him up a full foot off the ground.

Then there's Vice President Joe Biden who, um, canoodled with a biker lady at a Seaman, Ohio diner.

The picture captured by Carolyn Kaster of the Associated Press is priceless:

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Election 2012
10:39 am
Mon September 10, 2012

Former Aides Talk Strategy For Homestretch

Originally published on Mon September 10, 2012 1:17 pm

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

I'm Michel Martin, and this is TELL ME MORE, from NPR News. Coming up: The designers are sending their creations down the runway at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week in New York City. And just in case your invitations to some of those big-name shows got lost in the mail, we will bring the runway to you. We'll talk with a reporter who's in the mix to tell us what's hot and what's not. That's later in the program.

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Arts & Life
10:39 am
Mon September 10, 2012

NY Fashion Week, From Google Glasses To Harnesses

Originally published on Mon September 10, 2012 1:17 pm

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

I'm Michel Martin and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. Coming up, we'll talk about how a master violin maker holds onto his art form in this struggling economy. Talk about that in just a few minutes.

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U.S.
10:39 am
Mon September 10, 2012

Rep. Chu: Everyone Is Ignoring Military Hazing

Originally published on Mon September 10, 2012 1:17 pm

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

This is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. I'm Michel Martin. Now it's time to go behind closed doors. That's the part of the program where we talk about difficult issues that are often kept hidden.

And in this election season we've been hearing a lot about why candidates take on the issues they've chosen to address. Sometimes it's because an issue is popular, but sometimes it's just too important to ignore, and sometimes it's also personal.

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The Two-Way
10:03 am
Mon September 10, 2012

Top Al-Qaida Leader Reportedly Killed in Yemen

Al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula's second-in-command has been killed in Yemen, a government website reports.

Saudi national Saeed al-Shehri was killed in the Hadramawt area of southern Yemen along with six other militants, according to the website and ministry of defense officials quoted by the BBC.

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The Two-Way
8:27 am
Mon September 10, 2012

Government To Sell Controlling Interest In Bailed-Out AIG

Originally published on Mon September 10, 2012 8:59 am

Remember the dark days of 2008 when insurer American International Group Inc., better known as AIG, nearly collapsed under the weight of the mortgage crisis before Washington rode to the rescue to the tune of $182 billion?

Then there was the public outrage when AIG executives got millions in bonuses after receiving the largest of all of the Wall Street bailouts.

Since then, the New York-based insurance giant has been essentially a government-owned enterprise, with Uncle Sam holding a controlling share.

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