Morning Edition

Weekdays, 5 a.m. - 10 a.m.

Waking up is hard to do, but it's easier with NPR's Morning Edition

NPR's Renée Montagne and Steve Inskeep, and KCUR's Michael Byars and Maria Carter bring the day's local and national news.

Morning Edition provides breaking news, news in context, airs thoughtful ideas and commentary and reviews important new music, books and events in the arts.  

You can find out more about Morning Edition on NPR's website.

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Author Interviews
2:05 am
Tue May 29, 2012

The First Lady Cultivates 'American Grown' Gardening

First lady Michelle Obama tends to the presidential garden during the third annual White House kitchen garden fall harvest in October 2011. The last vegetable garden planted at the White House was Eleanor Roosevelt's victory garden.
Pablo Martinez Monsivais AP

Originally published on Tue May 29, 2012 3:34 am

One of the first things Michelle Obama did as first lady was to dig up part of the beautifully manicured South Lawn of the White House and plant a vegetable garden. The garden was just one of Obama's many efforts to encourage Americans to eat nutritious food and live healthier lives. Her latest project, a book called American Grown, is a diary of that garden through the seasons and a portrait of gardening in America, past and present.

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It's All Politics
2:04 am
Tue May 29, 2012

Dire Predictions Amid Another Looming Fiscal Battle

Originally published on Tue May 29, 2012 10:27 am

There are growing warnings on Capitol Hill that the nation could be rolling toward an end-of-the-year fiscal train wreck.

"The looming tax hike will be absolutely devastating," Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said.

"You can call this a fiscal cliff. You can call it 'Taxmageddon' as others have done. Whatever you call it, it will be a disaster for the middle class," Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, added.

And Sen. Ben Nelson, D-Neb., said: "It's a tsunami; there's no question about it, and it's coming."

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House & Senate Races
2:02 am
Tue May 29, 2012

Texas Senate Hopefuls Woo Republicans Of All Stripes

Originally published on Tue May 29, 2012 3:34 am

It's high noon in Texas at the Stephenville Community Center out on Highway 67, and the Cross Timbers Republican Women's Club Candidates Forum is about to begin.

Time has run out on this Republican Senate primary. This is a last chance for the candidates to make an impression before Tuesday's vote. They're vying to replace Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, who is retiring after serving for nearly 20 years.

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Family Matters: The Money Squeeze
1:57 am
Tue May 29, 2012

Listening To Parents Key To Financial Responsibility

Parents can make a difference in whether their kids become spenders or savers, studies find.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Tue May 29, 2012 3:34 am

As an increasing number of Americans live into their 80s and 90s, many families are struggling to find ways to make retirement dollars — that were once supposed to support seniors for years — now stretch over decades.

More and more, families have to care for the very elderly, as well as look after children who might be college grads but haven't found a job in a difficult economy.

All this requires one very important thing: lots of money.

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Middle East
10:07 am
Mon May 28, 2012

Ex-Mubarak PM, Islamist In Egyptian Runoff

Originally published on Mon May 28, 2012 11:43 am

In Egypt, Ahmed Shafiq and the Muslim Brotherhood candidate, Mohammed Morsi, will face each other in a runoff election next month. David Greene talks with NPR's Soraya Sarhaddi Nelson about what these results might mean for Egypt's future.

Middle East
6:39 am
Mon May 28, 2012

Syrian Government Denies Role In Houla Massacre

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

The United Nations special envoy to Syria, Kofi Annan, is in Damascus today to urge the Syrian government to abide by a ceasefire that most agree has been a failure - this after a horrific massacre over the weekend that left more than 100 people dead, nearly half of them children. Witnesses say Syrian army troops shelled a residential area, and then pro-government militias moved in and went on a killing spree. NPR's Kelly McEvers joins us from Beirut. And, Kelly, what happened in this village?

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Health Care
5:10 am
Mon May 28, 2012

Sick In America: Americans' Views On Health Care

Morning Edition's Renee Montagne talks with Dr. Elliott Fisher, director of Dartmouth's Center for Population Health, about the issues raised in our series "Sick in America." NPR, along with Harvard and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, recently surveyed 1,500 Americans on their views about the cost and quality of health care.

Europe
4:49 am
Mon May 28, 2012

Spanish Lender Gets $24 Billion Lifeline

Spain's third largest lender, Bankia, is getting a $24 billion lifeline from the Spanish government. The move is a part of Madrid's effort to return some stability to the country's struggling financial sector.

Around the Nation
4:49 am
Mon May 28, 2012

Secrets To A Happy Marriage: Matching Outfits?

Originally published on Mon May 28, 2012 5:24 am

Mel and Joey Schwanke have been married 64 years. The Fremont, Neb., couple appears to be the perfect match — perhaps their secret is matching outfits. The Schwankes told Omaha's KETV they've dressed alike for decades. They've got a closet full of 146 combinations. Mel's tie always matches the patterns on Joey's dresses.

Around the Nation
4:49 am
Mon May 28, 2012

Controversy Rages Over Farm Safety Rules For Teens

Originally published on Mon May 28, 2012 5:25 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

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Science
4:49 am
Mon May 28, 2012

Summer Science: An Introduction

David Greene speaks with NPR's Joe Palca about Morning Edition's upcoming series, "Summer Science."

Around the Nation
4:49 am
Mon May 28, 2012

A Conversation With Chief Of Hurricane Center

David Greene talks to Rick Knabb, the newly named head of the National Hurricane Center. Knabb is currently the Weather Channel's resident hurricane expert. When he previously worked at the National Hurricane Center as a meteorologist, he was one of the lead forecasters for Hurricane Katrina.

Afghanistan
4:49 am
Mon May 28, 2012

Memorial Honors Americans Killed In Afghanistan

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Today is Memorial Day, the day we remember the men and women who've died while serving in the Armed Forces. In Kabul, Afghanistan, the top U.S. commander, General John Allen, laid a wreath at a garden across from his headquarters. And he read a letter written by Marine Sergeant William Stacey to his parents in Seattle.

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Around the Nation
4:49 am
Mon May 28, 2012

Free Rent, Courtesy Of Unsuspecting AOL

Many young people expect to spend some time couch-surfing when they're just starting out. For Eric Simmons, the couch came courtesy of an unsuspecting AOL. Simmons had been enrolled in an incubator program at the tech firm's Palo Alto campus. And when the program ended, the card that gave him access to the building kept working. That key card unlocked the solution to his housing problem.

Around the Nation
4:49 am
Mon May 28, 2012

50 Years Later, Honoring Vietnam Veterans

Vietnam veterans never got the homecoming many feel they deserved. On Monday, a group of veterans, the Department of Defense and others will begin the first of many ceremonies to honor those who served and commemorate the 50th anniversary of the start of the Vietnam War. Events will be planned over the next 13 years, concluding with the fall of Saigon. Many will gather Monday at the Vietnam Memorial Wall for a wreath ceremony, including President Obama.

Politics
4:49 am
Mon May 28, 2012

Obama Fires Back On Spending Accusations

President Obama has started hitting back at Republicans who accuse him of being the biggest-spending president in history, arguing that the increases in his budgets are the smallest in decades.

Shots - Health Blog
4:49 am
Mon May 28, 2012

Patients Crusade For Access To Their Medical Device Data

Hugo Campos' implantable cardioverter-defibrillator was a mystery to him. So he decided to ask his doctor for access to the data. He made this image with one of his own X-rays.
Hugo Campos

Originally published on Tue May 29, 2012 7:19 am

Each year, tens of thousands of Americans are implanted with tiny battery-controlled devices that regulate the beating of their hearts. Those devices transmit streams of medical data directly to doctors.

But some patients, like Hugo Campos of San Francisco, fear they're being kept out of the loop.

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Dead Stop
4:49 am
Mon May 28, 2012

The Graveyard Of Shelved Ice Cream Flavors

Headstones in Ben and Jerry's "Flavor Graveyard" are dedicated to bygone favorites such as Oh Pear (1997), Makin' Whoopie Pie (2002-2003), and Urban Jumble (2000-2001). Click the enlargement for a detailed view.
Ben and Jerry's

Originally published on Thu June 7, 2012 9:19 am

The first installment in Dead Stop, Morning Edition's summer road trip series about interesting gravesites in America.

When the Ben and Jerry's ice cream company kills a flavor, it's treated with respect — including a burial in the company's "Flavor Graveyard."

"I think we've got the best, and the not-best, up here," Sean Greenwood, Ben and Jerry's Grand Poobah of Publicity, says from the cemetery in Waterbury, Vt.

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Around the Nation
6:26 am
Fri May 25, 2012

Cows Get Their Drink On After Crashing Party

Originally published on Fri May 25, 2012 9:09 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne. A Memorial Day weekend combines honoring those who served with backyard barbecues. And some are getting an early start. Police in Boxford, Massachusetts responded to a call about six party crashers - cows. The Tri-Town Transcript reports the cows crashed a backyard gathering, chased away partiers, and drank their beer. Said a police sergeant, the thirsty cows, quote, "just went in and helped themselves." It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright National Public Radio.

Europe
6:20 am
Fri May 25, 2012

Legendary Rats Return To German Town

Originally published on Fri May 25, 2012 9:09 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne. A town in Germany once had a legendary rat problem. Hamelin was the setting for the tale of the Pied Piper, who lured its rats into a river, and then led away its children when he wasn't paid. Some 700 years later, the rats have returned and chewed through the electric cable powering the town's fountain. Could be a job for another Pied Piper, or tourists could just stop scattering bread crumbs for birds near the fountain. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Asia
3:26 am
Fri May 25, 2012

Hollywood Dreams Led Chinese Firm To Buy Into U.S.

Moviegoers watch a 3-D IMAX movie at a Beijing theater run by the Chinese company Wanda, which recently announced it was buying AMC movie theaters for $2.6 billion. The move is seen as part of a larger effort by the Chinese conglomerate to move into the U.S. market.
Ng Han Guan AP

Originally published on Fri May 25, 2012 9:09 am

One of the big movie blockbusters this year isn't a film, but a business deal.

The Chinese company Wanda, one of that country's leading cinema owners, is buying AMC Entertainment, North America's second-largest movie theater company, for $2.6 billion.

When the agreement was announced in China this week, it did not make a lot of sense at first glance. At least for the buyer.

AMC is loaded with some $2 billion in debt, and movie theater attendance in North America was down 4 percent last year.

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Your Money
3:25 am
Fri May 25, 2012

In Tight Credit Market, A Tool For Small Businesses

Many small-business owners have had difficulty securing loans in recent years. One website grades the nation's banks by the ratio of small-business loans to deposits — and finds that community banks are often most friendly to small business.
Seth Perlman AP

Originally published on Fri May 25, 2012 9:09 am

When small-business owners start looking for money to expand, they often begin at a big bank. The banks are highly visible, well-known and often nearby.

But many small-business owners report that they have struggled to get loans in the wake of the economic downturn.

Ami Kassar, CEO of the small-business-loan broker multifunding.com, advises business owners that large banks are "not the best place to start" when looking for a small-business loan.

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Africa
3:06 am
Fri May 25, 2012

How Crumbling U.S. Dollars Bailed Out Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe now uses the U.S. dollar as its main currency, though the bills are often extremely dirty and falling apart due to constant use. Here a cashier holds U.S. dollars in good condition at a supermarket in the capital Harare in 2009.
Kate Holt Bloomberg via Getty Images

Originally published on Fri May 25, 2012 9:17 pm

Four years ago, Zimbabwe experienced one of the worst cases of hyperinflation in history. The country abandoned its own currency and switched to the U.S. dollar — a move experts say prevented a complete economic collapse.

But using American dollars has created a host of bizarre issues. The bills are filthy, crumbling and often in short supply. There are no U.S. coins to make change, so chocolate is handed out instead. There is, oddly, an abundance of $2 bills.

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Shots - Health Blog
2:51 am
Fri May 25, 2012

Dispatchers' CPR Coaching Saves Lives When Every Minute Counts

Becky Cole was eight months pregnant with her son Ryan when she passed out. Her husband performed CPR for six minutes with the help of a dispatcher before medics arrived.
Courtesy of Medic One Foundation

Originally published on Fri May 25, 2012 9:09 am

Your chances of surviving a sudden heart attack may depend on where you live; some American cities have survival rates five times higher than others. One difference can be 911 dispatchers.

If they coach someone over the phone to give CPR, the chance of surviving goes up. There's now a push to make it universal, but some cities are slow to implement the necessary training.

Becky Cole was eight months pregnant with her fourth child when she collapsed against the bathroom door. It was January 2011 in the Seattle suburb of Woodinville.

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Around the Nation
2:50 am
Fri May 25, 2012

Walk This Way: Crossing The Golden Gate Bridge

More than 200,000 people crossed the bridge the day it opened in 1937. Many walked. Others ran, tap-danced, roller-skated, unicycled, or strode on stilts.
Courtesy of GoldenGateBridge.org

Originally published on Fri May 25, 2012 1:15 pm

On May 27, 1937, San Francisco's Golden Gate Bridge opened, connecting bustling San Francisco to sleepy Marin County to the north. The Oakland-Bay Bridge had opened six months earlier — but the Golden Gate was an engineering triumph. It straddles the Golden Gate Strait, the passage from the Pacific Ocean into the San Francisco Bay, where rough currents prevail and winds can reach 70 mph.

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Shots - Health Blog
2:48 am
Fri May 25, 2012

Need A Nurse? You May Have To Wait

Some fear that with rising medical costs and an aging population, the country's nursing staff will be stretched too thin.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Fri May 25, 2012 9:15 pm

Nurses are the backbone of the hospital — just ask pretty much any doctor or patient. But a new poll conducted by NPR, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Harvard School of Public Health finds 34 percent of patients hospitalized for at least one night in the past year said "nurses weren't available when needed or didn't respond quickly to requests for help."

Since nurses provide most of the patient care in hospitals, we were surprised at the findings. We wanted to find out more. We wanted to know what was going on from nurses themselves. So we put a call-out on Facebook.

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Around the Nation
6:13 am
Thu May 24, 2012

Safeway Meat Clerk Reinstated After Fight

Ryan Young saw a pregnant woman being kicked by her boyfriend. He leaped out from behind the meat counter and intervened. Safeway suspended him, citing a zero-tolerance policy for workplace violence. But after the union took up his cause and people boycotted the store, Safeway reinstated Young, calling his action "commendable."

Around the Nation
6:06 am
Thu May 24, 2012

'Tebowing' Move Not Appreciated At Graduation

Chuck Shriner was about to receive his diploma from Fort Myers Catholic School in Florida when he dropped to one knee, and struck the praying pose made famous by quarterback Tim Tebow. Shriner won a $5 bet but lost the chance to get his diploma onstage.

Africa
5:17 am
Thu May 24, 2012

Egyptians Vote In 2nd Day Of Presidential Election

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

The first free presidential election in Egypt is in its second day. Thirteen candidates are vying to replace Hosni Mubarak in what many there say is a wide-open race. The last election in 2005 saw Mubarak winning 87 percent of the vote against another candidate, a candidate he later threw in jail. Voter turnout yesterday was so strong, election officials kept polling stations open across Egypt for an additional hour.

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Business
3:48 am
Thu May 24, 2012

Business News

Originally published on Thu May 24, 2012 6:30 am

The world's leading PC manufacturer has announced it will lay off 27,000 workers over the next two years — a third of those job cuts will be in the U.S. The CEO of Hewlett-Packard says the layoffs are part of a restructuring that will include greater spending on research and development.

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