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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Business
3:00 am
Tue March 6, 2012

U.S. Economy Shows Positive Signs For Growth

Originally published on Tue March 6, 2012 11:13 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with more positive signs for the economy.

The U.S. economy is improving faster than previously predicted. This, according to two dozen economists surveyed by the Associated Press. The economists foresee stronger growth and more hiring than they did two months ago, and predict an unemployment rate at around eight percent by Election Day.

Business
3:00 am
Tue March 6, 2012

Airline Fares Tick Higher

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

OK. And we all noticed rising costs at the gas pump. But those costs will also mean rising prices for airline tickets.

As NPR's Annie Baxter reports, that's already happening.

ANNIE BAXTER, BYLINE: If you've been looking for a great deal on airline tickets recently, you've probably been disappointed.

BOB MANN: Carriers have raised prices successfully twice, so far this year and that's out of four attempts. And I would expect another attempt literally within in a week.

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Business
3:00 am
Tue March 6, 2012

United, Delta Upgrade Overhead Bins

Originally published on Tue March 6, 2012 11:13 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And our last word in business has some good news for travelers – bigger bins. People have been avoiding checked-baggage fees by carrying on bags onto airplanes - that includes bags too big for the overhead bins. Now United and Delta Airlines are enlarging their bins, though there is some fear this will prompt people to bring bags that are even bigger.

That's the business news on MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Europe
3:00 am
Tue March 6, 2012

Moscow Protesters Demand 'Russia Without Putin'

Russia's opposition is turning to the streets to protest Sunday's presidential election which returned Vladimir Putin to power. The protesters may have agreed on a set of very catchy slogans, but they're not a cohesive political movement.

Business
1:55 am
Tue March 6, 2012

Let A Stranger Drive Your Car? More Owners Say 'Yes'

Stanford graduate student Katie Hagey rents her 2002 BMW to strangers through the peer-to-peer car sharing service Wheelz.
Charla Bear for NPR

Originally published on Tue March 6, 2012 11:13 am

It would be difficult for some people to let a stranger drive off with one of their most valuable possessions. But not for Stanford graduate student Katie Hagey.

Hagey is one of a growing number of individual car owners who have started renting their wheels to people they don't know through car-sharing startup companies resembling the better-known Zipcar.

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Music Interviews
3:08 pm
Mon March 5, 2012

K'Naan: A Song 'More Beautiful Than Silence'

K'Naan's new EP, More Beautiful Than Silence, was released Jan. 31.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Mon March 5, 2012 11:01 pm

The last time Morning Edition spoke with K'naan, he had just gone back to his native Somalia for the first time in 20 years to highlight the effects of the famine there.

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Around the Nation
6:31 am
Mon March 5, 2012

Michigan Moviegoer Sues Over High Snack Prices

Originally published on Fri March 9, 2012 9:51 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne. Joshua Thompson is a big moviegoer, but high prices at the concession stand left a bad taste in his mouth. So after paying $8 for a Coke and a box of Goobers, Thompson filed a class action lawsuit. It accuses Michigan's AMC Theaters of charging grossly excessive prices for snacks. Consumer lawyers told the Detroit Free Press the lawsuit will likely be a flop, but moviegoers are applauding. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright National Public Radio.

Europe
6:17 am
Mon March 5, 2012

Saint's Heart Stolen From Dublin Cathedral

Originally published on Fri March 9, 2012 9:51 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Sports
6:02 am
Mon March 5, 2012

70-Year-Old Japanese Equestrian Wins Olympic Spot

Originally published on Fri March 9, 2012 9:51 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Now, we do not know what songs make Hiroshi Hoketsu move, but the Japanese equestrian does move gracefully on a horse. Just shy of his 71st birthday, he has won a spot at the London Olympics for dressage, where you lead a horse through a series of very precise movements. Japanese officials are still deciding whether they'll let him compete.

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Law
3:00 am
Mon March 5, 2012

Deal Reached On Gulf Oil Spill Victims

Originally published on Fri March 9, 2012 9:51 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Lawyers for BP, and thousands of people affected by the Deepwater Horizon accident and oil spill, had been expected, for a long time, to be in a New Orleans courtroom this morning for a civil trial. Instead, they're reviewing a deal to settle the case.

BP estimates it would pay nearly $8 billion in the settlement. In exchange, the company would avoid revisiting, in a courtroom, what led up to the drilling rig explosion that killed 11 men and poured massive amounts of oil into the Gulf of Mexico.

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Business
3:00 am
Mon March 5, 2012

The Last Word In Business

Originally published on Fri March 9, 2012 9:51 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And today's last word in business is a blast from the past: Datsun, a name that you may remember if you're of a certain age. The cut-priced Japanese cars first appeared in the United States in 1958, when Elvis topped the charts. Datsun was produced by Nissan, which decided to phase out the brand in the 1980s. Now a Japanese newspaper says Nissan may bring it back.

Sadly, American Datsun enthusiasts may have to travel far to find one. Nissan's plans to sell low-priced cars only in emerging markets like India and Russia.

Around the Nation
3:00 am
Mon March 5, 2012

Tornado Destroys Only School In Henryville, Ind.

Originally published on Fri March 9, 2012 9:51 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

The death toll from the tornados that slammed Midwestern and Southern states on Friday has now risen to 39. The latest victim is Angel Babcock, 15 months old. She died on Sunday in a hospital in Louisville, Kentucky. The toddler was found in the shattered remains of her family's home. Her parents and two siblings were also killed.

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Business
3:00 am
Mon March 5, 2012

Business News

Originally published on Fri March 9, 2012 9:51 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with more bad news for News Corp.

An FBI investigation of Rupert Murdoch's media company is now looking to Russia. A billboard company, News Outdoor Russia, owned until last year by News Corp, is being scrutinized over possibly bribing public officials. The FBI began looking into News Corps' operations after its British newspapers were embroiled in a bribery and phone hacking scandal.

Asia
3:00 am
Mon March 5, 2012

China's National People's Opens Annual Session

Originally published on Fri March 9, 2012 9:51 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Now just as the U.S. economy seems to be picking up, China's is not. The Chinese government has downgraded its economic growth target to the slowest rate in eight years. China's premier says the country needs to boost consumer demand, and address what he calls unsustainable development.

NPR's Louisa Lim reports from Beijing.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

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Pop Culture
11:01 pm
Sun March 4, 2012

Zumba's A Hit, But Is It Latin?

Zumba dance classes are all the rage, but some critics say the fitness craze shouldn't be considered Latin dance.
Christopher Futcher iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Fri March 9, 2012 9:51 am

Zumba isn't just a fitness craze; it's an international business with more than 12 million enthusiasts in its classes. You can buy Zumba CDs, a Zumba video game and Zumba clothes. For many students — who show up in spandex to body-roll, fist-pump and booty-shake — it's their first taste of Latin music and dance steps. Now, some Latin dancers are trying to make more of a distinction between their art — and what happens in a Zumba class.

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Music News
8:19 pm
Sun March 4, 2012

Jazzercizing To 'It's Raining Men'? Hallelujah!

Jazzercizers in action.
Jazzercize, Inc.

All this winter, Morning Edition has been creating The Ultimate NPR Workout Mix by asking people what music makes them move. NPR's own Susan Stamberg says her favorite workout method, Jazzercise, is inherently musical.

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Business
6:56 am
Fri March 2, 2012

Continental, United Go To Single Computer System

It would be easy not to have known Continental Airlines has been merged with United for two years. That will change Saturday when all operations and branding are combined under just United. Any hiccups could mean delays throughout the airline's system.

Around the Nation
6:35 am
Fri March 2, 2012

Honeymooners Revisit Waldorf-Astoria 6 Decades On

When Joan and Izzy Schwartz got married, they spent their wedding night in a suite at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in Manhattan. Back then, the room cost $16.80. For their 60th anniversary, the Waldorf will give the couple a room for the same rate they paid in 1952.

Europe
6:28 am
Fri March 2, 2012

London Fashion Students Make A Green Statement

Students at London's Kingston University this week unveiled luxury designs made of bio-degradable materials. There are stilettos made from pistachio shells and coffee beans, a wood-chip corset and a top made from orange peel.

NPR Story
3:00 am
Fri March 2, 2012

Washington State To Hold Nominating Contest

Originally published on Fri March 2, 2012 6:12 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.

The next big day for Republican presidential hopefuls is Super Tuesday. But on the way to Tuesday, the candidates are making stops in Washington state. Republican caucuses there are set for tomorrow morning.

And as NPR's Martin Kaste reports, with the fight for the nomination still tight, for once the caucuses in Washington state may actually mean something to the presidential race.

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NPR Story
3:00 am
Fri March 2, 2012

Santorum Upset By Mich. Delegate Decision

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And in Michigan, there's a fight going on over one delegate to the Republican National Convention. Rick Santorum's campaign team says its candidate is a victim of, quote, thuggery. They accuse Michigan Republican leaders of engineering an after-the-fact rules change to give Mitt Romney a slim lead in delegates from last Tuesday's state primary.

We have more from Michigan Public Radio's Rick Pluta.

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Business
3:00 am
Fri March 2, 2012

Dentist Wins Bid For Elvis Presley's Crown

Originally published on Mon March 5, 2012 2:59 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And our last word in business this morning is: crowning achievement. At an auction in the U.K. last week, a dentist from Alberta, Canada, paid $10,000 for a crown that once belonged to The King himself: Elvis Presley.

The crown is actually the kind you wear on a tooth. That isn't the only dental collectible this dentist has paid top dollar for. He shelled out $31,000 for a rotten tooth that belonged to John Lennon. He says his waiting room is starting to look like a Hard Rock Cafe, but it's good for business.

Middle East
3:00 am
Fri March 2, 2012

Syria Update

The district of Baba Amr in the city of Homs had been the heart of the Syrian uprising, where mass protests turned into an armed resistance. Activists say government troops are combing the area, arresting any male over the age of 12.

Books
3:00 am
Fri March 2, 2012

Shadid's 'House Of Stone' Is A 'Sweep Of History'

Anthony Shadid, who died Feb. 16, was a foreign correspondent for The New York Times based in Baghdad and Beirut. He won a Pulitzer Prize twice, in 2004 and 2010.
Nada Bakri Courtesy Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

Originally published on Fri March 2, 2012 12:59 pm

The death of Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Times correspondent Anthony Shadid in Syria on Feb. 16 was a devastating loss for journalism and for the Middle East he did so much to illuminate.

But Shadid's voice is still with us — in the form of the memoir House of Stone, published this week.

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Fine Art
2:37 am
Fri March 2, 2012

In 'Ocean Park,' Gentle Portraits Of California Light

Richard Diebenkorn's 1975 work Ocean Park #79, features pastel blues, lavenders and aquas — and thin strips of deep red and green at the top to draw the viewer's gaze upward.
The Estate of Richard Diebenkorn Courtesy Philadelphia Museum of Art

Originally published on Fri March 2, 2012 7:31 am

In the late 1960s, while America was in turmoil over the Vietnam War and the assassinations of Martin Luther King Jr. and Robert Kennedy, a painter in Santa Monica, Calif., was creating a series of tranquil, glowing canvases that made his reputation and transfixed art lovers. Those works — the Ocean Park series — are now on view at the Orange County Museum of Art, about an hour's drive from the place where they were painted.

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Business
6:34 am
Thu March 1, 2012

Virgin Atlantic Hires Whispering Coach

The airline hired the coach to train its flight attendants to speak in hushed tones while serving passengers. Crews will be trained on tone and volume. The low tones are reserved for Virgin's new upper class dream suite.

Around the Nation
6:18 am
Thu March 1, 2012

Even In Court, A Wallet Must Be Monitored

Originally published on Thu March 1, 2012 11:18 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Steve Inskeep. A suspect in Iowa will not have to go far to find a jury of his peers. Jury selection was underway in a court in Waterloo when a potential juror left her wallet on a bench. She returned from a break and found cash missing. Witnesses and security cameras in the court led authorities to a suspect. The man was another potential jury member. Police arranged a court date for him in the same legal system he had been serving a short time before. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Business
3:00 am
Thu March 1, 2012

Acorn Media Gains Rights To Agatha Christie

Originally published on Thu March 1, 2012 11:18 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And this morning's last word in business is: killer deal.

That's what Acorn Media may feel it's landed. Acorn distributes British TV series in the U.S., and it's now acquired a controlling interest in the estate of Agatha Christie. The late author of murder mysteries has sold billions of books. Those include the classic detective series Miss Marple and Hercule Poirot.

(SOUNDBITE OF AGATHA CHRISTIE MOVIE)

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: (as Hercule Poirot) However, there is someone in this room who denied to him this pleasure.

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Election 2012
3:00 am
Thu March 1, 2012

Romney Touts Less Debt, Smaller Government In Ohio Stop

Originally published on Thu March 1, 2012 11:18 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

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

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

The battle over social issues in the Republican presidential primaries has extended through most of another week. This time the flashpoint was a remark by Mitt Romney. The former Massachusetts governor said he opposed, and then clarified that he actually favors, legislation involving contraception.

NPR's Tamara Keith reports it was not what Romney intended to discuss in Ohio.

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Election 2012
3:00 am
Thu March 1, 2012

Santorum Pounces On Romney's Views On Religious Freedom

Campaigning in Tennessee Wednesday, GOP presidential candidate Rick Santorum's camp took the opportunity to slam rival Mitt Romney for having a "liberal Record" on freedom of religion. At Nashville's Belmont University, Santorum spoke about his own views of religious freedom.

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