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By a vote of 373-52, the House passed a massive bill that among other things keeps the interest rate on student loans from doubling on July 1.

"The U.S. House of Representatives passed a massive bill on Friday combining funding for transportation programs, low-interest student loans, and the National Flood Insurance Program," the Reuters reports.

The Washington Post reports:

Conservative critics who say that Chief Justice John Roberts is some kind of traitor to their movement because he was the deciding vote in favor of upholding the Obama administration's Affordable Care Act "don't understand how these judges are supposed to discharge their responsibilities," Bush-era Attorney General Alberto Gonzales told NPR this morning.

Astronauts Prepare For Departure

Jun 29, 2012

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IRA FLATOW, HOST:

This is SCIENCE FRIDAY. I'm Ira Flatow. This weekend, three members of the crew onboard the International Space Station will be returning to Earth after over six months in orbit. Flora Lichtman had a chance to chat with some of them, and she's here with us. Hi, Flora.

FLORA LICHTMAN, BYLINE: Hi, Ira. That's right, just another day at SCIENCE FRIDAY, calling space.

(LAUGHTER)

Bidding Farewell to Lonesome George

Jun 29, 2012

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IRA FLATOW, HOST:

This is SCIENCE FRIDAY. I'm Ira Flatow. It's not often that people pay tribute, even eulogize, an animal, unless it's a famous film star like Lassie or maybe Trigger. But this week, they are remembering Lonesome George, the famous giant Galapagos tortoise thought to be over 100 years old and the last known member of his subspecies.

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When it comes to climate change, you've heard of melting icecaps and rising sea levels, but just how high will the sea levels rise in 20, 30 or 100 years? Will it be enough to notice the difference? New research now says the oceans will swallow up more and more of our coastline, rising not just inches but feet according to two new reports released by the National Research Council and the U.S. Geological Survey.

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IRA FLATOW, HOST:

This is SCIENCE FRIDAY; I'm Ira Flatow. Imagine walking through Times Square, and every step you take it converted into a tiny electric current by the special pavement underfoot. Now multiply by the third of a million people who walk through Times Square on any given day. Wow, it could be a pretty awesome source of renewable energy, right, perhaps enough to power all those neon lights and flashing billboards.

Spider-Man Gets A Physics Lesson

Jun 29, 2012

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IRA FLATOW, HOST:

Peter Parker and Gwen Stacy hit the big screen again next week. The new movie "The Amazing Spider-Man" opens on July 3rd. And once you accept the premise that a man can get super spidey skills from a radioactive - sorry to laugh - spider bite, well, you know, just like Johnny Carson used to say, you buy the premise, you buy the bit.

NPR: Alan Turing turns 100

Jun 29, 2012

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IRA FLATOW, HOST:

This is SCIENCE FRIDAY. I'm Ira Flatow. Your telephone is a computer, really. Your microwave, it's got a computer in it. Your television, it's got a computer there. Even, of course, your computer has a computer. Your iPhone, your cellphone. Everything - just about everything in electronics these days has a computer, and they all work the same way like a Turing machine. Decades before your PC, your Mac or your Commodore, Alan Turing was designing a machine which could calculate almost anything: a universal computer.

Julian Assange will defy a British Police notice to surrender. A member of his defense fund said the WikiLeaks founder will remain in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London because asylum law take precedence over an extradition order.

Saying he was afraid of persecution from the United States government and that his extradition to Sweden could hasten that, Assange has sought refuge and asylum from Ecuador.

Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts surprised the country yesterday by siding with the liberal wing of the court in the health care decision.

Roberts was appointed by President George W. Bush and has reliably taken conservative positions. But after yesterday's decision, you can bet his welcome from conservatives who saw him as a hero has chilled.

Speaking to a conference of judges and lawyers outside of Pittsburg, Roberts acknowledged his predicament.

In response to political reforms in Myanmar — also known as Burma — the U.S. and other Western countries have eased some sanctions targeting the country's former military rulers.

But so far, one of the most powerful institutions inside the country has kept its sanctions in place. For some time, Myanmar's Buddhist clergy have effectively been on a spiritual strike by refusing to take donations from the military — a serious blow to the former regime's legitimacy.

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MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

We want to get another angle on yesterday's Supreme Court decision on health care. The health care law would not have survived without the support of Chief Justice John Roberts. That support was surprising to many people, perhaps even shocking. He'd been seen as a solid conservative vote in the court but this week two opinions are making people rethink that: yesterday's health care decision and one earlier this week striking down much of Arizona's immigration enforcement law.

Former AG On Eric Holder Contempt Vote

Jun 29, 2012

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MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

I'm Michel Martin and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. Coming up, we're going to take a look at elections in Mexico, but first, we're going to continue our conversation on some of the big news in this country.

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MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Now we turn to presidential politics in Mexico. Americans are not the only people electing a new president this year. Mexicans are heading to the voting booth on Sunday. The frontrunner is Enrique Pena Nieto of the Institutional Revolutionary Party, also known as the PRI. That party dominated politics in Mexico for decades until a relatively recent time. The candidate in second place is Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador. He is with the Democratic Revolution Party.

Foul Play At Euro 2012 From Racist Fans

Jun 29, 2012

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MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Switching gears now to a subject that also inspires passion around the world, the finals are set at Euro 2012. That's Europe's big national team soccer tournament. It's being held in Ukraine and Poland this year. Italy got into the final, thanks to two goals from the striker, Mario Balotelli.

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MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

This is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. I'm Michel Martin. My thanks to Viviana Hurtado for sitting in for me for a couple of days this week. Coming up we'll ask former attorney general Alberto Gonzales what he makes of the fact that the current attorney general Eric Holder has been declared in contempt of Congress. This is the first time that this has happened to a sitting attorney general.

It's All Politics, June 28, 2012

Jun 29, 2012

A landmark decision by the Supreme Court on health care reverberates across the nation — and now comes the political implications. NPR's Ron Elving and guest host Don Gonyea break down the ruling and what it means for November.

Plus, the House votes to hold the attorney general in contempt of Congress. And a review of key primary races.

The city of Stockton, Calif., has officially filed for Chapter 9 bankruptcy protection, The Stockton Record writes.

There were winners and losers in the journalistic race to get out the news of the Supreme Court's momentous ruling upholding the administration's health care law Thursday.

This interview was originally broadcast on April 10, 2012. Since it aired, R.A. Dickey has pitched two consecutive one-hitters.

Most pitchers in the majors stick to fastballs, curveballs, sliders and change-ups when facing batters at the plate.

How To Avoid Bankruptcy (If You're A City)

Jun 29, 2012

The city of Stockton, Calif., filed for federal bankruptcy protection Thursday, becoming the largest city in U.S. history to do so.

Some worry it's part of a wave. Six other municipalities have filed for bankruptcy protection this year. That's roughly on track with last year's pace, which saw 13 bankruptcies — the most in two decades.

A wave of municipal bankruptcies could be the country's next big financial crisis, several Wall Street analysts have warned.

Figuring out who benefits most politically from Thursday's Supreme Court decision that upheld the constitutionality of President Obama's health care overhaul seems to be today's toughest assignment.

On It's All Politics, our colleague Frank James says it's "difficult to overstate how big a win" it was for Obama.

If the euro is to survive, the eurozone needs to be more like one country, and less like a bunch of different countries that happen to sit on the same continent.

European leaders just took a baby step in that direction. They agreed to create a banking union. Like many things in global finance, this sounds boring but is actually a pretty big deal.

Seth MacFarlane is known mostly for creating, writing and directing the animated TV show Family Guy. In the show, he also voices Peter and Stewie Griffin, and their dog, Brian.

With his new movie, Ted, he has moved to the big screen for the first time, again creating, writing and directing. And though it's a live-action picture, he has again voiced one of the characters — the titular teddy bear, whom I tried to resist but couldn't.

You may already have made a mental note as to where you were when you heard the Supreme Court had upheld the health care law known as Obamacare. It's one of those moments that become touchstones of our memory, personal connections to the history we have witnessed in our lifetimes.

The Supreme Court may not be the source of such moments very often, but when its rulings reach this level of our awareness, they alter the course of our lives.

"Syrian opposition groups that track casualties reported on Friday that the previous day was the deadliest so far this year, and possibly in the entire Syrian uprising, with as many as 190 civilians killed in a 24-hour period," The New York Times is reporting.

"European stocks rallied after policy makers eased repayment rules for Spanish banks, relaxed conditions for possible aid to Italy and unveiled a $149 billion growth plan for the region's economy," Bloomberg News reports this morning. "U.S. index futures and Asian shares also rose."

Pessimism swept over advocates of the Affordable Care Act after oral arguments this spring seemed to go decidedly against the Obama administration. But the Supreme Court's ruling on Thursday — and its decision in another high-profile case this week — suggest oral arguments aren't as predictive of final outcome as some believe.

Ogilvy's Longtime Chairman To Step Down

Jun 29, 2012

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LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

Our last word in business today comes from a giant in the advertising industry. Her name is Shelly Lazarus. The Brooklyn native began working at the ad agency Ogilvy and Mather at a time when the industry looked much like the one portrayed in the TV show "Mad Men."

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

An industry run mostly by men. It was 1971 when Shelly Lazarus arrived at the company, fresh from Columbia University, with an MBA - a time when few women were earning business degrees.

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RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

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