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Science
1:03 am
Fri August 30, 2013

Wise Old Whooping Cranes Keep Captive-Bred Fledglings On Track

This young whooping crane is on its first fall migration, guided by an Operation Migration ultralight aircraft. Each whooper in this population wears an identification band, and many carry tracking devices that record their movements in detail.
Joe Duff Operation Migration USA Inc.

Originally published on Fri August 30, 2013 12:40 pm

Being a wildlife biologist in the 21st century increasingly means rescuing rare animals from extinction. Among the success stories is the whooping crane. Seventy years ago there were only about 16 birds left on the planet. Now there are about 600.

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Politics
1:01 am
Fri August 30, 2013

Filner's Exit Isn't The End Of San Diego's Mayoral Mayhem

San Diego Mayor Bob Filner announces his resignation last week. His last day in office is Friday.
Bill Wechter Getty Images

Originally published on Fri August 30, 2013 7:51 am

On Friday, the embattled mayor of San Diego officially steps down. Allegations of sexual harassment against Bob Filner have rocked the eighth-largest American city, which now has to pick up the pieces and elect a new mayor.

The announcement last week that Filner would leave office was greeted with cheers, boos and a flurry of activity from the press — but it all went quiet when the soon-to-be ex-mayor emerged from a swell of bodyguards to speak at the podium.

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StoryCorps
1:00 am
Fri August 30, 2013

Following In The Family Footsteps

Mackenzie Byles graduated in 2010 from Mount Ida College with a degree in Funeral Home Management. She's taking over the family business from her dad, Don.
StoryCorps

Originally published on Fri August 30, 2013 7:51 am

Don Byles, 65, is a funeral director in New London, Conn. His grandfather started the family's business, Byles-MacDougall Funeral Service, in 1904. Now, Byles is getting ready to hand it over to his 25-year-old daughter Mackenzie.

"You have to teach me a lot of stuff before you can retire," Mackenzie tells her dad during a recent visit to StoryCorps. "I'm a little nervous about being on my own here. I've got big shoes to fill with you."

Click on the audio link above to hear their StoryCorps conversation.

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Music Interviews
12:03 am
Fri August 30, 2013

'We Grow Songs': Over The Rhine On Making Untamed Music

Over the Rhine is the married duo of Linford Detweiler and Karin Bergquist. The pair's new double album, Meet Me at the Edge of the World, is its 15th studio release.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Fri August 30, 2013 8:29 am

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World
4:24 pm
Thu August 29, 2013

U.K. Vote Against Syria Strike A Major Setback For Obama

Originally published on Thu November 7, 2013 9:59 am

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

So where does this leave the Obama administration? For more on that, I'm joined by NPR's Mara Liasson. And Mara, what's the White House reaction been to this vote in the British Parliament tonight?

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World
4:19 pm
Thu August 29, 2013

U.K. Lawmakers Vote Against Syria Strike

Originally published on Fri August 30, 2013 4:04 am

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Robert Siegel.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

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The Salt
4:01 pm
Thu August 29, 2013

Antibiotic Use On The Farm: Are We Flying Blind?

Piglets in a pen on a hog farm in Frankenstein, Mo.
Jeff Roberson AP

Originally published on Mon November 18, 2013 3:26 pm

There's a heated debate over the use of antibiotics in farm animals. Critics say farmers overuse these drugs; farmers say they don't.

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The Two-Way
3:47 pm
Thu August 29, 2013

British Parliament Closes Door On Syria Intervention

The Houses of Parliament are silhouetted against a setting sun as lawmakers debate possible British military action in Syria.
Andrew Cowie AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu August 29, 2013 5:35 pm

After debating deep into the night, the British House of Commons refused a precursory resolution on military strikes in Syria. The resolution, which failed 272-285, called for a second vote to authorize military action once the U.N. inspectors have issued their findings on whether the Syrian regime of Bashar Assad used chemical weapons against its own people.

"It is clear to me the British Parliament, reflecting the views of the British people, does not want to see British military action," Prime Minister David Cameron said. "I get that and the government will act accordingly."

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Shots - Health News
3:15 pm
Thu August 29, 2013

Study: Price Shocks On Health Exchanges Appear Unlikely

What's the prognosis for health insurance rates?
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Fri August 30, 2013 1:18 pm

With new health insurance exchanges set to launch in just over a month, there's been a lot of chatter about how shocking the rates might be.

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Middle East
3:04 pm
Thu August 29, 2013

Why Syria Is More Complicated Than Libya

Originally published on Thu August 29, 2013 5:23 pm

The Arab spring has brought large-scale protests and violence to at least half a dozen countries in the past three years. Until now, the U.S. has only intervened militarily in one of them — Libya.

Now, as President Obama considers a strike on Syria, here's a look at some of the differences between the two scenarios:

1. Syria's Not Standing Alone

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Science
2:51 pm
Thu August 29, 2013

Another 'Grand Canyon' Discovered Beneath Greenland's Ice

A little chilly for camping: Ice-penetrating radar revealed a mega-canyon below the Greenland ice sheet, extending for more than 460 miles.
Courtesy of J. Bamber/University of Bristol

Originally published on Fri August 30, 2013 10:37 pm

A major feature of the Earth has escaped notice — until now.

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Movie Interviews
2:51 pm
Thu August 29, 2013

Rebecca Hall, Finding New Thrills In The Family Business

Chaos, panic and disorder: Rebecca Hall stars as a barrister whose assignment leads to all kinds of bad things in the security-state thriller Closed Circuit.
Jay Maidment Focus Features

Originally published on Thu August 29, 2013 5:22 pm

Rebecca Hall, a veteran of films like Vicky Cristina Barcelona and The Town, is the star of the new surveillance-state thriller Closed Circuit, playing an English barrister charged with monitoring top-secret, closed-to-the-public evidence hearings involving a terrorist bombing.

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Around the Nation
2:51 pm
Thu August 29, 2013

Lady Houdini's Escape Act Breaks Through Not Just Handcuffs

Rochelle Fowler watches with tears on her face as Lady Houdini works to break free. Harry Houdini made the water torture cell famous more than 100 years ago.
Sadie Babits Boise State Public Radio

Originally published on Thu August 29, 2013 4:23 pm

Kristen Johnson is no "lovely" magician's assistant. She's Lady Houdini, an escape artist who has successfully performed thousands of public feats and has broken Harry Houdini's record for most water escapes ever.

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U.S.
2:51 pm
Thu August 29, 2013

Treasury, IRS Debut New Tax Rules For Same-Sex Couples

Originally published on Thu August 29, 2013 4:01 pm

Officials of the Treasury Department and the IRS announced new rules allowing same sex couples who marry in states with gay marriage to file jointly if they move to other states.

Shots - Health News
2:24 pm
Thu August 29, 2013

A Single Protein May Help Explain Memory Loss In Old Age

The underlying biology of age-related memory glitches — in old mice and old people — is different from what happens with Alzheimer's, recent research suggests.
Anthony Bradshaw iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Fri August 30, 2013 1:26 pm

If you're finding it harder to remember where you put the car keys, the culprit could be a brain protein with a name that's easy to forget: RbAp48.

A shortage of this protein appears to impair our ability to remember things as we age, researchers report in the current issue of Science Translational Medicine. And boosting levels of RbAP48 in aging brains can reverse memory loss, at least in mice, they say.

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Critics' Lists: Summer 2013
1:57 pm
Thu August 29, 2013

Lost And Found: 5 Forgotten Classics Worth Revisiting

Andrew Bannecker

Originally published on Tue March 18, 2014 2:25 pm

I don't remember when I first realized that books could go away, that they could — and did — pass into obscurity or out of print. Myra Breckinridge by Gore Vidal, All About H. Hatterr by G.V. Desani, Speedboat by Renata Adler, the sublime An Armful of Warm Girl by W.M. Spackman. Each of them, snuffed out. It seemed a scandal. But I vividly recall becoming aware that particular books were prone. To take chances with language or form was to court extinction.

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The Two-Way
1:53 pm
Thu August 29, 2013

Federal Court Backs Calif. Ban On Conversion Therapy For Minors

A federal appeals court has reversed an injunction that kept California's law banning conversion therapy from taking effect. This composite image shows sate Sen. Ted Lieu, left, who introduced the original bill, and David Pickup, a marriage and family therapist who is a plaintiff in the suit against it.
Rich Pedroncelli AP

California's pioneering law that prohibits treating young gay people with psychotherapy in an attempt to change their sexual orientation has cleared a constitutional challenge in federal appeals court. The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco ruled that the ban does not violate essential rights.

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The Two-Way
1:50 pm
Thu August 29, 2013

Nasdaq Gives Detail On Cause Of Last Week's Trading Halt

People in New York City walk by the Nasdaq stock market one day after the the electronic exchange experienced a a three-hour trading delay due to a technical problem.
Spencer Platt Getty Images

Nasdaq OMX Group Inc. issued a deeper explanation for the technical problems that halted trading for three hours last week.

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Shots - Health News
1:29 pm
Thu August 29, 2013

Feds Say 'Unbanked' Can Buy Insurance With Prepaid Debit Cards

Insurance? Let's just run your card.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Fri August 30, 2013 1:26 pm

The Obama administration said Wednesday that it is moving ahead with a rule that would requiring health plans to accommodate households that don't have traditional bank accounts.

One in four of the uninsured people eligible for federal insurance subsidies doesn't have a bank account, according to a report released earlier this year by the tax preparation firm Jackson Hewitt. The report dubbed people without connections to traditional financial institutions the "unbanked."

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The Salt
1:17 pm
Thu August 29, 2013

Your Kitchen Spices Can Often Harbor Salmonella

Pepper is the spice most commonly contaminated with salmonella and other pathogens.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Thu August 29, 2013 2:59 pm

Spice may be nice, but spices also can carry very bad bugs. About 7 percent of spices tested by Food and Drug Administration researchers were contaminated with salmonella, which can cause serious illness and death. Because of this finding and others, the FDA and international food safety organizations are putting more effort into how to reduce the risk.

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The Two-Way
12:52 pm
Thu August 29, 2013

IRS Will Recognize All Legal Same-Sex Marriages

Originally published on Thu August 29, 2013 1:16 pm

The U.S. Department of the Treasury and the Internal Revenue Service announced on Thursday that when it comes to federal tax purposes, same-sex couples who have legally married will be treated the same as straight married couples, no matter what state they reside in now.

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Shots - Health News
12:43 pm
Thu August 29, 2013

How Money Worries Can Scramble Your Thinking

Worrying about finances can tax the brain just as much as staying up all night.
Illustration by Katherine Streeter for NPR

Originally published on Fri August 30, 2013 1:29 pm

There's no question that dealing with mortgages, car payments and other bills takes up time and energy. But having a tight budget may also zap our ability to think clearly, scientists report Thursday in the journal Science.

In a series of clever experiments involving farmers in India and shoppers in New Jersey, scientists found that people are worse at solving puzzles — similar to those on the IQ test — when they're first reminded of money problems.

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The Two-Way
12:25 pm
Thu August 29, 2013

Report: Spy Agencies' 'Black Budget' Reveals Intelligence Gaps

Pakistani Army soldiers guard nuclear-capable missiles at the International Defence Exhibition in Karachi in 2008. The Washington Post reports that concern over their security is a "blind spot" in U.S. intelligence efforts.
Rizwan Tabassum AFP/Getty Images

The Washington Post on Thursday reports on U.S. spy agencies' $52.6 billion secret budget for fiscal year 2013, a document that reveals significant "blind spots" obscuring the intentions and motives of U.S. friends and foes alike.

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Parallels
12:16 pm
Thu August 29, 2013

A Rare Wedding Offers Syrians A Brief Respite From War Talk

The bride, groom and wedding party celebrate Thursday in the Syrian capital, Damascus. It was a brief respite for residents of the neighborhood who were expecting U.S.- or NATO-led airstrikes.
For NPR

Originally published on Thu August 29, 2013 1:26 pm

The author is a Syrian citizen in Damascus who is not being further identified for safety reasons.

In a west Damascus neighborhood Thursday, a drumbeat all too rare drew people to their windows and balconies. Passersby stopped to investigate. Traffic came to a halt. Some drivers honked to the beat.

They were the drums of a wedding, a tradition known in Damascus as an arada. It involves a troupe of professional drummers, along with dozens of members of a wedding party, that picks up the groom from home.

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The Two-Way
12:11 pm
Thu August 29, 2013

Third Tsarnaev Friend Indicted On Lying Charge

A third friend of accused Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev has now been indicted on a charge related to what authorities say were attempts by the trio to mislead investigators or dispose of evidence that linked Tsarnaev to the bombings.

The office of the U.S. Attorney in Massachusetts posted this statement on Twitter early Thursday afternoon:

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Parallels
11:57 am
Thu August 29, 2013

Too Weird To Be True? In China, You Never Can Tell

A zoo in central China's Henan province swapped a dog — a Tibetan mastiff like the one shown here — for a lion, in another story that recently swept Chinese cyberspace.
Ed Jones AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed October 9, 2013 3:47 pm

Here are some of the recent news stories that went viral in China that you may have missed:

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All Tech Considered
11:45 am
Thu August 29, 2013

The Fast-Food Restaurants That Require Few Human Workers

The Febo snack bar is open all night.
Adam Jackson Flickr

Originally published on Thu August 29, 2013 12:11 pm

In perhaps the largest nationwide fast-food strike in history, the employees who make your 99-cent burgers and tacos were planning strikes in 50 U.S. cities Thursday. Workers are calling for a $15 minimum wage and hoping to raise attention to the fast-food industry's low pay and limited prospects. The current federal minimum wage standard is $7.25 per hour.

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The Two-Way
11:31 am
Thu August 29, 2013

Federal Prosecutors Told Not To Focus On Marijuana Users

A customer rolls a joint made of half marijuana and half tobacco to smoke inside of Frankie Sports Bar and Grill in Olympia, Wash., in December 2012.
Nick Adams Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Thu August 29, 2013 5:58 pm

Federal prosecutors are being told by Attorney General Eric Holder to focus on cartels, criminal enterprises and those who sell the drug to children, not on casual marijuana users, a Justice Department official tells NPR's Carrie Johnson.

Holder today informed the governors of Washington and Colorado — two states that recently legalized the sale of marijuana for personal use — about the new guidelines for prosecutors, the official adds.

Bu the new guidelines will apply to all states, not just Washington, Colorado and those where "medical marijuana" is legal.

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The Two-Way
11:28 am
Thu August 29, 2013

NFL, Retirees Reach $765M Settlement On Concussions Suits

Junior Seau sustained many concussions during his career and was suffering from a degenerative brain disease when he killed himself in May 2012.
Otto Greule Jr. Getty Images

Originally published on Thu August 29, 2013 12:45 pm

The NFL and more than 4,500 retired players have reached an agreement calling for the league to contribute $765 million to a fund that will pay "medical and other benefits, as well as compensation" to those who suffered concussions and related injuries during their careers.

Details of the agreement, which would settle concussion-related lawsuits by former players and still needs a judge's OK, were released by the league early Thursday afternoon.

According to that statement:

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The Two-Way
11:26 am
Thu August 29, 2013

Judge Hints At Helping American Airlines Out Of Bankruptcy

American Airlines aircraft sit on the tarmac at Miami International Airport last week.
Joe Raedle Getty Images

Originally published on Thu August 29, 2013 12:41 pm

A U.S. bankruptcy judge on Thursday indicated that he's leaning in favor of a allowing American Airlines to emerge from bankruptcy, clearing a major obstacle to the carrier's planned merger with US Airways.

Judge Sean H. Lane said he is "finding the arguments in favor of confirmation fairly persuasive" to allow American, which filed for Chapter 11 in November 2011, to emerge from bankruptcy.

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