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Code Switch
2:38 am
Sat August 10, 2013

Why Didn't The Store Just Let Oprah Buy The $38,000 Handbag?

On the list of things to be outraged about at the moment, I'll admit this isn't at the top: The Swiss tourism office apologized to Oprah on Friday because she wasn't allowed to buy a $38,000 designer handbag while recently shopping in Switzerland. Poor lil' Oprah. *sad face*

It does make me wonder, though, can you ever be rich enough or famous enough or beautiful enough to not be racially profiled while shopping?

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Sports
2:37 am
Sat August 10, 2013

Bocce Ball: From Old-World Sport To New-School Phenomenon

Talbot Martin plays bocce ball at the Washington bar and restaurant Vendetta.
Hayley Bartels NPR

On the corner of H and 12 streets, across from the auto parts store sits a decently sized Italian restaurant and bar called Vendetta. Inside, there's a wooden bar and brick walls salvaged from churches in upstate New York and Maryland, and authentic Italian advertisements line the walls. Upstairs, old restored Italian Vespas hang from the ceiling.

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It's All Politics
5:40 pm
Fri August 9, 2013

Obama's Challenge: Answer Snowden Without Seeming To

President Obama sought to address concerns over NSA surveillance measures at a White House news conference on Friday.
Pablo Martinez Monsivais AP

Heading into Friday's news conference, President Obama had a delicate balancing act before him: how to acknowledge widespread concerns about National Security Agency surveillance without in any way legitimizing the actions of leaker Edward Snowden.

The best course, the president decided, was to acknowledge that Snowden's revelations to some degree forced his administration to accelerate and expand a review of the federal government's surveillance activities.

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The Two-Way
5:17 pm
Fri August 9, 2013

ITC Says Samsung Infringed On Apple Patents

A woman talks on an iPhone as she walks past construction of a new Apple store in Berlin in April.
Sean Gallup Getty Images

Originally published on Fri August 9, 2013 5:18 pm

U.S. trade officials have ruled that South Korea's Samsung infringed on patents owned by Apple for specific smartphone features, ratcheting up a tit-for-tat legal battle between the two electronics giants that is matched only by the ferocity of their marketplace competition.

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Book Reviews
4:59 pm
Fri August 9, 2013

Party Like It's 2009: Life And Friendship In The Great Recession

Choire Sicha co-runs the website The Awl. Very Recent History is his first book.
Jonathan Snyder

Originally published on Sun August 11, 2013 3:23 pm

In Choire Sicha's Very Recent History: An Entirely Factual Account of a Year (c. AD 2009) in a Large City, a voice from our future looks back at events taking place in a "massive" East Coast metropolis, its citizens perpetually gripped with "a quiet panic" while living in a gritty landscape of iron and excess. Throw in a mysterious virus, a rich, blind governor, a sketchy mayor campaigning for a third term, and this novel gets even more curious.

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The Two-Way
4:40 pm
Fri August 9, 2013

U.S. To Open Most Embassies Shuttered By Terrorist Threat

Eighteen of the 19 diplomatic missions that were shuttered this week because of a terror threat will reopen this Sunday, the State Department said.

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The Salt
4:05 pm
Fri August 9, 2013

Did Tyson Ban Doping Cows With Zilmax To Boost Foreign Sales?

A pen at a feedlot in central Kansas that houses 30,000 cattle. Feedlots are where cattle are "finished" before slaughter, often with the use of growth-promoting drugs like zilpaterol.
Peggy Lowe Harvest Public Media

Originally published on Fri August 9, 2013 4:36 pm

Tyson Foods Inc. announced this week that it would soon suspend purchases of cattle that had been treated with a controversial drug, citing animal welfare concerns.

But many in the industry wonder if the real reason is the battle for sales in other countries, where certain drugs that make livestock grow faster are banned.

"I really do think this is more of a marketing ploy from Tyson to raise some awareness so they can garner some export business from our overseas export partners," says Dan Norcini, an independent commodities broker.

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Politics
4:02 pm
Fri August 9, 2013

Transcript: President Obama's News Conference

A transcript of President Obama's Aug. 9 news conference, as released by the White House:

THE PRESIDENT: Good afternoon, everybody. Please have a seat.

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The Two-Way
4:00 pm
Fri August 9, 2013

5 Things To Know About The Legal Reasoning For Surveillance

The National Security Agency headquarters at Fort Meade, Md.
Saul Loeb Getty Images

After Obama proposed reforms to some surveillance programs run by the NSA, the Justice Department issued a long-awaited white paper (pdf) on the legal reasoning for the bulk collection of telephone records.

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The Salt
3:33 pm
Fri August 9, 2013

Watermelon Babies Of China: Your Friday Moment Of Zen

Mom, I'm not so sure about this: An example of the photos of babies dressed as watermelons being shared by Chinese Internet users.
dx365

Originally published on Tue August 13, 2013 8:56 am

Babies come in pretty cute packaging — we're pretty sure it has something to do with Mother Nature wanting you to coo over a burping, pooping little freeloader. But now Chinese Internet users have found a way to one-up nature: They're wrapping those already adorable babes in watermelons.

Yep, watermelons.

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The Two-Way
3:16 pm
Fri August 9, 2013

NCAA Will Stop Selling Player Jerseys, Takes Web Shop Down

A screenshot posted on Twitter by ESPN analyst Jay Bilas shows the results for a search for "manziel" — shirts and jerseys matching Texas A&M star Johnny Manziel. The NCAA says it will stop selling such products.
Jay Bilas Twitter

Stung by fresh accusations that the NCAA makes money off college athletes, the organization promised this week to stop selling jerseys and similar products. The move came days after ESPN analyst Jay Bilas tweeted pics of the NCAA Shop selling jerseys corresponding to current players' numbers.

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Politics
2:28 pm
Fri August 9, 2013

Susan Rice's First Month On The Job Has Been A Doozy

Rice talks with Yousef Al Otaiba, the United Arab Emirates' ambassador to the United States, before the start of a dinner celebrating Ramadan at the White House last month.
Carolyn Kaster AP

Originally published on Fri August 9, 2013 3:45 pm

People have been talking a lot lately about the National Security Agency. But there's another important "NSA" in the federal government — the president's national security adviser.

That person is a sort of funnel — gathering information from the military, the intelligence community, the State Department — and channeling it all to the president.

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Code Switch
2:24 pm
Fri August 9, 2013

From Wrong To Right: A U.S. Apology For Japanese Internment

John Tateishi was incarcerated at Manzanar internment camp in California from age 3 until he was 6.
Chloe Coleman NPR

Originally published on Fri August 9, 2013 3:45 pm

This month marks the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington, where the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. shared his dream for a more equal America. But there's another anniversary looming: 25 years ago this week, the Japanese-American community celebrated a landmark victory in its own struggle for civil rights.

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Iraq
2:24 pm
Fri August 9, 2013

July Was Iraq's Deadliest Month In Five Years

Originally published on Fri August 9, 2013 3:45 pm

Melissa Block talks to Tim Arango, Baghdad bureau chief for The New York Times, about increasing violence in Iraq.

Africa
2:24 pm
Fri August 9, 2013

As Ramadan Winds Down, Tensions Ramp Up In Egypt

Originally published on Fri August 9, 2013 3:45 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

And I'm Melissa Block. In Egypt, the country's Muslims are marking the end of the holy month of Ramadan, celebrating with family and friends. But not everyone is home enjoying the holiday. Tens of thousands of protesters are still in the streets mainly camped out in two locations in Cairo.

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Remembrances
2:24 pm
Fri August 9, 2013

Jack Clement Worked With Some Of Country Music's Best

Originally published on Fri August 9, 2013 3:45 pm

We remember recording producer Cowboy Jack Clements, who died Thursday in Nashville at the age of 82. In the 1950s, he helped record Elvis, Carl Perkins and Roy Orbison when he worked at Sun Records in Memphis. He also discovered Jerry Lee Lewis and began a life-long friendship with Johnny Cash. Clement later provided the signature sound to one of Cash's biggest hits, "Ring of Fire."

Wait Wait...Don't Tell Me!
1:07 pm
Fri August 9, 2013

Abby Wambach

Originally published on Sat August 10, 2013 10:03 am

The soccer star proves she has her head in the game.

Wait Wait...Don't Tell Me!
1:07 pm
Fri August 9, 2013

Nic Wallenda

Originally published on Sat August 10, 2013 10:03 am

Transcript

CARL KASELL: From NPR and WBEZ-Chicago, this is WAIT WAIT...DON'T TELL ME!, the NPR news quiz. I'm Carl Kasell. And once again here's your host, at the Chase Bank Auditorium in downtown Chicago, Peter Sagal.

PETER SAGAL, HOST:

Thank you, Carl. Thanks so much.

(APPLAUSE)

SAGAL: There are a lot of different kinds of pastimes and games, so there's some debate over what actually is a sport and what isn't. Here's my definition. A sport is anything I am scared to attempt.

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Wait Wait...Don't Tell Me!
1:07 pm
Fri August 9, 2013

Jon Miller

Originally published on Sat August 10, 2013 10:03 am

The voice of the San Francisco Giants tries to win our game.

Politics
12:47 pm
Fri August 9, 2013

Al-Qaida Leaks Reveal Both Security And Political Worries

A police officer checks a car Wednesday at the entrance of Yemen's Sanaa International Airport. Security forces in the Middle East and Africa have been on heightened alert because of concerns about potential terrorist attacks.
Hani Mohammed AP

Originally published on Fri August 9, 2013 1:01 pm

Revelations this week that the U.S. intercepted communications between top al-Qaida leader Ayman al-Zawahri and other key terrorist figures in the Arabian Peninsula offered a pretty good plug for the work of the National Security Agency.

As leaks go, this was a big one. Was it a signal that government officials are going to be more open about intelligence gathering in the aftermath of the Edward Snowden affair?

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Planet Money
12:42 pm
Fri August 9, 2013

The Raisin Outlaw Of Kerman, Calif.

Raisin farmer Marvin Horne stands in a field of grapevines planted next to his home.
Gary Kazanjian AP

Originally published on Fri August 9, 2013 7:39 pm

Meet Marvin Horne, raisin farmer. Horne has been farming raisins on a vineyard in Kerman, Calif., for decades. But a couple of years ago, he did something that made a lot of the other raisin farmers out here in California really angry. So angry that they hired a private investigator to spy on Horne and his wife, Laura. Agents from a detective agency spent hours sitting outside the Hornes' farm recording video of trucks entering and leaving the property.

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The Two-Way
12:33 pm
Fri August 9, 2013

President Faces Tough Questions On Latest NSA Leaks

President Obama talks with Jay Leno during the taping of his appearance on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno. Obama told Leno: "We don't have a domestic spying program."
Jacquelyn Martin AP

Originally published on Fri August 9, 2013 1:04 pm

President Obama, appearing Friday for his first news conference in more than three months, will no doubt be fielding tough questions on a new round of revelations regarding the NSA's top-secret electronic surveillance programs.

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The Two-Way
12:16 pm
Fri August 9, 2013

President Obama Proposes Reforms To Surveillance Programs

President Obama walks out of the East Room of the White House after holding a news conference Friday.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

Originally published on Fri August 9, 2013 4:50 pm

In the shadow of classified leaks that exposed some of the government's most secret surveillance programs, President Obama said he will work with Congress to reform the law governing their function.

Speaking at a press conference in the East Room of the White House on Friday, Obama defended the programs but said the reforms will bring greater oversight and transparency.

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The Two-Way
11:00 am
Fri August 9, 2013

Glock Vs. Glock: Gun Tycoon Loses Alimony Battle

The family behind the Glock gun company has been locked in court battles stemming from founder Gaston Glock's 2011 divorce from his wife of 49 years, Helga.
Jay Directo AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri August 9, 2013 11:56 am

Gaston Glock, 84, has been ordered to pay alimony to his ex-wife, Helga, whom he divorced in 2011. The couple had been married for 49 years. The founder of the Austrian gun company "divorced Helga in order to marry a woman about 50 years his junior," Agence France-Presse reports.

Austria's highest court issued its ruling this week, after two lower courts had sided with Gaston Glock in what has been a lengthy court battle.

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The Salt
10:40 am
Fri August 9, 2013

Wine Waste Finds Sweet Afterlife In Baked Goods

At her bakery in Costa Mesa, Calif., Rachel Klemek sells cabernet brownies made with a flour substitute derived from grape pomace, a byproduct of winemaking packed with nutrients known as polyphenols.
Mariana Dale NPR

Originally published on Sat August 10, 2013 9:26 am

When winemakers crush the juice from grapes, what's left is a goopy pile of seeds, stems and skins called pomace. Until several years ago, these remains were more than likely destined for the dump.

"The pomace pile was one of the largest problems that the wine industry had with sustainability," says Paul Novak, general manager for WholeVine Products, a sister company to winemaker Kendall-Jackson in Northern California.

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Parallels
10:36 am
Fri August 9, 2013

Rome's New Mayor Wants The Monuments Pedestrian Friendly

Tightrope walker Andrea Loreni performs in front of the Coliseum in Rome on Saturday. Rome's new mayor is on a crusade to make the ancient monuments more pedestrian friendly, and the city held an all-night street party as it permanently blocked off part of the main road running past the Coliseum.
Gabriel Bouys AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri August 9, 2013 7:38 pm

On the first Saturday of August, a funny thing happened to 150,000 people on their way to the Roman Forum.

While a pianist and sax player set the mood, people looked upward and watched anxiously as acrobat Andrea Loreni made his way slowly on a tightrope stretched across Via dei Fori Imperiali, the wide avenue flanking the Forum and leading to the Coliseum.

The acrobat's walk was meant as a metaphor, a bridge reuniting ancient squares.

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The Two-Way
10:20 am
Fri August 9, 2013

Look For Shooting Stars During This Weekend's Perseid Peak

A Perseid meteor streaks across the sky early on August 13, 2007 in the ghost town of Rhyolite, Nevada.
Ethan Miller Getty Images

Originally published on Fri August 9, 2013 3:47 pm

Time to stretch out the lawn chairs, lie back and enjoy the once-a-year celestial show known as the Perseid meteor shower.

The Perseids, the dusty debris of Comet Swift-Tuttle, whisk through our upper atmosphere every August. They aren't the only meteor shower on the calendar, but "the Perseids are the good ones," says meteorite expert Bill Cooke of NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala.

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The Two-Way
10:08 am
Fri August 9, 2013

Obama Administration, GOP Agree On Opening Prayers Case

Members of the media camp outside the U.S. Supreme Court in June.
Jim Watson AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri August 9, 2013 11:55 am

How's this for surprising news: The Obama administration and the GOP have found some common ground.

Both sides have filed amicus briefs with the United States Supreme Court supporting the right of local town boards to begin their meetings with a prayer. The Los Angeles Times explains Town of Greece, New York v. Susan Galloway, Et. Al. like this:

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The Two-Way
10:05 am
Fri August 9, 2013

5 Teams In 1 Year For 1 Player; And It's Not A MLB Record

Have bat, will travel: Casper Wells just before the start of the season, when he was with the Seattle Mariners. Four stops later, he's landed with the Philadelphia Phillies.
Christian Petersen Getty Images

Originally published on Fri August 9, 2013 12:04 pm

Reading in the Chicago Tribune that outfielder Casper Wells had been claimed off waivers by the Philadelphia Phillies and is now with his fifth major league team this season made us wonder:

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The Two-Way
9:55 am
Fri August 9, 2013

Texans Call For Boycott Of Retailers That Fought Wage Bill

In Texas, back-to-school shoppers are being urged to boycott Macy's and Kroger stores for their efforts to quash a wage fairness bill. In this file photo, a man shops at a Sears store in Fort Worth.
Tom Pennington Getty Images

Originally published on Fri August 9, 2013 11:56 am

A group is calling on back-to-school shoppers to boycott Macy's and Kroger stores in Texas this weekend, in retaliation for the national retailers' efforts to quash a bill that would have strengthened the state's wage discrimination law.

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