NPR News

Pages

The Two-Way
10:35 am
Fri April 12, 2013

Toy Or Trouble? 'Mexico Barbie' Has Passport, Chihuahua

Mexico Barbie.
BarbieCollector.com

Mattel says its "Dolls of the World" line of Barbies come with passports, stamps and, with many of the toys, an "animal friend."

Read more
The Two-Way
10:23 am
Fri April 12, 2013

Russia's Putin Announces $50 Billion In New Space Spending

A Soyuz capsule touches down in Kazakhstan in September, but by 2020, Russian cosmonauts might be splashing down instead.
Pool AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri April 12, 2013 10:52 am

Moscow will spend $52 billion on its space program through 2020, including money for completion of a new launch facility on Russian soil.

The announcement came from President Vladimir Putin as he spoke to orbiting astronauts aboard the International Space Station on Cosmonaut's Day, the 52nd anniversary of the first manned space flight by Russian spacefarer Yuri Gagarin.

Read more
Author Interviews
9:48 am
Fri April 12, 2013

Lemony Snicket Dons A Trenchcoat

Meredith Heuer Courtesy of Little, Brown & Co.

Originally published on Fri April 12, 2013 11:17 am

This interview was originally broadcast on Dec. 10, 2012.

It has been more than six years since Daniel Handler, aka Lemony Snicket, concluded his enormously popular 13-volume young adult series, A Series of Unfortunate Events. Handler recently revived the Snicket narrator, however, in his YA novel Who Could That Be at This Hour?

Read more
Movie Reviews
9:48 am
Fri April 12, 2013

Terrence Malick And Every Man's Journey 'To The Wonder'

Olga Kurylenko and Ben Affleck play two lovers in Terence Malick's latest film, To The Wonder.
Mary Cybulski Courtesy Magnolia Pictures

Originally published on Fri April 12, 2013 11:17 am

The voiceovers from Terrence Malick's To the Wonder, which has a lot of them, are intoned on the soundtrack while the characters stare into sunrises or sunsets — whenever the light is right, what cinematographers call, "the magic hour." This film and Malick's last, The Tree of Life, suggest that he's evolved into a blend of director and Christian minister: These are psalms writ on film.

Read more
Music Interviews
9:48 am
Fri April 12, 2013

Dale Watson: A Honky-Tonk Man With An Outlaw Spirit

Dale Watson (second from left) and His Lonestars. Their new album is titled El Rancho Azul.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Sat April 20, 2013 9:34 pm

Honky-tonk veteran Dale Watson has an impressive white pompadour and arms that tell his story: flag tattoos of Alabama, where he was born, and Texas, where he lives. Musical notes circle his biceps. And he has an inked portrait of his first musical inspiration — his late father, a truck driver and sometime country singer who passed on to Dale his love of traditional country, from Hank Williams to Lefty Frizzell.

Read more
NPR Story
9:04 am
Fri April 12, 2013

Red Meat's Heart Risk Goes Beyond The Fat

Originally published on Fri April 12, 2013 11:03 am

Transcript

FLORA LICHTMAN, HOST:

This is SCIENCE FRIDAY, I'm Flora Lichtman, filling in for Ira today. You know the phrase you are what you eat? Well, new research suggests a slight modification: Your gut bacteria are what you eat. And if you eat more red meat, for example, you'll nurture populations of microbes that like to eat red meat, too, which might not seem like a bad thing except that researchers have pinpointed a compound in red meat called L-carnitine that when broken down by gut bacteria might contribute to heart disease.

Read more
NPR Story
9:04 am
Fri April 12, 2013

Looking To Nature For Antibiotic Inspirations

Originally published on Fri April 12, 2013 11:03 am

Transcript

FLORA LICHTMAN, HOST:

This is SCIENCE FRIDAY. I'm Flora Lichtman. Later in the hour, a teenage science activist and the plight of the monarch butterfly. But first, researchers have developed a new way to fight antibiotic-resistant microbes by borrowing a trick from a longtime foe of the bacteria, the bacteria phage.

Read more
NPR Story
9:04 am
Fri April 12, 2013

Pouring Over The Science Of Coffee

Originally published on Mon April 22, 2013 4:55 am

Transcript

FLORA LICHTMAN, BYLINE: Up next, another mover and shaker in the alimentary canal - coffee. Whether you're a home brewer or a latte devotee, whether you take it light and sweet or on ice, your coffee is guaranteed to be chock full of chemistry. It starts in the bean, which is actually not a bean at all.

It's a seed, according Harold McGee, author of "On Food and Cooking: The Science and Lore of the Kitchen" along with other books on science and food. And we caught up with Harold, to hear more about how coffee gets its signature taste.

Read more
The Two-Way
9:03 am
Fri April 12, 2013

Second Rape Case To Draw Social Media Buzz Will Be Reviewed

A few days after Rehtaeh Parsons' mother turned off the hospital life support systems and allowed her daughter to die, computer activists claiming to be affiliated with the hacker group Anonymous are threatening to reveal the identities of Parsons' alleged rapists.

Read more
NPR Story
8:55 am
Fri April 12, 2013

Consumers Cut Back, Sales Reports Show

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with less shopping.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

Shots - Health News
8:19 am
Fri April 12, 2013

Annals Of The Obvious: Women Way More Tired Than Men

DRB Images LLC iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Mon April 15, 2013 7:00 am

Feeling run down? Dog-tired?

Who isn't, right?

But who's more exhausted: men or women?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has the answer, though it's one that you probably could have arrived at without a second's thought.

Read more
The Two-Way
8:15 am
Fri April 12, 2013

Update: BBC Will Play Clip Of 'Ding Dong The Witch Is Dead'

Former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher in 1996.
PA Photos /Landov

Originally published on Fri April 12, 2013 12:31 pm

Update at 11:50 a.m. ET. Radio 1 Will Play A Snippet:

There's word from NPR's Philip Reeves in London that BBC's Radio 1 now says its weekend Official Chart show will play "a clip in a journalistic environment" of "Ding Dong The Witch Is Dead," which critics of former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher pushed up the British charts this week after the Iron Lady's death.

The BBC has more:

Read more
The Two-Way
8:01 am
Fri April 12, 2013

Judge Rejects $20-Million Severance For American Airlines CEO

American Airlines CEO Tom Horton stands next to a control tower at Berlin Brandenburg Airport in March 2012.
Sean Gallup Getty Images

Originally published on Fri April 12, 2013 10:56 am

A severance package of $20 million might have seemed reasonable to American Airlines CEO Tom Horton, but a U.S. bankruptcy judge says it's too much.

The proposed payout, part of a deal that would merge American parent AMR and US Airways Group, first caught the attention of U.S. Trustee Tracy Hope Davis, a Department of Justice official monitoring AMR's Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

Read more
The Two-Way
7:11 am
Fri April 12, 2013

Explosives Said To Be In Package Addressed To Sheriff Arpaio

Maricopa County (Ariz.) Sheriff Joe Arpaio.
Laura Segall Reuters /Landov

Authorities in Arizona say a package addressed to controversial Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio was safely destroyed Thursday after a test for explosive residue confirmed it "contained black powder," The Arizona Republic writes.

Read more
The Two-Way
6:50 am
Fri April 12, 2013

Wholesale Prices Plunge, But So Do Retail Sales

A steep drop in gasoline costs fueled a 0.6 percent decline in wholesale prices from February to March, the Bureau of Labor Statistics says.

Excluding the volatile food and energy sectors, the so-called core rate of inflation was also in check: those prices rose a modest 0.2 percent.

Read more
Middle East
6:07 am
Fri April 12, 2013

Police In Dubai Adds Lamborghini To The Force

Originally published on Mon April 15, 2013 7:07 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm David Greene. Conspicuous consumption is the art of buying lots of expensive stuff to show off. It is part of daily life in the Emirate city of Dubai, even for the police. They just added a slick green and white Lamborghini with a $400,000 price tag to their force. It goes more than 200 miles per hour, which is useful in the fast moving kingdom.

Police say about 15 percent of the speeding tickets go to motorists going more than 130 miles per hour. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

The Two-Way
6:05 am
Fri April 12, 2013

Dodgers' $147 Million Ace Greinke Breaks Collarbone In Brawl

Ouch! Carlos Quentin (left) of the San Diego Padres charged the mound Thursday after Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Zack Greinke (right) hit him with a pitch. In the brawl, Greinke broke his left collarbone.
Denis Poroy Getty Images

Talk about an expensive bust:

Read more
Latin America
5:53 am
Fri April 12, 2013

Venezuelan Humorist Engages Kidnappers In Election Dialogue

Laureano Marquez, a popular Venezuelan writer and political satirist, says he is always opposed to the government in power. "The mission of humor is to show the people that things can be better," he says.
Nishant Dahiya NPR

Originally published on Fri April 12, 2013 11:18 am

Earlier this week in Caracas, we were about to go to an interview when it had to be rescheduled. The man we were going to speak with was unavoidably detained — kidnapped, to be precise.

It took awhile after that for Laureano Marquez to free up his schedule and meet us in a coffee shop.

"I'm so sorry," he said when he finally arrived, as if it was his fault for being thrown into a car and driven off to the far reaches of town.

Read more
Asia
5:25 am
Fri April 12, 2013

Japanese Blogger Obsesses Over Vending Machine

Originally published on Fri April 12, 2013 8:55 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Good morning, I'm David Greene.

For most of us, the office vending machine is good for a mid-day pick-me-up; that's pretty much it. But for one Japanese man it is much more. He hosts a blog called "I Take a Picture of the Vending Machine Every Day or So, I'm Very Sorry." Since 2005 he's taken nearly daily pictures of the same vending machine. Over the years the sodas move, the ads change, and there was that true moment of drama - the machine started taking digital payments.

The Two-Way
5:13 am
Fri April 12, 2013

Book News: DC Comics Introduces First Transgender Character

An image of Batgirl from the cover of "Batgirl 19," in which it is revealed that Batgirl's roommate is transgender.
DC Comics

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

Read more
The Two-Way
5:12 am
Fri April 12, 2013

Kerry Warns North Korea, But Holds Out Hope For Diplomacy

A North Korean soldier on the bank of the Yalu River, near the North Korean town of Sinuiju, along the Chinese border.
Jacky Chen Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Sat April 13, 2013 11:00 am

Walking a line meant to show both resolve and willingness to trust in diplomacy, Secretary of State John Kerry warned North Korea on Friday not to engage in more warmongering — but also said the U.S. is willing to talk with that communist state if it's serious about discussing denuclearization.

"No one is going to talk for the sake of talking," Kerry said, but the U.S. does want to see a peaceful resolution of the latest crisis on the Korean peninsula.

Read more
Business
3:49 am
Fri April 12, 2013

The Last Word In Business

Originally published on Fri April 12, 2013 8:55 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And our last word in business today is, what do you want on your burger? The CEO of Burger King Worldwide is stepping down. Forty-three-year-old Bernardo Hees has been wearing the Burger King crown since 2010, when the fast food chain was bought out by 3G Capital.

Read more
Latin America
3:49 am
Fri April 12, 2013

Venezuela's Telenovelas

Originally published on Fri April 12, 2013 8:55 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Hugo Chavez, the late president of Venezuela, had a touch for the dramatic. He appeared on television all the time. It turns out, he also admired dramatic acting. In the 1990s, when he was in prison for an attempted coup, he never missed an episode of his favorite TV drama.

Once he gained power, a deeper drama developed. Venezuela was a huge exporter of Latin-American multi-episode dramas called telenovelas, until President Chavez's government changed that. NPR's Jasmine Garsd reports.

Read more
Business
3:49 am
Fri April 12, 2013

Eli Lilly To Lay Off 30 Percent Of U.S. Sales Force

Originally published on Fri April 12, 2013 9:25 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with layoffs at Eli Lilly.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

StoryCorps
1:33 am
Fri April 12, 2013

Adoptive Dad Dreamed A Dream That Brought Him A Son

John Curtis with his 11-year-old son, John Wikiera.
StoryCorps

Originally published on Fri April 12, 2013 2:19 pm

In 1998, John Curtis and David Wikiera adopted a son from Vietnam and named him John Wikiera.

"I had always wanted to be a parent," Curtis tells his now 11-year-old son during a visit to StoryCorps in Rochester, N.Y. "So it was a dream I had, but I never dreamed would come true because Papa and I are gay. But we had some friends who started thinking about adoption and that got us thinking.

Read more
Media
1:33 am
Fri April 12, 2013

Startup CEO Wields Small Antenna In TV Streaming Battle

Aereo CEO Chet Kanojia
Dan Bobkoff NPR

Originally published on Fri April 12, 2013 11:30 am

A top executive at News Corp. dropped a bombshell this week when he said the company is considering taking Fox's over-the-air network to cable. The announcement follows a court win for a startup company that streams broadcast channels online.

That startup's CEO, arguably the most feared man in television right now, is soft-spoken and rather techy.

Read more
Music
1:30 am
Fri April 12, 2013

The Thatcher Era's Effect On British Music

Morrissey, an outspoken critic of Margaret Thatcher, is one of many U.K. musicians who responded to the late British leader's reforms in song.
Album cover

Originally published on Fri April 12, 2013 8:55 am

Read more
Space
1:29 am
Fri April 12, 2013

In NASA's Budget: Plans To 'Shrink-Wrap' An Asteroid

A NASA mission proposed in President Obama's budget would involve capturing an asteroid and pulling it into Earth's orbit for observation.
NASA/Advanced Concepts Laboratory

Originally published on Fri April 12, 2013 8:55 am

Read more
Planet Money
1:28 am
Fri April 12, 2013

The Tax Code, Translated Into Plain English

Tim Boyle Getty Images

Originally published on Fri April 12, 2013 8:55 am

The tax code is full of complicated loopholes and deductions that require professional translation. So I called a bunch of accountants and tax lawyers and asked them: What are your favorite, most confusingly named deductions — and what do they actually mean?

Intangible Drilling Costs

"The government will pay you to dig a hole in the ground," says Howard Rosen, a CPA in St. Louis. "You can write it all off immediately."

Read more
Latin America
1:27 am
Fri April 12, 2013

In The Wake Of Brazil's Boom, Prices To Match

Tatiana Coelho buys fruit from a vendor in a favela in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on Sept. 20, 2012. Prices, especially for food, are skyrocketing in Brazil.
Melanie Stetson Freeman Christian Science Monitor via Getty Images

Originally published on Fri April 12, 2013 8:56 am

In Sao Paulo, Brazil's largest city, a Starbucks coffee shop looks as it would in the United States. It has the same jazzy music; the same items on the menu.

There is one thing that is different, though: the prices.

"Everyone told me it's expensive, but when you see it yourself it's shocking," says one customer, Thierry, who is from Geneva and is in town for a wedding.

Read more

Pages