Refrigerators, foam buoys and even ketchup bottles are piling up on Alaska's beaches. Almost two years after the devastating Japanese tsunami, its debris and rubbish are fouling the coastlines of many states — especially in Alaska.
At the state's Montague Island beach, the nearly 80 miles of rugged wilderness looks pristine from a helicopter a few thousand feet up. But when you descend, globs of foam come into view.
The U.S. government is investing millions of dollars in what it considers a promising new industry for American manufacturing: nuclear reactors. The plan is to build hundreds of mini-reactors, dot them around the U.S. and export them overseas.
Home health care aides are waiting to find out if they will be entitled to receive minimum wage. A decades-old amendment in labor law means that the workers, approximately 2.5 million people, do not always receive minimum wage or overtime.
The Obama administration has yet to formally approve revisions to the Fair Labor Standards Act that would change that classification.
Drug-resistant bacteria are a growing problem at hospitals across the country. The bacteria, such as Staphylococcus and Clostridium difficile, are difficult to prevent and impossible to treat.
"The problem is expanding, and it's going up and up and up," explains Dr. Trish Perl of Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore. "We're running out of antibiotics to treat, and so the challenge is can we prevent?"
Moaz al-Khatib sent waves through the Syrian activist community this week when he announced via Facebook that he was open to talks with representatives of Syrian President Bashar Assad's regime on two conditions: that political prisoners, thought to number in the tens of thousands, be released; and exiled Syrians be able to renew their passports at embassies abroad.
Originally published on Sun February 3, 2013 1:40 pm
A 25-year-old man has been charged with killing the author of American Sniper and another person at a Texas gun range.
Former Navy SEAL Chris Kyle wrote American Sniper: The Autobiography of the Most Lethal Sniper in U.S. Military History, a best-seller that detailed his more than 150 kills of insurgents between 1999 and 2009. He also set up FITCO Cares, a nonprofit that helps soldiers deal with post-traumatic stress disorder.
Originally published on Sun February 3, 2013 3:24 pm
Iran's foreign minister on Sunday welcomed Vice President Joe Biden's comments that the U.S. was willing to hold direct talks with the Islamic republic over its nuclear program.
"We have no red line for bilateral negotiations when it comes to negotiating over a particular subject," Ali Akbar Salehi said at a security conference in Munich, Germany. "If the subject is the nuclear file, yes, we are ready for negotiations but we have to make sure ... that the other side this time comes with authentic intention, with a fair and real intention to resolve the issue."
Once a poet and an English teacher, Jim McCormick has become a powerhouse Nashville songwriter.
Credit Scott Saltzman / Courtesy of the artist
Credit Scott Saltzman / Courtesy of the artist
McCormick (right) with singer-songwriter Brantley Gilbert. Gilbert's song "You Don't Know Her Like I Do," which McCormick co-wrote, hit the top of <em>Billboard</em>'s Hot Country Songs chart in the summer of 2012.
Originally published on Sun February 3, 2013 8:13 am
Headlines were circulating last week about how, as Slate put it, "almost everybody" is rooting for the San Francisco 49ers over the Baltimore Ravens in Sunday's Super Bowl. Of course, it turns out that what this actually meant was more like "substantially more than half of the area of the country is included within counties in which more people like the 49ers on Facebook than like the Ravens on Facebook."
This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Rachel Martin.
There's been a lot of talk this weekend at a security conference in Germany about how to resolve the crisis in Syria. And for the first time, a leader of Syria's opposition sat down with officials from Russia and Iran, both countries are key allies of the Syrian regime.
The fate of this round of immigration reform will be decided by lawmakers on Capitol Hill. But the effects will be felt in cities and towns across all 50 states, especially those on the U.S.-Mexico border; which is why we reached out to the mayors of two cities in Texas.
John Cook is the mayor of El Paso, Texas. It is the biggest U.S. city on the border. And Raul Salinas is the mayor of Laredo, Texas. His city is the largest transit hub for goods going between Mexico and the U.S.
For more than 40 years, Leon Panetta has split his life on two coasts: his home in California and his work in Washington, D.C. It's a career that included 16 years in Congress, stints as White House chief of staff for President Clinton, and as the head of the CIA and the Pentagon under President Obama.
As Panetta prepares to leave his job as defense secretary, he sat down with Rachel Martin, host of Weekend Edition Sunday, to talk about his years in Washington and serving in the Obama administration.
On-air challenge: In recognition of the Super Bowl, the key word is "yards." You will be given some categories. For each one, name something in the category beginning with each of the letters Y, A, R, D and S. For example, if the category were "Girls' Names," you might say Yvonne, Alice, Rachel, Donna and Sally.
Americans seeking stem cell replacement therapy hope the process can heal them of myriad diseases, and a 2011 report by the Baker Institute estimated the industry could bring in $16 billion in revenue by 2020.
This is WEEKENDS on ALL THINGS CONSIDERED, from NPR News. I'm Laura Sullivan. And if it's anything like last year, tomorrow's Super Bowl will reach more than 111 million viewers, in this country alone. And while the game ends for the fans tomorrow night, for players, the effects will likely linger on.