In Commerce, Mich., today, The Associated Press reports, Republican presidential contender Mitt Romney told supporters that he and his wife, Ann, had been born in nearby hospitals. Then, Romney added, "no one's ever asked to see my birth certificate; they know that this is the place where both of us were born and raised."
This is SCIENCE FRIDAY, I'm Ira Flatow. Up next, discovering the universe inside your skull, and it is a universe. According to my next guest, a single cubic centimeter of brain tissue contains as many nerve connections as there are stars in the Milky Way - billions and billions just in a tiny bit of your brain. Never mind the other three pounds of brain matter. It's a vast world inside our skulls, and much of it operates without us really knowing or thinking much about it or even understanding it.
FLATOW: Yup, they were cheering again this week at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. The Mars Rover Curiosity made its first moves on the Red Planet. It wiggled its wheels, and it's rolling away from the landing site, toward a spot called Glenelg, actually you can spell it backwards and forwards the same way because it's going to return there.
Between mass tourism and the Internet, it's never been easier to learn about other cultures. Yet we often stay on the surface. Watching the Olympics opening ceremony a few weeks ago, I was struck by how much of what was presented as quintessential Britishness came from pop culture — James Bond and Mary Poppins and the chorus to "Hey Jude." Although Britain had a global empire not that long ago, the show's director, Danny Boyle, grasped that the world's image of his green and pleasant land now largely derives from movies and songs.
One of the first activities of the new school year at the University of Alabama is Hands On Tuscaloosa, a morning of community service. On Sat., Aug. 25, students can choose to refurbish a neighborhood baseball diamond, clean-up a local high school, create a carnival or do something else worthwhile.
It's MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.
Today's shooting in New York City draws special attention because of the location: at the base of the Empire State Building, perhaps the most famous building in New York, one of the most famous buildings in the world. The gunman opened fire there. Several people were shot and wounded. We're getting conflicting accounts of how many, although news photographs from the scene do show a number of people down on the ground.
This interview was originally broadcast on May 31, 2011. David Eagleman's Incognito is now out in paperback.
Your brain doesn't like to keep secrets. Studies at the University of Texas, Austin, have shown that writing down secrets in a journal or telling a doctor your secrets actually decreases the level of stress hormones in your body. Keeping a secret, meanwhile, does the opposite.
Originally published on Fri August 24, 2012 10:03 am
Catholics are considered one of the most important swing groups in the country. Now, for the first time in history, both major political parties have Catholic vice presidential candidates. Guest host Viviana Hurtado discusses the Catholic voting bloc with pollster Robert Jones and conservative Catholic blogger Gayle Trotter.
There's a debate going on about whether President Obama's deferred action program for undocumented workers will help boost the economy, or hurt it. Guest host Viviana Hurtado hears two opposing views from Muzaffar Chishti of the Migration Policy Institute, and Vanderbilt University law professor Carol Swain.
Originally published on Fri August 24, 2012 1:21 pm
Update at 3 p.m. ET. In its latest update, the National Hurricane Center says that tropical storm Isaac "could be near hurricane strength" when it reaches Haiti later today. That's a slightly more serious forecast from where we began the day.
Our original post — "Isaac Barrels Toward Haiti, But Isn't Likely To Become Hurricane Today":
Originally published on Mon August 27, 2012 6:59 am
When Ashley Beecher had her first daughter, nursing was a struggle, and she sometimes had to supplement her baby's diet with formula. But when she had her second daughter in January, it was a very different story.
"Very early on I noticed [that] I've got so much more milk than what this child is drinking," said Beecher, a 29-year-old Houston mom, who started expressing her milk and storing it in plastic bags in her freezer. "There's probably, I would say, estimated around 50 bags containing six ounces of milk in each one and that's just what I have right now."
Good morning. I'm Steve Inskeep with condolences to the U.S. Postal Service. The Post Office is stuck with hundreds of millions of stamps bearing the likeness of Homer Simpson. The service predicted the stamps would be twice as popular as Elvis Presley. One billion stamps were printed. Bloomberg reports only 318 million have been sold. An inspector general's report says that kind of overprinting adds to the post office money losses.
Good morning. I'm Steve Inskeep. Dr. Catherine Baucom was late for surgery, but didn't give up. She was stuck in a massive traffic jam caused by an accident in Baton Rouge. And then she recalled a friend's house nearby and went to borrow a bike. TV station WAFB says the friend loaned his seven-year-old daughter's bike. So Dr. Baucom, almost six feet tall and wearing a green surgical outfit, pedaled for miles to surgery on a small, pink bike with a pink princess helmet. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.
This week the publisher Penguin confirmed it is releasing a book about the raid that killed Osama bin Laden. The book is called "No Easy Day." And as of this morning, it is number one on Amazon's bestseller list, even though it is not due out until September 11.
Originally published on Mon August 27, 2012 5:43 am
Uno cards, soccer balls and Pac-Man: the scene at For Love of Children looks more like summer camp than a community tutoring program.
FLOC's Neighborhood Tutoring Program places children from low-income D.C. families with volunteer tutors in one-on-one relationships. Tutors are trained in the student's curriculum and help the children master the material in fun, captivating ways.
It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep. By now, people across the nation have heard remarks by Missouri Republican Todd Akin. He says he misspoke about pregnancy and rape, but his words shifted the polls in his race for a vital U.S. Senate seat. Now Democrats want to be sure the remarks have a national effect. Here's NPR's Ari Shapiro.
Brian Baker, 27, is a tennis player from Nashville, Tenn., who's had a Disney-like comeback season after being out of the sport for seven years with injuries. Baker started the season as 458th in the world. He's now 79th after making it to Wimbledon's fourth round. Now, Baker will be playing in his first U.S. Open since 2005.
NPR's business news starts with a big patent ruling.
(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)
INSKEEP: This is a case of Apple against Samsung - and if that sounds familiar, it's because there's more than one patent case here.
While a jury in California deliberates a huge multibillion dollar patent infringement case, which we've been discussing this week, a ruling on a similar case with the same players has been issued today in South Korea.
And today's last word in business is: duh. That's right, D-U-H.
That's a Colombian beer, and it's at the center of a brewing legal battle between two businessmen and 20th Century Fox. The golden ale was originally called Duff Beer, and it looks just like the beer served up at Moe's Tavern on "The Simpsons." But 20th Century Fox complained that the two brothers who founded the company were infringing on a trademark here - Duff, it's from "The Simpsons." So the brothers said they changed the name to DuH.
Now, the summer blockbuster season at the movies is nearly over, which means some smaller and more independent films are making their way into theaters. Film critic Kenneth Turan saw "Robot and Frank."
In a commentary this week on Morning Edition, Frank Deford said the "proof is in the pudding." A listener wrote in to say that keeping proof in a pudding would be messy. The original proverb is: The proof of the pudding is in the eating. And what it meant was that you had to try out food to know whether it was good.
And some other news on this eventful morning. Lance Armstrong says he is no longer fighting the doping case against him. The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency says as a result the cyclist will be stripped of his seven titles on the Tour de France. NPR's Mike Pesca joined us to talk about it. Good morning.
MIKE PESCA, BYLINE: Hello.
INSKEEP: How did this happen? Did Armstrong effectively admit guilt here by saying he's not fighting the charges?