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The Two-Way
2:33 pm
Fri December 26, 2014

Wake Held For Slain NYPD Officer

New York City police officers carry the casket of NYPD officer Rafael Ramos at his wake at Christ Tabernacle Church, in the Glendale section of Queens, on Friday.
John Minchillo AP

Originally published on Fri December 26, 2014 3:12 pm

Updated at 2:25 p.m. ET

New York City police officers are holding a wake this afternoon to honor officer Rafael Ramos, one of two patrolmen who were killed last weekend by a gunmen whose motive may have included revenge for the deaths of two unarmed black men at the hands of authorities.

USA Today reports:

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The Two-Way
1:18 pm
Fri December 26, 2014

Saudi Women Reportedly Referred To Terrorism Court For Driving

A Saudi woman poses in this picture to illustrate driving a car in Jiddah as part of a June 2011 protest. An advisory council recently recommended for the first time lifting a ban on female drivers.
Susan Baaghil Reuters/Landov

Two Saudi women arrested nearly a month ago for flouting a ban on female drivers have had their cases referred to a court established to try terrorists, according to The Associated Press.

Using driver's licenses obtained in the United Arab Emirates, Loujain al-Hathloul, 25, and Maysa al-Amoudi, 33, were arrested after crossing into Saudi Arabia, where women are officially banned from driving. The arrests took place on Nov. 30 and Dec. 1, respectively.

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The Two-Way
10:26 am
Fri December 26, 2014

Turkey Frees Teenager Who 'Insulted' The President

A teenager arrested for allegedly insulting Turkey's president was released today following widespread outcry. The boy's arrest has fueled charges that the country is leaning toward authoritarianism.

As he left the courthouse in the central city of Konya, Mehmet Emin Altunses, 16, remained defiant.

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The Two-Way
10:24 am
Fri December 26, 2014

Ukrainian Peace Talks Put On Hold

Women pass by a group of the Ukrainian government soldiers in the village of Debaltseve, Donetsk region, eastern Ukraine on Wednesday. Peace talks to resolve the conflict have inexplicably been called off.
Sergei Chuzavkov AP

A key round of negotiations aimed at ending the fighting in eastern Ukraine has been unexpectedly called off.

Belarusian officials, who were set to host the continuation of talks in their capital, Minsk, starting today, had no immediate comment on the reason for the cancellation.

As the BBC writes:

"The latest talks also included Russia and the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE).

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The Two-Way
9:12 am
Fri December 26, 2014

Possible Hack Of Sony, Microsoft Game Console Sites

Attendees walking past the Sony PlayStation booth at the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco in 2012. The PlayStation and Microsoft's Xbox consoles were experiencing a possible hack on their online sites.
Paul Sakuma AP

Originally published on Fri December 26, 2014 11:56 am

If you can't get your new Sony PlayStation or Microsoft Xbox online today, you can blame the Lizard Squad – or (indirectly) North Korea. Or maybe neither.

The Lizard Squad purports to be a group of hackers now claiming responsibility for a denial of service attack on the two game consoles' online sites.

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Music Interviews
9:03 am
Fri December 26, 2014

Sam Baker: Finding Grace In The Wake Of Destruction

Originally published on Fri December 26, 2014 2:29 pm

In 1986, a bomb planted by the Peruvian terrorist group Shining Path exploded in the luggage rack above Sam Baker. Somehow, during his long recovery, songs focused on empathy started coming to him.

Originally broadcast May 6.

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

TERRY GROSS, HOST:

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Code Switch
9:03 am
Fri December 26, 2014

Hollywood's Acceptance Of White Privilege Revealed By Sony Hack

The Rev. Al Sharpton (left) and Marc Morial, president of the National Urban League, speak to reporters after they met with Sony Pictures co-chairman Amy Pascal on Dec. 18.
Mark Lennihan AP

Originally published on Fri December 26, 2014 2:26 pm

It is, perhaps, the worst nightmare for those of us constantly trying to get a white-dominated Hollywood to widen its doors of opportunity for people of color: All those executives who say the right things in public and give to the right causes, just might think something much less admirable about diversity behind closed doors.

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The Two-Way
8:13 am
Fri December 26, 2014

Irish Court OKs Turning Off Life Support For Brain-Dead Pregnant Woman

The High Court in Ireland ruled today that a pregnant, brain-dead woman's life support can be turned off.

The unnamed woman's parents and her partner had both wanted life support to be removed.

Doctors had told the court's three judges that the 18-week fetus' chances of survival were low. There have been two similar cases in Ireland since 2001; both fetuses died in the womb.

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Goats and Soda
7:03 am
Fri December 26, 2014

How To Make An Unboring Documentary About Polio

The documentary film, "Every Last Child," chronicles the efforts to eradicate polio in Pakistan. Women play a key role β€” they're welcome in homes to share information, while men are not.
Courtesy of "Every Last Child"

Originally published on Fri December 26, 2014 8:46 am

When an Abu Dhabi film company, Image Nation, asked filmmaker Tom Roberts last summer to come up with an idea for a documentary about polio, he was flummoxed.

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Around the Nation
7:02 am
Fri December 26, 2014

We Raise A Glass To The Leathers Family And Their Names

Originally published on Fri December 26, 2014 7:52 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

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Around the Nation
7:02 am
Fri December 26, 2014

Give A Goat Your Old Christmas Tree

Originally published on Fri December 26, 2014 7:52 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

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The Salt
6:33 am
Fri December 26, 2014

Nutmeg Spice Has A Secret Story That Isn't So Nice

This copper engraving from approximately 1700 depicts the condition of the English prisoners at the hands of the Dutch. In the 1660s, Cornell University's Eric Tagliacozzo says, the conflict and competition for the spice trade came to a head. "The Dutch decapitated a number of English merchants who were also in the Spice Islands trying to profit from the trade."
WikiCommons

Originally published on Fri December 26, 2014 1:07 pm

Ah, nutmeg! Whether it's sprinkled on eggnog, baked into spice cake or blended into a latte, this pungent spice can evoke memories of holidays past.

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NPR Story
5:11 am
Fri December 26, 2014

Turkish President's Aggressive Behavior In 2014 Gets More Notice

Originally published on Fri December 26, 2014 7:52 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

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NPR Story
5:11 am
Fri December 26, 2014

Do Fish Have Fingers?

Originally published on Fri December 26, 2014 7:52 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

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Research News
5:11 am
Fri December 26, 2014

Solving The Mystery Of Why Rock Ants Avoid Right Turns

Originally published on Fri December 26, 2014 7:52 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

All Tech Considered
3:36 am
Fri December 26, 2014

Sony Hack Highlights The Global Underground Market For Malware

The toxic ingredients of a cyberattack like the one North Korea is accused of unleashing on Sony Pictures are available in underground markets.
Damian Dovarganes AP

Originally published on Fri December 26, 2014 2:12 pm

There are global underground markets where anyone can buy and sell all the malicious code for an attack like the one North Korea is accused of unleashing on Sony Pictures.

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StoryCorps
3:35 am
Fri December 26, 2014

The Grocery Delivery Man Who Brings Joy To A Housing Complex

Originally published on Fri December 26, 2014 7:52 am

Herman Travis, 55, lives in Holly Courts, a low-income housing complex in San Francisco.

Every Tuesday, Travis fills a shopping cart with groceries from a local food bank and makes home deliveries to his elderly and disabled neighbors. He started doing it in 2007 and says when he first started, people were skeptical.

"When I first started doing it. People was cautious. They didn't let me in their house, but after they got to really know me they would just be happy to see me," says Travis.

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Shots - Health News
3:34 am
Fri December 26, 2014

A Split View On Obamacare's Past And Future

Kevin Counihan (left) runs HealthCare.gov, and Michael Cannon, of the Cato Institute, is a prominent critic of Obamacare.
Courtesy of Chion Wolf/WNPR ; Courtesy of the Cato Institute

Originally published on Fri December 26, 2014 7:52 am

Kevin Counihan and Michael Cannon look at the Affordable Care Act and see very different things.

Cannon is part of the brain trust behind a Supreme Court case that could result in the repeal of a part of the exchanges he says is illegal.

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Around the Nation
3:33 am
Fri December 26, 2014

Getting High Safely: Aspen Launches Marijuana Education Campaign

Officials in Aspen have put out a brochure on how to use marijuana safely and legally.
Marci Krivonen

Originally published on Fri December 26, 2014 12:35 pm

The state government and the marijuana industry in Colorado are working to educate people about how to use pot safely. But in the high Rockies, one community is taking matters into its own hands.

The local sheriff in Aspen is leading an education effort that targets skiers and snowboarders flocking to the winter resort. And the sheriff isn't waiting until visitors hit the slopes β€” their education starts at the airport with pamphlets on marijuana.

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Parallels
3:31 am
Fri December 26, 2014

Europe's Far Right And Putin Get Cozy, With Benefits For Both

Marine Le Pen (center), leader of France's far-right National Front party, has visited Russia on several occasions, and a Russian bank recently lent her party $11 million.
Jean-Philippe Ksiazek AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri December 26, 2014 11:28 am

Last month at a meeting of the far-right National Front in the French city of Lyon, there was a special guest: Andrey Isayev, a member of Russian President Vladimir Putin's political party.

The apparent contradiction of political philosophies didn't seem to dampen the crowd's enthusiasm for Isayev's message: Long live Franco-Russian friendship, and down with the European Union! Isayev called the EU a "spineless lackey of the United States."

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All Tech Considered
3:31 am
Fri December 26, 2014

As Uber Expands, It Asks Cities For Forgiveness Instead Of Permission

The app-based car service Uber has had a big year for business --€” and controversy.
Ariel Zambelich NPR

Originally published on Fri December 26, 2014 3:12 pm

Perhaps no single company has stirred so many emotions this year β€” across so many continents β€” as Uber.

In 2014 Uber became more β€” much more β€” than a car service: The Silicon Valley startup became a symbol for capitalism itself.

The company's value soared from under a billion to about $40 billion, making it one of the most valuable private companies on Earth. But it also has become mired in turf wars, legal battles and scandal.

Hypergrowth And Backlash

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The Two-Way
1:59 am
Fri December 26, 2014

Oregon Woman Released From East Timor Prison

Originally published on Fri December 26, 2014 2:36 am

In January 2013, Dr. Stacey Addison of Portland, Ore., embarked on a trip around the world. Her starting point was Antarctica.

Addison, a veterinarian, had made all the necessary plans and had sold her house so she would have enough money for the trip.

In September of 2014, she shared a taxi with a stranger. That decision led to months of incarceration in the tiny nation of East Timor.

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The Two-Way
5:57 pm
Thu December 25, 2014

Somalia's Al-Shabab Attacks African Peacekeepers

African Union Mission to Somalia (AMISOM), African Union soldiers march along the top of a hill overlooking the al-Shabab stronghold of Barawe, a coastal town 135 miles southwest of Mogadishu, in Somalia, in October.
Tobin Jones AP

The African Union has condemned an assault on the organization's main base in Somalia by al-Shabab extremists that killed three AU soldiers and a civilian contractor.

AMISOM, the AU mission in Somalia, issued a statement Thursday saying that the four had been killed in a gunfight as soldiers tried to repel the attack by eight militant gunmen.

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Found Recipes
4:29 pm
Thu December 25, 2014

After The Presents, A Buttery Tea Cake Tradition

Susan Tannewitz-Karnes grew up eating Mrs. Lawrence every Christmas. The tea cake was so beloved that Tannewitz-Karnes and her siblings would argue over who received more than their fair share.
Courtesy of Susan Tannewitz-Karnes

When listener Susan Tannewitz-Karnes was a child in Johnson City, Tenn., Christmas wasn't Christmas without an English tea cake baked by their neighbor, Mrs. Lawrence.

She would deliver it about a week before Christmas. "We would come home from school and my mother would just say, 'Mrs. Lawrence came by! We have Mrs. Lawrence!' And we'd say, 'Oh, yes! Yes!' We couldn't wait."

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Economy
4:29 pm
Thu December 25, 2014

Economy Weathers A Bad Winter And Other Storms To Finish 2014 Strong

A New York Stock Exchange trader works on the floor on Dec. 17. Stocks rose nearly 300 points after the Federal Reserve announced it plans to begin raising interest rates next year.
Andrew Burton Getty Images

Originally published on Thu December 25, 2014 6:39 pm

The economy was floored by the polar vortex early on in 2014 β€” plus, businesses and consumers were still a little dazed by a government shutdown and debt ceiling fight late in 2013.

Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody's Analytics, says it all produced an anxious start to the year. "Yeah, a lot of worry, particularly because we had misstepped a few other times during the recovery," he says. "We had these false dawns when we really thought the economy was going to kick into gear and then we kind of fell back into the morass."

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Technology
4:16 pm
Thu December 25, 2014

Online Sellers Pop Up In Real Life, For A Limited Time Only

Originally published on Thu December 25, 2014 4:29 pm

One-click shopping is changing the ways people shop and retailers sell their wares. But some online retailers are opening physical stores β€” some of which last as short as a day. (This story originally aired on All Things Considered on July 28, 2014.)

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NPR Story
4:16 pm
Thu December 25, 2014

Scoring The Screen: Rachel Portman On Hitting The Right Emotional Note

Originally published on Thu December 25, 2014 4:29 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Around the Nation
4:16 pm
Thu December 25, 2014

Employers Help Legal Immigrants On Path To Citizenship

Originally published on Thu December 25, 2014 4:29 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Economy
4:16 pm
Thu December 25, 2014

Low Gas Prices Predicted For 2015 And Beyond

Originally published on Thu December 25, 2014 4:29 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

The Salt
4:16 pm
Thu December 25, 2014

Why Bury Fig Trees? A Curious Tradition Preserves A Taste Of Italy

Michele Vaccaro buries a fig tree in the yard of Mary Menniti in Sewickley, Pa.
Hal Klein for NPR

Originally published on Thu December 25, 2014 4:29 pm

On a grey, chilly December morning in Sewickley, Pa., Michele Vaccaro and his assistant are digging a trench in a garden.

"It looks like we're burying somebody over here β€” a body," Vaccaro says.

Cast your old Godfather stereotypes aside, because this Calabrian immigrant is carrying on a much more wholesome tradition: He's burying a 12-foot fig tree.

"It's been done for years. Probably [since] the 1800s," he says, when Italians coming to America first started bringing fig trees over from the old country. "They would put them always in the ground."

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