There will be no more "Mr. Nice Guy" in New York. No more "K2," "Skunk" or "Zohai" either.
The New York State Health Department banned the sale of synthetic marijuana products like those on Thursday. So all kinds of wacky stuff that's made to get people high — but is often disguised as potpourri, incense or some mixture of herbs — is now verboten.
This interview was originally broadcast on May 23, 1988.
Writer Harry Crews had a hard life and didn't made it any easier for the characters in his novels. He died Wednesday at age 76.
Crews' novels were filled with freaks and losers with unusual gifts. In Naked in Garden Hills, there was the 600-pound man with a penchant for dietary supplements. The Gospel Singer featured lunatics and carnival characters. Car showcased a man who literally ate a Ford Maverick, several ounces at a time.
Originally published on Fri March 30, 2012 10:21 am
Rep. Paul Ryan's endorsed Mitt Romney Friday just ahead of Tuesday's Wisconsin primary. In an interview with the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Ryan said: "I think he deserves to be the nominee. I think he earned it. He has emerged as the best candidate." Ryan, a rising star in the party who many wanted to run for president and who is seen as a vice presidential possibility, said a further protracted primary would weaken the party's chances of beating President Obama in November.
Originally published on Fri March 30, 2012 9:31 am
"There would have been George dead had he not acted decisively and instantaneously in that moment when he was being disarmed," the brother of George Zimmerman told CNN's Piers Morgan last night in one of the most extensive interviews yet with someone from the family of the man who shot and killed Florida teenager Trayvon Martin on Feb. 26.
Supporters listen to Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum at The Ravine in Bellevue, Wis., on March 24. Some voters in the state are complaining about a barrage of negative ads in advance of Tuesday's primary.
With a GOP presidential primary coming up on April 3, Wisconsin voters have found themselves besieged by political ads, reports NPR's David Schaper on Friday's Morning Edition.
Talking to voters in La Crosse, Schaper found that residents have grown weary of the onslaught. It has been massive: The Red, White And Blue Fund — the superPAC supporting Rick Santorum — has so far spent almost a half-million dollars on ads attacking front-runner Mitt Romney.
One day after fellow Republicans in the House ensured passage of his version of a 2013 federal budget, there are reports that Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan is about to endorse Mitt Romney's bid for the GOP presidential nomination.
The Associated Press says it has been told by two Republican officials that "Ryan's endorsement could come as soon as Friday, when Romney is scheduled to give an economic speech in Appleton, Wis."
Originally published on Fri March 30, 2012 12:27 pm
Everybody, it seems, is talking about tonight's Mega Millions lottery drawing because the jackpot's up to a record $640 million. (Update at 12:15 p.m. ET: Officials just increased the estimated jackpot, which began today at an already record $540 million.)
Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne with bad news for gladiators. Nowadays performers in Rome who dress like those ancient combatants earn money by posing in photos with tourists. As of today, they've been driven away from the Coliseum. Roman officials say gladiators will no longer be able to peddle pictures outside their classic arena. The no-pay rule only applies around the Coliseum. Still, it's not hard to tell how gladiators will react - thumbs down. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright National Public Radio.
NPR's business news starts with BlackBerry backpedaling.
Research in Motion, the maker of the BlackBerry smartphone, says it's turning its focus back to corporate customers. This follows its failure to break into consumer markets dominated by iPhones and androids. Last quarter, the company lost $125 million. Analysts say BlackBerry's main problem is its trouble running third-party applications. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.
President Obama is expected to sign another stopgap funding bill that avoids a weekend shutdown of thousands of transportation construction projects. The measure gives a 90-day funding extension for road, bridge and rail construction projects.
This Best Buy store in Richfield, Minn., near the retailer's corporate headquarters, is getting remodeled as part of a pilot project in the Twin Cities and San Antonio, Texas. The new store, part of Best Buy's "connected store" concept, will be smaller and emphasize portable electronics, such as tablets and e-readers.
Credit Annie Baxter/NPR
Outside the Richfield, Minn., store on Thursday, a banner announces the coming changes.
Credit Annie Baxter/NPR
Black Friday shoppers wait in line outside Best Buy on Nov. 26, 2010, in Fort Worth, Texas. Best Buy will shut down 50 of its large stores while testing new stores that are 20 percent smaller.
Best Buy is trying to wriggle out of the big box. The electronics retailer has a lot of real estate in its giant blue stores, but it isn't profitable space: In its most recent quarter, the company reported a $1.7 billion loss. So it's shedding stores and workers — and rethinking its big-box concept.
In Houston Thursday, former President George H.W. Bush endorsed Mitt Romney's run for the Republican presidential nomination. Bush's endorsement is one more signal from the Republican establishment for the party to close ranks behind Romney.
Ask almost anyone about negative political ads, you'll likely get a negative response. They're widely disliked, yet campaigns keep airing them over and over and over again. That's especially true right now in the state of Wisconsin, ahead of next week's Republican primary.
NPR's David Schaper reports that as hated as these ads are, they are seen as effective.
DAVID SCHAPER, BYLINE: Flip on the TV anywhere in Wisconsin this week and it won't be long until you hear this...
After a reporter asked President Obama about the shooting of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin in Sanford, Fla., GOP opponents said the president was being divisive by bringing up racial issues. David Greene talks to Lester Spence, an assistant professor of Political Science at Johns Hopkins University, about race and politics.
It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne.
DAVID GREENE, HOST:
And I'm David Greene.
A documentary that has been stirring up headlines for weeks finally opens today. "Bully," from producer Harvey Weinstein, has made news for its controversial R rating from the Motion Picture Association of America. Weinstein argues the R rating prevents the movie's intended audience - children - from seeing it, and so he decided to release "Bully" unrated.
The Motion Picture Association of America was going to give Bully an R rating for language, but the movie's producer decided to send it out with no rating. The nation's second-largest cinema chain AMC will show it, but Cinemark, the third-largest chain will not.
Alyssa Rodemeyer, 16, talks about her younger brother Jamey at an anti-bullying rally in San Francisco. Jamey committed suicide in September 2011 after being bullied. More schools are looking for ways to combat bullying among students.
Credit Marcio Jose Sanchez / AP
Erica Newell of the Massachusetts Aggression Reduction Center gives an anti-bullying presentation to middle-schoolers in Medway, Mass.
The Obama administration has announced a new policy to handle the risks posed by legitimate biological research that could, in the wrong hands, threaten the public.
The move comes in response to a huge debate over recent experiments on bird flu virus that got funding from the National Institutes of Health. Critics say the work created mutant viruses that could potentially be dangerous for people, or give terrorists a road map for making a bioweapon.
The killings in France of three Jewish children, a rabbi and three soldiers of North African descent came during a presidential campaign in which immigration has dominated campaign rhetoric. The Toulouse gunman, a Frenchman of Algerian descent, was shot dead by police, but the tragedy has prompted national soul-searching.
Myanmar opposition figure Aung San Suu Kyi speaks to supporters on Saturday. Voting in parliamentary elections this Sunday is considered a test of the political reforms that Myanmar's rulers have introduced over the past year.
Credit Khin Maung Win / AP
Dr. May Win Myint campaigns in front of a painting of Suu Kyi, leader of the National League of Democracy, at a rally near the capital Yangon. Win Myint has accused her opponent of vote-buying.
Titanic is back. The 1997 blockbuster featuring star-crossed lovers Jack and Rose is being released in 3-D. Starring Kate Winslet and Leonardo DiCaprio, Titanic was the highest-grossing movie in history — until Avatar.
Both films were directed by James Cameron, who has just returned from a landmark expedition to the deepest point in the ocean: a spot in the far western Pacific called the Challenger Deep.
In 2010, David Plant was diagnosed with skin cancer. The cancer has since metastasized to other parts of his body, and David is now contemplating the end of his life. So, just before his 81st birthday, he sat down with his stepson to talk about their life together.
As Frank Lilley explains, "David is my stepfather, but I certainly consider him my father."
The two spoke in in New London, N.H. And Frank began with a question.
From NPR News, this is All Things Considered. I'm Robert Siegel.
MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:
And I'm Melissa Block.
The Fair Labor Association, a labor rights group, has released its audit of Apple's largest supplier in China, Foxconn. The group found what it calls significant issues with working conditions at three factories there, including more than 50 violations of the FLA's code of conduct and Chinese labor law.
After this week's oral arguments at the Supreme Court, lawmakers and health policy experts are starting to ponder what had — until recently — been unthinkable to many: What if the court strikes down the entire Affordable Care Act?
Senior guard Darius Miller of Kentucky shoots during the Wildcats' win over Baylor in the South Regional final. Kentucky, the NCAA Tournament's No. 1 seed, faces rival Louisville in the Final Four Saturday.
College basketball's Final Four men's teams will play in New Orleans Saturday, to decide which two squads will play in Monday night's NCAA championship game. The first match-up pits the University of Louisville against tournament favorite — and archrival — the University of Kentucky. In the second game, Ohio State University will face the University of Kansas.