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The Two-Way
9:26 am
Tue May 15, 2012

Consumer Prices, Consumer Spending Both Flat In April

Two bits of economic news this morning:

-- Consumer prices overall were unchanged in April, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports, thanks in large part to a 2.6 percent drop in the price of gasoline.

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The Two-Way
8:58 am
Tue May 15, 2012

'Biggest Public Toilet In The World' Now Good To Go In Japan

The biggest public toilet in the world, officials claim. The flowers and plants will be put in the ground after the soil has settled properly, according to The Japan Times.
Ichihara City

It's only for women — and only for one woman at a time, it seems.

But officials in Ichihara City, Japan, claim they've created the "biggest public toilet in the world."

As The Japan Times reports, outside the city's train station there's now a fenced-in, "200-sq.-meter plot of land" with flowers, plants, pathways and — "smack in the middle" — a toilet enclosed in a glass box.

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The Two-Way
8:00 am
Tue May 15, 2012

Facebook Ups Its Forecast: Says Shares Will Sell For $34 To $38

Raul Arboleda AFP/Getty Images

Strong demand for its first public sale of stock has led Facebook to raise its forecast for how much each share will sell for when the company goes public on Friday.

"We anticipate that the initial public offering price will be between $34.00 and $38.00 per share," the company says in a statement filed earlier today with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Earlier, the social medial giant had expected shares would sell for $28 to $35 each.

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Around the Nation
7:39 am
Tue May 15, 2012

Amusement Park Rider Conquers Battle Of The Bulge

Originally published on Tue May 15, 2012 9:51 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Good morning, I'm David Greene. People who are overweight often say there was that final moment - that's it; I'm sick of it. I'm making a change.

For Nat Ambrose, it was last year at King's Dominion, the Virginia theme park. He tried to get on his favorite ride, Volcano the Blast Coaster, but the harness wouldn't fit his 300-pound frame. He lost 30 pounds in a month. Tried again, still couldn't squeeze in. Finally, nine months later, 105 pounds lighter, Nat Ambrose has conquered the Volcano.

Around the Nation
7:30 am
Tue May 15, 2012

Super Glue Helps Man Go For Fist-Pumping Record

Originally published on Tue May 15, 2012 9:51 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Steve Inskeep with congratulations to James Peterson who sought the world record for fist pumping. Yes. Mr. Peterson made this gesture of triumph for 16 hours. The Akron Beacon Journal says to maintain proper form he super glued his hand into a clenched fist. Yes. A video crew recorded this feat and sent it to the Guinness World Record people. If they do not accept the record we hesitate to think what gesture Mr. Peterson will try next. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright National Public Radio.

Europe
7:22 am
Tue May 15, 2012

Stevenage: A Place Where You Can't Be From

Originally published on Tue May 15, 2012 9:51 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

The town of Stevenage, England, 30 miles north of London, was once a small patch of farmland with a few thousand people. After World War II, the British government created a massive planned community there and hoped it would become a model for public housing for the world.

Gary Younge is a writer for the Guardian newspaper. He grew up in Stevenage and found it to be a mixed blessing. Younge wrote an essay about it for the spring issue of the literary magazine, Granta. We began our conversation by asking him to read us a passage.

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The Two-Way
7:15 am
Tue May 15, 2012

Former Murdoch Editor Facing Criminal Charges In Hacking Scandal

Rebekah Brooks, last Friday in London.
Christopher Furlong Getty Images

Originally published on Tue May 15, 2012 8:36 am

  • Philip Reeves reporting for the NPR Newscast

The first top editor from Rupert Murdoch's U.K. tabloids to face criminal charges related to the hacking scandal that has rocked his media empire is Rebekah Brooks, who prosecutors allege tried to "pervert the course of justice" last year by seeking to cover up what had been going on at Murdoch's News of the World.

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Economy
5:31 am
Tue May 15, 2012

Fact Checking Data On The Boomerang Generation

Originally published on Tue May 15, 2012 9:51 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

The fact-checking organization PolitiFact looked into a shocking claim in a political ad. The ad said 85 percent of recent college graduates are moving back in with their parents. There was a reason for the ad to make that claim. PolitiFact found that 85 percent figure has been repeated by CNN, the New York Post, U.S. News, and more news organizations. The number fits the notion of a boomerang generation, thrown back home by the economy.

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Business
4:45 am
Tue May 15, 2012

The Latest On JPMorgan Chase

Originally published on Tue May 15, 2012 9:51 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning. I'm Steve Inskeep.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And I'm David Greene.

JP Morgan Chase has long had the reputation of being one of the better managed big banks in the country. So how did it make a $2 billion blunder and what does it tell us about banking today, nearly five years after the onset of the financial crisis? When such questions are looming, we often turn to David Wessel, economics editor of The Wall Street Journal.

And, David, welcome back to the program.

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Business
4:45 am
Tue May 15, 2012

Facebook Raises Anticipated Stock Price

Originally published on Tue May 15, 2012 9:51 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with a price hike for Facebook shares.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

INSKEEP: OK, they're not even on sale yet, but investor excitement over Facebook's upcoming initial public offering has prompted the company to raise the price range for its shares. Sources say the new range will be from $34 to $38 per share. That's up from a previous range of $28 to $35.

Around the Nation
4:45 am
Tue May 15, 2012

California Budget Deficit Grows

Originally published on Tue May 15, 2012 9:51 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

California Governor Jerry Brown wants to convince voters to accept two things they don't like: higher taxes and deep spending cuts. The Democrat proposed a budget yesterday which would only be the start of the pain. The other part would come in November with a ballot measure to raise taxes and spare education. Capital Public Radio's Ben Adler reports from Sacramento.

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Election 2012
4:09 am
Tue May 15, 2012

JPMorgan's Loss A Gain For Campaign Positioning

The U.S. and JPMorgan Chase flags wave outside its headquarters in New York on Friday.
Eduardo Munoz Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Tue May 15, 2012 9:51 am

The fallout from banking giant JPMorgan Chase's $2 billion — and counting — loss has made its way into the presidential campaign. The president and presumptive GOP challenger Mitt Romney have very different views about the regulation of Wall Street, in particular the Dodd-Frank financial systems overhaul law.

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Family Matters: The Money Squeeze
3:07 am
Tue May 15, 2012

Paying For College: More Tough Decisions

Kelley Hawkins (center) smiles at her daughter Carley (left) as her other daughter, Chelsea (right), looks on, in their family home in Harrisburg, Pa.
Kainaz Amaria NPR

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 10:48 am

Middle age is prime time for saving money. From your late 40s through early 60s, you're supposed to squirrel away cash to cope with health care costs in your old age.

But for millions of Americans, middle age also is the time when children are seeking help with higher-education bills, and elderly parents may be needing assistance with daily care.

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The Salt
3:06 am
Tue May 15, 2012

Jetlagged By Your Social Calendar? Better Check Your Waistline

It doesn't take a transcontinental flight to end up out of sync with your body clock. It might just be that you stay up too late.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Tue May 15, 2012 9:51 am

It doesn't take a transcontinental flight to end up out of sync with your body clock. It might just be that you stay up too late.

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Your Money
3:06 am
Tue May 15, 2012

Canada's Housing Market Booms; Experts See Trouble

Canada's real estate market is one of the hottest in the developed world.
Mike Cassese Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Tue May 15, 2012 9:51 am

Housing prices are going through the roof in Canada. The real estate market there is one of the hottest in the developed world. In Toronto, prices increased 10 percent in March alone. The average detached house in the city costs more than $600,000.

That has economists and the government worried that Canada is experiencing a housing bubble that's about to burst.

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Europe
3:04 am
Tue May 15, 2012

From Iowa To Russia, Tractors Build Economic Bridge

Employees fit a tire to a John Deere W540 combine inside the company's Domodedovo manufacturing center near Moscow, Russia. The tractors are built in Waterloo, Iowa, and then taken apart and shipped to the Russian plant for reassembly.
Bloomberg via Getty Images

Originally published on Tue May 15, 2012 9:51 pm

The green is unmistakable at a plant in Russia as workers put together a John Deere tractor. The roughly 90 employees, however, don't actually make the tractors.

The engine, the drive train and the tractor itself are all built in Waterloo, Iowa. The completed tractor is tested, and then it is disassembled and prepared for shipment.

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The Fracking Boom: Missing Answers
3:03 am
Tue May 15, 2012

Sick From Fracking? Doctors, Patients Seek Answers

Michelle Salvini (left) and Terri DiCarlo take a break from work outside the Cornerstone Care clinic in Burgettstown, Pa. Mysterious fumes have repeatedly sickened clinic staffers, forcing them to evacuate the building several times.
Maggie Starbard NPR

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 10:48 am

Kay Allen had just started work, and everything seemed quiet at the Cornerstone Care community health clinic in Burgettstown, Pa. But things didn't stay quiet for long.

"All the girls, they were yelling at me in the back, 'You gotta come out here quick. You gotta come out here quick,' " said Allen, 59, a nurse from Weirton, W.Va.

Allen rushed out front and knew right away what all the yelling was about. The whole place reeked — like someone had spilled a giant bottle of nail polish remover.

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Shots - Health Blog
3:02 am
Tue May 15, 2012

Should Parents Be Able To Sue For 'Wrongful Birth'?

Arizona state Sen. Nancy Barto, R-Phoenix, listens during a special budget briefing at the state Capitol in October 2008. Barto sponsored a new law that prohibits wrongful birth lawsuits. She says the bill "sends the message that all life is worth protecting."
Ross D. Franklin AP

Originally published on Tue May 15, 2012 9:51 am

Several states, including Kansas and New Jersey, are debating so-called "wrongful birth" laws that would prevent parents from suing a doctor who fails to warn them about fetal problems.

Abortion rights activists say the laws give doctors the right to withhold information so women don't have abortions.

In Suffern, N.Y., Sharon and Steven Hoffman's son, Jake, was born with Tay-Sachs, a genetic disease that mainly affects Jewish families and is usually fatal by age 4 or 5.

"There's no treatment. There's no cure. There's nothing," Sharon says.

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Family Matters: The Money Squeeze
3:01 am
Tue May 15, 2012

Caring For Grandparent Matures A Young Man

Maryland resident Nicholas McDonald, 24, has briefly abandoned his musical aspirations to enter the workforce and contribute to the family's finances. "I'd like to give my mom $100 every now and then," he says.
Kainaz Amaria NPR

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 10:47 am

Nicholas McDonald grew up tempted by drugs and under pressure to hit the streets. Lacking male role models, the Maryland resident says he always saw his mom as "the apple of my eye."

Natasha Shamone-Gilmore tried to protect her son growing up. Now, 24-year-old Nicholas is doing his best to return the favor.

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Shots - Health Blog
7:33 pm
Mon May 14, 2012

To Fight HIV, Indian Health Workers Say Homosexuality Must Be Legal

Participants carry a rainbow flag during a gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender parade in Mumbai, India.
Rajanish Kakade AP

Originally published on Mon May 14, 2012 9:20 pm

It's just after nightfall as Anandrag Davinder, an outreach worker among Mumbai's mostly hidden community of gay men, wanders down a dark alley beside a busy railway station in Mumbai. His stop is a squalid row of urinal buildings where gay men go to meet, hidden from public view. The stench inside is overwhelming.

"This is a loo. This is a cruising center," Davinder says, stepping into the crowded, nearly pitch-black room. "All the gays are standing here only and saying, 'I like these guys. I want to do sex with this person.' "

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The Two-Way
7:00 pm
Mon May 14, 2012

Syrian Violence Spills Into Neighboring Lebanon

A Sunni gunman fires during clashes in the northern port city of Tripoli, Lebanon on Monday.
Hussein Malla AP

For a third day in a row, the violence of Syria spilled into the northern city of Tripoli in Lebanon.

The AP reports that the Alawites, who support the regime of Bashar Assad, and the Sunnis, who support the Syrian uprising, traded fire in Lebanon using assault rifles and rocket propelled grenades. Five people were killed and 100 were wounded in Lebanon's second-largest city.

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National Security
5:44 pm
Mon May 14, 2012

Military Looks To Redefine PTSD, Without Stigma

The U.S. military is trying to encourage service members and veterans to seek treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder. The military is also seeking to remove any sense of stigma for receiving treatment. Here, military personnel attend a presentation on PTSD at Fort Hamilton Army Garrison in Brooklyn, N.Y., in 2009.
Chris Hondros Getty Images

Originally published on Mon May 14, 2012 7:49 pm

The military and the Department of Veterans Affairs say they want more veterans and service members to get appropriate treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD.

That's why they're tweaking the way they define and treat PTSD. But if this approach works, it could add to the backlog of PTSD cases.

For years, the standard definition for post-traumatic stress disorder had a key feature that didn't fit for the military. It said that the standard victim responds to the trauma he or she has experienced with "helplessness and fear."

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The Salt
5:21 pm
Mon May 14, 2012

At Basque Cookings Clubs, Food And Fraternity Mix Heartily

Enrique Vallejo serves soup at the Amaikak Bat txoko in San Sebastian.
Deena Prichep for NPR

Originally published on Mon May 14, 2012 5:52 pm

Spring crops like asparagus and sorrel are poking up all over the hemisphere. And in the autonomous region of Northern Spain known as Basque Country, people are taking that spring harvest to a txoko.

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All Tech Considered
5:17 pm
Mon May 14, 2012

Draw Something App Reveals The Artistic Chimp In Us All

New Yorker cartoonist Matthew Diffee tries his hand at illustrating the word "Travolta" using the Draw Something app.
Courtesy of Matthew Diffee

Originally published on Tue May 15, 2012 11:23 am

Every week, as part of a new tech segment, we'll be digging into our digital sandbox for some fun. New Yorker cartoonist Matthew Diffee is starting things off with a review of Draw Something, a popular app that works a lot like Pictionary: Players pick a word, draw clues and then watch as their opponents guess the answer. But, as Diffee explains, the app's name is a bit misleading.

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Asia
5:13 pm
Mon May 14, 2012

India Debates Re-Banning Homosexuality

Originally published on Mon May 14, 2012 5:44 pm

India's Supreme Court is now weighing arguments by opponents and proponents of legal homosexuality. Same-sex relationships were decriminalized in 2009, but a number of political, social and religious groups are fighting to reinstate a colonial-era law that punished homosexual acts with prison time. Public health workers say legal recognition of India's gay community is critical in the fight against HIV and AIDS.

Election 2012
4:54 pm
Mon May 14, 2012

Obama's Gay Marriage Stand May Not Sway Latinos

President Obama speaks during a campaign fundraiser Monday at the Rubin Museum of Art in New York City. The event, co-hosted by gay- and lesbian-rights leaders and a Latino nonprofit, featured singer Ricky Martin.
Mandel Ngan AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon May 14, 2012 7:49 pm

President Obama is attending a campaign fundraiser Monday night co-hosted by gay- and lesbian-rights leaders and a Latino nonprofit. The event is being headlined by singer Ricky Martin.

Obama maintains a commanding lead over likely GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney when it comes to support among Latino voters. But those same voters are generally regarded as socially conservative, leading some to wonder how the president's support for same-sex marriage might affect the Latino electorate.

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Shots - Health Blog
4:53 pm
Mon May 14, 2012

In Talent Hunt, Some Businesses Offer Health Benefits For Same-Sex Couples

Reaction to President Obama's bombshell that he now supports gay marriage ran the gamut from profound to lighthearted.
The White House Getty Images

Originally published on Mon May 14, 2012 4:56 pm

President Obama's pronouncement last week in favor of same-sex marriage has no legal effect on employers' decisions on whether to offer benefits to workers' domestic partners.

But some advocates say it could reinforce a decade-long trend toward coverage.

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All Tech Considered
4:42 pm
Mon May 14, 2012

Facebook's Success Hinges On How Much More It Can Learn About Us

Investors will be betting that Facebook won't make its users so uncomfortable over privacy that they quit.
Photo Illustration: Joel Saget AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon May 14, 2012 7:49 pm

This week, All Things Considered is hitting refresh on its All Tech Considered segment — taking you into the changing landscape of technology and how it intersects with everyday life. From Silicon Valley to China, we'll feature stories from around the world, stay on top of innovations that matter — and get you the news you need to know. Every Monday, we'll preview the week's big tech stories.

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Deceptive Cadence
4:42 pm
Mon May 14, 2012

Garth Knox: One Viola And 1,000 Years Of Musical History

On Garth Knox's new album, Saltarello, the adventurous violist creates surprising musical juxtapositions.
Dániel Vass ECM Records

Originally published on Mon May 14, 2012 7:49 pm

Garth Knox was born to play the viola. As a youngster, he already had two sisters who played violin and a brother who played cello. "So for the family string quartet," Knox says, "it was very clear from the start which instrument I would play."

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The Two-Way
4:29 pm
Mon May 14, 2012

Striking Deal With Israel, Palestinian Prisoners Will End Hunger Strike

Palestinians hold pictures of prisoners and Palestinian flags as they celebrate the end of a prisoners' hunger strike in Israeli jails, in the West Bank city of Ramallah on Monday.
Majdi Mohammed AP

Originally published on Sun May 20, 2012 8:41 am

Hundreds of Palestinian prisoners agreed to end a hunger strike, today. In exchange, Israel agreed to end solitary confinement for the detainees.

NPR's Lourdes Garcia Navarro filed this report for our Newscast unit:

"Some of the hunger strikers have not been eating for more than 70 days, making this the longest hunger strike ever by Palestinians and certainly the largest.

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