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History
4:20 pm
Mon April 23, 2012

Discovery Sparks Interest In Forgotten Black Scholar

Three years ago, Rufus McDonald found historic documents in an abandoned house and took them to a rare-books dealer. The papers and books belonged to Richard T. Greener, a 19th century intellectual who was the first African-American to graduate from Harvard University.
Cheryl Corley NPR

Originally published on Mon April 23, 2012 7:39 pm

Three years ago, just moments before sledgehammers ripped through an abandoned home in Chicago, the head of a demolition crew decided to save the contents of an old steamer trunk stored in the attic.

"They were about to demolish it because they couldn't get it down the stairs," says Rufus McDonald, who gathered what was inside the steamer trunk — documents and old books — and took them to a rare-book dealer in Chicago.

"He said, 'Do you know who this is?' I said, 'Nah, who is it?' He said, 'It's Richard Theodore Greener," McDonald recalls. "I said, 'Who is he?' "

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Shots - Health Blog
4:18 pm
Mon April 23, 2012

Cancer Doc Brawley Says The U.S. Health Care System Is Sick

Otis Brawley, M.D., chief medical officer of the American Cancer Society.
Chris Hamilton American Cancer Society

Originally published on Fri April 27, 2012 9:48 am

Journalists make for a pretty tough crowd.

But Dr. Otis Brawley, chief medical officer for the American Cancer Society, fired up hundreds of them at the annual meeting of Association of Health Care Journalists over the weekend with a no-holds-barred critique of the U.S. health system.

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The Salt
4:01 pm
Mon April 23, 2012

Are Local Salad Greens Safer Than Packaged Salad Greens?

Miller Farms in Maryland is a family-run operation that sells its home-grown vegetables at farmers' markets and local grocery stores. Phil Miller, whose family owns the farm, says he's trying to earn a food safety certification now required by many food buyers.
Maggie Starbard NPR

Originally published on Tue April 24, 2012 7:23 am

There were lots of comments on this blog regarding my recent stories about making salads safer. Many of those comments argued that the solution is to grow your own. Or at least buy from local farmers.

Which raises an interesting question: Are salad greens from your local farmer's market actually safer than packaged lettuce from thousands of miles away? And should the same safety rules apply to both?

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The Picture Show
3:17 pm
Mon April 23, 2012

Are Your Facebook Friends Really Your Friends?

Photographer Tanja Hollander is on a mission to make protraits of all of her Facebook friends.
Tanja Hollander

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 10:51 am

The new issue of The Atlantic asks: Is Facebook Making Us Lonely? The jury's out, though signs point to maybe.

Facebook didn't necessarily make Tanja Hollander lonely, per se, but it did make her curious. It was a little over two years ago when she looked at that number representing "friends," 626 in her case, and started to analyze it.

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The Two-Way
2:57 pm
Mon April 23, 2012

Six Men Ask Judge To Overturn Convictions In Notorious D.C. Murder Case

In 1985, Chris Turner was convicted of the murder of Catherine Fuller. After spending decades in prison, Turner is now out on parole; he maintains his innocence. He is shown here in his childhood neighborhood in Northeast Washington, D.C., about 100 yards away from what was Fuller's home.
Amanda Steen NPR

Originally published on Mon April 23, 2012 3:39 pm

Six men wearing bright orange prison jumpsuits appeared in a D.C. courtroom today, seeking to overturn their decades-old convictions in a brutal murder by arguing the Justice Department failed to turn over critical evidence that could have helped them assert their innocence.

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NPR Story
2:33 pm
Mon April 23, 2012

Op-Ed: Obama And Romney, Quit 'Hispandering'

Columnist Esther Cepeda says it is "a sign of respect" when candidates reach out to Hispanics by speaking Spanish, but there ought to be substance behind the effort.
Rob Boudon Flickr

Originally published on Tue April 24, 2012 12:19 pm

Esther Cepeda recently learned a new word: "Hispandering." And, she writes in an op-ed for The Washington Post writers group, "it perfectly captures the spirit of the moment" in presidential politics.

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World
2:24 pm
Mon April 23, 2012

Egyptian Elections Complicated By Controversy

Originally published on Fri April 27, 2012 10:04 am

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan in Washington. In a few weeks, Egyptians vote in a presidential election that many hoped would mark a full transition from military rule. Then the Egyptian Election Commission disqualified 10 candidates, including the two leading Islamists and the former intelligence chief.

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The Two-Way
2:12 pm
Mon April 23, 2012

Trustees Warn Social Security Is Headed Toward Insolvency

Originally published on Mon April 23, 2012 4:37 pm

The trustees in charge of nation's Social Security program said a sagging economy has hit the program hard. The program's trust fund, which goes mostly to retirees, said the trustees, will run dry by 2033.

The AP reports "Medicare's finances have stabilized but the program's hospital insurance fund is still projected to run out of money in 2024."

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Religion
2:05 pm
Mon April 23, 2012

Vatican Reprimand Of U.S. Nuns Divides Faithful

Originally published on Mon April 23, 2012 2:39 pm

The Vatican reprimanded America's largest organization of Catholic nuns, the Leadership Conference of Women Religious. The Holy See charged the LCWR with promoting programs with "radical feminist themes" that are incompatible with doctrine on issues ranging from homosexuality to women's ordination.

Your Health
2:05 pm
Mon April 23, 2012

Gerson: Dieting's A Bore We're Ill-Prepared For

Originally published on Mon April 23, 2012 2:43 pm

Regular readers of Michael Gerson's column in the Washington Post know he usually tackles timely issues in politics, religion, foreign policy and global health and development. Recently, he dealt with what may be an even more challenging — and personal — issue: the difficulties of dieting.

It's All Politics
1:58 pm
Mon April 23, 2012

Romney Backs Extension Of Student Loan Relief

Originally published on Mon April 23, 2012 3:08 pm

Mitt Romney on Monday endorsed the idea of extending a law that curbs interest rates paid by some recipients of federal student loans, a cause that President Obama has made a campaign issue.

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The Two-Way
1:54 pm
Mon April 23, 2012

AP Analysis: Half Of Recent College Grads Are Jobless Or Underemployed

Students from John Moores' University celebrate graduation.
Christopher Furlong Getty Images

It's hard out there for a college grad.

The AP analyzed government data and came up with this stunning figure: "Half of young college graduates [are] either jobless or underemployed in positions that don't fully use their skills and knowledge."

The whole story is worth a read, so we encourage you to click over, but here is the meat of the AP's analysis:

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The Two-Way
1:13 pm
Mon April 23, 2012

Obama Announces New Sanctions Targeting Syria, Iran

U.S. President Barack Obama speaks at the Holocaust Museum in Washington, DC.
Pool Getty Images

President Obama announced a set of new sanctions that target "Syria and Iran and the 'digital guns for hire' who help them oppress their people with surveillance software and monitoring technology," the AFP reports.

The president made the announcement during a visit to the Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington. His visit was the first as president.

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The Two-Way
12:21 pm
Mon April 23, 2012

DARPA Explains Crash Of Hypersonic Glider

This US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency(DARPA) artists rendering shows the Falcon Hypersonic Technology Vehicle 2 (HTV-2).
AFP/Getty Images

The forces on the unmanned hypersonic glider tested last summer by the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) were so great that large parts of its skin peeled off causing its emergency system to plunge it into the ocean.

As we reported last August, the Falcon HTV-2 "was shot up on a rocket and right at the edge of space, it separated and glided through the atmosphere at 13,000 mph."

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Politics
12:04 pm
Mon April 23, 2012

Green Jobs Guru Back To Energize Progressive Base?

Activist Van Jones served as special adviser to President Obama on green jobs. He resigned in 2009 after media reports questioned his beliefs about the 9/11 attacks. Now, Jones is back with a new book, Rebuild the Dream, outlining his vision for the progressive movement. He speaks with host Michel Martin.

The Two-Way
11:35 am
Mon April 23, 2012

VIDEO: Space Out With NASA's 'Walking On Air'

From NASA's 'Walking on Air' video, a view of an aurora from space.
NASA.gov

Originally published on Mon April 23, 2012 11:52 am

If you're into images of Earth taken from space, NASA has a new video for you. Called Walking on Air, it "features a series of time lapse sequences photographed by the Expedition 30 crew aboard the International Space Station" and is set to the song Walking in the Air by Howard Blake.

Planet Money
11:28 am
Mon April 23, 2012

What America Owes In Student Loans

Lam Thuy Vo NPR

Originally published on Mon November 26, 2012 8:42 pm

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Movie Interviews
11:20 am
Mon April 23, 2012

Jack Black: On Music, Mayhem And Murder

In Bernie, Jack Black plays a local mortician who murders his live-in companion after she won't stop nagging him. The movie is based on a true story.
Deana Newcomb Wind Dancer Films

Originally published on Mon April 23, 2012 11:59 am

Actor Jack Black is best known for his comedic performances in films like Nacho Libre and School of Rock. In his latest film, Bernie, Black goes to a darker place: He plays a serious small-town funeral director who uncharacteristically murders his live-in companion, a wealthy widow played by Shirley MacLaine.

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The Two-Way
11:00 am
Mon April 23, 2012

U.S., Afghan Security Pact Is Sweeping But Not Specific

U.S. Marines in southern Afghanistan last June.
David Gilkey NPR

While the headlines proclaim that thanks to a new draft agreement the U.S. will continue to defend Afghanistan for a decade after the planned 2014 withdrawal of foreign combat forces from that country, the stories themselves make clear that many of the key details remain to be worked out:

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The Salt
10:53 am
Mon April 23, 2012

Don't Call It A Malbec: Europe Sours On British Winery's Plan

The European Union is forcing a British winery to give away wine made with Argentinian Malbec grapes. Here, a cluster of Malbec grapes hang from a vine.
Eric Risberg AP

Originally published on Mon April 23, 2012 11:17 am

A British winemaker has finally been given official approval to release a limited-edition wine made in collaboration with Malbec grape growers in Argentina, on one condition: It can't sell the wine, or label it a Malbec. Actually, it can't even call it wine at all.

The Chapel Down winery's only option for getting rid of its wine is to give it away as a sample, calling it a "fruit-derived alcoholic beverage from produce sourced outside the EU."

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Music Reviews
10:53 am
Mon April 23, 2012

Todd Snider: 'Stoner Fables' With A Layered Worldview

Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Mon April 23, 2012 11:20 am

Todd Snider is, on one level, your average guitar-strumming singer-songwriter with varying amounts of musical accompaniment for songs he sings with mush-mouthed intimacy. But Snider, now in his mid-40s and impressively prolific, is also an exceptional singer-songwriter, able to set up scenes with quick, precise details.

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The Two-Way
9:46 am
Mon April 23, 2012

Several More Secret Service Agents Tied To Scandal Likely To Lose Their Jobs

Within the next few days, several more Secret Service agents will lose their jobs because of their roles in the so-called summit scandal during which they allegedly cavorted with prostitutes in Colombia earlier this month, the chairman of the House Committee on Homeland Security said this morning.

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The Two-Way
9:03 am
Mon April 23, 2012

VIDEO: World Peace Causes World Of Pain With Elbow To Opponent's Head

The NBA's Ron Artest changed his name to Metta World Peace last year.

But the player known for being at the center of a 2004 brawl in the stands at the Palace of Auburn Hills in Michigan showed Sunday that his new name doesn't mean he's changed all his wild ways.

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The Two-Way
8:22 am
Mon April 23, 2012

To Keep His Job, France's Sarkozy Must Reach To The Right

French President Nicolas Sarkozy after Sunday's vote.
Marc Piasecki Getty Images

"Far-right National Front candidate Marine Le Pen" now has a chance to swing the French presidential election, as France 24 reports, after pulling in 18 percent of the ballots in the first round of voting Sunday.

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World
7:49 am
Mon April 23, 2012

A Year After Tsunami, Japanese Ball Found In Alaska

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne. A precious piece of his childhood is going back to a teenager in Japan. Misaki Murakami and his family lost everything in last year's tsunami. But waves carried his soccer ball, covered in notes from third grade friends, to a beach in Alaska. David Baxter found it there and his Japanese wife translated the writing, including the teenager's name. It will be the first bit of North American tsunami debris officially returned to Japan. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Around the Nation
7:39 am
Mon April 23, 2012

Rats Are Good Luck For NHL's Florida Panthers

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

The Two-Way
7:22 am
Mon April 23, 2012

Now It Snows?

Don Buckley took his dog Gracie for a walk during the snowstorm this morning in Akron, N.Y.
David Duprey AP

Originally published on Mon April 23, 2012 12:12 pm

The Northeast and mid-Atlantic began the cold season with an unusual Halloween snowstorm that knocked out power to millions. And after that? Almost no snow in may parts of those regions.

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The Two-Way
6:46 am
Mon April 23, 2012

Zimmerman Released After Posting Bail, Will Go Into Hiding But Be Monitored

George Zimmerman, left, as he walked out of jail earlier today. The other man was not identified.
Brian Blanco AP

Just after midnight earlier today, George Zimmerman — the man at the center of a killing that has become a national story because of its racial overtones — was released from the Sanford, Fla., jail where he was being held while awaiting trial.

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Around the Nation
6:36 am
Mon April 23, 2012

Artist Tosses Salad For 1,000 People

As a part of Earth Day celebrations, performance artist Alison Knowles took salad making to the extreme in New York City. Knowles chopped romaine lettuce, carrots and cucumbers to the beat of live music. She then tossed the avalanche of salad off a balcony into a giant tarp, where the salad was served up to audience members.

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