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Shots - Health Blog
5:56 pm
Thu March 22, 2012

Answers To Your Questions About The Health Care Overhaul Law

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Thu March 22, 2012 6:05 pm

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act — the health care overhaul law that President Obama championed and Republicans rejected — turns two on Friday.

The law is headed to the Supreme Court on Monday, where the Justices begin hearing three days of arguments about the constitutionality of the law. Ahead of the big day, we asked for questions from our audiences online and on air. Here's a sampling of questions, edited for clarity and length, and the answers.

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The Two-Way
5:30 pm
Thu March 22, 2012

Coroner: Whitney Houston's Death Ruled Accidental Drowning

Pop diva Whitney Houston was found dead in her Beverly Hills hotel room on the eve of the 54th Grammy Awards.
Getty Images Getty Images

Originally published on Thu March 22, 2012 5:48 pm

The Los Angeles County coroner's office is saying that pop star Whitney Houston drowned in her hotel room tub on Feb. 11.

USA Today reports the coroners listed the cause of death as: "drowning and effects of atherosclerotic heart disease and cocaine use."

They add:

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Movie Reviews
5:30 pm
Thu March 22, 2012

'Hunger Games': Mortal Combat As Appointment TV

Are You Not Entertained? TV host Caesar Flickerman (Stanley Tucci) takes the celebrity interview to new lows when chatting up the young combatants in the to-the-death Hunger Games — including Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence).
Lionsgate

Hungry for a good dystopia? Well, as you may be gathering from reports of the millions of tickets sold before prints were even shipped to theaters, author Suzanne Collins has a feast for you in the first movie installment of her young-adult trilogy The Hunger Games.

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The Two-Way
5:17 pm
Thu March 22, 2012

Goldman Sachs Scours Emails To Hunt For 'Muppets'

Kermit the Frog on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, where he was honored.
Frazer Harrison Getty Images

In the aftermath of the "take this job and shove it" scandal, Goldman Sachs has embarked on a muppet hunt.

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It's All Politics
5:13 pm
Thu March 22, 2012

As Health Care And Politics Collide At Home, Obama Heads Abroad

President Obama signs the national health care law at the White House on March 23, 2010.
J. Scott Applewhite AP

As the Supreme Court debates the constitutionality of his signature domestic policy achievement next week, President Obama will be keeping his distance from the events in Washington.

A coincidence of timing puts the president in South Korea for a global nuclear security summit on Monday and Tuesday, as the Supreme Court holds the first two of its three days of historic oral arguments on the new national health care law.

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Judging The Health Care Law
5:05 pm
Thu March 22, 2012

How Health Care Ruling Could Shift The GOP Debate

Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney signs into law a new health care reform bill during an April 12, 2006, ceremony at Faneuil Hall in Boston. The bill made Massachusetts the first state in the country to require that all residents have health insurance and has become a centerpiece of criticisms leveled by Romney's opponents in the 2012 presidential race.
Joe Raedle Getty Images

Originally published on Thu March 22, 2012 6:05 pm

As the Supreme Court gets ready to hear arguments about President Obama's health care law, supporters and opponents are planning a flurry of rallies, press conferences and phone banks to remind people why the law is so great — or so terrible. Republicans have been energized by their desire to see the law repealed, but the issue could be more complicated for the GOP than it seems.

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The Salt
4:26 pm
Thu March 22, 2012

Kitchen Calamity? Now You Can Tweet For Help

The Twitter feed @food52hotline offers confused cooks advice round the clock.
iStockphoto.com

Troubled when your creme won't brulee at 3 a.m.? Food52 Hotline can help.

The 24-hour, cooking advice Twitter feed is the brainchild of Amanda Hesser and Merrill Stubbs, two veteran New York food writers and editors who founded the site Food52.com.

The site focuses on crowdsourcing recipes and food news, so it makes sense that they would want to crowdsource cooking advice, too.

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It's All Politics
4:14 pm
Thu March 22, 2012

Insider Trading Ban Passes Congress, But Some See Missed Opportunity

Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, shown in August 2011, criticized the STOCK Act that passed Thursday, saying it didn't go far enough.
Brian Ray AP

Originally published on Thu March 22, 2012 7:59 pm

The Senate passed a bill Thursday to explicitly ban insider trading by members of Congress and the executive branch, and that means the Stop Trading on Congressional Knowledge Act is headed to the president's desk.

But this STOCK Act is quite a bit weaker than earlier versions.

The STOCK Act has been on a glide path ever since an explosive 60 Minutes story last fall highlighted the issue of members of Congress apparently profiting on nonpublic information.

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Monkey See
4:00 pm
Thu March 22, 2012

Spiders And Fighting And Trees, Oh My: Filming 'The Hunger Games'

Jennifer Lawrence on the set of The Hunger Games.
Murray Close Lionsgate

Originally published on Fri March 23, 2012 12:24 pm

There's a movie freshly out this weekend — perhaps you've heard of it.

The Hunger Games?

On Friday's Morning Edition, director Gary Ross and star Jennifer Lawrence talk to NPR's David Greene about the film.

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The Two-Way
3:45 pm
Thu March 22, 2012

Cat Falls 19 Floors, Lands Purrfectly

Sugar, after her fall.
Animal Rescue League of Boston

A woman in Boston saw something white fall past her second floor window Wednesday afternoon "and ran to see what it was," according to the Boston Globe.

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The Two-Way
3:44 pm
Thu March 22, 2012

Sanford Police Chief Will Step Down Temporarily

Sanford Police Department Chief Bill Lee (left) announces he will temporarily step down in the wake of the Trayvon Martin killing.
Mario Tama Getty Images

Originally published on Thu March 22, 2012 10:35 pm

  • NPR's Kathy Lohr Reports On "All Things Considered"

Saying his role as police chief has "become a distraction," Bill Lee Jr. announced he was stepping down temporarily.

The Sanford, Fla. police chief has been under fire for the way he has handled the investigation surrounding the shooting death of Trayvon Martin. Martin, who was unarmed, was shot by a a 28-year-old man, George Zimmerman, who claimed self defense.

During a news conference, today, Lee said that he stands by his police department, its personnel and the investigation that was conducted, but he was stepping down to "restore a semblance of calm to the city."

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It's All Politics
3:34 pm
Thu March 22, 2012

Romney Aide's Etch-A-Sketch Gaffe Won't Be Easily Erased

Rick Santorum beats up Mitt Romney with an Etch A Sketch, figuratively speaking.
Eric Gay AP

Etch A Sketch. Those three little words may become more of a bane to Mitt Romney's campaign than, say, Bain Capital.

As Romney's longtime aide, Eric Fehrnstrom, has learned to his chagrin, those three small words can make a very big difference.

Earlier this month, Fehrnstrom actually made a statement very similar in kind if not wording to what he said Wednesday on CNN.

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The Two-Way
3:24 pm
Thu March 22, 2012

California Appoints Its First Latino Poet Laureate

Juan Felipe Herrera.
Office of Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr,

Originally published on Thu March 22, 2012 3:27 pm

We don't usually dabble in arts news, but we thought we'd pass along this piece of news from California, home to 13.7 million Latinos.

Gov. Edmund Brown has appointed Juan Felipe Herrera as California's Poet Laureate. Herrera, 63, becomes the first Latino to be appointed to the position, which requires senate confirmation.

Here's how Brown's office described Herrera in its press release:

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The Two-Way
3:10 pm
Thu March 22, 2012

'Thank God It's Over,' Australia's Most Wanted Man Says After Capture

"On his 2,466th night in the wilderness," the hunt for Malcolm Naden ended.

And when it did, Australia's most wanted man seemed relieved, police said afterward, according to The Sydney Morning Herald:

"Sitting on the sodden ground in handcuffs, surrounded by his captors, a lucid and relaxed Mr Naden said: 'Thank God it's over, I've had enough.' "

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NPR Story
3:00 pm
Thu March 22, 2012

Obama Pitches Oil And Pipeline In Okla.

The second day of President Obama's all-of-the-above energy tour brought him to Oklahoma.

NPR Story
3:00 pm
Thu March 22, 2012

Senate Pushes JOBS Act Through

Originally published on Thu March 22, 2012 6:05 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

There was a bipartisan spirit on Capitol Hill today. The U.S. Senate voted to approve two major bills and a number of judges. One of those bills was the JOBS Act. The bill seeks to streamline regulations and make it easier for smaller companies to raise money and go public. The idea being that it will encourage job growth. The bill passed by an overwhelming majority.

But as NPR's Sonari Glinton reports, bipartisanship isn't always pretty.

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Digital Life
3:00 pm
Thu March 22, 2012

'Pinterest' Wades In Murky Copyright Waters

Originally published on Thu March 22, 2012 6:05 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

These days, a darling of the tech and business world is Pinterest. It's a virtual scrapbooking site that allows users to organize photos, recipes, images they like and pin them to an online bulletin board. Nearly 18 million users logged in to the site last month alone. So when Kirsten Kowalski wrote a blog post wondering whether Pinterest users risk violating copyright laws, it went viral. Kowalski is a lawyer and photographer and Pinterest user herself.

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Remembrances
3:00 pm
Thu March 22, 2012

Breakfast Barons: Mr. Coffee, Lender's Founders Die

Two entrepreneurs who changed American breakfasts have died. Robert Siegel talks about Sam Glazer, a co-founder of the Mr. Coffee company and Murray Lender, who helped make Lender's Bagels a household name.

Shots - Health Blog
2:48 pm
Thu March 22, 2012

What Your Gynecologist Doesn't Know About Your Sex Life, But Really Should

Having trouble in bed? Don't expect your gynecologist to ask.
iStockphoto.com

If your OB-GYN doesn't ask you about your sex life, who will?

That's the question that comes to mind on reading about a new survey of the women's health specialists and what they don't talk about with their patients.

Most gynecologists did ask a patient if she was sexually active. A measly 14 percent asked about sexual activity and pleasure. Only 28 percent asked about a patient's sexual orientation. Yet one-quarter of the doctors say they had expressed disapproval of their patients' sexual practices.

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Law
2:05 pm
Thu March 22, 2012

Shooting Renews Debate On Vigilance Vs. Action

A neighborhood watch sign stands outside The Retreat at Twin Lakes, the gated community in Sanford, Fla., where Trayvon Martin was shot by George Zimmerman on Feb. 26.
Roberto Gonzalez Getty Images

Originally published on Thu March 22, 2012 3:29 pm

Neighborhood watch programs have long been the eyes and ears of local law enforcement, keeping tabs on suspicious behavior. But the recent shooting death of an unarmed Florida teenager by a watch volunteer may incite debate over how to balance vigilance and action.

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The Salt
2:04 pm
Thu March 22, 2012

Wal-Mart And Grocers Agree To Stop Selling 'Pink Slime'

Beef on display at a new Wal-Mart store in Chicago. The retailer announced it will offer consumers meat that does not contain lean finely textured beef.
John Gress Reuters /Landov

Last week, we reported that the U.S Department of Agriculture decided it would give school food administrators alternatives to meat containing lean finely textured beef, also known as LFTB, or "pink slime" by its detractors.

Now, Wal-Mart has become the latest food retailer to announce that it's making changes after listening to customer concerns about LFTB.

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The Two-Way
1:40 pm
Thu March 22, 2012

Stricken Soccer Player Fabrice Muamba Continues Recovery

Fabrice Muamba of the Bolton Wanderers during last Saturday's game against Tottenham Hotspur in London, before his collapse.
Richard Heathcote Getty Images

Originally published on Thu March 22, 2012 1:56 pm

  • Philip Reeves on 'Morning Edition;' March 21, 2012

There is good news to report on Fabrice Muamba, the soccer player in Britain who went into cardiac arrest during a big game last Saturday in London.

Muamba, a 23-year-old from Congo, collapsed on the field as his team, Bolton, was playing English Premier League rival Tottenham. The Bolton club doctor, Jonathan Tobin, says the stricken player failed to respond to multiple defibrillator shocks, and that 78 minutes elapsed before Muamba's heart started beating on its own again.

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The Two-Way
1:17 pm
Thu March 22, 2012

'Stand Your Ground': Miami Judge Decides Fatal Stabbing Was Self Defense

Greyston Garcia.
florida.arrests.org

With Florida's "stand your ground law" in the spotlight, we want to point to a decision taken yesterday by a Miami-Dade county judge in the case of Greyston Garcia, who was facing second-degree murder charges.

Here's what we know about the case, according to The Miami Herald:

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Education
1:00 pm
Thu March 22, 2012

How Should We Test Students' College Educations?

Like many grade schools, a growing number of universities are turning to standardized tests to measure students' educations. Advocates say they are an important tool to help gauge what students learn. Critics insist no single exam can ever accurately measure the value of four years of college.

Europe
1:00 pm
Thu March 22, 2012

Turkey's Rise Under Enigmatic Erdogan's Rule

A NATO ally with close ties to the West, Turkey's economy has grown significantly, and the government of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has taken active roles in several international crises. But reporter Dexter Filkins paints a complicated picture of Erdogan under threats of coup and paranoia.

NPR Story
1:00 pm
Thu March 22, 2012

Race Cards: Six Words On Trayvon Martin's Death

Protesters demonstrate at a rally for slain teenager Trayvon Martin on March 22, 2012 in Sanford, Fla.
Mario Tama Getty Images

Originally published on Fri March 23, 2012 12:34 pm

Nearly a month after 17-year-old Trayvon Martin was shot and killed in Florida, the widespread shock and outrage has grown into a nationwide movement calling for justice. This week, the Justice Department announced it would conduct a federal investigation of the incident.

But the Trayvon Martin story has also turned into a dialogue about race in America, a conversation that NPR's Michele Norris has been engaged in for over a year with her Race Card Project.

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NPR Story
1:00 pm
Thu March 22, 2012

Parkinson's Benches Petrick, But He's Far From Out

Ben Petrick dives into the plate during a 2001 game against the San Diego Padres at Coors Field in Denver, Colo.
Brian Bahr Getty Images

If Ben Petrick's career had gone the way the scouts expected, he'd still be in his prime — a star baseball player, maybe even a megastar. He came up to the majors as a catcher for the Colorado Rockies in 2000 with speed, power, a fine arm and maybe a better head for the game.

But the year before, at just 22-years-old, he learned that he had early-onset Parkinson's. He struggled to hide the symptoms, but, frustrated by his shaking and growing lack of mobility, he retired in 2004. Petrick has since focused on coaching, parenting and giving motivational speeches.

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The Two-Way
12:37 pm
Thu March 22, 2012

Ex-Student Convicted In Rutgers Spying Case: 'I'm Very Sorry About Tyler'

Dharun Ravi leaves the courtroom in March.
Jerry Mccrea AP

"I'm very sorry about Tyler," Dharun Ravi, the former Rutgers student convicted of a crime for spying on his roommate, tells The New Jersey Star-Ledger this morning. "I have parents and a little brother, and I can only try to imagine how they feel. But I want the Clementis to know I had no problem with their son. I didn't hate Tyler and I knew he was okay with me. I wanted to talk to his parents, but I was afraid. I didn't know what to say."

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Shots - Health Blog
12:13 pm
Thu March 22, 2012

Bloomberg And Allen Boost Their Health Giving

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg said during a trip to Singapore this week that he would give even more of his personal fortune to fight smoking.
Nicky Loh Getty Images

A couple of really rich guys have decided to give even more money to health causes they care about deeply.

New York Mayor, media magnate and public health zealot Michael Bloomberg said he will give $220 million to fight smoking in the developing world. Bloomberg's charitable foundation has targeted tobacco use.

And the latest chunk of money, which is part of a four-year commitment, will bring Bloomberg Philanthropies' support of anti-smoking efforts around the globe to more than $600 million.

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The Two-Way
12:05 pm
Thu March 22, 2012

Four More Booms In Wisconsin City Troubled By Mysterious Sounds

Jordan Pfeiler of Clintonville says she's heard the booms.
Carrie Antlfinger AP

Originally published on Thu March 22, 2012 12:06 pm

Things were not quiet again in Clintonville, Wis., early today.

As we reported Wednesday, folks there have been hearing booms and feeling vibrations this week and no one has yet been able to explain what's causing them. One of the latest theories is that unusually warm temperatures are causing underground ice to crack. A few homeowners think they've suffered some damages (cracked floors, for example).

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