And we have a bit of sad news from the Galapagos Islands. The giant tortoise known as Lonesome George, believed to be the last living member of its subspecies - has died. We reported on the tortoise in 2008 when Lonesome George mated with a female from a similar species. The hope was his subspecies would be carried on. But the eggs turned out to be infertile. By tortoise standards, Lonesome George died relatively young. He was believed to be about 100 years old. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright National Public Radio.
You know, if you're weighed down by worry, you find a distraction. That at least is what Europeans are doing amid their economic trouble. They've been turning to their favorite sport - soccer. This weekend saw the last two Euro 2012 quarterfinals. This is a huge competition viewed in Europe, as second only to the World Cup. NPR's Philip Reeves of course has been following the action. He's on the line from London.
Anchorage is one of the few North American cities that depend on a glacier for most of their drinking water. The Eklutna glacier also provides some of the city's electricity, through hydro power. So a team of researchers is working to answer a very important question: How long will the glacier's water supply last?
To get that answer, those researchers have to shovel a lot of snow. "It gets to be the consistency of really strong Styrofoam once you get down, maybe six or eight feet," glaciologist Louis Sass says as he flings pristine snow out of a growing hole in the glacier.
Russian President Vladimir Putin is in the Middle East today. He's on a tour of the region that begins in Israel, where he's accompanied by a four-plane convoy carrying an entourage of 300 businessmen and policymakers.
NPR's Lourdes Garcia-Navarro reports on the agenda in a country where Putin's policies have caused a lot of consternation.
We're expecting soon to learn Supreme Court decisions on two gigantic cases. One case involves the Arizona immigration law. The federal government has challenged that law as an intrusion into federal authority.
RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:
Justices are also deciding the constitutionality of President Obama's health care law. The main challenge is to the individual mandate, which after 2014 would require most people to get health insurance or pay a fine.
It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. And I want to let you know that reporters at the Supreme Court are reading and listening to a decision this morning, on Arizona's immigration law. The Court has thrown our parts of the law, but retained the show your papers provision that allows police to stop and frisk suspected illegal immigrants. We'll bring you more as we learn it.
Originally published on Tue June 26, 2012 11:36 am
Rheumatoid arthritis is a disease that causes painful joint inflammation and can be debilitating for many people who suffer from it. New research shows that the female hormone estrogen, along with proteins produced by the body's fat cells, may play an important role in the development of the disease.
Originally published on Tue June 26, 2012 11:35 am
When 6.5 million LinkedIn passwords were stolen earlier this month, the revelation made Internet users think again about their ubiquitous words and phrases, and what they can do to make their online accounts a bit safer.
Shoppers in a suburban Seattle mall were asked recently about their password habits. Aaron Brown and Erin Gilmer have very different approaches.
Originally published on Tue June 26, 2012 11:30 am
The battering Mitt Romney took from Republican rivals during the primary made big news. What seemed less noteworthy at the time — the knocks he took from Republicans in Congress — is now much more significant if there is to be a President Romney.
"He's the least of the candidates running right now that would be considered a Tea Party candidate," Rep. Tim Scott, R-S.C., told CNN.
After Romney won Florida, GOP Rep. Allen West told CBS that Romney has to do a far better job in "making the appeal as far as being a strong constitutional conservative."
Originally published on Tue June 26, 2012 11:31 am
You won't catch John Durant in a tie. Shoes are optional, too. He has traded cubicle life for something a little wild: Promoting the diet and lifestyle of our ancestors from the paleolithic era. He's blogging and writing a book about his approach.
Originally published on Tue June 26, 2012 11:36 am
Millions of Americans suffer from migraine headaches so severe they miss work, social gatherings and important family events.
But that doesn't have to be the case, according to Charles Flippen, a University of California, Los Angeles, neurologist and researcher. "Everyone says, 'Oh, well, everyone has headaches,' so they just push through and suffer in silence," says Flippen.
Originally published on Tue June 26, 2012 11:33 am
The first thing you see at Alaska's Eklutna Cemetery is a tidy white church, with copper-colored onion domes that are topped by the three-barred Russian Orthodox cross.
The church is a reminder of the days when Alaska was claimed by imperial Russia. But it hardly prepares you for the unique combination of Native American and Russian Orthodox influences in the graveyard beyond.
Our guide is Aaron Leggett, who waits patiently under a light but steady rain to explain his community's burial traditions.
The winner of Egypt's first competitive presidential election is the Muslim Brotherhood's Mohammed Morsi. The official announcement was made Sunday to the cheers and jubilation of a massive crowd in Cairo's Tahrir Square.
Challenges remain, however, as the ruling military council has effectively stripped the incoming president of most of his powers. The popularly elected Parliament, dominated by the Muslim Brotherhood, was also dissolved.
Next year will mark the 20th anniversary of Siamese Dream, the second album by The Smashing Pumpkins and the one, along with 1995's Melon Collie and the Infinite Sadness, that broke the band into the mainstream and spawned its most lasting hits.
Muslim Brotherhood candidate Mohammed Morsi is Egypt's new president, the country's electoral commission announced on Sunday. A massive crowd in Cairo's Tahrir Square erupted in cheers at the announcement.
Morsi's election is a victory for Islamist groups as well as those who saw his candidacy as a way to clear out last remnants of ousted leader Hosni Mubarak's regime.
This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm David Greene. This morning, Egyptians have their first-ever democratically elected president. Mohamed Morsi, the Islamist Muslim Brotherhood candidate has been declared the winner of hotly disputed election.
This is WEEKEND EDITION, from NPR News. I'm David Greene. Americans are growing more and more frustrated with the gridlock in Washington, D.C. In a Gallup poll out this month, only 17 percent of Americans said they approve of the job Congress is doing. Well, Christine Quinn says it does not have to be that way. She is the speaker of the New York City Council, and she's taken heat for seeming too close to the executive branch - that would be New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg.
Human evolution is all about survival of the fittest. Over thousands of generations, the weak have been weeded out, and the strong have survived. But how would that kind of natural selection work in other settings - like, say, music? Well, one biologist decided to find out. He designed a website where listeners can rate collections of notes according to their musicality. The nice sounds survive, and other users listen to them. But the ugly sounds die off.
An Arizona law that went into effect last year essentially ruled that the Mexican-American studies program offered in the Tucson public school system was divisive and should be scrapped. At the end of the first semester without the classes, hard feelings still linger.
For eight years, until this past January, Lorenzo Lopez taught Mexican-American studies at Cholla High in Tucson, Ariz., the very school from which he graduated in 1992.
The U.S. military says it's spending an extra $100 million a month on the war in Afghanistan since Pakistan closed its border to NATO supply convoys. Now, NATO is using a route thousands of miles longer through Russia and Central Asia.
That route passes through Afghanistan's perilous Salang Tunnel, 11,000 feet up in the Hindu Kush mountains. The Soviet-built tunnel was heralded as a marvel of engineering when completed in 1964.
But years of war, neglect and geology have turned it into a dangerous bottleneck.
In Damascus, Syrians now openly speak their minds, but often won't offer a name for the record.
The "wall of fear" is crumbling even in the capital, where the security police have the heaviest presence. Syrians have lived under surveillance and emergency law for years, but after 15 months of anti-government protest and a brutal response by the regime, the killings have changed people.
Anticipation has reached a fever pitch, and the waiting is almost over.
This week, the Supreme Court is almost certain to issue its decision on the constitutionality of President Obama's health care law. The decision could have far-reaching implications for the legal landscape, the nation's health care system and even the Supreme Court's legacy.