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Music Interviews
8:00 am
Sat March 17, 2012

Composer Matches Music To Horse Hooves

Originally published on Sun March 18, 2012 10:07 am

Transcript

JACKI LYDEN, HOST:

As London prepares for an Olympic influx, the world's athletes are not the only ones limbering up. Composer Tom Hunt is at work with members of a British team who compete in the equestrian sport called dressage. He joins us from the BBC studios in Salford.

Thank you for joining us.

TOM HUNT: Thank you for having me.

LYDEN: The music that you compose for the equestrian competition, tell us how the music and the horse work together.

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Europe
6:23 am
Sat March 17, 2012

Greek Bailout Is Accompanied By Greek Resentment

Shipyard workers demand their unpaid wages in central Athens on Thursday, the day that countries in the 17-nation euro zone formally approved a second bailout of $36.6 billion for Greece.
Petros Giannakouris AP

Originally published on Sun March 18, 2012 10:07 am

Debt-beleaguered Greece has secured a second international bailout. But for many Greeks, the conditions set by the International Monetary Fund, European Union and European Central Bank — known as the "troika" — are a breach of their sovereignty.

A recent demonstration in central Athens was organized by a group of lawyers who claim the latest bailout agreement turns Greece into the ward of its international lenders.

Demonstrator Irini Lazana says it violates the country's legislative foundations.

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Author Interviews
6:23 am
Sat March 17, 2012

'The O'Briens': A Multigenerational Canadian Epic

Pantheon

In the Law of Dreams, Canadian writer Peter Behrens' first novel, an Irish immigrant, based on Behrens' grandfather, makes his way out of famine-starved Ireland to Canada. The novel came out in 2006 to wide acclaim and won Canada's Governor-General's award for fiction.

Now, Behrens has followed up with another multigenerational novel. The O'Briens opens in 1867, with teenage Joe O'Brien scratching out a living in Quebec after his father and mother have both died.

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Poetry
6:22 am
Sat March 17, 2012

A St. Patrick's Poem On Shamrocks And Stereotypes

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Sun March 18, 2012 10:07 am

Ireland has launched some of the greatest writers in English literature, from William Butler Yeats to Oscar Wilde to George Bernard Shaw.

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Middle East
6:21 am
Sat March 17, 2012

Despite Restrictions, Gaza Finds A Way To Build

A Palestinian youth breaks up stones for construction in Gaza City. Despite restrictions on imports including building material, the area is going through a construction boom.
Mohammed Abed AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sun March 18, 2012 10:07 am

A crowd of onlookers has gathered around the oily black tarmac recently being laid down in a section of downtown Gaza City. Gaza's potholed streets are finally getting a makeover, and infrastructure upgrades like this new road are still a novelty for residents.

The overseer of the project says that before, Gaza couldn't get enough material to fix the road. But now, everyone is building.

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Presidential Race
6:21 am
Sat March 17, 2012

Confusion Wins In Missouri's 'Chaotic' Caucus Process

Women count votes at the GOP presidential caucus in Barry County, Mo., on Tuesday. At this and other caucuses held in the state Saturday, voters selected delegates to go to the district and state conventions.
Frank Morris For NPR

Originally published on Sun March 18, 2012 10:07 am

Cassville, Mo., is a little town on the edge of the Ozark Mountains. During the Civil War, the Confederate state Legislature convened here. Tuesday, the Republican presidential caucus was the big draw. Most of the rest of the state holds its caucuses today.

Confusion On Caucus Night

The first caucus was a messy process. More than 250 people showed up, most planning to vote directly for the candidates. That was not to be.

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Afghanistan
2:22 am
Sat March 17, 2012

Neighbors: Suspect In Afghan Attack Was Family Man

Staff Sgt. Robert Bales (left), the U.S. soldier who allegedly shot and killed 16 civilians in Afghanistan, at the National Training Center in Fort Irwin, Calif., on Aug. 23.
Defense Video and Imagery Distribution System AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sun March 18, 2012 12:59 am

Staff Sgt. Robert Bales, the U.S. soldier alleged to have killed 16 Afghan civilians, was described by a former platoon leader Saturday as an "awesome" soldier.

"He always got the job done," said Cpt. Christopher Alexander, who led Bales on his second tour in Iraq. "You give this guy a task — it could be menial, it could be dangerous — either way, you never had to worry about whether he'd get it done and get it done well."

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U.S.
10:38 pm
Fri March 16, 2012

Soldier Suspected In Afghan Shootings Identified

Originally published on Fri March 16, 2012 11:03 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED, from NPR News. I'm Melissa Block. We now know the name of the American soldier who's in custody for killing 16 Afghan civilians last weekend. NPR has confirmed he is Army Staff Sergeant Robert Bales, based out of Joint Base Lewis-McChord in Washington State. And for more, we're joined by NPR's Pentagon correspondent Tom Bowman. Tom, the name has been withheld now for nearly a week since that shooting happened. Why is it out now?

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Music Interviews
6:27 pm
Fri March 16, 2012

Moot Davis: A Rocker With A Honky-Tonk Heart

Moot Davis' new album is Man about Town.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Sun March 18, 2012 10:07 am

Though guitarist Moot Davis grew up a New Jersey rocker, he had an appreciation for country music thanks to his West Virginian parents. But it wasn't until he saw a certain cola commercial that he really turned a corner.

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The Two-Way
6:23 pm
Fri March 16, 2012

Reports: Officials Identify Soldier Suspected Of Shooting Afghan Civilians

Staff Sgt. Robert Bales (left), the U.S. soldier who allegedly shot and killed 16 civilians in Afghanistan, at the National Training Center in Fort Irwin, Calif., on Aug. 23.
Defense Video and Imagery Distribution System AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sat March 17, 2012 4:42 am

Pentagon officials say Staff Sgt. Robert Bales is the soldier suspected of killing 16 Afghan civilians, including women and children.

While a profile of him is not yet detailed, now that his name has been made public one is beginning to emerge.

Bales is a 38-year-old father of two from Lake Tapps, Wash. with a good military record. His neighbors describe him as friendly and "full of life."

His lawyer has said that he's been injured twice and that this Afghanistan deployment was his fourth tour and he was adamant about going.

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Election 2012
5:55 pm
Fri March 16, 2012

Incumbents Face Off In Illinois After Redistricting

Rep. Don Manzullo, a 10-term veteran, campaigns in Belvidere, Ill., on March 5.
M. Spencer Green AP

Originally published on Fri March 16, 2012 11:20 pm

Redistricting is forcing a handful of congressional incumbents of the same party to run against each other in primaries. On March 6, Rep. Marcy Kaptur defeated fellow liberal Democrat Rep. Dennis Kucinich in Ohio.

And next Tuesday, two conservative Republicans square off in Illinois.

The scene is the newly drawn 16th Congressional District, which covers mostly rural territory in the northern part of the state, curving around the suburbs and exurbs of Chicago, from the Wisconsin border north of Rockford to the Indiana border east of Kankakee.

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The Two-Way
5:54 pm
Fri March 16, 2012

'Invisible Children' Co-Founder Arrested In San Diego

Originally published on Fri March 16, 2012 6:09 pm

Over the past couple of weeks, Invisible Children has been in the news quite a bit. First because a video produced by the organization acheived viral success and shone a spotlight on the Ugandan warlord Joseph Kony.

Then, because the video caused controversy when some said it glossed over a complex issue.

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Election 2012
5:06 pm
Fri March 16, 2012

Buying A Political Ad? Let A SuperPAC Foot The Bill

There has been one constant throughout the GOP campaign — Mitt Romney and the superPAC that supports him have vastly outspent his rivals.

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Economy
4:51 pm
Fri March 16, 2012

The Market's Finally Looking Up: Will It Last?

Trader Peter Tuchman reacts on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange on March 13. That same day, the Dow Jones industrial average had its highest close since 2007.
Richard Drew AP

Originally published on Fri March 16, 2012 11:03 pm

The stock market hit some major milestones this week: The Standard & Poor's 500 index reached its highest level in more than three years, the Dow Jones industrial average settled in above 13,000 — up about 24 percent since early October — and the Nasdaq rose to its highest level in 11 years. Still, the Federal Reserve has been warning not to get too excited about where the economy is headed next.

David Kotok, chairman and chief investment officer at Cumberland Advisors, says there are a bunch of reason for stocks to be rising.

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The Two-Way
4:33 pm
Fri March 16, 2012

Egyptians Rally In Cairo To Protest Acquittal Over 'Virginity Tests'

An Egyptian woman shouts anti-military Supreme Council slogans during a demonstration in front of Cairo's high court on Friday.
Amr Nabil AP

Hundreds of Egyptians rallied in Cairo today to protest the recent acquittal of a military doctor charged with forcing "virginity tests" on female activists.

The AP reports:

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Three Books...
4:05 pm
Fri March 16, 2012

Pioneers Of The Sky: 3 Books That Take Flight

AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sat March 17, 2012 6:44 am

Today, flying is like riding a bus. But it wasn't always that way. Vaulted from the sands of Kitty Hawk and freed from military exigencies by the end of World War I, aviation soared into the 1920s and '30s on a direct course to tomorrow. Here are three flyers who not only helped open the skies, but also brought literary gems back from the cutting edge of progress, from a time when flying was the most exciting thing in the world.

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It's All Politics
3:55 pm
Fri March 16, 2012

Obama Spreads (Tele)Phony Story About Long-Dead President

President Rutherford B. Hayes actually was a big fan of the telephone, despite President Obama's assertion otherwise.
AP

Poor Rutherford B. Hayes. It wasn't bad enough that the 19th president, a Republican, was called "His Fraudulency" by Democrats during his one term in office (1877-1881) because of the unusual circumstances of how he "won."

Now, the current occupant of the White House, President Obama, was spreading a most assuredly inaccurate story, according to experts, about Hayes' reaction to an early telephone.

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The Salt
3:02 pm
Fri March 16, 2012

Drunk On Biology For St. Patrick's Day

Adam Cole NPR

Originally published on Sat March 17, 2012 8:15 am

Have you ever wondered what would happen if Louis Pasteur joined The Clancy Brothers? Or if The Chieftains were more nerdy and less talented? Well, wonder no longer!

I wrote this song about the science of beer last year and the folks at The Salt asked me to dust it off in celebration of St. Patrick's Day.

In a vaguely Irish style, the song salutes that hero of beer production, the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, and explains the biochemistry of inebriation.

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NPR Story
3:00 pm
Fri March 16, 2012

Week In Politics: On GOP Primaries And Obama Campaign

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

We're going to follow the money now with our regular Friday political commentators, E.J. Dionne of The Washington Post and David Brooks of the New York Times. Welcome back to you both.

DAVID BROOKS: Good to be here.

E.J. DIONNE: Good to be with you.

BLOCK: And I want to start with a hypothetical question. What would this primary contest, do you think, have looked like without superPACs and without the Supreme Court's Citizens United decision? David Brooks, a very different race?

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NPR Story
3:00 pm
Fri March 16, 2012

'This American Life' Retracts Apple Story

Originally published on Fri March 16, 2012 11:03 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

The public radio show THIS AMERICAN LIFE has retracted a lengthy story it ran in January. The report painted an ugly picture of working conditions at Chinese factories where they manufacture iPhones and iPads. The story focused on a monologue told by performer and activist Mike Daisey about his interviews with factory workers. NPR's media correspondent David Folkenflik joins me now. And, David, this was THIS AMERICAN LIFE's most popular podcast. How are they explaining their decision to retract the story?

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Law
3:00 pm
Fri March 16, 2012

Supreme Court Allows Same-Day Audio In Healthcare Case

Originally published on Fri March 16, 2012 11:03 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

Here's one more piece of legal news. The U.S. Supreme Court will make same-day audio available of the upcoming arguments on the health care overhaul. The court says it's responding to extraordinary public interest in the case. Here's NPR's Nina Totenberg.

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Theater
3:00 pm
Fri March 16, 2012

'Edith Can Shoot' Centers On Precocious Young Girl

Isabella Dawis plays the protective 12-year-old Edith in the Mu Performing Arts production of Edith Can Shoot Things and Hit Them, by Rey Pamatmat.
Michal Daniel Mu Performing Arts

Edith is "too old to be talking to a stuffed frog and too young to be carrying a gun."

That's how Rey Pamatmat describes the main character — who carries both items — in his play Edith Can Shoot Things and Hit Them.

Pamatmat's play premiered at the prestigious Humana Festival of New American Plays in Louisville, Kentucky last year. Since then, it's been playing at regional theaters around the country.

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Shots - Health Blog
2:51 pm
Fri March 16, 2012

Supreme Court Will Release Same-Day Audio Of Health Care Arguments

The U.S. Supreme Court has announced that it will make available same-day audio of upcoming oral arguments later this month, arguments that could determine the fate of the Obama health care overhaul.

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NPR Story
2:42 pm
Fri March 16, 2012

David Edestein Reviews 'Casa De Mi Padre'

Transcript

DAVID BIANCULLI, HOST:

At age 44, Will Ferrell has played an anchorman, championship NASCAR driver, ice skater, an elf, and George W. Bush. What's his next challenge? Making a movie in which he speaks nothing but Spanish. The Mexican-set action comedy "Casa de mi Padre" is directed by Matt Piedmont, who collaborated with Ferrell on his website Funny Or Die. Film critic David Edelstein has a review.

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The Two-Way
2:21 pm
Fri March 16, 2012

'This American Life' Retracts Mike Daisey's Apple Factory Story

Mike Daisey in a scene from "The Agony and The Ecstasy of Steve Jobs."
Stan Barouh AP

Originally published on Fri March 16, 2012 4:16 pm

A highly popular episode of This American Life in which monologuist Mike Daisey tells of the abuses at factories that make Apple products in China contained "significant fabrications," the show said today.

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It's All Politics
1:32 pm
Fri March 16, 2012

What Ails Illinois Could Be Romney's Tonic

Union members rally outside of Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn's office on Feb. 2, demanding pay raises he withheld. Quinn said the state doesn't have the money to cover the raises.
Seth Perlman AP

Originally published on Mon March 19, 2012 12:42 pm

Illinois is in the worst fiscal shape of any state in the country.

Its pension system is $85 billion short of what it will need to pay promised retirement benefits, while it's already $8 billion behind on its everyday bills — money for schools, hospitals and private vendors for work already done and approved.

All of that could be good news next week — at least politically — says Illinois state Treasurer Dan Rutherford.

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The Two-Way
1:30 pm
Fri March 16, 2012

Editor Who Misled 'Oregonian' About Colleague's Death Is Fired

Originally published on Fri March 16, 2012 2:14 pm

The "family friend" who told The Oregonian that its editorial page editor was in his car on Saturday when he died of a heart attack turns out to have been another editor at the newspaper. She says she was trying to protect Caldwell's family from the public embarrassment that would come with the truth: that he had been in the apartment of a young woman with whom he was allegedly having sex.

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It's All Politics
1:30 pm
Fri March 16, 2012

Wisconsin Target Of Recall Decides To Quit Instead

A Wisconsin GOP lawmaker facing a recall election called it quits Friday and said she hopes the state can get past scenes like this gathering of protesters in Madison on March 10, 2012.
Barbara Rodriguez AP

What happens if the target of a recall election decides to call it quits before the actual election?

If it's Wisconsin, the recall election apparently happens anyway.

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Education
1:25 pm
Fri March 16, 2012

Violence In Schools: How Big A Problem Is It?

Students at Gardena High School in Gardena, Calif., lined up for a security check before school in January 2011.
Nick Ut AP

Originally published on Wed December 19, 2012 10:45 am

When an Ohio high school student killed three classmates in a shooting rampage several weeks ago, it once again brought a national spotlight to a problem widely believed to be epidemic in schools.

The reality, experts say, is exactly the opposite: Violent crime in schools has decreased significantly since the early 1990s.

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Planet Money
1:06 pm
Fri March 16, 2012

Why Are Some Countries Rich And Others Poor?

Haiti's brown landscape contrasts sharply with the rich forests of its neighbor Haiti-Dominican Republic Border, South Of Dajabon, Dominican Republic.
National Geographic/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon March 19, 2012 5:37 pm

Why are some nations rich and others poor? In a new book called Why Nations Fail, a pair of economists argue that a lot comes down to politics.

To research the book, the authors scoured the world for populations and geographic areas that are identical in all respects save one: they're on different sides of a border.

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