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Shots - Health Blog
11:25 am
Tue January 10, 2012

Nicotine Patches Up Early Memory Loss In Study

Franck Camhi iStockphoto.com

Slapping on a nicotine patch may not just be for smokers trying to kick the habit.

In an intriguing test, researchers tried nicotine patches as a memory booster for nonsmokers with mild declines in their thinking ability, a precursor to dementia or Alzheimer's disease.

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Books
10:57 am
Tue January 10, 2012

Michelle And Barack Obama: A Powerful Partnership

Jodi Kantor spoke to over 200 sources, including White House aides and close friends of the President, while reseaching her new biography on the Obamas. Kantor is a Washington correspondent for The New York Times.
Juliana Sohn Courtesy of the author

In late 2006, Barack Obama held a meeting with his wife Michelle and his advisors to weigh whether he should run for President.

"And Michelle Obama, in front of everybody, asks her husband a very dramatic question," says New York Times Washington correspondent Jodi Kantor. "She says, 'What do you think you can bring to this that the other candidates can't?'"

Her husband paused for a second, and then responded, "I really think if I became President, it would inspire people all over the world to think of new possibilities."

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The Two-Way
10:45 am
Tue January 10, 2012

Mine Disaster Settlement Talks Enter Fifth Day

The emotionally charged task of putting price tags on the lives of coal miners killed in the nation's deadliest mine disaster in 40 years continues for a fifth day in West Virginia.

Sources familiar with the mediation talks say the families of 13 Upper Big Branch mine explosion victims are still considering settlement of wrongful death claims with mine owner Alpha Natural Resources.

Six families settled yesterday in mediated negotiations that began Friday at a resort in Glade Springs, W. Va.

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The Two-Way
10:27 am
Tue January 10, 2012

Marketplace Explosion Leaves At Least 30 Dead In Pakistan

At least 30 people were killed at a busy market in northwest Pakistan after a bomb was placed inside the car of a local militia group tasked with fighting against the Taliban.

CNN reports the explosion occurred in the Jamrud Market in the Khyber near the Afghan border. The AP adds:

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It's All Politics
9:55 am
Tue January 10, 2012

Don't Get Your Hopes Up Over This Political Coverage

Former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman speaks to reporters before a campaign stop in Concord, N.H. In interviews, Huntsman has said that his goal in New Hampshire is to "beat market expectations."
Matthew Cavanaugh Getty Images

This may well be the worst story you've come across yet on politics.

Really, I beg you: You should have very, very low expectations for this story.

And this expectations thing is important stuff.

Pundits, reporters and the campaigns themselves have devoted a lot of energy to setting expectations for the candidates' performances.

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The Two-Way
9:20 am
Tue January 10, 2012

Myanmar's Aung San Suu Kyi Confirms She's Running For Parliament

Myanmar democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi, center, at an campaign event on Tuesday.
Soe Than Win AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue January 10, 2012 9:26 am

Myanmar's upcoming special parliamentary elections just became more legitimate. Aung San Suu Kyi, a leading opposition figure in the country as well as a Nobel Peace Prize laureate, said she will mount a campaign for a seat in parliament.

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The Two-Way
8:40 am
Tue January 10, 2012

After Defeating LSU, Alabama Overwhelmingly Ranked No. 1 In AP Poll

After a 21-0 victory over LSU in the bowl championship game last night, a final AP poll crowned the Crimson Tide No. 1. Alabama received 55 first-place votes, while LSU got one.

As the AP reports, yesterday's victory easily erased Alabama's Nov. 5 loss against LSU.

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It's All Politics
8:01 am
Tue January 10, 2012

What GOP Candidates Need From New Hampshire

If the New Hampshire primary goes as widely expected, Mitt Romney should emerge the winner among the candidates for the Republican presidential nomination. For weeks, polls in the state have shown him with a commanding lead.

But the 2012 campaign season has already delivered some surprises. Maybe New Hampshire will provide the latest in the series of unexpected twists?

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The Two-Way
7:36 am
Tue January 10, 2012

Defiant, Syria's Assad Says He'll Respond To Threats With An 'Iron Hand'

An image from Syrian state television shows Syrian President Bashar Assad delivering his speech Tuesday in Damascus.
- AFP/Getty Images

Speaking in public for the first time since June, embattled Syrian President Bashar Assad said he would not leave power. According to Reuters, Assad blamed "foreign planning" for the uprising that has engulfed his country. Calling the protesters terrorists, he vowed to respond to threats with an "iron hand."

The AP adds:

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Middle East
7:36 am
Tue January 10, 2012

Syria's Assad Defies Pressure To Step Down

Syrian President Bashar Assad vowed to stay in power during a speech Tuesday, defying international pressure for him to step aside. He vowed to respond to threats against him with an "iron hand."

It's All Politics
7:06 am
Tue January 10, 2012

As New Hampshire Heads To Polls, All Eyes Are On Mitt Romney

Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney addresses a rally at McKelvie Intermediate School in Bedford, New Hampshire on Monday.
Emmanuel Dunand AFP/Getty Images

Some in New Hampshire have already cast their votes this morning. As they do traditionally, voters in Dixville Notch and Hart's Location, both small northern New Hampshire towns, cast their ballots shortly after midnight.

The Washington Post reports on the results:

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Around the Nation
6:50 am
Tue January 10, 2012

Daughter Of Beyonce And Jay-Z Makes Musical Debut

Originally published on Tue January 10, 2012 7:38 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm David Greene. Blue Ivy Carter has made her musical debut. If the name doesn't ring a bell, don't worry. She's only 3 days old. Blue is the daughter of hip-hop power couple Jay-Z and Beyonce. The proud father released a song called "Glory" yesterday, with feature credits given to little B.I.C. In the song, Jay-Z raps that his daughter is the most beautiful thing in the world. Newborn Blue Ivy chimes in with a few cries at the end of the song. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Around the Nation
6:43 am
Tue January 10, 2012

TSA Defends Cupcake Confiscation Case

Originally published on Tue January 10, 2012 7:38 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

NPR Story
4:00 am
Tue January 10, 2012

New Hampshire Hosts First-In-The-Nation Primary

Originally published on Tue January 10, 2012 7:38 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm David Greene.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

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NPR Story
4:00 am
Tue January 10, 2012

TV Producer Profile

One of the most powerful producers in Hollywood is black, female, middle-aged and Muslim. Mara Brock Akil produces, along with her husband,The Game -- one of the biggest hit TV shows on cable. Last year, the couple collaborated on the film "Jumping the Broom.

NPR Story
4:00 am
Tue January 10, 2012

Chrysler Is Bringing Back The Dodge Dart

Originally published on Tue January 10, 2012 7:38 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with a blast from the automotive past.

Chrysler is bringing back the Dodge Dart. The company unveiled the new version of its 1960s-era compact car yesterday. Chrysler's hoping the Dart will keep the reinvented car company on a roll. The company has started regaining some traction after a near collapse and a government bailout. It's now part of the Italian car company Fiat.

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Business
4:00 am
Tue January 10, 2012

Yahoo To Show Original Animated Sci-Fi Series

Originally published on Tue January 10, 2012 7:38 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Our last word in business also comes to us from the Consumer Electronics Show. And the word is "Electric City." That's the name of a new animated science-fiction series created by - and starring - Tom Hanks. It's being promoted at the Vegas show in part because it will be airing - or rather it will be shown - on the Internet site Yahoo this spring.

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Presidential Race
4:00 am
Tue January 10, 2012

Romney Maintains The Style Of A Front-Runner

Originally published on Tue January 10, 2012 7:38 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Now, this past Sunday, Mitt Romney's campaign reserve a school gym in Exeter, New Hampshire. The details of that event tell you the style in which the Republican candidate is presenting himself. The campaign selected a small gym, far too is small for the crowd had arrived.

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: The next president of the United States, Mitt Romney.

(SOUNDBITE OF CHEERING AND APPLAUSE)

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Sports
4:00 am
Tue January 10, 2012

Alabama Shuts Down LSU In BCS Championship Game

Originally published on Tue January 10, 2012 7:38 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

When it comes to football there are two types of compelling games. One, the most people like, when teams battle back and forth to a dramatic finish. The other, when one team totally dominates to such an extent that all you can do is watch in awe.

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Business
12:01 am
Tue January 10, 2012

Hard Day's Delight: A School Of Rock, At The Office

Music educator Ivan Trevino (right) leads band practice for M5 Networks employees in Rochester, N.Y., who will play against other branches in a battle of the bands. The telecom company says it wants its employees to learn new things (and stay happy).
Zack Seward for NPR

Originally published on Tue January 10, 2012 7:38 am

It's 4 o'clock on a Thursday, and instead of sitting in front of computer screens, a group of software engineers and customer service reps from M5 Networks is in the middle of band practice.

M5 is a telecom company based in New York City that offers Internet phone services. But it offers something else for its employees: At the Rochester, N.Y., office of M5, workers are gearing up for a companywide battle of the bands against other branches.

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Shots - Health Blog
12:01 am
Tue January 10, 2012

Texas Asks Feds To Delay Health Insurance Rebate Plan

Originally published on Tue January 10, 2012 5:03 pm

Starting in 2012, health insurance plans in Texas — and most of the rest of the country — may have to cough up millions of dollars in rebates to customers.

The rebates will come from health plans that spend too much on administrative costs instead of medical care. The change is part of the national health overhaul law, the Affordable Care Act.

But state officials in Texas and 16 other states have asked to push back the requirement for a few years.

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Law
12:01 am
Tue January 10, 2012

Supreme Court To Consider FCC Indecency Case

Singer Cher accepts a lifetime achievement award at the MGM Grand Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas during the Billboard Music Awards show in 2002. Her use of an obscenity in her acceptance speech led the FCC to fine broadcaster Fox.
Joe Cavaretta AP

Originally published on Tue January 10, 2012 5:58 pm

Dirty words return to the usually staid Supreme Court Tuesday. For a second time in three years, the justices are hearing arguments about a Federal Communications Commission regulation adopted during the Bush administration that allows the agency to punish broadcasters with stiff fines for the fleeting use of vulgar language.

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It's All Politics
12:01 am
Tue January 10, 2012

Rivals Attack Romney's Record At Bain Capital

Mitt Romney, when he headed Bain Capital.
David L. Ryan Boston Globe via Getty Images

Originally published on Tue January 10, 2012 11:49 pm

The central argument of Republican Mitt Romney's presidential campaign is that he understands how the economy works — thanks to his business background — in a way that President Obama does not.

Democrats have been challenging the former Massachusetts governor's claim that the private equity firm he founded helped to create more than 100,000 jobs. Now, some of Romney's Republican rivals are raising questions of their own.

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It's All Politics
12:01 am
Tue January 10, 2012

$5M Check From Casino Magnate Gives Gingrich Boost

The South Carolina primary is a week from Saturday. Before then, voters there can expect to be inundated with ads attacking Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney and his role in Bain Capital.

"We made a $3.4 million ad buy in South Carolina, which is fairly significant," says Rick Tyler, senior adviser to the pro-Newt Gingrich SuperPAC Winning Our Future.

"Fairly significant" hardly does justice to the SuperPAC's plan.

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Music Interviews
8:52 pm
Mon January 9, 2012

What Makes Newton-John Get 'Physical' At The Gym

Olivia Newton-John on the cover of Physical.
Courtesy of the artist

Aside from watching all the new shows on TV, many people in the New Year will hit the gym, and we're doing our part to help. For the next couple weeks, we're asking athletes, actors and others what music gets them moving.

"Physical" has been a gym-goer's favorite for decades, but Olivia Newton-John says it didn't start out that way.

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The Two-Way
8:00 pm
Mon January 9, 2012

News From CES: Some Ford Vehicles Will Give Drivers Voice Control Of NPR's App

A Ford dashboard as it would look when connected to the NPR News app.
Ford Motor Company

Amid a flurry of connected-auto news, NPR announced today that its mobile news application will now connect with Ford's SYNC AppLink.

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The Two-Way
6:43 pm
Mon January 9, 2012

Career-Long Reds Shortstop Barry Larkin Elected To Cooperstown

Barry Larkin, who spent his entire career as a Cincinnati Reds shortstop, has been elected into the baseball Hall of Fame. He became the 48th hall of famer to play his entire career with one club.

Larkin received the vote of 86 percent of the Baseball Writers' Association of America in his third year on the ballott. A player needs 75 percent of the vote to be inducted.

The Hall reports:

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The Salt
6:29 pm
Mon January 9, 2012

The Forgotten, Fascinating Saga Of Crisco

It has been a long strange trip.
Tony Dejak ASSOCIATED PRESS

Our friends over at Planet Money produced a delightful podcast last Friday called "Who Killed Lard?" They finger a corporate perp: Proctor and Gamble's brilliant marketing campaign for the original Crisco, an alternative to lard that went on sale in 1911. "It's all vegetable! It's digestible!," it proclaimed.

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The Two-Way
6:02 pm
Mon January 9, 2012

IRS Revives Amnesty Program For Offshore Tax Cheats

The Internal Revenue Service is brining back an amnesty program for Americans who have stashed money in offshore accounts in order to dodge taxes. IRS Commissioner Douglas Shulman announced the program's renewal on Monday, saying the tax dodgers would have to pay back taxes and penalties but would not face any criminal charges.

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The Two-Way
5:19 pm
Mon January 9, 2012

Picture A Struggle: LSU And Alabama's Defenses Seen Deciding BCS Title

Not Giving An Inch: You can expect to see lots of close contact in Monday's BCS national title game. Here, Eric Reid of the LSU Tigers defends against Michael Williams of the Alabama Crimson Tide.
Kevin C. Cox Getty Images

The consensus among college football's fans and analysts seems to be that tonight's BCS championship game between No. 2 Alabama and No. 1 LSU will be a defensive struggle, similar to the touchdown-free game the two teams played on Nov. 5, when LSU won in overtime, 9-6.

"These are the two top defenses in the country," NPR's Tom Goldman told David Greene on today's Morning Edition. "Alabama allows under 9 points a game; LSU is right behind, allowing only 10.5 points a game."

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