Egyptians in Cairo and Alexandria are among those voting today in the first stage of parliamentary elections. These are the first elections since President Hosni Mubarak was ousted. Two other stages are scheduled for December and January.
We've been hearing a lot about the economic meltdown affecting a string of European countries, and the sort of tough austerity measures that they're now facing. Britain was among the first to embrace a tough austerity program. And now, the economy is stalled. Unemployment is going up. Young people are hit hardest of all - one in five is now out of work. NPR's Philip Reeves spent a day with one of those jobless Britons, a young man named Dean Smith.
Officials overseeing a new performance hall had to decide on a mobile phone policy. While theaters generally remind patrons to turn off their devices, The New York Times reports the new theater in Bellevue, Wash., will encourage smartphone use. The theater wants to attract younger audiences, and that means there's no use forbidding the technology.
The dream of high speed rail in California is running into tough realities. Cost estimates have more than doubled — to nearly $100 billion — since the project was approved by voters in 2008. The date of completion has been pushed back to 2030.
The economy is still far from healthy, and we've been asking people for one idea that could help fix even just one small part of the economy. And we have this latest idea from author and management consultant Jim Collins. He wants to change the way that CEOs are paid. Instead of granting stock options, he says executives should have to buy company stock with their own money.
JIM COLLINS: I want executives who are willing to be aligned in their own risk profile with how well the company does over time.
NPR's business news begins with a strong showing for retailers. Consumers spent a record $52.4 billion at stores and on the Internet over the weekend. It's the official start of the holiday shopping season. According to the National Retail Federation, shoppers hunting for Black Friday bargains spent an average of about $400 each, which is a big jump over last year.
If you suffer the pain and stiffness of arthritis, you may not be enthusiastic about exercising. But arthritis specialists say that's exactly what you need to do.
It's advice that 65-year-old Sibyl Zaden has taken to heart. A former marathon runner and triathlete, Zaden now suffers from osteoarthritis in her shoulders and knees. "My problem is lifting my arm," she says. "It's very painful. I can lift it halfway and that's it."
A new round of United Nations climate talks is getting under way in Durban, South Africa, Monday. And domestic struggles here in the United States are hampering the global talks.
The United States is second only to China in emitting gases that cause global warming. Despite a presidential pledge to reduce emissions two years ago, we're spewing more carbon dioxide than ever into the atmosphere.
That's putting a crimp on the 20-year-long struggle to develop a meaningful climate treaty.
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton sets off for Asia Monday, and part of her trip will see her as the first U.S. secretary of state to visit Myanmar – formerly known as Burma.
Secretary Clinton says she's going to Myanmar to test the waters to see how committed the country's new leader is to reforms. She'll also meet with Nobel Peace laureate Aung San Suu Kyi, who is rejoining the political process in the country and who has been guiding U.S. policy, according to activist Aung Din.
Ken Lieberthal of the Brookings Institution does a lot of work in China. Visiting about 10 times a year, he does some business consulting, meets with other scholars at universities and sometimes meets with government officials.
Like a lot of us these days, Lieberthal carries electronics with him to do his work. However, he takes a bit more precaution than many business travelers, as he tells weekends on All Things Considered guest host Rachel Martin.
Whether you want to or not, you've probably heard the songs on the top-100 list in the U.S. But do you know what's hot right now in West Africa or China? Weekends on All Things Considered guest host Rachel Martin finds out what music is popular in Hong Kong and Dakar by talking to music critics Ben Sin and Rose Skelton. They each pick three favorite songs that best represent the music scene in their cities.
In the same month that President Obama's Supercommittee failed to rise above partisanship for the sake of America's economy, a hyper-partisan House of Representatives managed a landslide victory.
The vote was 407 to 18 in favor of the Entrepreneur Access to Capital Act. If passed, it would allow entrepreneurs to crowdfund. That means they could raise money over the Internet through relatively small donations from people they don't know. The bill removes barriers to doing business – but this time for the little guy.
Catholics across the country are celebrating the start of their annual Advent season in an unfamiliar way. For the first time in four decades, the wording of the official Catholic liturgy has changed. Weekends on All Things Considered guest host Rachel Martin talks with Father Carmen D'Amico of Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal Church in Meadow Lands, Penn., after he performs his first mass with the new translation.
Writer-director Paddy Considine's debut film, Tyrannosaur, is a favorite of critics this year. It's generating Oscar buzz and has earned Sundance Festival awards for Considine's directing and the film's lead actors. the film tackles dark themes like death and spousal abuse, but a message of hope manages to shine through. Weekends on All Things Considered guest host Rachel Martin talks to Paddy Considine about writing and directing the film, which is in theaters now.
In a new book coming out next month, business tycoon and sometimes presidential candidate Donald Trump estimates his entire net worth is $7 billion. Trump says a hefty chunk — some $3 billion — alone covers the "brand value" of the Trump name.
It isn't just pop culture gadflies making a buck from that intangible factor known as "brand value" anymore. Journalists, too, are trying to build their own brands.
The frigid air needles exposed flesh and sinks through clothing, but that hasn't kept at least one protester from occupying a park in Fairbanks, Alaska, for more than a month. The temperature has been 30 to 40 degrees below zero in recent weeks.
This time of year, the days are short. It's dim, bleak and other-worldly in the nation's northernmost Occupy protest. While local officials want the protesters' tents taken down, occupiers say the shelter is necessary in such cold weather.
Protestors in Egypt's Tahrir Square have called for another massive demonstration in advance of Monday's parliamentary elections, bringing on fears of renewed violence on election day. As turmoil continues, sexual violence and paranoia are on the rise. NPR's Lourdes Garcia-Navarro reports from Cairo.
The Congressional supercommittee, charged with coming up with a plan to cut the national deficit, had been invested with handling so many unrelated tasks that its failure last week has left Congress with a sizeable workload in its remaining weeks this year. Among them: possible extensions of the payroll tax cut and unemployment benefits, and a continuation of the entire federal budget. NPR congressional correspondent David Welna joins us to set the stage for December.
A group of human rights activists in Mexico has asked the International Criminal Court in The Hague to investigate President Felipe Calderon in connection with the deadly war on drug cartels. The complaint, spearheaded by human rights lawyer Netzai Sandoval, claims war crimes have occurred. The complaint was filed a day after two dozen bodies were found dumped in Guadalajara. NPR's Jason Beaubien has more.
The spillover effects of Mexico's drug war are taking a grim toll in Central America. The region has the highest homicide rate in the world, according to a new U.N. report, as traffickers move more and more U.S.-bound cocaine through Central America's struggling and weak states.
Nick Miroff has this story from Honduras, with support from the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting.
NICK MIROFF, BYLINE: Operation Lightning is Honduras's response to the murder problem.
This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Audie Cornish. In Egypt today, protests are continuing ahead of tomorrow's parliamentary elections, the first since the fall of President Hosni Mubarak and his replacement by a military council. The turmoil is not limited to Cairo. NPR's Soraya Sarhaddi Nelson is in the city of Alexandria and she joins us now. Welcome, Soraya.
SORAYA SARHADDI NELSON, BYLINE: Good morning, Audie.
Egyptians living abroad are eligible to vote in the upcoming election. Absentee ballots are being accepted at Egyptian embassies around the world, including Washington, D.C. Several of those voting there spoke with NPR about their hopes as well as their frustrations with the process.
When FBI agents arrive at the scene of a shooting or a terrorist attack, there's often someone else standing in the background. It's a representative from the FBI's Office for Victim Assistance, there to help people suffering in the aftermath of a disaster.
The planning for those unfortunate days starts here, in a windowless conference room in the J. Edgar Hoover FBI building, where seven serious-looking people are sitting around a table.
The typical college student today isn't "typical" anymore: Only 1 in 4 lives on campus and studies full time.
But part-timers and commuter students are much less likely to finish — most part-time students are still without a degree or a certificate after eight years. Higher education is desperately looking for strategies that improve those numbers. There might be one in Tennessee.