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The Two-Way
7:45 am
Wed November 2, 2011

Lawyer: One Of Cain's Accusers Wants Her Story Told

Republican presidential contender Herman Cain on Monday (Oct. 31, 2011) in Washington, D.C.

Karen Bleier AFP/Getty Images

The lawyer for one of two women who in the late 1990s accused Republican presidential contender Herman Cain of sexual harassment wants her side of the story to come out because she believes Cain has not been telling the truth about what happened, a lawyer who represents her said Tuesday on CNN's Anderson Cooper 360.

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The Two-Way
7:19 am
Wed November 2, 2011

WikiLeaks' Julian Assange Loses Extradition Appeal

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange as he arrived at London's High Court this morning (Nov. 2, 2011).

Leon Neal AFP/Getty Images

British judges ruled this morning that WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange can be extradited from the U.K. to Sweden, where authorities want to question him about allegations from two women that he sexually assaulted them in August 2010.

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7 Billion And Counting
5:15 am
Wed November 2, 2011

Asian, European Nations Fret Over Birthrate Swoon

A South Korean man takes a photo of his baby during a picnic in Seoul, in 2009. After years of promoting family planning, South Korea is seeing unprecedented numbers of women staying single into their 30s β€” up from a handful a generation ago to 40 percent.
Jung Yeon-Je AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed November 2, 2011 2:40 pm

Right now, many people are nervous about the challenges presented by a global population that has reached 7 billion and is still rising. But for a lot of countries, a lack of babies is the bigger worry.

The so-called birth dearth is starting to cause problems across much of Europe and a substantial portion of Asia. With fewer children born, populations in many countries are aging rapidly. Soon, they may also be shrinking.

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Middle East
5:03 am
Wed November 2, 2011

With Protests, Syrians Are Learning Politics

Anti-government protesters march in the village of Amouda, Syria on Sept. 30. For many Syrians, the protests mark the first time they have taken part in anything resembling politics.

Shaam News Network AP

Originally published on Wed November 2, 2011 8:38 am

Government opponents in Syria have not been able to dislodge President Bashar Assad, but they are doing something the country has rarely if ever seen: they are organizing by themselves, outside of government control.

The massive street protests, demanding the end of Assad's regime, have defined the revolt over the past eight months.

But other things are happening as well, far from public view. In one quiet office in Damascus, Ashraf Hamza, 28, is leading a group of men at a session on community organizing.

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National Security
4:59 am
Wed November 2, 2011

Stuxnet Raises 'Blowback' Risk In Cyberwar

Instructor Mark Fabro leads an exercise at the Department of Homeland Security's cyberdefense facility at the Idaho National Laboratory in September. Training at the lab is intended to help protect the nation's power, water and chemical plants, electrical grid and other facilities from computer viruses such as Stuxnet.
Mark J. Terrill AP

Originally published on Fri November 4, 2011 7:53 pm

The Stuxnet computer worm, arguably the first and only cybersuperweapon ever deployed, continues to rattle security experts around the world, one year after its existence was made public.

Apparently meant to damage centrifuges at a uranium enrichment facility in Iran, Stuxnet now illustrates the potential complexities and dangers of cyberwar.

Secretly launched in 2009 and uncovered in 2010, it was designed to destroy its target much as a bomb would. Based on the cyberworm's sophistication, the expert consensus is that some government created it.

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Around the Nation
4:54 am
Wed November 2, 2011

In Wis., Focus Shifts From Union Law To Governor

A sign that reads "recall" hangs on a statue in front of the Wisconsin state Capitol last month in Madison. Labor groups are making an effort to recall Gov. Scott Walker for his controversial union rights law.

Justin Sullivan Getty Images

A Wisconsin law on union bargaining rights signed by Gov. Scott Walker shows no signs of disappearing.

In February and March, there was a shocking, sometimes strange sight at the Wisconsin capitol: By day, protesters marched shoulder-to-shoulder. By night, they lived in the capitol, sleeping on the building's marble floors.

It began after Walker, a Republican, broke 50 years of Wisconsin precedent, announcing he would not bargain with public employee unions. He said the state was broke and he had nothing to negotiate with. The rest is the stuff of political folklore.

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Law
4:52 am
Wed November 2, 2011

Court To Decide If Texas Voting Maps Discriminate

A sign in Spanish and English tells residents of El Paso, Texas, where to vote.

Joe Raedle Getty Images

Originally published on Wed November 2, 2011 2:56 pm

Lawyers for President Obama's Justice Department and Texas Gov. Rick Perry will be squaring off in federal court in Washington on Wednesday.

The state has sued the federal government to try to win court approval for its new legislative maps. There are big stakes: Texas stands to gain four new seats in the U.S. House of Representatives. But minorities in Texas, with a boost from the Justice Department, say the new boundaries amount to a step backward for Latino voting power.

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Election 2012
4:51 am
Wed November 2, 2011

Nonprofit Seeks To Be New Political Force

If you want to know just how unhappy Americans are with their two-party government, a group called Americans Elect is ready to tell you.

The nonprofit group has scheduled a press conference in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday in a bid to show the Democratic and Republican establishments that voters want a third choice in presidential candidates.

It's a choice Americans Elect hopes to provide. This might sound like a third political party taking the field, but the group says that's not what it is.

'A New Force'

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Law
4:50 am
Wed November 2, 2011

Miss. Set To Vote On Measure Making Fetus A Person

An anti-abortion activist holds a sign at the annual March for Life event in Washington, D.C. Mississippi's statehood amendment would ban abortion with no exceptions for rape or incest.

Alex Wong Getty Images

Next week Mississippi voters will decide whether to pass a constitutional amendment that redefines a person. Under the proposal, fertilized human eggs would be considered human beings, which would ban all abortions in the state. But abortion-rights activists say it would also limit contraception and threaten fertility treatments.

Les Riley has worked on the initiative for years, gathering signatures to get it on the ballot. Now, in northwest Mississippi, he's talking to voters and assembling yard signs that urge the passage of Amendment 26.

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7 Billion And Counting
4:50 am
Wed November 2, 2011

In Karachi, New Aspirations To Be A Global Player

The population of Karachi, Pakistan, has been boosted by a new influx of young people. And now the city, seen here during a political rally in January, is making a bid to attract global elites.

Rizwan Tabassum AFP/Getty Images

This week, we're asking what it really means to live in a world with 7 billion people. For some answers, we visit Karachi, Pakistan.

The grandest expression of the world's population growth is in the word "megacity." Dozens of these cities of more than 10 million now ring the globe, like a string of oversized pearls. In a megacity, people and ideas clash: The ancient collides with the modern; secular with religious; global with local. In Karachi, Pakistan, those forces can be seen in the story of a single piece of real estate.

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Sports
4:00 am
Wed November 2, 2011

Deal To Sell Dodgers Sparks Celebration

Embattled Los Angeles Dodgers owner Frank McCourt and Major League Baseball reached an agreement late Tuesday to sell the storied franchise. Roger Arrieta of Los Angeles, who started a website calling on billionaire Mark Cuban to "Save the Dodgers," plans a rally at the stadium to celebrate the sale.

Europe
4:00 am
Wed November 2, 2011

Greek Referendum Plan Sends Sarkozy Scrambling

Just a day before a meeting of the world's top 20 economies in France, Greece stunned the world by announcing it would put a hard-won bailout package agreed upon by Eurozone nations to the test in a popular referendum. The news went down like a lead balloon in European capitals and sent the markets reeling. French President Nicolas Sarkozy, host of the G20, is scrambling to repair the damage, summoning Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou to France.

Politics
4:00 am
Wed November 2, 2011

Head Of Ariz. Redistricting Commission Fired

Originally published on Wed November 2, 2011 2:52 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Arizona is one of a handful of states that hands the redistricting to an independent commission, instead of its legislature. At least that's what's supposed to happen. In a stunning move last night, though, the Arizona Senate and its governor ousted the head of the state's independent commission.

NPR's Ted Robbins joins us from our bureau in Tucson to explain. Good morning, Ted.

TED ROBBINS, BYLINE: Good morning, Renee.

MONTAGNE: What exactly happened?

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Asia
3:56 am
Wed November 2, 2011

At IKEA In Shanghai, Do-It-Yourself Matchmaking

An elderly Chinese man and woman chat at a park in Shanghai. Hundreds of elderly Shanghai residents make their way to IKEA twice a week for an informal lonely hearts club.
Mark Ralston AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed November 2, 2011 8:23 pm

If you're retired, single and looking for love in Shanghai, try IKEA.

Twice a week, hundreds of Shanghai residents who have formed an informal lonely hearts club of sorts gather at the cafeteria of the Swedish furniture megastore for free coffee and conversation.

The pensioners begin arriving around 1 in the afternoon and fill nearly 20 tables in the store cafeteria. They sit for hours drinking coffee, gossiping and subtly checking each other out.

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Sweetness And Light
10:00 pm
Tue November 1, 2011

No Love For November, Sports' Drama-Free Month

The Presidents Cup, on display in front of the Sydney Opera House and the Sydney Harbour Bridge in Australia. It's unclear to Frank Deford exactly what the Presidents Cup is β€” he knows only that it's played in November.

Matt King Getty Images Sport

Originally published on Wed November 2, 2011 9:03 am

There's an awful lot of games played in November –– even with the NBA locked out –– but it's really just an in-between month in sports... and life. There are no May-and-November romances, no good November songs. It's sort of a semi-final of a month.

Why are they still playing tennis in November? Let the boys and girls rest up for the summer so they're not all hurt when it matters.

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The Two-Way
6:35 pm
Tue November 1, 2011

Conservative Think Tank Study Finds Teachers Are 'Overpaid'

A new study tries to answer the age-old question: Are teachers underpaid?

Brooke Getty Images

The American Enterprise Institute, a conservative think thank in Washington, D.C., is causing waves with a study (pdf) it released today that found teachers are overcompensated in comparison to "similarly educated and experienced private-sector workers."

The organization said it took a "comprehensive" look at teacher's salaries and tried to take into account what it says are unique areas of compensation for teachers, including generous pension plans and better job security.

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Shots - Health Blog
5:56 pm
Tue November 1, 2011

Obama: 'Fit For Duty' And Smoker No More

A relaxed and fit President Obama meets with senior advisers at the White House in early July.

Pete Souza The White House

All middle-aged men should be so healthy.

A summary of the results from President Obama's latest physical were released yesterday, and he's looking good. Very good.

Navy Capt. Jeffrey Kuhlman, the president's doctor, declared him "fit for duty."

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Shots - Health Blog
5:34 pm
Tue November 1, 2011

CDC: Time To Curb 'Shocking' Epidemic Of Narcotics Overdoses

Originally published on Tue November 1, 2011 6:14 pm

Federal officials say they're making headway in their push to stem abuse of addictive painkillers. Still, they say, U.S. doctors are prescribing enough narcotics to medicate every American around the clock for a month.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says drug overdoses may soon overtake car crashes as the nation's leading cause of fatal injury.

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The Two-Way
4:43 pm
Tue November 1, 2011

House To Vote On Reaffirmation Of 'In God We Trust' Motto

The words "In God We Trust" are seen on U.S. currency.

Alex Wong Getty Images

The United States House of Representatives is expected to vote on a reaffirmation of "In God We Trust" as the country's official motto, today. The bill would also encourage public buildings to include the motto in their architecture.

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Law
4:40 pm
Tue November 1, 2011

Inmates May Be Freed By Crack Cocaine Case Review

Originally published on Tue November 1, 2011 6:07 pm

Across the country on Tuesday, federal judges began reviewing the prison sentences of thousands of men and women jailed on crack cocaine charges. Many inmates could be released or see their sentences sharply reduced.

Congress voted last year to ease federal sentencing guidelines for crack cocaine. But a decision this summer to revisit old drug cases has sparked new controversy.

Some History

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The Salt
4:28 pm
Tue November 1, 2011

When Lactose Intolerance Makes You Scream For No Ice Cream

A customer studies a display of milk and dairy products at Bryan's Grocery in San Francisco in March.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Originally published on Wed November 2, 2011 2:18 pm

Babies digest milk with ease, but it can get harder with age, unless you picked up a gene from your northern European ancestors. Between 30 million to 50 million American adults can't crank out enough of the enzyme that digests lactose, or milk sugar, which can turn a bowl of ice cream into a roller coaster of stomach discomfort.

Lactose-intolerant people who want to indulge in dairy without suffering the consequences have two options: take supplements of the enzyme lactase, or buy lactose-free dairy products, which are made by adding lactase to break down the milk sugar.

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Europe
4:24 pm
Tue November 1, 2011

Greek Inaction Or Democracy In Action?

Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou leaves a news conference after a meeting with European Council President Herman Van Rompuy on Oct. 13 at EU headquarters in Brussels. EU leaders were surprised and angered Tuesday when Papandreou said he would place a debt restructuring proposal before Greek voters.

John Thys AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue November 1, 2011 10:12 pm

Greece, the birthplace of democracy, may be suffering from an overdose of public input.

The decision by Greece's government to hold a January referendum on its deal with the European Union to restructure public debt has thrown the pact β€” and investors β€” onto shaky ground. Stocks around the world took a sharp dive on Tuesday's news, and other European leaders left little doubt over how they felt.

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'Darkhorse' Battalion And The Afghan War
4:11 pm
Tue November 1, 2011

As Casualties Mounted, So Did Marine Families' Fears

Amy Murray at home with her daughter Harper in Oceanside, Calif. Her husband, Capt. Patrick Murray, with the Darkhorse battalion, returned home from Afghanistan, in April 2011; 25 Marines from his unit did not.

David Gilkey NPR

A year ago, nearly 1,000 U.S. Marine officers and enlisted men of the 3rd Battalion, 5th Regiment deployed to restive Helmand province in southern Afghanistan. By the time their tour ended in April 2011, the Marines of the 3/5 β€” known as "Darkhorse" β€” suffered the highest casualty rate of any Marine unit during the past 10 years of war. This week, NPR tells the story of this unit's seven long months at war β€” both in Afghanistan and back home.

Third of seven parts

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The Two-Way
3:04 pm
Tue November 1, 2011

To Assure Japan, Official Drinks Water From Fukushima Puddle

Japan's Parliamentary Secretary for the Cabinet Office Yasuhiro Sonoda drinks a glass of decontaminated water taken from puddles inside the buildings housing reactors 5 and 6 at the Fukushima No. 1 plant.

Jiji Press AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue November 1, 2011 3:08 pm

He had assured Japan that the water inside the nuclear reactors crippled after the tsunami was safe. Yasuhiro Sonoda, a Japanese MP, said he so sure of the safety, he'd drink a glass of decontaminated water from the Fukushima reactor in front of reporters.

Monday, he made good on his promise. Here's the video:

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Shots - Health Blog
2:24 pm
Tue November 1, 2011

Exhibitors Strut Offbeat Wares At Public Health Confab

If you have a soft spot for internal organs, then you'll love these plush hearts, ovaries and intestines.

Julie Rovner NPR

At the heart of every convention worth its salt is the exhibit hall. But only at the American Public Health Association annual meeting can you find a plush heart for sale. Along with stuffed spleens, brains and uteruses.

And you know the game where you guess how many candies are in a jar and win something cool? Well, at the APHA meeting, the anti-tobacco American Legacy Foundation is giving away a new Kindle, if you can guess how many cigarette butts are in a huge jar.

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Herman Cain
2:07 pm
Tue November 1, 2011

Citizen Cain: Facing Another Hurdle Of History

Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain speaks Monday at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. During a question and answer portion of the program, Cain called the accusations of sexual harassment against him "a witch hunt."

Win McNamee Getty Images

Originally published on Tue November 1, 2011 2:25 pm

New allegations of an old scandal suggest that Herman Cain has hit the political big time.

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It's All Politics
2:05 pm
Tue November 1, 2011

Lawyer: Cain May Have Violated Confidentiality Of Harassment Settlement

Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain spoke about the harassment allegations at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., on Monday.

Pablo Martinez Monsivais AP

Originally published on Tue November 1, 2011 8:11 pm

The lawyer for a woman who settled a sexual harassment complaint against Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain in the late 1990s says that Cain may have violated the confidentiality terms of the agreement by commenting on its specifics over the past 24 hours.

"Herman Cain and others have already disclosed that there was a confidential settlement," says Joel P. Bennett, a Washington-based attorney specializing in employment law, who also represented the woman when she negotiated her settlement.

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The Two-Way
2:01 pm
Tue November 1, 2011

U.S. Sues Major Mortgage Broker Over Lending Fraud

In a lawsuit filed against one of the largest private mortgage brokers in the country, the United States alleges fraudulent lending practices by Allied Home Mortgage Capital Corp. cost the government $834 million in insurance claims paid by the Department of Housing and Urban Development.

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The Two-Way
1:15 pm
Tue November 1, 2011

Report: Congress Got Richer In 2010

Roll Call, a newspaper that specializes on reporting from Capitol Hill, digs through the personal financial disclosure forms of elected officials every couple of years to look at trends in the aggregate.

In its analysis of this year's data, it found that "members of Congress had a collective net worth of more than $2 billion in 2010, a nearly 25 percent increase over the 2008 total..."

Roll Call reports:

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The Salt
12:47 pm
Tue November 1, 2011

'Trade You Snickers For Smarties': The Economics of Halloween Candy

Sierra Lewter grabs a coveted candy after trick-or-treating on Halloween.

Melissa Forsyth NPR

Originally published on Tue November 1, 2011 3:05 pm

Budgets may be tight, but that didn't stop Americans from throwing down more money for Halloween candy this year than ever before.

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