From NPR News

Pages

U.S.
11:14 am
Thu September 20, 2012

'Fiscal Cliff' Scenarios Leave Economists On Edge

Economists hope lawmakers can avert a "fiscal cliff" after November's election, but what if Congress runs out of time?
Pablo Martinez Monsivais AP

Originally published on Thu September 20, 2012 2:46 pm

Members of Congress are about to flee Capitol Hill, and they'll be gone until Nov. 13, one week after Election Day.

As they shift to full-time campaigning, lawmakers are leaving behind many questions about the "fiscal cliff," a massive cluster of automatic spending cuts and tax-break expirations that come together around year's end.

Read more
Planet Money
11:04 am
Thu September 20, 2012

The Fiscal Cliff, In Three And A Half Graphics

Lam Thuy Vo / NPR

Originally published on Tue November 6, 2012 11:50 am

For more, see this story from NPR's Marilyn Geewax on how Congress might pass some stopgap measures to blunt the effect of the fiscal cliff.

A bunch of federal tax increases and spending cuts are scheduled to kick in around Jan. 1, 2013. This is what people are talking about when they talk about the "fiscal cliff."

Read more
The Two-Way
11:04 am
Thu September 20, 2012

Actress: Anti-Islam Filmmaker Lied And Made Me Look Like A 'Religious Bigot'

Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, a.k.a. Sam Bacile, made her look like a religious bigot by "having hateful words put in her mouth" when he dubbed a new soundtrack into the anti-Islam video Innocence of Muslims that has sparked violence and protests around the Muslim world, one of the actresses in the video charges.

Read more
The Salt
10:16 am
Thu September 20, 2012

As Scientists Question New Rat Study, GMO Debate Rages On

Italian farmer Giorgio Fidenato picks up what's left of his genetically altered corn after anti-GMO activists trampled it, back in 2010.
Paolo Giovannini AP

The headlines on the press releases that started showing up yesterday, here at The Salt certainly got our attention. Just one sample: "BREAKING NEWS: New Study Links Genetically Engineered Food to Tumors."

Read more
The Two-Way
10:06 am
Thu September 20, 2012

Colorado's 'Deeply Spiritual' Chimney Rock To Be A National Monument

Chimney Rock, in southwestern Colorado.
National Trust for Historic Preservation Sen. Michael Bennet's Flickr photostream

Originally published on Thu September 20, 2012 10:22 am

Southwestern Colorado's 4,700-acre Chimney Rock Archaeological Area will on Friday be designated a national monument, according to Sen. Michael Bennet, D-Colo.

The designation, which President Obama will approve and that has bipartisan support, will help preserve the site.

Read more
The Two-Way
9:10 am
Thu September 20, 2012

Woman Who Ruined Fresco Of Jesus Now Wants To Be Paid

Three images: How the fresco should look (left); how it looked before the "restoration" (center); and what it looked like after Cecilia Gimenez was done.
Centre de Estudios Borjanos AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu September 20, 2012 10:44 am

Cecilia Giménez, the Spanish woman who really messed up when she tried to restore a 19th-century fresco of Jesus, now wants a piece of the action from the 2,000 or so euros ($2,600) her church has collected from tourists coming to see the ruined artwork.

Read more
The Two-Way
8:45 am
Thu September 20, 2012

Jobless Claims Changed Little Last Week

There were 382,000 first-time claims for unemployment benefits last week, down by just 3,000 from the week before, the Employment and Training Administration says.

Meanwhile, "the 4-week moving average was 377,750, an increase of 2,000 from the previous week's revised average of 375,750." That figure offers a slightly better look at the trend.

Read more
The Two-Way
7:18 am
Thu September 20, 2012

Pakistani Students Burst Barricades In Latest Protest Linked To Anti-Islam Video

One scene from the site of today's protest in Islamabad, where men identified as students got through police barricades and into the diplomatic enclave.
Sajid Mehmood NPR

Originally published on Thu September 20, 2012 8:19 am

More than 500 people presumed to be university students today broke through police barricades and got into Islamabad's diplomatic enclave as they protested against the anti-Islam video that has sparked sometimes deadly demonstrations in many Muslim nations, NPR's Jackie Northam reports from the Pakistani capital.

Read more
The Two-Way
7:10 am
Thu September 20, 2012

Census: In 2011, Number Of Poor Americans Increased

Originally published on Thu September 20, 2012 9:21 am

  • Richard Gonzales on 'Morning Edition'
(We retopped this post at 8 a.m. ET.)

Though fresh data from the Census Bureau show that the number of Americans living in poverty edged higher in 2011, its latest American Community Survey also signals that after a Great Recession and a painfully slow recovery the U.S. economy may finally be bottoming out.

The Associated Press leads its report on the news this way:

Read more
Afghanistan
6:53 am
Thu September 20, 2012

British Soldier Gives Birth In Afghanistan

The new mother is a gunner at a NATO base in Helmand Provence which came under attack just days before Tuesday's birth. Britain's Ministry of Defense says the baby was conceived before the soldier deployed, and that she didn't realize she was pregnant. Mother and baby are now headed home.

Around the Nation
6:47 am
Thu September 20, 2012

President Obama Crashes Iowa Wedding

Originally published on Thu September 20, 2012 7:53 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Business
5:19 am
Thu September 20, 2012

Correction To Taxpayer Stories

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

We also have a correction for you this morning. Two reports in our air in recent days listed Americans who do not pay income taxes, and those lists included mentions of active duty-military service members. Those statements were too broad.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Military personnel do pay federal income tax. But there are exemptions for some, including those who are serving in designated combat zones.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

NPR Story
5:09 am
Thu September 20, 2012

Libyan Group Denies Role In U.S. Consulate Attack

A Libyan follower of Ansar al-Sharia Brigades carries a placard reads in Arabic "our Islamic holies are red line," during a protest in front of the Tibesti Hotel, in Benghazi, Libya, on Sept. 14, as part of widespread anger across the Muslim world about a film ridiculing Islam's Prophet Muhammad.
Mohammad Hannon AP

Originally published on Thu September 20, 2012 8:36 pm

Ansar al-Sharia, the ultraconservative armed Islamist group accused of taking part in the attack that killed the U.S. ambassador and three other Americans in Benghazi, Libya, denies it was involved. But the group's leadership stopped short of condemning the deadly attack. A top U.S. counterterrorism official says they are looking at the group in connection with the assault.

Ansar al-Sharia is one of the most powerful Islamist militias in eastern Libya. The brigade claims hundreds of men who fought, with U.S. and NATO support, to unseat strongman Moammar Gadhafi last year.

Read more
NPR Story
5:09 am
Thu September 20, 2012

Business News

Originally published on Thu September 20, 2012 6:32 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

NPR's business news begins with good news for Google.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

INSKEEP: The search giant is expected to be the top firm in online display advertising revenue this year, according to analysts at the industry news site eMarketer. If their prediction comes true - if - Google will unseat the reigning online ad champ Facebook, which would be a blow for Facebook, which only last year managed to beat back the previous top-earner, Yahoo.

Read more
NPR Story
5:09 am
Thu September 20, 2012

The Last Word In Business

Originally published on Thu September 20, 2012 6:43 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Our last word in business today is: the rich getting richer.

Forbes magazine just came out with its yearly list of the 400 richest Americans. Their combined net worth increased 13 percent since last year.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Here are some of the people who can certainly afford any kind of phone they want: Bill Gates, Warren Buffett, Larry Ellison, the Koch brothers and the children of Wal-Mart founder Sam Walton.

Read more
Middle East
3:35 am
Thu September 20, 2012

U.S., Libyan Versions Of Consulate Attack Diverge

The U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya, was in flames during an attack on Sept. 11. There are competing narratives on whether the attack was premeditated.
Esam Omran Al-Fetori Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Thu September 20, 2012 9:24 am

The attack on the U.S. consulate in Libya last week has led to dueling versions of what unfolded that night in Benghazi.

To hear the Obama administration tell it, the attack that killed Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens and three other Americans was spontaneous — and staged by local extremists who saw an opportunity to hijack peaceful demonstrations against an offensive film.

The Libyans have a different view. They say it was a premeditated strike, launched by foreign fighters with ties to al-Qaida.

Read more
Shots - Health Blog
3:33 am
Thu September 20, 2012

New Experimental Drug Offers Autism Hope

Andy Tranfaglia, 23, who has Fragile X syndrome, rides a horse with his mother, Katie Clapp.
Katie Clapp

Originally published on Thu September 20, 2012 10:10 am

An experimental drug that helps people who have Fragile X syndrome is raising hopes of a treatment for autism.

The drug, called arbaclofen, made people with Fragile X less likely to avoid social interactions, according to a study in Science Translational Medicine. Researchers suspect it might do the same for people with autism.

Read more
Planet Money
3:32 am
Thu September 20, 2012

Insurance Companies Send Out Rebate Checks; Economists Get Nervous

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Thu September 20, 2012 5:41 pm

Nearly 13 million Americans have gotten, or will soon be getting, rebates from their health insurance companies. This is because of a provision in the Affordable Care Act (aka Obamacare) that's supposed to force insurance companies to run better.

But while the idea of getting a check from your health insurance company may sound great, some economists worry this rule could actually make health insurance more expensive.

Read more
It's All Politics
3:31 am
Thu September 20, 2012

Military Vote Seen As A Key To Capturing Virginia

Mitt Romney takes the stage at a campaign rally at the Military Aviation Museum in Virginia Beach, Va., on Sept. 8.
Brian Snyder Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Thu September 20, 2012 8:38 pm

Both presidential campaigns are focusing on just a few swing states, and the relatively few remaining undecided voters. One of those states is Virginia, where a key swing constituency is military veterans.

Troops and veterans have long been considered a natural part of the Republican base. But President Obama is pushing hard for the veterans' vote to help him in a state he captured in 2008.

Read more
Sports
3:30 am
Thu September 20, 2012

'Itch' For Baseball Returns After Year In The Minors

Baseball player Reid Gorecki, seen here at a former teammate's home in Glassboro, N.J., says that despite being traded, "I thought the season was pretty awesome."
Kevin Leahy NPR

Originally published on Thu September 20, 2012 5:14 am

When Reid Gorecki began his quest to make it to baseball's major leagues this year, he probably didn't expect things to end up in Camden, N.J. The city is the home of Campbell's Soup — and Campbell 's Field, where the Camden Riversharks play their games.

And that's where Gorecki now plays, after being traded by the Long Island Ducks. Tuesday night's game was supposed to be one of the last of his season. But the game was canceled owing to rain, and the stadium was quiet.

Read more
World
3:29 am
Thu September 20, 2012

Father Of Pakistan's Nukes Enters Politics

Pakistani lawyers carry posters of Khan at a rally in support of him in Lahore in 2008.
Arif Ali AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu September 20, 2012 10:56 am

The man known as the father of Pakistan's nuclear weapons program, Abdul Qadeer Kahn, is a national hero in Pakistan — and a villain in much of the West.

Now, the controversial scientist is trying his hand at politics at the age of 76.

In the U.S., Khan is best known for selling nuclear technology to nations such as North Korea and Iran. In 2004, at the urging of the U.S., Pakistan placed Khan under house arrest. But in 2009, he was freed.

Read more
Election 2012
3:29 am
Thu September 20, 2012

Voter Purges Under Review Ahead Of Election Day

Originally published on Thu September 20, 2012 5:14 am

Noncitizens aren't allowed to vote in federal and state elections, but efforts to remove them from the nation's voter registration rolls have produced more angst than results.

Opponents say the scope of the problem has been overblown; those behind the efforts say they've just begun to look at the problem.

'Early Stages'

Read more
Science
3:28 am
Thu September 20, 2012

Why Pictures Can Sway Your Moral Judgment

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Thu September 20, 2012 9:41 am

When we think about morality, many of us think about religion or what our parents taught us when we were young. Those influences are powerful, but many scientists now think of the brain as a more basic source for our moral instincts.

Read more
Presidential Race
8:09 pm
Wed September 19, 2012

In Univision Forum, Romney Reaches Out To Latinos

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

And I'm Audie Cornish.

Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney is reaching out to Latino voters tonight. He took part in a forum on the Spanish-language television network Univision. He's also hosting a rally for Latino supporters in Miami. NPR's Scott Horsley joins us now from Miami.

And, Scott, describe the tone of the questions tonight.

Read more
U.S.
6:40 pm
Wed September 19, 2012

Held Dear In U.S., Free Speech Perplexing Abroad

Arab-Israeli men protest a video mocking the Prophet Muhammad, in front of the U.S. Embassy in Tel Aviv, Israel, on Thursday.
Jack Guez AFP/Getty

Originally published on Wed September 19, 2012 8:09 pm

The French government announced Wednesday that it will prohibit demonstrations planned for Saturday to protest the anti-Muslim video that has sparked violence in Muslim countries around the world.

The decision came after a French satirical magazine published cartoons depicting the Prophet Muhammad.

Read more
The Two-Way
6:17 pm
Wed September 19, 2012

Plans For John Hinckley's Transfer Have Been Put On Hold

Originally published on Wed September 19, 2012 6:49 pm

Plans that would allow John Hinckley to leave a mental institution and go live with his mother are on hold. His doctors say the man who tried to assassinate President Ronald Reagan is well enough to deserve more freedom.

But a key part of the treatment plan is now up in the air.

Therapists in Virginia, near the home of John Hinckley's elderly mother, say they want to withdraw from a plan to treat him several days a week.

Hinckley's longtime defense lawyers say they want to quit too, because they're not getting paid any more.

Read more
Opinion
5:48 pm
Wed September 19, 2012

Bama Fan By Marriage

Alabama Coach Nick Saban is not alone on game day. Die-hard fans, and their families, are willing the team to victory.
Dave Martin AP

Originally published on Wed September 19, 2012 8:09 pm

Let me tell you about the day my husband bolted into the room and asked, "Are you free for lunch on Sept. 21?"

It was the middle of July, and I'm not Oprah. Usually, I can be booked for lunch at a moment's notice. But I played along. I flipped through my virtual calendar, scrolled down to the very date in question, and gave it a good stare.

'Yup, I'm open!' I told him.

"Good," Ken said, 'because I got us tickets to see Coach Saban."

Read more
Shots - Health Blog
5:40 pm
Wed September 19, 2012

Subsidies Help Get Modern Malaria Drugs To Millions In Africa

Ayo Bello grabs a box of malaria medication at a pharmacy in Lagos, Nigeria. A pilot project by the Global Fund has helped private pharmacies and clinics sell top quality malaria drugs at wholesale prices in Nigeria and seven other African countries.
Sunday Alamba Associated Press

Originally published on Wed September 19, 2012 7:39 pm

Two years ago the United Nations' Global Fund launched an experiment that aimed to reduce the cost of malaria drugs in parts of Africa where they're needed most.

The idea was to subsidize the cost of drugs, sometimes making them available even cheaper than wholesale.

Did it work? The results for the first phase of the pilot were unveiled yesterday in Washington, and they looked pretty good — at least for the short time the project has been up and running.

Read more
The Two-Way
5:19 pm
Wed September 19, 2012

Halliburton Loses Radioactive Rod, The National Guard Is Called In to Help

You thought this happened only to Homer Simpson.

But, no, it happened in real life to oilfield workers in Texas: During the course of their work, they lost a radioactive rod. That's the story our friends at State Impact Texas are telling this afternoon.

We'll let you click over to get the full story about how even the National Guard has been enlisted, but here are the basics:

Read more
Science
5:13 pm
Wed September 19, 2012

Hungry Snakes Trap Guam In Spidery Web

Invasive brown tree snakes have gobbled up most of Guam's native forest birds. Without these avian predators to keep their numbers in check, the island's spider population has exploded.
Isaac Chellman Rice University

Originally published on Wed September 19, 2012 8:09 pm

The Pacific Island of Guam is experiencing a population explosion — of spiders.

There are more spiders there now than anyone can remember. To get a sense of how weird the situation is, I started out in Maryland. On my front porch, overlooking the Severn River.

At 6:30 in the morning on a cool fall day, I find two spider webs in a matter of five minutes. But if I were on the island of Guam, I might find 70 or 80 spider webs in five minutes.

Read more

Pages