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On May 3, 1971, at 5 p.m., All Things Considered debuted on 90 public radio stations.

In the 40 years since, almost everything about the program has changed, from the hosts, producers, editors and reporters to the length of the program, the equipment used and even the audience.

However there is one thing that remains the same: each show consists of the biggest stories of the day, thoughtful commentaries, insightful features on the quirky and the mainstream in arts and life, music and entertainment, all brought alive through sound.

All Things Considered is the most listened-to, afternoon drive-time, news radio program in the country. Every weekday the two-hour show is hosted by Robert SiegelMichele Norris and Melissa Block. In 1977, ATC expanded to seven days a week with a one-hour show on Saturdays and Sundays, currently hosted by Guy Raz.

During each broadcast, stories and reports come to listeners from NPR reporters and correspondents based throughout the United States and the world. The hosts interview newsmakers and contribute their own reporting. Rounding out the mix are the disparate voices of a variety of commentators, including Sports Commentator Stefen Fastis, Poet Andrei Codrescu and Political Columnists David Brooks and E.J. Dionne,

All Things Considered has earned many of journalism's highest honors, including the George Foster Peabody Award, the Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Award and the Overseas Press Club Award.

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NPR Story
5:49 pm
Wed January 11, 2012

Science Desk Experiments With Twinkies

Originally published on Wed January 11, 2012 5:49 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

You can buy Twinkies on the cheap right now. Safeway, just around the corner from our office here in Washington, has them on sale - two boxes for five bucks. So the NPR Science Desk was inspired to take part in the fine, long-standing tradition of experimenting with Twinkies.

NPR's Allison Aubrey reports on their findings.

ALLISON AUBREY, BYLINE: My colleagues, Julie Rovner, our health policy correspondent, and Adam Cole, a new addition to our team, had one idea.

So, what is your experiment, guys?

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National Security
5:44 pm
Wed January 11, 2012

Can Iran Close The World's Most Important Oil Route?

A member of Iran's navy participates in a drill on Dec. 28, 2011, in the Sea of Oman. Tehran is threatening to close the strategic Strait of Hormuz at the mouth of the Persian Gulf, in retaliation for new sanctions by the West.
Ali Mohammadi AP

Originally published on Wed January 11, 2012 10:24 pm

As tensions rise between Iran and the West, Tehran has threatened to block the Strait of Hormuz, a transit route for one-fifth of the world's oil. Is it more than an empty threat?

"The simple answer is: Yes, they can block it," Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said on CBS's Face the Nation on Jan. 8.

"They've invested in capabilities that for a short period of time block the Strait of Hormuz," he said.

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Business
5:03 pm
Wed January 11, 2012

Cadillac Gears Up To Take On German Automakers

Start Your Engines: With Cadillac's unveiling of the ATS — a compact luxury car — the Detroit automaker put itself in direct competition with BMW's 3 Series and Mercedes-Benz's C-Class.
Geoff Robins AFP/Getty Images

This year's auto show in Detroit could set the stage for a shake-up in the fiercely competitive — and hugely profitable — luxury car scene. That's because there's a new kid on the block, and its name is Cadillac.

The General Motors company says its new small, high-performance ATS will allow it to compete for the first time with Audi, Mercedes-Benz and BMW. But getting a brand-new luxury car like the ATS ready for market can be a grueling process.

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NPR Story
4:17 pm
Wed January 11, 2012

Study Links Hospital Water Wall, Legionnaires' Disease

Audie Cornish talks with Thomas Haupt, respiratory disease epidemiologist for the Wisconsin Division of Public Health. He's the lead author of the study that helped uncover the source of a mysterious and large uptick in Legionnaires' disease. The study, "An Outbreak of Legionnaires Disease Associated with a Decorative Water Wall Fountain in a Hospital" was published in the online journal Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology.

Deceptive Cadence
3:47 pm
Wed January 11, 2012

The Primary Season, A Cappella

Tired of the nerve-rattling chorus of pundits and office-seekers? Try an a cappella playlist as an antidote.
Luis Davilla Getty Images

The next 40-some weeks or so are going to be a screaming tower of political babble, a cacophony of accusing and boasting, pandering and slandering. I watch the news these days with the mute button permanently depressed, lest I fall into a permanent depression myself. There's only so much contention and vitriol a sensitive soul can bear.

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Presidential Race
8:18 pm
Tue January 10, 2012

Liasson, Dionne, Continetti Discuss N.H. Primary

Melissa Block talks about the New Hampshire primary to NPR's Mara Liasson. She also talks to our political commentators E.J. Dionne, of the Washington Post and Brookings Institution, and Matthew Continetti, opinion editor of The Weekly Standard, about the results of the New Hampshire primary.

NPR Story
8:15 pm
Tue January 10, 2012

Dionne, Continetti Discuss N.H. Primary

Originally published on Tue January 10, 2012 8:15 pm

Melissa Block speaks with Andy Kohut of the Pew Research Center and our political commentators E.J. Dionne, of The Washington Post and Brookings Institution, and Matthew Continetti, opinion editor of The Weekly Standard, about the results of the New Hampshire primary.

NPR Story
8:15 pm
Tue January 10, 2012

Doug Wead Discusses Ron Paul

Originally published on Tue January 10, 2012 10:47 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

We're going next, though to Doug Wead, who is a campaign advisor to Texas Congressman Ron Paul. Doug Wead, welcome to the program.

DOUG WEAD: Hey, thank you very much.

BLOCK: And so far, looking like your candidate has come in a strong second in New Hampshire. Your take on tonight's results?

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NPR Story
8:15 pm
Tue January 10, 2012

Former Sen. Bob Smith Discusses Newt Gingrich

Originally published on Tue January 10, 2012 8:15 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

And I'm joined now by former Senator Bob Smith, former New Hampshire senator, who is a supporter of Newt Gingrich. Welcome, Senator Smith.

BOB SMITH: Thank you. I'm glad to be with you.

BLOCK: And let me ask you. It looks like your candidate, Newt Gingrich, is coming in at this point, anyway, based on early returns, fourth in New Hampshire. A disappointing finish?

SMITH: I didn't hear you and I didn't hear the result. Could you repeat that again?

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Presidential Race
6:14 pm
Tue January 10, 2012

Pew's Kohut Discusses Exit Polling

Melissa Block talks with Andy Kohut of the Pew Research Center about New Hampshire primary exit polling.

NPR Story
3:00 pm
Tue January 10, 2012

How Important Is N.H. To Romney's Campaign?

Originally published on Tue January 10, 2012 10:47 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

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NPR Story
3:00 pm
Tue January 10, 2012

NPR Correspondents Discuss N.H. Primary

Audie Cornish and Melissa Block talk to NPR correspondents covering the New Hampshire primary. NPR's Don Gonyea is covering the campaign of former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum. NPR's Robert Smith is covering the campaign of Texas Rep. Ron Paul. NPR's Tovia Smith is covering the campaign of former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman. And NPR's Andrea Seabrook is covering the campaign of former House Speaker Newt Gingrich.

NPR Story
3:00 pm
Tue January 10, 2012

Panel Recommends Paying Eugenics Victims $50,000

Originally published on Tue January 10, 2012 10:47 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

More than half of states had forced sterilization programs at one time, but few were as aggressive as North Carolina's. Some 7,600 men, women and children were sterilized by that state's eugenics board up to the mid 1970s. Sterilization was seen as a way to control welfare costs and improve the caliber of the population. Well, today, a task force in North Carolina took a step toward becoming the only state to offer compensation to eugenics victims.

From member station WFAE, Julie Rose has the story.

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National Security
3:00 pm
Tue January 10, 2012

Army Scraps Most Of The JTRS Program

Originally published on Tue January 10, 2012 10:47 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

It's ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Audie Cornish.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

And I'm Melissa Block.

Now a story about the challenges of military communication on the battlefield.

(SOUNDBITE OF RADIO COMMUNICATION)

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Roger, stand by. I believe (unintelligible) trying to push traffic for you.

BLOCK: This is radio traffic from an Army convoy in eastern Afghanistan that's having trouble communicating.

(SOUNDBITE OF RADIO COMMUNICATION)

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Middle East
3:00 pm
Tue January 10, 2012

Assad Blames Protests On Foreign Involvement

Originally published on Tue January 10, 2012 10:47 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Now to Syria, where President Bashar al-Assad delivered a defiant speech today. He called protesters mongrels misled by foreigners and he vowed to stay in power. Assad also criticized the Arab League, which has an observer mission inside Syria.

NPR's Peter Kenyon has more on the story from Istanbul in neighboring Turkey.

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Law
3:00 pm
Tue January 10, 2012

Court Strikes Down Oklahoma Shariah Ban

Originally published on Wed January 11, 2012 4:55 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

A federal appeals court has struck down Oklahoma's ban on Sharia law. The ruling said the state amendment, which was passed in 2010, discriminated against Muslims.

NPR's Barbara Bradley Hagerty reports.

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Law
3:00 pm
Tue January 10, 2012

High Court Hears Arguments In FCC 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 11:01 pm

The U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments Tuesday testing the constitutionality of a Bush-era regulation that allows the Federal Communications Commission to punish broadcasters with stiff fines for the fleeting use of vulgar language or nude images. The FCC's rule applies only to radio and over-the-air TV networks — like Fox, ABC, NBC and PBS — but not to cable TV.

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Around the Nation
3:00 pm
Tue January 10, 2012

A Unique Expression Of Love For Math

Originally published on Mon March 31, 2014 5:37 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

Last week in Boston, 7,000 mathematicians, math teachers and math enthusiasts from all over the world converged for something called the Joint Mathematics Meeting. Naturally, there was a lot of this...

UNIDENTIFIED MAN 2: C plus S minus two.

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: Well, S is A plus B and C is two.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN 2: Right.

BLOCK: But reporter Ari Daniel Shapiro also found a lot that he wasn't expecting.

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Presidential Race
3:00 pm
Tue January 10, 2012

Elving Discusses N.H. Primary

Melissa Block talks with NPR senior Washington editor Ron Elving about Tuesday's first-in-the-nation New Hampshire primary.

Presidential Race
3:00 pm
Tue January 10, 2012

What To Expect From The N.H. Primary

After months of campaigning and millions of dollars in TV ads, the first presidential primary is Tuesday in New Hampshire. Audie Cornish talks with NPR's national political correspondent Mara Liasson about what to expect when the results roll in.

Asia
3:00 pm
Tue January 10, 2012

South Korea Takes Political Turn To The Left

When the current president of South Korea Lee Myung-bak took office four years ago, he turned a cold shoulder to engagement with North Korea. The conservative wing in South Korea opposed improving relations with Pyongyang. But that has proven to be an unpopular policy, and now Lee finds himself in the difficult position of appealing for closer ties in this unpredictable transition period in North Korea. Lee goes to Beijing Monday to seek Chinese backing for this policy shift.

Presidential Race
3:00 pm
Tue January 10, 2012

Five Ways Candidates Can Use Their Kids To Get Votes

The children of the Republican presidential candidates have been almost as present on the campaign trail as the candidates themselves. Sometimes they just serve as a backdrop on TV, other times as valuable surrogates.

It's All Politics
4:09 pm
Mon January 9, 2012

Celebrity Endorsements: What Happens When Reality TV And Politics Collide

Singer Kelly Clarkson took some heat from fans for endorsing Ron Paul. Clarkson's shown here performing at at Madison Square Garden on Friday, Dec. 9, 2011 in New York.
Evan Agostini AP

Originally published on Mon February 27, 2012 1:46 pm

On a day where Newt Gingrich picked up the endorsement of former "first dude" Todd Palin of Alaska, there are plenty of other celebrity endorsements to go around.

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Planet Money
4:01 pm
Mon January 9, 2012

People Want More Coins, That's A Good Sign For The Economy

Demand for quarter, dimes, nickels, and pennies was up this year.
AP

Originally published on Wed January 11, 2012 5:40 pm

All the instability in the global economy this year has been good for the United States Mint. People in search of a safe place to put their money have been buying gold and silver coins in record numbers.

"Precious metal coins were up $800 million dollars last year and that's approximately thirty some percent," says Richard Peterson, deputy director of the Mint.

According the the Mint's annual report, they sold 45.2 million ounces of gold and silver coins in 2011.

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Sports
3:00 pm
Sun January 8, 2012

Preview Of BCS Bowl Game

Originally published on Sun January 8, 2012 6:06 pm

Transcript

GUY RAZ, HOST:

So tomorrow night for the first time in the history of the Bowl Championship Series, two teams from the same conference, the Southeastern Conference, the two best teams in college football, Louisiana State University and the University of Alabama, will face off in the BCS National Championship in New Orleans. Who's going to win? Well, to help us answer that question, Mike Pesca joins me now.

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Around the Nation
3:00 pm
Sun January 8, 2012

Newark, N.J., Seeks To Revamp Shopping District

The city plans to revitalize its once-glitzy downtown shopping district. New Jersey News Service reporter Nancy Solomon tours Broad Street with Newark's head of economic development, and reports on plans to lure back high-end shoppers.

Politics
3:00 pm
Sun January 8, 2012

The State Of Play In The GOP Presidential Field

The six remaining Republican presidential candidates held two debates over the past 24 hours — one Saturday night, another Sunday morning. Guy Raz talks to NPR National Political Correspondent Mara Liasson about what transpired in those debate.

Around the Nation
3:00 pm
Sun January 8, 2012

Tucson Marks Anniversary Of Giffords Shooting

Originally published on Sun January 8, 2012 6:06 pm

Transcript

(SOUNDBITE OF BELLS RINGING)

GUY RAZ, HOST:

Just a few hours ago, bells rang across Tucson in remembrance of the first anniversary of the shootings there, which left six people dead and wounded 13 others, including Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords. That day, a gunman fired more than 30 shots at a constituent event hosted by Giffords outside a Safeway supermarket. NPR's Ted Robbins joins me now from in front of that Safeway. Ted, it's hard to believe it's already been a year.

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Author Interviews
2:46 pm
Sun January 8, 2012

A Self-Published Author's $2-Million Cinderella Story

Amanda Hocking is the best-selling author of the Trylle trilogy and six additional self-published novels.
Mariah Paaverud St. Martin's Griffin

Best-selling e-author Amanda Hocking grew up in the small town of Austin, Minn., which, she says, is known for Spam. Spam as in the food, not the e-mail spam.

"We invented Spam," the 27-year-old novelist tells weekends on All Things Considered host Guy Raz.

Hocking's dad was a truck driver. Her mom was a waitress. Even as a very young child, she had always been a kind of natural storyteller — especially when it came to fantasy stories. Stories about dragons, unicorns, pirates and more.

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Music Interviews
10:44 am
Sun January 8, 2012

Deathbed Music: The Final Works of Famous Composers

A 1791 painting Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart on his deathbed, surrounded by his wife and friends.
Hulton Archive Getty Images

When it comes to last words, there's a kind of poetry in even the oddest ones. Oscar Wilde hated the wallpaper in the room where he died: "One of us has to go," he muttered. Salvador Dali: "Where is my clock?" Steve Jobs: "Oh wow, oh wow, oh wow," according to his sister, who was in the room.

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