Weekend Edition Saturday on AM 870 NewsTalk

10am - Noon

Saturday mornings are made for Weekend Edition Saturday, the program wraps up the week's news and offers a mix of analysis and features on a wide range of topics, including arts, sports, entertainment, and human interest stories. The two-hour program is hosted by NPR's Peabody Award-winning Scott Simon.

Drawing on his experience in covering 10 wars and stories in all 50 states and seven continents, Simon brings a humorous, sophisticated and often moving perspective to each show. He is as comfortable having a conversation with a major world leader as he is talking with a Hollywood celebrity or the guy next door.

Weekend Edition Saturday has a unique and entertaining roster of other regular contributors. Marin Alsop, conductor of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, talks about music. Daniel Pinkwater, one of the biggest names in children's literature, talks about and reads stories with Simon. Financial journalist Joe Nocera follows the economy. Howard Bryant of EPSN.com and NPR's Tom Goldman chime in on sports. Keith Devlin, of Stanford University, unravels the mystery of math, and Will Grozier, a London cabbie, talks about good books that have just been released, and what well-read people leave in the back of his taxi. Simon contributes his own award-winning essays, which are sometimes humorous, sometimes poignant.

Weekend Edition Saturday is heard on NPR Member stations across the United States, and around the globe on NPR Worldwide. The conversation between the audience and the program staff continues throughout the social media world.

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Business
6:31 am
Sat August 18, 2012

In Wall Street 2.0, Computers Are King

Originally published on Sat August 18, 2012 3:03 pm

Weekend Edition Saturday host Scott Simon talks to Sean Gourley, physicist and founder of quid.com, about the computers that trade stock shares faster than human minds can comprehend.

Sports
6:31 am
Sat August 18, 2012

Week In Sports: The Nationals And Steven Strasbourg

Originally published on Sat August 18, 2012 9:58 am

Weekend Edition Saturday host Scott Simon speaks with Howard Bryant about sports this week and the Nationals' plans for star pitcher Steven Strasbourg.

NPR Story
6:17 am
Sat August 18, 2012

France To Hollande: Time To Get To Work

Originally published on Sat August 18, 2012 3:03 pm

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon. The president of France, Francois Hollande, has just passed 100 days in office. Mr. Hollande swept to victory in a wave of discontent aimed at former President Nicolas Sarkozy. But now, there are concerns that the new president's slow, cautious manner may not be suited to solving some of the challenges facing his country. Eleanor Beardsley sends us this report from Paris.

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NPR Story
6:17 am
Sat August 18, 2012

Fighting Continues To Scar Syrian Cities

Originally published on Sat August 18, 2012 3:03 pm

Transcript

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon. The last U.N. military observers are pulling out of Syria today. Their mission has been made near impossible by the heavy fighting gripping the country.

A former Algerian foreign minister is taking over as U.N. envoy on Syria, but he's not optimistic about a quick end to the fighting. And neighboring Lebanon remains on edge, after a spate of kidnappings this week related to the Syrian conflict. NPR's Anthony Kuhn joins us from Beirut.

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NPR Story
6:17 am
Sat August 18, 2012

For Julian Assange, A Tricky Exit For Asylum

Originally published on Sat August 18, 2012 3:03 pm

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

This week, Ecuador announced that it would grant Julian Assange, the founder of WikiLeaks, political asylum. He's been holed up in Ecuador's London embassy since June facing extradition to Sweden over sexual assault claims that he denies. But somehow he's got to get from London to Ecuador and he can't just buy a ticket, buy a canister of tea in duty-free and fly to Quito. The British government says that Julian Assange will be arrested if he sets a foot out of the embassy door.

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Europe
4:54 am
Sat August 18, 2012

Italian Yacht Owners Weigh Anchor To Dodge Taxes

The quayside at Compagnia della Vela in Venice, Italy, is largely deserted. Authorities have targeted yacht owners as part of a crackdown on tax evasion, and many boat owners have sailed to other countries in the Mediterranean.
Bloomberg via Getty Images

Originally published on Sat August 18, 2012 8:24 pm

Italy has a public debt of nearly 2 trillion euros, and it's cracking down on its notoriously wily tax evaders. Owners of luxury yachts are a prime target, with tax police launching dockside raids to see how individual tax files line up with owning and maintaining an expensive boat.

But yachts are mobile assets. In response, many boat owners are simply weighing anchor and setting course for more tax-friendly Mediterranean marinas.

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NPR Story
2:38 pm
Sat August 11, 2012

Wisconsin's Sen. Johnson On Rep. Ryan

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Linda Wertheimer. We are following the big political story this hour. Mitt Romney has announced the other half of his ticket, congressman Paul Ryan of Wisconsin. He's been a champion of conservative fiscal principles as chairman of the House Budget Committee. Let's listen to Paul Ryan from an interview with NPR in May of 2012, shortly after he released his first budget.

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NPR Story
2:38 pm
Sat August 11, 2012

Voices Of Support From The Romney-Ryan Announcement

The Romney campaign launched its first event with Ryan on the ticket in front of an excited crowd of supporters in Norfolk, Va., Saturday morning. If the crowd at the event was any indication, the decision has energized the Republican base.

NPR Story
2:38 pm
Sat August 11, 2012

Mitt Romney And Paul Ryan's First Day Out

It's been a big day for Mitt Romney's presidential campaign. Romney officially announced his running mate this morning in Virginia. NPR's Ron Elving tells guest host Linda Wertheimer how the pair are starting out.

NPR Story
2:38 pm
Sat August 11, 2012

The Romney Ticket, Now With Ryan Added

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

For more on Mr. Romney's choice of a running mate, we're joined in the studio by NPR's Washington editor Ron Elving and NPR's national political correspondent Don Gonyea.

Now, we just heard from congressman Chris Van Hollan of Maryland, who's a Democrat. He told us that the choice that Mr. Romney made tells independent voters to, quote, "take a hike." How do you think that this choice affects independents and undecided voters? You want to start, Ron?

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NPR Story
2:38 pm
Sat August 11, 2012

Romney And Ryan Take The Stage In Va.

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Linda Wertheimer.

This morning in Norfolk, Virginia, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney announced his running mate, Wisconsin congressman Paul Ryan.

MITT ROMNEY: Paul Ryan works in Washington, but his roots remain firmly rooted in Janesville, Wisconsin.

(APPLAUSE)

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NPR Story
2:38 pm
Sat August 11, 2012

What Ryan Brings To Romney's Bid

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

For more on the announcement, joining me in the studio are Washington Post columnist E.J. Dionne and contributing editor for the Weekly Standard Matthew Continetti. Gentlemen, it's wonderful to see you again.

E.J. DIONNE: Good to see you.

MATTHEW CONTINETTI: Good to see you.

WERTHEIMER: Let's first hear Paul Ryan from an interview with NPR in May of 2012. This was shortly after he released his first budget as chairman of the Budget Committee.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED INTERVIEW)

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NPR Story
2:09 pm
Sat August 11, 2012

The New Romney-Ryan Ticket: The White House Reacts

Originally published on Sat August 11, 2012 2:38 pm

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

Just as Mr. Ryan is a champion for fiscal conservatives, he's a big target for Democrats. President Obama's campaign wasted no time in attacking Mitt Romney's new running mate.

NPR's Scott Horsley joins us now. So, Scott, the initial response from the Obama campaign?

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NPR Story
2:09 pm
Sat August 11, 2012

Budget Colleague Van Hollan On Ryan's Selection

Originally published on Sat August 11, 2012 2:38 pm

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

Earlier this morning, we had Democratic reaction to the VP pick. I spoke about Mitt Romney's choice with Maryland congressman Chris Van Hollen, who, along with Ryan - who is on the House Budget Committee with Congressman Ryan.

REPRESENTATIVE CHRIS VAN HOLLEN: Morning. It's great to be with you.

WERTHEIMER: Now, I wonder if you could tell me what you think of this choice. You've worked closely with Paul Ryan.

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NPR Story
2:09 pm
Sat August 11, 2012

Grover Norquist On Paul Ryan's Candidacy

Originally published on Sat August 11, 2012 2:38 pm

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

After leaving the USS Wisconsin, Romney and Ryan are probably hungry. They'll head to a little café and catering business called Homemades by Suzanne - where they'll meet, among others, this lady.

KIMBERLY MILLS: I'm Kimberly Mills(ph). I am co-owner of Homemades by Suzanne, in Ashland, Virginia.

WERTHEIMER: Mills is no novice, when it comes to meeting politicians. Homemades by Suzanne was the site of another candidate visit, back in 2008.

MILLS: We had Sarah Palin, you know, four years ago.

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NPR Story
1:20 pm
Sat August 11, 2012

Why Virginia For Romney's VP Announcement?

Originally published on Sat August 11, 2012 2:38 pm

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

Mitt Romney made his big VP announcement this morning in Norfolk, Virginia, and that, of course, is no coincidence. Virginia is one of the swing states. And in this year's presidential race, and both the Romney and Obama campaigns, have been heavily targeting voters in that state for months. Joining us now, is Larry Sabato. He is the director of the University of Virginia's Center for Politics, and he's on the line from Charlottesville. Larry Sabato, welcome.

LARRY SABATO: Good morning, Linda.

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NPR Story
1:20 pm
Sat August 11, 2012

Ryan's Budget Makes Plans For Medicare

Originally published on Sat August 11, 2012 2:38 pm

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Linda Wertheimer. If you are just joining us, we're following a big announcement this morning. The Republican candidate, Mitt Romney, has chosen his running mate. Congressman Paul Ryan of Wisconsin will share the ticket. For more, I'm joined in the studio by our health policy correspondent, Julie Rovner.

Julie, hello.

JULIE ROVNER, BYLINE: Hello.

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NPR Story
1:20 pm
Sat August 11, 2012

Romney-Ticket Debuts Aboard The USS Wisconsin

Originally published on Sat August 11, 2012 2:38 pm

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Linda Wertheimer.

The Romney campaign is now the Romney-Ryan campaign. The newly minted Republican ticket was presented at an event in Norfolk, Virginia. Mitt Romney named Wisconsin congressman Paul Ryan as his running mate beside the aptly named USS Wisconsin. In his introduction of Ryan, he extolled the Midwestern virtues of the congressman.

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Presidential Race
8:07 am
Sat August 11, 2012

Romney Announces VP Choice In Norfolk, Va.

Originally published on Sat August 11, 2012 2:38 pm

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Linda Wertheimer. It is no coincidence that Mitt Romney makes his vice presidential announcement aboard the U.S.S. Wisconsin, since Congressman Paul Ryan is from the Badger State. The U.S.S. Wisconsin is one of the largest battleships ever built by the U.S. Navy.

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Presidential Race
8:07 am
Sat August 11, 2012

Wisconsin Reacts To Ryan As Romney's VP Choice

Originally published on Sat August 11, 2012 10:39 am

Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin has been named Mitt Romney's running mate. Weekend Edition Saturday guest host Linda Wertheimer speaks with Craig Gilbert about reaction in Wisconsin. Gilbert is the Washington bureau chief for the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel.

Presidential Race
8:07 am
Sat August 11, 2012

Introcuding Rep. Paul Ryan Of Wisconsin

Originally published on Sat August 11, 2012 2:38 pm

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Linda Wertheimer.

Paul Ryan, the congressman from Wisconsin, has been selected as the Republican candidate for vice president. Mitt Romney is expected to formally make this announcement of his obvious vice presidential running mate at an event later this morning in Virginia. The pick is a bit of a surprise. Congressman Ryan was not at the top of many lists. He shook off speculation on Fox News in May.

(SOUNDBITE OF FOX NEWS BROADCAST)

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Presidential Race
8:07 am
Sat August 11, 2012

Romney Picks Rep. Paul Ryan

Originally published on Sat August 11, 2012 11:13 am

Weekend Edition Saturday guest host Linda Wertheimer has an update on this morning's announcement.

Presidential Race
8:07 am
Sat August 11, 2012

Looking Ahead At The Romney-Ryan Ticket

Originally published on Sat August 11, 2012 2:38 pm

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

Now we're going back to the big, high-profile contest this morning in politics: this morning's announcement that Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan is Mitt Romney's pick to be the next vice president. Romney would not speculate about his chances in an interview with MSNBC earlier this week, but he said that he was looking for a running mate with vision.

(SOUNDBITE OF MSNBC BROADCAST)

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Presidential Race
8:07 am
Sat August 11, 2012

A Look At Paul Ryan's Budget

Originally published on Sat August 11, 2012 2:38 pm

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

The selection of Paul Ryan as Mitt Romney's running mate will energize conservatives and liberals for the same reason. Ryan is the architect of the Republican House budget, which makes him a champion for conservatives, but a lightning rod, as well.

Joining us now to talk about that Ryan budget is NPR's Scott Horsley. Scott, this is a choice that activists in both parties will have something to say about it.

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NPR Story
8:02 am
Sat August 11, 2012

Mitt Romney To Announce Running Mate

Originally published on Sat August 11, 2012 2:38 pm

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Linda Wertheimer.

Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan is Mitt Romney's choice to be the next vice president. Mitt Romney's campaign made the announcement earlier this morning, calling the ticket America's Comeback Team. Romney and Ryan are expected to appear together, for the first time as a ticket, at an event in Virginia later this morning. And we will be broadcasting that event when it happens.

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NPR Story
8:02 am
Sat August 11, 2012

Romney Officially Announces Running Mate

Originally published on Sat August 11, 2012 2:38 pm

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Linda Wertheimer. Today, and in fact we think in just a few minutes, Mitt Romney will make it official. Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan will be his choice for vice president. Romney is expected to make the announcement at an event in Norfolk, Virginia within sight of the Battleship Wisconsin.

Paul Ryan endorsed Mitt Romney during the Republican primaries and just before the Wisconsin primary, Ryan called Romney the right leader for the moment.

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NPR Story
8:02 am
Sat August 11, 2012

A Look At Romney's VP Pick

Originally published on Sat August 11, 2012 2:38 pm

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

Now, we also have with us, for more on this announcement, NPR's Washington editor, Ron Elving. Hi, Ron.

RON ELVING, BYLINE: Good to be with you, Linda.

WERTHEIMER: Now, we - also here, NPR political correspondent Don Gonyea. Don.

DON GONYEA, BYLINE: Good morning.

WERTHEIMER: Now, Ron, let me begin with you. Who is Paul Ryan?

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Around the Nation
4:44 am
Sat August 11, 2012

Some Idaho Farmers Pray, Others Turn On The Water

Farmer Hans Hayden walks through his drought-stricken wheat field in Idaho. He says the wheat should be 3 feet tall by now.
Molly Messick for NPR

Originally published on Sat August 11, 2012 2:38 pm

In the West, in Idaho's arid, high desert, the drought has a mixed effect. There's a big divide between farmers with deep wells and irrigation and those without.

Hans Hayden is a rare find: a talkative farmer. He likes to explain things. But when it comes to the wheat he planted this spring, there's not much to say. This field needed rain. It didn't get it.

"At this point in time, it kind of looks like a desert," he says.

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Around the Nation
4:44 am
Sat August 11, 2012

Joplin's New Trees Struggle To Survive Amid Drought

Volunteers water saplings planted in Cunningham Park in Joplin, Mo. The trees were planted to help reforest Joplin after a deadly tornado last year destroyed many of the city's trees.
Michele Skalicky KSMU

Originally published on Sat August 11, 2012 2:38 pm

Saplings — no more than 6 feet tall — dot the landscape in Joplin, Mo. They replace the large shade trees that were ripped out of the ground by a massive tornado that swept through town in May of 2011.

Nearly 7,000 new trees, donated by various organizations, have been planted. They include sturdy, mostly native, varieties, such as oak, sycamore and redbud — trees that can withstand strong winds when they're taller.

With temperatures above normal for the past few months and precipitation below normal, those trees have had a hard time taking root.

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Music Interviews
2:03 am
Sat August 11, 2012

Marian McPartland's Storied Life, Told 'In Good Time'

Marian McPartland hosted NPR's Piano Jazz for 33 years.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Sun August 19, 2012 12:32 pm

More than half a century ago this week, on Aug. 12, 1958, some of the greatest jazz musicians of the day assembled in Harlem at what was, for them, the ungodly hour of 10 a.m. Fifty-seven players came to East 126th Street to have their picture taken for Esquire magazine.

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