Originally published on Fri March 28, 2014 1:01 pm
Americans want to go their own way.
The right of individuals to question authority is one of the strongest facets of American life. But the ability to strike out on your own has always been balanced against the need for communal action in a complicated, continental country.
Right now, the pendulum is swinging more toward individualism.
Good morning, I'm Steve Inskeep. Taco Bell stuck it to McDonald's. The fast-food chain is broadcasting TV ads featuring Ronald McDonald. Dozens of people who are really named Ronald McDonald promote Taco Bell. While tweaking the McDonald's mascot, they also promote Taco Bell's authentic Mexican cuisine, including a breakfast waffle taco.
The fastest-growing city in the country is not what you'd expect, not a trendy tech hub, not an edgy edge city. It's The Villages, in Central Florida. Nobody under 55 can live there. Aging boomers have made The Villages the biggest retirement community in the world - specializing in microbrew, golf courses and November-December romance; also, the world's longest golf cart parade.
It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.
Originally published on Fri March 28, 2014 11:45 am
Update at 9:25 a.m. ET. Aircraft Spot "Multiple Objects;" Search Concludes For The Day:
On their first day of searching a new area of the Southern Indian Ocean for any sign of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370, "five aircraft spotted multiple objects of various colors," the Australian Maritime Safety Authority said Friday.
You know what's awesome? Drum fills. A killer bass line is pretty great, too. And guitar solos. And melodies and chord progressions. But a really great drum fill is often the one thing that makes a song truly take off. Think of Phil Collins' "In The Air Tonight" and try not to get that song's classic fill stuck in your head immediately.
It is Friday, which is when we hear from StoryCorps, which tells the stories of everyday people, in fact people tell those stories themselves. Marine Corporal Anthony Villarreal served in Afghanistan. In June 2008 his truck was hit by a roadside bomb. He suffered third degree burns, severely disfiguring most of his face and body. His right arm and the fingers on his left hand were amputated. This is a common story, as we know.
The Christian charity World Vision announced this week it would begin hiring married gay Christians, but then quickly reversed the decision because of a backlash from evangelicals. NPR's Sam Sanders has more on the controversy.
SAM SANDERS, BYLINE: World Vision is big. It brought in over a billion dollars in revenue last year. Its mission is simple: Raise money to fight poverty, and sponsor lots of children across the globe.
This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Linda Wertheimer.
STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:
And I'm Steve Inskeep. Good morning. Tijuana, Mexico stands so close to the U.S. border, the city practically leans on the fence. We drove through the city with NPR's Carrie Kahn.
CARRIE KAHN, BYLINE: This is the original border fence. That's all there was. Now you'll see there's a road, a dirt road, and then there is another fence, which are pylons, and then you'll see in some places there's actually a third fence.
NPR's business news starts with an engine for job growth.
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INSKEEP: Yeah. That's a joke. But it's also true. Ford Motor Company says it is investing more than half a billion dollars in upgrading an Ohio engine plant. Earlier this month, the company announced it is shifting production of some truck models to the Buckeye State from Mexico. And today, Ford says it will create 300 jobs more in Ohio.
Western countries are taking a two-fold approach to the Ukraine crisis: isolate Russia and help Ukraine overcome massive economic challenges. The International Monetary Fund has a bailout package in the works. It requires Ukraine to carry out difficult reforms. Ukraine has fallen short on such conditions in the past but the stakes are higher now.
It's day six of the search and rescue operation at the site of the landslide in Oso, Washington. The death toll stands right now at 26. Ninety people are still reported missing. That's left many families in limbo waiting for news. NPR's Martin Kaste reports on why the recovery work has been so excruciatingly slow.
Here's some news we're tracking today. NATO and Ukrainian officials are warning about a sizable troop build-up by Russia along its border with Ukraine. Western estimates put the military presence on the Russian side at between 20 and 50 thousand troops. Sources told Reuters these include infantry and armored units along with some air support.
Now, why the Russian forces would have gathered is still not clear. Although some Western officials fear they're preparing to invade Ukraine's Russian-speaking east.
If you want to trace Americans' fear of fat, the place to start is the U.S. Senate, during the steamy days of July 1976.
That's when Sen. George McGovern called a hearing to raise attention to the links between diet and disease.
And what was the urgency? The economy was booming, and many Americans were living high on the hog. A 1954 Capitol Hill restaurant menu offers a glimpse of what lunch looked like then: steak with claret sauce, buttered succotash and pineapple cheesecake. But soon, that prosperity began to cast a dark shadow within the halls of Congress.
With this year's deadline to register for individual health insurance just a weekend away, much attention is being lavished on two numbers — the 6 million Americans who have signed up so far, and the percentage of those folks who are (or aren't) young.
But experts say the national numbers actually don't mean very much.
When students go to law school, they make a bunch of calculations. A big one is cost: top schools charge more than $50,000 a year, and graduate-student debt is on the rise. Another key calculation: The likelihood of getting a good job after graduation.
Tijuana is itself a creation of the border. The borderline was drawn here in 1848, as the United States completed its conquest of the present-day American Southwest. The border, along with the growth of San Diego and Los Angeles, gave Tijuana a reason to be.
There's a flood of biblical proportions this year in Hollywood: Noah, starring Russell Crowe, floats into theaters Thursday. It follows Son of God, another Bible-based movie released by 20th Century Fox. And later in 2014, we'll see Exodus, a 3-D epic based on the story of Moses from director Ridley Scott.
Why so many Bible movies in 2014? "It just has to be that God is moving. There's no other explanation for it," says Son of God producer Mark Burnett.
Originally published on Fri March 28, 2014 6:42 am
Washington, D.C., police chief Cathy L. Lanier said Thursday the search for Relisha Rudd, a missing 8-year-old girl, "may be best described as a recovery operation." Lanier's comments suggest authorities fear she is no longer alive.
Earlier this week, the FBI released a Feb. 26 surveillance video showing Relisha and Kahlil Malik Tatum, a 51-year-old janitor at the homeless shelter where Relisha's family lived, in the hallway of a local hotel. Neither one has been seen since.
Originally published on Fri March 28, 2014 9:53 am
Is an artist's life relevant to her reputation as an artist? Not so much, perhaps, but many of us want the bio anyway, especially when the artist in question is as tantalizingly elusive as Vivian Maier (or Mayer, or Meyer, as she variously spelled it to confound the curious), a reclusive Chicago nanny whose posthumously discovered trove of street photographs swelled into a cause celebre after her death in 2009.
With only four days left before the March 31 enrollment deadline, the White House is kicking into high gear trying to round up more Affordable Care Act enrollees – and Louisiana got special attention Thursday.
Why? Enrollment in the federal healthcare exchange there has lagged behind other states and, perhaps as important, citizens are getting bombarded with anti-ACA ads as Democratic Sen. Mary Landrieu gears up for a tight race in November.
Originally published on Thu March 27, 2014 4:43 pm
The New Orleans-based U.S. 5th Circuit of Appeals ruled on Thursday that Texas could require abortion doctors to have admitting privileges at a nearby hospital.
That provision was part of a set of stringent abortion regulations passed in Texas in 2013. As NPR's Julie Rovner reported at the time, Texas was one of about a dozen states to ban most abortions after 20 weeks.
Making poetry out of something as messy as the recent housing crisis may sound like a tall order, but Nick Lantz has done it. The collection is called "How to Dance as the Roof Caves In." Our reviewer, Tess Taylor says calls it biting but tender.