Originally published on Thu October 17, 2013 4:19 pm
The phrase "previously on..." has become quite familiar to American TV audiences. Whether you're devoted to Battlestar Galactica, to Game of Thrones or Breaking Bad, you need to be able to catch up to a narrative when you've missed an installment or two. Novelists were there first, of course — the notion of a chain of novels focusing on the same characters goes back to Trollope and Proust – but it's less common to find a recap at the beginning of a book.
Two NASA astronauts are on the International Space Station. While the agency is largely shuttered during the government shutdown, Karen Nyberg and Mike Hopkins are using Twitter to update earth-bound fans on what they're doing.
The calendar says October, but retailers and economists are already analyzing the holiday shopping season. With budget battles gripping Washington and an economy that's still recovering, there are mixed feelings about how far shoppers will open their wallets.
The main opposition party in India has anointed Narendra Modi as its candidate for prime minister in next year's general election. Critics say Modi is a hardline Hindu nationalist who helped foment deadly anti-Muslim riots in 2002.
Steve Inskeep talks to Jonathan Chait, a commentator for New York magazine about how liberals are viewing the current budget negotiations in Congress, and if they might be willing to compromise on a deal.
With the debt ceiling deadline looming just two days away, Senate leaders say they're close to a deal that would reopen the government and avert default. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell have been leading bipartisan talks on a way out of the deadlock. Even if a bipartisan agreement clears the Senate, it will likely be a hard sell to House Republicans.
A street vendor outside New York's Central Park sold eight prints by the mysterious British street artist who goes by the name Banksy. Some of Banksy's most recognizable works sold for just $60. Many of the pieces are estimated to be worth more than $30,000. It was part of a social experiment.
Angela Ahrendts will oversee the expansion of Apple retail and online stores. It's a newly created position for Ahrendts, who will report directly to Apple CEO Tim Cook. Since taking over Burberry in 2006, Ahrendts has nearly tripled revenue for the company — known for its distinctive tartan patterns.
Originally published on Tue October 15, 2013 3:31 am
Negotiators from the U.S. and five other world powers expect Iran to outline how it can guarantee its program is for peaceful purposes — and not aimed at producing nuclear weapons. In exchange, Iranians hope for relief from economic sanctions.
Originally published on Tue October 15, 2013 3:36 am
STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:
Now, here's a reality about farming. From the earliest days of this country, it's been an uncertain business, and for many decades, national policies have been designed to smooth out that risk. But, of course, the risk never entirely goes away. You can never control the rain, for example, and lately the uncertainty has been growing. Corn prices are down. The farm bill is stalled in Congress and there's a sense that good times may be fading.
From Nebraska, Grant Gerlock of NET News brings us his report.
Crabbing season starts today in Alaska, well, except it doesn't. Crabbers and their boats are stuck in port because they can't get the permits that they need to begin their work. Federal workers who issue those permits are off the job because of the partial government shutdown and this is cutting into the short three month Alaska crab season, which is worth upwards of $200 million for the crabbers alone.
New homes are back in a big way — literally. This summer, a typical new house in Phoenix was more than 20 percent larger than a resale home as builders across the country added more space to accommodate post-recession lifestyles.
Take Jacque Ruggles' family, for example. Four women from three generations live under one roof.
Palo Alto middle school student Jennifer Munoz Tello (right) stands outside her family's trailer in Palo Alto with her mother, Sandra, and 2-year-old sister, Cynthia.
Credit Eric Westervelt / NPR
Erika Escalante is a program coordinator for the Palo Alto Medical Foundation. She grew up in the Buena Vista Mobile Home Park and now lives there with her husband and 6-year-old son, Andre Xavier Bracamontes.
Sunny Palo Alto, Calif., is awash in multimillion-dollar homes, luxury Tesla electric cars and other financial fruits from a digital revolution the city helped spark. The Silicon Valley city is home to Stanford University, at least eight billionaires, and one mobile home park.
The U.S. Supreme Court takes up the issue of affirmative action again Tuesday, but this time the question is not whether race may be considered as a factor in college admissions. Instead, this case tests whether voters can ban affirmative action programs through a referendum.
For many online and other small businesses, getting a loan or a big cash advance is tough. Banks and other traditional lenders are often leery of those without years of financial statements and solid credit scores.
But some lenders and other financial services companies are beginning to assess credit risk differently — using criteria you might not expect.
Jeffrey Grossman is an acupuncturist in Bellingham, Wash. He's also a small businessman. He creates media marketing materials for other acupuncturists hoping to expand their practice.
Originally published on Tue October 15, 2013 11:55 am
The budget negotiations in Washington are not front-page news on Mars. There, millions of miles away, NASA's rovers continue to operate, taking photographs and collecting data as they prepare for the coming Martian winter.
NPR's Joe Palca has this report for our Newscast unit:
Originally published on Mon October 14, 2013 10:49 pm
Monday marks the last day of newsstand sales of the International Herald Tribune, the newspaper that was once instrumental in keeping American expatriates up to date on their homeland. On Tuesday, the paper will bear a new name: The International New York Times.
So what is going on behind closed doors? Just how do these top-level congressional talks work? We're going to get some inside dope now from a former insider, Jim Manley who was a top adviser to Senator majority leader Harry Reid and, before that, press secretary to Senator Ted Kennedy. Jim Manley, welcome.
This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Melissa Block.
President Obama says he's hoping for a new spirit of cooperation to end the two-week old government shutdown and avoid a crippling default. And there are some encouraging signs this afternoon. Democratic and Republican leaders in the Senate say they're optimistic a deal can be reached soon. The President had summoned congressional leaders to the White House this afternoon, but that meeting was postponed to allow more time for talks to continue on Capitol Hill.
I'm joined now by Republican Congressman Tom Cole of Oklahoma. He's also House deputy whip, one of those who counts and cajoles fellow Republicans ahead of a vote. Congressman Cole, welcome to the program.
REPRESENTATIVE TOM COLE: It's great to be with you.
From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Melissa Block. Both the House and the Senate were in session today as the country closes in on the debt ceiling deadline. If Congress doesn't raise the debt limit before Thursday, the White House says the country will likely begin defaulting on its obligations. President Obama postponed a meeting with congressional leaders this afternoon.
This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Melissa Block.
The Nobel Memorial Prize in Economics went to three American professors today. In announcing the honor, the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences said the men all contribute to our understanding of how markets price things like stocks and homes. But as NPR's Dan Bobkoff reports, that doesn't mean the three economists always agree.
Tomorrow, nuclear negotiators for Iran and six world powers will meet in Geneva. It's a chance to see whether positive signals from Iran's new president can be translated into real progress at the table. Iran wants punitive sanctions lifted, but it's insisting on its right to enrich uranium for peaceful purposes.
NPR's Peter Kenyon reports that with hardliners waiting in the wings, momentum toward an agreement needs to be generated quickly.