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3:14 am
Wed January 28, 2015

White House Won't Seek To End 529 College Tax Break

Originally published on Thu January 29, 2015 5:03 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

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NPR Story
3:14 am
Wed January 28, 2015

New Anti-Austerity Party Gathers Support In Spain

Originally published on Wed January 28, 2015 6:09 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

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The Two-Way
1:36 am
Wed January 28, 2015

Officers Ask Map App To Remove Police Tracking

Waze's police reporting tool is one of several features in the app. Users can also share reports of traffic and construction in real time.
Courtesy of Waze

Originally published on Wed January 28, 2015 4:50 pm

Waze, the popular navigation app boasting more than 50 million users worldwide, has a new critic: police officers. Over the past few weeks, law enforcement officials have been urging the app and its owner, Google, to disable a feature that allows users to report when they've spotted a police officer, in real time, for all other Waze users to see.

Sergio Kopelev, a reserve sheriff in Orange County, Calif., is one of the law enforcement officials behind the push to remove Waze's police tracker. He says he first discovered the feature through his family.

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Shots - Health News
1:30 am
Wed January 28, 2015

VA Steps Up Programs As More Veterans Enter Hospice Care

A hospital bed is draped with a flag after a veteran died in the hospice ward at St. Albans VA in Queens, N.Y.
Quil Lawrence NPR

Originally published on Wed January 28, 2015 2:32 pm

Ask Americans if someone in their family served in the military, and the answer is probably no. After all, fewer than 1 percent of Americans serve these days.

But ask if one of their grandfathers served, and you'll likely get a different answer. Between World War II and the wars in Korea and Vietnam, millions of men were drafted into service — and both men and women volunteered.

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Parallels
1:26 am
Wed January 28, 2015

Singing The Blues, A U.S. Envoy Hopes To Boost Ties With Ecuador

Adam Namm (left) is the U.S. ambassador to Ecuador and a member of Samay Blues Band. He performs regularly with the group and says its a way to breakaway from traditional diplomacy.
Alejandro Reinoso for NPR

Originally published on Wed January 28, 2015 10:31 am

Shortly before taking the stage at a bar in Quito, Ecuador's capital, the local band Samay Blues plugs in for a sound check.

Among the audience are a number of Americans. That's because the word is out: U.S. Ambassador Adam Namm will be sitting in on keyboards.

"I'm glad to get out of the office once in a while," Namm tells a patron. "Thanks for coming."

In a region where many left-wing leaders are hostile to the United States, Namm has found a novel way to reach out to his host country.

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Around the Nation
1:25 am
Wed January 28, 2015

Homeless Man Encourages Others On The Streets To 'Get Up'

Tony Simmons leads a group of Johns Hopkins University students on a "justice walk" in downtown Baltimore, during which they learn about public policy, providing services, and the connections between income inequality and health.
Gabriella Demczuk for NPR

Originally published on Wed January 28, 2015 8:57 am

This story begins an occasional series about individuals who don't have much money or power but do have a big impact on their communities.

Sometimes, the people you'd least expect are those who do the most. People like Tony Simmons, a homeless man in Baltimore who helps others get off the street. Simmons says he does it as much for himself as for anyone else.

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Parallels
1:24 am
Wed January 28, 2015

Tiger Skins And Rhino Horns: Can A Trade Deal Halt The Trafficking?

Coleen Schaefer (left) and Doni Sprague display a tiger pelt that was confiscated and is being stored at the National Wildlife Property Repository on the outskirts of Denver. Some 1.5 million items are being held at the facility. The Trans-Pacific Partnership, which is still under negotiation, would punish wildlife trafficking.
Jackie Northam NPR

Originally published on Wed January 28, 2015 1:36 pm

If you want a sobering look at the scale of wildlife trafficking, just visit the National Wildlife Property Repository on the outskirts of Denver. In the middle of a national refuge is a cavernous warehouse stuffed with the remains of 1.5 million animals, whole and in parts.

They range from taxidermied polar bears to tiny sea horses turned into key chains. An area devoted to elephants is framed by a pair of enormous tusks.

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Parallels
1:21 am
Wed January 28, 2015

Group Urges Swedes To Evade Subway Fares, And Even Insures Against Fines

Christian Tengblad (right) and his fellow fare dodger are part of the group Planka.nu.
Ari Shapiro NPR

Originally published on Thu January 29, 2015 4:47 pm

Every city that has public transportation struggles with fare jumpers — people who sneak onto the subway or the bus without buying a ticket. In Sweden, fare-dodging is a brazen movement in which the group's members don't try to hide what they're doing.

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All Tech Considered
10:39 pm
Tue January 27, 2015

Apple Sold 30,000 iPhones An Hour Last Quarter, Scored Record Profits

Apple CEO Tim Cook discusses the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus late last year.
Marcio Jose Sanchez AP

Originally published on Wed January 28, 2015 1:50 pm

Sales of Apple's larger iPhone 6 and 6 Plus hit one out of the ballpark last quarter, reports NPR's Laura Sydell.

"Apple sold over 74 million iPhones in three months and it made $18 billion in profits — that's a record for the company. Apple CEO Tim Cook said that they sold 30,000 iPhones every hour.

"The sales may reflect pent-up consumer demand — many people were waiting for Apple to release a phone with a bigger screen, which its main competitor, Samsung, already had.

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The Two-Way
7:32 pm
Tue January 27, 2015

Winter Storm Winds Down, But Blizzard Conditions Persist

Francisco Fernandez de Alba skis along a recently plowed road during a snowstorm in Providence, R.I., Tuesday. Parts of the state were buried under nearly two feet of snow by early Tuesday afternoon, and more was on the way.
Michelle R. Smith AP

Coastal flooding and dangerous conditions were still affecting New England Tuesday evening, with blizzard warnings declared from Rhode Island to parts of New Hampshire and Maine. Since Sunday, parts of Connecticut, Massachusetts and other states have had more than two feet of snow.

Strong winds were a main concern along the coast, as they drove flood waters inland and caused other problems. The National Weather Service says winds gusted at over 70 mph in Nantucket and Chatham, Mass.

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The Two-Way
6:19 pm
Tue January 27, 2015

Former Vanderbilt Football Players Found Guilty In Rape Case

The defense gatherers after the jury was read the charges against Brandon Vandenburg, center, and Cory Batey, right, in Nashville Tuesday. The pair were found guilty of aggravated rape and aggravated sexual battery.
John Partipilo AP

A jury has found two former members of the Vanderbilt University football team guilty of multiple counts of aggravated rape and aggravated sexual battery, in a case that stems from a 2013 assault in a dorm room. Others also face charges in the case.

Brandon Vandenburg and Cory Batey will face sentencing on March 6. Convicted of multiple felonies, the two could be sentenced to decades in prison.

From Nashville, Blake Farmer of member station WPLN reports:

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The Two-Way
4:56 pm
Tue January 27, 2015

Obama Administration Won't Seek To End 529 College Tax Break

Originally published on Wed January 28, 2015 1:41 pm

Reversing what had been an unpopular approach, the White House says it is dropping the idea of ending a tax break for 529 college savings plans. Critics had called the proposal a tax hike. All 50 states and the District of Columbia sponsor 529 plans.

Money in 529 accounts is meant to grow along with future college students, and then be distributed to pay for education expenses without being taxed.

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It's All Politics
4:28 pm
Tue January 27, 2015

Koch Brothers Put Price Tag On 2016: $889 Million

Americans for Prosperity Foundation Chairman David Koch speaks in Orlando, Fla., in August 2013.
Phelan M. Ebenhack AP

Originally published on Tue January 27, 2015 5:33 pm

The political network led by industrialists Charles and David Koch plans to spend $889 million for the 2016 elections. In modern politics, it's more than just a ton of money.

It's about as much as the entire national Republican Party spent in the last presidential election cycle, four years ago. And as Sheila Krumholz — director of the nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics, which tracks politicians and donors — pointed out in an interview, it's double what the Koch brothers and their network spent in 2012.

Krumholz summed it up: "It is staggering."

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Goats and Soda
4:12 pm
Tue January 27, 2015

For Dollars Donated To Vaccine Campaigns, Norway Wears The Crown

A Pakistani polio vaccination worker gives a dose to a child in Islamabad during a 2014 campaign.
Farooq Naeem AFP/Getty Images

GAVI asked and the world gave.

GAVI is the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization. At a conference in Berlin today, the nonprofit group asked for help in meeting its goals of vaccinating 300 million children in low income countries against potentially fatal diseases.

The response was extraordinary: a total of $7.5 billion pledged to cover GAVI's 2016-2020 efforts.

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Code Switch
4:03 pm
Tue January 27, 2015

Miss Colombia Wins Pageant; Miss Jamaica Wins Twitter?

Miss Universe contestants congratulate fifth-place-finisher, Kaci Fennell of Jamaica. Many pageant watchers on social media argued that Fennell should have won.
Wilfredo Lee AP

Originally published on Wed January 28, 2015 5:25 am

After Miss Colombia's Paulina Vega won the Miss Universe pageant on Sunday, she was greeted with a scepter, tiara and a kiss from the first runner-up, Miss U.S.A. But even as Vega took her first steps as Miss Universe, something that was happening elsewhere on stage caught a lot of attention.

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Parallels
3:57 pm
Tue January 27, 2015

Pakistanis View Obama's India Visit With A Touch Of Irritation

President Eisenhower and Pakistani President Mohammed Ayub Khan ride through the streets of Karachi in 1959. This wouldn't happen today.
AP

Originally published on Tue January 27, 2015 4:59 pm

A black and white photograph captures a scene that could never happen today.

It shows an American president riding through the streets of a city in Pakistan in a gleaming horse-drawn carriage, as if he's the Queen of England.

The city is Karachi, in the days when American visitors were not obliged by the presence of Islamist militants to conceal themselves behind blast-proof walls, sandbags and razor wire.

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The Two-Way
3:54 pm
Tue January 27, 2015

In Case You Were Wondering, Marshawn Lynch Is Here For One Reason

Addressing journalists at the Super Bowl media day, Marshawn Lynch had only one message: "I'm just here so I won't get fined."
Christian Petersen Getty Images

Originally published on Wed January 28, 2015 4:49 pm

Whatever the question, Seattle Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch has the answer. At a (mandatory) media appearance for the upcoming Super Bowl, Lynch stuck to one response Tuesday: "I'm just here so I won't get fined." After he said it nearly 30 times, he added one word: "Time."

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Goats and Soda
3:37 pm
Tue January 27, 2015

How Did Obama Play In India? We Ask 4 Villagers To Weigh In

Simpson, 25, worries that India will be "enslaved in debt" because of the U.S. megaloans.
Wilbur Sargunaraj for NPR

Originally published on Tue January 27, 2015 4:53 pm

What do the villagers of India think of the Obama visit? To find out, our intrepid village correspondent (and creator of the "Village Way" video for Goats and Soda) interviewed four residents of villages in the rural parts of Tamil Nadu, a state in South India.

Meet the villagers:

Simpson: The 25-year-old came back to his native village of Ayartharmam after earning a bachelor's degree in theology and religious studies. Simpson speaks English and is passionate about his rural home. He loves sports and reading.

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The Two-Way
3:28 pm
Tue January 27, 2015

Operator Of Drone That Crashed At White House Works At Intelligence Agency

The Secret Service released this photo of a "quad copter" that crashed on the White House grounds Monday. The agency says the copter's operator reported crashing it this morning.
Secret Service

Originally published on Wed January 28, 2015 1:10 pm

We told you Monday about a "quad copter" that crashed on the White House grounds. The Secret Service said the person who was operating the device later called to say (s)he had lost control of it, noting the person had been cooperative. Well, today we know a little more. The National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency said one of its employees was operating the drone.

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Environment
3:26 pm
Tue January 27, 2015

Southern California's Water Supply Threatened By Next Major Quake

The California Aqueduct carries water from the Sierra Nevada Mountains to Southern California. It is one of four aqueducts in the region that glide across the San Andreas Fault.
David McNew Getty Images

Originally published on Tue January 27, 2015 4:30 pm

Southern California gets the vast majority of its water from four aqueducts that flow from the north, but all of them cross the San Andreas Fault.

That means millions of people are just one major earthquake away from drying out for a year or more.

"It's a really concerning issue for the city of Los Angeles," says Craig Davis, an engineer with the LA Department of Water and Power, which oversees the LA aqueduct.

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Middle East
3:26 pm
Tue January 27, 2015

Even At $30 A Barrel, Saudis Are Still Making Money On Oil

Originally published on Tue January 27, 2015 4:30 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

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Middle East
3:26 pm
Tue January 27, 2015

What Will New King Mean For Women In Saudi Arabia?

Originally published on Tue January 27, 2015 4:30 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Parallels
3:26 pm
Tue January 27, 2015

After Father's Death, A Writer Learns How 'The Japanese Say Goodbye'

Marie Mutsuki Mockett says the Japanese tradition of Tōrō nagashi — lighting floating paper lanterns in honor of loved ones — reminded her that she was not alone in her grief.
Alberto Carrasco Casado Flickr

Originally published on Tue January 27, 2015 4:30 pm

Several years ago, when her father died unexpectedly, writer Marie Mutsuki Mockett became unmoored. Lost in a deep depression, Mockett turned to Japan's rituals of mourning for a way forward.

Mockett's mother's family owns and runs a temple just 25 miles from the Fukushima nuclear power plant. The plant melted down after the 2011 earthquake and tsunami. Mockett begged her cousin, the temple's priest, to leave, but he refused — he said he needed to stay to care for the souls of the ancestors.

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Shots - Health News
3:05 pm
Tue January 27, 2015

To Protect His Son, A Father Asks School To Bar Unvaccinated Children

Rhett Krawitt, 6, outside his school in Tiburon, Calif. Seven percent of the children in his school are not vaccinated.
Courtesy of Carl Krawitt

Originally published on Wed January 28, 2015 12:09 pm

Carl Krawitt has watched his son, Rhett, now 6, fight leukemia for the past 4 1/2 years. For more than three of those years, Rhett has undergone round after round of chemotherapy. Last year he finished chemotherapy, and doctors say he is in remission.

Now, there's a new threat, one that the family should not have to worry about: measles.

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The Two-Way
2:33 pm
Tue January 27, 2015

Alabama Chief Justice: Federal Courts Don't Hold Sway On Marriage

Robert Bate of Birmingham holds signs endorsing same-sex marriage outside the Jefferson County Courthouse in Birmingham, Ala., Monday. On Tuesday, the chief justice of the state's Supreme Court said federal courts are overstepping their jurisdiction in deciding cases about the issue.
Tamika Moore AL.com/Landov

Originally published on Tue January 27, 2015 5:10 pm

Days after a federal judge in Alabama ruled in favor of a same-sex couple who want their marriage recognized, the chief justice of the state's Supreme Court has sent a letter telling the governor that federal courts don't have jurisdiction over what constitutes a marriage in Alabama.

Chief Justice Roy Moore said that Friday's ruling by U.S. District Judge Callie V.S. Granade "has raised serious, legitimate concerns about the propriety of federal court jurisdiction over the Alabama Sanctity of Marriage Amendment."

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Parallels
2:27 pm
Tue January 27, 2015

On Holocaust Day, Argentina's Jews Despair Over Deaths, Old And New

Holocaust survivors light candles during a ceremony at the Asociacion Mutual Israelita Argentina (AMIA) building for Holocaust Victims Memory Day in Buenos Aires, the site of a deadly bombing two decades ago.
Alejandro Pagni AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue January 27, 2015 4:30 pm

In more normal times, the annual Holocaust remembrance ceremony would have drawn the Jewish community to a somber ceremony at Argentina's Foreign Ministry. But a large part of the community decided to boycott the event Tuesday and hold its own on the site of a deadly bombing two decades ago.

The speakers, including the treasurer of the Delegation of Argentine Israeli Associations, Mario Comisarenco, wanted to make clear why.

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The Salt
2:26 pm
Tue January 27, 2015

Watch 'Bob's Burgers'? Now You Can Eat Them, Too

Bob Belcher, titular hero of Bob's Burgers, bites into one of his creations. Each episode features daily burger specials with chuckle-inducing names. The burgers were born in the show writers' imagination and brought to life in Cole Bowden's kitchen.
Fox via Getty Images

Originally published on Tue January 27, 2015 3:34 pm

The animated Fox series Bob's Burgers centers on the Belcher family, who is trying to run a halfway successful restaurant. A cult favorite, the show is full of pathos and humor — including the daily burger specials with chuckle-inducing names featured in each episode.

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NPR Ed
2:25 pm
Tue January 27, 2015

Football As A Tool In The Hands Of A Master Craftsman

Coach Corey Parker talks with his players during football practice at River Rouge High.
Dustin Dwyer Michigan Radio

Originally published on Tue January 27, 2015 4:30 pm

Under the bright lights on a cold November Friday, the Panthers of River Rouge High are about to play for the district championship.

On the other side of the field, the visitors' stands are packed. The River Rouge side is pretty empty as the Panthers take the field.

The Panthers' head coach, Corey Parker, is used to this. He works it into his pregame speech.

"All we have is us!" he shouts, as his players bounce with nervous energy. "Fight for each other, love each other, let's go get it Rouge!"

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Asia
2:24 pm
Tue January 27, 2015

The Mysterious Life Of India's First Lady

Originally published on Wed January 28, 2015 7:28 am

This week President Obama traveled to India with his wife Michelle to meet with the Indian Prime Minister, Narendra Modi. But Mr. Modi's wife was nowhere to be seen. In fact she has never appeared in public with her husband and Mr. Modi only admitted her existence last year. Melissa Block talks with Annie Gowen of the Washington Post, who has interviewed Mrs. Modi.

Europe
2:19 pm
Tue January 27, 2015

Public Inquiry Into Death Of Former KGB Agent Litvinenko Starts

Originally published on Tue January 27, 2015 4:30 pm

Tuesday is the first day of a public inquiry into the death of former KGB agent and whistleblower Alexander Litvinenko. He was poisoned in London in 2006 with Polonium 210, a rare radioactive isotope. On his deathbed, Litvinenko claimed Russian President Vladimir Putin was responsible for the murder. Alan Cowell of the New York Times talks to Robert Siegel.

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