The House is expected to vote Wednesday on a $1.1 trillion spending bill that would fund the federal government into October and bring to an end, for now at least, the bitter partisan battles that have led to one government shutdown and threatened to push the U.S. into defaulting on its bills.
Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 7:29 am
In August 1837, a group of girls aged ten through fourteen in a one-room Shaker schoolhouse received "signs from the world beyond." One by one they began singing, jerking, chanting, and reciting Latin. This miraculous phenomenon went on for hours. Elder Sister Agnes, the schoolteacher, witnessed it all. Thenceforth these and other Visionists — the name given to those deemed to be "chosen instruments" of Mother Ann, the Shakers' founder — "were allowed to make things that were not simply functional but beautiful, for they had created them under divine inspiration."
New York's health insurance marketplace is working, but some consumers are still having problems with insurers. Empire Blue Cross Blue Shield is the state's largest insurer and the target of a lot of consumer complaints.
Pope Francis continues to shake things up this week in the Catholic Church. Renee Montagne talks with John Allen of the National Catholic Reporter about what the new appointments say about the direction the Pope is leading the church.
Egyptians go to the polls over the next two days to vote on a draft constitution. The military-backed government is pushing for a "yes" vote amid indications that military chief General Abdel Fattah el-Sisi will soon announce his intention to run for the presidency.
Ah, the North American International Auto Show begins this week begins this week in Detroit. At least 50 new car models will make their debuts. Ford Motors is unveiling its highly anticipated makeover of the F-150 with a body made in part of aluminum - an aluminum truck.
Recent advances have made aluminum, which is lighter than steel, of course, viable on a large scale for manufacturing.
One of our favorite correspondents, NPR's Sonari Glinton, reports on what that means for the car industry.
On Monday, Google announced it had purchased Nest Labs for $3.2 billion. Nest is focused on the "automated home" concept, making smoke detectors and thermostats that connect to the Internet. Google's purchase signals a strong interest in this arena.
Boeing just extended its contract in Washington, keeping more than 10,000 jobs in state, partly by adjusting employees' pension plans. Last week, we heard on this program how these kinds of deals can cripple the middle class as corporations shift benefit costs from their books into the pockets their workers.
Today, Jacob Kirkegaard of the Peterson Institute for International Economics offers a counterpoint to David Greene, beginning with a breakdown of what that means for workers.
The recent disclosure that a large trove of customer information was stolen from Target, and now also from Neiman Marcus, points to growing vulnerabilities in cybersecurity. And experts say the problem is becoming more difficult to combat.
Even with 10 months to go before the midterm congressional elections, some political and ideological groups are already on the air, attacking incumbents they hope to take down in November.
One race that's attracting early advertisers is in New Hampshire, where Democratic Sen. Jeanne Shaheen is seeking a second term, and two tax-exempt social welfare organizations are buying ads against her.
NPR continues a series of conversations aboutThe Race Card Project, where thousands of people have submitted their thoughts on race and cultural identity in six words. Every so often, NPR Host/Special Correspondent Michele Norris will dip into those six-word stories to explore issues surrounding race and cultural identity forMorning Edition.
Lawyers for a young Portland man convicted of trying to blow up a Christmas tree ceremony are asking a judge to order the Justice Department to open its files and share "facts and circumstances" of electronic surveillance that prosecutors disclosed only months after his conviction.
The chemical that was found last week to be contaminating the drinking water of hundreds of thousands of West Virginians is used to clean coal. But very little is known about how toxic it is to people or to the environment when it spills.
Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 8:10 am
A ban on using tap water has been lifted in at least three areas affected by a chemical spill in West Virginia, where some 300,000 water customers received "do not use" advisories Thursday. Since then, water has been trucked in to the affected area, which includes nine counties.
West Virginia American Water residents were told they should use the water only for flushing toilets — not for drinking, cooking or washing.
A long-running school desegregation fight in Arkansas is over, after a federal judge accepted a settlement reached by the state, lawyers for black students, and three school districts in and around Little Rock. Under the deal, the state will no longer have to send payments — around $70 million this year — to aid desegregation.
According to the terms of the deal, those payments can stop after the 2017-2018 school year. They had been mandated by a court-ordered program that also included forming magnet schools and shifting students between school districts.
Originally published on Mon January 13, 2014 7:10 pm
For the first time, we are getting some demographic information about the more than 2 million people who have signed up for private health insurance through the exchanges set up by the federal government.
The New York Times reports that the Obama administration said older, less healthy enrollees outnumber healthy, younger ones. The Times adds: