State Department spokesman Patrick Ventrell raised concerns about the lack of transparency in Kenneth Bae's trial and urged North Korea to him "amnesty and immediate release."
NPR's Michele Kelemen reports that Ventrell wouldn't say whether the U.S. was considering sending a high-level envoy to Pyongyang as it has done in the past to win the release of U.S. citizens in North Korea.
Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne. Aiming to get more children to play outdoors, Britain's National Trust created a list of the 50 Things To Do Before You're 11 3/4. Things like climb a tree and cook on a campfire. Enough finished the 50 that the trust used social media to gather more ideas for getting kids away from social media.
Some are quite poetic: Catch a falling leaf. Jump over waves. Hold a scary beast. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.
How much do you love your employer? Probably not as much as some employees at Rapid Realty in New York. Their boss offered a 15 percent raise to anyone willing to get a tattoo of the company logo, and 40 people took him up on it. We have something similar at NPR. For a marketing campaign, I got a mean MORNING EDITION tat on my forearm. There's a photo of it at our Facebook page. No raise involved. I do feel pretty cool, though that might last as long as the tattoo, which is temporary.
In The Time Traveler's Wife, Audrey Niffenegger married her gently wry sensibility to a classic science-fiction conceit, and the result became a literary sensation — as much a tried-and-true staple of book-club culture as cheap malbec.
This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning. I'm David Greene.
RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:
And I'm Renee Montagne. Mexico's agonizing war on its drug cartels is about to change and President Obama is about to hear it personally from Mexico's new president. On a trip to Mexico that begins today, Mr. Obama will also focus on trade and economic opportunities between the two countries.
NPR's business news starts with profits for Facebook.
(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)
MONTAGNE: Facebook announced its latest quarterly results, reporting revenues just under $1.5 billion.
DAVID GREENE, HOST:
The company showed a profit of nearly $220 million for the quarter but this fell short of analysts' expectations. CEO Mark Zuckerberg blamed the missed target on higher costs. Company spending is up 60 percent this quarter over the previous one due to hiring and new developments.
OK. From understanding language, let's try to understand one development in the economy. Corporate revenues have been lackluster. But despite that, stock prices keep going up. This might have something to do with what the Federal Reserve has been up to. Hoping to get money into the economy and stimulate growth, the Fed has been aggressively buying bonds. And Fed officials said, after their two-day meeting ended yesterday, that they could even accelerate the bond purchases if necessary.
Let's say you're highly skilled and interested in emigrating to the United States. Well, there are reasons to think you have a pretty good shot. Those with a specialty that's rare and highly valued can take advantage of what's called the H-1B visa. It is specifically for people with a Bachelor's degree or higher and you can only get one if an American company explicitly wants to hire you.
It's MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. Good morning. I'm David Greene.
RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:
And I'm Renee Montagne.
The Guantanamo Bay detention center had more or less faded from the news until this week, when President Obama called it unsustainable. He and others are paying attention now because of an ongoing and growing hunger strike of at least - as of this morning - 100 prisoners. More than 20 are being force fed to keep them alive.
Celeste Corcoran is transported to Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital on April 28.
Credit Ellen Webber for NPR
Celeste Corcoran (right) and her daughter Sydney Corcoran are transported to Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital from Boston Medical Center on April 28. Sydney, who nearly bled to death after being struck by shrapnel in her thigh, is expected to recover most if not all function. Celeste required amputations of both legs. Doctors say the next phase of her recovery will be a holding pattern.
What do a forlorn Italian father, a costume-drama cad and a pair of Hollywood slapstick heroes have in common? They're all high on a list of must-see movies that David Chase, creator of The Sopranos and director of the 2012 film Not Fade Away, brought us for the occasional Morning Edition series "Watch This."
What unifies them?
Saps At Sea
"When I was a kid, I used to watch Laurel and Hardy with my cousins all the time," Chase says. "I still think they're extremely funny and so surreal."
The young women training to be mechanics at Nigeria's Lady Mechanic Initiative wear navy overalls and work boots and their hair is tucked under customized red caps as they repair vehicles in a garage. Customers come and go, dropping off and collecting their cars. Trainee Enogie Osagie says she faced great resistance at home when she started.
This is a story about a duck. More precisely, it's a story about what your brain just did when you read the word "duck."
Chances are, your brain created an image of a web-footed waterfowl. It also may have recalled the sound of quacking or the feel of feathers. And new research suggests that these mental simulations are essential to understanding language.
If you're interested in studying in China, a new scholarship program could help you on your way. Rivaling the prestigious Rhodes scholarships, the new Schwarzman Scholars program was announced recently by Stephen Schwarzman, CEO and co-founder of Blackstone Group, one of the world's biggest private-equity firms.
The financier says he plans to raise $300 million, including $100 million of his own money, to fund a new program aimed at bringing students from around the world to study at Beijing's Tsinghua University.
Of the many things made in Michigan that have become part of the fabric of American culture — the auto industry, Motown — punk rock is often overlooked. In 1967, years before The Sex Pistols performed incendiary anthems, Iggy Pop and his band The Stooges created an explosive new sound in Detroit that would influence generations of musicians.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation is asking the public for help in finding three individuals who were on the grounds of the U.S. mission in Benghazi, the day an attack killed four Americans, including Ambassador Christopher Stevens.
"These individuals may be able to provide information to help in the investigation," the FBI said in a short release.
The four cuts at the top of this skull "are clear chops to the forehead," says Smithsonian forensic anthropologist Douglas Owsley. Based on forensic evidence, researchers think the blows were made after the person died.
Credit Donald E. Hurlbert / Smithsonian
This forensic facial reconstruction shows what the 14-year-old, nicknamed "Jane," may have looked like. Scientists say the remains found at Jamestown are evidence of cannibalism over the winter of 1609-1610.
Credit Donald E. Hurlbert / Smithsonian
Markings on the lower side of the jaw look like they were sawed with a sharp object, says forensic anthropologist Douglas Owsley.
"First they ate their horses, and then fed upon their dogs and cats, as well as rats, mice and snakes."
So says James Horn of the historical group Colonial Williamsburg, paraphrasing an account by colony leader George Percy of what conditions were like for the hundreds of men and women stranded in Jamestown, Va., with little food in the dead of winter in 1609.
They even ate their shoes. And, apparently, at least one person.
Say the words "crop insurance" and most people start to yawn. For years, few nonfarmers knew much about these government-subsidized insurance policies, and even fewer found any fault with them. After all, who could criticize a safety net for farmers that saves them from getting wiped out by floods or drought?
Bolivian President Evo Morales sings his national anthem during the annual May Day march in La Paz on Wednesday. He announced during a speech that he was expelling the U.S. Agency for International Development from the country.
Workers manufacture clothing in a factory near Dhaka, Bangladesh, in December. Labor activists and major clothing retailers met in Germany this week to try to hammer out a deal that would improve working conditions in Bangladeshi factories.
This week, major retailers including Wal-Mart, Gap and others met with labor activists in Germany, hoping to hammer out a deal to improve working conditions in Bangladesh.
The meeting came less than a week after a devastating building collapse in the Bangladeshi capital, Dhaka, killed more than 400 workers. At the meeting, activists pushed retailers who use factories in Bangladesh to start spending their own money to make those workplaces safer.
Today is International Workers' Day, May Day, and a holiday in many countries - that includes Russia. But it's not nearly the big deal there that it used to be. In the former Soviet Union, this was an occasion for giant parades in Red Square. NPR's Corey Flintoff has this postcard from Moscow.