NPR News

Pages

Book Reviews
5:03 am
Thu October 3, 2013

'Darling' Makes Unfussy Peace With Religion And Sexuality

Originally published on Fri October 4, 2013 8:55 am

Richard Rodriguez begins his latest book, Darling, with an unfussy dedication to the Sisters of Mercy of the Americas, a Catholic women's group committed to helping the sick and destitute. This Baptism, if you will, is the first and surely the most straightforward indication within the book that Rodriguez intends to delve into his complex relationship with religion. The path that lies beyond that dedication is weird and wonderful, and readers will find that it's far from a direct route.

Read more
The Two-Way
5:00 am
Thu October 3, 2013

On Day 3 Of Shutdown, It's Deja Vu All Over Again

A gate leading into the Joshua Tree National Park California is latched (though not locked) because of the partial government shutdown. Though national parks are technically closed, national forests remain open — they're too large to close.
Robyn Beck AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu October 3, 2013 11:35 am

Pick your comparison.

Read more
Around the Nation
3:29 am
Thu October 3, 2013

Colo. Flooding Challenges Small Business Owners In Lyons

Originally published on Thu October 3, 2013 10:53 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Amid the partial government shutdown, the Small Business Administration will continue only a few programs, including disaster relief loans. That's good news in Colorado, where nearly a thousand businesses were damaged or destroyed by recent flooding. Many more could see sales go down.

Grace Hood of member station KUNC traveled to the small town Lyons to understand the full scope of challenges facing small businesses.

Read more
Business
3:23 am
Thu October 3, 2013

Fashion Designer Mark Jacobs To Leave Louis Vuitton

Originally published on Thu October 3, 2013 10:53 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And in other business news, Marc Jacobs is packing his bags. The fashion designer is leaving Louis Vuitton after 16 years. He is expected to focus on an eventual IPO for his own Marc Jacobs brand.

NPR's Margot Adler reports.

MARGOT ADLER, BYLINE: There was a sense of foreboding at Marc Jacob's spring fashion show in Paris. First, the music.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

Read more
Politics
3:17 am
Thu October 3, 2013

Why A Handful Of Hard-Liners Has A Hold On Boehner

House Speaker John Boehner speaks to the media after a meeting with President Obama at the White House on Wednesday.
Saul Loeb AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu October 3, 2013 10:53 am

To understand House Speaker John Boehner's role in the government shutdown, you have to understand the 30 or so House Republican hard-liners and his relationship with them.

It's an uneasy one at best.

"Listen, we've got a diverse caucus," was how Boehner put it in mid-September, shortly after the 30 forced him to ditch his original plan for a temporary government funding bill.

"Whenever we're trying to put together a plan, we've got 233 members — all of whom have their own plan," he said. "It's tough to get them on the same track. We got there."

Read more
Shots - Health News
3:17 am
Thu October 3, 2013

From Therapy Dogs To New Patients, Federal Shutdown Hits NIH

The Clinical Center at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Md.
National Institutes of Health

Originally published on Fri October 4, 2013 11:00 am

Abbey Whetzel has a 12-year-old son named Sam who has been at the National Institutes of Health Clinical Center in Maryland for over a month. He has leukemia that is no longer treatable. And in this difficult time, one source of joy has been the therapy dogs that come to visit the sick kids.

"They can only come once a week, but it's the highlight of Sam's week," says Whetzel. But this week, she says, her son got some bad news. "They came and stopped in, and told Sam that the therapy dog wouldn't be coming because of the government shutdown."

Read more
Politics
3:17 am
Thu October 3, 2013

Government Shutdown Will Add To VA's Backlog

Originally published on Thu October 3, 2013 10:53 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

All right. The partial government shutdown could take an especially painful toll on American veterans. The most serious consequences will not come unless the shutdown continues for weeks. Those consequences would include cutting off disability and education benefits. Politicians on both sides have scrambled to show their support for vets, but as NPR's Quil Lawrence reports, veterans applying for new benefits may already be suffering.

Read more
Politics
3:17 am
Thu October 3, 2013

Day 3 Of Shutdown: Both Sides Remain Dug In

Originally published on Thu October 3, 2013 10:53 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

The nation has grown accustomed to political crisis manufactured in Washington.

INSKEEP: Americans and their leaders are less accustomed to the situation now. The drama leading up to the deadline for a government shutdown was familiar.

Read more
Business
3:17 am
Thu October 3, 2013

Rhode Island City Appeals For Funds To Get Trash Cans

Originally published on Thu October 3, 2013 10:53 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And our last word in business is: Crowd Funding.

Central Falls, a former mill city in Rhode Island, has turned to the Internet for donations to fund a government project.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Now this is a town that was so broke a couple of years ago, it could not keep its only library open or pay full pension benefits to firefighters and policemen. It had to file for bankruptcy.

Read more
Business
3:17 am
Thu October 3, 2013

Court Ordered To Review BP Payout Formula

Originally published on Thu October 3, 2013 10:53 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

NPR's business news begins with a reprieve for BP.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

INSKEEP: The energy company has won a partial victory after a U.S. appeals court halted some payments related to the 2010 oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. This is a big win for BP which had complained that the payout formula was too generous, and compensated people who were not harmed. Billions of dollars in claims were filed by businesses and individuals in the aftermath of the Deepwater Horizon spill.

Read more
Africa
3:17 am
Thu October 3, 2013

Even With Peace, It's Hard To Be A Liberian Entrepreneur

Originally published on Thu October 3, 2013 10:53 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

For years, the small West African nation of Liberia was associated with violence, child soldiers, blood diamonds, 14 years of one of the world's most brutal civil wars. Now Liberia is celebrating a full decade of peace. Tamasin Ford brings us the story of one enterprising young woman there who's learning to operate in the new Liberia.

Read more
National Security
3:17 am
Thu October 3, 2013

NSA Head Admits Testing U.S. Cellphone Tracking

Originally published on Thu October 3, 2013 10:53 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Top U.S. intelligence officials are now warning about the threat to security posed by the partial federal shutdown. It is now idling most of the civilian workforce in the intelligence community. This follows an earlier warning to Congress about limiting their ability to monitor phone and data traffic.

That plea began during a Senate hearing about possible changes to intelligence laws, as NPR's Larry Abramson reports.

Read more
Politics
2:14 am
Thu October 3, 2013

National Parks Close As Other Public Lands Stay Open

The road to Lee's Ferry, Ariz., is blocked by barricades and national park rangers. Lee's Ferry is the launching point for river trips down the Colorado River through Grand Canyon National Park.
Scott Lee NPR

Originally published on Thu October 3, 2013 10:53 am

From Acadia in Maine to Zion in Utah to the North Cascades in Washington, America's 401 national park areas have gates blocking entrance roads.

The last remaining campers and hotel guests in the parks must leave Thursday, and park rangers will patrol to keep others out.

The national parks "belong to the American people, and the American people should have the right to come in," says National Park Service Director Jonathan Jarvis. "But the only way I can protect these places during this period is to shut them down."

Read more
Middle East
1:21 am
Thu October 3, 2013

Israel Eases Restriction On Building Materials To Gaza Strip

Palestinians inspect trucks loaded with iron arriving from Israel through the Kerem Shalom border crossing into Rafah, southern Gaza Strip, on Sept. 22. The delivery of the materials to the private sector is a first since the Hamas takeover in 2007.
Hatem Moussa AP

Originally published on Sun October 6, 2013 7:05 am

Israel eased a major restriction on the Gaza Strip last week. For the first time in six years, limited commercial shipments of cement and iron were allowed through Israel into Gaza.

Read more
Shots - Health News
1:07 am
Thu October 3, 2013

Back To Work After A Baby, But Without Health Insurance

People get information on California's health exchange at a table at Union Station in Los Angeles on Tuesday, the exchange's opening day.
Reed Saxon AP

Originally published on Sat October 5, 2013 7:13 pm

Pardit Pri had health insurance until she decided to quit her job as a legal administrative assistant and stay home with her newborn son 20 months ago. She thought she'd have coverage by now. But it didn't work out that way.

"I knew that I wasn't going to be working for a while because I decided to stay home with my son, and I thought ... 'OK, fingers crossed. Nothing will happen during that time,' " she says, as she plays with her son in their Orange County, Calif., apartment.

Read more
It's All Politics
1:05 am
Thu October 3, 2013

Reid's Tough Tactics In Shutdown Drama Draw Notice

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid pauses outside the West Wing of the White House after meeting Wednesday with President Obama, House Speaker John Boehner, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell.
Pablo Martinez Monsivais AP

Originally published on Thu October 3, 2013 10:53 am

As the leader of Senate Democrats, Harry Reid has been in a lot of fights — but this one may be different, in that Reid has drawn a line.

Throughout the weeks leading up to the shutdown, through four votes in the Senate with not a single defection from the Democratic caucus, and once again after the meeting at the White House, Reid has rejected any of the changes in the Affordable Care Act that House Republicans have demanded as a condition for funding the federal government.

Read more
Around the Nation
1:05 am
Thu October 3, 2013

While Others Underfunded Pensions, Milwaukee Held Firm

Bill Averill, 62, has retired from the City of Milwaukee assessor's office and is collecting his pension. Milwaukee's fund is consistently rated as one of the best-performing in the country.
Erin Toner WUWM

Originally published on Thu October 3, 2013 10:53 am

After more than two decades in city government, Bill Averill has a pretty impressive mental inventory of Milwaukee real estate. He started in the city assessor's office when he was 34, after leaving a private sector job that paid better but had no retirement benefits.

"That was one of the main reasons I went to work for the City of Milwaukee," he says. "And so I knew the pension at some time, way out in the future, would be a benefit to me."

Read more
All Tech Considered
1:02 am
Thu October 3, 2013

The Man Behind The Shadowy Illicit Drug Market, Silk Road

A screen grab from a December 2012 StoryCorps interview with Ross Ulbricht, the alleged mastermind of the online marketplace known as Silk Road.
YouTube

Originally published on Thu October 3, 2013 10:53 am

It's not every day federal authorities get to bust a case like this. It involves millions of dollars, illicit drugs and a would-be assassin, all of which allegedly were bought and sold on the Internet, in a shadowy online marketplace known as the Silk Road. On Tuesday, federal authorities shut down that site and arrested 29-year-old Ross Ulbricht, the man they say is its mastermind.

Read more
Shots - Health News
12:59 am
Thu October 3, 2013

Small Businesses May Find Insurance Relief In Exchanges

An employee of Covered California works in the newly opened call center in Rancho Cordova, Calif. Covered California is the state's new health insurance exchange.
Rich Pedroncelli AP

Originally published on Thu October 3, 2013 12:11 pm

Walk down the carpeted hallways of Westwind Media in Burbank, Calif., and it's common to hear the odd explosion, the hum of traffic or a burst of gunfire.

It's here in these edit bays that small feature films and TV dramas like the ABC hits Grey's Anatomy and Scandal and CBS's Person of Interest get primped and polished for prime-time viewing.

Read more
Politics
5:56 pm
Wed October 2, 2013

Boehner, Obama Meet But Make No Progress On Deal To End Shutdown

Day two of the government shutdown is nearing its finish, with no end in sight. And that's in spite of talks at the White House late today. President Obama met with House Speaker John Boehner for over an hour Wednesday evening. The meeting failed to produce a deal that would end the federal government shutdown.

The Government Shutdown
4:57 pm
Wed October 2, 2013

Some Are Benefiting From The Government Shutdown

Rasim Akin Sevimli of Turkey tries to peer through the glass of the closed Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum on Tuesday — his only chance to see the museum before leaving Washington, D.C.
Carolyn Kaster AP

Originally published on Thu October 3, 2013 10:52 am

Among the temporary casualties of the government shutdown, besides the paychecks of 800,000 workers, are all federally funded tourist attractions.

Sure, it's a bummer for those who planned vacations around the Smithsonian museums and galleries, national parks and national monuments (although barricades didn't stop some veterans at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., Tuesday).

Read more
The Two-Way
4:53 pm
Wed October 2, 2013

Jury: Concert Promoter Was Not Liable In Michael Jackson Death

Brian Panish, attorney for the Michael Jackson family, delivers his closing argument to jurors in the Michael Jackson lawsuit against concert promoter AEG Live last week in Los Angeles.
Pool Getty Images

Originally published on Wed October 2, 2013 5:55 pm

A Los Angeles jury has found concert promoter AEG Live was not negligent in the death of pop superstar Michael Jackson, who died of a sedative overdose four years ago.

Jackson's mother had sought $1.5 billion in damages — a figure AEG's attorney called "ridiculous" last week.

Reuters reports the jury ruled unanimously. The 12-person panel in the wrongful death lawsuit was made up of six men and six women, but only nine jurors were needed to decide the case.

Read more
It's All Politics
4:45 pm
Wed October 2, 2013

Shutdown Diary: Day 2

Anti-shutdown protesters in Los Angeles may have had enough of the budget crisis, but it appears to be far from over.
Jae C. Hong AP

Originally published on Wed October 2, 2013 7:12 pm

Wednesday's Highlights:

White House

Day 2 of the federal government shutdown found President Obama summoning congressional leaders to the White House to urge House Republicans to pass legislation to reopen agencies and raise the debt ceiling to avoid a first-ever default by the U.S. (Nothing was resolved; here's the story.)

Read more
The Two-Way
4:14 pm
Wed October 2, 2013

Legal Advocates Want Overhaul Of Public Defender System

Former Vice President Walter Mondale speaks at a Georgetown University Law Center discussion last week. He is one of several prominent individuals calling for better legal representation for the poor.
Win McNamee Getty Images

Originally published on Thu October 3, 2013 7:55 am

Prominent members of the legal community are pressuring the Obama administration to do more to ensure that poor criminal defendants have access to a lawyer, a situation that Attorney General Eric Holder has already likened to a national crisis.

Read more
The Two-Way
4:05 pm
Wed October 2, 2013

John Boehner Reports No Progress After Meeting With Obama

The White House is seen behind a stop sign in Washington, D.C, on Oct. 1.
Karen Bleier AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu October 3, 2013 11:46 am

Update at 7:15 p.m. ET. No Progress:

Speaker of the House John Boehner, a Republican from Ohio, stepped out of the White House this evening after a 90-minute meeting with President Obama and reported no progress.

"They will not negotiate," Boehner said. "All we are asking for here is a discussion and fairness for the American people on Obamacare."

Read more
All Tech Considered
4:05 pm
Wed October 2, 2013

Calif. Bans Jilted Lovers From Posting 'Revenge Porn' Online

Originally published on Thu October 3, 2013 10:08 am

After a breakup, raw feelings can set off a desire for revenge. Some jilted lovers have taken to posting intimate pictures of a former partner on the Internet. It's a phenomenon known as "revenge porn," and on Monday, California Gov. Jerry Brown signed a law making it a crime.

The new law is a victory to Holly Jacobs, who was a victim of revenge porn. Jacobs went through what sounds like a typical boy-meets-girl story of falling in and out of love. The first year of the relationship, Jacobs and her partner lived in the same city, but she left to go to graduate school in Miami.

Read more
Remembrances
3:36 pm
Wed October 2, 2013

Tom Clancy Dies, Left 'Indelible Mark' On Thriller Genre

Tom Clancy, seen here in 2010, was an insurance agent before publishing The Hunt For Red October in 1984.
David Burnett

Originally published on Wed October 2, 2013 5:56 pm

Best-selling author Tom Clancy has died. He was 66 years old. Beginning with the publication of his 1984 megahit The Hunt for Red October, Clancy wrote a string of blockbuster thrillers inspired by his fascination with military hardware and history.

Clancy didn't mince words when he talked to would-be writers. "If your objective is to write a book, get a computer and write the damn book," he told members of the military at a 2004 writing workshop. "Yes, you can do this if you try hard enough. It's a lot easier than you realize it is."

Read more
It's All Politics
3:36 pm
Wed October 2, 2013

GOP Establishment Grapples With A Tea Party That Won't Budge

Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y., is among the Republicans who want to pass a spending bill not tied to defunding or delaying the Affordable Care Act.
J. Scott Applewhite AP

Originally published on Wed October 2, 2013 5:56 pm

The old line in Washington is that the "establishment" controls everything.

But the fights that have resulted in the government shutdown have turned that cliche upside down.

This time, it's the Tea Party and its allies in Congress calling the shots. The "establishment" — on Capitol Hill and in the business community — has so far been on the outs.

You can hear the frustration in the voice of 11-term Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y., as he runs a gantlet of reporters at the Capitol.

"I'm just more concerned about there not being a clean CR," he says amid the hubbub.

Read more
All Tech Considered
3:36 pm
Wed October 2, 2013

Social Media Detectives: Is That Viral Video For Real?

via YouTube

Originally published on Wed October 2, 2013 5:56 pm

Read more
It's All Politics
3:29 pm
Wed October 2, 2013

Shutdown Gives Americans New Reason To Hate Washington

Regina Whittington (right) of Little Rock, Ark., and her friend Diana Fuller, of Noble, Okla., walk toward the entrance to the Gateway Arch Wednesday in St. Louis.
Jeff Roberson AP

Originally published on Wed October 2, 2013 3:59 pm

There's nothing like a government shutdown to make people angry about government, or at least the politicians who are running things.

"The people we have in the Senate and the House of Representatives, I don't know who they're working for, but they're not working for us," says Larry Abernathy, an insurance broker in St. Louis. "I think both parties are useless."

It's a widely shared belief. People in this Midwestern city may be far removed from the back and forth of the budget debate that has paralyzed Washington, but the partial shutdown is very much on their minds.

Read more

Pages