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The Two-Way
3:46 pm
Fri August 2, 2013

Kerry Announces Equal Treatment For Visas Of Same-Sex Spouses

Secretary of State John Kerry delivers a policy address regarding same-sex spouses applying for U.S. visas, at the U.S. Embassy in London on Friday.
Jason Reed AP

Originally published on Fri August 2, 2013 3:52 pm

The State Department said Friday it would begin processing visas for same-sex spouses the same as applications from married heterosexuals.

"Effective immediately, when same-sex spouses apply for a visa, the Department of State will consider that application in the same manner that it considers the application of opposite-sex spouses," Secretary of State John Kerry said.

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Shots - Health News
3:39 pm
Fri August 2, 2013

Congress May Be Getting Its Own Obamacare Glitch Fixed

If you worked here, you'd be worried about losing your employer-funded health insurance contributions.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Fri August 2, 2013 8:16 pm

As its last official action before leaving for a five-week summer break, the House today voted — for the 40th time — to block implementation of the federal health law.

But it was something that happened late Thursday night affecting members of Congress and their staffers' own health insurance that attracted more attention around the Capitol.

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It's All Politics
3:19 pm
Fri August 2, 2013

Obama Nominee For IRS Chief Has History With Tough Tasks

President Obama has nominated John Koskinen to be commissioner of the Internal Revenue Service.
Ron Edmonds AP

Originally published on Fri August 2, 2013 4:26 pm

The Internal Revenue Service, under attack by congressional Republicans, has been operating without a permanent commissioner. President Obama nominated John Koskinen on Thursday for what might be seen as a thankless job.

The president called his nominee "an expert at turning around institutions in need of reform." But Koskinen will have his work cut out for him, starting with his Senate confirmation hearing.

History With Struggling Agencies

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U.S.
3:19 pm
Fri August 2, 2013

N.C. Abortion Law Sparks Protest; Governor Responds With Cookies

North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory sent out a plate of cookies to abortion law protesters who had gathered outside the governor's mansion on Tuesday. Audie Cornish speaks with Mary C. Curtis, who writes for the Washington Posts' blog She the People, about the incident and North Carolina politics.

National Security
3:19 pm
Fri August 2, 2013

What A New Surveillance Court Could Look Like

Foreign Intelligence Surveillance courts received increased attention following the leaks about programs monitoring U.S. citizens. Some lawmakers are proposing changes to secret courts, including Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.). He speaks with Melissa Block about the proposal.

Politics
3:19 pm
Fri August 2, 2013

Week In Politics: Jobs, The Fed And Intra-Party Sniping

Originally published on Fri August 2, 2013 4:09 pm

Audie Cornish talks with political commentators David Brooks of The New York Times and Amy Sullivan of the National Journal. They discuss Friday's job numbers; the speculation over who President Obama will appoint to replace Ben Benanke as Fed chairman; and the intra-party sniping between Republicans Chris Christie and Rand Paul.

World
3:19 pm
Fri August 2, 2013

U.S. State Department Cautiously On Alert

U.S. embassies and consulates throughout the Muslim world will be closed on Sunday and possible for longer. The State Department says it is taking the step "out of an abundance of caution" and wouldn't say if they are receiving direct threats. Members of Congress say there are concerns about an al-Qaida-linked attack. Last year, the U.S. ambassador to Libya was killed in Benghazi, along with three other Americans. At that time, there were also violent protests at U.S. embassies in Cairo and Tunisia.

Around the Nation
3:19 pm
Fri August 2, 2013

Gay Bars Join Russia Protests By Boycotting Stoli

Gay bars from West Hollywood to London are condemning Russia's anti-gay laws by shunning one of its most iconic exports: vodka. The foremost brand affected by the boycott is Stolichnaya, or Stoli. The company says it's being wrongfully targeted.

Economy
3:19 pm
Fri August 2, 2013

Weakening Yen Strengthens Toyota's Profits

Friday, Toyota announced that it nearly doubled its quarterly profit over one year ago. The robust earnings were largely due to the weakening of the Yen, brought on by the economic policies of Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

Law
3:19 pm
Fri August 2, 2013

'Whitey' Bulger Won't Testify, But He Didn't Finish Quietly

In Boston Friday, former mob boss James "Whitey" Bulger said he would not take the stand in his criminal trial and that his defense would rest. But before that happened, he railed at the judge and his defense team.

Around the Nation
3:19 pm
Fri August 2, 2013

Yellowstone Geyser Erupts After Years Of Silence

Melissa Block talks to a Yellowstone park visitor who was lucky enough to see Steamboat Geyser erupting for the first time in eight years.

Around the Nation
3:19 pm
Fri August 2, 2013

Minneapolis Mayor Performs Marathon Of Gay Marriage Ceremonies

After Minnesota legalized gay marriage at midnight on Wednesday, Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak kept his City Hall open all night, performing one same-sex marriage ceremony after another. By the wee hours of the morning, he had officiated the weddings of 46 couples. He tells Melissa Block about the experience.

The Two-Way
2:50 pm
Fri August 2, 2013

Supreme Court Denies California Delay On Prisoner Release

A California Department of Corrections officer looks on as inmates at Chino State Prison exercise in the yard in 2010.
Kevork Djansezian Getty Images

The Supreme Court on Friday refused to grant California an extension on an order issued by the justices more than two years ago for the state to release some 10,000 inmates from its overcrowded prisons.

The high court's original May 2011 ruling held that congested conditions in the California's 33 prisons amounted to cruel and unusual punishment as defined by the Eighth Amendment. The court gave the state two years to comply with an order to free the prisoners and alleviate the overcrowding.

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Political Crisis In Egypt
2:28 pm
Fri August 2, 2013

In Egypt, 'Third Square' Protesters Seek Middle Road

Activists from a group called "Third Square," which promotes a middle way in the rift between the Muslim Brotherhood and supporters of the army's overthrow of Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi, shout slogans as they gather to oppose both parties at Sphinx Square in Giza on July 30.
Asmaa Waguih Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Fri August 2, 2013 5:05 pm

Tensions are running high in Egypt, as supporters of ousted Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi continue their protests. But they aren't the only ones.

Barely two weeks after Morsi was toppled in early July, a new protest movement emerged on the scene in Cairo.

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U.S.
2:13 pm
Fri August 2, 2013

The Old Gig: Catching Frogs On Warm Summer Nights

Tommy Peebles shines a light on the pond. With the help of Bick Boyte, the two Tennesseans catch frogs with homemade "gigs" for a frog leg fry they hold every year.
Stephen Jerkins for NPR

Originally published on Fri August 2, 2013 5:05 pm

Bick Boyte plops a 1-pound bullfrog in his aluminum canoe, still half alive. He resumes his kneeling position, perched upfront, on the hunt for a big bellower. Boyte hears the "wom, wom, wom" and knows frogs are within reach.

Boyte and Tommy Peebles have been "gigging" Tennessee ponds together since their daddies first taught them. Boyte now owns a truck dealership. Peebles is a real estate lawyer. But in the warm moonlight, they revert to their boyhoods. Peebles does the paddling.

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All Songs Considered
1:16 pm
Fri August 2, 2013

First Watch: The Garifuna Collective, 'Ubou'

Courtesy of the artist

It's been six years since Andy Palacio and the Garifuna Collective brought the beautifully rich music of the Garifuna people to international consciousness. Their 2007 album Watina became an instant classic, and probably did more than anything else to bring this culture and language to an international audience. But less than a year after Watina's release, Palacio, a vocalist and guitarist, was suddenly gone: dead of a heart attack and stroke at age 47.

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The Two-Way
1:14 pm
Fri August 2, 2013

House Votes To Quash Obamacare, For The 40th Time

The chamber of the House of Representatives.
Alex Wong Getty Images

Originally published on Fri August 2, 2013 1:20 pm

The House of Representatives voted Friday to suppress President Obama's signature legislative accomplishment for the 40th time since the law was passed in 2010.

The vote to gut the Affordable Care Act — or Obamacare — was a near-party-line 232-185 vote. And like the previous 39 times, this is a symbolic vote, because the Democratic-controlled Senate will not take up the measure.

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Shots - Health News
1:13 pm
Fri August 2, 2013

Could Hotter Temperatures From Climate Change Boost Violence?

A police officer guards Cambodia's famed temple of Angkor Wat. The powerful city-state collapsed in 1431 after suffering through two decades of droughts.
Heng Sinith AP

Originally published on Mon August 5, 2013 1:48 pm

Rates of homicide and other violent crimes often spike in cities during heat waves. People get cranky. Tempers flare.

So as the Earth gets hotter because of climate change, will it also become more violent?

Many scientists have thought so. And now a team of economists offers the first quantitative estimates for just how much weather changes might amplify human conflict.

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Interviews
11:34 am
Fri August 2, 2013

Matthew McConaughey, Getting Serious Again

Matthew McConaughey stars as a man on the run from authorities in Jeff Nichols' Mud.
Jim Bridges Roadside Attractions Publicity

Originally published on Mon August 5, 2013 12:30 pm

This interview was originally broadcast on April 23, 2013.

Matthew McConaughey earned early attention as a sensitive actor with his turn in the 1996 legal drama A Time to Kill -- but since then he has mostly made a career with leading-man roles in romantic comedies like How to Lose a Guy In 10 Days, Failure to Launch and The Wedding Planner.

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Movie Reviews
11:34 am
Fri August 2, 2013

A Good Girl And A Lost Boy, Looking For A Way Forward

Shailene Woodley, who played George Clooney's rebellious daughter in The Descendants, turns in a splendidly calibrated performance as a soft-spoken good girl who falls hard for a high school party animal (Miles Teller) in The Spectacular Now.
Wilford Harewood

The teen romance The Spectacular Now is by turns goofy, exhilarating, and unreasonably sad — just like being a teenager.

It centers on a fast-talking, hard-drinking high school party animal named Sutter Keely, who boasts of living for today and in the now — instead of, say, studying — and how he takes up with a girl named Aimee, who's the opposite of a party animal.

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Movies
11:28 am
Fri August 2, 2013

Emotional Terrorism, From The Shelter Of Home

Andre (Niels Arestrup) shares a home with his Moroccan-born adopted son Mounir (Tahar Rahim), who has struggled to find work outside his father's home-based medical practice.
Distrib Films

Our Children, a quietly devastating Belgian domestic drama, opens with a shattered young woman on an IV drip. Then the action moves swiftly back to that same woman, radiantly in love and eager to tell Andre, the man her beloved calls father, that she's planning to marry his boy.

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Shots - Health News
11:05 am
Fri August 2, 2013

That Face-Lift May Buy You Only Three Years Of Youth

Plastic surgeons tend to say a patient is going to look "refreshed," not younger.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Mon August 5, 2013 1:48 pm

The lighting in the NPR newsroom isn't doing me any favors. Maybe it's time to get some "work" done? Then again, cosmetic surgery makes people look only about three years younger and no more attractive, according to a study that tries to add some objectivity to a very subjective field of medicine.

The researchers took before and after photos of 49 people who underwent facial cosmetic surgery at a private practice in Toronto. The patients ranged in age from 42 to 73. Some had face-lifts and neck-lifts; others had brow-lifts or had their eyelids done.

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The Two-Way
11:02 am
Fri August 2, 2013

Ohio: 75 Police Officers Face Punishment In Deadly Car Chase

Originally published on Mon August 5, 2013 7:04 am

Dozens of police officers acted outside the rules and could be disciplined for their role in a massive car chase in Cleveland last fall, according to city leaders, after an official review of the 19-mile pursuit that resulted in two deaths. The review found that 13 officers fired 137 shots. The fleeing driver, Timothy Russell, and his passenger, Malissa Williams, were killed.

Update at 9 a.m. ET, Monday Aug. 5: 75, Not 74, Officers Involved

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The Two-Way
10:41 am
Fri August 2, 2013

WATCH: So Cute! Baby Elephant Splashes In Kiddie Pool

A 300-pound baby playing in a pool.
YouTube

Originally published on Fri August 2, 2013 2:14 pm

We'll get back to the real news, soon enough. But right now, we're pausing for a moment of cute.

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The Two-Way
10:14 am
Fri August 2, 2013

Whitey Bulger Decides Not To Take The Stand

James "Whitey" Bulger, in an image released by the U.S. Marshal's Service in August 2011.
EPA /Landov

Originally published on Fri August 2, 2013 10:18 am

One of the most anticipated testimonies in a criminal trial will not happen: James "Whitey" Bulger, the notorious Boston gangster, decided not to testify in his own defense, today.

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Business
10:06 am
Fri August 2, 2013

U.S. Job Growth Slows A Bit As Wages Shrink

Employees and supporters demonstrate Monday outside of a Wendy's fast-food restaurant in New York City to demand higher pay and the right to form a union. Incomes have been stagnant, especially for minimum-wage workers.
Spencer Platt Getty Images

Originally published on Fri August 2, 2013 11:10 am

Employers added 162,000 workers in July, and the U.S. unemployment rate slipped to 7.4 percent, the lowest level since December 2008, the Labor Department said Friday.

But while the number of jobs did increase, the hiring pace was slower than in the spring, marking a setback for unemployed Americans who had hoped for a better summer.

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The Two-Way
9:46 am
Fri August 2, 2013

Nepal To Clamp Down On Everest Expeditions

Mountaineers on the summit of Mount Everest in May.
AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri August 2, 2013 10:54 am

The Nepalese government says it will tightly monitor next year's ascents of Mount Everest after an embarrassing high-altitude brawl in April between a European climbing team and their Sherpa guides.

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A Blog Supreme
9:33 am
Fri August 2, 2013

What To Expect From The 2013 Newport Jazz Festival Webcast

Get ready for the 2013 Newport Jazz Festival.
Erik Jacobs for NPR

Originally published on Sun August 4, 2013 8:02 am

If you didn't manage to fly in, drive up or sneak your way aboard a yacht bound for coastal Rhode Island — well, we can't help you get to the 2013 Newport Jazz Festival. But if you're not near Aquidneck Island this weekend, you can still catch a lot of the festival from our live NPR Music webcast, presented with WBGO and WGBH.

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Barbershop
9:24 am
Fri August 2, 2013

Barbershop Guys Take A Swing At Sports Controversies

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

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National Security
9:24 am
Fri August 2, 2013

Bradley Manning: Whistleblower Or Traitor?

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

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