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All Songs Considered
9:19 am
Wed May 29, 2013

Viking's Choice: Back From The Grave, Autopsy Awakens An 'Arch Cadaver'

Autopsy.
Courtesy of the artist

Autopsy just wants to make nasty death metal, okay? No technical this, no frip-frappity-do that, and by the re-animated corpses of hellbound souls, ain't nothing going to change about it. From the late '80s to the mid-'90s, the Bay Area band was an anomaly among speed demons: a chaotic horde given to lurching rhythms, maniacal guitar solos and drummer Chris Reifert's escaped-mental-patient howls.

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Monkey See
8:56 am
Wed May 29, 2013

Ahem: Asking Someone To The Prom Is Not A 'Proposal'

BVDC iStockphoto.com

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The Record
8:54 am
Wed May 29, 2013

What It Means When 'Hip' Albums Top The Charts

Daft Punk's album Random Access Memories sold 339,000 copies in its first week in stores, the second highest total for any new album in 2013.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed May 29, 2013 4:50 pm

This past week, the No. 1 album in America was by a polo-shirted New York band that has never had a hit single. Even alt-rock radio doesn't play them much.

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The Salt
8:49 am
Wed May 29, 2013

Personalized Coca-Colas, But Not If Your Name Is Mohammed Or Maria

Originally published on Thu May 30, 2013 9:53 am

Remember the disappointment you felt as a kid at the souvenir shop when that personalized key chain wasn't available in your name? For me, it was never finding "Allison" with two L's. My colleague Maria says she was always stuck with "Mary" as her only option.

Facebook fans of Coca-Cola's new "Share a Coke" campaign are having similar frustrations. As part of its new campaign, which recently launched in Europe, the soda giant is printing popular first names on labels of Coke, Diet Coke and Coke Zero.

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Business
8:47 am
Wed May 29, 2013

China's Shuanghui Buys Pork Giant Smithfield For $4.7 Billion

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

NPR's business news begins with a meaty Chinese investment in the U.S.

A Chinese meat producer plans to buy the U.S. meat company Smithfield for $4.7 billion dollars. Smithfield is the world's largest pork producers, and by some estimates, if this deal is approved by regulators, it would be the biggest takeover of a U.S. company by a Chinese company.

The Two-Way
8:46 am
Wed May 29, 2013

Larry King Signs Up With The Russians

Larry King in April at a charity gala in Las Vegas.
Bryan Steffy Getty Images for Keep Memory Alive

Larry King, who signed off from CNN in December 2010, has signed on with the English-language arm of RT, the Russian TV channel that aims to cover "the major issues of our time for viewers wishing to question more and delivers stories often missed by the mainstream media."

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Shots - Health News
8:14 am
Wed May 29, 2013

Health Differences May Explain Medicare Spending Variation

Where a person lives seems to have an effect on Medicare spending. But why?
iStockphoto.com

The idea that uneven Medicare health care spending around the country is caused by wasteful practices and overtreatment — a concept that has influenced portions of the federal health law — took another hit in a study published Tuesday.

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The Two-Way
7:59 am
Wed May 29, 2013

6 Stories To Mark 60 Years Since First Summit Of Everest

Mount Everest.
AFP AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed May 29, 2013 8:12 am

On this, the 60th anniversary of the first successful summit of the world's tallest mountain, there's plenty of news about Mount Everest. Here are six stories we found interesting:

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The Two-Way
7:27 am
Wed May 29, 2013

Smithfield Foods To Be Sold To Chinese Firm For $4.72 Billion

Smithfield Foods, makers of ham products under a variety of brand names, is being purchased by Chinese food maker Shuanghui International, for $4.72 billion in cash.
LM Otero AP

Originally published on Wed May 29, 2013 8:11 am

The makers of Smithfield Ham, an icon on America's culinary scene for decades, are selling the publicly traded company to China's Shuanghui International Holdings Limited for about $4.72 billion in cash. The deal also includes an exchange of debt.

The purchase values Smithfield Foods at $7.1 billion — a figure that would make the purchase "the largest Chinese takeover of a U.S. company," according to Bloomberg News.

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Monkey See
6:39 am
Wed May 29, 2013

Entirely Real Photos: Wax Will Smith Gets Jiggy With Wax George Clooney

The Will Smith waxwork figure is unveiled at Madame Tussauds on May 22, 2013 in London, where it hangs out with the George Clooney and Emma Watson wax figures, because why not?
Ben A. Pruchnie Getty Images

As you know, we at Monkey See enjoy creepy wax figurines maybe more than anything in the world, and now, Wax George Clooney (whose adventures we have chronicled in the past) has been joined at a photo shoot in London by Wax Will Smith, as well as Wax Emma Watson. You know, just to hang out. To talk about movies. To talk about being made of wax.

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The Two-Way
6:28 am
Wed May 29, 2013

Tuesday's Tornadoes To Be Followed By More Storms Wednesday

Where the weather is expected to be the worst Wednesday.
National Weather Service

Tuesday's warnings about more severe weather and the likelihood of tornadoes across much of the nation's midsection proved accurate.

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The Two-Way
5:57 am
Wed May 29, 2013

Cleveland Hero Charles Ramsey Says No Thanks To Free Burgers

Charles Ramsey on the day three young women (and one of the women's daughters) were rescued from a Cleveland home. He gained fame for his accounts of what happened.
Scott Shaw The Plain Dealer /Landov

We need to update the news that a dozen Cleveland area restaurants said they would give Charles Ramsey "free burgers for life" because of the way he helped rescue three young women and a little girl from the home where police say they had been held captive and brutalized for years.

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First Reads
5:38 am
Wed May 29, 2013

Exclusive First Read: 'TransAtlantic' By Colum McCann

Hulton Archive Getty Images

Originally published on Wed May 29, 2013 9:51 am

  • Listen to the Excerpt

Like his 2009 National Book Award-winning novel, Let the Great World Spin, Colum McCann's TransAtlantic is a braided novel that weaves together the stories of various characters — some historical, others invented. The storylines illustrate the deep and complex connections tying Ireland and the U.S. over a span of some 150 years, beginning with Frederick Douglass, who visits Ireland in 1845 to drum up abolitionist support, and ending with Sen.

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The Two-Way
5:25 am
Wed May 29, 2013

Book News: Kipling Admitted Plagiarizing 'Promiscuously'

English poet and novelist Rudyard Kipling poses in 1925.
Hulton Archive Getty Images

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

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Europe
5:22 am
Wed May 29, 2013

Swedish High School Flubs Graduation Requirement

Originally published on Wed May 29, 2013 8:47 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

World
5:17 am
Wed May 29, 2013

Nepalese Climber Gives Up For Now On Regaining Everest Title

Originally published on Wed May 29, 2013 8:47 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning, I'm Renee Montagne with a follow-up on the record for oldest person to scale Mount Everest. An 81-year-old Nepalese climber earned the title five years ago when he was 76. Last week, an 80-year-old Japanese climber took the crown. Now Min Bahadur Sherchan has given up his attempt to snatch it back but bad weather, due to the season, forced him to turn back. Disappointing. Still, it wasn't age that proved the ultimate barrier.

It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

The Two-Way
5:12 am
Wed May 29, 2013

Moms Are Now Primary Breadwinners In 40 Percent Of Homes

Dawn Heisey-Grove of Alexandria, Va., hands off son Zane to father Jonathan Heisey-Grove after a midday feeding. The couple were both working full time when Jonathan lost his job as a graphic designer two years ago. She's a public health analyst. He's now a stay-at-home dad.
Kainaz Amaria/NPR

Originally published on Wed May 29, 2013 8:11 am

"A record 40 percent of all households with children under the age of 18 include mothers who are either the sole or primary source of income for the family," the Pew Research Center reported Wednesday as it released data that certainly won't surprise many Americans but will underscore some dramatic shifts over recent decades.

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Book Reviews
5:03 am
Wed May 29, 2013

The Courage To Cross An Ocean, Explored In 'TransAtlantic'

Originally published on Sun June 9, 2013 4:36 pm

In 1845, Frederick Douglass sailed to Ireland on a speaking tour to raise money for the abolitionist cause back home. About 75 years later, two airmen, Jack Alcock and Teddy Brown, performed the first nonstop trans-Atlantic flight, flying 16 hours from Newfoundland to land in an Irish bog. And 79 years after that, George J. Mitchell, the former senator from Maine, repeatedly crisscrossed the ocean — New York, Belfast, New York, Belfast — to steer the Northern Ireland peace process on behalf of President Clinton.

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Political Junkie
4:53 am
Wed May 29, 2013

Virginia Lt. Gov. Nominee Excites The Right, And Democrats Couldn't Be Happier

button courtesy of David Ray

It's taken awhile, but Tea Party activists and social conservatives are finally beginning to get smiles on their faces. Whether that will last through the November election is another story.

After watching their insufficiently conservative (in their view) presidential nominee lose last November, their opposition to taxing-the-rich fall by the wayside thanks to congressional Republican acquiescence, and changes in same-sex marriage and immigration coming faster than they might have wished, some on the right were becoming inconsolable.

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The Two-Way
4:33 am
Wed May 29, 2013

Tea Party Favorite Rep. Michele Bachmann Leaving Congress

She's saying goodbye, for now at least: Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., has announced she won't seek re-election in 2014. (File photo from Jan. 4, 2012, when she left the Republican presidential race.)
Jim Young Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Wed May 29, 2013 8:53 am

Rep. Michele Bachmann, a hero to many conservatives and tea party advocates who saw her fortunes rise and fall quickly in the 2012 race for the GOP presidential nomination, announced early Wednesday that she will not seek re-election to a fifth term in Congress.

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Asia
4:31 am
Wed May 29, 2013

U.S. Drone Strike Hits Taliban Stronghold In Pakistan

Originally published on Wed May 29, 2013 8:47 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

On this Wednesday, we are following developments in Pakistan. A U.S. drone strike has killed four suspected militants, including - according to some reports - the Taliban's second-in-command in Pakistan. Now, we should say the militant group denies that he's dead. This is the first strike since President Obama's speech last Thursday, announcing that the use of drones would be scaled back to limit civilian casualties.

Political Junkie
4:18 am
Wed May 29, 2013

It's ScuttleButton Time!

Ken Rudin collection

Originally published on Wed May 29, 2013 8:32 am

Just a reminder that there is a possibility ScuttleButton may disappear from the NPR Web site in the next month or so. So if I were you, I'd sign up for the Political Junkie mailing list (info below) to make sure you'll be in the know as to where these irreplaceable and delightful features wind up.

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Africa
3:30 am
Wed May 29, 2013

Al-Qaida Letter Reprimands Difficult Employee

Originally published on Thu May 30, 2013 10:45 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

On a Wednesday, it's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm David Greene.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne. You could call it a failing performance review. Recently uncovered correspondence from the North African branch of al-Qaida lays out - in bullet points - the shortcomings of one of its local leaders. In the letter, he is chastised by his bosses for sloppy expense reports, ignoring emails and failing to pull off, quote, "any single spectacular operation."

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Asia
3:30 am
Wed May 29, 2013

China's Leaders Promise To Speed Up Economic Growth

Originally published on Wed May 29, 2013 11:31 am

The Communist Party's new leadership has pledged to change China's slowing economy by putting a greater emphasis on private enterprise and reining in huge but far less profitable state-owned businesses. Economists say the party has no choice but to update if it wants to stay in power, but they doubt that a genuine overhaul is in the works.

Business
3:29 am
Wed May 29, 2013

White House Economic Advisers To Leave

Originally published on Thu May 30, 2013 8:19 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

One of President Obama's top economic advisers is leaving the White House later this year, to return to his teaching job at Princeton. Since 2011, Alan Krueger has chaired the President's Council of Economic Advisers.

NPR's Scott Horsley takes this look back at his time in the White House.

SCOTT HORSLEY, BYLINE: One of Alan Krueger's tasks at the White House is deciphering the many different signals the economy sends, including the closely watched jobs report that typically comes out on the first Friday of the month.

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Politics
3:29 am
Wed May 29, 2013

Redistricting Issue Heats Up In Texas

Originally published on Wed May 29, 2013 8:47 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning, I'm David Greene.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

We're going to hear now about drawing and redrawing the political map in two big states, beginning with Texas, where the legislature has had some legendary battles over the years, few more contentious than those involving revising legislative and congressional districts. One of the more dramatic saw Democratic lawmakers fleeing the state in an effort to block the process.

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Law
3:29 am
Wed May 29, 2013

Fox Dispute Justice Department's Stand On Subpoena

Originally published on Wed May 29, 2013 8:47 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

When it was revealed recently that the Justice Department had secretly seized records belonging to journalists, part of an effort to end high-profile government leaks, it sparked a huge debate about press freedom. But in one of the cases involving Fox News, there is a disagreement. Justice officials say they told Fox they were about to obtain telephone records for one of its senior reporters. The man at the center of the story has a different version of events, as NPR's David Folkenflik reports.

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Business
3:29 am
Wed May 29, 2013

Business News

Originally published on Wed May 29, 2013 8:47 am

Transcript

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

NPR's business news begins with a big bump for housing.

House prices went up 10 percent between March of this year and last year. That's according to the latest S&P/Case-Shiller Index. It's the largest gain in housing prices in seven years, putting prices on average where they were in mid-2003.

Business
3:29 am
Wed May 29, 2013

The Last Word In Business

Originally published on Wed May 29, 2013 8:47 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And we'll end this hour on a different note. Our last word in business is: Ap cappella.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "YOU AND I")

NYC SHARP: (Singing) When we launched you treated me, we should patch up. But the next dream meeting wasn't for six months. This time I'm not leaving without you.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

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