Morning Edition

Weekdays from 5am to 9am

Waking up is hard to do, but it's easier with NPR's Morning Edition. Hosts Renée Montagne and Steve Inskeep bring the day's stories and news to radio listeners on the go. Steve and Renee interview newsmakers from politicians, to academics, to filmmakers, Morning Edition provides news in context, airs thoughtful ideas and commentary, and reviews important new music, books, and events in the arts. All with voices and sounds that invite you to experience the stories. Morning Edition is a world of ideas tailored to fit into your busy life.

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StoryCorps
1:13 am
Wed October 23, 2013

A Father, A Daughter And Lessons Learned

Wil Smith with his daughter, Olivia, today.
StoryCorps

Originally published on Wed October 23, 2013 4:47 am

When we met Wil Smith last year, we learned that he and his daughter, Olivia, had been unlikely college roommates at Maine's Bowdoin College in the late '90s. At 27, not only was he older than the other students, but he was also a single dad raising an infant.

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Sports
3:55 am
Tue October 22, 2013

Fake Jerseys Work In A Pinch For Bogota Soccer Team

Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 4:53 am

Walk around any city in Colombia and you'll find vendors selling counterfeit soccer jerseys. That came in handy for Bogota's Independiente Santa Fe team. They showed up for an away game in the wrong color, so a team official bought knockoffs from vendors.

Strange News
3:52 am
Tue October 22, 2013

Man Goes Deer Hunting In Wal-Mart Parking Lot

Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 4:53 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Good morning, I'm Steve Inskeep.

You how it is with deer hunting, you have to get the right gear. You think about the time and place. You might build a deer stand, a kind of treehouse to shoot from high ground. Or you can do like a man in Indiana, Pennsylvania. He spotted a deer in the Wal-Mart parking lot and he shot it right there. The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review says he got six months' probation, even though it was, in all fairness, the first day of hunting season when he opened fire.

World
3:35 am
Tue October 22, 2013

Australian Wildfires Threaten Sydney

Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 4:53 am

Sydney, Australia, is suffering under a blanket of smoke and officials are sounding air quality alerts because of vast wildfires in the area. And it's still early in the fire season. Steve Inskeep talks to Stuart Cohen for the latest.

Parallels
2:50 am
Tue October 22, 2013

Election In Ultra-Orthodox Israeli Town Tests Gender Norms

Candidates for town council Michal Chernovitsky (left) and Adina Ruhamkin campaign in a park in El'ad, or Forever God, a small religious community in Israel. They could be the first women on El'ad's council, and the first ultra-Orthodox women to win public office in Israel.
Emily Harris NPR

Originally published on Sun October 27, 2013 6:29 am

Voters across Israel choose new mayors and city councilors in local elections Tuesday. In one small town, a handful of ultra-Orthodox Jewish women are defying the norms of their community by running for office.

On a recent day, children mob two women in skirts, stockings and purple T-shirts in a neighborhood park in El'ad, or Forever God. The women are candidates for town council. As part of their get-the-word-out campaign, they're blowing up balloons for kids.

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NPR Story
2:50 am
Tue October 22, 2013

Women Break New Ground In Marine Infantry Training

Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 4:53 am

Female Marines have been training for the past month at Camp Lejeune, trying to make it through infantry training. They've got a month to go, including a 12-mile hike with a heavy pack. They're the first ones ever to handle the training, part of an effort to integrate women into combat positions by 2016.

Author Interviews
1:24 am
Tue October 22, 2013

At Guantanamo, 'Sketching' Defendants, Witnesses And KSM's Nose

Khalid Sheikh Mohammed wore a camouflage vest to court. He argued that he was a warrior, and his lawyers convinced the judge to agree to let him wear paramilitary clothing to court.
Fantagraphics Books

Originally published on Tue November 5, 2013 1:45 pm

When the 2006 secretive military tribunals at Guantanamo Bay began, only one courtroom sketch artist was allowed in. Her name is Janet Hamlin.

The Associated Press sent her there. Since then, Hamlin has created a rare visual record of the human drama unfolding in Guantanamo's courtrooms. Those images are now collected in a book, Sketching Guantanamo.

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StoryCorps
1:24 am
Tue October 22, 2013

For A Father With Alzheimer's, Life 'Came Down To Love'

Priya Morganstern (left) and Bhavani Jaroff visited a StoryCorps booth with their father, Ken Morganstern, in 2006. He passed away a year later.
StoryCorps

Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 8:19 am

Five years after Ken Morganstern was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease, he sat down with his daughters Priya Morganstern and Bhavani Jaroff to talk about some of the memories he had left.

At 81, he couldn't see and he needed some prompting from time to time, but family stayed strong in his memory.

He remembered that his dad was an easygoing guy, nicknamed "Happy Harry." "I had a lot of his characteristics, I think," he said.

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Around the Nation
1:23 am
Tue October 22, 2013

West Point Women: A Natural Pattern Or A Camouflage Ceiling?

At the U.S. Military Academy in West Point, N.Y., the graduating class has been about 16 percent female since the institution first accepted women more than 30 years ago.
Mike Groll AP

Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 9:53 am

At the 200-year-old U.S. Military Academy at West Point, tradition dictates everything. That includes the habit of having freshmen stand in the yard everyday and call cadets to lunch. It's also tradition that the overwhelming majority of the graduating class will be white and 84 percent male.

Some say those rates are due to natural patterns of matriculation.

"Women will naturally matriculate — or, they have naturally matriculated — into the academy at about the 16 to 17 percent rate," says West Point admissions director Col. Deborah McDonald.

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U.S.
10:41 am
Mon October 21, 2013

Obama Says He's 'Frustrated' About Health Care Site Issues

Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 1:37 pm

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with an acknowledgement of trouble by President Obama.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

INSKEEP: OK, the president is speaking right now to reporters and others in the White House Rose Garden. Our White House correspondent Scott Horsley has been listening in. He's in our studios. Hi, Scott.

SCOTT HORSLEY, BYLINE: Good to be with you, Steve.

INSKEEP: OK, the president's talking about Obamacare. What's he saying?

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Strange News
3:44 am
Mon October 21, 2013

Scary Halloween Display Prompts Police To Get Involved

Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 1:37 pm

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Steve Inskeep. We are well into Halloween decorating season and police say a British man took it too far. He decorates his front yard each Halloween, raises money for cancer research. Admirable. But police became involved because his display terrified neighborhood children. He was inspired by the movie "The Texas Chainsaw Massacre."

Animals
3:35 am
Mon October 21, 2013

How Did The Chicken Cross The Road? In Style

Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 1:37 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning, I'm Renee Montagne.

We all know why the chicken crossed the road. A new product wants to make sure they get to the other side safely. As chickens become more popular as pets, British company Omlet is selling high-visibility chicken jackets; tiny fluorescent safety vets when they're out on the street. The jackets also protect the birds against rain and cold. But the website warns that owner should be sure to remove them before bedtime. They are not suitable as pajamas.

Television
3:03 am
Mon October 21, 2013

New Cable Channels Try To Lure Millennials Back To TV

Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 1:37 pm

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

OK, three brand-new cable channels all share the same problem. How do you persuade 20-somethings to look up from their phones long enough to gaze at an old-fashioned, regular TV? In Los Angeles, NPR's Neda Ulaby visited one of the channels that's trying to do that.

NEDA ULABY, BYLINE: This could be the set of any cable news show about to go live.

(SOUNDBITE OF TV SHOW, "TAKE PART LIVE")

UNIDENTIFIED ACTRESS: (As character) Three minutes.

UNIDENTIFIED ACTOR: As character) We've got three minutes to air.

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Business
3:03 am
Mon October 21, 2013

What To Know About The Tentative JPMorgan Deal

Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 1:37 pm

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

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

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne. The Justice Department is on the verge of a $13 billion settlement with JPMorgan Chase. That would make it the biggest government fine involving a single company. It involves the allegedly improper sale of mortgage securities that led to the financial crisis of 2008. NPR's Chris Arnold has been following this and he joins us now. Good morning.

CHRIS ARNOLD, BYLINE: Good morning, Renee.

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Around the Nation
3:03 am
Mon October 21, 2013

Ranchers Wonder If U.S. Sheep Industry Has Bottomed Out

The changing landscape of of agriculture is leaving many sheep farms in the dust. Farms are larger and technology makes crops more economically attractive and sheep herds less.
Luke Runyon Harvest Public Meida/KUNC

Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 1:37 pm

Over the last 20 years, the number of sheep in the U.S. has plummeted by half. The sheep industry has actually been declining since the late 1940s, when it hit its peak.

The sharp drop in production has left ranchers to wonder, "When are we going to hit the bottom?"

Some sheep are raised for their wool, others primarily for food. Consumption of both products — lamb meat and wool — have been declining in the U.S.

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Author Interviews
1:07 am
Mon October 21, 2013

Scott Adams Explains 'How To Fail At Almost Everything' (Except Dilbert)

Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 1:37 pm

Scott Adams has failed at a lot of things, from investments to inventions to computer programming. But he managed to turn his failure at office work into a giant success: a comic strip which follows a hapless, cubicle-bound engineer working for an unreasonable boss at a nameless company. Dilbert, which is based on Adams' own experience working in corporate America, appears online and in 2,000 newspapers.

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Keys To The Whole World: American Public Libraries
1:06 am
Mon October 21, 2013

Turning A Page Inside A Rural One-Room Library

Luster checks out books for frequent library visitor Phyllis Smith. Luster says she thinks of herself as a book curator.
Jennifer Davidson KSMU

Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 1:37 pm

There's one state highway running through Myrtle, Mo. It's a sleepy town in the Ozarks, population about 300. There's no bank or restaurant here, but enormous oak and persimmon trees loom over a small stone building right next to the road. Half of it is a post office; the other half, a one-room public library.

Rachel Reynolds Luster took over this branch four months ago with the goal of creating a learning hub. She calls herself a curator, not just a librarian.

Her first task? Filtering out some of the favorites of the previous librarian.

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Shots - Health News
1:05 am
Mon October 21, 2013

Should Severe Premenstrual Symptoms Be A Mental Disorder?

Women's moods can change based on the phases of their menstrual cycle. But does that mean they have a psychiatric disorder?
Katherine Streeter for NPR

Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 1:37 pm

The way Ronna Simmons of Philadelphia describes it, every two weeks a timer goes off.

Simmons, 24, will have been doing just fine, working, taking care of her daughter. And then suddenly everything changes. Normally cheerful, Simmons says she begins to hate herself.

"I tell everybody, 'I'm not myself right now,' " she says. " 'I'll call you back when I'm Ronna again.'"

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Shots - Health News
1:03 am
Mon October 21, 2013

Enrollments For Health Care Exchanges Trickle In, Slowly

Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 1:37 pm

The Obama administration's hopes ran high that millions would flock to enroll for health insurance on state and federal exchanges established under the Affordable Care Act.

Those exchanges went online Oct. 1. The administration projected that half a million individuals or families would enroll within 30 days, according to The Associated Press.

But three weeks in, the data suggest the actual number of enrollments is lagging far behind that number.

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Music Interviews
1:01 am
Mon October 21, 2013

TLC: A Girl Group's 20 Years Of Ups And Downs

TLC's Chilli and T-Boz attend the New York premiere of CrazySexyCool on Oct. 15, 2013.
Brad Barket Getty Images for VH1

Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 1:37 pm

Twenty years ago, Tionne Watkins, Lisa Lopes and Rozonda Thomas came together for the first time to sing and dance for music executives in the hopes of landing a spot in a singing group.

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Business
10:23 am
Fri October 18, 2013

Google Shares Top $1,000 For First Time

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

NPR's business news start with Google at an all-time high.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

GREENE: The Internet giant shares soared to new heights this morning, topping $1,000 a share. Google reported better than expected third-quarter sales and profits, reporting a profit of nearly $3 billion during the third quarter, up nearly 40 percent from a year earlier.

It is now the fourth company trading on a major exchange to have a stock price of $1,000 or more. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Around the Nation
5:12 am
Fri October 18, 2013

During Shutdown, EPA Office Finds Old Soup In Office Fridge

Originally published on Fri October 18, 2013 10:23 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne. Even after sending home nearly all its staff during the shutdown, the Chicago office of the Environmental Protection Agency managed to detect a potentially toxic substance. A 16-year-old can of Campbell's soup was discovered in a refrigerator there. Apparently no one ever got to the back of the fridge until furloughed staff had to take home all their snacks.

A welcome back email included a reminder to keep the fridges clean. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Animals
5:03 am
Fri October 18, 2013

National Zoo's Panda Cam Is Back

Originally published on Fri October 18, 2013 10:23 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Good morning, I'm David Greene.

The government shutdown is over and that means the National Zoo's panda cam is back. After 16 days, it's a reminder they grow up so fast. When we last saw the zoo's panda cub, she was pink and mostly hairless, weighing just three pounds. So when the feed flickered to life yesterday, panda fans were delighted to see the cub has sprouted fur and grown to five pounds. She's also opened her eyes and ears. Maybe Congress should take a cue.

Television
3:39 am
Fri October 18, 2013

'Glee' To End Next Season

Originally published on Fri October 18, 2013 10:23 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Most of the time, Fox's hit show "Glee" offers a sunny vision of high school. It's a musical, after all.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

But last week's episode hit a somber note.

(SOUNDBITE OF TV SHOW, "GLEE")

'GLEE' CAST MEMBERS: (Singing) 525,600 minutes, 525,000 moments so dear...

MONTAGNE: The characters paid tribute to Finn Hudson, who was played by the late actor Corey Monteith. He died of a drug overdose in July.

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Politics
2:03 am
Fri October 18, 2013

Obamacare Fight Leads Sen. Roberts To Turn Against Old Friend Sebelius

Kathleen Sebelius stands with Sen. Pat Roberts (right), R-Kan., and former Senate Majority Leader Bob Dole in 2009.
Susan Walsh AP

Originally published on Fri October 18, 2013 11:28 am

This month's government shutdown grew out of Republicans' insistence on a budget that defunded the Affordable Care Act.

That didn't happen, but Republicans still detest the law — and now there's a movement underway to oust Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius.

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Politics
2:03 am
Fri October 18, 2013

After Shutdown Dust Clears, Where Does Boehner Stand?

Originally published on Fri October 18, 2013 10:23 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And I'm David Greene. Good morning. Today marks the second day of relative normalcy following 16 days of government shutdown and the prospect of a U.S. default on its debts. A pivotal player in this drama was House Speaker John Boehner. He was portrayed alternately as a victim of Tea Party hardliners, as a figurehead haplessly stumbling through this crisis, or as a clever leader who had the ending figured out all along.

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Africa
2:03 am
Fri October 18, 2013

Nigerian Civilians Caught In Crackdown On Islamists

Originally published on Fri October 18, 2013 10:23 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

In Nigeria an Islamist insurgency has claimed thousands of lives, most of them civilians. The Nigerian president imposed a security crackdown last spring in a bid to end the uprising. Now Amnesty International is out with a report warning that more than 950 people have died in military detention in Nigeria in just the first half of this year. And the attacks continue. NPR's West Africa correspondent, Ofeibea Quist-Arcton, reports from, Lagos.

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Planet Money
1:26 am
Fri October 18, 2013

I Lent $999.78 To The Federal Government*

NPR

Originally published on Fri October 18, 2013 11:29 am

Earlier this week, I bought a Treasury bill.

Everybody calls Treasury bills T-bills, and they work like this: The government promises to pay holders of T-bills a specific amount on a specific day in the near future. For the T-bill I bought, the government promised to pay $1,000 on Oct. 31.

I bought the T-bill on Tuesday, before Congress had made the debt-ceiling deal, so it was unclear whether I would get paid back on time.

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StoryCorps
1:25 am
Fri October 18, 2013

Best Friends, Sharing 'Two Sides Of The Same Heart'

Starr Cookman (left) says she and Kylee Moreland Fenton have been "connected at the hip" since they were kids in Tucson, Ariz.
StoryCorps

Originally published on Fri October 18, 2013 10:23 am

Starr Cookman and Kylee Moreland Fenton have been inseparable since childhood. They live on the same street. Kylee, a nurse, was present for the delivery of Starr's son, Rowan. And when Rowan came home from the hospital breathing rapidly and spitting up his food, both friends were alarmed — even when the pediatrician said he was doing fine.

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Economy
1:25 am
Fri October 18, 2013

Declining Gas Prices Pump Up A Shaky Economy

A motorist fuels up at a service station in Springfield, Ill.
Seth Perlman AP

Originally published on Fri October 18, 2013 10:34 am

In recent weeks, economists have been worrying about the negative impact of the now-ended government shutdown and potential debt crisis.

But away from Capitol Hill, the economy has been getting a big boost: Gasoline prices have been declining, week after week. In some parts of the country, a gallon of unleaded regular gasoline is now down to less than $3 a gallon — a price most Americans haven't seen in three years.

And any time the pump price starts dropping, consumer spirits start rising.

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