This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan in Washington. Heat in the summertime is usually not news, but this year is more than a little out of the ordinary. The first six months of 2012 is already on the books as the warmest half-year on record according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
On July 2, TheNew York Times ran a review of author Patrick Somerville's book This Bright River. It was not a flattering assessment. Film and literary critic Janet Maslin described the starting point as "generic" and the destination as "soggy."
When Somerville read the review, he realized the whole thing hinged on a factual error: Maslin mixed up two characters from the very beginning, confusing which one got hit in the head.
Originally published on Tue July 10, 2012 12:31 pm
You might be surprised at how powdered milk, dehydrated kelp and shelf-stable chorizo can come together in ways that taste good — especially if you've been cooped up for a few months on a mission with five strangers on a desolate lava crater in Hawaii.
This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan in Washington. Last week's disappointing jobs numbers offer little hope of change anytime soon for the millions of long-term unemployed and underemployed Americans. For too many, this crisis has extended so long that cherished plans have been set aside and sights lowered: owning a home maybe, a college fund for the kids, family vacations.
In this photo released by the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) and distributed in Tokyo by the Korea News Service on Monday, July 9, 2012, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, right, and a woman clap with others on Friday as they watch a performance by North Korea's new Moranbong band in Pyongyang. Observers think she is Hyon Song-wol.
Two doctors and a trainer affiliated with seven-time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong have received lifetime bans from the sport because they failed to contest allegations that they violated doping bans.
The former members of the U.S. Postal Service Pro-Cycling Team — Dr. Luis Garcia del Moral, cycling team doctor, Dr. Michele Ferrari, cycling team consulting doctor, and Jose "Pepe" Martí, cycling team trainer — were charged by the United States Anti-Doping Agency at the same time they announced charges against Armstrong.
The organization, which promotes "progressive ideas and action," came to that conclusion when it analyzed surveys given to students by the Department of Education for its National Assessment of Educational Progress.
I'm Maria Hinojosa, and this is TELL ME MORE, from NPR News. Michel Martin is away. Coming up, we look at a growing trend: moms starting their own businesses. It can come with more flexibility, but there are also emotional and financial risks. We talk to a group of mom-preneurs, and that's just ahead.
We turn now to Nancy Northup. She's the president and CEO of the Center for Reproductive Rights, which is representing the Jackson Women's Health Organization in court. This is the only abortion clinic in Mississippi, and it might have to close its doors if a new law there is upheld. If it closes, Mississippi would be the only state with no working abortion clinic. She joins me from her office in New York City. Nancy, welcome to TELL ME MORE.
We turn now to another story that's making headlines for all the wrong reasons. It's been a bloody year in the Windy City. More than 250 people have reportedly been murdered so far this year in Chicago. That number is up about 38 percent from the same time last year, and now people are asking just what Mayor Rahm Emanuel is doing about it.
He faced reporters yesterday and said some of the old plans to stop violence weren't working now.
Originally published on Tue July 10, 2012 10:25 am
Facing Bach's St. Matthew Passion, I often feel a combination of anticipation and dread. It's a great work, profound in its humanity and spirituality, with sublimely beautiful music. But it's a long haul, and if it's not a good performance, well, I'm stuck. And it can be not-good in various ways: either too solemnly pious or too much an exercise in musical style rather than emotional drama. A new DVD recorded in 2010 at Berlin's great concert hall, the Philharmonie, would be of major interest under any circumstances.
In 2010, there were 78 million adults classified as obese in the United States, and roughly 164,000 primary care doctors to take care of them.
It doesn't take a math wizard to figure out that doctors who handle routine care, although they may well want to help their patients lose weight, are unlikely to have the time to provide the kind of intensive coaching to that would help their patients make a lasting change.
Iran must be "part of the solution" to the crisis in Syria, former U.N. Secretary-General Koffi Annan said today in Tehran.
But as Annan spoke, there was new word about how horrible things have gotten in Syria since protests against the regime of President Bashar Assad began in March 2011 and forces loyal to Assad cracked down on his opponents.
Originally published on Wed July 11, 2012 10:02 am
A fight between political leaders in Scranton, Pa., has left each and every city employee earning $7.25 an hour — minimum wage.
Last week Mayor Chris Doherty slashed pay, on his own, saying Scranton had run out of money. Lackawanna County Judge Michael Barrasse issued an injunction telling the city it must recognize pay rates spelled out in union contracts. But Doherty continues to violate that court order.
Though firefighters have "gained ground on a number of wildfires across the West," they're having trouble in southern Idaho, The Associated Press reports.
There, winds have "fanned a fast-moving blaze across nearly 300 square miles of sagebrush and dry grass," the wire service says. The fire began Saturday. It was apparently sparked by a lightning strike.
Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne. Some forest officials in Minnesota are complaining about deer stands. Deer stands are those small platforms hunters set up in trees to get a better view. In some deer-hunting areas, they've grown into veritable tree houses with stairs, shingled roofs, windows, heaters, lounge chairs, and all on public land. One county land commissioner told the Duluth News Tribune: We're seeing mansions out there. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright National Public Radio.
Batman may be able to save Gotham from villians but the rules of physics apply to him. Four British graduate students produced a paper called "Trajectory of a falling Batman." It says Batman could glide off a 500-foot building as he does in the 2005 movie but he'd hit the ground at a life-threatening 50 miles-per-hour.
It's been a decade since the first permanent International Criminal Court was created. On Tuesday, it delivered its first sentence. The Hague-based court ordered Congolese warlord Thomas Lubango to serve 14 years in prison. He was convicted in March of recruiting and using children as soldiers in his militia.
The number of African-Americans contracting HIV and AIDS runs considerably ahead of the rest of the population. And now the NAACP hopes to harness the power of the black church to help. During its annual convention this week, the civil rights group unveiled a new HIV/AIDS manual. As NPR's Cheryl Corley reports, it's designed to help ministers talk to their congregations about the problem.