Europe
10:01 pm
Thu September 22, 2011

Europe's Debt Crisis Casts Cloud Over U.S. Economy

U.S Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner (left) speaks to French Finance Minister Francois Baroin (right) during talks in Marseille earlier this month. The U.S. is increasingly concerned that the European debt crisis will have an impact on the U.S. economy.
Lionel Cironneau AP

With all the worry over the ailing U.S. economy, Europe's debt crisis may have seemed a long way off.

But not anymore. The faint tinkle of alarm bells a few months ago are now clanging loudly. What began as a crisis in smaller countries, like Greece, Portugal and Ireland, is now creating serious issues in much larger economies like Italy, France and Germany.

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Politics
10:01 pm
Thu September 22, 2011

Obama's Jobs Bill Pitch: A Bridge To Nowhere?

President Obama on Thursday visited the Brent Spence Bridge, which has been called "functionally obsolete." The president pressed Congress to pass his jobs act, arguing that if the country doesn't invest in restoring the bridge and other infrastructure now, it will pay for it later.
Pablo Martinez Monsivais AP

Originally published on Fri September 23, 2011 9:16 am

President Obama continued his tour in support of his jobs bill Thursday. The latest stop: Cincinnati, at the base of the double-decker Brent Spence Bridge.

The bridge sits on one of the busiest trucking routes in the country, and it's considered functionally obsolete.

Gerardo Claudio lives in Augusta, Ga., and works all over the U.S. He spends about three weeks on the road every month, which gives him a good look at the nation's infrastructure.

"The roads are in real, real awful condition, should I say," says Claudio, who was in Cincinnati on Thursday.

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Business
10:01 pm
Thu September 22, 2011

High Costs Make It Harder To Grow Young Farmers

Austin Bruns stands on land owned by a contractor for Monsanto, an agriculture corporation. Bruns helps with seed corn production there, and also rents 150 acres elsewhere.
Clay Masters for NPR

In farm country, business is still booming. Commodity prices remain high, and investors are funneling millions of dollars into buying farmland, making it quite enticing for the would-be farmer who wants to leave the rat race.

But surprisingly, these factors make it that much harder for the next generation of farmers to secure the financing they need to get on the tractor.

A High Cost To Start Out

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StoryCorps
10:01 pm
Thu September 22, 2011

Soul Singer Helps Shoeshiner 'Get On The Good Foot'

Earl B. Reynolds spoke with his daughter, Ashley Reynolds, in Roanoke, Va., about how a chance encounter with singer James Brown helped prod him into a new plan for his life.
StoryCorps

Originally published on Fri September 23, 2011 6:30 am

Earl B. Reynolds Jr., 60, grew up in Roanoke, Va., where his father cut hair in his own store, the Virginia Sanitary Barber Shop. And as a little boy, Earl often shined customers' shoes in the shop.

As Reynolds tells his daughter, Ashley Reynolds, a visit from the Godfather of Soul set him on a path in life that eventually put Earl at odds with his father.

Working in the store one day, Earl watched a tour bus pull up to a theater near the shop. The doors opened — and out stepped James Brown.

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The Two-Way
4:54 pm
Thu September 22, 2011

Astronauts Neil Armstrong, Gene Cernan Urge U.S. To Bring Back Shuttles

Astronaut Neil Armstrong, commander of Apollo 11, testifies before the House Science, Space, and Technology Committee about human space flight.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

The first and last men to walk on the moon told a congressional committee today that the United States needs to figure out a way to get back into space.

Neil Armstrong, the first man to walk on the moon, told the House Science, Space and Technology Committee that NASA needs a "master plan" to get Americans back in space.

Since the space shuttle program was grounded earlier this year, the only way for American astronauts to get into low Earth orbit or to the International Space Station is to hitch a ride with the Russian Soyuz spacecraft.

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All Tech Considered
4:18 pm
Thu September 22, 2011

The New 'Top' Story: Facebook's Flow Of Change

I logged on to Facebook this week to check out the changes so many people had been griping about in person. "Top News" blared above my News Feed and even more updates spewed in a stream in the right-hand corner of the screen. I reflexively closed the boxes on my profile that explained the "upgrade" and cluttered my view. I was suddenly in the dark, not knowing how to control the information.

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Shots - Health Blog
4:09 pm
Thu September 22, 2011

Silence From Rep. Bachmann As Vaccine Challenge Expires

Republican presidential candidate Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., speaks during the California Republican Party Fall Convention dinner in Los Angeles.
Chris Carlson AP

Originally published on Mon October 3, 2011 9:54 am

The high noon deadline for bioethicist Arthur Caplan's $10,000 challenge to Rep. Michele Bachmann has come and gone without a peep from the Republican presidential hopeful. But damage from her statement linking the HPV vaccine with mental retardation has already been done, Caplan says.

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It's All Politics
3:31 pm
Thu September 22, 2011

Lamar Alexander: Leaving Senate Leadership Gives Room To Deal

Sen. Lamar Alexander.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

Originally published on Thu September 22, 2011 4:09 pm

When Sen. Lamar Alexander, a Tennessee Republican, announced earlier this week that he was stepping down from the number three position in the Senate GOP leadership, his move got the rumor mill going.

Was it because the 71-year old senior senator from the Volunteer State sensed that he wasn't perceived as hardline enough in the Tea Party-era to advance to the the number two position?

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The Record
3:30 pm
Thu September 22, 2011

Facebook Announces New Partnerships For Music, Movies And TV

Screengrab of the Facebook Music profile picture.
Courtesy of Facebook

Facebook took a leap Thursday towards making itself into what it hopes will be the social center for entertainment and media. You'll be able to see what movies and TV your friends are watching, what music they're listening to and what news items they're reading.

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Education
3:22 pm
Thu September 22, 2011

Too Much GI Bill Money Going To For-Profit Schools?

The nation's for-profit colleges and universities have reaped a windfall from the new post-Sept. 11 GI bill.

The top for-profit companies brought in around a billion dollars in benefits in the last year alone.

Some lawmakers say federal regulations encourage these schools to target current and former members of the military.

At a Senate hearing Thursday, lawmakers and witnesses praised the two-year post-Sept.11 GI bill, saying it had helped many vets and active-duty service personnel go to college.

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