The Two-Way
5:00 am
Fri August 26, 2011

Irene On Track To Soak N.C., Barrel North Toward New York

Head inland: Nags Head, N.C., is among the many communities along the East Coast that are, or have been, evacuated as Irene draws near.
Scott Olson Getty Images

Though Hurricane Irene has weakened slightly and its projected track has been nudged east just a bit, it's still headed for what could be a devastating collision with the East Coast of the U.S. that will affect tens of millions of people from North Carolina to New England over the weekend.

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Asia
4:17 am
Fri August 26, 2011

After 15 Months In Office Japan's Leader Steps Down

Japan's Prime Minister Naoto Kan announced his resignation on Friday. He held the top leadership position for 15 months. His popularity dropped after the government was criticized for its handling of the earthquake, tsunami and nuclear disaster. Kenneth Cukier, the Tokyo correspondent for The Economist, about the political situation in Japan.

Around the Nation
3:10 am
Fri August 26, 2011

Texas Drought Takes Its Toll On Wildlife

It's not only people suffering from the drought in Texas. Susan Edwards, manager of Wildlife Rescue, holds a juvenile raccoon. The raccoon should at least be double in size, but its mother's milk was lacking needed nutrients.
John Burnett NPR

The unfolding calamity that is the Texas drought has thrown nature out of balance. Many of the wild things that live in this state are suffering.

Sections of major rivers — like the Brazos, the Guadalupe, the Blanco, Llano and Pedernales — have dried up. In many places, there aren't even mud holes anymore.

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Tom Goldman is NPR's sports correspondent. His reports can be heard throughout NPR's news programming, including Morning Edition and All Things Considered, and NPR.org.

With a beat covering the entire world of professional sports, both in and outside of the United States, Goldman reporting covers the broad spectrum of athletics from the people to the business of athletics.

During his more than 20 years with NPR, Goldman has covered every major athletic competition including the Super Bowl, the World Series, the NBA Finals, golf and tennis championships, and the Olympic Games.

Economy
10:01 pm
Thu August 25, 2011

As Economy Teeters, All Eyes On Bernanke

Investors are closely watching Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke's speech Friday in Jackson Hole, Wyo.
Alex Wong Getty Images

Originally published on Fri August 26, 2011 9:41 am

Nervous investors will be listening Friday to Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke's remarks in Jackson Hole, Wyo., for clues to additional steps the Fed might take to shore up the sagging economy.

For the past three decades, central bankers, and the people who watch them, have been gathering each summer in the Rocky Mountain resort to do some deep thinking about the economy. Fiscal watchdog Maya MacGuineas, who has attended several of these meetings, says it's not just the view of the Grand Tetons that makes them special.

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Sports
10:01 pm
Thu August 25, 2011

Female Golfing Phenom Seeks Titles, Recognition

The world's top women golfers are battling it out in Mirabel, Quebec, this week at the Canadian Women's Open. In the field is a powerful, yet little-known player: world No. 1 Yani Tseng of Taiwan.

Tseng has been powering and smiling her way around golf courses — and making history. At the relatively tender age of 22, she's already done something that no one who's swung a golf club has done before: Tseng has won five major championships.

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Sports
10:01 pm
Thu August 25, 2011

Woman Reaches K2's Summit, And A Place In History

Climber Gerlinde Kaltenbrunner sits with her husband, Ralf Dujmovits, in this file photo from 2009. This week, Kaltenbrunner became the first woman to climb all the world's 14 tallest peaks without using supplementary oxygen.
Ralf Dujmovits dapd

At more than 28,000 feet, K2 is the second-highest mountain in the world. And when Gerlinde Kaltenbrunner reached its summit this week, she became the first woman to climb all 14 of the world's tallest peaks without using any supplementary oxygen.

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Middle East
10:01 pm
Thu August 25, 2011

Western Sanctions May Put Slow Squeeze On Syria

Syrian street vendors display their goods in downtown Damascus on Tuesday, Aug. 23. Syria's economy was hit hard initially by the anti-government uprising. It has bounced back, but now the U.S. is urging the E.U. to join in banning import of crude oil from Syria.
Joseph Eid AFP/Getty Images

The Syrian economy has so far weathered the mass protests and widespread violence that have rocked most every major city. But in a move that could increase the pressure, the European Union is considering a ban on imported Syrian oil, similar to sanctions the U.S. imposed earlier this month.

Western governments say the Syrian regime's harsh response to an anti-government uprising has demonstrated that it is not fit to lead.

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Around the Nation
10:01 pm
Thu August 25, 2011

Drought Puts Texas Ranchers, And Cattle, At Risk

A severe drought has caused shortages of grass, hay and water in most of Texas, forcing ranchers to thin their herds or risk losing their cattle to the drought. Cattle use a tree for shade in late July, as temperatures rose above 100 degrees near Canadian, Texas.
Scott Olson Getty Images

In the cattle town of Emory in East Texas, the worst drought in state history is threatening a way of life. Scorching temperatures and no rain have forced many ranchers to sell off their stock.

Normally before being brought to market, cattle are penned in a rancher's best pasture to be fattened. The heavier the cow, the more the buyer pays.

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Science
10:01 pm
Thu August 25, 2011

Big-Box Stores' Hurricane Prep Starts Early

A convoy of Walmart trucks waited to enter New Orleans on Sept. 1, 2005, after the city was battered by Hurricane Katrina. Government agencies said the massive storm taught them that big-box retailers need to be an integral part of hurricane preparation and relief efforts.
Nicholas Kamm AFP/Getty Images

Forecasters don't expect Hurricane Irene to make landfall until Saturday. But for nearly a week now, big-box retailers like Walmart and Home Depot have been getting ready.

They've deployed hundreds of trucks carrying everything from plywood to Pop-Tarts to stores in the storm's path. It's all possible because these retailers have turned hurricane preparation into a science — one that government emergency agencies have begun to embrace.

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