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Judging The Health Care Law
12:55 pm
Mon July 9, 2012

Congress' Big Stick Just Got a Little Shorter

Susan Clark (left) argues with another protester about the Affordable Care Act outside the U.S. Supreme Court. Chief Justice John Roberts likened the law's Medicaid expansion provision to "a gun to the head" of states.
Kris Connor Getty Images

Originally published on Thu April 4, 2013 11:58 am

Nothing breeds lawsuits like uncertainty. That being the case, the Supreme Court's landmark health care ruling is almost certain to open the door to lawsuits challenging the federal government's authority.

The court ruled the federal government can't force states to participate in a major expansion of Medicaid or else risk losing existing Medicaid funds from Washington. That threat amounted to unconstitutional coercion.

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AIDS: A Turning Point
12:37 pm
Mon July 9, 2012

Teen Years Pose New Risks For Kids Born With HIV

A boy waits to get his anti-AIDS drugs from pharmacist Rajesh Chandra at the Botswana-Baylor Children's Clinical Center of Excellence in Gaborone.
Jason Beaubien NPR

Originally published on Mon July 9, 2012 9:33 pm

The southern African nation of Botswana is grappling with a relatively new problem in the evolving AIDS pandemic: It now has a large group of HIV-positive adolescents.

The teenagers were infected at birth before Botswana managed to almost wipe out mother-to-child transmission of the virus. These children have survived because of a public health system that provides nearly universal access to powerful anti-AIDS drugs.

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The Two-Way
12:33 pm
Mon July 9, 2012

PHOTO: A New Panoramic View Of Mars

NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity took this panoramic view of the planet between Dec. 2011 and May.
NASA

NASA has released a new, stunning panoramic image of Mars. The scene is stitched from 817 images taken by NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity from Dec. 2011 to May.

To do the image justice, you have to download the hi-resolution version, but be warned it's close to 14 MB.

Here's how NASA describes the scene:

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Shots - Health Blog
12:11 pm
Mon July 9, 2012

Texas Gov. Perry Says No To Medicaid Expansion

Wikimedia Commons

Originally published on Tue July 10, 2012 2:31 pm

Any doubt, and there probably wasn't much, that Texas would reject an expansion of Medicaid under the big federal health law was dispelled today.

The Supreme Court decision on the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act allows states to opt out of the expansion without losing all federal Medicaid funding. Only the federal money that would have gone toward the expansion is affected.

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The Two-Way
11:53 am
Mon July 9, 2012

2.97 Million And Counting; '66 Volvo Is Nearing Its 3 Millionth Mile

Irv Gordon in his trusty Volvo P1800S earlier this month.
Seth Wenig AP

Originally published on Mon July 9, 2012 12:10 pm

"It's just a car I enjoy driving."

That's for sure.

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The Salt
11:45 am
Mon July 9, 2012

Part Science, Part Art, Pollinator Pathway Connects Seattle Green Spaces

This tiger swallowtail butterfly is a pollinator that could benefit from a little more green space.
Jim, the Photographer

Originally published on Tue July 10, 2012 12:34 pm

When we think about improving urban food systems, we tend think about growing more vegetables — densely planted backyard plots and community gardens, with tiny tomatoes ripening in the sun. But according to some experts, we should start thinking smaller — way smaller — as in bugs.

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The Two-Way
11:21 am
Mon July 9, 2012

Lance Armstrong Sues To Block U.S. Anti-Doping Hearing

Lance Armstrong competes in the Ironman Panama 70.3. triathlon in Panama City, Panama.
Arnulfo Franco AP

Originally published on Mon July 9, 2012 4:05 pm

Update at 5:58 p.m. ET. Lawsuit Dismissed:

A federal judge dismissed a lawsuit filed by Lance Armstrong that sought to stop a USADA hearing into accusations of doping. The AP reports:

"U.S. District Judge Sam Sparks ruled just hours later. He criticized Armstrong's attorneys for filing an 80-page complaint the judge says seems more intended to whip up public opinion for his case than focus on the legal argument.

"Sparks, however, did not decide on the merits of Armstrong's case and said he can refile his lawsuit."

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The Two-Way
10:17 am
Mon July 9, 2012

Libya May Buck Arab Spring Trend And Elect Moderate Prime Minister

Mahmoud Jibril speaks to in Tripoli, Libya on Sunday.
Manu Brabo AP

Over the weekend, about 1.7 million Libyans cast a ballot to choose a prime minister. Like Tunisia and Egypt before it, these elections are the first free elections since a revolution toppled the country's dictator.

Moammar Gadhafi ruled since 1969. As Reuters reports, while there were some violent incidents and anti-vote protests, international observers gave the election process a thumbs up.

Reuters reports:

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Shots - Health Blog
9:58 am
Mon July 9, 2012

Virus Suspected In Mysterious Cambodian Outbreak

A Cambodian doctor examines a child at Kantha Bopha Children's Hospital in Phnom Penh.
Khem Sovannara AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue July 10, 2012 2:41 pm

An investigation into a perplexing outbreak among young kids in Cambodia is getting traction.

Doctors have identified a potential cause, a virus associated with hand, foot and mouth disease. (The illness is not foot-and-mouth disease, which affects only animals.)

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Author Interviews
9:46 am
Mon July 9, 2012

'The Life That Follows' Disarming IEDs In Iraq

Brian Castner served as an Explosive Ordnance Disposal officer in the U.S. Air Force from 1999 to 2007, deploying to Iraq to command bomb disposal units in Balad and Kirkuk in 2005 and 2006.
Joey Campagna Courtesy of the author

Originally published on Mon July 9, 2012 12:46 pm

Brian Castner arguably had one of the most nerve-wracking jobs in the U.S. military. He commanded two Explosive Ordnance Disposal units in Iraq, where his team disabled roadside IEDs, investigated the aftermath of roadside car bombings and searched door to door to uncover bomb-makers at their homes.

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The Two-Way
9:24 am
Mon July 9, 2012

Romney Raised $106 Million In June; Obama Raised $71 Million

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney on July 4 in Wolfeboro, N.H.
Kayana Szymczak Getty Images

Originally published on Mon July 9, 2012 9:33 am

For the second month in a row, Republican presidential contender Mitt Romney and his party have raised more money than the Democratic incumbent, President Obama.

Romney and his fellow Republicans hauled in $106 million in June for his presidential campaign, well above the $71 million raised by the president's campaign and Democrats. Both campaigns released their fundraising figures for the month earlier today.

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Africa
9:23 am
Mon July 9, 2012

1-Year-Old South Sudan: Potential To Be Harnessed

Originally published on Mon July 9, 2012 10:04 am

Transcript

MARIA HINOJOSA, HOST:

I'm Maria Hinojosa and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. Michel Martin is away. Coming up, violence continues to erupt across Syria. We'll talk to a human rights activist who has seen it firsthand. That's in a few minutes.

But first, a year ago today on July 9, 2011, the world's newest nation was born in Africa.

(SOUNDBITE OF SPEECH)

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: We hereby declare Southern Sudan to be an independent and sovereign state.

(APPLAUSE)

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

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Science
8:51 am
Mon July 9, 2012

Tell the World Your Big Idea With NPR's 'What's Your Big Idea?' Video Contest

NPR

Originally published on Sun August 19, 2012 1:22 pm

I have a simple question for you: Do you have a good idea? Something that could change the world?

Enter your big idea in NPR's "What's Your Big Idea?" video contest from July 9 to Aug. 12, 2012, and you could win the chance to get advice on making your big idea a reality from a big name in science and technology. And even if you don't win that grand prize, we'll showcase your video on NPR's YouTube channel and on Facebook.

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It's All Politics
8:46 am
Mon July 9, 2012

Sit And Talk A While: Filmmaker Chronicling Personal Side Of Politics

Preacher Eddie Brackett is interviewed by filmmaker Julie Winokur at the Waughtown Baptist Church in Winston-Salem, N.C. "I say that I'm a conservative, but I think that I am very open-minded to meeting the needs of the people that are out there," Brackett said.
Courtesy of Julie Turkewitz

Originally published on Mon July 9, 2012 1:44 pm

When I caught up with filmmaker Julie Winokur recently, she was in Atlanta, about to watch her 17-year-old son play baseball.

This is the same son who earlier this year called her the most "intolerant person" he knew.

"I couldn't let it go," she said. "I always thought I had a lot of empathy."

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The Two-Way
8:21 am
Mon July 9, 2012

'Mystery Woman' And Disney Ripoffs: Latest News About North Korea's Leader

An image from a video posted by StimmeKoreas, which in turn came from North Korea official media, showing some of the dancing (fake) Disney characters at Friday's performance.
YouTube.com

Originally published on Mon July 9, 2012 8:29 am

Two story lines are emerging from reports about a concert staged Friday in Pyongyang, North Korea, at which new leader Kim Jong Un had a front-row seat:

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The Two-Way
6:02 am
Mon July 9, 2012

In Afghanistan: Bomb Kills Six Americans; Shocking Video Of Woman's Execution

A screen grab from the video of a public execution reportedly carried out last month in Afghanistan. The victim is sitting with her back to the executioner, who is at left.
Agence France Presse

Originally published on Mon July 9, 2012 9:16 am

"In what was an extraordinarily violent day even by Afghan standards, separate incidents on Sunday killed seven Western troops, including six Americans who died in a single blast, along with five Afghan police officers and at least 18 civilians," the Los Angeles Times writes.

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Around the Nation
5:34 am
Mon July 9, 2012

Cherry Festival Crowns New Pit-Spitting Champ

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne. Ronn Matt told the Chicago Tribune that his mother used to frown on his habit of spitting cherry pits. But now he's a champion. Over the weekend in Michigan, Matt managed to unseat two spitting dynasties, families who had won for the last 20 years the International Cherry Pit spitting contest. He won by spitting a pit 69 feet. Impressive but far short of the world record of 93 and a half feet. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright National Public Radio.

Asia
5:22 am
Mon July 9, 2012

Disney Characters Frolick On North Korean Stage

Originally published on Mon April 28, 2014 7:31 am

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Linda Wertheimer. A concert for North Korea's new leader Kim Jong Un was a little more animated than usual. It featured Disney characters - from the mouses Mickey and Minnie, to Winnie the Pooh - frolicking onstage, according to the AP. Disney says nobody asked permission. Now analysts ask what it means for decadent Western entertainment to appear before North Korea's new leader - seriously. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

The Two-Way
5:09 am
Mon July 9, 2012

Ahhh! Some Relief From The Heat

Dancing in the rain: New York City got some relief from the heat as early as Saturday, when this young woman danced in the rain in Times Square.
John Minchillo AP

The oppressive heat wave that blanketed much of the nation for nearly two weeks, causing at least 46 deaths, has finally eased.

As The Associated Press writes:

"The cooler air began sweeping southward Sunday in the eastern half of the country, bringing down some temperatures by 15 or more degrees from Saturday's highs, which topped 100 in cities including Philadelphia, Washington, St. Louis, Indianapolis and Louisville, Ky."

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It's All Politics
4:03 am
Mon July 9, 2012

The ABCs Of Politicians

Even in zoos, donkeys and elephants turn their backs on their parties.
iStockphoto.com

A. First, politicians began omitting their party affiliations on campaign literature and websites. Politics "is a dirty word," says David King, a lecturer on public policy at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government. King told the MetroWest Daily News: "Why would you want to put it right out there; why would you sell a shirt with a stain on it? You need to appeal on other terms by downplaying partisanship."

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Economy
3:28 am
Mon July 9, 2012

Charity Collects Donations To Buy Greek Bonds

Many businesses in the town of Oia, on the northern tip of Santorini, are struggling to make ends meet following a drop in tourism.
Michael Virtanen AP

Originally published on Mon July 9, 2012 4:22 pm

A young shipping heir whose family helped turn the Greek island of Santorini into a tourist hot spot is trying to help Greece dig out of its massive debt by asking average Greeks to chip in.

Peter Nomikos hopes to build a social movement beginning with a charity he launched about two weeks ago called Greece Debt Free, which collects donations to buy Greek bonds. On Santorini, the Cycladic island of whitewashed homes, residents say they'd like help with their benefactor's charity — but they can't even pay their own bills.

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Africa
3:28 am
Mon July 9, 2012

South Sudan Struggles 1 Year After Independence

Originally published on Mon July 9, 2012 4:47 am

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Linda Wertheimer.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

This was the scene one year ago today in Juba, the capital of South Sudan.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: We hereby declare Southern Sudan to be an independent and sovereign state.

(SOUNDBITE OF CHEERING)

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Black Lung Returns To Coal Country
3:13 am
Mon July 9, 2012

As Mine Protections Fail, Black Lung Cases Surge

Mark McCowan, 47, was diagnosed with the worst stage of black lung only five years after an X-ray showed he had no sign of the disease.
David Deal for NPR

Originally published on Tue July 10, 2012 3:26 am

Part one of a two-part series.

It wasn't supposed to happen to coal miners in Mark McCowan's generation. It wasn't supposed to strike so early and so hard. At age 47 and just seven years after his first diagnosis, McCowan shouldn't have a chest X-ray that looks this bad.

"I'm seeing more definition in the mass," McCowan says, pausing for deep breaths as he holds the X-ray film up to the light of his living room window in Pounding Mill, Va.

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NPR Story
2:55 am
Mon July 9, 2012

Stafford Loans Interest Rate To Remain Steady

Originally published on Mon July 9, 2012 4:23 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And for one more year, college students can access a certain kind of loan for the low rate of 3.4 percent. It's known as a Stafford loan, and the interest rate was set to double, until lawmakers managed to reach an agreement to keep the rate low, which in turn will keep college more affordable for more people.

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NPR Story
2:47 am
Mon July 9, 2012

Business News

Originally published on Mon July 9, 2012 5:03 am

Some Internet users may be out of luck when they try to log on Monday. They're victims of an international malware attack — a malicious software picked up by their computers online over a year ago. The FBI has turned off Internet servers set up as a stop-gap to keep tens of thousands of victims online.

Politics
2:09 am
Mon July 9, 2012

GOP To Make 31st Attempt To Repeal Obamacare Act

Originally published on Wed November 14, 2012 11:00 am

The House Rules Committee takes up a bill Monday called the "Repeal of Obamacare Act." And just like it says, the bill would wipe away the president's Affordable Care Act. A vote of the full House is planned for Wednesday.

It's the first legislative response from House Republicans after the Supreme Court upheld the law. But it is far from the first time the GOP has voted for repeal.

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Governing
1:05 am
Mon July 9, 2012

Justice's New Watchdog Meets Fast And Furious

Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz is reviewing secret emails about the department's Fast and Furious operation.

Originally published on Mon July 9, 2012 3:28 am

The legal battle between Republican lawmakers and Attorney General Eric Holder over access to documents in a gun scandal could take months, if not years, to resolve.

But one man has already been sifting through secret emails about the operation known as Fast and Furious. He's Michael Horowitz, the Justice Department's new watchdog.

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AIDS: A Turning Point
1:04 am
Mon July 9, 2012

Botswana's 'Stunning Achievement' Against AIDS

Johane Setlhare began taking anti-AIDS drugs, provided by the government, in 2007. Two years later, he regained enough strength to build the house that's behind him.
Jason Beaubien NPR

Originally published on Tue July 10, 2012 6:50 am

The southern African nation of Botswana has one of the highest rates of HIV in the world. Nearly 25 percent of all adults in the country are infected with the virus. Only the nearby kingdom of Swaziland has a higher rate.

But Botswana is also remarkable for its response to the epidemic. It has one of the most comprehensive and effective HIV treatment programs in Africa. Transmission of HIV from infected mothers to their fetuses and newborn babies has been brought down to just 4 percent.

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Crime In The City
1:03 am
Mon July 9, 2012

Dark Doings Among The D.C. Monuments

The Iwo Jima Memorial, on the Virginia side of the Potomac River overlooking Washington, D.C., is one of many capital landmarks that do double duty as crime scenes in the novels of author Mike Lawson.
Mark Wilson Getty Images

Originally published on Mon July 9, 2012 8:47 am

In Washington, D.C., the glittering marble of public buildings and monuments can conceal the darkest of deeds. And in the crime novels of Mike Lawson, they do.

"When I started writing, the very first decision I made was, I wanted the book set in D.C.," says Lawson, who recently published his seventh Washington-based thriller, House Blood. "That was before I had a character, or anything else."

And he had a reason.

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