NPR News

Pages

The Salt
4:49 am
Sat February 4, 2012

This One's For The Chicken: A Super Bowl Party With A Purpose

Many will compete, but only one will be crowned Chicken Bowl champion this Sunday.
Photo illustration by NPR Staff

Originally published on Sat February 4, 2012 8:00 am

This Sunday will mark the 16th annual installment of "Chicken Bowl," my Super Bowl party, which doubles as a grand fried-chicken-eating contest. As many as 80 friends, coworkers, enablers and hangers-on will cram into my long-suffering house for this noble occasion.

But even with all the extravagances I've cobbled together to keep them happy — large TVs, vintage arcade machines, working toilets — there has never been a shred of doubt that chicken is king.

Read more
Europe
4:14 am
Sat February 4, 2012

In Ukraine, A Daughter Takes Up Her Mother's Cause

A police officer speaks to Ukraine's former prime minster, Yulia Tymoshenko, after she was convicted of abuse of power charges in a court in Kiev on Oct. 11, 2011. She is now serving a seven-year term, but her supporters say the charges against her were politically motivated.
Sergei Supinsky AFP/Getty Images

Evgeniya Tymoshenko has her mother's looks — minus the trademark blond braid that makes her mother, former Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko, quickly recognizable.

But the younger Tymoshenko says she's not a politician. She never imagined herself testifying on Capitol Hill, getting face time with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton at a prayer breakfast, or speaking to reporters at a K Street lobbying firm.

Read more
Economy
4:13 am
Sat February 4, 2012

Job Market Could Help Obama's Election Stock

President Obama speaks about the economy Friday in Arlington, Va. Obama says he wants to "send a clear message to Congress: Do not slow down the recovery that we're on."
Ron Sachs-Pool Getty Images

Originally published on Sat February 4, 2012 11:05 am

It turns out January was a surprisingly good month in the job market. U.S. employers added 243,000 jobs in January, and the unemployment rate fell to 8.3 percent.

That better-than-expected news from the Labor Department triggered a rally in the stock market Friday, with the Dow climbing more than 150 points. The news could also help the stock of President Obama.

Read more
Presidential Race
4:10 am
Sat February 4, 2012

Out West, GOP Candidates Mine For Caucus Votes

Romney supporters gather for a rally at the Elko Regional Airport in Nevada on Friday. The state holds its caucus Saturday.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Originally published on Sat February 4, 2012 11:05 am

Saturday is caucus day in Nevada, the first state in the West to vote as Republicans go about choosing their presidential candidate.

Mitt Romney is counting on another win here to keep him on the path to the nomination. Newt Gingrich and Ron Paul have also been campaigning across the state, while Rick Santorum is in the Midwest looking ahead to later contests next week.

Believe it or not, Nevada leads the country in unemployment, home foreclosures and bankruptcy.

Read more
Politics
4:08 am
Sat February 4, 2012

'Buffett Rule' Becomes A Bill, And Congress Bickers

Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, a Rhode Island Democrat, introduced legislation this week that would effectively raise taxes for most who earn more than $1 million annually.
Pete Marovich Getty Images

At last week's State of the Union address, the secretary of billionaire investor Warren Buffett was seated prominently with first lady Michelle Obama.

President Obama invited Debbie Bosanek to a seat in the spotlight to underscore a complaint her boss has widely made: that she pays a much higher tax rate than the 17 percent Buffett himself pays.

Read more
Around the Nation
4:07 am
Sat February 4, 2012

While Graceland Booms, Other Historic Homes Rot

Graceland, home of Elvis Presley.
Getty Images

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 9:03 am

Americans have always sought architectural brushes with greatness.

The nation's first president spent the night at so many inns and private houses that signs advertising "George Washington slept here" were regular roadside attractions even during his lifetime.

But only a few homes of celebrated figures, such as Thomas Jefferson's Monticello and Elvis Presley's Graceland, have become sites that people go out of their way to visit. Most such places have been torn down, or fall into neglect and disrepair.

Read more
Shots - Health Blog
5:48 pm
Fri February 3, 2012

Komen's Race To Reverse Course: Questions And A PR Challenge

Originally published on Fri February 3, 2012 5:58 pm

Just three days after announcing it would no longer fund cancer screenings at Planned Parenthood, the pink-ribboned breast cancer charity Susan G. Komen for the Cure abruptly reversed course today. But the Komen foundation's actions still leave many questions unanswered — not to mention a public relations challenge.

Read more
The Two-Way
4:47 pm
Fri February 3, 2012

Argentina, Britain Trade Barbs, As Prince William Arrives At Falklands

Argentine activists burn a Union Jack during a January protest in front of the British Embassy in Buenos Aires.
Sergio Goya AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri February 3, 2012 5:24 pm

We're coming up on the 30-year anniversary of the war between Britain and Argentina over the Falkland Islands. But the wounds are still fresh, especially if you judge by the rhetoric being flung by the leaders of both countries.

Read more
Planet Money
3:33 pm
Fri February 3, 2012

Who Killed Lard?

Old school.
Steve Snodgrass Flickr

Originally published on Mon February 6, 2012 9:01 am

Ron Silver, the owner of Bubby's restaurant in Brooklyn, recently put a word on his menu you don't often see anymore: lard. The white, creamy, processed fat from a pig. And he didn't use the word just once.

For a one-night-only "Lard Exoneration Dinner", Silver served up lard fried potatoes. And root vegetables, baked in lard. Fried chicken, fried in lard. Roasted fennel glazed with lard sugar and sea salt. Pies, with lard inside and out. All from lard he made himself in the kitchen.

Read more
The Two-Way
3:25 pm
Fri February 3, 2012

Federal Prosecutors Drop Doping Case Against Cyclist Lance Armstrong

Lance Armstrong arrives at a training session during a rest day of the 2010 Tour de France.
Nathalie Magniez AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri February 3, 2012 4:54 pm

Federal prosecutors say they have dropped its doping case against seven-time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong. For two years, prosecutors looked into allegations that Armstrong and his United States Postal squad used performance-enhancing drugs.

The AP reports:

"In a press release, United States Attorney Andre Birotte Jr. says the case has been closed but didn't disclose the reason for the decision.

Read more
It's All Politics
3:16 pm
Fri February 3, 2012

Voting Heads West: A Nevada Republican Presidential Caucus Primer

Men arrive at a campaign rally for Mitt Romney in Elko, Nev., on Friday.
Emmanuel Dunand AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri February 3, 2012 4:54 pm

While hotels along the Vegas Strip are full of Super Bowl fans and convention attendees this weekend, another event will be playing out Saturday at more than 100 locations across the state.

Nevada's Republican presidential caucuses will be taking place, not in expensive hotels, but mostly in low-key places like schools and firehouses.

David Gallagher of the Nevada state GOP says each county's local party is responsible for organizing its own caucus, so opening times vary.

Read more
The Two-Way
2:49 pm
Fri February 3, 2012

On Positive Jobs Report, Nasdaq Hits 11-Year High

The better-than-expected jobs numbers released today, sent the markets into positive territory they hadn't seen in years.

The Nasdaq Composite rose to an 11-year high, while the Dow hit its highest reading in almost four years. The S&P gained 1.4 percent, marking its best start to a new year since 1987.

Read more
Music Interviews
2:39 pm
Fri February 3, 2012

Ruthie Foster: Texas Gospel With A Worldly Touch

Ruthie Foster's new album is Let It Burn.
John Carrico

Ruthie Foster is from a small town in central Texas — but there's nothing small about the way she sings on her new album, Let It Burn. Zigzagging between blues, soul, gospel and rock, the album features solid originals and surprising covers, along with several stirring collaborations with The Blind Boys of Alabama.

Read more
Middle East
2:26 pm
Fri February 3, 2012

Near Syria's Capital, The Evidence Of Heavy Fighting

A Syrian army tank moving along a road during clashes with the Syrian army defectors, in the Rastan area in Homs province, central Syria, on Jan. 30, 2012.
STR ASSOCIATED PRESS

This story was written and reported by a GlobalPost correspondent in Damascus, whose name has been withheld for security reasons.

When a team of foreign journalists entered the eastern Damascus suburb of Saqba last Friday, they were greeted by a sight that did not bode well for the Syrian regime.

Read more
The Two-Way
2:16 pm
Fri February 3, 2012

Military Judge Denies Request To Delay Sept. 11 Case At Guantanamo

Originally published on Fri February 3, 2012 2:51 pm

A request for a delay in the Sept. 11 case at Guantanamo has been denied.

Two lawyers close to the proceedings tell NPR that a military judge denied their request to delay the arraignment of the Sept. 11 suspects at Guantanamo until the summer.

The lawyers were asking for more time to file memos on why Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and his alleged co-conspirators should not be tried in a capital case and be eligible for the death penalty. The 911 suspects are expected to be arraigned before a military commission as early as April.

Read more
The Salt
2:11 pm
Fri February 3, 2012

The Surprising Story Of A Super Bowl Snack

Presented on a gourmet plate or eaten out of the bag the chips came in, Frito Pie is an American standard.
malloreigh flickr.com

Originally published on Mon February 6, 2012 7:12 am

This Super Bowl Sunday, millions of Americans will watch the game with bowls of corn-based snacks at their side. Whether you prefer Doritos, Cheetos, or even Funyuns, you owe the pleasure of that crunchy munchy to the humble corn curl that started it all: the Frito.

Read more
Author Interviews
1:51 pm
Fri February 3, 2012

'Best Practices': Learning To Live With Asperger's

Originally published on Fri February 3, 2012 4:54 pm

When he was 30 years old, David Finch's wife, Kristen, sat him down and asked him a series of odd questions:

"Do you notice patterns in things all the time?"

"Do people comment on your unusual mannerisms and habits?

"Do you feel tortured by clothes tags, clothes that are too tight or made in the 'wrong material'?"

"Do you sometimes have an urge to jump over things?"

David's answers to all of these questions — and more than 100 others — was an emphatic yes.

Read more
The Two-Way
1:50 pm
Fri February 3, 2012

Senator Demands Answers from Freddie Mac's Regulator

Originally published on Fri February 3, 2012 2:19 pm

Sen. Robert Casey, a Democrat from Pennsylvania, sent a list of questions about Freddie Mac's controversial trades to the mortgage giant's regulator, highlighting how much remains unknown even after a flurry of statements from the regulator.

Read more
The Two-Way
1:38 pm
Fri February 3, 2012

Vermont Inmates Hide Image Of Pig On Police Decals

It took Vermont officials four years to notice a little creative editing by one or more inmates. Look at this police decal:

Look at the cow underneath the tree. Embedded within the cow's spots is an image of a pig, which as the Burlington Free Press reminds us is the '60s-era epithet used by protesters to refer to police.

Read more
Health
1:23 pm
Fri February 3, 2012

Can Komen Recover From Controversy?

Nancy G. Brinker, CEO and founder of Susan G. Komen for the Cure.
Susan G. Komen for the Cure

Originally published on Tue August 13, 2013 9:18 am

The Susan G. Komen for the Cure foundation has had one of the worst weeks in terms of public relations of any organization in recent memory.

Read more
The Two-Way
1:20 pm
Fri February 3, 2012

Winklevoss Twins May Reap $300 Million From Facebook IPO

Tyler (left) and Cameron Winklevoss.
Thomas Samson AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri February 3, 2012 1:23 pm

Before we finish the week, we have to pass on at least one more story related to Facebook's plan to raise about $5 billion with its first sale of shares to the public.

It seems that Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss — the "Winklevii" twins — could get up to $300 million worth of Facebook shares when the deal goes through.

Read more
Afghanistan
1:18 pm
Fri February 3, 2012

Afghans View Peace Talks With Hope, Suspicion

Taliban fighters walk with their weapons after joining Afghan government forces during a ceremony in Herat province, last month. Thirty fighters left the Taliban to join government forces in western Afghanistan. The Taliban announced recently that they would open a political office in Qatar ahead of talks with Washington.
Aref Karimi AFP/Getty Images

The surprise announcement last month that the U.S. and the Taliban could soon begin peace talks in the Gulf state of Qatar may have increased the chances of a negotiated settlement in Afghanistan.

But Afghans are treating the prospect with equal measures of hope and suspicion — perhaps more of the latter from the government of President Hamid Karzai.

Read more
Movie Interviews
1:02 pm
Fri February 3, 2012

Sharon Van Etten: Learning How To Rock

Sharon Van Etten says that when she writes music, "it's to heal."
Dusdin Condren

Originally published on Sun February 5, 2012 2:01 pm

Sharon Van Etten was once an aspiring songwriter in Tennessee, but she had no idea how the music industry worked. So she moved to New York City and took an unpaid internship working for a record label.

"I started doing mail orders and then learned my way around the music blogs," Van Etten says in an interview with Weekend All Things Considered host Guy Raz. "I didn't know what a music blog was at the time."

Read more
NPR Story
1:00 pm
Fri February 3, 2012

Cancer Foundation Reverses Controversial Decision

It's been a tumultuous week in the world of women's health. On Wednesday, it was revealed that the breast cancer charity Susan G. Komen for the Cure had stopped giving grants to the Planned Parenthood Federation of America. On Friday, the Komen foundation reversed itself, apologizing for any appearance that it was penalizing Planned Parenthood. Komen says grants will be only suspended to organizations when investigations are criminal and conclusive — not political. Planned Parenthood has been the target of one congressman's requests for financial information.

Economy
1:00 pm
Fri February 3, 2012

Jobs Numbers Surprise Economists

Originally published on Fri February 3, 2012 4:54 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

January's weather looked like spring in much of the country, and today's monthly employment report suggests it's spring in the job market, too. As NPR's John Ydstie reports, the economy added 243,000 jobs in January, and the unemployment rate dropped for the fifth straight month.

JOHN YDSTIE, BYLINE: Nobody expected that job creation in January would be this strong, or that the unemployment rate would fall again to 8.3 percent – nobody including John Silvia, chief economist at Wells Fargo.

Read more
Sports
1:00 pm
Fri February 3, 2012

The Physics Of A Football Player's Performance

The New York Giants' Brandon Jacobs is a 6'4", 270 pound running back. And with that kind of size, you think he'd be able to run right through would-be tacklers, especially when he only needs to pick up a few yards. But he often can't — Jacobs's stats are below average in those situations. A couple NFL greats and a physics professor have the answer.

Middle East
1:00 pm
Fri February 3, 2012

In Egypt, Military Blamed For Targeting Soccer Fans

Violent protests continued for a second day in Egypt in response to the deadly riot at a soccer match earlier this week. Many of the protesters claim authorities chose not to stop the soccer riots as retaliation against fan groups — known as Ultras — who had a hand in the country's political uprisings last year. Melissa Block talks with Adel Iskandar, Lecturer in media studies at Georgetown University, about the role of the Ultra football fan clubs in Egypt's politics.

Business
1:00 pm
Fri February 3, 2012

Facebook's IPO And The Average Investor

The social network filed to go public earlier this week and is hoping to raise $5 billion in a huge IPO. The markets are buzzing, but what might it mean for an individual investor? Melissa Block gets the story on how high profile IPOs work from Dennis Berman, Marketplace editor at The Wall Street Journal.

Shots - Health Blog
12:57 pm
Fri February 3, 2012

Many Hits, Rather Than A Big One, Pose Greatest Concussion Risk

Members of the Jefferson High School football team took 200 to more than 1,800 hits to the head in a season.
Purdue University

High school football players have changes in their brain function long before they have recognizable signs of a concussion, according to a new study.

The more hits a player got, the more brain function changed. The findings support the growing belief that a concussion comes as the result of a succession of insults, not just one bad hit.

Read more
The Salt
12:30 pm
Fri February 3, 2012

Prison Meal Deal: Where The Staff Serves Lunch ... And Time

Inmate Calvin Hodge, in the second week of a five-week rotation as head chef, stirs gravy in preparation for lunch at the Fife and Drum Restaurant at the Northeastern Correctional Center in Concord, Mass., Jan. 26.
Photos by Erik Jacobs for NPR

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 9:04 am

The Fife and Drum Restaurant offers a daily lunch bargain that sounds hard to pass up: For just $3.21, you get a hot, tasty meal, made mostly from scratch and delivered to your table by friendly waiters.

So what's the catch? You have to go through security before you're served.

Read more

Pages