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Politics
2:26 pm
Fri December 2, 2011

Why Recall Elections Are So Difficult To Pull Off

Supporters of recalling Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker march toward the state elections board office to deliver required paperwork to launch the effort in Madison on Nov. 15.
Scott Bauer AP

Originally published on Tue December 6, 2011 11:00 am

When the word "recall" makes headlines, it usually involves the removal of a defective product from store shelves or perhaps the testimony of some nervous executive at a congressional hearing saying, "I don't recall."

But 2011 has been the year of another kind of recall: the recall election. Angry at elected officials' handling of the economy, budget cuts and other issues, voters across America are taking the "Throw the bums out" approach to new heights.

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The Two-Way
2:00 pm
Fri December 2, 2011

Wisconsin Gov. Wants Protesters To Pay For Security

A farmer drives his tractor past the Wisconsin State Capitol during a rally in March.
Scott Olson Getty Images

Originally published on Fri December 2, 2011 3:14 pm

The Wisconsin State Capitol building has been the scene of protests since February, when Gov. Scott Walker started the process of passing a law that severely limits collective bargaining for public employees in the state.

Yesterday, the Walker administration took a step that is likely to antagonize protesters further. His administration enacted new regulations that would require permits to protest at the Capitol and other state buildings.

The controversial part is that the bill allows officials to charge groups for the security and clean-up costs of such events.

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Afghanistan
1:46 pm
Fri December 2, 2011

For Afghan Women, Rape Law Offers Little Protection

Afghan women walk in the northwestern city of Herat on Nov. 23. Women still have few rights, and can end up in jail on adultery charges when they accuse a man of rape. There are fears that women's rights will be further eroded when Western troops leave the country.
Aref Karimi AFP/Getty Images

This week, Afghan President Hamid Karzai announced the pardon of a 19-year-old Afghan woman who was imprisoned for adultery after being raped by a relative, in a case that has attracted international media coverage.

But what happened to the woman, Gulnaz, who has been in prison for two years, is not an isolated episode.

Many other women have suffered similar fates. A recent U.N. report suggests that laws to protect women in Afghanistan from rape and forced marriage are still not being enforced — with devastating results.

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Opinion
1:41 pm
Fri December 2, 2011

The Marvels And Messes Of A Month Of Writing

istockphoto.com

Erin Morgenstern is the author of The Night Circus.

Yesterday I was told I had approximately 20 hours to write an essay: 450 words about National Novel Writing Month, or NaNoWriMo. I'm quite partial to the event. Still, I thought about declining the essay, given the time constraint.

But then I decided, in the spirit of NaNoWriMo, that it was rather silly to say "oh, I can't write 450 words in less than a day" So here we go:

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Monkey See
1:15 pm
Fri December 2, 2011

Bow Bow, Chk-a-Bow: Five Voices Rise To The Top Of TV's A Cappella Competition

Pentatonix performs on The Sing-Off.
Lewis Jacobs NBC

Originally published on Fri December 2, 2011 5:00 pm

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Asia
12:57 pm
Fri December 2, 2011

World Starts To Worry As Chinese Economy Hiccups

Originally published on Fri December 2, 2011 4:55 pm

Not long ago, economists and others expressed concerns that China's economy was expanding too quickly. Now, the latest data are raising concerns about a slowdown — and the woes it could trigger.

With a sluggish U.S. economy and troubles in the eurozone, Chinese exports are taking a hit, causing a slowdown on shop floors in Shanghai and Shenzhen. Earlier this week, the Chinese Purchasing Managers' Index, or PMI, fell to its lowest level in nearly three years.

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Shots - Health Blog
12:50 pm
Fri December 2, 2011

Insurance Brokers' Fees Won't Count As A Health Care Expense

A broker's fee for insurance coverage isn't a medical expense, the feds have decided.
iStockphoto.com

The Obama administration ruled today that fees paid to health insurance brokers and agents won't count as medical care expenses, under limits imposed on insurers in the 2010 federal health law.

That decision, in one of the regulations for implementing the health overhaul, is sure to disappoint insurance agents, as you might have guessed. But it's more important than you might have imagined.

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The Two-Way
12:33 pm
Fri December 2, 2011

Cain To Make Announcement Saturday; Wife Leads 'Women For Cain' Effort

There's word from Rock Hill, S.C., that Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain says he'll be making an announcement on Saturday about the future of his presidential bid, The Associated Press reports.

Meanwhile, here's a related bit of news to consider: His campaign just launched a "Women for Cain" effort, chaired by the candidate's wife Gloria.

As the webpage says:

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The Salt
12:05 pm
Fri December 2, 2011

To Kill Or Not To Kill Horses That Others May Eat?

Since the ban on U.S. slaughterhouses in 2006, tens of thousands of unwanted or aging horses were exported to Canada and Mexico for slaughter.
Nate Jenkins AP

Originally published on Fri February 1, 2013 3:52 pm

The thought of eating Mr. Ed or Seabiscuit is likely to pull the heartstrings of most Americans. But there are plenty of people around the world who see our horses as just another source of protein and energy.

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The Two-Way
11:50 am
Fri December 2, 2011

Egyptian Elections: 62 Percent Turnout

Nov. 28: Women place their votes in a ballot box at a polling station in a girls school in Cairo.
Peter Macdiarmid Getty Images

Results from the first round of voting in Egypt's parliamentary elections are being announced this hour. Already, according to al-Jazeera and other news outlets, there's word from the head of Egypt's Elections High commission that 62 percent of eligible voters cast ballots.

The Associated Press adds that Abdel-Mooaez Ibrahim called the number "the highest since the time of pharaohs."

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The Two-Way
11:41 am
Fri December 2, 2011

Online Gaming Company Zynga Says Target Valuation Is Around $7 Billion

As we've noted before, 2011 has been a great year for Internet companies seeking to go public. Today, Zynga said it hoped to price its shares at $8 to $10 per share during its initial public offering later this month. Depending on whose math you trust, that means the company will try to raise about $1 billion and the debut could value the company at $7 billion. (Some news outlets are putting that number as high as $9 billion.)

What is Zynga you ask? They're the makers of social games like Farmville and Cityville.

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Economy
11:01 am
Fri December 2, 2011

Jobless Dip May Overstate Economic Improvement

NPR

The unemployment rate dropped unexpectedly to 8.6 percent in November, in part because hundreds of thousands of Americans stopped looking for work. But analysts said the modest increase of 120,000 jobs created last month points to an economy that's generally still limping.

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The Two-Way
10:50 am
Fri December 2, 2011

Samsung, HTC And Carrier IQ Face Suit Over Logging Software

Originally published on Fri December 2, 2011 11:02 am

The first lawsuit has been filed against Samsung, HTC and Carrier IQ over software installed on millions of phones that can capture a wide range of data including key strokes.

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The Two-Way
10:45 am
Fri December 2, 2011

Why Burma? Why Myanmar? Why Both?

Aung San Suu Kyi, right, and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton embraced today when they met at Suu Kyi's home in Yangon, Myanmar (also known as Burma).
Saul Loeb AP

Originally published on Fri December 2, 2011 12:10 pm

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton's visit to Myanmar, where she has pledged with opposition leader Aung Sang Suu Kyi to continue the push for democracy and respect for human rights there, has focused attention on that long-oppressed Asian nation.

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NPR Story
10:31 am
Fri December 2, 2011

'Lost In A Dream': Low, Loose And Slow

Originally published on Fri December 2, 2011 10:37 am

Fresh Air begins its remembrance of drummer Paul Motian with an archived review of his trio album. (The original review is below.)

Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

DAVE DAVIES, HOST:

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Movie Reviews
10:23 am
Fri December 2, 2011

For Fassbender, Two Perspectives On The Perils Of Sex

Fassbender's Carl Jung — Sigmund Freud's protege — struggles to reconcile theory and practice in A Dangerous Method.
Sony Pictures Classics

The Irish actor Michael Fassbender stars in two current films that revolve around the perils of sex — which means you see him have a lot, so he'll have something to regret.

You know how the sex will play out in Shame, because of, well, the title. Fassbender plays a sex addict, Brandon Sullivan, born in Ireland, raised in New Jersey, and he seems to work in advertising, which is unfortunate since he resembles Mad Men's John Hamm.

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The Fresh Air Interview
9:56 am
Fri December 2, 2011

Fresh Air Remembers Jazz Drummer Paul Motian

Originally published on Fri December 2, 2011 10:37 am

Paul Motian, a jazz drummer and composer who spent more than 50 years in the music industry, died November 22, from complications of multiple myeloma. He was 80.

The New York Times' Ben Ratliff once called Motian "one of the greatest drummers in all of jazz." The rare drummer who disliked drum solos, Motian recorded some of his most memorable work with pianist Bill Evans and bassist Scott LaFaro. Their recordings include the classics Sunday at the Village Vanguard and Portrait of Jazz.

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Shots - Health Blog
9:09 am
Fri December 2, 2011

Working Moms Multitask, And Stress, More Than Dads

A Kansas City family prepares a meal together. A new study finds that working mothers log more hours — and get more stressed — than working fathers while multitasking at home. (This family wasn't part of the research.)
Allison Long MCT /Landov

A new study in the December issue of the American Sociological Review comes up with some findings that lots of women may feel they already know too much about: Working mothers spend significantly more time multitasking at home than working dads. And those mothers aren't happy about it.

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Shots - Health Blog
9:08 am
Fri December 2, 2011

Apps Can Help You Take A Pill, But Privacy's A Big Question

Melissa Forsyth NPR

The American Medical Association just rolled out a shiny new iPhone app, My Medications, that you can use to keep track of your meds.

Mobile medical apps are a hot market, but unlike "Angry Birds," they're not just harmless fun. Some come with real privacy risks.

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The Two-Way
8:12 am
Fri December 2, 2011

Some Combat Dogs Suffer Post-Traumatic Stress Too

A U.S. Army soldier with the 10th Special Forces Group and his military working dog jump off the ramp of a CH-47 Chinook helicopter from the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment during water training over the Gulf of Mexico as part of exercise Emerald Warrior 2011 on March 1, 2011.
Tech Sgt. Manuel J. Martinez defense.gov

Originally published on Fri December 2, 2011 1:17 pm

Dogs who have served alongside U.S. military personnel in Iraq and Afghanistan now typically go on to live with their handlers in the civilian world after their service days are over, as All Things Considered reported in August.

That's a change from the past, when many combat dogs were euthanized once they were done working with the military.

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The Picture Show
6:53 am
Fri December 2, 2011

Russia By Rail: Setting Off From Moscow

Sergei Tarkhov, a geology professor and Trans-Siberian veteran, stands near the zero kilometer mark at Yaroslavsky Rail Station in Moscow.
David Gilkey NPR

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 9:13 am

Seven time zones, nearly 6,000 miles, and a lot of tea and borscht. That only begins to describe the long journey by David Greene, NPR's Moscow correspondent. He's been in Russia for just over two years and for his last reporting trip, he's riding the Trans-Siberian Railroad from Moscow to Vladivostok.

While crossing the world's largest country and bridging two continents, he'll make stops to capture the mood and the culture of Russia at an important milestone, two decades after the fall of the Soviet Union.

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The Two-Way
6:34 am
Fri December 2, 2011

Unemployment Rate Drops To 8.6 Percent; 120,000 Jobs Added

A job fair in San Francisco last month.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Originally published on Fri December 2, 2011 9:46 am

The nation's unemployment rate fell to 8.6 percent in November from 9 percent in October as payrolls went up by 120,000 jobs, the Bureau of Labor Statistics says.

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The Two-Way
6:00 am
Fri December 2, 2011

'Freakishly Powerful Winds' To Ease In Southern California, Utah

Toppled trees in the Highland Park section of Los Angeles did some heavy damage to vehicles parked along a street.
Mike Meadows AP

Originally published on Fri December 2, 2011 6:01 am

The worst is over in Utah, where winds that topped 100 mph Thursday toppled trucks trees and power lines.

And things should be calmer in Southern California too, where "freakishly powerful winds" on Thursday stunned people and left behind shredded rooftops and "yards littered with downed trees," as the Los Angeles Times says.

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The Two-Way
5:30 am
Fri December 2, 2011

U.S. Officials Say Pakistan Gave Go-Ahead For Airstrikes

The airstrikes that killed 24 Pakistani soldiers have sparked protests. In Peshawar, Pakistan, on Thursday students shouted anti-U.S. slogans.
A. Majeed AFP/Getty Images

"Pakistani officials at a border coordination center gave the go-ahead to American airstrikes that inadvertently killed 24 Pakistan troops, unaware that their own forces were in the area, according to U.S. officials briefed on the preliminary investigation," The Wall Street Journal reports this morning.

A Pakistani official quoted by Reuters says that's not true.

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Around the Nation
5:12 am
Fri December 2, 2011

Bin Laden Capture Celebrated With Expensive Wine

Some time ago, a restaurateur made a bet with Leon Panetta, then head of the CIA, that if the U.S. found Osama bin Laden, he would open a bottle of wine from 1870. Panetta said this week that he has collected on the bet. After the raid, Panetta sent word to Ted Balestreri to watch TV and prepare to deliver the $10,000 bottle of wine.

Business
5:02 am
Fri December 2, 2011

Maker's Mark Battles Jose Cuervo Over Bottle Wax

Originally published on Fri December 2, 2011 9:30 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Steve Inskeep with a court battle over trademarked wax. Maker's Mark, the Kentucky bourbon, comes in a bottle sealed by dipping it in red wax. The company considers that a trademark, even though no two bottles are exactly the same. So Maker's Mark was not happy when the makers of Jose Cuervo tequila tried to sell bottles the same way. The two sides have now taken this issue to an appeals court instead of simply settling it over a drink. You're listening to MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Iraq
2:20 am
Fri December 2, 2011

Icon Of U.S. Military Now In Iraqi Hands

Inside palace walls built by Saddam Hussein, U.S. generals plotted the war's course, tracked the mounting death toll and swore in new American citizens under gaudy glass chandeliers.

Just outside the palace, American troops whacked golf balls into man-made lakes or fished for carp while others sat down with a cigar and a can of nonalcoholic beer hoping for a respite from incoming rockets or mortar shells.

Along another lake some distance away, a jailed Saddam tended to tomatoes and cucumbers in a small, walled-off enclosure with guards patrolling overhead.

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Health
2:00 am
Fri December 2, 2011

Businesses Pledge 'Healthier Choices' For Customers

Corporate America is jumping on the opportunities to make people healthier, while keep their bottoms line strong. Leaders of Supermarkets, hotel chains and restaurant groups gathered in Washington this week for a summit aimed at shaping private sector solutions to the obesity epidemic.

Research News
2:00 am
Fri December 2, 2011

Research: Multitasking Is Multi-Stressful For Women

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Working mothers spend significantly more time multitasking when they are at home than their counterparts, working dads. That's according to a new study published in this month's journal The American Sociological Review. The findings are something that many women are surely saying, even as I speak, that they already knew. NPR's Patti Neighmond has this report.

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Business
2:00 am
Fri December 2, 2011

Available Financing Helps Auto Sales Rebound

Sales of new cars in the U.S. were up by 14 percent last month. One reason is more consumers are getting access to car loans — including those with less than perfect credit.

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