NPR News

Pages

Hurricane Irene Hits East Coast
10:01 pm
Mon August 29, 2011

Costs Of Irene Add Up As FEMA Runs Out Of Cash

FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate, shown at a press briefing last week in Washington, says his agency will postpone some repair work on earlier disasters in order to pay for the immediate needs of Irene.
Paul J. Richards AFP/Getty Images

From washed-away roads in North Carolina to historic bridges flooded out in Vermont, Hurricane Irene took its toll up and down the Eastern Seaboard.

But the East is not the only region to suffer from natural disasters this year. There was a string of deadly tornadoes in the South this spring, floods along the Mississippi and in the Upper Midwest, and last May's devastating tornado in Joplin, Mo.

Read more
All Tech Considered
5:38 pm
Mon August 29, 2011

Farmville Burns, Is Saved; No Need To Panic

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution's George Mathis may have started a panic earlier today, when he wrote the headline "Farmville is burning." But he quickly clarified that this was an actual, not a virtual, fire:

Before you rush off to rescue your Facebook plantation, know that this Farmville is an unincorporated area in Gordon County, located in northwest Georgia.

Read more
Around the Nation
5:00 pm
Mon August 29, 2011

From Cheerleader To Air Force To A New Life

"I had to learn to deal with it on my own," Victoria Blumenberg, 25, says of the stress of her deployment to Iraq with the Air Force Reserves. Here, she visits a restaurant in Charlotte, N.C., with Pete Kneski.
Julie Rose WFAE

The second part of our series about the challenges female veterans face as they transition back into civilian life.

What happens when a teenage girl spends her formative years in the military — tracking terrorists, enduring rocket attacks and holding her own in a rough, male-dominated environment?

The skills that make an excellent airman don't always match what the world expects of a young civilian woman.

Victoria Blumenberg was a champion cheerleader in high school.

"I was on dance teams. I did all of that girlie stuff," she says.

Read more
The Two-Way
4:57 pm
Mon August 29, 2011

Polygamist Warren Jeffs In Critical Condition

Warren Jeffs arrives at the Tom Green County Courthouse in San Angelo, Texas, on July 29, 2011.
Tony Gutierrez AP

Three weeks after a conviction for child sexual abuse, polygamist leader Warren Jeffs remains in critical but stable condition in a Texas hospital.

Jeffs, 55, was rushed from prison Sunday night to a hospital in Tyler, Tx. Officials there refuse to discuss Jeffs' condition but a spokeswoman for the Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) says Jeffs was hospitalized after a three-day fast.

Read more
The Two-Way
3:54 pm
Mon August 29, 2011

Vermont Floods May Be As Bad As 'Monumental' 1927 Flood

In Vermont, Tropical Storm Irene will not be remembered as overhyped. The flash floods its pounding rains created have proved historic. Scott Whittier of the National Weather Service told Vermont Public Radio they will compared the floods of 1973 and the "monumental flood" of 1927.

Read more
Latin America
3:50 pm
Mon August 29, 2011

Wiretapping Scandal Shakes Colombia

Former Colombian President Alvaro Uribe (left) speaks during a public congressional hearing in Bogota Aug. 8 about allegations that the country's intelligence service spied on high court judges during his government.
Eitan Abramovich AFP/Getty Images

In Colombia, a major scandal involving the country's intelligence service is unfolding. Colombia's chief prosecutor says the spy service bugged the Supreme Court, intercepted the phones of its justices and followed their every move.

Prosecutors also say the illegal surveillance was directed from the offices of former President Alvaro Uribe, who in his eight years in power was Washington's closest ally in Latin America.

Read more
The Two-Way
2:52 pm
Mon August 29, 2011

Artist, Social Critic Ai Weiwei Breaks Silence, Attacks Chinese Government

Ai Weiwei in October 2009.
Miguel Villagran Getty Images

The dissident artist Ai Weiwei has struggled with the Chinese government for years. Earlier this year, the conflict came to a head, when Ai was detained by the government for about 80 days. He was let go under the condition that he would not talk to the press.

Read more
Around the Nation
2:51 pm
Mon August 29, 2011

After The Storm: A Fight For Recognition, Housing

Pamela Landry lived in a FEMA trailer for a little more than two years after Hurricane Katrina. Since then, she has built herself a home out of two sheds. She was one of the plaintiffs in a 2009 lawsuit against the Mississippi housing department over unmet housing needs after the storm.
Kathy Lohr NPR

Pamela Landry didn't get any storm-surge damage during Hurricane Katrina, but the wrath of the storm's wind proved furious. She lives far away from the ocean in Picayune, Miss., in Pearl River County, about 45 miles from New Orleans and from Gulfport.

Like many low-income residents in Mississippi, Landry lived in a 1960s mobile home when the hurricane hit on Aug. 29, 2005. Katrina was not kind to her trailer, and her county got little help from the state.

Read more
Shots - Health Blog
2:28 pm
Mon August 29, 2011

Uninsured Largely Unaware Of Benefits Coming From Overhaul

When it comes to last year's Affordable Care Act, there's not much people agree on. Except, says Kaiser Family Foundation President and CEO Drew Altman, this one thing: "It really does help the uninsured; 32 million uninsured people will get coverage."

Read more
U.S.
2:15 pm
Mon August 29, 2011

Irene Disrupts Power, Commutes, Travel Plans

Irene knocked out power to millions and threatened transportation systems up and down the east coast. The restoration of most subway and bus lines in New York City helped avoid the commuting nightmare that some had feared, but the storm will leave many without power for days.

Hurricane Irene caused havoc for many rail lines, forcing crews to face a maze of downed trees and branches on the tracks and restoring power to some lines.

Read more
Afghanistan
1:35 pm
Mon August 29, 2011

Afghan President Pardons Would-Be Suicide Bombers

Incarcerated children sit at the Kabul Juvenile Rehabilitation Center May 18, in Kabul, Afghanistan. The four boys were believed to have been recruited by the Taliban as suicide bombers. In an end-of-Ramadan tradition, President Hamid Karzai recently ordered the release of two dozen children held as suspected suicide bombers.
Paula Bronstein Getty Images

As part of the traditional celebration of the end of Ramadan, Afghan President Hamid Karzai has pardoned prisoners from Kabul's juvenile detention center. This time it was two dozen youths who had been arrested for planned or attempted suicide bomb attacks, and many were under the age of 12.

Karzai presented the captured suicide bombers on national television — the youngest only 8 years old.

Read more
Shots - Health Blog
1:34 pm
Mon August 29, 2011

Even If Chocolate Doesn't Ward Off Heart Disease, It's Still Yummy

Heart disease is the leading cause of death worldwide, but the tools to fend it off — low-fat diets, exercise, statin drugs — leave a little bit to be desired in the charm department.

Then there's chocolate. It's hard to resist the notion that eating lots of one of the world's most delicious foods could be the key to cardiovascular health.

Read more
Asia
1:24 pm
Mon August 29, 2011

In Japan, Next Prime Minister Faces Many Skeptics

Finance Minister Yoshihiko Noda was chosen leader of the ruling Democratic Party of Japan on Monday, Aug. 29, 2011. That all but assures his selection as Japan's next prime minister.
Hiro Komae AP

Japan is about to get a new prime minster — the sixth in five years.

As early as Tuesday, Finance Minister Yoshihiko Noda could formally get the job.

He all but captured the post Monday when he won the leadership race of the ruling Democratic Party of Japan. The challenges he faces will be huge. They include helping Japan recover from last spring's devastating nuclear and natural disasters and winning over a skeptical public.

That skepticism was on display Monday.

Read more
The Two-Way
1:15 pm
Mon August 29, 2011

Irene's Toll: At Least 35 Deaths In 10 States

A somber update from The Associated Press:

"Hurricane Irene has led to the deaths of at least 35 people in 10 states."

The wire service says:

-- Two deaths have been reported in Connecticut. An 89-year-old woman died in a fire started by downed power lines, and a 46-year-old man drowned when his canoe capsized on a flooded street.

Read more
The Two-Way
1:09 pm
Mon August 29, 2011

Two Disqualifications Roil World Athletics Championships

The World Athletics Championships have been roiled by controversy. Two days in a row elite runners have been disqualified and medals have been awarded by default.

Today, Cuban hurdler Dayron Robles was stripped of his gold medal in the 110 meter hurdles after he seemingly reached for China's Liu Xiang with his right hand. Robles was disqualified after China launched a complaint. The gold went to the United States' Jason Richardson who finished 13.16 seconds.

Read more
Shots - Health Blog
12:58 pm
Mon August 29, 2011

Bird Flu Flies Again, Prompting UN Advisory

Workers at the Jurong Bird Park in Singapore catch flamingos last year as part of a drive to vaccinate them against avian flu.
Roslan Rahman AFP/Getty Images

Out of the public eye, the bird flu has been making a comeback.

The United Nations' Food and Agriculture Organization warned today about a "possible major resurgence" of H5N1 influenza, including a mutant virus that appears to be unfazed by available vaccines.

The latest fatality from the infection occurred in Cambodia earlier this month. A 6-year-old girl became the eight person to die from avian flu there this year, the World Health Organization said.

Read more
Conflict In Libya
12:35 pm
Mon August 29, 2011

Libya's Ex-Prisoners Finding Their Way Home

The walls of the Libyan Red Crescent office in Benghazi, Libya, shown here on Monday, are covered with photos of the missing. Some disappeared during Libya's revolution, but some have been missing for more than 10 years. Now, thousands released from Libya's prisons are being reunited with their families.
Susannah George NPR

Originally published on Mon August 29, 2011 6:06 pm

In Libya, thousands of rebel fighters and political prisoners freed from Moammar Gadhafi's notorious prisons are making their way home. But tens of thousands more are still missing.

Anxious relatives and friends in the eastern city of Benghazi have flooded the airport and docks night after night in hopes of finding their loved ones arriving by plane or by boat.

Read more
Around the Nation
12:00 pm
Mon August 29, 2011

'Left Out': Post-Katrina Housing Battle Continues

Dorothy McClendon in Gulfport, Miss., hopes the state's latest housing program to help low-income residents will provide assistance so she can repair her moldy house.
Marisa Penaloza NPR

Six years ago Monday, Hurricane Katrina blew up the U.S. Gulf Coast, killed more than 1,800 people and left hundreds of thousands homeless. The story of the coast's recovery varies from place to place.

For some, life is back to normal. Along the Mississippi coast, thousands affected by Katrina still live in battered houses. They've been trapped by a technicality. Their homes were damaged by wind gusts rather than Katrina's storm surge.

In Biloxi, railroad tracks separate some of the neighborhoods that got the most help from those who got little or no aid.

Read more
The Two-Way
11:57 am
Mon August 29, 2011

Juror Held In Contempt Of Court After 'Friending' Defendant

The Fort Worth Star-Telegram brings a bit of curious news this morning: A Tarrant County juror was sentenced to two days of community service after he pleaded guilty to four counts of contempt of court.

Read more
Hurricane Irene Hits East Coast
11:54 am
Mon August 29, 2011

East Coast Starts To Add Up Irene's Economic Blow

Irene destroyed much of the two-mile boardwalk in Spring Lake, N.J.
Michael Loccisano Getty Images

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 9:28 am

The day after Irene, cleanup efforts continue and the damage estimates are starting to come in. Overall, it appears to have caused much less damage than forecasters expected.

But it's still early to make exact pronouncements about how much damage this storm caused or may still cause.

Swollen rivers in upstate New York and New England continue to threaten dams. And on Monday, President Obama said that the cleanup in many areas will be tough.

Read more
Music Reviews
11:41 am
Mon August 29, 2011

Wilhelm Furtwaengler: A Complex German Conductor

German conductor and composer Wilhelm Furtwaengler.
Hulton Archive Getty Images

Originally published on Mon December 19, 2011 5:59 am

Note: Wilhelm Furtwangler's last name is typically spelled with an umlaut over the 'a' character. The npr website does not support characters with umlauts over characters. A variation of Furtwangler's name without the umlaut is spelled Furtwaengler.

Wilhelm Furtwaengler's name may be hard for Americans to pronounce, but the reason this great conductor isn't so well-remembered here is that he chose to remain in Germany during WWII, though he was never a member of the Nazi Party, and was exonerated by a postwar tribunal.

Read more
The Two-Way
11:35 am
Mon August 29, 2011

Reports: Some Of Gadhafi's Family In Algeria

Algeria's state news agency is reporting that the government there says members of Moammar Gadhafi's family are now in that country, The Associated Press and other news outlets say.

It's thought that they include the ousted Libyan leader's wife, two sons and a daughter. NPR's Lourdes Garcia-Navarro, who is in Tripoli, says it's also being reported that some of Gadhafi's grandchildren may also be in the group.

Sky News says on its Twitter page that:

Read more
The Two-Way
11:20 am
Mon August 29, 2011

Obama's New Economist Favors Tax Credits For Companies That Hire

Alan Krueger, who President Obama today nominated to lead the White House Council of Economic Advisers, favors "the idea of having a new jobs tax credit" as one way to get the labor market moving again, he told Bloomberg radio last month.

"If companies increase their payroll by an employee, they could get a $5,000 tax cut to offset their additional hiring costs," Krueger said.

Read more
The Two-Way
10:40 am
Mon August 29, 2011

Through Irene, Old Guard Stood Watch At Tomb Of The Unknowns

On guard during Irene at the Tomb of the Unknowns.
3rd U.S. INF Regiment The Old Guard

As they did during Hurricane Isabel in 2003, the Washington-area blizzards in 2009-10 and other extreme weather events, soldiers of The Old Guard continued to march at Arlington National Cemetery's Tomb of the Unknowns as Hurricane Irene blew through the area

Read more
The Two-Way
10:32 am
Mon August 29, 2011

Freedom For Yvonne, Germany's Runaway Cow: Search Is Called Off

Yvonne, a cow that has lived in the wild since eluding a trip to the slaughterhouse in May, has foiled all attempts to capture her. Now officials say that she's not to be disturbed.
Josef Enzinger dapd

The search for Yvonne, the six-year-old cow that dashed to freedom just before she was to be transported to a slaughterhouse in southern Germany, has been called off. The cow has become a star, drawing international attention to Zangberg, the Bavarian commune where she made her escape.

Read more
The Two-Way
10:31 am
Mon August 29, 2011

NASA: International Space Station May Have To Fly Solo

The International Space Station and the docked space shuttle Endeavour, flying at an altitude of approximately 220 miles, on May 23, 2011.
Paolo Nespoli NASA

Originally published on Mon August 29, 2011 11:46 am

The International Space Station may have to fly solo this fall. All of the astronauts, NASA said today, might have to leave the station in late November if Russian spacecrafts can't make trips to the station.

The AP reports:

If Russian Soyuz rockets remain grounded beyond mid-November, there will be no way to launch new crews before the current residents are supposed to leave.

A Russian supply ship was destroyed during liftoff last week. The rocket is similar to what's used to launch astronauts.

Read more
The Two-Way
10:00 am
Mon August 29, 2011

Before And After Irene, Ron Paul's No Fan Of FEMA

Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX), at the 2011 Republican Leadership Conference in New Orleans on June 17, 2011.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX) said before Hurricane Irene rolled over the mid-Atlantic and up through New England that the Federal Emergency Management Agency does more harm than good because "all they do is come in and tell you what to do and [what you] can't do" and add billions of dollars to the federal deficit.

Plus, he added, the agency did not perform well after Hurricane Katrina pummeled New Orleans' levees six years ago — devastating that city.

Read more
The Two-Way
9:18 am
Mon August 29, 2011

Wisconsin Town Bars Republicans From Labor Day Parade

Wisconsin politics — which hasn't been pretty of late — has made its way into a local Labor Day parade. The organizers of the Wausau Labor Day parade announced they would not let Republican lawmakers take part in the Sept. 5 display. The parade is organized by 30 local unions.

The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel reports:

Read more
Shots - Health Blog
8:40 am
Mon August 29, 2011

Pediatricians Put The Kibosh On Boxing For Kids

Time for kids to take the gloves off, pediatricians say.
Lori Sparkia iStockphoto.com

Whatever you think about the merits of boxing as a sport for adults, pediatricians say children have no place in the ring.

Citing the risk of injuries, including concussions, the American Academy of Pediatrics and its Canadian counterpart, the Canadian Paedeatric Society, have come out in opposition to boxing as a sport for children and adolescents.

Pediatricians should strongly discourage parents from letting their kids box and suggest sports "that do not encourage intentional head injuries," says a new policy statement from the two national groups for pediatricians.

Read more
The Two-Way
8:30 am
Mon August 29, 2011

VIDEO: Firefighters Save Couple From Flooded SUV In Vermont

Among the many photos and videos taken by people up and down the East during and after Hurricane Irene passed through are three clips taken Sunday in Mount Holly, Vt., as local firefighters rescued a couple from their vehicle.

WPTZ-TV of Plattsburgh, N.Y., has them posted here. It says they were taken by "u local contributor Melody Bothers Katrobos."

"Part III" shows the successful conclusion.

Read more

Pages