NPR News

Pages

Opinion
8:13 am
Mon August 8, 2011

Weekly Standard: Finger-Pointing Pundits Go Crazy

The arguments in Washington are enough to drive anyone crazy.
iStockphoto.com

Zack Munson writes for The Weekly Standard.

Read more
The Two-Way
7:42 am
Mon August 8, 2011

From Cuba To Florida: A 61-Year-Old Starts The 103-Mile Swim

Diana Nyad delivers a speech at Ernest Hemingway Nautical Club, in Havana.
Adalberto Roque AFP/Getty Images

Diana Nyad attempted it once before. It was 1978 when she was 28, but 42 hours into what's supposed to be a 60-hour swim, her team pulled the plug. Nyad, a world-class endurance swimmer, had been defeated by nature: the water temperature was a tad cool and the wind produced sizable waves.

Read more
Opinion
7:05 am
Mon August 8, 2011

Foreign Policy: History Doesn't Quite Repeat Itself

Members of a pro-Islamic human rights group and Syrians living in Turkey gather, one holding a placard that reads, "we did not forget Hama" as they stage a protest against the Syrian regime and its leader Bashar Assad during a protest outside the Syrian embassy in Ankara, Turkey, Monday, Aug. 1, 2011.
AP

David Kenner is an associate editor at Foreign Policy.

Something was stirring in the Syrian city of Hama. The Assad regime appeared to be losing control; it had issued vague warnings about an Islamist takeover, but had gone ominously silent for over a week. A government-planned trip to the city was canceled. Syrian officials warned privately that any attempt by intrepid journalists to visit Hama would be "life-threatening."

Read more
Opinion
6:54 am
Mon August 8, 2011

New Republic: A Lesson From The Great Depression

A family of migrant workers flees from the drought in Oklahoma camp by the roadside in Blythe, California, during The Great Depression.
Dorothea Lange Getty Images

John B. Judis is a senior editor of The New Republic and a Visiting Scholar at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.

Read more
Opinion
6:53 am
Mon August 8, 2011

Weekly Standard: Time To Celebrate Health Care?

President Barack Obama speaks about efforts to prepare veterans for the workforce, Friday, Aug. 5, 2011, at the Washington Navy Yard in Washington. On Friday the president also declated Aug. 7-13 as National Health Center Week.
Carolyn Kaster AP

Jeffrey H. Anderson was the senior speechwriter for Secretary Mike Leavitt at the Department of Health and Human Services.

Read more
The Two-Way
6:43 am
Mon August 8, 2011

Riots In London Over Police Shooting; Saudis Recall Ambassador From Syria

People walk past a burned van Sunday, a day after riots in the Tottenham area of London. A peaceful protest against the police killing of a 29-year-old man degenerated into a rampage.
Dan Kitwood Getty Images

Good morning!

As we said earlier, we'll be watching the markets as they react to the United States' rating downgrade and the greater worries about the global economy. But, here are some other stories making headlines:

-- London Riots: For the first time in decades, London witnessed intense riots this past weekend. The riots started after police shot and killed Mark Duggan a 29-year-old father of four. The AP reports:

Read more
Business
6:30 am
Mon August 8, 2011

Uneasy Financial World Awaits Wall Street Reaction

Wall Street was poised Monday for a day of potential turmoil after global stocks slid in the wake of a first-ever downgrade of U.S. credit and major intervention by the European Central Bank to help stave off defaults in Spain and Italy.

European markets lost early momentum and moved sharply lower amid mounting concerns over eurozone debt woes and the pending opening of U.S. markets, when traders will have their first chance to respond to Standard and Poor's decision Friday to lower its triple A rating for the U.S.

Read more
The Two-Way
5:57 am
Mon August 8, 2011

Developing: In Wake Of S&P Downgrade, Watching The Markets

The markets are trying to digest a lot, this morning: First, is the news from Friday that Standard & Poor's downgraded the United States' credit rating. Second, is that this morning the European Central Bank started buying Italian and Spanish government bonds.

Read more
Economy
4:34 am
Mon August 8, 2011

Economists Cast Opinions During Fishing Trip

Turmoil in the financial markets has coincided with an annual fishing trip for economists and top executives deep in the woods of Maine near the Canadian border. While the economists were together, Standard and Poor's took the unprecedented step of downgrading the U.S. government's credit rating.

Read more
13.7: Cosmos And Culture
1:30 am
Mon August 8, 2011

Baby's Palate And Food Memories Shaped Before Birth

Want your child to love veggies? Start early. Very early. Research shows that what a woman eats during pregnancy not only nourishes her baby in the womb, but may shape food preferences later in life.

At 21 weeks after conception, a developing baby weighs about as much as a can of coke – and he or she can taste it too. Still in the womb, the growing baby gulps down several ounces of amniotic fluid daily. That fluid surrounding the baby is actually flavored by the foods and beverages the mother has eaten in the last few hours.

Read more
Shots - Health Blog
10:01 pm
Sun August 7, 2011

Sleep-Deprived New Parents Don't Have To Hit The (Sleeping Pill) Bottle

Sleep researchers say parents of a new child can be a risk for long-term insomnia.
Timothy M. Black iStockphoto.com

Having a young child can wreak havoc on sleep patterns. So much so that sleep researchers say parents, and especially mothers, of a new child can be a risk for long-term insomnia.

There are the remedies parents whisper to each other on the playground: a spare bottle of Ambien, Tylenol PM or brandy. But for those looking for an un-medicated solution, Dr. Rafael Pelayo at Stanford University's Sleep Medicine Center has some ideas.

Read more
Your Health
10:01 pm
Sun August 7, 2011

Baby's Palate And Food Memories Shaped Before Birth

Mothers might not realize that the tastes and flavors they savor while pregnant can influence their babies' palates later.
Maggie Starbard/NPR

Want your child to love veggies? Start early. Very early. Research shows that what a woman eats during pregnancy not only nourishes her baby in the womb, but may shape food preferences later in life.

At 21 weeks after conception, a developing baby weighs about as much as a can of Coke — and he or she can taste it, too. Still in the womb, the growing baby gulps down several ounces of amniotic fluid daily. That fluid surrounding the baby is actually flavored by the foods and beverages the mother has eaten in the last few hours.

Read more
Living Large: Obesity In America
10:01 pm
Sun August 7, 2011

Big, Fat Stereotypes Play Out On The Small Screen

Jackie Gleason (right) played Ralph Kramden — a bumbling but loveable overweight husband — in the 1950s sitcom The Honeymooners. Audrey Meadows co-starred as his wife, Alice.
Paramount Pictures Getty Images

Originally published on Wed August 1, 2012 5:00 pm

Part of an ongoing series on obesity in America.

About the only thing all real fat people have in common is that they weigh more. Beyond that, they are as diverse in style, background and personality as people who aren't overweight. But on the small screen, fat people get shrunk into the same stereotypes.

Read more
Research News
2:59 pm
Sun August 7, 2011

'Labs On A Chip' May Detect Diseases In The Field

Can the most modern of technologies help solve the health woes in the poorest countries in the world? Some biomedical engineers say yes. They are designing diagnostic laboratories that fit on something as small as a credit card, and give results in minutes instead of hours or days.

These devices are sometimes referred to as a "lab on a chip." To use them, all you need to do is obtain a drop of someone's blood.

Read more
Politics
1:00 pm
Sun August 7, 2011

Downgrade Illustrates Washington's Dysfunction

Originally published on Mon August 8, 2011 4:24 am

When Standard & Poor's downgraded the United State's credit rating, it said that the "effectiveness, stability and predictability of American policymaking and political institutions have weakened." In other words, S&P was down on Washington's dysfunction, distrust and gridlock. The reactions to S&P's move — at least the reactions seen on TV — suggest that the ratings agency may have had a point.

Read more
World
7:07 am
Sun August 7, 2011

Nuclear Power Criticized On Hiroshima Anniversary

Saturday, Japan commemorated the 66th anniversary of the U.S. bombing of Hiroshima, but the ceremony was different this year.

In March, a massive earthquake triggered a meltdown at the Japanese nuclear plant in Fukushima. The plant continues to leak radiation in the worst atomic accident since Chernobyl. Saturday's ceremony focused on the nuclear attack on Japan in 1945, but the country's ongoing nuclear disaster loomed large.

Read more
U.S.
6:22 am
Sun August 7, 2011

Illegal Border Crossings Fewer But Just As Deadly

This border patrol rescue beacon is in the desert about 15 miles north of the Mexican border southwest of Tucson. Anyone in need can push the button for an emergency response. The instructions are in English, Spanish and the local Native American language.
Ted Robbins NPR

Over the last decade, the U.S. government has spent billions beefing up surveillance, manpower and fencing along the border with Mexico. Fewer people are attempting to cross, but hundreds of migrants still die every year, and not a day goes by without a rescue by border patrol agents.

Officials and humanitarian groups are ramping up efforts to find illegal crossers before the worst happens, and they're hoping new deterrents convince people not to cross in the first place.

Catching The Crossers

Read more
Commentary
6:00 am
Sun August 7, 2011

Manatee Scars Come From A Fight They Can't Win

Spot a manatee, the friendly, charming and prehistoric marine animal common in Florida's waters, and you're likely to think they're constantly besieged by sharks or other toothy killers. Many bear heavy scars and other marks of attack. But, as essayist Diane Roberts writes, manatees have no natural predators. What's attacking them? Boat propellers.

Politics
6:00 am
Sun August 7, 2011

White House Scorns S&P Downgrade

When Standard & Poor's downgraded the U.S. government's credit rating, the Treasury Department and White House responded swiftly with criticism. Guest host John Ydstie talks with NPR's National Political Correspondent Don Gonyea about that response.

A Blog Supreme
6:00 am
Sun August 7, 2011

A Millennial Incursion At Newport

Trombone Shorty, with Dan Oestreicher on baritone saxophone in the background, performing at the Newport Jazz Festival on Saturday.
Erik Jacobs for NPR

The New Black Eagle Jazz Band is about as traditional as they come. The musicians have been playing together for 40 years. And they opened this year's Newport Jazz Festival with rousing, old-time New Orleans polyphony, a style that dates back to the teens and 1920s.

At the same moment, a mere 300 feet away on another stage at Fort Adams, is a band of twenty- and thirty-somethings on the opposite end of the musical spectrum. It's called Mostly Other People Do the Killing.

Read more
World
6:00 am
Sun August 7, 2011

After The Downgrade, Eyes Turn To Monday's Markets

Europe is reacting to Friday's downgrade of U.S. credit by Standard & Poor's. NPR's Tom Gjelten reports from Madrid as markets prepare to open around the world.

Afghanistan
6:00 am
Sun August 7, 2011

Navy SEALs Mourn Heavy Loss In Afghanistan

The Navy SEAL community is mourning the loss of more than two dozen members. They were among 30 Americans killed Saturday when their helicopter came under fire during an operation in eastern Afghanistan. NPR Pentagon correspondent Tom Bowman reports.

Around the Nation
6:00 am
Sun August 7, 2011

In Tuscaloosa, A Commencement Comes A Year Late

This weekend, the University of Alabama will award degrees to students who would have received them last spring had a devastating tornado not postponed graduation. During ceremonies, the school will honor the six students killed in the storm. NPR's Kathy Lohr reports.

Around the Nation
6:00 am
Sun August 7, 2011

Urban Rangers Quest For The Natural L.A.

The Los Angeles Urban Rangers are an art collective set on teaching Angelenos how to view nature in their everyday surroundings. Guest host John Ydstie travels with the Rangers on their newest expedition: to explore the L.A. River, a neglected natural resource.

Business
6:00 am
Sun August 7, 2011

Credit Rating Agencies Aren't Above Scrutiny, Either

The opinions of the major ratings agencies like S&P carry a lot of weight in the financial markets. Their own reputations, however, were damaged during the financial crisis when they awarded AAA ratings to what turned out to be toxic, mortgage-backed securities. Guest host John Ydstie speaks with Nikola Swann, a credit analyst at Standard & Poor's, about some of the criticism the company's received in the wake of the decision to downgrade the U.S. credit rating.

Race
4:16 am
Sun August 7, 2011

After Years Of Research, Confederate Daughter Arises

Mattie Clyburn Rice is the second black "Real Daughter" to be recognized by the United Daughters of the Confederacy, an organization that was once exclusively for whites
Jessica Jones

Originally published on Sun August 7, 2011 7:01 pm

This year marks the 150th anniversary of the beginning of the Civil War. It's of particular importance to the United Daughters of the Confederacy, an organization for female descendants of Confederate soldiers.

The group includes 23 elderly women who are the last living daughters of those who served. One of them is black.

Read more
Animals
4:14 am
Sun August 7, 2011

Fighting Decline, Micronesia Creates Shark Sanctuary

Micronesian islands have declared vast areas of the Pacific Ocean to be a sanctuary for sharks. It's the latest move in a trend to create zones where sharks can live undisturbed.

These top predators are in serious decline around the world because they are being over-fished. Mostly, they are caught to feed an insatiable appetite for shark-fin soup in Asia.

Read more
Economy
4:05 am
Sun August 7, 2011

American Pride Takes A Hit With S&P's Downgrade

For generations, the United States and its debt — sold in the form of U.S. Treasuries — have been synonymous with safety. Now, though, the nation's sterling credit is tarnished. The ratings agency Standard & Poor's has downgraded the U.S. from AAA to AA-plus, one notch down. The downgrade has raised big questions about what this will mean for investors and for the nation as a whole.

Read more
Science
3:49 am
Sun August 7, 2011

Dinosaur Hall Roars To Life In Los Angeles

At the center of the new Dinosaur Hall at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles is a display on T. rexes' growth and eating habits.
Natural History Museum of Los Angeles

At the new Dinosaur Hall at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles, visitors are greeted with the simulated sound of a dinosaur's roar. Some 300 dinosaur specimens are on display. It's also a hands-on show, with interactive games where kids can become paleontologists. The centerpiece of the revamped exhibit are three Tyrannosaurus rex skeletons, including the youngest known T. rex fossil in the world.

Read more
Politics
7:48 pm
Sat August 6, 2011

Gov. Perry Tries To Keep Focus On God, Not Politics

It could have been a typical service at any megachurch in the South, with a tight band, a great choir, big-screen projection, and a large congregation swaying and praying. But the speaker who drew the biggest response at the prayer rally in Houston on Saturday was Texas Gov. Rick Perry, looking resplendent in a red tie and his much-envied mane of dark hair.

The often combative Republican governor did not attack his nemesis, Barack Obama, who Perry often accuses of overreaching and whom he may try to defeat at the polls next year.

In fact, Perry prayed for him.

Read more

Pages