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Economy
1:00 pm
Tue October 16, 2012

Movin' On Up? That May Depend On Your Last Name

New research suggests that success in life may be determined by ancestors from hundreds of years ago. The research finds that your chance of making it into the elite is the same in the United States as it is in South America, no matter when you were born.
Dan Kitwood Getty Images

Originally published on Tue October 16, 2012 5:06 pm

Here is a question that social scientists have been pondering for years: How much of your success in life is tied to your parents, and how much do you control?

The academic term used for this is "social mobility." And a striking new finding from economic historian Gregory Clark of the University of California, Davis claims your success in life may actually be determined by ancestors who lived hundreds of years ago. That means improving opportunities across generations might be a lot harder than anyone imagined.

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Music Reviews
12:53 pm
Tue October 16, 2012

K'Naan Brings Down Walls On 'Country, God Or The Girl'

K'Naan's new album is titled Country, God or the Girl.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue October 16, 2012 5:06 pm

The Somali-born rapper and singer-songwriter K'Naan can sure pack a lot into a 3-1/2-minute pop song: clever wit, heartfelt angst, a hook you can't shake — and, in the new track "Hurt Me Tomorrow," honky-tonk piano. That's the sort of quirk that helped win K'Naan his earliest fans. All sorts of eccentricities survive on Country, God or the Girl, his most expansive and elaborately produced work to date. Mostly, though, the new album soars with pairings of sharp, confessional rap and catchy vocal hooks.

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Music Reviews
11:40 am
Tue October 16, 2012

Budapest Quartet Gets To The Heart Of Beethoven

The Budapest String Quartet in 1919.
Wikimedia Commons

Originally published on Wed October 17, 2012 10:42 am

The Budapest String Quartet has always been my standard-bearer for chamber music. I grew up listening to their recordings, and especially admired not only their gorgeous sound, but also the uncanny interaction among all four players, even when there were changes in personnel. They had a way of playing as if they were speaking to each other, expressing deep and sometimes complicated feelings.

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Shots - Health News
11:38 am
Tue October 16, 2012

Feds Seek Comments On Bird Flu Safety Fears

An electron microscope view of the bird flu virus.
PR Newswire

Here's your chance to weigh in on mutant forms of bird flu that have been in the news — the U.S. government wants to know just how scary you think these new viruses are.

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The Two-Way
11:36 am
Tue October 16, 2012

Citigroup CEO's Exit Leaves Wall Street Scratching Its Head

Vikram Pandit on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange on in June.
Spencer Platt Getty Images

Today's announcement that Vikram Pandit had abruptly resigned as chief executive of banking giant Citigroup has left competitors, analysts and media pundits stunned and sputtering.

"This comes as a huge surprise," William George, a Goldman Sachs board member, said in an interview on CNBC.

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The Two-Way
11:22 am
Tue October 16, 2012

A Victory For Obama, High Court Refuses Ohio Early Voting Case

With a one sentence decision, the U.S. Supreme Court handed President Obama a victory today.

The court refused to hear a case that sought to block early voting Ohio. The AP reports:

"The court on Tuesday refused a Republican request to get involved in a dispute over early voting in the state on the three days before Election Day.

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Shots - Health News
11:16 am
Tue October 16, 2012

At Polio's Epicenter, Vaccinators Battle Chaos And Indifference

Kano, in northern Nigeria, has been called the "epicenter" of the current polio outbreak. This part of Nigeria is the only place in the world where polio cases are increasing.
David Gilkey NPR

Originally published on Thu November 1, 2012 2:16 pm

Polio was eliminated from the Western Hemisphere in the early 1990s. It was stamped out in Europe a few years later. And now, even the Congo and Somalia are polio free.

But in Africa's largest oil-producing nation, Nigeria, polio has been a difficult, contentious foe.

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Intelligence Squared U.S.
11:15 am
Tue October 16, 2012

Should We Ration End-Of-Life Care?

Sally Pipes and Ken Connor argue against the motion "Ration End-of-Life Care" in the latest Intelligence Squared U.S. debate.
Samuel LaHoz

Originally published on Tue October 16, 2012 1:19 pm

  • Listen To The Full Audio Of The Debate
  • Listen To The Broadcast Version Of The Debate

As the presidential candidates make their cases to the nation, health care is taking up a lot of talking points. But one subject that's less likely to be debated forthrightly is end-of-life care.

A big driver of U.S. health care expenditure is what's spent in the last year of life. Those who argue in favor of rationing that care say the country cannot afford to provide unlimited health care — either the government or insurance companies have to ration end-of-life care as a policy response.

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Books
11:03 am
Tue October 16, 2012

'Test Kitchen' Chefs Talk The Science Of Savory

Jack Bishop is the editorial director at America's Test Kitchen, where every day a near army of professional chefs test, test, then retest recipes to arrive at the best possible result.
Larry Crowe AP

Originally published on Tue October 16, 2012 2:22 pm

You might think that Bridget Lancaster and Jack Bishop — two of the culinary talents behind the public television shows America's Test Kitchen and Cook's Country — would have their cooking techniques pretty much figured out. Think again.

For the new Cook's illustrated book The Science of Good Cooking, Bishop and Lancaster tested principles they assumed were true — and as Bishop tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross, "Things that we thought were actually accurate turned out to be, perhaps, more complex."

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It's All Politics
10:17 am
Tue October 16, 2012

In The Second Debate, It's All About The Counter-Punch

Banners hang inside the media center amid preparations for tonight's presidential debate at Hofstra University in Hempstead, N.Y.
Stan Honda AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue October 16, 2012 12:46 pm

Tonight's presidential debate in New York is shaping up like an episode of the old game show To Tell the Truth: Will the real Barack Obama/Mitt Romney please stand up?

There are a lot of questions about what personas and strategies the two candidates will choose to adopt. Partisans on both sides argue that their man's opponent is a shape-shifter.

Democrats are convinced that part of the reason Romney won their first debate earlier this month is that he shamelessly lied about his own positions in tacking to the center.

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The Two-Way
10:10 am
Tue October 16, 2012

Second Female Marine Fails Grueling Infantry Officer Course

Female Marines unload their rifles after a patrol with Afghan soldiers in Helmand province in June. The Marine Corps leadership has started an experiment to determine whether female Marine lieutenants have what it takes to become infantry officers and lead on the battlefield.
Adek Berry AFP/Getty Images

The second of two female Marines who tried to make it through the grueling Infantry Officer Course has failed due to medical reasons. The female volunteers are part of a study by the Marines to see if women can become ground combat leaders.

The Marines have not released the names of either woman, citing privacy concerns.

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Asia
10:03 am
Tue October 16, 2012

Reporter On Friendship With Malala Yousafzai

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

I'm Michel Martin and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. Coming up, we've been talking a lot about the national debt this election year, but did you know that Americans, as a group, owe more than a trillion dollars in student loan debt? In a few minutes, we'll speak with a former college professor, who says faculty advisors need to be doing more to help students think that through. That's in just a few minutes.

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The Salt
10:02 am
Tue October 16, 2012

Farmer Tackling Monsanto's Seed Policy Gets A Day In Supreme Court

Many folks protest Monsanto's business practices, like this Greenpeace protester spraying paint on a company research soybean field in Iowa.
John Gaps III AP

Originally published on Wed February 13, 2013 8:57 am

Why do so many people hate Monsanto?

Is it because this multinational corporation pioneered some enormously successful genetically engineered crops, including corn, soybeans and cotton?

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It's All Politics
9:57 am
Tue October 16, 2012

Town Hall Format Could Make Things Tough On Obama

Originally published on Tue October 16, 2012 12:46 pm

It was Bill Clinton who made the town hall-style debate famous, and looking back to his performance in the first such fall faceoff in 1992, it's easy to see why.

Clinton commanded the stage and used the format — in which voters, not journalists, ask the questions — to "feel the pain" of the audience. Now, President Obama and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney get a shot at the same format.

However, it's the president who comes at it from a distinct disadvantage, says Chris Arterton, a professor of political management at George Washington University.

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Election 2012
9:56 am
Tue October 16, 2012

The Tea Party: Cooled Down, Or As Strong As Ever?

The Tea Party may have took the 2010 midterm elections by storm, but many analysts are now asking if the party's influence has cooled off. Host Michel Martin looks at the Tea Party's prospects for this election with NPR's Senior Washington Editor Ron Elving and Shelby Blakely, journalist coordinator for the Tea Party Patriots.

Economy
9:30 am
Tue October 16, 2012

5 Questions 'Real' People Might Ask At The Debate

An audience member holds up his hand at a Mitt Romney town hall meeting in Dayton, Ohio, in March. Audience members will be allowed to ask questions at the second presidential debate, being held Tuesday night in Hempstead, N.Y.
Gerald Herbert AP

As this election year began, political pundits insisted the No. 1 issue would be the economy. They expected the candidates to offer voters detailed plans for encouraging job growth.

Now, with the election just three weeks away, many Americans are still scratching their heads, wondering what exactly President Obama and former Gov. Mitt Romney would do to improve the economy.

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The Two-Way
9:02 am
Tue October 16, 2012

Cuba Eases Exit Visa Requirements For Most Of Its Citizens

Originally published on Tue October 16, 2012 10:45 am

Cuba announced another set of significant reforms today. This time, President Raúl Castro announced the country is lifting exit visa requirements for most of its citizens.

Beginning January 14, Cuban citizens, with the exception of some professionals like doctors, will no longer need to apply for permission to leave and they won't need a letter of invitation from someone living abroad.

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Shots - Health News
8:38 am
Tue October 16, 2012

Teenage Brains Are Malleable And Vulnerable, Researchers Say

Brain scans are showing researchers why it's important to treat problems like depression in teens.
iStockphoto.com

Adolescent brains have gotten a bad rap, according to neuroscientists.

It's true that teenage brains can be impulsive, scientists reported at the Society for Neuroscience meeting in New Orleans. But adolescent brains are also vulnerable, dynamic and highly responsive to positive feedback, they say.

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The Two-Way
7:33 am
Tue October 16, 2012

U.K. Blocks Extradition Of Hacker Accused Of Accessing Pentagon Computers

Briton Gary McKinnon in 2009.
Shaun Curry AFP/Getty Images

Gary McKinnon, who the U.S. government says perpetrated the biggest military computer hack of all time, will not be extradited to the U.S. from Britain, CNN reports.

The network adds:

"Home Secretary Theresa May said McKinnon's Asperger syndrome and depressive illness meant 'there is such a high risk of him ending his own life that a decision to extradite would be incompatible with his human rights.'

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The Two-Way
6:40 am
Tue October 16, 2012

Citigroup CEO Vikram Pandit Steps Down

Vikram Pandit on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange on in June.
Spencer Platt Getty Images

Originally published on Tue October 16, 2012 7:41 am

Vikram Pandit, the chief executive officer of Citigroup, has stepped down, the company's board announced today.

"The Board also announced it has unanimously elected Michael Corbat CEO and a director of the Board," Citigroup said in a statement. "Mr. Corbat previously served as Citigroup's CEO of Europe, Middle East and Africa."

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The Two-Way
6:26 am
Tue October 16, 2012

Obama Vs. Romney: The Presidential Candidates Set For Round 2

Media sets up in Spin Alley as they prepare for the debate between Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney and and President Barack Obama.
Timothy A. Clary AFP/Getty Images

After a zinger of a vice presidential debate last week, the bosses have a lot to live up to tonight. Just in case you haven't been paying attention: President Obama and former Gov. Mitt Romney face off in the second of three presidential debates.

It starts at 9 p.m. at Hofstra University in Hempstead, N.Y. The town-hall style debate will be moderated by CNN's Candy Crowley.

After what has been universally called a strong Romney victory during round 1, the spotlight is on Obama.

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The Two-Way
5:47 am
Tue October 16, 2012

Clinton: 'I Take Responsibility' For Benghazi Consulate Attack

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is pictured at Cairo International Airport on July 15 before her departure to Egypt's coastal city of Alexandria.
Brendan Smialowski AFP/Getty Images

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has taken the brunt of the responsibility for the attacks on the American consulate in Benghazi, in which ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans were killed.

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Monkey See
5:34 am
Tue October 16, 2012

A Judge Dismisses 'The Bachelor' Discrimination Lawsuit, But Not Its Concerns

Seen here in April 2012, Christopher Johnson and Nathaniel Claybrooks sued over the casting of The Bachelor.
Mark Humphrey AP

Yesterday, a federal judge dismissed a lawsuit brought by Christopher Johnson and Nathaniel Claybrooks, two black men who had auditioned for The Bachelor, who claimed that the show discriminates against people of color both in choosing the primary bachelor/ette and in choosing the people he or she will have to choose from.

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Business
5:33 am
Tue October 16, 2012

Who's The Richest Person In History?

Originally published on Tue October 16, 2012 8:45 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne. Nearly 700 years after he ruled the Mali Empire, King Mansa Musa has been awarded the title of richest person in history. Personal fortune: $400 billion. That's according to a new inflation-adjusted list compiled by Celebrity Net Worth. West Africa's salt and gold were the source of Musa's great wealth, which he used to build magnificent mosques. More modern names on the list: The Rothchilds and John D. Rockefeller. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright National Public Radio.

Business
5:29 am
Tue October 16, 2012

Pizza Hut Rethinks Debate Promotion

Originally published on Tue October 16, 2012 8:45 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Television
3:58 am
Tue October 16, 2012

A Check On How The Fall TV Season Is Going

Originally published on Tue October 16, 2012 8:45 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

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NPR Story
2:52 am
Tue October 16, 2012

Umpire Calls Are A Problem In Baseball's Post Play

Originally published on Tue October 16, 2012 8:45 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

In the baseball playoffs tonight, the Detroit Tigers have a chance to put the reeling New York Yankees on the brink of elimination. Meanwhile, the San Francisco Giants have slowed the St. Louis Cardinals who'd been playing with the kind of magic touch that carried them to last year's World Series title. Last night in San Francisco, the Giants beat St. Louis 7-1 to even their National League Championship Series at one game each. NPR's sports correspondent Tom Goldman joins us to talk more baseball.

Good morning.

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NPR Story
2:52 am
Tue October 16, 2012

Manufacturers Financially Support Hiring Vets

Originally published on Tue October 16, 2012 8:45 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And four major manufacturers say they will start offering financial support for the training of military veterans. The corporations are taking part in a program called Get Skills to Work Coalition. It has said its initial goal at training 15,000 vets.

NPR's Yuki Noguchi reports.

YUKI NOGUCHI, BYLINE: Unemployment among veterans has been falling, as it has for everyone else. The jobless rate among vets serving after 2001 now stands at 9.7 percent, but that's still about 2 percentage points higher than the general population.

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NPR Story
2:52 am
Tue October 16, 2012

Bank Of America Improves Foreclosure Image

Originally published on Tue October 16, 2012 8:45 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Bank of America will release quarterly earnings tomorrow and once again, foreclosures will be part of the equation. The Charlotte-based bank's role in the 2008 housing crash has landed it on a fair number of lists of most hated institutions in America.

But, as Julie Rose of member station WFAE in Charlotte discovered, some of those most involved in cleaning up the aftermath of the foreclosure crisis are beginning to soften toward the bank.

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Middle East
1:03 am
Tue October 16, 2012

Turks Fear What Syria's War Will Bring

Turkish soldiers stand near the Turkey-Syria border in Akcakale, Turkey, early Friday.
AP

Originally published on Tue October 16, 2012 6:16 pm

In Turkey's southern Hatay province, it is harvest time — the second harvest since the uprising began in neighboring Syria.

In the village of Hacipasa, Turkey, located right along the Syrian border, children play alongside tents on the edge of the farm fields. The tents belong not to Syrian refugees, but to Turkish farmworkers helping to bring in the cotton, tomatoes, peppers and pomegranates waiting to be harvested.

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