Originally published on Tue November 29, 2011 5:18 am
A second day of voting is underway in Egypt's parliamentary elections, with turnout being described as "massive and unexpected" and things moving along peacefully, The Associated Press and NPR's Lourdes Garcia-Navarro report from Cairo.
Good morning. I'm Steve Inskeep. It's never too late to settle a score. Joe Kapp and Angelo Mosca are former Canadian Football League stars. They supposedly haven't liked each other since competing in 1963.
Last week, the 73-year-olds were honored at a lunch. Kapp offered a flower as a peace gesture. Mosca rejected it, and lashed out with his cane. Kapp advanced with his fists.
The short animated film Hungry Hobos created by a young Walt Disney starred a rabbit. It was one of about 26 cartoons featuring Oswald the rabbit. Hungry Hobos screened in 1928 but sat on the shelf for decades. It will be sold at auction.
In New York, yesterday, a federal judge rejected a settlement of a fraud case involving Citigroup. The Securities and Exchange Commission, which brought charges against the bank, had agreed to the $285 million deal. But Judge Jed Rakoff said he didn't believe the settlement was in the public interest. NPR's Jim Zarroli reports.
The housing crisis has stalled home building but apartment construction is undergoing a bit of a renaissance. There's now a huge pool of people forced to rent because they can't afford to buy a home, or they were a victim of foreclosure. In Denver, there aren't enough apartment vacancies.
The long running NBC comedy series The Office is about a group of workers employed by fictitious paper company Dunder Mifflin. The Wall Street Journal reports that an office supply website called Quill.com has struck a licensing agreement with NBC to sell copy paper using the fictitious brand name.
According to the latest Census, the wealthiest Americans saw huge jumps in their income, while the rest had their incomes go down. For a deeper understanding of the wealth gap, Steve Inskeep talks to Tyler Cowen, an economist at George Mason University, and Matthew Yglesias, who writes about economics for the website Slate.com.
Peaceful voting in Egypt has given the country's stock market a boost. Cairo's market was closed on Monday when the landmark elections started. When trading opened Tuesday, the benchmark stock index surged more than 5 percent.
Because of the ability to cheaply process terabytes of information, companies can analyze all kinds of things that weren't possible before, like Decide.com's price prediction tool that exposes the surprising volatility of consumer electronic prices.
What do Facebook, Groupon and biotech firm Human Genome Sciences have in common? They all rely on massive amounts of data to design their products. Terabytes and even zettabytes of information about consumers or about genetic sequences can be harnessed and crunched.
Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney has been unofficially running for president for the better part of five years, and in that time, he has been asked about immigration over and over again. Now some of his rivals are arguing that his answers to the question have been inconsistent. And the issue blew up last week at a CNN debate on national security.
Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich said someone who has lived peacefully in the United States for many years with a family, a community and a job should have an opportunity to become a legal permanent resident.
Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney has been labeled a flip-flopper. And when it comes to abortion, the former governor of Massachusetts appears to have changed his position from being in favor of abortion rights to being opposed.
But now some people are asking if Romney ever supported abortion rights at all? Backers of abortion rights don't think so.
To understand how important remotely piloted aircraft are to the U.S. military, consider this: the U.S. Air Force says this year it will train more drone pilots than fighter and bomber pilots combined.
And that's changing the nature of aerial warfare — and the pilots who wage it.
Steve, a lieutenant colonel, grew up wanting to be in the Air Force. And that meant one thing: wanting to be a pilot.
To him, flying is physical: the pull of gravity, the sounds inside the cockpit.
Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich surprised viewers of last week's Republican presidential debate with his take on illegal immigrants.
"If you've been here 25 years and you've got three kids and two grandkids, you've been paying taxes and obeying the law, you belong to a local church, I don't think we're going to separate you from your family, uproot you forcefully and kick you out," he said.
His GOP opponents accused Gingrich of endorsing amnesty, a policy many conservatives deem unacceptable.
The congressional to-do list for the month of December is long.
The list includes things like agreeing on a way to keep the federal government funded past the middle of the month, making some routine and annual tax fixes, and deciding whether or not to continue the payroll tax holiday and extended benefits for the long-term unemployed.
Dawn Deane, a 49-year-old human resources professional from Philadelphia is particularly interested in that last item.
Originally published on Mon November 28, 2011 8:14 pm
Unilever, the Anglo-Dutch conglomerate that makes blockbuster food products like Hellmann's mayonnaise and Skippy peanut butter and supplies thousands of food-service companies in 74 countries, is a Fortune Global 500 company. If it decides it wants to do something about food waste, it could keep a lot of perfectly tasty morsels out of the garbage heap.
Originally published on Tue November 29, 2011 8:33 am
An Atlanta woman claimed Monday that she has had long-term affair with Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain and has the records to prove it, an accusation that delivers another blow to the former corporate CEO's campaign.
Cain vehemently denied the allegation during an interview on CNN before the woman's story aired on an Atlanta television station.
He described her as a "friend," but said their relationship was not sexual. "I have nothing to hide," he told CNN.
An Atlanta woman has told a local TV station that she had a 13-year-long sexual relationship with GOP presidential candidate Herman Cain. For several weeks now, Cain's campaign has been dogged by several accusations of sexual harassment. Melissa Block talks with NPR national political correspondent Don Gonyea.
A U.N. commission accused security forces loyal to Syria President Bashar Assad of killing hundreds of children and committing other "crimes against humanity" since the government began its crackdown on protesters back in March.
A NATO airstrike that killed 24 Pakistani soldiers over the weekend has brought U.S.-Pakistani ties to a new level of strain, but experts say it's unlikely to produce a permanent rift in the relationship.
Barely a month ago, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton visited Islamabad hoping to cement greater Pakistani cooperation to eliminate Taliban safe havens inside its territory. After Saturday's attack, that kind of cooperation appeared to be on indefinite hold.
The Associated Press and The New York Times report that Lana Peters, Josef Stalin's only daughter and his last surviving child, died last week at age 85. Peters was mainly known as the daughter of the Soviet tyrant, but her life was anything but simple: The evolution of her name says much about her efforts to escape the ignominy of her father. Peters was born Svetlana Stalina then changed her last name to Alliluyeva and later became Lana Peters.
The Kalichstein-Laredo-Robinson Trio — pianist Joseph Kalichstein, violinist Jamie Laredo and cellist Sharon Robinson — will celebrate its 35th anniversary as one of the world's finest chamber-music ensembles this January. For the past 25 years, one of the group's frequent partners has been Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Ellen Taaffe Zwilich. She says it's always great fun to hand over a new piece.
Visitors to the grave of the Irish writer and poet Oscar Wilde won't be able to leave a permanent mark on his tomb anymore. Since the '90s, mostly women started leaving lipstick kisses on his tomb in Paris' Père Lachaise cemetery, a gentle memento for a writer who didn't show much regard for women.
Sobhi Saleh, right, a senior member of the Muslim Brotherhood and candidate for parliament, speaks to voters at a polling station in Alexandria, Egypt on Monday. The Brotherhood is expected to make a strong showing in the polls.
Credit - / AFP/Getty Images
Members of Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood take part in a press conference in Cairo on April 30, to announce the formation of a new party, the Freedom and Justice Party, to contest up to half of parliament's seats in a September election.
Dozens of veiled women tried to squeeze past each other Monday and into a polling station in the working-class neighborhood of Raml in the northern Egyptian city of Alexandria.
They were eager to cast ballots for a clean-shaven man in a crisp blue suit and matching tie.
His name is Sobhi Saleh and he heads the Muslim Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party ticket in three of Alexandria's districts. The party is considered the best organized in Egypt and is expected to do well in the country's first election since President Hosni Mubarak was toppled in February.
Credit Courtesy Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
Researchers at the window testing facility at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory are developing nanocrystal technology. When activated by a small electrical current, it would allow light but not heat through.
Credit Courtesy Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
Researchers at the window testing facility at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory are developing dynamic windows treated with nanocrystals that block heat from the sun when a small electrical current is applied — useful for hot summer days.
Credit Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
This infrared image shows a low-e window (right) and an untreated window in winter conditions. The low-e window's insulating film keeps heat inside a building. It also has coating that blocks outside rays of sunlight — an inefficiency researchers are trying to correct with dynamic windows.
When you think of high-tech gadgets that make us greener, you might picture solar panels or electric cars; windows may not seem as exciting. But buildings are responsible for 40 percent of the country's energy use, and researchers say they can lower that number by making windows smarter.
As someone who studies windows, Howdy Goudey isn't surprised that most of us find them a little boring.
"It's a pretty pedestrian object," he says. "You know, what's new to do with a window?"
Originally published on Tue December 13, 2011 1:58 pm
Massachusetts Rep. Barney Frank says he decided not to seek re-election to a 17th term in 2012 because congressional redistricting would have given him a slew of new constituents and a difficult, expensive campaign.
"I think I would have won," Frank, 71, said during a Monday press conference in Massachusetts announcing his retirement. "But it would have been a tough campaign."
Added Frank, who has led financial reform efforts on Capitol Hill: "I don't like raising money."
A federal judge nixed a $285 million settlement agreement between Citigroup and the Securities and Exchange Commission involving a major financial case. U.S. District Court Judge Jed Rakoff said the proposed agreement is "neither far, no reasonable, nor adequate, nor in the public interest." Under the deal, Citi would have settled charges that it misled investors in mortgage debt prior to the collapse of the housing market. Rakoff has been a persistent critic of the SEC's oversight of Wall Street. Guy Raz talks to NPR's Jim Zarroli for more.
Millions of voters go to the polls in the Democratic Republic of Congo Monday in only the second election in its history. The mood in the country is tense. The current president Joseph Kabila is deeply unpopular, but many in Congo believe he will go to any lengths to hold onto power. Melissa Block talks to NPR's Ofeibea Quist-Arcton.