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Shots - Health Blog
9:54 am
Thu March 15, 2012

Feds To Pay For Graphic Anti-Smoking Ads

One of the graphic anti-smoking ads that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will run soon.
CDC

Federal health officials unveiled a graphic new anti-smoking campaign featuring testimonials from ex-smokers about the toll of tobacco on their health.

These aren't the usual public service announcements. The $54 million "Tips from Smokers" campaign marks the first time the federal government plans to pay to run anti-smoking ads nationwide, officials said.

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The Picture Show
9:33 am
Thu March 15, 2012

1940s Celebrities In Full Color

Louis Armstrong, 1947
Harry Warneckeby, Gus Schoenbaechler National Portrait Gallery

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 8:57 am

These are the kinds of black-and-white images we usually associate with past celebrities like Louis Armstrong, Orson Welles and Lucille Ball.

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Around the Nation
8:59 am
Thu March 15, 2012

Sonja Sohn: Changing Baltimore Long After 'The Wire'

Sonja Sohn is currently starring in the ABC drama Body of Proof. She is the founder of the Baltimore nonprofit ReWired for Change.
Peter Konerko Courtesy Sonja Sohn

Originally published on Thu March 15, 2012 9:40 am

For five seasons, actress Sonja Sohn played Detective Shakima "Kima" Greggs on the critically acclaimed HBO series The Wire, which chronicled life — and death — on Baltimore's toughest streets.

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The Two-Way
8:55 am
Thu March 15, 2012

'Star Rabbit' Dies When Photographer Takes Wrong Step

Til, on Wednesday, before his untimely death.
Uwe Meinhold AP

He's "like James Dean, a star dead before his time," according to The Local.

Spiegel Online says "the future had looked so bright for tiny Til."

Global Post somberly says that "an attempt to show a rare rabbit on TV took a tragic turn."

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The Two-Way
8:15 am
Thu March 15, 2012

Report Slams Sen. Stevens' Prosecutors

Former Sen. Ted Stevens, R-Alaska, in 2008.
Alex Wong Getty Images

In a "blistering" 500-page report released this morning a special prosecutor concludes that Justice Department lawyers "intentionally withheld" information that could have bolstered then-Sen. Ted Stevens' defense during the Alaska Republican's 2008 trial on corruption charges, NPR's Carrie Johnson tells us.

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It's All Politics
7:31 am
Thu March 15, 2012

Thursday Political Grab Bag: Obama And UK's Cameron Showcase Unity

The Obamas and Camerons at the White House before a state dinner for the British prime minister.
Susan Walsh AP

In the wake of the alleged killing of Afghan civilians by a U.S. soldier, Afghan President Hamid Karzai said he wants all NATO troops moved onto existing large bases and a faster handover of security responsibilities to his nation's forces. This dovetails with growing opinion in the U.S. that the withdrawal of American troops happen sooner than scheduled.

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Shots - Health Blog
6:58 am
Thu March 15, 2012

Mississippi Builds Insurance Exchange, Even As It Fights Health Law

Mississippi, unlike some of its neighbors, is moving ahead with an insurance exchange.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Fri March 16, 2012 7:24 am

Mississippi, a deeply red Southern state that is part of the Supreme Court case against the health law, is moving full speed ahead with one of the key provisions of that law: an online health insurance exchange.

Unlike Louisiana, Alabama, Florida and other conservative states in the South, Mississippi is well on its way to having an insurance exchange ready for operation by the 2014 deadline laid out by the health overhaul law.

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It's All Politics
6:42 am
Thu March 15, 2012

Obama's Unofficial Ambassador To The Middle Class — V.P. Biden — Hits Ohio

Vice President Joe Biden poses with an uncooperative baby at a speech in Tallahassee, Fla., on Feb. 6. On Thursday, he's in Ohio to begin a series of speeches aimed at framing the presidential race.
Phil Sears AP

Vice President Joe Biden wears a lot of different hats in the Obama administration. He's a longtime Senate insider who can negotiate with Republican Senate leader Mitch McConnell. He's a foreign policy veteran who helped to lead the transition in Iraq.

And one other thing to keep in mind, whenever there's idle political gossip about replacing Biden on the ticket with Hillary Cinton: He serves as a kind of White House ambassador to the middle class.

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The Two-Way
6:38 am
Thu March 15, 2012

Jobless Claims Fell By 15,000 Last Week

There was a 14,000 decline in the number of people filing first-time claims for unemployment insurance last week, the Employment and Training Administration just reported:

"In the week ending March 10, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 351,000, a decrease of 14,000 from the previous week's revised figure of 365,000. The 4-week moving average was 355,750, unchanged from the previous week's revised average of 355,750."

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Afghanistan
6:31 am
Thu March 15, 2012

Panetta, Karzai Meet After Villagers Are Massacred

Defense Secretary Leon Panetta is in Afghanistan on a long-planned trip that has turned into something of a fence-mending mission. A U.S. soldier is accused of killing 16 Afghan civilians. That attack is the latest in a series of negative events involving U.S. forces.

The Two-Way
6:25 am
Thu March 15, 2012

Priest Defends Denying Communion To Lesbian Mourner

Saeed Khan AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu March 15, 2012 7:35 am

The priest who was put on administrative leave by the Archdiocese of Washington following a much-talked-about incident in which he denied communion to a lesbian woman attending her mother's funeral, has issued a long defense of his action and has said the church isn't being candid about the reason for its decision to put him on leave.

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Around the Nation
5:49 am
Thu March 15, 2012

'Downton Abbey' Actors Attend State Dinner

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Around the Nation
5:43 am
Thu March 15, 2012

Bottles Of Tide Turn Up In Drug Bust

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

The Two-Way
5:25 am
Thu March 15, 2012

Afghans Object, U.S. Officials Defend Decision To Move Massacre Suspect

Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta, with Col. John Shafer, at Foward Operating Base Shukvani in Afghanistan on Wednesday.
Scott Olson Getty Images

Originally published on Thu March 15, 2012 8:35 am

  • Tom Bowman
  • Larry Abramson speaks with Renee Montagne

The news that the U.S. Army staff sergeant who is suspected of murdering 16 Afghan civilians has been moved to a detention facility in Kuwait is sparking some small protests in Afghanistan.

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Business
2:00 am
Thu March 15, 2012

The Last Word In Business

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And today's last word in business is: barbershop battle.

Barbers and beauticians are splitting hairs over the swirling red, white and blue striped pole that traditionally stands outside a barber shop. Barbers in several states are pushing legislation to prevent shops without a licensed barber from using the striped pole.

Many hair stylists say that they offer the same services as a licensed barber. But barbers say there are differences. For instance, only they can give shaves with a straight razor.

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Election 2012
2:00 am
Thu March 15, 2012

Biden Speeches To Frame Election Debate

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And I'm Steve Inskeep. Good morning.

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Afghanistan
2:00 am
Thu March 15, 2012

On Afghan Trip, Panetta Meets With Karzai

Originally published on Thu March 15, 2012 6:34 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

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

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

The U.S. Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta is in Afghanistan. It's a long-planned trip that's turned into something of a fence-mending mission. Yesterday, Panetta met with U.S. Marines and Afghan troops in the southern province of Helmand.

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Business
2:00 am
Thu March 15, 2012

Oil, Gas Drillers In Ohio Face Higher Taxes

Originally published on Thu March 15, 2012 3:22 pm

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Tax hikes and tighter regulations are in store for gas and oil drillers in Ohio, if the governor has his way.

Yesterday, Republican John Kasich called for sweeping changes and stricter controls in handling the state's shale gas boom.

Tim Rudell, of member station WKSU, reports Kasich is normally anti-regulation but is making an exception.

TIM RUDELL, BYLINE: Governor John Kasich told oil and gas companies to show him the money.

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Business
2:00 am
Thu March 15, 2012

When A Normal Job Resignation Won't Do

When Greg Smith quit his job at Goldman Sachs, he slammed his former employer in a blistering newspaper essay. People don't often quit with such a public display of vitriol. But when they do, it certainly gets attention.

Television
2:00 am
Thu March 15, 2012

TV Networks Roll Out Spring Replacement Shows

Originally published on Thu March 15, 2012 6:34 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

A new ABC series, called "Missing," debuts tonight. It features Ashley Judd as a woman tracking her teen son in Europe who's mysteriously disappeared. TV critic Eric Deggans says the series is part of a new TV trend this spring: shows that are more experimental and edgy.

ERIC DEGGANS, BYLINE: Would you believe Ashley Judd as a mom who works as a florist, but also used to be a deadly CIA operative?

(SOUNDBITE OF TV SHOW, "MISSING")

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Asia
2:00 am
Thu March 15, 2012

China Removes Flamboyant Politician From Post

Chongqing Municipality Communist Party Secretary Bo Xilai leaves after the third plenary meeting of the National People's Congress at The Great Hall of the People in Beijing on March 9. Bo had been seen as a leading contender to access the top rungs of power in China, but in a dramatic reversal of fortune, he was sacked Thursday amid a rare public scandal.
Feng Li Getty Images

In a moment of high political drama, China has removed flamboyant politician Bo Xilai from his post as party secretary of the major southern city of Chongqing. The sacking comes as Beijing approaches a once-in-a-decade power transition this fall, offering a glimpse of the Machiavellian political struggle behind the scenes.

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Author Interviews
10:01 pm
Wed March 14, 2012

The Wild And Crazy 'Tweets Of Steve Martin'

Steve Martin has won two Grammys for his comedy albums. His film credits include Father of the Bride, Parenthood and The Spanish Prisoner.

After 40 years on the stand-up stage, countless comedy albums and iconic movies, Steve Martin is still finding new ways to make people laugh.

The comedian got on Twitter in 2010, and by now he has attracted nearly 2.5 million followers with his funny and slightly demented tweets.

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Sports
10:01 pm
Wed March 14, 2012

Murray State Racers Fans Revved Up Over NCAA

Murray State fans celebrate a 3-point shot by Murray State's Donte Poole during the first half of a game St. Mary's on Feb. 18. Since January, every Racers home game has sold out.
Stephen Lance Dennee AP

On the Murray State University campus in Kentucky, warm weather has arrived. Students are out on the quad skateboarding, riding bikes, playing Frisbee and listening to music. But what are they talking about? Basketball.

"I think Murray State can go to the Final Four," one student says.

The MSU Racers have been in the tournament before, but with just a single loss this season and the highest tournament seed in the program's history, expectations are greater than ever.

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Middle East
10:01 pm
Wed March 14, 2012

Iranians Feel The Bite Of Tougher Sanctions

Iranians wait to enter a currency exchange shop in Tehran on Jan. 3. The Iranian rial fell to a record low against the dollar in early January after President Obama signed a bill imposing fresh sanctions on the country's central bank.
Morteza Nikoubazl Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Thu March 15, 2012 6:42 am

No nation has been sanctioned so frequently, and so thoroughly, as the Islamic Republic of Iran. For more than 30 years, the country has been under some kind of punitive economic measure.

The goal has been to prevent Iran from receiving and using the billions of dollars in oil profits that finance its nuclear program.

But none have been tougher, according to President Obama, than the sanctions his administration has imposed on Iran's banking system.

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Presidential Race
10:01 pm
Wed March 14, 2012

Campaign Videos: A Time-Tested Election Tactic

A screen shot of President Obama from the trailer for his campaign's movie The Road We've Traveled.
BarackObama.com/YouTube

Originally published on Thu March 15, 2012 6:34 am

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Race
10:01 pm
Wed March 14, 2012

Voters May Break Up Fight Over 'Fighting Sioux'

The University of North Dakota's Brad Eidsness makes a save during a game against the Minnesota Golden Gophers. Since 2005, there have been a series of lawsuits and legislative actions over the nickname for the school's athletic teams, the "Fighting Sioux."
Josh Holmberg AP

Originally published on Thu March 15, 2012 6:34 am

The state Supreme Court in North Dakota is about to consider this question: Can lawmakers require a college to name its sports teams after a Native American tribe?

For decades, University of North Dakota teams have been known as the "Fighting Sioux." It's a name some see as an honor and others find demeaning. Now, the long fight over the Fighting Sioux may be settled in a courtroom.

2,400 Logos And A 'Vexing' Dispute

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The Salt
10:01 pm
Wed March 14, 2012

In France, Politicians Make Halal Meat A Campaign Issue

French President Nicolas Sarkozy listens to a butcher during a visit to the butchery pavilion at the Rungis international food market, near Paris, in February.
Anna Maria Jakub Getty Images

Originally published on Thu March 15, 2012 7:29 pm

A provocative comment by an extreme right presidential candidate has started a debate that is dominating the French presidential campaign. France may be in the middle of an economic crisis, but politicians seem more interested in talking about halal meat and religious dietary rules.

It all began when National Front Party presidential candidate Marine Le Pen said that non-Muslims in Paris were unwittingly eating halal meat.

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Planet Money
10:01 pm
Wed March 14, 2012

China's Giant Pool Of Dollars

There is an advantage to strengthening the currency for people in China: It makes their imports cheaper. A clerk counts bank notes in a bank in Nantong, east China's Jiangsu Province.
Xinhua /Landov

Originally published on Thu March 15, 2012 9:08 am

China's central bank is sitting on a giant pool of U.S. dollars. It's the world's biggest holder of foreign reserves, worth over $3 trillion at last count.

All that money has piled up because every year, China exports more than it imports; it runs a trade surplus.

There are lots of reasons for China's trade surplus. In the past few decades, China has built an amazing manufacturing ecosystem. It's become the factory to the world.

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Energy
10:01 pm
Wed March 14, 2012

Surging Gas Prices Have Drivers Fuming

A driver pumps gas in Los Angeles, where prices are among the highest in the country, topping $4 a gallon.
Frederic J. Brown AFP/Getty Images

Gasoline prices have risen about 50 cents a gallon since January. The national average for regular gas stands at just above $3.80 per gallon.

Pity the drivers on the West Coast. Prices there have been much higher. At a Chevron station in Culver City, Calif., the price on Tuesday was $4.45 a gallon.

"I do building maintenance," Ursula Matthews said as she filled her tank. "I do a lot of driving from place to place. It's hurting me. I cannot raise the prices [of my services] with the economy what it is."

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The Two-Way
4:08 pm
Wed March 14, 2012

Santorum: Puerto Rico Must Adopt English If It Wants Statehood

Carlos Diaz, 84, reads local newspaper "El Vocero" with a front page depicting both Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum and a headline reading, "The National Battle Arrives on the Island."
Christopher Gregory Getty Images

Rick Santorum waded into a controversial issue today when he gave an interview to El Vocero, one of the biggest newspapers in Puerto Rico.

The issue? The island's primary language.

The paper asked the former Pennsylvania senator if he would back Puerto Rican statehood if Spanish along with English remained its official languages.

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