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The Two-Way
4:22 pm
Thu June 7, 2012

In Syria, Some Places 'Are Already Living The Civil War'

A Syrian boy sits in the rubble of house which was destroyed during a military operation by the Syrian pro-Assad army in April in the town of Taftanaz, Syria.
AP

NPR's Deborah Amos has been covering the uprising in Syria since it began more than a year ago. Like other foreign reporters, she has had to cover much of the conflict from afar because the Syrian government has only rarely granted visas. She has just returned to Syria for the first time since last fall and sent this dispatch:

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It's All Politics
3:54 pm
Thu June 7, 2012

There's More Secret Money In Politics; Justice Kennedy Might Be Surprised

Justice Anthony Kennedy, who wrote the Citizens United opinion saying that corporations can pay for ads expressly promoting or attacking political candidates.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

Originally published on Thu June 7, 2012 4:39 pm

Federal election law has required the public disclosure of campaign donors for nearly 40 years.

But this year, outside groups are playing a powerful role in the presidential election. And some of them disclose nothing about their donors. That's despite what the Supreme Court said in its controversial Citizens United ruling two years ago.

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Music Reviews
3:54 pm
Thu June 7, 2012

Music Review: 'Can You Canoe'

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

You're listening to ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News.

For many kids, summer means no homework, playing outdoors and, of course, traveling. Our children's music reviewer, Stefan Shepherd, tells us about a new album inspired by a trip down America's original interstate highway.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "CAN YOU CANOE?")

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Poetry
3:25 pm
Thu June 7, 2012

New U.S. Poet Laureate: A Southerner To The Core

Originally published on Thu June 7, 2012 3:54 pm

The United States named its 19th poet laureate today: Natasha Trethewey, a professor of English and creative writing at Emory University in Atlanta. She is the nation's first poet laureate to hail from the South since the initial laureate — Robert Penn Warren — was named by the Library of Congress in 1986.

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Youth Radio
3:25 pm
Thu June 7, 2012

Calif. School District Finds Gentler Path To Discipline

A gavel rests in a makeshift courtroom at Richmond High School in Richmond, Calif. The local school district has cut the number of student suspensions in half in six years by adopting a youth court program and other new discipline methods.
Robyn Gee

Originally published on Thu June 7, 2012 4:57 pm

Each school year, more than 700,000 California students — predominantly black and Latino — are suspended or expelled.

Robert, a talkative sixth-grader in the city of Richmond, has been suspended three times from his elementary school in the West Contra Costa Unified School District. If he gets suspended one more time, he says, he might get expelled. [NPR has withheld his last name because he is a minor.]

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Shots - Health Blog
3:00 pm
Thu June 7, 2012

Abortion-Rights Advocates Pin Hopes On Defense Bill

U.S. Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.), center, speaks as Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.), right, and Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) at a April news conference on Capitol Hill.
Alex Wong Getty Images

Since Republicans took back the U.S. House in the 2010 elections, abortion has been a fairly constant theme. The House took eight separate abortion-related votes in 2011 — the most in a decade, according to NARAL Pro-Choice America.

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Movie Interviews
2:18 pm
Thu June 7, 2012

Damon Lindelof Risks The Wrath Of Loyal Fans Again

Damon Lindelof moderated a conversation with Charlize Theron, who stars in the new Ridley Scott thriller Prometheus, at the 2011 Comic-Con. Lindelof co-wrote the film.
Kevin Winter Getty Images

Originally published on Thu June 7, 2012 5:35 pm

Damon Lindelof was a producer on the 2009 reboot of Star Trek, which seemed to win over loyal Trekkies. And this weekend Lindelof will earn the devotion — or wrath — of Alien fans. He helped write the screenplay for the new film Prometheus, an origin story for Ridley Scott's 1979 sci-fi classic.

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Latin America
2:11 pm
Thu June 7, 2012

Mexico's Once Dominant Party Poised For A Comeback

Mexican presidential front-runner Enrique Pena Nieto of the Institutional Revolutionary Party, or PRI, waves to the crowds during a campaign stop in the northern border city of Tijuana, Mexico, on June 3. The once dominant PRI, out of power for the past 12 years, looks likely to make a comeback.
Alex Cossio AP

Originally published on Thu June 7, 2012 3:54 pm

First of two parts

As Mexico approaches its election day on July 1, polls indicate the candidate for the opposition Institutional Revolutionary Party, or PRI, is well ahead and appears likely to return his party to power.

The PRI governed Mexico for seven decades until 2000, when it was tossed out by an electorate tired of a corrupt political machine. Now, discontent with the current leadership and the rampant drug-related violence has created an opening for the PRI to come back. Still, some Mexicans are queasy about the prospect of the party's resurgence.

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The Two-Way
1:58 pm
Thu June 7, 2012

U.S. Issues El Niño Watch, Which Could Mean Fewer Hurricanes, Colder Winter

Temperatures in Pacific have risen.
NOAA

The National Weather Service's Climate Prediction Center issued an El Niño watch, today.

That means there is a 50 percent chance that El Niño — warmer than normal temperatures in the Pacific Ocean near the equator — will develop by next winter. As The Baltimore Sun reports, if this happens it will be the first time El Niño rears its head since 2009.

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The Two-Way
12:16 pm
Thu June 7, 2012

Like LinkedIn, Last.fm And eHarmony Suffer Password Breach

Last.fm

Originally published on Thu June 7, 2012 1:21 pm

Last.fm and eHarmony became the latest websites to suffer security breaches that put the passwords of some of their users at risk.

In a statement on its website, Last.fm, which tracks and recommends music, said it was investigating the leaked passwords and asked all its users to "change their passwords immediately."

The dating site EHarmony said it had reset the passwords of those members whose passwords had been compromised.

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The Two-Way
12:00 pm
Thu June 7, 2012

That 'Splendid Splinter' Is Really Slinging The Old Pigskin, Boston Mayor Says

Ted Williams, "The Splendid Splinter." Perhaps Mayor Menino will mention him next.
Hulton Archive Getty Images

Originally published on Thu June 7, 2012 1:08 pm

Big-city mayors need to be able to do some basic things to keep their jobs.

Get the streets plowed. Fill the potholes. Make sure garbage is picked up. Take a bite out of crime. Love your local teams and extol the accomplishments of their heroes.

Apparently, Boston Mayor Tom Menino (D) can get away without doing very well on that last requirement.

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The Two-Way
11:58 am
Thu June 7, 2012

Drink Up! Idaho OKs 'Five Wives' Vodka

Bottles of Ogden's Own Distillery Five Wives Vodka at a state liquor store in Salt Lake City.
Brian Skoloff AP

Originally published on Thu June 7, 2012 3:54 pm

The state of Idaho's Liquor Division has changed its mind about Five Wives vodka.

The vodka, which as we said last week had been banned from Idaho's liquor stores because its name and label might offend women and Mormons, is going to be allowed to be sold in the state.

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Asia
11:46 am
Thu June 7, 2012

Bankrupt At Home, Philly Orchestra Looks To China

The Philadelphia Orchestra, which declared bankruptcy last year, has been performing in China, where it is looking to develop new streams of revenue.
Frank Langfitt NPR

Originally published on Thu June 7, 2012 6:17 pm

The Philadelphia Orchestra has just wrapped up a 10-day visit to China, its seventh trip to the country over the past four decades.

But this trip was different.

The orchestra is preparing to come out of bankruptcy, and this tour was about its survival. It hopes to balance its books by building new audiences and new revenues in the world's second-largest economy.

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Shots - Health Blog
11:30 am
Thu June 7, 2012

The Great Cockroach Escape: How Those Dirty Bugs Make Tricky Tracks

Cockroaches have hooks on their back legs that let them swing around surfaces onto the underside while running full-speed.
YouTube

Originally published on Thu June 7, 2012 1:25 pm

If cockroaches completely gross you out, then look away.

But if you've admired, even a tiny bit, the adaptations that help them thrive among us, I've got a video for you. It will help you develop a whole new appreciation for how these critters stay a step ahead of humans wielding brooms, rolled-up newspapers and anything else that's handy and can be used for swatting.

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It's All Politics
11:30 am
Thu June 7, 2012

Romney Beats Obama In May Fundraising, Recalling Kerry Vs Bush In 2004

In May, Mitt Romney's campaign effort raised more than President Obama's for the first time.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Originally published on Thu June 7, 2012 2:38 pm

-- Updated at 4:33 pm ET --

No question Republicans supporting Mitt Romney's White House bid should and will be pleased that his campaign raised more money in May than President Obama's effort.

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The Two-Way
11:25 am
Thu June 7, 2012

Fitch Downgrades Spain's Sovereign Debt Three Notches To BBB

Facing a banking a crisis, the ratings agency Fitch threw another curveball at Spain, today, downgrading its sovereign debt rating three notches to BBB. That is, according to The Guardian, just two notches above junk status.

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Economy
10:55 am
Thu June 7, 2012

Generation Rent: Slamming Door Of Homeownership

Neal Coleman and his wife, Rachel, are both in their mid-20s and attend graduate school at Indiana University in Bloomington, Ind. They say renting makes more sense for them and their young daughter until their family is a bit more settled.
Courtesy of Neal Coleman

Originally published on Thu June 7, 2012 12:07 pm

Kristi Taylor can pinpoint the precise moment she let go of the dream of homeownership. It was a few months ago, as she and her husband and infant son were driving through a neighborhood of homes near their apartment in Athens, Ga.

"As we were passing through, I realized that I don't really look at houses like I used to, when we would point out homes and say, 'That can be ours someday,' " says Taylor, who is 28. Now, she says, "the idea of homeownership is so vague, it doesn't even strike me as something that's in our future."

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The Two-Way
10:55 am
Thu June 7, 2012

Ron Paul Says He Won't Have Enough Delegates To Win GOP Nomination

Republican presidential hopeful Ron Paul speaks in this February file photo during an event celebrating Filipino veterans at the Leatherneck Club in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Stan Honda AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu June 7, 2012 1:13 pm

Rep. Ron Paul, who is still technically in the hunt for the Republican presidential nomination, seems to have finally accepted his fate.

In an email sent to supporters late last night, the Texas congressman said by the time the Republican National Convention comes around, he won't have sufficient delegates to secure the nomination.

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The Two-Way
10:47 am
Thu June 7, 2012

Think Our Cable Chat Shows Are Raucous? In Greece They Slap Each Other

YouTube.com

Originally published on Thu June 7, 2012 5:17 pm

We're not recommending that CNN, Fox, MSNBC or Talk of the Nation follow this format, though it might generate some big ratings:

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Food
10:29 am
Thu June 7, 2012

Assessing Consumer Concerns About The Meat Industry

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Thu June 7, 2012 12:58 pm

On Thursday's Fresh Air, Tom Philpott, who covers food and the agricultural industry for Mother Jones, joins Fresh Air's Terry Gross for a wide-ranging discussion about the meat and poultry industries — covering topics like pink slime, proposed legislation affecting antibiotics in the livestock food chain,

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Shots - Health Blog
10:11 am
Thu June 7, 2012

Introvale: Latest Birth Control Pill Recall

iStockphoto.com

What's so hard about making sure the right birth control pills are in the right place inside their packages?

Evidently, it's not as easy as you'd think it should be. Sandoz, a unit of drug giant Novartis, is recalling 10 lots of Introvale birth control pills.

It's the third big recall of birth control pills because of packaging problems in less than a year. Taking the wrong pills at the wrong time can lead to an unintended pregnancy.

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It's All Politics
9:55 am
Thu June 7, 2012

Public Still Mostly Hates Health Law With Supreme Court Ruling Just Weeks Off

If the Supreme Court follows the election returns, its members also no doubt pay attention to opinion polls.

Not that public opinion is the sole driver in the high court's decisions. But the justices certainly are aware of, say, the fact that Americans keep expressing their unhappiness with the Affordable Care Act.

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Sports
9:42 am
Thu June 7, 2012

Is Football Safe For Young Players?

Recent news of concussions, brain disease and suicides of former pro players have youth coaches rethinking the game of football. Host Michel Martin discusses new questions about safety with youth football coach Kim Deane and high school football coach Jamey Dubose.

Sports
9:42 am
Thu June 7, 2012

DeMaurice Smith On Football's New Bad Rap

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

This is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. I'm Michel Martin. Football is the most watched sport in the United States, and many people believe the most popular. But concerns about the safety of the game are raising questions about everything from how it's played to whether we should even watch. In just a few minutes we are going to speak with some youth coaches about how they are changing the way they teach the game to kids.

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The Two-Way
9:35 am
Thu June 7, 2012

Romney, Republicans Pulled In More Money In May Than Obama, Democrats

Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney in California last week.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Presidential candidate Mitt Romney and his fellow Republicans report raising more than $76 million last month, topping the $60 million collected by President Obama and the Democratic Party.

The Associated Press points out that "it's the first month that the former Massachusetts governor has collected more money than Obama, who is known for his fundraising prowess."

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The Two-Way
8:58 am
Thu June 7, 2012

U.N. Monitors Were Shot At Today In Syria, Secretary General Says

Originally published on Thu June 7, 2012 5:18 pm

United Nations monitors in Syria were shot at with small arms fire today as they tried to reach the scene of another alleged massacre, U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon said this morning.

At the U.N. General Assembly, Ban also condemned today's "shocking and sickening" reports about the killings of dozens. And, NPR's Michele Kelemen reports, he called this yet another "pivotal moment" that could see Syria fall into a full-blown civil war.

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The Two-Way
8:28 am
Thu June 7, 2012

Economy Is Poised For More Growth, But 'Fiscal Cliff' Looms, Bernanke Says

A word cloud of Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke's prepared testimony to the congressional Joint Economic Committee.
wordle.net

Originally published on Thu June 7, 2012 10:37 am

"Economic growth appears poised to continue at a moderate pace over coming quarters," Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke is telling Congress this hour, and will be supported in part by additional "accommodative monetary policy" from the central bank.

While there's been a slowing in job growth, Bernanke says that Fed policymakers believe household spending has been "relatively well sustained" and are encouraged by "consumer spentiment [that is] ... up noticeably from its levels late last year."

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The Two-Way
7:49 am
Thu June 7, 2012

Greek Unemployment Hits Record High, Is Nearly Double Eurozone Average

An elderly man walked by riot policemen guarding the Interior Ministry in Athens on Wednesday.
Kostas Tsironis AP

Originally published on Thu June 7, 2012 1:14 pm

  • Joanna Kakissis, reporting for NPR

(From Athens, correspondent Joanna Kakissis tells us about the latest news regarding the troubled Greek economy.)

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The Two-Way
7:03 am
Thu June 7, 2012

Japanese Dock Reaches Oregon; Tsunami Debris Arriving Sooner Than Expected

A man looks at the massive dock from Japan that washed ashore on Oregon's Agate Beach this week.
Rick Bowmer AP

Originally published on Thu June 7, 2012 8:42 am

"A massive dock" that was washed away from a city on Japan's northeast coast by the devastating March 2011 tsunami landed this week on an Oregon beach. It's a warning sign that dangerous chunks of debris from that disaster are reaching the Pacific coast of the mainland U.S. much sooner than predicted, The Oregonian reports.

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The Two-Way
6:42 am
Thu June 7, 2012

Jobless Claims Dipped Last Week

There were 377,000 first-time claims for unemployment insurance last week, down 12,000 from the week before, the Employment and Training Administration reports.

But in yet another mixed signal about how the economy's doing, that welcome dip is tempered by the fact that the "4-week moving average was 377,750, an increase of 1,750 from the previous week's revised average of 376,000." Economists watch that average because it offers a slightly larger look at the trend.

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