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Shots - Health Blog
12:57 pm
Fri February 3, 2012

Many Hits, Rather Than A Big One, Pose Greatest Concussion Risk

Members of the Jefferson High School football team took 200 to more than 1,800 hits to the head in a season.
Purdue University

High school football players have changes in their brain function long before they have recognizable signs of a concussion, according to a new study.

The more hits a player got, the more brain function changed. The findings support the growing belief that a concussion comes as the result of a succession of insults, not just one bad hit.

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The Salt
12:30 pm
Fri February 3, 2012

Prison Meal Deal: Where The Staff Serves Lunch ... And Time

Inmate Calvin Hodge, in the second week of a five-week rotation as head chef, stirs gravy in preparation for lunch at the Fife and Drum Restaurant at the Northeastern Correctional Center in Concord, Mass., Jan. 26.
Photos by Erik Jacobs for NPR

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 9:04 am

The Fife and Drum Restaurant offers a daily lunch bargain that sounds hard to pass up: For just $3.21, you get a hot, tasty meal, made mostly from scratch and delivered to your table by friendly waiters.

So what's the catch? You have to go through security before you're served.

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The Two-Way
11:55 am
Fri February 3, 2012

After A Tepid Start, Cities Like Rome, Denver Receive Winter Battering

A man dressed as a Roman Gladiator stands in front of the ancient Colosseum as snowflakes fall in downtown Rome on Friday.
Angelo Carconi AP

Denver and Rome could not be farther apart. But today one city used to massive snow storms is facing a blizzard so big it cancelled 310 flights, even though the Denver airport has 500 workers clearing the snow. The other one hasn't seen this much snow since the '80s.

NPR's Sylvia Poggioli told our Newscast unit the 1.5 inches of snow in Rome and the 16 inches that have accumulated in the northern suburbs have meant that very few attended schools and big tourist attractions like the Colosseum were closed.

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Economy
11:53 am
Fri February 3, 2012

Have Economists Got It Wrong About The U.S.?

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke pauses during a hearing before the House Budget Committee on Feb. 28, 2007.
Alex Wong Getty Images

Originally published on Fri June 22, 2012 9:23 am

Five years ago, a subprime mortgage firestorm was melting down the U.S. economy, but most analysts didn't see it happening.

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, testifying before Congress in February 2007, said the housing sector "is a concern, but at this point we don't see it as being a broad financial concern or a major factor in assessing the course of the economy."

If he and the vast majority of economists were blind to the economic and financial calamity taking shape then, could they also be missing the start of a huge economic boom now?

A boom? Really?

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Pop Culture
11:53 am
Fri February 3, 2012

3 Hidden Themes Of This Year's Super Bowl Ads

Many of this year's Super Bowl ads, like this one from CareerBuilders.com, play off our affection for animals.
CareerBuilders.com AP

Originally published on Sat February 4, 2012 8:01 am

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The Two-Way
11:40 am
Fri February 3, 2012

'Anonymous' Follows Hacking Of FBI-Scotland Yard Phone Call With Attacks

The Greek Ministry of Justice website after it was hacked earlier today.
Louisa Gouliamaki AFP/Getty Images

A day that began with the Anonymous hackers posting a nearly 17-minute recording of a conference call between officials of the FBI and Scotland Yard has been followed with some tweeted taunting of law enforcement and the news media, and the hacking of websites for the Greek Ministry of Justice, Boston Police Department and lawyers who defended a U.S. Marine at the center of the killing of 24 unarmed Iraqi civilians.

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It's All Politics
11:24 am
Fri February 3, 2012

If Romney Misspoke About 'Poor' Why Did He Later Repeat Statement?

Originally published on Fri February 3, 2012 1:10 pm

(Revised at 2:19 pm ET)

In an interview Thursday, Mitt Romney said he "misspoke" when he infamously said earlier in the week that he was not concerned about the very poor because they had a safety net, and the very rich but, instead, was focused on the middle class.

Speaking of the CNN interview that has caused Romney a world of trouble, the Republican presidential frontrunner told Jon Ralston of the Las Vegas Sun during an interview program called Face to Face:

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Health Care
10:56 am
Fri February 3, 2012

Komen Issues Apology In Planned Parenthood Flap

Originally published on Fri February 3, 2012 10:57 am

Transcript

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

NPR's Business News starts with a reversal from the Komen Foundation. The Susan G. Komen For The Cure Foundation has just announced that it will not pull its funding for Planned Parenthood after all. The breast cancer charity endured a massive backlash when it announced, earlier this week, it would no longer give Planned Parenthood money for breast cancer screening. NPR's Julie Rovner joins us to explain the turnaround. And Julie, what exactly did the Komen Foundation say this morning?

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The Two-Way
10:53 am
Fri February 3, 2012

BBC Accuses Iran Of 'Bullying' Its Persian Service Employees

Saying officials have undertaken yet another campaign of "bullying and harassment" of its Persian service staff, the BBC called on the Iranian government to "repudiate the action of its officials."

In a blog post, the BBC's Director General Mark Thompson also called on the international community to "put maximum pressure on Iran to desist in this campaign of intimidation, persistent censorship and a disturbing abuse of power."

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Business
10:45 am
Fri February 3, 2012

January's Jobless Rate Shows Spurt Of Growth

Originally published on Fri February 3, 2012 10:57 am

The Labor Department said the economy added 243,000 jobs in January, well beyond many economists' expectations. The unemployment rate fell to 8.3 percent.

The Two-Way
10:20 am
Fri February 3, 2012

Rights Group Says Syrian Security Forces Detained, Tortured Children

A young boy carries the Syrian-rebel adopted flag during an anti-regime demonstration in the Syrian village of al-Qsair, not far from Homs.
Alessio Romenzi AFP/Getty Images

Human Rights Watch has a harrowing report out today about what it says is the targeting of children by Syria's government forces.

"Children have not been spared the horror of Syria's crackdown," Lois Whitman, children's rights director at Human Rights Watch, said in a statement. "Syrian security forces have killed, arrested and tortured children in their homes, their schools or on the streets. In many cases, security forces have targeted children just as they have targeted adults."

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Education
10:00 am
Fri February 3, 2012

Las Vegas Principal Hopes To Beat The Odds

Nevada has the lowest high school graduation rate in the country. But now a multi-million dollar federal grant is helping one district turn its schools around. Host Michel Martin speaks with a principal who spent last Saturday knocking on the doors of students who dropped out, encouraging them to come back to school.

The Swing State Project
9:37 am
Fri February 3, 2012

Battered By The Bust, Nevada Voters Search For Slivers Of Hope

Las Vegas resident Jillian Batchelor, 29, voted for Obama in 2008 but says now, "I'm voting Republican all the way this time."
Becky Lettenberger NPR

The brutal recession has wracked Nevada, where soaring unemployment and foreclosure numbers tell the story of the state's misery. But its importance as a swing state in the 2012 presidential contest has only been enhanced in the four years since it went for Democrat Barack Obama.

The Two-Way
9:35 am
Fri February 3, 2012

Komen Foundation Now Says It Will Continue Grants To Planned Parenthood

Originally published on Fri February 3, 2012 12:14 pm

The Susan G. Komen Foundation just announced it will be providing grants to Planned Parenthood for that organization to use in basic screening and educating women about breast cancer.

"We will continue to fund existing grants, including those of Planned Parenthood, and preserve their eligibility to apply for future grants, while maintaining the ability of our affiliates to make funding decisions that meet the needs of their communities."

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Shots - Health Blog
9:35 am
Fri February 3, 2012

In Reversal, Komen To Continue Funding Planned Parenthood

Nancy G. Brinker, CEO and founder of Susan G. Komen for the Cure.
Susan G. Komen for the Cure

Originally published on Tue February 7, 2012 3:37 pm

After days of controversy, the Susan G. Komen for the Cure foundation has said it will continue funding for Planned Parenthood.

Earlier this week, the foundation moved to discontinue funding of breast cancer screening by Planned Parenthood. The Associated Press reported the change came because of a new Komen policy forbidding grants to organizations under official investigation.

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The Two-Way
9:03 am
Fri February 3, 2012

Reports: Two American Women Freed In Egypt

NBC News, al-Jazeera and al-Arabiya are reporting that police in Egypt say two American women and an Egyptian tour guide have been released by gunmen who kidnapped them earlier today near the Red Sea

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Shots - Health Blog
8:51 am
Fri February 3, 2012

Advocates Say Flu Vaccine Should Be Mandatory For Health Workers

Despite more than 20 years of recommendations that health workers get flu shots, the most recent data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show more than a third don't comply.

The voluntary approach to reducing the risk that workers will transmit flu to patients has fallen short.

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Around the Nation
8:43 am
Fri February 3, 2012

Fairway To Heaven: Trump Eyes A Golf Course Burial

Junior amateur Sarah Brown tees off on the 13th hole of the Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, N.J. Under the current deal that's been negotiated, the club could feature 500 graves, including, eventually, Donald Trump's.
Andy Mills The Star-Ledger/Landov

Originally published on Fri February 3, 2012 4:54 pm

You might think Donald Trump can buy anything he wants. But at least one purchase has eluded him: Trump wants to be buried on his golf course in Bedminster, N.J.

Even though Trump owns the 500-acre spread, it's taking an eternity for him to get a cemetery built there.

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The Two-Way
8:35 am
Fri February 3, 2012

Will Blue Laws Make For A Melancholy Super Bowl Sunday?

Indiana laws bar all carryout alcohol sales on Sundays, leaving Super Bowl revelers in the lurch in their quest for any 11th-hour 12-pack the day of the big game. At Kahn's Fine Wines and Spirits in Indianapolis earlier this week, Bill Cheek was putting labels on cases of beer.
Darron Cummings AP

Fans lucky enough to toast a Giants or a Patriots Super Bowl win in Indianapolis this weekend will need to stock up early on their champagne supplies. Indiana is one of just two states that ban the sale of beer, wine and liquor at stores statewide on Sundays.

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The Two-Way
8:20 am
Fri February 3, 2012

Baseball's Josh Hamilton Reportedly Suffers Relapse; Seen Drinking At Bar

Josh Hamilton of the Texas Rangers during last year's World Series against the St. Louis Cardinals.
Ezra Shaw Getty Images

Josh Hamilton of the Texas Rangers, one of baseball's biggest stars and someone who has been battling addiction demons for the last decade, was spotted drinking alcohol at a Dallas bar on Monday, the local Morning News has reported.

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The Two-Way
6:32 am
Fri February 3, 2012

Unemployment Rate Edges Down To 8.3 Percent

Originally published on Fri February 3, 2012 7:41 am

The nation's unemployment rate dipped to 8.3 percent in January from 8.5 percent the month before as private employers added 257,000 jobs to their payrolls, the Bureau of Labor Statistics just reported. Overall, after a small drop at government agencies, employment grew by 243,000.

We'll add more from the report momentarily.

Update at 9:40 a.m. ET. White House, Republican Reactions:

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The Two-Way
6:20 am
Fri February 3, 2012

Egypt Roiling: Deaths At Protests; Two Americans Reportedly Kidnapped

In Cairo earlier today, a masked Egyptian protester prepared to throw back a tear gas canister fired by security forces.
Mahmud Hams AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri February 3, 2012 6:23 am

The news from Egypt is grim again today:

-- "At least two people have been shot and killed in the Egyptian city of Suez, as police used live rounds to hold back crowds during a protest over security forces' failure to prevent a deadly football riot," al-Jazeera reports. And it adds that "one person was killed in Cairo just feet away from the Interior Ministry, as police in Cairo set off salvos of tear gas and fired birdshot."

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The Two-Way
5:55 am
Fri February 3, 2012

Freddie Mac's Regulator 'Completely Puzzled' By Allegations Of Conflict

Federal Housing Finance Agency Acting Director Edward DeMarco during testimony before Congress in December.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images
  • Steve Inskeep speaks with Edward DeMarco

Saying he is "completely puzzled by the notion that there was something immoral that went on here," the man at the top of the agency that regulates Freddie Mac has explained why he believes the taxpayer-owned mortgage company did nothing wrong when one of its arms, as NPR and ProPublica have reported, "placed multibillion-dollar bets against American homeowners being able to refinance to cheaper mortgages."

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The Two-Way
5:15 am
Fri February 3, 2012

Iran Defiant Amid Talk Of Israeli Attack On Its Nuclear Sites

Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei in 2009.
Behrouz Mehri AFP/Getty Images

"We have our own threats to impose at the right time" and "I have no fear of saying that we will back and help any nation or group that wants to confront and fight against the Zionist regime (Israel)," Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said today after reports surfaced that Israel could soon mount air strikes on Iran's nuclear facilities.

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Around the Nation
4:47 am
Fri February 3, 2012

Wis. Woman Tried To Profit From Facebook IPO

Originally published on Fri February 3, 2012 10:57 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne. OK, there's the graffiti artist who will make millions because he opted for stock over cash for painting murals at Facebook's offices. Then there's the contractor in Oshkosh who took Facebook stock for work on the home of Marianne Oleson. She claims she'd acquired the stock because her daughter knew Facebook's founder. But the stock is fake. Oleson is accused of fraud, and the contractor, not in for millions, but out thousands. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Latin America
4:14 am
Fri February 3, 2012

Man On Thin Ice For Allegedly Stealing 5 Tons Of Ice

Police have apprehended a man accused of stealing five tons of ice from a glacier in Chile. The Guardian reports police nabbed him with the illicit ice in his refrigerated truck. They believe he planned to sell it as designer ice cubes to the trendy bars of Santiago.

Remembrances
3:31 am
Fri February 3, 2012

Profound Poet Szymborska Carried Her Gravity Lightly

Poet Wislawa Szymborska of Poland died this week at the age of 88. Renee Montagne talks to Lawrence Weschler about her death. He covered Poland in the 1980s and '90s as a staff writer for The New Yorker. And Weschler has written about her in his books including his latest Uncanny Valley.

Author Interviews
3:14 am
Fri February 3, 2012

No Doubt: U.S. Remains 'Tremendously Influential'

Originally published on Fri February 3, 2012 10:57 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

President Obama's recent State of the Union message contained an answer to Republicans who claim he believes American is in decline.

(SOUNDBITE OF STATE OF THE UNION ADDRESS)

PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: Anyone who tells you that American is in decline or that our influence has waned doesn't know what they're talking about.

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National Security
2:10 am
Fri February 3, 2012

Justice Department Lawyers Play Role In Guantanamo

Originally published on Fri February 3, 2012 10:57 am

Anyone watching the recent court proceedings in the military commissions at Guantanamo Bay couldn't have helped but notice that several of the lawyers sitting on the prosecution side of the courtroom were not in uniform. That's because two of the five lawyers prosecuting the alleged mastermind of the USS Cole attack aren't members of the military at all: They are lawyers from the Justice Department.

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