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11:14 am
Fri February 15, 2013

Say Yes To 'No': Retro Political Thriller Packs A Timely Punch

Brash ad man Rene Saavedra (Gael Garcia Bernal) brings a youthful, positive energy to a campaign aimed at ousting a dictator in the political drama No.
Sony Pictures Classics

Originally published on Fri February 15, 2013 2:18 pm

In 1988, Chile's brutal military dictator, Augusto Pinochet, was facing international pressure to legitimize his regime. Confident that the opposition was splintered, and that state-run media could control the political dialogue, his administration agreed to a simple yes-or-no vote on extending his rule.

It was a vote that even Pinochet's opponents expected to go his way — but it didn't, for reasons made both compelling and instructive in Pablo Larrain's rousing Oscar-nominated drama, No.

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The Two-Way
10:57 am
Fri February 15, 2013

After Outrage, Benjamin Netanyahu's Ice Cream Budget Melts Away

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu heads the weekly cabinet meeting in his office on February 10 in Jerusalem, Israel.
Uriel Sinai Getty Images

Originally published on Thu February 21, 2013 7:42 am

It is perhaps one of the more frivolous stories out of the Middle East; still, it's tasty, so we'll tell you about it: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has angered his opponents by budgeting 10,000 Shekels ($2,716) to buy ice cream for his household.

As The Guardian reports, the news came at an inconvenient time for Netanyahu's coalition government: They had just proposed an austerity budget that cut benefits for public workers.

The Guardian adds:

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The Two-Way
10:31 am
Fri February 15, 2013

'Cruise From Hell' Was A Mix Of 'Survivor' And 'Lord Of The Flies'

After finally getting off the Carnival cruise ship Triumph, this passenger waited for a ride early Friday in Mobile, Ala.
Mark Wallheiser EPA /LANDOV

Originally published on Fri February 15, 2013 1:22 pm

As they finally came off the Carnival cruise ship Triumph late Thursday and early Friday in Mobile, Ala., passengers from the ill-fated cruise told stories that call to mind TV's Survivor and literature's classic Lord of the Flies, the Los Angeles Times writes.

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The Salt
10:28 am
Fri February 15, 2013

One City's Love Affair With Processed Cheese

Provel, as seen in its native habitat.
Jessica Stewart Allergic to Air

Originally published on Wed February 20, 2013 1:00 pm

With 30 Rock off the air, Judah Friedlander has time to indulge other interests. Like processed cheese.

Friedlander, who played Frank on the sitcom (the guy with all the custom baseball caps), says he's been "obsessed" for the past several years with Provel, a processed blend of Swiss, provolone and cheddar rarely found outside its hometown of St. Louis.

"It's not even legally cheese," Friedlander tells The Salt. "It's melted plastic from the '80s."

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Religion
10:03 am
Fri February 15, 2013

Keeping The Faith In The Catholic Church

Earlier this week, Pope Benedict XVI announced that he would be retiring from his position, but he's not the only prominent Catholic stepping down. Host Michel Martin speaks with top Catholic lobbyist and policy adviser, John Carr, about his own retirement and what's next for him and the Church.

The Two-Way
9:22 am
Fri February 15, 2013

Grad Who Sued Over C+ Grade Flunks In Court

Megan Thode, who lost her case against Lehigh University.
Donna Fisher/The Morning Call MCT /Landov

The latest person to sue a university over a "bad" grade has failed to make her case.

As the Allentown, Pa., Morning Call reports, "a Northampton County judge on Thursday rejected the claims of a Lehigh University graduate suing over her C+ grade, a verdict that upheld the school's insistence that she earned the mark she got."

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The Two-Way
8:38 am
Fri February 15, 2013

Why Did So Many Russian Drivers Get Such Great Meteor Videos?

One of the dashcam videos recorded Friday when a meteor appeared over Russia.
RussiaToday

Originally published on Fri February 15, 2013 9:58 am

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Law
8:34 am
Fri February 15, 2013

Attorney Advocates For Poor As Immigration Debate Continues

Jose Pertierra is an immigration lawyer from Cuba. He is well-known for defending Elian Gonzalez and works on behalf of refugees.
Becky Lettenberger NPR

As Washington debates changing the immigration system, the demand for immigration attorneys has already jumped, even without new laws in place.

Lawyers such as Jose Pertierra, a veteran immigration attorney, are trained to interpret the law, but Pertierra sees his role as much more.

Every Thursday at 6 p.m. for the past 10 years, Pertierrra is here — on the set of the Spanish language TV studios of Univision in Washington, D.C., near Capitol Hill. He does a segment on immigration where he answers viewers' questions.

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The Two-Way
6:24 am
Fri February 15, 2013

Book News: DOJ Approves Penguin, Random House Merger

Books from the Penguin publishing company are displayed in a book store in London.
Leon Neal AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue February 19, 2013 11:26 am

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

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The Salt
5:58 am
Fri February 15, 2013

Fried Chicken And Waffles: The Dish The South Denied As Its Own?

Originally published on Mon March 4, 2013 1:02 pm

Call fried chicken and waffles a traditional Southern food, and you're liable to get accused of a damn Yankee conspiracy.

That's what we found out last week, when our story about the dangers of a Southern fried diet prompted many of you with roots in the South to protest – don't pin that dish on us! Here's a sampling of the comments we received:

"I'm a southerner, and I have never heard of fried chicken on a waffle!"

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The Two-Way
5:49 am
Fri February 15, 2013

'Blade Runner' Pistorius In Tears As Murder Charge Is Filed

South African Paralympic and Olympic sprinter Oscar Pistorius as he wept today while being charged with murder.
Antoine De Ras EPA /LANDOV

Originally published on Fri February 15, 2013 7:32 am

"South African 'Blade Runner' Oscar Pistorius broke down in tears on Friday after he was charged in court with shooting dead his girlfriend in his Pretoria house," Reuters reports from Pretoria.

According to the wire service: "The 26-year-old Olympic and Paralympic superstar stood with head bowed in front of magistrate Desmond Nair to hear the murder charge read out, then started sobbing, covering his face with his hands."

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Around the Nation
5:22 am
Fri February 15, 2013

Longest Known Married Couple Lives In Louisiana

Originally published on Fri February 15, 2013 6:39 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne, with a tale about a very early love. Way back in 1931, Norma and Norman Burmah were perhaps destined to complete each other. They married shortly after meeting at a Louis Armstrong concert. They went on to run a catering business and raise a family in New Orleans, and this year became the longest-known married couple in the U.S. Norma is 99, Norman 102, and living happily ever after in their home in Louisiana. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

The Two-Way
5:18 am
Fri February 15, 2013

'No Link' Between Meteor That Hurt Hundreds And Asteroid About To Fly By

A meteor's vapor trail above the city of Chelyabinsk, Russia, on Friday.
Vyacheslav Nikulin EPA /LANDOV

Originally published on Fri February 15, 2013 1:40 pm

  • Sound from the AP: Booms, then breaking glass and car alarms, when the meteor roared in

So, on the day when an asteroid the size of an office building buzzed the planet, there's this unsettling news:

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Asia
5:15 am
Fri February 15, 2013

Fishermen Benefit From Clean-Plate Fine

Originally published on Fri February 15, 2013 6:39 am

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

Good morning, I'm Linda Wertheimer.

Clean your plate. You heard that from your mom. Now a restaurant in Sapporo, Japan says that to its customers. If you order their signature dish, it's all you can eat - a bowl of rice topped with salmon roe - you must eat it all or pay a fine, which goes to hardworking fishermen. But one server says that hardly ever happens because most diners clean their plates.

It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

NPR Story
4:12 am
Fri February 15, 2013

The Last Word In Business

Originally published on Fri February 15, 2013 6:39 am

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

Let's catch up on yesterday's $23 billion bid to buy H.J. Heinz Company. Warren Buffett is one of the investors. The Oracle of Omaha is famous for snatching up American staples, like ketchup.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Lesser known is one of Buffet's partners in the acquisition - a Brazilian, equally found of American companies.

Today's last word in business is: another oracle?

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NPR Story
4:12 am
Fri February 15, 2013

Effects Of Automatic Spending Cuts Become Clearer

Originally published on Fri February 15, 2013 6:39 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

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

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

And I'm Linda Wertheimer.

As we've been hearing, clock is ticking on the sequester. That is the Washington term for the across-the-board cuts that will take effect March 1, unless Congress acts to put them off.

The impact the $85 billion reduction in government programs could have became a bit clearer yesterday, as NPR's Brian Naylor reports.

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Politics
4:12 am
Fri February 15, 2013

Automatic Budget Cuts Near As Democrats, GOP Stand Firm

Originally published on Fri February 15, 2013 6:39 am

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Linda Wertheimer.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

With Congress headed for a recess, prospects are dimming for a deal to keep the nation from falling off the next fiscal cliff - sequestration. That's the term for automatic spending cuts that go into effect March 1.

NPR's Mara Liasson explains how the White House and Congress got to this impasse and why it's so hard to get past it.

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The Two-Way
3:03 am
Fri February 15, 2013

The 27th Victim: Nancy Lanza Is Subject Of 'Frontline' Documentary

Wooden angels memorialize the victims of Adam Lanza's shooting spree in Newtown, Conn., last December. An upcoming Frontline documentary seeks to provide new details about Lanza and his mother, Nancy.
Emmanuel Dunand AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri February 15, 2013 6:13 pm

The lives of the 26 people murdered by Adam Lanza at Sandy Hook Elementary School last December were eulogized and celebrated after the tragedy. But many discussions about Lanza's first victim, his mother, Nancy, were marked by both sympathy and suspicion, particularly as the news emerged that she had taken her son to shooting ranges.

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Economy
12:31 am
Fri February 15, 2013

In Kansas, A 'Glide Path' To No Income Taxes. Will It Work?

Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback, shown delivering the State of the State address last month, is pushing to get rid of the state's income tax, which has some Republicans concerned.
Charlie Riedel AP

Originally published on Fri February 15, 2013 7:47 am

Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback has put the state on what he calls a "glide path to zero" income tax. But that glide path is far from being clear or smooth.

On the face of it, Brownback seems to enjoy a remarkably strong political position. He's a conservative Republican, flanked by GOP supermajorities in both legislative chambers. His allies helped purge moderate Republicans from the state Senate in last year's election.

"I think the road is open," Brownback says. "I think we do provide an alternative model. I think we do provide a red-state model."

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Movie Interviews
12:31 am
Fri February 15, 2013

The Story Of 'No' Is The Story Of Modern Chile

The bright colors and throwback feel of the Chilean drama No mask the very real political consequences of the 1988 plebiscite it depicts. (Pictured: Gael Garcia Bernal as Rene Saavedra)
Sony Pictures Classics

Originally published on Fri February 15, 2013 6:39 am

The film No revisits the moment in Chile's history when 56 percent of the country voted to oust a dictator from power. It's the tale of the ad campaign that helped persuade Chileans to cast their ballots against Gen. Augusto Pinochet in a national referendum.

"This is an epic story, the story of a triumph," says Director Pablo Larrain. "It's how they defeat a dictator — probably one of the biggest bastards that we ever had in humankind."

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StoryCorps
12:09 am
Fri February 15, 2013

A Husband And Wife Blessed Late In Life

The Caplans. Louis, 76, and Harriet, 67, visited StoryCorps in Santa Fe, N.M.
StoryCorps

Originally published on Fri February 15, 2013 6:39 am

Harriet and Louis Caplan's love story began 20 years ago in a college town in Kansas. Harriet was 48 and working at a bank. Louis was a 56-year-old physicist.

Both assumed they'd be single for the rest of their lives — until their paths crossed.

It began with Wednesday evening outings when a group would meet after work.

"We went to football games and concerts, and I still don't quite know how it happened, but instead of going in two separate cars, you and I would start going in the same car," Harriet remembers. "I don't think we ever had a date."

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It's All Politics
4:33 pm
Thu February 14, 2013

Lautenberg Retirement Ends Potential May-December Senate Fight With Booker

Newark, N.J., Mayor Cory Booker speaks last year at a ceremony at City Hall.
Seth Wenig AP

Originally published on Thu February 14, 2013 5:21 pm

The potential Democratic Party contest for a U.S. Senate seat between 89-year-old Sen. Frank Lautenberg and 43-year-old Newark, N.J., Mayor Cory Booker had been shaping up to be a generational battle royale.

Alas, it won't happen now that Lautenberg has announced that he won't run for re-election in New Jersey's 2014 Senate race. In a statement, the octogenarian senator said:

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The Two-Way
4:21 pm
Thu February 14, 2013

Pope Hurt Head Last Year On Trip To Mexico

Pope Benedict XVI delivers his blessing after an audience with the Roman clergy in the Paul VI Hall at the Vatican on Thursday.
Alessandra Tarantino AP

Earlier this week, Pope Benedict XVI shocked the world by announcing he was resigning from his post as head of the Roman Catholic Church. It was the first time a sitting pope had stepped down in nearly 600 years.

As Mark wrote on Monday, Benedict cited his "advanced age (85) and diminishing strength," as reasons for his decision.

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The Two-Way
4:01 pm
Thu February 14, 2013

Frank Lautenberg, Oldest Member Of The Senate, Won't Seek Reelection

Sen. Frank Lautenberg speaks to members of the press in January.
Alex Wong Getty Images

Originally published on Thu February 14, 2013 5:18 pm

New Jersey Sen. Frank Lautenberg, the oldest member of the senate, announced today that he will not seek re-election.

The New York Times reports:

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Around the Nation
3:58 pm
Thu February 14, 2013

Artist Works To Keep Immigrants In The Picture

Los Angeles-based artist Ramiro Gomez Jr. displays his immigrant worker art on the Capitol's East Lawn in Washington, D.C.
Lizzie Chen NPR

Ramiro Gomez Jr. is working fast enough to draw the least amount of attention, but slowly enough to make every detail stand out. He describes the rush he gets as "therapeutic."

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It's All Politics
3:40 pm
Thu February 14, 2013

As Spending Cuts Loom, Alarm Bells Begin To Sound

Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Martin Dempsey (from left), Deputy Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter and Undersecretary of Defense and Comptroller Robert Hale wait for a hearing of the Senate Armed Services Committee on Tuesday. Military leaders are warning Congress about the effects of the sequester.
Brendan Smialowski AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu February 14, 2013 4:27 pm

Senate Democrats offered an alternative Thursday to the sequester, the automatic, across-the-board spending cuts set to hit March 1.

Despite dire warnings in congressional hearings this week, many on Capitol Hill seem resigned to the sequester.

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U.S.
3:40 pm
Thu February 14, 2013

Taxpayers Steaming Over Florida Nuclear Plant's Shuttering

The Crystal River Nuclear Plant has stood idle since workers cracked the reactor's containment building in 2009. The facility is now slated to close permanently.
Will Vragovic AP

Originally published on Thu February 14, 2013 5:15 pm

The operator of Florida's Crystal River nuclear plant sent shockwaves through the state when it announced recently that it was shutting down the facility for good.

When nuclear plants have closed elsewhere, locals have cheered. But in Citrus County, it's been more like a death in the family.

At Fat Boy's Bar-B-Q restaurant in Crystal River, owner Bubba Keller says he's worried about what's going to happen to the community. "I mean, things are already tough," Keller says. "If this makes it worse, don't know if I can hang in there."

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The Two-Way
3:31 pm
Thu February 14, 2013

Senate Votes To Continue Debate, Blocking Hagel Nomination

Former Sen. Chuck Hagel, R-Neb., who has been nominated to be the next secretary of defense.
Ron Sachs DPA /LANDOV

A cloture vote on the nomination of former Republican Sen. Chuck Hagel for defense secretary failed in the Senate, today.

That means Senate Republicans succeeded — with a vote of 58 to 40 — in keeping the Hagel nomination from coming before a final vote. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid scheduled the cloture vote after Republicans refused to give unanimous consent to proceed with the final vote.

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Shots - Health News
3:02 pm
Thu February 14, 2013

Darkness Provides A Fix For Kittens With Bad Vision

Scientists found that darkness worked far better than they expected as a treatment for kittens with lazy eye.
Bill Rhodes/Flickr

Originally published on Tue February 19, 2013 6:57 am

When it comes to treating a lazy eye, there's evidence that turning the lights off may help — if you're a kitten.

A study in the latest issue of Current Biology reports that kittens with a type of visual impairment known as amblyopia, or lazy eye, were able to regain normal eyesight after being plunged into total darkness for 10 days.

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It's All Politics
2:54 pm
Thu February 14, 2013

Rubio On The Move, At Least Once The House Sells

Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., works in his Capitol Hill office on Feb. 7.
J. Scott Applewhite AP

Originally published on Thu February 14, 2013 4:28 pm

Remember Sen. Marco Rubio's paean to his Florida neighborhood in giving the Republican response to the State of the Union address?

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