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3:30 pm
Fri September 21, 2012

Week In Politics: The '47 Percent,' Senate Races

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 4:53 pm

Robert Siegel talks to regular political commentators, E.J. Dionne of The Washington Post and Brookings Institution, and David Brooks of The New York Times. They discuss Mitt Romney's "47 percent," new polls on the presidential race, and close Senate races.

The Two-Way
3:25 pm
Fri September 21, 2012

Touchdown: Space Shuttle Endeavour Lands In Los Angeles

The Space Shuttle Endeavour passes the Hollywood Sign and the Griffith Observatory as seen from Dodger Stadium Friday.
Mark J. Terrill AP

Originally published on Mon September 24, 2012 4:44 am

The Space Shuttle Endeavour has landed safely in Los Angeles, after giving admirers around the city a chance to take historic photos of its last flight.

"Amazing, amazing, amazing," Derek Johns, 41, told The Los Angeles Times. Johns took photos from a pier.

"I got chills," El Segundo councilman Dave Atkinson told the paper. "This is America at its finest."

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It's All Politics
3:11 pm
Fri September 21, 2012

Obama, Ryan AARP Appearances Show Politics' Third Rail Is Still Charged

President Obama spoke to AARP members via live video feed.
AARP livestream

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 3:59 pm

Separate appearances Friday by President Obama and Rep. Paul Ryan before an AARP meeting in New Orleans proved that the third rail of American politics, Medicare and Social Security collectively, is still very much electrified.

Speaking to a supremely friendly audience via live video feed from Virginia, where he was campaigning, Obama drew repeated applause and cheers with promises to defend Medicare and Social Security from Republican proposals that he said threaten the entitlement programs' ability to deliver the kind of benefits seniors have become accustomed to.

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Shots - Health Blog
3:00 pm
Fri September 21, 2012

Government Officials Retire Chimpanzees From Research

Federally funded chimps at the New Iberia Research Center in Louisiana will retire to either a lab in Texas or a chimp sanctuary in Louisiana.
Courtesy of the Humane Society of the United States

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 4:47 pm

One hundred ten chimpanzees will retire from biomedical research, the National Institutes of Health announced today. The move comes as some groups are pushing for a ban on all medical chimp research.

The NIH has been reviewing its chimp research since December. That's when a report from the Institute of Medicine said that there was almost no scientific need for doing biomedical research on chimps.

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Around the Nation
2:56 pm
Fri September 21, 2012

In Calif., Some Ex-Inmates Get Help In New Ways

Francesa Anello with the Los Angeles County Mental Health Department heads up mental health services for prisoners at the county jail. She's responsible for reintegrating released prisoners with mental illness back into the community.
Scott Shafer for NPR

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 4:53 pm

Under California's criminal justice realignment program, counties are taking over responsibility from the state for low-level felons. And that has affected how inmates with histories of mental illness move through the system even after they're released.

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NPR Story
2:56 pm
Fri September 21, 2012

Obama, Ryan Talk Medicare At AARP Convention

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 4:53 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Robert Siegel.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

And I'm Audie Cornish.

In New Orleans today, thousands of senior citizens were treated to two different visions for their future. President Obama and GOP vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan each addressed the AARP.

As NPR's Ina Jaffe reports, they took questions on topics ranging from Medicare to Social Security, and back to Medicare.

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NPR Story
2:56 pm
Fri September 21, 2012

Fact-Checking Obama And Ryan Speeches To AARP

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 4:53 pm

Both President Barack Obama and Republican vice presidential hopeful Paul Ryan presented their visions for Medicare to the nation's most influential lobbying group for the elderly on Friday. Julie Rovner has parsed their remarks and joins Audie Cornish to provide some context.

It's All Politics
2:50 pm
Fri September 21, 2012

GOP Senate Takeover Hopes Dim, But Too Early To Put On Ice

Republican Rep. Todd Akin and incumbent Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill debate Friday in Columbia, Mo. McCaskill had once been considered among the most vulnerable Senate Democrats until Akin made comments about "legitimate rape." The candidates were asked about Akin's controversial statement at the start of Friday's debate.
Jeff Roberson AP

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 5:58 pm

Republican dreams of taking control of the U.S. Senate in November have been declared all but dead over the past several days by prognosticators pointing to trouble facing the party in unexpected places.

Missouri and Indiana come to mind.

But don't count Senate race analyst Jennifer Duffy among them.

"I'm not ready to call this done and over," Duffy said of the GOP's push to pick up four seats, which would definitely tip the Senate balance of power. "We seem to be in some period of transition. Whether it's permanent or not, we'll know in a couple weeks."

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The Two-Way
2:17 pm
Fri September 21, 2012

Wide Gap Remains Between NFL And Refs; League Insists On Respect For Subs

Denver Broncos Coach John Fox yells at field judge Jimmy Buchanan during the Broncos' game against Atlanta Monday. Referring to the game, the NFL insisted that players and coaches give replacement referees, and the game, more respect.
Kevin C. Cox Getty Images

Originally published on Mon September 24, 2012 4:44 am

Despite complaints from NFL coaches and players, the league and its locked-out officials are no closer to reaching a deal than they were last week, according to reports. The two sides are separated by "significant and serious economic gaps," an anonymous source tells the AP.

A representative of the NFL Referees Association confirmed that talks had taken place, but he would not go into detail, the AP reports.

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Around the Nation
1:31 pm
Fri September 21, 2012

One Afghan Girl's Healing Journey To The U.S.

Arefa with her host family, sisters Jami Valentine (left) and Staci Freeman. Doctors in the U.S. have been treating Arefa's third-degree burns, and also performed skin-graft surgery for the top of her head. Each morning still requires a fresh dressing.
Gloria Hillard for NPR

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 8:09 pm

There is limited medical infrastructure in war-torn Afghanistan, so severely wounded children are sometimes brought to the U.S. for medical care. Doctors in America say that for one little girl, her struggle to stay alive for three years until finding her way from central Afghanistan to a hospital in Los Angeles is nothing short of a miracle.

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The Salt
12:21 pm
Fri September 21, 2012

Juice Maker Helps Tight End Block Thieving Teammates

Niles Paul (right) at a Redskins practice with then-teammate Tim Hightower, before the juice-stealing incidents came to light.
Carolyn Kaster AP

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 2:58 pm

Niles Paul had a problem. The second-year tight end for the Washington Redskins couldn't stop his teammates from stealing his Capri Sun. You know, Capri Sun — those sugary-sweet packets of juice that come in triangular foil containers with their own straws attached.

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The Two-Way
12:19 pm
Fri September 21, 2012

Romney's 2011 Tax Return Shows He Paid At 14.1 Percent Rate, Campaign Says

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 4:53 pm

Mitt Romney and his wife Ann paid $1,935,708 in federal taxes last year on income of $13,696,951, an effective tax rate for the couple of 14.1 percent, the Republican presidential nominee's campaign just reported.

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Shots - Health Blog
11:29 am
Fri September 21, 2012

'Downton Abbey' And The History Of Medical Quackery

FDA

The third season of the television show Downton Abbey premiered in the U.K. last weekend, and if you're a dedicated follower like me, you'll know that medical tragedy is no stranger to the Crowley household.

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The Two-Way
10:52 am
Fri September 21, 2012

Please Tell Us Your Password Isn't 1-2-3-4

Try 1-2-3-4 and there's a fair chance you'll get in.
Kristian Dowling Getty Images
  • From 'All Things Considered': PINs That Aren't So Secure

Be honest, now.

Is 1-2-3-4 the password to some of your supposedly secure accounts?

If so, as Nick Berry of the analysis firm Data Genetics told All Things Considered's Robert Siegel, you're definitely not alone. When it comes to bank cards, he says, "the single most common password is 1-2-3-4 and over 10 percent of all cards use that particular number."

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Politics
10:05 am
Fri September 21, 2012

Was Romney Right On Video Comments?

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

I'm Michel Martin and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. Coming up, we are going to talk more about those protests that have been spreading in the Muslim world connected to a provocative video that has now gone viral. We'll talk about whether this is about a clash of civilizations or values or something else.

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Faith Matters
10:05 am
Fri September 21, 2012

A Look At Islam And Free Speech

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

I'm Michel Martin, and this is TELL ME MORE, from NPR News. Coming up, we'll dig into our digital mailbox to hear from you about stories and interviews that caught your attention or provoked some push-back this week. That's BackTalk, and it's in just a few minutes.

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The Two-Way
8:51 am
Fri September 21, 2012

Rep. Maxine Waters Cleared By House Ethics Committee

Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., and her husband Sidney Williams at the Capitol Hill hearing today where it was announced that she's been cleared.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

After an investigation that lasted two years, the House Ethics Committee has cleared Democratic Rep. Maxine Waters of charges that she tried to influence regulators when a bank that her husband owns stock in went looking for a federal bailout in 2008.

Virginia Republican Bob Goodlatte, acting chairman of the ethics panel, announced the decision this morning.

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Krulwich Wonders...
8:49 am
Fri September 21, 2012

Getting Slower And Slower: How Slow Can You Go?

Vincent Liota

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 9:36 am

Before we go slow, let's go fast, so fast you can't go any faster. That would be light in a vacuum, traveling at 670 million miles per hour ...

Light, of course, can slow down. When light passes through water, it loses speed. A diamond is an even better speed bump. It can slow a beam of light by 40 percent.

But moving on, you and I are going pretty fast right now, though we don't notice. The planet we're on is zipping around the sun at 66,000-plus miles per hour ...

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It's All Politics
8:01 am
Fri September 21, 2012

The Voter Veto: On Controversial Issues, More Citizens Taking On Lawmakers

In March, Stacey Kargman-Kaye (left) and her partner, Sharon Gorenstein, with sons Asher, 13, and Ezra, 8, gathered at the Maryland Statehouse in Annapolis to witness the signing of a law recognizing same-sex marriage. On Nov. 6, Maryland voters will decide whether to overturn the new law.
Amy Davis MCT /Landov

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 11:22 am

If you didn't get your fill of the debate about the best ways to evaluate and compensate teachers from the strike in Chicago, you can now tune in to hear similar arguments in Idaho.

Voters there are going to decide the fate of three different state laws that would phase out tenure, offer financial incentives to top-performing teachers and strip teachers of collective bargaining rights.

All of these laws are being challenged by what are known as popular referendums: when citizens challenge laws that have already been passed by the legislature and signed by the governor.

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'It's All Politics': NPR's Weekly News Roundup
7:53 am
Fri September 21, 2012

It's All Politics, Sept. 20, 2012

Cliff Owen AP

Originally published on Mon September 24, 2012 9:25 am

September can't end soon enough for Mitt Romney, as a leaked video — and some disappointing poll numbers in swing states — add to his woes. Republicans, trying to win a Senate majority, get some surprise encouragement in Connecticut.

But new polling in Virginia is problematic, and news out of Indiana and Wisconsin brings cheers to Democrats.

The Two-Way
7:49 am
Fri September 21, 2012

Another iPhone, Another Day Of Long Lines And Big Hype

In Tokyo today, a customer on line for the iPhone 5 was wearing a Steve Jobs mask.
Yoshikazu Tsuno AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 8:51 am

It's a "now familiar global ritual," as The Associated Press says: Apple fans are lining up today at stores "from Sydney to Paris to pick up the tech juggernaut's latest iPhone."

That would be the iPhone 5, which the company unveiled earlier this month.

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The Picture Show
7:23 am
Fri September 21, 2012

Amazing Art From Ivory, But At An Extreme Expense

"A sculpture like this can take a master carver years to produce. Front and center are the popular Taoist gods Shou, Lu and Fu — symbols of long life, money, and luck. 'We hope — no, we insist — we can continue to protect these skills,' says Wang Shan, secretary-general of the China Arts and Crafts Association."
Brent Stirton National Geographic

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 8:21 pm

My immediate response to the intricate carvings in these photos is awe — maybe even admiration. I can't believe they are made by hand from one solid piece of material. With such detail and complexity, I can see why they would be coveted and sold at a high price.

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It's All Politics
7:14 am
Fri September 21, 2012

Latest Fundraising Picture Shows Strong Month For Obama

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 11:21 am

Fundraising reports filed last night by the presidential campaigns show President Obama with a slight advantage in fundraising last month, while Republican Mitt Romney has the edge by some other measures.

Each candidate is raising money for his own campaign committee, plus his national party committee and a joint fundraising committee or two.

So what you see depends on what you look at.

In cash on hand, the overall Romney organization finished August with more than $168 million — that's $43 million more than the overall Obama organization.

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The Two-Way
7:11 am
Fri September 21, 2012

Here's Where And When To See Space Shuttle Endeavour Today In California

Endeavour passed by the Golden Gate Bridge today.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 3:28 pm

The last leg of space shuttle Endeavour's flight to its retirement home in Los Angeles began at 8 a.m. Pacific time today, NASA says.

And the space agency has put together a timetable for Endeavour's flybys that will give folks from San Francisco to Southern California a chance to see the shuttle aboard the jumbo jet that's carrying it to L.A.

Update at 4:25 p.m. ET. Touchdown:

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The Two-Way
6:02 am
Fri September 21, 2012

As Last Surge Troops Leave, Some Afghans Take Up Arms Against Taliban

January 2011: Boys in the Andar district of Afghanistan gathered to collect candy from passing U.S. Army soldiers. Now, there are reports from that area of locals rising up against the Taliban.
Shah Marai AFP/Getty Images

As Defense Secretary Leon Panetta notes that the last of the 33,000 so-called surge troops who were added to the U.S. force in Afghanistan last year have now left the country, there's this interesting news:

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The Two-Way
5:33 am
Fri September 21, 2012

More Protests In Muslim Nations; Some Violence

In Islamabad today, this demonstrator threw a tear gas canister back toward police.
Aamir Qureshi AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 9:45 am

(Check below for updates.)

Tens of thousands of people are protesting in all of Pakistan's major cities today, NPR's Jackie Northam reports from Islamabad, as those who oppose U.S. policy in the region continue to use outrage over an anti-Islam video to whip up anti-American sentiment.

There are also reports of new protests in other Muslim nations, including Bangladesh and Malaysia.

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Europe
5:26 am
Fri September 21, 2012

Woman Who Popularized Fresco Of Jesus Wants A Cut

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

World
5:14 am
Fri September 21, 2012

Record Soap Bubble Holds 181 people

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Election 2012
4:04 am
Fri September 21, 2012

Romney Argues For The Proper Role Of Government

Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney has been busy after a tape emerged of him telling wealthy donors that nearly half of Americans see themselves as victims dependent on the federal government. Now he's trying to make those remarks part of a broader argument: What is the proper role of government and who should pay for it?

NPR Story
3:58 am
Fri September 21, 2012

Want An iPhone 5 But Don't Want To Stand In Line?

Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 5:08 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And our last word in business today is: Why wait?

American consumers will likely go to great lengths - and stand in lines of great lengths - to get the iPhone 5, which goes on sale today.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

People are lining up in front of Apple stores already. But this is a market economy, after all, and time is money, which explains why some people are paying others to stand in line for them.

IAN DEBORHA: I'm getting paid $55 for four hours.

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