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.
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.
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.
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.
Facebook filed to go public this week, and many analysts expect that it will be valued between $75 billion and $100 billion on the day of its initial public offering. That would make Facebook more valuable than GM, Ford and even Goldman Sachs.
What's most remarkable is that the company has barely 3,000 employees, and many of them are about to become very, very rich.
The red areas show gray matter that is abnormally increased in drug users. Blue shows gray matter that is abnormally decreased in drug users. Yellow shows white matter tracts, called fractional anisotropy or FA. FA is significantly reduced in both the drug users and in their siblings, which suggests that the white matter tracts work less efficiently.
On Feb. 5, fashion designer Jason Wu is launching a limited-edition line for Target. Wu became famous for designing Michelle Obama's inaugural gown. He's the latest high-end designer to partner with a mainstream retailer and offer his chic couture at cheap prices for the masses.
On a bitterly cold morning in Washington, D.C., last November, hundreds of fashionistas flooded the street in front of the low-priced fashion chain H&M. Italian luxury label Versace was launching a collection there, and customers were waiting for the doors to open.
Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney's decisive win over former House Speaker Newt Gingrich in Florida returned him to the front-runner's spot in the Republican presidential race. Romney emerged from that battle with his strengths, but also his weaknesses, on full display.
Sometimes hard-fought nominating contests produce a more formidable general-election candidate. That's what happened to Barack Obama in 2008. But Dan Schnur, a former Republican strategist, thinks it's too soon to tell if this Republican primary battle will have the same effect.
The Mona Lisa is one of the most enigmatic and iconic pieces of Western art. It has inspired countless copies, but one replica at the Madrid's Museo del Prado is generating its own buzz: conservators say that it was painted at the same time as the original — and possibly by one of the master's pupils, perhaps even a lover.
Workers fill a pauper's grave at Homewood Memorial Gardens, south of Chicago, with remains from the Cook County Medical Examiner's Office, which is now catching up on its backlog of indigent burials.
Credit David Schaper / NPR
Sisters Bernice Terry (from left), Kim Dent and Sheila Hostetler hold pictures of their brother, Brian Warren, from his memorial service as well as a flier they distributed during the more than two weeks they believed he was missing.
Losing a loved one in any circumstance can be a painful experience, but for some families in Chicago, that pain is being compounded by what's been happening at the Cook County morgue in recent weeks. In the words of one observer, it's "a moral travesty."
David Axelrod, President Obama's political strategist, has what appears to be — from outside the president's re-election campaign, at least — a problem.
Back in early 2009, when the Obama presidency was still brand new, the president gave that NBC News interview in which he talked about his administration being a "one-term proposition" if the economy didn't snap back in time for his re-election.
Originally published on Thu February 2, 2012 8:15 am
Mitt Romney may want to see if there's anything his new Secret Service team can do to protect him from Jon Stewart's comedic barbs.
On The Daily Show Wednesday, after playing the infamous CNN clip in which Romney spoke of not being concerned about the very poor because they have a safety net, or the very rich, Stewart reacted thusly:
Mark Pincus is the CEO of Zynga, the largest maker of games on Facebook. Right now 1 billion people play games online. Pincus wants to see that number double in five years, and wants his company to grab a larger market share.
Credit Aarti Shahani / NPR
Workers pass the "Zyngabego" — an old-school motor home — to cross the neon tunnel and enter the futuristic studios of the online gaming company.
Credit Zynga / Zynga
Zynga went public in December 2011. Mark Pincus (center) and his wife Ali Pincus (left), surrounded by Nasdaq and Zynga staff. The stock price fell on opening day. It was a bust, and has raised questions about the company's real value.
The site of the demolished Frontier casino sits vacant on the Las Vegas Strip in December. Construction of a new hotel and casino, the Las Vegas Plaza, has been delayed until economic conditions improve.
Credit Jewel Samad / AFP/Getty Images
This housing project by the North Las Vegas Housing Authority was launched in 2004, but the entire subdivision has since fallen into foreclosure and is now owned by the FDIC.
Even in the dead of winter, the Russian city of St. Petersburg, with its church spires, palaces and waterways, is one of the world's truly beautiful cities. It was here that the Russian revolution began, and it's here where Prime Minister Vladimir Putin and President Dmitry Medvedev cut their teeth politically.
When her first child was born, Pamela Druckerman expected to spend the next several years frantically meeting her daughter's demands. In the U.S., after all, mealtimes, living rooms and sleep schedules typically turn to chaos as soon as a baby arrives. That's the reason one friend of mine used to refer to his child as a "destroying angel."
Two senators who have taken the lead on legislation aimed to help homeowners refinance at historically low interest rates were blunt this morning about how concerned they are by the news NPR reported earlier this week that Freddie Mac "has placed multibillion-dollar bets against American homeowners being able to refinance to cheaper mortgages."
Last month I fell ill with a wretched cough. The doctor said I would get better with time, but I craved food that would sustain me on my slow plod back to health. My mom was 3,000 miles away, unable to feed me the chicken soup and Saltines of my youth.
But I found a good substitute: The kimchi soup at a restaurant just around the corner from NPR. Even though this soup has a fiery kick unheard of in the Midwestern fare of my childhood, it was simple, bracing and comforting: just the thing to heal the sick.
Mitt Romney arrives in Nevada on Wednesday with more than the favor of Florida voters — the oddsmakers in Vegas like his chances, too. The online sports book Bovada has him as the favorite to win the GOP nomination at 1-15.
That means if you bet $15 on a Romney nomination, you'd only get $1 back if it happened. Before the Florida primary, Romney was at 1-9. Newt Gingrich, meanwhile, slipped from 6-1 odds Monday; he now stands at 9-1.
Update at 3:09 p.m. ET. With a signature, Gov. Mitch Daniels has turned Indianapolis into a right to work state. The governor signed into a law a controversial bill that would prohibit labor contracts from requiring workers to pay union dues, according to the AP.
Our Original Post Continues:
The controversial "right to work" bill was approved by the state Senate today with a 28 to 22 vote. Once Daniels signs the bill into law, which he is expected to do later today, Indiana will be the first state in a decade to pass a right to work law.
Most of the tents are gone, the parks are empty and nearly 99 percent of Occupy Wall Street's 99 percenters have gone home.
But even as the occupation enters a denouement, the nationwide movement sparked in September can claim a huge victory in the battle of ideas. Occupy has spoken, and Americans have listened.
Subjects that were largely taboo on Wall Street, Main Street and Pennsylvania Avenue just six months ago have moved to center stage. Higher taxes on the wealthiest Americans. Capping the cost of higher education. Corporate greed.
Steve Jobs, the "pioneer of digital music" who brought us the iPod, listened to vinyl records when he was at home because the quality of the sound is better than current digital formats can produce, rock 'n' roll legend Neil Young said Tuesday.
Florida primary voters handed Mitt Romney a resounding victory on Tuesday. But other GOP candidates declared that they are staying in the race. And President Obama has been busy raising money and trying to energize his base. Host Michel Martin talks about the latest election news with politicos Corey Ealons and Mario Loyola.
Now, we'd like to focus on another political battle that could influence the general elections in November. Voter ID laws. Thirty-one states have either introduced or tightened voter requirements in recent months. Fifteen of those states have made it mandatory to show government-issued photo ID before casting a ballot. So what's the big deal, you say?
Communist Party activists in Moscow campaign on Dec. 2 for the party's candidates in parliamentary elections. The Russian Communist Party is hoping to capitalize on a wave of dissatisfaction with Prime Minister Vladimir Putin and his ruling United Russia party.
Credit Krill Kudryavtsev / AFP/Getty Images
Gennady Zyuganov, speaking at a news conference in Moscow on Jan. 26, has led the Russian Communist Party since 1993. Many younger Communists say they yearn for a more modern and flexible leader.
A snazzy new Communist Party poster shows two young, tech-savvy and attractive Russians. Both are smiling and dressed in red: The woman holds a red iPhone; the man holds a red laptop, his T-shirt emblazoned with a hammer and sickle.
An Arizona judge has deemed Alejandrina Cabrera's English language skills to be inadequate, and has struck her name from the ballot for the city council. Host Michel Martin takes a look at the election controversy in the small border town of San Luis, Arizona. She speaks with Mayor Juan Carlos Escamilla and KAWC reporter Michelle Faust.