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Remembrances
1:00 pm
Sun February 19, 2012

The Man Who Revolutionized Pinball Dies At 100

Originally published on Sun February 19, 2012 5:58 pm

Transcript

MARY LOUISE KELLY, HOST:

It's WEEKENDS on ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Mary Louise Kelly. Today, the world lost a man who elevated a simple arcade game...

(SOUNDBITE OF PINBALL GAME)

KELLY: ...into an American obsession.

(SOUNDBITE OF PINBALL)

KELLY: Steve Kordek was Mr. Pinball. Before he came along, the game looked totally different.

DAVID SILVERMAN: The other companies had games that were six flippers per game.

KELLY: That's David Silverman, founder of the National Pinball Museum in Baltimore, Maryland.

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Music News
4:40 pm
Sat February 18, 2012

Houston Fan: 'We Got Tears Outside The Perimeters'

Fans mourn outside the funeral service for singer Whitney Houston in Newark, N.J., on Saturday. The pop superstar was found dead in a California hotel room a week ago. The cause of death has yet to be determined.
Michael Nagle Getty Images

Originally published on Sat February 18, 2012 5:20 pm

It was at the New Hope Baptist Church in Newark, N.J., where Whitney Houston first learned to sing, and it was there that friends and family gathered on Saturday to say goodbye to the pop superstar.

The star-studded service lasted more than three hours. Among those in attendance were Dionne Warwick, Kevin Costner and Alicia Keys.

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Author Interviews
2:15 pm
Sat February 18, 2012

Murder, Corruption And Cover-Ups In 'Bloodland'

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Mon March 18, 2013 4:11 pm

A troubled starlet dies in a helicopter crash off the Irish coast after sending a series of mysterious text messages. Three years later, a hungry young reporter desperate for work takes an assignment to write a quickie celebrity biography of her — but finds complexity and danger.

That seemingly accidental death is the catalyst for the events in Bloodland, a new thriller by Irish author Alan Glynn.

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NPR Story
1:00 pm
Sat February 18, 2012

Week In News: Payroll Tax Cut, China VP Visit

In a victory for the White House, the Republican-controlled House of Representatives passed an extension of the payroll tax cut on Friday after weeks of refusal. Host Mary Louise Kelly speaks with James Fallows of The Atlantic about the political reasoning behind the vote.

NPR Story
1:00 pm
Sat February 18, 2012

The Future Of Children's Books

Originally published on Sat February 18, 2012 4:41 pm

Transcript

MARY LOUISE KELLY, HOST:

So here's a conundrum for parents. If you have kids, you get told over and over limit their screen time. And you're also told, instead of screen time, get them reading more, which is all well and good, except that these days, many children do their reading on a screen, which raises some interesting questions about how children read today and what direction things are headed in children's book publishing.

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Fronteras
5:00 pm
Fri February 17, 2012

Juarez Nightlife Back to Life

Credit: European Community/Fabric

In the violence stricken city of Ciudad Juarez, one industry is making a strong and sudden comeback: nightlife. Thanks to police protection in certain parts of the Mexican border city, business owners have decided to reopen.  

As Monica Oritz Uribe reports for the Fronteras Changing America Desk, that means recently abandoned hot spots for clubs and bars have come alive again.

Fronteras
5:00 pm
Fri February 17, 2012

Musicians Return to Arizona Tour Spots

Credit: zdenadel

Two years ago after Arizona passed its tough immigration law S-B 10-70, many musicians chose to boycott the state.

From the Fronteras Changing America Desk, Laurel Morales reports many of them are now putting Arizona back on their tours.

Fronteras
5:00 pm
Fri February 17, 2012

Activists in Arizona Call for Sheriff to Resign, Immigration Not the Main Argument

Credit: Fibonacci Blue

The activists who successfully led the campaign to recall former Arizona State Senate President Russell Pearce ... are now running another campaign -- calling for the resignation of a sheriff with controversial immigration policies.  As Devin Browne reports from the Fronteras Changing America Desk, the strategy is consistent: Target immigration enforcement leaders, like Sheriff Joe Arpaio, WITHOUT talking about immigration.

Fronteras
5:00 pm
Fri February 17, 2012

Report: More Catastrophic Wildfires Likely

Credit: dflowers2

Scientists have examined clues from the past to predict the west’s fire future. And they say in a study released this week that all signs point to more large-scale wildfires like last year's Wallow and Las Conchas fires. 

Laurel Morales reports for the Fronteras Changing America Desk.

Music Interviews
4:46 pm
Fri February 17, 2012

Gretchen Peters: Personal Pain As Universal Truth

Gretchen Peters' new album is Hello Cruel World.
Gina Binkley

Country Music Award winner Gretchen Peters had an eventful 2010: The BP oil spill washed up on her doorstep, a good friend committed suicide, and her son announced that he's transgender. The last of those in particular, she says, got her thinking about personal conflict.

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Music Interviews
1:32 pm
Fri February 17, 2012

Conor Oberst, Ron Sexsmith Pay Tribute To Leonard Cohen

It's natural for Leonard Cohen to think a lot about mortality near the end of his life, but Ron Sexsmith says Cohen has never sung about "frivolous things."
Dominique Issermann

Originally published on Sun February 19, 2012 4:50 pm

Who'd have thought a 77-year-old Canadian singer-songwriter would be hovering near the top of the pop charts?

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Movies
1:00 pm
Fri February 17, 2012

Oscar Lobbying On The Other Campaign Trail

The 2012 Academy Awards are fast approaching, but behind all the glitz and glamor of Hollywood there is furious lobbying going on for that golden statuette. Robert Siegel talks with Christy Grosz, the awards editor at Variety, about the ins and outs of Oscar campaigning.

Europe
1:00 pm
Fri February 17, 2012

Middle Class Greeks Losing Hope Amid Austerity

Originally published on Fri February 17, 2012 4:45 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Melissa Block.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

And I'm Robert Siegel. Greece is anxiously awaiting a bailout from its European partners. One reason for the holdup - the Europeans say the Greeks aren't trying hard enough to reform. The Greeks say they've already implemented austerity measures so severe that they are destroying the country's middle class.

Joanna Kakissis has the story of one family in Athens.

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Commentary
1:00 pm
Fri February 17, 2012

Week In Politics: Primaries And Payroll Tax

Melissa Block talks to E.J. Dionne of The Washington Post and Brookings Institution and Ramesh Ponnuru, senior editor at the National Review, about the showdown between Republican presidential contenders Rick Santorum and Mitt Romney in Michigan and Arizona ahead of those states' primaries, and the extension of the payroll tax cut through the end of the year.

The Conservation Beat
9:51 am
Fri February 17, 2012

Access to Recycling Jumps in NM

Credit: epSos.de

A recent analysis by the New Mexico Recycling Coalition shows that access to recycling has nearly doubled in the last four years.  KUNM’s Sidsel Overgaard has more.

more conservation stories on our blog: earth air waves

Election 2012
2:18 pm
Thu February 16, 2012

In Arizona, Romney Can't Take Mormons For Granted

Karen Johnson, from Linden, Ariz., supports the candidacy of Ron Paul. She says Mitt Romney shares her faith, but not her politics.
Peter O'Dowd For NPR

Originally published on Thu February 16, 2012 4:41 pm

The wind howls on a blustery Sunday morning in the White Mountains of eastern Arizona, as well-dressed families pull into the parking lot of a Mormon church.

Mormon pioneer roots run more than a century deep in this part of the state, an isolated spot between two Indian reservations.

Karen Johnson is among the Mormon faithful, passionate about God and country.

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Election 2012
2:13 pm
Thu February 16, 2012

In One Maine County, Every Caucus Vote May Count

Washington County, Maine, is not a place for unhardy souls.

It's the easternmost county in all of New England, and one of the poorest. And at this time of year, people in Down East Maine do anything they can to eke out a living.

"I get about six months out of it," county resident Hartley Goston said, referring to his lobster boat, The Darian Sue. "I get a few odd jobs here and there to help tie up some loose ends."

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Planet Money
10:00 am
Thu February 16, 2012

Is China An Economic Miracle, Or A Bubble Waiting To Pop?

This can't go on forever.
Jacob Goldstein NPR

Originally published on Fri February 17, 2012 10:18 am

China's economy sailed through the financial crisis unscathed — at least in the short run.

When the global crisis hit, the country's government-owned banks started lending out lots more money. The money came largely from the savings accounts of ordinary Chinese people. It went largely to finance big construction projects, which helped keep China's economy growing.

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Movie Interviews
3:33 pm
Wed February 15, 2012

'Undefeated' Filmmakers Talk Friday Nights' Fights

North Memphis' Manassas Tigers Coach Bill Courtney and player O.C. Brown stand on the sidelines in a scene from the Oscar-nominated documentary Undefeated.
Weinstein Co.

Originally published on Thu February 16, 2012 1:15 pm

By 2009, after years of losses, the all-black football team at Manassas High School in inner-city North Memphis, Tenn., was known as 'Whipping Boy Manassas' — one of the worst teams in the entire state. The new documentary Undefeated, recently nominated for an Oscar, captures the team's following season, and the struggles of its coach and players, on and off the field.

Co-directors Dan Lindsay and T.J. Martin describe the team's recent history.

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NPR Story
1:00 pm
Wed February 15, 2012

Letters: On Aleksey Igudesman And Hyung-ki Joo

Melissa Block and Robert Siegel read emails from listeners about violinist Aleksey Igudesman and pianist Hyung-ki Joo.

The Conservation Beat
5:21 pm
Tue February 14, 2012

Forest Service Sues Otero County and State

Eggs&Beer

For the first time, a New Mexico county is putting to the test a state law passed in 2001…and federal authorities are responding with a lawsuit.  KUNM’s Conservation Beat reporter Sidsel Overgaard explains.

more conservation news on our blog: earth air waves

Food
3:24 pm
Tue February 14, 2012

Corn Prices Making Life Difficult For N.D. Bees

The northern plains, especially the Dakotas, are home to about half of the country's honey bee hives during the summer. It's been a good place for bees because they can gather nectar and pollen from so many wildflowers. But the landscape of the area is becoming less bee-friendly, and the consequences could be felt as far away as the almond groves of California, which depend on those same bees for pollination.

Asia
3:08 pm
Tue February 14, 2012

A Primer On China's Military

Melissa Block speaks with Eric Heginbotham — senior political scientist at RAND — about China's military capability today, how it's developed over time and what the Chinese make of ramped-up attention from the US.

Music Reviews
2:09 pm
Tue February 14, 2012

Dr. Dog: A Standout Among Stereotypes

Dr. Dog's sixth studio album is titled Be the Void.
Chris Crisman

Originally published on Tue February 14, 2012 4:16 pm

Sometimes I wonder: Do the members of young indie-rock bands know that they're walking stereotypes? There's the scruffy dude who's obsessed with everything vintage and analog, the Pavement-worshiping, whiny-voiced lead singer, the rhythm section that knows its way around every oddity recorded by The Kinks. That's pretty much how I pegged the Philadelphia sextet Dr.

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Winter Songs
1:02 pm
Tue February 14, 2012

A Skating Rink's 'Ribbon In The Sky'

hey.kiddo via Flickr

Originally published on Tue February 14, 2012 4:16 pm

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It's All Politics
4:16 pm
Mon February 13, 2012

What Would The GOP Candidates Do With The Federal Budget? A Look At Their Plans

A sign on a car window at a Feb. 2 rally for Ron Paul in Elko, Nev.
Ted S. Warren AP

Originally published on Mon February 13, 2012 5:06 pm

It goes without saying that the men who are vying for the Republican presidential nomination found serious flaws with the budget plan President Obama released Monday. But it got us thinking that this might also be a good time to dig into the budget plans offered by the GOP candidates.

All of the candidates want to cut government spending and balance the federal budget. They also want to cut taxes.

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Music
4:10 pm
Mon February 13, 2012

The Ballad Of The Tearful: Why Some Songs Make You Cry

Adele won the song of the year category at this year's Grammy Awards for her tear-jerker "Someone Like You."
Kevin Winter Getty Images

Originally published on Tue February 14, 2012 3:45 pm

Note: A number of listeners responded to this story and said the definition of appoggiatura was incorrect. Music commentator Rob Kapilow has a second opinion here.

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Music Videos
2:44 pm
Mon February 13, 2012

Igudesman And Joo: 'I Will Survive'

Doriane Raiman NPR

Originally published on Wed July 9, 2014 10:29 am

Violinist Aleksey Igudesman and pianist Hyung-ki Joo believe that classical music should be fun. That's why they subvert it whenever they appear on stage.

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Three Books...
11:32 am
Mon February 13, 2012

3 Biting Books For Those Bitter On Valentine's Day

Nate iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Tue February 14, 2012 8:54 am

For those who find themselves alone this Valentine's Day, or who reject the holiday altogether, you might not want to read about star-crossed lovers pining for each other and — even worse — winding up together in the end. So here are three alternatives to comfort you this Feb 14. Each novel is just the right length to read in a single night with a box of drugstore-bought chocolates. And although these tales are indeed reflections on love, the characters they follow are skeptics.

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Author Interviews
1:59 pm
Sun February 12, 2012

When The Bankers Plotted To Overthrow FDR

The Plots Against the President

Originally published on Mon February 13, 2012 6:08 am

It was a dangerous time in America: The economy was staggering, unemployment was rampant and a banking crisis threatened the entire monetary system.

The newly elected president pursued an ambitious legislative program aimed at easing some of the troubles. But he faced vitriolic opposition from both sides of the political spectrum.

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