Morning Edition

Monday - Tuesday 5:00a - 8:30a, Wednesday - Friday 5:00a - 8:00a
Steve Inskeep and Renee Montagne
Floyd E. Vasquez Jr. and Elaine Baumgartel

Waking up is hard to do, but it's easier with NPR's Morning Edition, bringing the day's stories and news to radio listeners on the go.

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Business
2:00 am
Fri January 27, 2012

The Last Word In Business

Originally published on Fri January 27, 2012 8:04 am

A Los Angeles restaurant famous for its 9 cent cup of coffee is raising the price to 45 cents -– 50 cents with tax. Management at Philippe the Original told the Los Angeles Times they can no longer keep up with the cost of coffee.

Business
2:00 am
Fri January 27, 2012

How Do You Take Apart A Floating City

The crippled cruise ship off the coast of Italy needs to be removed from the area where it ran aground. Joel Farrell, president and founder of Resolve Marine has been salvaging vessels for more than 30 years. Renee Montagne asks him to explain how the half-submerged cruise ship can be salvaged.

Television
10:01 pm
Thu January 26, 2012

For 'Black Nerds Everywhere,' Two Comedy Heroes

Jordan Peele (left) plays President Obama and Keegan-Michael Key (right) plays his "anger translator" in a sketch from Key & Peele, premiering Jan. 31 on Comedy Central.
Comedy Central

Originally published on Fri January 27, 2012 10:28 am

Comics Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele have known each other for years. They were both in the cast of MadTV. Now they're starting their own sketch-comedy series, due to launch on Comedy Central on Tuesday.

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The Two-Way
3:10 pm
Thu January 26, 2012

McCain Says History Will Judge Obama Harshly On Policy Toward Iran

Sen. John McCain, right, as he endorsed Mitt Romney's bid for the presidency earlier this month.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

President Obama has made the case that his administration spoke out forcefully when Iran's government used deadly force to suppress protests in the spring of 2009.

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Around the Nation
5:17 am
Thu January 26, 2012

Standard Military Eyeglasses Get A Makeover

Standard issue military eyeglasses are considered so unflattering, service members have an acronym for them: BCGs or Birth Control Glasses. For the first time in more than 20 years, the military is updating its look. Instead of those thick brown plastic frames, recruits can get sleeker black plastic specs.

Animals
5:12 am
Thu January 26, 2012

Dog In 'The Artist' To Retire

Fans of Uggie in the silent movie The Artist were outraged when the dog didn't get an Oscar nomination. Now Uggie's owner tells a magazine that movie was the Jack Russell terrier's last. He's retiring the 10-year-old animal. Uggie wants to relax.

NPR Story
2:00 am
Thu January 26, 2012

Business News

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with Amazon and taxes.

They say two things are certain: death and taxes. But Amazon is still hoping to avoid at least one of those things. The online retailer is reportedly promising Florida lawmakers it will create up to 3,000 jobs in the state and build new distribution centers in Florida, if lawmakers give Amazon a two-year break from collecting state sales tax.

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NPR Story
2:00 am
Thu January 26, 2012

Indiana To Adopt 'Right-To-Work' Measure

Originally published on Thu January 26, 2012 3:19 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And let's go next to my home state of Indiana, where state lawmakers now look certain to pass controversial right-to-work legislation.

Democrats have been trying to block that bill. But yesterday it passed the state's Republican-controlled House. And so Indiana is poised to become the first state to approve this kind of legislation in a decade.

We have more from Brandon Smith of Indiana Public Broadcasting.

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NPR Story
2:00 am
Thu January 26, 2012

The Last Word In Business

Originally published on Thu January 26, 2012 4:59 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And our last word in business today comes from Alaska Airlines. The carrier has been putting prayer cards on the meal trays it serves passengers since the 1980s. Flying can be nerve-wracking and the airline figured people might find comfort in a psalm from the Old Testament, along with the soothing image of a beach or the mountains.

It was also a marketing strategy so the airline could differentiate itself from competitors. Many passengers didn't mind.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

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Election 2012
2:00 am
Thu January 26, 2012

On The Road, Obama Pushes U.S. Energy, Manufacturing

Originally published on Thu January 26, 2012 4:35 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And I'm Steve Inskeep.

Take a map of the United States and stick pins in every state President Obama visits this week, and you would have a partial picture of how he hopes to win re-election. The president is visiting states he hopes to win this fall.

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Election 2012
2:00 am
Thu January 26, 2012

GOP Rivals Vie For Florida's Spanish-Speaking Vote

Cuban-Americans are an important part of the Republican presidential electorate in Florida. Both Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich have reached out to these voters in Spanish-language TV and radio ads. Romney, in particular, has racked up many endorsements from prominent Cuban-American political figures.

Analysis
2:00 am
Thu January 26, 2012

Gingrich Accused Of Dishonestly Challenging Voter Resentment

Republican presidential candidates Newt Gingrich, Ron Paul, Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum are scrambling to tie up votes in Florida, which holds its winner-take-all primary next Tuesday. Steve Inskeep talks to conservative writer David Frum about the state of the GOP race.

Asia
2:00 am
Thu January 26, 2012

Chinese Forces Move Against Tibetan Protesters

During a candlelight vigil in Dharamsala, India, on Wednesday, Tibetan Buddhist monks hold pictures of Tibetans they say were shot by Chinese security forces earlier this week.
Angus McDonald AP

Originally published on Thu January 26, 2012 10:37 am

Frustrated Tibetans this week staged some of the largest protests against Chinese rule in nearly four years. Chinese security forces responded by opening fire on demonstrators, killing up to four and wounding more than 30, according to Tibetan rights groups.

The demonstrations were inspired — in part — by a disturbing new trend in Tibetan dissent: Tibetan people lighting themselves on fire.

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Election 2012
2:00 am
Thu January 26, 2012

Will Nevada Be A Blue State In November?

President Obama visits Nevada on his post-State of the Union trip Thursday. He won the state in 2008. But with unemployment now at nearly 13 percent, the state will be more of a challenge in this fall's presidential election.

Health
2:00 am
Thu January 26, 2012

Kids Have A Say In Louisville's School Lunch Menu

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

The federal government has come out with its new standards for school meals - less fat, less salt, less sugar and more fruits, grains and vegetables. Devin Katayama from member station WFPL reports on how the Louisville, Kentucky school district is trying to comply with the guidelines and satisfy student tastes.

DEVIN KATAYAMA, BYLINE: Meet fourth grade food critic Jackson Schleff.

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Movies
2:00 am
Thu January 26, 2012

'Beasts Of The Southern Wild' Shines At Sundance

Originally published on Thu January 26, 2012 3:27 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

The Sundance Film Festival wraps up this weekend in Park City, Utah. Movies and more movies have been on offer at the gathering, famously backed by Robert Redford. Our own Kenneth Turan is taking it all in and joined us from member station KPCW in Park City.

Good morning.

KENNETH TURAN, BYLINE: Morning, Renee.

MONTAGNE: Well, let us begin with the dramatic films. What stands out for you this year?

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Business
10:01 pm
Wed January 25, 2012

To Grow Business, Starbucks Thinks Outside The Cup

Barista Nicole Adams serves up a drink in March at a Starbucks in downtown Seattle. The company is expanding its coffee options to include a light roast and plans to create a new health and wellness brand.
Ted S. Warren AP

Just four years ago, Starbucks seemed to be losing its mojo. Howard Schultz, the man who made Starbucks a household name, returned to the company as CEO. He closed hundreds of stores, streamlined operations and set the company on a path to record revenues and strong profits.

Starbucks serves 60 million beverages a week, which adds up to big profits. The company reports its earnings Thursday. In a bid to further expand its consumer base, Starbucks has a new roast and plans to produce more retail products to sell outside of its coffeehouses.

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Middle East
10:01 pm
Wed January 25, 2012

Growing Pressures Prompt Plunge In Iranian Currency

An Iranian man counts banknotes after exchanging a gold coin for cash in Tehran on Monday. Gold coins were being exchanged for over 10 million rials as the Iranian currency continues to lose value against the U.S. dollar.
Atta Kenare AFP/Getty Images

The value of Iran's currency — which had been sliding steadily for months — took another plunge this week. Faced with new economic sanctions from the U.S. and Europe, the rial now seems to be in free fall.

But at least part of the dive could be linked to currency manipulation by the government itself in an effort to fund candidates in upcoming elections.

In images posted on the Internet, hundreds of Iranians are seen gathered outside the headquarters of the Bank Melli in Tehran Monday. They wanted to buy dollars, but there were no dollars to be had.

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Music Interviews
4:35 pm
Wed January 25, 2012

Michelle Kwan's Slow And Steady Workout Jams

Michelle Kwan performs at an exhibition in 2005.
Matthew Stockman Getty Images

Originally published on Sun January 29, 2012 6:13 pm

This month, we're creating The Ultimate NPR Workout Mix. As many of us head back to the gym in the new year, we're asking people what music makes them move.

Today: the figure skating legend Michelle Kwan. For exercise, she says she runs and does Bikram yoga and Pilates. But there's one thing Kwan says she still enjoys more than anything else.

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Around the Nation
5:11 am
Wed January 25, 2012

Street Warning Misspelled In Front Of School

In New York City, the street in front of a high school was painted with big white letters that were supposed to read "school." But the word painted read "shcool." The city says a contractor made the mistake after some street repairs.

World
5:03 am
Wed January 25, 2012

Felicity Aston Skied Antarctica Solo In 59 Days

British adventurer Felicity Aston this week became the first woman to ski solo across Antarctica, from one coast to another. It took her 59 days to cover more than 1,000 miles, dragging her supplies behind her on sleds. She talked to Steve Inskeep from the Union Glacier base camp in Antarctica while waiting to go home.

NPR Story
4:52 am
Wed January 25, 2012

Tax Returns Show Romney's Complicated Fiances

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney earned more than $42 million over the past two years — the bulk of it from an array of stocks and investment funds. And he paid about 15 percent of what he made in taxes. The release of some 500 pages of tax returns give a much fuller picture of how he made his money and what he did with it.

Politics
4:50 am
Wed January 25, 2012

Mixed Evidence Of Obama's Post-Partisan Presidency

Originally published on Wed January 25, 2012 6:20 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

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

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And I'm Steve Inskeep. Good morning.

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Business
2:00 am
Wed January 25, 2012

Japan Details First Trade Deficit Since 1980

Originally published on Wed January 25, 2012 6:20 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with a turning point for Japan.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

MONTAGNE: Tokyo today reported Japan's first trade deficit since 1980. For the last three decades, Japan has exported so many goods to the world, it's run trade surpluses. But last year, Japan imported more than it exported - $32 billion more. The shift in fortunes comes after last year's earthquake and tsunami and nuclear power plant shutdowns.

From Tokyo, Lucy Craft has more.

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Business
2:00 am
Wed January 25, 2012

Business News

The company earned $13.1 billion in the quarter ended Dec. 31, a record. Sales of iPads were also up — soaring 111 percent from the same quarter a year earlier.

Business
2:00 am
Wed January 25, 2012

Federal Reserve To Publish Interest-Rate Projections

Originally published on Wed January 25, 2012 4:21 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And today, the Federal Reserve is taking another step in its stated intention to become more transparent. The committee that sets interest rates ends a two-day meeting, and its usual post-meeting announcement will have some unusual information.

For a hint of what we're to learn, we called David Wessel; he's economics editor of the Wall Street Journal. Good morning.

DAVID WESSEL: Good morning.

MONTAGNE: So what is the Fed going to announce today that's so remarkable?

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Politics
2:00 am
Wed January 25, 2012

Obama Speech Depicts Country At A Crossroads

Originally published on Wed January 25, 2012 6:20 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

President Obama wants to see more tax breaks for manufacturers and fewer tax breaks for millionaires. Those were among the ideas floated in the president's third State of the Union speech last night. Throughout the morning, we're getting reaction to that address.

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Business
2:00 am
Wed January 25, 2012

The Last Word In Business

Vancouver, Canada, is laying claim to the most expensive hot dog in the world. Chef Dougie Luv of DougieDog Hot Dogs starts serving his $100 Dragon Dog Wednesday. The hot dog features a foot-long bratwurst which is infused with 100-year-old Louis XIII cognac. That cognac costs more than $2,000 a bottle.

Politics
2:00 am
Wed January 25, 2012

Members Of Congress React To Obama's Speech

Originally published on Wed January 25, 2012 6:20 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Though millions of Americans watched the televised speech, the president's ostensible audience was right in front of him - Congress. His relations with many Republican lawmakers are icy at best. And even his alliances with Democrats had been put under stress at times in the past year.

The lawmakers' responses to the speech ranged from predictable to somewhat surprised. NPR's Andrea Seabrook listened to lawmakers after the speech.

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Around the Nation
5:10 am
Tue January 24, 2012

Disney Alters Facial Hair Policy At U.S. Theme Parks

Originally published on Tue January 24, 2012 8:00 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne. At Disneyland and Disney World, everyone working there has a clean-cut image. It goes back to the 1950s, when Disneyland first opened and facial hair was banned. Even though Uncle Walt Disney had one, moustaches weren't even allowed until 2000. But starting next month, employees will finally be allowed to have beards, as long as they're kept short and trim, unless maybe you're one of the seven dwarves. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

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