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The Salt
3:16 pm
Wed February 5, 2014

California Is So Dry, Some Diners Won't Get Water Unless They Ask

In California, some restaurants are changing their policy to serve water to patrons only upon request.
iStockphoto

Originally published on Sun February 9, 2014 4:39 pm

California's drought is getting very serious — so serious that even those water refills you didn't ask for at restaurants are now under scrutiny.

"We have not had this dry a time period in all of California's history since we've been keeping records — that's how bad it is," Rep. Jim Costa, D-Calif., who represents a district in the Central Valley, told reporters on Tuesday.

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It's All Politics
2:57 pm
Wed February 5, 2014

White House Creates 'Climate Hubs' To Help Rural Towns, Farmers

Farmers in Iowa are among those around the country who will get help coping with climate change through a new federal program.
Charlie Neibergall AP

Originally published on Thu February 6, 2014 12:00 pm

The White House on Wednesday rolled out a high-profile plan to help farmers and ranchers adjust to climate changes that have already begun to upend growing seasons and threaten livestock.

The "climate hub" initiative was praised by environmentalists, though they were quick to warn President Obama that it would not provide him cover on another environmental issue in the headlines: the Keystone XL pipeline.

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Business
2:38 pm
Wed February 5, 2014

Which Way For Stocks? Investors Watch 'Worry Index' For Clues

Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange on Tuesday afternoon.
Andrew Burton Getty Images

Originally published on Wed February 5, 2014 4:42 pm

Anyone who invests in the stock market knows share prices can go up — and down. That's why they call it a market.

Still, this year, price movements have been fast and furious — shocking investors and prompting many to fear "volatility."

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The Two-Way
2:25 pm
Wed February 5, 2014

MLS And Beckham Will Create A New Soccer Team In Miami

Former soccer star David Beckham holds a ball at a news conference where he announced he's exercising an option to buy a Major League Soccer expansion team in Miami.
Lynne Sladky AP

David Beckham's career in American soccer isn't over, despite his recent retirement from the field. Beckham confirmed Wednesday that he will create a Major League Soccer expansion team in Miami. Details about the team's stadium and start date are still being worked out.

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It's All Politics
2:24 pm
Wed February 5, 2014

Rethinking The 17th Amendment: An Old Idea Gets Fresh Opposition

Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, speaks during the Iowa Faith and Freedom Coalition's Friends of the Family Banquet in Des Moines, Iowa, in November 2013. Lee is one of the few candidates calling for 17th Amendment repeal who have won office.
Justin Hayworth AP

Originally published on Wed February 5, 2014 4:11 pm

It may be an idea whose time came and went 100 years ago.

Nevertheless, it's back.

A number of Republican politicians and conservative commentators are calling for repeal of the 17th Amendment. Ratified in 1913, it gave voters the power to elect U.S. senators directly.

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Parallels
2:17 pm
Wed February 5, 2014

Letters From An Egyptian Prison

Peter Greste, an Al Jazeera English journalist shown here in a 2005 interview, has been jailed in Egypt for more than a month. He and other imprisoned journalists and activists have written letters describing their prison conditions.
Thos Robinson Getty Images

Originally published on Wed February 5, 2014 4:12 pm

As part of a crackdown against critics, Egypt's military-backed government has been jailing journalists and activists. But the government hasn't entirely silenced them.

Writing surreptitiously and risking additional punishment, several of those detained have managed to write letters that have been smuggled out of prison or released by the authorities.

"I am nervous as I write this," detained Al Jazeera English correspondent Peter Greste said in a letter published by his network.

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Code Switch
1:15 pm
Wed February 5, 2014

'Tiger Mother' Author Spells Out 3 Traits That Drive Success In The U.S.

Amy Chua and Jed Rubenfeld appear on NBC News' Today show.
Peter Kramer Getty Images

Originally published on Wed February 5, 2014 4:48 pm

If you're a fan of parenting books or just raucous debates about parenting styles, then you probably know about Amy Chua. The Yale Law School professor kicked off a ferocious debate with her 2011 memoir, Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother. She took pains to point out that the book was tongue-in-cheek, but it still got much attention for her defense of a demanding parenting style that she traced to her Chinese roots.

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Shots - Health News
1:07 pm
Wed February 5, 2014

An Artificial Arm Gives One Man The Chance To Feel Again

Dennis Aabo Sorensen tests a prosthetic arm with sensory feedback in a laboratory in Rome in March 2013.
Patrizia Tocci/Lifehand 2

Originally published on Thu February 6, 2014 7:43 pm

Ten years ago Dennis Sorensen was setting off fireworks to celebrate New Year's Eve with his family in Denmark when something terrible happened.

"Unfortunately one of the rockets we had this evening was not good and when we light it then it just blew up and, yeah, my hand was, was not that good anymore," says Sorensen.

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World Cafe
1:02 pm
Wed February 5, 2014

Tony Joe White On World Cafe

Tony Joe White.
Joshua Black Wilkins Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu February 6, 2014 2:33 pm

Tony Joe White pretty much invented the swamp-rock genre in 1969 with his first album, Black and White; Elvis Presley often covered White's huge hit "Polk Salad Annie." (As White sings in his song, Polk salad is a food synonymous with the rural poor South.)

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The Salt
12:51 pm
Wed February 5, 2014

Ladies: Good Bacteria In Yogurt May Be Good For Waistlines, Too

A probiotic commonly found in yogurt seems to help women lose more weight and fat, a recent study finds. But you still have to eat healthy to see an effect.
iStockphoto

Originally published on Fri February 7, 2014 12:49 pm

Ladies, if that Super Bowl Sunday pitch from '90s heartthrob John Stamos didn't leave you craving more yogurt, here's some science that might do the trick: There's tantalizing new research suggesting that some friendly bacteria commonly found in yogurts may help women shed more weight while on a diet and keep it off.

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Arts & Life
12:47 pm
Wed February 5, 2014

Tim Gunn: On And Off The Runway, 'Life Is A Big Collaboration'

"The term 'vegan leather' makes me think that you peeled a carrot and took the skin and made a jacket out of it," says Tim Gunn, pictured above at the Under the Gunn finale fashion show.
Alberto E. Rodriguez Getty Images

Originally published on Wed February 5, 2014 4:19 pm

"Make it work," fashion guru Tim Gunn tells young designers on Project Runway. But life hasn't always "worked" for Gunn. "I can't even recite the number of schools I went to as a kid because I was constantly running away from them," he tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross. "It's so ironic that I would become a career educator because I hated school so profoundly. It wasn't the learning experience that I hated. I hated the social aspects."

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Music
12:46 pm
Wed February 5, 2014

R&B Star Miguel Gives Props To Kendrick Lamar

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Finally, today, we turn to a regular feature we call In Your Ear. That's where we invite some of our guests to tell us about the songs that give them inspiration. Today, we are hearing from R&B sensation Miguel. He's got a new single out now. It's called "Simplethings." Miguel was with us a while back to talk about his album "Kaleidoscope Dream," which featured the Grammy-winning single "Adorn". He also told us about the tracks he's been listening to.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "MAAD CITY")

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World
12:46 pm
Wed February 5, 2014

Alarm As Haitians Flee Country

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

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Sports
12:46 pm
Wed February 5, 2014

Sochi Has Diversity But 'Blackness' Isn't Part Of It

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

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Metropolis
12:43 pm
Wed February 5, 2014

Metropolis: 2/1/14

Banks' "Brain" appears on this episode of Metropolis.
Courtesy of the artist.

This week's two-hour mix includes a new song from rising dance vocalist Banks, a Maps remix of Moby's "Almost Home," the Mary J. Blige edition of Disclosure's "F for You" (of course) and much, much more.

Playlist

  • Moby, "Almost Home (Maps Remix)"
  • Banks, "Brain"
  • Andy Cato, "Rainfalls (Toulouse)"
  • Lancelot, "Givin It Up (MK Remix)"
  • Hostage, "Taxixi"
  • Green Velvet, "Bigger Than Prince (Hot Since 82 Remix)"
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Parallels
12:32 pm
Wed February 5, 2014

In Pakistan, Another Bhutto Joins The Risky Family Business

Bilawal Bhutto Zardari (left), son of assassinated Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto, arrives for a festival at Moenjodaro in southern Pakistan on Feb. 1. The event was seen as a political coming-out party for Bhutto, whose family has prominently featured in Pakistani politics for decades.
Waqar Hussein EPA/Landov

Originally published on Wed February 5, 2014 9:23 pm

His grandfather was hanged by a military dictator. His mother was assassinated. One of his uncles was slain by the police. Another died in a mysterious poisoning.

His father spent eight years in jail, yet later served a full term as president of Pakistan.

The Bhutto family history is a roller coaster ride, veering from prison, exile and corruption scandals to wealth, fame and power.

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Book Reviews
12:31 pm
Wed February 5, 2014

Triumph Of The Bookworms: Two Novels To Cure Your Winter Blues

Originally published on Wed February 5, 2014 4:19 pm

In the opening paragraph of Moby-Dick, Ishmael tells us he takes to sea whenever he feels the onset of "a damp, drizzly November in [his] soul." I know how he feels. Whenever the frigid funk of February settles in, I, too, yearn to get out of town. This year I have, thanks to two exquisite vehicles of escape fiction. Both Rachel Pastan's Alena and Katherine Pancol's The Yellow Eyes of Crocodiles are smart entertainments perfect for curling up with on a winter's night.

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Shots - Health News
12:20 pm
Wed February 5, 2014

Our Brains Rewrite Our Memories, Putting Present In The Past

The brain edits memories of the past, updating them with new information. Scientists say this may help us function better in the present. But don't throw those photos away.
iStockphoto

Originally published on Thu February 6, 2014 7:04 am

Think about your fifth-birthday party. Maybe your mom carried the cake. What did her face look like? If you have a hard time imagining the way she looked then rather than how she looks now, you're not alone.

The brain edits memories relentlessly, updating the past with new information. Scientists say that this isn't a question of having a bad memory. Instead, they think the brain updates memories to make them more relevant and useful now — even if they're not a true representation of the past.

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The Two-Way
12:17 pm
Wed February 5, 2014

White House Says There Are No Plans To Bail Out Puerto Rico

The Puerto Rican flag waves in front of the south wing of the Capitol in San Juan, Puerto Rico.
Ricardo Arduengo AP

Originally published on Wed February 5, 2014 1:01 pm

A day after S&P downgraded Puerto Rico's credit rating to junk status, the White House said it was not contemplating a bailout for the island.

Reuters reports:

"A White House spokeswoman declined to comment about the S&P move specifically but said the administration's position had not changed since Jan. 22, when she said that no 'deep federal assistance' was being contemplated.

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Shots - Health News
12:13 pm
Wed February 5, 2014

By Dropping Cigarettes, CVS Gives Its Reputation A Boost

A CVS pharmacy in Orlando, Fla., is one of more than 7,600 stores where the company will stop selling tobacco products by October.
John Raoux AP

Originally published on Thu February 13, 2014 5:24 pm

When drugstore chain CVS said Wednesday that it would stop selling tobacco products by October, the company also told investors that the move would probably cost it $2 billion a year in lost sales.

CVS says it has figured out unspecified ways to help make up for the profits from cigarettes and other tobacco products.

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The Two-Way
12:05 pm
Wed February 5, 2014

Sniper Attack On Calif. Power Station Raises Terrorism Fears

Fred Greaves Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Thu February 6, 2014 1:30 pm

Was an attack last April on an electric power station near San Jose, Calif., the work of vandals or something far more dangerous — domestic terrorism or a trial run by an individual or organization bent on damaging the nation's electric grid?

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Children's Health
12:03 pm
Wed February 5, 2014

Poverty Behind Detroit's High Child Mortality Rate?

Originally published on Wed February 5, 2014 12:46 pm

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

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All Songs Considered
10:12 am
Wed February 5, 2014

First Watch: Deleted Scenes, 'Stutter'

Dustin Diamond plays a struggling actor in the new video for the Deleted Scenes song, "Stutter."
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed February 5, 2014 1:28 pm

The sound of Deleted Scenes, a D.C.-based quartet formed in 2005, is potent, angular and distinct. The lyrics of Dan Scheuerman, who sings and plays guitar, can be simultaneously poetic and direct. The best part of Deleted Scenes is the unexpected, the unpredictable, and "Stutter" is a perfect example of their hard-to-label style. It mixes grating vocals with sporadic bursts of guitar, those abrasive sounds morphing into a likable, memorable track.

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The Two-Way
8:58 am
Wed February 5, 2014

Millions Warned To Stay Off Roads As Latest Storm Spreads

This man stopped to take pictures of the snow-covered trees in Manhattan's Central Park on Tuesday.
Seth Wenig AP

Originally published on Wed February 5, 2014 10:53 am

From the Midwest through the Northeast and on into New England, the latest winter storm is spreading misery across some of the most heavily populated states in the nation.

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Monkey See
8:36 am
Wed February 5, 2014

What Are Indie Booksellers Like At Parties?

Stacks of books on a store table.
iStockphoto

Martha Woodroof has been writing about the First Novel Experience. For this post, she reports on her travels to the American Booksellers Association's Winter Institute in January.

The American Booksellers Association Winter Institute was billed as providing independent booksellers with a chance to get together "...in vibrant Seattle for three-plus days of networking, special events, and professional development."

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The Salt
8:20 am
Wed February 5, 2014

Electronic Tongues Are The Beer Snobs Of The Future

Personally, we're most looking forward to having robot drinking buddies.
Bongo Entertainment Inc.

Originally published on Thu February 6, 2014 4:01 pm

If beer is the new wine, robots are the new beer snobs. Well, sort of.

Researchers in Barcelona have developed an electronic tongue that really knows the difference between a pilsner and a bock.

For now, it looks less like a slick, futuristic robot and more like a big of clump sensors. It's still a prototype, but its creators say it could some day replace human taste testers.

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The Two-Way
7:53 am
Wed February 5, 2014

Employers Added 175,000 Jobs Last Month, Survey Signals

The scene last November at a jobs fair in New York City.
Andrew Burton Getty Images

Originally published on Wed February 5, 2014 11:00 am

The first of two reports this week about how many jobs were added to U.S. payrolls in January indicates that growth was slow but solid.

The ADP National Employment Report estimates that there were 175,000 more jobs in the private sector last month than in December.

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The Two-Way
7:22 am
Wed February 5, 2014

Reports: 4 Arrests Linked To Philip Seymour Hoffman's Death

Originally published on Wed February 5, 2014 10:59 am

Three men and one woman were arrested Tuesday evening in connection with the death over the weekend of actor Philip Seymour Hoffman, The New York Times and other New York news outlets are reporting.

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The Two-Way
7:06 am
Wed February 5, 2014

Vatican Let Abuse Of Kids Go On For Decades, U.N. Panel Says

St. Peter's Square in Vatican City.
Ciro Fusco EPA/Landov

Originally published on Wed February 5, 2014 3:01 pm

The Vatican "has not acknowledged the extent of the crimes committed, has not taken the necessary measures to address cases of child sexual abuse and to protect children, and has adopted policies and practices which have led to the continuation of the abuse by, and the impunity of, the perpetrators," a U.N. human rights committee charged Wednesday.

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The Two-Way
6:46 am
Wed February 5, 2014

CVS To Stop Selling Tobacco Products

Soon to be gone: Marlboro cigarettes on display at a CVS store in Pittsburgh last July.
Gene J. Puskar AP

Originally published on Tue February 11, 2014 10:43 am

Saying it is "the right thing for us to do for our customers and our company to help people on their path to better health," the CEO of CVS Caremark announced Wednesday that the company's 7,600 pharmacies will stop selling cigarettes and tobacco products by Oct. 1.

Larry Merlo also said CVS will try to help those who want to quit smoking with a "robust national smoking cessation program" at its locations.

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