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Recipes
3:36 pm
Thu December 12, 2013

One Family's Christmas Cookies Mix Spice, Spite And Love

Amy Ta NPR

Originally published on Fri December 13, 2013 4:03 pm

The holiday season is about spending time with families. For a lot of families, it comes with conflict as well as cheer.

For Diana Abu-Jaber, author of a memoir on food and family called The Language of Baklava, her grandmother's annual arrival for a Christmastime visit meant lots of cookies and a boatload of bickering between her German-American Gram and her Jordanian immigrant father.

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Music Reviews
3:36 pm
Thu December 12, 2013

For The Bloodiest Tales In American Music, A Revenge-Themed Sequel

In the song "Old Time Angels," Jim Lauderdale imagines a second act for the women felled in American murder ballads.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu December 12, 2013 6:10 pm

"Old Time Angels," a new song by Nashville, Tenn.-based singer-songwriter Jim Lauderdale, sounds so ebullient that at first, you may not realize he's singing about one of music's most terrifying moments.

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NPR Story
3:36 pm
Thu December 12, 2013

Yes, Yeezus Dominated 2013 Hip Hop, But Many More Gems Were Made

Originally published on Thu December 12, 2013 5:44 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

All this week, we're looking back at the year in music with our friends at NPR Music as our guides. Every year, they round up their favorite 50 albums, some mainstream, some more obscure and some completely unavoidable, like "Yeezus" from Kanye West.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "BOUND 2")

BRENDA LEE: Uh-huh, honey.

KANYE WEST: (Rapping) What you doing in the club on a Thursday? You said you only here for a girl birthday. They ordered champagne but still look thirsty. Rock Forever 21 but just turned 30.

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NPR Story
3:36 pm
Thu December 12, 2013

Citing Concussion Concerns, Pro Baseball To Ban Home Plate Collisions

Originally published on Thu December 12, 2013 5:44 pm

Major League Baseball plans to eliminate home plate collisions, among other rules changes. For more on what the changes will mean for the game, Melissa Block speaks with Mike Piazza, a former MLB catcher with several professional teams and author of Long Shot, an autobiography.

NPR Story
3:36 pm
Thu December 12, 2013

Radical Islamists In Northern Syria Spill Over Turkish Border

Originally published on Thu December 12, 2013 5:44 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

As we just heard, Turkish officials say they're clamping down on the radical Islamists who move through Turkey to join the rebellion in Syria. But in some frontier towns of southern Turkey, there's little sign of a crackdown.

NPR's Deborah Amos has that story.

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The Two-Way
3:35 pm
Thu December 12, 2013

So Much For The 'Mozart Effect'

Researchers could not find a link between exposure to music and improved IQs in preschoolers.
Dmitry Naumov iStockphoto

Originally published on Thu December 12, 2013 6:02 pm

Music makes the heart grow fonder, but scientists are not so sure that it boosts IQ.

The Boston Globe notes:

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The Picture Show
3:30 pm
Thu December 12, 2013

Photo: Where Cars Go After A Flood

Cars line the runway and taxiways at Calverton Executive Airpark in Calverton, N.Y., on Jan. 9.
Stan Honda AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu December 12, 2013 5:53 pm

In the days, weeks and months after Superstorm Sandy, we editors got used to seeing lots of similar types of images of devastation, destruction and loss. Beaches. Houses. Taxis.

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NPR Story
3:28 pm
Thu December 12, 2013

Newtown Priest: 'Respect Each Other' On Anniversary Of Shooting

Monsignor Robert Weiss sits in a pew at St. Rose of Lima Roman Catholic Church in Newtown, Conn, Nov. 13, 2013. (Jessica Hill/AP)

Originally published on Tue December 17, 2013 9:41 am

Monsignor Robert Weiss has been pastor of St. Rose of Lima church in Newtown, Conn., for 13 years. Half of Newtown attends his church, so he knew many of the children who were killed in the Sandy Hook school shooting last December 14th.

He was the first religious person on the scene that day. Weiss, known as Father Bob in Newtown, still remembers the sound of shattered glass under his feet, and he still can’t sleep at night.

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NPR Story
3:28 pm
Thu December 12, 2013

Life After An Other-Than-Honorable Discharge

Michael Hartnett was a Marine during the Gulf War and served in Somalia. He received a bad conduct discharge for abusing drugs and alcohol. His wife, Molly, helped him turn his life around. (Quil Lawrence/NPR)

Originally published on Tue December 17, 2013 9:41 am

This week, NPR’s Quil Lawrence has been reporting on veterans who served their country, but for one reason or another, received an other-than-honorable discharge.

This label has affected more than 100,000 in the last decade. Some were discharged for misconduct, others for drug use, and some for committing crimes. As a result, they no longer receive VA health benefits.

He joins Here & Now’s Meghna Chakrabarti to discuss the special project.

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NPR Story
3:28 pm
Thu December 12, 2013

Spotify To Offer Mobile App For Free

(Johan Larsson/Flickr)

Originally published on Tue December 17, 2013 9:41 am

Spotify, the music streaming service, announced it will allow anyone on an Android or iOS device to use its app free of charge, starting immediately. The service lets listeners pick and choose songs, and is hoping the move will expand its user base.

The company also announced that it’s adding 20 new countries to its roster. Spotify will now reach 55 global markets. Spotify currently has about 24 million active users and 6 million paying subscribers. Its competitor Pandora has about 72 million active listeners.

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Mountain Stage
2:58 pm
Thu December 12, 2013

Old Man Luedecke On Mountain Stage

Old Man Luedecke performing live on Mountain Stage.
Brian Blauser Mountain Stage

Originally published on Fri June 20, 2014 8:17 am

Old Man Luedecke makes his first appearance on Mountain Stage, recorded live on the campus of East Tennessee State University. A native of Nova Scotia, Chris Luedecke isn't actually old, but his music clearly draws from his remarkable ear for the music and melodies of years gone by.

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World Cafe
2:54 pm
Thu December 12, 2013

Deer Tick On World Cafe

Lead singer John McCauley (center) and Deer Tick.
Anna Webber Courtesy of the artist

Deer Tick visits the WXPN studio to perform songs from its fifth album, Negativity. Of all the material the band has released over the past seven years, this record contains some of lead singer John McCauley's most personal songwriting yet.

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JazzSet with Dee Dee Bridgewater
2:49 pm
Thu December 12, 2013

Dee Alexander And The Evolution Arkestra On JazzSet

Marc PoKempner Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Fri June 20, 2014 8:15 am

The Jazz Institute of Chicago and the city's Park District teamed up in December 2012 to present this free family concert with Dee Alexander. As we air it on JazzSet a year later, Alexander is just back from performing the show in Poland where, she writes, "everyone was on their feet."

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The Salt
2:26 pm
Thu December 12, 2013

Social Supermarkets A 'Win-Win-Win' For Europe's Poor

A customer scans the shelves at Community Shop, the U.K.'s first "social supermarket." The discount grocery stores are growing in popularity across Europe and are open exclusively to those in need.
Courtesy of Community Shop

Originally published on Mon December 16, 2013 4:57 pm

Somewhere between a food pantry and a traditional grocery store lies an opportunity to help feed those in need.

Enter "social supermarkets," a European model that offers discounted food exclusively to those in poverty. The stores have grown in popularity across the continent, and this week, the U.K. opened its first. Dubbed Community Shop, the store is located in an impoverished former mining town in South Yorkshire.

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The Two-Way
2:10 pm
Thu December 12, 2013

Thai Protest Leader Says Heads Of Military, Police To Meet Him

Anti-government protesters react to a speech by former Democrat Party MP and anti-government protest leader Suthep Thaugsuban during a large rally near Government House on Tuesday in Bangkok.
Rufus Cox Getty Images

Originally published on Thu December 12, 2013 5:24 pm

The leader of massive anti-government protests in Thailand says the chiefs of the country's military branches and police force have agreed to meet and hear him out on "political reforms" — a move likely to spark concern over a possible coup similar to the one that overthrew the prime minister in 2006.

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All Tech Considered
1:48 pm
Thu December 12, 2013

A Rush To Reconcile Health Enrollment Data, By Hand

Affordable Care Act navigator Nini Hadwen helps Floridians shop for health insurance in October.
Joe Raedle Getty Images

Originally published on Thu December 12, 2013 5:44 pm

With just a few weeks left before a deadline to get health coverage, lingering bugs lurk in the part of HealthCare.gov that you can't see. And since time is running out to get things right, health officials on Thursday urged insurance companies to cover some enrollees even if their premium checks haven't come in.

Under the law's guidelines, consumers have to sign up for a health insurance exchange — and pay their first month's premium — by the end of December if they want coverage in January.

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The Two-Way
1:11 pm
Thu December 12, 2013

Probation For Teen Who Killed 4: Here's The Judge's Thinking

The news that a 16-year-old boy from Texas was sentenced this week to 10 years of probation for driving drunk and causing a crash that killed four people has led to many headlines such as this, from Time:

"The Affluenza Defense: Judge Rules Rich Kid's Rich Kid-ness Makes Him Not Liable for Deadly Drunk Driving Accident."

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The Two-Way
1:10 pm
Thu December 12, 2013

Bangladesh Executes Islamist Leader For War Crimes

Bangladeshi activists participate in a rally Thursday in the capital, Dhaka, celebrating the Supreme Court's decision to clear the way for the execution of Jamaat-e-Islami leader Abdul Quader Mollah. Mollah was hanged Thursday for crimes committed during the country's 1971 war of independence.
A.M. Ahad AP

Bangladesh has hanged an Islamist leader convicted of committing atrocities in the country's war of independence from Pakistan more than 40 year ago.

Abdul Quader Mollah, a top leader in the Jammat-e-Islami party, was originally scheduled to be hanged Tuesday, but he gained a temporary reprieve pending appeal. The country's Supreme Court denied the appeal on Thursday. Mollah, 65, was hanged at 10:01 p.m. Thursday.

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Movie Interviews
1:06 pm
Thu December 12, 2013

At 77, Robert Redford Goes Back To His Roots

In All Is Lost, Robert Redford plays an unnamed sailor, stranded at sea on a badly damaged yacht.
Daniel Daza Roadside Attractions/Lionsgate

Originally published on Thu December 12, 2013 5:23 pm

Robert Redford isn't merely the star of the movie All Is Lost — he plays the only character. He plays a man stranded alone on a small yacht in the Indian Ocean, and New York Times film critic A.O. Scott says it's "the performance of a lifetime."

We don't know the man's name, why he's there, or anything about his background — but when disaster strikes, we learn that he's resourceful and doesn't succumb to panic. After a stray shipping container rams his vessel and leaves a gaping hole in the hull, he must make the boat seaworthy again in order to survive.

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The Two-Way
12:19 pm
Thu December 12, 2013

Rule Allowing In-Flight Phone Calls Clears First FCC Hurdle

A passenger checks his cellphone while boarding a flight in Boston. The Federal Communications Commission is proposing new rules to allow using cellphones for data and voice calls during airline flights.
Matt Slocum AP

Originally published on Thu December 12, 2013 4:04 pm

Update at 4 p.m. ET: Commissioners Approve Rules Proposal

By a vote of 3-2, the FCC has approved the initial proposal to allow passengers on U.S. flights to use their cellphones for voice calls — something that's been forbidden on U.S. flights. The vote opens the door for further consideration by the commission's five members, as well as comments from the public.

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It's All Politics
12:11 pm
Thu December 12, 2013

Come On Down To Congress! Bob Barker Endorses In Fla. Race

Legendary Price Is Right host Bob Barker endorsed Republican David Jolly in an upcoming special congressional election in Florida.
Damian Dovarganes AP

Originally published on Thu December 12, 2013 1:19 pm

Former Price Is Right host Bob Barker wants Florida voters to come on down to the polls for Republican David Jolly next month.

Barker, who retired from the popular daytime game show in 2007 after 35 years, appeared in a television ad Thursday on behalf of Jolly, a lobbyist running in a special election for a St. Petersburg-area congressional seat.

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Parallels
11:51 am
Thu December 12, 2013

Pakistan's Fearless Chief Justice Challenged The Powers That Were

Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry (center) is greeted by lawyers in Islamabad after the government announced it would reinstate him, in March 2009. Pakistan's longest-serving chief justice challenged the status quo and fought to chart a more assertive and independent course for the country's judiciary.
Anjum Naveed AP

Originally published on Thu December 12, 2013 2:41 pm

He defied a military dictator, sacked a prime minister, and persistently sought to call generals and intelligence chiefs to account.

He became a symbol of hope for an impoverished multitude, seeking to assert their rights in a land where these are frequently ignored and abused.

He was one of his country's best-known figures who was seen — though not usually heard — on his nation's television screens as frequently as celebrity actors and cricket stars.

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The Two-Way
11:31 am
Thu December 12, 2013

What's Blocking Bertha, Seattle's 5-Story Tunneling Machine?

In this photo made with a fish-eye wide-angle lens, Bertha, the massive boring machine that is drilling a two-mile tunnel under Seattle, is shown in July before work began. The tunnel will replace a double deck highway along the downtown Seattle waterfront.
Ted S. Warren AP

Godzilla is back in the news and there's word that a massive boring machine appears to have hit something it can't get through under Seattle.

Hmmm.

But before we get carried away about creatures beneath our cities or hidden chambers holding eggs that will hatch monsters, let's focus on what we know about what's happening in the Northwest.

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Shots - Health News
11:15 am
Thu December 12, 2013

Scientists Turn To The Crowd In Quest For New Antibiotics

Yes, you could do this at home. Growing bacteria you find in a pile of dirt or a local pond might reveal the next big antibiotic.
Charlotte Raymond Science Source

Could you dig up the next antibiotic in your backyard? Two scientists would like you and, if they're lucky, millions of other people to give it a try.

The researchers hope that lots of do-it-yourself scientists around the world can come up with the next big idea for much-needed drugs.

There are plenty of precedents. Many blockbuster antibiotics were found in soil, where many bacteria produce chemicals to keep rivals out of their territory.

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The Two-Way
11:06 am
Thu December 12, 2013

Indian Officials Vow Steps To Overturn Gay Sex Verdict

Protesters in New Delhi rally Wednesday against the Supreme Court's decision to restore a ban on gay sex. On Thursday, the government said it would take steps to address the ruling.
Arkaprava Ghosh Barcroft Media /Landov

Originally published on Thu December 12, 2013 1:44 pm

We told you Wednesday about India's Supreme Court restoring a colonial-era ban on homosexual acts. The country's government said a day later that it would take urgent steps to overturn the ruling.

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Music Interviews
10:42 am
Thu December 12, 2013

Original 'Dreamgirl' Jennifer Holliday: 'I'm Not Going Nowhere'

Jennifer Holliday at NPR headquarters in Washington, D.C.
Amy Ta NPR

Originally published on Thu December 12, 2013 2:29 pm

Jennifer Holliday won fame by turning a Broadway show tune into an anthem. With her performance of "And I Am Telling You I'm Not Going" in the musical Dreamgirls, she became a star on Broadway. But Holliday's life and career offstage slipped out of control as she battled obesity and depression. After years out of the recording studio, Holliday is back with the album The Song is You. It's due out in January.

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Asia
10:42 am
Thu December 12, 2013

Did India 'Turn Back The Clock' On Gay Rights?

Originally published on Thu December 12, 2013 3:23 pm

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Now we turn to India where the Supreme Court has dealt a blow to gays and lesbians in that country. On Wednesday, the court reinstated a ban on gay sex, which is punishable with jail time. The ban, which dated to the 1800s, was originally overturned in 2009 but religious groups challenged it all the way to the Supreme Court. The decision is lighting up social media and India news channels. Here is the celebrated Indian author Vikram Seth speaking to India news channel, NDTV.

(SOUNDBITE OF INTERVIEW)

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World
10:42 am
Thu December 12, 2013

Does President Obama Have Bad Manners?

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

I'm Michel Martin and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. We want to take up some noteworthy international news now. In a few minutes, we'll go to India where the Supreme Court reinstated a ban on gay sex - actually, what it called unnatural acts. We'll talk about what that means for the LGBT community there, but also the reaction the ruling has gotten in the country on the whole. That's later. First though, we want to talk about the memorial service in Johannesburg earlier this week.

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Politics
10:42 am
Thu December 12, 2013

Budget Deal: Too Small To Fail?

A budget bill is making its way through Congress, after leaders agreed to a deal. But lawmakers on both sides of the aisle aren't completely sold. Host Michel Martin talks with NPR Senior Washington Editor Ron Elving, and Callie Crossley, host of Under The Radar in Boston.

The Two-Way
10:25 am
Thu December 12, 2013

Hawaiian Official Who Released Obama's Birth Certificate Dies In Crash

Loretta Fuddy, director of Hawaii's Department of Health. She died Wednesday.
Hawaii Department of Health AP

Loretta Fuddy, a Hawaiian health official who in 2011 was briefly in the national spotlight when she verified the authenticity of President Obama's birth certificate and authorized the release of information about it, died Wednesday in the crash of a small plane off the island of Molokai.

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