All Things Considered

Weekdays 4 -6 p.m.
Robert Siegel
Melissa Block

 In-depth reporting and transformed the way listeners understand current events and view the world. Every weekday, hear two hours of breaking news mixed with compelling analysis, insightful commentaries, interviews, and special - sometimes quirky - features.  

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Book Reviews
2:37 pm
Tue September 3, 2013

An Alternate Universe Delights In Complex, Perplexing 'Duplex'

Originally published on Tue September 3, 2013 4:04 pm

You're walking your dog in a suburb that may or may not exist in this dimension. The dog whines. You ignore him. Anyway, you're too busy looking out for that sexy, evil sorcerer. Suddenly, a gray rabbit appears, and you realize: the world is ending.

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NPR Story
6:11 pm
Mon September 2, 2013

Coal Industry Takes Teachers For A Class In Mining

Originally published on Tue September 3, 2013 11:25 am

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

The coal industry is trying to buff up its image in Texas. Texas is known for oil and gas, but it's also a big coal producer. And mining companies are paying for a boot camp for science teachers that has some educators and parents upset.

Laura Isensee, of member station KUHF in Houston, has more.

(SOUNDBITE OF FOOTSTEPS)

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The Salt
3:50 pm
Mon September 2, 2013

Tlacoyos: A Mexican Grilled Snack That Tempted The Conquistadors

Tlacoyos can be filled with beans, potatoes, mushrooms or cheese and are often topped with grilled cactus, onions, cilantro, and salsa.
Jasmine Garsd for NPR

Originally published on Wed September 4, 2013 1:10 pm

For the last in a summer series of grilled food from around the world, we head to Mexico, where a small doughy treat is found everywhere from street corner grills to high-end restaurants. It's called a tlacoyo (pronounced tla-COY-yo) and although it may sound novel, it's an ancient food that's older than Hernan Cortes.

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NPR Story
3:50 pm
Mon September 2, 2013

On Fifth Try, Diana Nyad Completes Cuba-Florida Swim

Originally published on Tue September 3, 2013 9:48 am

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

After years of unwavering tenacity, Diana Nyad has completed her quest. At 64 years of age, she became the first person to swim from Cuba to Florida without a protective shark cage. That is more than a hundred miles of water full of sharks, venomous box jellyfish and treacherous currents.

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NPR Story
3:50 pm
Mon September 2, 2013

Verizon To Pay $130 Billion For Stake In Vodafone

Originally published on Mon September 2, 2013 6:11 pm

Verizon Communications is paying $130 billion to buy part of its wireless unit from the British company Vodafone. It's one of the biggest deals in the history of the telecommunications business and underscores the growing profitability of wireless. Robert Siegel talks to NPR's Jim Zarroli about the deal.

Author Interviews
3:14 pm
Mon September 2, 2013

From Peace To Patriotism: The Shifting Identity Of 'God Bless America'

American composer Irving Berlin sings his song "God Bless America" in front of Boy Scouts troop members and spectators gathered at a tent in Monticello, New York in 1940. Instead of collecting royalties from "God Bless America," Berlin created a fund that collected and distributed them to the Boy and Girl Scouts.
Getty Images

Originally published on Tue September 3, 2013 9:47 am

In the fall of 1938, radio was huge. That Halloween, Orson Welles scared listeners out of their wits with his War of the Worlds. And on November 10, 1938 — the eve of the holiday that was known then as Armistice Day — the popular singer Kate Smith made history on her radio show. She sang a song that had never been sung before, written by the composer Irving Berlin.

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Food
3:12 pm
Mon September 2, 2013

Deep-Fry Chefs Keep It Hot And Poppin' In Texas

We had to do it! A fried mic.
John Burnett NPR

Originally published on Mon September 2, 2013 6:11 pm

Every year, the State Fair of Texas awards the most original food that is battered and plunged into a vat of boiling oil.

And it gets weirder every year. The obvious choices came and went in previous competitions — concoctions such as fried ice cream, fried cookie dough and chicken-fried bacon. Now, every year, the same cooks have to top themselves, which is not easy.

Last year, Butch Benavides — a Mexican food restaurateur turned fry-master — won a trophy for his fried bacon cinnamon roll on a stick.

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All Tech Considered
3:12 pm
Mon September 2, 2013

Amish Community Not Anti-Technology, Just More Thoughtful

One Amish family in Lancaster County, Pa., has three horse-pulled buggies they store in a barn. They all have electric lights powered by rechargeable batteries. One of the buggies even has battery-powered windshield wipers.
Jeff Brady NPR

Originally published on Mon September 2, 2013 6:11 pm

Many outsiders assume the Amish reject all new technology. But that's not true.

One Amish man in Lancaster County, Pa., checks his voicemail about four times a day. His shop is equipped with a propane-powered forklift, hydraulic-powered saws, cordless drills, and a refrigerated tank where milk from dairy cows is stored.

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Shots - Health News
2:03 pm
Mon September 2, 2013

Enough With Baby Talk; Infants Learn From Lemur Screeches, Too

Originally published on Thu September 5, 2013 8:26 am

New research suggests that 3-month-old human babies can use lemur calls as teaching aids. The findings hint at a deep biological connection between language and learning.

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History
5:18 pm
Sun September 1, 2013

Declassified Documents Reveal CIA Role In 1953 Iranian Coup

Former Iranian Premier Mohammed Mossadegh appears in October 1951. The CIA's overthrow of Mossadegh was a template for the agency's covert operations going forward.
AP

Originally published on Sun September 1, 2013 5:44 pm

The Central Intelligence Agency was behind the overthrow of Iranian Prime Minister Mohammad Mossadegh in 1953. It's been an open secret for decades, but last week, The George Washington University's National Security Archive released newly declassified documents proving it.

Orchestrating the Iranian coup d'état was a first for the CIA and would serve as the template for future Cold War covert operations worldwide.

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Business
4:41 pm
Sun September 1, 2013

When Stress Takes Over, Employee Burnout Can Set In

Pushing workers only goes so far, says one long-time human resources manager.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Sun September 1, 2013 6:16 pm

As Labor Day honors American workers, stress weighs on many. A changing world — and therefore a changing workplace — has many employees on the job and staring at screens for hours upon hours. Some have reached a breaking point.

John Challenger, CEO of workplace consulting company Challenger, Gray & Christmas, diagnoses burnout. He tells NPR's Jacki Lyden stress can manifest emotionally, mentally or physically. "It can be combined with doubts about your confidence or the value of the work you do," he says.

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Religion
4:04 pm
Sun September 1, 2013

Cowboy Church: With Rodeo Arena, They 'Do Church Different'

A Western motif greets visitors to the Cowboy Church of Ellis County, in Waxahachie, Texas. About 1,700 people attend the church on Sundays.
Matt Slocum AP

Originally published on Sun September 1, 2013 7:36 pm

It's Sunday morning at the Cowboy Church of Santa Fe County, N.M. You know you're there because of the chuck wagon parked by the highway.

You couldn't find a more nonreligious-looking building. The church is a charmless metal warehouse on a concrete slab. Inside, the altar is decorated like a set from a 1950s western — complete with saddles, hats, boots, a lasso and wagon wheel.

The band has just kicked off with "I Think God Must Be a Cowboy at Heart," and about 30 people in folding chairs are tapping their feet.

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Music Interviews
4:04 pm
Sun September 1, 2013

Kathleen Hanna On Working Through Illness And Focusing Anger

Kathleen Hanna (center) is the frontwoman of The Julie Ruin. The band's debut album is titled Run Fast.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Sun September 1, 2013 5:18 pm

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Television
4:04 pm
Sun September 1, 2013

'Cold Justice' Is Coming To A Small Town (And TV) Near You

In her 21 years as a prosecutor, Kelly Siegler successfully tried 68 murder cases.
John Nowak

Originally published on Sun September 1, 2013 5:18 pm

Television has served up sass and brass with its female crime solvers for decades: Angie Dickenson in Police Woman, in the 1970s, Cagney and Lacey in the 80s, and the modern duo Rizzoli and Isles on TNT.

This fall, that network has decided to forget the script. It has two more sleuths who've already cracked thousands of real crime scenes and racked up dozens of victories in court.

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Education
4:21 pm
Sat August 31, 2013

What Makes The 'Smartest Kids In The World'?

Originally published on Sun September 1, 2013 9:06 am

Transcript

JACKIE LYDEN, HOST:

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Author Interviews
4:21 pm
Sat August 31, 2013

Shacochis Spans Generations In 'The Woman Who Lost Her Soul'

Originally published on Sun September 1, 2013 9:06 am

As a journalist and essayist, Bob Shacochis has covered conflict in the Balkans and Haiti, the abuse of American power overseas, spycraft, and the sexual politics that divide men and women. He is also a novelist and the winner of a National Book Award. His new novel, The Woman Who Lost Her Soul, was a long time coming, but critics are saying it was well worth the wait.

The Woman Who Lost Her Soul is a 700-page work that spans continents and generations. It's been compared to the work of Joseph Conrad, Graham Greene and Norman Mailer.

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Strange News
4:21 pm
Sat August 31, 2013

Welcome To 'Night Vale' — Watch Out For The Tarantulas

Welcome to Night Vale is the number one most downloaded podcast on iTunes.
Jeffrey Cranor & Joseph Fink

Originally published on Sun September 1, 2013 9:06 am

Jeffrey Cranor and Joseph Fink have the news of the weird covered: they're the creative masterminds behind the popular sci-fi podcast Welcome to Night Vale. Though only a year old, the spooky Night Vale — which channels David Lynch, Orson Welles and H.P. Lovecraft in its descriptions of a small, weird desert town — has rocketed up the iTunes ratings list to claim the number one most downloaded spot.

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Parallels
5:04 pm
Fri August 30, 2013

How Do You Say ...? For Some Words, There's No Easy Translation

Ella Frances Sanders Maptia

Originally published on Fri August 30, 2013 6:01 pm

Just as good writing demands brevity, so, too, does spoken language. Sentences and phrases get whittled down over time. One result: single words that are packed with meaning, words that are so succinct and detailed in what they connote in one language that they may have no corresponding word in another language.

Such words aroused the curiosity of the folks at a website called Maptia, which aims to encourage people to tell stories about places.

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All Tech Considered
4:21 pm
Fri August 30, 2013

Taking The Battle Against Patent Trolls To The Public

A group of technology and retail groups is beginning a national ad campaign targeting so-called patent trolls.
The Internet Association, National Restaurant Association, National Retail Federation and Food Marketing Institute

Originally published on Fri August 30, 2013 6:01 pm

Patent trolls — a term known more among geeks than the general public — are about to be the target of a national ad campaign. Beginning Friday, a group of retail trade organizations is launching a radio and print campaign in 17 states.

They want to raise awareness of a problem they say is draining resources from business and raising prices for consumers.

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Around the Nation
3:55 pm
Fri August 30, 2013

Summer Nights: Phoenix's Piestewa Peak

Blair Cook and his sons, Dalton and Keegan, set out to hike Piestewa Peak in Central Phoenix.
Peter O'Dowd NPR

Originally published on Fri August 30, 2013 6:01 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

Labor Day is right around the corner, so before we mark the unofficial end of summer, here is the final installment in our series, Summer Nights. And for this last evening adventure, we head to Phoenix, where urban hikers strap on headlamps to ascend Piestewa Peak. This time of year, the desert heat can be deadly, so hikers wait until dark to climb to the summit, about 1,200 feet above the city.

Peter O'Dowd of member station KJZZ sends this postcard of one family that's been making the night trek for years.

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NPR Story
3:47 pm
Fri August 30, 2013

Firms Brace For Possible Retaliatory Cyberattacks From Syria

With the possibility of a strike on Syrian targets, U.S. firms are trying to protect themselves from cyberattacks that may follow.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Fri August 30, 2013 8:18 pm

The prospect of a military strike against Syria in the next few days has private U.S. firms bracing for retaliation — in cyberspace.

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NPR Story
3:47 pm
Fri August 30, 2013

Poet Seamus Heaney Was A Teacher, Critic, Translator

Originally published on Fri August 30, 2013 6:01 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

Few have used the English language to greater effect than Irish poet Seamus Heaney, who died today in Dublin. He was 74. Heaney was a Nobel laureate and the son of a farmer, a poet reluctantly drawn into the troubled politics of his homeland who attracted long lines of fans to his readings. NPR's Lynn Neary has this remembrance.

LYNN NEARY, BYLINE: Born in Ireland's County Derry, Heaney left home at the age of 12 to go to boarding school. Heaney said the place where he grew up was still a source of energy and image bank for him.

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NPR Story
3:47 pm
Fri August 30, 2013

NCAA Has Long List Of Headaches As Football Season Starts

Originally published on Fri August 30, 2013 6:01 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

The college football season kicked off with several games last night, and Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback Johnny Manziel will be back in action tomorrow, but not until the second half of Texas A&M's game against Rice. Sportswriter Stefan Fatsis joins us now to discuss the week in higher education. Hi, Stefan.

STEFAN FATSIS, BYLINE: Hey, Robert.

SIEGEL: Johnny Manziel was suspended by the NCAA this week for half a game. What did he do, and why half a game of all things?

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World
5:24 pm
Thu August 29, 2013

U.K. Vote Against Syria Strike A Major Setback For Obama

Originally published on Thu November 7, 2013 10:59 am

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

So where does this leave the Obama administration? For more on that, I'm joined by NPR's Mara Liasson. And Mara, what's the White House reaction been to this vote in the British Parliament tonight?

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World
5:19 pm
Thu August 29, 2013

U.K. Lawmakers Vote Against Syria Strike

Originally published on Fri August 30, 2013 5:04 am

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Robert Siegel.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

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The Salt
5:01 pm
Thu August 29, 2013

Antibiotic Use On The Farm: Are We Flying Blind?

Piglets in a pen on a hog farm in Frankenstein, Mo.
Jeff Roberson AP

Originally published on Mon November 18, 2013 4:26 pm

There's a heated debate over the use of antibiotics in farm animals. Critics say farmers overuse these drugs; farmers say they don't.

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Middle East
4:09 pm
Thu August 29, 2013

Why Syria Is More Complicated Than Libya

Originally published on Thu August 29, 2013 6:23 pm

The Arab spring has brought large-scale protests and violence to at least half a dozen countries in the past three years. Until now, the U.S. has only intervened militarily in one of them — Libya.

Now, as President Obama considers a strike on Syria, here's a look at some of the differences between the two scenarios:

1. Syria's Not Standing Alone

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Movie Interviews
3:51 pm
Thu August 29, 2013

Rebecca Hall, Finding New Thrills In The Family Business

Chaos, panic and disorder: Rebecca Hall stars as a barrister whose assignment leads to all kinds of bad things in the security-state thriller Closed Circuit.
Jay Maidment Focus Features

Originally published on Thu August 29, 2013 6:22 pm

Rebecca Hall, a veteran of films like Vicky Cristina Barcelona and The Town, is the star of the new surveillance-state thriller Closed Circuit, playing an English barrister charged with monitoring top-secret, closed-to-the-public evidence hearings involving a terrorist bombing.

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Around the Nation
3:51 pm
Thu August 29, 2013

Lady Houdini's Escape Act Breaks Through Not Just Handcuffs

Rochelle Fowler watches with tears on her face as Lady Houdini works to break free. Harry Houdini made the water torture cell famous more than 100 years ago.
Sadie Babits Boise State Public Radio

Originally published on Thu August 29, 2013 5:23 pm

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Shots - Health News
3:24 pm
Thu August 29, 2013

A Single Protein May Help Explain Memory Loss In Old Age

The underlying biology of age-related memory glitches — in old mice and old people — is different from what happens with Alzheimer's, recent research suggests.
Anthony Bradshaw iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Fri August 30, 2013 2:26 pm

If you're finding it harder to remember where you put the car keys, the culprit could be a brain protein with a name that's easy to forget: RbAp48.

A shortage of this protein appears to impair our ability to remember things as we age, researchers report in the current issue of Science Translational Medicine. And boosting levels of RbAP48 in aging brains can reverse memory loss, at least in mice, they say.

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