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Superstorm Sandy: Before, During And Beyond
4:44 pm
Mon November 26, 2012

Post-Sandy Aid Inaccessible For Some Immigrants

Rosa Maria Ramirez lost most of her belongings in the storm and is moving out of her damaged house on Staten Island. Because she's undocumented, she doesn't qualify for federal financial disaster assistance.
Reema Khrais NPR

Originally published on Mon November 26, 2012 5:41 pm

The living room was muddy and foul when 16-year-old Prisma revisited her family's apartment days after Superstorm Sandy washed through it last month. The furniture was tarnished, and most of the family's belongings were scattered and in ruins. The home was uninhabitable.

"Everything was completely in a different place," Prisma says. "It was really nasty."

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It's All Politics
4:25 pm
Mon November 26, 2012

GOP Pushback On No-Tax Norquist: Less Than Meets The Eye

Grover Norquist, head of Americans for Tax Reform, speaks on Nov. 5, 2011, in Washington, D.C.
Nicholas Kamm AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue November 27, 2012 9:00 am

A handful of congressional Republicans after finishing their Thanksgiving dinners decided to give anti-tax crusader Grover Norquist the brushoff, saying they wouldn't abide by his "no new taxes" pledge as they work on a budget deal.

Breathless coverage ensued.

"Move over, Grover?" read one headline.

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The Two-Way
4:22 pm
Mon November 26, 2012

Meeting Between Egypt's Morsi, Judiciary Appears To Fail To Bring Compromise

An Egyptian man walks over a graffiti reading "Morsi Go" at Egypt's landmark Tahrir square in Cairo.
AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon November 26, 2012 5:42 pm

NPR's Soraya Sarhaddi Nelson tells our Newscast unit that despite a meeting with leaders of the judiciary, Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi has not given any signal that he is backing down from most of his power grab.

A decree that essentially prohibited the judiciary from reviewing any of his decisions has brought violent demonstrations across the country from protesters who say they traded in one dictator for another.

Soraya sent this report from Cairo:

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Law
4:04 pm
Mon November 26, 2012

Manning Plea Offer Another Odd Piece Of An Odd Case

Army Pfc. Bradley Manning is escorted out of a courthouse in Fort Meade, Md., after a pretrial hearing in June. Manning is charged with aiding the enemy by giving hundreds of thousands of classified diplomatic cables and war logs to the secret-sharing website WikiLeaks.
Patrick Semansky AP

Originally published on Mon November 26, 2012 5:18 pm

The young Army private accused of passing diplomatic cables and war reports to the website WikiLeaks has made an unusual offer: Bradley Manning says he'll plead guilty to minor charges in the case. But he rejects the idea that he ever acted as a spy or helped America's enemies.

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Law
4:00 pm
Mon November 26, 2012

Who's A Supervisor When It Comes To Harassment?

The U.S. Supreme Court building in Washington, D.C.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

Originally published on Mon November 26, 2012 7:31 pm

The U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments Monday in a case that asks the justices to define who is a "supervisor" when the issue is harassment in the workplace. The definition is important because employers are automatically liable for damages in most cases in which a supervisor harasses a subordinate.

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The Two-Way
3:37 pm
Mon November 26, 2012

U.N. Committee Calls For An End to Centuries-Old Practice Of 'Baby Boxes'

A baby hatch that is fixed in a window at Waldfriede Hospital in Berlin. Mothers can bring unwanted babies and leave them anonymously. Baby boxes are a revival of the medieval "foundling wheels," where unwanted infants were left in revolving church doors.
Markus Schreiber AP

Originally published on Mon November 26, 2012 4:30 pm

For centuries, European mothers who felt they were incapable of caring for a newborn could leave the baby in a "foundling wheel," a rotating crib set up at the entrance to a convent or a place of worship.

Today, there's a debate over the modern version of the practice: the baby box.

At least 11 European countries, as well as Russia and India, now have baby boxes, sometimes known as baby windows or hatches.

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Shots - Health News
3:37 pm
Mon November 26, 2012

In Juvenile Detention, Girls Find Health System Geared To Boys

Girls line up at the Bernalillo County Juvenile Detention and Youth Services Center in Albuquerque, N.M.
Jenny Gold NPR

Originally published on Mon November 26, 2012 7:21 pm

For the growing number of teenage girls who are incarcerated each year, detention may be the only time they get health care.

But the care provided to girls in juvenile detention is often a poor match for their needs.

One reason: It's a system that was designed for boys.

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Television
3:31 pm
Mon November 26, 2012

Comedians Parody Two Sides Of President Obama

Originally published on Mon November 26, 2012 5:18 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

Comedians Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele have an avid following for their weekly show, "Key and Peele" on Comedy Central. They've parodied everything from the names of black athletes to white people with dreadlocks. This year, the duo set their sights on the presidential campaign and examined the role that race played in it.

NPR's Karen Grigsby Bates has that story.

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All Tech Considered
3:20 pm
Mon November 26, 2012

Spain Hopes For Economic Boost With Wave-Powered Electricity Plant

Residents of Mutriku, a fishing village on Spain's northern coast, lounge at their local beach, protected from fierce Atlantic waves by a cement breakwater that also houses Europe's first wave energy plant.
Lauren Frayer for NPR

Originally published on Mon November 26, 2012 5:18 pm

Waves constantly thrash the fishing village of Mutriku on Spain's northern coast. Records from the 13th century describe the dangerous surf and shipwrecks here. Until recently, water occasionally hurled debris through windows of homes, before the local government built a cement breakwater to shelter the harbor.

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Business
3:19 pm
Mon November 26, 2012

A Jolly Christmas? Retailers Count The Extra Days

Shoppers line up in a Best Buy store in Rockville, Md., during a Black Friday sale. Thanksgiving weekend sales jumped nearly 13 percent from last year, the National Retail Federation says.
Mandel Ngan AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue November 27, 2012 7:49 am

For merchants, the stars are lining up — at least so far.

Online shopping jumped more than 28 percent on Cyber Monday compared with a year ago, according to IBM Benchmark. And the National Retail Federation says Thanksgiving weekend spending shot up to $59.1 billion, nearly 13 percent more than last year's $52 billion.

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It's All Politics
2:57 pm
Mon November 26, 2012

New 'War On Christmas' Takes A Fiscal-Cliff Twist

The Christmas shopping season could be harmed if the fiscal cliff fight depresses consumer confidence, according to a new report from Obama administration economists.
Andrew Kelly Getty Images

Originally published on Tue December 4, 2012 6:19 pm

In past years, conservatives have used the phrase "war on Christmas" to liberally accuse liberals of trying to ruin the holiday through political correctness and anti-religiousness.

This year, it's the Obama White House warning that Republicans are a threat to Christmas or, more precisely, the part of the economy that relies on the holiday shopping season — retail sales.

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The Two-Way
2:43 pm
Mon November 26, 2012

State Department: Andrew W.K. Won't Party In Bahrain On Government Dime

Becky Lettenberger/NPR

Originally published on Mon November 26, 2012 4:29 pm

Andrew W.K., whom NPR Music described as the "long-haired, wild-eyed, keyboard-pounding, sublimely over-the-top party-rocker," won't be taking his party to Bahrain.

At least not on the government's dime.The State Department has rescinded its invitation, stopped the music if you will, just as word started to spread that the U.S. Embassy in Manama had invited W.K. to perform.

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Author Interviews
2:35 pm
Mon November 26, 2012

Mantel Takes Up Betrayal, Beheadings In 'Bodies'

Hilary Mantel's Wolf Hall won both the Man Booker Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award. The sequel, Bring Up the Bodies, won this year's Man Booker Prize.
Francesco Guidicini

This year, Hilary Mantel made history when she won a Man Booker Prize for her novel Bring Up the Bodies. She had previously been awarded the prize — England's highest literary honor — for her 2009 novel, Wolf Hall, and is now the first woman to receive the award twice.

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The Two-Way
1:56 pm
Mon November 26, 2012

News Outlets Punk'd, Somebody Profits: Google Wi-Fi Buy Is A Hoax

Google.com

This Associated Press report today wasn't true:

"Google has bought an operator of Wi-Fi hotspots in high-traffic locations such as airports, hotels and fast-food restaurants. Google Inc. is paying $400 million for ICOA Inc., a Warwick, R.I., company, as part of the search company's efforts to diversify its portfolio."

It was so wrong, in fact, that the AP later moved a "KILL BULLETIN" saying it was:

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The Two-Way
1:38 pm
Mon November 26, 2012

Supreme Court Refuses To Hear Case On Taping Police Officers

Chicago police move in during protests against the NATO summit in May.
AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon November 26, 2012 1:44 pm

The U.S. Supreme Court has refused to hear a case on the constitutionality of recording police officers while they do their job.

This means the court leaves in place a lower-court ruling, which found placing limits on taping police in public spaces unconstitutional.

The ACLU of Illinois brought the a suit against Cook County State's Attorney Anita Alvarez in 2010, after her office wanted to bring charges against ACLU staff recording audio of "police officers performing their public duties in a public place and speaking loudly enough to be heard by a passerby."

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Middle East
1:09 pm
Mon November 26, 2012

After Israel-Hamas Cease-Fire, What's Changed?

Originally published on Thu December 13, 2012 7:36 am

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan in Washington. Last week's cease-fire between Israel and Hamas was supposed to lead to more substantial discussions, but there's been little to no movement so far. So after eight days of bombs and rockets, what's changed? The dead, of course: six Israeli and over 160 Palestinians and destruction, also one-sided.

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Science
1:04 pm
Mon November 26, 2012

As Dec. 21 Draws Nigh, The Facts About Doomsday

Some doomsayers predict that the world will end on Dec. 21, 2012, citing the end of the pre-Columbian Mayan calendar.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Tue November 27, 2012 1:44 pm

On Dec. 21, 2012, some fear that a rogue planet will collide with Earth and destroy the planet, or that the supposed end of the Mayan calendar will lead to the obliteration of the universe.

When people have questions about these scenarios, they often turn to the Internet.

NASA astrobiologist David Morrison has taken it upon himself to enter that online conversation and answer hundreds of questions about the science of existential threats.

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Around the Nation
1:04 pm
Mon November 26, 2012

The Conversations About Infidelity On The Homefront

Originally published on Mon November 26, 2012 3:04 pm

The sex scandals of Gen. David Petraeus and Brig. Gen. Jeffrey Sinclair have triggered public conversations about ethics, national security and leadership. These high-profile cases of infidelity have also prompted private conversations about the challenges of military marriage.

The Two-Way
12:53 pm
Mon November 26, 2012

In Nigeria, Church Bombing Death Toll Now 30; Gunmen Attack Police Station

It has been a bloody last couple of days in Nigeria: First on Sunday, two car bombs exploded near a church inside a military base. According to the AP, hospital officials said the death toll in that incident has grown to 30.

And today, the AP reports, there is news that gunmen rushed a police station in the nation's capital of Abuja.

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The Two-Way
12:39 pm
Mon November 26, 2012

Paying For Success: River Otters Are Being Trapped Again In Illinois

Once almost gone from Illinois, river otters are now back in big numbers.
Illinois Dept. of Natural Resources

Originally published on Mon November 26, 2012 4:30 pm

  • On 'Morning Edition': Steve Inskeep speaks Illinois biologist Bob Bluett

"They're wonderful, they're great. But sometimes too much is too much."

That's the basic problem confronting Illinois and its wild river otters, state Department of Natural Resources biologist Bob Bluett said earlier today on Morning Edition.

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Planet Money
12:33 pm
Mon November 26, 2012

Household Debt In America, In 3 Graphs

Lam Thuy Vo / NPR

Originally published on Mon November 26, 2012 7:38 pm

For more, see What America Owes In Student Loans

U.S. households owe a bit less than they did at the peak of the bubble. But they still owe a lot: $11.4 trillion, give or take a few billion. Mortgage and home-equity debt is still by far the biggest chunk of that debt.

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Shots - Health News
12:29 pm
Mon November 26, 2012

Some Kids Bounce Straight To The Emergency Room

First the kids pile in, then the bouncing begins.
Nationwide Children's Hospital

If your kids absolutely must jump around at their next birthday party, an inflatable moonwalk or bounce house may be a safer bet than a backyard trampoline. But only a little safer.

The wildly popular mosh pits for the school-age set have become a common source of injuries that send kids to the hospital.

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The Two-Way
11:54 am
Mon November 26, 2012

In One Corner Of Syria, A Rebel Victory Results In Friction

A Syrian rebel fighter is shown in the northeastern Syrian border town of Ras al-Ayn on Nov. 11, several days after the rebels captured it. The rebel takeover has created friction with the town's Kurdish population.
Murad Seezer Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Mon November 26, 2012 5:49 pm

When Syrian rebels seized the border post at Ras al-Ayn on Nov. 8, they celebrated the victory and went on to "liberate" the town, a place where both Arabs and Kurds live on Syria's northeast border with Turkey.

But the Kurdish inhabitants quickly saw their "liberation" as a disaster. Within days, dozens were dead in clashes between Kurdish militias and the rebels.

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Music Reviews
11:32 am
Mon November 26, 2012

Jason Kao Hwang: From The Blues To China And Back

Burning Bridge personnel, left to right: Jason Kao Hwang (violin), Wang Guowei (erhu), Sun Li (pipa), Ken Filiano (string bass), Andrew Drury (drum set), Joseph Daley (tuba), Steve Swell (trombone), Taylor Ho Bynum (cornet/flugelhorn).
Scott Friedlander Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed August 21, 2013 1:20 pm

Jazz reflects who we are as a people — democracy in action and all that. But a jazz tune or solo is also a portrait of the musician who makes it; the music reflects the particular background and training that influences how composers compose and improvisers improvise. Jason Kao Hwang makes that autobiographical component explicit throughout his extended composition for eight pieces, Burning Bridge. His parents made the move from China around the end of WWII, and he grew up attending Presbyterian services in suburban Chicago.

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Politics
11:14 am
Mon November 26, 2012

Republicans Consider Breaking Tax Vow

Congress comes back to work this week and the fiscal cliff is its top priority. Some Republicans have said they'll break a longstanding pledge not to raise taxes. Host Michel Martin talks politics with columnist Mary Kate Cary of U.S. News and World Report and The Root's political correspondent Keli Goff.

The Two-Way
10:56 am
Mon November 26, 2012

SEC Chief Schapiro Is Leaving

Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Mary Schapiro.
Kevin Dietsch UPI /Landov

Originally published on Mon November 26, 2012 11:15 am

(We updated the top of this post at 11:50 a.m. and 12:15 p.m ET):

Moving quickly after the announcement that Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Mary Schapiro is leaving on Dec. 14, the White House just said that President Obama has designated SEC Commissioner Elisse Walter to be her replacement.

In a statement, the president says:

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The Two-Way
9:17 am
Mon November 26, 2012

Supreme Court Turns Down Appeal From Former Rep. William Jefferson

Former Rep. William Jefferson, D-La., in 2009.
Molly Riley Reuters /Landov

The congressman who became known as "Dollar Bill" Jefferson appears to have run out of options in his bid to overturn a 2009 corruption conviction.

The Supreme Court just announced it will not hear an appeal from former Rep. William Jefferson, D-La. So, as The Times-Picayune says:

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The Two-Way
8:50 am
Mon November 26, 2012

VIDEO: High Dives Into 'World's Biggest Pile Of Leaves'

Bangakang video.

Originally published on Mon November 26, 2012 9:49 am

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The Two-Way
7:41 am
Mon November 26, 2012

Top Stories: Fiscal Cliff Compromise? Egypt's Morsi Meets With Judges

It's a record: A sign in Atlanta about the $425 million jackpot in the Powerball lottery.
Erik S. Lesser EPA /LANDOV

Originally published on Mon November 26, 2012 9:20 am

Good morning.

Earlier, we posted about:

-- Outrage, Protests In Bangladesh After Factory Fire That Killed Scores.

-- 'Cyber Monday,' 'Giving Tuesday;' Then 'Weeping Wednesday?'.

Meanwhile, here are some of the other top headlines of the morning and from over the weekend:

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The Two-Way
7:12 am
Mon November 26, 2012

Outrage, Protests In Bangladesh After Factory Fire That Killed Scores

Inside the factory in Dhaka, Bangladesh, after the blaze.
AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon November 26, 2012 9:19 am

Horrific is a word that quickly comes to mind about the news from Bangladesh concerning a fire Saturday in a garment factory where clothes were made for retailers around the world, including some in the U.S.

Here's how The Associated Press starts its latest report:

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