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Education
6:18 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

Students Say They've Been Denied The Right To Read

Michelle Johnson and her family talk about conditions within Detroit's Highland Park schools, in July.
Mike Glinski Mlive Detroit

Originally published on Thu September 6, 2012 7:08 pm

Eight Detroit-area public school students returning to classes this week are plaintiffs against a school system they say has failed them.

Their families and the American Civil Liberties Union say that the Highland Park school system has denied the students the right to learn to read, and that the state has a responsibility to fix that.

Michelle Johnson has five children in Highland Park schools. Her daughter is heading into the 12th grade, but can read at only about the fourth-grade level.

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The Two-Way
6:07 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

Pistorius Falls To Britain's Peacock In 100 Meters; American Browne Is Second

Bronze medalist Arnu Fourie of South Africa (from left), gold medalist Jonnie Peacock of Great Britain, silver medalist Richard Browne of the United States and Oscar Pistorius of South Africa cross the line in the Men's 100m - T44 Final at London's Olympic Stadium.
Jamie McDonald Getty Images

Originally published on Fri September 7, 2012 5:25 am

In one of the most closely watched events at the London Paralympics, South African Oscar Pistorius failed in his attempt to win the 100-meter sprint and regain his title as the world's fastest amputee today.

Great Britain's Jonnie Peacock took the lead early and kept it, winning in 10.90 seconds, a Paralympic record. American Richard Browne, 21, of Jackson, Miss., won the silver medal.

Pistorius, the double amputee who ran in the Olympics this year, came in fourth. He finished in 11.17 seconds.

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The Two-Way
5:32 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

S&P 500 Spikes To New Four-Year High On News About Europe, U.S. Jobs

The Standard & Poor's 500-stock index rose to levels it hasn't hit in more than four years today, bolstered by the European Central Bank's plan to buy bonds of struggling countries to help support the euro. Strong U.S. jobs data also contributed to the gains.

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Business
5:32 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

Stocks Get Bounce From Europe; Focus Turns To Jobs

Traders on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange on Aug. 9. Economic developments on both sides of the Atlantic could have a big impact on the U.S. presidential election.
Richard Drew AP

As the political conventions wrap up, talking points concerning the economy may seem locked into place: Growth is continuing, but at a slow pace.

Don't be fooled.

There's still plenty of time for big surprises, and Thursday provided a stunning example. Stock prices shot to highs not seen in years.

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The Two-Way
4:39 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

Achtung Beer Drinkers: Munich's Brewers Need Bottles, Kegs For Oktoberfest

Ahead of Oktoberfest, Munich's brewers say they're running short of bottles and kegs for the festival's beer. Here, glass beer steins are seen at last year's Oktoberfest.
Johannes Simon Getty Images

Originally published on Thu September 6, 2012 11:29 pm

German beer drinkers are eagerly awaiting Sept. 22, when the first Oktoberfest beer barrel will be tapped in Munich and two weeks of revelry begin. But when that happens, they might want to drink up — because the city's brewers are worried they won't be able to supply enough beer for the massive party and its huge beer tents.

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Middle East
4:33 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

Syrian Refugees Move Into Lebanon's Crowded Camps

The Palestinian refugee camps in Lebanon are overcrowded and run down. But Syrian refugees are moving in as they flee the fighting in their homeland.
Mohammed Asad APA/Landov

Originally published on Sun September 9, 2012 7:34 am

The conflict in Syria is sending a staggering number of refugees into neighboring countries. Turkey, Jordan and even Iraq are building tent cities.

But Lebanon has yet to build such camps. The country is already home to more than a dozen teeming, squalid camps for hundreds of thousands of Palestinian refugees who fled the war after Israel's creation in 1948, as well as their descendants.

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It's All Politics
4:25 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

Live Blog: Thursday At The Democratic National Convention

Attendees sing and dance as musician James Taylor performs onstage during the final day of the Democratic National Convention at Time Warner Cable Arena on Thursday.
Joe Raedle Getty Images

Originally published on Wed September 12, 2012 6:02 pm

  • NPR Special Coverage, Hour 1
  • NPR Special Coverage, Hour 2
  • NPR Special Coverage, Hour 3

Good evening from Charlotte. Tonight during the last day of the Democratic National Convention, President Obama will accept his party's nomination.

It will be a star-studded evening with performances from James Taylor and the Foo Fighters and appearences from stars like Eva Longoria and Scarlett Johansson.

We'll keep tabs on it the whole night. Also, along with NPR's Liz Halloran and Becky Lettenberger, we'll hit the floor and bring you updates on several of the delegations. Make sure to refresh this page to the see the latest.

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The Two-Way
4:16 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

Drew Peterson Convicted Of Killing His Third Wife

Former Bolingbrook, Ill., police Sgt. Drew Peterson, seen here May 8, 2009, was found guilty Thursday of killing his third wife.
M. Spencer Green AP

Drew Peterson, the former Illinois police officer, who became the focus of scrutiny in 2007 after the disappearance of his fourth wife, was found guilty Thursday of murdering his third wife.

The Associated Press reports that Peterson, 58, did not react as the verdict was read. Relatives of his third wife, Kathleen Savio, gasped before hugging each other as they cried quietly in the courtroom, the AP reported.

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It's All Politics
3:49 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

Occupy The Conventions: Where Are The Protesters At The DNC, RNC?

A group of roughly 100 Occupy protestors took to the streets in Charlotte on Wednesday. Occupiers marched relatively peacefully down Tryon St. a few blocks away from the Time Warner Cable Arena.
Becky Lettenberger NPR

Originally published on Wed September 12, 2012 6:14 pm

These days, Tryon Street here in Charlotte has felt a bit like a carnival. It has some to do with the many temporary structures that have popped up every few blocks and certainly some to do with the street vendors hawking T-shirts and hats and pins and mugs.

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Author Interviews
3:49 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

Getting Around To Writing 'Art Of Procrastination'

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Mon September 10, 2012 10:12 am

At the end of July, when NPR's Robert Siegel set off on the longest vacation since his honeymoon 39 years ago, he packed a few books, including the new book The Art of Procrastination by John Perry, emeritus professor of philosophy at Stanford.

After two weeks in Delaware, two weeks in Iberia and a week of work in Tampa, Fla., Siegel finally finished it Wednesday night. He says his timing is fitting: The book is 92 small, double-spaced pages.

It expands on a short confessional essay Perry wrote in 1996 called "Structured Procrastination."

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Television
3:49 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

NFL And DNC Compete For Prime Time Viewers

Originally published on Thu September 6, 2012 6:09 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

People in Charlotte are watching the convention by the thousands, but people who are watching on television are doing so by the millions. Last night, the convention had some serious TV competition. NBC went with the NFL season opener, the Cowboys-Giants game, instead of Bill Clinton's speech.

How many people are watching the conventions? We turn now to Eric Deggans, who is TV and media critic for the Tampa Bay Times. Hi, Eric.

ERIC DEGGANS: How are you doing?

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Europe
3:49 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

European Bond-Buying Plan May Not End Debt Crisis

Originally published on Thu September 6, 2012 6:09 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

This move by the European Central Bank is complicated stuff, and we've asked economist Kenneth Rogoff to help explain it a bit further. He's professor of economics at Harvard and former chief economist at the International Monetary Fund.

Welcome back to the program.

KENNETH ROGOFF: Thank you.

SIEGEL: And the first question: In general, is this another incremental, stopgap measure to hold the eurozone together? Or is the European Central Bank and Mario Draghi, are they announcing a game-changer here?

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Shots - Health Blog
3:40 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

'Test And Treat' Strategy For Curbing HIV Draws Questions

Nurse Irena Majola tests Justice Mlambo's blood for HIV at a roadside AIDS testing table in a suburb near Cape Town. Under the "test and treat" strategy, about 45 million South Africans would need to be screened for HIV each year.
Rodger Bosch AFP/Getty Images

San Francisco is trying a new tactic to fight AIDS. Health workers are aggressively testing people for HIV and then immediately putting those who test positive on potent antiretroviral drugs.

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The Salt
3:24 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

Why We Rarely Feed Animals Food Scraps, Even In A Drought

Farm worker Jesus Francisco Cayetano feeds pigs a slop made from food scraps from casinos near North Las Vegas, Nev. in 2006.
Isaac Brekken AP

Originally published on Wed September 19, 2012 3:12 pm

Last month we heard that a farmer in Kentucky was feeding his cattle discarded chocolate because corn was too expensive. Things are getting weird, we thought.

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The Two-Way
2:52 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

A Bombing In Syria Wipes Out A Family, But A Baby Survives

One-year-old Hassan was discovered in the rubble of an apartment building in Aleppo, Syria, giving his rescuers a moment of hope on a sad day. His parents were killed by the helicopter strike.
Global Post

The northern Syrian city of Aleppo has been the site of the bloodiest recent fighting in that country's brutal war, and we're still getting only glimpses of the violence.

But GlobalPost has a striking video of a devastating bombing that killed an entire family — except for a 1-year-old boy who survived without any serious injuries.

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Music Reviews
2:39 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

Cat Power Rips It Up, Starts Again

Chan Marshall, better known by the name Cat Power, takes a new approach on her latest record, Sun.
Stefano Giovannini Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu September 6, 2012 6:09 pm

I recently listened to the first single from the new Cat Power album with some fellow fans, and the room was deeply divided. Some thought the song was fabulous, but others were startled and upset — which I could understand, sort of. Chan Marshall's songs generally speak to pain and trauma with a hushed and intimate musical vocabulary. But this song, "Ruin," was different — not just a rock 'n' roll song, but one you might even want to dance to.

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The Two-Way
1:41 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

From Mars: Curiosity's Tracks, Up Close And From Above

Curiosity's tracks on Mars, in an image taken from the rover.
NASA.gov

NASA continues to share some fascinating photos of the Mars rover Curiosity. Among the latest:

-- An image taken from NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter that shows Curiosity's tracks from high above. According to NASA, "the image's color has been enhanced to show the surface details better."

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Technology
1:31 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

Why Your Cell Phone Could Be Called A 'Tracker'

ProPublica investigative reporter Peter Maass." href="/post/why-your-cell-phone-could-be-called-tracker" class="noexit lightbox">
Many people use cellphones for purposes other than making calls. "If we call them trackers, then we're doing a much better job of informing ourselves what these devices are actually doing, and what we're really using them for," says ProPublica investigative reporter Peter Maass.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Fri September 7, 2012 11:29 am

Your cellphone is a tracking device collecting a lot more information about you than you may think, says ProPublica investigative reporter Peter Maass.

"They are collecting where we are — not just at one particular moment in the day, but at virtually every moment of the day," Maass tells Fresh Air's Dave Davies. "They are also taking note of what we are buying, how we're purchasing it, how often we're purchasing it."

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Election 2012
1:21 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

Revised Platform Elicits Boos At DNC In Charlotte

Originally published on Sun September 9, 2012 7:34 am

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

A rare moment of dissention at the Democratic National Convention. After a routine adoption of the party platform on Tuesday, critics pointed out that the document omitted any mention of the word God and did not identify Jerusalem as Israel's capital. Then yesterday the chair of the platform committee, former Ohio Governor Ted Strickland, proposed amendments.

(SOUNDBITE OF CONVENTION)

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Interviews
1:20 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

Advocate Fights 'Ambient Dispair' In Assisted Living

Most residents in assisted living facilities are in their 80s and 90s and arrive after a traumatic event, according to Martin Bayne, who writes about long-term care reform.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Fri September 7, 2012 11:31 am

Martin Bayne entered an assisted living facility at 53 after he was diagnosed with young-onset Parkinson's disease. The disease affected his nerves so severely, it was impossible for him to take a shower and get dressed by himself.

"When I was in my 40s, I was physically fit and very active," Bayne tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross. "And to have to give all that up and stay in a wheelchair now and be helped by so many people to do the simplest of things — it takes a little getting used to."

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Shots - Health Blog
1:17 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

How Americans Think About Screening

Dr. Karen Lindsfor, a radiologist at the University of California, Davis, Medical Center, reads a mammogram in Sacramento, Calif.
Rich Pedroncelli AP

Originally published on Thu September 13, 2012 10:28 am

An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, Ben Franklin wrote. But that was before he had to consider the risks and benefits of screening tests for cancers of the breast and prostate.

There are conflicting guidelines on when women should get mammograms and mounting questions on when the PSA blood test for prostate cancer is worthwhile.

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Fitness & Nutrition
1:13 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

Exercise And Eat Well: How Doctors Dole Out Advice

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan, in Washington. We know the facts: More than one-third of U.S. adults and nearly one-fifth of American children are obese. Our doctors have the unhappy task to tell us to eat less, drink less and get more exercise, or else. But sometimes that conversation doesn't happen, and when it does, it's often not very productive.

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Business
1:09 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

New Standards May Change How Cars Are Made

Originally published on Mon September 10, 2012 7:56 am

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan in Washington. Last week, the Obama administration just about doubled fuel efficiency standards. By 2025, cars and light trucks will have to average better than 54 miles a gallon. That's a goal that pleases environmental groups and carmakers.

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It's All Politics
12:59 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

Obama Neutralizes A Typical Source Of GOP Strength

President Obama and other members of his national security team monitored the mission that ended with the death of Osama bin Laden in May 2011.
Pete Souza White House

Originally published on Thu September 6, 2012 3:59 pm

Foreign policy and defense matters are normally a source of vulnerability for Democrats, but they're getting a fair amount of attention from speakers down in Charlotte.

"There are more mentions of Osama bin Laden than unemployment in the Democratic national platform," says Micah Zenko, a fellow with the Council on Foreign Relations. "You play to what your strengths are."

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Theater
12:59 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

Turner Channels Molly Ivins In 'Red Hot Patriot'

Kathleen Turner stars as Molly Ivins in Red Hot Patriot.
Mark Garvin Arena Stage

Originally published on Fri September 7, 2012 10:04 am

Academy Award nominee and Golden Globe winner Kathleen Turner stars in the play Red Hot Patriot. In the one-woman show, Turner plays the sassy newspaper columnist Molly Ivins, whose liberal wit first drew attention during her coverage of the Texas Legislature in the 1970s.

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It's All Politics
12:57 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

On Conference Call, Obama Says He Still Needs The Help Of Shut-Out Supporters

President Obama sounded a bit subdued when he called into a conference call for supporters shut-out of his acceptance speech today.

"My main message is we can't let a little thunder and lightening stop us," he said. "We're gonna have to roll with it."

Yesterday, the campaign announced that because of the threat of thunderstorms, they were moving Obama's acceptance speech from the Bank of America Stadium, which holds more than 65,000 people to the Time Warner Cable Arena, a much smaller venue.

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It's All Politics
12:36 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

'My Two Moms' Author Hopes To Highlight Gay Rights At Convention

Zach Wahls is shown on March 24 at the GLAAD Media Awards in New York.
Fernando Leon Getty Images

Originally published on Thu September 6, 2012 3:09 pm

In another sign of Democrats' growing embrace of gay-rights issues, an Iowa man who gained national attention for his story of growing up with lesbian mothers was to address the party's national convention Thursday.

Zach Wahls became a bit of an Internet star last year after testifying against a proposed same-sex marriage ban before members of the Iowa House of Representatives. A video of his statement went viral online, garnering millions of views.

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The Two-Way
12:36 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

Obama Was 'Spewing Coals' When Budget Deal Collapsed, Boehner Says

August 2011: President Obama (right) and House Speaker John Boehner at the White House as they and other lawmakers worked to head off a government shutdown that loomed.
Jewel Samad AFP/Getty Images

Some details are emerging from Washington Post journalist Bob Woodward's new book about the 2011 battle between President Obama and congressional Republicans over the budget, taxes and deficit reduction.

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The Two-Way
11:45 am
Thu September 6, 2012

Percent Of Detainees Who Return To Terrorism After Release Edges Up

Almost 28 percent of the detainees transferred out of the U.S.-run detention facility at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, have either returned to terrorism or are suspected of having done so, the Director of National Intelligence says in a new report.

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It's All Politics
11:37 am
Thu September 6, 2012

In High-Stakes Speech, Obama Seeks To Shift The Argument Forward

President Obama speaks during a campaign event at a high school in Toledo, Ohio.
Pablo Martinez Monsivais AP

Originally published on Thu September 6, 2012 1:15 pm

President Obama won't be giving the speech he might wish to give tonight.

All presidents accepting their party's renomination seek to shift from a message of hope and change to one of progress and accomplishment. Although Obama will certainly talk up the highlights of his term, he won't want to sound triumphant — not with a jobs report due tomorrow that's expected to show a 43rd straight month of U.S. unemployment above 8 percent.

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