All Things Considered on IPR News and News/Studio One

Robert Siegel, Michele Norris, Melissa Block, Pat Blank

Weekdays at 4 p.m. on IPR News and News/Studio One
 

Every weekday, "All Things Considered" hosts Robert Siegel, Michele Norris and Melissa Block present the program's trademark mix of news, interviews, commentaries, reviews and offbeat features.

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Environment
3:50 pm
Mon July 29, 2013

Once Resilient, Trees In The West Now More Vulnerable To Fires

The remains of a tree are seen in front of a boulder in the Dome Wilderness area of New Mexico in August 2012. The Las Conchas Fire torched the land in 2011, burning through more than 150,000 acres of forest.
David Gilkey NPR

Originally published on Thu August 22, 2013 1:24 pm

On any given day, there's a wildfire burning somewhere in the U.S. — and that's not necessarily a bad thing. Many western forests have evolved with fire, and actually benefit from the occasional wildfire.

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Around the Nation
3:47 pm
Mon July 29, 2013

Baltimore Activists Use Art And The Web To Fight Blight

Street artists Nether (top) and Tefcon install a mural in the Johnston Square neighborhood of East Baltimore.
Christopher Connelly NPR

Originally published on Wed July 31, 2013 8:01 pm

The Johnston Square neighborhood of East Baltimore used to be a thriving, working-class community. But that was a long time ago.

"I don't see kids playing games like we used to play, like the girls playing jacks and skipping jump-rope," says Richard Dean, who has lived here his whole life. "To me that is sad."

Most of the once-tidy row houses on the block sit empty; boarded up, cornices cracking, brick walls warped from water damage. Dean says the sense of community he grew up with disappeared as the neighborhood's population dwindled.

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Europe
3:47 pm
Mon July 29, 2013

Memorial Service Honors Victims Of Spanish Train Crash

Originally published on Wed July 31, 2013 8:01 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

A memorial service today in Spain to remember the victims of the country's worst rail disaster in decades. An American passenger died in a hospital over the weekend, bringing the death toll to 79. The train was carrying more than 200 passengers from Madrid when it derailed in northwestern Spain last Wednesday night.

Reporter Lauren Frayer is following developments from Madrid, and she joins me now. And, Lauren, tell us a bit more about this memorial mass tonight at the - that massive, soaring cathedral in Santiago de Compostela.

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Health Care
5:24 pm
Sun July 28, 2013

High-Deductible Health Plans, Gamble For Some, On The Rise

Near the end of last year, a big finance company in Charlotte, N.C., was doing what a lot of other businesses have been doing recently: switching up their health care offerings.

"Everything was changing, and we would only be offered two choices and each were a high-deductible plan," says Marty Metzl, whose husband works for the company.

High-deductible plans are the increasingly common kind of health insurance that have cheaper premiums than traditional plans, but they put you on the hook for thousands of dollars in out-of-pocket costs before the insurance kicks in.

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The Record
5:24 pm
Sun July 28, 2013

Paying The Piper: Music Streaming Services In Perspective

Thom Yorke of Radiohead and Atoms for Peace is one of many musicians concerned with Spotify's small royalty payments.
isifa Getty Images

Originally published on Mon July 29, 2013 3:31 pm

As sales of recorded music continue to plummet, the concept of fans "owning" music may soon be considered old-fashioned. Today, it's all about access to music, rather than ownership of an album or a song, and newer streaming services like Spotify are at the center of the storm.

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Book Reviews
4:39 pm
Sun July 28, 2013

A Touching, 'Telling' Book About Cheese

Michael Paterniti is also the author of Driving Mr. Albert: A Trip Across America with Einstein's Brain.
Joanna Eldredge Morrissey

Originally published on Sun July 28, 2013 5:24 pm

The first thing you should know: This is not a book about cheese. I mean, it is — and a famous, award-winning cheese at that, a Spanish sheep's milk cheese called the Páramo de Guzmán that cost $22 per pound in 1991. A cheese so good, the king of Spain himself couldn't get enough of it.

But this book is far more about its makers — the cheesemaker himself, an enormous and enormously charming Castilian named Ambrosio, and the book's maker, journalist and author Michael Paterniti, who basically falls in love with Ambrosio at first sight.

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Author Interviews
3:58 pm
Sun July 28, 2013

'Looking For Palestine': A Once-Split Identity Becomes Whole

Originally published on Sun August 4, 2013 7:46 am

Actress Najla Said is a Palestinian-Lebanese-American Christian, but growing up in New York City, her identity was anything but clearly defined.

The daughter of prominent literary critic Edward Said, she spent her childhood in one of the most influential intellectual households in America. Edward Said, who died in 2003, was a renowned professor at Columbia University and was critical to defining Palestinian independence.

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Music Interviews
3:37 pm
Sun July 28, 2013

AlunaGeorge Finds A Natural Groove, By Accident

George Reid and Aluna Francis have become darlings of the European music festival circuit without releasing an album. Body Talk, their full-length debut as AlunaGeorge, is out Monday.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue July 30, 2013 2:54 pm

If it weren't for a MySpace message three years ago, singer Aluna Francis and producer George Reid might never have joined to form AlunaGeorge.

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Science
3:36 pm
Sun July 28, 2013

'Batman' Style: How We Can See With Sound, Too

Echolocation is second nature to animals such as bats and dolphins. Can humans also find their way using sound as a tool?
Ian Waldie Getty Images

Originally published on Mon July 29, 2013 10:30 am

Birds do it. Bats do it. Now even educated people do it. Echolocation is the process used by certain animals to identify what lies ahead of them, by emitting sounds that bounce off objects.

Now a team of researchers has created an algorithm that could give the rest of us a chance to see with sound.

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Science
3:34 pm
Sun July 28, 2013

The Rise Of Bloodsucking Insects You Can't Just Swat Away

Originally published on Sun July 28, 2013 5:24 pm

Steamy days, sultry nights and swarming bugs all make up the thrum of life in the heart of summer. But more and more, our summers are assaulted by the bloodsucking kind of bugs, namely mosquitoes and ticks.

More than a nuisance, new species can impact our health and indicate larger environmental trends.

Beautiful And Adaptable

One relative newcomer prowling the scene is the Asian tiger mosquito. Named for its unique markings, it is black with white stripes.

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U.S.
4:25 pm
Sat July 27, 2013

How Americans Said No To Cocaine After Years-Long Addiction

Narcotics officers in New York seized 3,586 pounds of cocaine and $1.3 million seized in 1997. Cocaine use in the U.S. has dropped by almost half since 2006.
Gino Dominico AP

Originally published on Mon July 29, 2013 11:56 am

In the 1980s, if you moved in certain circles — or picked up the newspaper — a certain white powder was everywhere, common as dust.

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A Blog Supreme
4:25 pm
Sat July 27, 2013

Piano Mastery, Trinidadian Trumpet, Singing Apes: New Jazz

Trumpeter Etienne Charles' new album is called Creole Soul.
Laura Ferreira Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Mon July 29, 2013 9:26 am

It's been too long since we simply sat up and pointed out a few of the many new releases worth a set of ears. Luckily, the staff on weekends at All Things Considered thought the same. They invited me to sit down with host Jacki Lyden and play a few cuts for them.

Here's music from an elder statesman of piano, a trumpeter who understands creole music personally, a drummer who writes tunes with a payoff, and a singer in her early 20s with maturity and kick.

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Author Interviews
4:25 pm
Sat July 27, 2013

In 'The Panopticon,' They're Always Watching

During the 19th century, a panopticon was a prison or asylum with an all-seeing eye. Some of the C-shaped prisons with central watchtowers still stand in the U.S. and Europe.

Jenni Fagan's new book borrows the panopticon idea as the setting for a gritty, often poetic, novel. The story is based loosely on Fagan's own experience growing up in the Scottish foster care system for 16 years.

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NPR Story
3:54 pm
Sat July 27, 2013

Handful Of Tracks Propelled J.J. Cale To Big Leagues

Originally published on Sat July 27, 2013 4:25 pm

Transcript

JACKI LYDEN, HOST:

And as we mentioned earlier in the show, singer-songwriter J.J. Cale has died. If you're not familiar with his name, you've probably heard some of his music. He penned hits from the 1970s and '80s that were recorded by Eric Clapton, Lynyrd Skynyrd and many others. The success of those songs gave him the freedom to release his own albums for more than four decades. NPR's Dan Bobkoff has this remembrance.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "CALL ME THE BREEZE")

LYNYRD SKYNYRD: One, two, one, two...

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NPR Story
3:54 pm
Sat July 27, 2013

Film Unveils Underpinnings Of Mass Killings In Indonesia

Originally published on Sat July 27, 2013 4:25 pm

The film The Act of Killing is the most talked about movie of the year. It's a film that is both fiction and nonfiction. Filmmaker Joshua Oppenheimer talked to the old men in charge of the death squads in Indonesia in the 1960s that killed somewhere between 500,000 to 2 million civilians in the name of thwarting communism.

NPR Story
3:54 pm
Sat July 27, 2013

Diseases That Never Went Away: Battling Drug Resistance

Originally published on Sat July 27, 2013 4:25 pm

Why are these antiquated diseases on the rise again, and how strong is the threat of drug-resistant bacteria? Host Jacki Lyden talks to Dr. Tom Frieden, director of the Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta, Ga., about this trend in infectious diseases.

Found Recipes
4:57 pm
Fri July 26, 2013

And The Winning Taste Of Summer Is ...

Some NPR staff members taste recipes from the contest finalists.
Matt Martinez NPR

Originally published on Mon July 29, 2013 11:01 am

The voting is finished. The taste test is done. The verdict is in: Marti Olesen has won All Things Considered's Taste of Summer contest with her recipe for Diane's Dad's Summer Sandwich.

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NPR Story
3:55 pm
Fri July 26, 2013

The Yankees Want Him Out But Alex Rodriguez Wants To Stay

Originally published on Mon July 29, 2013 11:01 am

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel. One criticism of baseball is that it's too prone to long stretches of inaction, players sitting around not doing much. Well, if that's what baseball is, then Alex Rodriguez of the New York Yankees has been Mr. Baseball this season. He's been on the disabled list, but he claims he's healthy enough to play. His team begs to differ. Here to talk about the confusion is NPR's Mike Pesca, who joins us from New York. Hi, Mike.

MIKE PESCA, BYLINE: Hello.

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NPR Story
3:55 pm
Fri July 26, 2013

Fight Brews Over Who Will Pay To Clean Up Quebec Train Crash

Originally published on Mon July 29, 2013 11:01 am

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

Three weeks after a deadly train crash in eastern Canada, officials have yet to file any charges. Forty-seven people were killed when an unmanned tanker train full of oil derailed and exploded in the heart of a small town. Now, investigators are trying to figure out who or what is to blame. North Country Public Radio's Brian Mann has the story.

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NPR Story
3:55 pm
Fri July 26, 2013

Church Invested In Pay Day Loan Companies It Admonished

Originally published on Mon July 29, 2013 11:01 am

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel. The Church of England's top bishop is in a little hot water. The archbishop of Canterbury is embroiled in a controversy about ethical investment. As NPR's Philip Reeves reports, it involves a company called Wonga.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN #1: Let us greet our newly installed archbishop with great gladness.

(APPLAUSE)

PHILIP REEVES, BYLINE: Four months have elapsed since Justin Welby was enthroned as the 105th archbishop of Canterbury.

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Monkey See
2:24 pm
Fri July 26, 2013

'Snacks On A Plane' And Other #dullermovies

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Mon July 29, 2013 11:01 am

Boring movie titles may not lure audiences into theaters, but they are luring users on Twitter. The #dullermovies thread challenges tweeters to pick an enticing film title and deflate it. People have come up with must-not-see films such as Ferris Bueller Goes to School and I Speculate On What You Did Last Summer. A couple of our favorites are collected below.

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Sports
2:16 pm
Fri July 26, 2013

Age Hasn't Stopped This Man From Swimming — And Winning

Graham Johnston, 82, poses for a portrait through an underwater window at the pool on Wednesday. Graham competed at the Senior Games in Cleveland, where more than 10,000 athletes older than 55 are competing in various sports.
Benjamin Morris for NPR

Originally published on Mon July 29, 2013 11:01 am

More than 10,000 athletes are meeting in Cleveland for The National Senior Games. Adults older than 55 — and some older than 90 — are running track, riding bikes, playing basketball and competing in many of the sports you might see at the Summer Olympics. In fact there are a few who were Olympians themselves back in the day who say they find that competition is just as satisfying in their later years.

One of those is 82-year-old swimmer Graham Johnston. When he's not racing or getting ready to race, he's in the stands, checking out the other swimmers with an expert eye.

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Planet Money
11:49 am
Fri July 26, 2013

Stamps, Jeans, Beer: What Americans Want From North Korea

Can I buy a pair of jeans made in North Korea?
Office of Foreign Assets Control

Originally published on Mon July 29, 2013 11:01 am

U.S. sanctions mean that any citizen or business wanting to buy stuff from North Korea has to send a letter to the U.S. government asking for special permission. A few months back, we submitted a Freedom of Information Act request, asking for those letters.

Our request was granted: We recently received a packet of 18 letters from Americans who wanted to do business with the most isolated nation on the planet. We've posted all of the letters online.

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Movie Interviews
4:50 pm
Thu July 25, 2013

'In A World ...' Is A Comedy About, You Guessed It, Voice-Over Artists

Lake Bell was born Lake Siegel Bell. Her father is named Harvey Siegel, but she says her mother got the last name in the divorce settlement.
Seamus Tierney

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Business
4:25 pm
Thu July 25, 2013

U.S. Carmakers Are Riding High, But Detroit May Not Feel It

Jeff Caldwell, a chassis assembly line supervisor, checks a vehicle on the assembly line at the Chrysler Jefferson North Assembly plant in Detroit on May 8.
Paul Sancya AP

Originally published on Thu July 25, 2013 6:19 pm

The news out of Detroit has been grim of late, but there are some bright spots coming from one corner of the Motor City. On Thursday, General Motors posted its 14th straight profitable quarter since emerging from bankruptcy. Ford announced its 16th consecutive profitable quarter Wednesday, and Chrysler is expected to offer good news soon as well.

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Science
4:12 pm
Thu July 25, 2013

If You Want A Doughnut Hole, Don't Ask A Mathematician

Originally published on Tue August 27, 2013 10:27 am

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.

A program such as ours is timed to the exact second, and occasionally, there are small holes when our mix of news and features doesn't quite fill up our two-hour slot.

So NPR's Joe Palca offered to come to our rescue with some short math and sciencey hole-filling stories, stories about what else - holes.

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Around the Nation
4:12 pm
Thu July 25, 2013

N.C. Tries To Make Amends For Forced Sterilizations

Originally published on Thu July 25, 2013 4:43 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

You're listening to ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News.

In the early 1900s, more than half of the states in the U.S. passed laws allowing people to be sterilized against their will. North Carolina's eugenics program was particularly aggressive. Some 7,600 men, women and children were sterilized often because they were poor or mentally ill.

Now, North Carolina has done more than any other state to make amends, as we hear from Julie Rose of member station WFAE.

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The Salt
3:05 pm
Thu July 25, 2013

Catch Of The Day, Grilled The Turkish Way

Anglers fish off Galata Bridge in Istanbul in 2011. The bridge is within site of the modest waterside restaurant Akin Balik.
Bulent Kilic AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue July 30, 2013 9:17 pm

Each morning as dawn breaks over the Bosphorus Strait in Turkey, a small drama repeats itself: Massive oil tankers and cargo ships slide past tiny fishing boats bobbing on the surface like bathtub toys.

These intrepid fishermen are out in all weather, in all seasons. In the winter, they catch the rich, oily anchovies, bluefish and mackerel. With spring come the turbot and sea bream, and by summer, sea bass and red mullet are being hawked by the fishmongers.

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Europe
6:21 pm
Wed July 24, 2013

Royals Reveal New Baby's Name

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

Finally this hour, the news that some of you at least have been anxiously awaiting. The royal baby has a name, several of them, in fact. George Alexander Louis. We'll break down that monitor for you now.

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National Security
6:03 pm
Wed July 24, 2013

House Rejects Measure That Would Have Curbed NSA Program

Originally published on Wed July 24, 2013 6:58 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.

On Capitol Hill, an effort to limit the authority of the National Security Agency has fallen short. It was the first chance for House lawmakers to vote on the government's phone surveillance program since news of it was leaked by Edward Snowden. They rejected an amendment that the White House and top intelligence officials had lobbied hard against.

NPR's Tamara Keith joins us from Capitol Hill. And, Tamara, the amendment was defeated. How close was it?

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