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The Two-Way
8:53 am
Tue December 23, 2014

Algerian Army Kills Leader Of Group That Beheaded Frenchman

A picture of French tourist and mountain guide Herve Gourdel, 55, who was killed after being kidnapped on Sept. 21 while hiking in Algeria's Djurdjura National Park. The leader of the group that killed Gourdel has been killed in a military attack.
Farouk Batiche AFP/Getty Images

A man who led a group that beheaded a French journalist has been killed in an attack by Algeria's military. Abdelmalek Gouri had been a wanted criminal in Algeria for nearly 20 years. His Islamic State splinter group claimed responsibility for killing hiker Herve Gourdel in September.

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The Two-Way
8:21 am
Tue December 23, 2014

U.S. Economy Grew At A 5 Percent Rate; Dow Surpasses 18,000

Originally published on Tue December 23, 2014 1:55 pm

The U.S. economy grew at a surprisingly fast 5 percent annual rate in the third quarter of 2014, up sharply from the 3.9 percent of the last revision. The figure blew past the consensus estimate of 4.3 percent put forth by economists surveyed by Bloomberg News.

It's the fastest the U.S. economy has grown in one quarter in more than a decade: The GDP grew at a 6.9 percent pace in the third quarter of 2003.

Update at 10:30 a.m. ET: Dow Tops 18,000 For First Time

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The Two-Way
7:29 am
Tue December 23, 2014

Orangutan Declared To Have Basic Legal Rights In Argentina

Sandra, an orangutan owned by the Buenos Aires Zoo, was given the right to leave the zoo after a court ruled she was entitled to more desirable living conditions.
Juan Mabromata AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue December 23, 2014 8:48 am

In what may be a first, an appeals court in Argentina has recognized a nonhuman as having basic legal rights. A Buenos Aires judge ruled in favor of advocates who are calling for more freedom for a 28-year-old orangutan who was born in a zoo.

The advocacy group filed a petition for a writ of habeas corpus on the orangutan's behalf, which would require proof of a justified detention.

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All Tech Considered
6:33 am
Tue December 23, 2014

Is Sony Hack Really 'The Worst' In U.S. History, As CEO Claims?

Sony Pictures CEO Michael Lynton says the computer hacking against his company is "the worst cyberattack in U.S. history." Experts say other attacks have affected more people.
David McNew Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Tue December 23, 2014 5:54 pm

The CEO of Sony Pictures has been saying that the cyberattack against his company is "the worst cyberattack in U.S. history." And you can see where he's coming from. An entire feature film got canned — at least for now. And his corporate networks were so damaged, Sony workers had to revert to using fax machines to communicate. That said, "the worst" is a big claim.

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Remembrances
6:28 am
Tue December 23, 2014

Singer Joe Cocker Dies Of Lung Cancer At 70

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

This morning we are remembering a man and a voice.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "WITH A LITTLE HELP FROM MY FRIENDS")

JOE COCKER: (Singing) A little help from my friends...

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Monkey See
6:03 am
Tue December 23, 2014

Videos Of Ray Rice, Eric Garner Among Biggest Media Moments Of 2014

Protesters in Boston during a December demonstration against the deaths of two unarmed black men at the hands of white police officers in New York City and Ferguson, Mo.
Charles Krupa AP

Originally published on Tue December 23, 2014 12:08 pm

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Europe
5:54 am
Tue December 23, 2014

The Woman Who Mistook A Hat For A Parrot

Originally published on Tue December 23, 2014 6:28 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

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Around the Nation
5:54 am
Tue December 23, 2014

Christmas Tree And Menorah Conrolled By Tweets

Originally published on Tue December 23, 2014 6:28 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

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Arts & Life
4:05 am
Tue December 23, 2014

Time For A Holiday Favorite: 'Santaland Diaries'

Philip Game Getty Images/Lonely Planet Image

Originally published on Tue December 23, 2014 10:14 am

You might not expect "Santa's Helper" to be a career-altering gig, but for David Sedaris, it changed everything. The writer and humorist spent a season working at Macy's as a department store elf. He described his short tenure as Crumpet the Elf in "The Santaland Diaries," an essay that he read on Morning Edition in 1992.

Instantly, a classic was born. Sedaris' reading has become an NPR holiday tradition. Click the "Listen" link above to hear Sedaris read his story.

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Business
4:05 am
Tue December 23, 2014

A Year Later, Delivery Services Up Their Holiday Game

Originally published on Tue December 23, 2014 4:12 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Well, here's an idea for a lampooning December movie - it's the holidays and shipping companies can't get their act together. They disappoint millions of customers because they can't deliver gifts on time.

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Around the Nation
4:05 am
Tue December 23, 2014

Murder Of 2 NYPD Officers Widens Rift Between Mayor, Police Union

Originally published on Tue December 23, 2014 6:28 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Politics
4:05 am
Tue December 23, 2014

As Head Of Armed Services Committee, McCain Gets A Bigger Bullhorn

Originally published on Tue December 23, 2014 6:28 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

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Movie Reviews
2:31 am
Tue December 23, 2014

A Vital Chapter Of American History On Film In 'Selma'

David Oyelowo as Martin Luther King Jr. and Carmen Ejogo as Coretta Scott King in the new movie Selma.
Paramount Pictures

Originally published on Tue December 23, 2014 2:47 pm

It's hard to believe, but there has never been a major motion picture that centers on one of this country's most iconic figures: Martin Luther King Jr. But that's about to change, with Selma, which opens Christmas Day.

The film explores the tumult and the tactics of the civil rights movement, from King's tense relationship with President Lyndon Johnson to the battle for voting rights for black Americans — a battle that reached a climax on Bloody Sunday, March 7, 1965, as state police beat peaceful protesters trying to march across the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Ala.

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Shots - Health News
2:29 am
Tue December 23, 2014

Baby Thrives Once 3-D-Printed Windpipe Helps Him Breathe

Jake and Natalie Peterson and their son Garrett in October 2014.
Courtesy of Brittany Jacox

Originally published on Tue December 23, 2014 3:20 pm

Garrett Peterson was born in 2012 with a defective windpipe. It would periodically just collapse, because the cartilage was so soft, and he'd stop breathing. This would happen every day — sometimes multiple times a day.

"It was really awful to have to watch him go through his episodes," says his father, Jake Peterson of Layton, Utah. "He'd be fine and then all of a sudden start turning blue. It was just like watching your child suffocate over and over again."

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Parallels
2:27 am
Tue December 23, 2014

Reporter Offers Free Cab Rides For Stories From 'Streets Of Shanghai'

NPR reporter Frank Langfitt and one of his "customers," a biotech worker, whom he drove to a self-help conference in Shanghai's sprawling Pudong District.
NPR

Originally published on Tue December 23, 2014 9:30 am

Editor's Note: NPR Shanghai correspondent Frank Langfitt once drove a taxi as a summer job. He decided to do it again, this time offering free rides around Shanghai in exchange for stories about one of the world's most dynamic cities. This is the first in an occasional series.

I've been working on an unusual reporting project this fall in Shanghai. I picked up a car and have been driving around the city offering people free rides.

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Around the Nation
2:19 am
Tue December 23, 2014

California DMV Prepares For Undocumented Residents Applying For Licenses

People celebrate after California Gov. Jerry Brown signed bill AB60 on Oct. 3, 2013, in Los Angeles. Also known as the Safe and Responsible Driver Act, it allows undocumented immigrants to apply for state driver's licenses.
Kevork Djansezian Getty Images

Originally published on Fri December 26, 2014 3:30 pm

California residents who are living without documentation soon will be eligible to apply for driver's licenses, thanks to a new law that takes effect in the new year.

The state's Department of Motor Vehicles is expecting 1.6 million immigrants to apply in the first few years, and law enforcement, community groups and others are preparing for the surge.

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The Two-Way
5:16 pm
Mon December 22, 2014

Lengthy, Widespread Internet Outage Reported In North Korea

Originally published on Tue December 23, 2014 7:54 am

Update, 10 p.m. ET: After more than nine hours and 30 minutes, Internet service has been restored in North Korea, according to technology news service Dyn Research. Access is only partial, Reuters reports, but the country's main news service and newspaper both are back online.

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The Salt
4:54 pm
Mon December 22, 2014

Sandwich Monday: The 'Shroom Burger From Shake Shack

Mouth's eye view of the 'Shroom Burger.
NPR

Originally published on Mon December 22, 2014 5:21 pm

If you haven't heard of Shake Shack, it's a hip, growing national chain where Americans go to stand in long lines. Also, it serves food.

We tried the 'Shroom Burger, a breaded and deep-fried cheese-stuffed portobello mushroom patty in a bun. It's topped with lettuce, tomato and the chain's special sauce.

Peter: In order to get the mushrooms stuffed with cheese, they plant the spores in a block of Velveeta.

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NPR Story
4:50 pm
Mon December 22, 2014

North Korea Has Severe Internet Outage After Days Of Instability

Originally published on Mon December 22, 2014 6:29 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

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On Aging
4:50 pm
Mon December 22, 2014

Services Offer A Means To Foil Widespread 'Elder Fraud'

More than a quarter of the victims of financial fraud are over 60.
iStockphoto.com

This is the season for generosity — and for con artists who take advantage of it.

Older adults are particularly vulnerable to scams; more than a quarter of the victims of financial fraud are over 60, according to the FTC. But now there are products on the market designed to protect seniors' nest eggs.

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All Tech Considered
4:50 pm
Mon December 22, 2014

What You Need To Know About Subprime Lending For Smartphones

Startup Better Finance is offering lease-to-own programs for high-end smartphones. But some customers say that retail stores, such as MetroPCS, aren't always clear about the lease terms up front.
Larry W. Smith EPA/Landov

Originally published on Fri December 26, 2014 1:13 pm

If you visit a local strip mall or downtown shopping street, it's not hard to find a store where customers can lease-to-own. That is, you can pay over time and eventually, after some chunky fees, a flat screen TV or living room set is yours.

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The Two-Way
4:29 pm
Mon December 22, 2014

Jailed Cuban Spy's Wife Is Pregnant — With A Little Help From The U.S.

Updated at 5:20 p.m. ET

Adriana Perez is expected to give birth to a baby girl in about two weeks.

That wouldn't be remarkable, except that Perez's husband, Gerardo Hernandez, spent most of the last decade-and-a-half in U.S. federal prison for leading a Cuban spy ring.

Hernandez was released last week as part of a prisoner swap with Cuba. He returned to Havana and raised eyebrows when he was greeted by his very pregnant wife.

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National Security
4:04 pm
Mon December 22, 2014

Was Sony Pictures Hack 'Cyber Vandalism' Or Something More?

Originally published on Mon December 22, 2014 4:50 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Humans
4:04 pm
Mon December 22, 2014

What Motivates People To Give?

Originally published on Mon December 22, 2014 4:50 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

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Music News
4:04 pm
Mon December 22, 2014

What A Failed Hip-Hop Experiment Can Teach Us About The Future Of U.S.-Cuba Relations

Los Aldeanos' Aldo Rodriguez (left) and El B.
Daniel Hdez Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue December 23, 2014 10:55 am

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Code Switch
4:01 pm
Mon December 22, 2014

A Very Code Switch Christmas TV Special

PBS

Originally published on Mon December 22, 2014 4:21 pm

It's that time around Christmas, when all we can see
is the same set of specials on network TV.
There's
Frosty, and Charlie, and Ralphie, and Kevin
But not too much brown in this mostly white canon.

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Goats and Soda
3:46 pm
Mon December 22, 2014

The Khoisan Once Were Kings Of The Planet. What Happened?

In Namibia today, members of the ancient tribe of hunter-gatherers still forage. New genetic research reveals they were once the largest group of humans.
Stephan C. Schuster Penn State University

Originally published on Tue December 23, 2014 1:14 pm

Some 22,000 years ago, they were the largest group of humans on earth: the Khoisan, a tribe of hunter-gatherers in southern Africa.

Today, only about 100,000 Khoisan, who are also known as Bushmen, remain. Stephan C. Schuster, professor at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore, has published new research about the tribe, many of whom now live in poverty, their cultural traditions endangered. We spoke to Schuster about his study and the lives of the Khoisan.

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The Two-Way
3:31 pm
Mon December 22, 2014

'Dreamer' Immigrants Apply For Arizona Driver's Licenses

Ramon Maldonado takes his driving test with the Arizona Department of Transportation Motor Vehicle Division. Many young immigrants protected from deportation under the Obama administration's new policies began pursuing driver's licenses in the state Monday.
Ross D. Franklin AP

Hundreds of people who entered the U.S. without documentation as children lined up to seek licenses in Arizona on Monday, days after the Supreme Court declined to support the state's ban on issuing licenses to young immigrants brought to the U.S. by their parents.

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Shots - Health News
3:31 pm
Mon December 22, 2014

Is Your Heart Doctor In? If Not, You Might Not Be Any Worse Off

Gary Waters Getty Images/Ikon Images

Originally published on Fri December 26, 2014 9:15 am

If your cardiologist is away at a conference when you're having a stabbing feeling in your chest, don't fret. You may be more likely to live.

A study published Monday in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine found frail patients admitted to teaching hospitals with two common types of heart problems were more likely to survive on days when national cardiology conferences were going on.

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The Two-Way
2:34 pm
Mon December 22, 2014

'Rolling Stone' Asks Columbia J-School To Investigate Flawed Rape Story

Originally published on Mon December 22, 2014 3:09 pm

Jann Wenner, the editor and publisher of Rolling Stone, says the magazine has asked Columbia Journalism School to investigate the editorial process that resulted in its flawed story about a University of Virginia student who said she was gang-raped during a fraternity party in 2012.

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