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Here! Now! In the moment! Paddling in the middle of a fast moving stream of news and information. Here & Now is Public Radio's daily news magazine, bringing you the news that breaks after "Morning Edition" and before "All Things Considered."

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NPR Story
2:01 pm
Tue January 14, 2014

Study Questions Benefit Of Gifted Education Programs

(Steve Ruark/AP)

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:12 pm

In 2008, 73 percent of teachers surveyed by the Thomas B. Fordham Institute agreed that “too often, the brightest students are bored and under-challenged in school.”

Gifted and talented programs are in place to remedy that, and they’re heralded as a breeding ground for high-performing students.

Three million kids nationwide are placed in these exclusive programs — and parents view them as important to their kids’ futures.

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NPR Story
2:01 pm
Tue January 14, 2014

Detroit Auto Show Warms Up With Hot New Cars

Mary Barra, the new CEO of General Motors, walks to a media scrum on the eve of the 2014 North American International Auto Show on January 12, 2014 in Detroit, Michigan. (Bill Pugliano/Getty Images)

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:12 pm

The North American International Auto Show in Detroit is chock full of previews of new and experimental cars.

But all eyes were locked on incoming General Motor CEO, Mary Barra. When she takes the reigns later this week, she’ll be the first female chief of a global automaker.

The Wall Street Journal’s Jason Bellini is at the auto show, and he speaks with Here & Now’s Jeremy Hobson about the buzz.

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NPR Story
2:01 pm
Tue January 14, 2014

Project Tracks Ospreys From N.H. To The Amazon

An osprey nest in Umbagog Lake, New Hampshire. (Christine and John Fournier/Flickr)

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:12 pm

Ospreys, also called sea hawks or fish eagles, are found all over the world. But when the temperature drops, the birds head for the tropics.

For juveniles, that first migration is a crucible that only 25 to 40 percent survive.

From the Here & Now Contributors Network, Sam Evans-Brown of New Hampshire Public Radio brings this story of a project that tracks ospreys to learn about the adventures they have between their departure in the fall and return in the spring.

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NPR Story
2:09 pm
Mon January 13, 2014

‘Brooklyn Nine-Nine’ And ‘12 Years A Slave’ Surprise At Golden Globes

Steve McQueen and the cast of "12 Years A Slave" accept the award for Best Motion Picture, Drama during the 71st Annual Golden Globe Award at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on January 12, 2014 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Paul Drinkwater/NBCUniversal via Getty Images)

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:13 pm

Last night’s Golden Globe awards ceremony celebrated Hollywood’s best performances in television and in film.

“12 Years A Slave,” the film about a free black man captured and sold into slavery, lost in the individual actor categories but picked up a Best Picture award, stunning its director, Steve McQueen.

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NPR Story
2:09 pm
Mon January 13, 2014

The Multitalented Molly Ringwald

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:13 pm

Molly Ringwald has gone far beyond being the girl who made such a splash in films like 1985′s “The Breakfast Club.”

Though she continues to act, she is also a singer, on tour promoting her 2013 jazz album “Except Sometimes.” And in 2012, she published the book “When It Happens to You: A Novel in Stories.”

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NPR Story
1:10 pm
Mon January 13, 2014

Utah Couple Stays Optimistic Amid Gay Marriage Limbo

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:13 pm

Last week was an intense one for same-sex couples in Utah. Same-sex couples have been getting married in Utah since December 20, when a federal district judge ruled that the state ban on same-sex marriages was unconstitutional.

But on Wednesday, Utah governor Gary Herbert told state agencies not to recognize the marriages. The attorney general’s office said it was not sure whether the same-sex marriages that had occurred since Dec. 20 were valid.

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NPR Story
1:10 pm
Mon January 13, 2014

Young Poet's 'Shrinking Women' Goes Viral

Lily Meyer performs at the College Unions Poetry Slam Invitation in 2013. Her poem, "Shrinking Women" went viral. (Screenshot from CUPSI)

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:13 pm

[Youtube]

Lily Myers intended her poem “Shrinking Women” to be a personal one.

But a video of her recital at the 2013 College Unions Poetry Slam Invitational was posted to the poetry website Button Poetry and to The Huffington Post, where it went viral.

With more than 3 million views, it continues to circulate across social media websites.

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NPR Story
1:10 pm
Mon January 13, 2014

James Scott's Bleak Novel Of Revenge Set In Upstate N.Y.

(book cover image)

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:13 pm

James Scott’s debut novel “The Kept” (excerpt below) has already been garnering critical acclaim. The New York Times calls it both “daring and bleak,” and compares the book to Charles Portis’ “True Grit” and the novels of Cormac McCarthy.

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NPR Story
3:42 pm
Fri January 10, 2014

Israeli Troubadour Uses Music To Bridge Divides

Israeli musician, David Broza, performs in the Here & Now studios. (Jesse Costa/Here & Now)

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:13 pm

Singer-songwriter David Broza is an icon in his native Israel.

His first song “Yihye Tov,” written more than 30 years ago during the Arab-Israel peace talks, became the anthem of the peace movement. He has toured all over the world and has recorded more than 30 albums since.

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NPR Story
3:42 pm
Fri January 10, 2014

Target Breach More Widespread Than Originally Thought

A customer signs a credit card statement next to a scanner in a Target store in Miami, Florida. Target now believes that about 70 million credit and debit card accounts of customers who made purchases by swiping their cards at terminals in its U.S. stores between November 27 and December 15 may have been stolen. (Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:13 pm

Update 3 p.m.: Target now believes that up to 110 million customers may have had their personal information stolen.

Target has increased its estimate of the number of customers affected by its recent security breach to 70 million.

The retailer originally stated that 40 million shoppers were affected by the theft which came during the holiday season.

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NPR Story
3:42 pm
Fri January 10, 2014

Franklin McCain, Civil Rights Pioneer, Dies

Franklin McCain of Wilmington, North Carolina is pictured in April, 1960. (AP)

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:13 pm

Franklin McCain was one of four students who sat down at an all-white lunch counter in Greensboro, N.C., on February 1, 1960.

The freshman from North Carolina A&T ignited a sit-in movement in the Jim Crow South that led to other key chapters in the Civil Rights era.

McCain died yesterday at the age of 73.

From the Here & Now Contributors Network, Jeff Tiberii of WUNC has this remembrance.

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NPR Story
3:53 pm
Thu January 9, 2014

The Real Philomena

Actress Dame Judi Dench and Philomena Lee attend the 'Philomena' American Express Gala screening during the 57th BFI London Film Festival at Odeon Leicester Square on October 16, 2013 in London, England. (Zak Hussein/Getty Images for BFI)

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:13 pm

Philomena,” the movie starring Dame Judi Dench, has been both a critical and commercial success.

The film is based on the story of Philomena Lee, who as an unmarried pregnant teenager, went to a Catholic-run home for unwed mothers in Rosecrea, Ireland in 1952.

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NPR Story
3:53 pm
Thu January 9, 2014

Chris Christie Runs Up Against Bully Reputation

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie speaks during a news conference Thursday, Jan. 9, 2014, at the Statehouse in Trenton, N.J. (Mel Evans/AP)

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:13 pm

The New Jersey governor now in the middle of a political scandal over George Washington bridge lane closures has a reputation for hardball politics.

He’s stripped a former governor of his police escort, he’s pulled funding for a political scientist who declined to endorse Republican redistricting plans, and his office has pressured prosecutors who were investigating a Republican sheriff and fundraiser.

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NPR Story
3:53 pm
Thu January 9, 2014

Obama Picks 'Promise Zones' To Fight Poverty

President Obama will announce the designation of five "promise zones" today, including one in Philadelphia. (coia.nac/Flickr)

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:13 pm

The Obama administration has designated five regions around the country as “promise zones” — areas where the administration will focus on closing the gap between rich and poor by creating jobs and strengthening existing poverty-cutting programs.

This comes 50 years after President Lyndon Johnson declared an “unconditional war on poverty.”

Derek Thompson, business editor for The Atlantic, joins Here & Now’s Robin Young to explain how “promise zones” work.

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NPR Story
3:29 pm
Wed January 8, 2014

A Look At One Ordinary, Beautiful Life

Shelagh Gordon died suddenly at 55 in February, 2012, leaving an ordinary but magical life. (Courtesy)

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:14 pm

In our busy lives — we tend to overlook the simple acts of kindness around us. For the past few weeks, WBUR has been highlighting some of these as part of a series called “Kind World.”

In this edition we hear about an idea reporters at the Toronto Star came up with: Is it possible to capture the life of a person you’ve never met through the stories of their friends and family… after their death?

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NPR Story
3:29 pm
Wed January 8, 2014

Are We On The Titanic Or The Olympic?

Olympic (left) returning to Belfast for repairs in March 1912, and Titanic (right). This was the last time the two sister ships would be seen together. (Robert John Welch/Wikimedia Commons)

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:14 pm

Are we on the Titanic or the Olympic? That’s the question New Yorker writer Adam Gopnik asks in his piece “Two Ships,” as he looks at the last time Western civilization went from ’13 to ’14.

Gopnik is re-visiting the turn from 1913 to 1914, to think about the turn from 2013 to 2014.

He writes that 1913 was “full of rumbling energy and matchless artistic accomplishment,” which included achievements for Cubism in art, Proust in literature and Stravinsky in music.

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NPR Story
3:29 pm
Wed January 8, 2014

2014 Consumer Electronics Show Begins

Visitors check Audi's Concept Vision of Tomorrow during the 2014 International CES at the Las Vegas Convention Center on January 7, 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Joe Klamar/AFP/Getty Images)

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:14 pm

The 2014 International Consumer Electronics Show opened this week at the Las Vegas Convention Center. More than 3,200 exhibitors will present both retailers and the media with the latest in consumer technology.

NPR technology correspondent Steve Henn joins Here & Now’s Meghna Chakrabarti to discuss what items are already selling and what the next major technological breakthrough will be.

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NPR Story
3:28 pm
Wed January 8, 2014

Listener Thoughts On Laser Beam Headlights

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:14 pm

Earlier this week, Paul Eisenstein, publisher of the car news website The Detroit Bureau, joined us to talk about all the high-tech car innovations at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. (See the interview here.)

There was one thing he said that drew some pretty strong listener reaction. It was about a new device from Audi.

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NPR Story
3:28 pm
Wed January 8, 2014

Should We Do Away With 'Wind Chill Factor'?

(Mel Evans/AP)

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:14 pm

As cold weather grips much of the country, we’re hearing a lot about the “wind chill factor.”

The measurement comes from Canadian Antarctic explorers Paul Siple and Charles Passel, who in 1945 worked out an equation to show how quickly water froze at different temperatures depending on the wind.

The numbers that come out of their equation were the precursor to our modern day “wind chill factor,” which is supposed to tell you how cold it feels outside.

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NPR Story
3:30 pm
Tue January 7, 2014

American Skaters Not Expected To Take Much Gold In Sochi

Meryl Davis and Charlie White competes in the Ice Dance short program during day two of ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating 2013/2014 NHK Trophy at Yoyogi National Gymnasium on November 9, 2013 in Tokyo, Japan. (Koki Nagahama/Getty Images)

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:14 pm

The U.S. National Figure Skating Championships take place in Boston this week. Winners will make the U.S. Olympic team.

Sports writer John Powers tells Here & Now’s Meghna Chakrabarti to expect ice dancers Meryl Davis and Charlie White, the reigning world champions, to make history as the first U.S. pair to take gold in the Sochi Olympics next month.

But Powers says U.S. figure skaters are falling short in pairs and men’s and women’s individual events.

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NPR Story
3:13 pm
Tue January 7, 2014

Innovation And Connectivity Dominate Consumer Electronics Show

Sony Executive Vice President of Sony Corporation and Sony Mobile Communications President and CEO Kunimasa Suzuki displays a Sony Xperia Z compact phone during a Sony press event at the Las Vegas Convention Center for the 2014 International CES on January 6, 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (David Becker/Getty Images)

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:14 pm

Curved high-definition televisions, wearable computers, internet-connected cars, water bottles and tennis rackets are just some of the thousands of gadgets on display at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.

Jason Bellini of The Wall Street Journal is at the CES and tells Here & Now’s Robin Young that smart TVs and improved smartphones are among the hottest trends at the show, as tech companies respond to consumer demand for more connectivity.

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NPR Story
3:13 pm
Tue January 7, 2014

Robin Young On Michael Bay's Teleprompter Fail

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:14 pm

We began our story today on the Consumer Electronics Show by mentioning film director Michael Bay’s onstage meltdown at the show.

He said later in an email that he’d been so excited he’d jumped off his script, and that confused the poor teleprompter operator, who’d jumped ahead.

Who has not been there?

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NPR Story
3:35 pm
Mon January 6, 2014

Technology Writer Calls For 'Information Environmentalism'

Evgeny Morozov says that perhaps constant connectivity is not a good thing. (Ed Yourdon/Flickr)

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:14 pm

Technology writer Evgeny Morozov says we’ve ceded key decisions on public space to technology companies, and he is joining the call for a movement to take the space back.

“We’ve decided by default that more connectivity is a good thing, but maybe it isn’t,” Morozov tells Here & Now’s Robin Young.

For one thing, Morozov argues, we turn to technology to escape boredom, but information overload also leads to profound boredom.

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NPR Story
3:35 pm
Mon January 6, 2014

A Modern Greek Saga: Sisyphus And The Ivy

Tom Banse/Northwest News Network

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:14 pm

Some causes just seem hopeless some days. But you’ve no doubt met people who insist on tackling intractable problems locally and around the world.

From the Here & Now Contributors Network, Tom Banse of the Northwest News Network introduces us to a particularly dedicated fellow who wages a solo fight each weekday morning against invasive English ivy vines in his home state of Washington.

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NPR Story
3:35 pm
Mon January 6, 2014

JP Morgan To Pay $2 Billion Settlement In Madoff Case

The headquarters of JP Morgan Chase on Park Avenue December 12, 2013 in New York. JP Morgan Chase and federal authorities are close to a USD $2 billion settlement over the bank's ties to financier Bernard L. Madooff that involve penalties and deffered criminal prosecution. (Stan Honda/AFP/Getty Images)

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:14 pm

JP Morgan Chase is expected to reach a deal with federal authorities this week to pay about $2 billion in civil and criminal penalties to the government for its ties to Bernie Madoff.

The bank is suspected of ignoring signs of Madoff’s criminal financial scheme in order to win more commissions on services it provided.

With this payout, JP Morgan will have paid $20 billion to the government in the past year to resolve investigations.

The government reportedly plans to give some of the $2 billion settlement to investors affected by Madoff’s Ponzi scheme.

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NPR Story
3:30 pm
Fri January 3, 2014

Composer Caroline Shaw Nominated For Grammy

Violinist, singer and composer Caroline Shaw is the youngest person ever to win a Pulitzer Prize for music.

Her voice bending piece “Partita For 8 Voices” captured the attention of the Pulitzer judges this spring.

And she has been nominated for a Grammy award in the Best Contemporary Classical Composition category, also for “Partita For 8 Voices.”

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NPR Story
3:30 pm
Fri January 3, 2014

New Mayor Vows To Outlaw A Central Park Tradition

A horse-drawn carriage is seen near Central Park January 2, 2014 in New York. New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio has announced he would like the city council to outlaw the horse-drawn carriages and have them replaced by electric antique cars. (Stan Honda/AFP/Getty Images)

The horse drawn carriages are a staple in New York’s Central Park and an almost mandatory destination for the hoards of tourists that visit the city each year.

They have been around for more than 150 years–ever since Central Park first opened in 1858.

But this year, New York’s new mayor Bill DeBlasio is vowing to do away with Central Park’s horse drawn carriages.

He says that the practice is cruel and essentially amounts to animal abuse.

DeBlasio says doing away with this NY tradition will be one of the first changes he makes in office.

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NPR Story
3:30 pm
Fri January 3, 2014

Snowy Owls Head South In Biggest Numbers In 50 Years

Perched upon a car tire in a clam flat at Long Wharf in New Haven on December 15, 2013, a young male Snowy Owl scans its surroundings. In the background is Five Mile Point light in New Haven harbor. (Matt Messina/WNPR)

Birders in the Northeast are enjoying a rare spectacle this winter: sightings of the snowy owl.

Low supplies of food in the birds’ usual habitat — the Arctic — have sent some snowy owls south in search of prey, and they are sparking the imaginations of those who get a glimpse of the rare bird.

From the Here & Now Contributors Network, Patrick Skahill of WNPR went searching for snowy owls along the Connecticut coast.

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NPR Story
1:56 pm
Thu January 2, 2014

Antarctic Explorer's Failure Becomes His Greatest Success

Recently recovered cellulose photos recovered by the New Zealand Antarctic Heritage Trust. Pictured, Iceberg and land, Ross Island. (New Zealand Antarctic Heritage Trust)

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:14 pm

A helicopter has rescued all 52 passengers from a research ship that’s been trapped in Antarctic ice since Christmas Eve.

The group was stuck in the ice for 10 days, but imagine being stuck there for 15 months – with no communication with the outside world.

That’s what happened to Irish explorer Ernest Shackleton and his team in their attempt to make a land crossing of Antarctica in 1914.

Their ship got stuck in the ice, and they never reached their goal. But that journey is now remembered for Shackleton’s journey to rescue his crew.

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NPR Story
1:55 pm
Thu January 2, 2014

Bringing Back Detroit's 'Jit' Dance

The Jit is a street dance that was developed in Detroit during the 1970s. Haleem Rasul is the founder of HardCore Detroit, a dance troupe, and is keeping the dance's legacy alive in a new documentary. (Courtesy Haleem Rasul)

Originally published on Mon March 10, 2014 7:01 pm

Detroit is known for its auto industry, Motown music and now bankruptcy and vacant buildings — but a group of young dancers wants the city’s legacy also to include a street dance, known as the “Jit” (not to be confused with the swing dance called the jitterbug from the 1930s).

Three brothers started the dance in Detroit in the 1970s, they became known as the “Jitterbugs,” doing flips and kicks alongside each other in coordinated routines.

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