Talk of the Nation

Talk of the Nation linked the headlines with what's on people's minds, providing a springboard for listeners and experts to exchange ideas and pose critical questions about major events in the news and the world around them. Each day, Talk of the Nation combined the award-winning resources of NPR News with the vital participation of listeners. The result was a spirited and productive exchange of knowledge and insight that delves deeply into the news and ideas of the day.

Talk of the Nation ended its 17-year run on June 27, 2013.

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NPR Story
1:23 pm
Fri June 29, 2012

Spider-Man Gets A Physics Lesson �" The Amazing Spider-Man opens in theaters next week

Transcript

IRA FLATOW, HOST:

Peter Parker and Gwen Stacy hit the big screen again next week. The new movie "The Amazing Spider-Man" opens on July 3rd. And once you accept the premise that a man can get super spidey skills from a radioactive - sorry to laugh - spider bite, well, you know, just like Johnny Carson used to say, you buy the premise, you buy the bit.

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NPR Story
2:13 pm
Thu June 28, 2012

Multifaceted Moby's A Photographer, Too

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Moby's 2011 book, Destroyed, is a visual journey of a touring artist's insomnia. See a gallery of photos from Destroyed.
Moby from the book 'Destroyed'

Originally published on Thu June 28, 2012 6:09 pm

While he's best known for his aural pursuits, musician and DJ Moby has been taking photographs for years. He released his 2011 photo book, Destroyed, to accompany an album of the same name.

The book offers a visual journey of a touring musician's insomnia. Isolated and disoriented by jet lag and strange hotels, Moby shows readers what it's like to roam the world at hours when most of us are sleeping.

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Mental Health
2:07 pm
Thu June 28, 2012

Concrete Steps For Creating A Happier Office

Originally published on Thu June 28, 2012 3:03 pm

Conventional wisdom holds that happier workers are also more productive. But precisely how to boost staff morale has eluded many employers. But some researchers say there are specific ways companies can build a better workplace, from moving coffee stations to increasing diversity.

Health Care
2:04 pm
Thu June 28, 2012

What's Next For Healthcare, At Home And On The Hill

Originally published on Tue July 17, 2012 8:02 pm

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan at the Aspen Ideas Festival, but the big news today comes from Washington, where the Supreme Court upheld President Obama's health care law in a series of five-to-four votes. In a surprise, Chief Justice John Roberts joined the four liberal members of the court.

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U.S.
1:54 pm
Wed June 27, 2012

Firefighters Struggle To Contain Colorado Fires

Originally published on Wed June 27, 2012 5:02 pm

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan.

While fires don't affect us here in Aspen, other parts of Colorado face dire conditions. In Fort Collins, firefighters and the National Guard have been attempting to contain the huge High Park Fire burning for two weeks now. It's destroyed hundreds of homes and scorched tens of thousands of acres. A lightning-sparked wildfire erupted near Boulder yesterday, but the focus right now is in Colorado Springs where fire swept into the city and forced more than 30,000 people to evacuate their homes.

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NPR Story
1:54 pm
Wed June 27, 2012

'Who Gets What': Putting A Price On Human Tragedy

Public Affairs

Originally published on Thu June 28, 2012 12:56 pm

When a tragedy like the Sept. 11 attacks or the Virginia Tech shooting strikes, shock and grief quickly give way to blame. And when it's time to figure out if and how victims should be compensated, lawyer Kenneth Feinberg's phone rings.

Over the past three decades, Feinberg has developed a unique specialty: overseeing compensation funds by doing the difficult, often contentious and politically charged work of figuring out who deserves payment — and often, how much they will receive.

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NPR Story
1:31 pm
Wed June 27, 2012

Remembering Groundbreaking Filmmaker Nora Ephron

Originally published on Wed June 27, 2012 2:15 pm

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

Nora Ephron provided some of the most memorable moments in the movies: "When Harry Met Sally," "Sleepless in Seattle," many other films and, of course, essays and stories. She suffered from leukemia and died last night in New York at the age of 71. Six years ago, she joined us to talk about her book, "I Feel Bad About My Neck," and we concluded that conversation by talking about her last chapter, "Consider the Alternative," where she wrote about regrets, and she cited Edith Piaf's celebrated song "Non, Je Ne Regrette Rien."

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NPR Story
1:31 pm
Wed June 27, 2012

With Primaries Wrapped, Campaigns Shift Into High Gear

Originally published on Wed June 27, 2012 2:09 pm

With the Republican primary season completed, the presidential campaigns are buckling down for the months ahead. NPR's Ron Elving and political strategists Vin Weber and Anna Greenberg discuss the presidential race, key battleground states and what it will take for candidates Romney or Obama to win in November.

NPR Story
1:31 pm
Wed June 27, 2012

FBI Tracks Possible Military 'Insider Threats'

Originally published on Wed June 27, 2012 2:11 pm

The Pentagon and FBI have conducted more than 100 investigations into possible Islamist extremists inside the U.S. military in the wake of the 2009 shooting at Fort Hood, Texas. NPR's Dina Temple-Raston shares the latest developments and what the military is doing to prevent radicalization within its ranks.

NPR Story
2:02 pm
Tue June 26, 2012

As Colorado River Dries Up, The West Feels The Pain

Fifty miles south of the U.S.- Mexico border, the Colorado River Delta and its once-rich estuary wetlands --€” reduced by 95 percent since the river was restricted by dams --€” are now as parched as the surrounding Sonoran Desert.
Peter McBride

Originally published on Wed June 27, 2012 9:51 am

The Colorado River touches the lives of Americans coast to coast. The river begins in the Rocky Mountains and flows into Mexico's Sea of Cortez. Along the way, it feeds over a dozen tributaries across the American Southwest.

Many in the West rely on the Colorado for drinking water, and farmers depend on it to irrigate millions of acres of farmland. And if you've ever felt the cool relief of air conditioning in Las Vegas, there's a good chance the electricity was provided by the "mighty Colorado."

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Author Interviews
2:02 pm
Tue June 26, 2012

Colum McCann Links Communities With Storytelling

Originally published on Tue June 26, 2012 2:16 pm

When Colum McCann came to the U.S. from Ireland in the early 1980s, he set out on a cross-country bicycle trip to get to know his new country and its stories. He's spent the years since telling those tales through prose. With his project, Story Swap, he's helping diverse communities better understand each other by sharing their own stories.

Author Interviews
1:48 pm
Tue June 26, 2012

Author Chronicles Ever-Changing Life On The Border

Originally published on Tue June 26, 2012 2:28 pm

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

Over the past couple of weeks we've seen some important changes on immigration - the president announced a new plan to defer deportation for some young undocumented immigrants, and yesterday the Supreme Court decision on Arizona's controversial immigration law. Much of writer Luis Alberto Urrea's career has focused on life along the U.S.-Mexican border and on the lives of the people who cross it. Now those stories are beginning to change a bit.

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Author Interviews
1:48 pm
Tue June 26, 2012

Writers Offer Alternate Lens On Modern Middle East

Originally published on Thu June 28, 2012 3:57 pm

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan at the Aspen Institute. News from the Middle East often focuses on problems: violence in Syria; political infighting in Egypt; bombs in the new Iraq; nuclear facilities in Iran; ongoing conflict between Israel and Palestinians.

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Animals
2:25 pm
Mon June 25, 2012

Reviving Extinct Species May Not Be Science Fiction

Originally published on Mon June 25, 2012 2:26 pm

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan.

Wander through one of this country's fine museums of natural history and you'll see animals you'll never see in a zoo: the wooly mammoth, the dodo bird, animals extinct for centuries. But for Stewart Brand extinct doesn't mean gone forever. He's working on a new project, "Revive and Restore," to de-extinct animals we never thought we'd see alive.

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Environment
2:12 pm
Mon June 25, 2012

Researchers Offer First-Hand View Of Climate Change

Originally published on Mon June 25, 2012 2:28 pm

As the climate changes, scientists are documenting measurable shifts in the natural world — from a tremendous loss in Arctic sea ice and an increase in extreme weather like drought, floods and heatwaves, to the migration of plants and animals to new latitudes.

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