NPR Blogs

The Two-Way
6:34 pm
Tue September 30, 2014

FCC Votes To Eliminate Sports Blackout Rules

New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady jogs off the field following a 41-14 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs in an NFL football game on Monday.
Ed Zurga AP

The Federal Communications Commission voted on Tuesday to ditch rules that prohibited cable and satellite providers from broadcasting games that had been blacked out on local stations.

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Shots - Health News
5:49 pm
Tue September 30, 2014

First U.S. Case Of Ebola Confirmed In Dallas

A patient at the Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas has a confirmed case of Ebola, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says. He is being treated and kept in strict isolation.
LM Otero AP

Originally published on Tue September 30, 2014 10:42 pm

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirmed Tuesday that the first case of Ebola has appeared in the U.S.

A man in Dallas has tested positive for the virus, the agency said. The man flew to the U.S. from Liberia, arriving on Sept. 20, NPR has learned. He wasn't sick on the flight, and had no symptoms when he arrived.

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The Two-Way
5:31 pm
Tue September 30, 2014

New York Boosts Pay For Thousands With Hourly Wage Hike

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio signs an executive order raising the city's living wage law Tuesday. The move will require some employers to pay their employees between $11.50 and $13.13 an hour, depending on whether the employee receives benefits.
Andrew Burton Getty Images

Mayor Bill de Blasio signed an executive order Tuesday that effectively raises the hourly wage for thousands of workers in New York City. The city says its expansion of the Living Wage provisions will boost yearly earnings for the lowest-paid workers from $16,640 to $27,310.

From New York, NPR's Joel Rose reports:

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Shots - Health News
5:06 pm
Tue September 30, 2014

BRAIN Initiative Bets on Wearable Scanners, Laser-Controlled Cells

Andrew Ostrovsky iStockphoto

Eighteen months after its launch, President Obama's plan to explore the mysteries of the human brain is finally taking shape. During separate events Tuesday, the White House and National Institutes of Health offered details about which projects are being funded and why.

At a morning press conference, NIH officials announced $46 million in grant awards to more than 100 investigators. Most of the researchers are working on tools that can "transform how we study the brain," said NIH Director Francis Collins.

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The Two-Way
4:34 pm
Tue September 30, 2014

Contractor With Criminal History And Gun Was Allowed On Elevator With Obama

This 2009 photo provided by Jerry Murphy shows Omar Gonzalez, who was married to Murphy's mother, Samantha, until they divorced in 2012. Authorities have identified Gonzalez as the man who got into the White House after scaling a fence on Sept. 19.
AP

Originally published on Tue September 30, 2014 11:32 pm

Update at 7:24 p.m. ET. A New, Stunning Incident:

On the same day that a White House intruder was indicted on three charges and the head of the Secret Service was grilled by lawmakers, more stunning revelations are coming to light that continue to raise questions about the efficacy of President Obama's security detail.

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The Salt
4:04 pm
Tue September 30, 2014

'Human Flesh' Burger Is A Treat To Tempt The Walking Dead

Originally published on Tue September 30, 2014 4:11 pm

Here's something to make even the most carnivorous among us shudder: a burger that tastes something like human flesh.

It's not just the stuff of horror flicks anymore, thanks to two pioneering foodies out of London. For a publicity stunt to promote Season 5 of The Walking Dead, which premieres Oct. 13 in the U.K., they've created a zombie-inspired burger they say actually turned out "delicious."

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The Two-Way
3:19 pm
Tue September 30, 2014

U.S. Charges Four Hackers Over Theft Of Games From Microsoft, Army

Originally published on Tue September 30, 2014 4:09 pm

The United States has charged four men with stealing $100 million worth of intellectual property from Microsoft Corporation, Epic Games Inc., Valve Corporation, Zombie Studios and the U.S. Army.

The men, all between the ages of 18 and 28, allegedly used sophisticated methods to break into the company's systems to steal games before they were released to the public. In the case of the Army, the hackers allegedly stole Apache helicopter simulator software developed by a video game manufacturer.

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The Two-Way
3:07 pm
Tue September 30, 2014

Ban On Single-Use Plastic Bags Is Enacted In California

California Gov. Jerry Brown has signed the nation's first statewide ban on single-use plastic bags. Here, mixed plastic items are seen at a recycling plant in Vernon, Calif., earlier this year.
Reed Saxon AP

Originally published on Tue September 30, 2014 4:23 pm

Gov. Jerry Brown has signed SB 270, the first statewide ban on single-use plastic bags in the U.S.

"This bill is a step in the right direction — it reduces the torrent of plastic polluting our beaches, parks and even the vast ocean itself," Brown said. "We're the first to ban these bags, and we won't be the last."

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The Two-Way
1:08 pm
Tue September 30, 2014

WATCH: Container Ships Collide In Suez Canal

Two container ships collide in the Suez Canal on Monday.
YouTube

Originally published on Tue September 30, 2014 3:56 pm

Two container ships, the German-flagged MV Colombo Express and the Singapore-flagged MV Maersk Tanjong, collided on Monday at the north end of the Suez Canal, delaying traffic.

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The Two-Way
12:57 pm
Tue September 30, 2014

Aral Sea's Eastern Basin Has Dried Out, NASA Photos Show

Images from August 2000 (left) and August 2014 (right) show the drop in water levels in the Aral Sea.
NASA

Originally published on Tue September 30, 2014 2:07 pm

"For the first time in modern history, the eastern basin of the South Aral Sea has completely dried."

That's the word from NASA, which has released images showing the progressive decline of the water levels in the Aral Sea, which straddles the border between Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan in Central Asia. The space agency captured the striking photographs via its Terra satellite.

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Monkey See
12:21 pm
Tue September 30, 2014

The Strange, Split 'Selfie' Pilot

Social Media superstar Eliza Dooley has 263,000 followers who hang on to her every post, tweet and selfie. But she needs help from Henry (John Cho).
Nicole Wilder ABC

The pilot of the ABC show Selfie, starring Karen Gillan and John Cho in a Pygmalion update built on the notion that being obsessed with Twitter is the new Flawed But Fixable Personality Problem, is only about 22 minutes long — a little less. Given that pilots always have to contain a certain amount of pure exposition, that barely seems like enough time for the pilot to have both good parts and bad parts.

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Shots - Health News
11:43 am
Tue September 30, 2014

Putting Caffeine In Your Underwear Won't Make You Slimmer, Alas

via wacoal-america.com

Originally published on Tue September 30, 2014 2:41 pm

I love caffeine. I would love to trim my derriere. Combining the two seems like such an obvious win. Evidently some manufacturers of women's undergarments thought so, too. And now they're $1.5 million poorer.

The Federal Trade Commission has ordered two companies, Norm Thompson Outfitters Inc. and Wacoal America, to stop marketing shapewear infused with caffeine. The firms claimed that the amped-up underwear would cause fat loss and a reduction in body size.

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The Two-Way
11:24 am
Tue September 30, 2014

In NFL Game, A Slide And A Prayer Spur Debate And Clarification

Husain Abdullah of the Kansas City Chiefs scores a touchdown after an interception against the New England Patriots Monday. He was then penalized for praying on his knees — something the NFL now says shouldn't have been punished.
Dilip Vishwanat Getty Images

Originally published on Tue September 30, 2014 1:28 pm

When an NFL defender picks off a pass and runs it back for a touchdown, the celebration is often spirited. But referees in Monday night's game took exception to Kansas City's Husain Abdullah actions after he slid in the end zone and prostrated himself, imposing a 15-yard unsportsmanlike-conduct penalty.

The play quickly became a hot topic on social media, where many criticized a penalty for what qualifies as a quiet gesture in the NFL, where excited players are known to point at themselves, others, and the sky, sometimes while making crude gestures.

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Monkey See
11:23 am
Tue September 30, 2014

'Gone Girl,' Take Two: The Very, Very Spoiled Edition

Rosamund Pike plays Amy Dunne, whose mysterious disappearance turns her husband into a murder suspect.
Merrick Morton Twentieth Century Fox

Originally published on Tue September 30, 2014 11:56 am

Please understand that this post contains information about the plot of Gone Girl that has the capacity to rob it of many of its best and most delicious surprises for anyone not already aware of them. It's most appropriate for people who have already either read the book or seen the film, or for people who don't plan to read the book or see the film, or for people who don't like to be surprised, or for people who read the Wikipedia summary of a mystery before they watch it, or for people who hate having a good time.

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Shots - Health News
10:57 am
Tue September 30, 2014

Database Flaws Cloud Sunshine On Industry Payments To Doctors

Originally published on Tue September 30, 2014 3:09 pm

Editor's note: The Open Payments database is live and can be found at here.

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