NPR Blogs

The Salt
6:29 pm
Fri July 11, 2014

Are Organic Vegetables More Nutritious After All?

Originally published on Fri July 11, 2014 8:21 pm

There may never be an end to arguments over whether organic food is more nutritious. But a new study is the most ambitious attempt so far to resolve the issue — and it concludes that organic fruit and vegetables offer a key benefit.

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Health
6:29 pm
Fri July 11, 2014

Veterans Kick The Prescription Pill Habit, Against Doctors' Orders

Katherine Streeter for NPR

Originally published on Fri July 11, 2014 11:12 pm

For many people with post-traumatic stress disorder, sleeping can return you to the worst place you've ever been, at the worst possible moment.

"I always see his face," says Will, who did tours in Iraq and Afghanistan with the Army. "And in my dreams it's the same thing. ... I always walk over to him, and instead of this Afghani kid that's laying there, it's my little brother."

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Shots - Health News
6:26 pm
Fri July 11, 2014

Feds Tighten Lab Security After Anthrax, Bird Flu Blunders

Particles of H5N1 virus — a particularly dangerous type of bird flu that can infect people — attack lung cells.
Chris Bjornberg Science Source

Originally published on Fri July 11, 2014 8:21 pm

In the course of trying to understand a laboratory accident involving anthrax, officials at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention stumbled upon another major blunder — involving a deadly flu virus.

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13.7: Cosmos And Culture
5:26 pm
Fri July 11, 2014

The World Looked Better Through Anne Hollander's Eyes

Plato once remarked that it is easy to make a picture. Anyone can do it. You just hold up a mirror to whatever you are interested in and presto! you have its picture.

Plato was mistaken. A reflection is no more a picture than a footprint is a sculpture. We make pictures, for this or that purpose; reflections, in contrast, just happen; we stumble upon them. Moreover, I see the car in the rearview mirror, but I do not, in the same sense, see my grandfather, long since deceased, when I look at his photograph.

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The Salt
5:03 pm
Fri July 11, 2014

Spread Of Palm Oil Production Into Africa Threatens Great Apes

Gorillas in Virunga National Park in Democratic Republic of Congo, in 2013. Great apes like the gorilla have become increasingly threatened by the expansion of palm oil production in Africa.
Brent Stirton WWF/Canon/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri July 11, 2014 11:10 pm

In recent years, consumers have grown increasingly aware that the explosion of palm oil plantations to supply food companies making everything from Pop-Tarts to ramen noodles has taken a heavy toll on the environment.

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The Two-Way
4:58 pm
Fri July 11, 2014

Newspaper Editor, Activist John Seigenthaler Dies At 86

Nashville Tennessean Editor John Seigenthaler testifies at a Senate Commerce Subcommittee hearing in Washington in 1969. Seigenthaler died Friday at 86.
Bob Daugherty AP

John Seigenthaler, the legendary journalist who edited The Tennessean, was instrumental in shaping the editorial page of USA Today and worked as an assistant to Robert Kennedy, has died at 86.

A statement from his son, broadcast journalist John Seigenthaler Jr., said his father died "peacefully at home," where he was recovering after a recent medical treatment.

NPR's David Folkenflik says Seigenthaler was known as a crusader against corruption and for civil rights.

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The Two-Way
3:35 pm
Fri July 11, 2014

WATCH: Giant Undulating Anchovy School

A massive school of anchovies off La Jolla, filmed on Tuesday.
Scripps Institution of Oceanography — UC San Diego

It's the biggest aggregation of anchovies seen in near-shore waters in three decades, according to scientists at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography at the University of California, San Diego.

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The Two-Way
1:44 pm
Fri July 11, 2014

U.S. Had Heads-Up Over Destruction Of 'Guardian' Hard Drives

The Associated Press reports that the U.S. knew the British government would oversee the destruction of hard drives held by the Guardian newspaper that contained sensitive information.
Raphael Satter AP

Originally published on Fri July 11, 2014 3:01 pm

The National Security Agency knew the British government would oversee the destruction of hard drives held by the Guardian newspaper that contained information leaked by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden, though at that time the agency distanced itself from the action. That's according to emails obtained by The Associated Press through a Freedom of Information request.

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The Two-Way
1:40 pm
Fri July 11, 2014

Border Patrol Ceases Flying Migrants To San Diego

Miguel Hernandez (right), an immigrant rights activist, stands among anti-immigration activists outside of the U.S. Border Patrol's Murrieta station on Monday. The federal agency says it will not fly more detained migrants to be processed at the facility.
Sandy Huffaker Getty Images

Originally published on Fri July 11, 2014 2:22 pm

Migrants from Central America who enter the U.S. illegally in Texas will no longer be flown to San Diego for processing, the U.S. Border Patrol says. The practice came under fire last week, when opponents led protests against it in Murrieta, Calif.

In announcing the change, the agency didn't mention the fierce local opposition. Instead, it said it had eliminated the congestion in its system that spurred the plan to transport detained migrants.

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The Salt
1:21 pm
Fri July 11, 2014

If Exercise Feels Like Work, Mindless Snacking May Follow

In a recent study, participants who focused on the exercise of walking ate more M&Ms than people who focused on music while walking.
Daniel M.N. Turner NPR

Originally published on Fri July 11, 2014 5:24 pm

If we hit the gym, don't we deserve a little extra something, maybe something sinfully sweet? The idea that sacrifice begets reward is embedded in our collective thinking.

But a fascinating new study from the folks at the Cornell Food and Brand Lab shows how this thinking might backfire. Thinking of exercise as work can lure us into mindlessly devouring calorie-bombs, such as a big helping of pudding or extra handfuls of M&M's. And compensating for physical activity with sweet treats this way may lead to weight gain.

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The Two-Way
1:09 pm
Fri July 11, 2014

LeBron James Will Return To The Cleveland Cavaliers

A Cleveland Cavaliers fan holds up a LeBron James poster at a New York Yankees game Thursday. One day later, the fan's wish was granted: James will return to the Cavs for this year's new season.
Tony Dejak AP

Originally published on Fri July 11, 2014 1:20 pm

The Miami experiment is over: LeBron James will play for the Cleveland Cavaliers next season. The NBA star opted out of his contract with the Heat after spending four seasons in Miami, where he won two championships.

James, 29, played for Cleveland for seven seasons before leaving the town, and his home state of Ohio, for Miami. Speculation about his next move heated up after James and the Heat were trounced in the NBA Finals by the San Antonio Spurs.

Update at 12:45 p.m. ET: 'I'm Coming Home'

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Shots - Health News
12:55 pm
Fri July 11, 2014

Suicide Attempt Survivors Seek A Voice In Helping Others At Risk

iStockphoto

Originally published on Fri July 11, 2014 2:23 pm

In 2008, Cara Anna was working as a foreign correspondent in China and feeling overwhelmed by isolation, hostility from local authorities and a gnawing feeling that she was a failure. Her anguish led her to try suicide.

After waking up alive, she kept her attempt a secret. Asking for help seemed shameful, and she feared for her job if her employer found out. But after a second suicide attempt 15 months later, Anna realized that to recover she needed to stop feeling ashamed.

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The Two-Way
12:15 pm
Fri July 11, 2014

Kurds Seize 2 Oil Fields Amid Rising Tensions With Iraqi Government

Iraqi Kurds call for independence as Masud Barzani, president of Iraq's autonomous Kurdistan region, arrives to attend a session of the Kurdish Parliament on July 3.
Jawdat Barcroft Media/Landov

Originally published on Fri July 11, 2014 1:21 pm

Kurdish forces have seized two oil fields near the disputed city of Kirkuk, a day after their ministers withdrew from all Cabinet meetings in Baghdad, moves that further imperil Iraq's already tenuous unity.

Peshmerga forces took over the Bai Hassan and Kirkuk oil fields, expelling local workers, Iraq's Oil Ministry confirmed. A spokesman for the ministry called it a "violation of the constitution."

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The Two-Way
11:47 am
Fri July 11, 2014

Kerry Pushes For Audit Of Disputed Afghan Presidential Poll

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry talks with Afghan presidential candidate Abdullah Abdullah at the start of a meeting at the U.S. Embassy in Kabul on Friday. Kerry sought Friday to broker a deal between Afghanistan's rival presidential candidates.
Jim Bourg AP

Originally published on Fri July 11, 2014 3:16 pm

This post updated at 3:15 p.m. ET.

Calling it a "critical moment" in Afghanistan, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry is pushing for a partial recount in the country's presidential elections amid alleged vote fraud.

"We are in a very, very critical moment for Afghanistan," Kerry told reporters. "Legitimacy hangs in the balance. The future potential of the transition hangs in the balance. So we've a lot of work to do."

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The Two-Way
11:41 am
Fri July 11, 2014

Fly Like An Eagle: Site Picks The Best Aerial Drone Photos

An eagle flies over Bali's Barat National Park, in this award-winning image taken by a camera attached to a drone.
capungaero Dronestagram

Originally published on Fri July 11, 2014 12:15 pm

An eagle soars above a national park in Bali, Indonesia. A waterfall in Mexico is seen from above its shelf of cascading water. Those are the top two finishers in a contest held to find the best images captured by cameras mounted on aerial drones. The winners were recently unveiled by the site Dronestagram.

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