NPR Blogs

The Two-Way
8:54 am
Wed July 16, 2014

Murdoch Confirms A Spurned Bid For Time Warner

Originally published on Wed July 16, 2014 10:43 am

Rupert Murdoch's 21st Century Fox says it sought to buy Time Warner last month, confirming reports of a deal that would have reshaped America's media landscape. The offered price, which Time Warner rejected, was reportedly $80 billion.

The deal would have put HBO, CNN and other Time Warner properties under the same corporate umbrella as Fox News, a situation that The New York Times said would have forced the sale of CNN.

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The Two-Way
8:28 am
Wed July 16, 2014

EEOC Announces Tougher Rules Protecting Pregnant Workers

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission's new guidance states that employers who allow parental leave must provide it to men and women equally.
Yuri Arcurs iStockphoto

Originally published on Wed July 16, 2014 10:32 am

Discrimination against female workers who might get pregnant in the future, or have been pregnant in the past, is against the law, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission said this week. For the first time in 30 years, the agency has updated its rules against pregnancy discrimination.

The agency clarified several policies, including one that spells out when businesses may have to provide pregnant workers light duty and another that bans employers from forcing a pregnant worker to take leave even in cases when she's able to continue on the job.

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The Two-Way
8:11 am
Wed July 16, 2014

Court Finds Netherlands Liable For 300 Deaths In Srebrenica Massacre

Women from the Bosnian town of Srebrenica embrace their lawyers following a ruling Wednesday at a civil court in The Hague, Netherlands.
Phil Nijhuis AP

Originally published on Wed July 16, 2014 10:24 am

A court in the Netherlands ruled today that the country's government was partly liable for the deaths of 300 Bosnian Muslims whom Dutch peacekeepers failed to protect in Srebrenica in 1995.

But The Associated Press notes that the court decision clears the government of liability in the deaths of the thousands of others who were killed in Srebrenica.

"Relatives of the dead welcomed the limited finding of liability, but lamented that it did not go much further," The AP added.

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The Two-Way
7:54 am
Wed July 16, 2014

Book News: Harper Lee Says New Biography Is Unauthorized

Author Harper Lee smiles during a 2007 ceremony in Montgomery, Ala.
Rob Carr AP

Originally published on Wed July 16, 2014 10:51 am

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

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The Two-Way
7:34 am
Wed July 16, 2014

Syria's Assad Sworn In For Third 7-Year Presidential Term

Originally published on Thu July 17, 2014 3:35 pm

Syrian President Bashar Assad was sworn in Wednesday for a third seven-year term amid a brutal civil war that has split his country.

National television broadcast what it called the live swearing-in ceremony from the presidential palace in the capital, Damascus.

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The Two-Way
7:30 am
Wed July 16, 2014

Israeli Official: Chance Of A Ground Invasion Of Gaza 'Very High'

A picture taken from the Israeli border with the Gaza Strip shows smoke billowing from the coastal Palestinian enclave following an Israeli airstrike Wednesday.
Jack Guez AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed July 16, 2014 5:48 pm

This post was updated at 3 p.m. ET.

Israel has agreed to a United Nations request for a temporary cease-fire in its shelling campaign of the Gaza Strip, the Israeli newspaper Haaretz reports.

The five-hour bombing halt on Thursday will allow humanitarian aid to be delivered in Gaza.

But any semblance of peace will be fleeting.

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The Salt
3:42 am
Wed July 16, 2014

Craft Beer Reaches New Depths As Mainers Brew A Batch From Seaweed

A glass of the seaweed beer created by Marshall Wharf Brewing Co. in Belfast, Maine.
Jay Field MPBN

Originally published on Mon July 21, 2014 12:14 pm

More craft breweries are using exotic ingredients in their creations these days. There are ales made with all kinds of fruit, beers infused with coriander and other spices, stouts brewed with oysters — even beer made from yeast scraped off 35 million-year-old whale bones. But what about a beer made with seaweed?

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Shots - Health News
3:28 am
Wed July 16, 2014

Want More Stress In Your Life? Try Parenting A Teenager

Amy Myers talks with her son Kamron, 18, in the backyard of their home in Boise, Idaho. She has found raising a teenager to be extremely stressful.
Kyle Green for NPR

Originally published on Wed July 16, 2014 10:32 am

If anyone can handle the stress of parenting in the teen years, you'd think it would be a high school teacher.

That's how Amy Myers felt. She teaches high school English in a suburb of Boise, Idaho, where she says she has "pseudo parented" about 3,000 teenagers "who I have talked to, given advice to, guided, directed, even lectured about teenage issues," she says.

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Shots - Health News
3:27 am
Wed July 16, 2014

Coping With A Co-Worker's Body Odor Takes Tact

We can all work up a stinky sweat — welders, ballerinas and number-crunchers alike. Would you want to know?
emreogan/iStockphoto

Originally published on Wed July 16, 2014 1:14 pm

It's summer. It's sweaty. And sometimes that means people are trailing some pungent body odors that their colleagues can't help but smell. But how do you tactfully inform co-workers that they stink and need to address it? As Cath Ludeman-Hall will tell you, it isn't easy.

She was just out of college and a newbie at a staffing firm when she was asked to gently talk to an older worker in a retail warehouse after his colleagues complained that he stank.

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The Two-Way
11:18 pm
Tue July 15, 2014

California Approves $500 Fines For Residential Water-Wasters

Sprinklers water a Sacramento, Calif. lawn Tuesday morning.
Rich Pedroncelli AP

Originally published on Wed July 16, 2014 11:15 am

Californians who waste water will have to pay up to $500 a day for their extravagance under new restrictions approved Tuesday by the State Water Resources Control Board.

The move comes after the board concluded that voluntary conservation measures have failed to achieve the 20 percent reduction in water use that Gov. Jerry Brown was hoping for, reports The Associated Press.

In fact, a survey by the board showed a 1 percent increase in water use in May compared to the same month a year ago.

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The Two-Way
7:09 pm
Tue July 15, 2014

Apple Teams Up With Former Rival IBM On Business Apps

Originally published on Tue July 15, 2014 8:08 pm

Apple announced on Tuesday a deal with the company it once painted as Big Brother in its infamous 1984 ad: IBM.

The former rivals agreed on an exclusive partnership to work together on new business applications for Apple's iPads and iPhones. As part of the deal, IBM will also sell iPhones and iPads with the software to businesses all over the world.

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Shots - Health News
6:24 pm
Tue July 15, 2014

Stroke Rate May Be Declining In Older Adults

Film CT scans show these people have suffered strokes.
stockdevil/iStockphoto

Originally published on Wed July 16, 2014 9:31 am

Stroke is the fourth highest cause of death among adults in the U.S. But among people older than 65, stroke rates may be going down, a study published Tuesday suggests. And compared with 10 or 20 years ago, more of those hit with a stroke are surviving.

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The Two-Way
6:22 pm
Tue July 15, 2014

University Of Texas Can Continue Affirmative Action, Court Rules

Last year, Bradley Poole posed for a photo at the University of Texas after becoming president of the school's Black Student Alliance.
Eric Gay AP

Originally published on Wed July 16, 2014 9:30 am

A federal appellate court in Texas has ruled that the state's flagship university can continue to use race as a factor in admissions.

"To deny UT Austin its limited use of race in its search for holistic diversity would hobble the richness of the educational experience," Judge Patrick Higginbotham wrote for a split panel of the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

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The Salt
5:45 pm
Tue July 15, 2014

Captain Ahab's Revenge: Brewing Beer From An Ancient Whale Bone

Jasper Akerboom of the Lost Rhino Brewing Co. in Ashburn, Va., tested a dozen yeasts before finding one that was perfect for making bone beer.
Ryan Kellman NPR

Originally published on Tue July 15, 2014 5:54 pm

What happens when an amateur paleontologist with a love for beer teams up with a microbiologist? Bone beer, or beer made from yeast scraped from a 35-million-year-old whale fossil, to be precise.

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Shots - Health News
5:18 pm
Tue July 15, 2014

What's Going On In There? How Babies' Brains Practice Speech

The magnetoencephalograph can record electrical signals from a baby's brain without requiring the child to be perfectly still.
University of Washington

Originally published on Wed July 16, 2014 8:08 am

A baby's first words may seem spur of the moment, but really, the little ones have practiced their "Mamas" and "Dadas" for months in their minds.

Using what looks like a hair dryer from Mars, researchers from the University of Washington have taken the most precise peeks yet into the fireworks display of neural activity that occurs when infants listen to people speak.

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