NPR Blogs

Monkey See
9:22 am
Fri November 15, 2013

Pop Culture Happy Hour: Twitter And Subtitled Television

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On this week's show, we are lucky enough to be visited in the absence of our buddy Glen by the lovely Audie Cornish, who, in her spare time, is one of the hosts of a little afternoon show called All Things Considered. Audie took some time away from the Actual Hard News beat to chat with us about a few things and to gracefully accept a surprising comparison to Ron Burgundy. (It's a long story.)

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The Two-Way
9:11 am
Fri November 15, 2013

China Eases One-Child Policy, Ends Labor Camp System

Children participate in a drawing contest on May 13 celebrating international children's day in Qingdao, China.
Wu Hong EPA/Landov

Originally published on Fri November 15, 2013 11:47 am

China announced Friday that it is loosening its decades-old one-child policy, and abolishing its system of "re-education through labor" camps.

In order to have a second child, one parent would have to be an only child under the new rules. Previously, both parents had to be only children in order to have a second child.

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The Two-Way
9:11 am
Fri November 15, 2013

China Unveils Major Economic Changes

An investor is seen at a brokerage house in Shanghai, China, on Aug. 16.
Ding Ting Xinhua /Landov

Originally published on Fri November 15, 2013 11:32 am

We told you this morning about changes announced in China regarding the country's one-child policy, as well as an announcement that it was ending its system of labor camps. But those aren't the only policy shifts by the Communist Party.

China also said Friday that it would loosen restrictions on foreign investment in e-commerce and other businesses, and allow private competition in state-dominated sectors.

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The Two-Way
9:10 am
Fri November 15, 2013

Mighty Sachin Has Bowed Out: It's Over For Tendulkar

A poster in Mumbai this week of Sachin Tendulkar, India's cricket superstar.
Punit Paranjpe AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri November 15, 2013 10:32 am

Sachin Tendulkar, the "little master" who is known as India's greatest cricketer, left the pitch Friday for what's likely to be the last time.

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The Salt
9:06 am
Fri November 15, 2013

How Coffee, Citrus And Nuts Help Cut The Risk Of Diabetes

Coffee can help cut your risk of Type 2 diabetes, fresh research shows. Other foods, such as oranges, lemons and other citrus fruits, nuts and beans can also help.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Mon November 18, 2013 2:45 pm

If you go back to the 1970s, people with a serious coffee habit often had an accompanying habit: smoking.

And that's why early studies gave coffee a bad rap. Clearly, smoking was harmful. And it was hard for researchers to disentangle the two habits. "So it made coffee look bad in terms of health outcomes," Harvard researcher Meir Stampfer explained to me.

But fast-forward a quarter century, and the rap on coffee began to change.

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The Two-Way
7:57 am
Fri November 15, 2013

We Beheaded The Wrong Man, Syrian Terrorists Say

A member of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant urges Syrians in the city of Aleppo to fight against the Assad regime. This week, the militants apologized for beheading a commander from another anti-Assad group.
Karam al-Masri AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri November 15, 2013 10:28 am

"Militant Islamist rebels in Syria ... have asked for 'understanding and forgiveness' for cutting off and putting on display the wrong man's head," The Telegraph reports.

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The Two-Way
7:48 am
Fri November 15, 2013

Book News: Google's Book-Scanning Program Is Ruled 'Fair Use'

Originally published on Fri November 15, 2013 8:43 am

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

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The Two-Way
7:02 am
Fri November 15, 2013

Wait Continues In The Philippines: 'We Have Nothing To Eat'

A boy stands amid ruins in Tacloban, the Philippines. The city of 220,000 was devastated by Typhoon Haiyan.
David Gilkey NPR

Originally published on Fri November 15, 2013 11:02 pm

Aid is starting to get to some of the survivors of Typhoon Haiyan, but the sad news from the Philippines on Friday is that for many of the storm's victims things still aren't much better after a week without adequate food, water or shelter.

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Shots - Health News
3:32 am
Fri November 15, 2013

Medicare Penalizes Nearly 1,500 Hospitals For Poor Quality Scores

Originally published on Fri November 15, 2013 10:49 am

While the health law's insurance markets are still struggling to get off the ground, the Obama administration is moving ahead with its second year of meting out bonuses and penalties to hospitals based on the quality of their care. This year, there are more losers than winners.

Medicare has raised payment rates to 1,231 hospitals based on two-dozen quality measurements, including surveys of patient satisfaction and — for the first time — death rates. Another 1,451 hospitals are being paid less for each Medicare patient they treat for the year that began Oct. 1.

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The Salt
3:01 am
Fri November 15, 2013

Philippines Disaster Rekindles Fight Over Food Aid Rules

A relief worker looks over boxes of aid provided by the U.S. on November 14, 2013 in Leyte, Philippines. Proponents of food aid reform say it makes more sense for the U.S. to buy food donations locally than ship them across the globe.
Chris McGrath Getty Images

Originally published on Fri November 15, 2013 10:49 am

Emergency aid, including stocks of food, started arriving this week in cyclone-devastated areas of the Philippines; more is on the way.

The first wave of aid — high-energy biscuits designed to keep people alive when food is scarce — arrived via airlift. Huge shiploads of rice will be needed in the weeks and months to come. And exactly how the U.S. donates of that rice is a flashpoint in a long-running debate in Washington, D.C., about food aid.

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The Salt
6:28 pm
Thu November 14, 2013

What's The Most Important Thing Food Labels Should Tell Us?

Illustration by Daniel Horowitz for NPR

Originally published on Thu November 14, 2013 7:29 pm

Food labels have become battlegrounds. Just last week, voters in Washington state narrowly defeated a measure that would have required food manufacturers to reveal whether their products contain genetically modified ingredients.

Supporters of the initiative — and similar proposals in other states — say that consumers have a right to know what they're eating.

But there are lots of things we might want to know about our food. So what belongs on the label?

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Shots - Health News
5:30 pm
Thu November 14, 2013

Insurers Aren't Keen On Obama's Pledge To Extend Coverage

In a White House news conference Thursday, President Obama said he had thought that "98 percent" of policyholders would see no change in their current policies, or get a better deal.
Mandel Ngan AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri November 15, 2013 6:53 am

Remember when President Obama said, "If you like your health plan you can keep it?" Now it's more like, "If you like your health plan you can keep it — for another year, and only if your insurance company says it's OK."

It's not clear whether the administration's proposal to let insurers extend the policies they've been canceling for the past couple of months will solve the president's political problem. But it's sure not going over very well with the insurance industry.

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The Two-Way
5:18 pm
Thu November 14, 2013

Obama To Congress: 'Let's See' Before Any New Iran Sanctions

Originally published on Thu November 14, 2013 6:26 pm

President Obama on Thursday asked Congress to hold off on imposing any new economic sanctions on Iran to give negotiators more time to forge a deal on Tehran's nuclear program.

"My message to Congress has been that let's see if this short-term, phase-one deal can be completed to our satisfaction," Obama told reporters during a White House briefing.

"Let's test how willing they are to actually resolve this diplomatically and peacefully," he said.

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The Two-Way
5:10 pm
Thu November 14, 2013

Denver's Smell-O-Scope Targets Marijuana's Skunky Scent

A man uses the Nasal Ranger to detect smells in the southern U.S., in this photo provided by St. Croix Sensory. In Denver, the device is being used to monitor complaints of strong marijuana smells.
Courtesy of Nasal Ranger

Recreational marijuana is legal in Colorado. But that doesn't mean residents want the air to smell like a pot rally. Denver is getting more calls to enforce an odor ordinance that can impose a buzz-killing fine on violators. To find them, the city relies on a device called the Nasal Ranger.

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