NPR Blogs

Shots - Health News
1:20 pm
Tue June 25, 2013

Big Weight Loss For Diabetics, But No Drop In Heart Risk

Weight loss has been a key component of diabetes treatment for centuries.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Tue June 25, 2013 4:23 pm

Hundreds of overweight or obese people with diabetes have been able to do something very few Americans have done: lose a big chunk of weight and keep it off for 10 years.

So should it matter if that epic weight loss didn't reduce the risk of heart disease? Maybe not.

That's one response to the results of the Look AHEAD clinical trial, which checked to see if losing weight reduced heart disease risk in people with Type 2 diabetes.

Read more
The Two-Way
1:04 pm
Tue June 25, 2013

Germany Says It's Uncovered Terrorist Plot Using Model Planes

German officials say they've uncovered a radical Islamist plot to use remote-controlled model airplanes packed with explosives to carry out terrorist attacks in Germany.

Police carried out nine predawn raids in southern and eastern Germany as well as Belgium in search of evidence of what prosecutors allege was a plan for a "serious, state-threatening act of violence." There were no arrests.

Read more
Krulwich Wonders...
11:49 am
Tue June 25, 2013

The Man With A 'Battery Operated Brain'

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1PFknl5YFsE

Read more
The Two-Way
11:43 am
Tue June 25, 2013

Supreme Court Strikes Down Key Provision Of Voting Rights Law

Field Director Charles White of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) speaks at a podium outside the U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday in Washington, D.C.
Win McNamee Getty Images

Originally published on Tue June 25, 2013 4:49 pm

By a 5-4 decision, the Supreme Court has struck down a key provision of the landmark 1965 Voting Rights Act that establishes a formula to identify states that may require extra scrutiny by the Justice Department regarding voting procedures.

The decision focuses on Section 4 of the Act.

Read more
The Two-Way
11:40 am
Tue June 25, 2013

North, South Korean Sites Hacked On Korean War Anniversary

Websites in both North and South Korea were hacked Tuesday, the 63rd anniversary of the Korean War. A number of South Korean government and media websites reportedly were brought down, including that of President Park Geun Hye and the South Korean Office of Government Policy Coordination.

Read more
The Salt
11:26 am
Tue June 25, 2013

Will GMOs Help Protect Ugandan Families Against Hunger?

A woman sells bananas at the Kampala Airport. Ugandans eat about a pound of the fruit, on average, per day.
Ronald Kabuubi AP

Originally published on Wed June 26, 2013 1:45 pm

While a few states in the U.S. are debating mandatory labels for genetically modified foods, some African nations are considering a bigger question: Should farmers be allowed to plant genetically modified crops at all?

The question carries extra weight in countries like Uganda, where most people are farmers who depend on their own crops for food.

Read more
The Two-Way
11:09 am
Tue June 25, 2013

5-Year High In Consumer Confidence Bodes Well For Economy

If consumers are feeling better, they may be more apt to spend — which could mean better job growth down the road.
Jessica Rinaldi Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Tue June 25, 2013 1:30 pm

The economy "is unlikely to slow in the short-term, and may even moderately pick up," economist Lynn Franco predicted Tuesday as the Conference Board released its latest survey on consumer confidence.

The business research group, where Franco is director of economic indicators, said its index rose to a five-year high of 81.4 in June — up from May's 74.3. The index is based on surveys of Americans.

Read more
13.7: Cosmos And Culture
11:09 am
Tue June 25, 2013

How To Love The Zombie Apocalypse

World War Z is just the latest pop-culture incarnation of the Zombie Apocalypse. Adam Frank says the zombies keep coming because they're trying to tell us something.
MPC/Paramount Pictures

Originally published on Tue June 25, 2013 7:00 pm

"Zombie Apocalypse? What the hell are you talking about?"

It was our weekly astronomy group lunch when everyone, from the professors down to the undergrads, gets together for pizza. I'm not quite sure how the conversation took this turn, but at some point I quipped: "But of course that's after the Zombie Apocalypse."

Read more
Shots - Health News
9:17 am
Tue June 25, 2013

Why Morning-After Pill Won't Stop All Unintended Pregnancies

Almost half of all pregnancies in the U.S. are unintended.
Rudyanto Wijaya iStockphoto.com

Women of all ages will soon be able to buy emergency contraceptives over the counter without a prescription, now that the Obama administration has decided to stop fighting a judge's order to make the drugs more easily available.

But better access to emergency contraception doesn't necessarily reduce rates of unintended pregnancy, research has found. Why that's so remains unclear, although researchers have some ideas.

Read more
The Two-Way
9:06 am
Tue June 25, 2013

Qatar's Emir Transfers Power To His Son

Qatari Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani, left, and his son Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani, right, await France's President Francois Hollande prior to a welcoming ceremony earlier this month.
AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue June 25, 2013 10:26 am

Qatar's monarch, Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, handed over the reins of power this morning to his 33-year-old son, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani.

Bloomberg reports:

Read more
The Two-Way
9:00 am
Tue June 25, 2013

VIDEO For Nelson Mandela: Johnny Clegg's 'Asimbonanga'

A message for "Dear Tata" (Nelson Mandela) outside the hospital in Pretoria where he is being treated.
Alexander Joe AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue June 25, 2013 10:09 am

Read more
Monkey See
8:52 am
Tue June 25, 2013

The Seven Ways To Write About Television

iStockphoto.com

Perhaps it's the combination of Sunday night's Mad Men finale and the flurry of Sopranos discussion that followed the death of James Gandolfini, but it's hard not to be struck by the explosion of writing about television that's occurred in the last 15 years or so, facilitated (of course) by the ability to go from rolling credits to publication in an hour (if necessary). After any major episode, there will be a flurry of commentary, and even after minor episodes of minor shows, there are write-ups here and there.

Read more
The Two-Way
8:17 am
Tue June 25, 2013

Obama To Lay Out Broad Plan To Address Climate Change

The Capitol dome is seen behind the Capitol Power Plant, which provides power to buildings in the Capitol complex in Washington, D.C.
Carolyn Kaster AP

Originally published on Tue June 25, 2013 2:45 pm

Update at 2:38 p.m. ET. Obama Lays Out Plan:

In an address at Georgetown University in Washington, President Obama laid out a sweeping new plan to address climate change.

As expected, Obama said his plan seeks to cap the carbon emissions of power plants.

Obama also said the Keystone XL pipeline, which would carry oil from Canada to Texas, would only be approved by the State Department if it aligned with the "nation's interest."

That is if "this project does not significantly exacerbate the problem of carbon pollution," Obama said.

Read more
The Two-Way
7:33 am
Tue June 25, 2013

Attackers Killed During 'Brazen Assault' Near Afghan Palace

Afghan security officers at the scene of Tuesday's attack in Kabul.
S. Sabawoon EPA/LANDOV

Originally published on Tue June 25, 2013 9:58 am

The tenuous nature of efforts to bring peace to Afghanistan were dramatically underscored Tuesday morning when gunmen attacked buildings near Afghanistan's presidential palace in Kabul as journalists were gathering to hear from President Hamid Karzai about nascent plans for peace talks with the Taliban.

Read more

Pages