NPR Blogs

Shots - Health News
4:46 pm
Mon May 6, 2013

Why A Slowdown In Health Spending Is Starting To Look Real

iStockphoto.com

So you know all that talk about how the boatload of money going to health care will bankrupt the nation if something isn't done soon?

Well, it turns out that while politicians were bickering, the problem started taking care of itself. Well, a little bit.

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The Two-Way
4:26 pm
Mon May 6, 2013

Pentagon: China's Government Hacked U.S. Networks

The 12-story building outside Shanghai that is alleged to be the headquarters of the People's Liberation Army's hacking group.
Peter Parks AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon May 6, 2013 4:53 pm

The Pentagon has for the first time fingered Beijing directly for cyberattacks against both U.S. government networks and commercial computers, calling the practice a "serious concern."

The new report says numerous U.S. diplomatic, economic and defense industry networks were hacked in 2012 at the direction of China's government and its military.

As NPR's Tom Bowman reports: "In previous reports, the Pentagon has linked computer attacks to China, but not its government."

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The Two-Way
4:11 pm
Mon May 6, 2013

Germany Arrests 93-Year-Old 'Auschwitz Guard'

Barbed wire encloses the concentration camp of Aushwitz-Birkenau in Krakow, Poland.
Chris Jackson Getty Images

German authorities have arrested a 93-year-old man they say served as a guard at the Auschwitz extermination camp.

Hans Lipschis was deported from the United States to Germany after U.S. authorities found that he lied about his past.

The AP reports:

"Lipschis was taken into custody after authorities concluded there was 'compelling evidence' he was involved in crimes at Auschwitz while there from 1941 to 1945, prosecutor Claudia Krauth said.

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The Salt
3:47 pm
Mon May 6, 2013

Sandwich Monday: Fried Peanut Butter And Banana

Melissa approaches with caution.
NPR

Originally published on Mon May 6, 2013 3:58 pm

It's strange to find a Fried Peanut Butter and Banana sandwich, famous as Elvis Presley's favorite, on a restaurant menu, given its effect on Elvis. It's like finding a store selling an Isadora Duncan commemorative scarf.

Nonetheless, freelance radio producer Melissa LaCasse and I decided to try the one offered by The Breslin in New York, listed as "fried peanut butter & banana sandwich with bourbon & vanilla."

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The Two-Way
3:18 pm
Mon May 6, 2013

Death Toll In Bangladesh Factory Collapse Surpasses 650

A Bangladeshi family member holds up the portrait of her missing relative, believed to be trapped in the rubble of the collapsed Rana Plaza.
AFP/Getty Images

The grim toll from the collapse of a garment factory in Bangladesh last month has risen to more than 650, as more bodies have been pulled from the rubble of the eight-story complex.

The number of people confirmed dead has now reached 657, CNN quoted Col. Sheikh Zaman, a military official overseeing the recovery operation in Savar, as saying.

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The Two-Way
1:57 pm
Mon May 6, 2013

Senate Poised To Approve Online Sales Tax Bill

Supporters of the Marketplace Fairness Act say it will level the playing field between online retailers and traditional brick-and-mortar stores.
Mike Coppola Getty Images for eBay

Originally published on Mon May 6, 2013 7:24 pm

Update at 7:00 p.m.:

The Senate has passed the Marketplace Fairness Act by a vote of 69 to 27, The Associated Press reports.

Here's our original post:

The Senate is expected to approve a measure on Monday that would end tax-free shopping for online purchases, a move that concerns many e-retailers but has the support of the states that stand to collect billions in previously lost revenues.

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The Two-Way
1:50 pm
Mon May 6, 2013

SPLAT! Gov. Christie 'Saved A Few School Children From Spider'

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is surrounded by security and journalists in 2012.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

Originally published on Mon May 6, 2013 3:30 pm

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The Two-Way
1:16 pm
Mon May 6, 2013

UPDATED: Bombing Suspect's Friend Ordered Freed On Bail

This courtroom sketch shows defendant Robel Phillipos appearing in front of Federal Magistrate Marianne Bowler at the Moakley Federal Courthouse in Boston, Mass., on May 1.
Jane Flavell Collins AP

Originally published on Mon May 6, 2013 3:15 pm

Update at 3:13 p.m. ET. Phillipos Freed:

Robel Phillipos, who was arrested last week for allegedly lying to federal agents investigating the Boston Marathon bombings, was ordered released on $100,000 bail, pending a trial.

Reuters reports:

"While out on bail, Robel Phillipos will be under the custody of his mother and wearing a GPS bracelet, U.S. Magistrate Judge Marianne Bowler ordered in federal court in Boston."

Our Original Post Continues:

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The Two-Way
1:15 pm
Mon May 6, 2013

Gun Made With 3-D Printer Is Successfully Fired

The Liberator — a plastic handgun made with a 3-D printer.
Defense Distributed

Originally published on Mon May 6, 2013 1:22 pm

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13.7: Cosmos And Culture
1:12 pm
Mon May 6, 2013

Science, Meet The People

Courtesy of The People's Science

Originally published on Tue May 7, 2013 1:57 pm

Last month, psychologist Jamil Zaki from Stanford University launched The People's Science (TPS), a forum dedicated to bridging the gap between scientists and the public.

"I've been a big proponent of science communication for a long time," Zaki told me in an email. He was motivated to start the site in part because there's no "middle ground" between doing a lot of science communication (like a science writer) and doing none at all (like most scientists). Zaki explained:

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Shots - Health News
11:59 am
Mon May 6, 2013

Pfizer Goes Direct With Online Viagra Sales To Men

Originally published on Mon May 6, 2013 12:23 pm

The ubiquitous blue-toned TV ads for Viagra look downright tame compared with Pfizer's latest gambit for the impotence remedy.

Pfizer is now selling the drug directly from the official Viagra website.

Men still need a prescription for the diamond-shaped blue pills. But instead of going to the pharmacy in person, or taking their chances buying from an online pharmacy of unknown repute, men will be able to buy Viagra from the maker of the drug itself and have it shipped to their homes.

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Monkey See
11:55 am
Mon May 6, 2013

Entirely Real Photos: Greetings From These ABBA Puppets

Puppets of the ABBA members await you at what is, believe it or not, the world's first permanent ABBA museum.
Jonathan Nackstrand AFP/Getty Images

Of all the museums opening tomorrow that are devoted to supergroups of the 1970s, surely none is more hotly anticipated than ABBA The Museum.

You can dance. You can jive. You can visit the gift shop.

And you can see these puppets, which also appeared in a video in which you can see them in action. Are these more or less creepy than wax museum figures? It's a toss-up.

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The Two-Way
11:52 am
Mon May 6, 2013

Prisoner Points To Quran Search For Gitmo Hunger Strike

This image reviewed by the U.S. military shows the front gate of "Camp Six" detention facility of the Joint Detention Group at the US Naval Station in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.
Jim Watson AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon May 6, 2013 12:42 pm

The Miami Herald's Carol Rosenberg reports that for the first time, we have a sworn statement from a Guantanamo prisoner who talks about what sparked the massive hunger strike at the U.S. prison camp.

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The Two-Way
11:20 am
Mon May 6, 2013

Wal-Mart Reclaims No. 1 Spot On 'Fortune' 500 List

A shopping cart at a Wal-Mart store in Los Angeles.
Robyn Beck AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon May 6, 2013 3:40 pm

Wal-Mart has reclaimed the lead spot on the Fortune 500 list released today. For the past few years, the giant retailer has been battling it out with Exxon for top billing.

This year, Exxon Mobil dropped to No. 2.

Fortune writes about Wal-Mart:

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The Two-Way
11:17 am
Mon May 6, 2013

PHOTO: The Six-Story Rubber Ducky That's Gracing Hong Kong

That's one big duck floating in Hong Kong's Victoria Harbor this month.
Li Peng Xinhua /Landov

Originally published on Mon May 6, 2013 11:25 am

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