NPR Blogs

Shots - Health News
5:12 pm
Mon June 10, 2013

Triple Threat: Middle East Respiratory Virus And 2 Bird Flus

Men outside a hospital in Dammam, Saudi Arabia, wear surgical masks as a precaution against infection with a coronavirus.
Stringer Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Tue June 11, 2013 8:11 am

The World Health Organization is warning health care workers everywhere to suspect a disease called Middle Eastern Respiratory Syndrome, or MERS, whenever they see a case of unexplained pneumonia.

Monday's warning comes at the end of a six-day WHO investigation in Saudi Arabia, where 40 of the 55 cases of the respiratory disease have occurred. Sixty percent of those people with known infections died.

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The Two-Way
5:11 pm
Mon June 10, 2013

'I'm Not Satisfied': Family's First Graduate Has Bigger Goals

Recent high school graduate Dajina Bell got her diploma after working hard to turn around her GPA. An anonymous donor who heard her story on Colorado Public Radio set up a scholarship for her.
Jenny Bundin CPR

Originally published on Mon June 10, 2013 5:45 pm

When Denver teenager Dajina Bell graduated from high school last week, she celebrated a remarkable academic and personal comeback. Bell's high school years, marked early on by her brother's death and a host of other troubles, ended with her becoming her family's first graduate.

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Monkey See
4:57 pm
Mon June 10, 2013

Shoes, Romance, And Art: A Reader Walks With The Books She Loves

Rudi's shoes.
@rudi_bee

Longtime readers know that one of my favorite pop-culture blogs ever invented is Smart Bitches Trashy Books, which offers a home for romance readers (who are legion) to both love their books and laugh at their books.

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The Salt
4:22 pm
Mon June 10, 2013

A Senate Catfight Over Catfish

These funny mustachioed fish are at the center of a farm bill fight in the House and Senate.
Sasha Radosavljevic iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Mon June 10, 2013 6:15 pm

The farm bill is expected to pass in the Senate on Monday night. And to the dismay of some, it likely won't include an amendment that would have eliminated a controversial program to keep a closer eye on a food product you probably weren't even worried about: catfish.

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Shots - Health News
3:11 pm
Mon June 10, 2013

Concussion Prescription: A Year On The Bench For Youngsters?

Katherine Cuntz and Sarah Gaudet go up to head the ball during a Louisiana high school championship game in 2011.
Gerald Herbert AP

The moms at Saturday's soccer game let out a collective wow as a 10-year-old girl headed the ball away from the net.

Then one next to me said, "Should they be doing that?" Another said, "I don't think so." But none of us yelled: "Hey, kids, no heading the ball!"

Head injuries are a big problem for young athletes, who may be more vulnerable for a year after having a concussion, according to research published Monday. That means students and their parents may have to think hard about when it's safe to return to play.

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The Two-Way
2:50 pm
Mon June 10, 2013

BP Ends Oil Spill Cleanup In Gulf, Except For Louisiana

BP is scaling back its cleanup efforts from the Deepwater Horizon oilspill in areas outside Louisiana. Here, a photo from last September shows alluvial clay and tar mats on the shore of Elmer's Island, in Jefferson Parish, La.
Gerald Herbert AP

BP is ending its cleanup of the massive Deepwater Horizon oil spill in three Gulf Coast states this month, leaving Louisiana as the only state with ongoing cleanup linked to the company's Deepwater Horizon Response effort. Reports of oil sightings in Alabama, Mississippi, and Florida will soon be the U.S. Coast Guard's responsibility to investigate.

For NPR's Newscast unit, Debbie Elliott reports:

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The Two-Way
1:59 pm
Mon June 10, 2013

With Nod To 'Texts From Hillary' Guys, Clinton Joins Twitter

Will some of her tweets be as funny as the made-up "texts from Hillary?"
@HillaryClinton

"Thanks for the inspiration @ASmith83 & @Sllambe - I'll take it from here... #tweetsfromhillary"

With that bit of social media swagger on Monday, @HillaryClinton joined Twitter.

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The Two-Way
1:49 pm
Mon June 10, 2013

Butt Slap Lands Ex-NFL Star Chad Johnson In Jail

Former Miami Dolphins receiver Chad Johnson.
J. Meric Getty Images

Originally published on Mon June 10, 2013 2:59 pm

Chad Johnson — the NFL star formerly known as Chad Ochocinco for his jersey number — was minutes from having part of his life back on track. Johnson, who had pleaded no contest to head-butting his ex-wife, was about to seal a plea-deal that called for community service and counseling instead of jail time, when he did something that made the entire court room erupt in laughter.

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The Two-Way
1:38 pm
Mon June 10, 2013

What Is Meant By The Term 'Whistle-Blower'

In a video interview with The Guardian, Edward Snowden says he exposed NSA monitoring because "the public needs to decide whether these programs and policies are right or wrong."
Glenn Greenwald/Laura Poitras EPA/Landov

Originally published on Tue June 11, 2013 8:22 am

When Edward Snowden came out as the source of leaks about the National Security Agency's surveillance programs, he was immediately labeled a whistle-blower by many.

Is the term a misnomer?

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The Two-Way
1:33 pm
Mon June 10, 2013

CBS News: Memo Alleges State Dept. Influence Over Investigations

Originally published on Mon June 10, 2013 4:13 pm

CBS News has obtained what it says is a memo written by the State Department's investigative arm indicating that some of its investigations into allegations of illegal and inappropriate behavior of department employees were "influenced, manipulated, or simply called off."

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Krulwich Wonders...
1:06 pm
Mon June 10, 2013

Watts For Lunch? (Or Why Humans Are Like Light Bulbs)

Robert Krulwich NPR

There's a new lunch place down the block, so like you do when the menu looks interesting, I walked in and ordered something mysterious, which for me was the "Red Lentil and Edamame Salad," mostly because I can never remember what edamame is, and because that word suggests doing something slightly frightening, like munching accidentally on one's mother.

How Much Energy Am I Eating? Enough To Power A Flashlight?

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The Salt
1:00 pm
Mon June 10, 2013

Sandwich Monday: The Politician

Artist's rendering

Originally published on Tue June 11, 2013 4:36 pm

The Sandwich Monday crew is out of the office today, at a staff retreat where they're probably going to make us exercise. Still, here's a quick take on a new sandwich from one of our favorite spots.

The arrival of a new sandwich at Tudor's Biscuit World in West Virginia is a lot like that scene in The Lion King: Somebody takes the biscuit to the edge of a cliff and holds it out for all of Appalachia to behold, and all the animals rejoice, except the animals who end up on the biscuit.

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The Two-Way
12:50 pm
Mon June 10, 2013

For Bobby Fischer, WikiLeaks & NSA Leaker, Iceland Is Haven

Former world chess champion Bobby Fischer in March 2005 as he left Japan for Iceland, where he lived out his final years.
Yuriko Nakao Reuters /Landov

Edward Snowden, the former CIA and Booz Allen computer security technician who says he leaked information about National Security Agency surveillance programs, has told The Guardian that he wants "to seek asylum in a country with shared values

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13.7: Cosmos And Culture
12:23 pm
Mon June 10, 2013

Would You Accept DNA From A Murderer?

Does it matter where it comes from if it helps you out?
iStockphoto.com

Modern medicine and technology can change the way we define our physical and psychological selves. Is a prosthetic arm "your own arm" in the same sense that its biological predecessor seemed to be? Might taking antipsychotic medication fundamentally change your personality? Could an organ transplant from a pig, or from a violent murderer, somehow change who you are?

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Shots - Health News
11:26 am
Mon June 10, 2013

Designated Drivers Often Fail To Abstain From Drinking

Has the person taking the car keys been drinking, too?
Jacom Stephens iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Tue June 11, 2013 8:45 am

We might need to change the definition of a designated driver from noble abstainer to something along the lines of not as drunk as you.

The idea of having one person in a group agree not to drink so that everyone else can get home safely after a night of alcohol-fueled fun has been promoted as a way to reduce the dangers of drunken driving, especially among teenagers and young adults.

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