7:45am

Tue July 31, 2012
Election 2012

Controversy Followed Romney On Overseas Trip

Originally published on Sun August 5, 2012 2:02 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.

Republican presidential candidate, Mitt Romney, wrapped up a week-long foreign trip today, with a speech in Warsaw, Poland. His trip overseas, which began in London and then on to Jerusalem, was designed to bolster Romney's foreign policy credentials, but instead it's been riddled with gaffs and controversy.

Joining us now from Warsaw, is NPR's Eric Westervelt. Good morning.

ERIC WESTERVELT, BYLINE: Good morning, Renee.

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7:36am

Tue July 31, 2012
The Two-Way

Massive Failure: 600 Million In India Lose Power; Grid Collapses For Second Day

Originally published on Tue July 31, 2012 2:38 pm

Passengers waited for trains Tuesday at a railway station in New Delhi. Another grid failure cut power, causing chaos.
Raveendran AFP/Getty Images

At day's end in India, after what's been called the "world's biggest blackout" ever, officials were reporting that electric service had been restored to most of the 670 million or so people who lost it on Tuesday.

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7:19am

Tue July 31, 2012
NPR Story

Punk Band's Case Tests Putin's Tolerance For Dissent

Originally published on Tue July 31, 2012 7:52 am

Three women charged with blasphemy went on trial Monday in Russia in a case that's being seen as a major test of President Vladimir Putin's tolerance for dissent. The women are members of the band Pussy Riot. They were arrested after staging a punk rock protest at the altar of a Moscow cathedral.

5:07am

Tue July 31, 2012
Crisis In The Housing Market

Is Housing Recovery Real? Not Everyone Is Convinced

Originally published on Tue July 31, 2012 5:08 pm

A construction worker carries lumber while working on new homes in San Mateo, Calif., in March. Homebuilding is at its highest level in nearly four years.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Housing, the sector that led us into the recession, now looks to be one of the brighter spots in the economy. Homebuilding is at its highest level in nearly four years. More homes are selling, and at higher prices.

The question, of course, is whether this is a solid enough foundation to sustain a full housing recovery.

Lawrence Yun, the chief economist for the National Association of Realtors, says housing woes are largely behind us.

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5:07am

Tue July 31, 2012
Dead Stop

Rediscovered Headstones Hold Clues To Earthquake

Originally published on Tue July 31, 2012 8:55 am

The Gilliam Cemetery, near Sebastopol, Calif., received its first grave in 1852. Many of its older headstones have disappeared over the years.
Cindy Carpien NPR

The Gilliam Cemetery, which lies 60 miles north of San Francisco, appears to be gaining residents lately. But it's not only because new people have been interred there. Instead, headstones that wound up being buried a century ago have been found and resurrected.

The cemetery's story begins in 1850, when a wagon train of pioneers left Missouri and settled near what is now Sebastopol, Calif. The Gilliam Cemetery was started in 1852, when Polly Gilliam Sullivan and her husband, Isaac, needed a place to bury their stillborn son.

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5:06am

Tue July 31, 2012
Shots - Health Blog

Medical Technician Might Have Exposed Hundreds To Hepatitis C

Originally published on Tue July 31, 2012 3:24 pm

After five years of crisscrossing the country as a traveling medical technician, David Kwiatkowski landed at New Hampshire's Exeter Hospital in the spring of 2011. A full-time job in the hospital's cardiac unit soon followed.

It was at Exeter that federal prosecutors say the 33-year-old began to divert syringes of the drug Fentanyl. They say Kwiatkowski, who was arrested July 19, would inject himself with the painkiller, and then refill syringes with a saline solution. He is hepatitis C-positive, meaning those tainted needles might have spread the liver-damaging virus.

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5:06am

Tue July 31, 2012
Politics

Romney Goes After Obama On Alleged Leaking Of Secrets

Originally published on Tue July 31, 2012 8:25 am

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney meets with members of the Veterans of Foreign Wars after his speech at the VFW National Convention in Reno, Nev., on July 24.
Rich Pedroncelli AP

The latest national security issue to figure in the presidential campaign has little to do with Iran, Afghanistan or other foreign policy challenges. Mitt Romney is instead focusing on what he and other Republicans allege is the Obama administration's record of leaking classified information for political purposes.

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5:04am

Tue July 31, 2012
Space

Telescope Targets Black Holes' Binges And Burps

Originally published on Tue July 31, 2012 7:45 am

The NuSTAR telescope, seen in this artist's illustration, will soon be sending back data that researchers will use to study black holes.
NASA/JPL-Caltech

NASA's newest space telescope will start searching the universe for black holes on Wednesday. Scientists hope the NuSTAR X-ray telescope, which launched about six weeks ago and is now flying about 350 miles above the Earth, will help shed some light on the mysteries of these space oddities.

Mission control for the telescope is a small room on the University of California, Berkeley, campus, where about a dozen people with headsets rarely look up from their screens.

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5:03am

Tue July 31, 2012
Europe

Italy Worries Sicily's Woes Could Have Ripple Effect

Originally published on Tue July 31, 2012 5:09 pm

Raffaele Lombardo, the governor of Sicily, speaks to reporters after his meeting with Italian Prime Minister Mario Monti in Rome last week. Lombardo has been accused of having ties to the Mafia in Sicily.
Alessandro Bianchi Reuters/Landov

In antiquity, Sicily was known as Greater Greece. Now, the eurozone crisis has led to sharp spending cuts and, with an economy based on public sector wages, Sicily is being called Italy's Greece. The central government fears the region's debt of more than $6 billion could further endanger the country's financial stability.

Worried about contagion, the Rome government is dictating on Sicily tough bailout conditions similar to those international lenders imposed on Greece.

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7:23pm

Mon July 30, 2012
It's All Politics

Romney's Foreign Trip Hits Right Note For Some, Potholes For Others

Originally published on Sun August 5, 2012 2:01 pm

Mitt Romney, right, meets Monday with former Polish President Lech Walesa in Gdansk.
Charles Dharapak AP

As Mitt Romney nears the end of his seven-day trip abroad, it's safe to call the results mixed at best.

The trip to Great Britain, Israel and Poland had several goals. It was meant to show that Romney has the gravitas and acumen to be this country's top foreign affairs policymaker; to remind U.S. voters of his success running the 2002 Salt Lake City Olympics; to appeal to certain voters in battleground states, especially Jewish and Catholic voters of Polish heritage, and to raise campaign cash.

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