2:08pm

Wed May 23, 2012
NPR Story

Mike Nichols Warns 'Death' May Be His Last Job

Originally published on Thu May 24, 2012 11:55 am

Mike Nichols' directing credits include Spamalot on Broadway, the movies Working Girl and The Birdcage, and HBO's Angels in America.
Ida Astute

Mike Nichols has won every major entertainment award over a decades-long career that includes theater, comedy, television and film. He performed as half of the comedy team Nichols and May, won his first Academy Award directing The Graduate, and returned to Broadway with a revival of Death of a Salesman, which picked up seven Tony nominations. Nichols warns that the production may be his last.

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2:08pm

Wed May 23, 2012
NPR Story

Couch-Surfing: Global Travel On The Cheap

Originally published on Thu May 24, 2012 10:14 am

Couch-surfers pay for their lodgings with social interaction, not cash.
studio tdes Flickr

Nearly 4 million people are members of CouchSurfing.org and can find a host in every country — including North Korea — free of charge.

New Yorker staff writer Patricia Marx became a member recently and stayed with seven friendly strangers, from a graduate student in Iowa City to a couple in Bermuda in their 60s. She wrote about her experience for the magazine.

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1:33pm

Wed May 23, 2012
It's All Politics

At Auction, Reagan's Blood Is Pricey But A Bargain Versus Fidel-Signed Flag

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 3:30 pm

It's safe to say that when it comes to recent presidents, Ronald Reagan is the most venerated, especially among Republicans but not exclusively so. Some even accuse conservatives of beatifying the 40th president as though he were on the road to sainthood.

So it's not surprising there would be a Reagan relic out there, specifically a medical-lab vial purportedly containing the dried remains of a blood sample taken from the president on the day he was nearly assassinated in March 1981.

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1:21pm

Wed May 23, 2012
Shots - Health Blog

Compensating Organ Donors Becomes 'Talk Of The Nation'

iStockphoto.com

When we first kicked around the idea of asking people to share their opinions about compensating organ donors, it was pretty clear that we were on to something. Everybody in the newsroom seemed to have a strong feeling about it.

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1:07pm

Wed May 23, 2012
The Two-Way

Mayor Bloomberg: Immigration May Be Only Solution For Crumbling Cities

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg.
Lucas Jackson AP

For the most part, we don't hear novel arguments in favor or against the controversial issue of immigration. Mayor Michael Bloomberg has been one of the few to take a different view. Last year, he advocated opening the door to new immigrants if they all moved to Detroit.

At the time, it was derided as weird.

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1:00pm

Wed May 23, 2012
The Two-Way

Patrick Fitzgerald, High-Profile Prosecutor, Stepping Down

United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois Patrick Fitzgerald.
John Gress Getty Images

Patrick Fitzgerald, the federal prosecutor who obtained the conviction of Vice President Cheney's chief of staff for lying to authorities about the leaking of a CIA officer's name and who sent former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich (D) to jail on corruption charges, is stepping down from his post.

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12:52pm

Wed May 23, 2012
Music

Remembering Baritone Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 2:58 pm

German baritone Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau performing Benjamin Britten's 'War Requiem' in Coventry Cathedral.
Erich Auerbach Getty Images

12:36pm

Wed May 23, 2012
Commentary

Does Power Really Lie With Bystanders?

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 1:49 pm

Just as bystanders have the power to keep motorists and pedestrians in check, Tell Me More host Michel Martin suggests they also have sway over contentious social issues like same-sex marriage and immigration.
Fabian Bimmer AP

On my route home, there are a couple of stretches I tend to hit where, more often than not, there are a lot of people trying to cross the street at points where there are crosswalks but no stoplights.

And kids being kids, sometimes there's no crosswalk, but they're trying to cross anyway. Increasingly now, because there are new apartments going up, I also see more young working people marching across the street, carrying their take-out dinners, ear buds in place.

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12:31pm

Wed May 23, 2012
Election 2012

Get Ready For The First Robot President

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 2:48 pm

While American politicians may be scripted, they're not this robotic. But whoever wins the presidency this year will preside over a U.S. economy where automation is becoming increasingly important.
iStockphoto

As many folks know, Bill Clinton was called the First Black President by Toni Morrison in The New Yorker.

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12:27pm

Wed May 23, 2012
The Salt

Sodexo's Beef With Food Certification Programs

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 12:42 pm

Think these labels we found on foods inside an NPR refrigerator are a lot to digest? Try balancing these considerations with the demands of 50 million diners a day.
Maggie Starbard NPR

Surely you've noticed the proliferation of certifications advertising farmers' and food companies' virtuous commitments to fix the environment or promote health. These seals can reassure, but the sheer volume of them can also confound. How to choose between grass-fed, organic, hormone-free or free range?

Now imagine that you have to feed 50 million people a day in 80 countries around the world. And every day more of those people are demanding that the food you serve them be organic, gluten-free, or fair trade.

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