4:00am

Fri March 23, 2012
Europe

Portuguese Struggle Amid Austerity Measures

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Thousands of Portuguese workers walked off the job yesterday. They were protesting austerity measures tied to the country's $100 billion bailout from the European Union and International Monetary Fund.

Let's go to Lisbon now. Lauren Frayer reports that among protesters a sense of despair and confusion are more prevalent than anger.

(SOUNDBITE OF PROTEST)

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4:00am

Fri March 23, 2012
Europe

With Gunman Dead, France Probes For Answers

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm David Greene. Good morning.

Mohamed Mehra, the self-confessed gunman who terrorized the French city of Toulouse, was killed yesterday in a shootout with French police. Authorities had hoped to bring him in alive, to find out what drove him to commit the attacks that left seven dead, including three children at a Jewish school. Now, France is left to wonder whether its intelligence services missed signs that could've prevented the tragedy. NPR's Eleanor Beardsley sends this report.

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3:06am

Fri March 23, 2012
Religion

Pope Expected To Address Drug Violence In Mexico

Originally published on Fri March 23, 2012 12:24 pm

Pope Benedict XVI is expected to speak out against drug violence during his visit to Mexico, which begins Friday. Here, an actor is shown in front of a poster announcing the pope's visit Wednesday in the Mexican city of Leon, Guanajuato state.
Hector Guerrero AFP/Getty Images

Pope Benedict XVI begins a visit Friday that takes him to Mexico, a country with around 100 million Catholics, and to Cuba, a place where church leaders have played an increasingly active role in seeking change.

There are sensitive issues in both countries that the pope is likely to address in some form. In Mexico, it's the brutal drug war that has claimed roughly 50,000 lives over the past five years.

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12:01am

Fri March 23, 2012
Monkey See

'Mad Men' Returns On Sunday, To The Delight Of Its Excitable Fans

Jon Hamm plays Don Draper on Mad Men, which returns this Sunday night.
Frank Ockenfels AMC

On Friday's Morning Edition, Elizabeth Blair investigates one of television's pressing questions: Why has Mad Men been off the air so long? It's returning this Sunday night with a two-hour season premiere, but it's still puzzled some viewers that it has been off for such a long time.

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10:00pm

Thu March 22, 2012
StoryCorps

Two Lost Souls Find Each Other In A Hospital

Originally published on Fri March 23, 2012 1:39 pm

Winslow and Dorothy Jackson met at a hospital six years ago and have since decided to see the world together.
StoryCorps

Winslow Jackson was divorced when he met Dorothy Biebrich in 2006 at the Shepherd Center in Atlanta.

She was widowed.

They also both had multiple sclerosis.

"On my birthday, I was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis; three years later, my wife left, and we were divorced," Winslow, 62, said during a recent visit to StoryCorps in Atlanta. "And that was, undoubtedly, the saddest time of my life, because I felt so stranded."

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6:48pm

Thu March 22, 2012
It's All Politics

Obama Returns To Oklahoma Talking Oil

Originally published on Thu March 22, 2012 7:00 pm

President Obama announces support for building an oil pipeline from Oklahoma to Texas, Thursday in Cushing, Okla.
Tom Pennington Getty Images

Thursday marked the first time President Obama has visited Oklahoma since running for the White House in 2008. He didn't win the state four years ago, and he's not expected to carry the traditionally red state this November, either.

But one Oklahoma town took center stage Thursday as Obama wrapped up a two-day tour of four states promoting his energy policy.

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6:45pm

Thu March 22, 2012
The Two-Way

Robert Bales To Be Charged With 17 Counts Of Murder

Army Staff Sgt. Robert Bales during an August 2011 training exercise at Fort Irwin, Calif.
Spc. Ryan Hallock AFP/Getty Images

The Army soldier suspected of going on a shooting rampage in Afghanistan will be charged with 17 counts of murder, the AP, NBC News and Reuters are reporting.

The news organizations are pinning the report on unnamed U.S. officials.

NBC News reports Staff Sgt. Robert Bales will face six additional counts of assault and attempted murder in connection the March 11 massacre in southern Afghanistan.

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6:36pm

Thu March 22, 2012
The Two-Way

Top Executives Quit Komen After Planned Parenthood Controversy

Originally published on Fri March 23, 2012 6:46 am

There have been several high-profile resignations from the Susan G. Komen for the Cure amid calls for the group's founder and chief executive to resign, media reports say.

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6:22pm

Thu March 22, 2012
The Two-Way

Or Maybe They're Just Throwing Darts

Originally published on Thu March 22, 2012 7:14 pm

Lana Turner, center, is an interested listener as actress Ava Gardner leans over her to chat with Fernando Lamas, who is famous for saying, "It's better to look good, than feel good."
AP

Why do economists keep getting it wrong?

For months, the job market's strength has been exceeding economists' predictions. It happened again today: the Labor Department's weekly report on first-time jobless claims came in at just 348,000 — the lowest level in four years.

Most economists had predicted about 355,000 people had applied for unemployment benefits in the week ended March 17. So why do they keep missing the mark?

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6:03pm

Thu March 22, 2012
Law

Canadian Asked For Death, But Now Wants Life

Ronald Allen Smith is the only Canadian on death row in the United States. Since Canada has abolished the death penalty, Canadians have been advocating for clemency for Smith.
Courtesy of Montana State Prison

The only Canadian on death row in the United States is in the Montana State Prison, about an hour and a half southeast of Missoula. After almost three decades, he is asking the governor of Montana for mercy. The request for clemency is the last chance Alberta native Ronald Allen Smith has of avoiding execution.

"I've been here for 29 years," says Smith, who has spent more of his life inside the state's maximum security block than he has spent outside of it. He has tried to think about his crime as little as possible.

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