5:00am

Sat November 19, 2011
Politics

With Defense Budget Cuts Come Challenging Costs

The congressional supercommittee has only a few days left to come up with a plan to cut $1.2 trillion from the federal deficit. One of the areas on the chopping block is the nation's defense budget, and Pentagon officials are pushing back against any cuts beyond the $450 billion they've already been asked to make.

The defense budget is an easy target when it comes to cutting the deficit, because it makes up half of the federal government's entire discretionary budget, says Todd Harrison, a senior fellow at the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments.

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3:46am

Sat November 19, 2011
Fresh Air Weekend

Fresh Air Weekend: Regis Philbin, Alexander Payne

Originally published on Sat November 19, 2011 4:52 pm

George Clooney in The Descendents
Fox Searchlight

Fresh Air Weekend highlights some of the best interviews and reviews from past weeks, and new program elements specially paced for weekends. Our weekend show emphasizes interviews with writers, filmmakers, actors, and musicians, and often includes excerpts from live in-studio concerts. This week:

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2:57am

Sat November 19, 2011
Author Interviews

Speak, Memory: 'An Ending' That Uncovers The Past

The Sense of an Ending, winner of the 2011 Man Booker Prize, might be — paradoxically — Julian Barnes' slenderest and most emotionally forthcoming book to date. In his previous novels and short stories, emotion has been stifled, concealed or tucked behind technical devices (as in Flaubert's Parrot). In this latest book, feeling is laid bare and imbued into Barnes' longstanding intellectual preoccupations with authorship, authenticity and mortality.

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12:40am

Sat November 19, 2011
Politics

Foreign Policy Funding A Top Candidate For Cuts

Workers take a break in front of the cooling towers of a coal-fired power plant in Dadong, Shanxi province, China. At a House hearing on Tuesday, Nisha Biswal defended USAID's programs in China, saying the money goes to efforts that include reducing harmful emissions from the country's power plants.
Andy Wong AP

Should the United States give aid to China? Given America's trade imbalance with China, few politicians think it's a good idea.

That's why a hearing over $4 million that the U.S. Agency for International Development intends to spend on environmental programs in China drew such heat on Capitol Hill this week.

A bipartisan group of lawmakers lined up at a House hearing on Tuesday to denounce the program as "an insult to the American taxpayer" that would pour "U.S. taxpayer dollars down the toilet."

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6:43pm

Fri November 18, 2011
The Two-Way

Cool Photo: Scientists Present 'Lightest Material On Earth'

Researchers created a "micro-lattice" structure of interconnected hollow tubes with a wall thickness of 100 nanometers, 1,000 times thinner than a human hair.
Dan Little HRL Laboratories

We were stunned when we saw this image:

According to HRL Laboratories that is an "ultralight metallic microlattice" sitting atop a dandelion. The material was developed by scientists at HRL, The California Institute of Technology and the University of California, Irvine.

The material is 99.99 percent air and 100 times lighter than styrofoam.

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6:26pm

Fri November 18, 2011
Music Interviews

Peggy Sue: Mining The Dark And The Discordant

Peggy Sue's new album is Acrobats.
Patrick Ford

There's no Peggy Sue — or even a Margaret or a Susan, for that matter — in the British folk-rock band Peggy Sue. There is, however, a hard-driving group that has just released its second album, Acrobats. Peggy Sue is the trio of singers and guitarists Rosa Slade and Katy Young, and drummer Olly Joyce.

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6:24pm

Fri November 18, 2011
Music Interviews

Romeo Santos: Taking Bachata Mainstream

Romeo Santos.
Courtesy of the artist

5:58pm

Fri November 18, 2011
Social Entrepreneurs: Taking On World Problems

India Eye Care Center Finds Middle Way To Capitalism

Originally published on Tue November 29, 2011 7:38 pm

Patients sit after their cataract surgeries at a hospital of the Aravind Eye Care System in Madurai, India.
Reinhard Krause Reuters/Landov

At an Aravind hospital in Madurai, a city on India's southern tip, the waiting room is packed. A clinical assistant calls out the names of patients, and they're escorted to examination rooms. This hospital alone screens around 2,000 patients a day — and tour guide Shawas Philip says this day is busier than usual.

"We might break that record today — of the number of patients that are seen on a particular day. That's exciting," he says.

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5:49pm

Fri November 18, 2011
Movie Interviews

In 'Hugo,' Scorsese Salutes A Movie Magician

For his new film, director Martin Scorsese worked to recreate the scenes of Brian Selznick's illustrated children's book, The Invention of Hugo Cabret.
Jaap Buitendijk GK Films

In his 2007 children's book, The Invention of Hugo Cabret, author Brian Selznick tells the story of an orphan named Hugo who lives in the walls of a Paris train station and spends his time winding the clocks.

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5:41pm

Fri November 18, 2011
Music Interviews

A.A. Bondy: Making His Own World

A.A. Bondy performs at The Waiting Room in Omaha, Neb. He says it took him eight days to write his new album, Believers.
Hilary Stohs-Krause

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