12:14pm

Thu January 5, 2012
Television

Brownstein And Armisen's Comedic Take On Portland

Carrie Brownstein and Fred Armisen film their sketch-comedy show Portlandia in the summer, when Armisen is on hiatus from Saturday Night Live. During the rest of the year, they communicate through constant text messages, says Armisen.
Chris Hornbecker IFC

Soon after Carrie Brownstein and Fred Armisen became friends, they started making sketch-comedy videos.

"We would email a link ... to our friends, but they were mostly for us," says Brownstein. "It was very understated and silly, and we were just sort of reveling in the absurd."

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12:00pm

Thu January 5, 2012
Sports

Olympic Hopeful Mixes Muslim Faith And Fencing

World-class fencer Ibtihaj Muhammad hopes to compete in the 2012 London Olympics. If she qualifies, it is believed that she will be the first practicing Muslim to represent the U.S. in women's fencing, and the first American to wear Islamic head-covering while competing. She speaks with host Michel Martin.

12:00pm

Thu January 5, 2012
U.S.

Tough Task Of Being America's Top Whistleblower

Carolyn Lerner is hoping to bring the U.S. Office of Special Counsel out of its many years of obscurity within the federal government. The OSC aims to protect whistleblowers, eliminate government waste and protect federal workers from discrimination. Host Michel Martin speaks with Lerner, who's been heading OSC for six months.

12:00pm

Thu January 5, 2012
NPR Story

Broadcasting Legend Georges Collinet Offers Wisdom

Cameroon-born Collinet began his radio career in the 1960s, introducing American soul singers like James Brown to African audiences. Collinet became a famed broadcaster in Africa and a top expert on African Pop music. He speaks with host Michel Martin about his upbringing, worldview, and why black Americans have been slow to embrace Afropop.

12:00pm

Thu January 5, 2012
NPR Story

Threatened In Tucson: Mexican American Studies

An Arizona administrative law judge recently ruled that a program in Tucson's public schools violates a state law banning classes that 'promote resentment toward a race or class of people.' But program supporters say the courses teach a neglected history and inspire Latino students to excel. The Los Angeles Times' Stephen Ceasar has reported this issue and speaks with host Michel Martin.

11:36am

Thu January 5, 2012
Music Reviews

On 'Back To Love,' Hamilton Makes Every Syllable Count

Anthony Hamilton.
Courtesy of the artist

On Back to Love, Anthony Hamilton makes music from declarations. He tells a woman "I'm missing you crazy" in "Who's Loving You," and it's typical of his strategy. He states his thesis, his opinion, his desire in a voice that speaks as much as it sings for the sake of emphasis. After he's sure he's gotten his lover's attention, he begins doing his rhythm-and-blues work, mixing soul and blues and hip-hop phrasing to heighten the emotion in a song.

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11:33am

Thu January 5, 2012
Around the Nation

The Race To Dig Deeper Ports For Bigger Cargo Ships

Originally published on Thu January 5, 2012 6:27 pm

A container ship prepares to leave the Port of Miami in 2010. Plans are under way to deepen the port to 50 feet to attract bigger ships coming from the Panama Canal, but they've recently been put on hold after environmental groups filed a petition.
Joe Raedle Getty Images

In 2014, when expansion of the Panama Canal is complete, a new generation of superlarge cargo ships will begin calling on the East Coast. Cities like New York; Savannah, Ga.; and Miami are vying for the new business, as they race to deepen their ports and expand their facilities to accommodate the new ships.

But some of the cities are running into significant challenges. In Miami, where plans are under way to deepen the port to 50 feet, dredging is a hot topic. Some see it as a great business opportunity. To others, it's a threat to the environment.

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11:15am

Thu January 5, 2012
The Two-Way

Obama: 'Military Will Be Leaner,' But Ready For All Threats

Saying that "the size and structure of our military and defense budget have to be driven by a strategy — not the other way around," President Obama just gave a broad overview of his administration's new military strategy.

Speaking at the Pentagon, Obama said that:

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11:00am

Thu January 5, 2012
The Two-Way

Man's iPad Passport Claim Is 'Categorically False,' Customs Office Says

Originally published on Thu January 5, 2012 11:01 am

You may have heard about that Canadian man who says he got into the U.S. by showing a Customs and Border Protection officer an image of his passport on an iPad.

Well, U.S. Customs and Border Protection has this to say about that:

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Stephen J. Dubner is an award-winning author, journalist, and TV personality. He is the co-author, with Steven D. Levitt, of Freakonomics (2005) and SuperFreakonomics (2009), which have sold more than 5 million copies in 35 languages. Freakonomics has been translated into a high-profile documentary film (Freakonomics: The Movie); the Freakonomics blog, has been called “the most readable economics blog in the universe.”

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