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2:04pm

Wed May 2, 2012
Children's Health

What's Lost When Kids Don't Ride Bikes To School

Originally published on Wed May 2, 2012 2:53 pm

As childhood obesity rates continue to rise, schools and parents look for ways to get kids off the couch. But the number of students who walk or ride their bikes to school has dropped from 48% in 1969 to just 13% in 2009. David Darlington talks about his Bicycling article, "Why Johnny Can't Ride."

1:59pm

Wed May 2, 2012
The Two-Way

After Bar Brawl, British Parliament Moves To Limit Members' Drinks

When Parliament is in session, some may be overdoing it.
Dan Kitwood Getty Images
  • Larry Miller reporting from London

Getting into a fight at one of the four bars within the borders of the British Parliament's grounds not only brought House of Commons member Eric Joyce (a Labour MP) unwanted notoriety, it has also led to orders that bartenders and event staff start cutting off obviously intoxicated lawmakers.

Which, of course, would seem like something they already should have known they should do.

As the BBC says:

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1:57pm

Wed May 2, 2012
The Two-Way

Andy Pettitte Says He May Have Misunderstood HGH Conversation With Clemens

Former Major League baseball pitcher Andy Pettitte leaves a Federal Court in Washington on Wednesday.
Haraz N. Ghanbari AP

During a second day of testimony in the perjury trial against All-Star pitcher Roger Clemens, his old teammate Andy Pettitte walked back some of his previous testimony.

Yesterday, Pettitte said that he remembered having a conversation with Clemens in 1999 or 2000 in which Clemens admitted to using human growth hormone.

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1:40pm

Wed May 2, 2012
Can I Just Tell You?

Asking The Uncomfortable Questions

Michel Martin in Tell Me More's studio.
NPR

All week, we've been celebrating our fifth anniversary on the air. We actually hit that milestone on Monday, and we've been trying to have some fun with it — talking with 5-year-olds about what's fun about being 5; about five-year financial plans; and we checked in with some of the guests who were with us at the very beginning.

At this point, I realize you might be saying to yourself: Five? Big whoop! Come back to me when you're in double digits at least.

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1:33pm

Wed May 2, 2012
Shots - Health Blog

In Global Rankings, US Fares Poorly On Premature Births

Premature births are lowest in countries that are green. Red signals those with the worst problems.
March of Dimes

The United States has a higher rate of babies born early — and therefore at greater risk of death or health problems – than more than 125 other countries, including Rwanda, Uzbekistan, China and Latvia, according to a report out today.

About 12 percent of U.S. babies are born at 37 weeks or less, according to the report, which found a worldwide range of as few as 4.1 percent of babies in Belarus to as many as 18 percent in Malawi. Full term is considered 39 weeks.

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1:05pm

Wed May 2, 2012
The Two-Way

There May Never Be An Explanation In Death Of MI6 Agent Found In Locked Bag

Gareth Williams, 31, worked for Britain's secret eavesdropping service GCHQ but was attached to the country's MI6 overseas spy agency.
AP

Gareth Williams was a talented agent for Britain's secretive and renowned foreign intelligence agency. Williams was a codebreaker for MI6, until he was found dead in his apartment.

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12:27pm

Wed May 2, 2012
Pop Culture

Sherlock: A Character Who's More Than Elementary

Originally published on Wed May 2, 2012 1:04 pm

Basil Rathbone (right) as Sherlock Holmes and Nigel Bruce as Dr. Watson in The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, 1945.
AP

One of my favorite professors, the late Ian Watt, taught that there were four great myths of modern individualism: Faust, Don Juan, Don Quixote and Robinson Crusoe. This always got me wondering which, if any, pop-culture heroes might endure in the same way. James Bond? Luke Skywalker? The Avengers? C'mon. In fact, there's only one who I feel sure will last — Sherlock Holmes.

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12:26pm

Wed May 2, 2012
The Two-Way

NFL Suspends Four Players, One For Full Season, Over Saints' Bounties

Originally published on Wed May 2, 2012 12:37 pm

Oct. 31, 2010: Defensive coordinator Gregg Williams (then of the New Orleans Saints) talks to linebacker Jonathan Vilma. Williams has been suspended from the league indefinitely. Vilma will miss the 2012 season.
Matthew Sharpe Getty Images

Four NFL players tied to the so-called bountygate have now been hit with suspensions by the league. They were part of a scheme in which a New Orleans Saints coach created a bounty system for hits that knocked opponents out of games.

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12:04pm

Wed May 2, 2012
The Two-Way

Stocks Give Back Some Gains After Weak Economic Data Are Released

After hitting its highest mark since December 2007 on Tuesday because of a bullish report about the health of the manufacturing sector in April, the Dow Jones industrial average is right now down about 45 points (less than 0.3 percent) because of negative news about hiring and manufacturing.

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11:58am

Wed May 2, 2012
Election 2012

Are Asian-Americans An Untapped Voting Block?

Asian-Americans are one of the fastest growing minority groups in the country, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. A poll released Tuesday shows that a third identify as independents. Host Michel Martin explores whether this group is an untapped voting block. She speaks with a co-author of the poll, Mee Moua, and USC professor Jane Junn.

11:58am

Wed May 2, 2012
NPR Story

Who's Making Political Hay Out Of Osama Bin Laden?

Originally published on Wed May 2, 2012 12:31 pm

This week, the Beauty Shop ladies discuss whether President Obama and Mitt Romney are politicizing last year's killing of Osama bin Laden. They also weigh in on campaign ads meant to reach niche voters. Host Michel Martin checks in with professor Asra Nomani, policy analyst Michelle Bernard, and bloggers Viviana Hurtado and Danielle Belton.

11:58am

Wed May 2, 2012
Around the Nation

Best Part Of Being 5? Taking Off Training Wheels

NPR's Tell Me More turns five this week. During this time, the program has produced more than 1,300 hours of interviews that have piqued the interest of even the youngest listeners. Today, host Michel Martin hears from 5-year-old twins, Eric Miles Darby and Lauren Darby of Marietta, Georgia, about finally taking off those training wheels.

11:58am

Wed May 2, 2012
Performing Arts

When It Comes To War, Humor Helps Us Survive

Water by the Spoonful is this year's winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Drama. It's a play about addiction, memory, and the Iraq War. Host Michel Martin speaks with playwright Quiara Alegria Hudes, who says that her people don't have to wallow in misery, that we can laugh, even in our darkest moments.

11:48am

Wed May 2, 2012
The Two-Way

About 25,000 Troops May Be Needed In Afghanistan After 2014, Planners Say

When President Obama on Tuesday signed a 10-year security agreement with Afghan President Karzai, it wasn't announced how many U.S. troops would remain in Afghanistan past 2014 — the year Afghans are supposed to take over full responsibilty for security there.

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10:36am

Wed May 2, 2012
Author Interviews

ExxonMobil: A 'Private Empire' On The World Stage

Originally published on Wed May 2, 2012 12:30 pm

Steve Coll was a managing editor at The Washington Post and a staff writer for The New Yorker. He won a Pulitzer Prize in 1990 for reporting about the Securities and Exchange Commission and in 2004 for his book Ghost Wars: The Secret History of the CIA, Afghanistan, and Bin Laden, from the Soviet Invasion to September 10, 2001.
Courtesy of the author

In Private Empire, Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative journalist Steve Coll investigates how ExxonMobil has used its money and power to wield significant influence in Washington, D.C., particularly during the Bush administration.

Executives at the company maintained close personal connections with members of the Bush administration — but Coll says the "cliched idea that Exxon-Mobil was just an instrument of the Bush administration's foreign policy — a kind of extension of the American government during the Bush years — is just wrong."

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10:35am

Wed May 2, 2012
The Salt

What Pizza Hut's Crown Crust Pizza Says About Global Fast Food Marketing

The new Crown Crust Pizza from Pizza Hut
Pizza Hut Middle East/YouTube

Perhaps you've heard by now of the Crown Crust pizza, the pizza-cheeseburger hybrid recently unveiled by some of Pizza Hut's international franchisees. Available only at Pizza Hut Middle East, this fast food chimera features a vaguely crown-shaped crust studded with "cheeseburger gems," topped with lettuce and tomato, and drizzled with "special sauce."

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9:42am

Wed May 2, 2012
The Two-Way

Hiring Slowed In April, Report Signals

Businesses added just 119,000 jobs to their payrolls in April, a sharp drop from an estimated 201,000-gain in March, according to the latest ADP National Employment Report.

The private group's report is "a troubling sign" two days before the Bureau of Labor Statistics issues its figures on April employment growth and unemployment, The Associated Press says.

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9:13am

Wed May 2, 2012
Shots - Health Blog

Costly Heart Procedures Thrive In Some Places, Despite Cheaper Alternatives

Originally published on Wed May 2, 2012 9:38 am

Build a cardiac catheterization lab and doctors will tend to use it, even if treatment with drugs alone would suffice.
iStockphoto.com

Why do some doctors keep performing expensive medical procedures after it becomes apparent there are cheaper and equally safe ways to treat patients? A study of cardiac procedures in Michigan takes a crack at this question, and while it comes up short on definitive answers, it has some provocative findings.

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8:57am

Wed May 2, 2012
The Two-Way

We Had Dinner With Bin Laden In 2010, Men Tell BBC

Following the raid on Osama bin Laden's compound, the image of the al-Qaida leader was one of a man in hiding, watching himself on videos and plotting.
AFP/Getty Images

The story that Osama bin Laden never left his compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan, during the last five years of his life takes a hit with word from the BBC about a dinner the al-Qaida leader reportedly attended in the summer of 2010.

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8:25am

Wed May 2, 2012
Business

Virgin Atlantic Puts Richard Branson On Ice

The airline is molding ice cubes into Richard Branson's image to promote the in-flight bar.

8:16am

Wed May 2, 2012
Around the Nation

Thousands Of Bees Removed From New Jersey Home

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

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8:15am

Wed May 2, 2012
The Two-Way

'Afghan Good Enough' May Be Best U.S. And Allies Can Do

Originally published on Wed May 2, 2012 8:29 am

During his brief visit to Afghanistan, President Obama spoke to troops at Bagram Air Field north of Kabul.
Mandel Ngan AFP/Getty Images

Among the day-after analyses of President Obama's surprise trip to Afghanistan and the new pact about U.S.-Afghan relations is this from Anthony Cordesman at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, D.C.:

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7:59am

Wed May 2, 2012
Business

UBS Profits Drop 54 Percent In 1st Quarter

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with falling profits for UBS.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

GREENE: Suisse Bank UBS announced today that their profits fell 54 percent in the first quarter of this year. The drop is blamed on a decrease in investment banking income, and also because of an accounting charge on its debt.

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7:53am

Wed May 2, 2012
Law

DOJ Downplays Expectation For Hate Crimes Law

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

On a Wednesday, it's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And I'm David Greene. Nearly three years ago, Congress passed a federal hate crime law. It makes it illegal to target victims because of their race, religion or sexual orientation. The law drew protests from some Republican lawmakers and religious groups, who said it threatened their free speech rights. And the law has been used sparingly.

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7:51am

Wed May 2, 2012
Around the Nation

Texas Battling Pollution From Poultry Production

Originally published on Wed May 2, 2012 12:24 pm

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Americans are now eating more chicken than beef or pork. And meeting that demand is an industry that some have dubbed big chicken. Texas is a major player in the industry, and so now Texas must manage a problem that in other circumstances we might describe as fallout or blowback. Dave Fehling of member station KUHF in Houston explains what that problem is.

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7:48am

Wed May 2, 2012
Around the Nation

Occupy Movement Marks May Day With Protests

The Occupy protest movement was out in force Tuesday. May 1 is traditionally a day for labor demonstrations. For the most part, the demonstrations were noisy and theatrical but restrained.

7:30am

Wed May 2, 2012
Afghanistan

Taliban Claims Responsibility For Kabul Attack

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

News is slowly spreading across Afghanistan of President Obama's midnight visit to Kabul. And Afghans woke up this morning to a darker kind of news as well - that car bomb attack on a foreign aid compound little more than a mile from where the two presidents met hours earlier. NPR Kabul bureau chief Quil Lawrence joins me here in Kabul.

And let's start with this morning's attack. Tell us what you know about it at this point in time.

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7:26am

Wed May 2, 2012
The Two-Way

Will China Follow Through On Assurances About Activist's Safety?

Originally published on Wed May 2, 2012 4:26 pm

Chinese activist activist Chen Guangcheng earlier today at the a hospital in Beijing. He reportedly injured himself during his escape from house arrest last month.
Jordan Pouille AFP/Getty Images
  • From 'Morning Edition'

Chinese legal activist Chen Guangcheng has said to The Associated Press that "he was told Chinese officials would have killed his wife had he not left [the U.S.] embassy," the wire service reports.

It also writes that "Guangcheng says a U.S. official told him that Chinese authorities threatened to beat his wife to death had be not left the American Embassy."

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7:03am

Wed May 2, 2012
Business

The Last Word In Business

Originally published on Wed May 2, 2012 8:08 am

A home for the Academy Awards ceremony has been secured. The Kodak Theatre will now be called the Dolby Theatre. The audio technology company has signed a naming-rights deal with the real estate group that owns the property where the Oscar ceremony is held. Kodak, which filed for bankruptcy protection in January, gave up its naming rights.

7:03am

Wed May 2, 2012
Business

Pfizer Settles Suit Involving Celebrex

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Pfizer, one of the worlds largest drug companies, will pay Brigham Young University nearly half a billion dollars to settle a patent related lawsuit involving the company's blockbuster painkiller Celebrex.

NPR's Wendy Kaufman reports, the settlement comes as the case was about to go to trial.

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