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12:01am

Thu January 12, 2012
World

In Russia, Modern 'Revolution' Comes At Its Own Pace

Originally published on Thu January 12, 2012 10:08 am

The Russian village of Sagra has been in the headlines since last summer, when residents — including 56-year-old Viktor Gorodilov (shown here) — successfully fought off an armed criminal gang that they say threatened their community. For many Russians, Sagra has become a symbol of how they say the government has let them down.
David Gilkey NPR

Russia had one of the world's most famous revolutions nearly a century ago, in 1917. Yet for centuries, the country has seemed to prefer strong leaders who promised stability rather than revolutionary change. On a trip across Russia today on the Trans-Siberian railroad, NPR's David Greene found many Russians who expressed disappointment with their current government. But most said they wanted changes to be gradual, and were not looking for a major upheaval.

Second of three parts

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12:01am

Thu January 12, 2012
Economy

Project's Promise Of Jobs Has Appalachia Seeing Stars

Originally published on Tue August 7, 2012 3:42 pm

Visitors view a photo montage of Royal Dutch Shell's Ethylene Cracker Complex during its opening ceremony in Singapore in 2010. The company is expected to announce plans soon for an ethylene cracker plant in Ohio, Pennsylvania or West Virginia.
Munshi Ahmed Bloomberg

Ever since the collapse of the domestic steel industry, blue-collar workers living in the mountain towns near the border of Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Ohio have struggled to find jobs.

But last June, Shell Oil Co. announced it would build a huge petrochemical refinery somewhere in that Appalachian region. The plant, known in the industry as a "cracker," could bring billions of investment dollars and thousands of jobs.

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12:01am

Thu January 12, 2012
Planet Money

The History Of Factory Jobs In America, In One Town

A shuttered cotton mill in Greenville County, South Carolina
scmikeburton Flickr

For more, see Adam Davidson's cover story in this month's issue of The Atlantic.

Greenville County, South Carolina is where manufacturing's past and future live side by side. This is not a metaphor; it's a visible fact. In South Carolina, and throughout America, factories produce more than ever. Yet in Greenville, there are abandoned textile mills everywhere you look.

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12:01am

Thu January 12, 2012
Technology

Critics See 'Disaster' In Expansion Of Domain Names

Originally published on Thu January 12, 2012 5:28 am

mipan iStockphoto.com

Vast new tracts of the Internet are up for sale as of Thursday. The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, known as ICANN, is forging ahead with plans to sell new domain categories despite some vocal opposition from regulators and advertisers.

Forget .com or .org — for a registration fee of $185,000, applicants can register a new suffix like .music, or perhaps a brand like .NPR. If you think of the Internet as virtual land, new continents are now on the block.

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12:01am

Thu January 12, 2012

12:01am

Thu January 12, 2012
It's All Politics

Some At RNC Meeting Say It's Romney's Race To Lose

Originally published on Thu January 12, 2012 10:39 am

Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney greets supporters during a campaign rally in Columbia, S.C., on Wednesday.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

The annual winter meeting of the Republican National Committee got under way in New Orleans on Wednesday, just hours after Mitt Romney won New Hampshire's Republican presidential primary.

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12:01am

Thu January 12, 2012
Author Interviews

Connie Rice: Conscience Of The City

Originally published on Thu January 12, 2012 1:42 pm

For years, civil rights attorney Constance Rice says, she would wake up every morning trying to figure out new ways to sue the Los Angeles Police Department into policing minority communities more fairly.

In her memoir, Power Concedes Nothing, Rice details how she went from the LAPD's antagonist to reformer, convincing police that they needed to court the backing and support of the city's African-American and Latino populations.

Relations between the attorney and the police force have warmed over the years: The LAPD even hosted Rice's book release party.

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12:01am

Thu January 12, 2012
Business

Luxury Tractor Makes Debut At Detroit Auto Show

Craftsman's CTX tractor series is the first to be featured at the Detroit Auto Show. The newly unveiled line is equipped with many automobile-inspired features, including cup holders.
Mercedes Mejia

At the 2012 North American International Auto Show, it's clear that the industry's love affair with alpha-numeric designations hasn't waned. There's the ATS, the 700C, the MKZ. Now comes the CTX, a new line of Craftsman riding lawn mowers. They are fast, powerful and loaded with amenities.

"Everybody knows that Detroit's the national stage for cars — Motor City is where autos come from. So this show made perfect sense to come here and launch the tractor," says Onney Crawley, Craftsman's director of brand management for lawn and garden.

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6:09pm

Wed January 11, 2012
The Salt

Did Food Safety Auditors Cause The Fatal Outbreak From Tainted Cantaloupes?

Originally published on Thu January 12, 2012 1:02 pm

Melons were left to rot in the field at Jensen Farms after it was identified as the source of a fatal listeria outbreak.
Ed Andrieski ASSOCIATED PRESS

Private auditors paid to review food safety at the Colorado cantaloupe packer responsible for last summer's massive outbreak gave the facility rave reviews just before contaminated melons were shipped, which killed 30 people.

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5:49pm

Wed January 11, 2012
NPR Story

Science Desk Experiments With Twinkies

Originally published on Wed January 11, 2012 5:49 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

You can buy Twinkies on the cheap right now. Safeway, just around the corner from our office here in Washington, has them on sale - two boxes for five bucks. So the NPR Science Desk was inspired to take part in the fine, long-standing tradition of experimenting with Twinkies.

NPR's Allison Aubrey reports on their findings.

ALLISON AUBREY, BYLINE: My colleagues, Julie Rovner, our health policy correspondent, and Adam Cole, a new addition to our team, had one idea.

So, what is your experiment, guys?

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5:45pm

Wed January 11, 2012
The Two-Way

Justice Department's No. 3 Stepping Down

Originally published on Wed January 11, 2012 5:53 pm

Outgoing Associate Attorney General Tom Perrelli.
Alex Wong Getty Images

Associate Attorney General Tom Perrelli will leave the third highest-ranking post at the Justice Department in March after nearly three years managing a bustling portfolio that has run the gamut from mortgage abuses and the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico to stamping out domestic violence in Indian country.

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5:44pm

Wed January 11, 2012
National Security

Can Iran Close The World's Most Important Oil Route?

Originally published on Wed January 11, 2012 10:24 pm

A member of Iran's navy participates in a drill on Dec. 28, 2011, in the Sea of Oman. Tehran is threatening to close the strategic Strait of Hormuz at the mouth of the Persian Gulf, in retaliation for new sanctions by the West.
Ali Mohammadi AP

As tensions rise between Iran and the West, Tehran has threatened to block the Strait of Hormuz, a transit route for one-fifth of the world's oil. Is it more than an empty threat?

"The simple answer is: Yes, they can block it," Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said on CBS's Face the Nation on Jan. 8.

"They've invested in capabilities that for a short period of time block the Strait of Hormuz," he said.

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5:30pm

Wed January 11, 2012
The Two-Way

Pentagon Disgusted, Marines Investigating Disturbing Video

Originally published on Wed January 11, 2012 5:31 pm

"The Marine Corps is promising to investigate a disturbing web video that appears to show [four] Marines in Afghanistan urinating on the bloody corpses of [three] alleged Taliban fighters," Gannett Co.'s Marine Corps Times reports.

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5:07pm

Wed January 11, 2012
Shots - Health Blog

Marathon Runners Face Low Risk Of Cardiac Arrest

Running long-distance races isn't going to hurt your heart any more than other vigorous sports, researchers say. Just make sure you're fit enough to attempt the feat in the first place.

In the past decade, nearly 11 million runners participated in long-distance races, but only 59 suffered cardiac arrests, according to findings just published in the New England Journal of Medicine. Most of the cases happened to be in runners with undiagnosed, pre-existing heart problems.

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5:05pm

Wed January 11, 2012
Africa

Nigeria Rattled By Strikes, Sectarian Violence

Originally published on Wed January 11, 2012 5:59 pm

The Nigerian government removed fuel subsidies, which drove up prices and prompted nationwide strikes this week. Here, a young man protests in front of burning tires in the commercial capital Lagos on Tuesday.
Sunday Alamba AP

Nigeria's President Goodluck Jonathan is facing the most sustained challenge to his presidency as he confronts crises on two fronts.

His government recently removed fuel subsidies, which has sent transportation costs soaring and prompted nationwide strikes that were in their third day Wednesday.

And a radical Muslim group is warning of renewed sectarian violence in a country that has a roughly equal split between Muslims and Christians.

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5:03pm

Wed January 11, 2012
Business

Cadillac Gears Up To Take On German Automakers

Start Your Engines: With Cadillac's unveiling of the ATS — a compact luxury car — the Detroit automaker put itself in direct competition with BMW's 3 Series and Mercedes-Benz's C-Class.
Geoff Robins AFP/Getty Images

This year's auto show in Detroit could set the stage for a shake-up in the fiercely competitive — and hugely profitable — luxury car scene. That's because there's a new kid on the block, and its name is Cadillac.

The General Motors company says its new small, high-performance ATS will allow it to compete for the first time with Audi, Mercedes-Benz and BMW. But getting a brand-new luxury car like the ATS ready for market can be a grueling process.

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4:43pm

Wed January 11, 2012
The Two-Way

Doctor Isolates Exercise Hormone; Tells People To Keep Exercising

What if your New Year's resolution to get more exercise could be fulfilled — by taking a pill? That's the far-flung idea suddenly brought much closer to reality by the discovery of a hormone called irisin, which is produced by the human body in response to exercise.

Irisin may hold some of exercise's key benefits that relate to obesity and Type 2 diabetes, researchers say.

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4:40pm

Wed January 11, 2012
The Two-Way

Ethics Committee Releases Report On Rep. Hastings, Probe Will Continue

Originally published on Wed January 11, 2012 4:57 pm

Rep. Alcee Hastings (D-Fla.)
Carl de Souza AFP/Getty Images

"The House Ethics Committee said Wednesday it needs more time to consider sexual harassment allegations against Rep. Alcee Hastings (D-Fla.)," The Associated Press writes, "but released a report in which the alleged victim detailed a pattern of sexually suggestive remarks and unwanted hugs."

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4:17pm

Wed January 11, 2012
NPR Story

Study Links Hospital Water Wall, Legionnaires' Disease

Audie Cornish talks with Thomas Haupt, respiratory disease epidemiologist for the Wisconsin Division of Public Health. He's the lead author of the study that helped uncover the source of a mysterious and large uptick in Legionnaires' disease. The study, "An Outbreak of Legionnaires Disease Associated with a Decorative Water Wall Fountain in a Hospital" was published in the online journal Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology.

3:47pm

Wed January 11, 2012
Deceptive Cadence

The Primary Season, A Cappella

Tired of the nerve-rattling chorus of pundits and office-seekers? Try an a cappella playlist as an antidote.
Luis Davilla Getty Images

The next 40-some weeks or so are going to be a screaming tower of political babble, a cacophony of accusing and boasting, pandering and slandering. I watch the news these days with the mute button permanently depressed, lest I fall into a permanent depression myself. There's only so much contention and vitriol a sensitive soul can bear.

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3:35pm

Wed January 11, 2012
The Two-Way

EPA Creates Website To ID Biggest Emitters Of Greenhouse Gases

Originally published on Wed January 11, 2012 3:39 pm

Ever wondered who the big greenhouse-gas emitters are in your neck of the woods? The answer is now just a click away.

The US Environmental Protection Agency today unveiled a new website that identifies most of the nation's biggest emitters of carbon dioxide, methane and other greenhouse gases. It lets you, for example:

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3:30pm

Wed January 11, 2012
The Two-Way

Nigeria Faces Double-Edged Crisis In Protests, Militant Group

Originally published on Wed January 11, 2012 5:45 pm

Protesters gather to protest against the end of gasoline subsidies in Lagos. Wednesday marked the third day of mass strikes by labor and civil society.
Pius Utomi Ekpei AFP/Getty Images

Parts of Nigeria are under a 24-hour curfew, after demonstrations against a government policy to end fuel subsidies turned into a fiery rampage in the city of Minna. The BBC reports that "hundreds of rioters set fire to government and political party offices and also targeted the homes of local politicians."

The AP lays out the basics of how we got here:

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3:22pm

Wed January 11, 2012
It's All Politics

Expert: Pollsters Undersampled Paul's Young, Indie New Hampshire Voters

Originally published on Wed January 11, 2012 6:38 pm

Young voters at the University of New Hampshire listen to Rep. Ron Paul on Friday, Jan. 6, 2012.
Evan Vucci AP

Did pollsters underestimate the strength of Rep. Ron Paul's New Hampshire support because they didn't include enough younger voters or independents in their samples?

Yes, argues Stefan Hankin, a Washington, D.C. based pollster in a piece on the Campaign and Elections website.

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3:15pm

Wed January 11, 2012
The Two-Way

How's The Economy? Federal Reserve Reports 'Ongoing Improvement'

As we've said before, to figure out what the Federal Reserve means when it reports about how the economy is doing and whether policymakers think it's doing better or worse, you need to carefully compare the central bank's latest words to what it has said in preceding months.

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3:09pm

Wed January 11, 2012
Afghanistan

Afghan Announcements Annoy U.S., Hurt Relations

Afghan President Hamid Karzai, shown here during a press conference with U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta in Kabul last month, has become increasingly combative toward the U.S. recently.
Massoud Hossaini AFP/Getty Images

U.S.-Pakistan ties are virtually frozen. And now, relations between Afghan President Hamid Karzai and Washington are once again getting frosty.

Over the weekend Karzai surprised the Americans with the demand that the largest U.S.-run prison be turned over to Afghan control much sooner that planned.

It's the latest in a series of announcements by the Afghan government that sometimes appear designed to embarrass and annoy U.S. officials, as well as complicate American plans to withdraw troops from Afghanistan.

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3:05pm

Wed January 11, 2012
It's All Politics

Sign The End Is Nigh For Huntsman? In Hypothetical, Colbert Beats Him In S.C.

Originally published on Wed January 11, 2012 3:34 pm

Stephen Colbert.
Scott Gries PictureGroup

After a third-place finish in New Hampshire, the state he poured his heart and soul into and placed all his bets on, Jon Huntsman doesn't need any more bad news. Just a cursory look at the headlines, and you find they're mostly talking about the end. Even the Christian Science Monitor doesn't mince words, asking, "Is Jon Huntsman toast?"

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3:05pm

Wed January 11, 2012
Shots - Health Blog

Do Nicotine Patches And Gum Help Smokers Quit?

There are new questions about the value of nicotine patches and gum in helping people quit smoking.
Patrik Stollarz AFP/Getty Images

Nicotine patches and gums have been helping smokers quit for decades. Right?

Even President Obama, once the Smoker in Chief, has kicked the habit with the help of nicotine replacement therapy, according to his doctor's latest report.

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3:04pm

Wed January 11, 2012
Middle East

Death Of Iranian Nuclear Expert Adds To Tensions

Iranian security forces inspect the site where a magnetic bomb attached to a car by a motorcyclist exploded outside a university in Tehran on Jan. 11, 2012, killing nuclear scientist Mostafa Ahmadi Roshan.
Sajad Safari AFP/Getty Images

An explosion in Tehran Wednesday killed an Iranian nuclear scientist while he was driving his car. It's the fifth such death in five years, and Iranian officials immediately blamed Israel. The attack is the latest manifestation of escalating tensions between Iran and the West.

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2:59pm

Wed January 11, 2012
Latin America

Pope To Visit Cuba To Endorse Church's Growing Role

Originally published on Wed January 11, 2012 5:59 pm

Pope Benedict XVI will travel in March to Cuba, where he's expected to endorse the growing dialogue between the church and the state. Here, an employee from the Rome's Biopark zoo holds a rare Cuban crocodile Wednesday, as he meets the pontiff at the Vatican. The crocodile will be returned to Cuba around the time the pope visits the island.
Osservatore Romano AP

When Pope Benedict XVI goes to Latin America in March, Mexico is an obvious choice, with nearly 100 million Catholics.

But communist-run Cuba is also on his itinerary. The 84-year-old pontiff does not travel often, and this leg of his trip will be a strong show of support for Cuba's church leaders and their growing role in pushing President Raul Castro's government for change.

More than anywhere else in Cuba, the Santa Rita church in Havana's Miramar district is the place where religion and politics intersect.

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2:51pm

Wed January 11, 2012
Election 2012

Election 2012 Moves On, And America Yawns

Originally published on Thu January 12, 2012 10:45 am

A man walks past campaign workers touting their candidates during voting in the New Hampshire primary, at Webster Elementary School in Manchester on Tuesday.
Andrew Burton Getty Images

Tuesday was an exciting night for Mitt Romney in New Hampshire. In mid-Ohio, not so much.

By about 9 a.m. Wednesday, the bankruptcy of a local barbecue restaurant chain was one of several stories ranked higher in the "most popular stories" list on The Columbus Dispatch's website than anything coming out of the GOP primary.

For many people, the election so far just hasn't been that interesting — and it might be even less so if Romney again rakes in the chips in South Carolina next week, adding to the perception that his nomination is virtually a done deal.

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