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7:25am

Wed November 16, 2011
The Two-Way

'Murmurings' Of A Deal On Taxes And Deficit Reduction

There's one week to go before the so-called supercommittee on Capitol Hill is supposed to come up with a deal that combines at least $1.2 trillion in budget cuts and revenue increases to narrow upcoming deficits over the next decade. If lawmakers don't reach an agreement, that amount of spending cuts are supposed to happen automatically — with about 50 percent coming from defense and 50 percent from domestic spending other than Social Security and Medicare.

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6:36am

Wed November 16, 2011
All Tech Considered

Steve Jobs Dishes On The Tech Business In 'Lost Interview' From 1995

Originally published on Wed November 16, 2011 9:51 am

"We got the number of the Vatican and called the pope," Steve Jobs says of the first project he worked on with Steve Wozniak. Later, the two founded Apple Computer.

4:00am

Wed November 16, 2011
Election 2012

Perry Plan Would Make Big Changes To Washington

Originally published on Wed November 16, 2011 7:11 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Republican presidential hopeful Newt Gingrich is rising in the polls, but Rick Perry is back in the spotlight after some proposals he made in Iowa yesterday. The Texas governor wants Congress to take a 50 percent pay cut, as part of a sweeping plan to overhaul the government.

NPR's Scott Horsley reports.

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4:00am

Wed November 16, 2011
Asia

President Obama Travels To Australia

Australia is the latest stop on President Obama's tour of the Pacific Rim countries that the president thinks should be the new focus of U.S. foreign policy. It is already the focus of a competition for influence with China.

4:00am

Wed November 16, 2011
Afghanistan

Afghan Council To Consider Framework For U.S. Partnership

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

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4:00am

Wed November 16, 2011
Business

PETA Criticizes Nintendo's 'Super Mario 3D Land'

Originally published on Wed November 16, 2011 7:27 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And our last word in business today is save the tanooki.

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

MONTAGNE: The animal rights group People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals is attacking Nintendo's new video game "Super Mario 3-D Land." In the game, Super Mario sometimes wears the skin of a tanooki, which is a raccoon dog. Steve, you may have to finish...

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Oh no, come, no, no. It's fine. Come on, it's a raccoon dog. It's a nice animal.

MONTAGNE: Very sweet...

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4:00am

Wed November 16, 2011
Politics

Debt Reduction Committee's Deadline Is 1 Week Away

Originally published on Wed November 16, 2011 7:02 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And I'm Steve Inskeep, good morning.

Let's remember a bit of very recent history. Back in August, Congress came close to defaulting on U.S. government debts. Republicans wanted big cuts in spending. They finally got some, but a deal with President Obama pushed more deficit reductions off to the future, to a bipartisan committee which has been meeting this fall, and now has one week left until its deadline to reach a deal.

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4:00am

Wed November 16, 2011
Business

Olympus Scandal Could Hasten Disclosure Changes

Originally published on Wed November 16, 2011 8:20 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And here's a follow-up to the dramatic scandal at Olympus, which we've been following on this program. It's one of Japan's most respected corporations - or it was. Now executives Olympus are facing criminal charges and prison sentences. The company may be delisted from the Tokyo Stock Exchange, and may also go bankrupt. All this after revelations of dubious acquisitions and allegations of massive accounting fraud. From Tokyo, Lucy Craft has more.

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4:00am

Wed November 16, 2011
Business

House Panel Votes To End Fannie, Freddie Bonuses

The House Financial Services Committee voted on Wednesday to suspend nearly $13 million in bonuses paid to executives at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. The measure would also prohibit future bonuses. The Senate is expected to take up similar legislation.

3:48am

Wed November 16, 2011
Asia

In Indonesia, Anger Against Mining Giant Grows

Originally published on Wed November 16, 2011 8:22 pm

Police clash with workers of American mining company Freeport-McMoRan during a protest in Timika, Papua province, Indonesia, Oct. 10. Indonesian security forces fired on striking workers at Freeport-McMoRan's Grasberg gold and copper mine after a protest turned deadly.
Anonymous AP

A foreign mining company, protected by hundreds of soldiers, extracts precious resources from a remote tropical forest. The mining enrages indigenous tribes, who resist.

It may sound like a movie script, but it is in fact the story of the world's largest gold mine, located high in the mountains of Indonesia's Papua province and owned by Freeport-McMoRan, an American mining conglomerate.

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12:01am

Wed November 16, 2011
National Security

Small Fishing Boats Smuggle People To California

Originally published on Wed November 16, 2011 11:25 am

Fishermen and visitors gather at the beach in the village of Popotla, Mexico, some 15 miles south of the U.S.-Mexico border, in July 2010. Illegal immigrants are increasingly looking to the ocean, as they consider crossing overland more risky.
Guillermo Arias AP

Most mornings George Uraguchi grabs his paddle board and heads down a steep, secluded canyon in Palos Verdes, one of Los Angeles County's wealthier coastal communities. On one recent morning, though, his predawn excursion was interrupted by what he saw in the still water.

"It was more than just debris," Uraguchi says. "I saw some life jackets, and when I looked a little bit closer, then sure enough there was an overturned boat out there."

Uraguchi called 911, then hopped into the water and paddled out through the floating life jackets and bobbing fuel cans.

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12:01am

Wed November 16, 2011
It's All Politics

Illegal During Watergate, Unlimited Campaign Contributions Now Fair Game

Originally published on Wed November 16, 2011 4:23 pm

President Richard Nixon faced television cameras in the Oval Office on April 30, 1973 to announce the departure of his two closest assistants in the deepening Watergate scandal.
CBS AP

The 2012 presidential campaign is already being shaped by new rules for political money. The Supreme Court's Citizens United ruling allows corporations to jump into the presidential contest, as lower-court rulings and the Federal Election Commission provide new avenues through which corporate money can flow.

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12:01am

Wed November 16, 2011
Politics

Keynes' Consuming Ideas On Economic Intervention

The ideas of John Maynard Keynes, seen here around 1940, had great influence over the economic policies that followed the Great Depression and World War II.
Walter Stoneman Getty Images

12:01am

Wed November 16, 2011
Politics

Gun Violence Survivors Push For Tighter Restrictions

Originally published on Wed November 16, 2011 8:33 am

Patricia Maisch, one of the people who helped halt the Tucson shooting that killed six and wounded 13, including Arizona Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, holds up a photograph of victim John Roll, a federal judge, while testifying before a Senate subcommittee on Tuesday. Maisch testified in support of legislation that would strengthen federal power over the states' handling of background checks.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

Dozens of gun violence survivors and family members of victims traveled to Capitol Hill this week to try to convince lawmakers to pass a bill that would tighten loopholes in the background check system for people who buy firearms.

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12:01am

Wed November 16, 2011
Law

Penn State Scandal Emboldens Other Abuse Victims

The man said the advances began when he was 10 years old. He was a fourth-grader and an altar boy at a Catholic school in Hudson, Mass. He said the priest would try to touch the altar boys when they were putting on their robes, and he'd invite them to the rectory, one at a time.

"He'd want to show us pornographic magazines, and ask us to take our pants down, and he'd take his pants down and expose himself and things like that," he said.

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12:01am

Wed November 16, 2011
Middle East

Egyptian Groups Plan Mass Anti-Military Protests

Egyptians attend a rally calling for a rapid transition from military to civilian rule in following the February ouster of president Hosni Mubarak in Cairo's Tahrir Square.
Mahmud Hams AFP/Getty Images

Political parties, activists and Islamist groups in Egypt are threatening more mass protests in Cairo and other cities Friday against a document drafted by the interim government that would enshrine the powers of the Egyptian military.

It's the latest clash between Egypt's pro-democracy factions and the ruling military council, which is accused of clinging to power despite its pledge to cede control to an elected government.

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12:01am

Wed November 16, 2011
Around the Nation

New York Town Pulls Funds From Big Bank

Originally published on Wed November 16, 2011 12:08 pm

The Village of Hempstead, N.Y., sounds like a posh resort in the Hamptons. But if you ride the train an hour east from Penn Station, what you'll find is a working-class town of about 54,000 people, more than 80 percent of them African-American and Hispanic.

Nearly a third of local residents are underwater on their mortgages, six times the state average. Mayor Wayne Hall says he heard story after story from local residents who tried to get banks to refinance their loans but couldn't. Finally, Hall got fed up.

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12:01am

Wed November 16, 2011
Middle East

For Arab Nations In Transition, U.S. Emphasizes Trade

Originally published on Wed November 16, 2011 5:31 am

Egyptians are seen working in a bakery in Cairo. The U.S. has been working on ways to help revive the economies of nations in transition, like Egypt, Tunisia and Libya, while having limited resources available during tough economic times.
Mahmud Hams AFP/Getty Images

Just as the Arab uprisings were getting under way, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was warning that the region's foundations were sinking in the sand and that governments needed to respond to the needs of a young, educated and underemployed generation.

Now, she's come up with a new catchphrase.

"As tens of millions of young people enter the job market each year, we recognize that the Arab political awakening must also deliver an economic awakening," Clinton said. "And we are working to help societies create jobs to ensure that it does."

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12:01am

Wed November 16, 2011
Energy

Solyndra Highlights Long History Of Energy Subsidies

Originally published on Wed November 16, 2011 2:11 pm

Windmills and solar panels in Atlantic City, N.J., power a wastewater treatment plant, with surplus energy going to the area power grid. Solar and wind energy companies receive $370 million in federal subsidies annually, which is less than 1 percent of what oil and gas industries receive.
Mel Evans AP

When Energy Secretary Steven Chu appears on Capitol Hill on Thursday to defend the Obama administration's solar energy subsidy program, he will face questions about the solar panel firm Solyndra, which went belly up this summer.

The Energy Department has drawn stiff criticism over a government loan guarantee program that lent the company half a billion dollars, but the government has a long history of subsidizing many forms of energy.

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10:00pm

Tue November 15, 2011
Sweetness And Light

Is Football Culture The Core Of The Problem?

Originally published on Wed November 16, 2011 12:01 am

As confounding as was the failure of Penn State officials to act, the consensus explaining the motives for their ignoble behavior is that, first, Joe Paterno didn't want to scar the reputation of himself or his football program; and then, university executives wanted to protect the reputation of the dear old coach and his moneymaking team.

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6:49pm

Tue November 15, 2011
The Salt

Pizza As A Vegetable? It Depends On the Sauce

Originally published on Thu November 17, 2011 1:06 pm

Pizza for sale at a Chicago public school. Under a House spending bill, this would still count as a vegetable serving — without extra sauce.
Tim Boyle Getty Images

When it comes to the politics of school lunch programs, the easy part is agreeing that kids should be eating more fruits and vegetables.

The hard part? Determining what counts as a vegetable. Take, for instance, the tomato sauce on pizza. As part of new nutrition standards proposed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, schools would need to use about one-half cup of tomato paste on pizza in order for the sauce to count as a vegetable serving.

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6:04pm

Tue November 15, 2011
NPR Story

Lawmakers Consider Counting Pizza As a Veggie

Lawmakers say pizza and french fries deserve to keep their place in school cafeterias. New nutrition standards aimed at putting more fresh and healthy food in front of kids are being revised in a current House agriculture appropriations bill. The latest version says the tomato sauce on a slice of pizza is the equivalent of a vegetable. Critics are likening it to the "ketchup-as-a-vegetable-controversy" during the Reagan administration.

5:51pm

Tue November 15, 2011
The Two-Way

Energy Secretary Chu Defends How Administration Handled Solyndra

In an interview with NPR, Secretary of Energy Steven Chu vigorously defended the actions of the Department of Energy with regards $528 million in loans it gave the now-bankrupt solar energy company Solyndra.

Chu told All Things Considered's Melissa Block that neither he nor any of his staff working on DOE loans program was swayed by politics and that even in hindsight there was no way to know that Solyndra would fail.

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5:27pm

Tue November 15, 2011
Newt Gingrich

Why Did Freddie Mac Pay Newt Gingrich $300,000?

Polls continue to show former House Speaker Newt Gingrich solidly in the top tier of Republican presidential contenders. But at the same time, he is dogged by questions about a job he had after leaving Congress: consulting for the mortgage giant Freddie Mac — but not, he says, lobbying.

The questions began at the candidates' debate in Michigan last Wednesday, when CNBC's John Harwood asked Gingrich what he did for a $300,000 contract with Freddie Mac in 2006.

"I offered them advice on precisely what they didn't do," Gingrich said last week.

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5:22pm

Tue November 15, 2011
The Two-Way

Siding With Mayor, Judge Rules Against Occupy Wall Street Encampment

Protester Leina Bocar stands outside Zuccotti Park after police removed the Occupy Wall Street protesters from the park early this morning.
Mario Tama Getty Images

A State Supreme Court judge has backed New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg and the owners of Zuccotti Park, saying police had a right to enforce rules that prohibit camping at the park overnight. In the pre-dawn hours, Bloomberg ordered the removal of protesters from the park.

Earlier, another Supreme Court judge had issued a temporary injunction and ruled the protesters could return to the park with tents and sleeping bags.

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5:11pm

Tue November 15, 2011
It's All Politics

'Obamacare' Will Rank Among The Longest Supreme Court Arguments Ever

The US Supreme Court announced this week that it will hear arguments over President Obama's health care reform law.
KAREN BLEIER AFP/Getty Images

When the United States Supreme Court agreed Monday to hear a challenge to the health care reform law, the Court also announced that the parties would have more than the usual one hour to argue the case before the justices. That is not unheard of in particularly important cases — Bush v. Gore was allotted ninety minutes. But at five and a half hours, the length of time given for the health care case is nearly unprecedented in the modern Court.

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5:11pm

Tue November 15, 2011
Middle East

Syria Faces Growing Pressure As Bloodshed Spikes

Originally published on Tue November 15, 2011 7:19 pm

Turkey's Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan warned Syrian President Bashar Assad that his brutal crackdown on opponents threatens to place him on a list of leaders who "feed on blood."
Adem Altan AFP/Getty Images

5:10pm

Tue November 15, 2011
Asia

From Crushing Poverty To South Korea's Presidency

Originally published on Wed December 28, 2011 4:29 pm

South Korean President Lee Myung-bak (shown here as a young accountant, working for Hyundai's office in Thailand in the early 1960s) overcame a poverty-stricken childhood to become a student activist, successful business executive and, ultimately, leader of his country.
Courtesy of Lee Myung-bak

When Lee Myung-bak was inaugurated as the 10th president of South Korea in February 2008, it was an astonishing outcome for a poor boy from Pohang, whose No. 1 dream had been simply to get a job.

Lee's life journey is a literal rags-to-riches story. He has made a political journey, too, from a student radical imprisoned for his activism to a conservative head of state.

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4:38pm

Tue November 15, 2011
Shots - Health Blog

Fluoride In Drinking Water? No Thanks, Says Florida County

Originally published on Fri November 18, 2011 10:15 am

Public health officials say the evidence is solid that fluoridated drinking water helps protect teeth.
Jim Cole AP

The federal Centers for Disease Control calls fluoridated water one of the top 10 public health achievements of the 20th century. But many people still aren't convinced.

In Florida, opponents recently persuaded Pinellas County commissioners to stop adding fluoride to the water supply — a practice the county began in 2003. By the end of the year, Pinellas will once again be the largest county in Florida without fluoridated water.

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4:01pm

Tue November 15, 2011
Television

Filmmaker Woody Allen Gets The 'Masters' Treatment

Woody Allen's career goes under the American Masters microscope on Sunday and Monday.
MGM/Brian Hamill PBS

Woody Allen: A Documentary is the result, though not the culmination, of three very long and distinguished careers.

First, there's Robert Weide, the writer-director whose examination of Allen's life and art follows similar — and similarly impressive — documentaries on the Marx Brothers, Mort Sahl and Lenny Bruce.

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