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12:01am

Wed February 1, 2012
Europe

Grumbling, Excitement Build For London Olympics

The 1948 London Olympics were held when the city, recovering from World War II, was dotted with rubble from Nazi bombardment.
AP

The last time the British did this, they had a king: George VI, the father of Queen Elizabeth, was on the throne.

George was so often tongue-tied, yet he proclaimed open the 1948 London Olympics flawlessly.

It was late July. The sun shone down on London from a cloudless sky. The BBC had acquired the TV broadcasting rights for just $4,000 and made the most of them.

People packed Wembley Stadium, eager to forget the horrors of the second world war.

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12:01am

Wed February 1, 2012
Shots - Health Blog

Cystic Fibrosis Drug Wins Approval

The Food and Drug Administration has approved the first drug that can treat the underlying cause of cystic fibrosis.

The drug, known as Kalydeco, works by helping to fix one defect in the protein that causes the disease.

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10:16pm

Tue January 31, 2012
Sweetness And Light

Signing Day: Like Christmas For College Sports

Originally published on Thu February 2, 2012 12:03 am

Ahead of signing day, wide receiver Dorial Green-Beckham of Springfield, Mo., was the highest-ranking recruit who had yet to announce his college choice. Here, he visits a basketball game at the University of Missouri.
L.G. Patterson AP

Well, here we are starting February, with the single most important day in sports upon us.

No, of course I don't mean a silly little thing like Super Bowl Sunday. But today, the first Wednesday of the second month, is by some sort of — what, pagan lunar calendar? –– officially decreed National Signing Day, when all over America, high school seniors can officially plight their troth to a college football program.

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2:26pm

Tue January 31, 2012
Shots - Health Blog

Many In High-Risk Insurance Pools Face Lifetime Coverage Limits

iStockphoto.com

Thanks to the health care overhaul, most people no longer have to worry about getting sick and running out of health insurance coverage.

The law eliminated lifetime limits, which ran in many plans from $1 millon to $2 million.

Unfortunately, though, the change doesn't apply to plans that enroll some of the sickest people: those who buy coverage in so-called high-risk insurance pools because they have medical problems that make them uninsurable in the private market.

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1:58pm

Tue January 31, 2012
The Two-Way

VIDEO: A Bunny That Thinks It's A Sheepdog

Originally published on Tue January 31, 2012 2:01 pm

A rabbit tries to herd a flock of sheep.
YouTube

We'll get back to the serious news soon enough. But first, a video that, as The Awl tells us, is blowing up out on the Internet. We're not sure what it says about sheep, herding dogs or rabbits, but there's probably no need to over think this, so just watch:

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12:53pm

Tue January 31, 2012
Music Reviews

Leonard Cohen's 'Old Ideas' Inspire Confidence

Leonard Cohen.
Courtesy of the artist

At this point in his life, Leonard Cohen sings with a voice so deep and bottomless, he may as well be singing from underneath the earth. But that doesn't mean it's faint, or murky, or dead. Cohen's cracked baritone enunciates meticulous lyrics that sound searching, restless and jaunty. This has long been Cohen's saving grace: His dry humor juices up his more portentous pronouncements.

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12:50pm

Tue January 31, 2012
The Two-Way

U.S. Intelligence Chief: Iran Is More Willing To Launch Attack On U.S.

From left, FBI Director Robert Mueller, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, and CIA Director David Petraeus take their seats on Capitol Hill in Washington on Tuesday, prior to testifying before the Senate Intelligence Committee hearing.
Jacquelyn Martin AP

As part of his yearly report to the Senate's Select Committee on Intelligence, the United States' intelligence chief said that depending how threatened Iran feels, it may be more willing to launch an attack against the U.S.

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12:47pm

Tue January 31, 2012
It's All Politics

Florida GOP Primary Let Romney Show Skill In Political Knife Fight

Mitt Romney had reason to smile on Florida primary day, Jan. 31, 2012.
Charles Dharapak AP

With virtually all polls giving him a solid lead among Florida's Republican voters, Mitt Romney is expected to handily win the Sunshine State's GOP primary Tuesday, putting him back on course for his party's presidential nomination.

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12:34pm

Tue January 31, 2012
Music Interviews

Ira Glass Interviews His Cousin, Composer Philip Glass

Originally published on Wed February 1, 2012 4:31 pm

Glass on Glass: Philip Glass (left) and Ira Glass are second cousins.
Pavel Antonov St. Ann's Warehouse

This interview was originally broadcast on Sept. 21, 1999.

It's no coincidence that composer Philip Glass and This American Life host Ira Glass have the same last name: They're second cousins, but they didn't know each other well when the Field Museum in the Chicago asked Ira to interview Philip on stage in 1999.

On today's Fresh Air, we replay excerpts from that conversation in honor of Philip's 75th birthday, which is Tuesday.

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12:28pm

Tue January 31, 2012
Election 2012

How SuperPACs Are 'Gaming' The 2012 Campaign

Joe Hagan's cover story in the January 22, 2012 edition of New York Magazine details why the 2012 election will be the "most negative in the history of American politics."
New York Magazine

If you thought the 2008 election cycle was full of negative ads, just wait until 2012's campaign gets fully underway.

The upcoming presidential campaign, says journalist Joe Hagan, is expected to "be the most negative in the history of American politics."

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11:55am

Tue January 31, 2012
The Salt

Beyond Cuppa Joe: Starbucks Embraces India, Lighter Roasts And Alcohol

In India, Starbucks will have to compete with this locally-owned coffee chain, Cafe Coffee Day.
Aijaz Rahi AP

"Skinny venti quad decaf latte" is not a household term in India. But that may be about to change, as Elliot Hannon reports from New Delhi on today's Morning Edition.

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11:36am

Tue January 31, 2012
Shots - Health Blog

More Than A Million Condoms Recalled In South Africa

Condoms like this one were given out during the African National Congress party's centenary celebrations in early Now a South African health official says that 1.35 million of them are being recalled amid charges some broke during sex.
Denis Farrell AP

The party may be over, but the trouble may just be starting in South Africa.

The health department in Free State province is recalling 1.35 million condoms that may not be up to snuff.

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11:17am

Tue January 31, 2012
The Two-Way

Defying Camping Ban, Occupy D.C. Protesters Remain In Place

Originally published on Tue January 31, 2012 11:21 am

Occupy D.C. protesters shout slogans after erecting a tent over the statue of Civil War Maj. Gen. James Birdseye McPherson at McPherson Square in Washington.
KAren Bleier AFP/Getty Images

The Occupy D.C. encampment received notice that as of noon yesterday, camping would not be allowed at McPherson Square, the downtown Washington, D.C. park they've occupied for months now.

But that deadline came and went and instead of heeding the warning from the National Park Service, the protesters erected an even bigger tent. The protesters draped a huge blue tarp emblazoned with the words "Tent of Dreams" over the statue of Maj. Gen. James B. McPherson in the middle of the park.

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10:42am

Tue January 31, 2012
The Two-Way

CBO Estimates $1.1 Trillion Federal Deficit

Originally published on Tue January 31, 2012 11:43 am

CBO

Taking into account all the budget legislation passed in the last year, the Congressional Budget Office says the country will run a $1.1 trillion deficit in fiscal year 2012.

The CBO reports that is nearly 7 percent of the United States' GDP, but is "nearly 2 percentage points below the deficit recorded in 2011, but still higher than any deficit between 1947 and 2008."

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9:51am

Tue January 31, 2012

9:41am

Tue January 31, 2012
The Two-Way

For Third Straight Month, Home Prices Dropped In November

Home prices dropped in November for the third consecutive month. Standard & Poor's/Case-Shiller home price index found a drop in 19 of the 20 cities tracked.

The AP reports:

"The biggest declines were in Atlanta, Chicago and Detroit. Phoenix was the only city to show an increase.

"The decline partly reflects the typical fall slowdown after the peak buying season.

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9:41am

Tue January 31, 2012
The Two-Way

For Third Straight Month, Home Prices Dropped In November

Home prices dropped in November for the third consecutive month. Standard & Poor's/Case-Shiller home price index found a drop in 19 of the 20 cities tracked.

The AP reports:

"The biggest declines were in Atlanta, Chicago and Detroit. Phoenix was the only city to show an increase.

"The decline partly reflects the typical fall slowdown after the peak buying season.

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9:40am

Tue January 31, 2012
Presidential Race

The Slimary Process: Is This The Nastiest Race Ever?

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 11:04 am

Republican presidential hopefuls former House Speaker Newt Gingrich and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney debate in Jacksonville, Fla., on Thursday.
Matt Rourke AP

9:40am

Tue January 31, 2012
Presidential Race

The Slimary Process: Is This The Nastiest Race Ever?

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 11:04 am

Republican presidential hopefuls former House Speaker Newt Gingrich and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney debate in Jacksonville, Fla., on Thursday.
Matt Rourke AP

9:20am

Tue January 31, 2012
The Two-Way

Italian Authorities Call Off Search For Missing In Costa Shipwreck

Italian firefighters scuba divers approach the grounded cruise ship Costa Concordia off the Tuscan island of Giglio, Italy on Friday.
Pier Paolo Cito AP

Citing safety concerns, Italian officials said they were calling off the search for those still missing at the site of the Costa Concordia shipwreck.

The AP reports:

"Italy's Civil Protection agency said Tuesday that technical studies indicated that the deformed hull of the ship created too many safety concerns to continue the search. It said in a statement that relatives and diplomatic officials representing the countries of the missing have been informed of the decision.

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8:48am

Tue January 31, 2012
The Two-Way

Stephen Colbert Says His SuperPAC Raised $1 Million

Originally published on Tue January 31, 2012 10:44 am

Comedian Stephen Colbert at a campaign stop in Charleston, South Carolina.
Richard Ellis Getty Images

"I'm rolling seven digits deep!" is what Stephen Colbert told the Federal Election Commission in his superPAC's filing this morning.

The comedian said that as of January 30, his political action committee had collected $1,023,121.24 in donations.

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7:44am

Tue January 31, 2012
The Two-Way

VIDEO: Mitt Romney Sings 'America The Beautiful'

Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, campaigns at The Villages, Fla. on Monday.
Charles Dharapak AP

Maybe it's the latest poll numbers. Maybe it was being among a crowd of a few thousand supporters.

But Mitt Romney, long-known for being a little stiff, broke out into song during a campaign event at a retirement community in The Villages, Fla.

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7:17am

Tue January 31, 2012
Around the Nation

Protesters Sue Utility After TVA Bans Costumes

Last July, people protested the Tennessee Valley Authority's plan to finish a nuclear plant. They came to a board meeting dressed as zombies. The TVA then banned costumes. The Knoxville News Sentinel says this explains how the TVA is now being sued by Santa Claus and a pirate.

7:11am

Tue January 31, 2012
The Two-Way

As Florida Votes, Polls Put Mitt Romney Comfortably Ahead

Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney greets people during a grassroots rally with supporters at Lake Sumter Landing on Monday.
Joe Raedle Getty Images

Odds are that today's Republican primary in Florida won't be nearly as dramatic as the previous contest in South Carolina. Polls have been predicting a comfortable win for Mitt Romney and, as The Washington Post reports, a Quinnipiac University poll released, yesterday, gave Romney a 14-point lead over Newt Gingrich.

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7:06am

Tue January 31, 2012
Around the Nation

Air Travelers In San Francisco Can Relax With Yoga

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne. Where else would it start but San Francisco? Yoga has joined the food courts and massage stations as a pre-flight experience. San Francisco International Airport is now offering a yoga room. Travelers can stretch and de-stress before squeezing into those painfully crowded planes. It's equipped with mats, warm lights kept low and walls painted a serene blue. But if that's not what relaxes you, there is always the bar. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright National Public Radio.

4:35am

Tue January 31, 2012
Business

Sotol Maker Tries To Break Into U.S. Spirits Market

Americans drank more than 100 million liters of tequila in 2010. It's no wonder then, that a little-known spirit from Mexico is trying to make its name in the United States. Introducing Sotol — a smoky smooth liquor distilled in the Mexican state of Chihuahua.

12:01am

Tue January 31, 2012
Sports

It's A Good Time To Be An LA Clippers 'Superfan'

"Clipper Darrell" dances with the "Clipper Spirit" during a game against the Memphis Grizzlies at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, California in 2002.
Lisa Blumenfeld Getty Images

For a long time, Los Angeles has been a Lakers town, but thanks to some of the NBA's brightest young stars it's now the perennially-ridiculed Clippers that have the better record, and much of the city's attention. That's especially gratifying for one die-hard Clippers fan.

Darrell Bailey, better known as "Clipper Darrell," has missed only one Clipper game in the past 11 seasons. "I was in the hospital," he says. "That's the only reason they kept me out."

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12:01am

Tue January 31, 2012
Shots - Health Blog

'I Wanted To Live': New Depression Drugs Offer Hope For Toughest Cases

Originally published on Thu March 27, 2014 9:52 am

Chris Stephens, 28, who has been battling depression all of his life, plays with his dogs at home in Concord, Calif., on Friday. After a dose of ketamine, Stephens says, "I actually wanted to do things. I wanted to live life."
Lianne Milton for NPR

A club drug called "Special K" is generating a lot of buzz among researchers who study depression.

That's because "Special K," which is actually an FDA-approved anesthetic named ketamine, can relieve even suicidal depression in a matter of hours. And it works on many patients who haven't responded to current antidepressants like Prozac.

Those traditional drugs, which act on the brain's serotonin system, can take more than a month to kick in, and don't work for up to 40 percent of people with major depression.

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12:01am

Tue January 31, 2012
Election 2012

The Golden Age: Florida Primary Centers On Seniors

Judy Youngblood of Jacksonville, Fla., appears at a rally at the Hyatt Regency Jacksonville Riverfront hotel Monday, wearing earrings she made from campaign buttons supporting Newt Gingrich.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

Just how important is the senior vote in Florida?

Nearly one in five Floridians is retired. And a survey conducted by AARP predicts that as many as 60 percent of those who cast ballots in Tuesday's Republican primary — 6 out of 10 voters — will be retirees.

If that number is surprising, AARP Florida director Jeff Johnson says it helps to remember that primaries typically have a low turnout.

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12:01am

Tue January 31, 2012
The Salt

Lamb Boom Has Sheep Farmers Flocking Together

A holding pen for lamb at the Will-O-Wood Farm in southeastern Ohio.
Meta Van Nostran

When city folk think of lamb, they may think of very young sheep — perhaps six weeks old. But six months is the average age of spring lamb going to market these days.

Don Van Nostran has one in a holding pen in his barn at Will-O-Wood Farm in southeastern Ohio. It soon will be butchered and sold in a local Kroger store.

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