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9:50am

Thu January 26, 2012
The Two-Way

Australian Prime Minister Rescued From Angry Protesters

Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard is bundled out of a restaurant by security service agents after it was surrounded by furious Aboriginal rights protesters in Canberra on Thursday.
Lukas Coch AFP/Getty Images

Australia Day ended with a tense showdown between aboriginal protesters and Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard on Thursday.

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8:45am

Thu January 26, 2012
The Two-Way

Unemployment Claims Up Slightly; Business Spending Increased

Over the past week, 21,000 more Americans claimed unemployment benefits, the Labor Department reports. Like most economic news, that's the bad news. The good news, reports the AP, is the that the four-week average is down 2,500, which "still signals a healthier job market."

The Commerce Department also has some good news on the economy: Orders for durable goods rose 3 percent, last month.

The AP reports that this marks a gain for the second straight month. The AP adds:

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8:44am

Thu January 26, 2012
It's All Politics

Could The Crowd At The Final GOP Debate Make The Difference In Florida Vote?

Newt Gingrich greets supporters during a rally at Wings Plus in Coral Springs, Fla. on Jan. 25. The GOP candidates meet in Jacksonville Thursday night for a final debate before Tuesday's primary.
CARLINE JEAN MCT /Landov

As the Republican presidential hopefuls head into their final televised confrontation Thursday night at the University of North Florida in Jacksonville (at 8 p.m. ET on CNN), NPR's Ari Shapiro reports that the debate could sway the outcome of the close race.

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8:26am

Thu January 26, 2012
The Two-Way

Ahmadinejad: Iran Is Ready For Nuclear Talks

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad speaks to the press prior upon his arrival at Tehran's Mehrabad Airport on Jan. 14.
Atta Kenare AFP/Getty Images

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said today that his country is ready to talk with the West about its nuclear programs.

"They have this excuse that Iran is dodging negotiations while it is not the case," he said. "Why should we run away from the negotiations?"

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7:57am

Thu January 26, 2012
The Two-Way

Arizona Gov. Brewer Says She 'Was Not Hostile' In Meeting With Obama

Usually, there is lots of formality and protocol when a president steps off Airforce One and walks onto a tarmac. But, yesterday, when President Obama landed at the Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport, he was greeted by Gov. Jan Brewer and very quickly the welcome turned into a serious and tense discussion.

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7:17am

Thu January 26, 2012
Around the Nation

Standard Military Eyeglasses Get A Makeover

Standard issue military eyeglasses are considered so unflattering, service members have an acronym for them: BCGs or Birth Control Glasses. For the first time in more than 20 years, the military is updating its look. Instead of those thick brown plastic frames, recruits can get sleeker black plastic specs.

7:12am

Thu January 26, 2012
Animals

Dog In 'The Artist' To Retire

Fans of Uggie in the silent movie The Artist were outraged when the dog didn't get an Oscar nomination. Now Uggie's owner tells a magazine that movie was the Jack Russell terrier's last. He's retiring the 10-year-old animal. Uggie wants to relax.

7:03am

Thu January 26, 2012
The Two-Way

President Obama Will Unveil Energy Plans

Originally published on Thu January 26, 2012 8:23 am

President Obama will flesh out the energy goals he laid out during his State of the Union address today. He'll start talking about natural gas in a UPS Facility in Nevada and continue on to the Buckley Air Force base in Aurora, Colo., where the Air Force is installing a one-megawatt solar array.

Reuters reports that in Las Vegas, Obama will propose a tax credit that helps offset the upfront costs of buying natural gas trucks.

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4:00am

Thu January 26, 2012
NPR Story

Indiana To Adopt 'Right-To-Work' Measure

Originally published on Thu January 26, 2012 5:19 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And let's go next to my home state of Indiana, where state lawmakers now look certain to pass controversial right-to-work legislation.

Democrats have been trying to block that bill. But yesterday it passed the state's Republican-controlled House. And so Indiana is poised to become the first state to approve this kind of legislation in a decade.

We have more from Brandon Smith of Indiana Public Broadcasting.

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4:00am

Thu January 26, 2012
NPR Story

The Last Word In Business

Originally published on Thu January 26, 2012 6:59 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And our last word in business today comes from Alaska Airlines. The carrier has been putting prayer cards on the meal trays it serves passengers since the 1980s. Flying can be nerve-wracking and the airline figured people might find comfort in a psalm from the Old Testament, along with the soothing image of a beach or the mountains.

It was also a marketing strategy so the airline could differentiate itself from competitors. Many passengers didn't mind.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

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4:00am

Thu January 26, 2012
NPR Story

On The Road, Obama Pushes U.S. Energy, Manufacturing

Originally published on Thu January 26, 2012 6:35 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And I'm Steve Inskeep.

Take a map of the United States and stick pins in every state President Obama visits this week, and you would have a partial picture of how he hopes to win re-election. The president is visiting states he hopes to win this fall.

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4:00am

Thu January 26, 2012
Election 2012

Spanish-Speaking Vote Up For Grabs In Florida

Cuban-Americans are an important part of the Republican presidential electorate in Florida. Both Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich have reached out to these voters in Spanish-language TV and radio ads. Romney, in particular, has racked up many endorsements from prominent Cuban-American political figures.

4:00am

Thu January 26, 2012
Business

Business News

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with Amazon and taxes.

They say two things are certain: death and taxes. But Amazon is still hoping to avoid at least one of those things. The online retailer is reportedly promising Florida lawmakers it will create up to 3,000 jobs in the state and build new distribution centers in Florida, if lawmakers give Amazon a two-year break from collecting state sales tax.

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4:00am

Thu January 26, 2012
Health

Kids Have A Say In Louisville's School Lunch Menu

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

The federal government has come out with its new standards for school meals - less fat, less salt, less sugar and more fruits, grains and vegetables. Devin Katayama from member station WFPL reports on how the Louisville, Kentucky school district is trying to comply with the guidelines and satisfy student tastes.

DEVIN KATAYAMA, BYLINE: Meet fourth grade food critic Jackson Schleff.

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4:00am

Thu January 26, 2012
Economy

Forum Delegates Are Anxious About World Economy

Renee Montagne talks to Nariman Behravesh, chief economist at IHS Global Insight, about key issues dominating this year's World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. With Europe on the brink of recession, the mood at the meeting is not as upbeat as it was last year.

4:00am

Thu January 26, 2012
Movies

'Beasts Of The Southern Wild' Shines At Sundance

Originally published on Thu January 26, 2012 5:27 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

The Sundance Film Festival wraps up this weekend in Park City, Utah. Movies and more movies have been on offer at the gathering, famously backed by Robert Redford. Our own Kenneth Turan is taking it all in and joined us from member station KPCW in Park City.

Good morning.

KENNETH TURAN, BYLINE: Morning, Renee.

MONTAGNE: Well, let us begin with the dramatic films. What stands out for you this year?

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4:00am

Thu January 26, 2012
Asia

Tibetan Areas Rocked By Protest, Chinese Crackdown

Originally published on Thu January 26, 2012 12:37 pm

During a candlelight vigil in Dharamsala, India, on Wednesday, Tibetan Buddhist monks hold pictures of Tibetans they say were shot by Chinese security forces earlier this week.
Angus McDonald AP

Frustrated Tibetans this week staged some of the largest protests against Chinese rule in nearly four years. Chinese security forces responded by opening fire on demonstrators, killing up to four and wounding more than 30, according to Tibetan rights groups.

The demonstrations were inspired — in part — by a disturbing new trend in Tibetan dissent: Tibetan people lighting themselves on fire.

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12:01am

Thu January 26, 2012
Election 2012

'President Gingrich' Promises Permanent Moon Base

Originally published on Thu January 26, 2012 10:18 am

Republican presidential hopeful Newt Gingrich made campaign stops on Florida's Space Coast on Wednesday, saying space is part of America's destiny and outlining what he called a bold plan to send Americans to the moon and beyond. Here, the former House speaker delivers remarks outside a restaurant in Coral Springs, Fla.
Paul J. Richards AFP/Getty Images

Newt Gingrich, a self-described space nut, has long been a supporter of the U.S. space program. Now the Republican presidential hopeful is proposing what he calls a bold program that would send Americans back to the moon and beyond.

During a campaign event on Florida's Space Coast — hard-hit by the recession and the space program's uncertain future — Gingrich talked about coming of age at the time of Sputnik, the first satellite, launched in 1957 by the Soviet Union. He recalled reading science-fiction author Isaac Asimov and Missiles and Rockets magazine.

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12:01am

Thu January 26, 2012
Middle East

Growing Pressures Prompt Plunge In Iranian Currency

An Iranian man counts banknotes after exchanging a gold coin for cash in Tehran on Monday. Gold coins were being exchanged for over 10 million rials as the Iranian currency continues to lose value against the U.S. dollar.
Atta Kenare AFP/Getty Images

The value of Iran's currency — which had been sliding steadily for months — took another plunge this week. Faced with new economic sanctions from the U.S. and Europe, the rial now seems to be in free fall.

But at least part of the dive could be linked to currency manipulation by the government itself in an effort to fund candidates in upcoming elections.

In images posted on the Internet, hundreds of Iranians are seen gathered outside the headquarters of the Bank Melli in Tehran Monday. They wanted to buy dollars, but there were no dollars to be had.

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12:01am

Thu January 26, 2012
Planet Money

No, Hedge Funds Can't Foreclose On The Acropolis

Originally published on Mon May 7, 2012 12:12 pm

DIMITAR DILKOFF AFP/Getty Images

Greece is broke. But there's no blueprint for a country to declare bankruptcy, so Greece's creditors are sort of making things up as they go along.

"You're taking some sort of loss," Hans Humes of Greylock Capital Management told me. "But it's like, how much of a loss do you take? There's this thing called sovereign immunity. You can't go in and take the Acropolis."

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12:01am

Thu January 26, 2012
Space

Want To Make A Giant Telescope Mirror? Here's How

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 11:05 am

Giant Magellan Telescope
Giant Magellan Telescope

The world's largest mirrors for the world's largest telescopes are made under the football stadium at the University of Arizona.

Why there? Why not?

"We wanted some space, and it was just used for parking some cars, and this seemed like a good use," says Roger Angel.

Angel is the master of making big mirrors for telescopes. For 30 years he has been using a method called spin casting to make the largest solid telescope mirrors in the world.

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12:01am

Thu January 26, 2012
Middle East

For Turkish Journalists, Arrest Is A Real Danger

Originally published on Thu January 26, 2012 11:42 am

Hundreds of journalists protest the arrests of members of the media, including Ahmet Sik (poster on the right) and Nedim Sener (center) in Ankara, Turkey, in March 2011. Critics say the government is trying to stifle dissent by arresting journalists — for doing their job.
AP

In the wake of the Arab Spring, some Muslims in North Africa are looking across the Mediterranean to Turkey as a potential model of a state that can be modern, Islamic and democratic.

But some analysts in the region say that model is flawed, and they are questioning Turkey's human-rights record and its dealings with the press.

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12:01am

Thu January 26, 2012
Business

Quiznos Gives Up Control To Stave Off Bankruptcy

A man walks by a Quiznos franchise in New York City. The sandwich chain has given up part of its ownership to a private equity firm in order to restructure its debt and avoid bankruptcy.
Rob Kim Landov

Quiznos narrowly avoided bankruptcy this week when the sandwich chain shifted ownership to private equity firm Avenue Capital in exchange for erasing some debt.

The recession and poor management have hit the Denver-based sub-maker hard. The company once boasted more than 5,000 restaurants, but 40 percent of them have now shut their doors.

Andre Bonyadian owns nine Quiznos franchises in and around Los Angeles.

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12:01am

Thu January 26, 2012
Business

To Grow Business, Starbucks Thinks Outside The Cup

Barista Nicole Adams serves up a drink in March at a Starbucks in downtown Seattle. The company is expanding its coffee options to include a light roast and plans to create a new health and wellness brand.
Ted S. Warren AP

Just four years ago, Starbucks seemed to be losing its mojo. Howard Schultz, the man who made Starbucks a household name, returned to the company as CEO. He closed hundreds of stores, streamlined operations and set the company on a path to record revenues and strong profits.

Starbucks serves 60 million beverages a week, which adds up to big profits. The company reports its earnings Thursday. In a bid to further expand its consumer base, Starbucks has a new roast and plans to produce more retail products to sell outside of its coffeehouses.

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6:35pm

Wed January 25, 2012
Music Interviews

Michelle Kwan's Slow And Steady Workout Jams

Originally published on Sun January 29, 2012 8:13 pm

Michelle Kwan performs at an exhibition in 2005.
Matthew Stockman Getty Images

This month, we're creating The Ultimate NPR Workout Mix. As many of us head back to the gym in the new year, we're asking people what music makes them move.

Today: the figure skating legend Michelle Kwan. For exercise, she says she runs and does Bikram yoga and Pilates. But there's one thing Kwan says she still enjoys more than anything else.

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6:20pm

Wed January 25, 2012
The Salt

Alice Waters: Picture Perfect As The Constant Gardener

Chefs Jose Andres and Alice Waters pose along side her newly installed portrait, by photographer Dave Woody, at the National Portrait Gallery in Washington, on Jan. 20, 2012.
John Rose NPR

Alice Waters has moved from the kitchen to the garden to the soap box in her 40 years as a pioneer of the sustainable and locally grown food movement. But on one recent night, The Salt found her "hanging" in the National Portrait Gallery in Washington.

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6:01pm

Wed January 25, 2012
Business

Shoe Company Practices Insourcing For The Sole

Keen's Portland, Ore., factory is equipped to build up to 1.5 million pairs of shoes a year.
Courtesy of Keen

The American economy lost more than 5,000 jobs to offshore outsourcing in 2010, and in Tuesday's State of the Union address President Obama made it clear that he wants them back.

"We can't bring every job back that's left our shores," he said. "But right now, it's getting more expensive to do business in places like China. Meanwhile, America is more productive."

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5:51pm

Wed January 25, 2012
Presidential Race

Rep. Ron Paul: The Interview Transcript

Robert Siegel interviewed Rep. Ron Paul on All Things Considered on Jan. 25. This is an edited transcript of their conversation.

ROBERT SIEGEL: Representative Paul, welcome to the program once again.

REPRESENTATIVE RON PAUL (R-TX): Thank you. Good to be with you.

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5:35pm

Wed January 25, 2012
Shots - Health Blog

Start Early To Curb Heart Risks For A Lifetime

Originally published on Wed January 25, 2012 7:03 pm

Yvan Dub iStockphoto.com

Heart disease remains the leading cause of death in the U.S. But who's at the most risk?

A study in the lastest New England Journal of Medicine offers a simple way to predict the risk of a fatal or debilitating heart attack or stroke for a middle-aged person over the rest of his or her life.

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5:13pm

Wed January 25, 2012
Shots - Health Blog

With Age, Men May Lose Thinking Ability Faster Than Women

Physical health problems may help drive men's mental decline.
iStockphoto.com

Men are more apt than women to lose thinking ability as they age, according to new research. And that mild cognitive impairment often leads to dementia.

But people can reduce their risk of mild cognitive impairment by staying healthy and educated, according to Rosebud Roberts, a professor of epidemiology at the Mayo Clinic who led the study. "There is a lot that people can do," she told Shots.

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