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3:22pm

Thu November 3, 2011
'Darkhorse' Battalion And The Afghan War

A Marine's Death, And The Family He Left Behind

Kait Wyatt carries her 1-month-old son, Michael, at the burial for her husband, Marine Cpl. Derek Wyatt, at Arlington National Cemetery, Jan. 7. Wyatt was killed Dec. 6, 2010, in Afghanistan. Kait Wyatt, who was pregnant at the time of her husband's death, was induced the day after he was killed so she could attend the service.
Evan Vucci AP

A year ago, nearly 1,000 U.S. Marine officers and enlisted men of the 3rd Battalion, 5th Regiment deployed to restive Helmand province in southern Afghanistan. By the time their tour ended in April 2011, the Marines of the 3/5 — known as "Darkhorse" — suffered the highest casualty rate of any Marine unit during the past 10 years of war. This week, NPR tells the story of this unit's seven long months at war — both in Afghanistan and back home.

Fifth of seven parts

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3:07pm

Thu November 3, 2011
Books

'The Art Museum': A Case For The Printed Book?

Originally published on Mon December 5, 2011 3:01 pm

If The Art Museum were a real museum and not just a book, there would hardly be need for another. At 18 pounds and 922 pages, the expansive book is organized into thematic "galleries," and within those "rooms" dedicated to solo artists, like Picasso.
Phaidon

Publisher Phaidon's latest art endeavor, The Art Museum, presents the collection of an imaginary museum with the greatest works from art collections around the globe. That museum would have to be imaginary — the book itself weighs in at 18 pounds, measures 16 1/2 by 12 5/8 inches and runs nearly 1,000 pages.

The Art Museum is divided into 25 galleries, as opposed to chapters, and each gallery is divided into several rooms, which all told include reproductions of more than 2,700 works.

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3:00pm

Thu November 3, 2011
NPR Story

Report: Nation's Poor Cluster In Neighborhoods

The U.S. poverty rate was 15 percent last year — the highest in almost two decades. New numbers out Thursday from the Brookings Institution show that the nation's poor are increasingly concentrated in extremely poor neighborhoods. This creates additional problems for those trying to work their way out of poverty.

3:00pm

Thu November 3, 2011
NPR Story

Ongoing Palestinian-Israeli Conflict Leaves U.S. Isolated

The Obama administration's flagging efforts to revive Arab-Israeli peace talks took another turn in the wrong direction this week. The Palestinians overcame U.S. opposition and won diplomatic recognition by UNESCO, becoming a new member state of the U.N.'s cultural and scientific agency. They've vowed to keep seeking such recognition elsewhere in the U.N system. Israel responded by speeding up settlement construction. U.S. officials say those moves are pushing the parties further away from a peace process, but both sides seem determined to move in opposition directions, leaving the U.S.

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3:00pm

Thu November 3, 2011
Business

Filene's Basement To Close Its Doors

Filene's Basement, the storied discount store, has filed for bankruptcy and plans to close down all its locations by the new year. Its parent company, Syms Corp., has also filed for Chapter 11.

3:00pm

Thu November 3, 2011
Europe

Why Put The Bailout To A Referendum In Greece?

Robert Siegel speaks to Mark Mazower, a professor of history at Columbia University and an expert on contemporary Greece, about the tensions between democracy and the need for decisive action in dealing with the euro crisis. Mazower says that the speed of financial markets, and the slowness of the democratic process, has increased this tension during the crisis.

3:00pm

Thu November 3, 2011
World

Greek Drama Dominates Talks At G-20 Summit

Originally published on Thu November 3, 2011 7:37 pm

President Obama speaks with (from left) French President Nicolas Sarkozy, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and British Prime Minister David Cameron at the G-20 summit in Cannes, France, on Thursday. The talks were dominated by Greece's financial woes.
Charles Dharapak AP

Greece's decision to scrap a referendum on new austerity measures added a note of urgency to the G-20 summit meeting that began in Cannes, France, on Thursday. President Obama and other G-20 leaders are trying to prevent the Greek debt crisis from spreading to the rest of Europe and beyond.

Before the G-20 summit formally got under way, Obama met privately with the leaders of France and Germany — Europe's two biggest economies. They're also the architects of a continental debt rescue plan.

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2:59pm

Thu November 3, 2011
The Two-Way

Another Tibetan Nun Sets Herself On Fire

Palden Choetso.
Free Tibet

In what's becoming a disturbing trend in China, another Tibetan nun has set herself on fire to protest the country's strict control of their religion.

The Free Tibet Campaign says Palden Choetso is second nun to self immolate. Nine monks have done the same since March.

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2:52pm

Thu November 3, 2011
Deceptive Cadence

Hey, Kids, It's Vinny Pookh Time! Cartoon Music From The USSR

1969's Vinny Pookh V Gosti ("Winnie The Pooh Goes Visiting"), with music by Mieczysław Weinberg.
YouTube

Twentieth-century Russian music is often thought of as dark and brooding, a reflection of life under the thumb of a brutal state. When it was funny, it usually had a kind of gallows humor.

Yet many of the same composers whose concert works often reflected a dark reality also wrote cartoon music for kids. Thursday night, the Brooklyn Philharmonic is playing some of these cartoon scores in Brighton Beach — the heart of the Russian-American community in New York City. For some of its creators, cartoon music offered a certain kind of escape.

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2:21pm

Thu November 3, 2011
NPR Story

The 'Best Sports Writing' Is Rarely In The Newspaper

The best sports writing forces us to confront wonder, horror, disappointment and joy. These days, those stories are found not on the sports pages, but in magazines and on the Web.

Jane Leavy, editor of The Best Sports Writing 2011, shares her favorites, including Jake Bogoch's piece on hockey, "School of Fight: Learning to Brawl with the Hockey Goons of Tomorrow."

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2:19pm

Thu November 3, 2011
The Two-Way

After 520 Days In Isolation, 'Astronauts' About To End Fake Mission To Mars

Members of the Mars500 crew posing during their Mars500 mission.
AFP/Getty Images

To us it sounded like the premise of a particularly cruel reality TV show: Six men are picked to live in a windowless, cramped mock spaceship for 18 months to see how humans would react to conditions similar to what one would expect on a mission to Mars.

Tomorrow, after 520 days of isolation, the hatch will finally be open and the volunteers will return to normal life. With a cost of $15 million, the project, dubbed Mars500, is a serious experiment commissioned by the European Space Agency.

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1:23pm

Thu November 3, 2011
The Two-Way

Cuba Approves Buying And Selling Of Residential Property

Beginning Nov. 10, citizens and permanent residents in Cuba will be able to buy and sell residential property on the island. The move is one of the more major acts of reforms instituted by President Raúl Castro.

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1:00pm

Thu November 3, 2011
Around the Nation

Occupy Oakland Morphs From Protest To Strike

Originally published on Thu November 3, 2011 2:21 pm

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, host: Demonstrators continue to march and camp out in cities across the country, inspired by Occupy Wall Street. But yesterday, protesters in Oakland tried something different. Thousands marched through the city in what they called a general strike. They paraded through the streets through much of the day then down to its busy port where they blocked entrances and closed it down. Later, police in riot gear fired teargas as some protesters broke windows and lit fires downtown.

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1:00pm

Thu November 3, 2011
Afghanistan

Offering Advice To Top Brass On Afghanistan

As international forces prepare to leave Afghanistan, deep questions remain about the country's security and its government. Former NPR reporter Sarah Chayes lives part of the year there. She has served as special adviser to two commanders of NATO forces in Afghanistan, and Adm. Mike Mullen.

1:00pm

Thu November 3, 2011
Law

Second Chances, Not Jail Time, For Criminals

Originally published on Thu November 3, 2011 2:27 pm

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, host: This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan in Washington. If the threat of prison is supposed to deter crime, it's not working; record numbers are behind bars. And while all those bad actors off the street may contribute to lower crime rates in recent years, many believe there have to be better ways.

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12:07pm

Thu November 3, 2011
Music Reviews

Kelly Clarkson's Vocals Keep Getting 'Stronger'

Kelly Clarkson.
Harper Smith

Like a lot of successful American Idol contestants, Kelly Clarkson made her reputation as a belter — as someone who could project to the rafters and rouse a crowd — which doesn't necessarily translate into good pop singing. Ever since Bing Crosby started using the microphone as an instrument for achieving intimacy and nuance, the idea of delivering popular song as operatic aria is a flawed strategy. But everybody loves an anthem, right?

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12:00pm

Thu November 3, 2011
Food

Put Down The Fork — Lay Off The Pork

Some African-Americans have removed pork from their diets, while others proudly embrace it as a part of their culture. To hear more about the divide, host Michel Martin speaks with Natalie Moore, who wrote the essay "In Praise of Pork" for theRoot.com, and filmmaker Byron Hurt, producer of the documentary Soul Food Junkies.

12:00pm

Thu November 3, 2011
Politics

Under Political Stress, Turning To Spouses

GOP presidential hopeful Herman Cain is still facing questions on whether he sexually harassed women in the 1990s. But now his wife may step up to his defense. Reports say she'll do an exclusive interview with Fox News. Host Michel Martin discusses political spouses' roles with The Washington Post Political Reporter Nia-Malika Henderson, and The Chicago-Sun Times Washington Bureau Chief Lynn Sweet.

12:00pm

Thu November 3, 2011
Religion

Life Begins At Conception? Faith Leaders Debate

On November 8, Mississippi will vote on a controversial initiative that would define a fertilized egg as a person. If approved, it would effectively ban abortion, and possibly some forms of birth control. Pastor Jason Dillard says the initiative is important for preserving life. But Rev. Timothy McDonald III argues that it could harm women's health. They speak with host Michel Martin, who's also joined by NPR Correspondent Kathy Lohr.

12:00pm

Thu November 3, 2011
Your Money

Young Woman Wins Fight Against Big Bank

After facing public outcry and cancelled accounts, Bank of America abandoned plans to impose a monthly five dollar fee for debit card users. Twenty-two-year-old Molly Katchpole drew in more than 300,000 signatures for her online petition drive against the bank. She speaks with host Michel Martin.

11:51am

Thu November 3, 2011
The Salt

How Low-Fat Foods Get Their Texture

One way food companies compensate for the texture lost from lowering fat is by using replacements like cellulose gum.
iStockphoto.com

Pull any packaged food item off the shelf and chances are it has a long list of mysterious ingredients with highly scientific names like "methylcellulose." If you're like us, you may puzzle and even worry a little over these unappetizing words.

Why do we have so much weird stuff like methylcellulose and xanthum gum that's produced in a laboratory in our food? Texture, baby, texture. It's nearly impossible to understate the importance of texture and "mouth feel" to food companies, especially in an age when people fear the fat content in their food.

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11:40am

Thu November 3, 2011
Shots - Health Blog

A Disco Beat Isn't Enough For CPR Stardom

"Disco Science," which you may know from the movie Snatch, has joined the '70s hit "Stayin' Alive" and the British children's song "Nellie the Elephant" on a unique playlist.

The three songs have been found to help people compress the chest at the right rate. Unfortunately, adding music to the CPR mix doesn't improve its overall effectiveness, a new study finds.

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11:10am

Thu November 3, 2011
Digital Life

The War Between Google, Amazon, Facebook, Apple

Apple, Google, Facebook and Amazon are expanding rapidly into markets like media, TV, movies, finance, advertising, retail and mobile phones.
Stephanie d'Otreppe NPR

In the old days, Amazon sold books, Google was a search engine, Facebook was a social network and Apple sold computers.

But that's not the case anymore.

Google and Apple now sell phones. Amazon has gotten into the server business. Apple sells music. Facebook and Amazon provide online payment services. And that's just the beginning.

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10:35am

Thu November 3, 2011
The Two-Way

Daughter Beaten By Dad Who's A Texas Judge: It Happened Regularly

Originally published on Thu November 3, 2011 5:51 pm

Hillary Adams (left) as her father was striking her with a belt. She set up a video camera to record what she says was one of many such beatings.
YouTube.com (warning, video is graphic)

Hillary Adams, who videotaped her father beating her in 2004 and released it to the world last week because she believes he should not be serving as a judge in Texas, said this morning that such punishments happened regularly and that she believes her father "needs help and rehabilitation."

For his part, Judge William Adams says that "in my mind I haven't done anything wrong. ... She wasn't hurt, it was a long time ago" and she was just "being disciplined."

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9:57am

Thu November 3, 2011
Book Reviews

A Critic To Remember: Pauline Kael At The 'Movies'

Originally published on Thu November 3, 2011 12:16 pm

Pauline Kael was a film critic for The New Yorker from 1967 to 1991, as well as the author of several books, including I Lost It at the Movies and For Keeps: 30 Years at the Movies.

AP

To quote the immortal title of her 1965 collection of movie reviews, Pauline Kael may have "lost it at the movies," but she infinitely renewed her wide-eyed wonder as a moviegoer in her essays for The New Yorker magazine. Kael was no virgin as a critic when she started writing for The New Yorker in 1967 — but when she loved a movie, she always wrote like she was being touched for the very first time.

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9:15am

Thu November 3, 2011

8:46am

Thu November 3, 2011
The Two-Way

Jobless Claims Dip Below 400,000

There were 397,000 first-time claims for unemployment benefits last week, down 9,000 from the week before, the Employment and Training Administration just reported.

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8:15am

Thu November 3, 2011
The Two-Way

Cain Allegations: The Latest Developments

Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain during an appearance on Wednesday (Nov. 3, 2011) in McLean, Va.
Alex Wong Getty Images

Catching up on the latest news about the allegations, which he says are false, that Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain sexually harassed some women when he was heading the National Restaurant Association in the late 1990s:

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7:29am

Thu November 3, 2011
The Two-Way

Occupy Oakland Strike Turns 'Chaotic'

There's quiet now in the streets of Oakland, the local Tribune reports.

But what began as a "mostly peaceful" general strike that "drew thousands Wednesday for rallies and marches ... turned chaotic early Thursday after protesters took over a vacant building and police moved in, firing tear gas and flashbang grenades."

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7:14am

Thu November 3, 2011
The Two-Way

Along With Humans, Who Else Is In The 7 Billion Club?

Animal Kings: Ants, like these workers carrying eggs to a plant's leaf after rain flooded their nest, have a combined biomass estimated in the billions of tons.
Gurinder Osan AP

The revelation this week that the Earth now holds 7 billion people, according to the U.N.'s population division, prompted a question: Who else is in the 7 Billion Club? To find out which other animals had reached that plateau, we asked wildlife experts — and they patiently explained why our innocent question was nearly impossible to answer.

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