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Critics' Lists: Summer 2013
6:03 am
Thu July 25, 2013

Fact Behind The Fiction: 5 Great Historicals For Summer

Andrew Bannecker

So was that real?

I hear variations on this theme all the time from readers. Titrating fact and fantasy can give a story a mysterious energy. Writers fetch up those details that sate the senses, allowing us to touch and taste, hear and feel how things were once upon a time. A woman steps out in Gilded Age New York City. Would she wear muslin or silk, petticoats or a hoop of whale baleen? Short kid gloves or long satin ones? How deep is her decolletage? All the particulars, please!

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The Two-Way
5:40 am
Thu July 25, 2013

'Scene From Hell' At Site Of Spanish Train Crash

Some of the wreckage at the site of Wednesday's train crash near Santiago de Compostela, Spain.
Miguel Vidal Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Fri July 26, 2013 5:50 am

This post was last updated at 5:45 p.m. ET.

About 80 people died, scores more were wounded and the eyewitness accounts are sobering in Santiago de Compostela, Spain, after Wednesday's crash of a passenger train.

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Around the Nation
4:58 am
Thu July 25, 2013

George H.W. Bush Shaves Head In Support Of Ill Toddler

Originally published on Thu July 25, 2013 6:58 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne. Former President George H.W. Bush has a new summer 'do. He shaved his head to show support for the son of one of his Secret Service agents. Two-year-old Patrick lost his hair from leukemia treatments. Bush and his wife lost a three-year-old daughter to leukemia nearly 60 years ago. A photo just released shows Patrick perched on Bush's knee with matching bald heads, blue shirts, and khakis. Bill Clinton tweeted: 41, you look great. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Around the Nation
4:56 am
Thu July 25, 2013

Believe In Fortune Cookie Predictions? After This, You Might

Originally published on Thu July 25, 2013 6:58 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Good morning, I'm David Greene.

OK. Next time you open a fortune cookie, you might want to give the message careful consideration. Last week, after dinner out with his wife, William Johnson cracked open a fortune cookie. The little piece of paper inside told him: You will soon come into a lot of gold. The Southwick, Massachusetts man went out the next day, he bought a lottery ticket. He scratched it off, and the prize wasn't gold, but he could use it to buy a lot. He won a million dollars.

The Two-Way
4:27 am
Thu July 25, 2013

Steam And Groundwater Raise Concern At Japanese Nuclear Plant

Tokyo Electric Power Co (TEPCO) workers work on waste water tanks at Japan's Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant in the town of Okuma, Fukushima prefecture in Japan on June 12, 2013.
Noboru Hashimoto AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu July 25, 2013 9:01 am

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Politics
4:27 am
Thu July 25, 2013

Another Senate Battle Looms Over Judicial Nominees

Originally published on Thu July 25, 2013 6:58 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

You could say another blockbuster battle is shaping up on Capitol Hill - over nominations. This one does not concern President Obama's executive branch appointments. That fight got settled at the 11th hour last week. This dispute is over judicial nominations, specifically over Obama's bid to fill three vacancies on the Washington, D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals. It's widely considered the nation's second most important court.

Yesterday, Republicans argued the court has enough judges already. NPR's David Welna reports.

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Politics
4:27 am
Thu July 25, 2013

8 Years Later, Obama Returns To Site Of Big Economic Speech

Originally published on Thu July 25, 2013 6:58 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

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

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And I'm David Greene, good morning.

When president is in a second term, we often say that he's had his last campaign, at least as a candidate. For President Obama, this week is feeling in many ways like a campaign. He's trying to rally support for his ideas on the economy. The road trip began yesterday at Knox College in Illinois. Today he visits Jacksonville, Florida.

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Business
4:27 am
Thu July 25, 2013

Ex-Goldman Sachs Executive Takes The Stand

Originally published on Thu July 25, 2013 6:58 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

A former executive at Goldman Sachs will take the stand again in his civil fraud trial this morning. Fabrice Tourre is accused of misleading investors about a security he marketed and sold in the months leading up to the subprime mortgage collapse.

Tourre began testifying yesterday afternoon, and NPR's Jim Zarroli was there. Jim, good morning.

JIM ZARROLI, BYLINE: Good morning.

GREENE: So give us the background, here, if you can. What is Fabrice Tourre accused of, exactly?

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NPR Story
4:06 am
Thu July 25, 2013

Making Sense Of Cleveland's Good And Bad News

The new Cleveland Convention Center is hosting its first major event, the National Senior Games.
Thomas Ondrey The Plain Dealer/Landov

Originally published on Thu July 25, 2013 11:13 am

As Cleveland embraces national attention for everything from its booming arts and culinary scene to its redevelopment plans, it struggles with recent high-profile crimes. Some residents and tourists are left with news whiplash as they try to figure out what these diverging storylines say about the city.

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NPR Story
4:06 am
Thu July 25, 2013

Collecting Taxes Among Detroit's Financial Troubles

Originally published on Thu July 25, 2013 6:58 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning. I'm David Greene.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne. Detroit is broke. But a federal judge is holding hearings to determine whether Detroit is broke enough to qualify for bankruptcy protection. The court is examining whether the city has done everything possible to put more money in its coffers. Quinn Klinefelter of member station WDET reports one thing is certain - Detroit is struggling to bring into its coffers tax revenue.

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NPR Story
4:06 am
Thu July 25, 2013

Train Derailment Kills Scores In Spain

Originally published on Thu July 25, 2013 10:08 am

At least 78 people have died and more than 140 others have been injured after a train derailment in Spain. The high-speed train, carrying 218 passengers plus its crew, left the tracks as it went around a curve near the city of Santiago de Compostela. David Greene talks to Lisa Abend, who reports for Time magazine, for the latest.

Code Switch
2:41 am
Thu July 25, 2013

After Years Of Violence, L.A.'s Watts Sees Crime Subside

Los Angeles police officers take a break during a basketball game with residents of the Nickerson Gardens housing project in July 2011. Violent crime at Nickerson Gardens and two nearby housing projects has fallen by almost half since 2010.
Thomas Watkins AP

Originally published on Thu July 25, 2013 9:48 am

On most weeknights, in the middle of his shift, Los Angeles police officer Keith Mott trades his gun and uniform for a T-shirt and shorts, and heads to a park in the Watts neighborhood of South Los Angeles. He's there to coach 7- and 8-year-old boys on the Pop Warner Pee Wee football team, the Watts Bears.

The kids come from three nearby housing projects: Jordan Downs, Nickerson Gardens and Imperial Courts. The park was carefully chosen. It's a neutral site for local gangs. Otherwise, most of the Bears' parents wouldn't allow them to come and play.

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Parallels
2:40 am
Thu July 25, 2013

South Africans Ponder A Nation Without Mandela

A well-wisher uses his phone to take a picture of a banner of photos of Nelson Mandela outside the Mediclinic Heart Hospital in Pretoria, where the former South African president is being treated.
Ben Curtis AP

Originally published on Thu December 5, 2013 6:10 pm

From the township of Alexandra in Johannesburg, shack dwellers can look across a ravine to the spires of Sandton City, which houses the most lavish shopping mall in sub-Saharan Africa.

Alex, as this slum of roughly a half a million people is known, was home to Nelson Mandela when he first moved to Johannesburg in 1941.

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Environment
2:38 am
Thu July 25, 2013

La. Flood Board Sues Oil Industry Over Wetlands

Canals created for navigation and oil and gas pipelines cut through the marsh off the coast of Louisiana, seen in 2010.
Bloomberg via Getty Images

Originally published on Thu July 25, 2013 10:49 am

Since the 1930s, Louisiana has lost roughly as much land as makes up the state of Delaware.

"If you put the state of Delaware between New Orleans and the ocean, we wouldn't need any levees at all," says John Barry, vice president of the Southeast Louisiana Flood Protection Authority-East. "There is this large buffer of land that has disappeared, and that buffer makes New Orleans much more vulnerable to hurricanes."

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Deceptive Cadence
1:03 am
Thu July 25, 2013

The High, Heavenly Voice Of David Daniels

Countertenor David Daniels (right) and dancer Reed Luplau in the Santa Fe Opera's world-premiere production of Oscar, based on the life of Oscar Wilde.
Ken Howard Santa Fe Opera

Originally published on Sat August 3, 2013 8:19 am

"You very quickly forget whether it's a male voice or a female voice. ... Because he's such a terrific musician, and so expressive, the fact that it's a man singing in a woman's range becomes irrelevant, and what we hear is the music."

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