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The Salt
2:16 pm
Thu July 2, 2015

Do Organic Farmers Need Special Seeds And Money To Breed Them?

"Who Gets Kissed" corn is a variety bred in Wisconsin specifically for organic farmers. It's named for an old game. At corn husking time, a lucky person who found a rare ear of corn with red kernels had the right to kiss anyone that he or she chose.
Courtesy of Adrienne Shelton

Rearranging veggie genes is big business, and we're not even talking about biotechnology. Private companies and university researchers spend hundreds of millions of dollars every year breeding better genetic varieties of food crops.

But organic farmers say those programs have a big blind spot when it comes to figuring out which new varieties are truly better. Few companies or researchers test those varieties under organic conditions.

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Shots - Health News
2:10 pm
Thu July 2, 2015

Don't Get Your Kids' Genes Sequenced Just To Keep Up

You can now order genetic tests off the Internet and get your child's genome sequenced for less than the cost of a new car. The question is, should you?

Almost certainly not, according to the American Society for Human Genetics, which released a position paper Thursday intended to give parents some help navigating the dizzying world of genetic tests.

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The Two-Way
1:58 pm
Thu July 2, 2015

Former Sen. Jim Webb Announces Run For Democratic Nomination

Former Sen. Jim Webb, D-Va., speaks at the National Sheriffs' Association presidential forum in Baltimore on Tuesday. Webb announced Thursday that he is running for president.
Patrick Semansky AP

Originally published on Thu July 2, 2015 3:21 pm

Former U.S. Sen. Jim Webb has become the fifth Democrat to announce he is seeking the party's nomination for president.

"[Our] country needs a fresh approach to solving the problems that confront us and too often unnecessarily divide us," Webb said in a statement. "We need to shake the hold of these shadow elites on our political process."

Webb, 69, joins former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, former Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley and former Rhode Island Gov. Lincoln Chafee in the 2016 contest.

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The Two-Way
1:33 pm
Thu July 2, 2015

Afghan Court Commutes Death Sentences In Mob Killing Of Woman

Originally published on Thu July 2, 2015 4:19 pm

An appeals court in Afghanistan has overturned the death sentences handed to four men who were part of a mob that attacked and killed a 28-year-old woman falsely accused of burning the Quran.

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Goats and Soda
1:33 pm
Thu July 2, 2015

How Salt + Car Battery = Clean Water

A woman in Yatta, Kenya, explains how to make clean water using a car battery and just the right mixture of salt and water.
Jane Mauser Courtesy of MSR

Originally published on Thu July 2, 2015 6:27 pm

It's easy to take clean, safe water for granted. It just flows out of taps continuously — even in drought-ridden California.

But for hundreds of millions of people around the world, clean water is a luxury. In many places, even patients in hospitals and kids at school don't have water that's safe to drink.

Now, an unlikely partnership of an outdoor equipment manufacturer and a global health NGO is trying to change that.

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The Two-Way
12:54 pm
Thu July 2, 2015

Taiwan Airliner's Black Box Shows Pilot May Have Shut Off Wrong Engine

The mangled fuselage of a TransAsia Airways commercial plane is dragged to the river bank after it crashed in Taipei, Taiwan, in February.
AP

Originally published on Thu July 2, 2015 1:59 pm

"Wow, pulled back wrong side throttle."

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Movie Reviews
12:47 pm
Thu July 2, 2015

Not All Sequels Are Equal: Following Up To 'Terminator', 'Magic Mike'

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Politics
12:47 pm
Thu July 2, 2015

Was This Past Supreme Court Session 'A Liberal Term For The Ages'?

A man holds an American and a rainbow flag outside the Supreme Court in Washington, D.C., after the court legalized gay marriage nationwide.
Jacquelyn Martin AP

Originally published on Fri July 3, 2015 11:42 am

The Supreme Court term that just ended included historic rulings in support of same-sex marriage and the Affordable Care Act. "Political scientists will say that this is a liberal term for the ages," Adam Liptak, the Supreme Court correspondent at The New York Times, tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross.

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The Two-Way
12:37 pm
Thu July 2, 2015

Russian Rocket Poised For Crucial Supply Run To Space Station

On Friday, a Russian Soyuz rocket will send an unmanned cargo ship with more than 3 tons of food, water and fuel for astronauts aboard the International Space Station.
Russian Federal Space Agency

Originally published on Thu July 2, 2015 5:45 pm

The stakes are high for a routine cargo mission to the International Space Station, after a string of failures has left the orbiting outpost running somewhat low on supplies.

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It's All Politics
12:28 pm
Thu July 2, 2015

Bernie Sanders Just Drew A Huge Crowd. How Does It Measure Up?

U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders, an independent from Vermont and 2016 U.S. presidential candidate, speaks during a campaign rally in Madison, Wis., on Wednesday.
Christopher Dilts/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Originally published on Thu July 2, 2015 1:28 pm

Call it the latest sign of "Bernie-mentum" — Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders' latest event in Madison, Wis., on Wednesday drew an estimated 10,000 supporters. He packed the arena at Veterans Memorial Coliseum in the liberal college town.

Sanders said last month that he was "stunned" by the large crowds showing up for him. Organizers were once shocked by 300 in Iowa, then 5,000 in Minnesota.

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The Two-Way
11:46 am
Thu July 2, 2015

Why We Shouldn't Be Surprised By Greece's Impasse With Europe

Greece's Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras attends an emergency Parliament session for the government's proposed referendum in Athens on June 27.
Petros Karadjias AP

Originally published on Thu July 2, 2015 12:27 pm

This is what has unfolded in Greece in the past week:

June 26: Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras announces a July 5 referendum on terms put forward by the strapped country's creditors and urges his people to vote "no."

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Shots - Health News
11:09 am
Thu July 2, 2015

Sweeping Or Skydiving? When Counting Calories It's All The Same

Skydiving and vacuuming burn the same number of calories. So what'll it be, thrills or a clean carpet?
Mary McLain NPR

Originally published on Thu July 2, 2015 5:29 pm

Sure, playing in the women's World Cup burns a lot more energy than watching the women's World Cup. But the number of calories expended in sports and daily activities isn't always so obvious.

To figure it out, we dove into this database compiled by Arizona State University. It charts the energy expenditure for hundreds of activities, from mainstream ("bicycling, leisure, 5.5 mph") to obscure ("caulking, chinking log cabin").

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Economy
10:17 am
Thu July 2, 2015

In June Jobs Report, Positive Numbers Belie Frustrations Beneath Surface

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Book Reviews
10:03 am
Thu July 2, 2015

Get A 'Grip' On This Goofy Noir Sci-Fi Tale

Originally published on Thu July 2, 2015 1:36 pm

Remember how it felt when, as a kid, you opened up a fresh-from-the-library book to discover the illustrations weren't in color? It wasn't a good feeling. Most of us still have a foot planted firmly in childhood when it comes to the ol' rainbow. It means that sticking to black and white — whether it's to save money on your independent film or to approximate high-end austerity in an Ikea-furnished apartment — usually entails a sensory sacrifice.

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Law
9:34 am
Thu July 2, 2015

BP Agrees To Fork Over Nearly $19B For Role In Gulf Oil Spill

Originally published on Thu July 2, 2015 4:31 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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