Arts & Life

Arts & Life
1:26 pm
Thu November 1, 2012

Ricks: Firing 'The Generals' To Fight Better Wars?

Penguin Group USA

Originally published on Thu November 1, 2012 4:17 pm

When Thomas Ricks first learned that Terry Allen, the successful general in charge of the 1st Infantry Division during World War II's Sicily campaign, had been fired, he says, his jaw dropped.

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Arts & Life
12:30 pm
Thu November 1, 2012

Even Americans Find Some Britishisms 'Spot On'

Geoff Nunberg says that, like a lot of the Britishisms peppering American speech these days, "spot on" falls somewhere in the blurry region between affectation and flash.
Zdenek Ryzner iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Thu November 1, 2012 2:26 pm

Mitt Romney was on CNN not long ago defending the claims in his campaign ads — "We've been absolutely spot on," he said. Politics aside, the expression had me doing an audible roll of my eyes. I've always associated "spot on" with the type of Englishman who's played by Terry-Thomas or John Cleese, someone who pronounces "yes" and "ears" in the same way — "eeahzz." It shows up when people do send-ups of plummy British speech. "I say — spot on, old chap!"

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Arts & Life
12:28 pm
Thu November 1, 2012

Pay Phones Are Suddenly Important Again Because Of Sandy

A woman uses a pay phone in the Lower East Village in Manhattan on Wednesday.
Carlo Allegri Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Thu November 1, 2012 1:24 pm

"After Sandy, Wired New Yorkers Get Reconnected With Pay Phones: Coin-Eating Retro Devices Baffle Some, Frustrate Many; Moment Merits a Tweet."

That Wall Street Journal story today, about folks in lower Manhattan who have been forced by the power outages and damages in the wake of Superstorm Sandy to seek out an old-fashioned way to make a call, has struck a chord.

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Arts & Life
12:22 pm
Thu November 1, 2012

Bloomberg Businessweek's Cover: 'It's Global Warming, Stupid'

Bloomberg Businessweek's latest cover.
Bloomberg

Climate change is one of those important topics that has remained under the radar this election cycle.

Without a doubt, Superstorm Sandy has brought it back to the spotlight. That's evident when New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo linked Sandy to global warming.

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Arts & Life
11:37 am
Thu November 1, 2012

Why The White House Glass Ceiling Remains Solid

The presidency has remained a male-only office throughout American history. Despite changing demographics and huge gains by women in other walks of life, some experts still don't see a female president on the horizon.
Joshua Roberts Getty Images

Originally published on Thu November 1, 2012 1:50 pm

Will the United States ever elect a woman president?

When President Obama — or Mitt Romney — leaves the Oval Office, there will be a handful of highly touted female candidates for consideration as top-of-the-ticket nominees for both major parties.

On the Republican side, the list includes Sen. Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire and Govs. Susana Martinez of New Mexico, Nikki Haley of South Carolina and maybe even Sarah Palin of Alaska.

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Arts & Life
11:12 am
Thu November 1, 2012

Former Penn State President Graham Spanier Charged In Sex Abuse Scandal

Former Penn State University president Graham Spanier speaks during a news conference.
Carolyn Kaster AP

Originally published on Thu November 1, 2012 11:40 am

Pennsylvania Attorney General Linda Kelly just announced that former Penn State President Graham Spanier has been charged in connection with the child sex abuse scandal that has rocked the university.

According to Onward State, an online news outlet covering Penn State, Spanier is facing eight charges ranging from perjury to endangering welfare of children to conspiracy.

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Arts & Life
10:45 am
Thu November 1, 2012

Tips On Explaining The Storm To Young Ones

Originally published on Thu November 1, 2012 11:03 am

Millions of Americans are dealing with the aftermath of Sandy, including the responsibility of comforting children who may not have a frame of reference for the storm. For tips on helping kids cope, host Michel Martin speaks with Suzanne McCabe of Scholastic's classroom magazines. The magazines cover the aftermath of all kinds of disasters.

Arts & Life
10:45 am
Thu November 1, 2012

Sandy Raises Concerns For Nation's Infrastructure

Originally published on Thu November 1, 2012 11:03 am

The cleanup effort is underway after superstorm Sandy, and questions are cropping up about the country's aging infrastructure. Henry Gomez reports for The Plain Dealer in Cleveland. He put his questions to President Obama and GOP nominee Mitt Romney well before the storm hit. He speaks with host Michel Martin, as part of NPR's "Solve This" series.

Arts & Life
10:23 am
Thu November 1, 2012

For Complainers, A Stint In China's 'Black Jails'

A man walks through a former unofficial, or "black," jail in Beijing, in 2009. It's estimated that thousands of Chinese lodging protests against the government are illegally detained in secret sites such as this one, even though the government says they don't exist.
Elizabeth Dalziel AP

Originally published on Thu November 1, 2012 7:25 pm

People often say China is a nation of contrasts: of wealth and poverty, of personal freedom and political limits. But that observation doesn't begin to capture the tensions and incongruities of modern life here.

For instance, in today's Shanghai, you can sip a $31 champagne cocktail in a sleek rooftop bar overlooking the city's spectacular skyline, while, just a few miles away, ordinary citizens languish in a secret detention center run by government-paid thugs.

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Arts & Life
9:55 am
Thu November 1, 2012

Latest Figures On Deaths, Power Outages Related To Sandy

Originally published on Thu November 1, 2012 4:57 pm

NPR's librarians are helping us keep track of two sobering statistics about Superstorm Sandy:

As of 6 p.m. ET:

-- According to NPR's count, the death toll remains at 91. The AP count has now moved up to 90.

New York City alone is reporting 37 deaths. New Jersey reported 12 and Maryland 11.

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Arts & Life
9:36 am
Thu November 1, 2012

Sandy's Two-Fisted Attack: Water From Air And Sea

Adam Cole NPR

On Monday, Sandy brought heavy rain, winds and storm surges to the Northeast, causing widespread flooding and extensive damage to hundreds of communities, particularly in New Jersey and New York.

But the drenching from all that water varied greatly by region.

In areas south of Atlantic City, N.J., where the storm made landfall Monday night, the wind was pushing out toward the ocean. This prevented high storm tides along the Virginia, Maryland and Delaware coasts and in Chesapeake Bay. But the same arm of the storm that held the ocean at bay carried a lot of rain.

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Arts & Life
7:58 am
Thu November 1, 2012

Construction Resumes of Creek Casino in Alabama

The Wind Creek Casino & Hotel, owned by the Poarch Band of Creek Indians.
Credit southerngaming.com

The Poarch Band of Creek Indians is resuming work on its $246 million casino and hotel in Wetumpka.


Work on the 20-story project stopped two weeks ago after the Muscogee Nation of Creek Indians in Oklahoma objected to the plans. The Oklahoma tribe has historic ties to the land once known as Hickory Town Ground, and it objected to the graves of its ancestors being exhumed and moved.

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Alabama Gambling Trial
5:09 pm
Wed October 31, 2012

Feds OK With Delay In Gilley Going To Prison

Federal prosecutors say they have no objection to allowing Country Crossing casino developer Ronnie Gilley an extra two weeks to report to prison.

Federal prosecutors say they have no objection to allowing Country Crossing casino developer Ronnie Gilley an extra two weeks to report to prison.


Gilley is due to report Monday to begin a sentence of six years and eight months, but he is seeking a delay due to complications from surgery. The Justice Department filed court papers Wednesday that said allowing Gilley to report Nov. 19 would allow him to be treated by his own physician rather than at government expense.

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Arts & Life
12:45 pm
Wed October 31, 2012

International Film Conference Addresses Global Human Rights Issues

A scene from the documentary “Tahrir: Liberation Square.”
nytimes.com

Starting today, the University of Alabama at Birmingham is hosting an international film conference. The event will host more than 60 filmmakers and scholars from around the world to talk about how filmmaking plays into the international struggle for civil and human rights. I sat down to talk with Doctor Serge Bokobza, who chairs the foreign languages department at UAB and heads up the conference. He says his year’s event is homage to the 49th Anniversary of the 16th Street Baptist Church bombing in Birmingham.

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Arts & Life
9:03 pm
Tue October 30, 2012

The American Pastime Fades In Popularity

Wendell Franks iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Wed October 31, 2012 7:52 am

Jacques Barzun, the esteemed cultural historian, lived 104 years and wrote a multitude of words about the most important issues in society, but when he died last week, his one quote that was invariably cited was a pithy one that he wrote back in 1954: "Whoever wishes to know the heart and soul of America had better learn baseball."

Never mind that that is no longer even remotely true.

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