National News

Gary Owens, 'Rowan And Martin's Laugh-In' Announcer, Dies

NPR News - Fri, 2015-02-13 15:05

Owens, known for his baritone, parlayed his role on Laugh-In into a long career of voice-over work in more than a dozen movies and many TV shows. He was 80-years-old.

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Weekly roundup: In the media, some tough goodbyes

Marketplace - American Public Media - Fri, 2015-02-13 14:23

Here are some of the highlights from Marketplace this week, on air and online.

Fun Fact: The average American eats about 70 pounds of chicken a year. That's five times the amount we consumed in 1950. Meanwhile, the chickens Americans farm have nearly doubled in size.

12 crazy facts about chickens, and then some

Fun Fact: But the average American's consumption of eggs has fallen to 250 eggs a year.

Our per capita consumption of eggs has plunged from a high of 400 eggs a year in the 1940s. The decrease has been attributed to warnings about cholesterol. But fear not, egg lovers: It appears health officials are rethinking the whole cholesterol thing.

Dietary update: Cholesterol-rich foods aren't so bad

And finally, what a week it's been for media. 

On Wednesday, NBC announced it would suspend Brian Williams for six months as anchor of the Nightly News after he acknowledged making misleading statements about his experiences during the Iraq War. The scandal caused viewership of NBC's news broadcast to drop by some 36 percent. But NBC isn't the only network experiencing declines.

Changing fortunes of nightly news shows

Also on Wednesday, self-proclaimed fake news anchor Jon Stewart announced he would be leaving "The Daily Show" at some point in 2015. That's bad news not just for fans of Stewart but for parent company Viacom, which has ratings problems with a host of its programming.  

What Jon Stewart's departure means for Viacom

And, like many around the country, we're mourning the loss of  journalist David Carr, 58, who died Thursday in New York. He was was a media and culture columnist for The New York Times, and his wit was as grand as his heart.

Another major loss for journalism: Veteran CBS News correspondent Bob Simon died this week in a New York City car crash. He was 73.

Marketplace Tech spoke to Carr last year. Have a listen.

Ferguson story highlights Twitter's role as source

On Valentine's, saying "#LOVE" with candy hearts

Marketplace - American Public Media - Fri, 2015-02-13 14:18

New England Confectionery Company, or NECCO, has been producing candy sweethearts for more than 100 years. NECCO spends most of the year gearing up for Valentine's Day. Every year, the company sells about 2 billion candy hearts.

CEO Michael McGee took a break to talk to us about the so-called conversation hearts. 

"There's a lot of emotion – emotional heritage tied up in our product. These are traditions that are very much passed down," he says. "I clearly remember telling my first childhood crush how much I love them with a sweetheart."

McGee says the company stays relevant by keeping up with the jargon of the times. This year's box of sweethearts will have messages that include "TEXT ME," "#LOVE" and "BFF."

It's Valentine's Day... what candy are you buying?

Marketplace - American Public Media - Fri, 2015-02-13 14:18

New England Confectionery Company, or NECCO, has been producing candy sweethearts for more than 100 years. NECCO spends most of the year gearing up for Valentine's Day. Every year, the company sells about 2 billion candy hearts.

CEO Michael McGee took a break to talk to us about the so-called conversation hearts. 

"There's a lot of emotion – emotional heritage tied up in our product. These are traditions that are very much passed down," he says. "I clearly remember telling my first childhood crush how much I love them with a sweetheart."

McGee says the company stays relevant by keeping up with the jargon of the times. This year's box of sweethearts will have messages that include: "TEXT ME," "#LOVE" and "BFF."

Déjà vu All Over Again: Northeast Braces For Another Blizzard

NPR News - Fri, 2015-02-13 13:54

February has already become the snowiest on record for Boston, but this weekend's storm may bring up to a foot of more snow.

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Obama Calls UNC Murders 'Brutal And Outrageous'

NPR News - Fri, 2015-02-13 13:51

The president spoke a day after the Justice Department announced an investigation into the killings of three Muslim university students as a possible hate crime.

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Obama Calls For Better Response To Cybersecurity Threats

NPR News - Fri, 2015-02-13 13:43

President Obama signed an executive order that aims to stem attacks by hackers. The order encourages companies to share information about cyber threats with each other and the federal government.

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GMO Apples Get The Nod, But Not Much Of A Welcoming Party

NPR News - Fri, 2015-02-13 13:38

Government regulators have approved the first genetically modified apples, which don't turn brown when you cut them open. But planting these trees will be a gamble since consumers may not want them.

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Chinese have their own Internet censorship song

Marketplace - American Public Media - Fri, 2015-02-13 13:23

Here's one of the New York Times' odder dispatches from China:

The Chinese Cyberspace Administration is the government agency in charge of Internet policy over there, which you can rightly take to mean Internet censorship.

Turns out they have their own anthem:

Devotedly keeping watch over the space every day, / Taking up our mission as the sun rises in the east.

And then it ends strong:

An Internet power: Tell the world that the Chinese dream is uplifting China. / An Internet power: I represent my nation to the world.

Watch the whole thing here, translated by ProPublica:

Chinese have their own Internet censorship song

Marketplace - American Public Media - Fri, 2015-02-13 13:23

Here's one of the New York Times' odder dispatches from China:

The Chinese Cyberspace Administration is the government agency in charge of Internet policy over there, which you can rightly take to mean Internet censorship.

Turns out they have their own anthem:

Devotedly keeping watch over the space every day, / Taking up our mission as the sun rises in the east.

And then it ends strong:

An Internet power: Tell the world that the Chinese dream is uplifting China. / An Internet power: I represent my nation to the world.

Watch the whole thing here, translated by ProPublica:

Execution By Firing Squad Passes Key Vote In Utah Legislature

NPR News - Fri, 2015-02-13 12:31

The Republican-controlled House has voted to revive the option, which was discontinued in 2004, if the state cannot obtain the drugs needed to perform an execution by lethal injection.

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GOP 'Trailblazers' Gala Honors Largest Class Of Black Lawmakers

NPR News - Fri, 2015-02-13 12:28

The Republican National Convention hosted its "Trailblazers" gala where it honored its largest class of Black Republicans since Reconstruction.

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Pope Encounters Resistance On Some Reforms

NPR News - Fri, 2015-02-13 12:24

At the Vatican this week, the pope's G9 — a committee of nine cardinals — is working on how to overhaul Vatican governance.

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On World Radio Day, A New Generation Finds Their Voice

NPR News - Fri, 2015-02-13 12:21

Friday is UNESCO's World Radio Day. The theme this year is "Youth and Radio" — so Youth Radio reporter and commentator Bianca Brooks talks about the impact radio has had on her.

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Justice Ginsberg Admits To Being Tipsy During State Of The Union Nap

NPR News - Fri, 2015-02-13 12:21

Why was Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg dozing at the State of the Union this year? "I wasn't 100 percent sober," Ginsberg admitted during at a forum at George Washington University.

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Ore. Governor Resigns Amid Ethics Investigation

NPR News - Fri, 2015-02-13 12:21

Oregon's governor says he'll leave office next week. Democrat John Kitzhaber had been under pressure to resign amid ethics investigations related to his fiancee's consulting work. In recent days, leaders from his own party asked him to step down. Rachel Martin talks with Northwest News Network's Chirs Lehman.

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For Florists, Roses A Nerve-Racking Business Around Valentines Day

NPR News - Fri, 2015-02-13 12:21

Valentines Day is this one day when one product — a red rose — is worth two or three times more than it is at any other time of the year. If a florist catches that window, he's golden. But the process of getting the roses to is fraught with risk, middlemen, crazy expense and bad weather.

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For U.S. Presidential Hopefuls, Campaigning In London Is A Tough Task

NPR News - Fri, 2015-02-13 12:21

There's a new must-stop on the presidential primary tour: London. In recent weeks three potential Republican hopefuls have made the trip, and each made news in ways they hadn't hoped.

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Justices Ginsburg And Scalia: A Perfect Match Except For Their Views On The Law

NPR News - Fri, 2015-02-13 12:21

The two justices — sometimes called the Odd Couple of the Supreme Court — have been friends for decades. They shared their disagreements and affection at an evening at George Washington University.

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Will Upcoming Ceasefire In Ukraine Hold?

NPR News - Fri, 2015-02-13 12:21

Rachel Martin talks to Associated Press reporter Peter Leonard about the situation on the ground in Ukraine ahead of Sunday's planned ceasefire.

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