National News

Obama: People 'Will Be Held Accountable' For Veterans Affairs Problems

NPR News - Wed, 2014-05-21 07:25

Anybody found to have manipulated Veterans Affairs records "will be held accountable," President Obama said Wednesday. He also defended Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric Shinseki.

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Putting public radio on the map

Marketplace - American Public Media - Wed, 2014-05-21 07:17
Thursday, May 29, 2014 - 02:14 Dan Abendschein

A map of public radio stations that had been given licenses as of 1951.

Where did your public-radio station come from? If it acquired a license in the 1940s or 1950s, there's a good chance it was started for instructional purposes. Many stations created educational programming that was used by students in the classroom. 

As reporter Adriene Hill chronicles in her story on the roots of public radio, over-the-air education fizzled out after television came along.

The map above shows nearly 100 radio stations that had been granted a broadcasting license as of 1951. They include universities, school boards, trade schools and even a public library. The stations were required to have an educational purpose. It could be anything from teaching broadcasting,  to creating programs to be used in the classroom (some stations broadcast only during school hours), to simply playing classical music (apparently it had more to teach us than other types of music).

The red markers show stations that are now defunct; the green ones  are still broadcasting; and yellow is for stations broadcasting under different call letters.

By clicking on a marker, you can read a little more about the station's history

 In general, most stations that were run by school boards are gone. Many of the stations that were licensed to universities have become NPR member stations, and are only nominally affiliated with the institution that was granted the license.

At the college level,  there are still some student-run stations and some are still creating instructional material.  There are even a few high-school radio stations that have survived.

We know there's a lot more public-radio history that we've missed, so please fill us in.  We'd also love to hear from you if your station is not on the map, but was founded for over-the-air instruction.

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Bewildered By Bilderberg

NPR News - Wed, 2014-05-21 07:13

By creating a Google Alert for a mysterious meeting of the world's powerbrokers, we came to know that there is a lot we don't know.

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PODCAST: A cautious Fed

Marketplace - American Public Media - Wed, 2014-05-21 07:08

Chairman of the New York Fed William Dudley has spoken out saying his Federal Reserve needs to be especially careful about real estate at the dicey moment when interest rates start going up as a result of their stimulus cutbacks. To help us with this, we turn to Philip Swagel an economist at the University of Maryland who used to work at the Fed and the White House.

And from our broadcast in London this week, we visit London's Borough Market, where's there's been food for sale for an even one-thousand years.

Plus, some good news for London this week: the British capital came top in Price Waterhouse Cooper's sixth annual league table of international cities. London was rated the world's foremost "economic powerhouse and centre for culture, education and innovation." The accolade should go some way to soothe this city's wounded pride: London recently lost its number one slot in the prestigious Global Financial Centre Index.

Japanese School Says It Won't Be Kinki Anymore

NPR News - Wed, 2014-05-21 06:29

Osaka's Kinki University is named for its home region in south-central Japan. But school officials say the name is distracting to foreigners.

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GM Announces Its 30th Recall Of The Year Thus Far

NPR News - Wed, 2014-05-21 06:14

A day after recalling 2.42 million vehicles, General Motors says it's recalling an additional 218,000 Chevrolet model cars. All told, the company has recalled nearly 14 million vehicles this year.

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Medicare May Be Overpaying Hospitals For Patients Who Don't Stay Long

NPR News - Wed, 2014-05-21 05:29

Medicare told doctors to admit patients expected to stay in the hospital through two midnights or longer. Then Medicare said it wouldn't enforce the rules, adding to the controversy.

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Alito Halts Missouri Execution; Supreme Court To Look At Case

NPR News - Wed, 2014-05-21 05:06

Justice Samuel Alito granted a stay of Russell Bucklew's execution Tuesday night. The inmate has a rare medical condition that his attorneys say makes it likely that a lethal injection could go wrong.

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Won't you be our neighbor?

Marketplace - American Public Media - Wed, 2014-05-21 04:36

From the Marketplace Datebook, here’s a look at what’s coming up Thursday, May 22:

The National Association of Realtors reports on April sales of existing homes.

The White House will host a ceremony for the United States Postal Service's new Harvey Milk Forever Stamp, in honor of Harvey Milk Day.

And it was indeed a beautiful day in the neighborhood. On this day in 1967, "Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood" premiered on PBS with the late Frederick McFeely Rogers.

Where Are The World's Positive Vibes?

NPR News - Wed, 2014-05-21 04:20

The newly released "positive experience index" of 138 countries finds that people in Paraguay had the rosiest outlook (again). The U.S. made the top 20 in the annual Gallup index.

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Book News: Ray Bradbury's House Is Up For Sale

NPR News - Wed, 2014-05-21 03:08

"Everyone must leave something behind," the author once wrote. Also: Philip Roth retires from sandwich eating. And Jane Fonda is writing a novel.

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So What If It's Ugly? It Just Keeps On Going ...

NPR News - Wed, 2014-05-21 03:03

Thank heavens it's not pretty, not thirsty, not useful, not a bother, not nearby. It looks like a mess of rope. But, oh my, is this plant old. Really, really old.

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Egyptian Court Sentences Mubarak To 3 Years In Prison For Corruption

NPR News - Wed, 2014-05-21 02:54

Deposed Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak and his sons were charged with embezzling millions of dollars in public funds.

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T-Mobile and Univision pitch Latinos a phone plan

Marketplace - American Public Media - Wed, 2014-05-21 02:23

T-Mobile is offering three new cell phone plans that start at $30 a month and include 100 free minutes to some countries in Latin America. T-Mobile’s partner in the plans is Univision, the Spanish language broadcast network.  If you sign up for a new Univision Mobile plan, you’ll get access to exclusive content.

Luis Miguel Messianu, president and chief creative officer at Alma, a Hispanic and multicultural advertising firm in Miami, says the strength of Univision’s brand could help bring success.

"Why would I leave my AT&T plan and move to this new venture if it doesn’t give me additional perks?" he asked.

Messianu notes that Latino consumers want good content and prices, and that others have failed in targeting them in the past, like ESPN, J-Lo and Verizon.

T-Mobile wants Latino consumers, and it's easy to understand why. Messianu calls them "the original social network." A telecom industry analyst, Roger Entner, says Hispanics are spending more on their smart phones than the average. He notes that the market for Latino smartphone users is worth about $30 billion a year in service revenues.

But when it comes to Latinos, T-Mobile will have to overtake AT&T, Verizon and Sprint.

JPMorgan Chase investing in Detroit's community

Marketplace - American Public Media - Wed, 2014-05-21 02:21

JP Morgan Chase's $100 million dollar pledge to invest in the Detroit community follows a $15 million investment by Goldman Sachs late last year.

Robin Boyle, a professor of urban studies and planning at Wayne State University, says the investments don't necessarily signal that Detroit is the new darling of Wall Street, but the funds could help the bankrupt city focus on the future, while city managers grapple with billion dollars of debts. 

Terry Simonette, president and CEO of Capital Impact Partners, a non-profit community development financial institution that is receiving $20 million in loans and $5 million in grant money from Chase, says the group will use the money to help spur development in three Detroit neighborhoods: Northwest, Southwest and Jefferson East.  "As people re-occupy those neighborhoods they need food, bakery, they need coffee shops, they need supermarkets," says Simonette.

Supreme Court Ruling Not Enough To Prevent Debtors' Prisons

NPR News - Wed, 2014-05-21 01:01

In 1983, the high court ruled judges can't jail someone because they're too poor to pay their fines and fees. But an NPR investigation found judges still use jail time as punishment for non-payment.

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Whisk offers a different model for getting around town

Marketplace - American Public Media - Wed, 2014-05-21 01:00

When you think of the iconic images of New York City, certainly the yellow taxi cab comes to mind. It makes sense - NYC makes up 40 percent of the for-hire vehicle industry's business in the United States. It's why Michael Ibrahim, CEO of a startup called Whisk, thinks his business couldn't have gotten started anywhere else.

Unlike other phone apps with on-demand car services (think Uber or Lyft), Whisk doesn't deal in recruiting drivers to be part of its service. Instead, it serves as a platform for users to locate the nearest  black car or livery business vehicles. Also, unlike its competitors, users can watch their ride fare in real time on their phone, not unlike riding in a yellow taxi. 

Ibrahim says that working with multiple businesses that offer cars for hire allows Whisk to avoid a common problem found in other ride-sharing programs:

"There’s actually a predicative problem about knowing where rides are going to come from at what time and helping to deploy drivers. And what we get, because of our model, is we have all these partners that are helping us do it."

Should HPV Testing Replace The Pap Smear?

NPR News - Tue, 2014-05-20 23:24

The recent FDA approval of an HPV test to screen for cervical cancer has ignited debate among doctors. Some say the viral test will catch cancers earlier. Others warn it increases needless biopsies.

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Without A Marijuana Breathalyzer, How To Curb Stoned Driving?

NPR News - Tue, 2014-05-20 23:21

Legal pot sales are growing in Colorado, and the state has a marijuana DUI blood standard for drivers. But without a pot breathalyzer, it's hard to measure how high someone is.

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For N.J. Mayor, The Time To Adapt To Rising Sea Levels Is Now

NPR News - Tue, 2014-05-20 23:20

Hoboken, N.J., has experienced several major floods since Hurricane Sandy. Mayor Dawn Zimmer says her city isn't waiting to prepare for the effects of climate change.

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