The Two-Way
6:30 am
Wed September 21, 2011

$16 Muffins, $8 Coffees, $5 Meatballs: Justice Dept. Spending Rapped

Anel Fernandez Cover/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed September 21, 2011 12:05 pm

There's more ammunition today for those who collect evidence of government waste.

In a new report covering the last few years of the George W. Bush administration and the first year of the Obama administration, the Justice Department's Office of the Inspector General found that at conferences hosted by DOJ there was some "allowable but ... extravagant" spending.

A few notes from the report:

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The Two-Way
6:00 am
Wed September 21, 2011

At UN: Obama To Speak As Critics Take Aim At Mideast Policy

Originally published on Mon September 26, 2011 11:41 am

When President Obama steps to the podium at the U.N. General Assembly later this morning, he'll have a chance to explain why the U.S. opposes the bid by Palestinians to join that world body.

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The Two-Way
5:42 am
Wed September 21, 2011

Former NPR News Exec Ellen Weiss Takes Job At Center For Public Integrity

Ellen Weiss, who resigned in January from her job as NPR's senior vice president for news after an independent review raised questions about "the speed and handling" of news analyst Juan Williams' termination, has been named executive editor at the Center for Public Integrity.

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The Two-Way
5:10 am
Wed September 21, 2011

Developing: Iran Has Released Jailed Americans, State TV Says

A photo released by Iran's state-run Press TV on Feb. 6, 2011, shows U.S. hikers Shane Bauer (left) and Josh Fattal at court in Tehran.
AFP/Getty Images

Two American men jailed as spies in Iran since 2009 have been released, Iran's official Press TV reports.

The news site says it "has learned" that news.

Its report follows word from The Associated Press that attorney Masoud Shafiei said a court has approved a $1 million bail-for-freedom deal for the release of Shane Bauer and Josh Fattal.

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Around the Nation
3:23 am
Wed September 21, 2011

Repeal Day Marks The End Of 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell'

"Don't ask, don't tell" is no more. The policy barred openly gay, lesbian or bisexual people from serving in the military. Gay rights groups held Repeal Day celebrations across the country. One celebration took place in New York City at the historic Stonewall Inn, the birthplace of the gay rights movement.

World
10:01 pm
Tue September 20, 2011

At U.N., Obama Faces Palestinian Challenge

President Obama meets with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Tuesday in New York City. The two men discussed the Palestinian issue only after reporters had left the room.
Pool Getty Images

Originally published on Mon September 26, 2011 11:41 am

Palestinians say they still plan to seek recognition of their statehood from the U.N. Security Council this week, throwing more than a wrench into the diplomatic works for the Obama administration.

President Obama has promised to veto the move in the Security Council. That puts the U.S. on sound footing with Israel, but on a collision course with European and Middle Eastern allies who support the Palestinians' bid.

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Politics
10:01 pm
Tue September 20, 2011

As The 'Un-Candidate,' Palin Tests GOP Patience

Author Joe McGinniss has been out this week promoting his new book about Sarah Palin — a book widely condemned for gossipy allegations by anonymous sources. The book is getting attention in part because Palin might be running for president.

This summer, Palin certainly looked like a presidential candidate as she rode through Iowa and New Hampshire in a red-white-and-blue bus, but as time ticks away the pressure is building on Palin to make her candidacy official.

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Planet Money
10:01 pm
Tue September 20, 2011

'Operation Twist,' Explained In 4 Easy Steps

Note: Robert Smith has an Operation Twist explainer on Wednesday's Morning Edition. That story is attached above.

The interest rate on 10-year Treasury bonds is 1.95 percent. This is crazy low. It's lower than inflation. But the Federal Reserve may be about to push the rate even lower.

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Space
10:01 pm
Tue September 20, 2011

Where Falling Satellite Lands Is Anyone's Guess

This artist's conceptual image shows the Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite, or UARS. After two decades in orbit, the satellite will make an uncontrolled re-entry into the Earth's atmosphere.
NASA

Later this week, a retired NASA satellite the size of a school bus will finally fall back towards Earth after orbiting the planet for two decades. Most of it will burn up in the atmosphere. But about two dozen pieces are expected to hit the ground — somewhere.

And the biggest piece will weigh about 300 pounds.

If that's got you worried, NASA emphasizes that in the history of the space age, there have been no confirmed reports of falling space junk hurting anyone. But that doesn't mean no one has ever been hit.

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Business
10:01 pm
Tue September 20, 2011

A Do-It-Yourself Approach To The Electric Car

Jack Rickard and Brian Noto of EVTV are converting this replica 1966 AC Cobra to run entirely on batteries. The two host an online video series explaining how to convert a gas-guzzling road warrior into an all-electric vehicle.
Jacob McCleland for NPR

Jack Rickard and Brian Noto have developed something of a cult following on their webcast EVTV, or Electric Vehicle Television, produced from their garage in Cape Girardeau, Mo.

Every week, they talk in soul-crushing detail about the intricacies of how to gut a gas-guzzling road warrior and convert it into an all-electric vehicle. On Wednesday, they host the Electric Vehicle Conversion Convention at the Cape Girardeau airport.

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