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Shots - Health Blog
12:58 pm
Mon August 29, 2011

Bird Flu Flies Again, Prompting UN Advisory

Workers at the Jurong Bird Park in Singapore catch flamingos last year as part of a drive to vaccinate them against avian flu.
Roslan Rahman AFP/Getty Images

Out of the public eye, the bird flu has been making a comeback.

The United Nations' Food and Agriculture Organization warned today about a "possible major resurgence" of H5N1 influenza, including a mutant virus that appears to be unfazed by available vaccines.

The latest fatality from the infection occurred in Cambodia earlier this month. A 6-year-old girl became the eight person to die from avian flu there this year, the World Health Organization said.

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Conflict In Libya
12:35 pm
Mon August 29, 2011

Libya's Ex-Prisoners Finding Their Way Home

The walls of the Libyan Red Crescent office in Benghazi, Libya, shown here on Monday, are covered with photos of the missing. Some disappeared during Libya's revolution, but some have been missing for more than 10 years. Now, thousands released from Libya's prisons are being reunited with their families.
Susannah George NPR

Originally published on Mon August 29, 2011 6:06 pm

In Libya, thousands of rebel fighters and political prisoners freed from Moammar Gadhafi's notorious prisons are making their way home. But tens of thousands more are still missing.

Anxious relatives and friends in the eastern city of Benghazi have flooded the airport and docks night after night in hopes of finding their loved ones arriving by plane or by boat.

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Around the Nation
12:00 pm
Mon August 29, 2011

'Left Out': Post-Katrina Housing Battle Continues

Dorothy McClendon in Gulfport, Miss., hopes the state's latest housing program to help low-income residents will provide assistance so she can repair her moldy house.
Marisa Penaloza NPR

Six years ago Monday, Hurricane Katrina blew up the U.S. Gulf Coast, killed more than 1,800 people and left hundreds of thousands homeless. The story of the coast's recovery varies from place to place.

For some, life is back to normal. Along the Mississippi coast, thousands affected by Katrina still live in battered houses. They've been trapped by a technicality. Their homes were damaged by wind gusts rather than Katrina's storm surge.

In Biloxi, railroad tracks separate some of the neighborhoods that got the most help from those who got little or no aid.

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The Two-Way
11:57 am
Mon August 29, 2011

Juror Held In Contempt Of Court After 'Friending' Defendant

The Fort Worth Star-Telegram brings a bit of curious news this morning: A Tarrant County juror was sentenced to two days of community service after he pleaded guilty to four counts of contempt of court.

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Hurricane Irene Hits East Coast
11:54 am
Mon August 29, 2011

East Coast Starts To Add Up Irene's Economic Blow

Irene destroyed much of the two-mile boardwalk in Spring Lake, N.J.
Michael Loccisano Getty Images

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 9:28 am

The day after Irene, cleanup efforts continue and the damage estimates are starting to come in. Overall, it appears to have caused much less damage than forecasters expected.

But it's still early to make exact pronouncements about how much damage this storm caused or may still cause.

Swollen rivers in upstate New York and New England continue to threaten dams. And on Monday, President Obama said that the cleanup in many areas will be tough.

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Music Reviews
11:41 am
Mon August 29, 2011

Wilhelm Furtwaengler: A Complex German Conductor

German conductor and composer Wilhelm Furtwaengler.
Hulton Archive Getty Images

Originally published on Mon December 19, 2011 5:59 am

Note: Wilhelm Furtwangler's last name is typically spelled with an umlaut over the 'a' character. The npr website does not support characters with umlauts over characters. A variation of Furtwangler's name without the umlaut is spelled Furtwaengler.

Wilhelm Furtwaengler's name may be hard for Americans to pronounce, but the reason this great conductor isn't so well-remembered here is that he chose to remain in Germany during WWII, though he was never a member of the Nazi Party, and was exonerated by a postwar tribunal.

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The Two-Way
11:35 am
Mon August 29, 2011

Reports: Some Of Gadhafi's Family In Algeria

Algeria's state news agency is reporting that the government there says members of Moammar Gadhafi's family are now in that country, The Associated Press and other news outlets say.

It's thought that they include the ousted Libyan leader's wife, two sons and a daughter. NPR's Lourdes Garcia-Navarro, who is in Tripoli, says it's also being reported that some of Gadhafi's grandchildren may also be in the group.

Sky News says on its Twitter page that:

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The Two-Way
11:20 am
Mon August 29, 2011

Obama's New Economist Favors Tax Credits For Companies That Hire

Alan Krueger, who President Obama today nominated to lead the White House Council of Economic Advisers, favors "the idea of having a new jobs tax credit" as one way to get the labor market moving again, he told Bloomberg radio last month.

"If companies increase their payroll by an employee, they could get a $5,000 tax cut to offset their additional hiring costs," Krueger said.

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The Two-Way
10:40 am
Mon August 29, 2011

Through Irene, Old Guard Stood Watch At Tomb Of The Unknowns

On guard during Irene at the Tomb of the Unknowns.
3rd U.S. INF Regiment The Old Guard

As they did during Hurricane Isabel in 2003, the Washington-area blizzards in 2009-10 and other extreme weather events, soldiers of The Old Guard continued to march at Arlington National Cemetery's Tomb of the Unknowns as Hurricane Irene blew through the area

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The Two-Way
10:32 am
Mon August 29, 2011

Freedom For Yvonne, Germany's Runaway Cow: Search Is Called Off

Yvonne, a cow that has lived in the wild since eluding a trip to the slaughterhouse in May, has foiled all attempts to capture her. Now officials say that she's not to be disturbed.
Josef Enzinger dapd

The search for Yvonne, the six-year-old cow that dashed to freedom just before she was to be transported to a slaughterhouse in southern Germany, has been called off. The cow has become a star, drawing international attention to Zangberg, the Bavarian commune where she made her escape.

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The Two-Way
10:31 am
Mon August 29, 2011

NASA: International Space Station May Have To Fly Solo

The International Space Station and the docked space shuttle Endeavour, flying at an altitude of approximately 220 miles, on May 23, 2011.
Paolo Nespoli NASA

Originally published on Mon August 29, 2011 11:46 am

The International Space Station may have to fly solo this fall. All of the astronauts, NASA said today, might have to leave the station in late November if Russian spacecrafts can't make trips to the station.

The AP reports:

If Russian Soyuz rockets remain grounded beyond mid-November, there will be no way to launch new crews before the current residents are supposed to leave.

A Russian supply ship was destroyed during liftoff last week. The rocket is similar to what's used to launch astronauts.

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The Two-Way
10:00 am
Mon August 29, 2011

Before And After Irene, Ron Paul's No Fan Of FEMA

Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX), at the 2011 Republican Leadership Conference in New Orleans on June 17, 2011.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX) said before Hurricane Irene rolled over the mid-Atlantic and up through New England that the Federal Emergency Management Agency does more harm than good because "all they do is come in and tell you what to do and [what you] can't do" and add billions of dollars to the federal deficit.

Plus, he added, the agency did not perform well after Hurricane Katrina pummeled New Orleans' levees six years ago — devastating that city.

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The Two-Way
9:18 am
Mon August 29, 2011

Wisconsin Town Bars Republicans From Labor Day Parade

Wisconsin politics — which hasn't been pretty of late — has made its way into a local Labor Day parade. The organizers of the Wausau Labor Day parade announced they would not let Republican lawmakers take part in the Sept. 5 display. The parade is organized by 30 local unions.

The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel reports:

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Shots - Health Blog
8:40 am
Mon August 29, 2011

Pediatricians Put The Kibosh On Boxing For Kids

Time for kids to take the gloves off, pediatricians say.
Lori Sparkia iStockphoto.com

Whatever you think about the merits of boxing as a sport for adults, pediatricians say children have no place in the ring.

Citing the risk of injuries, including concussions, the American Academy of Pediatrics and its Canadian counterpart, the Canadian Paedeatric Society, have come out in opposition to boxing as a sport for children and adolescents.

Pediatricians should strongly discourage parents from letting their kids box and suggest sports "that do not encourage intentional head injuries," says a new policy statement from the two national groups for pediatricians.

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The Two-Way
8:30 am
Mon August 29, 2011

VIDEO: Firefighters Save Couple From Flooded SUV In Vermont

Among the many photos and videos taken by people up and down the East during and after Hurricane Irene passed through are three clips taken Sunday in Mount Holly, Vt., as local firefighters rescued a couple from their vehicle.

WPTZ-TV of Plattsburgh, N.Y., has them posted here. It says they were taken by "u local contributor Melody Bothers Katrobos."

"Part III" shows the successful conclusion.

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Monkey See
8:27 am
Mon August 29, 2011

Why Did I Watch Fourteen Hours Of The Weather Channel? I'm Not Sure.

In this handout image provided by The Weather Channel, Jim Cantore reports on Hurricane Irene from Battery Park on Sunday.
Getty Images

Originally published on Mon August 29, 2011 9:49 am

If you follow me on Twitter, you already know that I spent all day Saturday watching The Weather Channel. It started very early in the morning when I woke up nervous and headed out to the living room. The hurricane hadn't even made landfall yet, but they already had a guy on the beach who had been assigned to watch over a wooden pier to see if it would collapse. "I appreciate The Weather Channel's nonstop coverage of America's Pier," I said to practically nobody, since practically nobody was awake.

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The Two-Way
7:50 am
Mon August 29, 2011

Happy Feet, The Lost Penguin, Is Headed Home

Safe journey, little guy: Happy Feet in his container aboard the research vessel Tangaroa earlier today.
Hagen Hopkins Getty Images

Two months after he showed up 2,000 miles from home, Happy Feet the three-year-old Emperor Penguin is on a ship that will give him a big head start on his way from New Zealand to Antarctica.

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The Two-Way
7:05 am
Mon August 29, 2011

Consumer Spending Rebounds; Obama Chooses New Economic Adviser

Consumer spending rose 0.8 percent in July from June, the Bureau of Economic Analysis just reported. The increase came as personal income rose 0.3 percent.

Spending had dipped 0.1 percent in June from May. That had raised concerns about whether consumers — who buy about 70 percent of all goods and services — might pull an already weak economy down further.

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The Two-Way
6:55 am
Mon August 29, 2011

What's Got Folks Talking? Beyonce's Baby Bump

Beyonce during her performace Sunday.
Kevin Winter Getty Images

Originally published on Mon August 29, 2011 7:26 am

Our pal Linda Holmes over at Monkey See knows much more about these types of things than we do, but we do want to take a quick break from natural disasters and other heavy news to note that megastar Beyonce Knowles apparently stole the show at Sunday's MTV Video Music Awards by cleverly revealing to the world that she and Jay-Z are expecting a child.

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The Two-Way
6:15 am
Mon August 29, 2011

Powell: Cheney's Taking 'Cheap Shots'

Former Secretary of State Colin Powell during his appearance Sunday on CBS News' Face the Nation.
Chris Usher CBS News via Getty Images

Originally published on Mon August 29, 2011 6:55 am

Colin Powell isn't a fan of Dick Cheney's new memoir.

On CBS News' Face the Nation this weekend, former Bush administration secretary of state Powell said that Bush-era vice president Cheney takes some "cheap shots" and "overshot the runway" in the book that goes on sale this week.

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It's All Politics
6:15 am
Mon August 29, 2011

Powell Isn't Sure He'll Support Obama In 2012 Race

Former Secretary of State Colin Powell during his appearance Sunday on CBS News' Face the Nation.
Chris Usher CBS News via Getty Images

Originally published on Mon August 29, 2011 6:19 am

It was a big story when former Secretary of State Colin Powell, a Republican, endorsed Democrat Barack Obama during the 2008 presidential campaign.

So it's news that this weekend on CBS-TV's Face the Nation, Powell said he hasn't decided if he will vote for the president in 2012.

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The Two-Way
5:45 am
Mon August 29, 2011

New Leader Set In Japan; Gadhafi Still On Run

Good morning.

Residents from North Carolina up through New England are beginning the long process of recovering from Hurricane Irene, which we followed through the weekend and earlier today.

We'll keep an eye out for more stories about the storm and its aftermath. Meanwhile, other major news of the day includes:

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The Two-Way
5:15 am
Mon August 29, 2011

Irene: Not A Monster, But Lots Of Damage

Flooding Sunday in Waitsfield, Vt.
Sandy Macys AP

Originally published on Mon August 29, 2011 5:27 am

Hurricane Irene is gone, but she won't be forgotten anytime soon.

As NPR's Larry Abramson said today on Morning Edition, "Irene did not turn out to be the storm of the century" and many beach towns "were stunned by how lucky they were."

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Around the Nation
2:09 am
Mon August 29, 2011

Irene: Wet, Deadly And Expensive, But No Monster

A surfer in Long Beach, N.Y., passes heavy machinery Monday that was removing the remnants of a lifeguard shack that was knocked off its footing during Irene.
Craig Ruttle AP

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 9:29 am

The remnants of Hurricane Irene moved north Monday into Canada, leaving behind a path of destruction after raking the mid-Atlantic and northeast, where residents faced damaging floods triggered by hours of torrential rains.

While Irene's maximum wind speed might not compare with other legendary hurricanes, the storm had tremendous reach. A couple of days after it beat up on North Carolina, it still had enough strength to pummel Vermont and other parts of New England.

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Closing Walter Reed
10:01 pm
Sun August 28, 2011

Where Generations Of Soldiers Healed, And Moved On

Tyson Quink exercises at the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, MD. Quink, a former college football player, lost both of his legs three months into his deployment to Afghanistan.
Becky Lettenberger NPR

On a recent morning, John Pierce walked across the sprawling hospital campus of the Walter Reed Army Medical Center. On the lawn, he spotted people who have come to define the place in recent years.

"[They were] having physical fitness-type tests," Pierce says. "There were people with notebooks and things, like they record when you do your sit-ups and pushups — but these were a number of double amputees."

Pierce is the historian for the Walter Reed Society, which makes him an expert on the historic American hospital in Washington, D.C.

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Crisis In The Housing Market
10:01 pm
Sun August 28, 2011

'Land Bank' Knocks Out Some Foreclosure Problems

LaMont Rump of Fez Enterprises guides an excavator during the demolition of a house in Cleveland.
Mhari Saito for NPR

Cities have been tearing down crumbling, vacant houses for decades. The money for municipal demolition bills usually comes out of city budgets, but in Cleveland the housing crisis has started to change that equation.

Bill Beavers has lived on Cleveland's Dove Street since 1967. But on a frecent sunny morning, Beavers is sitting on a neighbor's front porch, watching something he has never seen on his block before.

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Shots - Health Blog
10:01 pm
Sun August 28, 2011

Think You're An Auditory Or Visual Learner? Scientists Say It's Unlikely

iStockphoto.com

We've all heard the theory that some students are visual learners, while others are auditory learners. And still other kids learn best when lessons involve movement.

But should teachers target instruction based on perceptions of students' strengths? Several psychologists say education could use some "evidence-based" teaching techniques, not unlike the way doctors try to use "evidence-based medicine."

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Shots - Health Blog
10:01 pm
Sun August 28, 2011

Simple Things To Do To Lessen Back-To-School Stomach Bugs

Researchers have found that when bottles of sanitizer and wipes were kept around schools and students were cued to use them, they ended up missing significantly fewer days due to stomach bugs.
iStockphoto.com

As kids head back to class the dreaded back-to-school bugs begin to spike. Sniffles and sneezes are inevitable, but there are also stomach bugs.

And parents may never have considered how one part of the morning routine may increase their children's odds of getting an upset stomach. It's the packing of lunch with just typical foods.

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Africa
3:33 pm
Sun August 28, 2011

Farrow Draws Attention To Plight Of African Refugees

Originally published on Mon August 29, 2011 5:34 am

In the Horn of Africa, 12 million people are in need of food aid because of the drought. The people of Somalia, facing both famine and war, are some of the hardest hit.

Many of those fleeing Somalia seek refuge in the southwest, at Kenya's giant Dadaab refugee camp. The settlement is about 50 miles from Kenya's border with Somalia. There are almost half a million Somalis in the camp – with more arriving every day.

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NPR Story
1:00 pm
Sun August 28, 2011

NYC Escapes Worst As Irene Roars Through

With mass transit shut down and mass evacuations ordered, New York was braced for a "once-in-a-century" punch from Irene. But the impact was less than expected. NPR's Joel Rose reports from New York.

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