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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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."
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.
Within 48 hours, Hurricane Irene was downgraded from a Category 2 to a Category 1 to a Tropical Storm by the time it passed through New York City. City officials along the East Coast called for historic evaluations, and grocery and home improvement stores were stripped bare in some areas. People prepared for the worst, but the worst never came. Weekends on All Things Considered guest host Laura Sullivan and NPR's Joe Palca talk about why Irene didn't live up to it's billing of a storm that could have caused cataclysmic damage.
On Friday night, Kevin Boyer was at Venter City Beach near Atlantic City with some buddies. They'd just bought a bunch of beer — Yuengling and Miller Lite. But when it looked like Hurricane Irene was going to be pretty serious, he decided to ride the storm out at home, with his parents, who live a block from the beach. They drank his dad's scotch, instead.
This morning, when Tod Clissold walked into Poor Richard's, the bar he owns in Manteo, North Carolina, the first thing he noticed was the smell. Like a lot of East Coast residents, Clissold is in recovery mode after Hurricane Irene left homes and businesses flooded and powerless from North Carolina to Massachusetts. Weekends on All Things Considered guest host Laura Sullivan talks with Clissold and several others, plus the latest from NPR's Jennifer Ludden, Joe Palca and Joel Rose in New York.
Assessing Irene's impact from North Carolina to New England. Many local officials are relieved the damage wasn't worse, but power outages and flooding remain a concern for coming days. NPR's Jennifer Ludden reports on the storm's impact.
As we've been hearing all morning from government officials, Irene had the potential to be a devastating tropical cyclone. No doubt it did damage and it was certainly deadly, but this map from the National Hurricane Center gives you an idea of the wrath that stayed off shore. It also tells you that the Outer Banks of North Carolina were the hardest hit:
With that in mind, the AP has put together a series of videos that give you an idea of the kind of storm this was.
Rex Goodnight went to Afghanistan last year to volunteer on construction projects, but came back frustrated.
Goodnight, chief of engineering with the Kansas City district of the Army Corps, saw a lot of planning but not much actual constructing. When something was being built, it was usually made out of clay and straw.
Irene hit North Carolina Saturday as a category 1 hurricane. That's far less powerful than orecasters had expected, yet even so, Irene hit the area as a massive storm. NPR's Greg Allen reports that in North Carolina, Irene left hundreds of thousands of people without power and many communities flooded.
New Jersey's Gov. Chris Christie on Friday announced mandatory evacuations for his state's coastal residents as Hurricane Irene approached. He said this weekend was not the time to get dinner in Atlantic City, but the Ducktown Tavern in Atlantic City is intent on staying open.
This weekend is the five-year anniversary of the crash of Comair Flight 5191. Forty-nine people died when the plane took off from the wrong runway at Lexington's Blue Grass airport. Brenna Angel of member station WUKY spoke with three victims' relatives about how they continue to cope and what a new memorial means to them.
Early Sunday morning, Hurricane Irene rolled through southern New Jersey. Guest host John Ydstie speaks with Pamela Grites of the American Red Cross Southern Shore Chapter about Hurricane Irene's effects on southern New Jersey.
Tropical Storm Irene is hitting New York City Sunday morning, but Saturday night in lower Manhattan, people weren't quite sure what to expect from the storm. NPR's Caitlin Kenney describes what it was like in her neighborhood.
In Libya, rebels have consolidated their control over the main city, Tripoli. Reports of human rights abuses are surfacing, with reports of apparent retaliatory murders. Reporters Sunday were taken to an apparent massacre site near a military camp held by supporters of Moammar Gadhafi. Meanwhile, a Gadhafi spokesman reportedly offered to negotiate with insurgents. Guest host John Ydstie discusses the latest news from Libya with NPR's Jason Beaubien.
Overnight, Hurricane Irene pounded the East Coast from North Carolina to New Jersey. The National Hurricane Center reports there will still be heavy winds and rain for the remainder of the day, although the storm is weakening. As many as 3 million people are without power. Guest host John Ydstie and NPR's Joe Palca discuss the causes and aftereffects of Hurricane Irene.