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Shots - Health News
1:46 pm
Mon May 6, 2013

Why A Slowdown In Health Spending Is Starting To Look Real

iStockphoto.com

So you know all that talk about how the boatload of money going to health care will bankrupt the nation if something isn't done soon?

Well, it turns out that while politicians were bickering, the problem started taking care of itself. Well, a little bit.

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It's All Politics
1:29 pm
Mon May 6, 2013

Some Democrats Back Same-Sex Amendment To Immigration Bill

Some Democrats want to amend the immigration bill before the Senate to allow foreign-born same-sex spouses of Americans to qualify for green cards.
Jason Reed Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Mon May 6, 2013 6:00 pm

The immigration overhaul bill before the Senate would provide, among other things, more visas for migrant farm workers and high-tech workers, and a path to citizenship for the estimated 11 million undocumented immigrants in the United States.

One thing it would not provide is help for same-sex couples in which one partner is an American and one foreign-born. For heterosexual couples, a foreign-born spouse automatically qualifies for a green card and many of the benefits of citizenship. Not so with gay and lesbian couples.

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Book Reviews
1:22 pm
Mon May 6, 2013

Safety Is Relative: A Moving Account Of Life In Chechnya

Russian troops patrol Minutka square in the Chechen capital on Monday, Feb. 28, 2000.
Alexander Zemlianichenko AP

Originally published on Mon May 6, 2013 6:00 pm

How do you write an absorbing novel about unspeakable things? It's always a tricky business, and an editor I know once described the dilemma this way: "A reader needs to want to go there." What "there" means is the self-contained world of the book. And what would make a reader want to go deeply into a world of hopelessness and seemingly perpetual war, a world of torture and intimidation and exploding land mines? There are many answers. One of the most obvious, of course, is the language.

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The Two-Way
1:11 pm
Mon May 6, 2013

Germany Arrests 93-Year-Old 'Auschwitz Guard'

Barbed wire encloses the concentration camp of Aushwitz-Birkenau in Krakow, Poland.
Chris Jackson Getty Images

German authorities have arrested a 93-year-old man they say served as a guard at the Auschwitz extermination camp.

Hans Lipschis was deported from the United States to Germany after U.S. authorities found that he lied about his past.

The AP reports:

"Lipschis was taken into custody after authorities concluded there was 'compelling evidence' he was involved in crimes at Auschwitz while there from 1941 to 1945, prosecutor Claudia Krauth said.

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The Picture Show
12:54 pm
Mon May 6, 2013

A Picture Postcard From Wild Wrangel Island

Musk oxen, more akin to goats and sheep than to oxen, were introduced to Wrangel Island in 1975 and now number about 800. In September, with mating season underway, bulls engage in frequent head-butting confrontations to establish dominance.
Sergey Gorshkov National Geographic

Originally published on Mon May 6, 2013 8:19 pm

If something seems impossibly remote, you call it Siberia. And if Siberians want to make the analogy, they could call it Wrangel Island. About 90 miles off the coast of northeastern Siberia, the 91-mile-long island has been inhabited by some humans over the years — but has been home to a superabundance of wildlife such as polar bears, Pacific walruses and musk oxen.

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The Salt
12:47 pm
Mon May 6, 2013

Sandwich Monday: Fried Peanut Butter And Banana

Melissa approaches with caution.
NPR

Originally published on Mon May 6, 2013 12:58 pm

It's strange to find a Fried Peanut Butter and Banana sandwich, famous as Elvis Presley's favorite, on a restaurant menu, given its effect on Elvis. It's like finding a store selling an Isadora Duncan commemorative scarf.

Nonetheless, freelance radio producer Melissa LaCasse and I decided to try the one offered by The Breslin in New York, listed as "fried peanut butter & banana sandwich with bourbon & vanilla."

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It's All Politics
12:37 pm
Mon May 6, 2013

Is Jeff Flake The Most Unpopular Senator In The Country?

Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., shown on Capitol Hill on April 23, voted against a bill expanding background checks on gun sales, which has upset some of his constituents.
J. Scott Applewhite AP

Originally published on Mon May 6, 2013 6:00 pm

Congress is coming back to Washington after a weeklong recess, and for Republican Sen. Jeff Flake, the return may come as a relief.

Some of his constituents in Arizona are still livid over his recent vote against expanded background checks for gun sales. They say the freshman senator is ignoring their calls for a public meeting.

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The Two-Way
12:18 pm
Mon May 6, 2013

Death Toll In Bangladesh Factory Collapse Surpasses 650

A Bangladeshi family member holds up the portrait of her missing relative, believed to be trapped in the rubble of the collapsed Rana Plaza.
AFP/Getty Images

The grim toll from the collapse of a garment factory in Bangladesh last month has risen to more than 650, as more bodies have been pulled from the rubble of the eight-story complex.

The number of people confirmed dead has now reached 657, CNN quoted Col. Sheikh Zaman, a military official overseeing the recovery operation in Savar, as saying.

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Television
10:54 am
Mon May 6, 2013

Linney Mines 'The Big C' For Serious Laughs

Laura Linney and Alan Alda star in The Big C, now in its fourth season on Showtime. Linney took on the role not long before her own father died of cancer.
Showtime

Originally published on Mon May 6, 2013 12:20 pm

From a young age, Laura Linney knew what she wanted to do with her life: act. There was no question.

She was a drama nerd in high school, and went onto Juilliard to study theater. But film acting was never the dream, and movie stardom definitely wasn't the goal.

"I was always completely intimidated by film," she tells Fresh Air's Dave Davies. "I was not the sort of person who grew up thinking, 'Oh, I want to be in the movies.' I loved movies; I just didn't think I particularly belonged there."

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The Two-Way
10:46 am
Mon May 6, 2013

SPLAT! Gov. Christie 'Saved A Few School Children From Spider'

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is surrounded by security and journalists in 2012.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

Originally published on Mon May 6, 2013 12:30 pm

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie has a reputation for being tough. It was certainly on display Friday, when he "saved a few school children from a spider."

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NPR Story
10:45 am
Mon May 6, 2013

Bedside Manner: Conversations With Patients About Death

Originally published on Mon May 6, 2013 11:29 am

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan, in Washington. All of us prefer to be told the truth - at least, we say we do - even when the diagnosis is terminal. And doctors believe they have an obligation to deliver bad news except that often, they don't. In a survey of nearly 2,000 physicians by the Mongan Institute for Health Policy at Massachusetts General Hospital, a majority said they believe they should never lie to a patient and yet more than half delivered a rosier prognosis than warranted, and 10 percent outright lied.

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NPR Story
10:45 am
Mon May 6, 2013

Could Syria's Civil War Become A Large Regional Crisis?

Originally published on Sun May 12, 2013 5:26 am

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan in Washington. In a strange way, Barack Obama and Bashar al-Assad find themselves in the same dilemma today: initiate military action that both would prefer to avoid or look weak, even hypocritical. The American president faces a chorus of criticism after he decided to wait for more proof that Syria's government has crossed his red line on chemical weapons, while Syria's president must now decide whether to respond to Israeli airstrikes on his capital or leave his supporters to wonder why not.

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NPR Story
10:45 am
Mon May 6, 2013

Unearthing History: How Technology Is Transforming Archaeology

Originally published on Mon May 6, 2013 11:40 am

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

Legend has it that the rainforest of Mosquitia hid La Ciudad Blanca, the White City. For centuries, explorers tried to find the fabled city in the jungle of Nicaragua and Honduras. Protected by white water, coral snakes, stinging plants and brutal topography, the White City remained an archeologist dream. But with a new application of recent technology, a documentary filmmaker, not an archeologist, found the White City.

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The Two-Way
10:16 am
Mon May 6, 2013

UPDATED: Bombing Suspect's Friend Ordered Freed On Bail

This courtroom sketch shows defendant Robel Phillipos appearing in front of Federal Magistrate Marianne Bowler at the Moakley Federal Courthouse in Boston, Mass., on May 1.
Jane Flavell Collins AP

Originally published on Mon May 6, 2013 12:15 pm

Update at 3:13 p.m. ET. Phillipos Freed:

Robel Phillipos, who was arrested last week for allegedly lying to federal agents investigating the Boston Marathon bombings, was ordered released on $100,000 bail, pending a trial.

Reuters reports:

"While out on bail, Robel Phillipos will be under the custody of his mother and wearing a GPS bracelet, U.S. Magistrate Judge Marianne Bowler ordered in federal court in Boston."

Our Original Post Continues:

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The Two-Way
10:15 am
Mon May 6, 2013

Gun Made With 3-D Printer Is Successfully Fired

The Liberator — a plastic handgun made with a 3-D printer.
Defense Distributed

Originally published on Mon May 6, 2013 10:22 am

The Texas-based company Defense Distributed is getting quite a bit of attention this week for its Liberator — a handgun made almost entirely by a 3-D printer.

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Radio Diaries
10:08 am
Mon May 6, 2013

Teenage Diaries Revisited: A Gay Teen's Family, 'Evolved'

Amanda as a teenager (left). She now lives in Manhattan and works as a massage therapist.
Radio Diaries (left), David Gilkey/NPR

Originally published on Mon May 13, 2013 7:19 am

Name: Amanda Brand

Hometown: Queens, N.Y.

Current city: New York, N.Y.

Occupation: Massage therapist

Then:

"My mother's always yelling at me, 'How are you supposed to find a man?'... I tell her, I'm like, 'I'm not interested in men.' "

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Book Reviews
9:56 am
Mon May 6, 2013

Godwin's 'Flora': A Tale Of Remorse That Creeps Under Your Skin

Gail Godwin, whose latest novel is Flora, has been a finalist for the National Book Award and a Guggenheim fellow.
David Hermon Bloomsbury Press

Originally published on Mon May 6, 2013 12:20 pm

Gail Godwin says one of the inspirations for her new novel, called Flora, is Henry James' ghost story The Turn of the Screw. Both stories take place in isolated old houses, and both revolve around mental contests between a governess character and her young charge. There are ghosts in Flora, too: specters that arise out of what our narrator calls her "remorse." Godwin had me at that word, "remorse": It's such a great, old-fashioned word, and it suggests that there'll be a lot of awful things going on in this novel that will need to be atoned for.

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Shots - Health News
8:59 am
Mon May 6, 2013

Pfizer Goes Direct With Online Viagra Sales To Men

Originally published on Mon May 6, 2013 9:23 am

The ubiquitous blue-toned TV ads for Viagra look downright tame compared with Pfizer's latest gambit for the impotence remedy.

Pfizer is now selling the drug directly from the official Viagra website.

Men still need a prescription for the diamond-shaped blue pills. But instead of going to the pharmacy in person, or taking their chances buying from an online pharmacy of unknown repute, men will be able to buy Viagra from the maker of the drug itself and have it shipped to their homes.

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The Two-Way
8:52 am
Mon May 6, 2013

Prisoner Points To Quran Search For Gitmo Hunger Strike

This image reviewed by the U.S. military shows the front gate of "Camp Six" detention facility of the Joint Detention Group at the US Naval Station in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.
Jim Watson AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon May 6, 2013 9:42 am

The Miami Herald's Carol Rosenberg reports that for the first time, we have a sworn statement from a Guantanamo prisoner who talks about what sparked the massive hunger strike at the U.S. prison camp.

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Music Reviews
8:39 am
Mon May 6, 2013

Caitlin Rose: A Singer Grounded In The Details Of Yearning

Caitlin Rose's newest album is titled The Stand-In.

Originally published on Mon May 6, 2013 12:20 pm

"Pink Champagne," a song on Caitlin Rose's second album The Stand-In, presents Rose's voice in its sparest purity and veiled shrewdness. She sends her voice skyward, the notes as buoyant and light as the bubbles of the pink champagne she's singing about. Her high trills could, with only a slight shift in tone and attitude, become self-conscious with a Betty Boop coyness, as they do once or twice on The Stand-In. But most of the time, Rose keeps her music grounded in the details of yearning, heartache and a welcome sense of gratefulness and enthused energy.

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