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Shots - Health Blog
1:54 pm
Thu September 13, 2012

Death Toll Climbs In Congo Ebola Outbreak

A medical worker from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention works at the laboratory in Uganda where Ebola specimens were tested at the start of the latest outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Stephen Wandera Associated Press

As health workers try to contain an Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the death toll has increased to 31.

The deaths from the hemorrhagic fever outbreak doubled in the past week. World Health Organization spokesman Tarik Jasarevic tells Shots that's because they have discovered more people who were originally infected.

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It's All Politics
1:46 pm
Thu September 13, 2012

Romney Reframes Foreign Policy Pitch After Flap Over Libya Remarks

Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney speaks Thursday in Fairfax, Va.
Molly Riley UPI /Landov

Originally published on Thu September 13, 2012 2:41 pm

Appearing in Virginia on Thursday, Republican Mitt Romney tried to bring his campaign back to the issues he has focused on before in the swing state: the nation's economy and strengthening the military.

A day after Romney ignited a debate over his criticism of President Obama's handling of events in Libya and Egypt, the Republican presidential nominee largely steered clear of discussing unrest in Egypt and the attack on an American consulate in Benghazi, Libya, that left four Americans dead.

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Education
1:37 pm
Thu September 13, 2012

Teacher Evaluation Dispute Echoes Beyond Chicago

One of the primary disputes in the Chicago Public Schools teachers' strike is over Mayor Rahm Emanuel's proposal to link teacher pay to student performance.
Robert Ray AP

Originally published on Thu September 13, 2012 8:19 pm

One of the primary issues at the heart of the the Chicago teachers' strike is whether student test scores should be used to evaluate teachers and determine their pay. Mayor Rahm Emanuel is pushing that approach, as are other officials around the nation.

But many teachers insist that it's inherently unfair to grade their teaching based on their students' learning.

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Music Reviews
1:18 pm
Thu September 13, 2012

ZZ Top: Taking The Blues Back To The Future

ZZ Top's new album, La Futura, is its first in nine years.
Ross Halfin

Originally published on Thu September 13, 2012 8:19 pm

Over the years, ZZ Top has stayed contemporary: dabbling in new wave, flirting with grunge and techno, making goofy music videos, even using a drum machine. But the band has never strayed too far from its classic amalgam of electric blues, garage rock and greasy grooves. On their new album, La Futura, the members sound like their old selves.

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It's All Politics
1:02 pm
Thu September 13, 2012

Can A Republican Win A Senate Seat In Blue Hawaii?

Former Hawaii Gov. Linda Lingle gives a victory speech in Honolulu after winning the Republican nomination for U.S. Senate on Aug. 11.
Marco Garcia AP

Originally published on Thu September 13, 2012 8:19 pm

Republican hopes of capturing the Senate in November rest on a handful of tossup races in states like Montana, Missouri and Virginia.

Surprisingly, some analysts also are putting Hawaii in the tossup column.

Hawaii is the bluest of blue states; it hasn't elected a Republican to the Senate since 1970. But with the retirement of 22-year incumbent Daniel Akaka, Republicans believe they have a chance.

And regardless of who wins, the state will have its first female senator come January.

In Hawaii, the language of politics is a little different.

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Shots - Health Blog
12:47 pm
Thu September 13, 2012

Infection Risk Prompts New York City To Regulate Ritual Circumcision

Originally published on Thu September 13, 2012 2:25 pm

There's no ready euphemism for this, so be warned.

The New York City Board of Health voted unanimously today in favor of a new regulation that would require parents of young boys who undergo ritual circumcisions involving "direct oral suction" to sign a consent form first.

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The Two-Way
12:41 pm
Thu September 13, 2012

Ben Bernanke: Fed Is Looking For 'Sustained Improvement' Of Economy

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke speaks during a news conference in Washington.
Manuel Balce Ceneta AP

Originally published on Thu September 13, 2012 12:55 pm

Federal Reserve Chief Ben Bernanke said the new monetary policy announced today is aimed at getting the U.S. economy moving for good.

After a meeting of the Federal Open Market Committee, the Fed announced that it would spend $40 billion a month on mortgage-backed securities in an effort to stimulate the economy and drive the the unemployment rate down.

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The Two-Way
12:22 pm
Thu September 13, 2012

Monkey, New To Science, Found In Central Africa

Researchers have identified a new species of African monkey, locally known as the lesula.
Maurice Emetshu, Noel Rowe PLOS ONE/AP

Originally published on Thu September 13, 2012 8:19 pm

It would seem difficult to overlook something as large as a new species of monkey, but scientists had no idea about the lesula until just a few years ago when conservation biologist John Hart discovered a specimen being kept as a pet in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

In retrospect, the monkey's striking, almost humanlike face should have made it hard to miss, and Hart, who spoke with All Things Considered host Melissa Block, is the first to admit that this new monkey was apparently not such a mystery to the Congolese themselves.

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Planet Money
12:04 pm
Thu September 13, 2012

The Fed Goes Big

Any questions?
Jim Watson Getty Images

Originally published on Thu September 13, 2012 3:06 pm

What people think is going to happen to the economy has a huge influence over what actually happens. If you can change peoples' expectations, you can change the world.

The Federal Reserve knows this. And, as Robert Smith pointed out this morning, Ben Bernanke and the Fed have been using the power of expectations more and more in recent years.

This afternoon, the Fed took another huge step in this direction.

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NPR Story
11:47 am
Thu September 13, 2012

How 'Geography' Informs The Fate Of The World

In The Revenge of Geography, Robert Kaplan examines how borders, population and resources should inform our understanding of conflict zones.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Fri September 14, 2012 9:25 am

To understand many of the worlds triumphs, tragedies and conflicts, according to geopolitical analyst Robert Kaplan, look no further than a map.

In his book The Revenge of Geography, Kaplan argues that geography is not just important to understanding world affairs — it's central to understanding where we've been and where we're going.

Kaplan uses this framework to look ahead and speculate about how geography will inform the future development and relations of countries like the United States, China and Iran.

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Television
11:46 am
Thu September 13, 2012

New Shows Hit Average In Fall TV Lineup

Mamie Gummer stars as the title character in Emily Owens, M.D., the best new show on broadcast television this fall.
Jack Rowand The CW

Originally published on Thu September 13, 2012 11:58 am

Last year, the broadcast networks didn't do well at all when it came to new series development. We got ABC's clever Once Upon a Time, which was about it for the fall crop, until midseason perked things up with NBC's Smash. Otherwise, a year ago, all the exciting new fall series were on cable, thanks to Showtime's brilliant Homeland and FX's audacious American Horror Story.

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Education
11:39 am
Thu September 13, 2012

What's At Stake For U.S. Teachers

Chicago Teachers Union members picket the CPS headquarters in Chicago on Thursday, the fourth day of their strike.
John Gress Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Fri September 14, 2012 1:46 pm

The intractable issues that led to the teachers' strike in Chicago are being argued about in states and school districts across the country.

The past decade has been a time of enormous ferment in education policy, with numerous new ideas and approaches being promoted by everyone from conservative think tanks to the well-heeled Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to Obama administration officials.

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The Two-Way
11:17 am
Thu September 13, 2012

'All That's Great About America': Nation Bids Neil Armstrong Farewell

Members of the congregation stand at the Washington National Cathedral in Washington during the national memorial service for the first man to walk on the moon, Neil Armstrong.
Ann Heisenfelt AP

Originally published on Thu September 13, 2012 8:19 pm

Hundreds packed the Washington National Cathedral today to pay their respects to Neil Armstrong, the first man to walk on the moon.

Perhaps the most amazing tribute came from Eugene Cernan, the man who followed in Armstrong's footsteps and became the last man to walk on the moon during the 1972 Apollo 17 mission.

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Middle East
11:13 am
Thu September 13, 2012

Syrian Refugees Flood Into Neighboring Jordan

Originally published on Fri September 14, 2012 9:00 am

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

As the conflict in Syria rages on, an estimated 200,000 people have already fled to neighboring countries: to Turkey, Iraq, Lebanon and most of all to Jordan. Jordan's foreign minister, Nasser Judeh, says the country can't absorb anymore and that the 85,000 already there have strained Jordan's limited means. Those arrivals include most of the high-profile Syrian defectors, including former Prime Minister Riyad Hijab. All this raises serious questions about Syria-Jordan relations and broader Middle East politics.

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The Two-Way
11:12 am
Thu September 13, 2012

Welcome To The New Middle East

Security guards were deployed outside the graffiti-covered walls of the U.S. Embassy in Cairo, Egypt, which came under attack Tuesday.
Mohamed Abd El Ghany Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Thu September 13, 2012 12:56 pm

The three attacks on U.S. diplomatic missions this week have a common theme: all took place in countries where autocratic rulers were ousted last year and where new governments are still struggling to keep order.

Last year, many Americans were cheering on Arab Spring uprisings in Egypt, Libya and Yemen. Now the U.S. is the focus of violent anger over an anti-Islamic film produced in this country.

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Middle East
11:09 am
Thu September 13, 2012

The Attack In Libya, How The U.S. Should Respond

Originally published on Thu September 13, 2012 11:18 am

After the attack that killed Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans in Benghazi, Libya, President Barack Obama said yesterday that the United States would "work with the Libyan government to bring to justice" the people involved.

Television
11:04 am
Thu September 13, 2012

'Totally Biased' Comic On Race, Politics And Audience

W. Kamau Bell's new FX weekly series Totally Biased mixes standup, sketches and interviews.
Matthias Clamer

Originally published on Thu September 13, 2012 2:03 pm

Before comic W. Kamau Bell became host of the new weekly political humor show Totally Biased, which mixes standup, sketches and interviews, he had a one-man show called The W. Kamau Bell Curve: Ending Racism in About an Hour.

"If you bring a friend of a different race, you get in 2 for 1," he tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross.

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Economy
11:02 am
Thu September 13, 2012

Smiley, West: Poverty Is A Political Issue

Originally published on Thu September 13, 2012 11:22 am

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan.

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Africa
10:29 am
Thu September 13, 2012

Gorillas And Guerrillas Share The Troubled Congo

Patrick Karabaranga, a warden at the Virunga National Park, plays with an orphaned mountain gorilla at the park headquarters in Rumangabo, eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, on July 17. The Virunga park is home to about 200 mountain gorillas, approximately a quarter of the world's population.
Phil Moore AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu September 13, 2012 8:19 pm

When crossing from Uganda into Congo at the shabby border town of Bunagana, I encountered a broadly smiling man in a black leather jacket named Hamid Kashaisha.

He asked if I wanted to see the gorillas. I replied that it's guerrillas — with guns, that is — that I wanted to see: the M23 rebels who, for the past two months, had occupied a piece of real estate in eastern Congo larger than Delaware.

That was no deterrence to the pitchman.

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The Salt
10:01 am
Thu September 13, 2012

Beef Products Inc. Sues ABC Over Repeated Attacks On 'Pink Slime'

Lean, finely textured beef, dubbed "pink slime" by critics, is frozen on a large drum as part of its manufacturing process at the Beef Products Inc.'s plant in S. Sioux City, Neb. in March.
Nati Harnik AP

Originally published on Tue September 18, 2012 11:46 am

Beef Products, Inc., the South Dakota company at the center of a firestorm this spring over its product labeled "pink slime" by critics, announced Thursday it is suing ABC News for defamation and $1.2 billion in damages.

BPI alleges that ABC reporters and hosts made 200 false statements over the course of a month about BPI's product, known in the industry as lean, finely textured beef (LFTB).

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