Here & Now

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Jeremy Hobson & Robin Young

Supreme Court rulings. Breaking news. Thoughtful interviews. A live production of NPR and WBUR Boston, in collaboration with public radio stations across the country, Here & Now reflects the fluid world of news as it’s happening in the middle of the day, with timely, smart and in-depth news, interviews and conversation. Co-hosted by award-winning journalists Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson, the show’s daily lineup includes interviews with NPR reporters, editors and bloggers, as well as leading newsmakers, innovators and artists from across the U.S. and around the globe. Here & Now began at WBUR in 1997, and expanded to two hours in partnership with NPR in 2013. Today, the show reaches an estimated 3.6 million weekly listeners on over 383 stations across the country. Stay connected to what’s happening…right now…with Here & Now from NPR and WBUR.

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NPR Story
1:15 pm
Fri December 13, 2013

'Survivor' Renewed Through 30th Season

The latest cast of "Survivor" anticipates someone being voted off the show. (CBS)

Originally published on Tue December 17, 2013 7:38 am

Survivor,” the reality TV show that sets up groups of strangers to compete in remote locations, is being renewed for its 29th and 30th seasons.

That makes it the longest-running reality competition show in television history. It’s also one of the first-ever reality series.

Since launching “Survivor” in 2000, executive producer Mark Burnett has gone on to produce other popular competition programs, including “The Voice” and “Shark Tank.”

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NPR Story
12:53 pm
Thu December 12, 2013

Newtown Priest: 'Respect Each Other' On Anniversary Of Shooting

Monsignor Robert Weiss sits in a pew at St. Rose of Lima Roman Catholic Church in Newtown, Conn, Nov. 13, 2013. (Jessica Hill/AP)

Originally published on Tue December 17, 2013 7:41 am

Monsignor Robert Weiss has been pastor of St. Rose of Lima church in Newtown, Conn., for 13 years. Half of Newtown attends his church, so he knew many of the children who were killed in the Sandy Hook school shooting last December 14th.

He was the first religious person on the scene that day. Weiss, known as Father Bob in Newtown, still remembers the sound of shattered glass under his feet, and he still can’t sleep at night.

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NPR Story
12:53 pm
Thu December 12, 2013

Life After An Other-Than-Honorable Discharge

Michael Hartnett was a Marine during the Gulf War and served in Somalia. He received a bad conduct discharge for abusing drugs and alcohol. His wife, Molly, helped him turn his life around. (Quil Lawrence/NPR)

Originally published on Tue December 17, 2013 7:41 am

This week, NPR’s Quil Lawrence has been reporting on veterans who served their country, but for one reason or another, received an other-than-honorable discharge.

This label has affected more than 100,000 in the last decade. Some were discharged for misconduct, others for drug use, and some for committing crimes. As a result, they no longer receive VA health benefits.

He joins Here & Now’s Meghna Chakrabarti to discuss the special project.

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NPR Story
12:53 pm
Thu December 12, 2013

Spotify To Offer Mobile App For Free

(Johan Larsson/Flickr)

Originally published on Tue December 17, 2013 7:41 am

Spotify, the music streaming service, announced it will allow anyone on an Android or iOS device to use its app free of charge, starting immediately. The service lets listeners pick and choose songs, and is hoping the move will expand its user base.

The company also announced that it’s adding 20 new countries to its roster. Spotify will now reach 55 global markets. Spotify currently has about 24 million active users and 6 million paying subscribers. Its competitor Pandora has about 72 million active listeners.

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NPR Story
12:40 pm
Wed December 11, 2013

Big Parts For Actresses In This Season's Movies

The all-star cast of "August: Osage County" is led by Meryl Streep (center) and Julia Roberts (right). (The Weinstein Company)

Originally published on Tue December 17, 2013 7:51 am

Ty Burr, film critic for the Boston Globe, gives Here & Now’s Meghna Chakrabarti a rundown of the latest releases.

He says the recent movies released feature meaty and varied parts for actresses, and some great performances.

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NPR Story
12:40 pm
Wed December 11, 2013

Audio Postcard: Smoggy Streets Of Shanghai

Smog in Shanghai (Frank Langfitt/NPR)

Originally published on Tue December 17, 2013 7:51 am

NPR’s Frank Langfitt brings Here & Now an audio postcard from the streets of Shanghai.

Last week, the smog in Shanghai, China, reached hazardous levels. On Friday, smog set records in Shanghai. The Air Quality Index soared over 600, which is officially “beyond index,” or off-the-charts awful.

And on Saturday morning, there was essentially a smog white-out, according to Langfitt. Visibility was down to about 40 feet.

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NPR Story
12:40 pm
Wed December 11, 2013

Tribal Fishery Opposes Washington Coal Terminal

Tribal treaty fishing rights give Washington tribes the opportunity to weigh in on, and even block, projects that could impact their fishing grounds.(Ashley Ahearn/KUOW Photo)

Originally published on Tue December 17, 2013 7:51 am

About a quarter of all the coal the U.S. exports goes to Asian markets. To meet the demand, there are plans to build what would be the largest coal terminal in North America at a place called Cheery Point in the far northwestern corner of Washington state.

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NPR Story
1:20 pm
Tue December 10, 2013

The Music Of Liberation: Steven Van Zandt And Danny Schechter On 'Sun City'

Steven Van Zandt and Danny Schechter (Jon Kalish)

Originally published on Tue December 17, 2013 7:53 am

In the early 1980s, Nelson Mandela’s name was virtually unknown in the United States. In fact, it was Steve Biko, who died in police custody in South Africa in 1977, who first put the struggles of black South Africans into public consciousness in the U.S.

Peter Gabriel’s song “Biko” was written in 1980, the same year the United Nations established a cultural boycott of the country, and was among the first of the songs that catapulted the plight of apartheid onto the musical airwaves.

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NPR Story
1:18 pm
Tue December 10, 2013

Echoes Of The Madoff Scandal On 5 Year Anniversary

Originally published on Tue December 17, 2013 7:53 am

It’s been five years since the Madoff scandal broke — the largest Ponzi scheme in history that defrauded investors of over $17.5 billion dollars.

Earlier this week, Frank DiPascali, Bernie Madoff’s former finance chief testified against five former coworkers, detailing how they helped carry out the fraud.

In the meantime, Madoff will spend the rest of his life at a federal prison in North Carolina. He recently granted an interview to The Wall Street Journal.

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NPR Story
1:18 pm
Tue December 10, 2013

Is Chipotle The New Model For Fast Food?

A Chipotle restaurant is pictured in Glenview, Illinois, in December 2005. (Tim Boyle/Getty Images)

Originally published on Tue December 17, 2013 7:53 am

With nearly 200 new restaurants slated to open in 2014 and the fastest-rising stock in the fast food industry, is Chipotle the new model for fast food?

Industry analyst David Tarantino says Chipotle is changing fast food the way Starbucks changed coffee shops and Home Depot changed home improvement.

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NPR Story
1:40 pm
Mon December 9, 2013

Soprano Dawn Upshaw And Composer Maria Schneider Make Grammy-Nominated Music Together

Originally published on Tue December 17, 2013 7:55 am

Soprano Dawn Upshaw has been a longtime fan of composer Maria Schneider’s work, so Upshaw approached the composer and suggested a collaboration.

The result is the album “Winter Morning Walks,” which has been nominated for three Grammy awards, including Best Contemporary Classical Composition and Best Classical Vocal Solo.

We revisit our March conversation with Schneider and Upshaw.

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NPR Story
1:40 pm
Mon December 9, 2013

The Close Harmony Of Lily And Madeleine

(lilandmad.com)

Originally published on Tue December 17, 2013 7:55 am

Each week NPR Music writer and editor Stephen Thompson brings us a new song. Today, he introduces us to the music of Lily & Madeleine with their song “Devil We Know.”

“Lily and Madeleine capture what is sometimes called ‘blood harmony,’ where siblings can make their voices interlock in ways that sound incredibly natural,” Thompson tells Here & Now’s Robin Young.

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NPR Story
1:40 pm
Mon December 9, 2013

Newtown Decides Against Shooting Anniversary Event

Photos of Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre victims sit at a small memorial near the school on January 14, 2013, in Newtown, Connecticut. (John Moore/Getty Images)

Originally published on Tue December 17, 2013 7:55 am

Residents of Newtown, Conn., have decided against a public commemoration to mark the first anniversary this coming Saturday of the shooting at the Sandy Hook Elementary School, which left 20 first graders and six educators dead.

Instead, the town is endorsing a “year of service” and is asking residents to put a candle in their window on Dec. 14, the day of the shooting, to show their commitment to the idea of service to each other.

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NPR Story
1:29 pm
Fri December 6, 2013

Budget Deal May Be On The Horizon

Originally published on Tue December 17, 2013 7:58 am

Congressional budget committee leaders are working to pull together a budget deal by the end of next week. Republic Congressman Paul Ryan and Democratic Senator Patty Murray are reportedly discussing how to increase revenue without raising taxes.

A main provision of the agreement would be a partial easing of the next two spending sequesters. It was only in October that a deadlock over federal spending led to the first government shutdown in 17 years.

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NPR Story
1:29 pm
Fri December 6, 2013

In Prison With Nelson Mandela

Originally published on Tue December 17, 2013 7:58 am

Anti-apartheid activist Ahmed Kathrada spent almost 27 years in prison with Nelson Mandela on Robben Island. Earlier this year, he gave President and Michelle Obama a tour of his former prison.

Here & Now’s Robin Young spoke to Kathrada in July. Today we present an excerpt of that conversation.

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NPR Story
1:29 pm
Fri December 6, 2013

Fukushima Inspectors Say Beginning Of Clean-Up Going Well So Far

In this photo released Nov. 27, 2013, by International Atomic Energy Agency, a team of IAEA experts check out water storage tanks at the crippled Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant in Okuma, Japan. (Greg Webb/IAEA)

Originally published on Tue December 17, 2013 7:58 am

Inspectors from the International Atomic Energy Agency are praising Japan for making progress to stabilize the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant, which was crippled by an earthquake and tsunami nearly three years ago.

This week, the IAEA inspectors wrapped up a 10-day inspection of the plant, where the decommissioning process started a few weeks ago.

Here & Now’s Jeremy Hobson gets the latest from BBC Tokyo correspondent Rupert Wingfield-Hayes.

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NPR Story
1:18 pm
Thu December 5, 2013

A Cappella Fans Cheer Return Of 'The Sing-Off'

The panel of judges on NBC's "The Sing-Off," an a cappella competition. (NBC)

Originally published on Tue December 17, 2013 8:00 am

On Monday, NBC’s a cappella competition “The Sing-Off” returns for a fourth season on Monday, Dec. 9.

Ten teams (list below) will compete for a recording contract and a $100,000 prize.

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NPR Story
1:18 pm
Thu December 5, 2013

Illinois Pension Debate Expected To Move To Courts

Originally published on Tue December 17, 2013 8:00 am

Update 3:20 p.m.: Illinois Governor Pat Quinn has signed the pension reform bill.

Now that lawmakers have passed an overhaul of Illinois’s government worker pension systems, the fight is expected to move to the courts.

Provisions of the overhaul include raising the retirement age for many state workers and cutting some benefits. The overhaul is estimated to save the state $160 billion over 30 years.

Illinois Governor Pat Quinn is expected to sign the bill by the end of the week.

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NPR Story
1:18 pm
Thu December 5, 2013

China Mobile And Apple Sign iPhone Deal

China Mobile, the world's largest mobile carrier, will soon provide iPhone service on its network. (William Hook/Flickr)

Originally published on Tue December 17, 2013 8:00 am

The world’s largest mobile carrier, China Mobile, will soon offer iPhones on its network.

The deal gives Apple access to more than 700 million subscribers. That’s seven times the size of Verizon Wireless.

Derek Thompson, business editor for The Atlantic, joins Here & Now’s Robin Young to discuss the implications of the deal.

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NPR Story
1:41 pm
Wed December 4, 2013

Miami Gears Up For Art Basel

Street artist Komik in front of his piece. (Julia Duba/WLRN)

Originally published on Tue December 17, 2013 8:03 am

Every year, tens of thousands of people attend the international art show in Miami Beach called Art Basel. There are arts galleries, live music performances and lots of live street exhibitions on the street.

Art Basel, which runs from Dec. 5 to 8, also comes to Miami’s up-and-coming neighborhood, Wynwood. With its warehouses-turned-art galleries, Wynwood is a prime location for street art.

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