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
11:51 am
Tue August 13, 2013

'Elysium' Is Latest Film To Tackle Income Inequality

Max (Matt Damon) and Frey (Alice Braga) fight to get medical care for Frey's child in the film Elysium. (Sony Pictures)

Originally published on Tue August 13, 2013 1:40 pm

Elysium,” the new movie starring Matt Damon and Jodie Foster, depicts a world where Earth is a destitute planet, covered in slums and plagued by disease, home to only the poorest of souls.

The more fortunate get to live on a space station called Elysium, where the air is pure and medical problems can be zapped with the flip of a switch.

This isn’t the first time that income inequality has been tackled on the big screen.

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NPR Story
11:51 am
Tue August 13, 2013

Little Known About Trial of Bo Xilai — Except The Result

Then Chongqing party secretary Bo Xilai attends a plenary session of the National People's Congress at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, March 11, 2012. (Andy Wong/AP)

Originally published on Tue August 13, 2013 1:40 pm

China is in a holding pattern, waiting for the trial of a former rising star in the Communist party, Bo Xilai.

Bo ran the city of Chongqing — a metropolis of 30 million people. He is being tried on corruption charges, including taking $3.3 million in bribes.

Bo is considered by Forbes to be the 10th richest man in China. He is also suspected of involvement in the killing of British business man Neil Heywood — for which his wife Gu Kailai has been convicted.

So far, authorities have not said exactly when the trial will begin, or detailed all the charges against Bo.

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NPR Story
11:51 am
Tue August 13, 2013

Prisoner Release Precedes Middle East Peace Talks

A man holds a sign that reads, "Red week, the Israeli government releases twenty six murderers," during a protest in Tel Aviv, Israel, Monday, Aug. 12, 2013, as people protested Israel's decision to release 26 Palestinian prisoners, most of them held for deadly attacks, as part of a U.S.-brokered deal that led to a resumption of Mideast negotiations. (Tsafrir Abayov/AP)

Originally published on Tue August 13, 2013 1:40 pm

Israeli authorities are preparing to release a group of 26 Palestinian prisoners from jail in the next 24 hours.

It is a gesture intended to kick start a new round of negotiations.

Tomorrow, representatives of the Israeli government and the Palestinian authority will sit down together in Jerusalem and talk. The meeting will be chaired by the U.S.

The BBC’s Middle East correspondent, Kevin Connolly reports.

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NPR Story
12:44 pm
Mon August 12, 2013

'Whitey' Bulger Guilty Of 11 Killings

Originally published on Mon August 12, 2013 3:29 pm

James “Whitey” Bulger, the feared Boston mob boss who became one of the nation’s most-wanted fugitives, was convicted Monday in a string of 11 killings and other gangland crimes, many of them committed while he was said to be an FBI informant. (Read the full verdict here)

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NPR Story
12:44 pm
Mon August 12, 2013

Will E-Books Be Passed Down Through Generations?

(mcbridejc/Flickr)

Originally published on Mon August 12, 2013 3:29 pm

After his aunt Eunice recently died, columnist Danny Heitman inherited many of her books — from Plutarch to coffee table books of her favorite artist, Andrew Wyeth.

But with the proliferation of e-books, Heitman wonders whether books will be passed on from one generation to the next.

In a recent column called “Can you inherit an e-book?,” Heitman writes:

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NPR Story
12:44 pm
Mon August 12, 2013

Sarah Siskind's Music, Rediscovered

Sarah Siskind has re-released her album, "Covered," under the record label of Justin Vernon, better known as Bon Iver. (Facebook)

Originally published on Mon August 12, 2013 3:29 pm

NPR Music writer and editor Stephen Thompson brings us new music each week to listen to.

This week, we’re reaching back into the archive, sort of.

In 2003, Sarah Siskind released an album called “Covered.” But as a result of severe sinus problems that required surgery, Siskind wasn’t able to tour and the album never really got off the ground.

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NPR Story
12:10 pm
Fri August 9, 2013

Expert Says To Get Russia, Read The Great Russian Authors

Saint Basil's Cathedral in Moscow. (Kwong Yee Cheng/Flickr)

Originally published on Fri August 9, 2013 2:11 pm

With U.S.-Russia relations at a new low, we revisit our conversation with Tom de Waal, who says that when it comes to understanding Russia and Vladimir Putin, stop listening to the political scientists.

Instead, de Waal says reading Nikolai Gogol, Anton Chekhov and Fyodor Dostoyevsky will help you understand not just Russia, but key neighboring states like Ukraine and Georgia.

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NPR Story
12:09 pm
Fri August 9, 2013

U.S. Military Revives Blimp Technology

(Courtesy of U.S. Army)

Originally published on Fri August 9, 2013 2:11 pm

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12:09 pm
Fri August 9, 2013

Priceline's Stock Climbs, Despite Europe Crisis

Actor William Shatner, the "Priceline negotiator," is the face of Priceline. (Priceline)

Originally published on Fri August 9, 2013 2:11 pm

Priceline.com, the U.S. online travel agency, has seen its stocks rise to near $1,000 — a record it set during the dot-com bubble of the 1990s.

Priceline purchased the Amsterdam-based Booking.com in 2005, and has relied on European hotel reservations for its growth.

This comes despite the tanking economies of some of the biggest European tourist destinations: Portugal, Greece, Ireland and Spain.

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NPR Story
12:47 pm
Thu August 8, 2013

Veteran Documents His Unit In Tintype Photographs

"Lieutenant/Co-pilot," a tintype made by Ed Drew in Afghanistan. (Ed Drew, Courtesy of the Robert Koch Gallery)

Originally published on Mon November 4, 2013 5:29 am

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12:47 pm
Thu August 8, 2013

Debate Over End Of Ramadan Complicates Doing Business

Today marks the end of Ramadan — or does it?

For 30 days, more than 1.5 billion Muslims fast during daylight hours, commemorating the month in which Allah is said to have revealed the first verses of the Koran.

But now, a theological debate surrounding the end of the holiday is making diplomacy and business in the Muslim world a bit more complicated.

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NPR Story
12:47 pm
Thu August 8, 2013

A Family's Painful Wait For Verdict In Bulger Trial

Originally published on Thu August 8, 2013 3:39 pm

The jury in the Boston trial of reputed mobster James “Whitey” Bulger is deliberating for the third day in his murder and racketeering trial.

For the families of his 19 alleged murder victims, the wait for the verdict to come down is just part of a long, painful journey.

From the the Here & Now Contributors Network, David Boeri of WBUR reports.

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NPR Story
2:05 pm
Wed August 7, 2013

The Summer Of Ethan Hawke

Ethan Hawke at the premiere of the film "Before Midnight," at the 63rd annual Berlin Film Festival in February 2013 (Siebbi/commons.wikimedia.org)

Originally published on Wed August 7, 2013 1:39 pm

It’s been a great summer for actor Ethan Hawke.

Before Midnight,” the third installment in the series of films he made with actress Julie Delpy and filmmaker Richard Linklater, opened to wide critical acclaim, giving him undeniable indie credentials. (See trailers for all three films below.)

He also had had a number one hit at the box office with the horror film “The Purge.”

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NPR Story
12:41 pm
Wed August 7, 2013

Bird Flu Researchers Push To Make Virus More Contagious

Flu vaccine production - Before incubation, the eggs are inoculated with the seed virus Val de Reuil - France - March 2009. (Sanofi Pasteur/Flickr)

Originally published on Wed August 7, 2013 2:05 pm

In a letter published today in the nation’s two most prestigious scientific journals — Science and Nature — bird flu researchers say they need to perform research on the H7N9 virus that would make it more dangerous.

The researchers say that’s necessary in order to prepare for its possible spread between humans, perhaps as early as this winter.

The paper comes on the heels of a new study in the British Medical Journal that shows the first probable transmission between humans of the H7N9 virus.

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NPR Story
12:41 pm
Wed August 7, 2013

Bird Flu Strain May Be Transmissible Between Humans

Health workers take a blood sample from a chicken in Hong Kong Thursday, April 11, 2013. The Hong Kong government started enhanced measures to prevent a new strain of bird flu from entering the city. Starting from Thursday, the authority is taking samples of live poultry from mainland China to test for the H7N9 virus. Thirty samples are taken in every 1,000 chickens. (Vincent Yu/AP)

Originally published on Wed August 7, 2013 2:05 pm

new study in the British Medical Journal shows the first probable transmission between humans of a new strain of avian flu — the H7N9 virus.

A 32-year-old woman in China became sick and died after caring for her father who had the H7N9 virus. The father also died.

However, the authors of the study stress this does not mean the virus has evolved to be easily transmissible between humans.

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NPR Story
12:41 pm
Wed August 7, 2013

Bezos Could Give Washington Post The Gift Of Time

Originally published on Wed August 7, 2013 2:05 pm

Earlier this week, online shopping pioneer Jeff Bezos said he would buy The Washington Post.

Given the sorry state of newspaper finances, some saw his move as an act of civic charity.

Others believe Bezos is a shrewd businessman who hopes to make the Post very profitable again. Maybe both views are right.

Marilyn Geewax, a senior business editor with NPR, joins us to discuss how the new philanthropy may involve giving the gift of time — time to figure out a new business model that works.

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11:48 am
Wed August 7, 2013

In An Autocorrect Generation, Does Spelling Still Matter?

Thomas Hurley is pictured in a screen shot from his appearance on Jeopardy. (YouTube)

Originally published on Fri August 9, 2013 4:57 am

Connecticut eighth-grader Thomas Hurley has serious beef with Alex Trebek.

The “Kids Jeopardy” contestant made it all the way to the Final Jeopardy round and even got the right answer. The only problem? He spelled it wrong.

We’ve decided in current society that spelling is important — that there’s only one single correct way to spell every word.
–Simon Horobin

Hurley told his local newspaper that he was “cheated” out of the question and that “it was just a spelling error.”

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NPR Story
11:48 am
Wed August 7, 2013

Japan Tries To Stop Radioactive Water Leaks

A construction worker walks beside the underground water tank and water tanks at the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plant at Okuma in Fukushima prefecture, Japan, June 12, 2013. (Toshifumi Kitamura/AP)

Originally published on Wed August 7, 2013 2:05 pm

The Japanese government announced today that the leaks of radioactive cooling water from the crippled Fukushima nuclear power plant are worse than it thought.

Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has ordered the government to step in to help TEPCO, the Tokyo Electric Power Company, come up with a solution.

TEPCO only recently acknowledged that the groundwater, used to cool the three reactors damaged in the tsunami of 2011, has been seeping into the ocean.

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NPR Story
11:48 am
Wed August 7, 2013

Pot Liquor: A Southern Tradition To Salvage Nutritious Broth From Greens

"Pot likker and cornbread" at Mary Mac's Tea Room in Atlanta, Georgia. (wallyg/Flickr)

Originally published on Thu January 23, 2014 11:55 am

Pot liquor — not what the name implies — is the leftover water of boiled greens.

It’s a Louisiana tradition to save the nutrient and vitamin-rich water that leaches out during cooking.

NPR food and health correspondent Allison Aubrey tastes some of the greens water and shares tips on how to use it.

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NPR Story
1:14 pm
Tue August 6, 2013

LA Commuters Brace Themselves For 'Obama Jam'

President Barack Obama smiles towards the audience during his appearance for taping of NBC’s The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Oct. 24, 2012, in Burbank, Calif. (Pablo Martinez Monsivais/AP)

President Obama is in California today for a short visit that includes an appearance on “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno.”

His visits cause a bit of panic, with drivers concerned about major traffic headaches, but some say it’s much ado about nothing.

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