Morning Edition

Weekday mornings 3:00 a.m. till 9:00 a.m.
Renée Montagne and Steve Inskeep

For nearly three decades, NPR's Morning Edition has prepared listeners for the day ahead with two hours of up-to-the-minute news, background analysis, commentary, and coverage of arts and sports.

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NPR Story
8:50 am
Fri March 8, 2013

Venezuela, World Leaders Mourn Hugo Chavez

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

Leader from around the world have arrived in Venezuela to pay their final respects to President Hugo Chavez, who used his country's oil wealth to put in place his vision of socialism during 14 years in power. And this larger-than-life leader presumably will continue to inspire his followers. The Venezuelan government plans to embalm his body and keep it on display in a glass coffin.

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Around the Nation
4:36 am
Fri March 8, 2013

Meteorologist Forced To Sit In Corner Over Bad Forecast

Originally published on Fri March 8, 2013 8:50 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Steve Inskeep. Finally, somebody takes responsibility for a mistake. Many forecasters predicted a monster storm would dump many inches of snow on Washington, D.C. The nation's capital shut down. But while the storm hit other parts of the country, Washington just got a bit of snow and rain. Channel 5 meteorologist Tucker Barnes did not blame the vagaries of the weather. He took a timeout, shown on camera sitting in a corner during the broadcast. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Around the Nation
4:25 am
Fri March 8, 2013

'Joint' Committee's Name Gets Some Laughs

Originally published on Fri March 8, 2013 8:50 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Good morning, I'm Steve Inskeep.

Here's one of the small joys of the change in marijuana laws. Colorado voters recently legalized small amounts of pot. State lawmakers must work out the details and regulations, how pot should be grown, taxed and sold. So they put together a special committee. Because it consists of members of both the State House and Senate, it is known by the phrase that such committee always are. Yes, it is the Joint Committee on Marijuana Regulation.

All Tech Considered
4:12 am
Fri March 8, 2013

The Life Cycle Of A Social Network: Keeping Friends In Times Of Change

The new look of Facebook's News Feed.
Facebook

Originally published on Fri March 8, 2013 9:32 am

Facebook is redesigning its front page. The News Feed — which is what Facebook's roughly 1 billion users see when they log on to the site — will be rolling out a radical new look over the coming months.

The changes are meant to increase user engagement on the site, make it easier to navigate on mobile phones and provide even more highly targeted advertising.

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Around the Nation
1:39 am
Fri March 8, 2013

Persian Empire Treasure Begins U.S. Tour

Originally published on Fri March 8, 2013 8:50 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

A formerly lost archeological treasure has made its way to the United States for the first time. It comes from Iran and dates back to the days of the ancient Persian Empire. It's called the Cyrus Cylinder. It'll be on tour across the U.S., starting tomorrow, with the Smithsonian Museum here in Washington.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

The Cyrus Cylinder isn't too much too look at - made of clay and shaped kind of like a loaf of bread. What's special about it is that it's etched with writing from the time.

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Latin America
1:39 am
Fri March 8, 2013

Venezuela To Display Chavez Body For Perpetuity

Originally published on Mon March 11, 2013 1:32 pm

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Thousands of Venezuelans have been filling the streets this week, listening to music and lining up to see the coffin of their leader, Hugo Chavez, who died on Tuesday. Leaders from around the world have also come to the capital city, Caracas, for a funeral which formally takes place today. And in keeping with his often larger-than-life persona, the Venezuelan government plans to embalm Chavez and keep his body on display under glass, in perpetuity. NPR's Juan Forero is in Caracas, following events there. Hi, Juan.

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Middle East
1:39 am
Fri March 8, 2013

Displaced Syrians Bring Life To Ancient 'Dead Cities'

The Syrian "Dead City" of Shanshrah, in northern Idlib province. A U.N. World Heritage site, the Dead Cities of northern Syria date back to the first to fifth centuries.
Kelly McEvers NPR

Originally published on Fri March 8, 2013 7:41 pm

Parts of the northern Syrian province of Idlib are a U.N. World Heritage site, known for its ancient archaeological wonders. Walking along muddy, rocky ground covered in new grass and wild daffodils, we start to see remnants of Roman structures — the columns and doorways of dwellings, temples and churches that date back to the 1st century.

They're known as the Dead Cities, and they trace the transition from ancient pagan Rome to Christian Byzantium. Until recently, they were deserted, frozen in time.

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It's All Politics
12:34 am
Fri March 8, 2013

Senate Mostly Blamed For Agency And Court Vacancies, But Obama Isn't Helping

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives has not had a permanent administrator since Congress required that the director be confirmed by the Senate in 2006.
AFP AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri March 8, 2013 8:50 am

Hear Brian Nayor, Julie Rovner, Yuki Noguchi and Carrie Johnson talk with Morning Edition's Steve Inskeep about the many federal entities operating without permanent leadership by clicking the audio link.

Some workers may dream about how productive they'd be without a boss. But for thousands of federal employees, being without a boss is a reality. And productivity isn't necessarily the result.

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Environment
11:23 pm
Thu March 7, 2013

Past Century's Global Temperature Change Is Fastest On Record

Scientists say they have put together a record of global temperatures dating back to the end of the last ice age, about 11,000 years ago. This historical artwork of the last ice age was made by Swiss geologist and naturalist Oswald Heer.
Oswald Heer Science Source

Originally published on Fri March 8, 2013 7:40 pm

There's plenty of evidence that the climate has warmed up over the past century, and climate scientists know this has happened throughout the history of the planet. But they want to know more about how this warming is different.

Now a research team says it has some new answers. It has put together a record of global temperatures going back to the end of the last ice age — about 11,000 years ago — when mammoths and saber-tooth cats roamed the planet. The study confirms that what we're seeing now is unprecedented.

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StoryCorps
11:21 pm
Thu March 7, 2013

A Real-Life Nick And Nora Charles, Hot On Love's Trail

Shaun Kaufman and Colleen Collins experienced a rough patch when they became private investigators, but the work ultimately helped strengthen their relationship.
StoryCorps

Originally published on Fri March 8, 2013 8:50 am

When Colleen Collins and Shaun Kaufman started dating, they were both middle-aged and divorced. Neither was having any luck with work, so in 2004, they took matters into their own hands.

"You had lost your job. You drank to excess, and you were stoned all the time," Colleen recalls at a visit to StoryCorps in Denver with Shaun. "And it was like, what are we gonna do?"

So Colleen, now 61, threw out the idea of starting a private investigation agency. Shaun, who has a law degree, had trained several PIs in the past. Within a week, she was out on a surveillance job.

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Planet Money
11:17 pm
Thu March 7, 2013

If A Driverless Car Crashes, Who's Liable?

Who's on the hook?
Eric Risberg AP

Originally published on Fri March 8, 2013 9:25 am

Some number of years from now, the technology may exist for cars to drive themselves. This could save thousands of lives a year (90 percent of fatal car accidents involve human error).

But getting the technology right won't be enough. Governments and courts will have to figure out lots of new legal and regulatory issues. One key question: If a driverless car crashes, who's liable?

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Technology
11:04 pm
Thu March 7, 2013

News Corp. Education Tablet: For The Love Of Learning?

Joel Klein, former New York City schools chief, left to run News Corp.'s education division. On Thursday, Amplify announced a specially designed education tablet.
Richard Drew AP

Originally published on Mon March 18, 2013 10:32 am

The educational division of the media conglomerate News Corp., called Amplify, unveiled a new digital tablet this week at the SXSW tech conference in Austin, Texas, intended to serve millions of schoolchildren and their teachers across the country.

Amplify promises the tablet will simplify administrative chores for teachers, enable shy children to participate more readily in discussions, and allow students to complete coursework at their own pace while drawing upon carefully selected online research resources.

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Theater
9:01 pm
Thu March 7, 2013

For Berry Gordy, Broadway Is Memory Lane

Valisia LeKae, Sydney Morton and Ariana Debose play the Supremes in the show.
Andrew Eccles

Originally published on Fri March 8, 2013 8:50 am

There's hardly an adult anywhere in the world who wouldn't recognize at least some of the music of Motown.

The R&B label changed the course of music in the United States and made household names of Diana Ross, Stevie Wonder and The Jackson 5. Now, the man who created Motown — Berry Gordy — is headed to Broadway to tell his version of how it all began.

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Animals
4:14 am
Thu March 7, 2013

Arthritic Rabbit Benefits From Hydrotherapy

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne. The life of a rabbit isn't always a piece of carrot cake. Heidi is a 15-pound continental giant rabbit in Dorset who suffers from arthritis. So a month ago, her vet prescribed an unusual treatment for a rabbit: hydrotherapy. Twice a week, she's strapped into a little orange life vest and paddles in a heated pool. Her owner told the BBC that Heidi has taken to it like a duck to water. Heidi also loves her post-swim shower. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Around the Nation
4:07 am
Thu March 7, 2013

Brick Doesn't Break Shop Owner's Creativity

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Good morning, I'm Steve Inskeep.

If life gives you lemons, make lemonade. And if life gives you broken glass, make money. A vandal threw a brick through the window of a Pittsburgh printing shop. The owner, undismayed, offered the brick for auction to raise money to fix the window. Sympathetic friends threw in prizes to go with the brick, like tickets to a hockey game. The winning bid was $1,150, enough to fix the window and make a donation to charity.

It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Business
1:48 am
Thu March 7, 2013

Time Warner To Spin Off Magazine Unit

Originally published on Thu March 7, 2013 4:20 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with a Time Warner split.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

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Europe
1:48 am
Thu March 7, 2013

Bolshoi Dancer Confesses To Masterminding Attack

Originally published on Thu March 7, 2013 3:53 am

In Russia, a prominent dancer with the fabled Bolshoi Ballet has confessed to ordering an attack on the company's director. The director suffered third degree burns after acid was thrown onto his face. For more on the scandals at the Bolshoi, Renee Montagne talks to writer Christina Ezrahi, author of Swans of the Kremlin: Ballet and Power in Soviet Russia.

Movies
1:48 am
Thu March 7, 2013

Will 'Oz The Great And Powerful' Gain Emerald Status?

Originally published on Thu March 7, 2013 2:19 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

"The Wizard of Oz" means to a lot of people, a young Judy Garland in sparkly ruby slippers. But in the hundred years since L. Frank Baum wrote the Oz stories, they, or stories featuring Oz characters, have been produced dozens of times. The latest, a prequel that opens in theaters this weekend, called "Oz the Great and Powerful."

NPR's Mandalit Del Barco has more.

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Energy
12:07 am
Thu March 7, 2013

BP Bows Out Of Solar, But Industry Outlook Still Sunny

As BP leaves the solar industry, Asian countries such as China are taking a lead role in production.
Xinhua News Agency AP

Originally published on Thu March 7, 2013 9:50 am

The solar energy business is growing quickly, but future growth will not include oil giant BP.

At the IHS CERAWeek energy conference in Houston, BP's CEO made it clear the company is done with solar.

"We have thrown in the towel on solar," Bob Dudley said after delivering a wide-ranging speech Wednesday.

"Not that solar energy isn't a viable energy source, but we worked at it for 35 years, and we really never made money," he added.

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It's All Politics
12:05 am
Thu March 7, 2013

Obama Looks For A Spring Thaw With Congress To Start Melting Deficit

President Obama speaks to reporters in the White House briefing room on Friday following a meeting with congressional leaders.
Pablo Martinez Monsivais AP

Originally published on Thu March 7, 2013 9:44 am

President Obama is hoping for a spring thaw in White House-congressional relations.

The president had dinner Wednesday night with a small group of Republican lawmakers. He's also planning rare visits to Capitol Hill next week to discuss his agenda with both Democrats and Republicans.

Aides say Obama is trying to locate what he calls a "caucus of common sense" in Congress to tackle the country's long-term budget challenges.

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