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Parallels
3:49 pm
Wed January 8, 2014

As Costs Soar, Who Will Pay For The Panama Canal's Expansion?

A view of the Panama Canal last Thursday. The canal is being widened to accommodate larger ships, but the builders and the canal operators are locked in a dispute about who will pay the higher-than-expected costs to finish the project.
Alejandro Bolivar EPA /Landov

Originally published on Wed January 8, 2014 10:29 pm

For five years, a multibillion-dollar expansion has been underway on the Panama Canal so that ships three times the current size can pass through the vital waterway. The new, wider canal will alter global trade routes and dramatically increase revenue for Panama's government, primarily from toll charges.

The expansion is more than two-thirds done, but now a funding dispute between the builders and the canal operators threatens to bring construction to a halt.

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Planet Money
3:32 pm
Wed January 8, 2014

Episode 508: A Bet On The Future Of Humanity

James Cridland Flickr

Originally published on Wed January 8, 2014 4:29 pm

A famous biologist predicts overpopulation will lead to global catastrophe. He writes a bestselling book and goes on the Tonight Show to make his case.

An economist disagrees. He thinks the biologist isn't accounting for how clever people can be, and how shortages can lead to new, more efficient ways of doing things.

So the economist, Julian Simon, challenges the biologist, Paul Ehrlich, to a very public, very acrimonious, decade-long bet. On today's show: The story of that bet, and the ugly precedent it set.

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Europe
3:18 pm
Wed January 8, 2014

The 'Pussy Riot' Arrests, And The Crackdown That Followed

Pussy Riot members Yekaterina Samutsevich (left), Maria Alyokhina and Nadezhda Tolokonnikova sit in a glass-walled cage in a Moscow court on Oct. 10, 2012.
Natalia Kolesnikova AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed January 8, 2014 4:19 pm

Masha Gessen is a prominent journalist who is also a lesbian and an outspoken LGBT rights advocate in Russia. After Russia passed two anti-gay laws in June, she decided it was time for her, her partner and their children to leave. In late December, they moved to New York.

"The only thing more creepy than hearing someone suggest the likes of you should be burned alive is hearing someone suggest the likes of you should be burned alive and thinking, 'I know that guy.' "

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The Two-Way
3:16 pm
Wed January 8, 2014

How Would You React In A Shooting? Have A Plan, Experts Say

Newtown, Conn., Dec. 20, 2012: Stuffed animals and a candle arrangement at a streetside memorial for the 20 children and six adults killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School.
John Moore Getty Images

Originally published on Thu January 9, 2014 10:28 am

The annual number of mass murders and attempted mass murders in the U.S. has tripled since 2008, to 15 last year, according to statistics that the FBI and Justice Department have been citing in recent weeks.

In a new study posted online by the FBI Law Enforcement Bulletin, experts make the case that "police have, generally, done an excellent job responding to active shooter events quickly."

But, they add:

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Television
2:35 pm
Wed January 8, 2014

On TV This Week: 'Babylon' Has Good Fun, 'Detective' Is The Real Deal

IFC's The Spoils Of Babylon follows a sister (Kristin Wiig) and adopted brother (Tobey Maguire) caught up in a passionate romance.
Katrina Marcinowski IFC

Originally published on Wed January 8, 2014 4:55 pm

Two new miniseries this week are worth special mention — and couldn't be more different.

True Detective, which begins Sunday on HBO, is a combination series and miniseries, kind of like American Horror Story on FX. Each season is designed to tell a different, self-contained story, followed the next year by a new tale with new characters and sometimes even new actors. This first season of True Detective is an eight-hour murder mystery starring Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson, neither of whom is expected to return next season.

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Shots - Health News
2:28 pm
Wed January 8, 2014

Sealant Inspired By Beach Worm Could Become Surgical Superglue

The superglue developed by scientists sticks to wet, bloody surfaces. Researchers hope the adhesive could one day seal a torn vessels or fix heart defects.
Randal McKenzie / McKenzie Illustrations.

Originally published on Wed January 8, 2014 5:05 pm

Remember that wacky glue commercial from the 1980s? "Krazy Glue, you crazy rat," the narrator says. "Strong enough to hold this man suspended in mid-air." He promises the stuff can bond almost anything: a plastic knob, a plastic plug, a rubber boot, a door knob, and even a flashlight case.

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The Two-Way
1:36 pm
Wed January 8, 2014

Sing Along, Now: Rodman's 'Happy Birthday' For Kim Jong Un

Dennis Rodman sings "Happy Birthday" to North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, seated above in the stands, before an exhibition basketball game Wednesday at an indoor stadium in Pyongyang, North Korea.
Kim Kwang Hyon AP

Originally published on Wed January 8, 2014 2:10 pm

When it comes to controversy, there's no time out for Dennis Rodman in North Korea.

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The Two-Way
1:36 pm
Wed January 8, 2014

2 Dead, 1 Missing After Navy Helicopter Crashes Off Virginia Coast

U.S. Navy crew members board a MH-53E helicopter in 2011. The Sea Dragon helicopter is similar to the one that crashed off Virginia on Wednesday.
Lt. Cmdr. John L. Kline AP

Originally published on Wed January 8, 2014 8:41 pm

This post was updated at 7:45 p.m.

Two crew members who were rescued after the U.S. Navy helicopter they were in went down in the Atlantic Ocean near Virginia have died, The Virginian-Pilot reports. They were among the four crew members taken to a hospital today. One crew member died soon after being rescued; the second died later Wednesday.

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The Record
1:02 pm
Wed January 8, 2014

An Interview With Eyehategod's Mike 'IX' Williams

Mike "IX" Williams onstage at The Acheron in Brooklyn in November.
Courtesy of Samantha Marble

Originally published on Thu January 9, 2014 10:41 am

Mike "IX" Williams has had a rough year. Williams (best known as the vocalist and wild-eyed wordsmith behind revered sludge metal gods Eyehategod) has had a rough life, one stained by addiction, poverty, incarceration, depression and Katrina's flood waters, but 2013 brought with it an unexpected, nearly crippling blow. In September Eyehategod's original drummer — and Williams' lifelong friend — Joey LaCaze died at the age of 42, leaving behind a wife, a daughter and friends. Suddenly, the future of this hitherto unshakable band hung in the balance.

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A Blog Supreme
1:02 pm
Wed January 8, 2014

5 Must-See Projects At Winter Jazzfest

Lionel Loueke (left) and Miguel Zenon (right) join Jeff Ballard in the drummer's rhythm-oriented trio.
Andrea Boccalini Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu January 9, 2014 11:08 am

This week's Winter Jazzfest seems to be a kind of turning point — for the festival, and maybe for jazz in New York City. What started 10 years ago as a one-night showcase under one roof has expanded to five days at 10 venues, featuring more than 90 groups in a vast array of styles.

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Shots - Health News
12:25 pm
Wed January 8, 2014

Where The Smokers Are Now: Bulgaria, Greece And Macedonia

Where are the smokers? Look for the colors reminiscent of a cigarette ember.
IHME

Originally published on Fri January 10, 2014 3:01 pm

Since the surgeon general's report laid bare the health hazards from smoking 50 years ago, the proportion of Americans who smoke has fallen dramatically.

About 19 percent of American adults smoke these days, compared with about 42 percent in 1965.

Smoking has become less prevalent in other countries, too, including Canada, Mexico and Iceland.

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Digital Life
12:21 pm
Wed January 8, 2014

Internet Harassment Of Women: When Haters Do More Than Just Hate

Originally published on Wed January 8, 2014 3:16 pm

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

I'm Michel Martin and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. Finally today, we want to take a look at the world of Internet media. Now we often hear that the Internet is the brave new world where things like race and gender don't matter. Everybody can be who they want to be and have equal access and equal say. But we also know that there is an ugly side to the Internet, and that's something you may have experienced yourself, particularly if you are a girl or a woman.

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Economy
12:21 pm
Wed January 8, 2014

Poverty And Not Knowing Your Neighbor Are Connected, Expert Says

Originally published on Wed January 8, 2014 3:16 pm

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

I'm Michel Martin and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. We start the program today with reflections on money, speaking broadly. In a few minutes, we'll talk about some myths and facts about credit. Consumer columnist Sheryl Harris will help us clear up some confusion over what exactly helps and hurts your credit. That's in just a few minutes.

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Education
12:21 pm
Wed January 8, 2014

New Education Standards Widen Achievement Gap For English Learners?

Originally published on Wed January 8, 2014 3:16 pm

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

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The Two-Way
11:53 am
Wed January 8, 2014

Emails Tie Gov. Christie's Aides To Lane Closings Controversy

Gov. Chris Christie, R-N.J.
Kena Betancur Getty Images

Originally published on Wed January 8, 2014 8:20 pm

Update at 8:15 p.m. ET: Gov. Christie Responds

In the late afternoon, Gov. Chris Christie released a statement expressing anger at the situation and denying involvement in what appeared to be an act of political payback:

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The Two-Way
11:34 am
Wed January 8, 2014

The Case For Clemency: Expert Says Snowden Deserves A Pass

A demonstrators shown during a march in October outside Capitol Hill demanding that Congress investigate the NSA.
Jose Luis Magana AP

Originally published on Thu January 9, 2014 3:49 pm

What's to be done about Edward Snowden?

As the courts consider whether the National Security Agency's surveillance practices are constitutional, NPR's Morning Edition is speaking to individuals making the case for and against granting clemency for the man whose leaks cast a spotlight on U.S. spying.

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13.7: Cosmos And Culture
11:25 am
Wed January 8, 2014

A Tribute To Failure

Topical Press Agency Getty Images

In a society where success is pursued and celebrated above everything else, where media stars, sport champions and the very rich are idolized, failure is seen as an embarrassment, something we must avoid at all costs and, when we can't, must be hidden from everyone else.

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World Cafe
11:23 am
Wed January 8, 2014

The Wild Feathers On World Cafe

The Wild Feathers.
Frank Maddocks Courtesy of the artist

The members of Nashville's Wild Feathers describe their sound as "American music" — and call it that to distinguish it from the kinder, gentler "Americana." Ricky Young, Joel King, Taylor Burns and Preston Wimberly come from Texas and Oklahoma, and jammed on Stones songs all night when they first met. Here, we'll hear them perform songs from their self-titled debut, plus a cover of Tom Petty's "Listen to Her Heart."

The Two-Way
11:21 am
Wed January 8, 2014

Maddux, Glavine And Thomas Going To Baseball Hall Of Fame

At the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, N.Y., a young fan reads about the game's greats.
Jim McIsaac Getty Images

Originally published on Wed January 8, 2014 3:43 pm

Updated at 2:10 p.m. ET

Two great pitchers from the Atlanta Braves and one great slugger who spent many of his best years with the Chicago White Sox are the newest additions to baseball's Hall of Fame.

The new inductees were announced at 2 p.m. ET Wednesday and they are:

-- Greg Maddux of the Braves

-- Tom Glavine of the Braves and later the New York Mets

-- Frank Thomas, who played for Oakland and Toronto as well as the White Sox. He's the first player who spent most of his career as a designated hitter to be put in the Hall of Fame.

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The Protojournalist
11:12 am
Wed January 8, 2014

Can Amazon's Jeff Bezos Save Planet Earth?

Jeff Bezos.
David Ryder Getty Images

Originally published on Wed January 8, 2014 1:07 pm

Look. Up in the sky — and in that little package with the A-to-Z logo. It's a bird. It's a plane.

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