World

NPR Story
1:12 pm
Fri December 19, 2014

A Journey From Wrestling Cage To Santa's Village

Mick Foley as Mankind in 1999, and as Santa Claus in 2014. (Courtesy of the WWE/Sean Hurley for NHPR)

You start to notice them in late November — in malls, outside stores, at company parties — the deluge of Santas. But who are the men under the beards and beneath the red stocking caps?

The answer about one Santa may surprise you. From the Here & Now Contributors Network, Sean Hurley of New Hampshire Public Radio reports that sometimes Santa has a secret he wants to keep.

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The Two-Way
12:09 pm
Fri December 19, 2014

Obama Says Sony Should Not Have Pulled Film Over Threats

Originally published on Fri December 19, 2014 3:13 pm

Updated at 2:25 p.m. ET

President Obama called Sony's decision to pull its film, The Interview, following threats to movie theaters that show the film, a "mistake."

"We cannot have a society in which some dictator someplace can start imposing censorship here in the United States," the president said in his year-end news conference.

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The Salt
12:00 pm
Fri December 19, 2014

How Peppermint Tricks Us Into Feeling (Deliciously) Cold

Even in the coldest months, we relish the refreshing, icy taste of peppermint — in seasonal treats like peppermint bark, peppermint schnapps, even peppermint beer.

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Marian McPartland's Piano Jazz
11:39 am
Fri December 19, 2014

George Shearing's Holiday Set On Piano Jazz

George Shearing.
New York Daily News Archive Getty Images

British jazz pianist George Shearing was a friend and frequent guest on Piano Jazz. On this special edition of the program from 2001, Shearing joins host Marian McPartland to celebrate the holidays in a jazzy way.

The two reminisce about seasons gone by and perform traditional and contemporary holiday tunes, including "Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas" and "Away In A Manger."

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It's All Politics
11:38 am
Fri December 19, 2014

Advocacy Groups Tell Lawmakers To Back Off

Workers with the Pebble Mine project test drill in July 2007 in the Bristol Bay region of Alaska near the village of Iliamma.
Al Grillo AP

Originally published on Fri December 19, 2014 3:53 pm

Three advocacy organizations — across ideological lines — are telling congressional investigators to back off in a probe of EPA ties to a leading environmental group, the Natural Resources Defense Council.

Republican Rep. Darrell Issa of California and Sen. David Vitter of Louisiana are leading the investigation. They contend that NRDC lobbyists have exerted too much influence over EPA on the issues of carbon reduction and the proposed Pebble Mine at Bristol Bay, Alaska.

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Goats and Soda
11:30 am
Fri December 19, 2014

A Nurse's Desperate Plea: Show Me The Ebola Money

A body bag and some wooden sticks were used to fashion this stretcher.
Courtesy of Karin Huster

I found her curled up in the fetal position on the ground, under a piece of cardboard wet from the rain, breathing quietly. Dried blood all around her mouth. Naked. Most likely she had stumbled from her ward in the middle of the night, making it past the gates meant to separate the area where patients live from the triage area, where ambulances pull in — gates that frustratingly still won't close.

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Monkey See
11:11 am
Fri December 19, 2014

Pop Culture Happy Hour: 'Top Five' And The Art Of The Mixtape

NPR

This week's show brings our pal Audie Cornish into the studio for a conversation about Chris Rock's comedy Top Five. We get into the balance of industry satire and romance, the particular variety of raunchy comedy the film favors, and how his deft handling of the agony of junkets contrasts with the actually impressive round of interviews Rock has done surrounding the film.

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NPR Story
11:04 am
Fri December 19, 2014

The Secret Book of Job

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

NPR Story
11:04 am
Fri December 19, 2014

Running with the Bulls

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

NPR Story
11:04 am
Fri December 19, 2014

No Son of Mine

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

NPR Story
11:04 am
Fri December 19, 2014

The Best Babysitter

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

The Two-Way
10:30 am
Fri December 19, 2014

FIFA Votes To Release At Least Some Of The Controversial World Cup Report

FIFA president Sepp Blatter attends a press conference in Marrakech, Morocco, on Friday.
Christophe Ena AP

Originally published on Fri December 19, 2014 10:51 am

Soccer's governing body is sticking to its guns.

FIFA has voted not to revisit the bidding of the 2018 and 2022 World Cups. It also decided to release, at some later date, at least part of a 430-page confidential report produced by American lawyer Michael Garcia.

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The Two-Way
10:23 am
Fri December 19, 2014

Book News: Macmillan Inks Deal With Amazon, But Doesn't Sound Happy About It

People wait in line at Macmillan Publishers to have books autographed by their authors at last year's Book Expo America in New York. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)
Mark Lennihan AP

Originally published on Fri December 19, 2014 12:01 pm

The daily lowdown on books, publishing and the occasional author behaving badly.

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The Two-Way
10:19 am
Fri December 19, 2014

Thailand Says It Was Unaware Of CIA 'Black Site' On Its Soil

Abu Zubaydah, an alleged al-Qaida operative who was reportedly subjected to waterboarding at a secret location in Thailand in 2002.
Anonymous AP

Thailand's prime minister says his government had no knowledge of a secret location inside the country where the CIA is said to have waterboarded top al-Qaida operatives in 2002.

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A Blog Supreme
9:58 am
Fri December 19, 2014

The 2014 NPR Music Jazz Critics Poll

Steve Lehman edged out Wadada Leo Smith for the top spot in the 2014 NPR Music Jazz Critics Poll.
Willie Davis Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Fri December 19, 2014 10:49 am

NPR Music is pleased to present a poll in which 140 jazz critics picked their favorite recordings of 2014.

For nine consecutive years, this poll has been a labor of love by eminent critic Francis Davis. It's grown tremendously since he initially submitted the consensus of 30 writers to The Village Voice in 2006. Over the last month, print journalists, bloggers and broadcasters nominated more than 700 different albums. We're thrilled to welcome his exhaustive project back to our site.

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A Blog Supreme
9:57 am
Fri December 19, 2014

An Upset Either Way: Steve Lehman And Wadada Leo Smith Triumph

Wadada Leo Smith finished second in the NPR Music Jazz Critics Poll, separated by only 12 points from surprise winner Steve Lehman.
Scott Groller Courtesy of the artist

Could anyone have predicted that Steve Lehman and Wadada Leo Smith would place first and second in this year's NPR Music Jazz Critics Poll, among a field including previous winners Sonny Rollins, Vijay Iyer and Jason Moran, plus 2011 runner-up (and favorite going in) Ambrose Akinmusire? Not me, and I even had Lehman and Smith on my ballot, along with Rollins and Akinmusire.

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Monkey See
9:53 am
Fri December 19, 2014

A Different 'Annie,' But Still A Good Kid

Jamie Foxx and Quvenzhane Wallis star in the latest incarnation of the musical Annie.
Barry Wetcher Sony Pictures

Originally published on Fri December 19, 2014 12:19 pm

The sun'll come out tomorrow
Bet your bottom dollar that tomorrow, there'll be sun

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Extras: TED Radio Hour
9:51 am
Fri December 19, 2014

Playlist: Powerful Personal Stories

TED speakers open up about their moments of struggle and growth.
iStock

In this TED Radio Hour playlist, TED speakers reveal challenges in their lives that produced courage and transformation.

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

Shots - Health News
9:51 am
Fri December 19, 2014

Teaching Hospitals Hit Hardest By Medicare Fines For Patient Safety

NYU Langone Medical Center is one of the teaching hospitals being penalized by Medicare for its rate of medical errors.
Joshua Bright AP

Originally published on Fri December 19, 2014 2:18 pm

Medicare has begun punishing 721 hospitals with high rates of infections and other medical errors, cutting payments to half of the nation's major teaching hospitals and many institutions that are marquee names.

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