World

The Two-Way
7:27 pm
Tue September 17, 2013

Judge Orders New Trial In New Orleans Bridge Shooting Case

Originally published on Tue September 17, 2013 8:19 pm

A federal judge ordered a new trial for five former New Orleans Police Department officers convicted in connection to the shooting deaths of two men on the Danziger Bridge in New Orleans.

The shootings gained national attention because they took place during the chaotic aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.

The New Orleans Times-Picayune reports the judge ordered a new trial because of the "grotesque" misconduct of federal prosecutors. The paper adds:

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It's All Politics
6:53 pm
Tue September 17, 2013

Dad, I'm 'A Massachusetts Liberal'

Campaign ad from Carl Sciortino, the Massachusetts Democrat running in the Oct. 15 House special election primary.
Campaign ad

Originally published on Wed September 18, 2013 3:04 pm

A candidate in a crowded House special election is trying to break away from the pack by coming out of the closet — as a Massachusetts liberal.

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The Two-Way
6:19 pm
Tue September 17, 2013

Car Factories Turn Robots And Humans Into Co-Workers

A robot arm helps make engine components at a Volkswagen factory in Germany. For the first time, robots are working alongside humans without guards or other safety barriers between them.
Universal Robots

Originally published on Tue September 17, 2013 7:24 pm

Robots are working alongside humans on car production lines, taking what Technology Review calls "a huge step toward revolutionizing the role of robots" at car factories. Previously, robots had been seen as being too unsafe to place them shoulder-to-arm-joint with humans on the assembly line.

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The Two-Way
5:48 pm
Tue September 17, 2013

Alleged Navy Yard Shooter Got Clearances Despite Troubled Past

Police say Aaron Alexis, who was killed Monday, gunned down 12 people at the Washington Navy Yard.
FBI Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Tue September 17, 2013 6:44 pm

A day after police say a 34-year-old civilian contractor and ex-Navy reservist killed 12 people at the Washington Navy Yard, questions are being asked about how a man with a troubled service record and signs of mental instability had clearance to be on base.

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The Two-Way
5:36 pm
Tue September 17, 2013

Stephen Hawking Backs Assisted Suicide For The Terminally Ill

British scientist Stephen Hawking appears during the opening ceremony of the London 2012 Paralympic Games in London last year.
Leon Neal AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue September 17, 2013 6:54 pm

Cosmologist Stephen Hawking, who has lived for years with the progressive and debilitating motor neuron condition known as Lou Gehrig's disease, tells the BBC that he favors assisted suicide for people with terminal illnesses.

Hawking, 71, who uses a wheelchair and speaks through a computer speech synthesizer activated by his eye movements, said: "We don't let animals suffer, so why humans?"

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Middle East
5:18 pm
Tue September 17, 2013

Evidence In UN Syria Report Makes Regime Most Likely Suspect

Originally published on Tue September 17, 2013 5:34 pm

UN inspectors have concluded that it was in fact a chemical weapons attack that occurred outside Damascus, Syria on August 23rd. The report does not assign blame for the attack. But according to Peter Bouckaert, Emergencies Director for Human Rights Watch, a careful read of the evidence laid out in the UN report shows the Syrian regime is most likely behind the attack. He talks with Robert Siegel about the UN findings and what they imply.

Latin America
5:18 pm
Tue September 17, 2013

Once Considered A Backwater, Northeast Brazil Is Booming

Originally published on Tue September 17, 2013 5:34 pm

The northeastern part of Brazil used to be considered the backwards part of the country, far from the riches of Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo in the south. That's changed in recent years, and today, northeastern Brazil is experiencing an explosion of industry, propelling millions of people out of poverty and into the middle class. Melissa Block talks with businessman Alfredo Bezerra Leite, owner of a bus company and an engineering firm, and his daughter Rebeca Bezerra Leite, to learn about what's behind this growth in the Northeast.

Latin America
5:18 pm
Tue September 17, 2013

Brazil President Postpones U.S. Visit After NSA Revelations

Originally published on Tue September 17, 2013 5:34 pm

In a slap to the United States, Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff announced she is postponing her state visit to Washington. It was scheduled for Oct. 23 and would have been the first state visit of President Obama's second term. The postponement follows revelations that the National Security Agency spied on Rousseff, her top aides and Brazil's state-run oil company.

It's All Politics
5:17 pm
Tue September 17, 2013

William Daley Has Left The Arena

William Daley, who was briefly President Obama's White House chief of staff, has long relished being the guy behind the guy who got elected. So his exit from the Illinois governor's race makes a certain kind of sense.
Paul Beaty AP

Originally published on Tue September 17, 2013 6:45 pm

When William M. Daley — son and brother of famous Chicago mayors, former Obama White House chief of staff and all-around Democratic pooh-bah — was President Clinton's commerce secretary, he kept in his office a framed passage from Theodore Roosevelt's "Citizenship in a Republic" speech.

"It's not the critic who counts. ... The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena."

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The Two-Way
5:10 pm
Tue September 17, 2013

Court OKs Forfeiture Of New York Building With Ties To Iran

The Piaget Building is seen on November 13, 2009 in New York.
Don Emmert AFP/Getty Images

A decision by a federal judge paves the way for the forfeiture of a 36-story Manhattan building that the U.S. alleges is secretly owned and controlled by the government of Iran.

The court agreed with the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York that the owners are a front for the Iranian government and therefore in violation of the International Emergency Economic Powers Act, which restricts commerce with Iran.

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It's All Politics
4:54 pm
Tue September 17, 2013

Navy Yard Tragedy Elicits Muted Political Response

American flags surrounding the Washington Monument fly at half-staff Tuesday, a day after the deadly shootings at the Washington Navy Yard.
J. Scott Applewhite AP

Originally published on Tue September 17, 2013 6:17 pm

A gunman shoots up a military facility, kills a dozen people and puts a fair chunk of the nation's capital on lockdown.

The political response to Monday's massacre at the Navy Yard in Washington?

Measured, bordering on muted.

From the words of the president to those on both sides of the gun control debate, caution has been the rule, with even the sharpest partisans tending to hold their tongues in the hours still suffused with tragedy.

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It's All Politics
4:46 pm
Tue September 17, 2013

In Emergencies, Politicians Are Expected To Master Disaster

Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper (center) speaks to members of the media Saturday, alongside Sens. Mark Udall (left) and Michael Bennet, after touring flood-damaged areas by army helicopter.
Brennan Linsley AP

Originally published on Tue September 17, 2013 6:19 pm

On Saturday, Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper was surveying scenes of destruction caused by massive flooding in the Boulder area. He found a dramatic way to help.

His helicopter stopped to pick up two groups of people who had been stranded by the storms.

The Democrat was quick to applaud GOP Rep. Cory Gardner, who was riding with him, for spotting the residents, as well as his pilot for having the skill to make pinpoint landings.

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Parallels
4:37 pm
Tue September 17, 2013

As Economy Cools, Brazilians Find Themselves Trapped In Debt

A woman looks at clothes inside a shop in Rio de Janeiro. Consumption has been a huge driver of the Brazilian economy, but the boom years are over, and economists say the outlook isn't good.
Sergio Moraes Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Tue September 17, 2013 8:44 pm

It all started out so promisingly. She was young, still in her teens, and she'd landed her first job. As is the custom in Brazil, to get your salary you have to open an account with the bank the company deals with — and with that new account came the woman's first credit card.

"The banks say, 'I want to help you,' " she says. "And if you have a credit card, it's a status symbol, you are well-regarded."

She switched jobs. That company dealt with another bank — which issued her another credit card. She got a store credit card, too.

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Music Reviews
4:33 pm
Tue September 17, 2013

Tom Odell: A Polarizing New Voice Shows Promise

Long Way Home is British singer Tom Odell's debut.
Andrew Whitton Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue September 17, 2013 5:34 pm

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The Two-Way
4:28 pm
Tue September 17, 2013

New Private Spacecraft Set For Mission To Resupply Space Station

An artist's rendering of the Cygnus spacecraft approaching the International Space Station.
Orbital Sciences

Originally published on Tue September 17, 2013 5:18 pm

The SpaceX Dragon may have gotten there first, but Orbital Sciences' Cygnus spacecraft is set to become the second private robotic ship to dock with the International Space Station after a Wednesday launch from NASA's Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia.

The launch is scheduled for 10:50 a.m. EDT on Wednesday from Pad 0A at the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport at Wallops.

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This Is NPR
4:23 pm
Tue September 17, 2013

Volunteer ProFile: 'I Have As Much Fun As The Guests'

Don Wells, NPR Ambassador
Claire Mueller NPR

In June, the NPR Audience and Community Relations team launched the NPR Ambassador Program, an ongoing volunteer opportunity based at our Washington, D.C. headquarters. Since the program's inception, 25 volunteer ambassadors have contributed more than 375 hours of service at NPR by leading the daily studio tours; working in our new retail outlet, The Commons; and helping during special events. Today's ProFile focuses on one of our ambassadors, Don Wells.

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The Salt
4:14 pm
Tue September 17, 2013

Auto-Brewery Syndrome: Apparently, You Can Make Beer In Your Gut

Most of us prefer drinking fermented beverages,€” not producing them in our gut.
Morgan Walker NPR

Originally published on Thu September 19, 2013 6:29 pm

This medical case may give a whole new meaning to the phrase "beer gut."

A 61-year-old man — with a history of home-brewing — stumbled into a Texas emergency room complaining of dizziness. Nurses ran a Breathalyzer test. And sure enough, the man's blood alcohol concentration was a whopping 0.37 percent, or almost five times the legal limit for driving in Texas.

There was just one hitch: The man said that he hadn't touched a drop of alcohol that day.

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All Songs Considered
3:37 pm
Tue September 17, 2013

Viking's Choice: CCR Headcleaner's Sludgy Noiseniks 'Steal The Light'

Courtesy of the artist

The members of CCR Headcleaner must be some kind of gutter mutants, spawned from the spores of an alternate-universe San Francisco psych scene that's less pop and more bong-ripped hedonism. But if the Geneva Jacuzzi-directed video for the sludgy "Steal the Light" is any indication, then maybe the band's destructively diverse debut, Lace the Earth With Arms Wide Open: 2013, was just formed out of bedroom burnouts.

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A Blog Supreme
3:25 pm
Tue September 17, 2013

Melissa Aldana Wins Thelonious Monk Competition For Saxophonists

Melissa Aldana performs at the 2013 Thelonious Monk International Jazz Saxophone Competition at The John F. Kennedy Center for Performing Arts in Washington, D.C.
Paul Morigi Getty Images for the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz

At a ceremony and concert last night in Washington, D.C., the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz named Melissa Aldana, 24, the winner of its annual competition for young musicians. The highest-profile event of its kind, this year's competition was open to saxophonists.

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The Two-Way
3:22 pm
Tue September 17, 2013

Wiring Damaged By Sandy Caused N.J. Boardwalk Fire

Firefighters stand at the scene of a massive fire that destroyed dozens of businesses along an iconic Jersey shore boardwalk on September 13, 2013 in Seaside Heights, New Jersey.
Spencer Platt Getty Images

Officials said a fire that raged along the famous boardwalk in the New Jersey Shore last week was caused by faulty electrical wiring likely damaged by last year's Hurricane Sandy.

The Newark Star-Ledger reports:

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