World

Political Junkie
12:42 pm
Tue March 26, 2013

It's ScuttleButton Time!

Ken Rudin collection

In the thousand-plus or so emails I get each time a ScuttleButton puzzle is posted, I invariably will get dozens and dozens of complaints that it was just too easy, that it insulted their intelligence, that I need to make them more challenging. That was clearly the case last week, as there were nearly 100 such emails.

Well, be careful what you wish for. This week's puzzle is one of the most difficult.

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Monkey See
12:37 pm
Tue March 26, 2013

Tweaks, Retooling, And When To Give Up: A Tale Of Two Singing Shows

Adam Levine, Shakira, Usher, and Blake Shelton make up the adjusted judging panel on NBC's The Voice.
Adam Taylor NBC

As The Voice returns to NBC this week for its fourth season, viewers are seeing two new, if quite familiar, faces as Shakira and Usher occupy the coaches' seats vacated by Christina Aguilera and Cee Lo Green. Its talent-show rival over on Fox, The X Factor, will also see two new judges when (if? no, "when," surely) it comes back in the fall.

So why does The Voice seem so healthy and The X Factor so wobbly?

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The Picture Show
12:19 pm
Tue March 26, 2013

Under Construction: Kazakhstan's Space-Age Capital

The Khan Shatyr Entertainment Center, designed by Norman Foster (Foster and Partners)
Fabrice Fouillet

Originally published on Tue March 26, 2013 1:43 pm

In 1997, Kazakhstan, recently freed from the Soviet Union, packed up its border-location capital, and moved it to the inhospitable steppe, smack in the middle of the country. That's where the country's president, Nursultan Nazarbayev, thought it should be. It was named "Astana," which translates to ... "capital."

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The Two-Way
12:05 pm
Tue March 26, 2013

Outside the Supreme Court, The Arguments Continue

A member of the New York Hispanic Clergy Organization (right) is confronted by a pro-gay-marriage activist outside the Supreme Court on Tuesday.
Karen Bleier AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed March 27, 2013 5:58 pm

As oral arguments were beginning Tuesday in the first of two same-sex marriage cases inside the Supreme Court, the steps in front of the court were filled with throngs of what looked to be mostly gay-marriage supporters, spilling out in front of the building and to the other side of the street.

About a half hour earlier, a parade of traditional-marriage supporters had arrived, later headed to a rally on the National Mall.

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Shots - Health News
12:05 pm
Tue March 26, 2013

Sequencing Of HeLa Genome Revives Genetic Privacy Concerns

A micrograph of HeLa cells, derived from cervical cancer cells taken from Henrietta Lacks.
Tomasz Szul/Visuals Unlimited, Inc. Getty Images

Originally published on Thu March 28, 2013 1:32 pm

Last week, scientists announced they had sequenced the full genome of the most widely used human cell line in biology, the "HeLa" cells, and published the results on the web. But the descendents of the woman from whom the cells originated were never consulted before the genetic information was made public, and thus never gave their consent to its release.

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The Two-Way
11:16 am
Tue March 26, 2013

Head Of Bank Of Cyprus Quits After Appointment Of Special Administrator

Students in the Cypriot capital, Nicosia, protest against austerity measures in front of the presidential residence.
Milos Bicanski Getty Images

Originally published on Tue March 26, 2013 2:56 pm

The chairman of the Bank of Cyprus abruptly stepped down after a special administrator was appointed to oversee its restructuring in the wake of a painful bailout of the island nation by international lenders.

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The Two-Way
11:13 am
Tue March 26, 2013

Gun Links Colorado Corrections Slaying, Texas Shootout

Originally published on Wed March 27, 2013 7:30 am

Colorado officials say a gun used in a shootout between Texas sheriff's deputies and a paroled felon Thursday is the same weapon used to kill the head of the Colorado's Department of Corrections two days earlier.

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All Songs Considered
10:51 am
Tue March 26, 2013

New Mix: Vampire Weekend, Savages, Giant Drag, Eluvium And More

Clockwise from upper left: Valeska Steiner and Sonja Glass of Boy, Matthew Cooper of Eluvium, Vampire Weekend, Annie Hardy of Giant Drag
Courtesy of the artists

Originally published on Thu May 16, 2013 1:19 pm

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It's All Politics
10:26 am
Tue March 26, 2013

NPR's Twitter Coverage Of Supreme Court Same-Sex Marriage Arguments

People line up in front of the U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday before the justices hear arguments in the first of two same-sex marriage cases.
Jewel Samad AFP/Getty Images

NPR is covering the historic oral arguments before the Supreme Court in a number of ways, including on Twitter.

You can follow our Twitter coverage at @nprpolitics.

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The Two-Way
10:24 am
Tue March 26, 2013

North Korea Threatens To Attack U.S., South Korean Bases

North Korean "landing and anti-landing drills" are shown in a photo released Tuesday.
KCNA AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri March 29, 2013 1:26 pm

North Korea says it has moved its artillery and ballistic missiles into "combat posture" for possible use against targets in South Korea, Guam, Hawaii and the U.S. mainland.

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The Two-Way
9:44 am
Tue March 26, 2013

Don't Blame Punxsutawney Phil: Handler Got Spring Prediction Wrong

Punxsutawney Phil and his buddies on Groundhog Day, 2012.
Gene J. Puskar AP

What exactly is "groundhog-ese" and how the heck would we know if it was mistranslated?

Check the weather outside.

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The Two-Way
9:29 am
Tue March 26, 2013

Home Prices Rose Again In January

A newly built home in San Diego.
Mike Blake Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Tue March 26, 2013 12:07 pm

The housing recovery continues:

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Favorite Sessions
9:15 am
Tue March 26, 2013

Tegan And Sara: A Closer Look At 'Closer'

Tegan and Sara perform on The Current.
Nate Ryan The Current

Canadian twin-sister duo Tegan and Sara are one of alternative pop's most celebrated acts, having released seven full-length albums over nearly two decades as musical collaborators. They've also been longtime Current favorites, stopping by for an in-studio performance in 2007 and an intimate performance in the UBS forum in 2010.

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The Two-Way
9:10 am
Tue March 26, 2013

Police: Berezovsky's Death 'Consistent With Hanging'

Boris Berezovsky outside a London court in August.
Warrick Page Getty Images

Originally published on Tue March 26, 2013 12:39 pm

Boris Berezovsky, the exiled Russian tycoon whose body was found at his U.K. home over the weekend, died from hanging in an apparent suicide, British authorities now say.

"The results of the postmortem examination, carried out by a Home Office pathologist, have found the cause of death is consistent with hanging," the Thames Valley Police said in a statement Tuesday, adding that there were no signs of a violent struggle.

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The Two-Way
8:42 am
Tue March 26, 2013

Women's Hoops: UConn Rolls As Kansas And Oklahoma Score Upsets

Connecticut's Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis shoots over Vanderbilt's Elan Brown during the team's game Monday night in Storrs, Conn.
Bill Shettle CSM /LANDOV

Originally published on Tue March 26, 2013 11:07 am

If it's March and there's madness, then the University of Connecticut women's basketball team must be in the middle of it all.

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The Two-Way
7:58 am
Tue March 26, 2013

In Afghanistan: Kerry Wraps Up Trip; Police, U.K. Troops Targeted In Attacks

Secretary of State John Kerry using his head Tuesday in Kabul, where he met the captain of that nation's women's soccer team.
Jason Reed Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Tue March 26, 2013 10:57 am

Tuesday's news from Afghanistan underscores the challenges that remain as the U.S. and its allies try to hand over security to that nation's military and police.

-- "5 Afghan Police Killed In Suicide Attack In East": The Associated Press writes that "eight suicide bombers attacked a police headquarters in the eastern Afghan city of Jalalabad on Tuesday, killing five officers and wounding four others, a security official said."

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The Two-Way
7:30 am
Tue March 26, 2013

'Monumental' Gay-Marriage Cases Could Set Law For Centuries

Some have been lined up for days — including during Monday's snow and rain — to insure they'll be inside the Supreme Court when the justices hear oral arguments about two laws involving same-sex marriage.
Jonathan Ernst Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Tue March 26, 2013 10:48 am

  • From 'Morning Edition': Nina Totenberg reports

It's Day 1 of the Supreme Court's two days' worth of oral arguments about laws concerning same-sex marriage. On Morning Edition, NPR's Nina Totenberg set the stage.

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The Two-Way
7:13 am
Tue March 26, 2013

Book News: Wis. Governor Takes Heat Over His Choice Of Ghostwriter

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker speaks during the Republican National Convention on Aug. 28, 2012.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

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

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First Reads
7:03 am
Tue March 26, 2013

Exclusive First Read: Meg Wolitzer's 'The Interestings'

Originally published on Tue March 26, 2013 10:20 am

  • Listen to the Excerpt

Meg Wolitzer returns with The Interestings, a big and deliciously complicated novel that follows a group of summer-camp friends through the decades. Jules, Ash, Ethan and Jonah first dubbed themselves "the Interestings" as teenagers in the sweltering confines of Boys Teepee 3 at the artsy camp Spirit-in-the-Woods. All of them are bright, talented kids — artists, musicians, actors — but what happens to close friendship and early promise when you grow up? For the Interestings, that question will have very different answers.

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