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The Two-Way
3:52 pm
Wed April 4, 2012

Theater Bombing In Mogadishu Breaks Tenuous Calm In Somalia

Ambulances are parked outside the Mogadishu National Theatre on Wednesday after a suicide attack in the Somali capital. A young woman strapped with explosives blew herself up on at a ceremony in the Somali national theater attended by the prime minister and other officials.
Abdurashid Abdulle AFP/Getty Images

Just as things had begun to seem peaceful in the Somali capital, a bomb exploded in the newly reopened National Theater. And it happened as the prime minister gave an address.

The New York Times reports that the bombing shattered what had been a tenuous calm in Mogadishu, which has been the center of a fierce civil war for the past 21 years.

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Shots - Health Blog
3:50 pm
Wed April 4, 2012

Speaking Multiple Languages May Help Delay Dementia Symptoms

Because these Chicago second-graders are bilingual, they may be better protected later in life against the ravages of dementia.
Tim Boyle Getty Images

The brains of people who grow up speaking two languages are wired differently, and those differences protect them from dementia as they age.

That's the news from two studies out this month from a scientist in Canada who has spent decades trying to figure out whether being bilingual is bad or good. "I've been doing this for 25 years," Ellen Bialystok, a distinguished research professor of psychology at York University in Toronto, tells Shots. "Suddenly people are interested. I figure it's because everybody's scared about dementia."

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Monkey See
3:45 pm
Wed April 4, 2012

Fred Savage: A Child Star Makes Good, With Less Than Wholesome Comedies

The face you may remember: Fred Savage cuddles up with a puppy on The Wonder Years, in a photo from December 1989.
ABC Photo Archives Getty Images

Originally published on Wed April 4, 2012 6:05 pm

Former Child Star Fatigue. Many of us have suffered it, given the drug problems, the meltdowns, the awful nude photos.

But then there's Fred Savage, who starred in the ABC show The Wonder Years from 1988 through 1993. Now he's a successful, slightly offbeat 35-five-year-old television producer and director. He works on wicked, slightly warped comedies including Party Down, It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia and as of today, Best Friends Forever. His first network sitcom premieres tonight on NBC.

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The Salt
3:42 pm
Wed April 4, 2012

Panel: To Safeguard Food Imports, It's Not Just About Inspections

A worker monitors the loading of containers on to a ship at a harbor in China's Shandong province. Under a new U.S. law, Chinese food exporters will now have to share more food safety information with American food importers.
STR AFP/Getty Images

Locavores, a word with you. Local food may be gaining traction in all kinds of ways, but a report out today from the Institute of Medicine serves as a stark reminder of just how globalized our food system truly is.

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Planet Money
3:35 pm
Wed April 4, 2012

Where Money Meets Power In Washington

iStockphoto.com

"Political fundraiser" has a fancy ring to it — tuxedos, famous singers, billionaires. In fact, most political fundraisers aren't that glamorous.

Think instead of a dozen lobbyists eating breakfast with a Congressman in a side room at some DC restaurant. Off in a corner, someone who works for the Congressman is holding the checks the lobbyists brought to get in the door.

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Shots - Health Blog
3:22 pm
Wed April 4, 2012

More Fake Cancer Drugs Found In The U.S.

The FDA says so far it hasn't gotten any reports of patients receiving the fake Altuzan.
U.S. Food And Drug Administration

Another batch of phony cancer drugs has made its way into the U.S., the Food and Drug Administration says.

U.S.-based medical practices purchased vials of counterfeit medicine labeled as Altuzan from a foreign supplier, FDA spokesperson Shelly Burgess tells Shots. She said the agency doesn't have any reports of patients having received the counterfeit drugs.

Altuzan is the Turkish brand name for Avastin, the FDA-approved blockbuster cancer drug from Swiss drugmaker Roche's Genentech unit. Altuzan is approved for use in Turkey — but not in the U.S.

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The Two-Way
3:11 pm
Wed April 4, 2012

More Violence, As U.N. Mission Races Toward Damascus

The peace plan brokered by international envoy Kofi Annan and backed the United Nations has yet to curb the violence in Syria.

Reuters reports that even though a U.N. team of peacekeepers is scheduled to arrive in Damascus, today or tomorrow, opposition activists said government forces continued their attack. They said about 80 people have been killed since Tuesday.

Reuters adds:

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Europe
3:11 pm
Wed April 4, 2012

Italian Law Pits Older Workers Against Younger Ones

Members of the Italian metalworkers trade union Fiom-CGIL hold a placard reading "Enough now!" during a protest in Rome on March 9.
Filippo Monteforte AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu April 5, 2012 9:06 am

Italy's technocrat prime minister, Mario Monti, came to office less than five months ago as the country's finances were in a tailspin. And now he could be facing his toughest challenge yet — pushing through changes to labor regulations.

Italian labor rules ensure job security for older workers but can condemn the younger generation to a series of insecure, temporary jobs.

Since taking office, Monti has pushed through a round of tough austerity measures, budget cuts, pension reform and some deregulation.

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The Two-Way
3:10 pm
Wed April 4, 2012

After 567,000 Miles And 48 Years, Florida Woman Parks Her 'Chariot'

Rachel Veitch and "Chariot," her 1964 Mercury Comet Caliente.
Katie Ball

Originally published on Wed April 4, 2012 6:05 pm

When 93-year-old Rachel Veitch picked up the newspaper on March 10 and realized that the macular degeneration in her eyes had developed to the point where she couldn't read the print, she knew it was time to stop driving.

But there's much more to the Orlando, Fla., woman's story.

The decision meant she would no longer be getting behind the wheel of her beloved 1964 Mercury Comet Caliente, a car she calls "The Chariot." Veitch has pampered her ride for nearly five decades and 567,000 miles.

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The Two-Way
1:49 pm
Wed April 4, 2012

'The Dog Ate My Tickets': This Time, The Mother Of All Excuses Was Real

One of the pieced-together tickets.
Russ Berkman via KJR

Imagine you've scored hard-to-get tickets to the Masters golf tournament in Augusta, Ga. Now, imagine you're so excited that you make big a deal out of this: You buy plane tickets, you schedule some golfing of your own, you invite three buddies. And then, one day you get home to find only chewed pieces of the tickets attached to the strings that came with them.

Suddenly, it dawns on you: "The dog ate my tickets."

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Business
12:58 pm
Wed April 4, 2012

Yahoo Cuts 2,000 Employees

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with layoffs at Yahoo.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

Economy
12:37 pm
Wed April 4, 2012

Private Hiring Signals Another Strong Jobs Report

Joanely Carrero restocks shelves at a Target store in Miami. Two reports Wednesday indicated that private hiring grew in March.
Joe Raedle Getty Images

Jobs at U.S. businesses increased by 209,000 in March, according to a report released Wednesday by the payroll processing firm ADP. That's in line with expectations for the monthly jobs report due out Friday.

Analysts expect Friday's official employment report from the Labor Department to show that employers added 215,000 in March and that the unemployment rate remained at 8.3 percent, according to Bloomberg News.

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The Two-Way
12:33 pm
Wed April 4, 2012

Military Proceeds With Guantanamo Trial Of Sept. 11 Mastermind

Originally published on Wed April 4, 2012 2:24 pm

The U.S. military announced today that it was ready to proceed with the war crimes tribunal of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and four other Guantanamo prisoners suspected of orchestrating the Sept. 11 attack on the United States.

NPR's Dina Temple-Raston reports this is important because it means that Mohammed must be arraigned within 30 days. This step is basically a military grand jury agreeing that there is enough evidence to proceed with a trial.

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Africa
12:26 pm
Wed April 4, 2012

Mali's Rebellion Stirs Fear Of Wider Saharan Conflict

Tuareg rebels eat a meal last month near the Malian city of Timbuktu, which they recently captured. The rebels have taken control of northern Mali, raising concerns about stability in the broader region.
Ferhat Bouda DPA/Landov

Originally published on Wed April 4, 2012 1:26 pm

Rebels from the Tuareg ethnic group now control most of northern Mali, a territory as big as France on the edge of the Sahara desert.

A column of trucks loaded with Tuareg fighters rolled into the ancient desert town of Timbuktu on Sunday, taking over the positions abandoned by fleeing government soldiers.

They include an Islamist faction that wants to impose Shariah law throughout Mali and are believed to include elements with links to al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb.

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The Two-Way
12:08 pm
Wed April 4, 2012

In News Conference, Pakistani Militant Taunts U.S. Over $10 Million Bounty

Hafiz Mohammad Saeed, chief of Jamaat-ud-Dawwa and founder of Lashkar-e-Taiba, listens to a reporter during his interview with the Associated Press in Islamabad, Pakistan on Tuesday.
B.K. Bangash AP

Hafiz Mohammad Saeed said he's not in hiding. In fact, he said, he would be Lahore tomorrow, if the United States wanted to capture him.

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Politics
12:00 pm
Wed April 4, 2012

Rep. Moore Discusses Stunning House Speech

During a debate over the Violence Against Women Act last week, the Wisconsin Democrat told her own history of surviving sexual assault and violence. Rep. Moore speaks with host Michel Martin about her story and why she thinks the Violence Against Women Act deserves bipartisan support. (Advisory: This segment may not be suitable for all audiences.)

The Two-Way
11:55 am
Wed April 4, 2012

Coming Up: Romney Talks To News Editors

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney during today's speech to the American Society of News Editors, in Washington, D.C.
Jim Watson AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed April 4, 2012 12:55 pm

Coming off his three-state sweep in Tuesday's primaries, GOP presidential contender Mitt Romney this noon renewed his charge that President Obama has displayed an "appalling lack of leadership."

Romney said that if elected president he could provide the kind of experience and guidance to give the economy a lift, get the government on the path toward deficit reduction and ensure the USA continues to play a leading role around the world.

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It's All Politics
11:40 am
Wed April 4, 2012

Obama, Romney Define Each Other As General-Election Fight Starts For Real

Romey-Steven Senne/Obama-Carolyn Caster AP

Incumbent presidents generally try to cast their re-election contest as a choice between the imperfect but well-meaning and effective occupant of the White House and the far worse alternative offered by the rival party.

Challengers, on the other hand, try to frame a presidential race as a referendum on the sitting president whose record nearly always contains missteps, or who can be blamed for trouble in the economy or elsewhere.

In short, whether it's the president or the challenger, the way the game is played requires each to define the opposition as well as himself.

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The Two-Way
10:45 am
Wed April 4, 2012

Peabody Awards: NPR Among Honorees

Peabody.uga.edu

Originally published on Wed April 4, 2012 1:05 pm

The winners of this year's George Foster Peabody Awards for excellence in electronic media were just announced and NPR is among those being honored.

NPR work being recognized:

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The Two-Way
9:55 am
Wed April 4, 2012

Good News On The Jobs Front, Except From Yahoo

Originally published on Wed April 4, 2012 9:56 am

On the plus side, the ADP National Employment Report issued this morning estimates there were 209,000 jobs added to private employers' payrolls in March. And ADP's data often are something of a predictor for what the Bureau of Labor Statistics will have to say when it issues its monthly numbers. Those March figures are due on Friday at 8:30 a.m. ET.

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U.S.
9:23 am
Wed April 4, 2012

Tornadoes Outside Dallas 'Indescribable,' Mayor Says

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Life is not back to normal for everybody in the town of Lancaster, Texas. A state of emergency has been declared there, and the city of Arlington, as well, following yesterday's storms in the Dallas area.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

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The Two-Way
9:05 am
Wed April 4, 2012

Olbermann: 'I Screwed Up,' But Current TV Had Problems

Keith Olbermann.
Current TV

Essentially saying that he should have known better than to go to work for Current TV, Keith Olbermann said Tuesday night that he "screwed up" by taking the job last year.

But while Olbermann said "it's my fault that it didn't succeed," he also figuratively pointed his finger at Current for why things went wrong before he was dismissed last week.

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Shots - Health Blog
8:45 am
Wed April 4, 2012

Doctors Urge Their Colleagues To Quit Doing Worthless Tests

Doctors, don't order that CT scan when a less-expensive ultrasound would work just as well, the Choosing Wisely campaign advises.
Catherine Yeulet iStockphoto.com

Nine national medical groups are launching a campaign called Choosing Wisely to get U.S. doctors to back off on 45 diagnostic tests, procedures and treatments that often may do patients no good.

Many involve imaging tests such as CT scans, MRIs and X-rays. Stop doing them, the groups say, for most cases of back pain, or on patients who come into the emergency room with a headache or after a fainting spell, or just because somebody's about to undergo surgery.

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The Two-Way
8:40 am
Wed April 4, 2012

Former Colorado Sheriff Pleads Guilty In Meth-For-Sex Case

Former Arapahoe County Sheriff Patrick Sullivan before a court hearing last month.
Ed Andrieski AP

Former Arapahoe County (Colo.) sheriff Patrick Sullivan, who back in December was charged with trying to trade methamphetamine for sex with a man, "pleaded guilty on Tuesday to charges of meth possession and soliciting prostitution," Denver's KUSA-TV reports.

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