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The Two-Way
10:40 am
Mon December 12, 2011

What A Sour Note: Thieves Target Tubas In Southern California

Who knew the big horn could be so valuable?
Jonathan Daniel Getty Images

Originally published on Mon December 12, 2011 10:43 am

The high prices they command on the black market and "Southern California's banda music craze" have combined to make tubas a hot property, the Los Angeles Times writes today.

Hot, that is, in the sense that there's been a recent "rash of unsolved tuba thefts at high schools in southeast Los Angeles County."

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The Two-Way
10:21 am
Mon December 12, 2011

Supreme Court Will Hear Arguments On Arizona Immigration Law

Originally published on Mon December 12, 2011 10:27 am

Arizona's controversial immigration law will indeed be getting a hearing before the U.S. Supreme Court, it was just announced.

Long expected, the court's decision to weigh in could help settle whether the law — known as SB 1070 for its bill number in the Arizona Senate — encroaches on federal law because, in large part, of its provision that would require the police to determine the immigration status of a person they have detained and whether the suspect is in the country illegally.

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The Two-Way
9:09 am
Mon December 12, 2011

Here We Go Again: Has Misnamed 'God Particle' Finally Been Found?

This is what researchers at the ATLAS detector at the Large Hadron Collider expect a Higgs boson to look like. The Higgs boson is the subatomic particle that scientists say gives everything in the universe mass.
ATLAS Experiment/CERN

The news that scientists at the European Organization for Nuclear Research in Switzerland will talk Tuesday at 8 a.m. ET about "the status of their searches for the Standard Model Higgs boson" has reignited speculation that they might be about to say they've found the so-called God particle.

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Monkey See
8:57 am
Mon December 12, 2011

Beyblades: A New Spin Puts An Old Toy Back On Top

The hot holiday gift Beyblades are seen in the FAO Schwarz store in New York City.
Mario Tama Getty Images

It's toy season. For boys, one of the hottest items on the market this year builds on an ancient concept: the spinning top. The tops are called Beyblades, and I discovered them on the playground of my son's elementary school, where I saw this pack of boys, huddled around something that looked possibly illicit. I was suspicious, but now I let them do the same thing at home.

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The Two-Way
8:39 am
Mon December 12, 2011

Funeral Today For Virginia Tech Officer; Shooter's Family Offers Condolences

Family, friends, students, faculty members and government officials will gather today at 2 p.m. ET in Virginia Tech's Cassell Coliseum to remember campus police officer Deriek Crouse.

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The Two-Way
7:45 am
Mon December 12, 2011

Putin Aide Says Vote Results Will Stand

Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin.
Yana Lapikova AP

Originally published on Mon December 12, 2011 7:53 am

Saying that "even if you add up all this so-called evidence, it accounts for just over 0.5 percent of the total number of votes," a spokesman for Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin has told Agence France Presse that the results of last week's parliamentary elections will stand despite public protests over evidence of fraud.

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Latin America
7:18 am
Mon December 12, 2011

Greased Tracks Facilitate Brazilian Train Robbery

The greased tracks forced the train to slow, and then the robbers used a tow truck with a hook to scoop corn out of the freight cars. It's believed they got away with 55 tons of corn which, given the current prices, should be worth thousands of dollars.

The Two-Way
7:15 am
Mon December 12, 2011

Iraqi Leader Says Iran Won't Be Interfering Anymore

Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki.
Hadi Mizban AP

Originally published on Mon December 12, 2011 7:16 am

As the last U.S. combat troops prepare to leave Iraq, the question of whether neighboring Iran will try to fill any vacuum looms large.

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Around the Nation
7:05 am
Mon December 12, 2011

Mom To Newspaper: I'm Not Dead Yet

A Brookville, Pa., man missed work because he said his mother had died. Her obit was in the local paper. Relatives began calling the paper saying Scott Bennett's mother was very much alive.

Analysis
4:00 am
Mon December 12, 2011

Politics In the News

Originally published on Thu December 29, 2011 11:02 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And let's hear one more number. In a CBS/New York Times poll released on Friday, more than half the respondents, 54 percent, said that President Obama does not deserve to be re-elected.

The president appeared on CBS last night, telling "60 Minutes" why he thought he would win the job again, despite that number. And we're going to talk about that and more with NPR's Cokie Roberts, who joins us most Mondays.

Cokie, good morning.

COKIE ROBERTS, BYLINE: Hi, Steve.

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Environment
4:00 am
Mon December 12, 2011

Delegates To Durban Agree To Climate Treaty

Originally published on Mon December 12, 2011 8:59 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Let's report, next, on a surprise agreement on climate change. United Nations climate talks in South Africa were not expected to produce much, but negotiators for many nations did make a deal, one that could lead to a major new climate treaty at the end of the decade. NPR's Richard Harris is in Durban, South Africa covering the story. Hi, Richard.

RICHARD HARRIS, BYLINE: Hi, Steve.

INSKEEP: So what is the agreement?

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Around the Nation
4:00 am
Mon December 12, 2011

Sandusky Scandal Casts Pale On Central Pa. High School

Originally published on Mon December 12, 2011 8:59 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Let's come back to this country now, where we're expecting a court hearing today in the Jerry Sandusky child sexual abuse scandal - it comes tomorrow. Among those expected to testify is the man designated by the grand jury as Victim One. His story of alleged abuse prompted a major investigation and brought this case to light.

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Business
4:00 am
Mon December 12, 2011

The Last Word In Business

Steve Inskeep has the Last Word in business.

Games & Humor
4:00 am
Mon December 12, 2011

Beyblades: Hot New Toy Borrows Ancient Concept

This Christmas, the Beyblade is sure to be a popular stocking stuffer. What's a Beyblade — it is a sophisticated top. Hasbro has taken the simple concept and added all kinds of cool features.

Europe
4:00 am
Mon December 12, 2011

Russia Protest Update

Originally published on Mon December 12, 2011 8:59 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

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Politics
4:00 am
Mon December 12, 2011

Gingrich Lacks Extensive Iowa Ground Organization

Originally published on Mon December 12, 2011 8:59 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And as the president does that, the race for the Republican presidential nomination continues. Newt Gingrich and Mitt Romney are the leaders in the race for that nomination. They faced each other in a debate in Des Moines, Iowa Saturday night.

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Business
4:00 am
Mon December 12, 2011

Occupy Protesters To Try To Shut Down Ports

Originally published on Mon December 12, 2011 8:59 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with Occupy Wall Street and West Coast ports.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

INSKEEP: Occupy protesters in cities up and down the West Coast are attempting to paralyze some of the nation's busiest ports today. Organizers say they expect thousands of demonstrators to turn out for what they're calling Wall Street on the Waterfront.

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It's All Politics
3:02 am
Mon December 12, 2011

U.S. Troops Leaving Iraq This Year; Obama Could Benefit Next Year

On this April 7, 2009, visit to Iraq, President Obama greets U.S. troops at Camp Victory in Baghdad. On Dec. 2, 2011, the base was handed over to the Iraqi government. All U.S. soldiers are to be gone from Iraq by year's end.
Charles Dharapak Associated Press

Originally published on Tue December 13, 2011 10:25 am

The last American troops are coming home from Iraq this month, and President Obama is marking the occasion with a series of events to commemorate the conclusion of the war.

On Wednesday at Fort Bragg, N.C., he and the first lady will thank troops for their service.

This event is a decade in the making, with far-reaching implications including domestic political consequences.

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Asia
12:01 am
Mon December 12, 2011

Despite Growth, China Too Faces Debt Problems

Cui Jinmin oversees an abandoned strip of unfinished highway in western China's Shaanxi province. Cui says the government stopped paying his workers in April and they went home in July.
Frank Langfitt/NPR

Originally published on Mon December 12, 2011 8:32 pm

As the U.S. and Europe have struggled with debt, China has seemed to be largely immune. This fall, the European Union even asked China for financial help, but China has a debt problem of its own.

Over the past several years, local governments have run up at least $1.5 trillion in bank loans for infrastructure projects intended to prop up the nation's economic growth. Analysts think much of that money will never be repaid.

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Shots - Health Blog
12:01 am
Mon December 12, 2011

Road Rage: A Symptom Of Much More Than Bad Traffic?

Los Angeles is no stranger to traffic jams and road rage.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Mon December 12, 2011 5:20 pm

It's not unusual for awful traffic conditions or incompetent driving to make some people really angry behind the wheel. But when enraged drivers actually lash out at others on the road, that's road rage — and experts say it can be a sign of deeper emotional problems.

The term road rage was coined in Los Angeles – a city long known for its epic freeway jams. Mike Shen got a taste of how bad it can get shortly after moving to L,A., when a woman viciously tailgated him on the freeway.

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Business
12:01 am
Mon December 12, 2011

Unpaid Bills Land Some Debtors Behind Bars

Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan thinks more can be done to keep debtors out of jail. She says the state is investigating creditors that it thinks are abusing laws by incarcerating debtors.
Joshua Lott Getty Images

Although debtors' prisons are illegal across the country, it's becoming increasingly common for people to serve jail time as a result of their debt.

Collection agencies are resorting to some unusually harsh tactics to force people to pay their unpaid debt, some of whom aren't aware that lawsuits have been filed against them by creditors.

Take, for example, what happened to Robin Sanders in Illinois.

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Shots - Health Blog
12:01 am
Mon December 12, 2011

French Lessons: Why Letting Kids Drink At Home Isn't Tres Bien

Many European parents, and some American ones, too, have long figured if they let their kids drink alcohol at home, they'd be less likely to go hog wild with their friends. But recent studies of teen drinking behavior don't bear that out.

That's unwelcome news in places like France, where these scientific developments are running head long into a culture that loves its wine.

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Asia
12:01 am
Mon December 12, 2011

Absent President Ignites Rumors In Pakistan

Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari speaks in Sri Lanka on Nov. 29. The president has been treated at a hospital in Dubai since Dec. 6. Aides say he is recovering.
Ishara S. Kodikara AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon December 12, 2011 8:59 am

Pakistan is a country where rumors are always flowing. So when President Asif Ali Zardari was rushed to a hospital in the United Arab Emirates on Dec. 6, it set off all sorts of speculation.

His aides are doing their best to quell talk that he might step down. They say Zardari has been undergoing treatment and tests for a pre-existing heart ailment, and is recovering well in Dubai.

But that hasn't stopped politicians from considering what Pakistan's political landscape might look like without him.

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Still No Job: Over A Year Without Enough Work
12:01 am
Mon December 12, 2011

The State Of The Long-Term Unemployed

People wait to see a career adviser at a training center operated by the New York Department of Labor in New York City. NPR and the Kaiser Family Foundation conducted a survey on the emotional, physical and financial effects of being without work for a year or more. Nearly 70 percent of respondents would like the government to offer more job training opportunities.
Spencer Platt Getty Images

Originally published on Mon December 12, 2011 12:02 pm

Millions of Americans wake up each morning without a job, even though they desperately want to work. It's one of the depressing legacies of the financial crisis and Great Recession.

NPR and the Kaiser Family Foundation conducted a poll of people who had been unemployed or with an insufficient level of work for more than a year. The results document the financial, emotional and physical effects of long-term unemployment and underemployment.

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