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Shots - Health Blog
12:52 pm
Wed November 2, 2011

Study: Regular Drinking Appears To Boost Breast Cancer Risk

A woman at a wine tasting in Napa Valley, Calif., in 2005.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Women who raise a glass just a few times a week appear to have a higher risk of getting breast cancer than those who are teetotalers.

A study that looked at the drinking habits and development of breast cancer in more than 100,000 nurses found those who drank more had a small but detectable increase in breast cancer compared with those who drank less.

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The Two-Way
12:39 pm
Wed November 2, 2011

Federal Reserve Holds Off On Any New Economic Policy

Originally published on Wed November 2, 2011 2:39 pm

Citing stronger economic growth, the Federal Reserve announced it is not making any changes to its monetary policy.

As the AP reported earlier, economists were expecting this wait-and-see approach because they figured the Fed would want time to assess whether its policy from August and September was spurring growth.

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It's All Politics
12:15 pm
Wed November 2, 2011

New Hampshire Chooses Jan. 10 As Primary Date

The schedule for the first four Republican presidential caucuses and primaries appeared officially set Wednesday with New Hampshire announcing that it would hold its first-in-the-nation primary on Jan. 10.

That would come exactly seven days after the Iowa caucuses, which were moved to Jan. 3, the first Tuesday of the new year, and which will kick off the process by which Republicans will choose their party's nominee to contest President Obama for the White House.

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The Salt
11:30 am
Wed November 2, 2011

How Fear Drove World Rice Markets Insane

Nothing is more basic and simple than food. Yet it comes to us courtesy of a long, complicated supply chain that spans the globe.

That chain delivers food cheaply — but it can break. Four years ago, it blew up in most spectacular fashion, affecting hundreds of millions of people who rely on rice for sustenance. That crash — the great rice crisis of 2008 — was a true disaster for some of the poorest people in Asia and West Africa.

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The Two-Way
11:07 am
Wed November 2, 2011

Pakistan Gives India 'Most Favored Nation' Trade Status

Indian Border Security Force soldiers (in khakhi) and Pakistani Rangers (in black) perform the daily retreat ceremony at the India-Pakistan border in Wagah. It's hoped that freer trade will reduce tensions between their two nations.
Narinder Nanu AFP/Getty Images

The news today that Pakistan's cabinet has moved to normalize trade with India — giving its neighbor "Most Favored Nation" status — is being viewed as a positive first step toward the possible normalization of diplomatic relations between the two nuclear rivals.

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Politics
11:00 am
Wed November 2, 2011

In Voter ID Debate, A Few Go Against Party Lines

Former Democratic Rep. Artur Davis of Alabama is in favor of voter ID laws. He says that over the years there have been numerous allegations of absentee voter fraud — and even a handful of convictions — in Alabama.
Dave Martin AP

Originally published on Wed November 2, 2011 6:42 pm

The debate over requiring voters to show photo ID at the polls has been a heated one. Democrats accuse Republicans, who support such laws, of wanting to suppress the votes of minorities, the elderly and the poor. Republicans accuse Democrats, who oppose ID rules, of condoning voter fraud.

It's a sharp partisan divide. But a few people have gone against the tide — and they're getting some political heat for doing so.

A Democrat Criticized For Fraud Concerns

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The Two-Way
10:45 am
Wed November 2, 2011

Audie Cornish Will Fill In For Michele Norris On 'All Things Considered'

Audie Cornish
Steve Barrett NPR

Originally published on Wed November 2, 2011 10:46 am

Weekend Edition Sunday host Audie Cornish will be filling in for Michele Norris on All Things Considered for a year, starting in January, NPR just announced.

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The Two-Way
8:35 am
Wed November 2, 2011

French Newspaper Firebombed After Satire Involving Prophet Muhammad

Charlie Hebdo's publisher, known only as Charb, talked to journalists today (Nov. 2, 2011) in front of his publication's burned-out offices.

Alexander Klein AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed November 2, 2011 8:36 am

The Paris offices of a French newsweekly that in its latest issue "invited" the Prophet Muhammad to be a guest editor and satirically wrote of what a "soft version" of Sharia law might be like, were burned early today.

According to The Associated Press:

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The Two-Way
7:45 am
Wed November 2, 2011

Lawyer: One Of Cain's Accusers Wants Her Story Told

Republican presidential contender Herman Cain on Monday (Oct. 31, 2011) in Washington, D.C.

Karen Bleier AFP/Getty Images

The lawyer for one of two women who in the late 1990s accused Republican presidential contender Herman Cain of sexual harassment wants her side of the story to come out because she believes Cain has not been telling the truth about what happened, a lawyer who represents her said Tuesday on CNN's Anderson Cooper 360.

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The Two-Way
7:19 am
Wed November 2, 2011

WikiLeaks' Julian Assange Loses Extradition Appeal

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange as he arrived at London's High Court this morning (Nov. 2, 2011).

Leon Neal AFP/Getty Images

British judges ruled this morning that WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange can be extradited from the U.K. to Sweden, where authorities want to question him about allegations from two women that he sexually assaulted them in August 2010.

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Strange News
7:15 am
Wed November 2, 2011

Police Say Railroad Robbers Got Away With Pork

Police are on the hunt for the bandits who robbed a Union Pacific Railroad car after it made an emergency stop in Victorville, Calif. They made off with 20 boxes. Police told the Victorville Daily Press that the robbers couldn't have known what was in the car; they made off with $200 worth of pigs feet.

Strange News
7:07 am
Wed November 2, 2011

NBA's Kevin Durant Plays Flag Football At Okla. State

The pro basketball season still hasn't started, but Kevin Durant got a workout. The Oklahoma City star drove across the state to a flag football game. On Twitter the other night, he wrote, "This lockout is really boring. Anybody playing flag football?" An Oklahoma State student invited Durant to join a game his team had planned.

7 Billion And Counting
5:15 am
Wed November 2, 2011

Asian, European Nations Fret Over Birthrate Swoon

A South Korean man takes a photo of his baby during a picnic in Seoul, in 2009. After years of promoting family planning, South Korea is seeing unprecedented numbers of women staying single into their 30s — up from a handful a generation ago to 40 percent.
Jung Yeon-Je AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed November 2, 2011 2:40 pm

Right now, many people are nervous about the challenges presented by a global population that has reached 7 billion and is still rising. But for a lot of countries, a lack of babies is the bigger worry.

The so-called birth dearth is starting to cause problems across much of Europe and a substantial portion of Asia. With fewer children born, populations in many countries are aging rapidly. Soon, they may also be shrinking.

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Middle East
5:03 am
Wed November 2, 2011

With Protests, Syrians Are Learning Politics

Anti-government protesters march in the village of Amouda, Syria on Sept. 30. For many Syrians, the protests mark the first time they have taken part in anything resembling politics.

Shaam News Network AP

Originally published on Wed November 2, 2011 8:38 am

Government opponents in Syria have not been able to dislodge President Bashar Assad, but they are doing something the country has rarely if ever seen: they are organizing by themselves, outside of government control.

The massive street protests, demanding the end of Assad's regime, have defined the revolt over the past eight months.

But other things are happening as well, far from public view. In one quiet office in Damascus, Ashraf Hamza, 28, is leading a group of men at a session on community organizing.

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National Security
4:59 am
Wed November 2, 2011

Stuxnet Raises 'Blowback' Risk In Cyberwar

Instructor Mark Fabro leads an exercise at the Department of Homeland Security's cyberdefense facility at the Idaho National Laboratory in September. Training at the lab is intended to help protect the nation's power, water and chemical plants, electrical grid and other facilities from computer viruses such as Stuxnet.
Mark J. Terrill AP

Originally published on Fri November 4, 2011 7:53 pm

The Stuxnet computer worm, arguably the first and only cybersuperweapon ever deployed, continues to rattle security experts around the world, one year after its existence was made public.

Apparently meant to damage centrifuges at a uranium enrichment facility in Iran, Stuxnet now illustrates the potential complexities and dangers of cyberwar.

Secretly launched in 2009 and uncovered in 2010, it was designed to destroy its target much as a bomb would. Based on the cyberworm's sophistication, the expert consensus is that some government created it.

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Around the Nation
4:54 am
Wed November 2, 2011

In Wis., Focus Shifts From Union Law To Governor

A sign that reads "recall" hangs on a statue in front of the Wisconsin state Capitol last month in Madison. Labor groups are making an effort to recall Gov. Scott Walker for his controversial union rights law.

Justin Sullivan Getty Images

A Wisconsin law on union bargaining rights signed by Gov. Scott Walker shows no signs of disappearing.

In February and March, there was a shocking, sometimes strange sight at the Wisconsin capitol: By day, protesters marched shoulder-to-shoulder. By night, they lived in the capitol, sleeping on the building's marble floors.

It began after Walker, a Republican, broke 50 years of Wisconsin precedent, announcing he would not bargain with public employee unions. He said the state was broke and he had nothing to negotiate with. The rest is the stuff of political folklore.

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Law
4:52 am
Wed November 2, 2011

Court To Decide If Texas Voting Maps Discriminate

A sign in Spanish and English tells residents of El Paso, Texas, where to vote.

Joe Raedle Getty Images

Originally published on Wed November 2, 2011 2:56 pm

Lawyers for President Obama's Justice Department and Texas Gov. Rick Perry will be squaring off in federal court in Washington on Wednesday.

The state has sued the federal government to try to win court approval for its new legislative maps. There are big stakes: Texas stands to gain four new seats in the U.S. House of Representatives. But minorities in Texas, with a boost from the Justice Department, say the new boundaries amount to a step backward for Latino voting power.

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Election 2012
4:51 am
Wed November 2, 2011

Nonprofit Seeks To Be New Political Force

If you want to know just how unhappy Americans are with their two-party government, a group called Americans Elect is ready to tell you.

The nonprofit group has scheduled a press conference in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday in a bid to show the Democratic and Republican establishments that voters want a third choice in presidential candidates.

It's a choice Americans Elect hopes to provide. This might sound like a third political party taking the field, but the group says that's not what it is.

'A New Force'

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Law
4:50 am
Wed November 2, 2011

Miss. Set To Vote On Measure Making Fetus A Person

An anti-abortion activist holds a sign at the annual March for Life event in Washington, D.C. Mississippi's statehood amendment would ban abortion with no exceptions for rape or incest.

Alex Wong Getty Images

Next week Mississippi voters will decide whether to pass a constitutional amendment that redefines a person. Under the proposal, fertilized human eggs would be considered human beings, which would ban all abortions in the state. But abortion-rights activists say it would also limit contraception and threaten fertility treatments.

Les Riley has worked on the initiative for years, gathering signatures to get it on the ballot. Now, in northwest Mississippi, he's talking to voters and assembling yard signs that urge the passage of Amendment 26.

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7 Billion And Counting
4:50 am
Wed November 2, 2011

In Karachi, New Aspirations To Be A Global Player

The population of Karachi, Pakistan, has been boosted by a new influx of young people. And now the city, seen here during a political rally in January, is making a bid to attract global elites.

Rizwan Tabassum AFP/Getty Images

This week, we're asking what it really means to live in a world with 7 billion people. For some answers, we visit Karachi, Pakistan.

The grandest expression of the world's population growth is in the word "megacity." Dozens of these cities of more than 10 million now ring the globe, like a string of oversized pearls. In a megacity, people and ideas clash: The ancient collides with the modern; secular with religious; global with local. In Karachi, Pakistan, those forces can be seen in the story of a single piece of real estate.

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Politics
4:00 am
Wed November 2, 2011

Head Of Ariz. Redistricting Commission Fired

Originally published on Wed November 2, 2011 2:52 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Arizona is one of a handful of states that hands the redistricting to an independent commission, instead of its legislature. At least that's what's supposed to happen. In a stunning move last night, though, the Arizona Senate and its governor ousted the head of the state's independent commission.

NPR's Ted Robbins joins us from our bureau in Tucson to explain. Good morning, Ted.

TED ROBBINS, BYLINE: Good morning, Renee.

MONTAGNE: What exactly happened?

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Sports
4:00 am
Wed November 2, 2011

Deal To Sell Dodgers Sparks Celebration

Embattled Los Angeles Dodgers owner Frank McCourt and Major League Baseball reached an agreement late Tuesday to sell the storied franchise. Roger Arrieta of Los Angeles, who started a website calling on billionaire Mark Cuban to "Save the Dodgers," plans a rally at the stadium to celebrate the sale.

Asia
3:56 am
Wed November 2, 2011

At IKEA In Shanghai, Do-It-Yourself Matchmaking

An elderly Chinese man and woman chat at a park in Shanghai. Hundreds of elderly Shanghai residents make their way to IKEA twice a week for an informal lonely hearts club.
Mark Ralston AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed November 2, 2011 8:23 pm

If you're retired, single and looking for love in Shanghai, try IKEA.

Twice a week, hundreds of Shanghai residents who have formed an informal lonely hearts club of sorts gather at the cafeteria of the Swedish furniture megastore for free coffee and conversation.

The pensioners begin arriving around 1 in the afternoon and fill nearly 20 tables in the store cafeteria. They sit for hours drinking coffee, gossiping and subtly checking each other out.

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