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Movie Reviews
6:06 pm
Sat May 18, 2013

New 'Trek' Goes 'Into Darkness,' But Not Much Deeper

Zachary Quinto as Spock, with Chris Pine as Kirk, in Star Trek: Into Darkness.
Zade Rosenthal Courtesy Paramount Pictures

Originally published on Sat May 18, 2013 7:47 pm

The opening sequence of J.J. Abram's new entry in the Star Trek universe has all the ingredients of the classic franchise.

There's Kirk and his crew bellowing on the bridge, everyone worrying about the prime directive and our favorite Vulcan trapped in a volcano.

OK, I'm in. I may not be a fanboy anymore, but I sure was in my youth, and having these guys in their youths again is just as cool at the outset as it was last time.

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Mental Health
5:27 pm
Sat May 18, 2013

Alzheimer's Cases Rise, But Hope Remains

Amy Goyer moved back to Phoenix to look after her father, Robert, when he began to show signs of Alzheimer's. He is just one of 5 million Americans living with the disease.
Sarah Brodzinski

Originally published on Sat May 18, 2013 7:47 pm

More than 5 million Americans are currently living with Alzheimer's disease, and the National Institute on Aging estimates that that number is going to triple by 2050 — in part due to aging baby boomers.

The cost of coping with the disease — currently estimated at $215 billion — is projected to rise to half a trillion dollars by 2050. That amount will likely tax our overburdened health care system, the economy and the families of those affected.

Amy Goyer realized her 84-year-old father Robert's health was deteriorating one night while watching a movie with him.

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The Two-Way
5:09 pm
Sat May 18, 2013

Prominent Pakistani Politician Shot, Killed On Re-Election Eve

Originally published on Sun May 19, 2013 3:25 am

On the eve of a re-vote, a prominent Pakistani politician was shot and killed on Saturday.

Pakistan's Dawn newspaper reports that Zahra Shahid Hussain, who was the senior vice president of Pakistan's Movement for Justice (PTI), was shot in the head during "an attempted robbery incident."

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Around the Nation
4:42 pm
Sat May 18, 2013

Impossible Choice Faces America's First 'Climate Refugees'

The 350 residents of Newtok, Alaska, will soon be the country's first "climate refugees." The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers says the village is likely to be underwater in just four years.
Richard Sprenger The Guardian

Originally published on Sun May 19, 2013 5:59 am

Climate change is a stark reality in America's northernmost state. Nearly 90 percent of native Alaskan villages are on the coast, where dramatic erosion and floods have become a part of daily life.

Perched on the Ninglick River on the west coast of the state, the tiny town of Newtok may be the state's most vulnerable village. About 350 people live there, nearly all of them Yupik Eskimos. But the Ninglick is rapidly rising due to ice melt, and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers says the highest point in the town — a school — could be underwater by 2017.

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Business
4:41 pm
Sat May 18, 2013

Internships: Low-Paid, Unpaid Or Just Plain Illegal?

Students fill out applications during a job fair at the University of Illinois Springfield in February. Fed up with working for free, some interns are suing their employers.
Seth Perlman AP

Originally published on Sat May 18, 2013 7:47 pm

Summer is almost here, and with it comes the army of interns marching into countless American workplaces. Yet what was once an opportunity for the inexperienced is becoming a front-line labor issue.

More and more, unpaid and low-paid interns are feeling their labor is being exploited. Some are even willing to push back — with lawsuits.

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Author Interviews
4:41 pm
Sat May 18, 2013

'Waiting To Be Heard' No More, Amanda Knox Speaks Out

Amanda Knox enters an Italian court on Oct. 3, 2011, just before being acquitted of murdering her British roommate, Meredith Kercher.
Oli Scarff AP

Originally published on Sat May 18, 2013 7:47 pm

When 20-year-old Amanda Knox left for Italy in August 2007, it was supposed to be a carefree year studying abroad.

No one could have foreseen it ending in her being accused, tried and convicted in the murder of her roommate, Meredith Kercher.

The case, and Knox, became an international media sensation.

"I think that there was a lot of fantasy projected onto me," she tells weekends on All Things Considered host Jacki Lyden. "And that resulted in a re-appropriation and re-characterization of who I am."

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From Our Listeners
4:41 pm
Sat May 18, 2013

Three-Minute Fiction Reading: 'Plum Baby'

 

Originally published on Sat May 18, 2013 7:47 pm

NPR's Susan Stamberg reads an excerpt of one of the best submissions for Round 11 of our short story contest. She reads Plum Baby by Carmiel Banasky of Portland, Ore. You can read the full story below and find other stories on our Three-Minute Fiction page or on Facebook.

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Parallels
4:20 pm
Sat May 18, 2013

Spaniard's Song Brings YouTube Fame ... And Maybe A Job

Enzo Vizcaíno, a 24-year-old unemployed Spaniard, isn't singing for his supper. He just wants a job.
mrenzovic/youtube.com

In his grainy homemade video, Enzo Vizcaíno looks like a busker, strumming away on his ukulele and singing as he roams a Barcelona metro car.

But the lyrics of this song are a bit unusual.

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The Two-Way
3:22 pm
Sat May 18, 2013

Bashar Assad: A Political Solution In Syria Is 'Unreal'

Syrian President Bashar Assad made it clear in an interview with the Argentine newspaper El Clarin that he was not resigning.
Louai Beshara AFP/Getty Images

Syrian President Bashar Assad essentially dismissed attempts by the United States and Russia to bring the civil war in the country to a political solution.

"Believing that a political conference will stop terrorism on the ground is unreal," Assad said in an exclusive interview with the Argentine newspaper El Clarin. Assad also took the usual stance on a wide range of issues.

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The Two-Way
12:58 pm
Sat May 18, 2013

Afghan Parliament Halts Debate On Women's Rights Bill

A boy holds the burqa of his mother as they walk down a street in the old city of Kabul on November 1, 2009.
Nicolas Asfouri AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sat May 18, 2013 10:58 pm

After protests from some MPs and after only about 15 minutes, the Afghan parliament halted debate Saturday on a bill aimed at curbing violence against women.

As the BBC reports, the bill would have solidified a law passed by presidential decree in 2009, which banned "violence against women, child marriages and forced marriages."

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Music News
12:03 pm
Sat May 18, 2013

Draco Rosa: A Pop Survivor Returns From The Brink, With Friends

Former bandmates Draco Rosa and Ricky Martin, seen here on stage at Univision's 2013 Premio Lo Nuestro awards celebration, reunite on Rosa's new album, Vida.
John Parra Getty Images

Originally published on Sat May 18, 2013 7:47 pm

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The Two-Way
10:43 am
Sat May 18, 2013

WATCH: NASA Spots Brightest Lunar Explosion Ever Recorded

NASA's lunar monitoring program has detected hundreds of meteoroid impacts. The brightest, detected on March 17, 2013, in Mare Imbrium, is marked by the red square.
NASA

NASA scientists say they witnessed an extremely bright lunar explosion this past March. In fact, it is the biggest explosion they've seen since they started keeping track of such events in 2005.

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The Two-Way
9:31 am
Sat May 18, 2013

Russian Official Names CIA Station Chief In Moscow

In Moscow's Red Square, people still line up to visit Lenin's tomb. Though the Cold War is over, Russia and the U.S. keep watchful eyes on each other. Tuesday, Russian officials claimed to have uncovered a CIA spy.
Sergei Ilnitsky EPA /Landov

Breaching protocol, a Russian official let a name slip during an interview with Interfax, the state news agency.

The interview was with a representative of the FSB, the Russian security agency, and the name he made public was of the person Russia believes is the CIA station chief in Moscow.

The Guardian explains:

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Shots - Health News
8:38 am
Sat May 18, 2013

The Unsafe Sex: Should The World Invest More In Men's Health?

A man smokes a cigarette as he takes a break at a fruit market in Hyderabad, India. Smoking tobacco is eight times more prevalent among Indian men than women.
Noah Seelam AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon May 20, 2013 5:20 pm

On average, men aren't as healthy as women.

Men don't live as long, and they're more likely to engage in risky behaviors, like smoking and drinking.

But in the past decade, global health funding has focused heavily on women.

Programs and policies for men have been "notably absent," says Sarah Hawkes from the University of London's Institute of Global Health.

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Media
8:03 am
Sat May 18, 2013

Local Story Shows 'Plain Dealer' Prowess, But Future's Murky

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

The Cleveland story. The escape of three women who were kidnapped and held captive for 10 years has attracted notice around the world. Of course, it's also an all-consuming local story. And the Cleveland Plain Dealer provided continuous coverage along with in-depth profiles of the three women, the neighborhood where they were held captive, and the man who allegedly kidnapped them.

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The Two-Way
7:33 am
Sat May 18, 2013

North Korea Fires Three Short-Range Missiles, Says The South

Originally published on Sat May 18, 2013 2:04 pm

After a relatively calm few weeks, North Korea fired three short-range missiles Saturday, a South Korean Defense Ministry spokesman said.

NPR's Louisa Lim reports that North Korea fired the missiles in defiance of international sanctions. She filed this report for our Newscast unit:

"North Korea launched two guided missiles this morning and a third in the afternoon, according to South Korea's defense ministry — all landed in waters off the eastern coast of the Korean peninsula."

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Music
7:23 am
Sat May 18, 2013

After Health Issues, Influential Conductor Back At Met Opera

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

This weekend at Carnegie Hall, a giant returns to the podium. James Levine will lead the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra for the first time in two years after a string of health challenges from shoulder injuries to spinal problems. He's considered by at least one critic to be the most influential American conductor since Leonard Bernstein. That critic is Anthony Tommasini, lead classical musical critic for the New York Times.

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U.S.
7:23 am
Sat May 18, 2013

Prime Challenge Sends Mathematicians On Infinite Search

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

A University of New Hampshire professor announced this week he's come close to solving a centuries-old problem proving something called the twin prime conjecture. We asked our math guy - Keith Devlin, of Stanford University - to join us, as he does now from their studios. Keith, thanks very much for being with us.

KEITH DEVLIN: Thanks, Scott. Nice to be with you again.

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Author Interviews
7:23 am
Sat May 18, 2013

Dan Brown: 'Inferno' Is 'The Book That I Would Want To Read'

Robert Langdon is back. The Harvard art professor in custom tweeds — and an ever-present Mickey Mouse watch — wakes up in a hospital after getting grazed in the head by a bullet, wondering how he ended up in Florence. He's got a sinister artifact sewn into his coat and just a few hours to keep the world from a grim biological catastrophe.

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Environment
5:18 am
Sat May 18, 2013

Not Your Grandpa's RV: This Roving Lab Tracks Air Pollution

Ira Leifer, next to an RV he has outfitted with methane sensors and other equipment to sniff the air.
Richard Harris NPR

Originally published on Sat May 18, 2013 1:45 pm

If you're driving down the road someday and you come across a camper with a 50-foot periscope sticking up into the sky, you just might have crossed paths with Ira Leifer. His quirky vehicle is on a serious mission. It's sniffing the air for methane, a gas that contributes to global warming.

Leifer is an atmospheric scientist at the University of California, Santa Barbara. But you'll more often find him off campus, in a garage, next to a string of auto body shops near the airport.

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Law
5:17 am
Sat May 18, 2013

Turning Up The Heat On Civil Rights-Era Cold Cases

Originally published on Sat May 18, 2013 2:26 pm

Six years ago, the FBI took on a challenge: To review what it called cold-case killings from the civil rights era. The investigation into 112 cases from the 1950s and 1960s is winding down, and civil rights activists are weighing the FBI's efforts.

The review comes with word this week of the death of a man who'd been named, by a newspaper investigation, as a possible suspect in one notorious case.

The Case

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It's All Politics
5:13 am
Sat May 18, 2013

Immigration Bill Chugs Along, But Some See Deal-Breakers

The Senate Judiciary Committee meets to work on immigration legislation on May 9.
Michael Reynolds EPA/Landov

Originally published on Sat May 18, 2013 7:23 am

It's been a long slog already for the bipartisan immigration overhaul proposed by the Senate's Gang of Eight.

The legislation has been the target of more than 300 amendments during days of debate and votes by the Senate Judiciary Committee. But while the bill has largely held its own so far, its prospects for getting through Congress remain uncertain.

In Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy's view, the immigration overhaul is "moving very well."

"It's moving a lot faster than people said it would," says Leahy, a Vermont Democrat.

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Parallels
5:13 am
Sat May 18, 2013

Afghan Mineral Treasures Stay Buried, Hostages To Uncertainty

An Afghan worker helps excavate part of the mountaintop copper works above the ancient city at Mes Aynak in February. Afghanistan is believed to be sitting on massive mineral and metal deposits. But many obstacles have prevented large-scale mining from getting underway.
Matthew C. Rains MCT/Landov

Originally published on Sat May 18, 2013 7:23 am

For years, reports have suggested that Afghanistan is sitting on massive deposits of copper, gold, iron and rare earth minerals valued up to $3 trillion. This provides hope for a future economy that would not have to rely so heavily on foreign donations.

But with an uncertain political, regulatory and security environment, international investors are hesitant. And it could be many years before Afghanistan begins extracting its mineral wealth.

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U.S.
5:13 am
Sat May 18, 2013

When Alcohol Takes The Wheel: What's Your Limit?

Originally published on Sat May 18, 2013 7:23 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

You can legally drink and drive in the United States, but there's a limit. In every state, drivers can't get behind the wheel if their blood alcohol content is .08 or higher, but the National Transportation Safety Board wants the states to lower the legal limit to .05 or even lower. Now, that would bring the United States into agreement with much of the rest of the world.

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Sports
5:13 am
Sat May 18, 2013

Sports: Playoffs, Hard Hits, Soccer Kicks

Originally published on Sat May 18, 2013 7:23 am

Host Scott Simon talks to ESPN's Howard Bryant about the NBA playoffs, Washington Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper's collision with a wall, and David Beckham's retirement from soccer.

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