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Supreme Court Weighs Legality Of Strip Searches

Oct 12, 2011

The United States Supreme Court wrestled on Wednesday with a case testing whether some 700,000 people arrested each year on minor charges can be subject to automatic strip searches when taken to jail. Specifically, the issue the justices grappled with was whether jail authorities need some reasonable suspicion to conduct that kind of a search.

Will Free Trade Agreements Really Create Jobs?

Oct 12, 2011

Congress approved with bipartisan support Wednesday much-delayed free trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama. The Obama administration and supporters in Congress have labeled these agreements jobs bills, though there are questions about how many jobs will really be created.

When Bill Lane, the Washington director for the heavy equipment maker Caterpillar, looks at the three trade deals, he sees opportunity.

U.S. Will Try To 'Put Iran In A Vice'

Oct 12, 2011

One day after the U.S. outlined an assassination plot allegedly linked to the Iranian military, a host of U.S. officials began making angry calls for tough action in response.

But what kind of action might that be? The U.S. has been imposing sanctions against Iran ever since U.S. diplomats were seized following the 1979 Islamic revolution. And analysts say they do not expect a U.S. military response.

Facing Planetary Enemy No. 1: Agriculture

Oct 12, 2011

For the past 200 years, ever since Thomas Malthus published his Essay on the Principle of Population, big thinkers have been wondering whether Earth-dwellers will eventually run out of food.

Today, a global group of scientists released a fresh look at the question. They add a different, environmental twist to it. Can we feed the world without destroying the environment?

At last night's GOP presidential debate in New Hampshire, Newt Gingrich condemned the government's latest effort to discourage men from routinely getting blood tests for prostate cancer by citing the views of Dr. Andrew von Eschenbach.

Gingrich stressed some of von Eschenbach's prestigious bona fides, including heading the National Cancer Institute and practicing at one of the country's major cancer centers.

The hits keep coming for Rupert Murdoch's News Corporation: While the company is still dealing with the consequences of its phone hacking scandal in the U.K., yesterday the publisher of The Wall Street Journal's European edition stepped down.

Today on All Things Considered, Alisha Niehaus of the Girl Scouts of the USA talks to host Guy Raz about a big update: For the first time in a quarter-century, they've completely overhauled the system of badges that Scouts can earn.

A budget battle between the city of Topeka, Kan. and Shawnee County has led to the repeal of the city's domestic violence law and freed about 30 people charged with abuse.

Here's how the Kansas City Star tells the story:

It started when Shawnee County District Attorney Chad Taylor announced that a 10 percent budget cut would force him to end his office's prosecution of misdemeanor cases, almost half of which last year were domestic battery cases.

Taiwan might be known to most Americans for its export economy, but it's also been importing musical styles — from avant garde jazz to hip-hop. I first learned about Taiwan's thriving music scene from Joshua Samuel Brown. He's a travel writer who authored the last two editions of Lonely Planet: Taiwan.

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Cook County Investigates Gacy Cold Cases

Oct 12, 2011

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Christmas Day Bomber Pleads Guilty

Oct 12, 2011

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National Book Awards Finalists Announced

Oct 12, 2011

Our colleagues at Oregon Public Broadcasting's Think Out Loud hosted today's announcement of the 20 finalists for this year's National Book Awards.

They report that the nominees are:

Decoded DNA Reveals Details Of Black Death Germ

Oct 12, 2011

Scientists have used DNA lurking inside the teeth of medieval Black Death victims to figure out the entire genetic code of the deadly bacterium that swept across Europe more than 600 years ago, killing an estimated half of the population.

The researchers didn't find any genetic feature that could explain why the plague was so virulent, according to a report just published in the journal Nature.

A tiny portion of a secret cable released last month by WikiLeaks is just now making its way to the United States. In the Sept. 2009 cable, U.S. Ambassador to Japan John Roos tells the Obama administration that Japan doesn't think it's a good idea for President Obama to visit Hiroshima or to apologize for using an atomic bomb on two Japanese cities during World War II.

The contents of the cable were reported back in September by The Japan Times and ABC News picked it up, today.

Before Politics, Huntsman Aspired To Rock Star Fame

Oct 12, 2011

Third in a series

GOP presidential hopeful Jon Huntsman says he is the most qualified Republican in the White House race, thanks to his background as governor of Utah, a corporate executive, and U.S. ambassador to China. But if Huntsman had lived out his youthful ambition, he would have been none of those things.

"My initial passion in life was to be a rock 'n' roll musician," Huntsman told graduates at the University of South Carolina in May.

The alleged plot by two Iranians to kill Saudi Arabia's ambassador to the United States, which U.S. investigators say had the support of some "factions" within Iran's government, marks a "dangerous escalation" in that nation's support for terrorism, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said this morning.

For a long time, the Irish economy airline Ryanair has been the leader in slashing costs. It's also been known as the airline that made the current nickle-and-dime model of charging for food and carry-on luggage popular.

At one point last year, Ryanair briefly considered charging passengers to use the toilet. Now, Ryanair chief Michael O'Leary has put another cost-saving plan on the table: Removing two of the three on-board lavatories to make room for more seats.

After a 4-3 vote by the Harrisburg, Pa., city council Tuesday night to file for Chapter 9 municipal bankruptcy protection, a council member delivered the necessary documents to court today.

But now, The Associated Press reports, Harrisburg Mayor Linda Thompson (D) is making the case that the council doesn't have the authority to seek bankruptcy.

A Picture Of Poaching: Baby Gorilla Rescued

Oct 12, 2011

The folks at Virunga National Park, in the Democratic Republic of Congo, alerted news media this week about a baby gorilla rescued from the clutches of poachers. You can tell a lot about little Shamavu's recent ordeal from this photo. With less than 900 mountain gorillas remaining on Earth, according to Virunga National Park, one gorilla saved is an accomplishment.

Family Lost In Corn Maze Dials 911 For Help

Oct 12, 2011

Maybe they'd recently read or watched Children of the Corn:

Frank Kameny sued the government in 1957 for firing him as a government astronomer because he was gay. His case is believed to be the first civil rights claim based on sexual orientation that reached the U.S. Supreme Court. Kameny then became a vocal gay rights advocate. He died Tuesday at age 86. Michel Martin looks at his legacy.

Debunking Black Marriage Myths

Oct 12, 2011

A recent article in Empower magazine says that media and popular opinion are too pessimistic when analyzing the success of black couples. Ivory Toldson, a senior research analyst for the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, says he crunched the numbers and found fallacies in the negative stereotypes associated with black courtship and marriage. He speaks with Michel Martin.

Helping Marriages Go The Distance

Oct 12, 2011

The new book, 'I Do ... Every Day: Words of Wisdom for Newlyweds, and Not So Newlyweds' offers common sense advice and surprising tips for maintaining healthy marriages. Journalist Cynthia Bond Hopson and Reverend Roger Hopson write from experience — they've been happily married for 35 years, with two children and four grandchildren. They speak with host Michel Martin about their book, marriage and advice for couples.

GOP presidential hopefuls focused on the U.S. economy in their debate Tuesday. The same day, President Obama's $447 billion jobs plan failed to advance in the Senate as Democrats did not produce the 60 votes needed to allow debate on the bill. And as the Occupy Wall Street movement continues, a group called Occupy the Hood is emerging in Detroit to get more blacks and Latinos to join the Occupy protests. Michel Martin talks with Washington Post Political Reporter Perry Bacon Jr. and WDET News Director Jerome Vaughn.

Tell Me More's celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month and the music of Latin America wraps up this week. The hosts of NPR's Alt. Latino podcast, Jasmine Garsd and Felix Contreras, talk about the unusual mix of electronica and folk. They listen to these blended tracks and styles from Colombia and Argentina.

The Indian government recently launched the world's cheapest tablet computer, which will be sold to students at a subsidized price. Michel Martin speaks with Columbia University Digital Media Professor Sree Sreenivasan about whether the world's largest democracy — with more than half its population living below the poverty line — can bridge the digital divide.

Financial Conflicts 'Pervasive' On Key Medical Panels

Oct 12, 2011

Like it or not, there's a seeming inexorable movement in medicine toward guidelines to help the average doctor deliver care that's in line with the latest evidence.

Somebody has to come up with those guidelines. Somebodies, actually, and they usually are experts who sit on panels charged with the task of boiling down the evidence.

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