NPR News

London has a unique vigil for its forgotten dead

Nov 21, 2017

A few minutes from Shakespeare's Globe Theatre, a unique ceremony takes place every month. The Crossbones Vigil follows no particular religion and commemorates no powerful or famous people.

And that's what makes it so special. The vigil is for London's outcasts.

During a recent vigil, the road is closed to traffic soon after rush hour, while a few dozen people begin to gather. Maggie has come to remember her son. "He was 26 years of age, and he got shot and killed in the Netherlands," she says. She needs Crossbones at this time.

About 60,000 Haitians here in the U.S. are trying to figure out what's next for them. The Trump administration has decided not to renew what's known as Temporary Protected Status for this group. Under TPS, the government allows people already here — because of war, strife or natural disasters in their home country — to stay and work legally. Citizens of 10 countries currently have that status. The Trump administration’s decision to not extend the humanitarian program for Haiti makes it the second country this month to get a heads up that their citizens' time here is running out.

When you're facing a major life change, it helps to talk to someone who has already been through it. All Things Considered is connecting people on either side of a shared experience, and they're letting us eavesdrop on their conversations in our series Been There.

At 70 years old, Camille Miller was not excited about leaving her home. For 35 years, it had been her refuge.

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Several countries are helping with the search for a missing Argentine submarine. But concerns about the fate of the crew are growing. Officials worry the vessel's oxygen supply is running short. NPR's Philip Reeves has more.

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News reports about jellyfish often have an ominous flavor.

(SOUNDBITE OF DOCUMENTARY, "RISE OF THE JELLYFISH")

Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai said today he's going to ask the commission, which is split along party lines in favor the GOP, to get rid of Obama-era rules around net neutrality and adopt a more free-market approach. The move comes at a confusing time for telecommunications policy in this country, and we'll talk about it. Then: About 60,000 Haitians living in the United States are trying to figure out what's next. The Trump administration said it's not going to renew protections that let people driven out of their homes from disaster or war live and work legally here.

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Thanksgiving dinner is cheaper this year — but you might not be feeling it.

The American Farm Bureau Federation pegs the average cost of a Thanksgiving feast at $49.12, a five-year low. The Federation has been doing price surveys on the same list of groceries for 32 years now, tracking the average cost of a modest, traditional meal for 10.

Here's the full shopping list, along with this year's average prices:

Want to see Santa? You better have an appointment

Nov 21, 2017

NEW YORK (AP) — Santa Claus may be coming to town, but you’ll need a reservation to see him.

At Macy’s flagship store on 34th Street in New York, a chance to sit on Saint Nick’s lap is by appointment only this year, for the first time ever.

Starting Monday, eager families can go online to sign up for a time slot from 30 minutes to five days in advance. Admission is free to Santaland Herald Square and runs from the day after Thanksgiving through Christmas Eve.

42: Breaking bread without conflict

Nov 21, 2017

Retired cognitive science and linguistics professor George Lakoff appeared in a previous episode, explaining how your brain reacts to political rhetoric. He's back this week with tips on how to break through to family members this holiday, even if you don't share the same worldview. 

(Markets Edition) Just shortly into the trading day, stocks were up. What's guiding this positive market sentiment? The GOP's proposed tax overhaul. David Kelley from JP Morgan Funds stopped by to discuss whether reform will actually happen. Afterwards, we'll look at how holiday jobs are changing to keep up with online demand, and then we'll talk about the Justice Department's decision to sue AT&T over its planned merger with Time Warner.

Could tax reform lead to millionaire tax flight?

Nov 21, 2017

President Donald Trump promised Americans a “big, beautiful Christmas present in the form of a tremendous tax cut” this year. While the details of the tax reform have yet to be hammered out by the U.S. Congress, some state and local officials are worried that instead of a present the federal government will be delivering them a lump of coal.

Updated at 12:13 p.m. ET

Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe has resigned from office, according to the speaker of the country's parliament. Midway through proceedings to impeach the president Tuesday, Speaker Jacob Mudenda read what he said was Mugabe's letter of resignation as the body of lawmakers erupted in jubilant applause.

FCC chairman sets out to repeal ‘net neutrality’ rules

Nov 21, 2017

WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai on Tuesday followed through on his pledge to repeal 2015 regulations designed to ensure that internet service providers treat all online content and apps equally, setting up a showdown with consumer groups and internet companies who fear the move will stifle competition and innovation.

The current rules, known as net neutrality, impose utility-style regulation on ISPs such as Comcast, AT&T and Verizon to prevent them from favoring their own digital services over those of their rivals.

FCC targets net neutrality

Nov 21, 2017

The next target of the Trump administration's regulatory rollback appears to be net neutrality. The Obama-era rule that says all internet traffic has to be treated equally. The Federal Communications Commission is expected to release a new net neutrality rule this week reversing that decision.

Here's how net neutrality works. Think of the web as a highway.  Internet service providers like Comcast and Verizon are the on ramps.  Content providers like Netflix are the cars. All going at the same speed.

Holiday jobs changing to keep up with online demand

Nov 21, 2017

Some of the country’s major retail chains are in trouble this holiday season, closing stores and losing evermore sales to online shopping sites. And yet, hiring of temporary seasonal retail workers is predicted to be about on par with 2016, according to a report by outplacement firm Challenger Gray & Christmas.

(U.S. Edition) The Trump administration is now set to roll back network neutrality, which says all internet traffic has to be treated equally. We'll explain how all of this would work. Think of the web as a highway, and content providers like Netflix as the cars who now may have to pay extra for high-speed lanes. Next, we'll discuss the European Union's decision to choose new cities to host two European agencies that had been based in London.

Earnings are out this today for the Campbell Soup Company, and investors are likely to hear more about the company’s move toward plant-based foods. Not only has the company been buying up specialty companies like juice maker Bolthouse Farms, but last month Campbell’s joined a new trade group, the Plant Based Foods Association. What's behind these moves from the company known for its iconic chicken noodle and other soups?

Click the audio player above to hear the full story. 

(Global Edition) From the BBC World Service … Tencent — a huge Chinese tech firm that's barely known globally — has jumped in value to over half a trillion dollars to become one of the biggest companies in the world. Afterwards, global food prices could start to rise in 2018 because of uncertainty over climate and trade deals, according to a report out today by Rabobank. Then, in a global first, a London company called Bio-Bean is using coffee-waste powered London buses.

Hollywood actress Hedy Lamarr, "the Angelina Jolie of her day," was also an avid inventor and the person behind advances in communication technology in the 1940s that led to today’s Wi-Fi, GPS, and Bluetooth.

Alexandra Dean is the director and producer of a new documentary about Lamarr called “Bombshell: The Hedy Lamarr Story.”

Tech in retail, from the good to the gimmicky

Nov 21, 2017

Stores are trying their hardest this holiday season to compete with online shopping by using technology to encourage more in-store buying. Some of this tech is already noticeable. There are more sales associates on the floor available to ring you up with a mobile devices, more in-store charging kiosks for customer's to park their cell phones while they shop, and interactive "magic mirrors" that let customers call for help or share photos of what they're trying on with friends or on social media.

After his wife died, Dan Peterson didn't know what to do with himself. He spent a lot of time in his garden remembering his wife's favorite flower, white roses.

"I've never been able to get a white rose to grow — all mine are red," Peterson says.

Before she died, Dan and his wife would do everything together. Now, the world just felt darker.

"I'm sitting here starring out the back window of my house, just waiting it out to see how long I was going to live," he says.

One day on a dreaded grocery run, Dan felt particularly depressed.

As millions of people have fled Syria, they haven't been able to take much with them on their journey. Families often had to abandon the things that reminded them of home. So the recipes that bring them back to the places they left behind are precious.

Dina Mousawi and Itab Azzam are the authors of a new cookbook, Our Syria: Recipes From Home. For the book they interviewed Syrian refugees scattered around Europe and the Middle East. The book gathers their stories, along with the recipes that remind them of home.

Updated at 1:15 p.m. ET Tuesday

Veteran television host Charlie Rose has been fired by CBS, a day after eight women told The Washington Post that he sexually harassed them between the late 1990s and 2011.

About a month ago, President Trump declared the opioid epidemic a public health emergency. He's spent a lot of time talking about the severity of the drug crisis. But he's spent less time outlining the specific steps he'll take to fight it. Today, a White House analysis declared that the true cost of the opioid epidemic in 2015 was more than half a trillion dollars.

Disaster relief bill funding hits roadblock

Nov 20, 2017

The Trump administration has asked Congress to pass the third disaster-relief spending bill this year in the aftermath of Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria, and the devastating California wildfires.

The Department of Justice is suing to block AT&T's purchase of Time Warner, legally challenging a $85 billion deal that would give the telecom giant control of a media empire including CNN, Warner Brothers, HBO, and other major media brands.

Germany won't have a government anytime soon

Nov 20, 2017

Germany still has no government. The leading party of Chancellor Angela Merkel, the Christian Democratic Union, has been unable to form a coalition with rival parties for control of the parliament as is customary in German politics. Marketplace host Kai Ryssdal talks with Eric Graydon, a business reporter based in Berlin, about the ramifications of this development for the rest of Europe.

Kai Ryssdal: This is obviously a political story but there is—there are rather— some some fundamental economic issues behind it right?

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