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5:08 pm
Tue January 28, 2014

Deep South, Meet Deep Freeze

Originally published on Tue January 28, 2014 6:55 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

The Deep South is in a deep freeze. Snow, sleet and freezing rain have gripped a region more accustomed to sun and surf. As a result, roads are a mess and from South Louisiana to the Carolina coast, classes are cancelled, airplanes are grounded, and businesses and government offices are closed.

NPR's Debbie Elliott reports.

(SOUNDBITE OF SIRENS)

DEBBIE ELLIOTT, BYLINE: In Birmingham, Alabama today, just getting around town is practically impossible.

(SOUNDBITE OF SIRENS)

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Politics
5:08 pm
Tue January 28, 2014

Hoping For Hope: Obama Seeks A Return To Optimism In Address

Originally published on Tue January 28, 2014 6:55 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Now, for more on the president's speech, we're joined by NPR national political correspondent Mara Liasson. Hi, Mara.

MARA LIASSON, BYLINE: Hello, Audie.

CORNISH: So listening to Jay Carney just now, what do you think is the president's overriding goal tonight?

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Politics
5:08 pm
Tue January 28, 2014

On Obama's Agenda: Immigration, Inequality And Unfinished Business

Originally published on Tue January 28, 2014 6:55 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

And I'm Audie Cornish. President Obama heads to Capitol Hill tonight for his fifth official State of the Union address. After a challenging year, it's a chance for Obama to turn the page and lay out his priorities for 2014 ahead of this fall's midterm elections. We'll bring you full coverage of the speech later tonight. First, a preview of what the president is expected to say.

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Economy
5:08 pm
Tue January 28, 2014

Days Of Turmoil Test Stability Of Emerging Markets

Originally published on Tue January 28, 2014 6:55 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

After losing a lot of ground, stock prices were back up a bit today. Investor anxiety about the state of the world's currency markets seemed to ease. The current turmoil is reminiscent of the 1997 currency crisis in Asia, which hurt economies all over the world.

As NPR's Jim Zarroli reports, there are also some big differences.

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The Two-Way
4:52 pm
Tue January 28, 2014

Cantaloupe Farmers Get Probation Over Deadly Listeria Outbreak

Eric Jensen, right and Ryan Jensen, brothers who owned and operated Jensen Farms, arrive at the federal courthouse in Denver in January of 2014.
Ed Andrieski AP

Two cantaloupe farmers who pleaded guilty to charges stemming from a 2011 outbreak of listeria that killed 33 people, were sentenced on Tuesday to five years probation and six months of home detention.

The AP reports:

"A federal magistrate also ordered brothers Eric and Ryan Jensen to each pay $150,000 in restitution and perform 100 hours of community service. Each read a statement in which they apologized but didn't show any emotion during the hearing.

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Planet Money
4:33 pm
Tue January 28, 2014

Who Are The Long-Term Unemployed? (In 3 Graphs)

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Originally published on Thu February 6, 2014 12:54 pm

When you are out of work and looking for 27 weeks or longer, you become part of a group the Bureau of Labor Statistics calls long-term unemployed. The share of long-term unemployed workers hit its peak in May 2010, when 46 percent of the unemployed were long-term unemployed. It has hovered around 40 percent of the unemployed in the three years since.

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Business
3:57 pm
Tue January 28, 2014

A Chinese Company Brings Hope To Former GM Workers In Ohio

An abandoned General Motors automotive assembly plant near Dayton, Ohio, will soon become home to Fuyao Auto Glass, a Chinese windshield maker.
AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue January 28, 2014 6:55 pm

For years, industrial cities across the U.S. have watched factories pack up and leave, taking their operations to Mexico or China. But here's something relatively new: increasing numbers of Chinese companies are bringing manufacturing to the United States.

Just south of Dayton, Ohio, a Chinese auto-glass maker now plans to open up shop in what used to be a large General Motors truck plant.

The announcement is a big deal for this former factory town.

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The Two-Way
3:00 pm
Tue January 28, 2014

Illinois Train Conductor's Challenge: Keep The Beer From Freezing

In an Illinois railyard, train cars carrying beers such as Corona and Pacifico are at risk of spoiling their cargo if freezing temperatures take hold.
Scott Olson Getty Images

Originally published on Tue January 28, 2014 8:18 pm

In a railyard outside Chicago, the deep cold of winter can threaten a Midwest staple: beer. The large distribution hub regularly holds more than 1 million cases, according to Crain's Chicago Business. A Crain's reporter spent a night on the job with the man who must keep the beer safe.

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The Two-Way
2:08 pm
Tue January 28, 2014

China Is Poised To Force 'Times' Reporter Out Of Country

In a move that's being seen as retaliation for negative stories about its leaders, China's government has told a New York Times reporter that he must leave the country when his visa expires Thursday. The government has not granted a request for a new visa that was made last summer.

The development comes despite objections from Vice President Joe Biden, who has urged senior officials in Beijing not to punish U.S. journalists with de facto expulsion.

From Beijing, NPR's Frank Langfitt reports for our Newscast unit:

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Author Interviews
1:57 pm
Tue January 28, 2014

Entrepreneurs Looking For 'Windfall' Cash In On Climate Change

A boat skims through the melting ice in the Ilulissat fjord in August 2008, on the western coast of Greenland.
Steen Ulrik Johannessen AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue January 28, 2014 2:48 pm

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The Fresh Air Interview
1:57 pm
Tue January 28, 2014

Pete Seeger Remembers Guthrie, Hopping Trains And Sharing Songs

Pete Seeger.
Joe Kohen WireImage

Originally published on Tue January 28, 2014 2:48 pm

Pete Seeger believed songs were a way of binding people to a cause. He popularized "This Land is Your Land" and "We Shall Overcome" and wrote "If I Had a Hammer." In 1940s, he co-founded The Weavers, who surprised everyone, including themselves, when they became the first group to bring folk music to the pop charts — until they were black listed. Seeger refused to answer questions about his politics when he appeared before House Un-American Activities committee in 1955.

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The Two-Way
1:52 pm
Tue January 28, 2014

No, Queen Elizabeth Is Not Down To Her 'Last Million'

Queen Elizabeth II.
Kirsty Wigglesworth AP

Did you hear about Queen Elizabeth II? That times are tough for Britain's monarch?

Or as an inspired headline writer at Australia's Canberra Times put it:

Royal no longer flush — Queen 'down to her last million'

Well, don't schedule a telethon for her just yet.

The queen herself is not running out of money.

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The Salt
1:49 pm
Tue January 28, 2014

Sushi Chefs Aren't Feeling California's New Glove Law

Originally published on Tue January 28, 2014 6:12 pm

On Sunday, we told you about bartenders who are up in arms about a new California law that makes it illegal for culinary workers to touch uncooked food with their bare hands. Turns out, sushi chefs are ticked off, too.

For sushi chefs, crafting sashimi or a great roll is a lot like creating art. It requires skill and feel. Bare hands are essential.

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Politics
1:33 pm
Tue January 28, 2014

Top Moments In State Of The Union History

AP

Originally published on Tue January 28, 2014 5:47 pm

The annual State of the Union speech isn't just stagecraft: the message is mandated by the U.S. Constitution (trivia alert: Article II, Section 3). It's intended to give Congress a status update on the country and make recommendations where needed, but the tradition has evolved over time.

The history of the address is rich, even if the individual speeches sometimes seem fleeting and forgettable.

Who was the first person to deliver this presidential memo? (George Washington.)

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The Two-Way
12:53 pm
Tue January 28, 2014

Super Bowl Tickets Are 'Cheap,' And Weather Isn't Only Reason

Tickets? Tickets? Anybody need tickets? Some are available to Sunday's Super Bowl in New Jersey at "bargain" prices.
Charlie Riedel AP

Sure, the game-time temperature's going to be in the low-30s or high-20s at Sunday's Super Bowl in New Jersey.

But brokers say that's not the only reason why tickets to the game aren't going for super-high prices on the websites where they're being resold.

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Shots - Health News
12:35 pm
Tue January 28, 2014

College Students Can Learn To Drink Less, If Schools Help

Eighty percent of college students drink, and schools have had little success reducing those numbers, or the problems caused by excessive alcohol.
Toby Talbot AP

Originally published on Tue January 28, 2014 2:20 pm

Drinking remains one of the biggest health risks for college students, with 80 percent of students drinking alcohol and more than one-third binge drinking.

This may seem like an inevitable part of student life. But there's actually a lot that schools can do to help students get their drinking under control if they're willing to offer more than generic online courses, a study finds.

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It's All Politics
11:57 am
Tue January 28, 2014

Obama's State Of The Union, Playing On A Second Screen Near You

A screen grab from last year's "enhanced State of the Union," which is also available Tuesday on WhiteHouse.gov.
Nathan Yau/Flowing Data

Originally published on Tue January 28, 2014 5:58 pm

Viewership is declining. Washington seems increasingly dysfunctional and irrelevant to the daily lives of Americans. The presidency isn't the bully pulpit it used to be.

In an age of social media and divided audiences, the annual, constitutionally mandated State of the Union speech is beginning to look like a stuffy relic from a bygone era.

It's an institution in need of a makeover, which is precisely what the White House intends to do Tuesday night.

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The Two-Way
11:53 am
Tue January 28, 2014

Philippine Police Used 'Wheel Of Torture,' Rights Group Says

Originally published on Tue January 28, 2014 12:51 pm

Police in the Philippines played "wheel of torture" to dole out punishments to criminal suspects during interrogations, according to country's own Commission on Human Rights.

"They do it for fun, it's like a game for entertainment," Loretta Ann Rosales, the chair of the Commission on Human Rights said. "We're trying to correct this mindset based on a human rights approach to policing, but obviously it may take a lot of time."

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Shots - Health News
11:27 am
Tue January 28, 2014

How A Divorce Can Boost Health Insurance Subsidies

iStockphoto

As the enrollment period continues for health coverage on the state health insurance marketplaces, people continue to have many questions about buying a plan there.

What happens with premium tax credits if a couple gets divorced? If the premium tax credit is based on the previous year's income when the couple filed taxes jointly, many wouldn't qualify. But once someone is divorced, one individual might have little income. What is the subsidy based on in that situation?

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The Protojournalist
11:12 am
Tue January 28, 2014

Fixing The NFL: Put Robots In The Super Bowl

Cleatus of Fox Sports
Kevin Lynch FOX Sports

Through one lens, the National Football League — on the threshold of Super Bowl XLVIII — looks to be at the top of its game. Revenues are ridiculously high: more than $9 billion a year, CNN reports. Television ratings are roof-piercing: 34 of the 35 most-watched TV shows of autumn 2013 were NFL games, according to the NFL.

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The Two-Way
11:07 am
Tue January 28, 2014

Opposition 'Gaining Ground' In Ukraine?

Anti-government protesters wave flags and shout slogans Tuesday in Kiev, Ukraine.
Vasily Fedosenko Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Tue January 28, 2014 12:21 pm

Demonstrators in Kiev's main square are welcoming the news that Ukraine's "widely despised" prime minister is stepping down, that anti-protest laws have been repealed and that protesters may get amnesty, NPR's Corey Flintoff reports.

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The Two-Way
11:06 am
Tue January 28, 2014

Despite Soundproof Box, Egypt's Morsi Is Defiant In Court

Egyptians watch a television screen showing the trial of ousted President Mohammed Morsi on Tuesday in Cairo.
Khaled Elfiqi EPA /LANDOV

Originally published on Tue January 28, 2014 1:04 pm

"I am the legitimate president of the country, and this trial is not legal."

Ousted Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi struck a defiant tone with those words at his trial Tuesday in a Cairo courtroom.

As NPR's Leila Fadel tells our Newscast unit, Morsi is standing trial in three different cases. Leila reports:

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All Tech Considered
10:50 am
Tue January 28, 2014

One Way Lawmakers Are Trying To Prevent Government IT Disasters

Rep. Anna Eshoo, D-Calif., is a co-sponsor of the new bill.
Charles Dharapak AP

HealthCare.gov's infamous failure to launch has inspired some fresh legislation that aims to organize and streamline the currently scattered — and expensive — approach to multimillion-dollar technology projects built by the government and its contractors.

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Parallels
10:45 am
Tue January 28, 2014

In China's Hugely Indebted Cities, Some Big Bills Are Coming Due

Wuhan, in central China, is in debt to the tune of a reported $33 billion — nearly twice the city's GDP. This 17-mile highway sat dormant for two years after banks cut off funding as Wuhan's debt ballooned. Work on the road resumed last year, but the construction company still hasn't been paid.
Frank Langfitt NPR

Originally published on Tue January 28, 2014 6:55 pm

In recent years, rampant borrowing has driven a significant chunk of China's economic growth. The bill is now becoming clearer — and it's big. Late last year, China revealed that local governments owe nearly $3 trillion – more than the gross domestic product of France, the world's fifth-largest economy.

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The Salt
10:36 am
Tue January 28, 2014

FDA Found Drugs Used In Food Animals To Be 'High Risk'

Beef cattle in a barn on the Larson Farms feedlot in Maple Park, Ill.
Daniel Acker Landov

According to newly released documents, the Food and Drug Administration concluded years ago that many of the antibiotics farmers use on food animals are risky for human health.

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