Pittsburgh's NPR News Station

Pages

Around the Nation
1:36 pm
Wed January 29, 2014

How Industrial Chemical Regulation Failed West Virginia

Jonathan Steele, owner of Bluegrass Kitchen, fills a jug with bottled water from a tank he installed in the back of his Charleston restaurant.
Steve Helber AP

Originally published on Wed January 29, 2014 7:55 pm

On Jan. 9, people in and around Charleston, W.Va., began showing up at hospitals: They had nausea, eye infections and some were vomiting. It was later discovered that around 10,000 gallons of toxic chemicals had leaked into the Elk River, just upstream from a water treatment plant that serves 300,000 people. Citizens were told not to drink or bathe in the water, and while some people are now using water from their taps, many still don't trust it or the information coming from public officials.

Read more
Music Reviews
1:36 pm
Wed January 29, 2014

Don't Pigeonhole Me, Bro: New Country Albums On The Borderline

Jon Pardi.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed January 29, 2014 4:20 pm

Read more
Shots - Health News
1:19 pm
Wed January 29, 2014

A Little Acid Turns Mouse Blood Into Brain, Heart And Stem Cells

A mouse embryo grows from stem cells made by stressing blood cells with acid. The blood cells are tagged with a protein that creates green light.
Courtesy of Haruko Obokata

Originally published on Thu January 30, 2014 7:24 am

Back in 1958, a young biologist at Cornell University made a stunning discovery.

He took a single cell from a carrot and then mixed it with some coconut milk. Days went by and the cell started dividing. Little roots formed. Stems started growing. Eventually, a whole new carrot plant rose up from the single cell.

Imagine if you could perform a similar feat with animal cells, even human cells.

Read more
It's All Politics
12:50 pm
Wed January 29, 2014

Why Red-State Kentucky Got A Shoutout From Obama

Kentucky's Democratic governor, Steve Beshear, has gotten considerable attention for embracing President Obama's Affordable Care Act and adopting the Common Core educational standards.
Roger Alford AP

Originally published on Wed January 29, 2014 2:44 pm

Steve Beshear couldn't help but chuckle during the State of the Union speech when President Obama said, "Kentucky's not the most liberal part of the country."

Obama was singling out his fellow Democrat for being the rare Southern governor who has fully implemented the Affordable Care Act, expanding Medicaid and running a state health insurance exchange that launched far more smoothly than the federal model.

Read more
Politics
12:49 pm
Wed January 29, 2014

Democratic Rep. Fudge Weighs In On Obama's Key Points

Originally published on Wed January 29, 2014 2:08 pm

Rep. Marcia Fudge of Ohio, chairwoman of the Congressional Black Caucus, joins Steve Inskeep with reaction to President Obama's State of the Union address.

The Two-Way
11:58 am
Wed January 29, 2014

Tycoon's Lesbian Daughter Rejects Multimillion-Dollar 'Marriage Bounty'

Gigi Chao (right) daughter of Hong Kong property tycoon Cecil Chao, poses with her partner, Sean Eav, at an event in Hong Kong.
AP

A Hong Kong real estate tycoon made headlines two years ago when he offered a $65 million bounty to the man who could win his daughter's heart and marry her. In an open letter today, the daughter says she hopes he can accept that she is indeed a lesbian.

Read more
Politics
11:55 am
Wed January 29, 2014

Farm Bill Charts New Course For Nation's Farmers

Originally published on Wed January 29, 2014 2:56 pm

The House on Wednesday passed a new five-year compromise farm bill. The bill now moves to the Senate for a vote.

The farm bill — the result of a two-year-long legislative saga — remains massive. The bill contains about $500 billion in funding, most of which is pegged to the food stamp program, officially called the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).

Read more
The Two-Way
11:29 am
Wed January 29, 2014

House Passes Compromise Farm Bill

The House of Representatives voted Wednesday to pass a five-year farm bill.

The $100 billion-a-year measure included small cuts to the food stamps program, and preserved some farm subsidies. The vote in the House was 251-166.

The bill now heads to the Senate, which is expected to approve it. President Obama is expected to sign the measure into law.

Read more
Economy
11:04 am
Wed January 29, 2014

Oil Boom: See A Modern-Day Gold Rush In Motion

Ritter Brothers, a jewelry shop in Williston, N.D., sells novelties that might appeal to those benefiting from the region's recent oil boom.
Annie Flanagan for NPR

Originally published on Wed January 29, 2014 2:30 pm

If you've seen any coverage of North Dakota's oil boom, you've seen the images — oil rigs, truck traffic, "man camps," miles of temporary housing.

But there is something about this place that just can't be captured by a still photograph. It's a feeling you get when you cruise down an endless highway under a vast, big sky — until suddenly: BOOM. You're wedged between semitrucks dwarfing what was once a quiet farm town.

Read more
Shots - Health News
10:45 am
Wed January 29, 2014

Yoga May Help Overcome Fatigue After Breast Cancer

People practice yoga at a fundraiser for a breast cancer foundation in Hong Kong.
Ed Jones/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu January 30, 2014 11:11 am

Exercise helps recovery after cancer treatment, but fatigue can make working out hard. Yoga can help reduce fatigue for breast cancer survivors, a study finds. It's one of a growing number of efforts using randomized controlled trials to see if the ancient practice offers medical benefits.

Women who took a yoga class three hours a week for three months reported less fatigue compared with a group of breast cancer survivors who did not do yoga.

Read more
The Salt
10:40 am
Wed January 29, 2014

Frogs And Puffins! 1730s Menus Reveal Royals Were Extreme Foodies

Britain's King George II: Snazzy dresser, adventurous eater.
Hulton Archive/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri January 31, 2014 11:10 am

You think 21st century foodies will go to great lengths for a culinary thrill? (Lion meat, anyone?) Turns out, they've got nothing on 18th century English royals.

Frogs, puffins, boar's head and larks and other songbirds were all fair game for the dinner table of England's King George II, judging by a chronicle of daily meals served to his majesty and his wife, Queen Caroline.

Read more
The Two-Way
8:46 am
Wed January 29, 2014

Northwestern Football Players Want To Unionize: Is That OK?

Northwestern quarterback Kain Colter, who finished his college career last season, is the spokesman for the players' effort to unionize.
John Mersits CSM/Landov

Originally published on Wed January 29, 2014 2:44 pm

Even during a week when the NFL's Super Bowl is dominating sports pages and sports talk shows, college football is back in the headlines because players at Northwestern University have voted to form a union.

Read more
The Two-Way
7:52 am
Wed January 29, 2014

VIDEO: Congressman Threatens To Throw Reporter Off Balcony

Rep. Michael Grimm, R-N.Y. (right), as he confronted NY1 reporter Michael Scotto on Tuesday in the Capitol.
NY1.com

Originally published on Wed January 29, 2014 2:49 pm

Update at 12:35 p.m. ET. Grimm Apologizes; Says He 'Overreacted':

"@repmichaelgrimm called to apologize. He said he 'overreacted.' I accepted his apology," tweets NY1 reporter Michael Scotto, who was the object of Rep. Michael Grimm's anger Tuesday night.

Read more
Politics
7:50 am
Wed January 29, 2014

Republican Rep. Schweikert: Obama Didn't Hit A Crescendo

Originally published on Wed January 29, 2014 1:58 pm

The Arizona Congressman sat in the House chamber Tuesday night and listened to President Obama address the nation. He tells Steve Inskeep this year's address sounded a lot like last year's speech.

It's All Politics
7:36 am
Wed January 29, 2014

Obama Showed A Deft Hand With Speech. Why Not With Congress?

President Obama shakes hands after giving the State of the Union address before a joint session of Congress on Tuesday.
Larry Downing AP

Originally published on Wed January 29, 2014 2:40 pm

The toughest test of a card player comes not with a big hand or a sheer bust, but rather with cards somewhere in between. Then it's not the deal that makes the difference — it's the sheer skill of the player.

Read more
The Two-Way
7:34 am
Wed January 29, 2014

Book News: Nurse's Debut Novel Wins Prestigious Costa Award

Costa Book of the Year author Nathan Filer poses with his prize for his debut novel Tuesday in London.
Sang Tan AP

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

Read more
The Two-Way
7:07 am
Wed January 29, 2014

'Rush Hour From Hell' Drags On In Icy Southern Cities

A winter storm dumped snow Tuesday along Interstate 20/59 near downtown Birmingham and on other parts of central and southern Alabama.
Tamika Moore Al.com /Landov

Originally published on Wed January 29, 2014 6:40 pm

  • On 'Morning Edition': NPR's Russell Lewis reports from Birmingham

Update at 12:17 p.m. ET. 'Obviously, There Were Errors':

During a televised press conference, the governor of Georgia and the mayor of Atlanta both said they would take responsibility for the mess unfolding across Atlanta's highways.

CNN reports that the broad effect is now coming to light: Officials says one person died, 130 were hurt, and 1,254 accidents were reported during the snowstorm.

Read more
Sports
4:43 am
Wed January 29, 2014

Is There An Economic Benefit To Hosting The Super Bowl?

Originally published on Wed January 29, 2014 12:49 pm

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

The Super Bowl is just four days away in New York.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Actually, New Jersey.

INSKEEP: The teams have arrived at their New York hotels.

MONTAGNE: In New Jersey.

INSKEEP: The game itself will be played at New York's MetLife Stadium.

MONTAGNE: In New Jersey.

INSKEEP: Local towns have been hoping for an economic boost from hosting the big game. But as NPR's Joel Rose reports, some officials in New Jersey complain that tourism dollars seem to be flowing instead to New York City.

Read more
National Security
4:43 am
Wed January 29, 2014

Panel Considers Bin Laden Bodyguard's Stay At Guantanamo

Originally published on Wed January 29, 2014 12:49 pm

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Some other news now. One if the longest-term inmates of the Guantanamo Bay prison camp has had a parole hearing yesterday. He's a man from Yemen, allegedly a former bodyguard of Osama bin Laden. Carol Rosenberg of the Miami Herald was among the reporters allowed to see a portion of parole hearing on a video screen.

CAROL ROSENBERG: We saw Abdul Malik Wahab al Rahabi, a man who arrived on the day that Guantanamo Prison opened, sitting at a table while his advocates made an argument that he should be allowed to someday go home.

Read more
NPR Story
4:43 am
Wed January 29, 2014

Traffic Comes To Halt Around Atlanta But Baby Couldn't Wait

Originally published on Wed January 29, 2014 12:49 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne. Snow and ice sweeping through the South caused an epic traffic jam yesterday around Atlanta. One couple stuck on the freeway found themselves in a different kind of jam. Their unborn baby wouldn't wait to get to the hospital. So the father and a local police officer helped deliver the baby girl right there in the middle of afternoon rush hour. Mother and baby ultimately made it to the hospital, and yes, they are doing fine. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Shots - Health News
2:59 am
Wed January 29, 2014

Ancient Plague's DNA Revived From A 1,500-Year-Old Tooth

Graduate student Jennifer Klunk of McMaster University examines a tooth used to decode the genome of the ancient plague.
Courtesy of McMaster University

Originally published on Thu January 30, 2014 11:11 am

Scientists have reconstructed the genetic code of a strain of bacteria that caused one of the most deadly pandemics in history nearly 1,500 years ago.

They did it by finding the skeletons of people killed by the plague and extracting DNA from traces of blood inside their teeth.

This plague struck in the year 541, under the reign of the Roman emperor Justinian, so it's usually called the Justinian plague. The emperor actually got sick himself but recovered. He was one of the lucky ones.

Read more
Europe
2:57 am
Wed January 29, 2014

Archaeologists Unearth What May Be Oldest Roman Temple

Excavation at the Sant'Omobono site in central Rome has provided evidence of early Romans' efforts to transform the landscape of their city.
Sylvia Poggioli NPR

Originally published on Wed January 29, 2014 12:49 pm

Archaeologists excavating a site in central Rome say they've uncovered what may be oldest known temple from Roman antiquity.

Along the way, they've also discovered how much the early Romans intervened to shape their urban environment.

And the dig has been particularly challenging because the temple lies below the water table.

At the foot Capitoline Hill in the center of Rome, stands the Medieval Sant'Omobono church.

Read more
The Edge
2:55 am
Wed January 29, 2014

Too Far, Too Complicated: Why Some Families Will Sit Out Sochi

Security personnel sit in the back of a truck outside the Fisht Olympic Stadium in Sochi. Security concerns are one reason why many U.S. fans and family are not going to this year's games.
David J. Phillip AP

Originally published on Wed January 29, 2014 1:52 pm

On a frigid afternoon, Jack Burke is coaching young skiers in a field in Saranac Lake, N.Y. His son Tim — who shoots and skis as part of the U.S. biathlon team — got his start training here. Now, Tim is off to Sochi to compete, but Jack and his whole family are staying home, missing the games for the first time since Tim's first Olympics in 2006.

"The uncertainty certainly did weigh into it," says Jack. "The cost was substantial, and costs seemed to be changing weekly."

Read more
Around the Nation
2:54 am
Wed January 29, 2014

On The Plains, The Rush For Oil Has Changed Everything

Diners at Lonnie's Roadhouse Cafe eat breakfast before heading to work in Williston, N.D.
Annie Flanagan for NPR

Originally published on Wed January 29, 2014 12:49 pm

A remarkable transformation is underway in western North Dakota, where an oil boom is changing the state's fortunes and leaving once-sleepy towns bursting at the seams. In a series of stories, NPR is exploring the economic, social and environmental demands of this modern-day gold rush.

On a Sunday at dusk, Amtrak's eastbound Empire Builder train is jampacked, filled with people heading to their jobs in North Dakota towns like Minot, Williston and Watford City.

Read more

Pages