Pop Culture
7:26 am
Wed November 20, 2013

Monty Python To Reunite For Stage Show

Originally published on Wed November 20, 2013 7:34 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne. The rumors are true. Terry Jones confirmed to the BBC that Monty Python will reunite for a stage show. It's been more than three decades since the last proper Python project. The group is beloved on both sides of the Atlantic for its surreal sense of humor, with a touch of slapstick.

(SOUNDBITE OF FILM, "MONTY PYTHON AND THE HOLY GRAIL")

GRAHAM CHAPMAN: (as King Arthur) Now, stand aside, worthy adversary.

JOHN CLEESE: (as the Black Knight) 'Tis but a scratch.

6:21 am
Wed November 20, 2013

Thousands wait to get power back in Southwest Michigan

Lead in text: 
Red Cross shelters open in Kalamazoo, Calhoun, Barry, Berrien, Cass, Kent and Ionia Counties
  • Source: Mlive
  • | Via: Kalamazoo Gazette
KALAMAZOO, MI -- While crews continue to restore power for thousands of residents across Southwest Michigan affected by Sunday's storm, the outages have been a nuisance for many, and a boost in business for some.
6:15 am
Wed November 20, 2013

New Portage City Council fails to vote for mayor pro-tem

Lead in text: 
Deadlock between Jim Pearson and Terry Urban may not be broken until new council member is picked
  • Source: Mlive
  • | Via: Kalamazoo Gazette
PORTAGE, MI - The new Portage City Council was seated Tuesday night, but could not decide who will be the new mayor pro-tem. Council members Nasim Ansari, Claudette Reid and Terry Urban were sworn into office along with five-term mayor Pete Strazdas after winning elections Nov.
Author Interviews
4:44 am
Wed November 20, 2013

Gov. Scott Walker Recounts First-Term Battles In New Book

Gov. Scott Walker speaks during a rally for South Carolina Republican Gov. Nikki Haley on Aug. 26 in Greenville, S.C.
Richard Shiro AP

Originally published on Wed November 20, 2013 4:54 pm

In his new book released this week, Unintimidated: A Governor's Story and a Nation's Challenge, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker reflects on the political firestorm he survived at home in 2012 — and diagnoses what went wrong for the national party.

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Politics
4:44 am
Wed November 20, 2013

Obama Concedes Botched Insurance Website Rollout Cost Time

Originally published on Wed November 20, 2013 7:34 am

The Obama administration is asking for people who've been turned off by the government's problem-plagued insurance website to come back. Officials say the website is working better now, though it's still far from fixed.

Around the Nation
4:44 am
Wed November 20, 2013

Early Warnings Saved Lives In Weekend Storms

Originally published on Wed November 20, 2013 7:34 am

The death toll from Sunday's tornado outbreak across the Midwest stands at eight. Many of those who witnessed the devastation say they're shocked that number isn't higher. Early warnings delivered by text message may have helped limit the casualties.

All Tech Considered
3:23 am
Wed November 20, 2013

Profit, Not Just Principle, Has Tech Firms Concerned With NSA

Google and five other companies sent a letter last month to members of the Senate Judiciary Committee supporting legislation to reform NSA surveillance programs.
Marcio Jose Sanchez AP

Originally published on Thu December 12, 2013 12:51 pm

Along with the privacy advocates and the national security establishment, there is another set of players with strong views on NSA surveillance programs: U.S. tech companies.

Google and five other companies weighed in on the surveillance debate last month, sending a letter to members of the Senate Judiciary Committee, supporting legislation to reform National Security Agency surveillance programs.

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Around the Nation
3:18 am
Wed November 20, 2013

The Art Of Letter-Writing Isn't Lost On These Scribblers

Do you write letters anymore? A few determined people are doing their best to keep them arriving in U.S. mailboxes.
iStockphoto

Originally published on Wed November 20, 2013 11:00 am

When was the last time you wrote a letter?

If the answer is "not recently," then you can count yourself among the millions of Americans who just don't write letters anymore. The post office says the average American home receives only one personal letter about every two months.

But there are a few determined people who are doing their best to wreck that average.

"It's becoming a lost art," says Deb Bruzewski.

Every day she curls up on her plaid couch in her home in Auburn, Mich., to write a few of her 60 letters for the week.

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Africa
3:16 am
Wed November 20, 2013

In Nigeria's Bloody Fight, Who's Gaining The Upper Hand?

Men walk amid rubble after Boko Haram militants raided the town of Benisheik in northeast Nigeria, on Sept. 19. The Islamist group has been waging an insurgency in northern and central Nigeria for the past four years and was recently placed on the U.S. list of terrorist groups.
Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Wed November 20, 2013 10:51 am

For four years, the Islamist militants of Boko Haram have been waging a deadly campaign in northern and central Nigeria, killing thousands of people. In response, the Nigerian military is cracking down on the group, and the United States last week designated Boko Haram a terrorist organization.

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Around the Nation
12:19 am
Wed November 20, 2013

After Floods, Some Colo. Rivers Aren't Where They Used To Be

Excavators work to restore the original channel of Left Hand Creek. The creek's diversion structures sit clogged with mud, debris and stagnant water.
Jim Hill KUNC

Originally published on Wed November 20, 2013 7:34 am

In Colorado, farmers are scrambling to recover from September's historic floods — floods that decimated miles of roadways, cut off entire towns and sent rivers and creeks into areas they'd never been before.

Like Tim Foster's immaculate front yard.

"It was beautiful," he says. "I had four large blue spruces. We had hundred-year-old cottonwoods all along the bank. We had our irrigation and our pumps. It was just gorgeous."

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State issues
9:07 pm
Tue November 19, 2013

WestSouthwest: State Representative Kate Segal

State Representative Kate Segal
Credit WMUK

WestSouthwest with State Representative Kate Segal

Democrat Kate Segal represents Battle Creek and other parts of Calhoun County in Michigan's 62nd state House district. She is in her third term. 

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Dysfunctional comedy
9:06 pm
Tue November 19, 2013

WestSouthwest: Comedian Mark Lundholm

Mark Lundholm
Credit Dan Dion, marklundholm.com

WestSouthwest with comedian Mark Lundholm

    

Mark Lundholm says he struggled with addiction for a long time, and in some ways he still does. But Lundholm has been sober for 25 years. 

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The Salt
6:53 pm
Tue November 19, 2013

What's Trending In Food Magazines? Thanksgiving Classics

Three food magazines featured a pumpkin pie finished with a bruleed top for Thanksgiving this year, according to The Bitten Word.
Courtesy of TheBittenWord.com

For many of us, Thanksgiving is just not the same without turkey, mashed potatoes, cranberry sauce and pumpkin pie. In other words, tradition tends to trump trendy.

Yet food magazines always encourage going beyond the usual suspects. And who among us has time to try them out in advance of Thanksgiving?

Zach Patton and Clay Dunn, that's who. They're the married couple behind the food blog The Bitten Word.

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Parallels
5:54 pm
Tue November 19, 2013

Londoners Urged To Cycle, But Commute Can Be Treacherous

Cyclists negotiate rush hour traffic in central London on Nov. 15. Fourteen London cyclists have died so far this year, all in accidents involving heavy goods vehicles.
Oli Scarff Getty Images

Originally published on Tue November 19, 2013 7:30 pm

London's colorful mayor, Boris Johnson, has made it a priority to get more of his constituents on two wheels. But a series of deaths on the city's roads have shaken cyclists and noncyclists alike.

The number of Londoners cycling to work has more than doubled in the past decade. On some roads, cyclists now make up more than half the rush hour traffic.

And for years, Johnson has been among them. Many think the London mayor has his eye on Prime Minister David Cameron's job.

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4:55 pm
Tue November 19, 2013

Downtown parking rates could go up in Kalamazoo next year

Lead in text: 
Daily parking rates in ramps would go up by five cents. Monthly rates for cars could increase by $1-4. Daily metered parking rates would stay the same, but monthly meter rates would go up by $2 .
KALAMAZOO, MI -- Parking rates in downtown Kalamazoo could rise 5 percent in 2014. The Kalamazoo Downtown Development Authority is considering the hike as part of the 2014 proposed $3.3 million parking budget. DDA directors considered the budget on Monday, but decided to table the decision until the board's December meeting.
NPR Story
4:40 pm
Tue November 19, 2013

Afghan Elders Will Decide Future Of U.S. Troops After 2014

Originally published on Tue November 19, 2013 5:54 pm

Some 3,000 Afghan elders will assemble on Thursday in Kabul to consider a new security agreement with the U.S. The document will spell out the rules for American forces in Afghanistan troops after their combat mission ends in December 2014. U.S. officials say between 6,000 and 9,000 US troops would remain to train Afghan security forces and conduct counter-terror missions against al-Qaeda and other anti-government forces. That counter-terror mission remains a sticking point, though most other issues — like potential criminal liability of Americans in Afghanistan — have been resolved.

NPR Story
4:40 pm
Tue November 19, 2013

Iconic Sheep Return To Tucson Mountains, But Is It For Good?

Originally published on Tue November 19, 2013 5:54 pm

The last desert bighorn sheep that roamed the mountains above Tucson, Ariz., died in the 1990s, the victim of human encroachment, mountain lions, and fire suppression. Now, the iconic Southwest animal — picture the Dodge Ram's grille — is back. A herd of 31 was released Monday morning after being transplanted over the weekend from the Yuma area in the far west of the state. Why would the sheep survive this time?

NPR Story
4:40 pm
Tue November 19, 2013

Duncan Apologizes For 'Clumsy' Common Core Remarks

Originally published on Tue November 19, 2013 5:54 pm

Education Secretary Arne Duncan is in some hot water over remarks he made last week suggesting that opposition to Common Core of Standards was coming from "white suburban moms." He has since pulled back from those remarks.

4:01 pm
Tue November 19, 2013

Schoolcraft Council President steps down

Lead in text: 
Dan DeVries works for the Stryker Corporation and will be relocating to Phoenix, Arizona.
SCHOOLCRAFT, MI - The Schoolcraft Village Council will take its time replacing Village President Dan DeVries, who stepped down Monday after four years because of a job relocation. DeVries is employed with Stryker Medical and will be transferring to Phoenix, Ariz. with his wife, Kate, and two children, Adele, 6, and Jack, 4.
Author Interviews
3:46 pm
Tue November 19, 2013

Anjelica Huston Tells Her 'Story' Of Growing Up With A Director Dad

In a new memoir, Anjelica Huston recounts her childhood in Ireland, her teen years in London and her coming of age in New York.
Robert Fleischauer Courtesy of Scribner

Originally published on Wed November 20, 2013 2:40 pm

Anjelica Huston is best-known for her performances in Prizzi's Honor, The Grifters, The Addams Family, The Royal Tenenbaums and the TV series Smash. But her new memoir about her early life, A Story Lately Told, ends just as her successful acting career begins. That part of her life will be in a second volume, now in the works.

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Parallels
1:57 pm
Tue November 19, 2013

How Will Afghan Forces Fare As NATO Troops Draw Down?

An Afghan soldier stands guard in the western city of Herat in October. U.S. Maj. Gen. James McConville, who commands coalition forces in eastern Afghanistan, says Afghan forces did hold their ground this year, but "they're not winning by enough that the enemy is willing to stop fighting yet."
Aref Karimi AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue November 19, 2013 5:54 pm

Shiite Muslims gathered in Kabul last week to celebrate Ashura, one of the holiest days on their religious calendar. Hundreds of shirtless men chanted and flogged themselves with chains tipped with knife-like shards of metal.

In the past, these public Shiite commemorations have become targets of the Taliban and other Islamist extremists. In 2011, a suicide bomber killed 56 Shiites marking Ashura. But this year, security was particularly tight.

Shopkeeper Noor Aga said the celebration was magnificent, and he felt safe.

Read more
1:47 pm
Tue November 19, 2013

More than 25,000 Consumers Energy customers still without power in Southwest Michigan

Lead in text: 
Some customers may not get power back until Saturday
  • Source: Mlive
  • | Via: Kalamazoo Gazette
KALAMAZOO, MI - Consumers Energy officials say Tuesday's sunny weather is proving helpful in their efforts to restore power following a storm Sunday that knocked out electric service to 286,000 customers statewide. As of 11:30 a.m., a little more than 25,400 Consumers customers in Southwest Michigan were without power, according to a news release issued by the company.
Movie Reviews
12:30 pm
Tue November 19, 2013

'Great Beauty,' 'Narco Cultura': Excess, Succeeding Wildly

Toni Servillo plays a jaded journalist and perpetual partier in The Great Beauty, Italy's submission for the best foreign language film Oscar.
Guanni Fiorito Janus Films

Originally published on Tue November 19, 2013 3:36 pm

In The Marriage of Heaven and Hell, William Blake served up one of those mind-bending proverbs he's known for: "The road of excess leads," he wrote, "to the palace of wisdom." I thought about this line as I watched two terrific new movies that put Blake's words to the test.

Paolo Sorrentino's thrillingly good The Great Beauty tackles the idea head-on — it's an excessive film about excess. Sorrentino doesn't merely aim to update one of the most famous movies of all time (Fellini's portrait of decadent Rome, La Dolce Vita). He intends to better it.

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Parenting
12:17 pm
Tue November 19, 2013

China Eases One Child Policy, What's Next?

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

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Economy
12:10 pm
Tue November 19, 2013

Economic Recovery: Women Bouncing Back Quicker Than Men?

New figures show women have more jobs in the U.S. than ever before - but men are still struggling to pull out of the recession. Host Michel Martin speaks with NPR senior business editor Marilyn Geewax, and Ariane Hegewisch from the Institute for Women's Policy Research.

World
12:10 pm
Tue November 19, 2013

Dominican Republic Official Defends Citizenship Ruling

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

I'm Michel Martin and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. Later in the program, we'll meet an author who managed to trace her own great-grandmother's journey from a small village in India to the cane fields of Guyana. We'll hear about this remarkable feat of reporting that sheds light on a system that's probably even less understood than slavery, which is indentured servitude.

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Books
12:10 pm
Tue November 19, 2013

'Coolie Woman' Rescues Indentured Women From Anonymity

Originally published on Tue November 19, 2013 2:37 pm

"Immigrant number 96153. That's how my great-grandmother was cataloged, that was the number on her immigration pass." says Gaiutra Bahadur, author of the new book Coolie Woman.

Bahadur set out to uncover her family's roots by following a paper trail of colonial archives and ship records that traced her great-grandmother's journey from a small village in India to the cane fields of Guyana.

Read more
12:06 pm
Tue November 19, 2013

Calhoun County Commission Chairman to run for state House

Lead in text: 
Art Kale is second Republican to launch campaign in 62nd district
Art Kale, chair of the Calhoun County Board of Commissioners, has announced he will seek a seat in the Michigan House. The Republican from Albion said he will run for the 62nd District, currently held by Rep. Kate Segal.
7:29 am
Tue November 19, 2013

Benton Harbor Commission objects to Emergency Manager's deficit plan

Lead in text: 
Manager is under no obligation to honor commission's vote
BENTON HARBOR - The Benton Harbor City Commission voted 6-3 Monday to reject the emergency manager's deficit elimination plan, which includes a $2.3 million loan from the state to pay off the city's outstanding debt and to provide the city's budget a little cushion.
7:16 am
Tue November 19, 2013

American Red Cross opens shelter in Cass County for people affected by power outages

Lead in text: 
Shelters also open in Kalamazoo, Calhoun, Berrien, Kent and Ionia Counties
  • Source: Mlive
  • | Via: Kalamazoo Gazette
DOWAGIAC, MI - The American Red Cross of West Michigan has opened a shelter in Cass County for residents affected by widespread power outages from Sunday's strong storms. The shelter, which is located at Dowagiac Armory Headquarters, 700 W. Prairie Ronde St., in Dowagiac, is the sixth shelter the Red Cross has opened since Monday in West Michigan.

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