The Salt
6:40 pm
Wed May 1, 2013

Bones Tell Tale Of Desperation Among The Starving At Jamestown

The four cuts at the top of this skull "are clear chops to the forehead," says Smithsonian forensic anthropologist Douglas Owsley. Based on forensic evidence, researchers think the blows were made after the person died.
Donald E. Hurlbert Smithsonian

Originally published on Wed May 1, 2013 7:48 pm

"First they ate their horses, and then fed upon their dogs and cats, as well as rats, mice and snakes."

So says James Horn of the historical group Colonial Williamsburg, paraphrasing an account by colony leader George Percy of what conditions were like for the hundreds of men and women stranded in Jamestown, Va., with little food in the dead of winter in 1609.

They even ate their shoes. And, apparently, at least one person.

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Business
5:59 pm
Wed May 1, 2013

Deal To Protect Bangladeshi Factory Workers Still Elusive

NPR

Originally published on Wed May 1, 2013 7:48 pm

This week, major retailers including Wal-Mart, Gap and others met with labor activists in Germany, hoping to hammer out a deal to improve working conditions in Bangladesh.

The meeting came less than a week after a devastating building collapse in the Bangladeshi capital, Dhaka, killed more than 400 workers. At the meeting, activists pushed retailers who use factories in Bangladesh to start spending their own money to make those workplaces safer.

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Shots - Health News
5:51 pm
Wed May 1, 2013

Second Thoughts On Medicaid From Oregon's Unique Experiment

Originally published on Wed May 1, 2013 7:48 pm

Two years ago, a landmark study found that having Medicaid health insurance makes a positive difference in people's lives.

Backers of the program have pointed to that study time and again in their push to encourage states to expand the program as part of the federal health law.

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All Tech Considered
5:21 pm
Wed May 1, 2013

How One College Is Closing The Computer Science Gender Gap

Harvey Mudd President Maria Klawe often uses her longboard to get around campus and chat with students like senior Xanda Schofield.
Wendy Kaufman NPR

Originally published on Wed May 1, 2013 7:48 pm

This story is part of our series The Changing Lives of Women.

There are still relatively few women in tech. Maria Klawe wants to change that. As president of Harvey Mudd College, a science and engineering school in Southern California, she's had stunning success getting more women involved in computing.

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Local Music
5:19 pm
Wed May 1, 2013

Soloists acknowledge their roots with KSO's 'A Night of Musical Promise'

Alpin Hong
Credit alpinhong.com

Pianist Alpin Hong and violinist Jun-Ching Lin are the featured soloists in a free collaborative concert this Thursday called A Night of Musical Promisewhich will include over 170 young performers who participate in a variety of regional music programs. 

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World
4:51 pm
Wed May 1, 2013

Why Chemical Weapons Have Been A Red Line Since World War I

Soldiers with the British Machine Gun Corps wear gas masks in 1916 during World War I's first Battle of the Somme.
General Photographic Agency/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed May 1, 2013 7:48 pm

President Obama has said that the use of chemical weapons could change the U.S. response to the Syrian civil war. But why this focus on chemical weapons when conventional weapons have killed tens of thousands in Syria?

The answer can be traced back to the early uses of poison gas nearly a century ago.

In World War I, trench warfare led to stalemates — and to new weapons meant to break through the lines.

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Africa
4:45 pm
Wed May 1, 2013

S. African Leader Under Fire After Awkward Visit With Mandela

In this image taken from video, South African President Jacob Zuma sits with ailing anti-apartheid icon Nelson Mandela on Monday. Mandela was hospitalized in late March with a lung infection, and in images from the visit, appeared largely unresponsive.
SABC AP

Originally published on Wed May 1, 2013 7:48 pm

In South Africa, controversial images of a frail and ashen Nelson Mandela being visited by South Africa's current president aired on national television this week. Some people claimed it was a political publicity stunt.

The footage is fueling fresh debate about what is proper and what constitutes invasion of privacy regarding the ailing, 94-year-old former president and anti-apartheid legend.

President Jacob Zuma, accompanied by two other top officials of the governing ANC party, visited Mandela at his Johannesburg home on Monday.

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Shots - Health News
4:37 pm
Wed May 1, 2013

A Sleep Gene Has A Surprising Role In Migraines

Bates experienced migraines as a child. She made this painting to depict how they felt to her.
Courtesy of Emily Bates

Originally published on Thu May 2, 2013 10:33 am

Mutations on a single gene appear to increase the risk for both an unusual sleep disorder and migraines, a team reports in Science Translational Medicine.

The finding could help explain the links between sleep problems and migraines. It also should make it easier to find new drugs to treat migraines, researchers say.

And for one member of the research team, Emily Bates, the discovery represents a personal victory.

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SW Michigan
3:50 pm
Wed May 1, 2013

Eight State House Dems get their committees back

Michigan State Capitol Building
Credit Melissa Benmark / WKAR

Eight state House Democrats who lost their committee assignments Tuesday got them back Wednesday.

Republican House Speaker Jase Bolger of Marshall removed the lawmakers, including Representative Kate Segal of Battle Creek, saying they had missed too many committee meetings. But the Gongwer News Service says Bolger reversed the decision after what he called “positive” meetings with the eight legislators.

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3:43 pm
Wed May 1, 2013

Albion thinking about closing its high school

Lead in text: 
The district's school board plans to hold a public forum on the issue Thursday at 6 p.m. at the high school library.
ALBION - The Albion Public Schools Board of Education is sure it wants to keep grades kindergarten through eight in the district, the board president said Wednesday, but is considering outsourcing its high school grades to cover a $1 million budget shortfall. Board President Al Pheley said Wednesday that the board is giving serious consideration to four options.
Afghanistan
3:16 pm
Wed May 1, 2013

Secret Cash To Afghan Leader: Corruption Or Just Foreign Aid?

Afghan President Hamid Karzai acknowledged a report this week that the CIA has regularly been sending him money. Afghans seem to have mixed feelings. The president is shown here speaking at an event in Kabul on March 10.
S. SABAWOON EPA/Landov

Originally published on Wed May 1, 2013 7:48 pm

After a report in The New York Times this week, Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai has acknowledged that the CIA has been secretly delivering bags of money to his office since the beginning of the war more than a decade ago.

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Television
2:25 pm
Wed May 1, 2013

The Strategy Of Putting Politics On TV

Transcript

JOHN DONVAN, HOST:

Now, you've probably noticed this. Political drama is not confined to just the news on TV these days. We are in an era that is seeing a proliferation of politically themed television and other forms of streaming. And maybe you've also noticed shows like "Veep."

(SOUNDBITE OF TV SHOW, "VEEP")

JULIA LOUIS-DREYFUS: (as Vice President Selina Meyer) I'm the vice president of the United States, you stupid little (bleep).

DONVAN: And "Alpha House."

(SOUNDBITE OF TV SHOW, "ALPHA HOUSE")

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Business
2:18 pm
Wed May 1, 2013

The Quiet Strength Of Introverts In The Workplace

Transcript

JOHN DONVAN, HOST:

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Politics
2:05 pm
Wed May 1, 2013

The Race For South Carolina's Congressional Seat

Transcript

JOHN DONVAN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm John Donvan in Washington. Mass momentum for Markey, Sanford's ears and what they can't always hear, and Obama's sequester quest for an understanding with the GOP. It is Wednesday and time for a...

PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: Trapped in a Taylor Swift album...

DONVAN: Edition of the political junkie.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDINGS)

PRESIDENT RONALD REAGAN: There you go again.

VICE PRESIDENT WALTER MONDALE: When I hear your new ideas, I'm reminded of that ad: Where's the beef?

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Movie Reviews
1:42 pm
Wed May 1, 2013

Two Indie Directors Go Confidently Mainstream

In Ramin Bahrani's At Any Price, Zac Efron stars as a teen rebelling against his family and dreaming of becoming a professional race car driver. Sound like a generic summer pic? Critic David Edelstein says the film has "a hell of a sting in its tail."
Hooman Bahrani Sony Pictures Classics

Studios are putting most of their eggs in $100 million baskets these days, even as American independent filmmakers go hungry from lack of mainstream attention. But two of my favorite American indie writer-directors, Jeff Nichols and Ramin Bahrani, have new films with bigger stars than they've had before — films they hope will break through to wider audiences. The results, at least artistically, are impressive.

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Author Interviews
1:22 pm
Wed May 1, 2013

Criminologist Believes Violent Behavior Is Biological

iStockphoto.com

Twenty years ago, when brain imaging made it possible for researchers to study the minds of violent criminals and compare them to the brain imaging of "normal" people, a whole new field of research — neurocriminology — opened up.

Adrian Raine was the first person to conduct a brain imaging study on murderers and has since continued to study the brains of violent criminals and psychopaths. His research has convinced him that while there is a social and environmental element to violent behavior, there's another side of the coin, and that side is biology.

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Beauty Shop
12:33 pm
Wed May 1, 2013

Spring Cleaning: Toss Your Old Jeans!

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

This is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. I'm Michel Martin. Now, we are going to head into the Beauty Shop. That's where we get a fresh cut on hot topics with our panel of women journalists, commentators, bloggers and activists.

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Latin America
12:00 pm
Wed May 1, 2013

Obama Crosses The Border

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

I'm Michel Martin and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. We are going to spend some time today talking about relationships across borders, especially the southern border. Later, we will hear about a practice called medical repatriation that's been documented by a law school think tank. Researchers there claim that a number of hospitals around the country have been sending undocumented patients back to their home countries, even while they're unconscious, to avoid paying for expensive care.

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NPR Story
12:00 pm
Wed May 1, 2013

Wole Soyinka, Nobel Laureate And Billie Holiday Fan

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

We'd like to end today with the occasional series we call In Your Ear. That's where some of our guests tell us about the songs they listen to for a little inspiration. Today we hear from Nigerian writer and Nobel laureate Wole Soyinka. He recently received yet another honor, the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award's Lifetime Achievement Prize. This unique prize is given to writers who broaden our vision of race and diversity. When we spoke to Wole Soyinka last year, he also shared his favorite music with us.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "ISEL'OFIN")

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Health Care
12:00 pm
Wed May 1, 2013

Deported While Unconscious

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

I'm Michel Martin, and this is TELL ME MORE, from NPR News. Coming up, you might be thinking about freshening up your spring wardrobe, and you might find yourself excited by the low prices being advertised at your favorite store at the mall. And then you hear that there were hundreds of deaths at a factory in Bangladesh. Our next guest is going to tell us what one might have to do with the other. We'll have that conversation in just a few minutes.

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Local Music
11:24 am
Wed May 1, 2013

From Wagner to 'Les Mis:' Rick Phelps previews Kalamazoo Singers concert

Rick Phelps
Credit Michael Lanka

Bayreuth to Broadway is the title of the May 5 concert by the Kalamazoo Singers.

Coming off the heels of an ambitious program in March featuring two major sacred works for choir and orchestra, Kalamazoo Singers conductor Rick Phelps looks ahead to a completely different program and fondly remembers the last one.

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Business
11:11 am
Wed May 1, 2013

Factory Audits And Safety Don't Always Go Hand In Hand

A Bangladeshi soldier walks through rows of burnt sewing machines Nov. 25, after a fire in the nine-story Tazreen factory in Savar, near Dhaka. The fire killed 112 people.
AFP/Getty Images

A factory collapse in Bangladesh last week killed more than 400 people, mostly garment workers. Hundreds more are still missing, making it one of the largest manufacturing disasters in history. It's just the latest horrific accident in the garment industry despite more than a decade of auditing aimed at improving working conditions.

In September 2012, a fire at the Ali Enterprises factory in Pakistan killed nearly 300 workers. Six weeks later, in November, a fire in the Tazreen factory in Bangladesh killed 112 people. Then, last week, there was the Rana Plaza collapse.

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Strange News
10:51 am
Wed May 1, 2013

High Schoolers Show Up For Prom On Wrong Night

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning, I'm Renee Montagne.

Prom is the high school highlight for many teens. But maybe not for 400 students from Bloomington High here in Southern California, who showed up for their prom a week early. The invitations had the wrong date. Faced with students in gowns and rented tuxes, the venue managed a makeshift party complete with DJ and chicken strips. One mother wasn't impressed. Those chicken strips, she said, were the most expensive the kids would ever eat.

Business
10:51 am
Wed May 1, 2013

Chuck E. Cheese Slims Down Along With Restaurant's Profits

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm David Greene. If you're like me you remember some great birthdays at Chuck E. Cheese. The mascot at the pizza joint, an oversized rodent, gave the best birthday hugs. But these days Chuck E. is just not himself. It looks like he's been on a major diet. The restaurant chain has had a few tough years.

Prison contracts
8:44 am
Wed May 1, 2013

Chairman of subcommittee overseeing corrections spending hails private vendor for food service

State Prison in Jackson
Credit AP Photo

Interview with John Proos

  

The chairman of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Corrections says hiring a private vendor to provide food service for Michigan prisons is a victory for taxpayers.

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7:53 am
Wed May 1, 2013

DNR plan would lift cap on state land purchases

Lead in text: 
Plan to go to governor approval
Michigan's Department of Natural Resources is delivering a proposal to Gov. Rick Snyder this month that it hopes will help lead to the lifting of a state-imposed cap on land acquisitions. Last year, the Republican-controlled Legislature limited the state's holdings to 4.6 million acres.
7:50 am
Wed May 1, 2013

Kalamazoo Public Schools cautiously optimistic about passing $62-million bond issue

Lead in text: 
KPS Superintendent Michael Rice says proposal appears to have backing based on survey done in fall
  • Source: Mlive
  • | Via: Kalamazoo Gazette
KALAMAZOO, MI -- A week away from the May 7 election, widespread opposition has yet to surface against a $62 million bond issue on the ballot for Kalamazoo Public Schools. "We've been answering all the questions that have been raised and there haven't been a lot of questions," KPS Superintendent Michael Rice said Tuesday.
6:30 am
Wed May 1, 2013

Report calls for improvements to Kellogg Arena

Lead in text: 
Estimate is repairs would cost about $3.49-million. About $2.5-million could come from city as it makes capital improvement projects
City commissioners and other stakeholders will be presented a report on Kellogg Arena as the city administration makes a 'case for investment.' The arena is included in a list of proposed capital improvement projects that would require the city to take on $16 million of new debt.
NPR Story
5:45 am
Wed May 1, 2013

J.C. Penney Wins Legal Fight Over Martha Stewart

Originally published on Wed May 1, 2013 10:51 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Proof of Martha Stewart's ongoing commercial appeal has been on display in a New York courtroom. Yesterday, an appeals court decided that department store J.C. Penney can continue selling a new line of housewares designed by Stewart. But the ruling keeps Macy's from having the exclusive rights to the brand.

NPR's Sonari Glinton reports.

SONARI GLINTON, BYLINE: There is one reason why both J.C. Penney and Macy's want Martha Stewart.

MARSHAL COHEN: She's had a history of having success.`

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NPR Story
5:45 am
Wed May 1, 2013

Decision Day: High School Seniors Secure Spots In College With Deposits

Originally published on Wed May 1, 2013 10:51 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Here in the United States, this is a big day for many high school seniors. It is College Decision Day, May 1st. It's when many seniors have to send in their deposits to college to secure a place in next year's freshman class. For many, this decision caps a long college application process. And to find out what it's been like, we visited a high school here in Washington D.C.

NICK VITALE: My name is Nicholas Vitale. I'm 18 years old and I'm a senior here at Gonzaga College High School. And I applied to six colleges.

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