4:00am

Thu November 17, 2011
Europe

Lack of Trust Underlies Greece's Societal Problems

Renee Montagne talks to financial writer Michael Lewis about societal problems underlying the Greek financial crisis: loss of trust, lack of civil society and refusal to pay and collect taxes.

4:00am

Thu November 17, 2011
Books

2011 National Book Award Winners Announced

Stephen Greenblatt's "The Swerve," a dramatic account of the Renaissance-era rediscovery of the Latin poet Lucretius, won for nonfiction. "Salvage the Bones," set in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, by Jesmyn Ward, won for fiction.

4:00am

Thu November 17, 2011
Business

Labor Department Wants To Make Farming Safer For Kids

Originally published on Thu November 17, 2011 12:40 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Life as a kid on a farm can seem idyllic. The work, though, can be dangerous. Kids who do farm work are six times more likely to be killed than those doing other jobs.

The Department of Labor now wants new regulations that would bar children under the age of 16 from doing the most dangerous farm jobs. As Harvest Public Media's Peggy Lowe reports, that's angered many who depend on such labor, and see it as a right of passage.

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4:00am

Thu November 17, 2011
Africa

Congolese Presidential Candidate Orders Jail Breaks

Originally published on Thu November 17, 2011 12:40 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Voters in the Congo head to the polls at the end of this month. The campaigning has been beset by violence which threatens to undermine an electoral process in a giant nation that's at the heart of Africa. NPR's Ofeibea Quist-Arcton reports.

OFEIBEA QUIST-ARCTON, BYLINE: Campaigning took a stormy turn when veteran Congolese opposition politician and presidential candidate Etienne Tshisekedi sent a bombshell. He proclaimed himself president and ordered his supporters to stage jailbreaks to free their detained colleagues.

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4:00am

Thu November 17, 2011
NPR Story

EPA Sites Asarco For Toxic Violations

The Environmental Protection Agency says the Asarco copper smelter in Hayden, Arizona, has been continuously emitting illegal amounts of lead, arsenic and eight other dangerous toxins, for the last six years. The agency's finding means Asarco could face millions of dollars in fines and could be forced to install expensive pollution controls. The EPA disclosed the action last week to NPR and the Center for Public Integrity, which were jointly investigating toxic air pollution in the town.

2:15am

Thu November 17, 2011
The Two-Way

At A Quiet Zuccotti Park, Occupy Wall Street Prepares For Big Protests

A near-empty Zuccotti Park on Wednesday night.
Eyder Peralta NPR

Late at night on Wednesday, protesters at Zuccotti Park in New York were outnumbered by police. But every now and then a new protester would come into the park and just stare at the space like they were looking at it for the first time.

Jo Robbin, 29, was one of them. One of the first things she did as soon as she made it past the security check point was pull up her sleeves to show the red markings the plastic ties had left her.

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12:01am

Thu November 17, 2011
Asia

Asia In Focus As U.S Expands Australia Defense Ties

Originally published on Thu November 17, 2011 12:40 pm

Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard and President Obama hold a joint news conference in Australia on Wednesday. The U.S. is sending some 250 U.S. Marines to the country next year, a number that will later grow to 2,500.
Saul Loeb AFP/Getty Images

President Obama traveled early Thursday to the Australian city of Darwin, a base for past U.S.-Australian military cooperation. Now it will be one of several military bases from which the U.S. operates as it seeks to reassert itself in Asia.

Some 250 U.S. Marines will arrive in northern Australia next year, a number that will later expand to about 2,500. U.S. jets and warships will also train with the Australians.

Abraham Denmark, a China specialist at the Center for Naval Analyses, sees the new focus on Asia as a natural evolution of U.S. interests.

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12:01am

Thu November 17, 2011
Shots - Health Blog

Why Brain Injuries Are More Common In Preemies

Originally published on Thu November 17, 2011 8:26 pm

The most common cause of brain injury in premature infants is a lack of oxygen in the days and weeks after birth, researchers say.
Ibrahim Usta AP

Scientists say they are beginning to understand why brain injuries are so common in very premature infants — and they are coming up with strategies to prevent or repair these injuries.

The advances could eventually help reduce the number of premature babies who develop cerebral palsy, epilepsy or behavioral disorders such as ADHD, researchers told the Society for Neuroscience meeting in Washington, D.C., this week.

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12:01am

Thu November 17, 2011
Newt Gingrich

By Attacking The Media, Gingrich Built A Following

Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich has relished attacking the journalists questioning him during the GOP debates.
Scott Olson Getty Images

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich was once written off as a footnote in the 2012 Republican presidential primaries. But, for the moment, polls now show him among the leaders.

Gingrich may have found his voice, in part, by turning the tables on the political press. Republicans have been doing this for decades — quite explicitly at least since Richard Nixon and Spiro Agnew in 1968.

In Gingrich's case, it was a strategy masquerading as a tactic — one that he adopted over the summer at a time of desperation.

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12:01am

Thu November 17, 2011
Election 2012

Political Climate Ripe For A Third-Party Prospect

Originally published on Thu November 17, 2011 2:02 pm

Ross Perot, shown on a video screen, addresses the Reform Party's national convention in July 1999 in Dearborn, Mich. The billionaire founder of the Reform Party, Perot ran for president as a third-party candidate in both 1992 and 1996.
Jeff Kowalsky AFP/Getty Images

Voter dissatisfaction with both parties is at an all-time high — and voters' trust in Washington is at an all-time low.

This is the kind of political climate that is welcoming for an alternative to the Democrats and the Republicans.

Pollster Stan Greenberg worked for Bill Clinton in 1992, when third-party candidate Ross Perot roiled the race. If it happened back then, Greenberg says, it can happen again next year.

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