Tue June 7, 2011
Spotlight on Country

Matraca Berg: 'Dreaming' Out Loud

Matraca Berg.
Glen Rose Courtesy of the artist

Singer-songwriter Matraca Berg co-wrote her first hit song with Bobby Braddock at age 18. She's a two-time Grammy nominee and a member of the Songwriters Hall of Fame in Nashville, where she was born, raised and still lives.

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Tue June 7, 2011
The Record

A Record Label Resurrects The Radio Star

Alex Turner and Matt Helders of Arctic Monkeys at the Domino Radio studio on Monday.
Courtesy of Domino Records

You'd think that a country that gave birth to The Beatles and The Rolling Stones would have radio stations belting out plenty of new music. But in Britain, critics complain about a surprising lack of variety and an absence of risk taking among many broadcasters. The BBC gives some exposure to new bands.

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Tue June 7, 2011
The Two-Way

China, Russia Hold Talks With Libyan Rebels

Russia and China, two countries that abstained from voting in the United Nations resolution authorizing use of force in Libya, say their diplomats have made contact with Libyan rebels.

The AFP reports on China's dealings:

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Tue June 7, 2011
Environmental Watchdog

East Kentucky Coal Mining on Decline

According to a report by the U.S. Energy Information Administration, coal production in eastern Kentucky declined in 2010, even though the industry saw a slight boost in western Kentucky. The variance in production is partially due to the different mining conditions found in the two regions. In eastern Kentucky, coal production declined by nearly 10 percent from 2009. But during the same time period, production increased by more than 13 percent in the western part of the state.

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Tue June 7, 2011
Planet Money

How The Greek Crisis Could Hit The U.S.

U.S. banks haven't loaned much money to Greece. So, on the surface, it shouldn't much matter for the U.S. financial system if Greece defaults on its debt.

But U.S. firms have apparently been doing a brisk business selling credit default swaps on Greek bonds — essentially, insurance contracts that pay off if Greece doesn't make good on its debts.

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Tue June 7, 2011

Mozambique's Struggles Fueled By The Price Of Bread

The Padaria Allianca, a bakery in Maputo, the capital of Mozambique, turns out 12,000 loaves of bread a day. But the Mozambican government is planning to end food subsidies it can't afford, putting the bakery's business in doubt.
Melissa Block NPR

Everywhere you go in Mozambique, you see people at bakeries buying their daily bread — delicious crusty loaves or eggy sweet rolls.

At the Padaria Allianca, a bakery in the capital, Maputo, customers wait in a long line for their bread. Workers are busy slapping and shaping golden mounds of dough. The bakery turns out 12,000 loaves a day.

The story of bread in Mozambique — as in much of the developing world — turns out to be a tale of poverty, food security and social unrest.

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Tue June 7, 2011

As GM Hires, Michigan City's Outlook Brightens

Hamtramck, Mich., has seen its fortunes rise and fall with the auto industry. In recent years, they've been falling. But now there's reason for some optimism. General Motors says it will add 2,500 jobs at its Detroit-Hamtramck plant, and bring production of the next-generation Chevy Impala to the facility.

The plant, which straddles the border dividing the two cities, has not exactly been humming with activity in recent years. Sluggish demand for the cars it produced had the plant running one shift, four days a week.

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Tue June 7, 2011
NPR FM Berlin Blog

Berlin Flashback: Summer 2010 With NPR FM

Monika Mueller-Kroll, Dr. R. Jay Magill Jr.
Kingsley Smith for NPR

It's been almost one year since NPR FM 104,1 organized several events in Berlin. Here's a photo of staff, friends, and freelancers enjoying a happy moment.

Left to right: Sara Richards, Monika Mueller-Kroll, Dr. R. Jay Magill Jr., and Bettina Warburg-Johnson.

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Tue June 7, 2011
All Politics are Local

Millionaires Group Okay with Higher Taxes

A group of wealthy Americans  are marking the ten-year anniversary of the tax cuts signed into law by former President George W. Bush by calling for an end to the reductions for people making over $1 million. The group Patriotic Millionaires sent a video message to members of Congress Tuesday asking lawmakers to raise their taxes in order to help reduce the deficit. But Republican leaders have said any discussion about tax increases are a non-starter and Democratic support for the break has been solid.

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Tue June 7, 2011

Familiar Role For Conservative Provocateur Breitbart

Andrew Breitbart, who runs BigGovernment.com, speaks to the media before a press conference held by Rep. Anthony Weiner on Monday.
Andrew Burton Getty Images

Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-NY) clearly brought the scandal over his digital dalliances upon himself, but the media's coverage of the story from the moments after he sent that errant tweet has been orchestrated almost entirely by one person: conservative blog entrepreneur Andrew Breitbart.

Breitbart, the other famous guy at the center of this scandal, has made the scandal a national fixation.

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