All Things Considered

Weekdays at 4pm
Robert Siegel, Michele Norris, and Melissa Block

This program presents a trademark mix of news, interviews, commentaries, reviews, and offbeat features. It rings with the disparate voices of its commentators, from veteran analyst Daniel Schorr and storyteller Kevin Kling to poet Andrei Codrescu. It hums with the distinctive music that threads between reports -- music collected in the online program All Songs Considered. And by the time All Things Considered marked its 30th anniversary on the air, the program had earned many of journalism's highest honors, including the Peabody, DuPont and Overseas Press Club awards.

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4:31pm

Wed August 28, 2013
It's All Politics

Many U.S. Lawmakers Want A Say On Taking Action In Syria

Originally published on Wed August 28, 2013 7:44 pm

Rep. Scott Rigell, R-Va., has gotten dozens of House members to sign on to a letter demanding that President Obama ask for the official blessing of Congress before attacking Syria.
Steve Helber AP

The Obama administration appears poised to attack Syria after concluding Bashar Assad's government used chemical weapons, but many members of Congress say they haven't been briefed enough about why military action is warranted.

Opinions about Syria are all over the map, with many lawmakers saying the president cannot proceed without first getting authorization from Congress.

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1:30pm

Wed August 28, 2013
Shots - Health News

Diverse Gut Microbes, A Trim Waistline And Health Go Together

Originally published on Wed August 28, 2013 6:39 pm

The tale of the tape may be told, in part, by the microbes inside you.
iStockphoto.com

Scientists have discovered new clues about how microbes in our digestive systems may affect health.

European researchers found that the less diverse those microbes are, the more likely people are to gain weight, become obese and develop risk factors for serious health problems.

Evidence has been mounting in recent years that bacteria and other organisms in our bodies do a lot more than just help us digest food.

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6:12pm

Tue August 27, 2013
All Tech Considered

Outage Summer: What To Know About The Syrian Electronic Army

Originally published on Wed August 28, 2013 6:39 pm

The New York Times headquarters building in New York City.
Ramin Talaie Getty Images

In the latest hacking that brought down The New York Times on Tuesday, evidence points to the activist group of hackers known as the Syrian Electronic Army. This group also took out The Washington Post briefly last week and has used phishing attacks to take control of NPR.org and other national news organizations in previous months. The Washington Post notes:

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5:29pm

Tue August 27, 2013
Science

Sophisticated Prosthetics Help Liberate Disabled Adventurers

Originally published on Tue August 27, 2013 6:31 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Melissa Block.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

And I'm Robert Siegel.

A story now about technology and the creative ways it's being used to help people with disabilities enjoy the great outdoors - skiing, biking, even whitewater rafting, as Colorado Public Radio's Eric Whitney reports.

ERIC WHITNEY, BYLINE: In the equipment room at Telluride Adaptive Sports in Colorado, it's all about what works.

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5:29pm

Tue August 27, 2013
Energy

Vt. Nuclear Plant Shutdown A Sign Of Changing Energy Market

Originally published on Tue August 27, 2013 6:31 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

After years of litigation and political jousting, Vermont is set to close its only nuclear power plant by the end of next year. As John Dillon of Vermont Public Radio reports, the plant's closure is a sign of how much the country's energy market is changing.

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5:29pm

Tue August 27, 2013
World

U.N. Security Council Not Expected To Approve Syria Strike

Originally published on Tue August 27, 2013 6:31 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

A strike against Syria will almost certainly fail to win the support of the U.N. Security Council. That is because of Russian opposition, and the Chinese also oppose it. Why are the Russians so determined in their support of the Syrian regime despite Western claims that Bashar al-Assad's army has committed an atrocious war crime?

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4:53pm

Tue August 27, 2013
Music Reviews

Sam Baker's 'Say Grace' Is At Once Beautiful And Broken

Originally published on Tue August 27, 2013 6:31 pm

Sam Baker's Say Grace is his fourth album since he started making them in 2004, at age 50.
Chrislyn Lawrence Courtesy of the artist

Sam Baker has a backstory that must be told. In 1986, at age 31, he was traveling by train in Peru when a bomb from the terrorist group Shining Path exploded right next to him. The little girl he'd been talking to was killed along with half a dozen others, and his own injuries required 18 operations. His mangled left hand was rebuilt; work on his ears left him with a loud ringing that never stops, though Baker says he's made his peace with it.

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4:45pm

Tue August 27, 2013
Around the Nation

Elite Native American Firefighters Join Crews At Yosemite

Originally published on Tue August 27, 2013 8:57 pm

Flames burn near the Tuolumne Family Camp near Groveland, Calif., on Sunday.
Noah Berger EPA/Landov

One of the firefighting teams trying to contain the Rim Fire in and around Yosemite National Park is the Geronimo Hotshots team from San Carlos, Ariz., one of seven elite Native American firefighting crews in the U.S.

On the San Carlos Apache Indian Reservation, firefighting jobs are one of only a few ways for many young men to earn a living. For team member Jose Alvarez Santi Jr., 25, the work is rewarding — but being away from home fighting fires can be tough.

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3:55pm

Tue August 27, 2013
Shots - Health News

After Missteps In HIV Care, South Africa Finds Its Way

Originally published on Wed August 28, 2013 4:39 pm

A nurse takes a blood sample from Nkosi Minenhle, 15, in a mobile clinic set up to test students for HIV at Madwaleni High School in KwaZulu Natal, South Africa.
Stephane de Sakutin AFP/Getty Images

South Africa has more people with HIV than any other country in the world.

Roughly 5.5 million of its 53 million citizens are infected with the virus. In some of the hardest hit parts of the country, one-third of women of childbearing age are HIV positive.

Now, after years of delay and mistakes, South Africa is transforming how it approaches the disease.

The South African government is simplifying AIDS care, cutting treatment costs and providing antiviral drugs to almost 2 million people every day.

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12:00pm

Tue August 27, 2013
Accessibility Project

For Kids With Special Needs, More Places To Play

Originally published on Tue August 27, 2013 6:31 pm

Brooklyn Fisher rolls down the ramp on the playground named for her in Pocatello, Idaho. The playground was built using accessible features so children of all abilities could play alongside each other.
John W. Poole NPR

Remember running around the playground when you were a kid? Maybe hanging from the monkey bars or seeing who could swing the highest?

It wasn't just a mindless energy burn. Many have called play the work of childhood. Play teaches children how to make friends, make rules and navigate relationships.

But for kids whose disabilities keep them from using playgrounds, those opportunities can be lost.

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5:48pm

Mon August 26, 2013
The March On Washington At 50

Sleepy, Southern And Segregated: What D.C. Was Like In '63

Originally published on Tue August 27, 2013 5:30 pm

Charter bus passengers look for their transportation home after the March on Washington of Aug. 28, 1963.
AP

Fifty years ago this week, when hundreds of thousands of demonstrators came from across the country to take part in the 1963 March on Washington, the city was not yet the cosmopolitan capital that it arguably is today.

But it was a mecca for African-Americans, says historian Marya McQuirter.

"Washington was definitely a different city 50 years ago," she says, "for a number of reasons. By 1957, it had become the largest majority black city in the country."

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5:48pm

Mon August 26, 2013
The Salt

'Braai Day' Aims To Bring S. Africans Together Over Barbecue

Originally published on Tue August 27, 2013 5:30 pm

Jan Scannell, former accountant, has taken on a new identity as "Jan Braai," a South African TV show host and media personality promoting the idea of National Braai (barbecuing) Day, celebrated each year on Sept. 24.
Courtesy of Stephanus Rabie

Nelson Mandela is officially "improving," though still in critical condition at a South African hospital. His long battle with a lung infection has South Africans anxiously contemplating their "post-Mandela" future in a still racially divided country. In a unique strategy, one man is hoping to help heal those divisions with a pair of barbecue tongs.

Jan Scannell is a 32-year-old former accountant with a dream: To establish a national holiday in South Africa like July 4 called Braai Day.

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5:15pm

Mon August 26, 2013
Law

Embattled LA Sheriff Still Plans To Give Fifth Term A Shot

Originally published on Tue August 27, 2013 5:30 pm

Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca at the Men's Central Jail in downtown LA in 2012. Baca, who has been under fire for jailhouse abuses, is facing calls to step down and not seek a fifth term.
Reed Saxon AP

Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca — who oversees the largest municipal jail system in the country — is facing growing pressure to bow out of the race for what could be his fifth term.

There's a lot that's been piling up against Sheriff Baca lately. At the top of the list is an FBI probe into what's been described as a systemic pattern of unnecessary force against inmates in county jails.

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5:15pm

Mon August 26, 2013
Sports

Was 1973 'Battle Of The Sexes' Tennis Match Thrown?

Originally published on Tue August 27, 2013 5:30 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Robert Siegel.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

And I'm Melissa Block.

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5:15pm

Mon August 26, 2013
Strange News

Finns Dominate Mobile Phone Throwing World Championship

Originally published on Tue August 27, 2013 5:30 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

And we wrap up this week's All Tech Considered with a story out of Finland.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

This past weekend, 80 people from six countries competed in the annual Mobile Phone Throwing World Championships. The Finns shut out the competition, winning first, second and third place overall.

SIEGEL: The top tosser threw his handheld device an impressive 320 feet. The top woman on the field was a 31-year-old Swede - Asa Lundgren. Her distance: 132 feet. She's a newcomer to the sport but threw javelin in her youth.

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