State and National News


Middle East
3:28 am
Wed March 13, 2013

Syrian Cyber-Rebel Wages War, One Hack At A Time

Ahmad "Harvester" Heidar is a computer software engineer whose work for the Syrian rebels includes sweeping the hard drives of detained anti-government activists, and trying to develop a robot that will help extract sniper victims in Syria. Turkish officials have given Heidar the green light to develop a prototype of his robot, which he calls Tina.
Jodi Hilton for NPR

Originally published on Wed March 13, 2013 7:27 pm

The Internet is a battleground in Syria, a place where President Bashar Assad's regime has mounted a sophisticated surveillance campaign that includes monitoring and arresting activists by tracking their Facebook pages.

The Syrian Electronic Army, an arm of the Syrian military, is in charge of the monitoring.

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Middle East
3:26 am
Wed March 13, 2013

With Official Wink And Nod, Young Saudis Join Syria's Rebels

Mohammad al-Qahtani, a human rights and democracy activist, speaks at his home in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, in 2011.
Hassan Ammar AP

Originally published on Wed March 13, 2013 4:36 pm

Following a circuitous route from Saudi Arabia up through Turkey or Jordan and then crossing a lawless border, hundreds of young Saudis are secretly making their way into Syria to join groups fighting against the government of Syrian President Bashar Assad, GlobalPost has learned.

With the tacit approval from the House of Saud and financial support from wealthy Saudi elites, the young men take up arms in what Saudi clerics have called a "jihad," or "holy war," against the Assad regime.

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Health Care
3:24 am
Wed March 13, 2013

'We Shouldn't Have To Live Like This'

Linwood Hearne, 64, and his wife, Evelyn, 47, stand near Interstate 83 in Baltimore where they have slept on and off for the past four years. According to the local nonprofit Health Care for the Homeless (HCH), a growing percentage of homeless patients nationally are 50 or older, with complex mental and physical conditions.
Kainaz Amaria NPR

Originally published on Thu March 14, 2013 11:05 am

If aging is not for sissies, that's especially true if you're homeless. You can be on your feet for hours, or forced to sleep in the frigid cold or seriously ill with no place to go. But, increasingly, the nation's homeless population is getting older. By some estimates, more than half of single homeless adults are 47 or older.

And there's growing alarm about what this means — both for the aging homeless and for those who have to foot the bill. The cost to society, especially for health care and social services, could mushroom.

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It's All Politics
2:06 am
Wed March 13, 2013

Republicans Face Off Over Strategy For Picking Candidates

Karl Rove and the big donors behind his Crossroads superPAC have formed a new group, the Conservative Victory Project, to vet and recruit Republican Senate candidates.
Rich Pedroncelli AP

Originally published on Wed March 13, 2013 4:36 pm

Republicans have a steep hill to climb if they want to take control of the Senate next year. The GOP would need to pick up six seats in 2014.

There are plenty of open seats and vulnerable Democrats up for re-election, but Republicans are debating the best way to win.

Last year's Senate results were disappointing for the GOP: The party ended up losing a number of seats it thought were winnable — and now it's trying to figure out what to do differently next year.

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Sweetness And Light
12:53 am
Wed March 13, 2013

School Bands Should Not Be Entertainment Adjunct For Sports

A marching band performs at halftime on the field during a high school football game.
Jani Bryson

Originally published on Wed March 13, 2013 4:36 pm

Several years ago I gave a speech in which I mentioned that athletes tended to be the only college students who were awarded scholarships for what is an extracurricular activity.

Afterward, Myles Brand, the late president of the NCAA, told me I was wrong, that many music extracurricular scholarships were awarded at colleges.

Brand and I seldom agreed on much of anything, but I've always found him to be a gentleman. So, I expressed surprise at this claim.

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This Is NPR
8:59 pm
Tue March 12, 2013

Gustavo Santaolalla Hearts NPR

Melissa Kuypers NPR

Originally published on Tue March 12, 2013 6:34 pm

Gustavo Santaolalla might be best known for his Oscar-winning scores. He's taken home golden statues for both Brokeback Mountain and Babel. But Santaolalla is also a pioneer of Latin rock, with his Argentinean band Arco Iris.

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Planet Money
8:58 pm
Tue March 12, 2013

Planet Money: Don't Believe The Hype

Originally published on Wed March 13, 2013 8:20 am

Despite all the celebration, the Dow Jones industrial average has not hit record highs recently. If you adjust for inflation, the highs just aren't as high as they seem.

And even if it does hit a real, inflation-adjusted high in the next few weeks, it won't mean much. The Dow is a seriously flawed stock index, and it's certainly not a good way to measure what's going on in the overall economy.

On today's show, we rain on the Dow's parade and explain why a lot of very smart people say we should ignore the Dow.

For more on the Dow:

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Music Documentaries
8:57 pm
Tue March 12, 2013

Dan Deacon On Q2 Music's 'Spaces'

Dan Deacon's practice space.

Originally published on Wed July 2, 2014 2:51 pm

The music of electroacoustic composer Dan Deacon is defined by its extreme eclecticism. A tangle of sputtering beats, Disklaviers and homemade instruments, Deacon's compositional style draws as much from Conlon Nancarrow and electronic music pioneer Raymond Scott as it does from the worlds of pop, electronic and dance music.

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The Picture Show
8:57 pm
Tue March 12, 2013

Japanese Photography: A Tale Of Two Artists

Photos from the upcoming exhibition Japan's Modern Divide, by Kansuke Yamamoto (left) and Hiroshi Hamaya (right)
Courtesy of the J. Paul Getty Museum

Originally published on Tue March 12, 2013 3:47 pm

There's no way you can really reduce the photographic history of a place to just a few artists, let alone two. But the curators at L.A.'s J. Paul Getty Museum are trying — in the forthcoming exhibition, Japan's Modern Divide.

By focusing on two artists, the show will examine how, as Japan faced westernization, photography diverged in two general directions: Hiroshi Hamaya's documentary style centered on Japan's traditional culture, while Kansuke Yamamoto's avant-garde art more closely aligned with French surrealism.

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Music Interviews
8:57 pm
Tue March 12, 2013

Wild Belle: Musical Siblings Go Island Hopping

Wild Belle's debut album is titled Isles.
Jennifer Tzar Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue March 12, 2013 5:42 pm

Elliot and Natalie Bergman, a sibling duo originally from Chicago, are Wild Belle. Elliot has been in other bands (including NOMO) but says this project with his sister, eight years his junior, is just the right fit.

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