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Middle East
2:52 am
Thu February 23, 2012

Egypt's Press Still Feels The Power Of The Military

An Egyptian stock trader reads a copy of the Al-Masry Al-Youm newspaper last November. Critics say the newspaper is reluctant to criticize the ruling military council and has engaged in self-censorship.
Amr Nabil AP

When Egypt's former President Hosni Mubarak was ousted from power last February, many Egyptian journalists hoped for a new era of freedom of expression.

But many now say they've been disappointed. A year after the revolution, Egypt's independent media still face many challenges, mostly, but not exclusively, from the country's ruling military council.

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Election 2012
1:29 am
Thu February 23, 2012

Retired GOP Voters In Ariz. Unmoved By Mesa Debate

Back in October, a group of Republican voters in Arizona gathered at NPR's request to watch one of the early GOP presidential debates on TV. Wednesday night, they got together again. NPR's Ted Robbins watched with them in Saddlebrooke, a retirement community northwest of Tucson, and asked them to share their thoughts.

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Movie Interviews
11:01 pm
Wed February 22, 2012

Private Screening: How Hollywood Watches Its Work

At the Charles Aidikoff Screening Room on Rodeo Drive, filmmakers can screen their works in progress for an invite-only audience in the small, 57-seat theater. The screening room is also rented to show films to members of the Academy and the press.
Cindy Carpien NPR

Before they made it to the Oscars, the nominated films — not to mention all the films that didn't make the cut — were viewed by some 6,000 members of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Many of those movies were shown in small, private, rented screening rooms all over Hollywood.

The studios have their own screening rooms, of course, but often directors want a more private place to screen works in progress — with no studio suits in sight.

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Crisis In The Housing Market
11:01 pm
Wed February 22, 2012

With Banks As Landlords, Some Tenants Neglected

Luz Escamilla's bedroom walls are stained with the blood of bedbugs. She says she doesn't want to bleach them until reps from CW Capital, her landlord, pay an in-person visit to her Maryland home.
Aarti Shahani NPR

Across the country, big banks and other large investors are buying up tens of thousands of foreclosed rental properties. They're not always model landlords, according to tenants and regulators. Some banks are failing to follow local and state housing codes, leaving tenants to live in squalor — without even a number to call in the most dire situations.

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Planet Money
11:01 pm
Wed February 22, 2012

How Mitt Romney's Firm Tried — And Failed — To Build A Paper Empire

Mitt Romney, shown here when he was president of Bain Capital.
David L. Ryan Boston Globe via Getty Images

Originally published on Mon May 7, 2012 11:20 am

Mitt Romney is campaigning as a businessman who knows how to turn the economy around — a skill he says he learned during his time turning companies around, as president of the private equity firm Bain Capital.

So today, we're going to take a look at two deals that Bain did while Mitt Romney was heading the firm. This afternoon, we'll tell the story of one of Bain's successes.

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Law
5:56 pm
Wed February 22, 2012

Is A Lie Just Free Speech, Or Is It A Crime?

The Supreme Court heard arguments over whether it should be a crime to lie about receiving military medals. Here large replicas of the Medals of Honor hang at the Medal of Honor Museum.
Bruce Smith ASSOCIATED PRESS

The U.S. Supreme Court took up the subject of lying on Wednesday.

Specifically at issue was the constitutionality of a 2006 law that makes it a crime to lie about having received a military medal. But the questions posed by the justices ranged far beyond that — from advertising puffery to dating lies.

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The Two-Way
5:39 pm
Wed February 22, 2012

12.76-Carat Pink Diamond Unearthed In Australia Could Be Worth Millions

An undated handout photo released by mining giant Rio Tinto on Feb. 22 shows a 12.76 carat pink diamond — the largest of the rare and precious stones ever found in Australia.
Rio Tinto AFP/Getty Images

Take a look at this rock:

That's a 12.76-carat pink diamond that was found at Rio Tinto's Argyle diamond mine in Western Australia. The mine said it is the biggest of its kind found in the country, which is a big deal because that mine produces 90 percent of the global market diamond supply.

The Telegraph reports:

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The Salt
5:38 pm
Wed February 22, 2012

A Puff Of Controversy Over Inhalable Caffeine

A woman holds an AeroShot inhalable caffeine device in Boston.
Charles Krupa AP

Originally published on Thu February 23, 2012 11:19 am

Since we introduced you to AeroShot, a product that delivers a blast of caffeine through an inhaler, a few months back, it seems a lot of folks — mostly around college campuses in New York and Boston — have tried the quick pick-me-up.

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All Tech Considered
5:21 pm
Wed February 22, 2012

Troubled Sony Pins Hopes On PlayStation Vita

Sony's PlayStation Vita and its predecessor, The PlayStation Portable.
Reed Saxon AP

Sony launched the PlayStation Vita, its first hand-held gaming device in seven years, Wednesday. Vita, of course, is the Latin word for "life." And after suffering a series of tough blows — from the Japanese earthquake and tsunami to a relentlessly strong yen and a significant hacking attack — a bit of new life is just what the struggling company needs.

The Vita went on sale at a Best Buy in Los Angeles Wednesday morning. Despite the company's $50 million marketing campaign, only about a dozen gamers were on hand.

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Law
5:19 pm
Wed February 22, 2012

Supreme Court Considers Case On Military Honors

The Supreme Court engaged in a lively debate Wednesday when it heard oral arguments in a case testing whether the 2006 Stolen Valor Act is constitutional. The law makes it a crime to lie about military honors.

Shots - Health Blog
4:59 pm
Wed February 22, 2012

High Court Punts On California Medicaid Ruling

A key legal case challenging cuts in Medicaid pay for doctors, hospitals and pharmacists is heading back to California.
Keith J. R. Binns iStockphoto.com

The Supreme Court has officially declined to decide one of its bigger cases of the term: whether or not doctors, hospitals and other health care providers can sue a state to challenge cuts in the Medicaid health program for the poor.

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News
4:53 pm
Wed February 22, 2012

A Long Time Coming: Glimpse Inside The Upcoming African American Museum

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 10:00 am

At the groundbreaking on the National Mall on Wednesday, President Obama said the newest Smithsonian museum has been has "a long time coming" and will serve "not just as a record of tragedy, but as a celebration of life." The National Museum of African American History and Culture is expected to open in 2015.

Book Reviews
4:52 pm
Wed February 22, 2012

What Happened In 'Watergate': An Alternate Take

Getty Images

Nearly 40 years after the Watergate scandal, Watergate, Thomas Mallon's latest historical novel, captures both the metastasizing dishonesty and the ludicrousness of this great American tragedy of political ambition run amok.

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The Two-Way
4:42 pm
Wed February 22, 2012

Mail Containing Harmless Powdery Substance Sent To Congressional Offices

Three different congressional offices have received mailings that contained a suspicious powdery substance.

Terrance W. Gainer, the Senate Sergeant at Arms, sent an email to congressional staff saying that a Senate State office and House District office received a mailing yesterday and a Senate State office received a letter today. Gainer said the letters were postmarked in Portland and the substance was found to be harmless.

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The Two-Way
4:07 pm
Wed February 22, 2012

Is Einstein Right? Error Could Account For Faster-Than-Light Neutrinos

A 2010 light installation entitled 'Speed of Light' in London.
Ben Stansall AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed February 22, 2012 4:25 pm

Remember last year, when we reported that Italian scientists claimed to have broken the speed of light? Remember the mystical implications of that? The possibility that Einstein was wrong? That our very basic idea of physics was challenged? The idea that you could be shot before a bullet left a gun?

Then you also remember that our friend and astrophysicist Adam Frank warned that these results should be looked at with great suspicion.

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