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Here! Now! Imperative: not to be avoided: necessary. In a typical week, the show will cover not only all the big news stories, but also the stories behind the stories, or some of the less crucial but equally intriguing things happening in the world.

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NPR Story
3:46 pm
Thu September 26, 2013

A Look At Parkinson's As Michael J. Fox Returns To TV

Michael J. Fox returns to television tonight with the debut of "The Michael J. Fox Show." (NBC)

Originally published on Thu September 26, 2013 5:03 pm

It’s been 22 years since Michael J. Fox was first diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease — and 15 years since he famously told Barbara Walters that he would be cured of Parkinson’s before his 50th birthday.

That didn’t happen, but neither did his doctor’s stated expectation that he would have only about 10 more years to work in television.

Fox makes his return to television tonight — no longer trying hide his Parkinson’s symptoms, as he did during his six years on “Spin City.”

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NPR Story
3:46 pm
Thu September 26, 2013

Panera CEO Takes The Food Stamps Challenge

Originally published on Thu September 26, 2013 5:03 pm

Ron Shaich, the CEO and founder of Panera Bread lived on a food and beverage budget of $4.50 per day for a week.

That figure is about the same amount someone receiving food assistance would get per day.

He joins Here & Now to share what he’s learned from the experience.

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NPR Story
3:45 pm
Thu September 26, 2013

Popular Science Disables Online Comments

(ccarlstead/Flickr)

Originally published on Thu September 26, 2013 5:03 pm

The magazine Popular Science is turning off its user comments, citing a study from the University of Wisconsin that shows readers exposed to rude or insulting comments reported a skewed view of the information they read in the article.

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NPR Story
3:34 pm
Wed September 25, 2013

Author Karen Russell Awarded MacArthur 'Genius Grant'

Originally published on Wed September 25, 2013 4:39 pm

Karen Russell’s debut novel “Swamplandia!” got critical raves, as did her follow-up short story collection “Vampires in the Lemon Grove.”

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NPR Story
3:34 pm
Wed September 25, 2013

Kenyans Mourn, Come To Grips With Mall Attack

Zachary Yach and four others in the popular ArtCaffe survived the attack. (BBC)

Originally published on Wed September 25, 2013 4:41 pm

Kenya has begun three days of national mourning today, after the siege of a Nairobi shopping mall ended on Tuesday.

Now, the stories of what happened inside the mall are emerging, and people affected by the siege are still coming to terms with what’s happened.

The BBC’s Will Ross is in Nairobi and has been meeting those who were there, and the people trying to help them.

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NPR Story
3:34 pm
Wed September 25, 2013

Upswing In China's Economy May Be Temporary

In this May 30, 2013: Volvo car at an assembly line of a Volvo factory in Chengdu, southwestern China's Sichuan province released by Volvo Cars. (AP Photo/Volvo Cars)

Originally published on Wed September 25, 2013 3:46 pm

Manufacturing in China is at a six-month high, but many economists think this growth could be driven by government policy rather than by real demand.

“Modest growth is what you’re seeing,” NPR’s Shanghai correspondent Frank Langfitt told Here & Now.

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NPR Story
3:46 pm
Tue September 24, 2013

Remembering Nirvana's Final Album 'In Utero'

Cover art for "In Utero," Nirvana's third and final album. The album is being reissued to mark its 20th anniversary. (Nirvana)

To commemorate the 20th anniversary of Nirvana’s third and final record, “In Utero,” Here & Now speaks with pop culture critic Renee Graham, and Here & Now producer and director Alex Ashlock shares these thoughts:

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NPR Story
3:46 pm
Tue September 24, 2013

Ted Cruz Embraces 'Wacko Bird' Label

Originally published on Tue September 24, 2013 3:42 pm

Freshman U.S. Senator Ted Cruz of Texas began an old-fashioned talking filibuster this afternoon, to try to get the rest of the Senate to go along with his plan to defund Obamacare.

He will probably not be at a loss for words.

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NPR Story
3:46 pm
Tue September 24, 2013

After 21-Year Dry Streak, Pirates Make The Playoffs

Pittsburgh Pirates center fielder Andrew McCutchen, left, Starling Marte, center and Marlon Byrd celebrate the Pirates' 2-1 win over the Chicago Cubs after a baseball game Monday, Sept. 23, 2013, in Chicago. (Charles Rex Arbogast/AP)

The Pittsburgh Pirates finally snapped out of their 21-year losing streak and have clinched a spot in the playoffs.

In their game against the Chicago Cubs on Monday, the Pirates won 2-1, allowing them to advance to the playoffs, something the team hasn’t done since 1992.

Lanny Frattare experienced that day all those years ago. Frattare was the play-by-play announcer for the Pirates for 33 years.

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NPR Story
3:28 pm
Mon September 23, 2013

Elections In Germany May Shift Economic Tone In Eurozone

German chancellor Angela Merkel smiles behind German flags at the party headquarters in Berlin, Sunday, Sept. 22, 2013. (Michael Sohn/AP)

Originally published on Mon September 23, 2013 3:53 pm

Chancellor Angela Merkel has won her third term as Germany’s top leader.

But Merkel’s center-right Christian Democrats party fell five seats short of an absolute majority in the German Bundestag — the national parliament.

This may change some economic policies in the eurozone’s largest economy, including a softening towards bailed-out nations like Greece.

Financial Times reporter Cardiff Garcia joins Here & Now to explain.

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NPR Story
3:28 pm
Mon September 23, 2013

Los Campesinos! Exclamation Point Not Optional

Los Campesinos! is a Welsh band. The band's new album is called "No Blues." (facebook.com/loscampesinos)

Originally published on Mon September 23, 2013 3:53 pm

NPR Music’s writer and editor Stephen Thompson brings Here & Now a new song each week to jazz up our play lists.

This week it’s a song from the upcoming album from Los Campesinos!. The album is called “No Blues” and the song is “What Death Leaves Behind.”

Thompson says the punctuation in the band’s name isn’t just casual.

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NPR Story
3:28 pm
Mon September 23, 2013

Michigan Prepares To Battle Invasive Asian Carp

The Michigan Department of Natural Resources uses electric probes to stun fish. (Lindsey Smith/Michigan Radio)

Originally published on Mon September 23, 2013 3:53 pm

Asian carp, an invasive and destructive fish, have spread through the Mississippi, Ohio, Illinois and Missouri rivers. In total, the fish are affecting more than 20 states from Louisiana to South Dakota.

Under the right conditions, it could take as few as a dozen Asian carp to establish a population in the Great Lakes. That’s according to a report published this month by scientists in Ontario.

If they’re correct, the risk of even just a handful of Asian carp escaping into the Great Lakes could be more significant than officials had planned.

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NPR Story
3:21 pm
Fri September 20, 2013

Atlanta Wedding Reception Donated To The Homeless

Carol Fowler (in blue dress) and her family donated the reception from a cancelled wedding to 200 of Atlanta's homeless. (Hosea Feed the Hungry)
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NPR Story
3:21 pm
Fri September 20, 2013

Verdict In Trial Of Bo Xilai Due This Weekend

In this Aug. 22, 2013 file photo released by the Jinan Intermediate People's Court, former Politburo member and Chongqing city party leader Bo Xilai, center, stands on trial at the court in eastern China's Shandong province. A verdict is expected on Sept. 22. (Jinan Intermediate People's Court via AP)

China’s biggest political scandal in decades reaches a conclusion this weekend.

A verdict is due in the trial of Bo Xilai, one of China’s rising political stars. He’s accused of corruption and covering up the murder of the British businessman Neil Heywood.

Bo’s wife has already been found guilty of poisoning Heywood, with whom she had a business dispute. Bo remains a popular figure.

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NPR Story
3:21 pm
Fri September 20, 2013

13 Injured In Chicago Park Shooting

Chicago Police detectives investigate the scene where a number of people, including a 3-year-old child, were shot in a city park on the south side of Chicago, Thursday, Sept. 19, 2013. (Paul Beaty/AP)

Thirteen people were wounded in a shooting in Chicago late Thursday night, including a 3-year-old boy.

The shooting took place in the Back of the Yards neighborhood on the South Side of Chicago.

Police are still interviewing victims to determine a motive for the shooting, but a police spokesman said it appeared to be gang-related.

Chicago had more than 500 homicides in 2012, more than any other city in the United States.

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NPR Story
3:33 pm
Thu September 19, 2013

Play Illuminates Rocky Year In Johnson Presidency

Bryan Cranston is pictured in "All the Way." (Evgenia Eliseeva/American Repertory Theater)

Bill Rauch graduated from Harvard University in 1984 and co-founded the Cornerstone Theater Company, which made a point of bringing theater to underserved places.

He’s since moved on to become artistic director of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. Now, he returns to Cambridge, Mass. to direct “All the Way” at the American Repertory Theater.

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NPR Story
3:33 pm
Thu September 19, 2013

Revisiting The Fire That Killed 19 Hotshots

Unidentified members of the Granite Mountain Interagency Hotshot Crew from Prescott, Ariz., pose together in this undated photo provided by the City of Prescott. Some of the men in this photograph were among the 19 firefighters killed while battling an out-of-control wildfire near Yarnell, Ariz., on Sunday, June 30, 2013, according to Prescott Fire Chief Dan Fraijo. It was the nation's biggest loss of firefighters in a wildfire in 80 years. (City of Prescott, Ariz.)

The Yarnell Hill fire that swept through Arizona in late June and early July burned more than 8,000 acres, destroyed 129 buildings and killed 19 firefighters — members of the Granite Mountain Hotshot crew from nearby Prescott, Ariz.

An independent investigative team has been looking at whether or not human error contributed to the deaths of almost the entire team. Their findings are expected out in the next few weeks.

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NPR Story
3:33 pm
Thu September 19, 2013

SEC Wants Companies To Disclose CEO-Worker Pay Ratio

The Securities and Exchange Commission's Washington DC headquarters. (Wikimedia Commons)

Originally published on Thu July 3, 2014 12:27 pm

The Securities and Exchange Commission has proposed a rule that would require publicly traded companies to disclose the difference in pay between the company’s CEO and its employees.

The rule is applauded by unions and labor advocacy groups that think the transparency would help investors “identify top heavy compensation models,” according to Reuters. However, business groups oppose the measure.

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NPR Story
3:36 pm
Wed September 18, 2013

From Arsenio To Queen Latifah, Familiar Faces In New Talk Shows

Queen Latifah speaks with Will Smith on a recent episode of her new talk show, "The Queen Latifah Show." (The Queen Latifah Show)

There are some familiar faces coming to the syndicated talk show line-up this fall.

Already, Arsenio Hall has made his return to late night after a 19-year hiatus. On Monday, Queen Latifah made her return to daytime with “The Queen Latifah Show.” Reality star Bethenny Frankel is also hosting her own talk show this fall.

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NPR Story
3:36 pm
Wed September 18, 2013

N.C. Officer Charged In Death Of Unarmed Black Man

Willie Ferrell, left, talks about his relationship with his older brother, Jonathan Ferrell, at a media conference, as attorney Christopher Chestnut, center, his mother, Georgia Ferrell, right, listen on Monday, Sept. 16, 2013, in Charlotte, N.C. Police were called Sept. 14, after the former Florida A&M University football player knocked on the door of a home near the car crash he was in. Ferrell was hit with a Taser as he approached officers and then shot, resulting in a voluntary manslaughter charge against one of the officers. (Bob Leverone/AP)

A North Carolina police officer has been charged with voluntary manslaughter in the shooting death of an unarmed black man.

Officer Randall Kerrick of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department fired 12 shots, ten of which hit 24-year-old Jonathan Ferrell, according to authorities.

Ferrell, who had played football for Florida A&M University, was seeking help after crashing his car, according to authorities.

When he knocked on a woman’s door, she called 911 — alarmed to find Ferrell on her doorstep.

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NPR Story
3:36 pm
Wed September 18, 2013

How Mercury Poisons Gold Miners, Water In Indonesia

A gold miner in Indonesia holds up a bottle of mercury. (BBC)

Next month, 140 nations will sign the United Nations’ Minamata Convention.

It’s a treaty that aims to regulate the use of mercury worldwide, and is named after the Japanese community that witnessed the world’s biggest mass mercury poisoning 60 years ago.

Today, contamination with mercury is a particular problem in countries where small-scale gold miners operate. Mercury is used to separate fragments of gold from the rock or earth.

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NPR Story
4:33 pm
Tue September 17, 2013

First Nations DJs Mix Tradition With Electronic Beats

Members of the First Nations trio of deejays, A Tribe Called Red. (A Tribe Called Red)

A Tribe Called Red is an Ottawa-based trio of First Nations DJs who remix social powwow music with electronic dance beats.

The group’s music has put them at the forefront of a First Nations political and cultural renaissance.

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NPR Story
4:33 pm
Tue September 17, 2013

Flood Cleanup Begins In Colorado

Downtown Estes Park, Colo., is pictured on the morning of Friday, Sept. 13, 2013. (Town of Estes Park Facebook page)

The rain has stopped and the flood waters are beginning to recede in Colorado.

Many communities are now trying to figure out how to move forward, the how to begin cleaning up and returning home.

Kate Rauch is spokeswoman for the city of Estes Park, Colo., one of the hardest-hit areas.

She told Here & Now that the cleanup process has already begun.

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NPR Story
4:33 pm
Tue September 17, 2013

Mapping Software Helps Stores Find Profitable Locations

A Starbucks across the street from another Starbucks in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. (Rob Williams/Flickr)

A recent story in the Boston Globe caught our eye: A Dunkin Donuts restaurant increased its business by a whopping 50 percent by moving to a location a couple hundred yards away.

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NPR Story
3:50 pm
Mon September 16, 2013

Colorado Rescue Efforts Continue Amid Flooding

Water flows through an evacuated neighborhood after days of flooding in Hygeine, Colo., Sunday Sept. 15, 2013. (Brennan Linsley/AP)

Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper is meeting with FEMA administrator Craig Fugate today to let the public know how they are responding to massive flooding.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency is sending two 80-person search-and-rescue teams to assist with continuing rescues in Larimer County and providing aid to other communities following massive flooding that began Wednesday along the Front Range.

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NPR Story
3:50 pm
Mon September 16, 2013

The Week Ahead In Washington

President Obama addressed the shooting at the Washington Navy Yard before speaking on the fifth anniversary of the financial collapse.

In the week ahead, Congress will return to budget talks as the Obama administration considers its choice for who will lead the Federal Reserve.

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NPR Story
3:50 pm
Mon September 16, 2013

Director Makes Debut With Critically Acclaimed 'Una Noche'

The three main actors of Una Noche, from left, Dariel Arrechaga, Javier Nuñez Florian and Anailín de la Rúa de la Torre. (Facebook/UnaNocheFilm)

Una Noche” is documentary filmmaker Lucy Mulloy‘s first feature film and also her graduate thesis.

The film tells the story of three Cuban teens — brother and sister Elio and Lila, along with friend Raul — who embark on a journey from Havana to Miami on a makeshift raft after Raul is wrongfully accused of a crime.

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NPR Story
5:09 pm
Fri September 13, 2013

Boxing's Most Anticipated Match Up Also Has A Huge Payday

Floyd Mayweather (left) will fight Saul "Conelo" Alvarez in what could be one of the most lucrative fights in recent history. (AP)

Tomorrow in Las Vegas, two undefeated boxers — Floyd Mayweather and Saul “Canelo” Alvarez — will duke it out for the super welterweight title.

The highly anticipated fight is also setting a record as the highest paid fight in history. It could garner as much as $200 million in sponsorships and pay-per-view fees.

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NPR Story
5:09 pm
Fri September 13, 2013

Ex-Con Parents Blocked From Volunteering At School

Originally published on Fri September 13, 2013 7:28 pm

Ex-felons often have difficulty transitioning back into society. It’s tough for them to find a job, and the label “ex-felon” alone can close even more doors.

For example, in Louisville, Kentucky, many parents have been blocked from volunteering at their children’s schools because of prior crimes they’ve committed. In most cases, the convictions involved non-violent offenses and didn’t involve children.

From the Here & Now Contributors Network, Devin Katayama of WFPL has more.

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NPR Story
5:09 pm
Fri September 13, 2013

New Hybrids And Electric Cars Debut At Frankfurt Auto Show

Porsche's new hybrid sports car the 918 Spyder retails for $850,000. (Porsche)

Originally published on Fri September 13, 2013 7:28 pm

The 65th International Motor Show in Frankfurt is one of the biggest in the world. A wide array of the latest and greatest vehicles and technologies is on display in Germany and open to the public through September 22nd.

There are some 70 new or concept vehicles on display at the show, and just about every manufacturer is introducing a vehicle with electric battery technology.

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