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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
3:59 pm
Mon October 21, 2013

'Memory Cafes' For Dementia Patients Gain Ground

Originally published on Mon October 21, 2013 4:36 pm

A growing number of communities are creating places for people with Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia — and their caregivers — to socialize and share a meal.

Among the latest are: Stamford, Conn., Brookfield, Wis., Chalfont, Calif. and Presque Isle, Maine.

From the Here & Now Contributors Network, Rick Howlett of WFPL reports on the memory cafe in Louisville, Kentucky.

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NPR Story
2:51 pm
Fri October 18, 2013

Four Years Later, Army Hero Honored

President Barack Obama awards the Medal of Honor to retired Army Captain William D. Swenson on Wednesday. (AP/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

Originally published on Fri October 18, 2013 2:47 pm

This week, retired Army Capt. William Swenson was awarded the Medal of Honor for his actions during an intense firefight in Afghanistan in 2009.

His team was conducting meetings with village elders in the village of Ganjar, in Kunar Province, when they were ambushed.

Swenson was honored for risking his life several times to rescue fellow troops and recover bodies during the seven-hour battle.

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NPR Story
2:51 pm
Fri October 18, 2013

Former Republican Congressman: Dysfunction In Washington Is 'Systemic'

A view of the U.S. Capitol building on Tuesday, Oct. 15, 2013 in Washington. (AP/ Evan Vucci)

Mickey Edwards represented Oklahoma’s 5th district for 16 years in Congress. Edwards says the dysfunction in Washington is a “systemic problem,” and can’t be cured until the power of political parties diminishes.

Edwards told Here & Nows Jeremy Hobson that the last impasse in Washington is a result of how the political parties, both the Democrats and the Republicans, operate.

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NPR Story
2:51 pm
Fri October 18, 2013

Puerto Rico Struggles With Debt Crisis

Puerto Rico Gov. Alejandro Garcia Padilla speaks during a state of the commonwealth address at the Capitol building in San Juan, Puerto Rico in April, 2013. (AP/Ricardo Arduengo)

Puerto Rico has about $87 billion of debt — that’s about $23,000 for every resident.

The island nation is a U.S. territory, but it can’t declare bankruptcy.

Puerto Rican politicians are looking to raise taxes and cut pension obligations. 

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NPR Story
3:59 pm
Thu October 17, 2013

Most Fast Food Workers Rely On Public Assistance

Protesters demonstrate outside a fast food restaurant on Thursday, Aug. 29, 2013, in Los Angeles. (Nick Ut/AP)

Originally published on Thu January 23, 2014 1:55 pm

A new report by researchers at the University of California Berkeley finds that despite working and taking home a pay-check, more than half of fast-food workers rely on public assistance programs such as food stamps or Medicaid to cover their basic needs.

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NPR Story
3:59 pm
Thu October 17, 2013

DJ Sessions: Louisville, KY-- A Sonic Mashup

Cabin (Photo Courtesy of cabinwebsite.com)

Kyle Meredith, music director at WFPK public radio in Louisville, Kentucky, says that Louisville’s music scene, like the city, has always had an identity crisis — because Louisville is “not really the South, the East, the West or the North.”

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NPR Story
3:59 pm
Thu October 17, 2013

Fla. Sheriff Speaks Out About Bullying Suicide Investigation

Pallbearers wearing anti-bullying t-shirts carry the casket of Rebecca Sedwick,12, to a waiting hearse as they exit the Whidden-McLean Funeral Home Monday, Sept. 16, 2013, in Bartow, Fla. (AP/Brian Blanco)

Originally published on Fri October 18, 2013 8:15 am

The Sheriff of Polk County, Fla. has arrested two middle school girls for bullying another girl, Rebecca Sedwick, until her suicide earlier this month.

Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd said Facebook comments were the last straw after a month long investigation into Sedwick’s death. Two girls were arrested on felony aggravated stalking charges.

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NPR Story
3:35 pm
Wed October 16, 2013

Rep. Charlie Dent: "Confident And Optimistic" Senate Deal Will Pass In House

Rep. Charlie Dent, (R-PA). (Wikipedia)

Originally published on Wed October 16, 2013 3:39 pm

The Senate is proposing a bipartisan plan that would avoid a default and reopen the federal government, but it remains to be seen whether the Senate plan will pass in the House.

“I am confident and optimistic that the bipartisan, bicameral agreement will be adopted by the House,” Rep. Charlie Dent (R-PA) told Here & Now‘s Jeremy Hobson.

He says that there will probably remain stalwarts in his party who will vote against the plan, but remains confident that it will have bipartisan support in the House.

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NPR Story
3:35 pm
Wed October 16, 2013

Esther's Follies Take On Washington

Members of Esther's Follies, a political sketch comedy group from Austin, Texas. (Esther's Follies)

Originally published on Wed October 16, 2013 3:39 pm

What’s happening in Washington can seem like a joke these days, and Esther’s Follies, the campy political sketch comedy troop from Austin, Texas, is raking in the material.

Interview Highlights: Shannon Sedwick and Ted Meredith

Sedwick on how their comedy show works in Austin:

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NPR Story
3:35 pm
Wed October 16, 2013

Picking The Gridiron Contenders

Bowl Championship Series (PlayoffPAC/Flickr)

Originally published on Wed October 16, 2013 3:39 pm

Next season, there will be a new playoff system for big time college football.

A committee, which includes former Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice, will select the four teams that will play in the semifinals ahead of the championship game.

That system will replace the Bowl Championship Series which has, until now, determined which college teams play for the national championship.

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NPR Story
3:30 pm
Tue October 15, 2013

Soldier Receives Medal Of Honor Today

William Swenson stands with a group of World War II veterans during a 10th Mountain Division ceremony at the WWII Memorial Sunday, Oct. 13, 2013 in Washington. On Tuesday, October 15. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

Army Captain William Swenson will be presented with the nation’s highest military honor at the White House today.

When President Obama hangs the medal around his neck it will be the end of a rocky road.

Swenson is credited with risking his life to save fellow troops and recover bodies during a battle in Afghanistan in 2009.

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NPR Story
3:30 pm
Tue October 15, 2013

Amazon Partners With Proctor & Gamble

Toilet paper roll (Jane Waterbury/Flickr)

Originally published on Wed October 16, 2013 9:00 am

If you haven’t heard of Ali-Baba, you will soon.

China’s largest e-commerce company recently announced it is going public in 2014, which means it will be the internet’s third largest company, and Amazon’s newest competitor.

Ali Baba’s edge is pricing — it’s able to keep prices super low because it has direct access to seller’s supply chains, which is exactly what Amazon is trying to do, by partnering with the giant like Proctor & Gamble.

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NPR Story
3:30 pm
Tue October 15, 2013

Some Thoughts Six Months After The Marathon Bombs

In the days after the Boston marathon bombings in April — we turned to Here & Now’s Alex Ashlock for reporting and more.

Six months later, he shares his thoughts.

Alex Ashlock is a producer and the director of Here & Now.

NPR Story
3:33 pm
Mon October 14, 2013

Smooth Sounds From The Twin Cities

Channy Leaneagh, the singer for Polica. (facebook.com/thisispolica)

Originally published on Mon October 14, 2013 4:08 pm

As he does every Monday, NPR Music writer and editor Stephen Thompson is here to freshen our playlists and recommend a new song for us.

This week, Thompson bring us a band from the Twin Cities called Poliça.

Thompson describes Poliça’s sound as “very cool, sleek, kinda slinky music.”

He singles out Poliça’s vocalist, Channy Leaneagh.

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NPR Story
3:33 pm
Mon October 14, 2013

Supreme Court To Hear Michigan Affirmative Action Case

Originally published on Mon October 14, 2013 4:08 pm

After the Supreme Court ruled a decade ago that race could be a factor in college admissions in a Michigan case, affirmative action opponents persuaded the state’s voters to outlaw any consideration of race.

Now, the high court is weighing whether that change to Michigan’s constitution is itself discriminatory.

It is a proposition that even the lawyer for civil rights groups in favor of affirmative action acknowledges a tough sell, at first glance.

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