From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.
After a long wait, the Senate has finally passed student loan legislation. It would restore lower interest rates for undergraduates. Many of them saw their rates double on July 1st when the Senate missed its deadline.
As NPR's Ailsa Chang reports, the new measure closely resembles both what the president wanted and what the House has already passed.
If you asked me to name my favorite movie scene, I'd choose the one in Citizen Kane when newspaper owner Charles Foster Kane steals his rivals' best reporters, then throws a party in his own honor. As musicians literally sing his praises, we watch Kane dance with chorus girls wearing a look of radiant delight. It's a moment bursting with promise and cockiness and joie de vivre, made all the more exuberant because Kane's pleasure is so obviously shared by Welles himself.
By historical standards, this is an expedited naming. In the past, royals have waited weeks to announce a name. Prince Charles' name wasn't known for a month; Prince William's name wasn't made public for seven days.
In the introduction to his book, Savage Continent, Keith Lowe writes:
Imagine a world without institutions. No governments. No school or universities. No access to any information. No banks. Money no longer has any worth. There are no shops, because no one has anything to sell. Law and order are virtually non-existent because there is no police force and no judiciary. Men with weapons roam the streets taking what they want. Women of all classes and ages prostitute themselves for food and protection.
President Obama on Wednesday launched another effort to lay out his vision for how to strengthen the U.S. economy with a midday speech at Knox College in Galesburg, Ill., in which he hit themes familiar to those who followed his 2008 and 2012 presidential campaigns.
Note added on Aug. 23, 2013: When we wrote this post and its headline — "Sales Of New Homes Rise Again, Hit Five-Year High" — the data said that was true. Now, the agencies that produce the numbers have issued revisions that indicate sales of new homes in June were the second-best in the last five years. Go here to read about that.
In general terms, there are two eras that characterize the 200,000 years or so of human presence on Earth: first, and for most of this time, the hunter-gatherers, nomadic groups that roamed the land in search of food and shelter. Then came what we call "civilization," product of the fixation of larger groups around fertile areas. Presumably, the first were the Natufians some time around 10,000 BCE, along the swath of land between Israel and Jordan.