6:09am

Sat July 7, 2012
U.S.

Gridlock: Storms, Blackouts Expose Power Problems

Originally published on Sat July 7, 2012 3:19 pm

A power pole is bent after severe storms hit the Bemidji, Minn., area on Tuesday, knocking down thousands of trees and causing extensive damage to utility lines. Thousands of customers were left without power.
Monte Draper AP

As hundreds of thousands swelter without power a week after a violent storm pummeled the Midwest and Mid-Atlantic, energy experts say the future will look even worse if the nation's aging, congested electrical grid isn't upgraded.

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6:08am

Sat July 7, 2012
U.S.

How One Drought Changed Texas Agriculture Forever

Originally published on Wed November 6, 2013 3:40 pm

Siblings Charles Hagood and Nancy Hagood Nunns grew up in Junction, Texas, in the 1950s. Charles says the drought drove ranchers to find other types of work.
Michael O'Brien Michael O'Brien

In Texas, there is still the drought against which all other droughts are measured: the seven-year dry spell in the 1950s. It was so devastating that agriculture losses exceeded those of the Dust Bowl years, and so momentous that it kicked off the modern era of water planning in Texas.

From 1950 to 1957, the sky dried up and the rain refused to fall. Every day, Texans scanned the pale-blue heavens for rainclouds, but year after year they never came.

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4:02am

Sat July 7, 2012
The Two-Way

U.S. Gives Afghanistan New Ally Status As Part Of 2014 Transition

Originally published on Sat July 7, 2012 8:11 am

In Kabul, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton announces that Afghanistan is now a "major non-NATO ally" alongside Afghan President Hamid Karzai.
Sean Carberry for NPR

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton made an unannounced visit to Afghanistan this morning, and she brought along some news. The country has officially been designated a "major non-NATO ally" of the U.S., which will facilitate defense and security cooperation between the countries even after the U.S. withdraws combat troops in 2014.

In an emailed press release, the State Department says the status "qualifies a country for certain privileges supporting defense and security cooperation but does not entail any security commitment to that country."

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2:08am

Sat July 7, 2012
Fresh Air Weekend

Fresh Air Weekend: Summer Cooking From Top Chefs

Originally published on Sat July 7, 2012 11:57 am

Bridget Lancaster and Jack Bishop prepare a traditional summer barbecue, as imagined by WHYY's artist-in-residence, Tony Auth.
Tony Auth

Fresh Air Weekend highlights some of the best interviews and reviews from past weeks, and new program elements specially paced for weekends. Our weekend show emphasizes interviews with writers, filmmakers, actors, and musicians, and often includes excerpts from live in-studio concerts. This week:


Summer Cooking Tips From 'America's Test Kitchen': Jack Bishop and Bridget Lancaster highlight some of their favorite grilling techniques and summer recipes — everything from meats to vegetables to, yes, even desserts.

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2:03am

Sat July 7, 2012
Author Interviews

Remembering George Szell, Powerhouse Conductor

Originally published on Sat July 7, 2012 5:42 pm

Michael Charry was the "sorcerer's apprentice" to celebrated 20th-century conductor George Szell. For the last decade of Szell's tenure at the Cleveland Orchestra, Charry was an assistant conductor.

Now, Charry has captured the power of Szell's artistry — as well as his tempestuous personality — in a new biography called George Szell: A Life of Music.

Charry vividly recalls Szell testing him on how many notes he could find in a chord when he first auditioned for the job.

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5:29pm

Fri July 6, 2012
Religion

Evangelicals Fight Over Therapy To 'Cure' Gays

Originally published on Tue July 10, 2012 4:46 pm

iStockphoto.com

Supporters call it "conversion therapy." Critics call it "praying away the gay." Whatever name you use, it's creating a ruckus in Christian circles about whether a person can change his or her sexual orientation. And now the largest "ex-gay ministry" is rejecting the approach.

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5:29pm

Fri July 6, 2012
Movies

Sarah Polley: A Long Look At What We Feel Is Missing

Originally published on Tue July 10, 2012 4:46 pm

Seth Rogen and Michelle Williams as a husband and wife whose marriage becomes strained in Take This Waltz, the latest film from Canadian director Sarah Polley.
Magnolia Pictures

Sarah Polley started acting when she was 4, in her native Canada. She earned critical acclaim for her performance as a teenage girl injured in a school bus crash in Atom Egoyan's film The Sweet Hereafter.

Polley made her debut as a director with the subtle and devastating film Away from Her — a portrait of a marriage later in life, as the wife (Julie Christie) is pulled away by Alzheimer's disease.

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5:29pm

Fri July 6, 2012
Economy

Options Slim, Older Job Seekers Try Starting Fresh

Originally published on Tue July 10, 2012 4:46 pm

John Pham (right) reviews Bob Drake's resume at an AARP event aimed at helping older workers improve their job search. Workers age 55 and older cite particular difficulty finding employment, and some are choosing to retrain for new careers.
Frank Franklin II AP

Deborah Klein sits in a parked car, a pile of envelopes on her lap. She's looking for work as a pharmacy technician, and has come to a faded strip mall near Waterbury, Conn., to drop off resumes with employers.

"I hope they get in touch with me, they want to meet with me, and who knows — they may have a position," Klein says. "It may not be now, but if I put something in their hand, they have something to think about."

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5:04pm

Fri July 6, 2012
The Salt

Finding Food (Even Filet Mignon) During A Week Without Power

It has been about a week since a gigantic wind storm tore through the Mid-Atlantic, leaving millions without electricity in its tattered wake. By now much of the debris has been cleared, but Reuters reports that 500,000 Americans are still without power, which of course is keeping many people out of their kitchens.

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4:57pm

Fri July 6, 2012
World

At Last, A Verdict On Argentina's 'Stolen Children'

Originally published on Tue July 10, 2012 4:46 pm

Since 1978, Rosa Tarlovsky de Roisinblit has waged a relentless search to find her daughter, Patricia, who was kidnapped by military henchmen and never seen again. Twelve years ago, Roisinblit did find Patricia's son, who is now in his 30s.
Silvina Frydlewsky for NPR

As a judge in Argentina read out the 50-year prison term handed down to former dictator Jorge Rafael Videla, a courtroom packed with the families of the victims celebrated, feeling that justice had at last been delivered.

And no one watching Thursday's historic sentencing in Buenos Aires had worked so hard for justice as the tenacious members of one of the world's most renowned human rights groups, the Grandmothers of the Plaza de Mayo.

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