Alabama authorities say a home burglary suspect has died after police used a stun gun on the man.  Birmingham police say he resisted officers who found him in a house wrapped in what looked like material from the air conditioner duct work.  The Lewisburg Road homeowner called police Tuesday about glass breaking and someone yelling and growling in his basement.  Police reportedly entered the dwelling and used a stun gun several times on a white suspect before handcuffing him.  Investigators say the man was "extremely irritated" throughout and didn't obey verbal commands.

Montgomery Education Foundation's Brain Forest Summer Learning Academy was spotlighted Wednesday at Carver High School.  The academic-enrichment program is for rising 4th, 5th, and 6th graders in the Montgomery Public School system.  Community Program Director Dillion Nettles, says the program aims to prevent learning loss during summer months.  To find out how your child can participate in next summer's program visit

A police officer is free on bond after being arrested following a rash of road-sign thefts in southeast Alabama.  Brantley Police Chief Titus Averett says officer Jeremy Ray Walker of Glenwood is on paid leave following his arrest in Pike County.  The 30-year-old Walker is charged with receiving stolen property.  Lt. Troy Johnson of the Pike County Sheriff's Office says an investigation began after someone reported that Walker was selling road signs from Crenshaw County.  Investigators contacted the county engineer and learned signs had been reported stolen from several roads.

NPR Politics presents the Lunchbox List: our favorite campaign news and stories curated from NPR and around the Web in digestible bites (100 words or less!). Look for it every weekday afternoon from now until the conventions.

Convention Countdown

The Republican National Convention is in 4 days in Cleveland.

The Democratic National Convention is in 11 days in Philadelphia.

NASA has released the first picture of Jupiter taken since the Juno spacecraft went into orbit around the planet on July 4.

The picture was taken on July 10. Juno was 2.7 million miles from Jupiter at the time. The color image shows some of the atmospheric features of the planet, including the giant red spot. You can also see three of Jupiter's moons in the picture: Io, Europa and Ganymede.

The Senate is set to approve a bill intended to change the way police and health care workers treat people struggling with opioid addictions.

My husband and I once took great pleasure in preparing meals from scratch. We made pizza dough and sauce. We baked bread. We churned ice cream.

Then we became parents.

Now there are some weeks when pre-chopped veggies and a rotisserie chicken are the only things between us and five nights of Chipotle.

Parents are busy. For some of us, figuring out how to get dinner on the table is a daily struggle. So I reached out to food experts, parents and nutritionists for help. Here is some of their (and my) best advice for making weeknight meals happen.

"O Canada," the national anthem of our neighbors up north, comes in two official versions — English and French. They share a melody, but differ in meaning.

Let the record show: neither version of those lyrics contains the phrase "all lives matter."

But at the 2016 All-Star Game, the song got an unexpected edit.

At Petco Park in San Diego, one member of the Canadian singing group The Tenors — by himself, according to the other members of the group — revised the anthem.

School's out, and a lot of parents are getting through the long summer days with extra helpings of digital devices.

How should we feel about that?

Police in Baton Rouge say they have arrested three people who stole guns with the goal of killing police officers. They are still looking for a fourth suspect in the alleged plot, NPR's Greg Allen reports.

"Police say the thefts were at a Baton Rouge pawn shop early Saturday morning," Greg says. "One person was arrested at the scene. Since then, two others have been arrested and six of the eight stolen handguns have been recovered. Police are still looking for one other man."

A 13-year-old boy is among those arrested, Greg says.


Red Bull's Brand As Powerful As Its Beverage

Oct 15, 2012
Originally published on October 15, 2012 10:10 pm



From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Melissa Block.

Yesterday millions of people watched a man free fall from 24 miles above earth, breaking the sound barrier, and then watched as Felix Baumgartner glided down into the New Mexico desert.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN #1: Here he's coming. And there you can see by the approaching shadow, he's just about there. (Unintelligible) the world record holder.

BLOCK: Unmistakable on Baumgartner's helmet, his pressurized suit and his parachute, the Red Bull name and logo. This was the Red Bull stratos-mission, seven years in the making and just the latest splashiest venture for the energy drink company that's taken branding and sponsorship of extreme sports to bold new levels.

Duff McDonald profiled the company and its founder for Bloomberg Business Week and he joins me now. Duff, welcome to the program.

DUFF MCDONALD: Thanks for having me.

BLOCK: We're going to get to the extreme sports component in a moment. But first, let's talk about the origins of the Red Bull Company itself. It was founded by an Austrian named Dietrich Mateschitz. He started it in his home country 25 years ago. How does a guy who was a toothpaste salesman for a German country become this titan running this huge energy drink company?

MCDONALD: Well, the simple origin of it was that he was on the road selling that toothpaste in Thailand and someone gave him one of those Asian syrups that you'd see in a lot of delis for energy. And he said it worked, tracked down the guy who made it in Thailand and said, let's sell this stuff in the West, but we're going to do it with a twist. We're going to carbonated and then we're going to get Westerners to buy it.

He's a branding guy at the core and you can tell that from the whole trajectory of Red Bull. You know, yesterday's jump is just a 25-year culmination of a brand image that is in its success is unrivaled in recent memory. It's not one of the world's great brands.

BLOCK: That trajectory that you talked about is pretty outstanding, 4.6 billion cans of Red Bull sold worldwide in 2011. You actually met Mr. Mateschitz at his headquarters in Austria. He doesn't give a lot of interviews, but he did talk to you. What did he say about how that success came about?

MCDONALD: He insists that this is a drink that, quote, "improves performance," whatever that actually means. And in making that insistence, he put a premium price on it. A Red Bull is about two bucks a can, you know, which is four or five times what you pay for a Coca Cola in a grocery store. And I asked him, I said, what gave you the brass to put a premium price on it out of the gate?

And he looked back at me all deadpan and he said, how would people know it was a premium product if it didn't have a premium price? You know, from the very beginning, they associated with extreme sports, which I think was an under-exploited part of the athletic and sort of visual television universe and sort of latched on to a whole philosophy of, you know, mind the pun here, it is Red Bull, but take a bull by the horns.

And it's been that way for 25 years. And the kinds of events and spectacles they put on have just increased in their extravagance.

BLOCK: This is a company that is not without controversy, right? You wrote in your profile about incidents where there were deaths that people thought might have been associated with consuming Red Bull along with alcohol. How did the company handle that?

MCDONALD: You know, it's interesting, someone dancing at a rave all night and having, you know, five Red Bull and vodkas and passing out from dehydration, you know, whose fault is it? It's certainly not Red Bull's. You know, if they had vodka tonics, are you going to go sue Schweppes for selling the tonic? I asked him about that and he said, none of this has to do with us.

And on the other hand, though, we didn't go out and seek to quash the controversy because as a brand guy he said despite the tragedy - and he did not make light of that at all, it was just more of the same. It was, what is this drink that everyone is talking about?

BLOCK: Must be the any publicity is good publicity theory?

MCDONALD: Yeah, exactly.

BLOCK: You know, this company has managed to be extremely successful marketing a product that - I say this on a basis of one test case today as I prepared for this interview - is pretty awful. I say that with pure journalistic integrity. But a product that has some taste challenges, let's say, to be polite. How does this happen?

MCDONALD: First of all, let me just say it's an acquired taste. I love my diet Red Bull.

BLOCK: You do?

MCDONALD: Oh, I also love Listerine, though. And, you know, I think they're not unrelated. I did ask him that when I met him. I said, you could've made it taste better. And he just looked at me sort of with a queer-less look and he's like, Duff, it's not about the taste, which is hilarious for someone who's selling something that you open up a can and put in your mouth, but...

BLOCK: A little counterintuitive.

MCDONALD: Yeah, it' counterintuitive, but it was consistent with this idea that what we're doing here is improving your performance. And if that's your goal, what should it matter to you what it tastes like.

BLOCK: That's Duff McDonald. His profile on Dietrich Mateschitz in Bloomberg Business Week last year is titled, "Red Bull's Billionaire Maniac." Duff McDonald, thanks so much.

MCDONALD: Thanks for having me. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright National Public Radio.