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The Two-Way
11:02 am
Mon July 21, 2014

Veteran Who Held Off Taliban Attack On His Own Receives Medal Of Honor

Sgt. Ryan Pitts waits for a flight at Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan.
U.S. Army

Originally published on Tue July 22, 2014 4:05 am

Army Sgt. Ryan Pitts will be the ninth living veteran to receive the nation's highest award for valor for actions in Iraq or Afghanistan, when President Obama presents him with the Medal of Honor later today.

As NPR's Tom Bowman reports, Pitts is credited with holding off a brutal Taliban attack back in 2008. Tom filed this report for our Newscast unit:

"Soldiers from Chosen Company were setting up an outpost in the rugged hills near the Pakistan border. Suddenly they came under attack by more than a hundred Taliban fighters.

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The Salt
10:55 am
Mon July 21, 2014

From Scratch Or Not? French Restaurant Law Stirs Controversy

A new logo that is supposed to ensure a Paris restaurant's food is homemade (fait maison in French) is already stirring up controversy.
Miguel Medina AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon July 21, 2014 2:04 pm

If you go to France this summer, you might notice a new logo in restaurant windows or on menus. It's a simple graphic of a rooftop covering a saucepan, and it's supposed to designate fait maison, or homemade. It's designed to highlight places that make their own dishes rather than bringing in frozen or sous vide — prepared meals cooked in a water bath, sealed in airtight plastic bags and designed to be heated up later.

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Shots - Health News
10:40 am
Mon July 21, 2014

Big Data Peeps At Your Medical Records To Find Drug Problems

Katherine Streeter for NPR

Originally published on Tue July 22, 2014 11:43 am

No one likes it when a new drug in people's medicine cabinets turns out to have problems — just remember the Vioxx debacle a decade ago, when the painkiller was removed from the market over concerns that it increased the risk of heart attack and stroke.

To do a better job of spotting unforeseen risks and side effects, the Food and Drug Administration is trying something new — and there's a decent chance that it involves your medical records.

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The Salt
10:36 am
Mon July 21, 2014

To Save These Pigs, Ky. Farmer Says We Have To Eat Them

Kentucky hog farmer Travis Hood with Luther, a young Red Wattle boar. Hood started raising Red Wattles five years ago after cuts to his job, and began turning a profit on the meat in February.
Courtesy of Hood's Heritage Hogs

Originally published on Mon July 21, 2014 11:54 am

Robertson County has the smallest population of any county in the state of Kentucky, and it's the only one, word has it, without a stoplight.

So it's an unlikely place to find a campaign to keep the food system more genetically diverse. But that is exactly what's happening on a small farm owned by Travis Hood, called Hood's Heritage Hogs.

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The Two-Way
10:34 am
Mon July 21, 2014

Putin: Tragedies Like MH17 Should 'Bring People Together'

Deputy head of the OSCE mission to Ukraine Alexander Hug (center right) stands outside a refrigerated train as members of the Netherlands' National Forensic Investigations Team inspect bodies.
Vadim Ghirda AP

Originally published on Mon July 21, 2014 11:57 am

(This post was updated at 12:51 p.m. ET.)

Russian President Vladimir Putin says tragedies such as the downing of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 last week should "bring people together" rather than "dividing us."

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Wildfire Danger
11:58 pm
Sun July 20, 2014

Wildfires Force Northwest Fruit Pickers Out Of Camps

File photo of the Carlton Complex Fire in central Washington.

Originally published on Sat July 19, 2014 8:55 pm

Fire officials estimate wildfires have burned more than 1,200 square miles in Washington and Oregon. Crews are working fast to build fire lines between the rapidly moving flames and rural communities. But hundreds of people remain on evacuation alert.

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Wildfire Danger
11:57 pm
Sun July 20, 2014

Pateros Residents Try To Make Sense Of Destruction Left By Wildfire

A view of smoldering home in Pateros, Washington.

Originally published on Sat July 19, 2014 9:45 pm

The wildfires burning in central Washington prompted another round of evacuations Friday night.

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Wildfire Danger
11:57 pm
Sun July 20, 2014

Okanogan County Residents Look For Remnants Of Lives In Burned Homes

The Carlton Complex's 'dangerous nature' has made it the No. 1 fire in the country according to the Washington DNR.

Originally published on Sat July 19, 2014 9:08 pm

Residents of fire-ravaged central Washington say they're in a “state of shock.” Fires destroyed more houses over the weekend and prompted additional evacuation notices.

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NPR Story
10:55 am
Fri July 18, 2014

A Conversation With Immigrant Activist Jose Antonio Vargas

In this June 20, 2012, file photo former Washington Post journalist turned immigration reform activist, Jose Antonio Vargas, center, an illegal immigrant himself, speaks in Washington. (Jacquelyn Martin/AP)

Originally published on Wed July 23, 2014 7:40 am

Immigrant-rights activist Jose Antonio Vargas has written extensively about the fact that he has been living illegally in the U.S. for years.

A Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, Vargas was recently in south Texas documenting the stories of many Central American child migrants detained at a shelter in McAllen. As an immigrant himself, he says it was only “natural” that he go there.

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Parallels
10:36 am
Fri July 18, 2014

What To Watch In Israel's Ground Invasion Of Gaza

An Israeli tank advances near the Israel-Gaza Strip border on Friday as part of Israel's ground incursion in the territory. Israel launched the ground operation Thursday following more than a week of airstrikes that did not halt Palestinian rocket fire.
Dusan Vranic AP

Originally published on Sat July 19, 2014 1:10 pm

Israel has unleashed repeated military offensives in the Gaza Strip since 2000 and has never been able to permanently suppress Palestinian rocket fire or seal off the territory's smuggling tunnels.

So why is Israel launching another major ground incursion now, and is there any reason to think the outcome will be different this time?

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Goats and Soda
9:48 am
Fri July 18, 2014

From Twitter: The News Unfolds Of The AIDS Figures On Flight MH17

At a July 18 press conference at Amsterdam's Schiphol Airport, Vice President of Malaysia Airlines Europe Huib Gorter talk about the crash of flight MH17.
Christopher Furlong Getty Images

Originally published on Fri July 18, 2014 11:57 am

The AIDS world is reeling. Researchers, activists and officials were aboard Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17, which was shot out of the sky on Thursday; they were headed to the International AIDS Conference in Melbourne.

The nearly 300 passengers on the plane were all killed. Twitter users were among the first to report the loss of leading figures in the fight against AIDS, including Dutch researcher Joep Lange, former president of the International AIDS Society.

Here is how the story unfolded on Twitter.

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The Salt
9:46 am
Fri July 18, 2014

Soylent DIYers Sell Their Own Versions Of The Powdered Food

Soylent CEO Rob Rhinehart holds a bag of finished product in September 2013. Rhinehart recently discouraged members of the company's DIY online community from competing directly with Soylent.
Josh Edelson AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue July 22, 2014 2:35 pm

When Rob Rhinehart first created Soylent –– a powdered, synthetic food product made of industrial nutrients and oils –– he was a San Francisco techie trying to sustain himself cheaply without the inconveniences of grocery shopping, cooking or even eating.

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All Tech Considered
9:46 am
Fri July 18, 2014

Better Culture Could Have Prevented Viral Comcast Call

The call center of Zappos.com gets high marks from consumers for strong customer service.
Shashi Bellamkonda Flickr

Originally published on Mon July 21, 2014 8:13 am

This week, one man's customer service call to Comcast turned into a badgering — a simple request to cancel his service was repeatedly beaten back by the employee on the other end of the line. It was a familiar feeling for a lot of us, which perhaps explains why more than 4 million people have listened to it in less than a week.

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The Two-Way
9:46 am
Fri July 18, 2014

Amazon Launches Subscription Service For E-Books

Originally published on Fri July 18, 2014 8:17 am

Amazon launched a new subscription service for e-books and audiobooks on Friday called Kindle Unlimited.

The service, which will cost subscribers $9.99 per month after a free initial 30-day trial, offers access to more than 600,000 e-books and about 2,000 audiobooks. The reading and listening experiences can be linked through a syncing service.

Such "all you can eat" subscription models have become common for music and video. Amazon now enters into a space already occupied by unlimited reading services such as Scribd, Oyster and Entitle.

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Shots - Health News
9:45 am
Fri July 18, 2014

Half Of Texas Abortion Clinics Close After Restrictions Enacted

Texas gubernatorial hopeful and state Sen. Wendy Davis came to prominence when she opposed legislation restricting abortions. The bill eventually became law and is now blamed for the closure of abortion clinics across the state.
LM Otero AP

Originally published on Sun July 20, 2014 7:40 am

In a little over a year, the number of clinics that provide abortions in Texas fell to 20 from 41, and watchdogs say that as few as six may be left by September.

Many clinics closed because of a requirement that doctors at those clinics obtain hospital admitting privileges within a certain radius of the clinic, and many doctors couldn't comply. The requirement took effect last November. This week marks the first anniversary of the state law that started it all.

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