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Here & Now

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NPR's midday news magazine.  

Here & Now‘s Meghna Chakrabarti speaks with Balbina Hwang, visiting professor at Georgetown University and a former State Department senior adviser, about what might be next after President Trump cancelled next month’s North Korea summit.

Two different congressional briefings will be held in Washington, D.C., on Thursday, for lawmakers to review secret documents in the FBI’s Russia investigation, including information that Republicans demanded to see about a government informant who contacted Trump campaign aides in 2016.

Las Vegas hotel and casino workers have voted to authorize a strike as early as next month. Contracts for about 50,000 culinary and bartender union workers expire at the end of May.

Workers are demanding a bigger share of the casino profits, but also protections against the use of robots and artificial intelligence to automate service jobs.

Here & Now‘s Meghna Chakrabarti speaks with the Culinary Union’s Bethany Khan (@BethanyKhan) about those demands.

President Trump said on Twitter on Wednesday that he’s going to sign into law “big changes” to the Dodd-Frank banking regulations put in place after the financial crisis.

The bill passed the House late Tuesday, with supporters saying it would make it easier for midsize and regional banks to lend. It already passed the Senate in March.

A mountain biker has died and a second person was seriously injured after a cougar attacked them on a remote trail in Washington state.

Here & Now‘s Robin Young speaks with Richard A. Beausoleil, bear and cougar specialist with the Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife.

Health workers in the Democratic Republic of Congo began vaccinating people Monday against an outbreak of Ebola that’s killed at least 26 people. The experimental drug was tested in Guinea two years ago with a 100 percent success rate, but this is the first time a vaccine will be used to control an Ebola outbreak.

Mike Shirkey grew up in the Arkansas Delta, listening to “pickin’ music” — bluegrass, country, folk and the like. Years later, in 1980, he started the show “The Pickin’ Post” on KUAF to highlight some of his favorite musical finds, often bypassing the latest trends and releases.

The traditional fish hooks used by the Makah Tribe in Washington state have been found to be better at catching halibut than modern circle fish hooks.

As John Ryan (@heyjohnryan) of KUOW reports, the historical hooks help prevent the problems of “bycatch” — hauling up the wrong type of fish.

Democratic strategist Jamal Simmons (@JamalSimmons) and Republican strategist Paris Dennard (@PARISDENNARD) join Here & Now‘s Jeremy Hobson and Peter O’Dowd to discuss results of primaries in four states Tuesday, and other news from Washington.

Federal food benefit programs are vital for low-income immigrant families. But if a parent is unauthorized to live in the U.S., they may decide not to enroll their children who are citizens in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program or SNAP to get money for groceries.

Since the opioid crisis took off in the U.S., cities across the country have added more and more needle exchange programs, which allow people with addiction to turn in used syringes for new, clean ones.

Most researchers say such programs are effective at reducing the spread of HIV and hepatitis C. However, some cities — including Charleston, West Virginia, where opioid use is pervasive — have moved to close their needle exchanges, citing problems with crime and mismanagement.

Literary Giant Tom Wolfe Dies

May 15, 2018

Literary giant Tom Wolfe, who chronicled everything from hippies to the space program before turning his eye to fiction, has died. Wolfe was known for creating a “New Journalism” and writing bestsellers that defined eras of American life. His books included “The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test” and “The Bonfire of the Vanities.”

The Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia, Mohammed bin Salman, said last week that if Iran restarted its nuclear weapons program his country would pursue a nuclear weapon, too.

Here & Now‘s Jeremy Hobson speaks with Ali Shihabi (@aliShihabi), founder of The Arabia Foundation.

It’s been 20 years since the finale of “Seinfeld.”

Here & Now‘s Jeremy Hobson talks about some of the show’s most quotable scenes and its impact with comedian Carol Leifer (@carolleifer), who was a writer on the show’s fifth, sixth and seventh seasons.

Spotify has announced it will stop promoting R. Kelly’s music on its streaming service, via playlists or recommendations. It comes as a movement called #MuteRKelly grows. R. Kelly has been accused of various sexual misconduct for years, including controlling a group of women that lives with him by blocking them from contact with the outside world.

Trump Announces Plan To Lower Drug Prices

May 11, 2018

President Trump announces a plan Friday to lower drug prices, something he’s been talking about since his campaign. Here & Now‘s Jeremy Hobson speaks with Michael Regan (@Reganonymous), senior editor for Bloomberg News, about the plan.

In Nashville, It's Catfish On Ice

May 10, 2018

The Nashville Predators and Winnipeg Jets square off in a Game 7, winner-take-all showdown in the NHL’s second-round playoffs Thursday night. The game will be played in Nashville, where there’s one slightly illicit tradition that can be as much of a spectacle as the game itself.

Just after the national anthem, fans throw catfish onto the ice.

President Trump thanked North Korean leader Kim Jong Un for unexpectedly releasing three Americans held as prisoners in North Korea ahead of a planned summit between the two leaders. The detainees arrived back in the U.S. overnight.

NPR national political correspondent Mara Liasson (@MaraLiasson) joins Here & Now‘s Robin Young to discuss the circumstances of the detainees’ capture and release.

It’s graduation season, which means an annual walk across the stage that many graduates assume they will make. For others, it’s a miracle.

Rosibeth Cuevas will soon become the first person in her family to graduate from college. But that’s not the miracle.

Four years ago, Cuevas was a senior at Manual Arts High School in South Los Angeles. She dreamed of going to college in rural Northern California at Humboldt State University, and joined others who would be first-generation college students on a 12-hour bus trip to the school on April 10, 2014.

Recipes To Help You Spring Into Summer

May 9, 2018

Late-spring days are warm — but the evenings can still be chilly. Here & Now resident chef Kathy Gunst brings hosts Jeremy Hobson and Robin Young three dishes that make the most of spring vegetables, but still provide a bit of cool-weather comfort.

The clothing brand LuLaRoe has many fans of its patterned leggings and geometrically designed dresses, which are sold by women out of their homes. But thousands of these “consultants,” as the company calls them, have left LuLaRoe. Several filed lawsuits last fall alleging the company was a pyramid scheme.

NPR’s Uri Berliner (@uberliner) joins Here & Now‘s to assess the impact of Iran sanctions on the U.S. economy.

Chinese exports of steel and aluminum are up according to the latest figures, despite new tariffs imposed by the Trump administration in March.

Liu He, Chinese President Xi Jinping’s top economic adviser, will visit Washington next week to continue trade talks between the two countries.

President Trump today announced he will pull the U.S. out of the 2015 deal with Iran that gave the country relief from economic sanctions in exchange for restrictions on its nuclear program.

The Case For The Fair-Weather Sports Fan

May 7, 2018

In the NBA playoffs Monday night, it’s the Philadelphia 76ers versus the Boston Celtics and the Toronto Raptors against the Cleveland Cavaliers.

So is it OK to root for, say, the Golden State Warriors, who play Tuesday, if you aren’t from the Golden State? Or should you hide your soft spot for LeBron James if you don’t live in Cleveland?

The opioid epidemic has spurred medical professionals to look for nonpharmaceutical approaches to pain management. There’s a growing consensus among pain experts that a low-tech approach focused on lifestyle changes can be more effective than opioids.

Language Advisory: This segment contains language some listeners may find offensive.


Atlanta’s hip-hop scene is booming with new music from well-known acts like Migos and Lil Yachty. But there’s a long list of up-and-comers bringing fresh sounds to the city.

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein dismissed threats of impeachment Tuesday and said the Justice Department “is not going to be extorted.”

NPR’s Phil Ewing (@philewing) joins Here & Now‘s Robin Young to talk about the increasing pressure on Rosenstein from supporters of President Trump.

In North Carolina, a project is converting pig waste into renewable natural gas for electricity. The system eliminates pig farms’ methane, a climate change gas, and is helping the state move away from fossil fuels.

James Morrison (@JCMorrisn) reports for WUNC.

It’s May: the start of graduation season. Speakers everywhere will try to live up to the wise words of what was rumored to be Kurt Vonnegut — then revealed to be a column from The Chicago Tribune’s Mary Schmich — which Baz Luhrmann made into a hit in the ’90s.

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