All Things Considered
All Things Considered
Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Minnesota Public Radio Stories

  • Worthington businessWorthington groups stay separate
    The goal is for immigrants to blend seamlessly into their new communities. That rarely happens. Like many cities, the different groups in Worthington tend to keep to themselves.4:50 p.m.
  • In Legislature's waning days, property tax relief becomes hot issue
    The Minnesota Supreme Court affirmation of the cigarette fee is fueling debate among lawmakers over how to spend more than $400 million that's now available.5:19 p.m.
  • Time working against natural resources bill at Capitol
    With time running out, House and Senate negotiators have been unable to bridge a fundamental difference between their bills. The House bill would dedicate a percentage of existing sales taxes, while the Senate wants a sales tax increase.5:23 p.m.
  • Coleman proposes gasoline price relief
    A new proposal in the United States Senate would provide states with annual grants to help low and middle-income residents with the high cost of gasoline. The Fuel Emergency Relief Act, introduced today by Minnesota Sen. Norm Coleman, would be funded by oil companies, and eligibility would be determined by income level.5:44 p.m.
  • International bridgeBorder towns want state, province to purchase International Bridge
    The toll bridge from International Falls to Fort Frances, Ontario is up for sale. Locals on both sides of the border worry that if the bridge is sold to private investors, it would mean a rise in crossing tolls.5:52 p.m.
  • New drug may help smokers quit
    Addicition to tobacco is a problem that affects at least one in five americans, and it's also the single most preventable cause of death in the United States. But when it comes to drugs for treating it, there are surprisingly few available. A new option, Varenicline, which will be sold as Chantix, has just received FDA approval. It works in the brain to even out the flow of dopamine, which produces a pleasurable effect when smokers inhale nicotine.6:19 p.m.

National Public Radio Stories

  • Rumsfeld: Troop Reduction in Iraq Unlikely in 2006
    It may not be possible to reduce U.S. troop levels in Iraq this year, according to Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld's testimony before a Senate committee. Gen. Peter Pace, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, says it will be months before Iraqi army units are ready to operate on their own.
  • The Resilient Students at an Iraqi School for the Deaf
    At Baghdad's school for deaf children, the challenges go far beyond the physical and mental obstacles common in schools around the world. Students are forced to deal with violence, power outages, and the fear that plagues much of the country.
  • Democrat Calls for FCC Inquiry into NSA Phone Operations
    A Democratic member of the Federal Communications Commission is calling for the agency to investigate whether phone companies broke the law by giving customer calling records to the government. Regulating the telephone industry is one of the FCC's mandates.
  • Congress Should Closely Analyze Hayden, NSA
    NPR Senior News Analyst Daniel Schorr says that the confirmation hearings for Gen. Michael Hayden are a chance for Congress to take a second look at the National Security Agency's surveillance programs.
  • Stocks Droop 214 Points on Inflation Concerns
    The Dow Jones Industrial average finished down 214 points, reflecting a sell-off that began when the government released a report showing April's consumer prices increased much faster than expected. Investors are guessing an interest-rate hike could be coming.
  • Worried About Inflation? Try Zimbabwe's 1,000 Percent
    Melissa Block talks with Zimbabwean economist John Robertson about the massive inflation in real prices caused by the devaluation of government currency. Anecdotes in recent news reports put prices for goods such as bread and orange juice at as much as 500,000 Zimbabwe dollars -- or five U.S. dollars.
  • Old Cities Can Profit from New Sprawl
    The author of a new book defending sprawl says millions of people are able to live more comfortably in places that are cleaner, greener and safer than where their grandparents lived. Some cities benefit, too. Aurora, Illi., is a case in point: The city was losing population and businesses in the 1970s and '80s, but it is booming now, mostly by annexing new subdivisions.
  • St. Louis Escapes Its Rust-Belt Past
    In downtown St. Louis, the opening of the new Busch Stadium is the latest effort to beautify and improve an area that once was called an eyesore and a tragedy. More than 50 businesses have opened in the area, where residential lofts are booming and major projects are building excitement in St. Louis.
  • Houston Fans Jeer Bonds, Cheer Buzz-Ball
    As San Francisco Giants hitter Barry Bonds stands poised to tie Babe Ruth for second on the all-time home run list, Astros reliever Russ Springer drew cheers from fans at Houston's Minute Maid Park by bouncing a pitch off Bonds' shoulder Tuesday. Bonds has something of a history with Springer; neither player offered comments after the game. Michele Norris talks with baseball reporter Andy Baggarly of The Oakland Tribune.
  • Rebel on the Mic: India's Maoist Dissident
    A man calling himself Gaddar makes no secret about his ideology: He sings it from the rooftops. The Indian man can barely finish a sentence without bursting into song, often describing the oppression of the masses. Gaddar was once a foot soldier in the jungles of India with the People's Army, a Maoist insurgent militia. Maoists are active in nearly half of the country's states; hundreds have died in recent violence between the Maoist militias and Indian security services. Years ago, Gaddar turned from violence to music, becoming a revolutionary balladeer and writing hundreds of popular songs. The authorities are taking notice of the power of Gaddar's music.

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