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Wednesday, December 31, 2008

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National Public Radio Stories

  • Wounded Palestinians Relay Gaza's Bad Conditions
    Arab foreign ministers are gathering Wednesday in Cairo, Egypt, to discuss the Israeli bombing campaign in the Gaza Strip after Israel rejected a French proposal for a cease-fire. A number of wounded Palestinians have made it to hospitals in neighboring Egypt for treatment, bringing grim tales of the conditions inside Gaza.
  • Palestinian Lawmaker Pushes Nonviolence In Gaza
    Israel rejected a truce Wednesday in its five-day offensive against Hamas in the Gaza Strip. The current violence erupted after a six-month cease-fire brokered by Egypt expired last week. Mustafa Barghouti, an independent lawmaker in the West Bank city of Ramallah, says Palestinians believe nonviolence is the best way to pursue their struggle.
  • California Winemakers Press A Family Vintage
    Chateau Montelena winery is famous for besting French competitors at a 1976 competition in Paris. The Napa Valley winery is also a family business, one that has passed through two generations and could make it to a third. But working together wasn't always smooth.
  • Tennessee Spill: The Exxon Valdez Of Coal Ash?
    There aren't a lot of answers yet about what caused a catastrophic spill of coal ash from a Tennessee Valley Authority plant near Knoxville. But the disaster has raised a lot of questions about whether regulations of coal ash are strict enough.
  • Egypt Can Be A Peacemaker In Gaza
    For a fifth day, Israeli jets and assault helicopters pounded Hamas targets in the Gaza Strip. Egypt borders one side of Gaza and could play an important role in solving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Scott Lasensky of the U.S. Institute of Peace, talks with Steve Inskeep about what Egypt can do to help establish peace in the Gaza Strip.
  • The Top 'Non-Troversies' Of 2008
    They were issues that dominated a news cycle — or many — but, in the end, they just didn't matter. Before they completely fade from memory, commentator John Ridley highlights some of the major "non-troversies" of the past year.
  • Fed To Buy Mortgage-Backed Securities
    In an effort to boost the housing market, the Federal Reserve announced Tuesday it would begin purchasing mortgage-backed securities early next month. The Fed is expected to purchase $500 billion worth of the securities that are guaranteed by home loan giants Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and Ginnie Mae. Officials announced the plan in November but did not say at the time when it would begin.
  • Economy Is Not Off Life-Support Yet
    Over the past year, the government has sent $100 billion in stimulus checks to taxpayers and bailed out Wall Street, banks and automakers. However, the economy still hasn't turned around. David Wessel, economics editor of The Wall Street Journal, talks with Steve Inskeep about why the economy isn't getting stronger.
  • GMAC Made Risky Subprime Mortgage Loans
    GMAC is the most recent beneficiary of a government bailout. As the financing arm of General Motors, it supplies funding for auto dealers to buy inventory and credit for consumers to buy cars. It is also a major player in the home mortgage market.
  • N.Y. Thruway Offers Free Coffee New Year's Eve
    Officials at the New York Thruway are keeping up their New Year's Eve tradition. The thruway's 27 toll plazas are offering free coffee and tea to travelers. And Silver Lake Research has a caffeine detector stick. It tests whether your cup of coffee is decaf.

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