North Dakota Senator becomes powerful voice for Indians When Congress goes into session in January, the shift of power from Republicans to Democrats will be good for the upper Midwest. In the U.S. House, the Agriculture and Transportation committees will be chaired by Minnesota Rep. Jim Oberstar and Collin Peterson. North Dakota Sen. Byron Dorgan will chair the Indian Affairs Committee. Indian advocates say they're happy the three-term Democrat will take over the leadership position.6:51 a.m.
Meteorogist Mark Seeley's weather comments Minnesota Public Radio's Cathy Wurzer talks with University of Minnesota meteorogist Mark Seeley, who discusses the recent dry weather in many parts of Minnesota. He also talks about weather-related books that make good holiday gifts.6:55 a.m.
Baseball as America An exhibit from the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York, has made a stop in the Twin Cities for the winter. MPR's Jim Bickal toured the exhibit and talked with two of the game's greatest stars.7:21 a.m.
Small businesses online to greet cyber shoppers
Today, the day after Thanksgiving, marks the traditional beginning of the holiday retail rush. Minnesota Public Radio's Martin Moylan reports that if your shopping takes you to the Web, you may be surprised to find how many small businesses in your neighborhood are online.7:51 a.m.
Higher corn prices helps some and hurts others
Minnesota Public Radio's Mark Steil reports that farmers have seen something this fall that may be a once in a lifetime event. Corn prices are rising dramatically, up more than 60 percent. The main reason for the rise is increasing demand for corn by the ethanol industry. Higher corn prices is good news for grain farmers, but may cause big problems for some livestock producers.7:55 a.m.
National Public Radio Stories
Shiite Ministers Threaten to Boycott Parliament
Baghdad is under indefinite curfew after explosions kill more than 200 people in Sadr City, the capital's Shiite stronghold. Followers of radical Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr are blaming occupation forces for fomenting the violence in Iraq and threaten to boycott parliament unless Iraq's prime minister cancels a meeting with President Bush next week.
Europe Reluctant to Green Light U.S. Detainee Policy
The Bush administration is trying to convince European allies that its current policy for dealing with suspects in the war on terror, particularly those in Guantanamo Bay, is sound, legal and fair. But Europe is reluctant to go along -- despite some agreement that it would be good to develop a new international framework for handling terrorism suspects.
History as a Political Tool
NPR News Analyst Cokie Roberts talks with Steve Inskeep about how the Republican and Democratic parties use history to define themselves and the political landscape.
NASCAR Woos Hispanic Fans
NASCAR, the traditionally white, Southern racing circuit, is trying to draw a Hispanic audience. The campaign is keyed to the arrival of Colombian Formula 1 racer Juan Pablo Montoya to the NASCAR circuit.
Companies Offer Pilgrimage Rehearsals
For Muslims, the pilgrimage to Mecca, known as the Hajj, is the journey of a lifetime. And for the growing number of American Muslims who make this trip, it requires a lot of preparation. Few travel agencies specialize in the details of arranging a pilgrimage, but the number of companies in the United States offering such services to Muslims is growing.
A Western Twist on Middle East Literary Traditions
Two comic writers are breaking tensions with their unique interpretations of the Middle East. In American Bill Willingham's new graphic novel, 1001 Nights of Snowfall, he creates an American version of the Middle Eastern classic Book of 1001 Nights -- starring Snow White. Meanwhile, Kuwaiti writer Naif al-Mutawa has a new comic series about the attributes of Allah. But his main characters are western-style superheroes. Steve Inskeep reports.
Where Malls Go To Die
Many malls will see a surge this holiday weekend, with approximately 137 million people on the hunt for Black Friday sales. But not all malls will fare that well. The Web site DeadMalls.com catalogs dead or dying malls across the country.
Shopping with Elmo
It's Black Friday, one of the busiest shopping days of the year. Commentator Steve Case remembers how he spent it 10 years ago -- with a giggly, cuddly, and extremely elusive little ball of red fur named Elmo.
The Syria-Lebanon Connection
Historically, Syria has tried to influence events in Lebanon. But why? Theodore Kattouf, a former U.S. ambassador to Syria, explores the relationship between the two countries with Steve Inskeep.
Iran's Role in Iraq
Iran might be able to play a stabilizing role in Iraq. To find out what kind of influence Iran would have over Iraq, NPR's Mike Shuster speaks with Steve Inskeep.