Wed June 22, 2011
The Two-Way

Target Tuesday: In Afghanistan, A Mortar Attack Caught On Tape

Specialist Gregory Goodrich, from Paw Paw Michigan, with Butcher Troop, part of the US Army 1st Infantry Division, fires a Mark 19 grenade launcher at a Taliban mortar team as incoming rounds were hitting just outside the bunker at Combat Outpost Wilderness in Paktia provence, eastern Afghanistan.
David Gilkey NPR

Our colleagues, embedded with troops in Afghanistan, witnessed a dramatic attack yesterday. NPR's Pentagon correspondent Tom Bowman tells Michele Norris on today's All Things Considered that the attack happened while they were at a Combat Outpost called Wilderness, which is a short helicopter ride from the city of Khost.

"I was actually coming back from brushing my teeth and there was this massive explosion, maybe 40 yards away," said Tom. Soldiers started screaming "mortars, mortars!" And Tom headed for cover.

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Wed June 22, 2011

Auto Industry Adjusts To New Normal: Low Sales

A salesman looks at Ford Fusion cars with customers on the lot at the Serramonte Ford dealership in Colma, Calif. This year, Ford Motor Co. reported its best first-quarter earnings since 1998, at $2.6 billion.
David Paul Morris Getty Images

The U.S. auto market is slowly rebounding. But even as sales increase, they're still not at the peaks hit 10 years ago. In 2000 and 2001, more than 17 million automobiles were sold in America. Last year, just under 12 million were sold.

But many analysts, dealers and executives believe the industry is actually healthier selling far fewer cars.

"That 16 to 17 million sales level that we experienced was not a normal situation," says Jeremy Anwyl, CEO of car site Edmunds.com.

He says a lot of the factors that kept car sales high won't be seen again.

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Wed June 22, 2011
NPR Story

Grunting At Wimbledon

Michele Norris and Robert Siegel check in on complaints of grunting at Wimbledon.


Wed June 22, 2011
Health Care

Health Secretary Touts Affordable Care Act in Colorado

ICU Dr. Ivor Douglas gives Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius a tour at Denver Health Wednesday.
Photo by Kirk Siegler

As many Republicans continue to call for a repeal of President Obama’s health care overhaul, the administration’s top health official is paying a visit to Colorado to highlight a Denver Health program that could help contribute to billions of dollars in savings to Medicaid.  

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Wed June 22, 2011

Chinese Reopen Debate Over Chairman Mao's Legacy

Thousands of Chinese students holding Communist flags and a portrait of China's late leader Mao Zedong mark the 90th anniversary of the founding of China's Communist Party. Celebrations like this one come during a controversial moment, as leftist groups push back at criticism of Chairman Mao and the millions of deaths he caused.
STR AFP/Getty Images

As China prepares to mark the 90th anniversary of its Communist Party on July 1, there are signs of a new ideological struggle over former leader Mao Zedong's legacy.

The conflict is being played out online amid a backdrop of heightened nostalgia for the revolutionary days, as a young leftist takes on an elderly economist who dared to publicly criticize the founder of the People's Republic of China.

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Wed June 22, 2011
World Cafe

Delicate Steve On World Cafe

Steve Marion's band, Delicate Steve, performs on this episode of World Cafe.
Courtesy of the artist

Delicate Steve got a lot of attention early this year when the band's debut album, Wondervisions, was released with a prank press release written by rock critic Chuck Klosterman. The parody, which many took at face value, described Delicate Steve as "the wordless New Jersey U2" and claimed that bandleader Steve Marion played more than 40 instruments.

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Wed June 22, 2011
The Record

Following Claire Chase: A Week In The Life Of The Modern Freelance Musician

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 9:43 am

Melanie Burford

Claire Chase offered to send a helicopter to pick me up each morning during the seven days I followed her to produce this story.

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Wed June 22, 2011
Planet Money

Why We Tip

If you ask people why they tip, they'll say it's obvious. They tip for good service, of course. It's a reward for a job well done.

But a leading theory on tipping suggests that's not really why we do it.

Studies show that the size of the tip doesn't have much to do with the quality of service. The weather, how sunny it is, what kind of mood people are in, these factors matter just as much as how satisfied the customers are with the service they receive.

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Wed June 22, 2011

Schools Blend Computers With Classroom Learning

Kindergartners at KIPP Empowerment Academy in South Los Angeles work on laptops while in another corner of the room, a group of students do an activity with a teacher.
Larry Abramson NPR

Part 1 of a two-part report.

Many school districts are reluctantly cutting staff and dropping courses in a desperate effort to respond to tighter budgets. But some educators are looking at ways to save money and improve instruction at the same time.

The answer for some schools: blended learning, which is part computer lesson, part classroom instruction.

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Wed June 22, 2011
The Two-Way

Double Standard? US Airways Allows Man Wearing Panties To Fly

You remember we wrote about the University of New Mexico football player who was arrested at a San Francisco airport for his sagging pants, right?

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