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2:19am

Wed September 28, 2011
Middle East

Syrian Leader Digs In For A Long Battle

Despite domestic and international pressure, Syrian President Bashar Assad has pursued an aggressive crackdown on protesters, and the outcome of the seven-month-old uprising is far from clear.
Muzaffar Salman AP

After seven months of protests in Syria, the international community has stepped up economic pressure, and some of Syria's traditional allies have turned into critics.

Yet President Bashar Assad presses on with a relentless and bloody crackdown, and his government seems to be operating on its own timeline when it comes to the uprisings that have already toppled several Arab regimes.

The events in Syria suggest it's time for a reassessment of the Arab spring, according to Vali Nasr, a former U.S. government adviser and Middle East scholar at Tufts University.

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2:19am

Wed September 28, 2011
Herman Cain

Cain's Catchy 9-9-9 Tax Plan Draws Interest, Doubters

Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain speaks in Orlando, Fla., on Saturday. He won a GOP straw poll there with 37 percent of the vote.
Mark Wilson Getty Images

Last weekend, pizza magnate Herman Cain did something that surprised the political world: He came in first in a Florida GOP presidential straw poll.

One way Cain has attracted the attention of Republican voters is with what he calls his 9-9-9 plan. It's a cleverly marketed idea for changing the nation's tax code.

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10:58pm

Tue September 27, 2011
Planet Money

The Dream Of Europe And The Bailout Of Greece

Peace symbol
Michael Probst AP

"We need Greece," Maurice Minot, a Frankfurt taxi driver, told me, swerving in excitement. "We need Spain, we need Italy. It's the dream for Europeans, for more than a hundred years."

For Minot, as for many Germans on both sides of the debate, the question of bailouts goes beyond narrow self interest. It gets at what it means to be German, and what it means to be European.

Klaus Frankenberger, an editor at the newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, points to the painful labor reforms Germany went through a few years ago.

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10:01pm

Tue September 27, 2011
Krulwich Wonders...

Wanna Live Forever? Become A Noun

Adam Cole NPR

Adam: When I say "Henry Shrapnel, Jules Leotard, Robert Bunsen," you think — what?
Me: That they're inventors?
Adam: No. Better than that. Each one has become immortal. They're nouns!
Me: Is that a good thing, becoming a noun? ...
Adam: Are you kidding? It's a wonderful thing. A thing to sing about.
Me: You're going to sing?
Adam: If I may ...

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8:00pm

Tue September 27, 2011
Sweetness And Light

We're All Just 'Guys'

Opening night for Guys and Dolls on Broadway or, for Frank Deford, "Guys and Guys."
Joe Corrigan Getty Images

As best as I know, I own the distinction of being the first human being to call our national attention to a linguistic phenomenon.

This was back in 1972, in an article in Sports Illustrated about Robyn Smith, who was then the best female jockey in the land. Smith referred to married couples as "you guys." I was so bemused that someone might actually refer to a woman as a guy that I felt obliged to mention it in the piece.

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