Mark Memmott

Mark Memmott joined NPR News in the spring of 2009 to launch a new blog, "The Two-Way," with co-blogger Frank James.

"The Two-Way" is the place where NPR.org gives readers breaking news and analysis — and where it engages users in conversations ("two-ways") about the most compelling stories being reported by NPR News and other news media.

Memmott came to NPR from USA Today, where for over 20 years he worked as a reporter and editor on subjects ranging from politics and, foreign affairs to economics and the media.

In recent years he helped launch and then led three different news blogs at USATODAY.com, including the website's 2008 presidential campaign blog, On Politics.

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10:35am

Tue September 6, 2011
The Two-Way

Tracks, Equipment Left By Apollo Missions Visible In New Moon Photos

The Apollo 17 landing site: To the far right, the Lunar Roving Vehicle; Toward the center, the descent stage of the Challenger lunar module. The lines are tracks and cables.
NASA

Tracks and equipment left on the moon by astronauts from three of the Apollo missions can be seen in new photos just released by NASA.

Though not close-ups by any stretch of the imagination, the images do offer more detail than other photos taken two years ago by the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, which is now circling the moon.

As it flew over landing sites of the Apollo 12, 14 and 17 missions, the orbiter snapped pictures that show, among other things:

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8:45am

Tue September 6, 2011
The Two-Way

Service Sector Still Growing, Though Slowly, Survey Shows

The service sector of the economy, which accounts for more than 80 percent of the jobs on private payrolls, "grew in August for the 21st consecutive month," according to data collected by the private Institute for Supply Management.

The institute's "non-manufacturing" index expanded by 0.6 percentage points, to 53.3. A reading above 50 signals that the service sector is expanding.

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8:10am

Tue September 6, 2011
The Two-Way

We Can All Track 'Happy Feet' On His Swim Home

The pause before the plunge: Happy Feet hesitated, and needed a little nudge from a handler, before sliding down into the sea on Sunday.
New Zealand's National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research Getty Images

It took a little nudge, but Happy Feet the wayward penguin was indeed sent on his way home (hopefully) over the weekend.

The Associated Press has video of the moment when the little guy who ended up on a beach in New Zealand — thousands of miles from his home in Antarctica — slid into the Pacific Ocean.

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7:35am

Tue September 6, 2011
The Two-Way

Remembering Sept. 11: 'We Didn't Want The Bad Guys To Win'

As the 10th anniversary of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks draws closer, we're pointing to some of the stories being told about that day and the days since.

This morning, The Wall Street Journal offers "A Battered Firm's Long Road Back." It's a look at the investment-banking firm Keefe, Bruyette & Woods, which lost more than a third of its 171 New York employees when the south tower of the World Trade Center fell.

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5:45am

Tue September 6, 2011
The Two-Way

Top Stories: Wildfires; Obama's Ratings; Postal Service's Losses

Good morning.

Wildfires continue to blaze in parts of central and northeast Texas, as we reported earlier. There are so many and they're moving so fast, in fact, that NPR's Wade Goodwyn says there just aren't enough firefighters and aircraft to battle them all effectively.

We'll keep an eye on developments there this week.

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