Theater
1:24 pm
Thu June 14, 2012

'Old Jews' Take Jokes To The Stage

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

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Afghanistan
1:22 pm
Thu June 14, 2012

On The Ground With Troops In Afghanistan

NPR's Pentagon correspondent, Tom Bowman, recently spent several weeks in Afghanistan following the last major combat offensive in the region. He and Andrew Exum of the Center for a New American Security talk about the situation on the ground just two years shy of the withdrawal deadline.

Africa
1:18 pm
Thu June 14, 2012

The Future Of Democracy In Egypt

Egypt's Supreme Court declared recent elections illegal and ordered the Islamist-led parliament dissolved. The decision, by judges who were appointed by former dictator Hosni Mubarak, escalates the power struggle between the military government and the Muslim Brotherhood and other Islamists.

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The Two-Way
12:57 pm
Thu June 14, 2012

This Past May Was Second Warmest On Record

A map showing above and below average temperatures around the world in May.
NOAA

Every month, NOAA puts out a report wrapping up big climate trends. Today, it reports that this past May was the second warmest on record.

"May 2012 also marks the 36th consecutive May and 327thconsecutive month with a global temperature above the 20th century average," the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration reports.

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The Two-Way
12:56 pm
Thu June 14, 2012

Romney, Obama Squaring Off On Economy

Originally published on Fri June 15, 2012 11:18 am

President Obama and Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney delivered speeches that framed their visions for the United States moving forward.

While the appearences — both delivered in Ohio; Obama in Cleaveland, Romney in Cincinatti — were billed as dueling speeches scheduled for roughly the same time slot, the campaigns moved things around and the president delivered a much longer address right after Romney finished speaking.

In his address, Romney took shots at Obama for not delivering a recovery. He painted the president as being the "enemy" of business.

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The Two-Way
11:55 am
Thu June 14, 2012

Libya's High Court Strikes Down Law Banning Glorification Of Gadhafi

Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi attends the opening session of the Africa-EU summit in November 2010, before the current conflict. Now that the U.S. military has intervened in Libya, many wonder what the endgame is.
Mahmud Turkia AFP/Getty Images

Libya's Supreme Court decided on Thursday that its citizens should have the right to glorify Moammar Gadhafi, who ruled the country for more than three decades until his ouster last year.

Law 37, which called for prison sentences for those who spoke well of Gadhafi and for those who published bad news about the February 17 revolution, was challenged by a lawyer who argued the law violated the freedom of speech.

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Ken Tucker reviews rock, country, hip-hop and pop music for Fresh Air. He is a cultural critic who has been the editor-at-large at Entertainment Weekly, and a film critic for New York Magazine. His work has won two National Magazine Awards and two ASCAP-Deems Taylor Awards. He has written book reviews for The New York Times Book Review and other publications.

Tucker is the author of Scarface Nation: The Ultimate Gangster Movie and Kissing Bill O'Reilly, Roasting Miss Piggy: 100 Things to Love and Hate About Television.

Music Reviews
11:22 am
Thu June 14, 2012

On 'Banga,' Patti Smith Pays Homage To Friends

Patti Smith.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu June 14, 2012 4:39 pm

Featuring Patti Smith's former New York punk-era colleague Tom Verlaine on solo guitar, "April Fool" is one of the prettiest songs on Smith's new album, Banga. Verlaine sends out long, thin, delicate tendrils of sound as Smith's voice suffuses the melody with full-throated urgency. Although Smith has said, with typical art-democratic directness, that "almost everybody in the world can sing," a few songs on Banga make you aware of what a good voice she has.

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Around the Nation
11:22 am
Thu June 14, 2012

Radio's Bryan Fischer Tries Pushing Romney Right

Before hosting Focal Point, Bryan Fischer was the chaplain of the Idaho State Senate and the head of the Idaho chapter of the American Family Association.
Troy Maben AP

Originally published on Thu June 14, 2012 1:56 pm

In April, Mitt Romney hired Richard Grenell, an openly gay man, to serve as his campaign's national security spokesman. Within hours, Grenell was being attacked by a Christian radio talk show host named Bryan Fischer, whose Focal Point call-in show reaches more than 1 million listeners a day.

Nine days after Fischer began his on-air attack, Grenell resigned. He had been the only openly gay member of Romney's campaign staff.

The Christian right and Fischer saw Grenell's resignation as a "tremendous victory," says New Yorker staff writer Jane Mayer.

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