2:52am

Wed August 1, 2012
Remembrances

Gore Vidal, American Writer And Cultural Critic, Dies

Originally published on Thu August 2, 2012 5:31 am

Author Gore Vidal in 1986. Vidal, whose prolific writing career spanned six decades, died Tuesday at age 86.
AP

Gore Vidal came from a generation of novelists whose fiction gave them a political platform. Norman Mailer ran for mayor of New York City; Kurt Vonnegut became an anti-war spokesman. And Vidal was an all-around critic. His novels sometimes infuriated readers with unflattering portraits of American history.

He also wrote essays and screenplays, and his play The Best Man currently has a revival on Broadway.

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10:43pm

Tue July 31, 2012
Poetry Games

'Once More,' Passing The Torch To One And All

Originally published on Mon August 13, 2012 8:14 am

Ron Tanovitz

Representing Europe in NPR's Poetry Games is Slovenian poet Ales Steger. Steger's first work translated into English, The Book of Things, won last year's Best Translated Book Award for Poetry. The translator was poet Brian Henry, who also translated Steger's Olympic poem, "Once More."

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Madhulika Sikka is Executive Editor for NPR News, a role she joined in January 2013. As Executive Editor, Sikka oversees all desks and reporters, and helps set the agenda for the entire News division.

5:22pm

Tue July 31, 2012
The Torch

Badminton Qualifying Matches Descend Into Farce, Players Are Booed

Originally published on Wed August 1, 2012 9:51 am

BWF Referee Torsten Berg, center, urges Indonesia's Greysia Polii, center, and Meilana Jauhari, bottom right, and South Korea's Ha Jung Eun, back right, to play fairly in their women's doubles badminton match during the London 2012 Olympic Games in London on Tuesday.
Adek Berry AFP/Getty Images

BREAKING NEWS Update at 8:10 a.m. ET, Aug. 1:

"Eight players from four teams in the women's doubles competition have been thrown out" of the London Olympics for allegedly deliberately trying to lose their matches, The Telegraph is reporting.

The Associated Press has moved this "alert":

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5:09pm

Tue July 31, 2012
Media

Newspaper Takes A Stand On Anonymous Commenters

Linda Cook eventually revealed herself as the commenter who made a disparaging remark about an Idaho Republican Party official online.
Sandy Clemons Courtesy of Linda Cook

The Internet is slowly becoming a less anonymous place. YouTube has a new policy encouraging commenters to use their real names, and many news sites have switched to a login system run by Facebook.

News sites that still allow anonymous comments are finding there are legal risks. The Spokesman-Review newspaper in Spokane, Wash., has spent the last few months trying to protect the identity of a reader who saw a photo of a Republican Party official in Idaho named Tina Jacobson, and then posted a disparaging comment.

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4:39pm

Tue July 31, 2012
The Two-Way

From Our Readers: Lunchbox Lessons From Mom And Dad

Originally published on Wed August 1, 2012 4:40 am

We asked readers whether their childhood bedtime routine included an educational activity like "Bedtime Math." We also wanted to know whether parents out there have implemented something similar for their kids.

Readers shared stories about parents who carved out teachable moments —whether before bed, in the car on the way to school, or at the breakfast table.

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4:37pm

Tue July 31, 2012
The Torch

We've Got Olympic Spirit, Yes We Do; How 'Bout You?

Cheerleaders perform during the women's beach volleyball preliminary phase Pool B match on the Centre Court Stadium at Horse Guards Parade in London on Monday.
Daniel Garcia AFP/Getty Images

When I say citius, you say altius; when I say altius, you say fortius. Or don't. That's fine, too, traditional even. But these Olympics have conspicuously defied traditional notions by having cheerleaders, in a few different styles, at a few different venues. In basketball, dance teams perform between matches. In beach volleyball, highly choreographed teams delight attendees.

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4:17pm

Tue July 31, 2012
The Torch

Fed Up (As Usual) With NBC? Check Out The View From London On The BBC

On its website, NBC reported the U.S. women's gymnastics team's gold medal Tuesday. But if you were watching on American TV, you had to wait until prime time to see the competition.
NBC

'Morning Edition' executive producer Madhulika Sikka is back in her native Britain on vacation. And in contrast to what she's hearing from her American friends, the viewing choices there for the Olympics are staggering, she says.

The 2012 Summer Olympics are in full swing. And there is one gold medal America wins without fail, every four years. It's for the sport of complaining about NBC's tape-delayed coverage of the Olympic Games.

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3:58pm

Tue July 31, 2012
The Two-Way

BP Posts $1.4 Billion Loss, Surprising The Market

The Wall Street Journal's Market Watch says today's earning report shows that BP, the British oil giant, is still "struggling to make things right."

BP posted a $1.4 billion loss for the second quarter of the year. The main reason for the loss is that BP took a $4.8 billion writedown — in other words it reassessed some of its assets and decided that they were worth less than the company thought.

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3:20pm

Tue July 31, 2012
The Two-Way

Fannie, Freddie Regulator Holds Firm Against Mortgage Write-Downs

Many experts say reducing mortgage principal can help troubled homeowners avoid foreclosure and stay in their homes. But the regulator who oversees two of the nation's largest mortgage holders, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, has rejected the idea.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

A federal regulator is blocking the government-owned mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac from reducing the principal that homeowners owe on their mortgages in order to avoid foreclosures.

Tuesday's decision came from Edward DeMarco, the acting director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency.

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