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N.B. — Book News is going on vacation next week. Your faithful correspondent will be in California sans laptop and praying that Jonathan Franzen doesn't choose that week to reignite any feuds with daytime talk show hosts. In the meantime, as always, leave your hot tips, scurrilous attacks and existential questions in the comments section or direct them to @annalisa_quinn on Twitter.
RENEE MONTAGNE: Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne. The NASDAQ says it was a software glitch that froze its trading worldwide for hours yesterday. So this time it wasn't the squirrel. The bushy-tailed rodents have halted the flow of capitalism before. In 1987 and again in 1994, squirrels chewed through a key NASDAQ computer cable. Not saying, but cables still exist in the NASDAQ's high tech world so it seems squirrels could strike again. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.
Originally published on Fri August 23, 2013 11:05 am
While the U.S. and its allies cannot move militarily against Syrian President Bashar Assad's regime "without a U.N. mandate and without clear evidence" that Assad's forces have used chemical weapons, the time within which a decision about such action must be made has been shortened, President Obama tells CNN.
A Canadian dentist bought one of John Lennon's molars at auction for $31,000. And now, Michael Zuk plans to use the tooth to clone the former Beatle. The DNA sequencing is already underway. But cloning technology is not quite there yet, so Zuk is biding his time in other ways. He released a parody song called "Love Me Tooth," as in...
(Singing) Love, love me tooth.
Sorry, I just did that. What would John Lennon think of all of this? Probably just say, let it be.
Security forces and medics wheel a stretcher transporting former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak from a military helicopter into an ambulance at a Cairo military hospital after his release from prison Thursday.
In Egypt, members of the Muslim Brotherhood are trying to get supporters of ousted President Mohammed Morsi back into the streets.
But the military appears to be consolidating its power.
There were signs of Egypt's shifting fortunes on Thursday when former President Hosni Mubarak was flown from jail to house arrest in a hospital. A few dozen people celebrated outside the prison as Mubarak, 85, was ferried away by helicopter.
This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.
DAVID GREENE, HOST:
And I'm David Greene. Good morning. President Obama is on a two-day back-to-school bus tour. He's holding a town hall meeting today at the State University in Binghamton, New York. Later he'll visit a community college in Scranton, Pennsylvania. The president is pushing his plan to make college education more affordable. NPR's Scott Horsley is along for the ride. He reports that the bus tour has the president in one of his comfort zones.
The Fukushima-Daiichi nuclear power plant is back in the news more than two years after an earthquake and tsunami triggered a series of meltdowns. New leaks found this week prompted regulators to consider raising the alert level there in Japan. NPR's science correspondent Geoff Brumfiel joined us to explain. Geoff, good morning.
Soaring sales figures suggests that the world has developed quite a taste for American whiskey. And to satisfy the masses, Jack Daniel's is expanding its distillery in the small city calls home, Lynchburg, Tennessee.
Blake Farmer from member station WPLN reports.
BLAKE FARMER, BYLINE: Last year, Jack Daniel's hit a sales record - 11 million cases of charcoal-mellowed, sour mash whiskey. But the nearly 150-year-old brand still only controls three percent of the global market, says senior vice president John Hayes.
Kesennuma, in the Tohoku region of Japan, was devastated in a March 11, 2011, earthquake and tsunami. A researcher studying recent mega-quakes says this one, centered some 300 miles from Tokyo, could actually mean an increased risk of a quake hitting Japan's capital, one of the most populous metropolitan areas in the world.
There's a joke among scientists: Prediction is difficult, especially about the future. For Ross Stein, it wasn't a joke after the Indian Ocean quake and tsunami in 2004. It killed some 275,000 people. "I just felt almost a sense of shame," Stein says, "that this tragedy could have been so immense in a world where we have so much intense research effort."
Members of the Congress of Racial Equality leaving Brooklyn en route to the March on Washington, on April 15, 1963. At 16, Lawrence Cumberbatch (fourth from left, in back wearing a white hat) was the group's youngest member.
Credit Orlando Fernandez / World Telegram & Sun/Library of Congress
Lawrence (right) recounted his 1963 walk from New York to Washington, D.C., to his son, Simeon, on a visit to StoryCorps.
Lawrence Cumberbatch was only 16 when he trekked, on foot, from New York City to Washington, D.C., to join the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom. Lawrence, now 66, was the youngest person on the march with the Brooklyn branch of the Congress of Racial Equality.
His parents thought two weeks on the open road would be too dangerous for a teenager and made their best effort to dissuade him, Lawrence tells his son, Simeon, 39, at StoryCorps in New York.
FBI Director Robert Mueller testifies on Capitol Hill in June.
Credit J. Scott Applewhite / AP
FBI Director Robert Mueller had been on the job just a week before the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. On Sept. 12, he took questions from reporters with U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft about the investigation.
For a man at the center of so many critical government actions, with a portfolio that includes preventing terrorist strikes and cyberattacks, FBI Director Robert Mueller has mostly avoided the limelight since he joined the bureau just a week before Sept. 11, 2001.
As his friend and former CIA Director George Tenet says, Mueller represents a different type.
Originally published on Fri August 23, 2013 7:06 pm
The case of Army Pfc. Bradley Manning tested many complex questions about espionage, journalism and even treason. But there was always one thing that lingered as a subtext to the case: Manning's struggle with gender identity.
On Thursday, when Manning announced that he wants to be known as Chelsea Manning, it became clear that the subtext would become the focus and that Manning will now likely test military policy on transgender issues.