All Things Considered for Monday, August 19, 2013

New data from the federal government show that sequestration has eliminated more than 50,000 places for children in Head Start programs this fall. Some centers preserved slots for children by cutting back hours or shortening the school year and some states stepped in to fill the funding gap.

Suit In Alabama Seeks To Stop School Choice Law

Parents in some rural Alabama counties are asking a federal court to block a new state law that gives tax breaks to families who transfer out of failing schools. They argue that their children aren't getting a fair shot at a quality education.

NPR CEO Gary Knell Announces He's Leaving

Knell joined NPR in December 2011. He came after the resignation of Vivian Schiller, who left after two high-profile controversies. Now he's moving to National Geographic for what he says is an opportunity "I could not turn down."

Young Chefs Disrupt The Barbecue Game In Texas

A new generation of BBQ chefs is making its mark in Texas. We check out a few with Texas Monthly barbecue critic Daniel Vaughn. (This piece originally aired on Morning Edition on July 23, 2013.)
An Obama administration task force is recommending strategies to prepare for more disasters like Hurricane Sandy. The task force is advocating for improvements to make the electrical grid more robust and updates to flood control and building standards.
Author Marisha Pessl turned to technology to enrich readers' experience of her new thriller, Night Film — creating found-footage YouTube films, screen shots of hidden websites, and an app that readers can use to access additional content after scanning an illustration in the book.
Last week the world remembered the end of the war in the Pacific, and Japan's surrender on what become known as V-J Day. But many Japanese have never really accepted the terms of that surrender, and especially the constitution forced on Japan by the Americans after the war. Now the ruling party says Japan needs to revise its constitution to boost the country's confidence and pride. Critics say the proposed revisions would be a major setback for Japanese democracy.

A Vacation Horror Story: Honeymoon Edition

As part of the series "Vacation Horror Stories," Mary and Chris Darrigo tell the story about their honeymoon to an island resort where each day something horrible happened — from an earthquake to two falls with visits to the hospital and a dead woman in the next lounge chair.
As Egypt reels from the violent standoff between the country's military rulers and Islamist supporters of deposed President Morsi, a court dropped a corruption charge against former President Hosni Mubarak. His lawyer says this clears the way for his release from jail, but other reports suggested authorities would find a way to keep him detained.

Obama Administration Resists Cutting Off Egypt Aid

Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said on Monday that the United States has limited influence in Egypt, where a violent crackdown by Egypt's military has left hundreds of protesters dead. Hagel's comment comes as some in Congress suggest the U.S. does have substantial leverage. They want the the U.S. to cut off military aid to Egypt.
On Monday, President Obama summoned top financial regulators to the White House to get an update on the implementation of the Dodd-Frank Act. The legislation was passed in the wake of the financial crisis and is a sweeping overhaul of the nation's financial regulations. But three years after being signed into law, much of Dodd-Frank still isn't in place. Such is the difficulty of re-writing financial rules.

Some Investors Choosing U.S. Over Emerging Markets

Investors appear to once again be interested in the relative safety of U.S. stocks. A Bloomberg analysis shows investors pulling money out of emerging markets while simultaneously boosting purchases of U.S. equities.

The End Of Buttons: The New Gesture-Control Era

The newest smartphones are abandoning both physical and on-screen buttons in favor of gestures. As with so much behavior change ushered in by technology, the change happens before we take wider notice.
Libraries have been digitizing their collections for years, but the materials can be hard to find. Enter the Digital Public Library of America. Worried that Google has an outsized hand in digitizing books, the DPLA is combining, on one site, the digital collections of libraries nationwide — free.
A reporter runs into a conundrum: how to describe a sacred Hopi item without using certain forbidden words to do so.
Founded in the mid-19th century, luxury leather goods maker Moynat won renown for its traveling trunks for the moneyed set. But it fell on hard times and closed in the 1970s. Now, it's undergoing a rebirth, turning out limited quantities of luxurious, handmade bags that utilize centuries-old craftsmanship.
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