The U.S. is back from the brink after a deal to reopen the government and lift the debt ceiling, but more crises may be on the horizon with a compromise budget due by mid-December and the federal government only funded through Jan. 15. Host Scott Simon speaks with NPR's senior Washington editor Ron Elving about what comes next.
Several new studies show the political battles in Washington have been seriously hurting companies and workers. Some economists estimate that over the past few years, partisan standoffs have been stunting growth to the tune of hundreds of billions of dollars — and close to a million jobs.
Absolut, the Swedish vodka maker, is marketing a new spirit called Absolut Chicago. The vodka company describes its taste as "rich and aromatic with intriguing herbal notes of rosemary and thyme." But Scott Simon has his own suggested ingredients, from a kick of cold lake wind to a drop of the blues.
For the Affordable Care Act to work, young, healthy people have to sign up for the new insurance exchanges. But these so-call Young Invincibles have a number of reasons for forgoing coverage. Host Scott Simon talks with Lisa Dubay of the Urban Institute about these 18- to 35-year-olds.
Part-time bartender Jacob Kreider, 33, tells host Scott Simon that he's chosen not to take the medical plan for which he qualifies under the Affordable Care Act. He says he'd rather use the money to pursue his career goals.
Philadelphia Public Schools have been facing a funding crisis. There have been a series of layoffs, including assistant principals, school nurses and counselors. Some funding has come through to rehire hundreds of staffers, but not any new nurses. Host Scott Simon speaks with Eileen DiFranco, who has been a school nurse in the city for more than 23 years, about the situation.
After years of jokes, Ultimate Frisbee players say they're finally getting some respect. This year the sport received provisional recognition from the International Olympic Committee, and Ryland Barton of KWBU in Waco, Texas, reports that this weekend its national championship will be broadcast live on ESPN3.
Solomon Northup, an African-American musician from New York, was kidnapped and sold into slavery in 1841. He was eventually freed and wrote about his experience in Twelve Years a Slave, a memoir that has inspired a new film adaptation. But by the end of the Civil War, he dropped off the public record.
Many film critics have called 12 Years A Slave hard to watch because of its graphic and emotional content. Host Scott Simon talks with Slate's movie expert, Dana Stevens, about why we sit through difficult movies.
The trumpeter and bandleader premiered his gospel-jazz Abyssinian Mass back in 2008. But now, accompanied by a 70-voice choir, he's taking the sprawling work on the road and into African-American churches — whose services were the inspiration for the piece.
This week, politicians and pundits of almost all persuasions seemed to agree that the Republican Party took a hit from the shutdown. But Jonah Goldberg of the National Review sees a path forward. Hos Scott Simon talks with Goldberg about how the party can put its schisms behind it.
The political instability over funding the U.S. government and raising the debt ceiling could have international financial implications. Host Scott Simon speaks with Matthew Goodman of the Center for Strategic and International Studies about how emerging economies view the dollar after the current debt crisis.
When Saudia Arabia cut off direct oil shipments to the U.S. 40 years ago, the country was thrown into shock. Calls for energy independence grew louder. The U.S. is now producing more of its own oil and natural gas than ever, but the commitment to efficiency has been uneven.
A new Chinese rule targets Chinese bloggers whose posts against their government have gone viral. One blogger and editor for the Chinese Wall Street Journal, Li Yuan, talks to host Scott Simon about the increased danger of posting in China.
The Web is full of sites promoting views that many find offensive — and often, those sites do business with credit card companies. Some advocacy groups are pressuring Visa and MasterCard to end those relationships, but others worry these campaigns will have a chilling effect on free speech online.
The Cardinals beat the Dodgers Friday night, and Detroit and Boston are back at Fenway on Saturday. Host Scott Simon talks with Howard Bryant of ESPN about the games and what's ahead for the World Series.
The name of Washington's football team has been hotly debated: criticized for being a racial slur but defended but the team's owner as actually being a kind of tribute to Native Americans. Host Scott Simon talks to Forbes senior editor Kurt Badenhausen about the economics of the Washington Redskins brand.
San Antonio's newest library doesn't look very bookish. In fact, the BiblioTech is completely digital. Host Scott Simon speaks with Judge Nelson Wolff of Bexar County, who spearheaded the initiative, about the modern take on the traditional library.
Dina Moreno of Seattle describes how her family built a "Little Free Library," one of thousands of miniature lending spots popping up around the country. The library, the size of a doll house, has helped bring the neighborhood together.
Donna Tartt's new novel The Goldfinch follows a motherless boy and a priceless painting in the aftermath of a terror attack. It's only her third novel in 21 years. Tartt tells NPR's Scott Simon that she started thinking about art, money and fate after stumbling across an art exhibition in a Las Vegas casino.
The jazz legend practiced his saxophone 10 to 15 hours a day before he got his big break, and while he wasn't the most reliable husband, when it came to music, he never wavered. Scholar Stanley Crouch's Kansas City Lightning is the first of a two-volume biography of Parker.