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11:47 am
Fri May 30, 2014

Phoenix To Self: 'Why Am I Talking About This? ... Joaquin, Shut Up'

Joaquin Phoenix's Her character, Theodore, has a job writing intimate — and sometimes erotic — cards and letters on behalf of other people.
Courtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures

Originally published on Fri May 30, 2014 3:30 pm

This interview was originally broadcast on Jan. 21, 2014.

Joaquin Phoenix started his acting career in 1982, when he was about 8, on an episode of the TV series Seven Brides For Seven Brothers. (His brother, the late River Phoenix, was a regular in the series.) He tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross that he still vividly remembers his first time on a set.

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U.S.
11:18 am
Fri May 30, 2014

VA Secretary Apologizes For 'Indefensible' Treatment Delays

Originally published on Fri May 30, 2014 12:36 pm

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm David Greene.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And I'm Steve Inskeep. Good morning. Eric Shinseki, the embattled secretary of Veterans Affairs, meets this hour with President Obama at the White House. Now, earlier today, Shinseki spoke at a conference on homeless veterans, and addressed what he called the elephant in the room. The issue of VA clinics lying about how quickly they were seeing patients.

(SOUNDBITE OF PRESS CONFERENCE)

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The Two-Way
10:39 am
Fri May 30, 2014

Tsarnaev Friend Accused Of Impeding Boston Bombing Investigation

Originally published on Fri May 30, 2014 3:46 pm

Updated at 3:45 p.m. ET:

Federal prosecutors have charged Khairullozhon Matanov with misleading the FBI and destroying evidence relevant to the investigation of last year's Boston Marathon bombing.

"He will plead not guilty," Ed Hayden, Matanov's court-appointed public defender told reporters. "Nothing he did or said was intended to mislead the FBI. And from what I know now, it didn't."

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The Two-Way
10:15 am
Fri May 30, 2014

VA Chief Eric Shinseki Resigns Post, Obama Announces

Eric Shinseki resigned as the head of the Department of Veterans Affairs on Friday, in what President Obama said was a decision spurred by a desire to not distract from efforts to fix the agency's problems. Earlier Friday, Shinseki spoke at a conference in Washington.
Win McNamee Getty Images

Originally published on Fri May 30, 2014 1:10 pm

Embattled Department of Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki has resigned his position, hours after saying he would work to fix "systemic" problems in the VA's health care system.

President Obama said Friday that the decision was made so Shinseki wouldn't be a "distraction" from efforts to address the agency's wide-ranging problems.

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The Two-Way
8:34 am
Fri May 30, 2014

National Spelling Bee: Rare Co-Champions, And A Star Online

Ansun Sujoe, of Fort Worth, Texas, and Sriram Hathwar, of Painted Post, N.Y., were named co-champions of the 2014 Scripps National Spelling Bee on Thursday. Their siblings helped them celebrate the first shared title since 1962.
Manuel Balce Ceneta AP

Originally published on Fri May 30, 2014 12:41 pm

For the first time in 52 years, the Scripps National Spelling Bee crowned two winners last night, after the final two competitors exhausted the word list. The winners were Sriram Hathwar, an eighth-grader from Painted Post, N.Y., and Ansun Sujoe, a seventh-grader from Fort Worth, Texas.

"I like sharing the victory with someone else," Ansun said. "It's been quite shocking and quite interesting, too. It's very rare."

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Around the Nation
7:29 am
Fri May 30, 2014

Cracks Appear On Ledge Of Chicago's Willis Tower

Originally published on Fri May 30, 2014 12:36 pm

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Steve Inskeep with a tale of the Willis Tower, the Chicago Skyscraper formally known as Sears. There's a glass box on the side where you step out standing on a glass ledge 103 floors up. Some tourists asked if it could break. The guide said, no, it was unbreakable. So they stepped out, and that's when they heard the cracking. An official insists it was just a protective coating that shattered beneath their feet. Workers edged out to repair it. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Europe
7:29 am
Fri May 30, 2014

Rare Right-Wing Party Favors EU Integration, Joining Nato

Originally published on Fri May 30, 2014 12:36 pm

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Europe's far-right parties did well, really well in last week's elections to the European Parliament. But their embrace of Russia and its annexation of Crimea is not exactly what the far-right counterparts in Ukraine were expecting. NPR's Peter Kenyon reports on a rare right-wing party that favors EU integration and joining NATO.

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Around the Nation
7:29 am
Fri May 30, 2014

Judge Rules Tenn. Town Can Change Its Name To Rocky Top

Originally published on Fri May 30, 2014 12:36 pm

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm David Greene. Ah, "Rocky Top." This blue grass tune's a Tennessee anthem about the simple life in a fictional place in the hills. Well, some developers want Rocky Top on the map for real. They lobbied to change the name of Lake City, a former coal town, to Rocky Top, to attract tourists. The song's publisher sued to stop them, but a judge approved the switch, even working a few "Rocky Top" lyrics into his opinion.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "ROCKY TOP")

The Two-Way
7:26 am
Fri May 30, 2014

NBA Says LA Clippers Sale 'Resolved,' But Sterling Vows To Sue

Los Angeles Clippers co-owner Shelly Sterling (left) has announced a "binding contract" to sell the team to former Microsoft executive Steve Ballmer for $2 billion. Any sale of the team would require the NBA's approval before it is made official.
Mark J. Terrill AP

Originally published on Fri May 30, 2014 7:49 pm

Shelly Sterling says her family's trust has reached a deal to sell the Los Angeles Clippers to former Microsoft executive Steve Ballmer for $2 billion. The wife of embattled Clippers owner Donald Sterling issued a news release announcing a "binding contract" Thursday night.

"I am delighted that we are selling the team to Steve, who will be a terrific owner," Shelly Sterling said in the news release. "We have worked for 33 years to build the Clippers into a premiere NBA franchise. I am confident that Steve will take the team to new levels of success."

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Asia
6:19 am
Fri May 30, 2014

Terror Attacks In China Take An Alarming Turn

Smoke rises from Tiananmen Square in Beijing on Oct. 28, when three Uighurs, a mostly Muslim ethnic minority, drove a jeep into a crowd there, killing two tourists. The people inside the car died as well, after they set their vehicle on fire.
STR Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Fri May 30, 2014 7:39 pm

China has suffered small-scale terror attacks in the past that often targeted local government in out-of-the-way cities. In the past year, though, the attacks have taken an alarming turn.

Ethnic militants have gone after civilians outside their homeland and employed a relatively new tactic: suicide.

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Africa
6:08 am
Fri May 30, 2014

Political Chaos Reigns 3 Years After Moammar Gadhafi's Ouster

Originally published on Wed July 16, 2014 3:16 pm

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And I'm David Greene. We are reminded this morning of how difficult the transitions have been in the countries of the Arab Spring. Egypt has had a coup. Serious bloody civil war carries on. And in Libya, two men now claim to be the rightful prime minister. One is a businessman elected by parliament earlier this month with the backing of Islamists.

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NPR Story
5:11 am
Fri May 30, 2014

Colombian Rebel Group Becomes World's Oldest Guerrilla Army

Originally published on Fri May 30, 2014 12:36 pm

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

In May of 1964, a Marxist militant group called the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia or FARC, began its fight to overthrow the Columbian government. Fifty years later, despite ongoing peace talks that fight continues, making FARC the worlds oldest guerilla army. John Otis reports.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: (Spanish spoken).

JOHN OTIS, BYLINE: Here in the southern Colombia town of Uribe, army troops salute their officers. This region is a long-time rebel stronghold, so everyone is on high alert.

(SOUNDBITE OF CROWD)

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NPR Story
5:11 am
Fri May 30, 2014

Sen. Corker Wants More Lasting Show Of Force In Eastern Europe

Republican Sen. Bob Corker, the ranking member on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, says he thinks President Obama hasn't responded strongly enough to the crises in Ukraine and Syria.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

Originally published on Fri May 30, 2014 1:10 pm

Sen. Bob Corker of Tennessee, the top Republican on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, had tough words following President Obama's West Point speech and NPR interview about foreign policy goals.

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NPR Story
5:11 am
Fri May 30, 2014

Will The U.S. Arm Syrian Rebels?

Originally published on Fri May 30, 2014 12:36 pm

There was some anticipation this week that President Obama might endorse stronger measures to give training to Syria's rebels. The president told NPR the rebels might be better able to use U.S. aid.

StoryCorps
3:04 am
Fri May 30, 2014

Once Forbidden, Books Become A Lifeline For A Young Migrant Worker

On a visit to StoryCorps, Storm Reyes told her son, Jeremy Hagquist, about growing up as a farm laborer. Reyes eventually went to night school and worked in a library for more than 30 years.
StoryCorps

Originally published on Fri May 30, 2014 1:33 pm

In the late 1950s, when she was just 8 years old, Storm Reyes began picking fruit as a full-time farm laborer for less than $1 per hour. Storm and her family moved often, living in Native American migrant worker camps without electricity or running water.

With all that moving around, she wasn't allowed to have books growing up, Storm tells her son, Jeremy Hagquist, on a visit to StoryCorps in Tacoma, Wash.

"Books are heavy, and when you're moving a lot you have to keep things just as minimal as possible," she says.

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