Here and Now

Monday through Friday, 11am - 1pm
Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson

WNIJ's midday news magazine keeps you up-to-date with the news between Morning Edition and All Things ConsideredHere & Now combines the best in news journalism with intelligent, broad-ranging conversation to form a fast-paced program that updates the news from the morning and adds important conversations on public policy and foreign affairs, science and technology, and the arts: film, theater, music, food, and more.

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NPR Story
3:16 pm
Wed October 9, 2013

Mercury Treaty Puts Spotlight On Japan's Minamata Chemical Disaster

Visitors viewing photographs of deceased Minamata disease victims displayed at the Minamata Tokyo Exhibition in 1996 (Timothy S. George)

Representatives from 140 countries gather in Minamata, Japan, this week to sign a global agreement to reduce mercury in the environment.

This comes nearly 80 years after a chemical plant in Minamata began releasing methyl mercury into the ocean.

The resulting mercury poisoning affected some 60,000 people and was officially recognized as Minamata disease in 1956.

The chemical poisoning is described as one of the world’s worse environmental disasters.

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NPR Story
4:37 pm
Tue October 8, 2013

DJ Sessions: Dark And Soulful In Los Angeles

The Los Angeles-based musician, Kauf. (facebook.com/kaufaudio)

Los Angeles boasts artists from Charles Mingus to The Byrds.

KCRW DJ Travis Holcombe gives Here & Nows Jeremy Hobson a sonic tour of L.A., including new songs by Beck, funk duo The Internet, singer-songwriter Banks and electronic producer Kauf.

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NPR Story
4:37 pm
Tue October 8, 2013

Legal Questions Over Special Ops Raids

Accused al-Qaida leader Anas al-Libi is being questioned in U.S. military custody on a Navy Ship, even as questions rise about the laws under which he was captured and is being held.

The U.S. Army’s Delta Force conducted raids in Somalia and in the Libyan capital, Tripoli, over the weekend, capturing al-Libi, who is suspected of masterminding the 1998 bombings of U.S. embassies in East Africa.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry has said al-Libi was a “legal target,” and added that the raids show that terrorists who attack American interests “can run but they can’t hide.”

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NPR Story
4:37 pm
Tue October 8, 2013

New $100 Bills Aimed At Stopping Counterfeiters

The new $100 bill has additional security features, and goes into circulation today. (newmoney.gov)

Despite the government shutdown, the Federal Reserve starts distributing its brand new $100 bills to banks today.

The new $100 bill is the first redesign since 1996, and includes new features to thwart counterfeiters.

Jason Bellini of the Wall Street Journal joins Here & Now’s Jeremy Hobson to explain.

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NPR Story
3:11 pm
Mon October 7, 2013

Historian Reveals Ben Franklin's Not-So-Famous Sister

Here & Now's Alex Ashlock spoke to historian Jill Lepore at the Granary Burying Ground in Boston, where Benjamin and Jane Franklin's parents are buried. (aScratch/Flickr)

Originally published on Mon October 7, 2013 5:08 pm

Benjamin Franklin is arguably the most famous American ever. His youngest sister Jane is mostly lost to history. But Harvard historian Jill Lepore found her in the letters she and her brother exchanged over their long lives. They were called Benny and Jenny and Benny wrote more letters to Jenny than he did to anyone else. Most of his survive; many of hers do not.

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NPR Story
3:11 pm
Mon October 7, 2013

What Happens If The Debt Ceiling Isn't Raised?

Originally published on Mon October 7, 2013 5:08 pm

All eyes are on whether Congress will resolve the government shutdown, which has entered its seventh day.

But an even more serious concern is the debt ceiling.

If lawmakers on Capitol Hill fail to raise the nation’s debt ceiling by October 17th, the government will run out of money to pay all of its bills.

If this were to happen it hurt the economy and the country’s credit rating, and some people simply wouldn’t get paid.

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NPR Story
3:11 pm
Mon October 7, 2013

Rodriguez Sues MLB, Yankees' Doctor

Originally published on Mon October 7, 2013 5:08 pm

This weekend, the Oakland A’s beat the Detroit Tigers 1 to 0, and the Boston Red Sox bested the Tampa Bay Rays 7 to 4 in the American League. In the National League, the Dodgers won against the Braves 13 to 6 and the Pirates took the Cardinals 5 to 3.

But New York Yankees fans might have been paying more attention to Alex Rodriguez’s lawsuits.

On Thursday, the Yankee’s third baseman announced that he’s suing Major League Baseball and MLB commissioner Bud Selig over his 211-game suspension for taking performance enhancing drugs, claiming MLB is trying to ruin his career.

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NPR Story
4:43 pm
Fri October 4, 2013

How The Government Shutdown Is Hurting Farmers

Lawmakers battling over the food assistance program SNAP failed to pass a new farm bill this year, and the current one expired on Monday.

The farm bill traditionally touches on trade, rural development, loan credit, subsidies for farmers, a safety net for farmers and food for poor women and children.

With this season’s harvest underway, farmers are worried about getting crop insurance for the next cycle of planting.

Glenn Brunkow, a farmer in Westmoreland, Kansas, says the government shutdown is causing ripple effects for farming.

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NPR Story
3:40 pm
Fri October 4, 2013

Should You Tell Your Partner About Past Loves?

(Grant/Flickr)

Originally published on Fri October 4, 2013 4:43 pm

Vermont couple Leon Marasco and Kate Harper were friends for 17 years before they became romantically involved.

Because of that friendship, they knew all about each other’s former partners and felt that that knowledge deepened the bond between them.

Harper and Marasco wondered if other couples had had similar experiences.

After doing interviews and collecting hundreds of stories, they found the answer seems to be yes.

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NPR Story
3:40 pm
Fri October 4, 2013

'Hump Day' Disrupts Class

Originally published on Fri October 4, 2013 4:43 pm

The Geico commercial “Hump Day,” has gone viral.

Students at Vernon Center Middle School in Connecticut made news when they used the phrase “hump day” so much it became disruptive.

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