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How Dogs Understand What We Say

KPLU News - 2 hours 29 min ago
Scientists — and anyone who lives with a canine — know that dogs pay close attention to the emotion in our voices. They listen for whether our tone is friendly or mean, how the pitch goes up or down and even the rhythms in our speech.

But what about the meaning of the words we say?

Sure, a few studies have reported on super smart dogs that know hundreds of words.

Pentagon Expected To Release More Detainees From Guantanamo

KPLU News - 2 hours 46 min ago
The U.S. prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, is far from being closed — something President Obama promised to do in the first days of his administration. But people are being released.

Five Taliban prisoners were swapped in May for U.S. Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl.

AFL-CIO Supports Black Friday Strikes Against Walmart

KPLU News - 2 hours 50 min ago
The day after Thanksgiving is traditionally one of the busiest shopping days of the year. Bargain hunters heading to Walmart, in addition to looking for holiday deals, may find workers participating in Black Friday Strikes.

Since 2012, Our Walmart, which is an employee labor group, has been staging strikes on the day after Thanksgiving.

Employees at stores in six states and Washington, D.C., plan to participate and more locations are expected to join in.

Our Walmart says it is standing up for better jobs.

Gold-Plated Gowns And 8-inch Pumps: The Stuff That Made Starlets Shimmer

KPLU News - 2 hours 50 min ago
Dripping in diamonds and shimmering in silks, the movie stars of the 1930s and '40s dazzled on the silver screen. Now, some of their costumes and jewels are on view at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston. There, a film clip runs on a wall behind gorgeously gowned mannequins lit by sconces and chandeliers. The clip is from 1932's No Man of Her Own, starring Clark Gable and Carole Lombard. Nearby, co-curator Michelle Finamore points to the actual gown Lombard wore. It's long, made of slinky silk crepe and covered in teeny gold-colored glass beads.

Thailand Blocks Access To Damaging Human Rights Report

KPLU News - Thu, 11/27/2014 - 13:43
Thailand's military junta has apparently blocked domestic access to a scathing new report from U.S.-based Human Rights Watch which describes the country as having fallen into an "apparently bottomless pit" since Army Gen.

Sun, Sand And Offshore Drilling In Spain's Famed Canary Islands

KPLU News - Thu, 11/27/2014 - 13:23


In A Land Of Few Christians, Pope Will Reach Out To Muslims In Turkey

KPLU News - Thu, 11/27/2014 - 13:23
Pope Francis is heading to Turkey for what could be one of the most challenging trips of his young papacy.

The three-day visit, which begins Friday, will be a mix of the religious and political, with the pope addressing topics ranging from Christian unity to the worsening plight of Christians in the Muslim-dominated Middle East.

While the Catholic and Orthodox churches have been divided since the "Great Schism" nearly a millennium ago, Francis will attend Sunday's celebration of St.

WTO Members Approve Historic Trade Deal

KPLU News - Thu, 11/27/2014 - 12:51
The World Trade Organization has received the unanimous backing of its 160 member nations for a first-ever multilateral trade deal, an agreement that has been years in the making and that the organization claims could add $1 trillion annually to global commerce.

India had been a sticking point on the Trade Facilitation Agreement. New Delhi had insisted that there be no constraints on stockpiling food.

Indian Investigators Deny Village Girls Were Raped, Murdered

KPLU News - Thu, 11/27/2014 - 11:47
Two teenagers who were found hanging from a tree outside a village in northern India in May in an apparent rape-and-murder may have taken their own lives, Indian officials now say.

The two girls, in their early teens, were first reported to be sisters and later cousins. They had reportedly gone into a field to relieve themselves but never

For P.D. James, A Good Mystery Celebrated Human Intelligence

KPLU News - Thu, 11/27/2014 - 09:12
Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

BirdNote: Wishbones And Dinosaurs

KPLU News - Thu, 11/27/2014 - 09:00

The anatomical structure we call the wishbone was long thought unique to birds. But fossil discoveries of recent decades have shown that some dinosaurs, including the mighty Tyrannosaurus rex, and the Velociraptors of ”Jurassic Park,” also had wishbones.

And there is now wide consensus among experts that this group of dinosaurs includes the direct ancestors of modern birds. Not only did they have wishbones but, like birds, they likely incubated their eggs, had hollow bones, and were clad in feathers!  

Wacky Wrestlers Of Yesteryear

KPLU News - Thu, 11/27/2014 - 08:39
Hoodslam — a popular spectacle that is staged monthly in Oakland, Calif. — is described by the San Francisco Chronicle as "part wrestling show, part carnival act and all comedy."

The foul-mouthed, adult-humored extravaganza is raunchy and rollicking as wrestlers "battle" each other while occasionally wielding strange weapons or tossing powder in faces.

Foreign Guesthouse Reportedly Attacked In Kabul's Diplomatic Area

KPLU News - Thu, 11/27/2014 - 08:36
Police in Afghanistan have confirmed that a foreign compound is under attack in the capital, Kabul, as explosions and gunfire can be heard.

NPR's Sean Carberry, reporting from the Afghan capital, says the gunfire and blasts could be heard in the city's diplomatic area.

As The Associated Press notes: "Kabul has come under regular attack in recent weeks.

OPEC Holds Production Steady, Signaling Lower Fuel Prices

KPLU News - Thu, 11/27/2014 - 07:49
OPEC oil ministers have agreed to keep production levels steady, virtually ensuring continued low prices at the gas pump and lower costs for jet fuel that could translate into cheaper air-ticket prices.

After the decision was announced, crude prices quickly tumbled on the global market.

A Nationwide Outpouring Of Support For Tiny Ferguson Library

KPLU News - Thu, 11/27/2014 - 07:06
The Ferguson Public Library is just a block away from the center of demonstrations at the Ferguson Police Department. As we've reported, when violent protests this week led to the burning of more than a dozen businesses and the uncertainty caused schools to close, the library stayed open.

It has become a quiet refuge for adults and children alike in this St. Louis suburb. And the nation has taken notice.

Holiday Travel Snarls Look To Be Easing

KPLU News - Thu, 11/27/2014 - 06:45
The weather is still wreaking havoc for Americans still traveling today in planes, trains and automobiles, but for the most part, the situation has improved dramatically as people crisscross the country making their way to Thanksgiving gatherings with family and friends.

AAA estimates that 46 million Americans will travel more than 50 miles to attend Thanksgiving festivities — the most in seven years.

Accuweather says the s

Your Adult Siblings May Be The Secret To A Long, Happy Life

KPLU News - Thu, 11/27/2014 - 06:03
Somehow we're squeezing 16 people into our apartment for Thanksgiving this year, with relatives ranging in age from my 30-year-old nephew to my 90-year-old mother.

British Mystery Novelist P.D. James Dies At 94

KPLU News - Thu, 11/27/2014 - 06:00
British mystery and crime novelist P.D.

A Moment Of Gratitude For Those Who Help Us Travel

KPLU News - Thu, 11/27/2014 - 05:00

Nationally, this is one of the busiest travel weeks of the year. With so many people flocking from point A to point B, this week we thought we’d focus on the people who help us get to where we need to be.

Travel expert Matthew Brumley and KPLU’s Ed Ronco both recall a time they were thankful for someone who went above and beyond their job to help them travel easily.

3 NFL Games On Tap To Satisfy Thanksgiving Football Fans

KPLU News - Thu, 11/27/2014 - 04:41
There are three traditional Fs that highlight the Thanksgiving holiday: family, food and football. Today's three NFL games are each between division rivals, and all the teams are battling for a playoff spot.

First up, while everyone is still wide awake, is a real Thanksgiving tradition: The Detroit Lions (7-4) host the Chicago Bears (5-6) in a classic match-up between historic NFL foes.