5:07am

Thu December 13, 2012
The Two-Way

Diplomatic Shift? Russia Acknowledges Assad May Be On Way Out

Originally published on Thu December 13, 2012 9:33 am

Northwest of Aleppo, Syria, this week, rebels were in control of this Syrian military base.
Herve Bar AFP/Getty Images

"Syria's most powerful ally, Russia, said for the first time Thursday that President Bashar Assad is losing control of his country and the rebels might win the civil war, dramatically shifting the diplomatic landscape at a time of enormous momentum for the opposition," The Associated Press writes.

Here's what Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov said, according to the AP:

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4:25am

Thu December 13, 2012
Europe

Botched Fresco Restorer Sells Original Work

Originally published on Thu December 13, 2012 6:03 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm David Greene. Remember Cecilia Gimenez? She's the 80-year-old Spanish woman who gained fame for her restoration of a 19th century fresco of Jesus. The botched restoration became quite a sensation. Some describe it as looking more like a monkey. Well, now Gimenez is selling some original work. It's a painting of a house in her hometown. It's on eBay, with bidding at more than $800. It makes you wonder if that Jesus restoration was bad art or good business. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

4:19am

Thu December 13, 2012
Around the Nation

If You Can't Beat Them, Copy Them

Originally published on Thu December 13, 2012 6:03 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne. Kristina Green knew she couldn't trump her next door neighbor's elaborate Christmas light display, so the Maricopa, Arizona woman decided to have some fun. Now pictured on her Facebook page is her neighbor's house covered, from driveway to roof, in 16,000 lights. And Green's house? It features a display of just 900 lights above her garage arranged to spell out the word ditto with an arrow pointing next door. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright National Public Radio.

4:03am

Thu December 13, 2012
Europe

A New Tale By Hans Christian Andersen

Originally published on Thu December 13, 2012 6:03 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Now to a writer whose exact words may not be remembered, but whose stories have come down through the ages. Scholars in Denmark believe they have found a new tale by Hans Christian Andersen. It's a short story called "The Tallow Candle."

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

A Danish newspaper says it was discovered in a storage box near Andersen's hometown. Experts believe he wrote it as a young teenager in the 1820s.

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1:53am

Thu December 13, 2012
NPR Story

Most Of Congress In The Dark On 'Fiscal Cliff' Talks

Originally published on Thu December 13, 2012 8:44 am

Of the 535 members of Congress, not many appear to be in the loop about the "fiscal cliff" negotiations. That makes the rest nervous about having to vote on a bill on short notice despite misgivings about what's in it. But this is often how major deals get accomplished in Washington.

In these budget negotiations, the names Boehner and Obama come up most often โ€” and virtually all the rest are on the outside looking in.

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1:53am

Thu December 13, 2012
NPR Story

Business News

Originally published on Thu December 13, 2012 6:03 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with supervising banks in the EU.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

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1:53am

Thu December 13, 2012
NPR Story

The Last Word In Business

Originally published on Thu December 13, 2012 6:03 am

CALM is an acronym for a new law that takes effect Thursday. It stands for the Commercial Advertisement Loudness Mitigation Act, and it means you won't have to jump for your TV remote the second commercials air. The law says the volume of commercials needs to be the same as the programs they're coming out of.

12:35am

Thu December 13, 2012
The Salt

Archaeologists Find Ancient Evidence Of Cheese-Making

Originally published on Mon December 17, 2012 9:19 am

Archaeologists believe that ancient farmers used pots made from these pottery shards to make cheese รขย€ย” a less perishable, low-lactose milk product.
Nature

As any cheese maker will tell you, it's not that hard to make cheese. You just take some fresh milk, warm it up a bit, and add something acidic to curdle it. Then, once it has cooled, you drain off the whey โ€” the liquid part โ€” and you're left with cheese.

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12:28am

Thu December 13, 2012
Planet Money

Will A $1.9 Billion Settlement Change Banks' Behavior?

Originally published on Thu December 13, 2012 8:55 am

Ben Stansall AFP/Getty Images

If a kid does something bad and you want to discipline him โ€” give him a timeout, say, or take away a toy โ€” there are some basic principles that seem to work.

The punishment needs to happen quickly after the bad behavior. And it needs to be significant enough to get noticed. Those rules aren't just for kids; they need to hold true for any type of punishment to be effective.

But if you're a federal regulator punishing a bank, it can be tough to be swift enough and to levee a penalty that's severe enough to make a difference.

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12:26am

Thu December 13, 2012
It's All Politics

Report On CIA Interrogation Tactics Revives Torture Debate

Originally published on Thu December 13, 2012 6:03 am

Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., and Sen. Saxby Chambliss, R-Ga., have opposing views about a report detailing CIA detention and interrogation practices.
Alex Wong Getty Images

In a closed-door meeting Thursday, lawmakers will consider whether to approve a secret report that chronicles CIA detention and interrogation practices โ€” including methods that critics have compared to torture.

That report โ€” along with the release of a new movie about the hunt for Osama bin Laden โ€” is rekindling an old debate about whether those methods worked.

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