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NPR's business news starts with Apple's giant pile of money.

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INSKEEP: The maker of iPads, iPhones and computers is sitting on almost one hundred billion dollars in cash and securities. And today, Apple announced that it will spend some of that money paying a stock dividend to shareholders and buying back some company stock. NPR's Steve Henn has been following developments, and joins us on the line from Silicon Valley. Steve, good morning.

STEVE HENN, BYLINE: Good morning.

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Here's one thing that many people mean when they say Washington is broken. They may mean that politicians from different parties seem unable or totally unwilling to compromise, and many voters hate that. And yet many voters also hate it if politicians from their own party should compromise with the other side. That could be considered giving in. NPR's science correspondent Shankar Vedantam joins us regularly to talk about social science research, and he's found some that relates to this political problem. Hi, Shankar.

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We're following news this morning of more killings in the Syrian city of Homs. That's the city where rebel neighborhoods came under artillery fire for weeks and where two Western journalists were killed. Rebels later retreated, but residents and activists say pro-government militias have massacred dozens of civilians, mainly women and children. NPR's Kelly McEvers is following this story from Beirut.

And, Kelly, what evidence you have?

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

This ranks among the more dismaying moments in a decade-long war. Americans have worked for years to position themselves as protectors of Afghans against murderous insurgents, and then yesterday a U.S. Army sergeant surrendered after a shooting rampage that left well over a dozen people dead. The list of those killed includes women and children, and the motive for the suspect remains unclear.

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And we're also reporting on violence on the border between Israel and the Gaza Strip. The attacks stretched the weekend into today. Israeli airstrikes killed three more people today in Gaza - that Palestinian-held area - bringing the total to 21.

As Israelis have been bombing, Palestinians have been firing rockets into Israel. And NPR's Lourdes Garcia-Navarro is following this story.

And Lourdes, what's the latest?

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

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It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning, I'm Steve Inkseep. Let's follow up on today's unemployment report. The Labor Department says unemployment stayed where it was, 8.3 percent, but the economy created 227,000 new jobs net.

And we're going to talk about that with NPR's Yuki Noguchi. She's in our studies. Yuki, good morning.

YUKI NOGUCHI, BYLINE: Good morning, Steve.

INSKEEP: What stands out here for you?

GOP presidential candidate Rick Santorum won three Super Tuesday contests: Oklahoma, North Dakota and Tennessee. He just missed in Ohio. Mitt Romney went on to win there.

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Politics In The News

Mar 5, 2012

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The presidential contest overshadows constant maneuvering that could determine control of Congress this fall. Democrats hope to recapture the House. Republicans have been presumed to have an advantage in their efforts to take over the Senate. Both sides have been dealt some disappointments lately though.

Cokie Roberts has analysis as she does most Mondays. And this Monday morning, she's at our member station KERA in Dallas. Hi, Cokie.

COKIE ROBERTS, BYLINE: Hi. How are you, Steve?

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Some new research throws into question things we say all the time about the Internet. The research focuses on Twitter, the service that lets many millions of people send short messages to each other from computers or cell phones. It's commonly said that social networking like this is revolutionary, that it's created new communities, even that it's obliterated geography. You can connect with people who share common interests, not just people who happen to live nearby. NPR's Shankar Vedantam is here to explode all that. Hi, Shankar.

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And I'm Steve Inskeep. Good morning.

One more Arab nation is changing a longtime leader. Yemen's president for 33 years was Ali Abdullah Saleh. Today, millions of Yemenis vote. And they're being asked to ratify a plan under which Saleh's vice president will replace him. NPR's Kelly McEvers is in Yemen's capital Sana'a.

And, Kelly, where exactly are you in the capital city?

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The U.S. economy is improving, even though Americans keep having to look over their shoulders at Europe. The state of the economy affects everything in American politics right now, from the presidential election to the budget that the White House lays out today.

NPR's Cokie Roberts has some analysis, as she does the most Mondays. Cokie, good morning.

COKIE ROBERTS, BYLINE: Hi, Steve.

INSKEEP: OK, so what does the president's budget tell us?

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On a Friday morning, it's MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

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

Activists and human rights groups in Syria contend the government has now killed hundreds of civilians this week alone. It's hard to verify that number, but it is clear that mortars, rockets and tanks continue firing into the city of Homs. That gunfire has served as a week-long punctuation mark on the United Nation's failure to approve a resolution against Syria. NPR's Kelly McEvers is following the situation from Beirut. She joins us once again.

Hi, Kelly.

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This is MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.

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And I'm Steve Inskeep. Good morning.

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It is estimated that more than 111 million people watched Sunday's Super Bowl. That is the biggest TV audience ever for the championship game. And with all the hype before and even after the match-up between the Giants and the Patriots, other sports were drowned out. NPR's Tom Goldman is going to help correct that. He's here to bring us up to date on some other sports news.

Hi, Tom.

TOM GOLDMAN, BYLINE: Good morning.

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This is MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.

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And I'm Steve Inskeep. Good morning. Here's the latest on the crisis in Syria. The U.S. State Department says it has closed the U.S. Embassy in Damascus, and evacuated its diplomats. The U.S. also issued a warning for all American citizens to leave the country immediately. A State Department spokewoman says the embassy was shut because of concerns that it's not sufficiently protected from armed attack.

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