All Things Considered on 89.5-1

Weekdays 4-7 pm & Weekends 4-5 pm
Melissa Block and Robert Siegel

In-depth reporting and transformed the way listeners understand current events and view the world. Every weekday, hear two hours of breaking news mixed with compelling analysis, insightful commentaries, interviews, and special - sometimes quirky - features. To hear the most recent broadcast, or search the All Things Considered archives, click here.

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Science
3:14 pm
Sun July 22, 2012

Invasive Pests, Or Tiny Biological Terrorists?

There are millions of killers loose in California, and eucalyptus trees are their victims. Entomologist Timothy Paine has been studying the insects killing California's menthol-scented trees for two decades — and he's noticed a suspicious pattern.
George Rose Getty Images

Originally published on Sun July 22, 2012 4:33 pm

Long before the era of post-Sept. 11 security precautions in the U.S., an unknown person or group of people may have begun carrying out a series of bioterrorism attacks in California.

The target? Menthol-scented eucalyptus trees.

Before you wonder why you hadn't heard of this, it's because the story isn't necessarily true. It's a hypothesis, a theory promoted by a noted California entomologist and eucalyptus expert named Timothy Paine.

If his theory is correct, then somebody out there wants those trees dead.

Digging For Clues

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Movies I've Seen A Million Times
2:58 pm
Sun July 22, 2012

The Movie Donald Faison Has 'Seen A Million Times'

Actor Harrison Ford as Han Solo in Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back.
AP

Originally published on Sun July 22, 2012 4:33 pm

The weekends on All Things Considered series Movies I've Seen a Million Times features filmmakers, actors, writers and directors talking about the movies that they never get tired of watching.

For actor Donald Faison, whose credits include Clueless, Remember the Titans, the TV shows Scrubs and The Exes, the movie he could watch a million times is Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back. "I want to say I saw it at the movie theaters 30 times," Faison says.

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Author Interviews
2:29 pm
Sun July 22, 2012

'Savages' Return In 'The Kings Of Cool'

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Mon July 23, 2012 9:05 am

Oliver Stone's latest film, Savages, opened in theaters earlier this month. The movie centers on two young marijuana growers, Ben and Chon, who live and deal in California, alongside their girlfriend O — short for Ophelia. They find themselves thrust into a world of violence and murder when a Mexican drug cartel comes after their business. The film is based on the book by crime writer Don Winslow, who also co-wrote the screenplay.

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Why Music Matters
4:24 pm
Sat July 21, 2012

Fleeing Iran After A Fateful Gig

Aria Saadi is an Iranian-born musician and actor, who fled the country several years ago and is currently based in Canada.
KEXP

Weekends on All Things Considered continues its "Why Music Matters" series with Aria Saadi, an actor and musician originally from Iran. Saadi now lives and works in Vancouver, Canada, where he escaped after running afoul of the Iranian government.

Saadi says he remembers well one of his first encounters with Iranian authorities. A self-taught keyboard player, he was performing at what most Americans would call a normal party.

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Author Interviews
3:57 pm
Sat July 21, 2012

From Juvie To J.D.: The Story Of A 'Runaway Girl'

Originally published on Sat July 21, 2012 4:24 pm

When Carissa Phelps was 12, she dropped out of seventh grade in the small town of Coalinga, Calif. Her homelife was dysfunctional and soon, she ran away.

Her life on the streets took its toll, and before long the unthinkable happened: she was kidnapped by a pimp and forced into prostitution.

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Health
3:32 pm
Sat July 21, 2012

Say 'Ahhh': A Simpler Way To Detect Parkinson's

Mathematician Max Little has come up with an algorithm that can detect Parkinson's just using a person's voice.
Courtesy of Max Little

Originally published on Sat July 21, 2012 7:45 pm

There's currently no cure for Parkinson's, a debilitating neurological disease. There's also no blood test that can detect it, meaning early intervention is almost impossible.

But soon there might be a shockingly easy way to screen for Parkinson's disease. It would be as simple as picking up the telephone and saying "ahhh."

"There's some evidence, admittedly weak, that voice disturbances may well be one of the first or early indicator of the disease," mathematician Max Little tells weekends on All Things Considered host Guy Raz.

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History
3:24 pm
Sat July 21, 2012

Immigration, The Gold Mountain And A Wedding Photo

Wedding photograph of Wong Lan Fong and Yee Shew Ning, 1926.
U.S. National Archives and Records

Originally published on Mon July 23, 2012 6:50 pm

Deep inside the National Archives in Washington, D.C., old case files tell the stories of hundreds of thousands of hopeful immigrants to the U.S. between 1880 and the end of World War II.

These stories are in the form of original documents and photographs that were often attached to immigrant case files. Many of them are part of a new exhibit at the Archives, called "Attachments."

For University of Minnesota history professor Erika Lee, one of these attachments turned out to be very special.

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Deceptive Cadence
2:02 pm
Sat July 21, 2012

A Musician And The Audition Of His Life

To audition for the BSO, percussionist Mike Tetreault was required to prepare musical excerpts from 50 pieces on nine different instruments, including timpani.
Sean Hagwell Mike Tetreault

Originally published on Tue September 18, 2012 3:18 pm

Earlier this year, classical percussionist Mike Tetreault walked onstage at Symphony Hall in Boston for the audition of a lifetime: The Boston Symphony Orchestra was looking for not just one but two new percussionists.

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Movie Interviews
4:54 pm
Fri July 20, 2012

In New Documentary, Our Economic Fall Writ Large

Jackie Siegel poses in The Queen of Versailles. She and her husband, David, were building the largest house in the U.S. before the recession soured their plans.
Lauren Greenfield Magnolia Pictures

Originally published on Fri July 20, 2012 7:39 pm

The Queen of Versailles is a movie about a couple who set out to build a colossal 90,000-square-foot home — the biggest in America — inspired by the palace of Louis XIV, the Sun King.

In another time, this might have been the premise for a fictional film — a fable about hubris and material excess. But in our time, The Queen of Versailles is actually a documentary about the real life of David and Jackie Siegel of Orlando, Fla.

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The Aurora Theater Shootings
4:54 pm
Fri July 20, 2012

'Dark Knight' Events Canceled, Theaters Add Guards

Workers dismantle an installation that was set up for the premiere of The Dark Knight Rises in Paris. It had been scheduled for Friday night but was canceled after a gunman killed 12 people at a Colorado opening of the same film.
Jacques Brinon AP

Originally published on Fri July 20, 2012 5:56 pm

In the aftermath of the mass shooting in a Colorado theater, the hoopla surrounding a blockbuster movie opening was toned down, and theaters around the country began beefing up security.

Warner Bros., the studio behind The Dark Knight Rises, canceled Friday night's red-carpet premiere in Paris. It also called off a press conference with the director and the stars.

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