Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne. It was a classic make-way-for ducklings scenario. Syracuse city worker Gary Clifford saw a mother duck leading a dozen little ones down a busy city street. So he followed them in his truck, stopping traffic along the way. Until they walked across a storm drain and four ducklings fell in. Syracuse.com reports a city crew was called. It scooped them up, calmed the panicked mama duck, and took the entire feathered family to a creek. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.
He has performed around the world for millions of screaming fans. Now, Justin Bieber is taking his talents off the planet. Bieber put a quarter-million dollar deposit on a seat on Virgin Galactic's spaceship. The singer wants to shoot a music video in space.
Astronaut Chris Hadfield already did that last month, singing David Bowie's "Space Oddity" on board the International Space Station.
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This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Linda Wertheimer.
RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:
And I'm Renee Montagne.
Since 2007, America's National Security Agency has been mining data from the servers of major American Internet companies, including Microsoft, Apple, Facebook, Google. That's according to new reports from the Guardian and the Washington Post. This comes hard on the heels of another Guardian report revealing the intelligence agency is collecting Verizon phone records of millions of Americans
NPR's business news starts with pension problems for Illinois.
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MONTAGNE: The credit rating for the state of Illinois has taken another step closer to junk bond status. Illinois already had the lowest credit rating in the nation before it was downgraded again this week by Moody's and Fitch. The state legislature adjourned last week without addressing a $100 billion pension shortfall.
So as NPR's David Schaper reports, the governor is calling lawmakers back.
Chinese President Xi Jinping begins a two-day meeting later today with President Obama near Palm Springs, California. There's a good deal of significance behind the choice of California as a venue for this summit. The state one of China's largest trading partners. And is also home to a recent boom in Chinese real estate investment.
Not the kind you drink on a wintery day, but the kind you eat in the sizzling tropics. The snack company Mondelez says it's perfecting a process to make chocolate unmeltable - even in temperatures above 100 degrees. The Deerfield, Illinois company says this new innovation will help it sell chocolate in emerging markets with hot climates and limited refrigeration, like sub Saharan Africa.
It's MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.
LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:
And I'm Linda Wertheimer. Just one day after we learned the National Security Agency has been secretly collecting telephone records from millions of Americans, it's been revealed that the agency is also running a massive Internet surveillance program.
This week TheGuardian newspaper shared with its readers a document that few people ever get to see — an order from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court telling Verizon to share countless phone records with the National Security Agency. The White House would not confirm the existence of this surveillance effort, but it insisted Congress is fully briefed about such activities. Members of Congress confirmed that they knew.
For years, there were only three countries in the world that didn't officially sell Coca-Cola: Cuba, North Korea and Myanmar, formerly known as Burma.
Now, after 60 years, Coke is back in Myanmar. Sanctions were lifted last year on the country. Just this week, Coca-Cola opened its new bottling plant outside of Yangon. Now all the company has to do is figure out a way to sell all that Coke to people who may not remember what it tastes like.
The ongoing anti-government protests in Turkey are about a lot of things — including a recent law to restrict the advertising and sale of alcohol. The limits aren't any more onerous than those in some other Western countries, but secular Turks see them as another step in a push by the ruling party to impose conservative social values on the population