Rachel Martin

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Oil prices keep climbing, supply chains still tangled - and that's keeping inflation at its highest level in more than a dozen years. The Labor Department said this morning that consumer prices rose 5.4% during the 12 months ending in September. Price hikes accelerated in just the last month. NPR's Scott Horsley joins us. Scott, that is a long list of bummer items. Let's start with energy. Crude oil prices have risen sharply, and that's causing gas to rise. What's going on?

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The U.S. will open its land borders with Canada and Mexico next month. Visa holders who can show proof of vaccination will be able to cross again after some 18 months of being locked out. The land borders had been closed to all but essential travel when COVID hit, and this reopening is a huge deal for people on both sides of the U.S.-Mexico border who often cross daily to see family or to shop.

Reporter Vicente Calderon lives in Tijuana. He's a visa holder himself who hasn't been able to cross to San Diego in a year and a half. Welcome.

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The FDA says at least one popular e-cigarette brand can stay on the market. It's the first authorization of its kind. This comes as the FDA is still deciding whether Juul and other e-cigarette products should be sold.

Updated October 12, 2021 at 9:58 AM ET

In her new book, Chinese American poet Victoria Chang writes, "Shame never has a loud clang. The worst part of shame is how silent it is."

After her mother passed away in 2015, Chang found boxes full of family documents, letters and birth certificates in a storage facility.

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Three economists are sharing this year's Nobel Prize for their work on so-called natural experiments, including how changes in the minimum wage affect the labor market. NPR's Scott Horsley is here with details. Hey, Scott.

If you're looking for a song to introduce you to Brandi Carlile, you could do worse than 2007's "The Story." It's her breakout single, and a great showcase of the range and expressiveness of her voice, how it can begin soft and vulnerable and then practically knock you out of your seat. And if you listen closely, it also gives you a window into the importance of two other musicians in her career.

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How could action by Congress bring changes to Facebook?

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A decade ago, jazz icon Tony Bennett and pop superstar Lady Gaga struck up one of the great Odd Couple partnerships in recent music history. Singing together first on his album Duets II, and then on their co- album, Cheek to Cheek, Bennett and Gaga made history on the charts while proving some things never go out of style.

Now, with Love For Sale, Bennett and Gaga are serving up another round but with a poignant twist: It may be Bennet's final album. He's 95, and has been living Alzheimers disease.

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The pharmaceutical company Johnson & Johnson now says a booster shot to its COVID vaccine will improve immunity. Joining us now with details - NPR health correspondent Rob Stein. Good morning, Rob.

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President Biden is about to face a bunch of critics who complain that he has broken a promise.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

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Updated September 1, 2021 at 11:58 AM ET

When a suicide bomber attacked the Kabul airport last week, the lives the 170 Afghans and 13 U.S. service members were cut short.

One of them was Marine Corps Lance Cpl. Jared M. Schmitz of Wentzville, Mo. He was just 20 years old. Schmitz was only 6 months old when 9/11 happened and the U.S. went to war in Afghanistan.

Janet Jackson's album Control was one of the biggest hits of 1986 – and the Grammy-winning beginning of a legendary partnership between Jackson and the album's producers, Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis.

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The pace of hiring is picking up but not as quickly as many employers would like. The Labor Department said this morning that employers added 850,000 jobs in June. Many businesses say they'd like to hire more folks if they had more applicants.

Updated July 1, 2021 at 9:53 AM ET

North Korea's leader, Kim Jong Un, doesn't make casual public remarks. They service a particular agenda and are highly calculated at any moment. That's why it raised eyebrows last month when he called the food situation in North Korea "tense" during a meeting with the Central Committee of his ruling Workers' Party.

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It's been over 100 hours and counting since a 12-story condominium collapsed in Surfside, Fla.

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Néstor (izquierda) y su papá Melvin emprendieron la jornada desde su país, El Salvador, a los Estados Unidos en el 2018.

For Manas Ray, the distance from his home in Massachusetts to India, where his extended family lives, has made the coronavirus pandemic feel like a nightmare.

At least 12 friends and family members close to the biochemist have been infected since April 2020, including his mother, Bandana. Reports earlier this spring from his friends and relatives were especially bleak as the second wave devastated the country he left 33 years ago.

"It's very hard on me because I'm so far away from them and cannot help," Ray tells Morning Edition.

At this time last year, Morning Edition was looking for ways to chronicle, and through that make sense of a moment as dramatic as anything in recent memory. We turned to music almost immediately, and specifically our Song Project — asking musicians to write an original song about their experience of the tumult.

The past year has been heavy and affected us in both small and big ways.

Now, millions of Americans have been vaccinated, businesses are reopening and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention loosened guidance on mask-wearing for vaccinated people. As many begin to take steps to come out on the other side of the pandemic, Morning Edition asked NPR's audience to write a poem using Maya Angelou's poem "Still I Rise" as inspiration.

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Where exactly did COVID-19 come from? President Biden wants the intelligence community to find the answer.

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The coronavirus pandemic has been especially tough on women, who are still bearing the brunt of the demands of child care and housework.

About 400,000 more women than men have left the workforce since the start of the pandemic. The percentage of women in the paid labor force has not recovered from the steep drop in the spring of 2020.

Natasha Cobbs Leonard began singing early, performing "I Believe Children Are Our Future" at a cousin's kindergarten graduation while she was still in grade school, though she had a longer road towards realizing the scope of her now-obvious gift. "After that, I literally did not sing lead in front of a crowd until I was 15 years old."

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