"Between 1950 and 1960," according to NPR's John Burnett, Texas "lost nearly 100,000 farms and ranches," and rural residents who had made up more than a third of the population dwindled to just a quarter of the population.
As hundreds of thousands swelter without power a week after a violent storm pummeled the Midwest and Mid-Atlantic, energy experts say the future will look even worse if the nation's aging, congested electrical grid isn't upgraded.
In Texas, there is still the drought against which all other droughts are measured: the seven-year dry spell in the 1950s. It was so devastating that agriculture losses exceeded those of the Dust Bowl years, and so momentous that it kicked off the modern era of water planning in Texas.
From 1950 to 1957, the sky dried up and the rain refused to fall. Every day, Texans scanned the pale-blue heavens for rainclouds, but year after year they never came.
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton made an unannounced visit to Afghanistan this morning, and she brought along some news. The country has officially been designated a "major non-NATO ally" of the U.S., which will facilitate defense and security cooperation between the countries even after the U.S. withdraws combat troops in 2014.
In an emailed press release, the State Department says the status "qualifies a country for certain privileges supporting defense and security cooperation but does not entail any security commitment to that country."
Fresh Air Weekend highlights some of the best interviews and reviews from past weeks, and new program elements specially paced for weekends. Our weekend show emphasizes interviews with writers, filmmakers, actors, and musicians, and often includes excerpts from live in-studio concerts. This week:
Summer Cooking Tips From 'America's Test Kitchen': Jack Bishop and Bridget Lancaster highlight some of their favorite grilling techniques and summer recipes — everything from meats to vegetables to, yes, even desserts.
Tony Shalhoub is a normal guy who's become famous playing eccentric people. He was the obsessed Italian chef in Big Night, the alien pawnshop owner in the Men in Black movies, and, of course, the obsessive compulsive detective on the TV series Monk. Now, Tony has gone back to Broadway in Lend Me a Tenor.
In true "Not My Job" fashion: because Tony has played a Monk, we're going to ask him three questions about nuns.
CARL KASELL: From NPR and WBEZ-Chicago, this is WAIT WAIT...DON'T TELL ME!, the NPR News quiz. I'm Carl Kasell, and here again is your host, at the Chase Bank Auditorium in downtown Chicago, Peter Sagal.
PETER SAGAL, HOST:
Thank you, Carl. Thanks everybody.
SAGAL: Listen, this week we are doing just what we are told. It's a listener request edition of WAIT WAIT. And one thing many of you asked for was an all Mo show.
In 2005, President Clinton founded the Clinton Global Initiative to address "the world's most pressing challenges." In 2011 in Chicago, Clinton hosted the CGI America meeting, with a focus on job creation and economic growth in the U.S.
CARL KASELL: Being NPR, we often turn to experts for their opinion and their analysis.
PETER SAGAL, HOST:
And you wanted to hear again from someone we brought onto the show in April of 2010, when we needed a particular perspective on an important story. Joining us as well were panelists Roxanne Roberts, Mo Rocca and Charlie Pierce.
CARL KASELL: From NPR and WBEZ-Chicago, this is WAIT WAIT...DON'T TELL ME!, the NPR News quiz. I'm Carl Kasell, and here's your host, at the Chase Bank Auditorium, in downtown Chicago, Peter Sagal.
PETER SAGAL, HOST:
Thank you, Carl. Thanks everybody. We have got a special show for you all today. It's our second ever Listener Request show, in which we asked via Twitter and our blog, to tell us what you're favorite WAIT WAIT moments were from the last year or so.