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In-depth reporting that transforms 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. 

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When indie folk star José González arrived at the time to create his latest album, Local Valley, he reached for – what else – local sounds: "I took an evening, set up the stereo mic and recorded an hour of just bird songs," González says in an interview with NPR's Ari shaprio. Aside from his costars, the singer-songwriter recorded the record in the same mode, at his home studio outside of Gothenburg, Sweden, where he lives near the coast in a forest of birch and pine.

Updated September 17, 2021 at 1:03 PM ET

A debate is heating up over whether President Biden's sweeping vaccine mandate should be extended to cover those who travel domestically by plane and train.

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So that is a reminder of how quickly things have changed in Afghanistan and how quickly they continue to change. I want to turn on this one-month anniversary of the fall of Kabul to talk about where Afghanistan and the U.S. go from here. And to do that, we are joined by NPR diplomatic correspondent Michele Kelemen. Hey, Michele.

MICHELE KELEMEN, BYLINE: Hi, Mary Louise.

KELLY: How is the United States dealing with this new Taliban government?

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The COVID-19 response plan that President Biden unveiled last week aims to dramatically increase the accessibility of rapid tests for the coronavirus.

The Biden administration announced it was spending $2 billion on 280 million quick-turnaround tests to be distributed to community health centers, food banks, testing sites, shelters, prisons and other congregate settings. It's also leaning on Walmart, Amazon and Kroger to sell rapid tests at wholesale cost for the next three months.

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Politicians and pop stars often come back to the same refrain.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "ME AND BOBBY MCGEE")

JANIS JOPLIN: (Singing) Freedom is just another word for nothin' left to lose.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "FREEDOM")

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As President Biden laid out his plan to combat this latest surge of the coronavirus, he asked doctors to help.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

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One of the biggest technological advances in Formula One racing in recent years hasn't come in the form of speed...

(SOUNDBITE OF ENGINE REVVING)

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Lawmakers had some tough questions today for Secretary of State Antony Blinken about the messy end of the U.S. combat mission in Afghanistan.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

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