Jonathan Ahl joined Iowa Public Radio as News Director in July 2008. He leads the news and talk show teams in field reporting, feature reporting, audio documentaries, and talk show content. With more than 17 years in public media, Jonathan is a nationally award-winning reporter that has worked at public radio stations in Macomb, Springfield and Peoria, IL. He served WCBU-FM in Peoria as news director before coming to Iowa. He also served as a part-time instructor at Bradley University teaching journalism and writing courses. Jonathan is currently serving a second term as president of PRNDI – the Public Radio News Directors, Incorporated.

Revolutionary Road Trip
1:30 am
Wed June 13, 2012

In The New Libya, Lots Of Guns And Calls For Shariah

Libyans rally in favor of Shariah law, in Benghazi, eastern Libya. The city was the birthplace of the uprising that ousted Moammar Gadhafi.
John W. Poole NPR

Originally published on Wed June 13, 2012 12:33 pm

Morning Edition host Steve Inskeep is taking a Revolutionary Road Trip across North Africa to see how the countries that staged revolutions last year are remaking themselves. Steve and his team are traveling some 2,000 miles from Tunisia's ancient city of Carthage, across the deserts of Libya and on to Egypt's megacity of Cairo. In the Libyan towns of Benghazi and Derna, he talks to Islamists about their desire to see a new Libya ruled by Shariah law.

The other day in Benghazi, Libya, we found our vehicle surrounded by truckloads of men with machine guns.

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The Salt
1:29 am
Wed June 13, 2012

Farmers Split Over Subsidies As Senate Farm Bill Debate Begins

Larry Sailer on his corn and soybean farm, just north of Iowa Falls, Iowa.
Jonathan Ahl for NPR

Originally published on Wed June 13, 2012 5:48 am

The latest proposal for the farm bill — the law governing everything from food stamps to rural development grants — is being considered by the U.S. Senate this week. It's designed to save more than $23 billion over the next 10 years, in part by getting rid of direct payments to farmers. The direct payment program alone costs taxpayers $5 billion per year.

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Politics
1:29 am
Wed June 13, 2012

Why The Farm Bill's Provisions Will Matter To You

Dairy cows feed on a farm in Chilton, Wis., in May. The farm bill being considered by Congress, part of a massive package that could cost nearly $1 trillion over a decade, contains a number of provisions affecting dairies.
Carrie Antlfinger AP

Originally published on Wed June 13, 2012 9:49 am

If you think only farmers care about the farm bill currently being considered by Congress, you're very, very mistaken.

The measure will not only set policy and spending for the nation's farms for years to come, but it will also affect dozens of other seemingly unrelated programs — all at a cost of nearly $1 trillion over the next decade. Following are a few questions and answers about the massive legislation:

Why is it called the farm bill, and where did it come from?

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The Record
9:03 pm
Tue June 12, 2012

Clear Channel Will Be The First To Pay Royalties For Music On Its Air

Tim McGraw (left) and Scott Borchetta, CEO of Big Machine Label Group, at a press conference in Nashville last month announcing McGraw's signing to the label.
Royce DeGrie WireImage

Originally published on Tue September 18, 2012 4:40 pm

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Sweetness And Light
7:03 pm
Tue June 12, 2012

The Language of Baseball: In Is Out And Foul Is Fair

Pittsburgh Pirates fans reach for a foul ball hit into the stands by Mike Moustakas of the Kansas City Royals in the seventh inning of a game in Pittsburgh.
Keith Srakocic AP

Originally published on Wed June 13, 2012 5:14 am

Baseball historians continue to poke around in the 19th century to better explain how the game was originated and developed, but I've always wondered if one of the prime movers wasn't a student of Shakespeare.

While I certainly don't know the terminology of all ball games, the popular ones I'm aware of — everything from basketball and football to golf and tennis — all use some variations of the words in and out when determining whether the ball is playable.

Only baseball is different.

"Fair is foul and foul is fair; Hover through the fog and filthy air."

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Idaho Execution
5:52 pm
Tue June 12, 2012

Idaho Corrections: Lawsuit Necessary to Change Lethal Injection Protocol

Four Idaho reporters watched as an execution team inserted I-V's into convicted murderer Richard Leavitt today . This was the first time witnesses were allowed to watch what happens as soon as the condemned is wheeled into the death chamber on a gurney. the Idaho Department of Correction would not have changed its ways without a lawsuit.

The Associated Press and other Idaho news organizations sued the state to view Richard Leavitt’s entire execution. They won last Friday in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.

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Oregon Unemployment
5:27 pm
Tue June 12, 2012

Oregon's Unemployment Rate Drops Again

Non-farm payroll employment added a healthy 6,900 jobs in May, the most the state has added in one month since January of last year.

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Wash. Gov. Debate
5:24 pm
Tue June 12, 2012

Wash. Gov. Debate: Candidates Spar On Healthcare

The two men vying to be Washington’s next governor squared off Tuesday.

Jay Inslee and Rob McKenna fielded questions about jobs and the economy. But the opening question was about healthcare.

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Election 2012
5:02 pm
Tue June 12, 2012

As GOP Cashes In, Democrats Search For Billionaires

President Obama at a Democratic Party election fundraiser in Chicago on June 1.
Jason Reed Reuters/Landov

The big story of this year's election campaign is big money. Since the Supreme Court, through its Citizens United ruling, has made it easier for corporations, unions and rich individuals to raise and spend unlimited amounts of money, Republicans have seized the advantage.

Right now, an analysis by NPR finds that Republican allied groups are outspending their Democratic counterparts by 8 to 1.

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