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Today’s top stories
The Federal Reserve is expected to announce it’s raising interest rates again today after it took a break last month from rate hikes.
Mark Wilson/Getty Images
- The Fed wants to use interest rates to strike a balance and slow the economy down just enough to lower inflation without starting a recession, according to NPR’s Stacey Vanek Smith. On Up First, she reports that inflation is at 3% — not far from the Fed’s 2% goal. But an economist tells her declaring victory over inflation too soon could destroy the progress the Fed has made.
The White House wants to make mental health care more accessible. Yesterday, Biden proposed new regulations that would push insurance companies to pay for mental health care more often.
- NPR’s Yuki Noguchi says the proposals are trying to address how the lack of data on how insurance policies affect patients makes it hard to hold them accountable. Biden also wants to draw more therapists to the profession by providing better reimbursements for doctors.
Threads, the new Twitter rival from Meta, has amassed millions of users in just a few weeks. Despite its quick growth, the company has yet to announce plans for how it will curb disinformation — worrying voting rights groups as the country heads into an election year.
- Meta says its Facebook rules apply to Threads, but voting groups say the app needs a separate policy. The CEO of Vote.org Andrea Hailey tells NPR’s Dara Kerr that her organization wants to know how Meta is “going to make sure that Americans are receiving accurate information about elections.”
A federal judge has blocked the Biden administration’s new asylum rules at the U.S-Mexico border, saying the rules are unlawful because they impose conditions on asylum seekers Congress didn’t intend.
- The DOJ will likely appeal the decision to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. NPR’s Joel Rose says the case could go to the Supreme Court after that, where it’s “harder to predict what would happen. Katrina Eiland of the ACLU sees the decision as a victory. She tells Rose that asylum seekers should have the right to seek refuge in the country, regardless of their method of entry.
Living Better is a special series about what it takes to stay healthy in America.
Hate going to the gym? Turns out, you can bring the workout to you by just going about your daily life. It’s called non-exercise activity thermogenesis, or NEAT. It includes all your daily movements — folding laundry, doing your groceries, unloading the dishwasher.
- More than half of your daily calorie expenditure is used on basic bodily functions. This is your basal metabolic rate, and you can’t do much to change it.
- That’s where NEAT comes in. It can play a big role in calorie burning. Though it’s not a substitute for structured exercise, it’s definitely better than being sedentary.
- Increasing NEAT is easy — insert movement wherever you can. Standing during your next Zoom call would burn 50-100 calories per hour — much more than you would burn sitting. Thank us later.
From our hosts
This essay was written by Steve Inskeep. He joined NPR in 1996 and started hosting Morning Edition in 2004. He also hosts Up First.
Neda Sharghi met us in an alley, on a summer morning when the bricks were in shadow. We inspected a mural that’s now one year old.
The mural in Washington, D.C., shows the faces of Americans detained overseas, including her brother Emad Shargi, held in Iran since 2018. His face and others have been peeling off the bricks. The artist, Isaac Campbell, deliberately chose materials that would decay.
“It shows the passage of time,” Sharghi says. “You can see the effect of time on their faces. It’s a reflection of the effect time is having on our lives and on their lives.”
Some whose faces went up last year have been released—such as basketball player Brittney Griner, freed from Russia. Stickers on the wall serve as updates.
But for Sharghi’s brother and others—such as Siamak Namazi, also imprisoned in Iran for years—there is only the decay of the image.
When we record an interview, we sometimes listen for the closing thought. Sometimes you know it the second it’s said. You think, “That’s the end.” But as we talked with Sharghi, I realized that, for now, there is no end.
3 things to know before you go
- Lebron James’ eldest son, Bronny, was hospitalized yesterday after suffering a cardiac arrest during basketball practice at USC. He’s now out of the ICU and in stable condition.
- Avery Vehlewald wants to be the very best, like no one ever was. The 7-year-old will travel to Japan to compete in the Pokémon World Championship. (via KCUR)
- A former pastor has been arrested in Delaware and charged with murdering an 8-year-old girl nearly 50 years ago.
This newsletter was edited by Majd Al-Waheidi.