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Tuesday September 14, 2010

Iran Releases American Hiker

Laura Fattal, left, Cindy Hickey, and Nora Shourd, mothers of three American hikers jailed in Iran, participate in a demonstration outside Iran's mission to the United Nations. (AP)

Laura Fattal, left, Cindy Hickey, and Nora Shourd, mothers of three American hikers jailed in Iran, participate in a demonstration outside Iran's mission to the United Nations. (AP)

Iranian officials now say that 32-year-old Sarah Shourd, detained for more than a year along with two fellow Americans accused of spying and entering Iran illegally, is free to leave the country after $500,000 bail has reportedly been posted on her behalf. The American government has refused to pay bail and Shourd’s family had said they didn’t have the money. Meanwhile, the two young men arrested with Shourd, on what they said was a hike on the Iranian border last summer, will not be immediately released. We speak with Borzou Daragahi, Beirut bureau chief for the Los Angeles Times.

Low Interest Rates + Rising Bank Fees = How Can Someone Save Money?

The average interest rate paid on many forms of savings accounts has fallen to .99 percent, a record low over the last half century. And when you consider rising bank fees, penny-conscious people can often find themselves losing money at the same time they’re trying to save it. So unless you’re content to stuff your extra cash in your mattress, what are the options? Brett Arends is personal finance columnist for the Wall Street Journal.

Pitiful Pittsburgh Pirates

The Pittsburgh Pirates are playing out the string as they wind down their 18th straight losing season. The once-proud franchise can claim five World Series titles, but the last one was in 1979. Dennis Roddy, a writer for the Pittsburgh Post Gazette, produced a video lament for his beloved Pirates and joins us to talk about whether there is any hope for the future.

Explosion Raises Concerns About Aging Gas Pipes

Emergency workers sift through rubble of a burned down home, three days after a natural gas pipeline exploded in San Bruno, Calif., (AP)

Sections of the natural gas pipe that exploded last week in San Bruno, California, are now headed to a federal lab in Washington, D.C. The pipe dates back to the 1950’s when the neighborhood contained a handful of homes. Today it is more densely populated. At least four people died in last week’s blast; nearly 60 homes were damaged. The explosion has raised questions about whether the 300,000 miles of aging gas pipelines beneath American neighborhoods are safe. Our guest is Carl Weimer, executive director of the Pipeline Safety Trust.

Walking The Boardwalk Empire

Riding the success of the “Sopranos,” HB0 premieres a new series this Sunday about mobsters in New Jersey. “Boardwalk Empire” is set in 1920’s Atlantic City, when prohibition is in full swing and so are the gangsters and corrupt politicians set on making a fortune selling bootleg booze. Here & Now’s critic-at-large Ed Siegel has a preview.

Music From The Show

  • Couch, “Heimweg 78”
  • Fugazi, “Recap Modotti”
Robin and Jeremy

Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson host Here & Now, a live two-hour production of NPR and WBUR Boston.

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