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Africa
12:00 pm
Fri March 2, 2012

Invisible Crisis In World's Newest Country?

South Sudan gained independence in 2011, but it has been locked in a bitter conflict with its northern neighbor. Rep. Frank Wolf (R.-Va.) just returned from the area. He talks with host Michel Martin about what some observers are calling a humanitarian crisis, and what the U.S. can do to help.

The Two-Way
10:25 am
Fri March 2, 2012

California Woman Awarded $168 Million In Workplace Harassment Case

The scales of justice tipped toward the plaintiff in this case.
Christophe Ena AP

Originally published on Fri March 2, 2012 2:32 pm

A California woman's nearly $168 million award from a jury is "believed to be the largest for a single victim of workplace harassment in U.S. history," the Los Angeles Times reports.

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A Blog Supreme
9:54 am
Fri March 2, 2012

David Baker's 21st-Century Soul Music

David Baker helped make formal jazz education a growing part of the music's history and evolution.
Courtesy of Indiana University

Originally published on Thu January 19, 2012 1:21 pm

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The Two-Way
9:35 am
Fri March 2, 2012

Taliban Claims It Killed More Than 20 Rival Militants In Pakistan

Among the reports of more deadly violence in Pakistan today — about 70 people were killed in three incidents, DAWN reports — is word that about 20 of the deaths were the result of one militant group attacking another.

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It's All Politics
8:48 am
Fri March 2, 2012

Friday Political Grab Bag: Obama To Israel, Iran - 'I Don't Bluff'

President Obama tells both Israel and Iran through an interview with The Atlantic that "as president of the United States, I don't bluff," when he leaves open the possibility of a U.S. military strike against Iran's nuclear program.

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The Two-Way
8:35 am
Fri March 2, 2012

Red Cross Aid Convoy Arrives In Devastated Syrian City

After weeks of shelling and sniper fire from Syrian Army forces, the people who remain in the Baba Amr district of the city of Homs may finally get some aid from the outside world today.

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Business
7:56 am
Fri March 2, 2012

Continental, United Go To Single Computer System

It would be easy not to have known Continental Airlines has been merged with United for two years. That will change Saturday when all operations and branding are combined under just United. Any hiccups could mean delays throughout the airline's system.

The Two-Way
7:50 am
Fri March 2, 2012

Ohio School Reopens, Coach Who Chased Shooter Says 'I'm Not A Hero'

Chardon High School assistant football coach Frank Hall.
Tony Dejak AP

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Around the Nation
7:35 am
Fri March 2, 2012

Honeymooners Revisit Waldorf-Astoria 6 Decades On

When Joan and Izzy Schwartz got married, they spent their wedding night in a suite at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in Manhattan. Back then, the room cost $16.80. For their 60th anniversary, the Waldorf will give the couple a room for the same rate they paid in 1952.

Europe
7:28 am
Fri March 2, 2012

London Fashion Students Make A Green Statement

Students at London's Kingston University this week unveiled luxury designs made of bio-degradable materials. There are stilettos made from pistachio shells and coffee beans, a wood-chip corset and a top made from orange peel.

The Two-Way
7:25 am
Fri March 2, 2012

Tornado Trauma: Five Died On One Short Street; More Storms Due Today

The areas inside the red lines are where tornadoes were being reported at 11:36 a.m. ET.
National Weather Service

Originally published on Fri March 2, 2012 6:09 pm

Five of the estimated 13 deaths from the tornadoes that pounded Illinois, Missouri and Tennessee on Wednesday happened on one "short avenue in a tight-knit neighborhood" of Harrisburg, Ill., the Los Angeles Times writes today.

Brady Street was pummeled. "There are no words to describe this," Dena McDonald, whose mother was killed there, tells the Times. The newspaper describes the aftermath this way:

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Energy
4:43 am
Fri March 2, 2012

As Gas Prices Rise, Natural Gas Vehicles Get A Boost

Bob Davis fills up his airport shuttle van at a natural gas pumping station in College Park, Ga. A growing number of companies are considering converting their vehicle fleets to natural gas.
David Goldman AP

Originally published on Fri March 2, 2012 9:39 am

Interest in natural gas vehicles soared in the 1990s and then faded. Twenty years later, the cost of gasoline is going up while the cost of natural gas is going down. And that difference in price explains the resurgent interest in natural gas vehicles.

In Indiana, Fair Oaks Dairy Farm does more than just produce milk — it is also in the transportation business. The farm owns 60 trucks, which deliver milk to a processor halfway across the state. Last September, most of the trucks were converted to natural gas.

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NPR Story
4:00 am
Fri March 2, 2012

Business News

Greece has taken almost all the action needed to secure a second bailout from eurozone countries, according to the head of the European currency group. The first loan can now be paid out by March 20, as long as Greece completes a bond swap between Athens and private investors, which should cut the nations privately-held debt in half.

NPR Story
4:00 am
Fri March 2, 2012

Dentist Wins Bid For Elvis Presley's Crown

Originally published on Mon March 5, 2012 3:59 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And our last word in business this morning is: crowning achievement. At an auction in the U.K. last week, a dentist from Alberta, Canada, paid $10,000 for a crown that once belonged to The King himself: Elvis Presley.

The crown is actually the kind you wear on a tooth. That isn't the only dental collectible this dentist has paid top dollar for. He shelled out $31,000 for a rotten tooth that belonged to John Lennon. He says his waiting room is starting to look like a Hard Rock Cafe, but it's good for business.

Election 2012
4:00 am
Fri March 2, 2012

Washington State To Hold Nominating Contest

Originally published on Fri March 2, 2012 7:12 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.

The next big day for Republican presidential hopefuls is Super Tuesday. But on the way to Tuesday, the candidates are making stops in Washington state. Republican caucuses there are set for tomorrow morning.

And as NPR's Martin Kaste reports, with the fight for the nomination still tight, for once the caucuses in Washington state may actually mean something to the presidential race.

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Election 2012
4:00 am
Fri March 2, 2012

Santorum Upset By Mich. Delegate Decision

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And in Michigan, there's a fight going on over one delegate to the Republican National Convention. Rick Santorum's campaign team says its candidate is a victim of, quote, thuggery. They accuse Michigan Republican leaders of engineering an after-the-fact rules change to give Mitt Romney a slim lead in delegates from last Tuesday's state primary.

We have more from Michigan Public Radio's Rick Pluta.

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Books
4:00 am
Fri March 2, 2012

Shadid's Memoir 'House Of Stone'

Anthony Shadid, who died Feb. 16, was a foreign correspondent for The New York Times based in Baghdad and Beirut. He won a Pulitzer Prize twice, in 2004 and 2010.
Nada Bakri Courtesy Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

Originally published on Fri March 2, 2012 1:59 pm

The death of Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Times correspondent Anthony Shadid in Syria on Feb. 16 was a devastating loss for journalism and for the Middle East he did so much to illuminate.

But Shadid's voice is still with us — in the form of the memoir House of Stone, published this week.

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Energy
4:00 am
Fri March 2, 2012

Liquid Metal Battery Could Budget Sun's Energy

David Greene talks to materials chemist Donald Sadoway from the TED (Technology, Entertainment and Design) conference in Long Beach, Calif. Sadoway is the co-inventor of the liquid metal battery. It's inexpensive, super efficient, sustainable and can provide large scale energy storage.

Middle East
4:00 am
Fri March 2, 2012

Rebel Stronghold Falls To Syrian Government Forces

The district of Baba Amr in the city of Homs had been the heart of the Syrian uprising, where mass protests turned into an armed resistance. Activists say government troops are combing the area, arresting any male over the age of 12.

StoryCorps
3:41 am
Fri March 2, 2012

'Life Is Really Good,' Says Cancer Survivor, 12

Jennifer Coursey with her son, 12-year-old Grant Coursey, at StoryCorps in Ukiah, Calif.
StoryCorps

Originally published on Fri March 2, 2012 8:27 am

When Grant Coursey was a toddler, he was diagnosed with neuroblastoma, a cancer often found in young children. A tumor had wrapped itself around Grant's spinal cord and had grown so that it pushed against his lungs.

Now 12, Grant is cancer-free; he received his first "clean" scan 10 years ago in March 2002. He had to undergo several procedures to rid his body of the cancer.

Recently, Grant and his mother, Jennifer, sat down to talk about his young life and how cancer has affected it.

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Fine Art
3:37 am
Fri March 2, 2012

In 'Ocean Park,' Gentle Portraits Of California Light

Richard Diebenkorn's 1975 work Ocean Park #79, features pastel blues, lavenders and aquas — and thin strips of deep red and green at the top to draw the viewer's gaze upward.
The Estate of Richard Diebenkorn Courtesy Philadelphia Museum of Art

Originally published on Fri March 2, 2012 8:31 am

In the late 1960s, while America was in turmoil over the Vietnam War and the assassinations of Martin Luther King Jr. and Robert Kennedy, a painter in Santa Monica, Calif., was creating a series of tranquil, glowing canvases that made his reputation and transfixed art lovers. Those works — the Ocean Park series — are now on view at the Orange County Museum of Art, about an hour's drive from the place where they were painted.

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Asia
3:36 am
Fri March 2, 2012

Looking For Elephant Ivory? Try China

A Malaysian customs official examines elephant tusks at a port in Kalang. Malaysia has become an ivory transit hub, with African elephant tusks bound for China. Worldwide, authorities seized more than 5,000 smuggled tusks.
AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri March 2, 2012 8:53 am

Armed with tips from animal welfare activists, I recently went on an ivory hunt with my Chinese assistant, Yang, in an antiques market in Beijing.

Activists say China's growing purchasing power is driving global demand for products from vulnerable animals, everything from elephant ivory to rhino horn.

Two huge stone lions stood sentinel outside the four-story market nestled among a forest of buildings off one of Beijing's beltways. In China, vendors usually accost shoppers and try to lure them into stores.

Not here.

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Governing
12:01 am
Fri March 2, 2012

Shrinking Community Grants Put Cities In A Crunch

Originally published on Fri March 2, 2012 6:24 am

Budget cuts approved by Congress in the past two years are trickling down to local communities, and officials there are not happy. They say that reductions in community development block grants will hurt the nation's most vulnerable neighborhoods.

Two years ago, the federal government gave out about $4 billion in such grants to low- and moderate-income communities. This year, the figure is $3 billion — a 25 percent cut. And as that pie has shrunk, those whose slices have shrunk even more are hungry for answers.

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Europe
12:01 am
Fri March 2, 2012

Putin Heavily Favored As Russians Pick A President

Prime Minister Vladimir Putin delivers a campaign speech during a rally of his supporters in Moscow, Feb. 23. Putin is mounting a vigorous campaign in the face of growing opposition but is expected to win Sunday's presidential elections.
Yuri Kadobnov AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri March 2, 2012 8:12 am

When Russians go to the polls Sunday, they will have several choices for president. But none is a serious threat to Vladimir Putin, who has been the most powerful figure in Russia for the past 12 years.

Boris Makarenko, a longtime observer of Russian politics, says the candidates arrayed against Putin are all more or less part of what Kremlin leaders call "the systemic opposition."

In other words, he says, they are "the tolerable opposition ... which can never even hope of replacing them in the Kremlin."

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