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Economy
9:12 am
Fri April 6, 2012

Jobless Rate Slips; Fewer New Jobs Than Expected

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning. I'm Steve Inskeep.

Let's talk about the surprisingly weak jobs report that came out from the Labor Department today. The numbers for March show just 120,000 new jobs were added to U.S. payrolls. That's considered a disappointment, even though the unemployment rate did decline slightly, to 8.2 percent.

NPR's John Ydstie is here to talk with us about what all this means. Hi, John.

JOHN YDSTIE, BYLINE: Hi, Steve.

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The Two-Way
8:34 am
Fri April 6, 2012

Just 120,000 Jobs Added, But Jobless Rate Dips To 8.2 Percent

The changes in payroll employment over the past two years.
NPR

Originally published on Fri April 6, 2012 10:37 am

The nation's unemployment rate edged down to 8.2 percent in March from 8.3 percent in February, but only 120,000 jobs were added to private and public payrolls the Bureau of Labor Statistics said this morning in a report that was less positive about the labor market's health than economists had expected.

Prior to the news, forecasters had predicted BLS would say about 200,000 jobs were added to payrolls last month.

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The Two-Way
8:10 am
Fri April 6, 2012

Coast Guard Sinks Japanese 'Ghost Ship' Set Adrift By Tsunami

The Ryou-Un Maru after being fired upon and before it sank to the bottom of the Gulf of Alaska.
U.S. Coast Guard

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Planet Money
7:35 am
Fri April 6, 2012

The Most (And Least) Lucrative Committees In Congress

Lam Thuy Vo The Sunlight Foundation

Originally published on Mon April 9, 2012 11:19 am

This story is part of Planet Money's series on money in politics. This post was originally published on March 30. It was updated on April 6.

Most of the nitty-gritty action in Congress happens in committees.

Not surprisingly, campaign contributions flow to members of the committees that big donors are really interested in — like, say, the ways and means committee, which oversees the tax code.

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Barack Obama
7:31 am
Fri April 6, 2012

Obama Is The Best And The Worst President. Discuss

President Obama inspires strong feelings, some positive, some negative. This composite image shows Obama at two separate events.
AP and Getty Images NPR

Close your books, America. It's time for a pop quiz.

Do you believe Barack Obama is:

a) The best of presidents? A blogger who goes by the name Troubadour on Daily Kos, Brian Altmeyer, pretty much makes the claim in a recent post: "Barack Obama is either the best President we've ever had, or more humbly, equal to the best Presidents we've ever had (and thereby one of their number)."

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The Two-Way
7:30 am
Fri April 6, 2012

Board Recommends Marine Be Discharged For Comments About Obama

Sgt. Gary Stein.
Facebook.com

A U.S. Marine sergeant who posted "contemptuous" comments and images about President Obama on the Web should be dismissed and given an other-than-honorable discharge, a Marine Corps administrative board recommended late Thursday evening.

The case against Sgt. Gary Stein, 26, has raised questions about how far the military can go to restrict the First Amendment rights of its personnel.

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The Two-Way
6:55 am
Fri April 6, 2012

Jobless Rate Likely Held Steady At 8.3 Percent In March, Economists Say

The morning's major news, if all goes as planned, will be the 8:30 a.m. ET release of the March jobs and unemployment data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

According to Reuters, economists expect we'll hear that the unemployment rate stayed at 8.3 percent and that private and public employers added about 200,000 jobs to their payrolls. The jobless rate's recent peak was 10 percent, in October 2009.

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Around the Nation
6:35 am
Fri April 6, 2012

Jailer Takes Inmate On Golfing Trip

Originally published on Fri April 6, 2012 6:36 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Europe
6:21 am
Fri April 6, 2012

Speed Trap Nabs Driver Who Suggested It

A Swedish man got tired of drivers speeding through his neighborhood. Henrik Ismarker sent a Twitter message to the Stockholm police asking them to step up enforcement. The next day, according to a local news organization, police were on duty. A cop pulled over a speeding car, and the driver turned out to be the very same guy who had complained.

Media
4:04 am
Fri April 6, 2012

Murdoch's 'Australian': A Powerful Player

A jogger runs past a banner for The Australian, part of Rupert Murdoch's newspaper empire, in Sydney last year.
Tim Wimborne Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Fri April 6, 2012 3:14 pm

Part three of four

Robert Manne, one of Australia's top public intellectuals and journalists, tells me the first thing to know about The Australian.

"It is by far the most detailed paper in regard to national politics," he says. "And it's also at a higher level of analysis, in general, than the other papers."

Second, he says, the paper is "smarter, sharper" than the others — with more resources and fewer profit demands to boot. Manne explains why:

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Business
4:00 am
Fri April 6, 2012

Average U.S. Car Price Tops $30,000

Average prices for cars are at an all-time high, reflecting increased demand and a healthier economy. The average car price has gone up nearly $2,000 since last year. Even though car prices are higher, buyers haven't shied away from picking up a new car.

Business
4:00 am
Fri April 6, 2012

GOP, Democrats Budgets Reflect Different Approaches

Steve Inskeep talks to David Wessel, economics editor of The Wall Street Journal, about how the Republican budget by Wisconsin Representative Paul Ryan compares with President Obama's proposal. The plans show differences on spending, taxes and dealing with the government.

Movies
4:00 am
Fri April 6, 2012

Get Your Geek On With 'Comic-Con Episode IV'

Movie maker Morgan Spurlock, director and star of Supersize Me and The Greatest Story Ever Sold, has a documentary opening on the West Coast this weekend: Comic-Con Episode IV: A Fan's Hope. It introduces a group of determined popular culture enthusiasts who've come to San Diego's enormous convention in the summer of 2010 to pursue their different but connected dreams.

Business
4:00 am
Fri April 6, 2012

The Last Word In Business

According to The Consumerist, the video game publisher received more than 250,000 reader votes for that distinction. It was singled out for deliberately holding back video game content so it can charge for it later, and for buying up small video game companies to squash competition.

Starting Up: Silicon Valley's Origins
3:26 am
Fri April 6, 2012

Intel Legends Moore And Grove: Making It Last

Intel's first hire (from left), Andy Grove, and Intel co-founders Robert Noyce and Gordon Moore in 1978, the 10th anniversary of the company. Grove is sitting on a graphical layout (a rubylith) of one of Intel's early microprocessors.
Courtesy of Intel

Originally published on Fri April 6, 2012 9:06 am

Part 3 of a series on Silicon Valley's history

In Silicon Valley, the spotlight is often on young entrepreneurs with fresh ideas that will change the world — people like Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook, or Jack Dorsey of Twitter.

But for decades, two older titans of the high-tech industry thrived in that fast-paced world: Gordon Moore and Andy Grove of Intel.

Speaking recently in a rare joint interview, the two discussed how their company survived, and what they think of the current crop of Silicon Valley techies.

Intel's Odd Couple

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Around the Nation
3:25 am
Fri April 6, 2012

Bears Stuffing Themselves Near Massachusetts Homes

A black bear enjoys the landscaping of a Northampton, Mass., resident's yard. Northampton has been dealing with an unusual number of bears this year.
Courtesy of Alan Seewald

Originally published on Fri April 6, 2012 7:33 pm

The mild New England winter means that more bears are up and about, looking for food — and not just in the woods. They're also exploring urban backyards and residential streets. The small town of Northampton, Mass., has more than its share of furry visitors.

In Northampton, a call on a neighborhood email list for tales of recent bear encounters netted about about a dozen responses in an hour. Almost everyone, it seems, has a bear story.

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StoryCorps
10:00 pm
Thu April 5, 2012

75 Years Later: The Day The Town School Exploded

Kenneth Honeycutt spoke about the New London School Explosion of 1937 with his wife, Gaye, in Knoxville, Tenn.
StoryCorps

Originally published on Fri April 6, 2012 7:47 am

One of the worst school disasters in American history occurred 75 years ago, when an explosion killed hundreds of students at a school in East Texas. It was an event that etched itself into the memory of Kenneth Honeycutt, now 83.

"It was an explosion in the school building that led to the death of 300 students and teachers," he says. "It was caused by an accumulation of gas throughout the school building."

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Middle East
7:53 pm
Thu April 5, 2012

Muslim Brotherhood Attempts To Charm U.S. Skeptics

Khairat el-Shater, a leader of Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood, leaves the election committee headquarters in Cairo on Thursday after registering for the presidential election next month. A delegation from the Brotherhood is currently visiting Washington to talk about the group's plans for Egypt's future.
Mohammed Hossam AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri April 6, 2012 12:01 am

The political ascent of Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood has created some unease in Washington, and in an attempt to counter that, the group dispatched a delegation to the U.S. capital this week for meetings that range from administration officials to think tanks and universities.

The Brotherhood has rapidly evolved into a powerful political force since former Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak was ousted from power in February of last year.

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The Two-Way
6:43 pm
Thu April 5, 2012

Assailing 'Disobedience,' Pope Says Women Will Not Be Ordained

Pope Benedict XVI waves as he leaves at the end of the Chrismal mass in the morning of Holy Thursday on Thursday.
Vicenzo Pinto AFP/Getty Images

In a Mass today at St. Peter's Basilica, Pope Benedict XVI delivered a scathing homily that reiterated the Catholic Church's ban on female priests.

He also criticized a group of priests who have called on their colleagues to ignore Rome. NPR's Barbara Bradley Hagerty filed this report for our Newscast unit:

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It's All Politics
6:37 pm
Thu April 5, 2012

Obama's Signing Of JOBS Act Likely Won't Dim GOP Charge He's Anti-Jobs

By signing the JOBS Act, President Obama likely didn't buy himself much relief from GOP charges he's hurt job creation.
Carolyn Kaster AP

President Obama signed the Jumpstart Our Business Startups (or JOBS) Act into law Thursday, legislation meant to make it easier for entrepreneurs to get investor financing that helps them add workers. Does that mean it will be harder for Republicans to frame Obama as anti-jobs?

"Well, if it works, it will make it harder," said Craig Shirley, a longtime conservative political strategist and writer who runs a Washington, D.C.-area public-affairs firm.

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Shots - Health Blog
6:10 pm
Thu April 5, 2012

New Type Of Resistant Malaria Appears On Thai-Burmese Border

A micrograph shows red blood cells infected by the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum.
John C. Tan AP

Malaria experts have been holding their breath and hoping it wouldn't happen. But it has.

Malaria parasites resistant to the last, best drug treatment, called artemisinin combination therapy, or ACT, are infecting people along the border of Thailand and Myanmar.

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The Two-Way
6:04 pm
Thu April 5, 2012

'Enforcer' For Violent Mexican Drug Cartel Faces Life Sentence

The self described enforcer for a violent Juarez, Mexico, drug cartel has pleaded guilty to conspiracy, racketeering and murder charges that could send him away for the rest of his life.

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It's All Politics
5:39 pm
Thu April 5, 2012

Conservative Leaders, Santorum Meet To Discuss Path Forward

Rick Santorum speaks Wednesday in Hollidaysburg, Pa., holding boxing gloves given to him by Pennsylvania State Sen. John Eichelberger (left). On Thursday, Santorum met in private with a group of conservative leaders to discuss next steps in his campaign.
Paul J. Richards AFP/Getty Images

Former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum met with a group of conservative leaders Thursday behind closed doors at an office in Northern Virginia. They discussed the road ahead for Santorum's Republican presidential campaign as the polls tighten in his home state of Pennsylvania, which holds its primary on April 24.

The meeting included "strategic conversations about how to get the conservative ranks to coalesce around Rick," Santorum campaign spokesman Hogan Gidley told NPR.

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The Two-Way
5:25 pm
Thu April 5, 2012

Former CIA Officer Indicted For Allegedly Sharing Secrets With Reporters

Former CIA officer John Kiriakou, leaves federal court in Alexandria, Va., in January.
Jacquelyn Martin AP

Originally published on Thu April 5, 2012 6:49 pm

A federal grand jury in Virginia has indicted former CIA officer John Kiriakou on charges that he violated the Espionage Act by allegedly sharing secret information about some of his colleagues with reporters.

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