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Simon Says
5:11 am
Sat April 6, 2013

Roger Ebert: Elegance and Empathy

The iconic Chicago photographer Art Shay took portraits of presidents, prizefighters, prose poets — and in the person of Roger Ebert, at least one Pulitzer-winning critic.
Art Shay

Originally published on Sun April 7, 2013 11:08 am

Roger Ebert was a critic, not a blowtorch. He could be sharp if he thought a movie insulted the audience, but had a champ's disdain for a cheap shot.

Many critics ridiculed the film Deep Throat when it came out in 1973. Who couldn't mock its absurdities? Roger just wrote, "If you have to work this hard at sexual freedom, maybe it isn't worth the effort."

Roger Ebert was a Chicago newspaperman who typed with two fingers — it sounded like a machine gun, columnist Bob Greene remembered on Friday — who was from the age when reporters were fueled by ink and booze.

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Theater
4:33 am
Sat April 6, 2013

On Broadway, Old Shows And New Tricks

Willemjin Verkaik is the latest leading lady to play Elphaba, the misunderstood green girl who grows up to become the Wicked Witch of the West in Broadway's long-running Wicked. She has also played the role in Dutch and German in Europe.
Bankhoff-Mogenburg

Originally published on Sun April 7, 2013 11:08 am

When I was a teenager falling in love with the theater, I picked up a book called Broadway's Greatest Musicals. The sole criterion for inclusion was that a show run for at least 500 performances, which translates to about a year and a quarter.

How quaint.

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Movie Interviews
3:03 am
Sat April 6, 2013

In '42,' A Young Star Suits Up For A Hero's Role

Chadwick Boseman plays baseball's trailblazing Jackie Robinson in the upcoming biopic 42.
D. Stevens Warner Bros. Pictures

Originally published on Sun April 7, 2013 11:08 am

The number 42 has been retired from every team in Major League Baseball, and in recent years, teams have been eager for fans to remember why: It was the number Jackie Robinson wore for the Brooklyn Dodgers when he broke the sport's color barrier — and began to break a new path in American history.

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The Two-Way
6:55 pm
Fri April 5, 2013

Former Employee, Who Leaked Rutgers Abuse Video, Files Whistleblower Lawsuit

Eric Murdock as a Los Angeles Clipper in 1999.
Tom Hauck Getty Images

Originally published on Fri April 5, 2013 8:48 pm

Eric Murdock, the Rutgers University employee who leaked video of coach Mike Rice physically and verbally abusing his players, filed a whistle-blower lawsuit against the university on Friday.

In the complaint, filed a New Jersey state court, Murdock alleges he told the school's athletic director Tim Pernetti about Rice's abusive behavior "on several occasions."

Instead of taking action against Rice, the complaint says, Murdock was fired.

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The Two-Way
6:04 pm
Fri April 5, 2013

CPI Corp., Which Ran Photo Studios At Sears, Wal-Mart, Shutters All Locations

The company that runs more than 2,000 photo studios at stores like Sears and Wal-Mart has gone out business.

CPI Corp. announced it decision in a two paragraph statement posted on its website.

"We are attempting to fulfill as many customer orders as possible," CPI said. "If you've had a recent session, your portraits may be available at your Sears, PictureMe or Kiddie Kandids portrait studio."

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Shots - Health News
6:04 pm
Fri April 5, 2013

Human Cases Of Bird Flu In China Draw Scrutiny

A cockerel walks on a bridge in a residential area of Beijing. The Chinese are beginning to destroy thousands of birds in an effort to stamp out the presumed source of H7N9 infection.
Wang Zhao AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon April 8, 2013 6:09 pm

Sixteen cases of a new flu around Shanghai have touched off a major effort to determine what kind of threat this new bug might be.

The victims range in age from 4 to 87 years old. Six have died. It is a tragedy for them and their families, but is it a global crisis?

To understand why so few cases are generating so much concern, the first thing to know is that no flu virus like this one — called H7N9 — has ever been known to infect humans before.

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It's All Politics
5:36 pm
Fri April 5, 2013

Obama Riles His Own Party With Social Security Offer

President Obama prepares to depart San Francisco on Thursday.
Jewel Samad AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri April 5, 2013 6:11 pm

Few things indicate a president no longer needs to worry about re-election more than his willingness to ignite an intraparty firestorm.

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U.S.
4:38 pm
Fri April 5, 2013

FBI Building May Soon Be 'Put Out Of Its Misery'

The Federal Bureau of Investigation headquarters in Washington, just blocks from the White House, has long been the government building everyone loves to hate.
Manuel Balce Ceneta AP

Originally published on Fri April 5, 2013 6:04 pm

The nation's capital has been undergoing something of a building boom. Dozens of construction cranes dot the Washington, D.C., skyline.

So it comes as no surprise that the federal government is hoping to take advantage of the real estate values and unload what's seen by many as an eyesore on Pennsylvania Avenue: the J. Edgar Hoover Building, headquarters of the FBI.

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Africa
4:38 pm
Fri April 5, 2013

In Post-Coup Central African Republic, Instability Remains

Kadidja Mamath sells hot porridge made of rice, sugar and milk on the roadside in the capital city, Bangui. The 19-year-old says the people of CAR have suffered enough and are ready for the coups to stop.
Benno Muchler for NPR

Originally published on Fri April 5, 2013 6:04 pm

Tumult defines the Central African Republic. The landlocked nation in the heart of Africa is rich in natural resources such as diamonds, gold and uranium, but it remains one of the world's poorest countries. It has suffered from decades of misrule and coups.

The latest uprising occurred last month, when a rebel alliance seized control of the country and ousted the president. What followed were days of violence and looting, leaving the country in shambles: gas stations without pumps, hospitals without equipment, the university without computers.

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It's All Politics
4:15 pm
Fri April 5, 2013

The Democrats' Final Four On Gay Marriage

In the U.S. Senate, it's down to the Final Four versus the Dynamic Duo.

Only four Democratic senators remain who do not support same-sex marriage. Across the aisle, there are now two Republicans who have announced their support.

The new alignments mean that a majority — 53 senators — now support a concept that 85 senators voted to ban in 1996 with the Defense of Marriage Act.

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NPR Story
3:58 pm
Fri April 5, 2013

Construction Jobs Take A Hit In March After A Fall Boost

Originally published on Fri April 5, 2013 6:04 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

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NPR Story
3:58 pm
Fri April 5, 2013

Book Review: 'Submergence'

Originally published on Fri April 5, 2013 6:04 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

The writer J.M. Ledgard leads multiple lives. He's a journalist and covers East Africa for the Economist, but Ledgard is also a novelist. Here's Alan Cheuse with a review of his latest book, "Submergence."

ALAN CHEUSE, BYLINE: James More, a British secret agent, has been captured by a Somalian affiliate of al-Qaeda, a peripatetic fringe group that keeps moving him back and forth across the mostly barren terrain of northeastern Africa, trying to hide from drone attacks and make jihad at the same time.

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NPR Story
3:58 pm
Fri April 5, 2013

Although Unemployment Dropped In March, Job Growth Slowed

Originally published on Fri April 5, 2013 6:04 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

It's ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Audie Cornish.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

And I'm Robert Siegel.

At first blush, it might seem like good news from the Labor Department this morning: The unemployment rate that has been dropping in recent months fell again. It fell to 7.6 percent in March. But job growth was much weaker than expected. And the main reason that the rate went down is that a large number of people decided to leave the workforce. NPR's Yuki Noguchi joins us now. Hi, Yuki.

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The Salt
3:50 pm
Fri April 5, 2013

Craft Beer-Crazy Oregon Poised To Name Official State Microbe

Oh, Portland: the Hopworks Urban Brewery's "pub bike."
Elly Blue/via Flickr

Originally published on Wed April 10, 2013 4:36 pm

A humble creature that has long toiled in obscurity for the benefit of humankind is poised to win a small measure of the distinction it deserves: designation as Oregon's official state microbe.

It looks to be the first microbe to gain official state recognition.

The microbe in question, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, plays a key role in the state's economy. Without it, sugar would not become alcohol, and Oregon would not have a craft beer industry worth $2.4 billion.

That's a lot of yeast.

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The Two-Way
3:49 pm
Fri April 5, 2013

Obama Apologizes To California AG Over 'Best Looking' Remark

California Attorney General Kamala Harris.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said today that President Obama called California Attorney General Kamala Harris to apologize.

Obama made waves Thursday during a fundraiser in which he referred to Harris' looks.

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Shots - Health News
3:01 pm
Fri April 5, 2013

As Palliative Care Need Grows, Specialists Are Scarce

Dr. Martha Twaddle talks to a patient and strokes her hair during a visit at the Midwest Palliative and Hospice CareCenter in Skokie, Ill., in 2012.
Antonia Perez MCT /Landov

Originally published on Fri April 5, 2013 6:59 pm

Baby boomers have never needed more care to ease their pain and suffering. But there simply aren't enough specialists to get the job done.

There's a shortfall of as many as 18,000 physicians focused on palliative care and hospice care. Right now, there are 5,150 hospice programs and 1,635 hospital palliative care teams in the U.S., according to the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine.

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The Two-Way
2:56 pm
Fri April 5, 2013

FAA Will Delay Closure Of 149 Air Traffic Control Towers Until June

The Federal Aviation Administration has decided to delay the closing of 149 airport control towers until mid-June.

The Obama administration said it needed to cut funding for the towers — mostly in small communities — because of $637 million in budget cuts mandated by law.

"This additional time will allow the agency to attempt to resolve multiple legal challenges to the closure decisions," the FAA said in a statement. "Extending the transition deadline will give the FAA and airports more time to execute the changes to the National Airspace System."

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Economy
2:43 pm
Fri April 5, 2013

Honda's Growth Helps Tow Ohio Out Of Recession

Al Kinzer, who was Honda of America's first employee, drives the company's one millionth U.S.-produced car off the assembly line at Honda's assembly plant in Marysville, Ohio, April 8, 1988.
Greg Sailor AP

Originally published on Fri April 5, 2013 6:04 pm

Honda is moving its North American headquarters from California to Ohio. That's just the latest bit of good news for the Buckeye State and Honda, whose fortunes have been closely tied for decades now.

Honda has been an economic heavyweight here since it was lured to central Ohio in the 1970s. The company's footprint is big, and it continues to increase.

Honda's sprawling Marysville Auto Plant opened outside Columbus in 1982. Since then, it has grown to nearly 4 million square feet and now sits on a campus of 8,000 acres.

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Law
2:30 pm
Fri April 5, 2013

Experts: Prison Gang Reach Increasingly Extends Into Streets

Originally published on Fri April 5, 2013 4:47 pm

Prison violence is getting out of prison.

Authorities are looking into the possibility that white supremacist prison gangs may have been involved in a series of shootings of public officials in Colorado and Texas. If so, criminologists say, this would be part of a larger pattern of prison gangs extending their reach.

"Increasingly, these prison gangs are spilling out onto the streets," says Mark Potok, an editor with the Southern Poverty Law Center, which tracks hate groups.

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Music Interviews
2:30 pm
Fri April 5, 2013

Bonobo: Challenging Music's 'Borders,' Finding A New Frontier

Bonobo's new album is titled The North Borders.
Andrew De Francesco Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Fri April 5, 2013 6:04 pm

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13.7: Cosmos And Culture
2:29 pm
Fri April 5, 2013

Coughing And The Meaning Of Art

Musical instruments wait for the arrival of the orchestra during the closing session of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing on March 12.
Mark Ralston AFP/Getty Images

A few years back, I attended a Keith Jarrett solo piano recital at Davies Symphony Hall in San Francisco. The hall, which seats nearly 3,000 people, was sold out.

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The Two-Way
2:15 pm
Fri April 5, 2013

Pope Francis Calls For 'Decisive Action' On Clerical Sex Abuse

Pope Francis greets the faithful on March 31, 2013 in Vatican City.
Dan Kitwood Getty Images

Pope Francis told his staff to take "decisive action" when it comes to cases of clerical sex abuse of minors.

In a statement, the Vatican said the pontiff ordered the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith to "act decisively as far as cases of sexual abuse are concerned, promoting, above all, measures to protect minors, help for those who have suffered such violence in the past (and) the necessary procedures against those who are guilty."

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Shots - Health News
1:48 pm
Fri April 5, 2013

Lead In Soil May Be An Overlooked Threat To Kids' Health

Industrial cities like Detroit have high levels of lead in the aging housing stock and in soils. Researchers found that the amount of soil lead in Detroit that gets suspended in the air correlated with the levels of lead in kids' blood.
Spencer Platt Getty Images

Originally published on Fri April 5, 2013 7:43 pm

Lead poisoning in kids is hardly the problem it used to be, now that we've stopped using lead in house paints and gasoline. But the lead that lingers outside and in old homes is still dangerous if kids are exposed to it.

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Economy
1:01 pm
Fri April 5, 2013

Jobs Report: 'Ouch!'

Originally published on Mon April 8, 2013 10:19 am

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

I'm Michel Martin and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. Later in the program, we will speak with a Christian leader who's led his church to rethink both its politics and its worship. It's the Reverend Cecil Williams of San Francisco's Glide Memorial Church. He and his wife, who's also a church leader, will join us for a Faith Matters conversation in a few minutes.

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The Two-Way
12:42 pm
Fri April 5, 2013

Puzzling, Shaky Start To New Round Of Iran Talks

The negotiating table in Almaty, Kazakhstan, where the U.S. and other nations are talking with Iran about that nation's nuclear ambitions.
Ilyas Omarov AFP/Getty Images

The first day of the latest talks between Iran and the so-called P5+1 group about the Persian nation's nuclear ambitions has ended with reports of a "shaky" start and Western diplomats saying they are puzzled by what Iran brought to the table.

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