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It's All Politics
4:37 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
4:10 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
4:04 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
3:39 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
3:25 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 4:49 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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The Two-Way
3:02 pm
Thu April 5, 2012

Obama, Romney Agree On One Thing: Women Should Be Allowed In Augusta

Patrons watch as Henrik Stenson of Sweden, Alvaro Quiros of Spain and Gary Woodland of the United States play the 16th green during the first round of the 2012 Masters Tournament at Augusta National Golf Club on Thursday.
Streeter Lecka Getty Images

Originally published on Thu April 5, 2012 3:07 pm

Maybe this bipartisan thing will become a trend: As we noted, earlier today President Obama signed the JOBS Act into law flanked by Republican Majority Leader Rep. Eric Cantor.

And, now there's news that both President Obama and Mitt Romney agree on one thing: They both think women should be allowed to join the Augusta National Golf Club.

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Media
2:31 pm
Thu April 5, 2012

Murdoch's Unrivaled Hold On The Australian Press

Between 6 and 7 of every 10 copies of national and metro papers sold in Australia are owned by News Ltd., News Corp.'s Australian newspaper arm. The company owns The Australian and The Daily Telegraph; while The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald are owned by rival Fairfax Media.
Rick Rycroft AP

Step up to any newsstand in Australia, like the one in Melbourne's Central Business District, and ask who Rupert Murdoch is, and you might get an appraisal like this one from Tom Baxter, an officer with a local disability foundation: "Long time in newspapers, ruthless; dedicated to their craft; a global citizen."

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It's All Politics
2:02 pm
Thu April 5, 2012

South Carolina Gov. Haley: Ann Romney Is Mitt's 'Golden Ticket'

Mitt Romney laughs with South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley (right) during a campaign event in Greenville, S.C., on Jan. 20. Haley says Ann Romney (left) will be important in helping the former Massachusetts governor appeal to female voters.
Charles Dharapak AP

Originally published on Fri April 6, 2012 6:11 am

South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley has some unsolicited advice for presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney on appealing to female voters.

"The golden ticket that people need to see and see more of is Ann Romney," Haley told NPR's Steve Inskeep in an interview set to air on Friday's Morning Edition. Haley was responding to a question about polls that show strengthening support among women for President Obama.

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The Two-Way
1:55 pm
Thu April 5, 2012

Grammy-Winning Singer Youssou N'Dour Appointed Senegal's Culture Minister

Youssou N'dour speaks during a united opposition rally in February.
Gabriela Barnuevo AP

Youssou N'Dour, the Grammy-Award-winning artist best known for his singing in Peter Gabriel's hit In Your Eyes, has been appointed culture minister by Senegal's new government.

NPR's Ofeibea Quist-Arcton reports that N'Dour was disqualified from running from president so he threw his support to the incoming president. Reporting from Bamako in Mali, Ofeibea filed this report:

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The Salt
1:52 pm
Thu April 5, 2012

Some Jews Say Bugs Have No Place At The Seder Table

The Passover Seder plate with symbolic foods (clockwise, from top center): horseradish; a shank bone; a mixture of fruit, wine and nuts called haroset; lettuce, parsley and an egg.
Dan Goodman AP

At this week's Passover Seders, Jews around the world lay out ceremonial meals. There's parsley or radishes to represent spring rebirth, and horseradish to show the bitterness of slavery.

As Orthodox Rabbi Tzvi Fischer shows me at the People's Farmer's Market in southeast Portland, Ore., those vegetables, and the critters inside them, bring their own theological issues.

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Middle East
1:50 pm
Thu April 5, 2012

With A Dose Of Caution, Kurds Oppose Syrian Regime

Kurds in Syria overwhelmingly oppose the current Syrian regime but have been hesitant to join in the fighting. Here, Kurds wave the Kurdish flag as they rally against the government in the northern city of Qamishli, Syria, on March 21.
STR AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu April 5, 2012 9:38 pm

When protesters took to the streets of Syria last year, one of those who joined in was Abu Azad — a pseudonym he uses to protect his safety.

A member of the Kurdish ethnic group, Abu Azad helped organize protests in Kurdish areas, calling for Syrian President Bashar Assad to step down. But Abu Azad recently found out he was wanted by Syrian authorities.

"They were chasing me and they want to kill me," he says.

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Animals
1:39 pm
Thu April 5, 2012

A 'Warm And Fuzzy' Dino? (Yes, But Mind The Teeth)

An artist's impression of a group of Yutyrannus. The 30-foot-long dinosaurs were covered with downy feathers — likely to keep the animals warm.
Dr. Brian Choo Nature

Thirty feet long and weighing in at around 3,000 pounds, Yutyrannus huali goes by the nickname "beautiful feathered tyrant." Yutyrannus earned the name "tyrant" because it casually ripped its prey to pieces. But it was also a snappy dresser: The huge predator was covered in downy feathers.

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The Two-Way
1:22 pm
Thu April 5, 2012

President Obama Signs JOBS Act Into Law

"This bill represents exactly the kind of bipartisan action we should be taking in Washington to help our economy," said President Obama before signing the Jumpstart Our Business Startups (JOBS) Act into law.

It was a rare bipartisan moment in Washington. Just look at this picture:

The Democratic president is flanked by Majority Leader Rep. Eric Cantor, a Republican from Virginia and Eleanor Holmes Norton, a Democratic delegate from the District of Columbia.

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Shots - Health Blog
1:18 pm
Thu April 5, 2012

Fox In Socks! Dartmouth Names Its Medical School After Dr. Seuss

An imagined new facade for Dartmouth's school of medicine (with apologies to Dr. Seuss).
Adam Cole NPR

Originally published on Thu April 5, 2012 3:04 pm

At the college of Dartmouth, in the year '24
There lived a young humorist named Theodor.
Though boozing was banned as a crime and a sin,
Theo hosted a party with plenty of gin.
But then in through the door without even a knock
Burst the grinch who stole gin-mas: Dean Craven Laycock.

The dean started shouting. His face turned bright red.
"Put down your tumbler and listen up, Ted!
I'm kicking you out of those clubs that you're in.
Your work won't be published at Dartmouth again!"

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It's All Politics
1:16 pm
Thu April 5, 2012

Craigslist Founder Takes On Voter ID Laws By Infographic

Originally published on Thu April 5, 2012 1:19 pm

It's about a week after it became available on the Internet but no less interesting now than it was then is the infographic by Craig Newmark, founder of Craigslist, which skewers voter ID laws cropping up in various states. One of his points — the cure is far worse than the disease.

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Animals
1:01 pm
Thu April 5, 2012

White-Nose Syndrome: A Scourge In The Bat Caves

A little brown bat with white-nose syndrome hangs in Greeley Mine, Vt., in March 2009. The disease is spreading across the country, currently affecting bat populations in 19 states.
Marvin Moriarty U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service

A disease that has killed more than 5.5 million bats in the eastern United States and Canada is making its way west. White-nose syndrome has now been diagnosed in three Missouri bats — the first confirmed cases west of the Mississippi. And scientists say it won't stop there.

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Environment
12:54 pm
Thu April 5, 2012

Feds Interview New Witnesses In Polar Bear Probe

Two polar bears spar on the shoreline of the Hudson Bay in November 2007.
Paul J. Richards AFP/Getty Images

Federal agents interviewed new witnesses this week in an ongoing investigation of government scientists that's been called "polar bear-gate," according to the scientists' lawyer.

The controversial probe, now entering its third year, is looking into allegations of scientific misconduct related to a 2006 report by wildlife researchers Charles Monnett and Jeffrey Gleason, who described seeing dead polar bears floating in Arctic waters.

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The Two-Way
12:32 pm
Thu April 5, 2012

No One's Claimed Mega Millions Win, Maryland Lottery Official Says

We still don't know who bought the three winning tickets in Friday's $656 million Mega Millions lottery drawing — one in Illinois, one in Kansas and one in Maryland.

And we still don't know what's going on with Mirlande Wilson, the Maryland woman who has made headlines by claiming to have purchased a big winner, but who hasn't yet provided any proof.

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Shots - Health Blog
12:17 pm
Thu April 5, 2012

Across America, The Grip of Prescription Painkillers Tightens

Hydrocodone is a key ingredient in the prescription painkiller Vicodin.
Sue Ogrocki AP

Originally published on Sat April 7, 2012 6:58 am

Tens of millions of Americans turn to powerful painkillers to ease their sufferings. But an analysis on the sales of two prescription drugs over a decade is particularly worrisome.

Check out The Associated Press' interactive map at the end of this post. It uses data from the Drug Enforcement Agency to show how sales of oxycodone and hydrocodone ballooned from 2000-10.

You can click on individual states to see which areas had the biggest increases.

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The Two-Way
11:58 am
Thu April 5, 2012

'Three Cups' Author Mismanaged Charity, Will Repay $1 Million

Greg Mortenson, author of Three Cups of Tea and Stone Into Schools, with schoolchildren in Azad Kashmir, Pakistan.
Central Asia Institute

Originally published on Thu April 5, 2012 11:59 am

The author of Three Cups of Tea has agreed to repay $1 million to a charity he founded, after the Montana Attorney General's office found that he had mismanaged the nonprofit by spending charity money on personal items.

The AP reports that Greg Mortenson misspent Central Asia Institute funds on "family vacations and millions on charter flights."

The AP adds Mortenson pretty much had unchallenged control of the non-profit:

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The Two-Way
11:55 am
Thu April 5, 2012

'Kill The Head, The Body Will Die,' NFL's Gregg Williams Heard Telling Players

Gregg Williams, then a coach with the New Orleans Saints, in August 2011.
Bill Haber AP

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U.S.
10:46 am
Thu April 5, 2012

How Lawyer Got Nation Talking About Trayvon Martin

Benjamin Crump (right), the attorney for Trayvon Martin's family, is joined by the Revs. Al Sharpton and Jessie Jackson at a protest in Sanford, Fla., last week. Crump has enlisted the help of prominent civil rights activists to draw attention to the case.
Roberto Gonzalez Getty Images

The prosecutor investigating the shooting of Trayvon Martin in Sanford, Fla., has not yet decided if she will bring charges against the shooter, George Zimmerman.

It took several weeks for the Feb. 26 shooting to draw the nation's attention — after Benjamin Crump, the attorney for Trayvon Martin's family, launched a campaign to get the case before media and civil rights activists nationwide.

Two days after the shooting, the high-profile civil rights attorney started getting calls about the case. "My phone was buzzing," Crump says.

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The Two-Way
10:18 am
Thu April 5, 2012

Security Company Says About 600,000 Macs Infected With Trojan Virus

A map released by Dr. Web shows where the anti-virus software company found infected Macs.
Dr. Web

Originally published on Thu April 5, 2012 11:51 am

A Russian computer security firm says it has discovered that about 600,000 Apple computers have been infected with a "Flashback Trojan" virus.

Now, before we move on, you should know that the company making the announcement is Dr. Web, which sells anti-virus software that will protect a computer against that kind of virus. It's also important to note that many of the parties weighing in are part of a security community that makes money off selling anti-virus software.

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The Two-Way
10:04 am
Thu April 5, 2012

Two Years After W. Va. Mine Disaster: Grief, Anger And Questions Linger

Tonight, in Whitesville, W.Va., mourners will silently walk with candles on sidewalks lined with luminary lights to remember the 29 coal miners who died two years ago today in the nation's worst mine disaster in 40 years.

That memorial will follow a 3 p.m. ET event in Beckley,W. Va., where an honor guard will ring a bell 29 times to mark the moment the Upper Big Branch coal mine erupted in a massive explosion.

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Education
10:00 am
Thu April 5, 2012

NYC Chancellor On Turning Around City's Schools

Dennis Walcott oversees a school system with more than one million students. Graduation rates are below the national average, and studies suggest most of the city's high school graduates are not ready for college. But Chancellor Walcott tells host Michel Martin that, after one year on the job, New York City schools are on the mend.

Race
10:00 am
Thu April 5, 2012

In Trayvon Martin Case, Who's Considered White?

Race is central to the debate surrounding Trayvon Martin, the black Florida teen shot by neighborhood watch volunteer, George Zimmerman. Many media outlets first identified Zimmerman as "white," but his father describes him as a Spanish-speaking minority. Host Michel Martin explores the question, "who is white?" with sociologist Jean Halley.

The Salt
9:57 am
Thu April 5, 2012

Chocolate Bilbies, Not Bunnies, For An Australian Easter

The bilby is an endangered Australian marsupial that has been run out of its habitat by humans and rabbits.
Courtesy of Australia's Queensland State Government.

In the turf war between rabbits and bilbies that plays out in burrows dug into Australia's arid grasslands, rabbits, those aggressive and fertile European immigrants, have largely won out.

But the chocolate bilby has staked its claim on the springtime candy shelf — an honor that could help the threatened species make a real comeback.

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Million Dollar Donors
9:11 am
Thu April 5, 2012

For Romney, Family Ties To Marriott Heirs Pay Off

J.W. Marriott dines with his son Bill in a Hot Shoppe in March 1969. The elder Marriott was close to Mitt Romney's father, George.
Dennis Brack Landov

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It's All Politics
7:32 am
Thu April 5, 2012

Thursday Political Grab Bag: Poll Puts Romney Ahead In PA

Mitt Romney has taken the lead in voter support in Pennsylvania, according to a new poll from Public Policy Polling which shows the Republican frontrunner ahead of Rick Santorum, the former U.S. senator from the Keystone State, 42 percent to 37 percent. That lead was just on the 4.9 point margin of error, suggesting a tie. That's bad news for Santorum, however, as he dropped six percentage points while Romney gained 17 percent from a month ago.

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