NPR News

The Two-Way
7:55 am
Wed April 4, 2012

Good News On The Jobs Front, Except From Yahoo

Originally published on Wed April 4, 2012 7:56 am

On the plus side, the ADP National Employment Report issued this morning estimates there were 209,000 jobs added to private employers' payrolls in March. And ADP's data often are something of a predictor for what the Bureau of Labor Statistics will have to say when it issues its monthly numbers. Those March figures are due on Friday at 8:30 a.m. ET.

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The Two-Way
7:05 am
Wed April 4, 2012

Olbermann: 'I Screwed Up,' But Current TV Had Problems

Keith Olbermann.
Current TV

Essentially saying that he should have known better than to go to work for Current TV, Keith Olbermann said Tuesday night that he "screwed up" by taking the job last year.

But while Olbermann said "it's my fault that it didn't succeed," he also figuratively pointed his finger at Current for why things went wrong before he was dismissed last week.

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Shots - Health Blog
6:45 am
Wed April 4, 2012

Doctors Urge Their Colleagues To Quit Doing Worthless Tests

Doctors, don't order that CT scan when a less-expensive ultrasound would work just as well, the Choosing Wisely campaign advises.
Catherine Yeulet iStockphoto.com

Nine national medical groups are launching a campaign called Choosing Wisely to get U.S. doctors to back off on 45 diagnostic tests, procedures and treatments that often may do patients no good.

Many involve imaging tests such as CT scans, MRIs and X-rays. Stop doing them, the groups say, for most cases of back pain, or on patients who come into the emergency room with a headache or after a fainting spell, or just because somebody's about to undergo surgery.

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The Two-Way
6:40 am
Wed April 4, 2012

Former Colorado Sheriff Pleads Guilty In Meth-For-Sex Case

Former Arapahoe County Sheriff Patrick Sullivan before a court hearing last month.
Ed Andrieski AP

Former Arapahoe County (Colo.) sheriff Patrick Sullivan, who back in December was charged with trying to trade methamphetamine for sex with a man, "pleaded guilty on Tuesday to charges of meth possession and soliciting prostitution," Denver's KUSA-TV reports.

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It's All Politics
6:33 am
Wed April 4, 2012

Will Pennsylvania Dash Santorum's Political Dreams (Again)?

The action was in Wisconsin Tuesday night, but Rick Santorum and his wife, Karen, had already moved on to his home state of Pennsylvania. They greeted supporters at an election night rally in Mars.
Jason Cohn Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Wed April 4, 2012 7:07 am

After going 0-for-3 in Tuesday's presidential primaries, a defiant Rick Santorum dismissed calls to drop out and predicted he'll win the next contest in his home state of Pennsylvania on April 24.

He'll have to — and not because it would put the former Pennsylvania senator on a path to defeat front-runner Mitt Romney, who has been racking up delegates and is increasingly seen as the inevitable nominee.

A loss in Pennsylvania, where recent polls show Santorum is weakening, would "destroy the rationale for him continuing," says Pennsylvania pollster G. Terry Madonna.

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The Two-Way
6:20 am
Wed April 4, 2012

VIDEO: Pepper Spray Used At Another California Student Protest

Nnaemeka Alozie, campaign manager for California congressional candidate David Steinman, poured milk on his face Tuesday after being pepper sprayed during the incident at Santa Monica College.
Courtesy of David Steinman AP

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The Two-Way
5:35 am
Wed April 4, 2012

After Ferocious Texas Tornadoes, Two Incredibly Welcome Words: 'No Deaths'

In Arlington, Texas, Tuesday afternoon, David Lowe carried his daughter's dog, Phoebe, away from the rubble.
Tom Pennington Getty Images

Originally published on Wed April 4, 2012 9:11 am

Tuesday's tornadoes in the Dallas-Fort Worth area produced some amazing videos of truck trailers being tossed into the air and homes being ripped apart.

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The Two-Way
5:05 am
Wed April 4, 2012

Baylor Women Are Perfectly Great; Finish Season 40-0, Win NCAA Title

Brittney Griner (#42) of the Baylor Lady Bears blocks a shot attempt by Kayla McBride (#23) of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish during Tuesday night's NCAA Division I women's basketball championship game in Denver.
Justin Edmonds Getty Images

Originally published on Wed April 4, 2012 5:08 am

Looking not just to win the NCAA Division I women's basketball championship, but also to be the first team to win 40 games in one season and to do it without a single loss on the way, the Baylor Lady Bears achieved all that last night with an 80-61 win over Notre Dame.

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The Two-Way
4:40 am
Wed April 4, 2012

With Wisconsin Win, Romney Moves From 'Likely' To 'Almost Certain'

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney celebrated last night with supporters in Milwaukee.
Scott Olson Getty Images

His wins Tuesday in Washington, D.C., Maryland and — most importantly — in Wisconsin has produced a subtle shift in the way Republican presidential contender Mitt Romney is being referred to by the news media.

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Law
1:19 am
Wed April 4, 2012

Gay Marriage Lawsuit Presses For Survivor Benefits

Herbert Burtis' spouse, John Ferris (left), died four years ago. When Burtis went to the Social Security office to apply for survivor benefits, the clerk told him the federal government did not recognize his marriage.
Courtesy of Herbert Burtis

Herbert Burtis met the person he wanted to marry in college, in 1948. But since the object of his affection was another man, they had to wait until 2004 for the ceremony, when Massachusetts legalized same-sex marriages.

"It's a long engagement," Burtis says, laughing. "We thought it was time that we made each other honest people."

His spouse, John Ferris, died four years ago. When Burtis went to the Social Security office to apply for survivor benefits, the clerk told him the federal government did not recognize his marriage.

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U.S.
1:05 am
Wed April 4, 2012

Activist Puts Albany Neighborhood On The Bus Map

Willie White pushed for the creation of a new bus route for his previously underserved neighborhood in Albany, N.Y.
Marie Cusick for NPR

Originally published on Wed April 4, 2012 12:47 pm

The New York state capital, Albany, is a gathering place for the state's most powerful people.

But in the city's poor and predominately black South End neighborhood, many residents once felt powerless.

They had repeatedly asked for better public transit for South End, an area plagued with poverty and crime not far from New York's gated governor's mansion.

Today, the city's Route 100 bus glides easily up Morton Avenue, a steep hill in the South End neighborhood. Many feel there would be no Route 100 if not for the efforts of local resident Willie White.

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Sports
1:04 am
Wed April 4, 2012

U.S. Rhythmic Gymnastics Star Readies For London

Rhythmic gymnast Julie Zetlin, seen here during last October's Pan-American Games, hopes to win a medal for the United States at the Summer Olympics in London.
Martin Bernetti AFP/Getty Images

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It's All Politics
12:58 am
Wed April 4, 2012

Once Again, Santorum Keeps It Close But Falls Further Behind

Republican presidential candidate, former U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum speaks at a campaign rally at Four Seasons Sheraton in Mars, Pa., Monday night. Rival Mitt Romney won the Washington, D.C., Maryland and Wisconsin primaries.
Jeff Swensen Getty Images

Originally published on Wed April 4, 2012 11:50 am

Rick Santorum came surprisingly close to an upset in Wisconsin this week, losing to Mitt Romney by less than 5 percentage points. It was not as heartbreakingly close as his previous losses in Michigan and Ohio, but it was one more reminder of what might have been.

With a win in Wisconsin, Santorum would have confounded the ruling media narrative of the moment, which wants to turn from the primary season of spring to the autumnal matchup of Romney and President Obama.

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It's All Politics
4:35 pm
Tue April 3, 2012

A Primary Hat Trick: Romney Wins Wisconsin, Maryland And D.C.

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney greets supporters Tuesday in Milwaukee.
Scott Olson Getty Images

Originally published on Wed April 4, 2012 10:07 am

With wins in Maryland, Wisconsin and Washington, D.C., Mitt Romney inched his way forward toward becoming the inevitable GOP presidential candidate.

After Tuesday's hat trick, the road to victory is clear for Romney and increasingly rocky and unlikely for Rick Santorum, Romney's leading opponent.

Still, in a speech from Mars, Pa., Santorum vowed to continue his campaign.

"We have now reached the point where it's half time," Santorum said. "Who's ready to charge out of the locker room for a strong second half in Pennsylvania?"

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It's All Politics
3:51 pm
Tue April 3, 2012

GSA Clown-Conference Scandal Could Result In Counterproductive Reaction

Former GSA administrator Martha Johnson on Capitol Hill in June 2009.
Harry Hamburg AP

The scandal involving the General Services Administration's by now infamous conference featuring spending on a clown and mind reader is certainly far from the biggest in terms of the overall dollars involved. After all, we're talking about less than $1 million all told.

That's pocket change at the Pentagon, where they can probably find more taxpayer money under the couch cushions.

But it may go down in history as one of the dumbest. A clown and a mind reader at a conference of federal bureaucrats? Really?

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The Two-Way
3:32 pm
Tue April 3, 2012

After Two Test Flights, The Race Toward A Flying Car Is On

The PAL-V at a runway.
PalVco via Flickr

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Asia
1:53 pm
Tue April 3, 2012

Is North Korea Changing — Or Resisting Change?

In a photo released by North Korea's Korean Central Agency, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un (third from right) and other senior leaders attend a memorial service in Pyongyang, March 25, marking the 100th day since the death of Kim's father, Kim Jong Il. North Korea has been sending the world mixed messages since the death of the elder Kim.
EPA /Landov

Originally published on Tue April 3, 2012 9:05 pm

Recent developments in North Korea are puzzling watchers of the "Hermit Kingdom" in both the U.S. and South Korea.

There are some signs of change within the new leadership in North Korea — and there are signs of resistance to change as well.

When he was in Seoul, South Korea, last week, President Obama said he didn't know who is calling the shots in Pyongyang, which is making it difficult to determine what's next for North Korea.

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The Two-Way
1:02 pm
Tue April 3, 2012

Tornadoes Touch Down Near Dallas; Widespread Damage Reported

Destroyed vehicles sit in a Kenworth trailer lot after a tornado that swept through the area toppling many of the trailers on the lot on Tuesday in Lancaster, Texas.
Tony Gutierrez AP

Originally published on Tue April 3, 2012 4:58 pm

"We've got two tornadoes, one in Dallas and one in Arlington. I just watched it plow through a tractor trailer parking lot like it was Godzilla in a temper tantrum."

That's how NPR's Wade Goodwyn just described the images being shown on local television in Texas.

The images from WFAA, the local ABC affiliate in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex, show tractor trailers flailing across the air in the middle of a dark debris ball.

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Education
12:44 pm
Tue April 3, 2012

Under Scrutiny, Some Head Start Programs In Limbo

President Obama plays with children at a Head Start center in Yeadon, Pa. The Obama administration is requiring some Head Start programs to compete for continued federal funding.
Mandel Ngan AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue April 3, 2012 9:05 pm

The Obama administration is calling for major changes in Head Start, the 46-year-old early childhood education program that helped launch President Johnson's War on Poverty.

President Obama says too many children today aren't learning, and too many education programs are mismanaged.

"We're not just going to put money into programs that don't work," the president announced late last year. "We will take money and put it into programs that do."

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Shots - Health Blog
12:00 pm
Tue April 3, 2012

New Rankings Are County-By-County Health Snapshot

County Health Rankings

How healthy is your county?

To see how the place where you live stacks up against the rest of the U.S., check out the latest County Health Rankings, an annual report comparing health trends for more than 3,000 counties, plus the District of Columbia.

The rankings are produced by the University of Wisconsin and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. You can drill down to look at, among other things, which areas have the highest and lowest education rates and income levels as well access to medical care and healthful foods.

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The Two-Way
11:07 am
Tue April 3, 2012

Obama: GOP Budget 'Makes Contract With America Look Like The New Deal'

Originally published on Tue April 3, 2012 11:08 am

Renewing his push against "trickle-down economics" that he says has failed the nation in the past, President Obama just said the Republican budget plan passed by the House last week is so conservative and so focused on cutting taxes for the rich that it makes the GOP's mid-1990s Contract With America "look like the New Deal."

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Shots - Health Blog
10:48 am
Tue April 3, 2012

Mammograms May Lead To Breast Cancer 'Over-Diagnosis,' Study Finds

The problem of breast cancer overdiagnosis with mammograms is similar to the dilemma faced by men diagnosed with prostate cancer because of a PSA test.
Damian Dovarganes AP

Norwegian scientists say as many as 1 in every 4 cases of breast cancer doesn't need to be found because it would never have caused the woman any problem.

It's a startling idea for laypeople (and many doctors) thoroughly indoctrinated with the notion that any breast cancer is medically urgent — and should be found at the earliest possible moment.

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The Two-Way
10:35 am
Tue April 3, 2012

Census Bureau's Website Is Coming Back: 1940 Data Now Viewable

Sara and Arthur Memmott, July 1939.
Family photo

After a tough start because of huge interest that overwhelmed servers, the Census Bureau's new website devoted to records from the 1940 census is showing signs of life.

Monday, as The Associated Press says, the website was "nearly paralyzed shortly after the records became available to the public":

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World
10:00 am
Tue April 3, 2012

Is Mexico's Drug War Worth The Cost?

Originally published on Wed April 4, 2012 3:18 pm

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

I'm Michel Martin and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. Coming up, it's National Poetry Month, and just as we did last year, we want the celebration to include you, so once again we're inviting you to send us your poems via Twitter. Poet Holly Bass kicks off our month-long tweet poetry series. We call it Muses and Metaphor. That's in just a few minutes.

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Law
10:00 am
Tue April 3, 2012

Zimmerman's Lawyer: Don't Rush To Judgement

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

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Middle East
9:43 am
Tue April 3, 2012

Boycotts Simplify Ongoing Issues In West Bank

Israel's Supreme Court has ruled the West Bank Jewish settlement outpost of Migron must be destroyed by August 2012.
Sebastian Scheiner AP

Originally published on Tue April 3, 2012 5:03 pm

In many American Jewish families, Israel is an extremely difficult subject to talk about. Generational and political divides have stalled discussions about the occupation of the West Bank in numerous households.

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The Two-Way
9:15 am
Tue April 3, 2012

Cheney Released From Hospital

Former Vice President and Mrs. Cheney at home after his release from Inova Fairfax Hospital on Tuesday.
Courtesy of Dick Cheney

Originally published on Tue April 3, 2012 2:45 pm

Former Vice President Dick Cheney was released this morning from the Fairfax, Va., hospital where he received a heart transplant on March 24.

NPR's Don Gonyea forwards us this statement from Cheney's office:

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The Two-Way
8:50 am
Tue April 3, 2012

Car Sales, Factory Orders Both Make Gains

In Glendale, Calif., last month, Allen Zimney and Leila Alvarez shopped for a Ford Edge.
Kevork Djansezian Getty Images

Originally published on Tue April 3, 2012 8:52 am

As the Census Bureau was reporting earlier this morning about a 1.3 percent gain in orders for manufactured goods in February from the month before, automakers were saying that March was perhaps their best month in almost four years, The Associated Press says:

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The Two-Way
8:15 am
Tue April 3, 2012

Murdoch Son Stepping Down From Post At BSkyB

James Murdoch, in July 2011.
Warren Allott AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue April 3, 2012 8:17 am

The hacking scandal that has ripped through Rupert Murdoch's newspapers in the U.K. has now led to son James Murdoch's decision to step down as chairman of the satellite broadcast giant BSkyB.

NPR's David Folkenflik tells our Newscast Desk that:

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