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Book Reviews
6:03 am
Tue March 12, 2013

The Mundane World Illuminated In 'Hand-Drying In America'

Ben Katchor's syndicated comic strips vary in subject — his Julius Knipl: Real Estate Photographer, for example, explores the surreal underside of our urban environment by documenting the inner lives of the spaces and storefronts we walk past every day, while The Cardboard Valise reads like a Fodor's guide to a country that exists only in Franz Kafka's dream journal.

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Around the Nation
5:30 am
Tue March 12, 2013

Arizona State's Mascot Gets A Makeover, And Backlash

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Steve Inskeep. Arizona State never had much luck with sports mascots. When it was a normal, or a teacher's school, they were the Normals. Later they became the Arizona State Sun Devils. This mascot is Sparky the Sun Devil in a red costume with horns and a pitchfork. Now Disney has helped update Sparky, but some students find his big eyes and bulging muscles creepy. Students may vote on Sparky's future after the campus paper warned he'll scare kids. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Strange News
5:29 am
Tue March 12, 2013

Arizona Gator Gets $6,000 Prosthetic Tail

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning, I'm Renee Montagne.

There's "The Six Million Dollar Man" and now there is the $6,000 alligator. He's called Mr. Stubbs because his tail was bitten off years ago. Mr. Stubbs was taken in by the Phoenix Herpetological Society, where, The Arizona Republic reports, an orthopedic care specialist realized a silicone tail could be designed for him. Mr. Stubbs now sports a $6,000 prosthetic, making him half gator, half rubber.

It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Business
4:33 am
Tue March 12, 2013

SEC Charges Illinois With Fraud Over Pensions

For only the second time ever, the Securities and Exchange Commission is charging a state with fraud, for allegedly misleading investors about the health of its pension funds. The SEC says the state of Illinois did not properly inform investors that its pension funds were significantly underfunded when selling bonds from 2005 to 2009. This is the latest fiscal black eye for a state with a pension shortfall approaching a whopping $100 billion. The state has agreed to settle the charges.

Business
4:17 am
Tue March 12, 2013

SEC Nominee Faces Senate Panel In Confirmation Hearing

Originally published on Tue March 12, 2013 4:49 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with the SEC nominee.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

Business
4:17 am
Tue March 12, 2013

Cruise Ship Leaders To Discuss Industry's Future

Leaders of several cruise lines are meeting in Miami on Tuesday to discuss the state of the industry. The conference comes after a series of setbacks, including a cruise ship losing power for days in the Gulf of Mexico.

Religion
4:17 am
Tue March 12, 2013

What American Catholics Want From The Next Pontiff

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Awaiting the white smoke from the Sistine Chapel are many of the 75 million Catholics in the U.S., and the question comes up, what do American Catholics want to see in the next pope? The Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life explored that question in recent surveys. Here with the findings is Pew senior researcher Greg Smith. Good morning.

GREG SMITH: Good morning.

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Latin America
4:17 am
Tue March 12, 2013

Mexican President Shifts Focus From Drugs To Progress

Originally published on Tue March 12, 2013 4:48 am

Mexico's new president, Enrique Peña Nieto, has been in office for three months, and despite his claims that he's fighting drug violence with a new strategy, there are no signs the situation is any better. The president prefers to focus on Mexico's economic potential and has been touring the country, giving pep talks wherever he goes.

Politics
4:17 am
Tue March 12, 2013

Rep. Paul Ryan To Release GOP Budget Plan

Originally published on Tue March 12, 2013 4:08 pm

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

You have made it to Tuesday, ladies and gentlemen. It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne. This is a big week in Washington, D.C. for budget wonks. House Budget Committee Chairman and former Republican vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan unveiled his budget plan this morning. Tomorrow, Senate Democrats will do the same. Last night, Senate Democrats also introduced their version of a stopgap funding bill to keep the government open for the rest of the fiscal year.

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All Tech Considered
3:29 am
Tue March 12, 2013

Self-Tracking Apps To Help You 'Quantify' Yourself

Noah Zandan shows off his Zeo sleep-tracking headband. His other self-tracking devices are on his wrists. Noah and his father, Peter, are both part of the growing "Quantified Self" movement.
Elise Hu NPR

Originally published on Tue March 12, 2013 10:11 am

Technology has made it easier than ever to track your activity levels, your sleep cycles, how you spend your time, and more. The self-trackers who near-obsessively capture and analyze their own data are part of a growing "Quantified Self" movement.

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The Salt
2:58 am
Tue March 12, 2013

Mississippi Passes 'Anti-Bloomberg' Bill

Originally published on Wed March 13, 2013 4:11 pm

Mayor Mike and his public health edicts are having a rough ride.

On Monday, a state judge in Manhattan struck down New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg's rule capping soda sizes. And lawmakers in Mississippi are taking the backlash against government regulation on food marketing one step further.

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Latin America
2:58 am
Tue March 12, 2013

In Upcoming Venezuelan Vote, Hugo Chavez Looms Large

An image of late President Hugo Chavez hangs behind acting President Nicolas Maduro, as he speaks to supporters after registering his candidacy outside the national electoral council in Caracas, Venezuela, on Monday.
Ariana Cubillos AP

Originally published on Tue March 12, 2013 4:17 am

The tall and imposing Nicolas Maduro stepped forward last week to be sworn in as Venezuela's interim leader following the death of President Hugo Chavez.

Before the country's packed congressional hall, he swore to complete Chavez's dream to transform the OPEC power into a socialist state, allied with Cuba and decidedly opposed to capitalism and U.S. interests in Latin America.

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Arts & Life
2:51 am
Tue March 12, 2013

'Bowery Boys' Are Amateur But Beloved New York Historians

Library of Congress

Originally published on Mon March 18, 2013 3:12 pm

In the 19th century, the Bowery Boys were a street gang that ruled that small section of Manhattan. In the 21st century, the Bowery Boys are two best friends — Tom Meyers and Greg Young — who record a do-it-yourself podcast with the same name.

Meyers and Young love to perform almost as much as they love New York City, and their show traces the unofficial history of the place. They record a few blocks from — you guessed it — the Bowery district.

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Financial Basics For Baby Boomers
2:49 am
Tue March 12, 2013

From Grief Comes A Mission To Make Estate Planning Less Daunting

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Tue March 12, 2013 4:17 am

Estate planning may seem like a pain, but imagine the mess you leave to those managing your affairs if you don't draw up a will or get life insurance.

"It takes really just a few hours now, rather than a pile of hours and thousands of dollars to do it later when you really need it done," says Chanel Reynolds, who created a website geared to help people get their affairs in order.

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All Tech Considered
6:04 pm
Mon March 11, 2013

Like This Post On Facebook — It Might Reveal Something About You

Anatoliy Babiy iStockphoto

Originally published on Tue March 12, 2013 10:13 am

Those Facebook likes? they may be reveal more about you than you realize.

A study published Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences says Facebook likes "can be used to automatically and accurately predict a range of highly sensitive personal attributes including: sexual orientation, ethnicity, religious and political views, personality traits, intelligence, happiness, use of addictive substances, parental separation, age, and gender."

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