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The Two-Way
11:34 am
Tue February 19, 2013

Tunisian Prime Minister Steps Down Amid Crisis

Tunisian Prime Minister Hamadi Jebali.
Fethi Belaid AFP/Getty Images

Tunisian Prime Minister Hamadi Jebali announced his resignation during a news conference today, the BBC reports.

Jebali resigned after days of protests erupted in the country. As we've reported, thousands of Tunisians took the streets to protest the assassination of Jebali's opponent.

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The Two-Way
11:13 am
Tue February 19, 2013

Gen. John Allen, Recent Top Commander In Afghanistan, Is Retiring

Marine Corps Gen. John Allen in March 2012.
Kevin Dietsch UPI /Landov

Originally published on Tue February 19, 2013 12:24 pm

Marine Corps Gen. John Allen, who led U.S. and NATO forces in Afghanistan until earlier this month and had been on track to be the top NATO commander in Europe, is retiring from the military.

The White House early Tuesday afternoon released a statement from President Obama that says, in part:

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The Two-Way
11:02 am
Tue February 19, 2013

Bowles, Simpson Release New Plan That Cuts Deficit By $2.4 Trillion

Co-chairmen of the National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform, former Sen. Alan Simpson, right, and Erskine Bowles.
Mark Wilson Getty Images

Originally published on Tue February 19, 2013 5:00 pm

Just as Congress faces another self-imposed fiscal deadline, Erskine Bowles and Alan Simpson, the Democrat and Republican who were charged by the president in 2010 to present a fiscal reform plan, presented a second solution today that seeks to cut the deficit by $2.4 trillion in the next ten years.

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Politics
10:33 am
Tue February 19, 2013

Obama Again Calls For Balanced Plan For Cuts

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

And I'm Linda Wertheimer.

Earlier this hour, President Obama spoke in the White House about the impacts of deep spending cuts that are scheduled to take effect a week from Friday. A group of first responders in uniforms stood behind him. The president said if Congress does not stop these cuts, these men and women in uniform will not be available to help communities respond to, and recover from disasters.

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The Two-Way
10:22 am
Tue February 19, 2013

At Least Four Dead, Including Gunman, After Southern California Shootings

"A chaotic 25-minute shooting spree" across Southern California's Orange County Tuesday morning "left a trail of dead and injured victims before the shooter killed himself," KPCC reports.

The Orange County Register says "four people are dead and two others [were] wounded."

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The Two-Way
10:10 am
Tue February 19, 2013

Judge OKs Transocean's $1 Billion Civil Settlement Over Gulf Oil Spill

A federal judge in New Orleans has approved a $1 billion civil settlement over its role in the Gulf of Mexico oil spill where 11 men died in April of 2010, the AP reports.

As we reported back in January, federal authorities blamed Transocean "for acting negligently when the rig's crew proceeded with maneuvers to the deep-sea well in the face of clear danger signals that oil and natural gas were flowing."

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The Two-Way
9:44 am
Tue February 19, 2013

The Snake's A Snitch: Why Florida Released Biggest Python Caught In Hunt

A Burmese python at Zoo Miami. Authorities are trying to cut down the number of such snakes in the state.
Peter Andrew Bosch MCT /Landov

Originally published on Tue February 19, 2013 10:47 am

This headline may make you go "huh?"

"Biggest Python in Florida Snake Hunt Released Back into the Wild."

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Technology
9:39 am
Tue February 19, 2013

Changing The Game In Video Gaming

Originally published on Fri February 22, 2013 9:29 am

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

I'm Michel Martin and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. Coming up, if your seven-year-old was topping out the weight charts for her age, what do you think you'd do? Sign her up for dance class, cut out dessert, wait and see what happens? We'll hear about the steps one mom took when she realized her daughter was losing the battle of the bulge and the incredible blowback she got from friends and family. She'll tell us about it all in just a few minutes.

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Politics
9:39 am
Tue February 19, 2013

Sequestration: Are the Negations Just 'Theater?'

Originally published on Fri February 22, 2013 9:29 am

The Defense Department and other government agencies are preparing for the possible government budget cuts known as sequestration. Host Michel Martin talks with Lieutenant Colonel Elizabeth Robbins of the Defense Department and Washington Post 'Federal Diary' columnist Joe Davidson about who'll be affected.

Children's Health
9:39 am
Tue February 19, 2013

Mommy Bashing: Criticism Fair Over Kid Diet?

Originally published on Fri February 22, 2013 9:29 am

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

I'm Michel Martin, and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. They say it takes a village to raise a child, but maybe you just need a few moms in your corner. Every week, we check in with a diverse group of parents for their comments and some savvy advice. We are going to continue our conversation about children and obesity.

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Books
9:39 am
Tue February 19, 2013

Why One Mom Put Her 7-Year-Old On A Diet

Originally published on Fri February 22, 2013 9:29 am

Over the past few years, there's been a spotlight on the growing number of overweight and obese children in America. Today, more parents are paying close attention to what their kids eat and how often they exercise. While many parents might balk at the idea of putting a 7-year-old on a diet, that's what Dara-Lynn Weiss did. She speaks with NPR's Michel Martin about the ordeal, which she recalls in her new memoir, The Heavy: A Mother, A Daughter, A Diet.

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The Two-Way
9:09 am
Tue February 19, 2013

Obama Pushes Congress To Avoid Automatic Cuts; GOP Says It's Not The Problem

As he pressed Congress for action Tuesday, President Obama stood before a group of first responders. He made the case that their departments will be hurt if automatic budget cuts go into effect March 1.
Win McNamee Getty Images

Originally published on Tue February 19, 2013 9:54 am

Standing in front of first responders who he says could lose their jobs, President Obama pushed Tuesday for Congress to act now to avoid $85 billion in "automatic, severe budget cuts" set to kick in starting on March 1.

The cuts due because of the so-called sequestration "are not smart, they are not fair [and] they will hurt our economy," the president said.

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Shots - Health News
9:09 am
Tue February 19, 2013

Few Public Family Planning Centers Accept Insurance, Yet

Health plans are required to pay for contraceptives, but the clinics that are common sources of family planning services aren't used to dealing with insurers.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Mon March 25, 2013 12:44 pm

Most women can expect to get contraceptives without paying out of pocket for them thanks to the federal Affordable Care Act.

Women who are young or those who are poor and rely on publicly funded family planning centers for reproductive health services are covered, too.

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The Salt
8:58 am
Tue February 19, 2013

Pictures Don't Lie: Corn And Soybeans Are Conquering U.S. Grasslands

A corn field is shrouded in mist at sunrise in rural Springfield, Neb.
Nati Harnik AP

Originally published on Tue February 19, 2013 11:56 am

For years, I've been hearing stories about the changing agricultural landscape of the northern plains. Grasslands are disappearing, farmers told me. They're being replaced by fields of corn and soybeans.

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The Two-Way
7:38 am
Tue February 19, 2013

Clues Connect Global Hacking To Chinese Government, Security Firm Says

Cyberattack headquarters? The 12-story building in a Shanghai suburb that American investigators say houses an operation responsible for hundreds of cyberattacks on companies around the world.
Peter Parks AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon March 4, 2013 1:41 pm

  • Frank Langfitt on 'Morning Edition'

"Hundreds of investigations convince us" that the Chinese government is at least aware of, and likely sponsoring, cyber thieves who have stolen massive amounts of information from companies around the world, including American defense contractors, a U.S. security firm reported Tuesday.

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The Two-Way
6:43 am
Tue February 19, 2013

Quite A Haul: $50 Million Worth Of Diamonds Stolen In Lightning-Fast Heist

Yves Herman Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Tue February 19, 2013 12:50 pm

In a heist right out of movies such as The Italian Job, eight masked gunman drove on to the tarmac at Brussels' international airport Monday night, sped to a plane being loaded with diamonds and made off with about $50 million worth of the precious stones, authorities say.

It was all over in just a few minutes.

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The Two-Way
6:42 am
Tue February 19, 2013

Newtown Shooter May Have Taken Cues From Norway Massacre

Originally published on Tue February 19, 2013 8:57 am

Investigators trying to piece together a motive in December's killings in Newtown, Conn., believe that 20-year-old shooter Adam Lanza may have been inspired by a similar 2011 massacre in Norway.

The Hartford Courant and CBS News report that authorities searching through Lanza's belongings after the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary discovered several news articles about Anders Behring Breivik, who killed 77 people in Norway in July 2011.

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The Two-Way
5:55 am
Tue February 19, 2013

Pistorius Says He Feared For His Life; Prosecutor Says Shooting Was Premeditated

Oscar Pistorius in a Pretoria court Tuesday.
Siphiwe Sibeko Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Tue February 19, 2013 7:51 am

South African prosecutors laid out their case Tuesday against sprinter Oscar Pistorius, charging that the Olympic and Paralympic athlete committed premeditated murder on Valentine's Day when he allegedly rose from bed, put on his prosthetic legs, walked to a locked bathroom door and fired through it four times — killing his girlfriend, model Reeva Steenkamp.

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Around the Nation
5:51 am
Tue February 19, 2013

Houston Couple Welcomes Quadruplets

Originally published on Tue February 19, 2013 10:33 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne. Congratulations to the Montalvos of Houston, Texas on the birth of their identical twins Ace and Blaine and on the birth of identical twins Cash and Dylan. The couple thought they'd hit the jackpot when they learned they were expecting twins. Then they heard fourth heartbeat. Quadruplets are unusual, but a pair of identical twins - the odds are about 70 million to one. Next? Possibly a family trip to Las Vegas. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Around the Nation
5:43 am
Tue February 19, 2013

Hackers Disrupt Burger King's Twitter Account

Originally published on Tue February 19, 2013 10:33 am

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

Good morning, I'm Linda Wertheimer.

Unknown hackers captured Burger King's Twitter account for more than an hour yesterday. They changed BK's bio, saying the company was sold to rival McDonald's because the Whopper had flopped. McDonald's sent the message: We didn't do it. The hackers did bring Burger King 30,000 new followers. BK recovered its account and tweeted: Interesting day.

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

NPR Story
3:41 am
Tue February 19, 2013

Older Tech Workers Oppose Overhauling H-1B Visas

Originally published on Tue February 19, 2013 1:45 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Now, a look at one part of the immigration debate in Congress: a proposed increase in H1-B visas. Those are the visas that allow companies to hire skilled foreign workers. As NPR's Martin Kaste reports in today's "Business Bottom Line," offering more of those visas is controversial, especially among American tech workers of a certain age.

MARTIN KASTE, BYLINE: Here in Seattle, people still have fond memories of the 1990s tech boom.

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: Do you want a cup of coffee?

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NPR Story
3:41 am
Tue February 19, 2013

The Last Word In Business

Originally published on Tue February 19, 2013 10:33 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

OK. Let's stay with tablets, the digital kind. The kind we used to download apps. Our last word in business today is: apps aplenty.

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

With the popularity of tablets and smartphones, people have been downloading about 10 apps per month onto their devices.

MONTAGNE: Great news for businesses, perhaps, except research from the business consulting firm Nuance Enterprise shows that the vast majority of those apps are quickly abandoned, especially those that are free.

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NPR Story
3:41 am
Tue February 19, 2013

Islamists Failed To Quiet Mali's Music

Originally published on Tue February 19, 2013 10:33 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Hey, Mississippi can righteously proud of the part it played as the cradle of America's quintessential music, the blues. American music by way of Africa. One place in particular, Mali, has long laid claim to giving birth to the blues.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

MONTAGNE: Here the legendary Ali Farka Toure.

Mali's musical tradition was threatened this past year when Islamist militants took over the vast deserts of Northern Mali and immediately banned music - an incredibly painful experience for Malians.

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Africa
1:21 am
Tue February 19, 2013

Kenya's Graffiti Train Seeks To Promote A Peaceful Election

"This is something that's never been done in Africa," says artist Swift9. "People will have to pay attention. And they'll have to think about it, when they go to vote."
Mark Brecke for NPR

Originally published on Tue February 19, 2013 10:33 am

Kenya's peace train is ready to roll.

Kenyan graffiti artists received permission from the Rift Valley Railway to spray-paint a 10-car commuter train with peace messages and icons. It may be the first train in Africa with officially authorized graffiti.

The train will travel through the massive Nairobi slum of Kibera, one of the largest in Africa, where young gangs torched, looted and killed in the spasms of violence that followed the 2007 Kenyan presidential election.

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Law
1:17 am
Tue February 19, 2013

Prisoner's Handwritten Petition Prompts Justices To Weigh Government Immunity

The U.S. Supreme Court
J. Scott Applewhite AP

Originally published on Tue February 19, 2013 10:33 am

This year marks the 50th anniversary of Gideon v. Wainwright, the Supreme Court's landmark decision requiring the states to provide lawyers for poor people accused of committing crimes. Clarence Gideon, the defendant in that case, wrote his own petition to the high court in longhand, and Tuesday, the Supreme Court is hearing the case of another defendant who, in the longest of long shots, filed a handwritten petition from prison asking the justices for their help.

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Environment
1:14 am
Tue February 19, 2013

Forecasting Climate With A Chance Of Backlash

Jim Gandy, chief meteorologist for WLTX, in Columbia, S.C.
Brian Dressler Courtesy of WLTX

Originally published on Tue February 19, 2013 3:31 pm

When it comes to climate change, Americans place great trust in their local TV weathercaster, which has led climate experts to see huge potential for public education.

The only problem? Polls show most weather presenters don't know much about climate science, and many who do are fearful of talking about something so polarizing.

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Education
1:04 am
Tue February 19, 2013

Cyberbullying Law Shields Teachers From Student Tormentors

Originally published on Tue February 19, 2013 10:33 am

Ganging up on classmates online can get students suspended.

But sometimes teachers are the target of cyberbullying, and in North Carolina, educators have said enough is enough. State officials have now made it a crime to "intimidate or torment" teachers online.

Chip Douglas knew something was up with his 10th-grade English class. When he was teaching, sometimes he'd get a strange question and the kids would laugh. It started to make sense when he learned a student had created a fake Twitter account using his name.

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All Tech Considered
1:01 am
Tue February 19, 2013

As 3-D Printing Become More Accessible, Copyright Questions Arise

A 3-D printed bust of Yoda is one of the more popular digital designs shared on Thingiverse.
Courtesy of StruveDesigns.com

Originally published on Tue February 19, 2013 2:13 pm

Many people think 3-D printing could help spark a manufacturing renaissance in the U.S. — even President Obama highlighted this technology in his State of the Union address last week.

But as 3-D printers and 3-D scanners get cheaper, this nascent industry could be roiled by battles over intellectual property.

Not so long ago, a good 3-D scanner that could create accurate digital models of objects in the real world cost more than $10,000. Then, Microsoft released the Kinect — the video game controller that allows you to play games by just waving your hands.

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Politics
12:59 am
Tue February 19, 2013

Get A Social Security Check? Treasury Says It's Time To Go Electronic

U.S. Treasury checks are run through a printer.
William Thomas Cain Getty Images

Originally published on Tue February 19, 2013 10:33 am

Every month, the government sends out about 5 million checks to Americans who receive federal benefits. On March 1, the Treasury Department is making those paper checks a thing of the past.

Since May 2011, all new Social Security recipients are required to get direct deposit of their benefits. Some 93 percent of all recipients now do.

But there are still holdouts, so the Treasury Department started a campaign and a website, Go Direct, in an effort to convince the remaining 7 percent.

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