NPR's business news starts with efforts to streamline the federal government.
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GREENE: President Obama is asking Congress, today, to give him the power to consolidate certain U.S. agencies. Doing that, he says, will reduce the number of federal jobs and make government more efficient.
PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: The government we have is not the government that we need. We live in a 21st Century economy, but we've still got a government organized for the 20th Century.
We've all heard the rule: Turn off your cell phone. Well, someone broke it this week at a performance of the New York Philharmonic.
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GREENE: The iPhone Marimba ring tone had not been written into Mahler's Ninth Symphony. But there it was, chirping from the front row of the audience. The conductor was so incensed, he cut off the performance and waited for the iPhone to stop. The audience member was apparently not offered an audition.
Good morning. I'm Steve Inskeep, with a milestone for immigration. Warina Zaya Bahou becomes a U.S. citizen today in Sterling Heights, Michigan. She's an immigrant from Iran. What makes the ceremony remarkable is the birth date of the new citizen. She was born in 1900. Back then, Iran still had kings and William McKinley was president of the United States. Now at age 111 she becomes the second oldest person to be naturalized as an American. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.
This year, more than 3,100 companies flocked to the Consumer Electronic Show to hawk their wares. Thousands of products are launched at the show and many fail, possibly most. Lots of small companies established just for this show will not be back next year.
But as NPR's Steve Henn reports, their hustle is infectious and some of them become tech stars.
Let's stay on politics and another superPAC making news. Comedian Stephen Colbert made a very important announcement on his Comedy Central show last night.
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STEPHEN COLBERT: I am proud to announce that I am forming an exploratory committee to lay the groundwork for my possible candidacy for the president of the United States of South Carolina. I'm doing it.
On Twitter, News Corps. Chief Rupert Murdoch confessed: "We screwed up in every way possible." He added the company learned a lot of valuable and expensive lessons from the purchase of the social networking site.
As Newt Gingrich campaigned in South Carolina yesterday, there were signs he was beginning to soften his critique of the private equity career of rival Mitt Romney. Gingrich had come under fire this week from fellow Republicans for his attack on Romney.
For almost 70 years, New York City has been home to two opera companies: the well-heeled Metropolitan Opera and its scrappy younger sibling, the New York City Opera. But City Opera has fallen on hard times, and a bitter labor dispute might mean curtains for this beloved institution.
While GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney savored his second consecutive win in the Republican nominating process, those who finished behind him in New Hampshire also continued on to South Carolina. They are hoping that it is in the Palmetto state where they can get his campaign to to stumble before it becomes unstoppable.
Over the next three years, RBS will cut 3,500 jobs. That's in addition to more than 30,000 layoffs that happened over the last two years. In the U.S., RBS runs Citizens Bank with branches in about a dozen states.
For years, civil rights attorney Constance Rice says, she would wake up every morning trying to figure out new ways to sue the Los Angeles Police Department into policing minority communities more fairly.
In her memoir, Power Concedes Nothing, Rice details how she went from the LAPD's antagonist to reformer, convincing police that they needed to court the backing and support of the city's African-American and Latino populations.
Relations between the attorney and the police force have warmed over the years: The LAPD even hosted Rice's book release party.
State parks across the southwest are reeling from budget cuts. California officials plan to close 70 parks by next summer. In Arizona parks closed and reopened with the help of community partners. The TexasWildlife and Park Foundation is asking for more than 4 million dollars in donations to keep its parks open. From Flagstaff, Laurel Morales reports for the Fronteras Changing America Desk.
More than half of U.S. Latinos say they disapprove of the way the Obama administration has handled deportations. From the Fronteras Changing America Desk, Ruxandra Guidi has more on the latest survey of Hispanic public opinion.
California has the country's largest Hispanic student population and ranks at the bottom for reading and math achievement among Latino children. As Ruxandra Guidi reports from the Fronteras Changing America Desk, experts are beginning to call for an overhaul of the school system.
The National Park Service is beginning to map out hundreds of old smuggler roads along the Arizona border. The agency plans to return scarred land to natural desert. Michel Marizco reports for the Fronteras Changing America Desk.
Federal auditors discovered that US customs inspectors are not fully trained and lack some fundamentals to do their job at ports of entry. From the Fronteras Changing America Desk, Michel Marizco reports.
The Interior Secretary is expected to finalize Monday a 20-year ban on new uranium mining claims on land surrounding Grand Canyon National Park. Laurel Morales reports for the Fronteras Changing America Desk.
There's a new award for brutal book reviews in Britain: the Hatchet Job of the Year Award. A Julian Barnes book is dismissed as "just so... average." A biography of Martin Amis is called "spectacularly bad writing about spectacularly good writing."
Ben Motz of Indiana University looked at NFL games over a 25-year span, and found the home team won 57 percent of the time. Professor Motz did find the home team's winning percentage dropped with the advent of instant replay.
Several decades ago, more than half the states had eugenics laws — measures that allowed governments and others to forcibly sterilize people. It was a difficult chapter for many states and now North Carolina is looking to make amends. A task force says each of the state's 2,000 living victims should receive $50,000.
As expected, GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney won the New Hampshire primary. Texas Rep. Ron Paul clinched second place — ahead of former Utah Governor Jon Huntsman. Paul told a crowd of supporters that he was nibbling at the heels of the front-runner.