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The Salt
12:17 am
Sat February 2, 2013

How To Save A Public Library: Make It A Seed Bank

The seed library is a partnership between the Basalt Public Library and the Central Rocky Mountain Permaculture Institute. Seed packets encourage gardeners to write their names and take credit for their harvested seeds.
Courtesy of Dylan Johns

Originally published on Sat February 2, 2013 10:07 am

Despite the cold and snow, some signs of spring are starting to break through in Colorado. The public library in the small town of Basalt is trying an experiment: In addition to borrowing books, residents can now check out seeds.

In a corner of the library, Stephanie Syson and her 4-year-old daughter, Gray, are just finishing a book with a white rabbit on the cover.

When Gray approaches the knee-high shelves filled with seed packets, she zeroes in on a pack labeled "rainbow carrots."

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Around the Nation
12:17 am
Sat February 2, 2013

Undocumented In The U.S.: 11 Million And Counting

While a vast majority of undocumented immigrants in the United States come from Mexico, many also come from Central American nations, China, parts of Africa and India.
David McNew Getty Images

Originally published on Sun April 7, 2013 3:06 pm

There are an estimated 11 million undocumented immigrants living in the United States, and it's a number you might have heard a lot about this week from Washington lawmakers.

Since the 1970s, Jeff Passel, now senior demographer at the Pew Hispanic Center, has been keeping tabs on a group that actively tries to stay off the radar. He says many actually do participate in the census count and other surveys.

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Simon Says
12:12 am
Sat February 2, 2013

History Sometimes Rewards Those Who Are Sidelined

San Francisco 49ers quarterback Alex Smith looks on from the sidelines during the overtime period against the New York Giants on Jan. 22, 2012, in San Francisco.
G. Newman Lowrance AP

Originally published on Sat June 15, 2013 12:26 am

You might look for a player along the sidelines in the Super Bowl on Sunday named Alex Smith and wonder, as he might, if he'll be the next Wally Pipp or Ken Mattingly.

Pipp was the Yankee first baseman in 1925 who had a headache and was told to take two aspirin and sit out the game. A young player named Lou Gehrig took his place — and stayed at first base for 14 years, becoming one of baseball's most storied players.

Pipp wound up working in a screw factory. He was a good sport who told fans in later years, "I took the two most expensive aspirin in history."

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The Two-Way
10:54 pm
Fri February 1, 2013

Taliban Militants Assault Pakistani Army Base

Pakistani troops gather at the site of an attack on an army post in Serai Naurang town, near Lakki Marwat, Pakistan, on Saturday.
Jibran Yousufzai AP

Originally published on Sat February 2, 2013 4:10 am

Armed with rocket-propelled grenades and automatic weapons, militants attacked an army camp in Northwestern Pakistan early Saturday morning.

According to officials, speaking on the condition of anonymity, 12 militants and 13 security officials were killed in the attack. The New York Times is reporting that 10 civilians — including three women and three children — who were living in a nearby compound, were also killed.

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Three-Minute Fiction
7:03 pm
Fri February 1, 2013

Three-Minute Fiction Round 10: Leave A Message After The Beep

Author Mona Simpson is the judge for Round 10 of Three-Minute Fiction. She has written five works of fiction (among other short stories and essays): Anywhere but Here, The Lost Father, A Regular Guy, Off Keck Road and My Hollywood.
Alex Hoerner

Originally published on Sun February 10, 2013 6:59 pm

It's Round 10 of Three-Minute Fiction, the short story contest from weekends on All Things Considered. Here's the premise: Write a piece of original fiction that can be read in about three minutes (no more than 600 words).

Our judge for this round is author Mona Simpson, whose most recent book is My Hollywood. She most recently won a Literature Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, among other prizes. Here's her twist for Round 10:

Write a story in the form of a voice-mail message.

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Shots - Health News
2:17 pm
Fri February 1, 2013

White House Tries Again To Find Compromise On Contraception

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Fri February 1, 2013 2:35 pm

The Obama administration on Friday issued another set of proposed rules — and asked for yet another round of public comments — in a continuing quest to find a way to ensure that women receive no-cost contraception as part of a package of preventive health services under the 2010 Affordable Care Act without requiring religious employers to violate their beliefs.

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It's All Politics
1:07 pm
Fri February 1, 2013

What's Behind Rubio's 'Full Circle Back' On Immigration?

Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla, is among a bipartisan group of eight senators who this week announced a plan to overhaul the nation's immigration laws.
Charlie Neibergall AP

Originally published on Fri February 1, 2013 2:17 pm

Marco Rubio has been the junior senator from Florida for barely two years, but he's already considered a likely 2016 presidential contender.

The 41-year-old Republican's political star rose still higher this week when he joined a bipartisan group of senators offering a path to citizenship to millions of unauthorized immigrants.

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The Salt
1:06 pm
Fri February 1, 2013

Carrot Juice Instead Of Coke? USDA Proposes New School Snack Rules

The U.S. Department of Agriculture's proposed new rules for school snacks promote healthier options, like the fruits and vegetables served in this Palo Alto, Calif., cafeteria.
Paul Sakuma AP

Originally published on Wed February 6, 2013 5:24 am

The Department of Agriculture has proposed a new "Smart Snacks in School" rule that aims to promote more healthful options in school vending machines, snack bars and cafeterias across the country.

The USDA's updated regulations, which are open to public comment for 60 days, will set nutrition standards and calorie limits for snack foods that are sold in schools.

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The Two-Way
1:02 pm
Fri February 1, 2013

Barney, Former First Dog Who Loved Playing With His Soccer Ball, Dies

Barney at the White House.
Tina Hager Courtesy of the George W. Bush Presidential Library & Museum

Barney, a Scottish Terrier who loved playing with his soccer ball and golf ball and was better known as President George W. Bush's pet, has died.

"Barney was by my side during our eight years in the White House," Bush said in a statement posted on his Facebook page. "He never discussed politics and was always a faithful friend. Laura and I will miss our pal."

Barney was 12 and died after a battle with lymphoma.

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Economy
1:02 pm
Fri February 1, 2013

Pentagon Remains Big Target In Likely Budget Cuts

The winding down of the war in Afghanistan and efforts to slice the budget deficit will likely mean more spending cuts for the Pentagon.
AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri February 1, 2013 2:17 pm

The economy shrunk in the fourth quarter — for the first time in three years — and one of the critical reasons was a drop in defense spending. Apparently, contractors took precautionary steps and held onto money in case the federal government failed to avert the fiscal and tax crisis known as the fiscal cliff.

But there's now a new deadline — automatic budget cuts, known as sequestration, which may hit at the beginning of March.

The Effect On Contractors

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Health Care
1:02 pm
Fri February 1, 2013

Obama Administration Wades Into Birth Control Coverage Fray

Originally published on Fri February 1, 2013 1:33 pm

The Obama administration has issued a proposal detailing how coverage for contraception will be paid for under Obamacare. The health overhaul law requires insurance plans to provide birth control coverage, but those opposed to artificial contraception argue they should not be made to use their own funds to pay for it. Audie Cornish talks to Julie Rovner.

Shots - Health News
1:01 pm
Fri February 1, 2013

Quick TB Test Builds Up Arsenal Against Drug-Resistant Bacteria

A medical worker in Carletonville, South Africa, examines a sample at a mobile testing facility for tuberculosis.
Alexander Joe AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sat February 2, 2013 12:56 pm

The people on the front lines of tuberculosis control have their hands full, but their biggest challenge for the moment may be containing strains of the disease that are resistant to drugs.

Worldwide the number of TB cases is going down. The bad news is that the number of drug-resistant cases is going up. The World Health Organization estimates that the number of reported TB cases that were multi, extremely- or totally-drug resistant doubled between 2009 and 2011.

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U.S.
12:47 pm
Fri February 1, 2013

For Some Donors, Boy Scouts' Ban On Gays Doesn't Add Up

Eagle Scout Zach Wahls delivers cartons of petitions to the Boys Scouts of America national board meeting in Orlando, Fla., last May, calling for an end to anti-gay discriminatory practices. Helping to carry the cartons are Mark Anthony Dingbaum and Christine Irvine of Change.org.
Barbara Liston Reuters/Landov

Years of criticism and even a U.S. Supreme Court challenge couldn't force the Boy Scouts of America to admit openly gay members and leaders. But money talks, and after the defections of major donors, the 103-year-old organization is poised to lift its national ban.

Just last summer, the Boy Scouts reaffirmed the ban after a lengthy internal review. Several incidents since then have tarnished the organization's image and fueled an aggressive nationwide protest led by an Eagle Scout.

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Business
12:38 pm
Fri February 1, 2013

Pennsylvania Outdoor Sports Show Caught In Gun Debate Cross Hairs

Gun rights advocates demonstrate at the capitol in Harrisburg, Pa., on Wednesday as vendors pulled out of the city's Eastern Sports and Outdoor Show. Vendors were upset that the organizers of the event banned the sale and display of certain types of guns.
Matt Rourke AP

Originally published on Fri February 1, 2013 2:17 pm

A boycott by vendors starting this weekend at one of the nation's largest hunting and fishing shows has led to the event's indefinite postponement. Pennsylvania businesses stand to lose tens of millions of dollars in revenue.

Some 200 shops and groups pulled out of the Harrisburg, Pa., event after organizers banned the sale and display of certain types of guns.

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It's All Politics
12:36 pm
Fri February 1, 2013

Why Steven Chu Was One Of Obama's Most Intriguing Choices

Energy Secretary Steven Chu tours the Vogtle nuclear power plant in Waynesboro, Ga., last year.
David Goldman AP

Originally published on Fri February 1, 2013 12:43 pm

Of all the individuals in President Obama's first-term Cabinet, physicist Steven Chu was arguably the least likely to be found in official Washington.

The Energy Department secretary, after all, was a Nobel Prize-winning physicist from the University of California, Berkeley, the first science laureate to serve as a Cabinet secretary.

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Deceptive Cadence
12:34 pm
Fri February 1, 2013

Treasures In The Attic: Finding A Jazz Master's Lost Orchestral Music

Stride piano pioneer James P. Johnson had dreams of becoming a successful symphonic composer.
William Gottlieb

Originally published on Wed February 20, 2013 12:13 pm

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The Two-Way
12:30 pm
Fri February 1, 2013

Questions Arise About Veracity Of Iranian Space Monkey

The monkey Iranian authorities said was sent to space.
AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri February 1, 2013 1:21 pm

Earlier this week, we told you that Iran was claiming a "major achievement." State media reported the country had sent a monkey into space.

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The Salt
12:25 pm
Fri February 1, 2013

Where's The Beef? Burger King Finds Horsemeat In Its U.K. Patties

Originally published on Fri February 1, 2013 3:21 pm

Burger King has acknowledged this week that some of its burgers in Britain and Ireland included horsemeat, the latest development in an ongoing scandal.

Horsemeat actually contains just as much protein and far less fat than beef, according to nutritionists.

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The Two-Way
12:21 pm
Fri February 1, 2013

Reports: Secret Service Director Will Retire After 30 Years Of Service

Mark Sullivan, Director of the United States Secret Service, at a hearing of the Senate Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee in May of 2012.
Brendan Smialowski AFP/Getty Images

Secret Service Director Mark Sullivan will retire after 30 years in service, The Associated Press and other news outlets are reporting.

Sullivan is retiring after a tough year for the agency. If you remember, 11 of its agents were involved in a prostitution scandal in Colombia.

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The Two-Way
11:32 am
Fri February 1, 2013

Dow Breaks 14,000 For First Time Since 2007

Trader Frederick Reimer works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange on Friday.
Richard Drew AP

Happy days are (or might be) here again: The Dow Jones industrial average closed above 14,000 Friday, marking the first time the stock market measure has broken that barrier at close since October 2007.

The average closed at 14,009.79. That's up more than 149 points, or about 1.1 percent for the day. The closing comes hours after the release of a new monthly unemployment report that indicated jobs grew at a faster rate late last year than previously estimated.

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Shots - Health News
11:27 am
Fri February 1, 2013

Novartis Recalls Triaminic And Theraflu Cough Syrups

Triaminic syrups and Theraflu Warming Relief syrups have been recalled by manufacturer Novartis.
Courtesy of the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission

Originally published on Fri February 1, 2013 11:44 am

The Consumer Products Safety Commission says that "child-resistant" caps on some bottles of cough and flu syrup aren't as sturdy as advertised.

That's a problem, because products implicated in the agency's latest recall announcement — Triaminic and Theraflu syrups and "warming liquids" — contain acetaminophen and diphenhydramine.

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Media
11:10 am
Fri February 1, 2013

For Super Bowl Ads, More Social-Media Savvy

Deutsch LA

Originally published on Fri February 1, 2013 2:17 pm

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The Two-Way
11:01 am
Fri February 1, 2013

Study: Most Gun Deaths Happen Outside Of Mass Shootings

As the debate on guns heats up, there is one thing we can all be certain of: Lots of statistics will be thrown about.

On this blog, we've already pointed to a Department of Homeland Security study on commonalities in mass shootings.

Today, we'll point you a study commissioned by Mayors Against Illegal Guns. As the name implies, the group led by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is advocating for stronger gun control laws.

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Author Interviews
10:59 am
Fri February 1, 2013

'Schroder' Chronicles A Father's Desperate Mistakes

Twelve Books

Originally published on Sun February 3, 2013 10:43 am

A father embroiled in a bitter custody battle abducts his 6-year-old daughter and heads off with her through upstate New York and Vermont.

His name is Eric Kennedy and he's the desperate, complicated narrator of a new novel by Amity Gaige. Schroder is written as an explanation to his ex-wife of where he went and why he did it:

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The Salt
10:06 am
Fri February 1, 2013

An Oscar-Nominated Guacamole: Your Friday Visual Feast

Fresh Guacamole, an Oscar-nominated short film by PES
PES

Originally published on Fri February 15, 2013 7:11 am

Mashed avocado hand grenades, chopped baseball onions and hand-picked light bulb chili peppers can hardly be considered an authentic recipe, but that's not going to stop a Latina like me for rooting for Fresh Guacamole in the Oscars later this month.

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Sports
10:00 am
Fri February 1, 2013

Brain Injuries And The NFL: A Fan's 5 Stages Of Grief

Mark Stahl iStockphoto.com

A few years ago, before "CTE" was as much a part of football conversations as "quarterback rating" or "wild card spot," I had a conversation with some friends about unsettling news stories that linked the sport to brain injury.

As we spoke, an avowed hater of sports piped up. "Football, as it's currently played, is completely indefensible," she said.

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The Two-Way
9:31 am
Fri February 1, 2013

Hillary Clinton Formally Resigns As Secretary Of State

Outgoing Secretary of State Hillary Clinton listens to her intoduction before speaking on "American leadership" on Thursday at the Council on Foreign Relations in Washington, DC.
Mandel Ngan AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri February 1, 2013 9:47 am

Hillary Clinton formally resigned as the 67th secretary of state, just moments ago.

In a letter to President Obama, she said it was an "honor to serve."

"I am more convinced than ever in the strength and staying power of America's global leadership and our capacity to be a force for good in the world," she said.

She concluded, "On a personal note, it has been a pleasure to work with you and your team. Thank you, Mr. President, for your friendship, and for the opportunity to serve in your Cabinet."

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The Two-Way
9:28 am
Fri February 1, 2013

3 Things To Say At A Super Bowl Party

San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick.
Joe Skipper Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Sun February 3, 2013 7:02 pm

If you're invited to a Super Bowl party and aren't quite up to speed about Sunday's big game, join the club. This blogger's a Buffalo Bills fan and tries to kind of tune out around this time of the season because, after all, it brings back some painful memories.

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It's All Politics
8:57 am
Fri February 1, 2013

Reports: Republican Scott Brown Won't Seek Massachusetts Senate Seat

Republican Scott Brown, shown here on Capitol Hill in 2010 not long after coming to the Senate in a special election, announced Friday that he won't run in this year's special election in Massachusetts to replace Democrat John Kerry.
Mark Wilson Getty Images

Originally published on Fri February 1, 2013 9:38 am

Former Massachusetts Sen. Scott Brown will not seek the Republican nomination for Senate in a special election to replace Sen. John Kerry, the Democrat who on Friday was being sworn in as secretary of state.

The decision leaves Republicans in deep blue Massachusetts scrambling to find a candidate who can be competitive in a special election just five months away.

Brown, who won a 2010 special election for the seat of the late Sen. Edward Kennedy, lost the seat in November to Democrat Elizabeth Warren.

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The Two-Way
8:40 am
Fri February 1, 2013

In Interview, John Kerry Says He Was Hired Before Rice Withdrew

The next Secretary of State John Kerry.
Saul Loeb AFP/Getty Images

For those of you who keep up with the details of Washington machinations. Here's a bit of surprising news: The next Secretary of State John Kerry told The Boston Globe that President Obama offered him the State gig a week before U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice removed her name from consideration.

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