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The Two-Way
8:29 am
Thu February 28, 2013

Countdown To The Sequester: 3 More 'Should-Read' Stories

Will the clouds part, the sun shine and a sequester solution be found?
Jason Reed Reuters /Landov
  • NPR's Tamara Keith on where things stand
  • NPR's Brian Naylor on the sequester and aviation safety
  • KCUR's Frank Morris on meat inspections

Friday's deadline looms, and as we heard earlier today on Morning Edition: "Oh, it's gonna happen."

The "it" is sequestration — $85 billion worth of across-the-board federal spending cuts that are due to start kicking in at the end of Friday unless Republican and Democratic leaders somehow bridge their differences.

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The Two-Way
7:40 am
Thu February 28, 2013

U.S. To Give Syrian Opposition $60 Million More In Non-Lethal Aid, Kerry Says

Secretary of State John Kerry during a news conference Thursday in Rome.
Alberto Pizzoli AFP/Getty Images

The Obama administration will ask Congress for an additional $60 million in aid to help the Syrian opposition council provide basic goods and services in areas under rebel control, Secretary of State John Kerry announced Thursday in Rome.

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The Two-Way
7:39 am
Thu February 28, 2013

Book News: 'Fifty Shades Of Grey' Author Says Next Book Will Be Tamer

Fifty Shades of Grey author E.L. James on the set of the French TV show Le Grand Journal.
Kenzo Tribouillard AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu February 28, 2013 10:25 am

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

  • Queen of kink E.L. James told the New York Post that her next book "won't be nearly so raunchy" as Fifty Shades of Grey, and that she will "probably write it under another name." Her "inner goddess" is probably tired after all of that merengue-ing.
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Around the Nation
7:28 am
Thu February 28, 2013

Princeton University To Give Away Free Homes

Originally published on Thu February 28, 2013 12:04 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne with news for folks looking to acquire a new home. Princeton University is giving some houses away for free. They are fixer-uppers, offered as is, but did I mention they're free? The old houses, which have been used as offices, need to be taken off campus to make room for a new art and transit project. Prospective owners will need to pick up their new homes. So a free house, delivery not included. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

The Two-Way
7:13 am
Thu February 28, 2013

Benedict's Time Is Over; He's No Longer The Pope

A final blessing: Pope Benedict XVI as he blessed those gathered outside his summer residence in Castel Gandolfo on Thursday. He's not expected to make any more public appearances.
Tony Gentile Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Thu February 28, 2013 2:11 pm

  • Sylvia Poggioli on 'Morning Editon'

(We last updated the top of this post at 2 p.m. ET.)

Precisely on time, under dark skies but with the lights of cameras from news outlets around the world illuminating the scene, Swiss Guards on Thursday closed the doors of the palazzo at Castel Gandolfo south of Rome — marking the official end of Pope Benedict XVI's time as head of the Roman Catholic Church.

For the first time in about 600 years, a pope has voluntarily stepped down. His final moment as leader of the church came at 8 p.m. local time (2 p.m. ET).

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Around the Nation
7:12 am
Thu February 28, 2013

Tooth Fairy Survey: Rate Went Up 15 Percent in 2012

Originally published on Thu February 28, 2013 12:04 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning, I'm Renee Montagne with an economic indicator found under children's pillows.

The latest Tooth Fairy survey shows the average rate for lost teeth went up 15 percent last year. Illinois based provider Delta Dental says the gain is similar to the jump the S&P 500 saw last year. The average Tooth Fairy gift was just over $2.40. The real moneymaker is the first lost tooth, worth a full dollar more.

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

Business
6:27 am
Thu February 28, 2013

Job Applicants Are Wary Of Firms' Resume Sorting Software

Companies rely on software to search for new employees, especially when there's a large number of job applicants. But those seeking employment say it puts them at a disadvantage when the software hones in on key terms that don't fit on their resumes.
Jacquelyn Martin AP

Originally published on Thu February 28, 2013 1:32 pm

With unemployment still high, hiring managers continue to be inundated by job applications. Some big companies are coping with the deluge by using talent management software that winnows pools of job applicants before a human lays eyes on their resumes.

Human resources teams say in today's economy, the systems, which have been around for decades, are crucial. But job hunters like Tim Woodfield often find the software overly aggressive.

Woodfield is an information technology expert, but, ironically, computers became his nemesis during his job search.

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Around the Nation
6:06 am
Thu February 28, 2013

States, Feds Warm To Online Gambling

Originally published on Thu February 28, 2013 12:04 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

New Jersey is hoping to hit the jackpot. Governor Chris Christie just signed a new law allowing online gambling. You have to be in the state to gamble there online, though it does save a drive to Atlantic City. And New Jersey's new law follows a similar move in Nevada last week.

To find out more, we called David Schwartz. He's director of the Center for Gaming Research at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.

Good morning.

DAVID SCHWARTZ: Hi.

MONTAGNE: Hi. How big of a deal is this?

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Business
6:06 am
Thu February 28, 2013

Non-Profit Hopes To Get Kids Exciting About Computer Coding

Originally published on Fri March 1, 2013 9:16 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

The U.S. has made it through gas shortages and the credit crunch. Now tech industry insiders are warning the country is headed for a critical shortage of computer programmers.

NPR's Steve Henn reports that a new non-profit backed by some big tech names is launching this week and is hoping help close the gap - by getting kids excited about coding.

STEVE HENN, BYLINE: Since 2004, the number of U.S. students graduating from college with computer science degrees has fallen by roughly 30 percent.

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NPR Story
5:59 am
Thu February 28, 2013

Sequester Cuts Could Affect Air Safety

Originally published on Thu February 28, 2013 12:04 pm

Transcript

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NPR Story
5:59 am
Thu February 28, 2013

Democrats Move To Reinstate Assault Weapons Ban

Originally published on Thu February 28, 2013 12:04 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning, I'm Renee Montagne.

A hearing on Capitol Hill yesterday included tears, cheers and a recording of bursts of gunfire. It was all part of a new push by Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee to reinstate a ban on assault weapons, a ban that expired nearly a decade ago.

NPR's David Welna was there.

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Business
4:42 am
Thu February 28, 2013

Experts Boil Telecommuting Decisions Down To Flexibility Vs. Serendipity

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Thu February 28, 2013 12:04 pm

Yahoo touched off a debate about the effectiveness of telecommuting when it told employees last week that they may no longer work from home. The policy change was made, according to the company's internal email, to enhance workplace collaboration.

Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer, who happens to be a new mother, drew fierce criticism from those who say she should embrace, rather than reject, flexible work arrangements.

What exactly is lost and what's gained when people work from home?

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Shots - Health News
3:42 am
Thu February 28, 2013

What Happened To The Aid Meant To Rebuild Haiti?

Many homes that were rebuilt after the earthquake in 2010 are even more dangerous than the original ones. This three-story home was put up after the quake but is already slated for demolition to make way for an 18-unit housing project.
David Gilkey NPR

Originally published on Mon March 4, 2013 4:39 pm

After a devastating earthquake hit Haiti in 2010, governments and foundations from around the world pledged more than $9 billion to help get the country back on its feet.

Only a fraction of the money ever made it. And Haiti's President Michel Martelly says the funds aren't "showing results."

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Author Interviews
3:17 am
Thu February 28, 2013

Dictionary Of Idioms Gets Everybody On The Same Page

The "elephant in the room" is something obvious that can't be overlooked, even if no one is talking about it. The phrase was in use as early as 1935.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Thu February 28, 2013 12:04 pm

If you've ever shot the breeze, had a heart-to-heart or bent somebody's ear — in fact, if you've ever talked at all — odds are you've used an idiom. These sometimes bizarre phrases are a staple of conversation, and more than 10,000 of them are collected in the latest edition of The American Heritage Dictionary of Idioms, which came out this week.

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