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Parallels
3:04 am
Fri April 25, 2014

Does Russia Have The Military To Take Ukraine?

Armed pro-Russia activists stand outside the Ukrainian regional administration building in the eastern Ukrainian town of Slovyansk on April 14.
Evgeniy Maloletka AP

Originally published on Fri April 25, 2014 8:44 am

Russia says it is once again staging military drills near the border of eastern Ukraine.

Russia's defense minister says the exercises are a reaction to NATO maneuvers in Eastern Europe and what he calls "Ukraine's military machine."

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Shots - Health News
3:04 am
Fri April 25, 2014

Confusion, Cost Lead Some Californians To Go Uninsured

Informational pamphlets are displayed during an enrollment fair on the last day before the sign-up deadline at the Bay Area Rescue Mission in Richmond, Calif.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Originally published on Fri April 25, 2014 10:32 am

Despite a surge in enrollment in the two weeks before the April 15 deadline to enroll for health insurance under the federal health law, many more Californians still haven't signed up, and they're unlikely to.

Many people are uninterested, confused or skeptical.

Scott Belsha, from Long Beach, Calif., falls in the skeptical category.

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The Two-Way
7:54 pm
Thu April 24, 2014

Feds Rescind Washington State's 'No Child Left Behind' Waiver

Originally published on Thu April 24, 2014 8:09 pm

Washington has become the first state to have its "No Child Left Behind" waiver revoked by the Obama administration. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan notified the state of his decision today, which will restrict Washington's flexibility in spending federal education dollars.

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The Two-Way
6:41 pm
Thu April 24, 2014

Kerry Says Window For Russia To Change Course In Ukraine Is Closing

Originally published on Thu April 24, 2014 7:34 pm

Secretary of State John Kerry delivered a strongly worded warning to Russia on Thursday, saying the U.S. is ready to impose more sanctions if Russia refuses to de-escalate the situation in Ukraine.

"The window to change course is closing," Kerry said. If Russia doesn't change course, "the world will make sure the costs for Russia will only grow."

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Shots - Health News
6:38 pm
Thu April 24, 2014

Why The U.S. Is Worried About A Deadly Middle Eastern Virus

Fearful of catching the MERS virus, workers wear masks during a soccer match on April 22 at King Fahad stadium in Riyadh.
Fayez Nureldine AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon April 28, 2014 7:52 am

UPDATE at 4:17 p.m. Friday: Saudi Arabia has confirmed 313 cases of the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome, including 92 deaths, the Ministry of Health said Friday. Of note, one of the 14 new patients caught the virus while working as a hospital receptionist.

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All Tech Considered
6:30 pm
Thu April 24, 2014

Life Outside The Fast Lane: Startups Wary Of Web Traffic Plan

Alexis Ohanian, co-founder of the Internet startup Reddit, says he and his partner had no connections and little money when they started the now-popular site.
Tanya Kechichian Courtesy of Hachette Book Group USA

Originally published on Sat April 26, 2014 11:24 pm

The chairman of the Federal Communications Commission is offering up some new rules to govern traffic on the Internet. The draft document could allow some Web companies to pay more for faster access.

It's the latest attempt by the FCC to adjust so-called network neutrality rules, initially intended to make sure that all traffic on the Internet moves at the same speed.

The new rules won't be made public until May, but some members of the startup world are already worried.

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Politics
6:29 pm
Thu April 24, 2014

On The Ballot In Georgia This Year: JFK

A campaign sign for John F. Kennedy, a Republican running for office in Georgia, by the railroad tracks outside the city of Forsyth.
Adam Ragusea/GPB

Originally published on Thu April 24, 2014 8:42 pm

Voting for this year's midterm elections is already underway in some states that hold early primaries. In Georgia, a field of seven GOP candidates is locked in a bitter fight for the nomination to succeed retiring Senate Republican Saxby Chambliss.

But another race that's turning heads in Georgia is one for state Senate that involves a candidate with a very familiar name: Kennedy.

Yes, his name is John F. Kennedy.

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The Two-Way
6:15 pm
Thu April 24, 2014

Radioactive Leak At U.S. Waste Dump Was Preventable, Report Says

A worker drives an electric cart past air monitoring equipment inside a storage room of the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in Carlsbad, N.M., shown in this undated photo.
Anonymous AP

Originally published on Thu April 24, 2014 7:02 pm

A February accident at a nuclear waste dump that resulted in the contamination of 21 workers resulted in part from "poor management, ineffective maintenance and a lack of proper training and oversight," a Department of Energy report concludes.

NPR's Geoff Brumfiel says the report, released Thursday, says the release of radioactive material into the environment from the Feb. 14 accident at the underground Waste Isolation Pilot Plant near Carlsbad, N.M., could have been prevented. The facility is a repository for defense-related nuclear waste.

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The Two-Way
5:48 pm
Thu April 24, 2014

Yankees Pitcher Suspended Over 'Foreign Substance' On Neck

Home plate umpire Gerry Davis checks out the hand of Michael Pineda of the New York Yankees in front of teammate Derek Jeter before throwing him out of the game in the second inning against the Boston Red Sox.
Jared Wickerham Getty Images

Major League Baseball issued a ten-game suspension against Yankees pitcher Michael Pineda for "possessing a foreign substance on his person" during a game against the Boston Red Sox.

As Major League Baseball reports, after the Sox's manager complained to home plate umpire Gerry Davis, he went out to the mound to inspect Pineda.

Davis found some tar on Pineda's neck.

Pineda was ejected and if he doesn't appeal the suspension, he'll begin serving it tonight.

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Business
5:16 pm
Thu April 24, 2014

Recall Woes Push Along GM's Cultural Reinvention

General Motors has yet to explain why it took 10 years to recall a faulty ignition switch. Some blame the culture. GM says it's working on that.
Uli Deck DPA/Landov

Originally published on Thu April 24, 2014 7:17 pm

General Motors has announced a big hit to first-quarter earnings, largely due to costs for recalls. Profits dropped nearly 90 percent from last year, with the company making a razor-thin profit of $100 million, GM said Thursday.

Meanwhile, GM has yet to explain why it took 10 years to issue one of the recalls for a defective ignition switch. Some critics believe the automaker's dysfunctional culture is to blame.

But the recall crisis could speed up a culture shift that's already underway. 

Customer-Focused

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Strange News
5:14 pm
Thu April 24, 2014

The Man Who Would Own All The World's 'Speed' — But Only On VHS

Originally published on Thu April 24, 2014 7:17 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

Ryan Beitz feels a need for speed. Specifically, he wants to get...

RYAN BEITZ: All available VHS copies of the hit 1994 action-adventure film "Speed," starring Sandra Bullock, Keanu Reeves and Dennis Hopper.

BLOCK: It's called the World Speed Project. And please note, Mr. Beitz is very particular: only copies...

BEITZ: On VHS.

BLOCK: No Beta, no laser discs, no DVDs.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

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Book Reviews
5:03 pm
Thu April 24, 2014

A Biography Of Your Cubicle: How This Became The Modern Workplace

empty cubicles
iStockphoto

Originally published on Fri April 25, 2014 11:33 am

I remember my first office desk well. It was the roaring '90s in Manhattan. "Silicon Alley," they called it. I was fresh out of college, working at a Web design company. The office had an open layout. We all shared long tables. I did have a window that looked onto a stone wall. I was given a computer, a drawer and a fancy ergonomic chair.

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U.S.
4:48 pm
Thu April 24, 2014

Postal Workers Protest At Staples Over Shift In Jobs

Postal workers take part in a march in Washington, D.C., on Thursday to protest the opening of U.S. Postal Service counters at Staples stores.
Meredith Rizzo NPR

Originally published on Thu April 24, 2014 7:17 pm

U.S. postal workers took to the streets Thursday to protest in front of Staples office supply stores around the country. At issue is a decision to open Postal Service counters in Staples stores — something they say is siphoning away union jobs.

The postal workers' grievances come as their employer faces pressures to find new avenues of business.

Both the American Postal Workers Union and the leadership of the U.S. Postal Service lay claim to be fighting for the same cause: safeguarding the long-term future of one of the largest employers in the country.

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Shots - Health News
4:46 pm
Thu April 24, 2014

Rural Hospitals Weigh Independence Against Need For Computer Help

Dr. Billy Oley (left) talks with Dr. William George in the Beartooth Billings Clinic in Red Lodge, Mont. The hospital became part of the Billings Clinic system in exchange for help with its digital medical records.
Eric Whitney for NPR

Originally published on Thu April 24, 2014 7:17 pm

One of the biggest challenges American hospitals face right now is moving to electronic medical records from old-fashioned paper files.

The switch is costing tens of billions of dollars, eating up tons of staff time, and it's especially tough for the country's 2,000 rural and small-town hospitals.

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The Salt
4:37 pm
Thu April 24, 2014

Should Figs Go The Way Of Apples And Become A Year-Round Fruit?

Over 90 percent of American figs are grown in California. Two growers there are trying to coax the fruit into ripeness nine months of the year — and maybe more.
anujd89/Flickr

Originally published on Sat April 26, 2014 9:54 am

True fig lovers are well-practiced in the art of patience. We watch the calendar, dreaming of summer and the fruit's silky, sappy flesh. The season lasts through June and July, with another crop from August to October. And then we're back to almost eight months of oranges, apples and, if we must, Fig Newtons.

But these figless days may be coming to an end.

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