Barrasso Jobs
5:17 pm
Wed September 7, 2011

Barrasso wants Obama to cut regulations to promote job growth

U.S. Sen. John Barrasso

Wyoming's jobless rate sits at 5-point-8 percent, more than three points lower than the nation's rate.

The president is preparing to speak to the Senate and House in a joint session to outline a new slate of jobs initiatives.

Republican Senator John Barrasso of Wyoming, wants the president to call for a dramatic reduction in regulations he says are stifling job growth.

"The reality they have added, in two months alone, 17 billion dollars in regulations, and these regulations continue to be a heavy wet blanket over our economy."

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The Two-Way
4:28 pm
Wed September 7, 2011

Yes, It's True: Ben & Jerry's Introduces 'Schweddy Balls' Ice Cream Flavor

Schweddy Balls ice cream.
Ben & Jerry's

We thought it would never happen. When we reported that comedian Ana Gasteyer had spilled the beans on a new Ben & Jerry's ice cream flavor based on a Saturday Night Live skit that pokes fun at NPR, we thought it would never happen.

But we were wrong. Ben & Jerry's announced today that "Schweddy Balls" ice cream is on its way to store shelves across the country.

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It's All Politics
3:38 pm
Wed September 7, 2011

GOP Reagan Library Debate: What To Expect

The Republican presidential debate from the Ronald Reagan library in Southern California will be voters' first chance to see the current frontrunner for the GOP nomination, Texas Gov. Rick Perry, on the same stage with Mitt Romney, the previous pack leader.

Yes, there will be other candidates on the stage, all of whom have their various supporters who still believe, more or less.

But it takes a prodigious imagination to see a clear path to the nomination for the two current members of Congress now in the field, Ron Paul and Michele Bachmann.

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The Two-Way
3:30 pm
Wed September 7, 2011

Where Is Billy? A S.F. Giants Fan Goes Missing, And A Team Goes Searching

Billy poses for a photo with San Francisco Giants' Pitcher Matt Cain.
Courtesy of the San Francisco Giants

Billy was always outside the San Francisco Giant's ballpark. As the team's manager Bruce Bochy remembers it, on game days, Billy would be there before he arrived and would stay until he came out.

Sometimes that meant waiting until Bochy finished a meeting and emerged at one or two in the morning. Billy was always there — for years — so they became friends, Bochy told All Things Considered host Robert Siegel.

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It's All Politics
2:44 pm
Wed September 7, 2011

Drought And Wildfires Haven't Changed Perry's Views On Climate Change

Firefighting helicopters dump water and flame retardant after loading up with water from a pond at Lost Pines Golf Club as they fight a fire in Bastrop State Park on September 6, 2011 in Bastrop, Texas.
Erich Schlegel Getty Images

Rick Perry heats up the atmosphere every time he talks about climate change. He's an avowed global warming doubter who once quipped, "The biggest source of carbon dioxide is Al Gore's mouth."

Perry set off the debate again in New Hampshire recently when he said, "I think we're seeing weekly, and even daily, scientists who are coming forward and questioning the original idea that manmade global warming is what is causing the climate to change."

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The Two-Way
2:09 pm
Wed September 7, 2011

Study: 33 Percent Of Americans Raised Middle Class Move Downward As Adults

Factors in downward mobility.
Pew Charitable Trusts

That headline may not seem significant, but here's how Pew Charitable Trusts sells its finding that 33 percent of adults who grew up middle class end up sliding downward:

The idea that children will grow up to be better off than their parents is a central component of the American Dream, and sustains American optimism. However, Downward Mobility from the Middle Class: Waking up from the American Dream finds that a middle-class upbringing does not guarantee the same status over the course of a lifetime.

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Reflecting On Sept. 11, 2001
1:57 pm
Wed September 7, 2011

Unlikely Star: A Woman Turns 9/11 Grief Into Action

Carie Lemack, pictured in May, lost her mother Judy Laroque in the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. Ten years later, Lemack is on a first-name basis with Sen. John Kerry as part of her mission to raise awareness so that another Sept. 11 doesn't happen.
The Washington Post Getty Images

Carie Lemack, 36, gave up a long time ago trying to make sense of the Sept. 11 attacks that killed her mother, Judy Larocque.

"That's not possible," Lemack says.

But she says she will never quit trying to prevent that kind of tragedy from ever happening again.

Ten years after her mother's unfathomable death, Lemack is on a mission that's taken her down a road she also never could have imagined.

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Around the Nation
1:51 pm
Wed September 7, 2011

USDA: Food Aid Kept Hunger Rate Down

A sign in a New York City market window advertises the acceptance of food stamps.
Spencer Platt Getty Images

Originally published on Thu September 8, 2011 2:17 am

Despite the bad economy, the number of Americans who struggled to get enough to eat did not grow last year, and in some cases declined, according to new government data. Still, a near-record number — almost 49 million people — were affected.

Federal officials say an increase in government food aid kept the numbers from going even higher.

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program

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The Two-Way
1:25 pm
Wed September 7, 2011

San Francisco May Make Nudists Cover Their Seats

Hanging out in San Francisco's Castro district; Nov. 3, 2010.
Jeremy Brooks

Walking around San Francisco with no clothes on?

No problem as long as you're not a public nuisance or being lewd or ... (how do we put this?) ... looking like you're enjoying yourself a little too much. (And given how cold it can be there, perhaps arousal isn't a big issue.)

But if you sit down on a public bench or go into a restaurant, city Supervisor Scott Wiener (yes, that's correct) says you should bring something along to cover either the seat, if outdoors, or yourself, when in a restaurant.

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1:03 pm
Wed September 7, 2011

New ATF Chief Inherits Agency Fighting For Survival

B. Todd Jones, the top federal prosecutor in Minnesota, speaks during a press conference with Attorney General Eric Holder last year. Jones has been tapped as acting chief of the troubled Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
Brendan Smialowski Getty Images

Originally published on Wed September 7, 2011 5:27 pm

The federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives is fighting for its life. The agency is under pressure from Republicans in Congress after a botched gun-trafficking operation known as "Fast and Furious," and the scandal has already cost the ATF leader and a top prosecutor their jobs.

Now, the Obama administration is counting on a new leader, B. Todd Jones, to try to get the agency back on track. Jones spent years as a U.S. Marine, and he's got the direct approach to prove it.

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