Latin America
9:01 pm
Mon February 20, 2012

Prison Break Epitomizes Mexican Drug War Woes

A relative of an inmate observes Mexican police behind the security fence after a riot inside Apodaca prison near Monterrey. At least 44 inmates were killed during Sunday's riot, and about 30 alleged members of the drug cartel Los Zetas were rushed out of the prison.
Julio Cesar Aguilar AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue February 21, 2012 5:08 am

Officials in Mexico are offering a reward of nearly $1 million for the capture of 30 inmates who broke out of a prison in the northern state of Nuevo Leon on Sunday.

The governor says the inmates staged a riot, during which 44 people died, to create a diversion for their escape.

It was a jail break that epitomized the Mexican drug war: Rival gang members brutally killed each other, corrupt public officials looked the other way, and dangerous criminals went free.

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Support For Education
6:46 pm
Mon February 20, 2012

Union, School Supporters Rally In Salem

Oregon State capital building.
Photo Credit: Dual Freq Wikimedia commons

Hundreds of school and labor supporters rallied at the Oregon Capitol today Monday to advocate for more state spending on education and social services. Rob Manning reports.

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Mountain Safety
6:38 pm
Mon February 20, 2012

Air Bag Becoming Standard Equipment For NW Skiers

Skier Elyse Saugstad credits the ABS air bag with saving her life in an avalanche at Stevens Pass in Washington.
Photo courtesy of ABS-airbag.com Northwest News Network

The air bag credited with saving a woman from an avalanche at Stevens Pass is starting to become standard equipment for back country skiers in the Northwest. The expert skiers who seek the thrill of more remote areas are no strangers to signs of avalanches.

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Mountain Conditions
4:13 pm
Mon February 20, 2012

Northwest Back Country Ripe For More Avalanches

A photo of an avalanche in progress.
Photo Credit: Greg L. Wright Wikimedia commons

The conditions that led to fatal avalanches in the Washington Cascades could get worse this week. Three expert skiers died near Stevens Pass on Sunday and a snowboarder died in a separate avalanche near Snoqualmie.

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You Must Read This
2:50 pm
Mon February 20, 2012

A Depressive Diarist Chronicles His Descent

istockphoto.com

Patrick deWitt is the author of The Sisters Brothers.

"Doesn't the act of noticing matter as much as what's noticed?" So asks the narrator of Harry Mathews' masterpiece of minutia, The Journalist.

On the mend from a nervous breakdown (though it's mentioned only in passing — "the steering wheel came off in my hands," he says), he's been encouraged by his doctor to keep a journal. A seemingly benign idea, and he throws himself into the task with gusto — far too much gusto, it turns out, as the journal soon eclipses his entire life.

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All Tech Considered
2:19 pm
Mon February 20, 2012

Tech Pioneer Channels Hard Lessons Into Silicon Valley Success

Nvidia Chief Executive Officer Jen-Hsun Huang co-founded the graphics chip maker in 1993.
Paul Sakuma AP

Originally published on Tue October 16, 2012 1:31 pm

Modern computer games and their fast-paced graphics require an incredible amount of computing horsepower. So much, in fact, that the kinds of chips commonly used for gaming are now being built into some of the world's fastest supercomputers.

If you're a serious gamer, if realistic, detailed graphics get your pulse racing, you should write Jen-Hsun Huang a thank-you note.

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Arts & Life
12:52 pm
Mon February 20, 2012

Our Media, Ourselves: Are We Headed For A Matrix?

Design Within Reach? The cool sterility of 2001: A Space Odyssey is just one example of how pop culture expresses an anxiety that's seemingly about technology, but may be as old as time.
MGM

Originally published on Tue February 21, 2012 7:31 am

When Hollywood imagines the future, from Logan's Run to Avatar, it tends to picture living spaces as sterile and characterless, without any cultural clues to the person who lives there. No record library, no DVDs, no Hemingway on bookshelves ... often no bookshelves.

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Economy
12:13 pm
Mon February 20, 2012

With Business Up, Owners Say Banks Lending Again

Originally published on Tue February 21, 2012 8:26 am

A big reason for the slow recovery has been that the nation's battered banks haven't been able or willing to lend. There are signs that's changing and that bank lending is helping to support stronger growth.

Paul Kasriel, chief economist at Northern Trust, a Chicago-based bank, say his reading of Federal Reserve data has convinced him that banks have finally taken the baton from the Fed and are now making credit more available.

"We've seen a sharp increase in business loans on the books of banks," he says.

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Middle East
12:00 pm
Mon February 20, 2012

Yemen The Next Arab Nation In Line To Oust Dictator

Voters in Yemen go to the polls on Tuesday in a one-candidate presidential election many hope will lead to a resolution of the nearly year-long crisis there. While most Yemenis support the peaceful transfer of power from former President Ali Abdullah Saleh to his deputy, many are frustrated that Saleh has immunity for all the protester deaths last year and that his sons and nephews still control the country.

Election 2012
12:00 pm
Mon February 20, 2012

Lawsuits Flying Over Florida's Redistricting

Originally published on Mon February 20, 2012 2:54 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

In Florida, members of Congress and the state legislature are scrambling to decide what districts they'll run for in this year's election. The legislature recently released maps that redraw the districts. It's a once-in-a-decade process every state goes through to reflect population changes since the last census. Because of its growth, Florida is gaining two seats, but there is bipartisan unhappiness with the maps. And NPR's Greg Allen reports that the battle over how they were drawn may ultimately be decided by the courts.

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