5:08am

Sun July 8, 2012
U.S.

Texas Seeks New Water Supplies Amid Drought

Originally published on Sun July 8, 2012 1:59 pm

Receding water at Lake Travis near Austin, Texas, has the state concerned about its water supply. In 2011, Lake Travis had the lowest inflow since it was created about 70 years ago.
Joshua Lott Reuters/Landov

The punishing seven-year drought of the 1950s in Texas brought about the modern era of water planning. But the drought of 2011 was the hottest, driest 12 months on record there.

Though only a handful of towns saw their water sources dry up last summer, it got so bad that cities, industries and farmers began to think the unthinkable: Would they run out of water?

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5:07am

Sun July 8, 2012
Presidential Race

Urgency Reigns At Vote-Focused NAACP Convention

Originally published on Sun July 8, 2012 1:59 pm

The NAACP, the nation's oldest civil rights organization, holds its annual convention in Houston this week. As in any election season, the group is focused on voting rights and voter turnout. But this year, there's another issue that's front of mind: the dramatically high rate of unemployment rate among African-Americans.

Presidential candidate Mitt Romney will address the NAACP convention on Wednesday, and Vice President Joe Biden is scheduled to speak the following day. NAACP members are ready to hear their plans.

The Race To Register

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5:06am

Sun July 8, 2012
Afghanistan

Kabul, A City Stretched Beyond Its Limits

Originally published on Sun July 8, 2012 7:54 pm

An Afghan boy pushes a wheel on the Naderkhan hill in Kabul, Afghanistan, in May. As more people have crowded to Kabul, the city center has become like a buoy floating in a sea of sprawl.
Ahmad Jamshid AP

Kabul was once a relatively lush haven for several hundred thousand residents. But decades of war, migration and chaotic sprawl have turned the Afghan capital into a barely functioning dust bowl.

The tired infrastructure is crumbling under the weight of nearly 5 million people. And 70 percent of Kabul is now a cramped, ad hoc development where water, sewers and electricity are in short supply.

Somehow, life goes on. But the city seems to be nearing its breaking point.

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11:13pm

Sat July 7, 2012
Krulwich Wonders...

Weekend Special: Guess What? Sweat Is Not Smelly! (So Why Do I Smell?)

Originally published on Mon July 9, 2012 12:28 pm

The Chemical Heritage Foundation via YouTube

It's hot today. Really, really, hot; over a 100 degrees Fahrenheit hot, and so I'm sweating.

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3:44pm

Sat July 7, 2012
Your Money

What Does London's LIBOR Mean To The U.S.?

Originally published on Sat July 7, 2012 4:24 pm

British banking giant Barclays is at the center of an interbank loan rate scandal that caused several high-ranking executives to resign and forced the company to pay $455 million in fines.
Carl Court AFP/Getty Images

Many of us were introduced to the term LIBOR for the first time this week, when it was revealed that some banks might have been manipulating the dull but vital interest rates to gain an edge in the market.

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3:42pm

Sat July 7, 2012
Author Interviews

'Agent Garbo,' The Spy Who Lied About D-Day

Originally published on Mon July 9, 2012 12:50 pm

Juan Pujol Garcia in his uniform as a lieutenant in the Spanish Republican Army.
Courtesy Tamara Kreisler

Juan Pujol Garcia lived a lie that helped win World War II. He was a double agent for the British, performing so well that they nicknamed him for the enigmatic actress Greta Garbo.

Author Stephan Talty tells the story of this unlikely hero in a new book called Agent Garbo: The Brilliant, Eccentric Secret Agent Who Tricked Hitler and Saved D-Day.

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2:55pm

Sat July 7, 2012
Election 2012

Pro-Obama SuperPACs Losing The Money Race

Originally published on Sat July 7, 2012 4:28 pm

President Obama steps onstage before a campaign event in Poland, Ohio. He recently underlined the importance of campaign finances to supporters in an email that began, "I will be outspent."
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

"I will be outspent." This simple phrase headed an email President Obama recently sent to supporters.

"We can be outspent and still win," the message read. "But we can't be outspent 10 to 1 and still win." Obama asked for donations of as little as $3 to compete against the deep pockets of Republican challenger Mitt Romney and the super political action committees that back him.

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1:00pm

Sat July 7, 2012
Cultural, Community, Information

Metropolitan Opera's 2012 National Council Winners Concert

Airs, Saturday, July 7 at 1:00 p.m.  The Metropolitan Opera presents the winners of the 2012 National Council Auditions. They are: Janai Brugger, soprano from Darien, IL; Anthony Clark Evans, baritone from Owensboro, KY; Matthew Grills, tenor from Newtown, CT; Margaret Mezzacappa, mezzo-soprano from Euclid, OH; and Andrey Nemzer, countertenor from Moscow, Russia. The winners were selected from nine finalists who performed arias with the MET Orchestra, conducted by Andrew Davis. Each winner receives a cash prize of $15,000, as well as invaluable career exposure: the audience for the auditions includes influential opera executives, artist managers, and music critics, and some of the biggest stars in opera received their first major recognition as National Council Winners.

The Grand Finals Concert is hosted by renowned bass-baritone Eric Owens, a 1996 National Council Auditions winner. During the judges’ deliberations, he gave a special performance of “Ella giammai m’amò,” King Philip’s aria from Verdi’s Don Carlo. The Grand Finals Concert was recorded for broadcast at a later date on public radio stations across the United States.

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7:57am

Sat July 7, 2012
Around the Nation

Scranton's Public Workers' Pay Cut to Minimum Wage

Originally published on Sat July 7, 2012 3:29 pm

The city of Scranton, Pa., sent out paychecks to its employees Friday, like it does every two weeks. But this time the checks were much smaller than usual. Mayor Chris Doherty has reduced everyone's pay — including his own — to the state's minimum wage: $7.25 an hour.

Doherty says his city has run out of money.

Scranton has had financial troubles for a couple of decades — the town has been losing population since the end of World War II. But the budget problems became more serious in recent months as the mayor and the city council fought over how to balance the budget.

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6:58am

Sat July 7, 2012
NPR Story

Your Letters: Eugene Levy And American Dreams

Originally published on Sat July 7, 2012 7:57 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

Time for your letters.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

SIMON: Last Saturday, NPR's Jennifer Ludden introduced us to 30-year-old Michelle Holshue, as part of NPR's "American Dream" series. Ms. Holshue graduated with $140,000 in student loan debt just as the recession hit. She worries she'll never be able to own a home, or raise a family.

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