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Planet Money
2:04 am
Fri May 17, 2013

Why Is There An Ammunition Shortage In The U.S.?

"We're going to keep prices as fair as we possibly can," says Bob Viden of Bob's Little Sport Shop in southern New Jersey.
Marianne McCune NPR

Originally published on Fri May 17, 2013 9:04 pm

Sales of guns and ammunition rose after President Obama took office in 2008, and they went through the roof starting late last year, when a school shooting led to a push for new gun control measures. That's led to a prolonged ammunition shortage, even with manufacturers running at full capacity.

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Politics
2:03 am
Fri May 17, 2013

AP Case Adds To Obama Team's Tough Record On Leaks

President Obama speaks during a news conference in the White House Rose Garden on Thursday. He told reporters: "Leaks related to national security can put people at risk."
Mark Wilson Getty Images

Originally published on Fri May 17, 2013 8:34 am

President Obama had a reputation when he took office as a liberal former constitutional lawyer who had condemned Bush-era national security policies.

But he has proven to be even tougher than President George W. Bush on prosecuting national security leaks. The seizure of Associated Press phone records is just the latest example.

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Politics
2:02 am
Fri May 17, 2013

LA Mayoral Candidates Try To Persuade Voters To Pay Attention

Los Angeles mayoral candidates Eric Garcetti and Wendy Greuel had similar records while serving together on the City Council.
AP

Originally published on Tue May 21, 2013 3:46 pm

The candidates have spent a record amount of money. They've stumped hard in a city that isn't easy to campaign in — 470 square miles sliced up into neighborhoods divided by a web of freeways.

Yet despite nearly $20 million in spending in the March primary alone, turnout is expected to be low next Tuesday in Los Angeles when voters go to the polls to pick a new mayor to replace the term-limited Antonio Villaraigosa.

As a result, City Councilman Eric Garcetti and his opponent, City Controller Wendy Greuel, are engaged in an all-out blitz for votes across the sprawling city.

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Parallels
2:00 am
Fri May 17, 2013

Are Buddhist Monks Involved In Myanmar's Violence?

Some Muslims say Buddhist monks have been inciting followers during recent violence in Myanmar. Monk U Wirathu acknowledges that he is a Buddhist nationalist but says he has tried to prevent fighting. He's shown here at the Masoeyein monastery in Mandalay, Myanmar, on March 27.
Gemunu Amarasinghe AP

Originally published on Fri May 17, 2013 9:05 pm

In the Western stereotype, Buddhists are meditating pacifists who strive to keep their distance from worldly passions. But last month, more than 40 people were killed in fighting between Buddhists and Muslims in the central Burmese town of Meiktila. Witnesses say some Buddhist monks joined in the violence, while others tried to stop it.

One prominent monk in particular has been blamed for being behind it.

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Music Interviews
1:03 am
Fri May 17, 2013

Sam Amidon: Reshaping An American Folk Tradition

Sam Amidon's new album is titled Bright Sunny South.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Fri May 17, 2013 8:55 am

Shape-note singing is a communal form of music that began in New England 200 years ago, mostly from townsfolk without any musical training. It's music that surrounded folk singer Sam Amidon during his childhood in Vermont.

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Code Switch
6:47 pm
Thu May 16, 2013

Former GOP Hispanic Outreach Director Now A Democrat

iStock
iStock

Originally published on Wed May 15, 2013 8:34 am

The Republican National Committee's former Hispanic Outreach Director in Florida, Pablo Pantoja, announced Monday that he's switching parties.

Pantoja explained his decision to become a Democrat in an e-mail that was first published by the Florida Nation.

"It doesn't take much to see the culture of intolerance surrounding the Republican Party today. I have wondered before about the seemingly harsh undertones about immigrants and others," Pantoja said.

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The Record
6:47 pm
Thu May 16, 2013

Robots In Ecstasy: Daft Punk's 'Memories' Embraces The Pleasure Principle

On May 21, Daft Punk will release Random Access Memories, the duo's first album since 2005.
David Black Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue May 14, 2013 2:11 pm

"Give life back to music," coo the robots on the first track of Daft Punk's new album, Random Access Memories, which showed up yesterday on iTunes after a long period of near-hysterical anticipation and advance marketing. Does the veteran Parisian dance music duo succeed in doing this on its first album in eight years?

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13.7: Cosmos And Culture
6:46 pm
Thu May 16, 2013

Noir Through Space And Time

There's always a girl and there's always a gun: the Hero-Blaster used by Harrison Ford's character in the movie Blade Runner. The gun was up for auction in 2009.
Mark Ralston AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue May 14, 2013 1:14 pm

Spade's arms went around her, holding her to him, muscles bulging through his blue sleeves.

That line comes from The Maltese Falcon and the guy with the blue sleeves is none other than Sam Spade. I read those words in a worn paperback copy my dad loaned me when I was 18 and I was quickly hooked. I'd fallen in love with the dark world of the noir detective. But who hasn't?

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Asia
6:44 pm
Thu May 16, 2013

The Legacy Of Gen. Ridgway And America's War In Korea

Originally published on Wed May 15, 2013 11:07 am

The ongoing conflict between North Korea and South Korea is the legacy of the Korean War, which can help explain relations between the two countries. In a new book, historian Victor Davis Hanson discusses how the strategies of U.S. Gen. Matthew Ridgway helped to turn around what appeared to be "a lost war."

Hanson, author of The Savior Generals, tells NPR's Neal Conan that although the three-year war "ended right where it began," it did allow for South Korea to flourish as a democracy.

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Author Interviews
6:38 pm
Thu May 16, 2013

Neil Gaiman Turns His Grad Speech Into 'Good Art'

Neil Gaiman is also the author of Coraline, American Gods, Anansi Boys,Stardust and M Is for Magic. He was born in Hampshire, England, and now lives near Minneapolis.
Darryl James Getty Images

Originally published on Thu May 30, 2013 11:00 am

A year ago, writer Neil Gaiman told the graduating class at Philadelphia's University of the Arts that life is sometimes hard — that things will go wrong in love and business and friendship and health, and in all the other ways that life can go wrong. And that the best thing an artist can do at those times is to "make good art."

That commencement speech became a hit on the Web and has now been adapted into a small book, titled, appropriately, Make Good Art.

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