State and National News

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The Two-Way
9:39 am
Wed February 13, 2013

Top Stories: North Korea Bomb Test; Obama's State Of The Union Tonight

Originally published on Tue February 12, 2013 7:18 am

Good morning, here's our top story:

North Korean Nuke Test Seems Timed To Upstage Obama's State Of The Union.

And here are more early headlines:

First Lady's Guests For State Of The Union Speech Include Apple CEO. (San Jose Mercury News)

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Book Reviews
9:39 am
Wed February 13, 2013

'Vampires' Isn't Sparkly — It's Magnificent

Originally published on Tue February 12, 2013 6:03 am

There's a popular misconception that literary fiction is supposed to be staid, boring, realistic to a fault. Like all stereotypes, it's deeply unfair, but it endures, perhaps because readers keep having traumatic flashbacks to novels, like Sister Carrie, that they were forced to read in high school.

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First Reads
9:39 am
Wed February 13, 2013

Exclusive First Read: 'With Or Without You' By Domenica Ruta

Spiegel & Grau

Originally published on Fri February 22, 2013 12:05 pm

  • Listen to the Excerpt

Domenica Ruta's memoir, With or Without You, chronicles her youth in a working-class Massachusetts town, the daughter of a wildly flamboyant mother who drove a beat-up lime green hatchback, and held impromptu storm-watching parties on the porch.

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Political Junkie
9:39 am
Wed February 13, 2013

It's ScuttleButton Time!

Ken Rudin collection

Originally published on Tue February 12, 2013 5:03 am

Knowing you the way I do, I figured it would make no sense putting up ScuttleButton later in the day today. Not while you're getting ready for President Obama's State of the Union address to Congress.

So I decided to have it ready early this morning, giving you more time to solve this week's puzzle. And, I daresay, it's a bit harder than usual.

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Poetry
9:39 am
Wed February 13, 2013

In A North Vietnamese Prison, Sharing Poems With 'Taps On The Walls'

Horst Faas Associated Press

Originally published on Tue February 12, 2013 8:12 am

The United States was fresh off signing the peace accords to end the long and bloody war in Vietnam when, on Feb. 12, 1973, more than 140 American prisoners of war were set free.

Among the men to start a long journey back home that day was John Borling.

An Air Force fighter pilot, Borling was shot down on his 97th mission over Vietnam on the night of June 1, 1966. He spent the next six years and eight months in a notorious North Vietnamese prison.

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Music Interviews
9:38 am
Wed February 13, 2013

Bryan Ferry: A Forward-Looking Musician Turns To The Past

The Bryan Ferry Orchestra's new album is titled The Jazz Age.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Fri February 15, 2013 2:05 am

Throughout his career, English musician Bryan Ferry has been one of popular music's most forward-looking performers. His band Roxy Music remodeled rock into an artsy, cosmopolitan sound in the early '70s and spearheaded the New Romantic style of the '80s.

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The Two-Way
9:38 am
Wed February 13, 2013

International Skating Union Wants Harder Look At Tampering Scandal

Simon Cho competes in the men's 500-meter finals at the 2011 ISU World Cup short track speedskating final in Dresden, Germany. He won the event.
Robert Michael AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon February 11, 2013 5:59 pm

Documents obtained by NPR indicate the International Skating Union (ISU) has some doubt about a US Speedskating (USS) investigation of an incident involving sabotage of a rival athlete's skates.

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The Two-Way
9:38 am
Wed February 13, 2013

Another Shiny Object Seen In Pictures From Mars Is Now Explained

The image, taken by Mars rover Curiosity in January has sparked debate because of the shiny object marked by the yellow arrow.
NASA/JPL-Caltech/Malin Space Science Systems

Originally published on Mon February 11, 2013 5:47 pm

Last week, a blogger at Universe Today began a bit of an Internet frenzy when a reader spotted a shiny object in one of the pictures taken on Mars by the Curiosity rover.

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13.7: Cosmos And Culture
9:37 am
Wed February 13, 2013

Of Rats And Men: Edward C. Tolman

A lab rat stuck in a maze
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Mon February 11, 2013 5:20 pm

You've probably never heard of Edward C. Tolman, unless you're an experimental psychologist. If you're a Berkeley alumnus, you might be familiar with Tolman Hall, home to my office and lab. It's an unappealing and outdated homage to a man who was neither.

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13.7: Cosmos And Culture
9:37 am
Wed February 13, 2013

A Mind And A Man Worthy Of Adulation: Conrad H. Waddington

A zygote begins its journey to expression in the form of a human being.
Science Picture Co. Science Faction/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon February 11, 2013 5:19 pm

In the pantheon of scientists I have known and most admired, I hold high Conrad H. Waddington. His intellectual courage changed the shape of biology.

Waddington fundamentally extended the neo-Darwinian synthesis. Post-Newton, Charles Darwin is, to my mind, the mind that most altered the Western world view. His explanation of evolution through heritable variation and natural selection shifted everything.

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