National

Business
3:20 am
Wed April 10, 2013

Construction Booming In Texas, But Many Workers Pay Dearly

Marchers at the state capitol building in Austin, Texas, in February protest working conditions in the state's construction sector.
Jason Cato Courtesy of Workers Defense Project

Originally published on Thu April 11, 2013 1:12 pm

Like almost everything in the Texas, the construction industry in the Lone Star State is big. One in every 13 workers here is employed in the state's $54 billion-per-year construction industry.

Homebuilding and commercial construction may be an economic driver for the state, but it's also an industry riddled with hazards. Years of illegal immigration have pushed wages down, and accidents and wage fraud are common. Of the nearly 1 million workers laboring in construction here, approximately half are undocumented.

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Financial Basics For Baby Boomers
3:19 am
Wed April 10, 2013

Debt And The Modern Parent Of College Kids

How will you pay for your kids' college?
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Wed April 10, 2013 9:44 am

It's college touring season, and many parents are on the road with their teenagers, driving from school to school and thinking about the college application — and financial aid — process that looms ahead.

Many baby boomers have already been through this stage with their kids, but because the generation spans about 20 years, others still have kids at home. So how should boomers plan to pay for school when, on average, students graduate from college in the U.S. with $25,000 in debt?

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Sweetness And Light
10:03 pm
Tue April 9, 2013

Tiger At The Masters: The Juncture Of Exhilaration And Peril

Tiger Woods spends some time on the driving range during Monday's practice round for the Masters golf tournament in Augusta, Ga.
Charlie Riedel AP

Originally published on Wed April 10, 2013 7:20 am

Let us now ponder the exquisite status of Tiger Woods, who has clawed back to the top of the charts thereby to proclaim, with the help of his Nike mouthpiece, that his ragged and raw past few years never really happened because — ta-da –– as his ad says: "Winning takes care of everything."

And yes, indeed, he is No. 1 in the rankings again. And, too, he has a beautiful new girlfriend, although, of course, I will not mention her name here, so as not to be a member of what he calls the "stalkerazzi."

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The Two-Way
5:47 pm
Tue April 9, 2013

Bitcoin Surpasses $200 Mark, Continuing 'Epic' Rise

A chart shows the sharp rise of bitcoin against the U.S. dollar in the past five days. Only two months after exchange rates put a single bitcoin's value at around $20, it surpassed $200 Tuesday.
Bitcoin Charts

Bitcoin, the digital currency that trades outside the control of central banks and international borders, reached new heights Tuesday, surpassing the $200 mark for the first time. That level comes just five days after bitcoin approached $150, a development that Mt.Gox, the largest exchange service for the currency, deemed to be "epic."

Bitcoin's rise has been sharp. It was only two months ago that exchange rates put a single bitcoin's value at around $20.

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Sports
5:28 pm
Tue April 9, 2013

How Louisville Went From 'Little Brother' To Powerhouse

Louisville forward Chane Behanan celebrates after defeating Michigan in the NCAA basketball championship on Monday. It was the school's first basketball title since 1986.
David J. Phillip AP

Originally published on Tue April 9, 2013 7:34 pm

University of Louisville fans have had a lot to cheer about lately — and not just basketball.

Monday's big victory by Louisville's men's basketball team over Michigan is just the latest success for the school and for an athletic department that is quickly becoming one of the country's most admired.

In January, the football team upset fourth-ranked Florida to win the Sugar Bowl, and coach Charlie Strong turned down a lucrative offer from the University of Tennessee to continue rebuilding the Louisville program.

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The Salt
5:14 pm
Tue April 9, 2013

Vermont Bests The Nation In Local Chow

A Vermont farm stand. The state excels at getting the produce to the people.
David Sucsy iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Tue April 9, 2013 7:00 pm

Sure, it's a tiny state, but Vermont is powerful when it comes to shopping at farmers markets, ordering up veggies from a CSA, and developing distribution systems for local products.

That's why the Green Mountain State topped the 2013 Strolling of the Heifers Locavore Index, a ranking of all 50 states and the District of Columbia based on their commitment to local food.

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Around the Nation
4:38 pm
Tue April 9, 2013

New York's Penn Station Makeover Faces Arena-Sized Obstacle

Originally published on Tue April 9, 2013 7:34 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

Mass transit advocates in New York City are daring to dream big. Penn Station is North America's busiest transportation hub and some civic organizations argue it's time to replace it with a world class train station.

But as NPR's Joel Rose reports, there's at least one big obstacle: Madison Square Garden, the world famous arena, sits right on top of it.

(SOUNDBITE OF A CROWD)

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Technology
4:38 pm
Tue April 9, 2013

Kansas City Slow To Connect With Google's Super Fast Internet

Originally published on Tue April 9, 2013 7:34 pm

Google has already rolled out an experimental broadband network in parts of Kansas City.

Environment
4:38 pm
Tue April 9, 2013

Keystone XL Pipeline Could Be Huge Boon For Canada

Originally published on Tue April 9, 2013 7:34 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

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Environment
4:38 pm
Tue April 9, 2013

Energy Secretary Nominee Dodges Question On Gas Exports

Originally published on Tue April 9, 2013 7:34 pm

A U.S. Senate committee held a confirmation hearing for Ernest Moniz on Tuesday, who has been nominated to be the U.S. Energy Secretary. Moniz says he will retire from MIT, where he's a professor of physics and energy systems. He would advocate for the Obama administration's "all of the above" energy strategy, which calls for continued fossil fuels development and supports nuclear energy, wind and solar.

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