March 7, 2008

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Friday, March 07, 2008

Show Summary: McCain's rocky rapport with his hometown paper; beware the bedbug story!; and cruciverbalists compete

This Magic Momentum

Hillary Clinton's victories this week barely dented Barack Obama’s delegate lead, but they did wonders for her momentum. That is if you believe in all that momentum stuff. Slate's Tim Noah says momentum is less a political reality than a narrative device for reporters.

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The No Talk Express

John McCain's contentious history with his hometown paper, The Arizona Republic, has included bitter exchanges and periods when McCain refused to talk with the paper at all. Politico’s media reporter Michael Calderone talks about the evolution of the relationship.

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NPR CEO O-U-T

After only 18 months as head of National Public Radio, CEO Ken Stern stepped down on Thursday by “mutual agreement” with the board. Current reporter Karen Everhart says Stern’s ideas about the direction of public radio, including an aggressive push into digital media, met with resistance from influential member stations.

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The Long Arm of the Law

Making its way through the New York state legislature is the Libel Terrorism Protection Act. The bill aims to mitigate the impact of libel tourism, which former civil-rights attorney Samuel Abady believes undermines our First Amendment.

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Bugging Out

Washington Post staff writer David Segal says stories about bedbugs generally follow a hyperbolic pattern: They’re back. They’re everywhere. They suck your blood and ruin your life. Segal talks about the hysterical coverage and explains why a bedbug story is every editor’s dream.

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Letters

Listeners weigh in on the upcoming conversion to digital TV and the recent death of William F. Buckley, Jr.

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Revenge of the Nerds

Dungeons & Dragons co-creator Gary Gygax died this week. First published in 1974, the fantasy role playing game has been ridiculed as the pastime of supergeeks, but don't dismiss D&D. Time magazine columnist James Poniewozik says the game has had a profound influence on today's popular culture.

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Life Squared

Last weekend, 23-year-old crossword puzzle phenom Tyler Hinman bested solvers from around the country to win the American Crossword Puzzle Tournament for a fourth straight year. On the Media producer Mike Vuolo followed contestant Stella Daily to the competition in 2006 and came back with this ...

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