12:01am

Fri April 15, 2011
Your Money

Same-Sex Families Get A New Boost From Tax Rules

Some same-sex couples have to file their federal income taxes in a new way this year. For some of those couples, it means they'll save a lot of money.

The gay couples who have new filing rules are same-sex spouses and registered domestic partners in "community property" states — that means they both own all of their income, no matter who earns what.

Three states extend their community property laws to same-sex couples: California, Nevada and Washington.

A Family Benefits From Tax Shift

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12:01am

Fri April 15, 2011
Africa

Inside The Pirate Business: From Booty To Bonuses

The last in a three-part series.

In recent years, Somali piracy has grown into a multimillion-dollar criminal enterprise. Rarely a week goes by that pirates don't attack or seize a ship.

Ransoms now average between $4 million and $5 million, and researchers estimate as many as 2,000 pirates operate from Somalia's shores.

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12:01am

Fri April 15, 2011
Latin America

Real Estate, Auto Markets Drive Reform Talk In Cuba

Cuba's Raul Castro has outlined hundreds of reform measures in preparation for the big Communist Party Congress that starts this weekend, the first since 1997.

Some would entail major changes to Cuba's property laws. The reforms could lead to a real estate boom, but could also mark the beginning of the end for many of Cuba's classic American cars.

It is the quintessential image of Havana postcards and tourism brochures — dozens of battered Fords, Buicks and other aging clunkers from Detroit's heyday lined up in colorful formation outside the elegant Cuban Capitolio.

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9:47pm

Thu April 14, 2011
Movie Reviews

A 'Conspirator' On Trial, Along With The System

A better history lesson than it is a drama, The Conspirator acknowledges the 150th anniversary of the American Civil War in a studious, almost reverent mode. History buffs will recognize the name of Mary Surratt, the title character, but many Americans have heard only of her more notorious acquaintance: John Wilkes Booth.

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9:46pm

Thu April 14, 2011
Movie Reviews

'Montpensier': A Bauble With A Mind Of Her Own

Bodices are tight and morals are loose in The Princess of Montpensier, a lusty romance that begins on one battlefield and continues on another. But though it's set against the backdrop of the French wars of religion — that 16th-century smackdown between Catholics and Protestants, whose representatives keep popping up at intervals to batter one another to bloody pulp — Bertrand Tavernier's 25th feature cares little for war and even less for religion. The only battle on its mind is the one between the sexes.

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7:43pm

Thu April 14, 2011
It's All Politics

Rep. Ryan Defends GOP Proposals For Medicare, Tax Rate Cuts In NPR Interview

Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI), chairman of the House Budget Committee and author of the 2012 budget plan that would, among other things, privatize Medicare, defended his proposal on All Things Considered Thursday.

Much of the interview with NPR host Robert Siegel centered on the Medicare plan which would radically change the program from a single-payer approach.

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Jennifer Ludden is a correspondent on NPR's National Desk. She covers a range of stories on family life and social issues.

In recent years, Ludden has reported on the changing economics of marriage, the changing face of retirement as the baby boomers enter old age, and the ethical challenges of modern reproductive technology.

Ludden helped cover national security after the 9/11 attacks, then reported on the Bush administration's crackdown on illegal immigrants as well as Congressional efforts to pass a sweeping legalization. She traveled to the Philippines for a story on how an overburdened immigration bureaucracy keeps families separated for years, and to El Salvador to profile migrants who had been deported or turned back at the border.

6:50pm

Thu April 14, 2011
Movie Reviews

A Guy With Mommy Issues, And The Lady In Question

Bruno, the peevish sad sack at the center of the charming Italian comedy The First Beautiful Thing, has all the fixings of a decent life, including a stable job teaching at a vocational school and a faithful live-in girlfriend who seems more entertained than annoyed by his stubborn eye for the half-empty glass.

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6:39pm

Thu April 14, 2011
The Two-Way

Playboy Names University of Colorado At Boulder 'Top Party School'

Today, Playboy crowned the University of Colorado at Boulder as the nation's "top party school." University of Texas at Austin, which topped the list last year dropped to No. 5.

"You know Boulder is a party school because whenever you tell someone that you went there, the first thing they ask is, 'Did you graduate?'" Playboy's website says. (We'd link to it, but there are — as one might expect — some rather racy photos there.)

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5:53pm

Thu April 14, 2011
The Two-Way

NATO Calls For More War Planes For Operation In Libya

NATO's Secretary General said the alliance needs more jets to target more of Moammar Gadhafi's ground forces in Libya.

Bloomberg reports:

"We need a few more precision-fighter ground-attack aircraft for air-to-ground missions," NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said today at a meeting of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization's 28 foreign ministers and leaders from other allied nations in Berlin.

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