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Stories for April 30, 2009

Do You Have a Creative Fix for Our Country?

April 30
By Angela Carone

With all that's on President Obama's plate (recession, wars, swine flu!), what if Obama added people like Philip Roth, W.S. Merwin, Yo-Yo Ma, or Barbara Kruger to his advisory team? Would these artists come up with a different approach to solving our country's problems? Would they provide unique insight?

Stolen Cow From CowParade La Jolla

April 30
By Angela Carone
Tease photo

One of the artist-painted cows in the La Jolla CowParade was stolen from a La Jolla sidewalk sometime between April 25th and 26th, according to organizers of CowParade La Jolla, a public art project that includes 40 cows designed and painted by local artists. The stolen cow (above) was painted by San Diego artist Werc Alvarez, who is also a graffiti artist. The cows in CowParade are auctioned off to benefit Rady Children's Hospital and the Zoological Society of San Diego. Michael Kinsman, Operations Director for CowParade La Jolla, says this cow was estimated to raise between $5,000 and $10,000 at auction on July 11th.

Summer's Here! Really!

April 30
By Beth Accomando
Tease photo

Every year Hollywood tries to kick off the summer blockbuster season earlier and earlier. So spring might still be in the air, but for the major studios tomorrow May 1 will officially launch the summer blockbuster season. Here's a look at what's coming up, including "Wolverine," "Star Trek" and "Terminator Salvation."

Low Snowpack Hurts California Water Supply

April 30
By Ed Joyce
Low Snowpack Hurts California Water Supply Tease photo

The last survey of the season in the Sierra shows that the snowpack is at two-thirds of normal for this time of year. The lack of snow may further restrict the water supply for cities and farms. KPBS Environment Reporter Ed Joyce has more.

Baja Governor Says Stay Home

April 30
By Amy Isackson

Baja California's Governor has asked people to stay home. He's also closed all non essential government offices closed in the Mexican state for five days. This despite the fact that no cases of swine flu have been confirmed in Baja. KPBS Reporter Amy Isackson has the story.

Local School Leaders Say Federal Education Aid Not Enough

April 30
By Ana Tintocalis

The first town hall meeting on San Diego Unified's budget crisis takes place tonight at Kearny High School. District officials will talk about budget cuts and how federal stimulus money might help. It’s the first in a series of expected meetings that districts around the county will hold.

More Water Coming To San Diego

April 30
By Ed Joyce

The San Diego County Water Authority, state and federal water agencies will celebrate the lining of the All-American Canal in Imperial County this Thursday morning. KPBS Environment Reporter Ed Joyce says the project is intended to boost San Diego water supplies.

UCSD Scientists Say Climate Change Altering Ocean

April 30
By Ed Joyce

A UC San Diego study shows that climate change is altering the ocean ecosystem. KPBS Environment Reporter Ed Joyce tells us what the scientists have discovered.

Why Threats to the Press Threaten Us All

April 30
These Days

Freedom of the press in the U.S. is granted in the Constitution. But a third of the world's people live in countries with no press freedom and no democratic system of governance. How does intimidation and violence against journalists pose a threat to democracies young and old? We'll talk about the problem of silencing the press and how Mexico has emerged as one of the most dangerous places for journalists in the world.

Q&A: Understanding Swine Flu

April 30
Online NewsHour

Key facts on swine flu and what is being done to better understand and combat the virus.

Ghosts of Girlfriends Past

April 30
Janeane White, Teen Critic
Tease photo

Matthew McConnaughey plays a womanizing photographer who's about to be taught a lesson in life by the ghosts of his past girlfriends. Jennifer Garner plays the real thing and Michael Douglas is the playboy uncle who returns from the grave to help his nephew discover what really matters in life.

How Many Species Can Scientists Identify in a 24-hour Period?

April 30
These Days

Have you ever wondered how many species of plants and animals live in San Diego? If so, the BioBlitz event going on this weekend will interest you. Teams of volunteers, scientists, and educators will be participating in a 24-hour "rapid biodiversity assessment" at Mission Trails Regional Park this Saturday. The goal of the event is to identify and document the total number of species living in the park. We speak to Dr. Michael Wall, from the San Diego Natural History Museum, about what's been learned from previous BioBlitz events. And, we talk to a ranger to discuss what's unique about Mission Trails Regional Park.

Sorting Through Swine Flu

April 30
These Days

As of Wednesday, eight countries confirmed cases of swine flu and the World Health Organization raised the alert to "pandemic is imminent" level. Health officials continue to try to get a handle on the outbreak. We'll get a report of the latest news on the virus, and what people can do to keep themselves from contracting it.