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Stories for May 5, 2011

Venomous Spider Spreading Rapidly In San Diego County

May 5
By Susan Murphy
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There’s a new venomous, eight-legged creature in San Diego. The notorious black widow spider has a brown cousin, and it's rapidly invading the county.

Obama: 'When We Say We Will Never Forget, We Mean What We Say'

May 5
Associated Press
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Marking Osama bin Laden's death where the terrorist inflicted his greatest damage, President Barack Obama soberly laid a wreath Thursday at New York's ground zero.

An Increase In Building Permits Could Mean A Better Economy Ahead

May 5
By Katie Orr
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There are signs the region’s economy could be on an upswing. The city of San Diego is seeing an increase in building permits.

Former San Diego Islamic Cleric Could Be Contender for Bin Laden's Job

May 5
By Amita Sharma

Anwar Al-Awlaki has acted independently of Osama bin Laden and other Al Qaeda leaders.

Masterpiece Classic: South Riding - Part Two

May 5
Masterpiece Classic: South Riding - Part Two  Tease photo

A lively heroine arrives in Depression-era Yorkshire to shake up education at a school for girls, sparking conflict with a stern landowner. In this episode, at risk of losing his estate to pay family medical bills, Robert Carne (David Morrissey) travels to Manchester seeking work. There, he chances to meet Sarah (Anna Maxwell Martin), and they have a drink together. Penelope Wilton also stars.

Debt Ceiling Fight Could Be Critical For Government

May 5
By Erik Anderson

A San Diego State University professor says the federal government faces a showdown over the debt ceiling later this summer. Some say $14.3 trillion in annual borrowing may not be enough.

School District Bans Unlawful Student Fees

May 5
City News Service

The Sweetwater Union High School District Board of Trustees voted today to prohibit sports teams, student organizations or other district groups from charging fees to student participants.

Insight: Before The Housing Market Went To Hell

May 5
By Tom Fudge | On-Ramp
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Housing experts gathered at the University of San Diego in 2005 to forecast trends in the real estate market. Boy... did they NOT see what was coming!

Sony Victims Face Identity Fraud In Months To Come

May 5
By Peggy Pico
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More than 100 million Sony Online Entertainment users are at high risk of identity fraud long after their personal data was illegally accessed.

NATURE: Bears Of The Last Frontier: City Of Bears

May 5
NATURE: Bears Of The Last Frontier: City Of Bears  Tease photo

Get up close and personal with North American bears in NATURE's three-part special "Bears of the Last Frontier." Bear biologist Chris Morgan sets up camp at a remote spot in the heart of Alaskan wilderness, alongside the largest concentration of grizzlies in the world. He experiences close encounters with bears, observing brutal battles among males during mating season as well as tender moments between a grizzly mom and her cubs.

State Assembly Approves "California Dream Act"

May 5
Associated Press

The state Assembly has approved a bill that would allow college students who are illegal immigrants to apply for private scholarships.

Anne Of Green Gables

May 5
Anne Of Green Gables  Tease photo

Anne Shirley arrives at the Cuthbert’s farm on Prince Edward Island, called “Green Gables.” She is a precocious, romantic child, desperate to be loved and highly sensitive about her red hair and homely looks. In her own unique headstrong manner, Anne manages to insult the town matriarch, Rachel Lynde (Patricia Hamilton) in a dispute over her looks; smashes her slate over Gilbert Blythe’s (Jonathan Crombie) head ... when he calls her “carrots” during her first day of school; and accidentally dyes her hair green in an effort to turn her red hair black and salvage her wounded pride.

CA Lawmakers Scurry To Meet Committee Deadline For Bills

May 5
California Capitol Network

This week has brought a flurry of committee hearings at the California Capitol. Lawmakers are trying to ensure their bills meet tomorrow’s looming deadline of passing a first committee test and many Republican-authored measures are dying quiet deaths.

Live From The Artists Den: Elvis Costello And The Sugarcanes

May 5
Live From The Artists Den: Elvis Costello And The Sugarcanes  Tease photo

On the evening of November 2, 2010, Elvis Costello gave a private concert for 500 lucky fans to celebrate the release of his new album, "National Ransom," that day. Within the ornate and awe-inspiring Celeste Bartos Forum in The New York Public Library’s world-famous Stephen A. Schwarzman Building, Costello – along with the Sugarcanes and Pete Thomas on drums – performed new songs from "National Ransom" as well as hits spanning his three-decades-and-counting career.

San Diego Schools Improve Test Scores

May 5
City News Service

Students in the San Diego Unified School District, and many other districts in the county, showed year-over-year improvement on standardized tests, according to results released today by the state Department of Education.

New Bill Aims To Increase Bail Of Court Evaders

May 5
City News Service

A bill by a local legislator that would add $100,000 to the bail of defendants who have previously failed to appear in court is one step closer to becoming law, San Diego County District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis announced today.

Treasure Trackers

May 5
Treasure Trackers  Tease photo

In "Treasure Trackers," viewers learn about the exciting, adventure-filled game of geocaching. Often described as “high-tech hide-and-seek,” geocaching combines puzzle-solving with technology and exploration.

Above Yellowstone

May 5
Above Yellowstone  Tease photo

"Above Yellowstone" is the first-ever aerial tour of Yellowstone National Park. Filmed in high definition from a helicopter, the program provides a bird’s-eye view of the wonders of America’s first national park. The program explores Yellowstone’s geological history, wildlife, native peoples, and its role as a popular tourist destination.

VA Research Develops Brain Scan To Detect TBI

May 5
By Alison St John
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A researcher at the VA Medical Center in La Jolla is developing a brain scan to make an invisible injury visible. Dr Mingxiong Huang wants to detect how mild traumatic brain injury affects the brain physiologically.

State Senate Passes Single-Payer Health Care Bill

May 5
California Capitol Network

The California State Senate Health Committee passed a single-payer health care bill Wednesday.

Americans Yearn To Talk To SEALs In Bin Laden Raid

May 5
Associated Press
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Patrons in bars across the country are raising toasts in the air, hoping the gesture of gratitude would somehow reach the clandestine Navy SEAL team that took down Osama bin Laden. Millions of others are turning to social networks with their thoughts.

Events: Gator By The Bay, Steampunks, Fleet Foxes

May 5
These Days
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It's Thursday which means it's time to begin planning your weekend. We want to help. If you want to know more about Steampunks, there's a stylish convention in town. Or if you want to enjoy some Cajun music by the bay, we have a festival to recommend. Joining us with their suggestions are Nina Garin and Rosey Bystrak.

Sony PlayStation Breach Discovered In San Diego

May 5
These Days
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News that Sony's online gaming network was infiltrated by hackers effects millions of users who may have had their personal and credit card information stolen. The security breach was discovered at Sony's data center in San Diego. KPBS technology reporter Peggy Pico is following the story.

A Summer Of Movie Sequels

May 5
These Days
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"Thor" opens in theaters this weekend, launching the summer movie season. KPBS film critic Beth Accomando says to expect lots of sequels.

San Diegan Poised To Be Next Food Network Star

May 5
These Days
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Perhaps you've wondered what it would be like to travel around the world like Anthony Bourdain, eating exotic and rare foods. One San Diegan is getting a taste of that life. Troy Johnson is currently shooting a 9-part television show for the Food Network. It debuts in June but he's agreed to share some stories from the road.

Did Navy Seals Use a Military Dog in the Hunt for Osama Bin Laden?

May 5
By Beth Ford Roth
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Home Post Blog: The story of how our Navy Seals took down Osama bin Laden just keeps getting better and better. Slate is reporting that a military dog accompanied the Navy Seals as they invaded bin Laden’s compound in Pakistan. This detail has not yet been confirmed by the Pentagon, but it makes a lot of sense. Slate speculates that the Seals might have brought a highly-trained pooch with them to help sniff out bombs.

What's Up With All the Pelicans?

May 5
These Days
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To some brown pelicans are magical, to some they're pooping pests. But this spring there are a heck of a lot of them flying up and down the San Diego coast.

San Diego IBA Discusses Budget Recommendations

May 5
These Days
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We've heard about the mayor's budget proposal, and the council's budget recommendations. Now, it's time for San Diego's Independent Budget Analyst to weigh in. How does the city's IBA, Andrea Tevlin, think the mayor and council should eliminate the $57 million deficit?

Ground Zero: Both Secular And Sacred

May 5
Liz Halloran, NPR
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President Obama's visit to ground zero has refocused attention on the events of Sept. 11 and the 16 New York City acres where the World Trade Center twin towers were destroyed. Balancing the commercial and memorial aspects of the site has been slow and painful.

GOP's Debt Focus Seen Limiting Obama On Economy

May 5
Cory Dade, NPR
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As President Obama tries to refocus on domestic issues, he confronts yet another enemy that's been difficult to eliminate: the laggard economy.

Louv: Balance Technology With Nature

May 5
These Days
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Imagine what your life would be like if your days were as immersed in nature as they are in technology. That's a question and challenge posed in Richard Louv's new book The Nature Principle. the new book THE NATURE PRINCIPLE. It's not an anti-technology argument, but rather a suggestion that our urban, high-tech lives are missing something crucially important. Encounters with nature enrich humans in ways we don't even fully understand yet...and those encounters are rapidly disappearing. IRichard Louv's new book, The Nature Principal: Human Restoration And The End Of The Nature Deficit Disorder, expands on his thesis that our society has developed such faith in technology that we don't realize how human capacities are enhanced through the power of the natural world.

San Diego's High Tech High Competing For President Obama

May 5
By Dwane Brown
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A San Diego Charter high is among three finalists competing to get President Obama to speak at their graduation ceremony.The commencement challenge invited schools across the country to demonstrate how their school best prepares students for college. At High Tech High International in Point Loma it already feels like college.

Review: 'Poetry'

May 5
By Beth Accomando
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The Korean film "Poetry" had its San Diego premiere at the San Diego Asian Film Foundation's Spring Showcase. It now gets a well deserved theatrical release. You can listen to my radio review.