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It's All Politics
9:09 am
Mon September 23, 2013

Monday News Clips: What We're Reading

J. Scott Applewhite AP

Originally published on Mon September 23, 2013 5:11 pm

We're kicking off a new morning routine in which we'll get the day started on NPR's It's All Politics" blog by sharing a handful of political stories that caught our interest or that we'll be watching.

Here are a few of them for Monday, Sept. 23:

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The Two-Way
9:08 am
Mon September 23, 2013

Boston Police Chief Is Stepping Down

Boston Police Commissioner Edward Davis talks with reporters during the hunt for the Boston Marathon bombers in April.
Michael Reynolds EPA/Landov

Originally published on Mon September 23, 2013 1:45 pm

Boston Police Commissioner Edward Davis, who became a nationally known figure as he led his department's response to last April's bombings at the Boston Marathon, announced Monday that he's stepping down after seven years in the job.

"It's time for me to try other things," the 57-year-old Davis told reporters. Among the first opportunities he said he may take advantage of is a fellowship at Harvard.

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The Two-Way
8:33 am
Mon September 23, 2013

$3.9 Billion U.S. Defense Contract Includes Missiles For UAE

A photo provided by Lockheed Martin shows a test of its THAAD missile interceptor system. The Pentagon has awarded a contract worth more than $3.9 billion for the system.
Lockheed Martin

Originally published on Mon September 23, 2013 1:11 pm

The U.S. Defense Department has awarded a rich military contract to Lockheed Martin, agreeing to pay more than $3.9 billion for a missile-defense system. The deal calls for a maximum of 110 high-altitude interceptor missiles for the United States, and 192 versions of the missiles for export to the United Arab Emirates.

Update at 2:30 p.m. ET: Number Of Missiles Adjusted

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Code Switch
8:33 am
Mon September 23, 2013

Is It Racist To 'Call A Spade A Spade'?

So where did the phrase "call a spade a spade" come from?
andrewasmith/via Flickr

Originally published on Mon September 23, 2013 12:21 pm

What happens when a perfectly innocuous phrase takes on a more sinister meaning over time?

Case in point, the expression "to call a spade a spade." For almost half a millennium, the phrase has served as a demand to "tell it like it is." It is only in the past century that the phrase began to acquire a negative, racial overtone.

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The Two-Way
8:19 am
Mon September 23, 2013

U.N.: Child Labor Is Down, But 168 Million Children Still Work

Near Islamabad, Pakistan, 6-year-old Jabro Mounir was arranging bricks this summer — part of his daily work at a brick-making facility. He earns a little less than $2 per day.
Muhammed Muheisen AP

Originally published on Mon September 23, 2013 8:59 am

The trend is good:

"The global number of child laborers has declined by one third since 2000."

But:

That still means there are an estimated 168 million child laborers around the world, and more than half "are involved in hazardous work" involving such things as dangerous machinery and harmful chemicals.

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