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Though President Obama is trying to find a place for gay binational couples in his immigration reform plan, Republicans such as Sen. Lindsey Graham just won't have it; as a tribute to the late Aaron Swartz, MIT should make academic articles free to the public; meanwhile, new studies show that urbanites have developed neural responses that keep them constantly on the lookout for danger. These discoveries and more after the jump.

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A hospital executive pulling down $875,000 a year? How about a water official collecting $600,000? Those are among the salaries contained in a new round of public compensation disclosures by the California state controller in the wake of the pay scandal in Bell.

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True, the weather hardly ever departs from the ideal range, and the mountain and oceanside vistas (when visible through the smog) can make for picturesque living in Los Angeles provided you have somewhere to live For the homeless, as two advocacy agencies have noted, LA seems downright mean.

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St. Louis beat out Detroit, Flint, Compton and Camden to top a list of the most dangerous cities in America. On the other end of the spectrum, a small town called Brick, N.J., is this year's safest city.

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An Apple Computer audit of labor conditions at an iPod factory in China uncovered employees working longer hours than permitted by its code of conduct. Auditors also said that workers earned ?at least the local minimum wage? -- whatever that may be in Longhua, China.

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Mexico City Mayor Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, who is waging a progressive populist campaign for his country's presidency, has some plans sure to incense US conservatives in border states: redrafting the free-trade aspects of NAFTA that force Mexicans to emigrate northward; turning every Mexican consulate in the U into a legal aid center to defend immigrant rights; and vocal opposition to the militarization of the U-Mexico border.

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Department of Homeland Security chief Michael Chertoff may have again revealed his incompetence by slashing New York's anti-terror funding, but the problems plaguing that agency reach far deeper than one man.

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