One of the most pervasive notions of American cultural identity is that of the Old West and the myth of the cowboy. This month we stick a magnifying glass up to those notions to see where they originate, and where they continue to resonate.

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A federal agency known as the Mineral Management Service, or MMS, has faced scrutiny as of late after the BP oil disaster in the Gulf. The agency falls under the Department of Interior, headed by former Colorado Senator, Democrat Ken Salazar. But, this isn’t the first time MMS has come under fire. High [...]

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With the reintroduction of the wolf into Rocky Mountain regions, some are advocating for hunting the animals. Long time High Country News contributor and contributing Field & Stream editor Hal Herring recently wrote an article entitled “One Way to Save the Wolf: Hunt It.” He speaks to High Country [...]

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The deck is looking increasingly stacked against coal in many Western states. With broad bipartisan support and endorsements, Colorado lawmakers recently passed a bill that makes the conversion of three Front Range power plants from coal to natural gas almost a sure bet. High Country News producer Cally Carswell recently sat down [...]

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News

April 1, 2015 | KHN · Consumers can face unexpected costs if they don’t cancel their insurance plan before they relocate to another state.
 

AP
April 1, 2015 | NPR · The culture wars are always percolating beneath the surface in presidential politics. And as is often the case in controversies, the facts have become muddled and conflated.
 

April 1, 2015 | NPR · Lawmakers passed the bill Tuesday. A similar Indiana measure sparked a backlash. Critics say it allows businesses to refuse services to gays and lesbians. Supporters say it bolsters religious freedom.
 

Arts & Life

April 1, 2015 | NPR · The multitalented filmmaker Alejandro Jodorowsky turns to fiction (sort of) with Where the Bird Sings Best, a semi-autobiographical novel that critic Juan Vidal calls “brilliant, mad, unpredictable.”
 

Emli Bendixen
April 1, 2015 | NPR · Ronson’s new So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed looks at the ways social media shaming affects both the targets and those doing the shaming. Critic Eric Weiner calls it sharp-eyed and often hilarious.
 

Courtesy of Flatiron Books
April 1, 2015 | NPR · “There are some lessons that only grief and responsibility can teach us,” says Weekend Edition host Scott Simon. His new memoir, Unforgettable, is about the life and death of his mother.
 

Music

Courtesy of the artist
April 1, 2015 | NPR · In the first taste of the band’s forthcoming Restless Ones, Heartless Bastards’ big, bluesy sound feels slick and streamlined, with choruses that get grander and grander as the song chugs along.
 

Getty Images
April 1, 2015 | NPR · After being found unconscious in her home Tuesday afternoon, folk music icon Joni Mitchell has been hospitalized in Los Angeles.
 

De Agostini/Getty Images
April 1, 2015 | NPR · A pair of timpani — the only ones crafted by legendary viola and violin maker Antonio Stradivari — go on sale today in New York. Bidding on the two drums might go well into eight figures.
 

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