U.S. News

Around the Nation
1:29 am
Mon April 13, 2015

For Some Superstorm Sandy Victims, The Government Wants Its Money Back

Liz Treston received thousands of dollars from FEMA and the Small Business Administration after Superstorm Sandy destroyed her basement. Two years later, FEMA demanded more than $4,000 of that money back.
Alex Welsh for NPR

Originally published on Mon April 13, 2015 11:28 am

As the rain and wind swirled outside the window during Superstorm Sandy more than two years ago, Liz Treston's family helped her into bed.

Treston, 54, was disabled in a diving accident when she was in her 20s. She uses a wheelchair to get around her Long Island, N.Y., home and an electronic lift machine to get into her bed. The night the storm hit, she wanted to be ready for sleep in case the power went out.

Under the covers, she listened as water rushed into her basement, pouring over the appliances and furniture she kept down there.

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It's All Politics
8:29 pm
Sun April 12, 2015

Clinton Announces Presidential Campaign, Hops In A Van To Iowa

A replica of "The Mystery Machine" van used in the Scooby Doo cartoon series parked at the L.A. Festival of Books in 2012. Hillary Clinton is traveling to Iowa in a van she calls her "Scooby" van.
Doug Kline flickr/Creative Commons

Originally published on Mon April 13, 2015 2:01 pm

At around the same time that Hillary Clinton's campaign team in Brooklyn, N.Y., was hitting "send" on the emails and tweets that officially launched Clinton's presidential campaign, the former first lady was hitting the road — in a van.

Clinton was scheduled to be in Iowa on Tuesday, but instead of flying, she decided she wanted to pack up a van — which she refers to as the "Scooby" van because of its resemblance to the van from the Scooby Doo cartoon — and chat with people along the way.

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National Security
3:25 pm
Sun April 12, 2015

Before The NSA, The DEA Used Phone Records To Track Drug Cartels

Originally published on Mon April 13, 2015 8:52 am

NPR's Arun Rath speaks with USA Today reporter Brad Heath about how the Drug Enforcement Administration collected the records of billions of American telephone calls. The program began in 1992 and pre-dated a similar surveillance program at the National Security Agency.

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Politics
3:25 pm
Sun April 12, 2015

Presidential Announcements Offer Insight Into How Candidates Run

Originally published on Sun April 12, 2015 4:43 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

ARUN RATH, HOST:

Hillary Clinton formally announced her run for the White House today online.

(SOUNDBITE OF VIDEO, "GETTING STARTED")

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: Right now, I'm applying for jobs.

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Poetry
3:25 pm
Sun April 12, 2015

I Saw The All-Stars Of Our Generation Honor Allen Ginsberg's 'Howl'

Poet Allen Ginsberg reads his poem "Howl" outside the U.S. Court of Appeals in Washington, D.C., Oct. 19, 1994, before a hearing on the constitutionality of a FCC policy restricting indecent material.
Dennis Cook AP

Originally published on Mon April 13, 2015 1:05 pm

Sixty years ago in San Francisco, Allen Ginsberg penned a poem that opened with the now-famous lines:

I saw the best minds of my generation destroyed by madness, starving hysterical naked,
dragging themselves through the negro streets at dawn looking for an angry fix ...

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History
3:25 pm
Sun April 12, 2015

Discovery Gives New Ending To A Death At The Civil War's Close

An engraving depicts Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee's surrender to Union Gen. Ulysses S. Grant in Appomattox, Va.
Library Of Congress

Originally published on Mon April 13, 2015 6:02 pm

For decades, the story of Hannah Reynolds' death read like a tragedy of historical circumstance.

In 1865, Reynolds was a slave in the household of Samuel Coleman in the Virginia village of Appomattox Court House. And as Union and Confederate troops fought the Battle of Appomattox Court House on April 9, 1865, a cannonball tore through the Coleman house.

The Coleman family had left the day before, but Reynolds had stayed behind. The cannonball struck her in the arm and, it was thought, she died that same day, as the battle's only civilian casualty.

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The Two-Way
1:44 pm
Sun April 12, 2015

It's Official: Hillary Clinton Announces Presidential Run

Hillary Clinton announces her candidacy.
Hillary Clinton campaign

Originally published on Sun April 12, 2015 2:26 pm

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton announced today that she is seeking the Democratic presidential nomination for the 2016 election.

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It's All Politics
1:34 pm
Sun April 12, 2015

Hillary Clinton, Polarizing Or Misunderstood, Jumps Into Race For President

Hillary Clinton has described herself as the most famous person you don't really know. And as she launches into her second presidential campaign, she'll be reintroducing herself to voters who largely think they have her figured out.
Mel Evans AP

Originally published on Mon April 13, 2015 2:14 pm

Hillary Clinton officially launched the campaign everyone has been expecting for months — years, really. She's running for president and to finally break open that glass ceiling she famously said her last campaign put "18 million cracks" in.

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All Tech Considered
7:22 am
Sun April 12, 2015

Once The Cream Of The Crop, Zynga Zigzags To Adapt To Mobile

Zynga CEO Mark Pincus gives a presentation in 2011.
Jeff Chiu AP

Originally published on Sun April 12, 2015 9:01 am

Remember those days of tending rows of virtual soybeans and strawberries on your Facebook page with a game called Farmville? It was a moment, and Zynga, the company that makes the game, cashed in when it went public back in 2011.

Now, Zynga is losing money and its founder is back, to mixed reviews.

When Zynga launched Farmville in 2009, it surprised everyone with its success. It quickly became the most popular game on Facebook.

But people got bored with planting seeds on a desktop. The market had moved to mobile, and Zynga didn't keep up.

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Around the Nation
7:02 am
Sun April 12, 2015

Better Than 'Survivor': Wild Drama Hooks Viewers On Nest Web Cams

One of the two female ospreys that scuffled over the male on the Boulder County, Colo., nest web cam.
Boulder County

Originally published on Mon April 13, 2015 8:37 am

Fans of Boulder County's osprey nest cam saw a bit of drama last season.

Two females and a male were living in the nest, when a third female arrived and kicked the original female out. Observers said she bonded with the male.

"People called it ... the 'home-wrecker osprey,' " says Nik Brockman, Boulder County's web specialist.

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The Salt
5:25 am
Sun April 12, 2015

Beyond Almonds: A Rogue's Gallery of Guzzlers In California's Drought

Leif Parsons for NPR

Originally published on Wed April 15, 2015 3:54 am

California is parched. Wells are running dry. Vegetable fields have been left fallow and lawns are dying. There must be some villain behind all this, right?

Of course there is. In fact, have your pick. As a public service, The Salt is bringing you several of the leading candidates. They have been nominated by widely respected national publications and interest groups.

There's just one problem: Not all of these shady characters live up to their nefarious job description. Let us explain.

1. Almonds

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Race
5:25 am
Sun April 12, 2015

Cop Shooting Victim's Family Calls For Calm In South Carolina

Originally published on Sun April 12, 2015 9:01 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

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Politics
5:25 am
Sun April 12, 2015

Clinton To Roll Out Her Campaign On The Small Stage

Originally published on Sun April 12, 2015 9:01 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

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U.S.
3:25 am
Sun April 12, 2015

Newly Released Texas Inmates Prepare For A Long Ride To Freedom

The Huntsville Greyhound station has been the gateway to the free world for hundreds of thousands of offenders who are released from The Walls, the Civil War-era red-brick prison, Monday through Friday.
David Gilkey NPR

Originally published on Mon April 13, 2015 7:37 am

Last year, 21,000 inmates were released in Huntsville, Texas — one of the largest prison towns in America. For most of them, their gateway to the free world is the Huntsville Greyhound station.

Monday through Friday, the glass doors swing open on the front of the Civil War-era, red-brick prison they call "The Walls." The inmates exit and shuffle along the sidewalk, some smiling, some pensive, shouldering potato sacks full of belongings. Most of them don't have loved ones waiting, so they continue walking the two blocks to the bus station — single file, out of habit.

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The Two-Way
4:23 pm
Sat April 11, 2015

Federal Government Protects Bat, Angers Industry

An undated file photo provided by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources of a northern long-eared bat. A fungal disease has devastated the species, now listed as threatened.
AP

Originally published on Sat April 11, 2015 7:04 pm

They may not be the most attractive creatures in the world, and they scare the life out of many people, but you have to feel bad for the bat.

Millions of them are dying across the Northeast, the Midwest and parts of the South, from a disease called White Nose Syndrome, named for a white fungus that crusts their faces.

Seven species of bats are being decimated by White Nose Syndrome; the hardest-hit species is the northern long-eared bat. Last week, the federal government listed it as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act.

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Latin America
4:09 pm
Sat April 11, 2015

At Summit, All Eyes On Meeting Between Obama And Castro

Originally published on Sat April 11, 2015 7:04 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

ARUN RATH, HOST:

Presidents Obama and Raul Castro of Cuba shook hands last night before opening ceremonies of the Summit of the Americas in Panama. But the informal meeting between the two men today was the most anticipated moment of the conference.

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Around the Nation
4:09 pm
Sat April 11, 2015

As Scott Family Reels From Police Shooting, Hundreds Turn Out For Funeral

Originally published on Sat April 11, 2015 7:04 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

ARUN RATH, HOST:

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National Security
4:09 pm
Sat April 11, 2015

New START Nuke Deal With Russia May Be Aging — But It's Not Over

President Obama speaks beside Russian President Dmitry Medvedev after signing New START documents in 2010. Now five years old, that treaty has taken on renewed relevance in light of the framework nuclear deal between the U.S. and Iran.
Joe Klamar AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sat April 11, 2015 7:04 pm

The tentative deal limiting Iran's nuclear program has gotten a lot of attention since it came together on April 2. It's shaping up to be a major test of the Obama administration's ability to finesse both negotiations abroad and politics on the home front. But this won't be the first time.

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The Two-Way
3:12 pm
Sat April 11, 2015

U.S. Capitol Briefly Placed On Lockdown After Apparent Suicide

Members of law enforcement and emergency services gather and a perimeter created around the west front of the U.S. Capitol as the U.S. Capitol was on lockdown Saturday after an apparent suicide.
Carolyn Kaster AP

A "precautionary lockdown" of the U.S. Capitol and Capitol Visitor Center has been lifted today after a shot was fired in an apparent suicide, according to police.

"The suspected shooter has been neutralized but the U.S. Capitol Building has been locked down as a precautionary measure," Capitol Police spokeswoman Kimberly Schneider said in a written statement after the shooting, which occurred around 1 p.m. EDT.

No one else is believed to have been hurt, The Associated Press says.

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The Two-Way
12:27 pm
Sat April 11, 2015

Part Of Fishing Boat Destroyed In Japan Tsunami Appears Off Oregon

An image provide by Oregon Parks and Recreation Dept. shows a chunk of a fiberglass boat 25-30' long that was spotted off the Oregon shore west of Ona Beach on Thursday. The debris is the latest to reach the U.S. West Coast from Japan's devastating 2011 tsunami.
AP

Originally published on Sat April 11, 2015 1:26 pm

A piece of a commercial fishing boat that was ripped from Japan's coast by the March 11, 2011 tsunami has turned up on near Oregon four years later, carrying a small diaspora of live yellowtail jack fish, native to east Asian waters, according to state park officials.

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The Two-Way
9:32 am
Sat April 11, 2015

Egyptian Court Sentences U.S. Citizen To Life In Prison

Egyptian Judge Mohammed Nagi Shehata reads the verdicts against Mohammed Soltan and others charged with ties to the Muslim Brotherhood in Cairo on Saturday.
Hassan Ammar AP

Originally published on Sat April 11, 2015 10:29 am

Updated at 12:30 p.m. ET

An Egyptian court has sentenced an American, Mohamed Soltan, to life in prison for having ties to the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood, as the court also handed down a fourth death sentence on the leader of the Islamist group that was ousted from power in a 2013 coup.

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Education
7:35 am
Sat April 11, 2015

Students Push College Fossil Fuel Divestment To Stigmatize Industry

Alumnus Will Lawrence of the Fossil Fuel Divestment Student Network came back to Swarthmore to help the students effectively communicate their protest to the school's administrators.
Emily Cohen NewsWorks

Originally published on Sat April 11, 2015 8:54 am

In the past few years, students at hundreds of colleges and universities have started pushing their schools to divest from fossil fuel companies as a way to slow climate change.

The campaign has had some notable wins in the past year. But at tiny Swarthmore College, outside of Philadelphia, where the movement was born, students have been staging a sit-in for nearly a month to try to make their voices heard.

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The Two-Way
6:46 am
Sat April 11, 2015

Kansas Man Arrested For Alleged ISIS-Inspired Bomb Plot

A water tower at Fort Riley, Kan., in a photograph taken in February. John T. Booker Jr. is accused of plotting a car bomb attack on the U.S. Army post.
Orlin Wagner AP

Originally published on Sat April 11, 2015 7:16 am

A man who authorities say was sympathetic to the self-declared Islamic State and plotting to carry out a suicide bombing at a U.S. Army base in Kansas, has been arrested and charged following a lengthy FBI sting operation.

John T. Booker Jr., 20, of Topeka, was apprehended Friday morning "while making final preparations for the suicide car bomb attack" he'd been planning at Fort Riley, Kansas Public Radio's Stephen Koranda reports.

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Politics
6:17 am
Sat April 11, 2015

Obama, Castro Shake Hands Ahead Of Historic Meeting Saturday

President Obama talks with Cuban counterpart Raul Castro before Friday's inauguration of the VII Summit of the Americas in Panama City.
Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Sat April 11, 2015 8:54 am

It's the handshake some have waited more than 50 years for. And the handshake some hoped would never happen.

President Obama greeted Cuban President Raul Castro at a summit meeting in Panama Friday night. Their handshake helped crystalize the diplomatic thaw that began in December, when Obama declared an end to decades of official hostility.

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Law
6:06 am
Sat April 11, 2015

Colorado Deals Inmates A New Deck Of Cards

Colorado is the latest state to produce the cold case cards.
Colorado Bureau of Investigation

Originally published on Sat April 11, 2015 8:54 am

There's not a whole lot to do in prison, so inmates spend a fair amount of time playing cards.

For several years, law enforcement officials around the country have been putting that prisoners' pastime to good use. They've been putting facts and photos from unsolved crimes in front of prisoners' eyes by printing them on decks of cards, hoping to generate leads.

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National Security
5:43 am
Sat April 11, 2015

Army Reviewing Rape Charges Against U.S. Troops In Colombia

Originally published on Sat April 11, 2015 8:54 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Race
5:43 am
Sat April 11, 2015

Large Crowds Expected For Walter Scott's S.C. Funeral

Originally published on Sat April 11, 2015 8:54 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

TAMARA KEITH, HOST:

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NPR Ed
5:03 am
Sat April 11, 2015

New Research Shows Free Online Courses Didn't Grow As Expected

Student Raul Ramos goes through his online homework during a session of a massive open online class, or MOOC, in Madrid, Spain.
Andres Kudacki AP

Originally published on Sat April 11, 2015 10:02 am

Remember the MOOC?

Just a few years ago, the Massive Open Online Course was expected to reinvent higher education. Millions of people were signing up to watch Web-based, video lectures from the world's great universities. Some were completing real assignments, earning certificates and forming virtual study groups — all for free.

Surely the traditional college degree would instantly collapse.

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All Tech Considered
3:10 pm
Fri April 10, 2015

Magic Mirror, At The Store, Should This Top Go In My Drawer?

Neiman Marcus is testing a digital "Memory Mirror" that lets shoppers see how an outfit looks in back as well as displaying items they've tried on side by side.
Courtesy of Neiman Marcus

Originally published on Fri April 10, 2015 5:30 pm

Spring: the time of year many people find themselves twirling in front of mirrors, trying on prom dresses, tuxedos or wedding gowns. Wouldn't it be nice to know how an outfit really looks from the back, instead of craning your neck, hoping to see what others see?

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Law
3:05 pm
Fri April 10, 2015

Police-Involved Shootings Highlight Problem With Law Enforcement 'Culture'

Originally published on Fri April 10, 2015 5:30 pm

NPR's Audie Cornish talks with Seth Stoughton, an assistant professor at the University of South Carolina School of Law, about his view that there needs to be a paradigm shift in policing away from the "warrior mindset" to a "guardian" role.

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

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