National

The Two-Way
6:44 am
Thu August 8, 2013

3 Winning Powerball Tickets Sold: 2 In N.J., 1 In Minnesota

This one wasn't a winner: A Powerball ticket sold Wednesday in Port Washington, N.Y.
Shannon Stapleton Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Thu August 8, 2013 10:43 am

If you haven't gotten in touch recently with relatives in New Jersey and Minnesota, this might a good time to check on how they're doing.

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Politics
6:03 am
Thu August 8, 2013

Government Shutdown? Odds Are Uncomfortably High

Protesters urging a government shutdown and spending cuts demonstrate in front of the U.S. Capitol in 2011.
Jewel Samad AFP/Getty Images

It's going to be another ugly fall in Washington.

The federal government runs out of money on Oct. 1, unless spending authority is granted to agencies for the new fiscal year. If Congress can't pass its spending bills by then, most of the government will shut down.

It's no empty threat. Many who watch the budget process closely think there's a very good chance that's exactly what's going to happen.

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Law
5:21 am
Thu August 8, 2013

Defense Lawyers Want Out Of Fort Hood Shooting Trial

Maj. Nidal Hasan faces 13 charges of murder and 32 of attempted murder for the November 2009 shootings at Fort Hood, Texas.
Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Thu August 8, 2013 5:30 am

The judge in the court martial of accused Fort Hood shooter Maj. Nidal Hasan is expected to announce Thursday what she's going to do about a rebellion in her courtroom.

A team of Army defense lawyers told her on Wednesday that they want to be released from their job.

The defense lawyers want out because they think Hasan is purposely trying to lose this trial.

Hasan fired them in May, but the judge made them stay on to offer Hasan technical help with court procedures.

Now the lead defense lawyer says that arrangement is "untenable."

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U.S.
4:31 am
Thu August 8, 2013

Kerry, Hagel To Meet Russian Counterparts On Friday

Originally published on Thu August 8, 2013 5:41 am

The U.S. has canceled plans for an Obama-Putin summit because Russia granted temporary asylum to NSA leaker Edward Snowden. But Secretary of State John Kerry and Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel will go ahead with plans to meet their counterparts in Washington.

Latin America
3:23 am
Thu August 8, 2013

Working To Save The Painted 'Zonkeys' Of Tijuana

Victor Reyes has been photographing tourists atop Tijuana's "zonkeys" since he was 12, and says at one time he could earn $150 a day. Now, he's lucky to earn $15, he says. Here, Reyes poses with his donkey, Ruben.
Amy Isackson NPR

Ruben prances across the street one recent morning on his way to work on a corner of Tijuana's famous tourist strip, Avenida Revolución.

Ruben's hair is freshly dyed. His nametag is shiny.

But both he and his boss, Victor Reyes, have long faces.

Ruben, well, he's a donkey, (a "zonkey" in local parlance).

As for Reyes, his business — taking photos of tourists atop Ruben — has stumbled on hard times.

'Old Mexico'

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Business
3:15 am
Thu August 8, 2013

California's New Rules Could Change The Rideshare Game

In cities across the nation, people are turning to ridesharing apps like Lyft — whose cars are adorned with pink mustaches — instead of traditional cab companies.
Jeff Chiu AP

Originally published on Thu August 8, 2013 8:55 am

By now, you've probably heard of Internet-based ridesharing apps like Uber and Sidecar that let you hail a ride with the touch of a screen. They're often cheaper than taxis and because of that, they're in most major cities and their popularity is booming.

For years, cities and states — bodies that regulate transportation — have struggled to figure out what to do about them. Recently, California took the first steps towards legitimizing them.

In Los Angeles, Lyft is one of the biggest ride-sharing companies.

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Planet Money
3:13 am
Thu August 8, 2013

Egypt May Not Need Fighter Jets, But The U.S. Keeps Sending Them Anyway

An American F-16 fighter plane arrives at an airbase in Egypt on March 27, 1982.
Foley AP

Originally published on Thu August 8, 2013 1:51 pm

Every year, the U.S. Congress appropriates more than $1 billion in military aid to Egypt. But that money never gets to Egypt. It goes to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, then to a trust fund at the Treasury and, finally, out to U.S. military contractors that make the tanks and fighter jets that ultimately get sent to Egypt.

The U.S. started sending M1A1 Abrams tanks to Egypt in the late '80s. In all, the U.S. sent more than 1,000 tanks to Egypt since then — valued at some $3.9 billion — which Egypt maintains along with several thousand Soviet-era tanks.

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It's All Politics
6:58 pm
Wed August 7, 2013

Hubbub Over Hillary Clinton Movies: A Dress Rehearsal For 2016

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton appears at the Women in Public Service Project leadership symposium in Bryn Mawr, Pa., on July 9.
Matt Rourke AP

Originally published on Wed August 7, 2013 7:33 pm

Commotion over a pair of movies that haven't even been made proves, if anything, that the Clintons need not lift a finger to inspire a controversy.

That said, the hubbub over a planned CNN documentary and a proposed NBC Entertainment miniseries on Hillary Clinton, the former first lady and secretary of state, does feel somewhat premature. Clinton hasn't said whether she intends to run for president in 2016.

But it's never too early to take a Democratic Party titan down a few pegs, especially one who polls well ahead of all Republican presidential possibilities.

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The Two-Way
6:49 pm
Wed August 7, 2013

Military Veterans Accuse San Diego Mayor Of Sexual Harassment

San Diego Mayor Bob Filner entered a two-week behavioral therapy program on Monday.
Sam Hodgson Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Wed August 7, 2013 10:59 pm

Two military veterans are the latest women making allegations against San Diego Mayor Bob Filner.

Eldonna Fernandez, a retired master sergeant from the Air Force, and Gerri Tindley, an Army veteran, said Filner made unwanted advances back when Filner was serving his 10th term as a U.S. congressman in 2012. What's more, they told CNN in an interview, he did so knowing the two women had said they were raped while in the military.

CNN reports:

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Environment
5:48 pm
Wed August 7, 2013

EPA Wants To Allow Continued Wastewater Dumping In Wyoming

More than 40 years ago, the EPA banned oil companies from releasing wastewater into the environment, but made an exception for the arid West. If livestock and wildlife can use the water, companies can release it. Cows like these grazing near a stream of waste on the Wind River Reservation in Wyoming are supposedly the reason the EPA lets oil companies release their waste into the environment.
Elizabeth Shogren NPR

Originally published on Thu August 8, 2013 10:16 am

The Environmental Protection Agency is proposing to let oil companies continue to dump polluted wastewater on the Wind River Reservation in Wyoming. This includes chemicals that companies add to the wells during hydraulic fracturing, an engineering practice that makes wells produce more oil.

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