Originally published on Wed January 21, 2015 11:00 pm
House lawmakers were set to vote Thursday on a bill that would ban almost all abortions at 20 weeks post-conception, but NPR's Juana Summers reports that they changed their plans late Wednesday as some lawmakers voiced concerns that the bills language went too far.
"Some Republican lawmakers — many of them women — raised objections that the bill's language was too restrictive. They took issue with a provision in the bill that would exempt rape victims from the abortion restrictions, but only if they report the attack to police.
Originally published on Thu January 22, 2015 8:23 am
Normally, we wouldn't call something a living fossil. But the name seems tailor-made for the frilled shark, whose roots are traced to 80 million years ago. Its prehistoric origins are obvious in its primitive body; nearly all of the rare animal's closest relatives are long extinct.
In the most recent of those 80 million years, the frilled shark has been scaring the bejeezus out of humans who pull it out of the water to find an animal with rows of needle-like teeth in a gaping mouth at the front of its head.
Google plans to launch a new mobile phone service that it will sell directly to U.S. consumers, according to technology site The Information and other news outlets. Instead of building its own network, Google will reportedly use bandwidth purchased from cellphone carriers Sprint and T-Mobile.
The wireless service could be rolled out as early as this year, adding what could be a disruptive new force to the U.S. mobile market. It would also give Google another way to leverage its Android mobile platform — and to control how those devices operate.
Originally published on Wed January 21, 2015 8:13 pm
There's an inconspicuous metal box mounted on the wall of the gym at San Francisco County Jail No. 4.
When Kate Monico Klein turns a knob, the machine releases a condom in a small cardboard packet. Machines like this one — dispensing free condoms — are installed in all of the county's male jails.
"We set [the machine] off to the side, so that people would have a minor amount of privacy," explains Monico Klein, director of HIV services for Jail Health, a division of the county's health department.
Originally published on Thu January 22, 2015 4:26 am
Overturned chairs and shouts of protest briefly shattered the formality and calm of the U.S. Supreme Court this morning.
The session had just begun when protesters in the back of the chamber began yelling things like, "One person, one vote," "We are the 99 percent," "Money is not speech," and "Overturn Citizens United." This last was a reference to the Court's 2010 decision, issued on this day five years ago. That decision struck down limits on corporate and union campaign spending, uncorking a flood of campaign cash.
While reporting my story on how foods earn a label certifying them as "non-GMO," I came across a comment that struck me – and it might surprise you, too.
The comment came from Ken Ross, the CEO of Global ID. (He didn't make it into the final story.) Global ID is the parent company of FoodChain ID, one of the companies that traces ingredients to determine whether they contain genetically modified organisms (GMOs).
Originally published on Thu January 22, 2015 12:18 pm
If you own a house, stock, bonds, or a retirement account, you're betting that things are going to get better — that the lines on the chart will keep going up.
Historically, this is a reasonable bet. But you can place a bet in the opposite direction. You can make a bet that things will go down: a short. For example, if you short Apple stock and the stock price drops, you make money. While all the normal shareholders are consoling themselves, you can celebrate. But for the most part, people don't do it. Experts warn us that we shouldn't either.
Originally published on Wed January 21, 2015 8:47 pm
What do you have when the State of the Union response is assigned to an English-only advocate — but then is reprised in Spanish by someone who supports a pathway to citizenship for immigrants here unlawfully?
Facebook's on a mission to make your News Feed a little more truthful.
The social media giant has announced it will start doing more to alert users when stories they're seeing in their feeds are fake. And it will allow users to start flagging hoaxes themselves. But Facebook says it won't remove false stories. And the company says it won't start "reviewing content and making a determination on its accuracy."
Two days after the State of the Union address, President Obama will sit down for a round of unusual interviews. There's a good chance he'll get a question that none of his predecessors have ever had to answer.
One distinct possibility: "Mr. President, is you OK? Is you good? 'Cuz I wanted to know."
Originally published on Thu January 22, 2015 3:23 pm
Picture this: A rickety barge about the size of a garden shed is floating on the Madre de Dios river in eastern Peru. A stream of tan sludge pours off a conveyor belt on one side of the platform. Smoke from a generator belches from the other. The sound of a massive pump thuds across the water. And dangling over the side of the barge is a thick tube to suck sediment up from the riverbed.
Welcome to wildcat gold mining in the 21st century, Peruvian style.
A group of high-profile women's soccer players have withdrawn a lawsuit that fought FIFA and the Canadian Soccer Association's plan to use artificial turf at this summer's Women's World Cup. Stars such as Abby Wambach, Homare Sawa of Japan, and Marta of Brazil had backed the suit.
The lawsuit accused the organizers of discrimination, saying that elite men's teams would never be forced to play on an artificial surface instead of natural grass. The complaint was filed with the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario.
The Devil Makes Three makes its first appearance on Mountain Stage, recorded live in Charleston, W.Va. The group's studio recordings, live albums and endless touring — to say nothing of its captivating live performances — have helped it score arena shows with Alison Krauss and Willie Nelson, as well as spots in festivals like Bonnaroo, Telluride and Hardly Strictly.