Even in an era of stark political polarization, there are still some issues that can draw Americans together and scramble the normal ideological fault lines.
Recent revelations about the Internal Revenue Service and the National Security Agency are among them.
Unlike the debates over Obamacare or President Obama himself, which tend to be more litmus tests for party affiliation than anything else, the reactions to reports about overreach by the Internal Revenue Service and the National Security Agency have brought normally warring partisans together.
The Ask Me Another crew at The Bell House, their home-base venue in Gowanus, Brooklyn. (l to r) Josh Rogosin, Jonathan Coulton, Ophira Eisenberg, Jesse Baker, Eric Nuzum, John Asante, John Chaneski, Eleanor Kagan and Art Chung.
Students rush to safety after shots were fired near the Santa Monica College Friday. According to reports, at least six people were shot, and a suspect was taken into custody. One shooting victim died of her injuries during surgery.
As many as four people died in a series of shootings in Santa Monica Friday, according to city police chief Jacqueline Seabrooks. The gunman was eventually shot to death in an exchange of fire with police in the library of Santa Monica College, she said at a news conference.
Police said earlier that seven people were killed, but later corrected that number to five people total, including the gunman, at a news conference Friday night.
A U.S. drone aircraft fired two missiles at a compound in a remote area of northwest Pakistan, killing seven people Friday night, according to reports. Pakistani officials who spoke about the strike to the AP say it killed seven militants.
Basketball fans were surprised to see a commercial for the NBA's new fashion blog during the play-offs. The commercial showed a man in a green suit checking up on NBA players' outfits on his phone while getting measured by a tailor. The site was launched six weeks ago in response to the overwhelming social media attention generated by the league's most fashionable players.
A new report from grain safety researchers at Purdue University says eight people died while trapped in grain last year, another steep drop from the record year of 2010, when 31 people lost their lives in grain bins and other grain storage facilities.
The continued decline in incidents since 2010 is credited to drier and smaller harvests since then. The grain stored in bins in 2010 was generally harvested wet and tended to spoil and clog. Workers and farmers went into bins to unclog grain and were trapped in a "quicksand" effect common in flowing grain.
She found her brother's finger in the grass by the shed.
The grass glistened with the morning dew, but the finger did not.
She picked it up. She had seen it fall. He'd been running for the house, away from the toolshed, and he'd been holding onto the finger and onto the space where the finger had been, and despite his concentration, and in his haste, he had let go of the one to hold on tighter to the other.
The door slam is meant to be symbolic, I can tell, one last "take that!" in our roiling argument. But that door never did fit right in the frame, so it swings back open, revealing the heel of his departing shoe and the flick of his coat as he swings around the corner. I hear his footfalls stop, and imagine him pondering a return to slam the door, for real this time.
As President Obama and his Chinese counterpart prepare for a weekend summit in California to discuss thorny bilateral issues, a new poll shows that ordinary Americans and Chinese increasingly eye one another with suspicion.
Surging rivers in central Europe are threatening more people downstream, following heavy rains this week and a very sodden spring. After inundating Austria, the Czech Republic, Germany, Poland and Slovakia, the next area of danger appears to be Hungary.
Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban warned Friday that "it is now certain that we must face the largest-ever flood on the Danube, so we must be prepared for the worst," The Associated Press reported.
This is SCIENCE FRIDAY; I'm Ira Flatow. If you're thinking about getting married or having children or just contemplating your health care options, you or your doctor may decide to have your DNA analyzed, looking for genes that may indicate possible trouble ahead. Maybe there's a telltale mutation hiding there or a recognizable pattern of genes.
Many people associate France today with the production of great wines. But winemaking isn't native to the French. Patrick McGovern, an archaeologist of fermented beverages, has dated the beginning of viniculture in France to around 500 B.C. and contact with the Etruscans.
The two Koreas have agreed in principle to talks aimed at mending their almost nonexistent relations, but they are stalled on the question of where to meet.
South Korea has suggested that high-level talks take place in its capital, Seoul, but North Korea has countered that only lower-level negotiations should take place and they should be held in its border city of Kaesong.
The rival Koreas have not met face to face for such negotiations since February 2011.
Our lives, our cultures, are composed of many overlapping stories. Novelist Chimamanda Adichie tells the story of how she found her authentic cultural voice — and warns that if we hear only a single story about another person or country, we risk a critical misunderstanding.
As you may have heard, Jon Stewart is taking a hiatus from The Daily Show to, among other things, work on his first feature film, Rosewater. He'll be gone 12 weeks, and eight of those weeks will include new episodes of the show hosted by correspondent John Oliver.
Last night was Stewart's sendoff for the summer — the math suggests you'll see him again in early September — and Oliver wasted no time in making it clear that he's in charge now.