Parallels
12:40 am
Thu July 25, 2013

South Africans Ponder A Nation Without Mandela

A well-wisher uses his phone to take a picture of a banner of photos of Nelson Mandela outside the Mediclinic Heart Hospital in Pretoria, where the former South African president is being treated.
Ben Curtis AP

Originally published on Thu December 5, 2013 4:10 pm

From the township of Alexandra in Johannesburg, shack dwellers can look across a ravine to the spires of Sandton City, which houses the most lavish shopping mall in sub-Saharan Africa.

Alex, as this slum of roughly a half a million people is known, was home to Nelson Mandela when he first moved to Johannesburg in 1941.

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Environment
12:38 am
Thu July 25, 2013

La. Flood Board Sues Oil Industry Over Wetlands

Canals created for navigation and oil and gas pipelines cut through the marsh off the coast of Louisiana, seen in 2010.
Bloomberg via Getty Images

Originally published on Thu July 25, 2013 8:49 am

Since the 1930s, Louisiana has lost roughly as much land as makes up the state of Delaware.

"If you put the state of Delaware between New Orleans and the ocean, we wouldn't need any levees at all," says John Barry, vice president of the Southeast Louisiana Flood Protection Authority-East. "There is this large buffer of land that has disappeared, and that buffer makes New Orleans much more vulnerable to hurricanes."

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Deceptive Cadence
11:03 pm
Wed July 24, 2013

The High, Heavenly Voice Of David Daniels

Countertenor David Daniels (right) and dancer Reed Luplau in the Santa Fe Opera's world-premiere production of Oscar, based on the life of Oscar Wilde.
Ken Howard Santa Fe Opera

Originally published on Sat August 3, 2013 6:19 am

"You very quickly forget whether it's a male voice or a female voice. ... Because he's such a terrific musician, and so expressive, the fact that it's a man singing in a woman's range becomes irrelevant, and what we hear is the music."

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Just One Breath
6:41 pm
Wed July 24, 2013

Congressional Task Force to Aid Valley Fever Fight

Credit Designed by ReportingonHealth.org graphic artist, Claudia Delgado

Republican Congressman Kevin McCarthy made another move in his crusade against valley fever Wednesday, announcing the new “Congressional Valley Fever Task Force.”

The panel is comprised of 11 Republicans and three Democrats from California, Arizona and Texas. McCarthy said the group grew out of meetings he’s had throughout the year with Rep. David Schweikert, R-Ariz., who will co-chair the task force.

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Health
6:22 pm
Wed July 24, 2013

Employer Mandate Delay Means Working Californians Will Find Own Health Care

California Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones (file photo)
Credit California Department of Insurance

California’s Insurance Commissioner says the Obama administration’s decision to delay the employer mandate in the Affordable Care Act means more people will have to buy their own health insurance in a few months. Health Care Reporter Pauline Bartolone has more from Sacramento.

The Department of Insurance says the vast majority of California’s large companies already offer their employees health coverage. But about one and a half million Californians are in companies with 50 or more workers, and no insurance options.  

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Government & Politics
6:09 pm
Wed July 24, 2013

Perez Concedes Defeat in Senate Race Versus Vidak

Hanford Republican Andy Vidak leads the vote count in Tuesday's special election against Democrat Letecia Perez.
Credit Andy Vidak

There's news late this afternoon in the race between Democrat Leticia Perez and Republican Andy Vidak for the 16th Senate District seat. Katie Orr reports that one side has conceded defeat. 

Democrat Leticia Perez has conceded the race to Republican Andy Vidak. The two were running to fill the Central Valley State Senate seat left vacant by Democrat Michael Rubio, who abruptly resigned last winter.

In a statement Perez said “This campaign is over.  Andy has earned the right to represent us in Sacramento.” 

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The Two-Way
4:22 pm
Wed July 24, 2013

George H.W. Bush Shaves His Head In Support Of Ailing Boy

George H.W. Bush with Patrick, the two-year-old son of one of the members of his security detail.
Office of George H.W. Bush

In a very sweet gesture, President George H.W. Bush shaved his head to show solidarity for Patrick, the two-year-old son of one of the members of his Secret Service detail.

Patrick, Bush's spokesman Jim McGrath said on Twitter, is undergoing treatment for leukemia, so he lost his hair.

McGrath tweeted this picture of Bush with the little guy:

And this one of Patrick with Bush and the entire Secret Service detail:

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Europe
4:21 pm
Wed July 24, 2013

Royals Reveal New Baby's Name

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

Finally this hour, the news that some of you at least have been anxiously awaiting. The royal baby has a name, several of them, in fact. George Alexander Louis. We'll break down that monitor for you now.

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National Security
4:03 pm
Wed July 24, 2013

House Rejects Measure That Would Have Curbed NSA Program

Originally published on Wed July 24, 2013 4:58 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.

On Capitol Hill, an effort to limit the authority of the National Security Agency has fallen short. It was the first chance for House lawmakers to vote on the government's phone surveillance program since news of it was leaked by Edward Snowden. They rejected an amendment that the White House and top intelligence officials had lobbied hard against.

NPR's Tamara Keith joins us from Capitol Hill. And, Tamara, the amendment was defeated. How close was it?

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The Two-Way
3:05 pm
Wed July 24, 2013

Train Derailment In Spain Leaves Dozens Dead

Originally published on Thu July 25, 2013 12:22 am

Update at 3:20 a.m. Thursday: Death Toll Rises

The Associated Press reports that 77 people were killed when a train derailed in northwestern Spain, according to Maria Pardo Rios, spokeswoman for the Galicia region's main court. Four died at hospitals, while 73 were found dead at the scene, she said.

Our Original Post Continues:

The Spanish newspaper El País paints a bloody picture of the scene of a train derailment in Santiago de Compostela, Spain, on Wednesday.

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