A dispute between Iraq's Shiite-led central government and the semi-autonomous Kurdish region is boiling over, as Kurdish ministers withdrew from all Cabinet meetings. In response, Baghdad is reportedly halting some cargo flights between Kurdish cities.
In the weeks since a California judge overturned the state's rules governing teacher tenure, the political noise has only grown louder. Advocates on both sides of the issues have largely stuck to "give-no-ground," press-release rhetoric that risks drowning out educators in the middle.
I've spoken with educators around the state since the ruling, including many who say they want protections but also real change.
Chinese hackers successfully accessed U.S. government computer networks in March apparently hoping to find information about "tens of thousands of employees who have applied for top-secret security clearances," The New York Times reports.
The newspaper says the attack centered on the Office of Personnel Management was reportedly detected and blocked — but not before the hackers had gotten into some of the agency's databases.
In case you missed the buzz on Facebook, scientists recently determined that "beer goggles" do in fact exist, though not precisely in the way we thought. Consuming alcohol, it seems, tends to elevate desire and reduce inhibitions more than alter our actual perception of another person's attractiveness.
When a writer passes before her time, readers and fans often mourn not only the loss of her presence in the world, but the loss of the words she may yet have written. Such was the case when, in 2006, speculative fiction writer Octavia E. Butler died unexpectedly at her home in Seattle. Butler is one of the most celebrated authors in the genre, her novels and short stories regularly graced with Hugo and Nebula awards. She was the first speculative fiction writer to receive the MacArthur "genius grant," a prize whose name perfectly summarizes Butler's work: She was a genius.
Let's follow up now on the water war in Detroit. So far this year, the water utility has shut off the spigots to 17,000 customers. It wants people to do pay their overdue bills. Many residents are upset with how the city is doing this and ask if some are getting special treatment. Here's Sarah Cwiek of Michigan Radio.
Democrats in the Senate have unveiled legislation to override the recent Supreme Court decision on contraceptives.
STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:
In that decision, the court sided with the owners of Hobby Lobby, a chain of craft stores, ruling that many businesses do not have to pay for health insurance to cover contraceptives if they object on religious grounds.
After years of stunning growth, China's go-go real estate market is now in retreat.
Prices fell last month in 79 out of 100 cities, according to the China Real Estate Index run by SouFun Holdings, a real estate website. Land sales dropped nearly 30 percent this spring from a year earlier.
Real estate has been one of the engines driving the world's second-largest economy, which is why economists in China and around the world are watching the market closely these days.