Police in Baton Rouge say they have arrested three people who stole guns with the goal of killing police officers. They are still looking for a fourth suspect in the alleged plot, NPR's Greg Allen reports.

"Police say the thefts were at a Baton Rouge pawn shop early Saturday morning," Greg says. "One person was arrested at the scene. Since then, two others have been arrested and six of the eight stolen handguns have been recovered. Police are still looking for one other man."

A 13-year-old boy is among those arrested, Greg says.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

After an international tribunal invalidated Beijing's claims to the South China Sea, Chinese authorities have declared in no uncertain terms that they will be ignoring the ruling.

The Philippines brought the case to the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague, objecting to China's claims to maritime rights in the disputed waters. The tribunal agreed that China had no legal authority to claim the waters, and was infringing on the sovereign rights of the Philippines.

Donald Trump is firing back at Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg after she made disparaging comments about him in several media interviews. He tweeted late Tuesday that she "has embarrassed all" with her "very dumb" comments about the candidate. Trump ended his tweet with "Her mind is shot - resign!":

Donald Trump wrapped up his public tryout of potential vice presidential candidates in Indiana Tuesday night with Gov. Mike Pence giving the final audition.

The Indiana governor's stock as Trump's possible running mate is believed to be on the rise, with New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich also atop the list. Sources tell NPR the presumptive GOP presidential nominee is close to making a decision, which he's widely expected to announce by Friday.

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The unassuming hero of Jonas Karlsson's clever, Kafkaesque parable is the opposite of a malcontent. Despite scant education, a limited social life, and no prospects for success as it is usually defined, he's that rarity, a most happy fella with an amazing ability to content himself with very little. But one day, returning to his barebones flat from his dead-end, part-time job at a video store, he finds an astronomical bill from an entity called W.R.D. He assumes it's a scam. Actually, it is more sinister-- and it forces him to take a good hard look at his life and values.

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Donald Trump picked a military town — Virginia Beach, Va. — to give a speech Monday on how he would go about overhauling the Department of Veterans Affairs if elected.

He blamed the Obama administration for a string of scandals at the VA during the past two years, and claimed that his rival, Hillary Clinton, has downplayed the problems and won't fix them.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.


The 1940 Census: 72-Year-Old Secrets Revealed

Apr 2, 2012

Nylon stockings became all the rage. Black fedoras were the "pure quill" — meaning the real deal. Bing Crosby crooned Only Forever on the console. And Hattie McDaniel was the first African-American actor ever to take home an Oscar.

Ah, 1940. Three score and 12 years ago, America was in a very different place — economically and culturally.

But on April 2, 2012, when the National Archives releases detailed data from the 1940 census, we will get an even keener idea of how much — or how little — this nation has really changed in the past 72 years.

We already have general census information from 1940, but the "manuscript census" — the conglomeration of individual forms filled out by citizens at the time — has not been available until now.

Data miners will have the opportunity to pick and chip through more than 3.8 million digital images of census schedules, maps and other sociological minutiae, explains Vicki Glasier, of the U.S. Census Bureau.

The mass of retro information is like a huge time capsule, dug up from yesteryear.

Status Update

What will we learn from this mother lode?

The pivotal year 1940 "marked the beginnings of a shift from a depressed peacetime to a prosperous wartime," says David E. Kyvig, author of Daily Life in the United States, 1920-1939.

The vast data dump, Kyvig says, will allow historians "to look closely at particular communities and how people within them were doing in terms of employment, income and material comforts."

With privacy guaranteed, people opened up. They let the census-takers into their homes and they answered all kinds of questions. Everyone spoke openly of their living arrangements, their jobs, their families, their faith and a whole lot more. And bit by bit, a mosaic of American life took shape.

It all added up to a sort of primitive Facebook.

There is a reason that all of this up-close-and-personal information from 1940 is being released all these years later. "In 1952, the director of the Census Bureau and the National Archivist agreed that keeping census records private for 72 years balanced public release of federal records with the tradition of confidentiality," explains the Census Bureau's Glasier. In other words, 72 years was considered at the time to be longer than most lifespans.

From aggregate information made available by the Census Bureau, we already have a broad-stroke, then-and-now portrait of 1940.

Back then, for instance, there were just over 132 million people in the United States. By 2010 — the year of the most recent census data — there were nearly 309 million people.

In 1940, nearly 90 percent of those surveyed were white. Some 9.8 percent were black and 0.4 percent registered as other. By 2010, 72.4 percent signed up as white and 12.6 percent were listed as black or African-American.

In 1940, the three most populous states were New York (13.4 million), Pennsylvania (9.9 million) and Illinois (7.9 million). In 2010, the three states with the most people were California (37.2 million), Texas (25.1 million) and New York (19.3 million).

Only 5 percent of the 1940 population had college degrees. By 2010, 28 percent of Americans were college graduates.

The median income for a man in 1940 was $956. Seventy years later, the median income was $33,276. Women in 1940 earned 62 cents for every dollar a man earned. In 2010, women earned 74 cents for every dollar a man earned.

The top five industries in 1940 included manufacturing (23.4 percent), agriculture (18.5 percent), retail (14 percent), personal services (8.9 percent) and professional services (7.4 percent). By 2010, the numbers tilted. The top five industries included educational services, health care and social assistance (23.2 percent); retail (11.7 percent); professional, scientific, management and administrative services, waste management services (10.6 percent); manufacturing (10.4 percent); and construction (6.2 percent). Agriculture was not listed in the top five.

Facts To Guide Decision-Makers

The period from 1940 to 1960, says Kyvig, who is planning to write a book about those decades, "was an era of remarkable progress in the everyday lives of ordinary Americans, and we need to have a clear picture of where we were in 1940 in order to appreciate the changes soon to occur."

Come Monday, Kyvig and others will be able to drill down into the quotidian habits of folks in 1940. Genealogists are especially interested in the files because it was the last census before World War II.

Historians are intrigued because it will present a panoramic snapshot of a nation on the cusp. Some Americans were still stuck in the financial muck of the Great Depression, while others began to prepare for — and prosper from — America's entry into World War II.

"I suspect we will learn more about how much the ramping up of government spending on defense changed the economic circumstances and everyday lives of ordinary Americans," Kyvig says. "As we see how the country evolved over the subsequent 20 years, where we have aggregate census data ... we ought to be able to see more clearly how government spending bettered everyday life, confirmed Keynesian economic theory and revealed that, before the war, the New Deal did too little, rather than too much, to stimulate the U.S. economy."

According to training films made for the occasion, the Census Bureau sent out more than 120,000 fact-gatherers, known as "enumerators," in the spring of 1940 to survey the nation's 33 million homes and 7 million farms.

Radiating out across the nation from Washington, their goal was to come home with unbiased facts to help guide decision-makers, including businesspeople, farmers and legislators.

Participation by the populace was mandatory. After all, the voice-over in one film intoned, "You cannot know your country, unless your country knows you."

Copyright 2012 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.