Amid a sweeping crackdown on dissent in Egypt, security forces have forcibly disappeared hundreds of people since the beginning of 2015, according to a new report from Amnesty International.

It's an "unprecedented spike," the group says, with an average of three or four people disappeared every day.

The Republican Party, as it prepares for its convention next week has checked off item No. 1 on its housekeeping list — drafting a party platform. The document reflects the conservative views of its authors, many of whom are party activists. So don't look for any concessions to changing views among the broader public on key social issues.

Many public figures who took to Twitter and Facebook following the murder of five police officers in Dallas have faced public blowback and, in some cases, found their employers less than forgiving about inflammatory and sometimes hateful online comments.

As Venezuela unravels — with shortages of food and medicine, as well as runaway inflation — President Nicolas Maduro is increasingly unpopular. But he's still holding onto power.

"The truth in Venezuela is there is real hunger. We are hungry," says a man who has invited me into his house in the northwestern city of Maracaibo, but doesn't want his name used for fear of reprisals by the government.

The wiry man paces angrily as he speaks. It wasn't always this way, he says, showing how loose his pants are now.

Ask a typical teenage girl about the latest slang and girl crushes and you might get answers like "spilling the tea" and Taylor Swift. But at the Girl Up Leadership Summit in Washington, D.C., the answers were "intersectional feminism" — the idea that there's no one-size-fits-all definition of feminism — and U.N. climate chief Christiana Figueres.

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Arizona Hispanics Poised To Swing State Blue

2 hours ago
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Editor's note: This report contains accounts of rape, violence and other disturbing events.

Sex trafficking wasn't a major concern in the early 1980s, when Beth Jacobs was a teenager. If you were a prostitute, the thinking went, it was your choice.

Jacobs thought that too, right up until she came to, on the lot of a dark truck stop one night. She says she had asked a friendly-seeming man for a ride home that afternoon.

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Technology Columnist Sheds Light On New Bulbs

Jun 12, 2013
Originally published on June 13, 2013 5:53 am



Buying a light bulb it's not as simple as it used to be. You're not just choosing between 100 watts and 75 watts, between three-way and one-way. Now you can choose light bulbs that will save you quite a bit of money and use less power. There are now bulbs that don't get hot, and you can pick a bulb that might last longer than you do.

Technology columnist Rich Jaroslovsky, at Bloomberg News, has been trying out the new bulbs and will enlighten us. Good morning, Rich.


WERTHEIMER: Rich, a few years ago, CFLs - compact fluorescent bulbs - seemed to be the main alternative. But now, there seems to be another switch towards LED. What is driving that? What are consumers telling us?

JAROSLOVSKY: Consumers are telling us, I think, that they have not been pleased with the experience with compact fluorescents. The quality of the light, especially the early ones, have kind of a bluish tint to it. They take time to warm up. They have trace elements of mercury so if you break one, it's kind of a big deal. So consumers have not been thrilled with the experience, so far.

WERTHEIMER: Does the LED improve that experience?

JAROSLOVSKY: The LED, in a lot of ways, is a superior technology. It doesn't have the warm-up issues. It doesn't have some of the toxicity issues. The big drawback, though, has been the price.

WERTHEIMER: Now, I have seen a 40-watt version - which you wrote about - made by a company that I never heard of called Cree. That sells for around 10 bucks. And you seem to think that it might be a game changer.

JAROSLOVSKY: Well, it's getting to that sweet spot. At $10, it's still considerably more expensive than a compact fluorescent, but it doesn't have a lot of the issues compact fluorescents have. It lasts longer, although both compact fluorescents and LEDs lasts so long, I think you begin to say, well, the difference between nine years and 16 years doesn't really make a difference to me today.


WERTHEIMER: Not many people live in a house for 16 years.

JAROSLOVSKY: No. And this, essentially, makes the concept of light bulbs burning out obsolete.

WERTHEIMER: Now, I want lighting that makes me look good. I don't want to look like the late Linda Wertheimer in my own house. Does this light bulb - does that work?

JAROSLOVSKY: Well, you do have companies like Philips - another light bulb manufacturer - that makes a system called Hue H-U-E, which you can change the colors using an iPhone or Android app on your smartphone. So you can, if you want to give yourself a rosy glow, you can simply adjust the lighting.

WERTHEIMER: So these two companies that you mentioned - Philips and Cree - are sort of leading the way. But presumably, everybody will arrive at the same general area soon.

JAROSLOVSKY: I think that that's the case. There are a lot of other companies, including very big companies - like General Electric, like 3M - that are in this space or interested in this space, and so I kind of expect we will see a lot more of these, particularly as the energy efficiency standards for traditional incandescent bulbs kick in.

WERTHEIMER: Do you imagine that people are going out and buying, you know, dozens of these bulbs and putting them up all over the house, or have they really arrived in that way yet?

JAROSLOVSKY: Well, my guess right now is that there are probably people who were going out and buying dozens of incandescent bulbs, to stockpile them against the day when they disappear from the market.




JAROSLOVSKY: But in part, I think that's because the experience with the compact fluorescents has not been wonderful. I think as more people experience the light bulbs like the Cree and the other LED bulbs, I think some of that resistance will go away.

WERTHEIMER: Rich Jaroslovsky is the technology columnist for Bloomberg News. Rich, thank you very much for joining us.

JAROSLOVSKY: Thank you so much for having me. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.