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The Two-Way
4:29 pm
Mon September 23, 2013

IRS Official At Center Of Political Scandal Will Retire

Lois Lerner, the head of the IRS division that handles applications for tax-exempt status, listens to opening statements during a hearing before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee before refusing to testify on May 22.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

Originally published on Mon September 23, 2013 5:20 pm

Lois Lerner, the Internal Revenue Service official who ran the division engulfed in a scandal over special scrutiny of Tea Party and patriot groups seeking tax exemption, will retire.

The IRS announced Monday that Lerner would step down after being placed on paid leave in May. She refused that month to answer questions at a congressional hearing, citing the Fifth Amendment right not to incriminate herself.

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The Two-Way
3:29 pm
Mon September 23, 2013

$4.7 Billion Deal Would Take BlackBerry Private

BlackBerry CEO Thorsten Heins officially unveils the Z10 smartphone in January.
Timothy A. Clary AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon September 23, 2013 4:11 pm

A consortium of investors lead by Fairfax Financial Holdings Limited has offered BlackBerry a $4.7 billion buyout, pending "due diligence," the company said on Monday.

The deal would take the struggling telecommunications firm into the private market, paying investors about $9 per share in cash. In a press release, BlackBerry said:

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13.7: Cosmos And Culture
2:45 pm
Mon September 23, 2013

Does Science Require Faith?

Are faith and reason just like oil and water?
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Mon September 23, 2013 3:38 pm

Does science require faith? According to astronomer Phil Plait, the answer is:

No.

According to the physicist at Ask A Mathematician / Ask A Physicist, the answer is:

No. Exactly No.

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The Salt
2:37 pm
Mon September 23, 2013

Sandwich Monday: The Woody Allen

The Woody Allen. There's a quarter in this photograph to give you a sense of scale, but it's so tiny you can't see it.
NPR

Originally published on Thu September 26, 2013 5:36 pm

So many great sandwiches have been named after great directors: the reuben, named for the great Ingmar Reuben, and the cheese sandwich, named for James Cameron. The Carnegie Deli in New York created the "Woody Allen," and our own Eleven City Diner here in Chicago copied it "oh so close." It's a double-decker corned beef and pastrami on rye.

Ian: Boy, the pastrami at this place is really good. And in such large portions!

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The Two-Way
2:28 pm
Mon September 23, 2013

High-Level Meeting Set Between Kerry, Iranian Counterpart

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif speaks during a news conference earlier this month.
Ahmad Al-Rubaye AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue September 24, 2013 11:26 am

Secretary of State John Kerry plans to meet his Iranian counterpart this week for the highest-level face-to-face between Washington and Tehran in six years.

The meeting with Foreign Minister Javad Zarif and representatives of five other world powers — Russia, China, Britain, France and Germany — would come as newly elected Iranian President Hassan Rouhani visits the United Nations in New York. The talks would center on Iran's nuclear program.

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The Two-Way
2:01 pm
Mon September 23, 2013

Detroit Has Many Strays, But 'We're Not Tripping Over Dogs'

A stray dog in Detroit last week.
Carlos Osorio AP

Originally published on Mon September 23, 2013 8:38 pm

While there's a serious dog problem in Detroit, the initial results of an effort to count the number of homeless canines in the city indicate there are far fewer than the 50,000 strays that some news accounts have talked about.

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Shots - Health News
1:41 pm
Mon September 23, 2013

On Eve Of U.N. Goal-Setting, AIDS Agency Claims Big Progress

A doctor takes an HIV test from an athlete during the 18th National Sports Festival in Lagos, Nigeria, last December.
Sunday Alamba AP

Despite a plateau in funding by international donors, the United Nations AIDS agency reports striking progress in curbing new HIV infections and deaths from AIDS.

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The Two-Way
1:37 pm
Mon September 23, 2013

Apple Sells 9 Million New iPhones In Opening Weekend

Apple says it has sold 9 million iPhone 5s and 5c models since their launch on Friday. Here, staff members at an Apple retail store in Beijing cheer a customer after he bought a new iPhone.
Andy Wong AP

Originally published on Mon September 23, 2013 3:29 pm

Sales of its new iPhone 5s and 5c models have surpassed other iPhone releases and exceeded initial supply, Apple says. The company says it has sold 9 million of the phones since their launch on Friday and that "many online orders" will ship in coming weeks.

"This is our best iPhone launch yet — more than nine million new iPhones sold — a new record for first weekend sales," Apple CEO Tim Cook said in a Monday press release. He added that "while we've sold out of our initial supply of iPhone 5s, stores continue to receive new iPhone shipments regularly."

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The Two-Way
11:56 am
Mon September 23, 2013

U.S. Team Sails Back From Brink In America's Cup

Defenders Oracle Team USA was out ahead of Emirates Team New Zealand in Race 12 of the America's Cup Finals on Thursday.
Ezra Shaw Getty Images

Originally published on Mon September 23, 2013 6:38 pm

Less than a week ago, it looked like the America's Cup — yachting's oldest and most prestigious trophy — would sail back to New Zealand after a near blowout of the U.S. defenders, who are sponsored by Oracle CEO Larry Ellison.

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The Two-Way
11:56 am
Mon September 23, 2013

Typhoon Usagi Destroys Homes, Causes Dozens Of Deaths In China

A man runs from a huge wave pushed up by Typhoon Usagi on a wharf in China's Guangdong province Sunday. Usagi killed at least 25 people after crashing ashore in southern China.
AFP AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon September 23, 2013 1:31 pm

Typhoon Usagi, which stormed ashore north of Hong Kong on Sunday evening, has been blamed for at least 25 deaths in south China's Guangdong province. Some 8,490 houses reportedly collapsed in the typhoon's winds, officials say.

"A total of 5.48 million people were affected and 310,000 residents were displaced due to the storm," reports the Xinhua state news agency, adding that the storm has caused an estimated $1.16 billion in direct economic losses.

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Shots - Health News
11:34 am
Mon September 23, 2013

To Succeed At Breast-Feeding, Most New Moms Could Use Help

That's how it's supposed to work. But for most new moms, breast-feeding doesn't come easily, a study finds.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Tue September 24, 2013 8:58 am

The majority of new mothers try to breast-feed. But it's not easy.

Only 13 percent manage to breast-feed exclusively for the six months that are recommended for a baby's health. And, as you might expect, the moms who have trouble with breast-feeding in the first week with a new baby are the ones most likely to give up, a study finds.

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The Two-Way
11:16 am
Mon September 23, 2013

Death Toll In Pakistan Church Attack Reaches 85

A woman is carried into the hospital after being injured when two suicide bombers attacked a church in Peshawar, Pakistan, on Sunday.
AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon September 23, 2013 3:58 pm

At least 85 people are listed as dead in northwest Pakistan after what's been described as the largest-ever attack on the country's Christian minority.

A pair of suicide bombers blew themselves up Sunday at the historic All Saints Church in the city of Peshawar, not far from the Afghan border.

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The Two-Way
10:33 am
Mon September 23, 2013

$3.9 Billion U.S. Defense Contract Includes Missiles For UAE

A photo provided by Lockheed Martin shows a test of its THAAD missile interceptor system. The Pentagon has awarded a contract worth more than $3.9 billion for the system.
Lockheed Martin

Originally published on Mon September 23, 2013 3:11 pm

The U.S. Defense Department has awarded a rich military contract to Lockheed Martin, agreeing to pay more than $3.9 billion for a missile-defense system. The deal calls for a maximum of 110 high-altitude interceptor missiles for the United States, and 192 versions of the missiles for export to the United Arab Emirates.

Update at 2:30 p.m. ET: Number Of Missiles Adjusted

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The Two-Way
10:19 am
Mon September 23, 2013

U.N.: Child Labor Is Down, But 168 Million Children Still Work

Near Islamabad, Pakistan, 6-year-old Jabro Mounir was arranging bricks this summer — part of his daily work at a brick-making facility. He earns a little less than $2 per day.
Muhammed Muheisen AP

Originally published on Mon September 23, 2013 10:59 am

The trend is good:

"The global number of child laborers has declined by one third since 2000."

But:

That still means there are an estimated 168 million child laborers around the world, and more than half "are involved in hazardous work" involving such things as dangerous machinery and harmful chemicals.

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