If you only knew about America from watching TV, the last few months might lead you to think that women here wield enormous political power. First you had Game Change, the story of Sarah Palin's attempt to become vice president. Then you had Veep, in which Julia Louis-Dreyfus's character has accomplished just that. Now comes Political Animals, a new USA network series about a strong female secretary of state who I suspect even a Martian would realize is based on Hillary Clinton.
Good morning. I'm Steve Inskeep. Prosecutors say no cats were harmed in the making of this news story. A man in Tacoma, Washington told a sad tale. He was involved in a car crash and two years later he said that collision had killed his cat named Tom. He filed a $20,000 insurance claim. But now, according to KOMO, he's been accused of fraud. Authorities say the cat never existed. The man allegedly backed up his claim with cat photos from the Internet. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright National Public Radio.
It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.
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And I'm Renee Montagne.
It's a sobering morning at Penn State University. Today, former FBI Director Louis Freeh release released a scathing report on how Penn State dealt with a series of shocking allegations that led to the by Jerry Sandusky scandal.
Sandusky was the revered former defensive coach for the Penn State football team. He was found guilty last month of 45 counts of child sexual abuse.
Most Americans use electricity, gas or oil to heat and cool their homes. But the small city of Brainerd, Minn., is turning to something a bit less conventional: the sewer.
As it turns out, a sewer — the place where a city's hot showers, dishwashing water and organic matter end up — is a pretty warm place. That heat can generate energy — meaning a city's sewer system can hold tremendous potential for heating and cooling.
It's just that unexpected energy source that Brainerd hopes to exploit.
This week, President Obama signed a law banning synthetic marijuana and other synthetic drugs. Dozens of states and local governments have already tried to outlaw fake marijuana, which has been blamed for hundreds of emergency room visits and a handful of fatalities.
But the bans have proved largely ineffective, and there are fears that the federal law won't be any different.
Synthetic marijuana looks a bit like dried grass clippings. It's readily available on the Internet and in convenience stores and smoke shops, where it's sold as herbal incense or potpourri.
Peter O'Toole announced his retirement from show business on Tuesday. The actor is best known for the title role in Lawrence of Arabia 50 years ago. Melissa Block spoke to O'Toole in 2007 and offers this look back.
Eleven-year-old Woosuk Kim sees his mother only three or four times a year. That's because he's part of what Koreans call a "goose family": a family that migrates in search of English-language schooling.
A goose family, Woosuk explains, means "parents — mom and dad — have to be separate for the kids' education."
Woosuk's father brought him and his little brother to America two years ago to attend Hancock Park Elementary, a public school in Los Angeles. The boys' mother stayed in South Korea to keep working.