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For Homeless Families, Quick Exit From Shelters Is Only A Temporary Fix

KPLU News - Mon, 07/06/2015 - 21:24
More than 150,000 U.S. families are homeless each year. The number has been going down, in part because of a program known as rapid rehousing, which quickly moves families out of shelters and into homes.

But new research by the Obama administration finds that for many families, rapid rehousing is only a temporary fix.

It seemed like a good idea back in 2009 — when the recession had pushed thousands of families into homelessness.

Growing Concerns About Development Prompt Seattle Zoning Changes

KPLU News - Mon, 07/06/2015 - 17:10

Seattle is in the middle of a development boom that many people argue is proceeding without enough limits set by the city. The city council has now voted to tighten some zoning regulations but one councilman says they don’t go far enough. 

Cosby Admitted Giving Woman Quaaludes

KPLU News - Mon, 07/06/2015 - 15:20
Updated at 7:10 p.m. ET

Comedian Bill Cosby testified in 2005 that he obtained the sedative Quaalude with the intent of giving the drug to women with whom he wanted to have sex, and he acknowledged giving it to at least one woman.

The Associated Press, which first reported the story, had gone to court to get the documents released.

Recent Islamic State Losses Show It Can Be Defeated, Obama Says

KPLU News - Mon, 07/06/2015 - 14:41
Updated at 5:26 p.m. ET

President Obama has warned that the campaign against the so-called Islamic State "will not be quick" as he cited gains made in Iraq and Syria by the coalition fighting the militant group.

"This will not be quick," Obama said at the Pentagon.

S.C. Senate Takes Another Step Toward Removing Confederate Flag

KPLU News - Mon, 07/06/2015 - 13:42
By a 37-3 tally, the South Carolina Senate has given more support to moving a Confederate battle flag from its spot flying on the State House grounds to the Confederate Relic Room. The Senate will need to approve the bill one more time before it can go on to the House.

Monday afternoon's vote was on the the bill's second reading; the Senate will hold another vote Tuesday on its third reading. That means the House won't begin to consider the bill until at least Wednesday.

"The final vote requires a two-thirds majority vote for passage, a rule set under...

Knowing How Doctors Die Can Change End-Of-Life Discussions

KPLU News - Mon, 07/06/2015 - 13:30
Dr. Kendra Fleagle Gorlitsky recalls the anguish she felt performing CPR on elderly, terminally ill patients.

It looks nothing like what we see on TV. In real life, ribs often break and few survive the ordeal.

"I felt like I was beating up people at the end of their life," she says. "I would be doing the CPR with tears coming down sometimes, and saying, 'I'm sorry, I'm sorry, goodbye.' Because I knew that it very likely not going to be successful.

With Corruption Rampant, Good Cops Go Bad In Texas' Rio Grande Valley

KPLU News - Mon, 07/06/2015 - 13:30
This week, NPR examines public corruption in South Texas. The FBI has launched a task force to clean up entrenched misconduct by public officials in the Rio Grande Valley. In this installment of the series, we hear from a police officer who became a drug dealer.

In the Rio Grande Valley of Texas, where people are accustomed to seeing public officials led away in handcuffs, the case of the Panama Unit shocked everyone.

Reddit CEO Apologizes Days After User Revolt Over Firing Of Popular Figure

KPLU News - Mon, 07/06/2015 - 12:54
Reddit CEO Ellen Pao has apologized to users of the popular website, citing a "long history of mistakes" that resulted in an insurrection last week in which moderators shut down many of the site's most popular sections in protest against the dismissal of a key figure in the site's popular r/IAmA section.

Here's part of Pao's apology that was posted on the site today:

"We screwed up. Not just on July 2, but also over the past several years.

Obama To Meet With Vietnam's Communist Party Chief Amid Concern Over China

KPLU News - Mon, 07/06/2015 - 12:49
Nguyen Phu Trong — the head of Vietnam's communist party and one of most powerful figures in the Southeast Asian nation — will meet with President Obama on Tuesday for a historic meeting aimed at strengthening ties between the two nations.

The 71-year-old party secretary said Friday that he hopes to build trust between Washington and Hanoi 20 years after President Bill Clinton normalized diplomatic ties and four decades after the end of the Vietnam War.

Vietnam's Than

Live Studio Sessions: The Bad Plus Joshua Redman - Blinded By The Light

KPLU News - Mon, 07/06/2015 - 12:44

The Bad Plus is one of the most in-demand trios in jazz.  Joshua Redman is one of the most in-demand saxophonists.  When the trio and the saxophonist joined forces to become The Bad Plus Joshua Redman, the star-power threatened to be blinding, so when they came to KPLU for a live session, we all had sunglasses near at hand.

Dzhokhar Tsarnaev's Lawyers File Motion For New Trial

KPLU News - Mon, 07/06/2015 - 12:44
Less than two weeks after he was sentenced to die for his role in the 2013 Boston Marathon bombings, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev has begun the process of seeking a new trial.

Tsarnaev's lawyers filed a preliminary motion Monday that will reportedly seek to overturn his conviction and his death sentence.

Donald Trump, 'Wrestling A Pig,' And The GOP's Struggle To Reform

KPLU News - Mon, 07/06/2015 - 11:46
Republicans have been talking about reforming their party since President Obama's re-election in 2012. The recent Supreme Court rulings on same-sex marriage and Obamacare and the reversal of several Southern Republican governors on the Confederate battle flag gave the GOP a new chance. But change can be hard.

In presidential years, the party has a math problem, according to GOP strategist Steve Schmidt.

Mechanization Brings Quick Change To Borneo Region Known For 'Slow Rice'

KPLU News - Mon, 07/06/2015 - 11:15
Change typically doesn't come fast or often in the Kelabit Highlands in the interior of Malaysian Borneo. "Go slowly" is both a motto and a way of life here. For centuries, even millennia, locals have gathered and grown their own foods in the dense tropical jungle.

Greece's 'Erratic Marxist' Leaves Legacy Of Sound Bites

KPLU News - Mon, 07/06/2015 - 11:10


Cuba Is First To Earn WHO Seal For Ending Mother-Baby HIV Transmission

KPLU News - Mon, 07/06/2015 - 10:47
A woman has HIV. She becomes pregnant. What are the chances that she can deliver a baby who is not infected?

In some countries, like Yemen, for example, only 11 percent of pregnant women with HIV receive treatment to prevent their babies from being infected. For women who aren't part of that fortunate group, the chance of passing HIV to their infant is as high as 45 percent.

But in Cuba, the chances are now practically nil.

Monsoon Takes A Break; Tibetans Celebrate Dalai Lama's 80th Birthday

KPLU News - Mon, 07/06/2015 - 10:40
This weekend the monsoon started pouring down on the hilly streets of Dharamsala in northern India. But the rain held off on Monday as thousands of Tibetans gathered at the town's Buddhist temple to celebrate the Dalai Lama's 80th birthday.

All morning, Tibetan schoolchildren in costumes of silk brocade and big fur hats sang and danced as they strummed traditional lutes. When they stamped their wool felt boots, the crowd went wild.

After Measles Outbreaks, Parents Shift Their Thinking On Vaccines

KPLU News - Mon, 07/06/2015 - 10:18
Nothing like a good measles outbreak to get people thinking more kindly about vaccines.

One third of parents say they think vaccines have more benefit than they did a year ago, according to a poll conducted in May.

That's compared to the 5 percent of parents who said they now think vaccines have fewer benefits and 61 percent who think the benefits are the same.

Vaccine safety also got a boost, with 25 percent of parents saying they believe vaccines are safer than they thought a year ago, compared to 7 percent of parents who think they're less safe.

Burt Shavitz, Namesake And Co-Founder Of Burt's Bees, Dies

KPLU News - Mon, 07/06/2015 - 09:52
Burt Shavitz, the man whose face is on your minty Burt's Bees chapstick and body wash, died on Sunday in Bangor, Maine.

What's Next For Greece?

KPLU News - Mon, 07/06/2015 - 09:22
Greeks waved flags and danced in the streets after they overwhelmingly voted to reject further austerity measures from their international creditors. But now comes the reckoning, as Greece faces the realities of an economy out of money and creditors out of patience.

Here are some of the fundamental questions:

When will the banks reopen?

There's no firm date yet. The banks have now been closed a week and look likely to remain shuttered for at least a few more days. The Greeks are allowed to withdraw only 60 euros ($66) a day from ATMs.

A Hacker Is Hacked: Controversial Italian Cyber Espionage Company Is Targeted

KPLU News - Mon, 07/06/2015 - 09:03
A controversial cyber espionage company called Hacking Team is reeling this morning after hackers gave it a taste of its own medicine by breaking into its systems, downloading hundreds of gigabytes of data and throwing it all on the open Internet.

Hacking Team has not said whether the leaked documents are legitimate, but NPR verified that at least the hacked personal passwords do check out.

Without a doubt, a hack of this kind would be terribly problematic for a company that secretly sells spyware to governments — including, if the documents prove authentic, repressive ones — around the wo