NPR Blogs

The Two-Way
5:10 pm
Fri January 24, 2014

Holder Favors Pot Banking, And Legal Dealers Shrug

A marijuana bud and cash at a shop in Denver. An owner of marijuana stores in the city says of his company's bank account, "We treat it like gold."
Ed Andrieski AP

When I heard late Thursday that Attorney General Eric Holder had come out in favor of bank accounts for state-sanctioned pot businesses, I assumed the industry would react with cheers. After all, they've long complained about being black-balled by banks, which are justifiably afraid of violating federal laws against handling drug money.

But when I started calling around today, the reactions ranged from "That's nice" to "Meh."

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The Two-Way
4:34 pm
Fri January 24, 2014

Dow Loses 318 Points, The Most In One Day Since June

The Dow closed 318 points lower on Friday, the biggest one-day drop since June.

As NBC News puts it, the index joined the rout that hit European and Asian markets on fears that the global economy is slowing.

The Wall Street Journal adds:

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The Two-Way
3:53 pm
Fri January 24, 2014

Which Are The Most, And Least, 'Bible-Minded' Cities In The U.S.?

A new study ranks 100 American cities according to how "Bible-minded" they are. The top spot went to Chattanooga, Tenn. Several cities in the Northeast and West were ranked "least Bible-minded."
Joseph Kaczmarek AP

Originally published on Fri January 24, 2014 8:26 pm

In an era of shifting populations and values, the notion of America's Bible Belt can be a slippery concept. But a new study gives us an idea of which cities can be considered to be part of that tradition — and which cities aren't.

Chattanooga, Tenn., was named America's most Bible-minded city, followed by Birmingham, Ala., and Roanoke/Lynchburg, Va.

And despite its name, Providence, R.I., was named the least Bible-minded city. It tied New Bedford, Mass., in that slot, followed by Albany, N.Y., and Boston.

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The Two-Way
3:37 pm
Fri January 24, 2014

Pakistani Judge Orders Death For Man Who Claimed To Be Prophet

Originally published on Mon January 27, 2014 6:08 am

A mentally ill British national held in Pakistan has been sentenced to death for blasphemy after claiming to be the Prophet Muhammad.

Mohammed Asghar, 69, was arrested in Rawalpindi, near the Pakistani capital Islamabad, in 2010 shortly after returning from a trip to the U.K., where he was treated for paranoid schizophrenia, his lawyer said.

It was then that he allegedly wrote letters to various individuals, including a police officer, claiming that he was the revered prophet of Islam.

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The Two-Way
2:16 pm
Fri January 24, 2014

10 Years' Probation For NFL Player Who Caused Fatal Crash

Former Dallas Cowboys defensive lineman Josh Brent, who was drunk in December 2012 when the car he was driving crashed and his passenger — teammate Jerry Brown Jr. — was killed, was sentenced Friday to 180 days in jail, a $10,000 fine and 10 years of probation.

The Dallas Morning News writes that:

"After reading the sentence, state District Judge Robert Burns scolded Brent for his actions.

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The Two-Way
1:46 pm
Fri January 24, 2014

How An 18-Year-Old Code Was Cracked On The Web In 13 Minutes

A fascinating story that our friends at Minnesota Public Radio posted about earlier this week seems to be spreading fast and resonating with many.

Here's how The Associated Press, which picked up on the news a day after MPR's Bob Collins and some others, begins its account:

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The Two-Way
1:27 pm
Fri January 24, 2014

Former Va. Gov. Bob McDonnell, Wife Plead Not Guilty

Former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell and his wife, Maureen, leave the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, on Friday in Richmond, Virginia.
Mark Wilson Getty Images

Former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell and his wife pleaded not guilty to corruption charges in front of a federal judge on Friday.

As we've reported, McDonnell and his wife, Maureen, have been charged with 14 counts, including conspiracy and wire fraud over allegations they took gifts from the CEO of a pharmaceutical company and in exchange provided Star Scientific with the "prestige of the governorship."

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The Two-Way
1:22 pm
Fri January 24, 2014

Show Us: The State Of The Union Through Your Eyes

President Obama's motorcade en route to Capitol Hill for his the State of Union speech on January 25, 2011.
Jewel Samad AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue January 28, 2014 7:03 pm

On Tuesday, President Obama will deliver his fifth State of the Union address.

He'll talk about the past year and he'll lay out his vision for the year to come.

For the occasion, we also want a ground-level feel of the state of the union. We want to see how the state of the union is playing out in your life.

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The Two-Way
11:36 am
Fri January 24, 2014

Ukraine Protests Spread, But 'Fragile Truce' Holds In Kiev

On Friday in Kiev, a woman knelt as she appealed to Ukranian police troops at the site of clashes with anti-government protesters.
Gleb Garanich Reuters/Landov

"Violent protests in Ukraine have spread beyond the capital, Kiev," the BBC writes, as President Viktor Yanukovych and three key opposition leaders meet.

On Friday, according to the BBC, "protesters stormed the governor's offices in Lviv, and there were rallies in at least five more western cities."

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The Two-Way
11:26 am
Fri January 24, 2014

U.N. Says Authorities, Locals In Myanmar Killed Dozens Of Muslims

Originally published on Fri January 24, 2014 2:48 pm

The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights says her organization has credible evidence that dozens of minority Muslims in Myanmar were killed in the northern state of Rakhine.

Here's how Navi Pillay described what took place in a press release issued on Thursday:

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