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Shots - Health News
3:37 pm
Thu July 18, 2013

World's Biggest Virus May Have Ancient Roots

Pandoraviruses were discovered lurking in the mud of Chile and Australia, half a world apart.
courtesy of Chantal Abergel and Jean-Michel Claverie

Originally published on Sat July 20, 2013 6:14 am

Researchers have discovered the largest virus ever, and they've given it a terrifying name: Pandoravirus.

In mythology, opening Pandora's Box released evil into the world. But there's no need to panic. This new family of virus lives underwater and doesn't pose a major threat to human health.

"This is not going to cause any kind of widespread and acute illness or epidemic or anything," says Eugene Koonin, an evolutionary biologist at the National Institutes of Health who specializes in viruses.

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NPR Story
3:35 pm
Thu July 18, 2013

New Tyler Perry Shows Offer Lessons On Finance

Promotional image for the show "The Have and Have Nots." (Oprah Winfrey Network)

Tyler Perry has two new shows on the Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN): “The Have and The Have Nots” and “Love Thy Neighbor.”

At first, the shows received a record number of viewers for the network, but ratings have since dropped off.

“The Have and Have Nots” is a soap opera-like show about the tensions between rich and poor, black and white.

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NPR Story
3:35 pm
Thu July 18, 2013

South Africa Marks Nelson Mandela's Birthday

Children sing to Nelson Mandela on his 95th birthday in Johannesburg, South Africa. (Jason Beaubien/Twitter)

Millions of children across South Africa sang “Happy Birthday” to Nelson Mandela today as he turns 95.

People around the world are joining South Africans in celebrating his life.

British entrepreneur Richard Branson is among those volunteering 67 minutes in their communities, to honor the 67 years Mandela gave to the struggle against apartheid and creating a new South Africa.

In New York’s Times Square, South African artist Paul Blomkamp is showing his giant portrait of Mandela, which he says was inspired by the leaders great energy.

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NPR Story
3:35 pm
Thu July 18, 2013

Law School Enrollment Plunges

Enrollment is declining at law schools nationwide. At Harvard (pictured) enrollment is steady, though it's becoming easier to get in. (Harvard)

Law school enrollment is taking a nose dive, and law schools are trimming their faculty rolls.

The legal market has yet to recover from the recession, and that means fewer students are applying to law school.

Middle-tier schools are among the hardest hit, and legal experts say it could be years before their enrollment returns to pre-recession levels.

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The Two-Way
3:03 pm
Thu July 18, 2013

Man Who Hoped To Testify Against Whitey Bulger Is Found Dead

Stephen Rakes as he arrived at the U.S. Federal Courthouse in Boston on June 12 for the first day of the "Whitey" Bulger's trial.
Brian Snyder Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Thu July 18, 2013 6:31 pm

Stephen "Stippo" Rakes, who claimed that notorious Boston gangster James "Whitey" Bulger forced him — at gunpoint — to sell a liquor store in 1984, was found dead Wednesday in Lincoln, Mass.

According to the Middlesex (Mass.) District Attorney's office, "there were no obvious signs of trauma. The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner is conducting an autopsy to determine the cause and manner of death."

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The Two-Way
2:07 pm
Thu July 18, 2013

Scientists: Pitch In July Is Slower Than Molasses In January

Originally published on Thu July 18, 2013 6:28 pm

Researchers at Trinity College Dublin have some long awaited test results: After 69 years, they have captured on video a drop of pitch, also known as bitumen or asphalt.

With a camera trained on a glass funnel containing a generous dollop of the substance, so thick that it appears as a solid at room temperature, it finally happened.

You can see the dramatic moment in this video above, which proves conclusively that pitch is indeed a liquid, according to Nature.

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Politics
2:04 pm
Thu July 18, 2013

The United States Of Dynasty: Boom Times For Political Families

Liz Cheney walks off the stage with her father, former Vice President Dick Cheney, after addressing the Conservative Political Action Conference in 2010.
Cliff Owen AP

Originally published on Thu July 18, 2013 3:23 pm

Another day, another political dynasty.

This latest one is taking shape in Wyoming, where Liz Cheney, daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney, announced Tuesday that she's challenging incumbent Sen. Mike Enzi in the 2014 Republican primary.

Her announcement is a fitting prelude to the next four years, when voters will witness America's political royalty in its full glory.

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The Two-Way
1:56 pm
Thu July 18, 2013

Justice's Rules Mean Reporter Need Not Testify, Lawyer Says

The seal of the Central Intelligence Agency. The case that prosecutors want journalist James Risen to testify in involves an alleged leak of information by a former CIA agent.
Greg E. Mathieson Sr. MAI/Landov

Originally published on Thu July 18, 2013 8:48 pm

A lawyer for New York Times reporter James Risen is citing new Justice Department guidelines about when to subpoena journalists to support his argument that Risen is covered by a common-law reporter's privilege and need not testify about a former CIA agent who allegedly served as his source.

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Book Reviews
1:40 pm
Thu July 18, 2013

The Only Surprise In Rowling's 'Cuckoo's Calling' Is The Author

J.K. Rowling recently revealed herself to be the author of the mystery novel The Cuckoo's Calling.
Ben Pruchnie Getty Images

Originally published on Thu July 18, 2013 3:41 pm

Call it "The Mystery of the Missing Book Sales" — and I don't think we'll be needing to bring Sherlock Holmes in to solve this one. In April, a debut mystery called The Cuckoo's Calling was published. It appeared to be written by an unknown British writer named Robert Galbraith, who was identified on the book jacket as a former military cop now working in private security.

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Pop Culture
1:40 pm
Thu July 18, 2013

Maria Bamford: A Seriously Funny Comedian

Originally published on Thu July 18, 2013 3:05 pm

It's almost uncomfortable to laugh at Maria Bamford's comedy, because so much of it is about really serious problems she has: OCD, bipolar disorder, suicidal thoughts. She's been hospitalized several times. But you have to laugh, because she's that funny.

In addition to the difficulties from which she suffers, Bamford — who has a new comedy CD out called Ask Me About My New God! — incorporates her family into much of her material. She's close to both her parents, in part, she says, because they've been through so much together.

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