Around the Nation
6:14 pm
Wed March 27, 2013

86-Year-Old Music Teacher A Hit Among Jailed N.C. Youths

For many inmates, Gordon's music class is their first. "But when they discover they have some talent, it's very exciting," she says.
Briana Duggan WFAE

Originally published on Wed March 27, 2013 9:55 pm

Prisons are notoriously difficult places to work in for obvious reasons. But one prison in North Carolina has an employee who is indispensable: a grandmother.

Millicent Gordon is not a guard or doctor — she's a music teacher. And she not only brings her warmth to the state's only youth prison, but her popular butterscotch candies, too.

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The Two-Way
6:12 pm
Wed March 27, 2013

James Holmes' Attorneys Say He's Willing To Plead Guilty To Avoid Death Penalty

James Holmes in a photo from the Arapahoe County (Colo.) Sheriff's Office.
AP

The attorneys for James Holmes, who is alleged to have walked into a crowded Colorado movie theater and opened fire, killing 12 and wounding nearly 60, say he is willing to plead guilty to avoid the death penalty.

Colorado's 9 News reports that his defense attorneys made the offer public in a two-page filing that says the prosecution has yet to accept the offer because "it may choose to pursue the death penalty."

9 News adds:

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The Two-Way
6:08 pm
Wed March 27, 2013

BRICS Nations To Set Up Development Bank

BRICS leaders, from left, Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Chinese President Xi Jinping, South African President Jacob Zuma, Brazil's President Dilma Rousseff and Russian President Vladimir Putin pose for a group picture during the BRICS 2013 Summit in Durban, South Africa, on Wednesday.
Sabelo Mngoma AP

Originally published on Thu March 28, 2013 12:53 pm

The leaders of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa – emerging economies that collectively are referred to as BRICS – announced Wednesday the creation of a development bank to fund infrastructure projects in developing nations.

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The Two-Way
4:43 pm
Wed March 27, 2013

Judge Awards $8,000 To A Man Who Got Stuck On Disney's 'Small World' Ride

A scene from the "It's A Small World" ride, seen at Disneyland in Anaheim, Calif.
Damian Dovarganes AP

Originally published on Wed March 27, 2013 7:29 pm

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Europe
4:30 pm
Wed March 27, 2013

Long After Its Fall, Berlin Wall Is Focus Of New Protests

American actor David Hasselhoff speaks to protesters next to a remnant of the Berlin Wall last week. Thousands of people turned out to oppose a plan to knock down one of the few remaining sections of the wall. A small part was removed Wednesday.
Odd Andersen AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed March 27, 2013 9:55 pm

Protected by scores of German police officers, workers removed sections of a key remnant of the Berlin Wall before dawn Wednesday despite earlier protests demanding the concrete artifact of the Cold War be preserved.

The removal came as a shock to residents, just as it did on Aug. 13, 1961, when communists first built the barrier that divided Berlin during the Cold War.

Tour guide Rolf Strobel, 52, was among the scores of people who came to gape at the holes in what had been the longest remaining stretch of the wall — about eight-tenths of a mile.

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Energy
4:30 pm
Wed March 27, 2013

Is The Sky The Limit For Wind Power?

Wind turbines at the San Gorgonio Pass Wind Farm in Whitewater, Calif., in 2012.
Bloomberg via Getty Images

Originally published on Wed March 27, 2013 9:55 pm

Wind power is growing faster than ever — almost half of the new sources of electricity added to the U.S. power grid last year were wind farms.

But is the sky the limit? Several scientists now say it's actually possible to have so many turbines that they start to lose power. They steal each other's wind.

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It's All Politics
4:23 pm
Wed March 27, 2013

Skim Milk, States' Rights And Political Clout: The High Court And DOMA

This artist rendering shows Roberta Kaplan, attorney for plaintiff Edith Windsor, addressing the Supreme Court during arguments on the Defense of Marriage Act on Wednesday.
Dana Verkouteren AP

Originally published on Wed March 27, 2013 6:17 pm

The U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments Wednesday in a challenge to the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act, which defines marriage as between "one man and one woman as husband and wife."

It was the court's second and final day of hearing appeals involving same-sex marriage laws. And it served up some memorable observations from the high court denizens.

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg characterized same-sex unions under DOMA, which limits federal spousal benefits to heterosexual couples, as the equivalent of "skim milk" marriages.

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The Two-Way
4:00 pm
Wed March 27, 2013

High Court Rules U.S. Government Can Be Sued Over Actions Of Prison Guards

Originally published on Wed March 27, 2013 5:51 pm

When can the federal government be sued when a law enforcement officer intentionally injures or harms someone? Apparently, any time the officer is acting within the scope of his or her employment.

That was the answer Justice Clarence Thomas gave when he wrote today's opinion for a unanimous court in Millbrook v. United States.

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Planet Money
3:32 pm
Wed March 27, 2013

What If You Couldn't Take Your Money To Another State?

What if this wasn't worth $1?
ceoln Flickr

Originally published on Thu March 28, 2013 9:48 am

One day, the legislature in the state where you live passes a new law: Until further notice, you're not allowed to take your money to another state.

There are exceptions. You can take a few thousand dollars with you if you go on a trip. You can do some out-of-state shopping on your credit card, but not too much. Beyond that, all your money — your checking account, your savings account, the cash you buried in your backyard — has to stay in your state. You're free to leave the state, as long as you don't take your money with you.

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The Two-Way
3:08 pm
Wed March 27, 2013

British Government Rebuked Again; Court Rules It Cannot Deport Muslim Cleric

Muslim Cleric Abu Qatada arrives home after being released from prison in London, England.
Peter Macdiarmid Getty Images

Originally published on Wed March 27, 2013 3:12 pm

The British government has suffered another loss in its attempt to deport Muslim cleric Abu Qatada back to Jordan.

While Qatada has never been charged with anything in the United Kingdom, he is accused of being a spiritual inspiration for some of the those involved in the Sept. 11 attacks.

The BBC reports that today a Special Immigration Appeals Commission decided the government of Prime Minister David Cameron could not send him back to Jordan, where in 1999, he was convicted on terror charges in absentia.

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