National / International News

Why attack India-Pakistan Wagah crossing?

BBC - Mon, 2014-11-03 04:41
As dozens are killed in a suicide bombing at the Wagah crossing on the India-Pakistan border, the BBC's Sanjoy Majumder in Delhi explains the significance of the target.

Quiz: Counting students and teachers

Marketplace - American Public Media - Mon, 2014-11-03 04:38

Statewide student-teacher ratios range from 10 students-per-teacher in Vermont to 23 in California, according to the Department of Education.

What was the student-teacher ratio for United States public schools during the 2012-2013 school year?

VIDEO: Where is England's Tree of the Year?

BBC - Mon, 2014-11-03 04:38
The Woodland Trust asks for votes to choose England's first Tree of the Year to compete in a Europe-wide contest.

Day in pictures: 3 November 2014

BBC - Mon, 2014-11-03 04:16
24 hours of news images: 3 November

VIDEO: Theresa May's abuse inquiry dilemma

BBC - Mon, 2014-11-03 04:10
After the second proposed chairman of an inquiry into the extent of child sexual exploitation stood down, the home secretary faces a dilemma how best to fill the role

EU migrants: Merkel v Cameron

BBC - Mon, 2014-11-03 03:42
Amid increasing frustration with the UK in Berlin, Downing Street may be looking for a compromise on EU migrant numbers.

Turkey migrant boat sinks killing 24

BBC - Mon, 2014-11-03 03:42
At least 24 people are killed and scores are missing after a boat believed to be carrying refugees sank off the north coast of Turkey, officials say.

Guerrilla pictures: Urban explorers

BBC - Mon, 2014-11-03 03:34
Urban explorer captures decay in Northern Ireland

VIDEO: Why wear a red poppy in November?

BBC - Mon, 2014-11-03 03:17
Wearing a poppy for those who died in the two world wars is a mark of respect but does it now have political overtones?

VIDEO: Branson: Explosion claims 'hurtful'

BBC - Mon, 2014-11-03 03:14
Virgin Galactic owner Sir Richard Branson tells BBC News claims in the media about an explosion were "quite hurtful".

US right-to-die advocate ends life

BBC - Mon, 2014-11-03 02:36
Brittany Maynard, the terminally ill cancer patient whose viral YouTube video reignited the US debate on assisted-suicide, ends her life.

Your pictures: Shopfronts

BBC - Mon, 2014-11-03 02:06
Readers' photos on the theme of "Shopfronts"

Is it a news article or malware?

Marketplace - American Public Media - Mon, 2014-11-03 02:00

Back in 2007, the FBI bugged the computer of a 15-year-old student who was suspected to be behind a number of bomb threats that hit Washington State High School.

So how did they do it? The FBI buried malware into a link that resembled a news report. 

"It's not that difficult anymore," says Jonathan Zittrain, Professor of Law at Harvard University.

All you needed to have was an article persuasive enough for the suspect to click on and you're well on your way to delivering a package of tracking malware.

Now, the question is: Where should the government should draw the line? 

Click the media player above to hear Jonathan Zittrain in conversation with Marketplace Tech host Ben Johnson.

Starbucks CEO co-authors book on valuing veterans

Marketplace - American Public Media - Mon, 2014-11-03 02:00

Howard Schultz, CEO of Starbucks, has a new book entitled "For Love of Country: What Our Veterans Can Teach Us About Citizenship, Heroism, and Sacrifice." He and his co-author, Rajiv Chandrasekaran, a Washington Post reporter who covered the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, stopped by to discuss the book, as well as Starbucks' pledge to hire 10,000 veterans and their spouses within five years.

Schultz says his father's military service was one of the catalysts for this project, as well as getting to know former defense secretary Robert Gates, who is on the Starbucks board.

Says Schultz: "There would be a significant loss if we don't recognize the value that the military can bring to the business community and the American society at large. And this is just good business. This is not charity, this is not pity. This is the right thing to do for them and for us."

Audio from this interview is forthcoming.

McDonald's seeks to tailor menu to regional tastes

Marketplace - American Public Media - Mon, 2014-11-03 02:00

McDonald’s hasn’t been doing so hot lately. Same-store sales dropped in the third quarter of this year, which helped drag profits down 30 percent. Its CEO said the company’s facing “formidable” headwinds.

Large ships don’t turn easily, but one of the changes the company’s announced is a more regional focus, breaking the country into four zones (instead of its old three) to better respond to the individual tastes of customers in different parts of the country.

But for years, McDonald’s succeeded with a "one size fits all" approach.

“When we look at what has made McDonalds a strong brand, it's consistency, convenience, affordability and strong fast service,” says Darren Tristano, with food-research firm Technomic.

However, he says diners today are more interested customization, like choosing what goes in their burrito at Chipotle.  

This is especially important to millennials, says Andy Brennan, a food analyst at IBIS World.

“Millennials want something different,” he says. “They want to feel like things are customized toward them, they want the ability to choose, and they want high quality things, so unfortunately, McDonald’s doesn’t fit the bill for any of these requirements.”

“The marketplace today is increasingly dynamic and diverse,” Mike Andres, McDonald’s USA President said in a statement. “These changes will enable us to better leverage and support our local market management structure so that we are more nimble in response to and anticipation of the local customer needs and market conditions in a relevant and timely way.”

“The same things that worked nationally, don’t work nationally now,” agrees John Gordon, a food industry analyst with Pacific Management Consulting Group. He says a menu item like spicy chicken wings may play well with customers in Detroit, but miss with customers in Salt Lake City.

Gordon says this regional push is a small step for McDonald’s, but symbolic of the way it needs to decentralize—and a sign that bigger changes may be coming.

Obamacare in the Supreme Court (again)

Marketplace - American Public Media - Mon, 2014-11-03 02:00

The Supreme Court is expected to announce this week whether or not it will hear the latest challenge to the Affordable Care Act—the King versus Burwell case. That case asks whether the Affordable Care Act should be taken literally. UPDATE: The court decided against hearing the challenge.

The ACA specifically grants insurance subsidies for policies bought on state exchanges. Now the question is: “Can the Internal Revenue Service say, 'All right, even for people who’ve purchased insurance through the federal exchange, they can also get the tax credit,'” says Miller Baker, a partner at McDermott, Will and Emery.

Another big ACA case involves something called the Origination Clause, which requires all tax bills have to start in the House of Representatives. This case could face long odds.

“I believe that there has only been one successful Origination Clause case in history, and that was over a century ago,” says Timothy Jost, a professor at Washington and Lee University Law School. Jost says opponents of the healthcare law will have to prove it’s a tax bill. And he says it did originate in the House, but was overhauled in the Senate. 

There are other lawsuits that challenge specific aspects of the healthcare law—from contraception to the delay of the mandate for employers to insure their workers—but these aren't likely to overturn it, experts say.

VIDEO: Slowing device 'deployed too early'

BBC - Mon, 2014-11-03 01:12
A safety device on the Virgin Galactic spacecraft that crashed on Friday deployed early during the fatal test flight, US investigators say.

In pictures: Poppies and remembrance

BBC - Mon, 2014-11-03 00:36
A personal view of poppies by Lee Karen Stow

Home rule campaign to be launched

BBC - Sun, 2014-11-02 21:49
A campaign for Scottish home rule is to be launched later, which draws support from a number of political parties.

'Reckless attack' on Derry police

BBC - Sun, 2014-11-02 21:47
A police vehicle is damaged by an explosive device in a "reckless attack" in Londonderry, the PSNI has confirmed.