National / International News

Legal wrangle over NBA team sale

BBC - Fri, 2014-05-30 16:21
The NBA tentatively backs the sale of the LA Clippers to ex-Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer but a lawyer for owner Donald Sterling says he may sue.

VIDEO: India police sacked over hanged girls

BBC - Fri, 2014-05-30 16:20
Two police officers in India are sacked for allegedly refusing to help search for two missing girls who were later found gang-raped and hanged.

An Old-Fashioned Newspaperman Takes The Helm In A Digital World

NPR News - Fri, 2014-05-30 15:53

Dean Baquet, the new executive editor of The New York Times, is a proud defender of old-school newsroom values. But, he says, he recognizes that both he and the Times need to adapt to the digital era.

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Brazil child sex trade alarm as World Cup nears

BBC - Fri, 2014-05-30 15:39
The battle to curb the child sex trade

Is it possible to be a millionaire poet?

BBC - Fri, 2014-05-30 15:23
What happens to creativity after you get rich?

Liverpool make £25m bid for Lallana

BBC - Fri, 2014-05-30 15:09
Liverpool make a final offer of £25m for Southampton captain Adam Lallana and want to complete the deal swiftly.

McDermott leaves role as Leeds boss

BBC - Fri, 2014-05-30 15:04
Brian McDermott leaves his role as manager of Championship side Leeds United by mutual consent.

VIDEO: Afghan wheelchair basketball team

BBC - Fri, 2014-05-30 15:03
Afghan wheelchair basketball team play the game of their lives

German POW march to be re-enacted

BBC - Fri, 2014-05-30 15:00
A re-enactment is to be staged of German WW2 prisoners being marched to the Cultybraggan POW camp in Perthshire.

Babies can learn to love vegetables

BBC - Fri, 2014-05-30 15:00
Children can learn to eat new vegetables if they are introduced regularly before the age of two, suggests a University of Leeds study.

We will peak for Italy - Gerrard

BBC - Fri, 2014-05-30 14:50
Steven Gerrard says England will be in peak condition for their World Cup opener against Italy after victory over Peru.

Peter Mutharika wins Malawi election

BBC - Fri, 2014-05-30 14:49
Opposition candidate Peter Mutharika is declared the winner of Malawi's disputed presidential election in a vote a rival says was rigged.

What a billion dollars buys you this week

Marketplace - American Public Media - Fri, 2014-05-30 14:47

There have been a lot of billion dollar deals in the past couple days. Sales, proposed fines, buyouts. If you’ve got a couple billion dollars lying around the house, you had a lot of options. So, on the off-chance you’re a billionaire, here are some of the things you might have been able to buy this week: 

$1 billion

A clean river. Los Angeles city officials want to turn Los Angeles River into a scenic urban oasis, and that plan just got a bit more likely with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers recommending approval of that $1 billion proposal. This all still has to be voted on by Congress, but it’s looking like the Los Angeles River might not be a concrete corridor for much longer.

$2 billion

The worst franchise in sports history. That’s what former Microsoft tycoon Steve Ballmer seems like he’ll be able to buy from noted racist-remark-maker Donald Sterling if and when his deal to buy the Los Angeles Clippers goes through. Beating out bids by David Geffen, Grant Hill, and Oprah Winfrey, the deal still requires final approval from the NBA. And though Sports Illustrated named the Clippers the "worst franchise in sports history," their fortunes appear to be looking up.

$3 billion

A whole bunch of headphones. Beats, the high-end headphone manufacturer and music streaming service owned by Dr. Dre and Jimmy Iovine, might seem like an odd fit for Apple, purveyor of shiny gadgets and computers. But Apple disagrees, to the tune of the $3 billion it will spend on Beats. Apple doesn’t have to build a subscription music service itself, and instead just supplants one already in place.

$5.7 billion

Lots and lots of meat. Or not. When Pilgrim’s Pride offered to buy Hillshire Brands for $5.7 billion, everything seemed alright (or more accurately for the two huge meat companies, kosher). Then food-giant Tyson swept in with an even bigger offer and made everything a bit more complicated. The deal still hasn’t been finalized, but you could consider Hillshire the king of the prom right now.

$10 billion

Forgiveness, or at least freedom from further prosecution. That’s what BNP Paribas, the largest bank in France, might have to pay in order to avoid criminal prosecution. The U.S. Justice Department suspects that BNP Paribas ignored sanctions and did business with countries like Sudan and Iran, but won’t press criminal charges if the bank pays a very large fine. And the actual amount they have to pay might be far less, and BNP Paribas is looking to pay less than $8 billion. 

A Columbus, Miss. QUIZ! How well do you know this Southern city?

Marketplace - American Public Media - Fri, 2014-05-30 14:07

We're continuing our American Futures series with The Atlantic's James Fallows this week. Kai and James have been traveling across the U.S. looking at how small towns are living and working in a new economy.

Next stop: Mississippi to the city of Columbus -- A town with a long history in the South.

How much do you know about this small town? Take our quiz! And check out our reporting from Columbus.

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Cleveland Patrolman, Five Others Charged In Deadly 2012 Car Chase

NPR News - Fri, 2014-05-30 14:03

Prosecutors say Patrolman Michael Brelo fired more shots than any of the officers who together pumped 137 rounds into the vehicle, killing two unarmed suspects.

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Is The Deck Stacked Against Black Boys In America?

NPR News - Fri, 2014-05-30 14:03

A new White House report exploring the intersection of race, poverty and justice suggests the answer is still a resounding yes.

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Shinseki Couldn't Outflank Election-Year Politics

NPR News - Fri, 2014-05-30 13:54

By President Obama's own admission, politics had a lot to do with why he decided to accept VA Secretary Eric Shinseki's resignation.

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New NHS boss backs smaller hospitals

BBC - Fri, 2014-05-30 13:52
Smaller community hospitals should play a bigger role especially in the care of older patients, the new head of the NHS in England says.

What’s Ballmer buying? An 'expensive plaything'

Marketplace - American Public Media - Fri, 2014-05-30 13:45

Former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer is buying the LA Clippers for $2 billion. It’s a record-breaking sum if the deal goes through, though for Ballmer, it’s fairly small compared to his estimated $20 billion fortune. For his money, he’ll get a team that’s poised to greatly increase its TV revenues and the thanks of fans grateful to be rid of Donald Sterling, disgraced after his infamous racist rant. But above all, he’s getting a remarkably expensive plaything.

“He’s not getting a sound economic investment. He’s buying a big toy,” says Andy Zimbalist, a sports economist at Smith College. “It’s a vanity purchase. He gets a lot of exposure, ego massaging.”

$2 billion is more than what most analysts think the team is worth, with some valuing it at a quarter of that price. But in the bonkers world of sports business, all that matters is what one super-rich person will pay.

Regardless of what the team’s true value is, Ballmer will almost certainly benefit from a far richer TV contract when the current one expires. Some estimate the Clippers next deal could triple what they’re making now.

“All of the big deals that we’ve seen in recent times that are really startling have been fueled by the money that’s coming in from freshly negotiated or to-be negotiated TV contracts,” says Clemson University sports economist Skip Sauer.

After all, another LA team, baseball’s Dodgers, sold for $2.1 billion. The new owners went on to sell the media rights for billions more in a 25-year agreement. But of course, the Clippers are far less popular and successful than the Dodgers. Trying to change that could soon be Ballmer’s problem.

Weekly wrap: Numbers, nudging

Marketplace - American Public Media - Fri, 2014-05-30 13:42

There was a lot to talk about in the economy this week.

For starters, the revised number for Gross Domestic Product growth came out yesterday and things are not looking so good. According to the Bureau of Economic Analysis, the economy contracted in the most recent quarter by one percent.

"I think this just shows that the economic growth we have now isn't very robust. It's no time to get complacent, but it's not all bad news. Things are getting a little better," says Cardiff Garcia from the blog FT Alphaville.

However, many argue that in one more quarter, we'll be back in another recession. 

Nela Richardson, chief economist for the brokerage and referal site Redfin, believes we should fear these numbers because the goals set by the Feds are not as attainable as they make it seem. 

"What it would take for us to reach the 3 percent that the Fed has been forcasting is for us to grow in the second half of this year by 5 percent... I just don't see any evidence of where this growth is going to come. And the reason I'm so troubled is because business investment plumeted so much... There's no indication that the seeds of growth that would hit 5 percent in the second half of the year are actually starting to bloom in the spring swoon," says Richardson.

The inflation number also came out this week. And it appears we had a small increase in inflation.

"It has all kinds of beneficial effects. It also can be a sign that the economy is starting to grow again. But the good thing about inflation when it doesn't spike too quickly is that it means that households are incentivised to spend money because their money is going to worth a little bit less each year. It also means that businesses are incentivised to invest," says Cardiff.

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