House investigators demand details on private emails

WASHINGTON — A top House Republican has demanded details on the use of private emails by some of President Donald Trump’s closest advisers. Rep. Trey Gowdy, a South Carolina conservative who chairs the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, and the top Democrat on that panel, Rep. Elijah Cummings, cite a recent Politico report that Jared Kushner set up a private email account after the election to conduct work-related business. The New York Times is reporting that at least six of Trump’s closest advisers, including Kushner, Steve Bannon and Reince Priebus, used private email to discuss White House matters. During the 2016 presidential campaign, Trump repeatedly attacked Democratic opponent Hillary… Read More

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Equifax CEO steps down in the wake of damaging data breach

NEW YORK — Equifax CEO Richard Smith stepped down Tuesday, less than three weeks after the credit reporting agency disclosed a damaging data breach that exposed highly sensitive information for about 143 million Americans. His departure follows those of two other high-ranking executives who left in the wake of the company’s admission that hackers exploited a software flaw that it did not fix to access Social Security numbers, birthdates and other personal data that provide the keys to identify theft. Smith, who had been CEO since 2005, will also leave the chairman post. Equifax said Smith was retiring, but he will not receive his annual bonus and other potential retirement-related… Read More

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This satellite image shows Puerto Rico in a complete blackout

A newly-released satellite image from the U.S. government shows Puerto Rico in a complete blackout. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration tweeted an image of Puerto Rico before and after Hurricane Maria “knocked out” the power grid. Satellite night images of #PuertoRico. #HurricaneMaria knocked out power grid, millions without electricity. More @ https://t.co/UxxCHH5OVC pic.twitter.com/yUDLk8V0Jf — NOAA Satellites (@NOAASatellites) September 25, 2017 Millions of people remain without power in Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria, a Category 4 storm, wrecked havoc on the U.S. territory last week. Resources, like clean water and food, are also scarce. Those remaining on the island have had to wait for supplies from the U.S. government. Gov.… Read More

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Macron: Europe is too slow, blind to dangers of nationalism

PARIS Calling Europe slow, weak and ineffective, French President Emmanuel Macron on Tuesday said the EU should embrace a joint budget, shared military force and harmonized taxes to stay globally relevant. With Brexit looming, Macron warned the rest of Europe against the dangers of anti-immigrant nationalism and fragmentation, saying that goes against the principles of a shared Europe born from the tragedy of world wars. “We thought the past would not come back … we thought we had learned the lessons,” Macron told a crowd of European students at the Sorbonne university Tuesday as he seeks to make France’s mark on Europe’s future. After a far-right party entered the German… Read More

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Trump and former adviser loom large in Alabama Senate race

FAIRHOPE, Ala. Sen. Luther Strange and firebrand jurist Roy Moore face off Tuesday in the GOP primary runoff for an Alabama U.S. Senate seat in a race where Moore ended his last full day of campaigning by whipping out a handgun as he lashed out at attack ads run against him. The contest to fill the remainder of Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ Senate term has pitted President Trump against his former strategist, Steve Bannon. Trump supported Strange with a Tweet sent before voting began Tuesday morning: “Luther Strange has been shooting up in the Alabama polls since my endorsement. Finish the job – vote for ‘Big Luther.’” The winner of… Read More

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The Limits of Education’s Promise of Success

One of the most commonly taught stories American schoolchildren learn is that of Ragged Dick, Horatio Alger’s 19th-century tale of a poor, ambitious teenaged boy in New York City who works hard and eventually secures himself a respectable, middle-class life. This “rags to riches” tale embodies one of America’s most sacred narratives: that no matter who you are, what your parents do, or where you grow up, with enough education and hard work, you too can rise the economic ladder. A body of research has since emerged to challenge this national story, casting the United States not as a meritocracy but as a country where castes are reinforced by factors… Read More

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How the AfD Won

Angela Merkel may have secured a historic fourth term as chancellor of Germany on Sunday, but her victory was blunted by an unprecedented showing from the Alternative für Deutschland (AfD), the country’s far-right populist party, which now becomes the third-strongest party in the Bundestag, with 12.6 percent of the vote. It dominated the narrative on election night as the first far-right party to enter Germany’s national parliament since the 1950s. At the AfD’s election party in Berlin on Sunday night, Alexander Gauland and Alice Weidel, the party’s co-leading candidates, offered a preview of the kind of rhetoric that their supporters can expect in the Bundestag. Weidel wasted no time taking… Read More

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How the AfD Won

Angela Merkel may have secured a historic fourth term as chancellor of Germany on Sunday, but her victory was blunted by an unprecedented showing from the Alternative für Deutschland (AfD), the country’s far-right populist party, which now becomes the third-strongest party in the Bundestag, with 12.6 percent of the vote. It dominated the narrative on election night as the first far-right party to enter Germany’s national parliament since the 1950s. At the AfD’s election party in Berlin on Sunday night, Alexander Gauland and Alice Weidel, the party’s co-leading candidates, offered a preview of the kind of rhetoric that their supporters can expect in the Bundestag. Weidel wasted no time taking… Read More

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How Puerto Ricans on the Mainland Are Getting News From Relatives

Perhaps the grimmest aspect of the ongoing emergency in Puerto Rico is that the knowledge of the aftermath of Hurricane Maria—including 10 deaths, the devastation of entire swathes of the island, and dire shortages of food, water, and fuel—come from the teaspoonfuls of information that have dribbled out of the island. Most places don’t have power, and won’t for weeks, if not months. Less than 300 of the islands 1,600 cellphone towers are functional, 85 percent of all above-ground cable and phone infrastructure was knocked out, and the more remote areas that make up the majority of Puerto Rico’s landmass have mostly gone dark, with mostly brief calls from satellite… Read More

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First beatification Mass for U.S.-born priest and martyr draws thousands

OKLAHOMA CITY — In the final step before sainthood, a missionary from Oklahoma slain during Guatemala’s civil war has been beatified — the first U.S.-born priest and martyr to receive such recognition by the Catholic Church. An estimated 20,000 Catholics waited in long lines to attend the special Mass on Saturday (Sept. 23) celebrating the Rev. Stanley Francis Rother, who was shot to death by three masked assassins who entered his rectory in 1981. “In a period of grave social and political turbulence in Guatemala, Father Rother lived as a perfect disciple of Christ, doing good and spreading peace and reconciliation among the people,” said Cardinal Angelo Amato, who heads… Read More

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