Richard Cordray, the new head of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, defended his appointment in an interview with All Things Considered today.
"This is a valid appointment," he told NPR's Robert Siegel. "But, again, I'm not going to be distracted by the details of that. My job is to be the director of this consumer bureau, to look out for consumers across the country and I'm going to focus 100 percent on that job."
Robert asked if he was just going to "ignore whatever litigation might develop from that" and Cordray said, "that's correct."
It's flat. It's slimy. And it hides under rocks on the river bottom. It's the Ozark hellbender, and at up to two feet in length, it's one of the world's largest salamanders.
But Ozark hellbenders are disappearing: Fewer than 600 are left in the rivers of southern Missouri and northern Arkansas. Scientists have been making a huge effort to get them to breed in captivity. And now, thanks to a major effort at the Saint Louis Zoo, 2012 could be the year of new hope for hellbenders.
Rick Santorum has been upsetting elections from the beginning.
He was only 32 years old when he toppled a seven-term incumbent in a majority Democratic district in western Pennsylvania.
Just four years later, Santorum rode the Republican wave of 1994 into the Senate representing Pennsylvania. And from the beginning, Santorum has stood for unwavering social conservatism, especially on the issue of abortion.
"Give the baby a chance to live," said Santorum while delivering a speech on the Senate floor in 1997.
A scandal involving French-made breast implants continues to widen.
The implants contain industrial-grade silicone that causes abnormally high rupture rates, according to critics. They have been sold in many countries in Europe and beyond, though not in the United States. Now, the French government has opened a criminal investigation into the company.
French television showed footage on Thursday of investigators and a judge searching the factory of the Poly Implant Prothese company, or PIP, in southern France.
Photographer Eve Arnold died Wednesday, just a few months shy of her 100th birthday. Arnold is best known for her intimate portraits of both the rich and famous — including Marilyn Monroe, Malcolm X and Joan Crawford — and of the down and out.
As Robert Capa, one of the founders of the agency Magnum Photos, once put it: Arnold's work "falls metaphorically between Marlene Dietrich's legs and the bitter lives of migratory potato pickers."
On <a href="https://www.facebook.com/theteapartyofficial?sk=info">The Tea Party's Facebook page</a>, bassist Stuart Chatwood, guitarist Jeff Martin and drummer Jeff Burrows describe their music as having "blues, progressive rock, Indian and Middle Eastern influences."
If you direct your browser to TeaParty.com, you will not find a site devoted to the political movement of the same name. What you will find is the Internet home of The Tea Party, a Canadian rock band that has owned the domain name since the early '90s.
Now, with seemingly no shortage of would-be buyers, the band is hoping to cash in.
Originally published on Thu January 5, 2012 2:57 pm
Facing the prospect of a recall election in June, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker came to Washington on Thursday to talk up the merits of the anti-union legislation that has landed him in hot water — and to raise funds to save his job.
Walker said he's certain his opponents will gather the 540,000 signatures they need in time for the Jan. 17 deadline, setting up a recall election in June.
How much lead does it take to ruin a brain? Not much, according to a new standard proposed for lead poisoning in children.
The amount of lead in a child's blood that determines dangerous lead exposure should be cut in half, from the current standard of 10 micrograms per deciliter of blood to 5 micrograms for ages 5 and below, a federal advisory committee said Wednesday.
That in itself would be a big step, and would double the number of young children in the United States officially considered to have lead poisoning to almost 500,000.
Thursday, the Pentagon announced its new strategy for dealing with threats around the world. The goal is to use the new blueprint to guide difficult budget choices in the coming years. The new document is released as the U.S. winds down two long wars — in Iraq and Afghanistan — and embarks on a period of defense budget cuts.
It's time now for your letters and, first, one correction. Yesterday, Minnesota congresswoman Michele Bachmann dropped out of the Republican presidential nominating contest, and in our story about her failed bid for the White House, some of you heard our reporter call political analyst Lawrence Jacobs, Lawrence Jacobson. It's our mistake and we apologize to Mr. Jacobs.
For lovers of Camembert, the downy white rind is the tart bite that balances out the fat-laden, oozing, pungent layer inside.
For a group of Swiss bioengineers, that moldy rind is one of nature's greatest living surfaces, doing double duty as a shield and a cleaner. The rind allows the cheese's deep flavor and aroma to mature, but also defends it against microorganisms that could spoil it. The cheese repays the fungi on the rind by supplying it with nutrients.
Originally published on Thu January 5, 2012 12:11 pm
In its February issue, Vanity Fair has a long report on Jon Corzine, the former head of Goldman Sachs and former Democratic governor of New Jersey. Corzine has been in the news lately for his role in MF Global, which last year collapsed spectacularly and left $1.2 billion in client money missing.
The piece talks to friends and former associates of Corzine and paints a picture of a CEO who took great risks and micromanaged.
As the trial of Egypt's former dictator continued in Cairo, today, one of the prosecutors said Hosni Mubarak should face the death penalty for his role in the killing of protesters during the uprising that toppled his regime, last year.
"Retribution is the solution," Mustafa Khater said on the final day of the prosecution's opening statements. "Any fair judge must issue a death sentence for these defendants."
In this photograph of a sketch by courtroom artist Janet Hamlin, reviewed by the U.S. military, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, a suspected plotter in the Sept. 11 attacks, attends his arraignment at the U.S. Military Commissions at Guantanamo Bay U.S. Naval Base, in Cuba, on June 5, 2008. The trial for the five suspects is expected to begin sometime in the next few months.
Credit Janet Hamlin / AP
This combination of undated photos shows, from left: Ali Aziz Ali, Walid bin Attash, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, Mustafa al-Hawsawi and Ramzi bin al-Shibh, the alleged co-conspirators in the Sept. 11 attacks.
The long-awaited trial of five men accused of helping plan the Sept. 11 attacks is scheduled to begin early this year in a revamped trial process at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.
Initially, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and four other men charged with planning the attacks were going to be tried in a New York federal court, but congressional opposition forced the Obama administration to reverse course.
Editors of the conservative <em>Dartmouth Review</em>, from left to right: Sterling Beard, 22, from Abilene, Texas, the <em>Review</em>'s editor-in-chief; Benjamin Riley, 20, from New York City; Blake Neff, 21, from Sioux Falls, S.D.
Credit John Winslow Poole, John W. Pool / NPR
Benjamin Riley, 20, of New York City, a junior at Dartmouth College and an editor on <em>The Dartmouth Review</em>.
Joseph P. Kennedy III, the son of former Rep. Joseph P. Kennedy II and grandson of Sen. Robert F. Kennedy, "is taking the final steps to launch a run for Congress this year, hoping to succeed [the retiring] U.S. Rep. Barney Frank," the Boston Globe reports.
Carrie Brownstein and Fred Armisen film their sketch-comedy show <em>Portlandia</em> in the summer, when Armisen is on hiatus from <em>Saturday Night Live</em>. During the rest of the year, they communicate through constant text messages, says Armisen.
Credit Chris Hornbecker / IFC
In one episode of <em>Portlandia</em>, Brownstein and Armisen started a grassroots campaign to prevent the Olympics from ever coming to Portland.
On Back to Love, Anthony Hamilton makes music from declarations. He tells a woman "I'm missing you crazy" in "Who's Loving You," and it's typical of his strategy. He states his thesis, his opinion, his desire in a voice that speaks as much as it sings for the sake of emphasis. After he's sure he's gotten his lover's attention, he begins doing his rhythm-and-blues work, mixing soul and blues and hip-hop phrasing to heighten the emotion in a song.
A container ship prepares to leave the Port of Miami in 2010. Plans are under way to deepen the port to 50 feet to attract bigger ships coming from the Panama Canal, but they've recently been put on hold after environmental groups filed a petition.
Credit Joe Raedle / Getty Images
Port of Miami Director Bill Johnson (right) speaks to Florida Gov. Rick Scott at the port. "It is the game changer," Johnson says of the city's plan to deepen its port to accept new, larger ships from the Panama Canal.
In 2014, when expansion of the Panama Canal is complete, a new generation of superlarge cargo ships will begin calling on the East Coast. Cities like New York; Savannah, Ga.; and Miami are vying for the new business, as they race to deepen their ports and expand their facilities to accommodate the new ships.
But some of the cities are running into significant challenges. In Miami, where plans are under way to deepen the port to 50 feet, dredging is a hot topic. Some see it as a great business opportunity. To others, it's a threat to the environment.
Saying that "the size and structure of our military and defense budget have to be driven by a strategy — not the other way around," President Obama just gave a broad overview of his administration's new military strategy.