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Japan's 'evaporated people' have become an obsession for this French couple

Tue, 25 Apr 2017 21:24:10 +0000

It all started in a bar in Paris, back in 2008, when a friend told Lena Mauger a story. It was about a Japanese couple who had disappeared. They hadn’t died. They weren’t kidnapped. They just deliberately vanished in the middle of the night without explanation. And this wasn’t just a one-off, mysterious occurrence. According to Mauger’s friend, it was a phenomenon. In Japan, thousands of people each year became johatsu — “evaporated people” — driven underground by the stigma of debt, job loss, divorce, even just failing an exam. Mauger, a journalist by trade, was intrigued. And confused. “To disappear in a country as modern [as Japan], with all the techniques of tracing, with social networks, I thought that it was amazing,” Mauger says. Mauger and her husband, photographer Stephane Remael, would spend the next five years documenting the johatsu and the underground networks that sustain them. Their book, " The Vanished: The "Evaporated People" of Japan in Stories and Photographs ," was

Paper Plants and Animals Invade South Florida

Tue, 25 Apr 2017 20:49:07 +0000

South Florida middle schoolers are folding paper to teach their communities about Florida’s River of Grass. Origami Everglades is an art project creating life-sized sculptures of the region’s endangered species. Hear how the project uses a technique called “modular origami” to create the animals. Origami Everglades is a 2016 Knight Arts Challenge winner. The Knight Foundation is accepting ideas for its 2017 grants through Friday. For details, click here .

Fighting Steep Odds, Flint Starts To See Bright Spots

Tue, 25 Apr 2017 20:41:00 +0000

It's been a tough three years for an already troubled city. When Flint, Mich., switched to using the Flint River for its drinking water as a cost-saving measure, then failed to properly treat it, lead pipes corroded and contaminated the water with lead. But Flint residents are fighters, and many are beginning to see signs of hope for a better future. The most visible are changes are in the city's downtown. There are coffeehouses and restaurants along Saginaw Street where 10 years ago there were almost none. General Manager Ken Laatz says business is thriving at his establishment, the Soggy Bottom Bar, where you'll find good food and good Michigan-brewed beer on tap. "Almost every night, we have some cool things going on," he said. "We have a jazz night that's really popular; trivia night's always popular." Laatz says besides the new eateries, philanthropists with ties to the city are restoring the Capitol Theatre to its former glory. The theatre is next to the renovated, century-old

'Calling Thunder' Documents History Of New York City Before Europeans Arrived

Tue, 25 Apr 2017 20:32:00 +0000

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Myanmar's Aung San Suu Kyi Criticized For Treatment Of Rohingya

Tue, 25 Apr 2017 20:32:00 +0000

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A Worm May Hold The Key To Biodegrading Plastic

Tue, 25 Apr 2017 20:32:00 +0000

People around the world use more than a trillion plastic bags every year. They're made of a notoriously resilient kind of plastic called polyethylene that can take decades to break down. But a humble worm may hold the key to biodegrading them. It was an accidental discovery. Scientist and beekeeper Federica Bertocchini was frustrated to find that her beehives were infested with the larvae of Galleria mellonella , commonly known as a wax worm. Bertocchini, who works at the Institute of Biomedicine and Biotechnology of Cantabria in Spain, tells NPR that she was cleaning out the hive and put the worm-infested parts in a plastic bag. But shortly afterward, she noticed that "they were all crawling around my place and the plastic bag was riddled with holes." This got her thinking about whether the creatures were simply chewing up the plastic or actually breaking it down chemically. Bertocchini and a team of researchers decided to test it, so they ground some wax worms into a pulp and spread

What You Learn Hiking The Whole Appalachian Trail

Tue, 25 Apr 2017 20:32:00 +0000

When you're facing a major life change, it helps to talk to someone who's already been through it. All Things Considered is connecting people on either side of a shared experience, and they're letting us eavesdrop on their conversations in our series Been There . Each year, hundreds of people hike the roughly 2,200 miles of the Appalachian Trail from Springer Mountain in Georgia to Mount Katahdin in Maine. This year, Rhys Hora is one of them. He's 32 years old and had been working the same job in Philadelphia since he graduated from college. He felt like he was stuck in a rut. "I wasn't unhappy, but I wasn't actually happy," he says. One night out with friends, the idea of thru-hiking the trail popped into his head, and it grew from there. "It was like a little snowball that sort of rolled down the hill and got bigger and bigger," he says, "until I found myself pretty much planning my life around it." Rhys finally hit the trail this March, but first he got some advice from Sara Leibold

Commerce Department Orders 20 Percent Tariff On Canadian Lumber Imports

Tue, 25 Apr 2017 20:32:00 +0000

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Trump Hints At Shift On Wall Funding To Avert Government Shutdown

Tue, 25 Apr 2017 20:32:00 +0000

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Russia Questions Dominate First 100 Days Of Trump's Presidency

Tue, 25 Apr 2017 20:32:00 +0000

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Congress Returns Amid Pressure To Revisit Derailed Health Care Efforts

Tue, 25 Apr 2017 20:32:00 +0000

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North Carolina Pastor Criticizes Trump's First 100 Days As 'A Disaster'

Tue, 25 Apr 2017 20:32:00 +0000

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Trump Pledges To Confront Anti-Semitism At Holocaust Remembrance Event

Tue, 25 Apr 2017 20:32:00 +0000

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Jay Dickey, Arkansas Congressman Who Blocked Gun Research, Dies At 77

Tue, 25 Apr 2017 20:32:00 +0000

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Years after US Iraq intervention, Yazidis are still seeking safety on a mountain

Tue, 25 Apr 2017 20:22:01 +0000

Wadha Khalaf sits cross-legged on the rough ground, throwing dough between her hands like she’s done it a million times before. The 45-year-old mother of 13 is a new arrival among the thousands of displaced Yazidis living on top of Mount Sinjar, in northern Iraq — a sacred place for people of her faith. But it is not the first time she has sought safety here. Nearly three years after fleeing a murderous rampage by ISIS fighters, Khalaf is part of a wave of Yazidi families who have been forced to escape again, this time because of fighting between groups that have sworn to protect them. “It has made me feel like we would never feel happy again in our life,” she says as she piles the bread high. Wadha Khalaf makes bread for her family on Mount Sinjar. This is the second time she and her family have had to flee up the mountain for safety. Credit: Richard Hall/PRI Fleeing to the mountain This tent city on the mountain where Khalaf is taking shelter has been here since 2014, when thousands

So Much Love! South Florida Food Inspires Almost 600 Edible Odes

Tue, 25 Apr 2017 20:08:56 +0000

Who says this is not a town of foodies? Poets of all ages answered WLRN and O,Miami's call and submitted 595 Edible Odes to the foods that make South Florida home. From March 20 to April 21, we received poems of 40 words of less dedicated to everything from kumquats to anchovies. Forty finalists have been selected to read at Vizcaya Village on Wednesday, April 26 at a feature event from the O, Miami Poetry Festival. You can get your tickets here and check out some of the finalists here . What did we learn along the way? That food is a big inspiration for Miami-Dade County residents, who submitted 463 odes. We also received 96 poems from Broward County, 24 from Palm Beach, five from Monroe and seven from cities outside South Florida (Hi friends in Brooklyn, NY; Newnan, GA; Oviedo, FL; Apollo Beach, Fl; Seffner, FL; St. Petersburg, Fl and Chihuahua, Mexico!) South Florida might be the land of coladas and croquetas, but pizza still reigns (even if by a narrow margin). There are 21 Edible

To understand climate change, look at it from a mussel's perspective

Tue, 25 Apr 2017 20:02:08 +0000

The phrase “climate change” triggers images of a huge, global phenomenon. Rising seas. Drought. Ocean acidification. But it's actually experienced on a much smaller scale, by individual plants, animals and people. And most of the world’s organisms experience it much differently than humans do. “As humans, we have this really biased view of the world. Well over 95 percent of the organisms on Earth, they’re completely dependent on the ambient environment for their temperature,” says Northeastern University marine biologist Brian Helmuth. Brian Helmuth, Northeastern University marine biologist.  Credit: Carolyn Beeler Many of those organisms are stuck in one place for most of their lives and depend on ocean currents for food and oxygen. Helmuth has built his career on trying to better understand how mussels experience temperature and other environmental changes, and he argues it’s essential to look beyond our own human perspective when thinking about climate change. If we don’t, he says,

PriceCheck: The Cost Of Health Care In The Sunshine Economy

Tue, 25 Apr 2017 19:56:19 +0000

Sometime before the end of this year, the state of Florida will have a new website with health care prices for patients. It's the result of a 2016 law and a five-year, $6.1 million state contract that was finalized earlier this month. The biggest health insurance providers in Florida are expected to contribute prices to the website: Florida Blue, Aetna, United Healthcare, AvMed and others. Under the law, these health insurers will have to share the prices they pay to Florida health care providers on behalf of their patients. These millions of prices for various procedures will go toward Florida’s most serious effort yet toward price transparency for health care. " I am not intoxicated with price transparency," said Health Care Cost Institute Executive Director David Newman. "It is not a silver bullet." The nonprofit group based in Washington, D. C. will build the website for the state of Florida. Pricing Data The institute already runs a site -- Guroo.com -- where it uses health-care

The Research Argument For NYC's Preschool Plan For 3-Year-Olds

Tue, 25 Apr 2017 19:39:00 +0000

Mayor Bill de Blasio this week pushed ahead with plans to make New York City one of nation's few big cities to offer free, full-day preschool for all 3-year-olds­­. The plan would serve, when fully rolled out over several years , more than 60,000 children a year. It builds on one of de Blasio's signature accomplishments of his first term – universal pre-K for 4-year-olds. A few places, including Washington, D.C., have made a serious effort to fund preschool for 3-year-olds. New York City's plan, when fully realized, would be the most ambitious such effort to date. To achieve this goal the mayor says he'll need significant help from the state and federal government: upwards of $700 million dollars . And he faces the political tussles that will surely accompany his financing challenges. The mayor is running for re-election. But his proposal builds on widespread consensus that high-quality pre-K programs can have a huge positive impact on the lives of children – especially low-income ones

Difficult People - Sarah Elliston

Tue, 25 Apr 2017 19:24:34 +0000

(4-25-2017, originally aired 1/4/2017) Today’s Topical Currents is with a self-proclaimed “difficult person,” Sarah Elliston. She says most “hard to get along-with” people have no idea they’re such. Clueless. Once she saw the light, she changed . . . and began to help other “difficult” types take on different exteriors. Perhaps her message will resonate with . . . YOU.