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Top Stories: Trump To Visit FBI; Staggering Global Health Care Costs

Fri, 12/15/2017 - 05:48

Also: Australia criticizes the Catholic Church in a sex abuse report; the GOP tax bill could hurt affordable housing; and scientists think they know why a skydiver was able to break the sound barrier.

Top British Officer: Russia May Be Able To Cut Undersea Cables

Fri, 12/15/2017 - 05:28

British Air Chief Marshal Sir Stuart Peach says the Kremlin's improved naval capabilities pose a risk to communications and Internet cables that would be an economic catastrophe if severed.

(Image credit: Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)

After Months Of Withering Criticism, Trump Prepares To Visit FBI

Fri, 12/15/2017 - 05:00

President Trump is preparing to appear at a graduation ceremony for a new class of FBI employees Friday. The visit will be complicated, given months of blistering criticism of the agency on Twitter.

(Image credit: Yuri Gripas/AFP/Getty Images)

'Necesitamos La Música': Puerto Ricans Recovering From Maria Embrace The Arts

Fri, 12/15/2017 - 05:00

Many Puerto Ricans are still without electricity and basic services three months after Hurricane Maria. Some are prioritizing song, dance and celebration to feel more at home again.

(Image credit: Ryan Caron King/WNPR)

U.S. Army Green Berets Accused From Within Of Lowering Standards

Fri, 12/15/2017 - 05:00

The Green Berets community is in a bitter internal debate over whether standards have been lowered for the U.S. Army elite force.

(Image credit: David Gilkey/NPR)

How The House Tax Overhaul Bill Could Hurt Affordable Housing

Fri, 12/15/2017 - 04:54

Builders of affordable housing say the House Republican tax plan has a poison pill inside it that removes a tax incentive crucial for about half of the affordable housing units that get built.

(Image credit: Alex Brandon/AP)

Catholic Church Singled Out In Australian Sex Abuse Report

Fri, 12/15/2017 - 02:52

A royal commission recommends that the Australian Catholic Church ask the Vatican to lift its celibacy requirement for clergy and require that evidence of abuse revealed in confession be reported.

(Image credit: Nina Dermawan#145440/Moment Editorial/Getty Images)

Federal Investigation Finds 'Significant Issues' At Immigrant Detention Centers

Thu, 12/14/2017 - 21:09

An inspector general's report says immigrant detainees' rights, health and safety are compromised in four facilities. In response, ICE agrees to strengthen oversight and improve conditions.

(Image credit: Kate Brumback/ASSOCIATED PRESS)

Teen's Dramatic Video, Revealing His Acceptance By Harvard, Charms Internet

Thu, 12/14/2017 - 20:14

"All the hard work was worth it," Ayrton Little said. The video has been viewed more than 6 million times.

(Image credit: Bloomberg via Getty Images)

Nephews Of Venezuelan First Lady Sentenced In U.S. Drug Smuggling Case

Thu, 12/14/2017 - 18:38

Efrain Antonio Campo Flores and his cousin Franqui Francisco Flores de Freitas received 18 years in prison.

(Image credit: Elizabeth Williams/AP)

After Maria, Puerto Rico Struggles Under The Weight Of Its Own Garbage

Thu, 12/14/2017 - 18:29

Even before Maria hit, most of the island's landfills were filled beyond capacity and nearly half had EPA closure orders. The storm generated millions of cubic yards of waste and debris.

(Image credit: José Jiménez-Tirado for NPR)

Firefighter Dies in California Wildfire, Now The 4th Largest In The State's History

Thu, 12/14/2017 - 17:48

The Thomas fire has claimed more than 242,000 acres and over 700 homes. Officials say it won't be contained until January.

(Image credit: Mike Eliason/Santa Barbara County via AP)

Poll: Americans Overwhelmingly Support 'Zero Tolerance' On Sexual Harassment

Thu, 12/14/2017 - 16:47

Republicans, independents and Democrats alike agree that "a zero-tolerance policy for sexual harassment is essential to bringing about change in our society," according to a new NPR/Ipsos poll.

(Image credit: Brittany Mayes/NPR)

What Are The Two Health Bills Sen. Susan Collins Wants Congress To Act On?

Thu, 12/14/2017 - 16:45

Maine Sen. Susan Collins voted for the Senate GOP tax plan despite its repeal of the individual mandate because GOP leadership promised her a vote on her reinsurance bill, and a vote on legislation to restore some payments to insurers. But it's doubtful getting those provisions enacted would mitigate the damage to exchanges from the mandate repeal.

Putin Says He Hopes For Better U.S.-Russia Relations

Thu, 12/14/2017 - 16:45

Russian President Vladimir Putin talked of his hopes for better relations with the U.S. during his annual press conference in Moscow on Thursday – but the nearly four hour marathon was dominated by domestic issues, ahead of next year's Presidential election.

How The 'Village Movement' Is Being Adapted In Rural Areas

Thu, 12/14/2017 - 16:45

Americans are maintaining independence thanks to something called Villages — local membership organizations that provide access to services that help older adults stay in their homes as they age. But how is that model being adapted when it comes to mountain communities, like those of rural Plumas County in northern California?

European Union Leaders To Review Britain's Brexit Progress

Thu, 12/14/2017 - 16:45

European Union Leaders will meet in Brussels on Friday to decide if Britain has made sufficient progress in its attempts to leave the EU. If Britain has mad enough progress, the two sides can start talking about their future relationship.

The Most Important Economic Indicator That Everyone Ignored

Thu, 12/14/2017 - 16:45

This week on All Things Considered, we're sharing a series of "Highly Specific Superlatives." Cardiff Garcia from NPR's podcast The Indicator talks about the most important economic indicator in 2017 that everyone ignored: global trade.

Trump Administration Proposes Rule That Could Change Distribution Of Tips

Thu, 12/14/2017 - 16:45

The Labor Department wants to change its Tip Credit Rule, to give employers more leeway to redistribute tips received by their employees. But the proposal has its critics.

How Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke's Views Have Changed Under Trump

Thu, 12/14/2017 - 16:45

As a Montana politician, Ryan Zinke, had a reputation as a conservationist conservative. That's changed since he became Secretary of the Interior. NPR's Kelly McEvers talks with Outside Magazine's Elliott Woods about his profile: "Ryan Zinke Is Trump's Attack Dog on the Environment."