Tue November 1, 2011

Inmates May Be Freed By Crack Cocaine Case Review

Originally published on Tue November 1, 2011 6:07 pm

Across the country on Tuesday, federal judges began reviewing the prison sentences of thousands of men and women jailed on crack cocaine charges. Many inmates could be released or see their sentences sharply reduced.

Congress voted last year to ease federal sentencing guidelines for crack cocaine. But a decision this summer to revisit old drug cases has sparked new controversy.

Some History

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Tue November 1, 2011
The Salt

When Lactose Intolerance Makes You Scream For No Ice Cream

Originally published on Wed November 2, 2011 2:18 pm

A customer studies a display of milk and dairy products at Bryan's Grocery in San Francisco in March.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Babies digest milk with ease, but it can get harder with age, unless you picked up a gene from your northern European ancestors. Between 30 million to 50 million American adults can't crank out enough of the enzyme that digests lactose, or milk sugar, which can turn a bowl of ice cream into a roller coaster of stomach discomfort.

Lactose-intolerant people who want to indulge in dairy without suffering the consequences have two options: take supplements of the enzyme lactase, or buy lactose-free dairy products, which are made by adding lactase to break down the milk sugar.

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Tue November 1, 2011

Greek Inaction Or Democracy In Action?

Originally published on Tue November 1, 2011 10:12 pm

Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou leaves a news conference after a meeting with European Council President Herman Van Rompuy on Oct. 13 at EU headquarters in Brussels. EU leaders were surprised and angered Tuesday when Papandreou said he would place a debt restructuring proposal before Greek voters.

John Thys AFP/Getty Images

Greece, the birthplace of democracy, may be suffering from an overdose of public input.

The decision by Greece's government to hold a January referendum on its deal with the European Union to restructure public debt has thrown the pact — and investors — onto shaky ground. Stocks around the world took a sharp dive on Tuesday's news, and other European leaders left little doubt over how they felt.

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Tue November 1, 2011
'Darkhorse' Battalion And The Afghan War

As Casualties Mounted, So Did Marine Families' Fears

Amy Murray at home with her daughter Harper in Oceanside, Calif. Her husband, Capt. Patrick Murray, with the Darkhorse battalion, returned home from Afghanistan, in April 2011; 25 Marines from his unit did not.

David Gilkey NPR

A year ago, nearly 1,000 U.S. Marine officers and enlisted men of the 3rd Battalion, 5th Regiment deployed to restive Helmand province in southern Afghanistan. By the time their tour ended in April 2011, the Marines of the 3/5 — known as "Darkhorse" — suffered the highest casualty rate of any Marine unit during the past 10 years of war. This week, NPR tells the story of this unit's seven long months at war — both in Afghanistan and back home.

Third of seven parts

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Tue November 1, 2011
The Two-Way

To Assure Japan, Official Drinks Water From Fukushima Puddle

Originally published on Tue November 1, 2011 3:08 pm

Japan's Parliamentary Secretary for the Cabinet Office Yasuhiro Sonoda drinks a glass of decontaminated water taken from puddles inside the buildings housing reactors 5 and 6 at the Fukushima No. 1 plant.

Jiji Press AFP/Getty Images

He had assured Japan that the water inside the nuclear reactors crippled after the tsunami was safe. Yasuhiro Sonoda, a Japanese MP, said he so sure of the safety, he'd drink a glass of decontaminated water from the Fukushima reactor in front of reporters.

Monday, he made good on his promise. Here's the video:

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Tue November 1, 2011

Kardashians Made Bank From Wedding

Guy Raz speaks with Leslie Bruce, senior writer the Hollywood Reporter, about the money behind reality star Kim Kardashian's wedding to basketball player Kris Humphries. The reportedly multimillion dollar wedding actually earned the Kardashian family money through various deals with entertainment television and magazines. But Kardashian filed for divorce Monday after 72 days of marriage.


Tue November 1, 2011
National Security

Senators Grill Officials On ATF Operations

Senators grill a high-level Justice Department official about why they didn't do or say more about two Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosive gun trafficking operations that resulted in hundreds of guns going missing in Mexico.


Tue November 1, 2011
Presidential Race

Rick Perry Video Goes Viral

Video of a speech Texas Gov. and GOP presidential candidate Rick Perry delivered in New Hampshire last week has gone viral.


Tue November 1, 2011
Book Reviews

Book Review: 'Mrs. Nixon'

11/22/63 is the latest book from author Stephen King.


Tue November 1, 2011
Around the Nation

'Buy Here Pay Here' Lots Target Those With Bad Credit

Robert Siegel speaks with Ken Bensinger, business reporter for the Los Angeles Times, about used car sales lots known as "Buy Here Pay Here" dealerships. Bensinger has written a three-part investigative series on this type of business. He tells Robert that "Buy Here Pay Here" lots are very common, and they prey on people with low incomes and bad credit. They charge high prices and very steep interest rates. And in many cases the buyer defaults on the loan, and the car is repossessed and resold again and again.