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Missing radioactive material may pose 'dirty bomb' threat: IAEA

IAEAAbout 140 cases of missing or unauthorized use of nuclear and radioactive material were reported to the U.N. atomic agency in 2013, highlighting the challenges facing world leaders at a nuclear security summit next week.

Any loss or theft of highly enriched uranium, plutonium or different types of radioactive sources is potentially serious as al Qaeda-style militants could try to use them to make a crude nuclear device or a so-called "dirty bomb", experts say.

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U.S. says Toyota to pay $1.2 billion over safety issues

ToyotaToyota Motor Corp will pay a record $1.2 billion to resolve a criminal investigation into its handling of consumer complaints over safety issues, the U.S. Justice Department said on Wednesday.

Toyota admitted it misled American consumers by concealing and making deceptive statements about two safety issues, each of which caused a type of unintended acceleration, the Justice Department said.

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Robert Parry: A Shadow US Foreign Policy

NEDThe National Endowment for Democracy, a central part of Ronald Reagan’s propaganda war against the Soviet Union three decades ago, has evolved into a $100 million U.S. government-financed slush fund that generally supports a neocon agenda often at cross-purposes with the Obama administration’s foreign policy.

NED is one reason why there is so much confusion about the administration’s policies toward attempted ousters of democratically elected leaders in Ukraine and Venezuela. Some of the non-government organizations (or NGOs) supporting these rebellions trace back to NED and its U.S. government money, even as Secretary of State John Kerry and other senior officials insist the U.S. is not behind these insurrections.

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Ohio cuts early voting method favored by blacks

Ohio voting cutsOhio Secretary of State Jon Husted announced Tuesday he is cutting early voting on Sundays and weekday evenings, dealing another blow to the voting rights effort in the nation’s most pivotal swing state.

Husted’s change would spell doom for a voting method that’s popular among African-Americans in Ohio and elsewhere. Many churches and community groups lead “Souls to the Polls” drives after church on the Sunday before the election.

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Lawsuit brings to light secrecy statements required by Halliburton & KBR

HalliburtonOne of the nation’s largest government contractors requires employees seeking to report fraud to sign internal confidentiality statements barring them from speaking to anyone about their allegations, including government investigators and prosecutors, according to a complaint filed Wednesday and corporate documents obtained by The Washington Post.

Attorneys for a whistleblower suing Halliburton Co. and its former subsidiary, Kellogg Brown & Root, said the statements violate the federal False Claims Act and other laws designed to shield whistleblowers.

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I sold my house and traveled the US giving socks to the homeless

homeless in the USI'm just a regular guy. I've been a special education teacher most of my life. I've had great moments and crummy ones, including a very low period after a divorce. But as I neared retirement, I looked at life and everyone around me differently.

One night as my friend Craig and I were walking to the entrance of the Chicago Blackhawks game, I had a revelation. My friend and I have been going to the games for a decade, and the same homeless man was always stands at the same corner holding his cup asking for change and is polite as he can be. If he receives nothing he still says "God Bless You, have a good night." I know there are many homeless like this in many cities.

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Controversial Catholic group apologizes to sex-abuse victims

Legio of ChristThe Legion of Christ Catholic order has for the first time apologised to the victims of sexual abuse carried out by its founder, Father Marcial Maciel. In a statement, the order condemned the "reprehensible and objectively immoral behaviour" of the Mexico-born priest.

Father Maciel led the order from its foundation in 1941 until 2006, when Pope Benedict ordered him to retire.

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