National News

Science Crowns Mozzarella The King Of Pizza Cheese

Any way you slice it, Americans are obsessed with pizza. One in eight of us are noshing it on any given day, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. And the average American consumes pizza about 39 times a year, according to the NPD Group, a market research firm.

The signature of a great American-style pizza is not the toppings du jour but the cheese: hot, gooey mozzarella, with big, dark splotches of caramelization.

Afghan election commission worker sorts ballots for an audit.

Both Afghan Candidates Pull Observers From U.N. Audit Of Votes

The Afghan election process was thrown further into disarray on Wednesday, when both candidates pulled their observers from a U.N.-led audit of the country's ballots.

The Associated Press reports that Abdullah Abdullah was the first to withdraw his observer, saying the process was full of fraud. The news service adds:

What's on the menu at Tim Hortons? Coffee and doughnuts --” and also sandwiches and pastries.

Canadians Fret Merger With Burger King Will Change Tim Hortons

Never heard of Tim Hortons, the Canadian coffee-and-doughnut chain that U.S. fast-food chain Burger King recently announced it was buying? In Canada, that's like asking an American, "What's Starbucks?"

The brand affectionately called Timmy's is everywhere in Canada. Tim Hortons has more than 3,000 stores across Canada as well as about 600 in the U.S.

Redemption Hospital, in Liberia's capital of Monrovia, offers free medical care. After several health care workers were infected with Ebola, people have been afraid to come.

Why Patients Aren't Coming To Liberia's Redemption Hospital

Redemption Hospital is a government-run facility in Liberia's capital city of Monrovia.

It offers care to all who come, free of charge.

Only now, patients aren't coming. It's rainy season — and malaria season. Tita Horace, head nurse of the pediatric ward, says her department usually sees 25 patients a day this time of year. Today, there are only five.

The sick are staying away, she explains, because they are afraid. "Some of them are afraid that maybe when they come they will get in contact with [an] Ebola patient. So they don't want to come to the hospital."

American Eric Harroun threatened Bashar Assad on Facebook and YouTube. He spent six weeks fighting with a rebel army, a journey that did not end well for him.

U.S. Officials Try To Gauge Threat From American Fighters In Syria

The heyday of "war tourism" was probably the 1930s, when a host of intellectuals and artists left the U.S. to bear witness to the Spanish Civil War. Ernest Hemingway wrote about it. George Orwell, just to name another, actually fought in it.

Regular people from all walks of life showed up on those fields of battle as well, in much the same way young men — both Muslim and non-Muslim — are streaming to Syria today. The modern-day result: Instead of newspaper articles and Homage to Catalonia, there are literally hundreds of Facebook entries that chronicle the fight.

Commentator Frank Deford advises the White House press office not to let the president be photographed in a golf cart again.

Golf May Be Too Polite A Sport For Presidential Politics

There's been much criticism of the president lately, even within his own party, that he's too detached and withdrawn, not combative enough anymore. This can be explained completely with a sports analogy: We elected a basketball president, but then we ended up with a golf president.

Los Angeles Unified School District Superintendent John Deasy exchanged multiple emails with executives at Pearson PLC about the potential for working together.

The LA School iPad Scandal: What You Need To Know

A massive expansion of classroom technology has come to a grinding halt in Los Angeles.

The LA Unified School District had planned to buy some 700,000 iPads for its students and teachers. The Apple tablets would include learning software built by publishing giant Pearson. But Superintendent John Deasy announced earlier this week he is canceling the contract and restarting the bidding process.

Unifi makes Repreve, a thread that comes from plastic waste bottles and leftover polyester scraps, at its Yadkinville, N.C., facility.

Driven By Climate Change, Cotton Buyers Look For Alternatives

VF Corp. is one of the biggest clothing companies you might not have heard of. But its brands include Lee and Wrangler jeans, Timberland shoes and The North Face, and it also makes uniforms for police and major league sports teams.

It's also a large purchaser of cotton. "We buy roughly 1 percent of the cotton available in the world," says Letitia Webster, VF's senior director of sustainability. Her job is to both reduce the company's greenhouse gas footprint and reduce its risks from climate change.

From her cubicle at Vital Decisions in Cherry Hill, N.J., Kate Schleicher counsels people who are seriously ill.

Hello, May I Help You Plan Your Final Months?

Imagine you're at home. You have cancer. You just had another round of chemo, and the phone rings.

"My name is Kate. I'm a health care counselor," the gentle voice of the caller says from her cubicle in Cherry Hill, N.J.

This is not a typical telemarketing call. She wants to talk with you about your serious illness and, eventually, if you're ready to think about it, what you'd like to have happen at the end of your life.

The MD Brush has an unusual grip that automatically angles the brush head at a 45-degree angle.

Build A Toothbrush, Change The World. Or Not

Some people dream of climbing Mount Everest or riding a bicycle across the country. Mike Davidson's dream has been to create the perfect toothbrush, and now he thinks he's done it.

The saga of this brush tells a lot about the passion and persistence to take an idea and turn it into a product.

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