National News

Andrew Madoff, Son Of Disgraced Financier Bernard Madoff, Dies At 48

Andrew Madoff, the surviving son of disgraced financier Bernard Madoff, died today of cancer at the age of 48 in New York, his lawyer said.

"Andrew Madoff has lost his courageous battle against mantle cell lymphoma," lawyer Martin Flumenbaum said in a statement quoted by Reuters. "He died peacefully at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center on September 3, 2014, surrounded by his loving family."

So many big data breaches — not to mention celebrity data hacks — have happened in the past year that we're reacting to hacks with a shrug.

I Feel Nothing: The Home Depot Hack And Data Breach Fatigue

How many megahacks have we consumers faced in recent memory?

Associate Attorney General Tony West, at podium, speaks at the Justice Department in Washington on Aug. 21. West is preparing to announce he is leaving government for a job in the private sector.

No. 3 Justice Department Official To Depart For The Private Sector

Updated at 3:20 p.m. ET

Associate Attorney General Tony West, the third in command at the U.S. Justice Department, is preparing to announce he will leave government for a job in the private sector, two sources familiar with the decision tell NPR.

In a statement, the Justice Department confirmed West's planned departure.

Pro-Russian rebels prepare their weapons in the eastern city of Donetsk on Aug. 31. Russia's role in Ukraine has raised tensions between Russia and NATO to their highest level since the Soviet breakup more than two decades ago.

Can NATO Find A Way To Contain Russia?

Ever since the Cold War ended, the armies of NATO and Russia have been moving warily toward each other while their political positions keep moving further apart.

Twelve Eastern European countries have joined NATO since the Soviet breakup, and NATO is now on the verge of creating a rapid-reaction force for the region. Russia has sent troops into two former Soviet republics, Ukraine and Georgia, that have relationships with NATO, but not membership.

People shop in a Miami grocery store on July 8. USDA says that despite the drop in unemployment, the number of food insecure Americans has not declined because higher food prices and inflation last year offset the benefits of a brighter job market.

Millions Struggle To Get Enough To Eat Despite Jobs Returning

The number of U.S. families that struggled to get enough to eat last year was essentially unchanged from the year before, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture's latest report on "food security."

The agency says that about 17.5 million families — or 1 in 7 — were food insecure last year. That means that at some point during the year, the household had trouble feeding all of its members. In 2012, the number was 17.6 million.

Bucking Legal Trend, Federal Judge Upholds Louisiana's Ban On Gay Marriage

Bucking a long judicial trend, a federal judge ruled on Wednesday that Louisiana's ban on gay marriage is constitutional.

U.S. District Judge Martin Feldman acknowledged that his ruling "runs counter to all but two other federal decisions," but he goes on to say that other judges went too far in their opinions.

Artist Gilbert Baker, designer of the Rainbow Flag, is draped with the flag while holding a banner that reads "Boycott Homophobia" before the start of the St. Patrick's Day parade in March in New York.

Organizers Of New York St. Paddy's Day Parade Lift Ban On Gay Groups

For the first time in its centuries-old history, the St. Patrick's Day parade in New York City will include a gay group marching under its own banner.

The organizers of the world's largest parade of its kind said Wednesday that they were dropping their ban on the participation of gay groups.

The Associated Press reports:

Lorenzo Dorr works at the grass-roots level to help deliver health services in far-flung areas of Liberia. In July, he was on his way to meet with community health providers in Konobo, one of Liberia's most remote rural districts.

A Liberian Health Worker Aims To Keep Ebola Out Of His Rural Region

Lorenzo Dorr is facing one of the most important challenges of his career as a Liberian health outreach worker: trying to keep Ebola from taking hold in the southeastern part of the country.

In the weeks ahead, Dorr will be talking with our blog, Goats and Soda, about his mission.

Theodore Wafer (center) and his attorney Mack Carpenter sit in the back of the courtroom Jan. 15 before his arraignment in Detroit in the shooting death of Renisha McBride.

Detroit Man Sentenced To At Least 17 Years In Porch Shooting Case

A Detroit man convicted of second-degree murder over the shooting death of an unarmed black teenager has been sentenced to at least 17 years in prison.

The AP reports that before the judge handed down the sentence, Theodore Wafer, who is white, apologized to the family of 19-year-old Renisha McBride.

"I will carry that guilt and sorrow forever," Wafer said according to the AP.

Locusts Eat The Crops Of Madagascar — And Each Other, Too

For the third year in a row, skies over Madagascar are black with millions of locusts — the insects of biblical fame that gobble up crops and ravage landscapes, mostly in countries where people barely get by.

This swarm, of red locusts, has come together to breed and feed. In rural parts of Madagascar, the bugs are taking a huge toll on rice and maize. Last week, a heat wave drew them to the capital city of Antananrivo as well, making for an apocalyptic urban scene (see video).