The story of the woman famously referred to as a "welfare queen" in Ronald Reagan's 1976 campaign is far more bizarre and unsettling than the stereotype she became the emblem for, as a stellar long read from Slate reveals.
President Obama and his family are vacationing in Hawaii and Congress is in recess until early next year. As members left town, it was in a less contentious mood than in the last several years. But next year brings challenges that are likely to test whatever good will is now in the air.
People often question why some pronounce the word "ask" as "ax." We axed several linguists, and it turns out that "ax" has long been an accepted form of the word, used by English speakers for more than a thousand years.
Iran's leaders are active on Facebook and Twitter, and frequently reach out in English via social media. Both services remain officially banned in Iran. But journalist Robin Wright, an expert on Iran, calls their online overtures "the most ambitious public diplomacy campaign since Iran's 1979 revolution."
The camaraderie that veterans talk about used to be true in Congress too — partly because many members had served in the military. But today's Congress has very few veterans in its ranks, about 20 percent, compared with more than three-quarters in the post-Vietnam era. What does that number mean politically.
A partial government shutdown is looming. To discuss the situation, David Greene and Steve Inskeep talk to contributor Cokie Roberts, NPR's Mara Liasson, All Things Considered host Audie Cornish and Robert Costa, who covers Congress for the National Review.
President Obama heads to New York on Monday for the annual meeting of the U.N. General Assembly. The international meeting comes as, back in Washington, the U.S. Congress is once again heading into a possible government shutdown over spending priorities.
The U.S. government moved this week to seize a Manhattan skyscraper said to be secretly owned by Iran. To discuss how such targeting of Iran's financial assets fits into the broader strategy of ending its nuclear program, Renee Montagne talks to former White House and Treasury Department official Juan Zarate.