News

Americas
10:48 am
Tue August 20, 2013

Samsung Under Fire For Alleged Brazil Labor Violations

A man holds up a Samsung S4 smartphone against a video screen. Samsung is accused of labor violations in Brazil, home to its largest manufacturing operation.
Dado Ruvic Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Tue August 20, 2013 9:15 am

We told you recently about new allegations of violations at three Chinese factories that make Apple's popular iPhones and iPads. Now, we have more allegations of labor violations – this time against Apple's main rival, Samsung, and its operations in Brazil.

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People
10:47 am
Tue August 20, 2013

Crime Novelist Elmore Leonard Dies

Writer Elmore Leonard died Tuesday at the age of 87.
Dermot Cleary Chasen

Originally published on Wed August 21, 2013 12:03 pm

Elmore Leonard, the crime novelist whose best-sellers included Get Shorty, Freaky Deaky and Maximum Bob, died Tuesday morning at his Detroit-area home, according to statements from his longtime researcher Gregg Sutter on Twitter and to The Detroit News

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Climate Change
8:34 am
Tue August 20, 2013

How Extreme Australian Rains Made Global Sea Levels Drop

Heavy rains in Australia in 2010 and 2011 flooded farmland and homes, like these in the Queensland state town of St. George, seen here on Feb. 7. 2011.
Sally Nicol Rigney AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue August 20, 2013 9:19 am

Global sea level has been rising as a result of global warming, but in 2010 and 2011, sea level actually fell by about a quarter of an inch.

Scientists now say they know why: It has to do with extreme weather in Australia.

The sea level drop coincided with some of the worst flooding in that continent's history. Dozens of people died and torrents washed away houses and cars, forcing thousands from their homes.

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Politics
7:00 am
Tue August 20, 2013

Q&A: The Effort To Make Medical Marijuana Legal In Florida

The proposal to legalize medical marijuana in Florida includes a state database that would track users, caregivers and growers.
Credit TheNewsHerald/Flickr

Organizers who want medical marijuana legalized in Florida have completed the first step toward getting a proposed constitutional amendment on next year's ballot. 

The United For Care campaign says medical marijuana is legally providing relief and therapeutic value to residents in 19 states and the District of Columbia, so why not Florida?

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Transportation
4:21 pm
Mon August 19, 2013

Cyclists Rally In Miami Beach To Remind Drivers Of Traffic Safety

Cyclists hold signs and line 16th Street in Miami Beach.
Credit Karelia Arauz

On Saturday, August 16, a group of friends and supporters gathered for a "Cyclist Respect Rally" on the bike lane of 16th Street near the intersection with Jefferson Avenue in Miami Beach.

Along the street, they stood in a line between the car lane and the bike lane to create a human barrier where event coordinator Jessica Hunter was hit by a car earlier this month.

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Environment
8:39 am
Mon August 19, 2013

How Artificial City Lights Are Killing Baby Sea Turtles

One in every three sea turtle hatchlings disorient to artificial light in Broward County
Staci-Lee Sherwood, Sea Turtle Oversight Protection

South Florida is at the height of sea turtle nesting season, the time of year when thousands of turtle hatchlings burst out of their nests and instinctively use moonlight to guide them out to the ocean.

Although conservationists have made progress in dimming the lights along the beach, they're still running up against a form of light pollution that's hard to control.

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Politics
10:24 am
Fri August 16, 2013

Medical Marijuana Group Collects +100K Petitions, Slows Drive Until Florida Supreme Court Rules

Credit Vlado / Flickr CC

A medical marijuana group says it has cleared its first major hurdle to get a proposed constitutional amendment on the 2014 ballot: Collecting enough voter signatures to trigger Florida Supreme Court review of the initiative's language.

Since July, People United for Medical Marijuana collected at least 110,000 signatures -- well in excess of the 68,314 needed to start the review, said the group's treasurer and director, Ben Pollara.

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Americas
7:51 am
Fri August 16, 2013

Can Quinoa Farming Go Global Without Leaving Andeans Behind?

A man cleans quinoa grain in Pacoma, Bolivia.
Juan Karita AP

Originally published on Fri August 16, 2013 3:53 pm

I ate quinoa-and-turkey chili in a cafeteria today, which, when you think about it, is pretty amazing. Rarely does an entire culture, almost overnight, adopt an entirely new food.

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Crime
9:00 am
Thu August 15, 2013

Florida Ranks Third In Human Trafficking But Can't Prosecute Many Cases

The Florida Attorney General's Office says Florida is third in the nation for the number of human trafficking cases. 27 million people are enslaved worldwide, and most victims are female.
Credit Andrea Waldrop/flickr

Three children in Tampa were among 105 children rescued nationwide last month during a FBI sex trafficking sting operation.

“Operation Cross Country” focused on underage victims of prostitution and led to more than 150 arrests.

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Business
8:29 am
Thu August 15, 2013

Team Walks Florida's Beaches With Google Eye

Originally published on Thu August 15, 2013 6:44 am

Google Street View cars have been photographing roads and highways for years, but how about this: Google Beach View. Florida is paying a pair of intrepid trekkers to walk all 825 miles of the state's beachfront carrying the Google Eye camera in a 40 pound backpack — blue orb sticking out the top.

Civil Rights
3:08 pm
Wed August 14, 2013

Pentagon Details Plan To Extend Benefits To Same-Sex Spouses

The Pentagon said Wednesday that it will extend benefits to same-sex spouses of service members and civilian employees.
AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed August 14, 2013 1:37 pm

The Department of Defense announced Wednesday that it is extending full benefits to the same-sex spouses of service members and civilian employees.

The move is an effort to bring Pentagon policies in line with a Supreme Court decision that found the Defense of Marriage Act was unconstitutional.

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Urbanism
9:00 am
Wed August 14, 2013

Decision Helps Walmart Inch Closer To Miami's Midtown

The design plans for the proposed Walmart in Midtown have passed muster with Miami's planning director.
Courtesy of City of Miami Planning Department

Miami’s planning director has given Walmart the green light to build a new store in the city's Midtown district. However, Walmart still has more hoops to jump through before it can carve out a place in Midtown.

It’s been a two-year battle for the retailer associated with boxy, suburban stores to win the right to build in the trendy, urban neighborhood.

Walmart can now apply for a building permit since Miami’s Planning Director Francisco Garcia decided the company’s plans meet the local zoning code.

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Americas
8:40 am
Wed August 14, 2013

Top Foreign Real Estate Buyers In Miami Are Brazilians

Originally published on Wed August 14, 2013 9:16 am

Transcript

GREG ALLEN, BYLINE: I'm Greg Allen, in Miami. To gauge the impact of Brazilians here, you only need to go downtown and look up.

(SOUNDBITE OF MACHINERY)

ALLEN: Just a few years after the housing downturn, in Miami, once again, cranes and construction crews are hard at work building high-rise condominiums. Thousands of units are going up all over town, and many are being built for Brazilians.

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Americas
8:26 am
Wed August 14, 2013

Brazilians Flood To U.S. On Massive Shopping Sprees

Camila DeSouza, a 17-year-old Brazilian, shops for shoes at a mall in Sunrise, Fla., on July 16, 2012. During their winter, Brazilians flock to the U.S., mainly to shop. Even with the cost of airfare figured in, many products are far cheaper in the U.S. than in Brazil.
Charles Trainor Jr. Miami Herald/MCT /Landov

Originally published on Wed August 14, 2013 7:26 pm

What's the busiest U.S. Consulate in the world? If you guessed in Mexico or China, you'd be wrong.

It's actually in Brazil, Sao Paulo to be exact. The consulate there is giving a record number of visas to Brazilians who want to visit the U.S. And that is giving a boost to the economies of cities like Miami.

On a recent day, Tiago Dalcien and his girlfriend stand outside the U.S. Consulate in Sao Paulo clutching their passports and other documents. He is a 30-year-old banker; his girlfriend is a doctor.

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Transportation
5:17 pm
Tue August 13, 2013

Justice Sues To Block US Airways-American Airlines Merger

A US Airways plane rests near two American Airlines jets at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport last year. The combined carrier would be named American Airlines.
Jim Watson AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue August 13, 2013 2:33 pm

A merger of American Airlines and US Airways would violate U.S. antitrust law, the Justice Department, six state attorneys general and the District of Columbia allege in a lawsuit filed Tuesday in Washington, D.C.

Bloomberg reports that Justice alleges the merger would lead to "less competition in the industry and higher prices for consumers." The wire service explains:

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