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  • Real Estate: The Color of Sales

    The housing slump notwithstanding, sellers of ecofriendly homes are seeing green. "Our local real-estate market is in the tank, but we're hiring people left and right to try to keep up with demand," says David Stitt, an ecofriendly builder in Arkansas. At 340 on the Park, a new green high-rise overlooking Lake Michigan in Chicago, 337 of the building's 343 units are sold—despite prices from $350,000 to more than $2 million. "We're selling expensive real estate in the city of Chicago, and it can't feel Birkenstockish," says Kerry Dickson, of the developer Related Midwest. In December, Elaine Cottey and her husband will move into their unit. They like the ecologically correct bamboo floors, the bike room and the 11,000-gallon tank that collects storm water used to irrigate the landscaping. All the right stuff, and it still looks luxe. "It's a win-win situation," says Cottey.Today's buyers want to save money on energy and breathe air without smelly chemicals in the paint. There's also...
  • Perfect Weekend: ¡Hola, Buenos Aires!

    Join Europeans making the most of a weak peso or Americans jetting in for photo shoots with sexy Argentine models against crumbling urban backdrops. ...
  • GOP Iowa Debate: Just More of the Same

    One danger about scheduling so many presidential debates so early in the campaign is that it doesn’t take long until they all start blurring together.Today’s debate mostly proved that point. When the Republicans vying to be their party’s 2008 nominee gathered for their fourth debate in as many months, perhaps the only distinguishing difference from other forums held so far was the location—Iowa—and the number of men on stage—now eight, since Jim Gilmore dropped out last month.No doubt there were subtle changes among the GOP field, mainly in terms of performance. After some shaky moments in a few of the earlier debates, Mitt Romney came off confident and smooth—delivering perhaps the best line of the day, a dig at Barack Obama’s foreign policy moves last week. “He’s gone from Jane Fonda to Dr. Strangelove in a week,” Romney declared. (The line was clearly not off the cuff. Upon delivery, his campaign almost instantaneously zapped reporters covering the debate a link to a YouTube...
  • Democrats to Court Gay Voters at Forum

    In a crowded primary field, every vote counts. So it’s probably not surprising that six of the eight Democratic presidential contenders for 2008 plan to participate in the first debate devoted entirely to gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender issues on Aug. 9 in Los Angeles. (Senators Joe Biden and Chris Dodd declined to attend, citing scheduling conflicts) Still, the event’s sponsors, the Human Rights Campaign and Viacom’s Logo cable TV network, are touting the event as an historic opportunity for the gay community to raise its issues on a national stage. The forum, moderated by Margaret Carlson of Bloomberg News, will run from 9-11 p.m. ET on Logo and Logo.com. (The sponsors say they invited GOP candidates to participate in their own gay debate, but that none signed on.)While gay and lesbian voters have largely been a reliable voting bloc for Democrats at least since the ‘80s, some activists say their community is taken for granted by the party. Privately, political strategists...
  • Did This Maryland Mom Murder?

    By many accounts, Christy Freeman seemed like an average small-town mom, juggling the demands of running a taxi company and raising four teenage kids. She worked hard, friends say, often taking the wheel of a taxi herself as many as 12 hours per day. And yet she still managed to carve out time for her kids, driving them to athletic matches. Among some year-round residents in the beach community of Ocean City, Md., Freeman was popular for the discounts she gave them. One of her neighbors, Karen L’Hussier, recalls that Freeman once went out of her way to pick up L’Hussier’s son to ensure he got home safely.So no one would have imagined the horrors that lay hidden in the two-bedroom apartment Freeman shared with her longtime boyfriend and kids. Last week, authorities discovered the remains of four dead infants and fetuses—all of them believed to be hers—in or near her home. Two sets of remains were found in a trunk in her living room, one in a motor home on her property and the final...
  • Meet the General Who Lends Gravitas to Obama

    Those who fall in with the Barack Obama campaign tend to fall hard for the man himself, and none more than Jonathan Scott Gration. A recently retired Air Force major general who voted for George W. Bush in 2000, Gration accompanied Obama on a 15-day tour of Africa last August and was, he says, simply bowled over. When the two traveled to Kenya, the homeland of Obama’s father, the U.S. presidential candidate directly confronted President Mwai Kibaki over corruption. "It was an incredible thing to watch," Gration later blogged on BarackObama.com. After the two of them went to Robben Island, the South African prison where Nelson Mandela was incarcerated for almost three decades. Gration had something of an epiphany. "To see how Mandela saved his country by bridging racial, ethnic and in some cases cultural diversity, and turn a page from a turbulent time—I think that’s sort of what the senator’s doing," Gration told NEWSWEEK in an interview this week. "He’s using his experience to turn...
  • On Collapsed Bridge, Warning Signs Were There

    Survivors of Minneapolis’s bridge collapse said there was little warning. But the warning signs were in place years before.Long before Wednesday’s accident, which killed at least four and injured around 80, the Minnesota Department of Transportation (MDOT) had warned about problems with the bridge. The structure had a "structurally deficient" rating since 1990 and has been inspected every year since, according to MDOT. Don Dorgan, an MDOT engineer, says, "We thought we had done all we could—obviously something went very wrong." In a 2001 report, engineers wrote that the bridge’s deck truss had many fatigue details on the main truss and floor truss system. Still, the report concluded the bridge “should not have any problems with fatigue cracking in the foreseeable future.” Then, in 2005 and 2006 the bridge was deemed “structurally deficient,” meaning that the bridge doesn’t need to be closed but is in poor condition and ill-equipped to handle current traffic loads. Apparently that...
  • Q&A: Can a Pedophile Be Law-Abiding?

    Is there such a thing as a lawful pedophile? Parents and children’s advocates in the Los Angeles area have grown worried about Jack McClellan, a self-described pedophile who in recent months has maintained an on-again, off-again Web page where he charts his trips to family-friendly venues like parks, county fairs and bowling alleys to meet what he calls LGs—little girls. McClellan tells reporters that he gets a “high” from being around girls between 3 to 11 years old, but insists he does not molest them. (Pedophilia covers a continuum from legal fantasy to illegal molestation and rape.) So far, law-enforcement officials agree with him. L.A.-area cops say McClellan is not under investigation. “We’ve monitored his Web site, and at the moment we’re determined that it does not cross into that area where it’s criminal in nature,” says Capt. Joe Gutierrez, commander of the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Special Victims Bureau, which handles sex crimes and child-exploitation cases.(On Friday, a...
  • Capital Sources: Taking Aim at D.C.'s Gun Law

    The District of Columbia has the most restrictive gun laws in the country. But that’s a distinction the nation’s capital will soon lose—if Robert Levy prevails. Levy was born in Washington, but left years ago; a resident of Naples, Fla., who made a fortune as an investment analyst, he is now a senior fellow in constitutional studies at the libertarian Cato Institute. A critic of what he sees as unnecessary government regulation, he rounded up six D.C. plaintiffs who either owned firearms or wanted to, for self-protection, and helped bankroll their challenge to the city’s gun law—which makes it illegal to own or possess an unregistered handgun (D.C. stopped registering handguns back in 1978). The city permits registered “long” guns like shotguns and rifles, but they must be disassembled or disabled with trigger locks, and it’s illegal to use a firearm of any kind in self-defense—even in the owner’s home. The suit, which is being bankrolled by Levy, has been successful so far; in...
  • Money: Your Cash is on Line 1

    For those who find it comforting to check their money 24/7, cell-phone banking has arrived. A host of credit unions and banks, including Bank of America, Citibankand Wachovia, are giving customers mobile account access. That's useful if you want to check your balances before you plunk down that debit card, or if you want to pay bills while you're on the commuter bus. Visa and MasterCard are already testing the next phase: wave your cell phone at a cash register and, thanks to infrared technology, you'll pay and be on your way.That's handy, but frightening, too. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. is warning bank customers to make sure their accounts are password protected and that no sensitive data get stored on the cell phone. Ask your bank if it offers any further safeguards.And consider the cost. Most banks offer the service free of charge, but some require specialized software or equipment, and you could still eat up a lot of cell-phone minutes "talking" to your checking account...
  • Film: Occupying Iraq—What Went Wrong

    Lucidly, and without partisan rhetoric, Charles Ferguson's not-to-be-missed documentary, "No End in Sight," lays out the disastrous missteps of the U.S. occupation of Iraq. The magnitude of the errors perpetrated by the Bush administration—ignorance, incompetence, arrogance, bad or nonexistent planning, cronyism and naiveté—can make you weep with anger. We hear about jobs in Iraq handed to the sons of Bush campaign donors, of the young woman put in charge of managing traffic in chaotic Baghdad despite never having studied traffic control or Arabic.Thirty-five people are interviewed in the film, including Jay Garner, who briefly ran the reconstruction before being replaced by L. Paul Bremer; Ambassador Barbara Bodine, who was placed in charge of Baghdad (in an office that didn't even have phones); former deputy secretary of State Richard Armitage; a clearly bitter Robert Hutchings, chairman of the National Intelligence Council, who believes President Bush did not read the one-page...
  • A Life In Books: John Banville

    Call it a victory for the not-so-old man and "The Sea." Irish novelist John Banville clinched the prestigious Man Booker Prize in 2005 for his 18th novel, "The Sea." If he awarded a Banville Prize for most important book, this would be his shortlist. A Certified Important Book you haven't read: George Eliot's "Middlemarch," which is a source of shame. I know it's superb, but I have always been daunted by this masterpiece. The book I most want my kids to read: "The Tower" by W. B. Yeats. They would learn, or at least glimpse, how magnificent poetry can be.
  • College: Why Internships and Study Abroad Don't Mix

    By this point in the summer, interns at many companies are busy learning the ropes and filling in for regular employees out on vacation. But there's a growing group of collegians who can find it difficult to gain these important career toeholds: students who spend a semester or full year studying abroad. The number of students studying overseas grew by 144 percent from 1995 to 2005, and at schools like Wake Forest, Georgetown and Duke, more than half of undergrads now do a stint studying in a foreign country. The trouble is, being overseas can make it difficult for students to do the in-person interviews required for top internships—and for students who study in increasingly popular places like Australia or South Africa, the school calendar can keep them from returning to the United States until late June, well past the date when most formal internships have already begun. "Recruiters are somewhat frustrated," says Notre Dame career-services chief Lee Svete. "The competition is such...
  • Bush-Brown Summit: Fresh Start for U.S., U.K.

    When the biggest question about a summit is sartorial—how will the new British prime minister dress?—you can bet the meeting will be a success. And so it was when Gordon Brown had his first encounter with President George W. Bush on Sunday in the "business casual" confines of Camp David. Anyone expecting an explosion of disagreement between the two leaders on matters of substance would have been disappointed. True, it was not a hot date à la Bush and Tony Blair, Brown’s predecessor. But equally true, it accomplished what both parties in the new U.S.-U.K. marriage wanted: a fresh start marked by mutual respect and admiration.The dress issue was easily resolved. Brown has seldom been spotted in anything but a dark suit and tie, and his visit to Camp David was no exception. Bush has been known to greet guests in casual slacks and an Air Force bomber jacket. This time, in deference to Brown, he wore a jacket and tie. The body language also passed muster. After the helicopter ferrying...
  • Road Test: Bentley Arnage T

    He may be nasty on "American Idol," but when Simon Cowell slips behind the wheel of his very well-behaved Bentley Arnage and cruises down Rodeo Drive, he might appear almost charming. That's because it's nearly impossible to come off as anything other than civilized while inside this English gentleman's cruiser. Though the Arnage T still looks overly conservative to most of us stateside, it's actually been tarted up a bit for 2007, with flashy, smoky metallic trim and an optional rear-seat cocktail bar and champagne cooler.There's a sense of relentless locomotion while driving this heavy sedan, owing to its substantial heft and a monster of a 6.7-liter, twin-turbocharged, 500-hp, V-8 engine. All the more reason to appreciate its high-performance ventilated disc brakes. And though maneuvering through tight turns isn't what these I'm-richer-than-you wheels were meant for, handling is better than expected. Mostly, though, the car oozes wealth. There's diamond-tufted leather and heavy...
  • The Editor's Desk

    After September 11, many Americans asked whether Muslims living here at home were susceptible to the same extremist ideologies that had fueled the 9/11 hijackers. Or to put the question more starkly, would young Muslims here turn against America and toward Al Qaeda's brand of murderous nihilism? Nothing like that has happened. There have been a few, unsuccessful homegrown plots. But America has not proved fertile ground for Islamic radicalism. In fact, Muslims here are more integrated, affluent and politically engaged than anywhere else in the West. They have, in short, bought into the American Dream.Of course, that is not the whole story. Many Muslim Americans were subjected to heavy-handed scrutiny after 9/11. Throughout the country there are significant pockets of discontent that, if left to fester, could lead to deeper alienation and radicalism. But still, compared with countries like France and Britain, where many Muslims live in ethnic ghettos and lead lives isolated from the...
  • Sexual Abuse: Trusting Memories

    Recovered memories of childhood sexual abuse (CSA) may be as trustworthy as memories that persist from the time of abuse, reports the journal Psychological Science. In a first-of-its-kind study, investigators checked out CSA memories of 128 individuals by interviewing others abused by the same perpetrator, or people who learned about the victim's abuse shortly after it occurred or when the abuser confessed. Over a six-month period, they found corroborating evidence for 37 percent of memories that had been recovered outside of therapy, nearly matching the 45 percent corroboration rate for continuous memories. Memories recovered in therapy, however, could not be corroborated. While not proving such memories are false, the finding suggests they should be treated cautiously. Elke Geraerts, a postdoctoral research fellow at Harvard University and the study's author, believes suggestive therapy can create an expectation that traumatic memories will be unearthed. "Too many therapists...
  • Crime: Cruel and Unusual

    The man known as "Fat Dog" can't quite understand why people make a fuss about it. A pit-bull breeder from outside Savannah, Ga., Fat Dog says dogfighting is no bloodier than some of the human combat people watch on cable television every day, on shows like the Ultimate Fighting Championship's "Fight Night." And the matches, though staged in secret, can have the trappings of a conventional sporting event. Fat Dog, who did not want his real name revealed, said he's been a spectator at about 50 professional matches over the years. The last one he attended, in rural North Carolina, was held in a structure built just for dogfighting, complete with bleachers and even a concession stand. "There was a great dog [there] named Zebo, who ended up a grand champion," Fat Dog told NEWSWEEK. He said he's seen only two or three dogs die in such matches. "They [the dogs] have every opportunity to quit, just like a boxer does."The indictment last week of Atlanta Falcons quarterback Michael Vick on...
  • The Checklist

    RENT "Zodiac." David ("Se7en") Fincher's long, obsessive, fascinating account of the search for San Francisco's Zodiac killer zeroes in on the hunters (Jake Gyllenhaal, Robert Downey Jr., Mark Ruffalo), who become consumed by their quest.READ "Pudlo Paris 2007-2008" by Gilles Pudlowski ($19.95). Available in English for the first time, this popular French guide reviews restaurants, bars, cafés and gourmet shops, and profiles the year's top chefs, bistros and bakers.HEAR "Beauty & Crime." Suzanne Vega celebrates her long-overdue return with this valentine to her hometown of New York City. The funky pop-folk collection proves that Vega is as original, gritty and gorgeous as ever.EAT Tyrrells Potato Chips, a new "crisp" from England ($19 for five bags; chelsea marketbaskets.com). Our favorite was the addictively seasoned, award-winning Sweet Chilli & Red Pepper.GO to the 27th Annual U.S. Open Sandcastle Competition in Imperial Beach, Calif. It's the largest competition of its...
  • The Law: A Battle for O.J.'s Book

    If O. J. Simpson did it, we still may hear how. Fred Goldman will ask a federal bankruptcy-court judge in Miami next week to ratify a deal giving him the rights to "If I Did It," the 2006 work in which Simpson told how he might have committed the 1994 killings of ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson and Goldman's son, Ron (which he denies doing). If Goldman gets the rights to the project, dropped by HarperCollins last fall after public protest, he hopes to repackage the book for a new publisher.Goldman opposed publication when Simpson stood to gain from it. Now he wants the book's sales to pay down some of the $38 million Simpson owes Goldman from the 1997 wrongful-death judgment against the former NFL star, acquitted of murder in 1995. "This is first opportunity we have ever had to take an asset from the killer," Goldman told NEWSWEEK.But lawyers for Nicole's estate will seek to block the agreement giving Goldman the rights, claiming the two families should share them. If the court...
  • Mail Call: Partners in Power?

    Our May 28 cover story on Bill Clinton's role in his wife's presidential campaign elicited mixed reactions from readers. "Hillary will be elected on her own merits," said one. "Conservatives haven't forgiven Bill," wrote another. A third simply preferred the Clinton years to those of Bush. ...
  • Cell Phones: Who Had Your Number?

    Phone companies recycle numbers to avoid splitting area codes. So the 10-digit cell-phone number you consider your digital DNA probably belonged to a stranger not long ago. Since February, UCLA junior Shira Barlow has been flooded with calls and text messages asking WHERE'S THE PARTY? Barlow's wireless company had given her Paris Hilton's old number. A Michigan teen inherited the state governor's former line, and a New York City writer fields calls for comedian Chris Rock. Landline numbers are recycled, too. Manhattan attorney Laurie Sternberg gets calls asking for "M"—as in Madonna. She's heard from Antonio Banderas and Gabriel Byrne (he asked about brunch plans), mogul Harvey Weinstein and singer k. d. lang. Sternberg started taking messages, relaying them through an assistant to M herself. She didn't get thanked, but Sternberg doesn't mind. "Why not just put your name on your answering machine?" Lang asked, a move that would end most of these mix-ups. "Are you kidding?" Sternberg...
  • Airport Tips for Summer Travelers

    Here's where you don't want to spend your summer vacation: on the tarmac at JFK. Or sitting at the gate in O'Hare. Or waiting around in Detroit, Charlotte or any of the other stressed-out airports that are helping to make this air-travel season the worst ever. With a record 209 million passengers expected, most planes are full. Any slowdown—due to bad weather, oversold flights or mechanical problems—can escalate into a marathon layover. Even before the summer crush, almost one in every four domestic flights was delayed, according to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics. At the busiest airports, the rate approached twice that, and most experts say problems are underreported.Airport horror stories are proliferating online. Ft. Worth, Texas, Web designer Robert McKee documented his 10 hours in airplane hell in a YouTube video ("Delta Flight 6499") that's painful to watch. He and his fellow nontravelers spent seven hours on the tarmac with no food but plenty of crying babies—the...
  • Alter: How Superficial Has Our Culture Become?

    It's a trifecta much bigger and rarer than an Oscar, an Emmy and a Tony. Only five people in history have ever won the Nobel Peace Prize, the Presidential Medal of Freedom and the Congressional Gold Medal: Martin Luther King Jr., Mother Teresa, Nelson Mandela, Elie Wiesel ... and Norman Borlaug.Norman who? Few news organizations covered last week's Congressional Gold Medal ceremony for Borlaug, which was presided over by President Bush and the leadership of the House and Senate. An elderly agronomist doesn't make news, even when he is widely credited with saving the lives of 1 billion human beings worldwide, more than one in seven people on the planet.Borlaug's success in feeding the world testifies to the difference a single person can make. But the obscurity of a man of such surpassing accomplishment is a reminder of our culture's surpassing superficiality. Reading Walter Isaacson's terrific biography of Albert Einstein, I was struck by how famous Einstein was, long before his...
  • The Veep: Why Is Dick Cheney So Gloomy?

    Dick Cheney may be a taciturn man, writes author Stephen F. Hayes, but the vice president can become animated discussing doomsday scenarios. In his new biography, "Cheney: The Untold Story of America's Most Powerful and Controversial Vice President" (578 pages. HarperCollins. $27.95), Hayes tells the story of the Cheney family, sitting around their new big-screen TV in Jackson Hole, Wyo., on a recent Fourth of July, watching the 1997 movie "The Peacemaker." Starring George Clooney and Nicole Kidman, the film is about a plot to blow up New York with a nuclear bomb. Partway through the movie, Cheney's wife, Lynne, entered the room and asked what was happening. The question was directed at no one in particular, but the vice president launched into "a 10-minute, scene-by-scene synopsis of the action," according to Lynne's brother Mark Vincent. She interrupted to clarify her question: "What's happening now?"Cheney, writes Hayes, woke up on the morning of September 12, 2001, asking: when...
  • Health: Berry Potent

    With more antioxidants than red wine, blueberries and even pomegranates, the açaí berry is being hailed as the new "it" superfood. Grown in the Amazon, the purple açaí (pronounced ah-sigh-ee) berry also contains healthy omega fatty acids, amino acids and vitamins A, C and E. Sambazon sells organic açaí smoothies, which come in flavors such as mango and strawberry (available at Whole Foods for about $2.50). Bossa Nova's açaí juices (about $2.99 at Whole Foods and Safeway) are sweetened with agave nectar and combined with other exotic fruits like mango or passion fruit. We especially liked Naked Juice's Purple Machine, a delicious smoothie that blends açaí berries, plums and grapes ($2.99-$3.99 at most food stores). Even big brand companies like Anheuser Busch (with its new 180 Blue energy drink) and Häagen-Dazs (with a Brazilian Açai Berry Sorbet) are jumping on the trend.—Christina Gillham
  • Mail Call: Can Obama's Appeal Move Beyond Race?

    Readers, fascinated by how Barack Obama's candidacy is shaking up the primary campaign, remain intrigued by the man. One said, "Obama stirs more excitement in me than any other candidate since Abraham Lincoln because he looks at all sides of the issues, is realistic and willing to compromise while maintaining an optimism that Americans are ready to move forward." Another added, "Win or lose, America will be better for his candidacy." Several were perturbed by the question of whether Obama is "black enough." One woman noted, "For Pete's sake, is Hillary Clinton female enough? I'm white, 66 years old and contributing to his campaign." For others, race proves less of a factor than character and conviction. One said, "Obama's honesty and widely expressed vision leaves no doubt that he resolves to be an American president qualified, willing and able to serve all Americans without fear or favor."Barack Obama's record shows that he truly walks his talk ("Across the Divide," July 16). His...
  • Alter: The Politics of Talking to Dictators

    Clinton criticized Obama for his stated willingness to meet with the leaders of rogue states. Romney likened Obama to Neville Chamberlain. But we are way past the politics of us against them.
  • Ward Churchill Reacts to His Firing

    He will go down in history as the guy who called the victims of September 11 “little Eichmanns”—a reference to the notorious Nazi bureaucrat who helped ship hundreds of thousands of Jews to concentration camps. Ward Churchill’s comment, included in a long-forgotten essay dug up by an enterprising journalism student, stirred a national debate about the power of unpopular words—and the proper consequences for those who use them.But the saga of the tenured University of Colorado ethnic studies professor grew more complicated in 2006, after allegations surfaced that Churchill had plagiarized, falsified or misrepresented some of his other scholarly work (Churchill denies any wrongdoing). An investigation was launched, and a panel of peers pored over his work. By May 2006, the panel had reached some damning conclusions, saying some of Churchill’s questionable writings fell into the category of academic misconduct. But the five-person panel was split on whether Churchill should be fired....
  • New Orleans D.A. Blasted Over Murders

    When New Orleans District Attorney Eddie Jordan dropped murder charges against the alleged killer of Dinerral Shavers last month, many residents were incensed. Shavers, 25, a beloved brass-band drummer and high-school music teacher, died in December when an errant bullet struck him in the head as he rode in a car with his wife and two stepchildren. The D.A.'s explanation: that an uncooperative witness made the case impossible to prosecute.Two weeks later, Jordan raised the public’s ire further when he dropped charges against another murder suspect, one accused of slaughtering five teenagers last year in the city’s worst mass killing since 1995. Once again, his office explained, that a key eyewitness was uncooperative and couldn’t be located. But the next day, police produced the witness at a press conference and said that Jordan had dismissed the case without notifying them. “The victims are being treated unfairly,” says Nakita Shavers, sister of the slain musician. “We’re...
  • Trial Against U.S. Muslim Charity Begins

    Noor Elashi wants to "shatter stereotypes" about Muslims and Arabs. It's one of the reasons she pursued a career in journalism. A Palestinian-American cub reporter at the Fort Worth (Texas) Star-Telegram, Elashi, 21, bristles at the seemingly endless questions she gets about Muslims’ views on terrorism and suicide bombing. “It’s really frustrating,” she says. “We are totally against anything to do with violence or terror. Just like most people in this world, we’re very peaceful people.”Elashi may be getting those questions more often than a typical Muslim American. Her father, Ghassan Elashi, stands accused of supporting the Palestinian militant group Hamas. Along with other fellow officers of the Richardson, Texas-based Holy Land Foundation—which was once the nation’s largest Islamic charity—Elashi faces charges of funneling $12.4 million to the Palestinian group since the U.S. government declared it a terrorist organization in 1995. As the defendants’ trial got underway in Dallas...
  • Should Congress Censure Judge Kavanaugh?

    The House Judiciary Committee, on a party-line vote, held Harriet Miers and other White House officials in contempt of Congress on Wednesday. But they aren’t the only ones Congress thinks might have dissembled in their discussions on Capitol Hill. Senate Judiciary Chairman Patrick Leahy is still waiting to hear whether U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales will investigate allegations that one of the highest ranking judges in America did not tell the truth under oath.Never mind, for the moment, that this is tantamount to asking Barry Bonds whether Mark McGwire lied to Congress about steroid use. Deeply important questions of legislative oversight and judicial independence are on the line here.At issue is the testimony of Brett Kavanaugh, a former White House legal adviser who is now a sitting judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia. That body’s location in the nation’s capital makes it the most influential court besides the Supremes.During the May 9, 2006,...
  • Why McCain’s Collapse Matters

    His campaign's sorry state isn't just a setback for the candidate. It's a sign that the country won't listen to a military man running for president—at a time when it matters most.
  • Trips for Families With Teenagers

    Teenagers, and especially teenage boys, don't exactly go begging to hang out with Mom for a week straight. So when my 16-year-old son Henry brought up the idea, I jumped at the chance to spend time with him and only him.Henry had just spent the year away from our New York City apartment, living with his tennis coach in Los Angeles and seeing if he had what it takes to compete on the junior circuit. It was a tough year for him; he was plagued with injuries and finally stopped playing. In the midst of disappointments on the court, Henry discovered a new passion: American history. Something clicked, and suddenly the struggles, people, and events he had been reading about seemed more than just stuff he had to learn for school. Henry wanted to find out more about the U.S., hence the request for a cross-country road trip on the move back home. Over the years, I had found it increasingly more difficult to connect to Henry than to his older sister, Wilson. We gals could yap away about...
  • Robbing the Rich in L.A.

    The latest Los Angeles crime spree might make a good caper movie. A crew of two, maybe three, shadowy burglars figures out how to break into million-dollar mansions dotting the pricey hillsides above L.A. Clad in gloves and ski masks, the crooks case the homes of the rich and absent, then skirt the security systems by climbing in alarm-free second-story windows before quickly grabbing cash, jewels and the occasional rare book. If the stuff’s in a unanchored safe, they just pick it up and go. Los Angeles Police Department detectives think the crew has struck more than 50 times since late last fall. The haul so far: about $7 million and counting.Last week, baffled L.A. police announced a $50,000 reward for information leading to the capture of the real-life gang the locals are beginning to give Hollywood names like "Ocean’s Eleven" or "Burglars to the Stars." They’ve struck fear among the homeowners of posh communities such as Bel-Air, Brentwood, Encino and Holmby Hills, who have long...
  • Assessing the CNN-YouTube Debate

    Last night the eight Democrats running for their party's nomination in the 2008 presidential race met for a historic moment: the first-ever jointly sponsored CNN-YouTube debate. In the end, a couple dozen questions were fielded, selected from the 3,000-odd video inquiries submitted by average voters from across the country. So how'd they do? No, not the candidates—they're all pros who stayed reliably on message. How well did the citizenry hold the powers-that-hope-to-be to account? Was it a glorious flowering of a level of direct democracy the Founding Fathers never dreamed of? A novel ad vehicle? The death knell for the Fourth Estate?CNN hyped the event heavily on its Web site, crowing in its recap that though the cable network "vetted the questions, it was the first time that a journalist or a professional has not dictated what is asked of the candidates. The control was solely in the voters' hands." Actually, the control was in Anderson Cooper's hands—a fact which rankled many...
  • 'D.C. Madam' Scandal: Follow the Numbers

    The "D.C. Madam" scandal isn't going away. Reporters, bloggers and investigators for Hustler magazine publisher Larry Flynt are all scrambling to match recently released phone records from Deborah Jeane Palfrey's escort service to Beltway pols who might have been clients. "It's going to be one revelation after the other for the next 20 weeks or so," says Palfrey, who is fighting federal prostitution charges and who hopes "outed" clients will testify that her employees weren't prostitutes. She says anywhere between a few dozen to a hundred high-level officials will be discovered on her list.The latest catch: Louisiana Sen. David Vitter, Rudy Giuliani's top Southern conservative ally. Vitter quickly confessed to a "very serious sin" and went into hiding. The Vitter revelation is just the latest scandal to touch Giuliani, whose former police commissioner has pleaded guilty to corruption charges and whose South Carolina campaign chairman was forced to step down last month after he was...
  • Drinks: Summer Sipping

    Just in time for summer, some new products are reinventing the "G" and the "T" in the G&T. The new gins ease up on juniper, the berry that gives the booze its evergreen flavor. Tanqueray Rangpur ($23.99 for 750ml) leans heavily on the Rangpur Indian lime. The liqueur like G'Vine Gin de France ($38) uses the green grape flower for an herbal twist. Stellar ($19.99) has the mild personality of an orangey vitamin water.The new tonics are lighter and softer. Stirrings ($4.99 for a four-pack) gets an easy sweetness from cane sugar, as does the fuller-tasting Fever-Tree ($5.99). The driest of the bunch, Q Tonic ($9.99), uses agave syrup. All are tasty—and dangerously drinkable.
  • Food: Ice-Cream Makers

    Mixing ice cream from scratch is simpler than you might think. Testers examined seven top brands.
  • Capital Sources: Anatomy of a Nuclear Sting

    Gregory Kutz and his colleagues wanted to order enough radioactive material to make a dirty bomb. So they set up bogus companies and applied for separate licenses from the Nuclear Regulatory Commission and the state of Maryland. They didn’t succeed with Maryland, but they got a license from the NRC in less than a month. Then Kutz and his associates doctored the license to increase the amount of radioactive material they could buy, and began placing orders for nuclear moisture-density machines, which contain Cesium-137 and Americium-241. Suppliers were only too happy to help. Fortunately, Kutz is head of forensic audits and special investigations for the Government Accountability Office. His operation was a sting—one of about a dozen his team runs each year, most of them successfully. (The NRC has acknowledged some shortcomings, and moved quickly to address them.) Following testimony to a Senate subcommittee, Kutz explained the way the sting worked to NEWSWEEK’s Jeffrey Bartholet....
  • Auto Tech: Beating the Heat

    Air conditioningfirst appeared in cars 50 years ago. Today, motorists have more than one way to chill when they're on the road.Saab introduced the cooled seat a decade ago, and today it's a common—but expensive—option in luxury cars (Saab's "sport-ventilated seats" are $995 extra). A cheaper, do-it-yourself option is the Cold Seat ($49.95; coldseat.com), a quilt-covered gel-pack that sits over your kid's car seat while you're out of the car. Remove it, and the seat and buckle are cool, not hot.The Chrysler Sebring and the Dodge Avenger feature cup holders that keep cold drinks at 35 degrees and hot drinks at 140 degrees ($795 to $1,295 including other options). Then there are air-conditioned glove boxes, available in the VW Jetta, for one, and cooled center consoles, found in some models of Lexus and Range Rover. Remote-start cars, like the Chevy Tahoe, allow you to turn on the car and the air conditioning before you hop in. How cool is that?
  • Mail Call: How Well Do We Know Our World?

    Our July 9 issue, examining "181 Things You Need to Know Now," prompted readers to ponder what makes one culturally literate. "I like the idea of a discussion over what is important to know," said one. "But one question you did not consider is how such knowledge increases our understanding of the world and our place in it. Why, for example, is being knowledgeable about both the Supreme Court and reality TV important?" Added another, "Why didn't you ask readers if they know the history of Europe? Or if they know the percentage of those living in poverty in their state?" Many readers enjoyed taking our global-literacy IQ test. "I can't wait for the next one," said one. And a 15-year-old, who said he was surprised by our poll that found more Americans could name the latest winner of "American Idol" than the chief justice of the United States, said, "Perhaps Americans are the most-entertained and least-informed people on the planet."A loyal reader since age 23, I somehow got busy with...
  • Road Test: Mazda CX-9

    If vehicles have a DNA that defines their personalities, then Mazda's molecular building blocks speak the language of sport. Surprisingly, it's even evident in this big seven-seat crossover. The CX-9, with its three rows of seating, is a family hauler. Less apparent is its handling and performance prowess—that is, until you hop in for a ride. A trip through L.A.'s curvy canyons chauffeuring five adults in the back made me worry they'd all get queasy, but the CX-9 has a taut but forgiving suspension. That's rare for a vehicle this size, but not unusual for Mazda.And the CX-9 is fashionable. A friend who drives a Lexus RX330 remarked that my tester looks a lot like her wheels. I didn't have the heart to tell her it sells for about 10 grand less and generates 21 more horsepower from a 3.5-liter V-6 engine. My vehicle had heated front seats, a touchscreen for audio and navigation systems, and steering-wheel-mounted buttons to control the phone, music and cruise control. There was even...
  • Split Decisions: No-Fault Divorce

    A forthcoming study by the Institute for Marriage and Public Policy (iMAPP), a group that aims to "strengthen marriage," found that no-fault divorce leads to an increase in the divorce rate on the order of 10 percent. NEWSWEEK's Julie Scelfo spoke with Maggie Gallagher, founder of iMAPP and coauthor of the study with Douglas Allen, to find out more. ...