Photo of Mindy Alper among her sculptures by Grant Mudford.
FROM THIS EPISODE
The hashtag #releasethememo appeared on Twitter on January 18, referring to a classified document written by Rep. Devin Nunes that alleged FBI bias against the Trump administration. News of the so-called Nunes memo quickly spread on social media, and soon enough, the memo was released. One researcher says automated Russian Twitter bots created and spread the hashtag in an effort to influence American public opinion and discredit the Russia investigation.
Gerrymandering is when a voting district’s boundaries are manipulated to favor a particular political party. In some important swing states, gerrymandering has been so egregious that courts have demanded lawmakers re-draw the districts more fairly. But some of these cases have been appealed to the Supreme Court, which has blocked the lower courts’ orders. That’s happened in Wisconsin, North Carolina, and Texas.
Los Angeles police and firefighters can retire at age 50 and collect their pension, which is 90 percent of their salary for the rest of their lives. If they sign up for The Deferred Retirement Option Plan, they can collect even more money. The Los Angeles Times investigated how much money the city is spending on the DROP program, and discovered that many cops and firefighters may be abusing the program with bogus injury claims.
Mindy Alper among her sculptures. (Photo by Grant Mudford)
The short film “Heaven is a Traffic Jam on the 405” is nominated for an Oscar this year. It follows 56-year-old artist Mindy Alper, who’s spent many years fighting depression and anxiety. Drawing and sculpture have been her most effective outlets. She can see beauty in unexpected places, like the 405 freeway.
The winter Olympics begin Friday and once again, curling is on the schedule.The sport involves sliding big rocks down the ice and frantically sweeping the path in front of them. KCRW’s Christian Bordal recently went out on the ice and tried it.
More From Press Play with Madeleine Brand
Why black boys from rich families have a 50-50 chance of falling into poverty New research shows that black boys raised in U.S. -- even in the richest neighborhoods -- still earn less money when they grow up than white boys of similar backgrounds. But that’s not the case for women. Black and white women usually track together, while black men rarely make it to the same levels as white men.
California case: free speech v. abortion rights Crisis pregnancy centers are generally run by pro-life groups that aim to convince pregnant women not to get abortions. A California law requires that employees tell their clients that the state offers free and low-cost abortions and other family planning services. Now a group of these centers is arguing that the law violates their freedom of speech.
Does copyright law cover graffiti? Clothing company H&M did a fashion shoot in Brooklyn featuring models standing against a gray wall painted with black waving lines. The graffiti was the work of an LA-based street artist, who wanted compensation. H&M responded by filing a lawsuit against him, then dropped it a few days later.
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