Meanwhile on Capitol Hill, an unlikely scene unfolded as a bust of Winston Churchill was unveiled in Statuary Hall Wednesday. The entertainment: Roger Daltrey. Who? Yes, Roger Daltrey of the 1960s rock band The Who.
An emergency responder helps evacuate two people with a boat after their neighborhood in Little Ferry, N.J., was flooded.
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Neighbors in the Rockaway section of Queens, N.Y., survey homes and businesses destroyed by Superstorm Sandy on Oct. 30, 2012.
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In one Rockaway neighborhood the historic boardwalk washed away during the storm.
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A resident traverses flooded streets as cleanup operations begin in Hoboken, N.J. The storm surge triggered deep flooding in low-lying neighborhoods.
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Barbara Young tosses sand out her front door in Long Beach, N.Y. The storm caused massive flooding across much of the Eastern Seaboard.
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Jackie Hoey inspects the first floor of her Long Beach, N.Y., home, which experienced heavy flooding.
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In the Ocean Breeze area of Staten Island, water continued to flood neighborhoods on Nov. 1, 2012. Most homes in the seaside community were inundated by the ocean surge caused by Sandy.
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Old photographs are laid out on a car hood to dry after being removed from a flooded home in Seaside Heights, N.J. At the time, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie estimated that Superstorm Sandy had cost his state $29.4 billion in damage and other economic losses.
Credit Jason DeCrow / AP
Sand marks the floodwater line on the side of a house in Long Beach, N.Y.
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The Rockaway section of Queens, in New York City, was hit hard by Superstorm Sandy. Many people in the neighborhood, shown here on October 30, 2012, lost power.
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One Year Ago: Homes in Mantoloking, N.J., sit in ruin at the end of a bridge that was wrecked by flooding from Superstorm Sandy.
When Sandy blew into East Coast communities a year ago, it was flooding that did the most damage.
That's in part because the average sea level has risen over the past century — about a foot along the mid-Atlantic coast. That made it easier for the storm to push the ocean onto the land.
And scientists say there will be many more Sandy-style storms — that is, torrential rain and wind that create heavy coastal flooding — and they'll be more frequent than in the past. But preparing people for that means changing the way they live, and that's proving politically difficult.
When the head of the agency responsible for the troubled Healthcare.gov went before Congress for the first time since its foibles became apparent Oct. 1, she probably didn't expect that many questions would be on something else altogether.
The Adoption Network Law Center is based in California, but when someone in Illinois searches "adoption" on the Web, up it pops, right near the top.
"They're very specific in directing their advertising and marketing to people in Illinois," says Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan, even though they're not licensed in the state. Illinois prohibits for-profit adoption agencies.
The NBA begins a new regular season today with three games. Among the match-ups, the two-time defending champion Miami Heat play the Chicago Bulls. That game features the regular season return of Bulls' all-star point guard Derrick Rose. He hurt his knee badly a year and a half ago. As NPR's Tom Goldman reports, knee injuries are just one of the storylines of the new season.
TOM GOLDMAN, BYLINE: Chicago's preseason began 24 days ago with a game in Indianapolis, and with Bulls fans holding their collective breath.
You're on Amazon.com. You're buying, say, a toaster, and you're checking out the customer reviews. You assume the people writing these reviews are people like you — people who wanted a toaster, went online and bought one. As it turns out, a lot of reviews on Amazon are written by people who are nothing like you. They're written by elite reviewers who are sent free merchandise to review products. In other words, it's possible that the guy reviewing that toaster you're looking at wasn't in the market for a toaster to begin with and didn't pay a cent for it.
Monday was yet another troubled day for the Affordable Care Act.
Sunday night, the outside vendor that operates two key parts of the website that lets people browse and sign up for health insurance experienced a failure.
The failure took place at a vendor called Verizon Terremark and presumably affected other clients as well as HealthCare.gov, the federal website that people use to sign up for insurance under the Affordable Care Act.
After Superstorm Sandy struck the East Coast, people returned to waterlogged homes and began to assess the damage. They created lost-and-found lists on the walls of town halls or Facebook pages to try to recover some of what the storm had swept away.
Lost: Two cedar Adirondack chairs, a necklace passed down through generations. Found: a floating dock, a high school diploma.
Now, one year after the storm, residents on the Jersey shore are still reflecting on what they lost during the storm — and what they might have gained.
When you're in love with science, ordinary everyday stuff can suddenly seem extraordinary. At least that's how NPR blogger and astrophysicist Adam Frank sees it, even down to the dust on his car.
ADAM FRANK, BYLINE: Carl Sagan, an astronomer with the soul of a poet, liked to remind us that we are all star stuff. It was without a doubt one of his most beautiful images. But what really was Carl Sagan talking about? Well, there are two answers to this question.
The Justice Department is negotiating a multibillion-dollar settlement with JPMorgan over its handling of mortgage-related securities during the financial crisis. The deal could be announced this week, and it reportedly includes $4 billion set aside for homeowners who lost substantial value on their homes. NPR's Yuki Noguchi reports on lessons learned from the payout of similar settlements.
Demonstrators who are critical of the Catholic Church and favor abortion rights take part in a protest in Rio de Janeiro during Pope Francis' visit to Brazil on July 27. Abortion is illegal in Brazil with rare exceptions. Some lawmakers are attempting to make it even more restrictive.
The doctor's office is clean and white and comfortingly bland in an upscale neighborhood of Sao Paulo. We were given the address by a health professional who told us one of the doctors here gives safe abortions in a country where they are illegal.
The doctor agrees to speak on condition of anonymity after we prove we are not there to entrap him. He does not admit on tape that he terminates unwanted pregnancies. But he says openly he favors legalizing abortions.
Anthropologist Lynne Isbell was running through a glade in central Kenya in 1992 when something suddenly caused her to freeze in her tracks. "I stopped just in front of a cobra," she says. "It was raised with its hood spread out."
Isbell, who is at the University of California, Davis, says she has spent the past couple of decades trying to understand how she could have reacted before her conscious brain even had a chance to think — cobra!
This week, we're exploring the tech frontier through the eyes of our children. So we're starting with the littlest ones — babies. Can certain kinds of screen time help babies learn?
To find some answers, I employed the help of my 1-year-old daughter, Eva. She's still a wobbly walker and the sum total of her speaking skills sound like gibberish. But she has no problem activating Siri, the virtual assistant on my iPhone. Her 16-month-old friend, Lily, is even savvier with the gadgets.
Morning recess at St. Augustine Catholic School in Culver City, Calif., is like recess in many other schools. Children run and play in the afternoon sun. But nearby, away from the basketball hoops and the games of tag, the staff is preparing.
Next to the playground sits a cargo container full of supplies: water, duct tape, an axe, a shovel and a generator along with gasoline. All of these supplies are here just in case the freeways are cut off or the power goes out — in case there is a major, destructive earthquake.
At Night We Walk in Circles is set in an unnamed, war-scarred Latin American country. The book follows young actor and aspiring playwright Nelson as he traverses his nation, performing in a provocative play called The Idiot President.
It's Daniel Alarcon's second novel — his first was Lost City Radio, published in 2007. The Peruvian author says there are some parallels between him and his protagonist, dreaming of a life as an artist.
The Academy Awards are still months away, but some Hollywood insiders are already on the attack.
Studios have huge publicity machines that lobby for their movies to win, but there's also a shadowy strategy that's not as visible as the advertising blitz. It's good old-fashioned trash-talking: So-called "whisper campaigns" are a sneaky way to lobby against the competition.
As recently as 25 years ago, there were more than 100 self-described feminist bookstores in the U.S. — stores focusing on books written by and for women. Like most independent bookstores, though, their numbers have dropped dramatically over the years.
Chicago's Women and Children First is among the few feminist stores still standing, and one of the largest. The store opened 34 years ago in 1979. Now, after a long, successful run, the store's owners say they're ready to retire — and they're looking for a buyer to continue the store's mission.
Lou Reed onstage in London in 1975 playing a transparent, Plexiglass guitar. Reed died Sunday. He was 71.
Credit PA Photo/Landov
Reed, Mick Jagger and David Bowie share a joke at a party at Cafe Royal thrown by Bowie in 1973.
Credit Jeff Christensen / Reuters/Landov
Maureen Tucker, Martha Morrison (wife of Sterling Morrison), John Cale and Lou Reed pose for photographers shortly after The Velvet Underground was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Jan. 17, 1995.
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Reed performs his album Berlin at the CCH Congress Center in Hamburg in 2008.
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Reed presents his photography exhibition at the Matadero cultural center in Madrid on Nov. 16, 2012.
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Reed attends an event for the photography book Transformer, by Mick Rock, in New York City on Oct. 3.
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Reed and Nico perform with Velvet Underground in 1972.
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American rock singer-songwriter Lou Reed performs at the Hammersmith Odeon in London in 1975. He is playing a transparent, plexiglass guitar. Reed died Sunday at the age of 71.
Credit Liam Nicholls / Getty Images
Reed performs at the Regent Theater in Melbourne, Australia, in 2000.
States across the country are facing a shortage of the drugs used for lethal injections. Some are going from a three-drug cocktail to a single drug.
Credit Phil Sandlin / AP
A lone supporter of the execution of William Happ stands across the highway from the Florida state correctional facility on Oct. 15. Happ was the first inmate to be put to death using the drug midazolam.
The U.S. is facing a shortage of a drug widely used for lethal injections. With few options, states are turning to new drugs and compounding pharmacies, rather than overseas companies.
The move is raising safety concerns, and in some cases delaying executions. Other executions are proceeding, however, and advocates are asking whether the use of new drugs violates the inmates' Eighth Amendment protection from cruel and unusual punishment.
Ashley Hentze (left) gets help signing up for the Affordable Care Act from a volunteer in Florida. The government says that 40 percent of the expected enrollees for 2014 must be young and healthy for health insurance premiums to remain affordable.
Relatively few people have enrolled in new health insurance plans since the Affordable Care Act exchanges launched this month. But some health care experts say it's early days yet — and that getting the right proportion of healthy, young new enrollees is just as important as how quickly people sign up.
The Congressional Budget Office projects that 7 million people will buy health insurance for 2014 through the new exchanges, integral to the implementation of the government's new health care law.
JPMorgan Chase agreed pay $5.1 billion to settle litigation over mortgage assets sold during the housing bubble. The deal, announced late Friday afternoon, is to resolve claims the company misled Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac before the housing market crashed. It is part of a tentative $13 billion deal the company is trying to reach with federal and state agencies over its mortgage liabilities.
On the Mexican Dia de los Muertos holiday, the living remember the dead. Some believe they are communing with the deceased. While it may sound morbid, Pati Jinich, a Mexican-born blogger, food show personality and author of Pati's Mexican Table, says it's a joyous occasion.
"People get ready to welcome people — those who have deceased and that presumably have license to visit just once a year," Jinich told All Things Considered host Melissa Block.
The Canadian rock band Arcade Fire released their first record "Funeral" back in 2004 on a small independent label. But these days there's nothing small about them. Their third record, "The Suburbs," won a Grammy and the band's upcoming fourth album is one of the most anticipated releases of the year. It's after a much hyped appearance on "Saturday Night Live" and a half hour special on NBC. Will Hermes has this review of "Reflektor."