Sample Size
5:43 pm
Tue December 16, 2014

Best of 2014: Parker Millsap, Colourmusic & Broncho

Parker Millsap

Welcome to Sample Size, where KOSU's Ryan LaCroix and LOOKatOKC pop music columnist Matt Carney team up each week to discuss music news and new music releases.

Today, we look back at some of our favorite tracks from Oklahoma musicians in 2014, including Parker Millsap, Colourmusic, and Broncho.

Follow Matt & Ryan on Twitter at @OKmattcarney and @KOSUryan.

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Around the Nation
5:35 pm
Tue December 16, 2014

On Nebraska's Farmland, Keystone XL Pipeline Debate Is Personal

Susan and Bill Dunavan own 80 acres of land in York County.
Melissa Block NPR

Originally published on Wed December 17, 2014 2:46 pm

Drive down gravel Road 22 in Nebraska's York County, past weathered farmhouses and corn cut to stubble in rich, black loam soil, and you'll find a small barn by the side of the road.

Built of native ponderosa pine, the barn is topped with solar panels. A windmill spins furiously out front.

Known as the Energy Barn, it's a symbol of renewable energy, standing smack on the proposed route of the controversial Keystone XL oil pipeline — a project of the energy giant TransCanada.

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JenX with Jennifer James
8:50 am
Tue December 16, 2014

The Future of Gen Xers and Their Kids

The future of Generation X looks bleak especially as we get closer to retirement.

But what about the children of Generation X?


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Local News
8:42 am
Tue December 16, 2014

Headlines: Capitol Repairs, Devon Donations & Blood Shortage

Headlines for Tuesday, December 16, 2014:

  • The state Supreme Court gives its stamp of approval on a $120 million bond for capitol repairs. (NewsOK)

  • The people of Enid want more choices when it comes to eating out. (Journal Record)

  • An investigation shows Devon poured nearly $1 million into GOP campaigns for statewide office. (Tulsa World)

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Law
4:39 am
Tue December 16, 2014

Judge Regrets Harsh Human Toll Of Mandatory Minimum Sentences

The shocking death of basketball player Len Bias from a cocaine overdose in 1986 led Congress to pass tough mandatory sentences for drug crimes.
AP

Originally published on Wed December 17, 2014 3:08 pm

It seems long ago now, but in the 1960s, '70s and '80s, murders and robberies exploded as cocaine and other illegal drugs ravaged American cities.

Then came June 19, 1986, when the overdose of a college athlete sent the nation into shock just days after the NBA draft. Basketball star Len Bias could have been anybody's brother or son.

Congress swiftly responded by passing tough mandatory sentences for drug crimes. Those sentences, still in place, pack federal prisons to this day. More than half of the 219,000 federal prisoners are serving time for drug offenses.

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U.S. News
3:26 am
Tue December 16, 2014

President's Task Force To Re-Examine How Police Interact With Public

President Obama announces the creation of a policing task force Dec. 1 as Philadelphia Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey (left) and George Mason University criminology professor Laurie Robinson look on.
Mandel Ngan AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed December 17, 2014 3:09 pm

Earlier this month, after the events in Ferguson, Mo., and Staten Island, N.Y, the White House announced the creation of what it's calling a Task Force on 21st Century Policing.

The group's job is to find ways to strengthen the relationship between police and the public, and to share recommendations with the president by late February.

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Health
11:01 am
Mon December 15, 2014

Small Businesses Drop Coverage As Health Law Offers Alternatives

Where are the health insurance deals? On the exchanges, many small businesses have concluded.
Bjorn Rune Lie Ikon Images/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon December 15, 2014 12:57 pm

For two decades Atlanta restaurant owner Jim Dunn offered a group health plan to his managers and helped pay for it. That ended Dec. 1, after the Affordable Care Act made him an offer he couldn't refuse.

Subsidies under the health law for workers to buy their own coverage combined with years of rising costs in the company plan made dropping the plan an obvious — though not easy — choice.

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Local News
8:25 am
Mon December 15, 2014

Headlines: Violent Criminals Released, New OKC Tower & Armed Lawmakers

Headlines for Monday, December 15, 2014:

  • Policy changes at the Department of Corrections result in the early release of hundreds of violent criminals and sex offenders. (Oklahoma Watch)

  • The architects who built the Devon Tower want to build a new 27-story building in downtown. (NewsOK)

  • A bill under consideration this spring allows lawmakers to carry guns anywhere including college campuses and the State Capitol. (Tulsa World)

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Business
7:16 am
Mon December 15, 2014

Texas Braces For A Drop In Production After Oil Prices Fall

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

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Politics
4:19 am
Mon December 15, 2014

'Warning Shot': Sen. Warren On Fighting Banks, And Her Political Future

Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass. (right), a member of the Senate banking committee, and Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., ranking member of the House financial services committee, express their outrage to reporters that a $1.1 trillion spending bill that was passed in Congress contains changes to the 2010 Dodd-Frank law that regulates complex financial instruments known as derivatives.
J. Scott Applewhite AP

Originally published on Tue December 16, 2014 6:20 pm

Updated at 9:30 a.m. ET

Sen. Elizabeth Warren failed to stop a change in bank regulations last weekend, but she raised her profile yet again.

The Massachusetts Democrat tells NPR that her fight over a provision in a spending bill was a "warning shot." She intends to continue her fight against what she describes as the power of Wall Street, even though that fight brought her to oppose leaders of her own party.

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