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Once released, felons become part of a criminal caste system, and most don’t make it on the outside. State prisons have a five-year recidivism rate of 76.6 percent, which keeps the prison-industrial complex full and profitable.

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Dead at age 90, King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia (at right) was praised by President Obama "as a force for stability and security in the Middle East and beyond." But analysts accuse him of turning the Syrian uprising into a proxy war with Iran, and U.S. diplomatic cables identified the country as the world's largest funder of militant Islamist groups.

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In the aftermath of the stock market failure of 2008, another type of economic bubble is swelling: student debt. And it's no surprise, since Congress has done nothing to change the lending practices that brought the U.S. to the brink three years ago. (more)

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As part of an enormous effort to make television programming available for scholarly and journalistic use, the digital librarians at Internet Archive have compiled more than 3,000 hours' worth of international TV news across 20 channels from the week immediately after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. (more)

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New Jersey's leaders have some heavy lifting to do, quickly. Scientists who have reviewed the most detailed study yet produced on the subject of sea level changes over the last 2,000 years are predicting a three-foot rise for the state's coastline by the end of the century. (more)

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