Your daily cry
May 14, 2014

Josh Kelly suffered from epilepsy, a brain disorder that forced him to drop out of high school nine days before graduation. But Kelly was determined not to miss out on another educational milestone. For nearly a decade, Kelly attended Idaho State University working toward a degree in geology, with his faithful service dog, a black pit bull named Cletus, by his side. The pair would dutifully walk two miles both ways to catch the bus to campus.

Unfortunately, Kelly passed away in February just two classes shy of his degree. Nonetheless, ISU granted him a posthumous degree on May 10. In the young man's place, Kelly's tearful father, Terrell, walked across the stage with Cletus by his side, accepted the diploma, lifted it to the sky and said almost inaudibly, "This is for Josh."

In honor of Kelly's hard work and his service dog, who gained celebrity status among the students, the undergraduate study hall in the geosciences department has been officially named "Cletus' Corner." Watch the video below. --Lauren Hansen

military matters
12:23 p.m. ET

While the U.S. Army for years urged recruits to "be all you can be," that message didn't quite get through to the military's health care system. In fact, military members who are misdiagnosed or otherwise hurt by treatment in a military medical facility lack accountability measures available in the civilian world to address the situation, resulting in substandard treatment and a general lack of transparency.

Lawsuits are not an option; mandated safety inspections are often skipped when a patient dies, and complaints filed against health care workers are stored in an internal database with little action taken.

Leaving the military's care is often not a viable choice, either: Service members are "unable, without specific approval, to get care elsewhere if they fear theirs is substandard or dangerous," wrote Sharon LaFraniere at The New York Times. "Yet if they are harmed or die, they or their survivors have no legal right to challenge their care and seek answers by filing malpractice suits." Bonnie Kristian

12:10 p.m. ET
Screenshot/The Baltimore Sun

As the riots in Baltimore raged on Monday, police officers were alerted to a "credible threat" of disparate gang members collaborating to attack law enforcement. But in a video by The Baltimore Sun, two members of rival gang members embraced and called the claim false.

"We don't want nobody to get hurt," said Crips gang member Charles Shelley, while embracing a member of the Bloods gang. "All that about the police getting hurt about certain gangs — that's false. We're not here for that. We're here to protect our community and that's it." Watch the whole video over at The Baltimore Sun. Kimberly Alters

campaign 2016
12:03 p.m. ET

Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky, a contender for the GOP nomination for president, offered his take on the Baltimore riots on Laura Ingraham's show this morning, saying a "lack of fathers" and a "lack of a moral code in our society" were responsible for the "thievery and thuggery."

He also said, "I came through the train on Baltimore last night, I'm glad the train didn't stop."

Listen to his comments here, via Media Matters: —Ryu Spaeth

This just in
11:40 a.m. ET

The Baltimore Orioles announced Tuesday they would postpone the night's scheduled game against the Chicago White Sox due to the ongoing unrest in Baltimore.

The Orioles and Major League Baseball postponed Monday night's game as well after rioting broke out across the city, resulting in widespread damage and around 200 arrests. And on Saturday, Baltimore officials broadcast a message into Camden Yards asking fans to stay inside the venue as protests raged outside.

Baltimore is scheduled to play at home through Sunday, though some of those games could be postponed as well because of the city's newly imposed 10 p.m. curfew. Jon Terbush

Tax Day
11:30 a.m. ET
Joe Raedle/Getty Images

While tax prep giant H&R Block initially estimated that half of ObamaCare (ACA) subsidy recipients would have to pay money back to the IRS, the final tally is even worse:

Almost two-thirds of tax filers who received insurance via the state or federal insurance marketplaces had to pay back an average of $729 of the Advance Premium Tax Credit (APTC), cutting their potential refund by almost one-third, according to analysis of filing data by H&R Block. [H&R Block]

For the rest of H&R Block customers, tax season was a little less traumatic: About one quarter of insurance subsidy recipients saw an increase in their tax refunds, while 13 percent saw no change.

The confusion has occurred because — on top of the complexity the ACA adds to the tax code — estimating income in advance to calculate how big an insurance subsidy should be is difficult for non-salaried workers. As Timothy Jost, a Washington and Lee University law professor, explains, "If you’re a person who is a waitress or worked for a landscape company and you're asked how much money you're going to make, you're really just throwing a dart at the board." Bonnie Kristian

Numbers don't lie
11:23 a.m. ET
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

If your application to one of America's top 40 colleges and universities is waitlisted, don't hold your breath.

New data from U.S. News and World Report found that a number of selective schools, including Johns Hopkins, MIT, Princeton, Middlebury College, and Bucknell, have each accepted less than four percent of waitlisted applicants since 2011.

Stanford has the lowest acceptance rate for waitlisted applicants — in 2014, just one percent of those waitlisted at Stanford were eventually accepted.

The data isn't exhaustive — some colleges, including Harvard, Brown, and Yale, didn't release figures about their waitlist acceptance rates. Still, admissions officers admitted to Bloomberg that most students who are placed on waitlists don't have very good odds of being accepted. "There are students who might think the wait list is a neat way to know they were close to getting admitted," Jim Rawlins, admissions director at the University of Oregon, told Bloomberg, "but there's others who will wish they'd just been denied." Meghan DeMaria

10:48 a.m. ET

President Obama on Tuesday hosted Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at the White House, and he used the occasion to thank the island nation for its greatest exports. No, Obama did not extol Japan's vaunted cars or technology, but rather its contributions to art and drunken office bonding experiences.

"Today is also a chance for Americans, especially our young people, to say thank you for all the things we love from Japan," Obama said. "Like karate, karaoke, manga, and anime — and of course, emojis."

Obama has hinted in the past he's a closet karaoke aficionado. —Jon Terbush

See More Speed Reads