March 23, 2014

An article in The New York Times Magazine this weekend from Carlotta Gall lays out the case that Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence knew of and hid Osama bin Laden in the country for years. But readers of the Times' international edition in Pakistan didn't see the story in print. There, a local printer left an empty space where the story was slated to run.

A Times spokeswoman, Eileen Murphy, confirmed the alteration, saying it had been done "without our knowledge or agreement." The paper noted that another article earlier this month, on the Chinese sex industry, was censored, too. Jon Terbush

10:16 a.m. ET
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On Tuesday, Hewlett Packard CEO Meg Whitman will become the first Republican to publicly campaign for Hillary Clinton. Whitman — previously a top Republican fundraiser, the GOP's 2010 gubernatorial nominee in California, and now a vocal Donald Trump detractor — will meet with business leaders in Denver to discuss the Democratic presidential nominee's proposals for jobs.

While Whitman is far from the only Republican to throw her support behind Clinton, she will be the first to make an appearance on the campaign trail on Clinton's behalf. Initially, Whitman backed New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) in the presidential primary. Earlier this month, however, she announced she would support Clinton over Trump, who, Talking Points Memo reported, she believes to be a "'demagogue' who has 'exploited anger, grievance, xenophobia, and racial division.'" Becca Stanek

10:03 a.m. ET

Man's best friend actually knows what man is saying, according to a new study out of Hungary on how dogs react to language.

By training 13 family dogs to sit still in an fMRI scanner, the authors of the study discovered that by saying positive words in an excited manner, two different regions of the dog's brain lit up — the left hemisphere, which is connected to the meaning of words, and the right hemisphere, which is connected to how words are emotionally said. The same regions are connected to meaning and intonation in human brains, too.

"Dogs not only tell apart what we say and how we say it, but they can also combine the two, for a correct interpretation of what those words really meant," study author Attila Andics said in a statement.

Perhaps most fascinating of all, the study shows that processing meaning and emotion in separate hemispheres of the brain before tying them together developed in non-primates long, long before people ever began saying, "Who's a good dog?"

"Using words may be a human invention, but we now see that the neuromechanisms to process them are not uniquely human," Andics said. Jeva Lange

9:34 a.m. ET
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Constant fundraising requests combined with enthusiastic supporters led to more than 1,500 donors contributing more than was legally allowed to the Bernie Sanders campaign, The Atlantic reports. "It's very similar to what drug dealers use or casinos use to get people to continue to play," Timothy Fong, the co-director of the Gambling Studies Program at UCLA, said of such fundraising requests, which incite urgency and impulsiveness.

Sanders' campaign was built on grassroots support, and it drew in many people who had never donated to a political campaign before and who perhaps didn't fully understand the federal laws or lost track of how much they had contributed. Many who donated did so frequently, and without an awareness of the $2,700 limit for individual contributions to a campaign.

The FEC requires that campaigns send refunds for any donation in excess of the legal limit within 60 days, and according to its federal filings, the Sanders campaign has issued more than $5 million in refunds. But several of the largest "over donors" to Sanders said they never received checks the campaign reported that it sent to them late in the spring, in some cases for several thousand dollars. "Are you kidding me? I barely even received a thank you from the campaign," said Annamarie Weaver of Chicago when I informed her that, according to records on the FEC website, the Sanders campaign had issued her a refund of $3,617 on May 1 and another one for $500 on May 31. "That's complete bulls---." [The Atlantic]

By comparison, President Obama had only refunded $1.5 million by the end of July in 2008. This year, Hillary Clinton's campaign has refunded $3.4 million so far. Jeva Lange

9:31 a.m. ET

The New York Times editorial board dished up some advice for the Clinton family Tuesday: Step away from the Clinton Foundation now. Hillary Clinton has already pledged to completely ban all contributions to the foundation from "any foreign governments, corporations, or citizens," as well as donations from American corporations. But if she wins in November, The New York Times recommends that the Clinton family do more — and sooner — to save herself the trouble she'll inevitably face from her political foes:

Mr. Clinton has said he will resign from the board of the foundation and the CHAI board if Mrs. Clinton wins the presidency. Simply closing the foundation, as even some Democrats recommend, could kill programs helping tens of thousands of people. While that's unwarranted, the foundation could do much more to distance itself from the foreign and corporate money that risks tainting Mrs. Clinton's campaign. Its plans to restrict its funding sources only after the election will likely dog Mrs. Clinton.

A wiser course would be to ban contributions from foreign and corporate entities now. If Mrs. Clinton wins, Bill and Chelsea Clinton should both end their operational involvement in the foundation and its affiliates for the duration of her presidency, relinquishing any control over spending, hiring, and board appointments. [The New York Times]

Clinton has already caught flak for not drawing stark enough lines between the Clinton Foundation and herself during her tenure as secretary of state. The sooner she takes action to cut ties, the editorial board contends, the less chance there will be for the Clintons' two worlds to become further entangled. Read the full editorial over at The New York Times. Becca Stanek

8:50 a.m. ET
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New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie said Donald Trump does not need to do anything to help Camden, New Jersey, despite the fact that the city has more than twice as many homicides as Chicago, the Philadelphia Inquirer reports.

Christie and other Republicans have blasted Chicago's Democratic Mayor Rahm Emanuel for "liberal policies," which they say have resulted in rampant homicides in the city. Emanuel "has refused to do anything about the fact that's there's over 2,000 of these incidents in a year," Christie said.

The homicide rate in Camden this year is at least 2.3 times what it is in Chicago; Camden has a homicide rate of at least 40 per 100,000, while Chicago, a much larger city, has a rate of 17 per 100,000 residents.

Still, while insisting Trump will make "safer streets," Christie said the Republican nominee needs to do "nothing" for the city of Camden.

Trump "doesn't have to worry about liberal policies in New Jersey" if he gets to the White House, Christie said. He needs to "worry about places like Chicago" instead. Jeva Lange

8:43 a.m. ET
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Hillary Clinton's big lead over Donald Trump took a tumble in this week's NBC News/SurveyMonkey poll. The latest national poll out Tuesday reveals that Clinton now leads Donald Trump 48 percent to 42 percent — a winning margin 2 points slimmer than the week before.

While Clinton has fallen 2 points, from 50 percent to 48 percent, Trump has stayed steady with his 42 percent support. Trump's support did, however, inch up among Independents who don't lean towards either party. Just two weeks ago, Trump dragged 8 points behind Clinton with this group, 40 percent to 32 percent. Now, he's behind by just 4 points.

The poll, which surveyed 24,104 adults across the U.S. from Aug. 22 to Aug. 28, has a margin of error of plus or minus 1.0 percentage points. Becca Stanek

8:33 a.m. ET
Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Over the last century, temperatures have risen at a rate 10 times faster than the historical average, NASA scientists have found. Temperature reconstructions fom NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration revealed that, over the last 5,000 years, temperatures rose by about 4-7 degrees Celsius. But in the next century, NASA predicts the world will start warming at a rate "'at least' 20 times faster than the historical average," The Guardian reported.

NASA's Gavin Schmidt has lost confidence that temperature increases can remain below the 1.5C limit set just last year at the Paris climate accord. "In the last 30 years we've really moved into exceptional territory," Schmidt, the director of NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies, told The Guardian. "It's unprecedented in 1,000 years. There's no period that has the trend seen in the 20th century in terms of the inclination (of temperatures)."

And, Schmidt added, there's "no evidence it's going away and lots of reasons to think it's here to stay."

You can read more about the temperatures to come at The Guardian. Becca Stanek

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