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Updated at 9:50 a.m. ET

The Labor Department says the U.S. economy added 173,000 jobs in August, a figure that fell short of expectations but nonetheless appeared to shrug off turmoil in overseas markets, particularly China.

In a separate survey, the department's Bureau of Labor Statistics said the unemployment rate had dipped to 5.1 percent — a seven-year low.

Saudi Arabia's new king is at the White House on Friday and Iran is expected to be high on the agenda. The Obama administration has been trying to reassure Gulf Arab allies that a nuclear deal with Iran doesn't mean that the U.S. will turn away from its other concerns about Iranian activities in the Middle East. To prove that, the U.S. is stepping up military sales to Saudi Arabia.

On the way to his son's baseball game on Long Island, sports writer J.R. Gamble tells me that his son, J.C., is quite a ball player.

"I have a lot of clips and highlights that I show people of him doing amazing things — jumping over catches, hitting balls right-handed, hitting balls left-handed," Gamble says.

Part of the reason his son is so good at baseball, Gamble explains, is that he started at an early age — a very early age.

There's a special significance to the monthly jobs report that will be released Friday morning. It could tip the balance for the Federal Reserve. Policymakers are weighing whether to raise the Fed's official interest rates later this month. It's something the Fed hasn't done since before the Great Recession.

Surveys of economists are predicting that job growth in August will be right around the current trend of about 220,000 new jobs a month, and they think the unemployment rate will tick down a notch to 5.2 percent.

The photographs of 3-year-old Aylan Kurdi, his lifeless body washed up onto a Turkish beach, forced the current refugee crisis onto front pages, home pages and Facebook feeds across the world this week.

"The image resonates personally before it resonates professionally," David Miliband, president of the International Rescue Committee, and the former British foreign minister, told NPR. "Anyone's who got children can't help but think of the worst for the moment."

In a new sign that Iran might consider freeing Jason Rezaian, a powerful Iranian politician tells NPR that there are "practical" ways to liberate the Washington Post reporter and other American prisoners. He then sketched the outline of a trade.

"That's one way," Ali Larijani, the speaker of Iran's Parliament, tells NPR's Steve Inskeep.

The Justice Department says it will beef up legal requirements for using cell-site simulators, an increasingly controversial form of surveillance technology that secretly gathers data about mobile devices.

Under the new policy, federal investigators will be required to get a warrant from a judge demonstrating probable cause, in most domestic criminal probes. Agents will need to explain to judges how the technology is being used. And they'll be directed to destroy volumes of bystanders' data "no less than once daily."

In the annals of ill-conceived public relations campaigns, the egg industry's war on Just Mayo deserves at least a mention.

Just Mayo is a product that looks like mayonnaise, tastes like mayonnaise and yet contains no eggs. The company behind it, Hampton Creek, has been getting lots of attention.

Josh Tetrick, the company's founder, has big ambitions. "If we're successful, there are a lot of [food] industries out there that are going to have to adjust," says Tetrick.

More than 1,500 tractors driven by angry farmers snarled Paris traffic this morning, NPR's Eleanor Beardsley reports. In an ongoing protest movement, farmers across the country have been up in arms about high taxes and low prices on their goods.

The Associated Press reports:

"They're facing increasingly slim margins they blame on cheap imports and high payroll charges, which they say make them unable to compete against producers in Germany and Eastern Europe. The farmers are seeking tax breaks from the French government and EU action."

U.S. federal prosecutors are seeking the extradition of London-based day trader Navinder Singh Sarao on charges of market manipulation that they say triggered the May 6, 2010, "flash crash" in which the Dow lost 10 percent of its value in a matter of minutes.

It was made public Thursday that Sarao, 36, who was arrested in the U.K. in April with bail set at $7.5 million, was being formally charged in the United States.

When President Obama spoke to the Democratic National Convention in Colorado seven years ago, he tried to call a truce in one of the nation's long-running social debates.

"We may not agree on abortion. But surely we can agree on reducing the number of unwanted pregnancies in this country," he said to applause.

Not long after that, Colorado launched an experiment aimed at doing just that. The results have been dramatic — but efforts to expand the program using taxpayer money have hit a political roadblock.

Football giant FC Bayern Munich today pledged to help refugees in Germany. In a statement it announced plans to donate 1 million euros from a friendly match to support refugee projects and to establish a "training camp" for refugee youth in which participants will train at FC Bayern, take German language classes and be provided with meals and football jerseys.

The statement read in part:

Donald Trump isn't the only political outsider who's been having a good summer. Retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson is gaining in several polls — especially in the first-in-the-nation caucus state of Iowa, where evangelical voters play a big role.

Two days before its football season kicks off, Rutgers University has suspended five current players who are accused of a variety of crimes, from assault to home invasion. Local authorities arrested the players Thursday; two former Rutgers players also face charges.

Many of the allegations stem from robberies this spring, in which money and marijuana were stolen from students; others are related to an attack on a group of people that left a 19-year-old student with a broken jaw.

Some of the world's most ambitious climate change legislation is currently under consideration in America. But the lawmakers in question aren't in D.C. — they're in Sacramento.

California lawmakers are intensely debating far-reaching goals to curb greenhouse gas emissions.

The bill contains three proposals: one to double energy efficiency in buildings, one to derive 50 percent of electricity from renewable sources and one head-turning proposal to cut petroleum use in vehicles by half — all in the next 15 years.

Editor's Note: Back in February, NPR published this look at Syrian refugees entering Europe. The crisis has only intensified since then and we are republishing the original report.

Some of the figures have changed. For example, there are now more than 4 million Syrian refugees, up from 3.8 million in February.

Read the original story.

Updated at 3:45 p.m. ET

The white man accused of murdering nine people at a historically black church in Charleston, S.C., in June will face the death penalty, according to court documents filed Thursday.

It was the closing ceremony of the Fifth Annual Slum Film Festival and Maxwell Odhiambo's film, the centerpiece of the night, wasn't there yet.

"Did you finish it?" his mentor, George Stanley Nsamba, asked nervously as Odhiambo burst through the door, two hours late.

"We finished it," he said with a grin.

A packed audience in downtown Nairobi, including a Kenyan actor who had flown in from Hollywood, waited for his film to begin. A blue screen stared back at them; the audience shifted nervously. There were technical difficulties.

Updated at 3:45 p.m. ET

The U.S. Coast Guard has shut down a section of the Mississippi River south of Paducah, Ky., after two tow boats collided, causing an oil spill of unknown size.

In a statement, the Coast Guard said that the collision occurred Wednesday at 8:22 p.m. at Mile Marker 937, just north of Columbus, Ky.

The number of confirmed cases of Legionnaires' disease at California's San Quentin prison is holding steady at six, one of three outbreaks of Legionnaires' around the country that have sickened dozens and killed 20.

Another 95 San Quentin inmates are under observation because of respiratory illness, state officials said, but they have not been diagnosed with Legionnaires' disease. The inmates are being treated at San Quentin's medical unit.

Among the kangaroos and kookaburras, another creature trundled through the Australian bush.

Hooves barely visible, eyes mostly covered, the animal was the size of a refrigerator, the color of dirty snow.

A concerned hiker spotted the furry specimen days ago and raised the alarm. It was a matter of life and death — and this sheep needed a haircut.

Updated at 7:15 p.m. ET

Donald Trump is "totally pledging" his allegiance to the GOP and promising not to mount a potentially damaging third-party bid for president.

The billionaire businessman said Thursday he had signed the Republican National Committee's "Loyalty Pledge," which says he will support the eventual nominee and not run as an independent or on another party line.

"I will be totally pledging my allegiance to the Republican Party and the conservative principles for which it stands," said Trump.

It was supposed to be a routine photo op.

Editor's Note: The photos in this story may be distressing to some viewers. The original version has been updated to include additional details.

The numbers associated with today's migration crisis are huge: 4 million Syrians fleeing their country; 3 million Iraqis displaced. But it was the image of a solitary child — a toddler in a red T-shirt, blue shorts and Velcro sneakers, found face-down on a Turkish beach — that shocked and haunted the world this week.

Updated at 3:35 p.m. ET

Thousands of migrants flooded into a train station in the Hungarian capital Thursday after police lifted a two-day blockade, but some who boarded a train they thought was going to Germany ended up instead at a refugee camp just miles from Budapest.

Florida Cowboys Week: Part Two

The state of Florida has a rich and diverse tradition of cattle ranching. Recently we explored the black cowboys of Florida. There are other distinctive elements to the state's past as well.

"Indian cowboys," for instance.

A federal judge has thrown out Tom Brady's four-game suspension over his role in "deflategate."

The suspension was handed down by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell after attorney Ted Wells found that employees of the New England Patriots deflated footballs to make them easier to grip. Goodell said Brady likely knew about the scheme.

Brady appealed Goodell's decision in federal court, and today, he prevailed.

A former aide to Hillary Clinton said he will invoke his Fifth Amendment right to remain silent and not answer questions from Congress.

The aide, Bryan Pagliano, helped set up Clinton's private email server. Clinton has faced months of scrutiny for using her home server and a private email address to conduct State Department business.

The Select Committee on Benghazi had asked Pagliano, a former State Department employee, to field questions next week. His lawyer has declined, sending a letter to Congress citing the negative political environment.

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