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The Stafford Act plays a key role in House of Cards. Here’s how that law works.


Warning: This post contains spoilers up through Episode 5 of House of Cards. The Stafford Act is having its Hollywood moment.

Fox's new sitcom Last Man on Earth blends comedy with the post-apocalypse


The Last Man on Earth, which debuts on Fox Sunday at 9 p.m. ET, has a complicated relationship with silence.

130 years of facial hair trends, in one chart


This chart purports to show how facial hair styles in London changed from 1842 to 1972. You could call it "The Rise of the Razor." Facial hair through the ages.

The best sendoff to Spock came from the International Space Station


On Saturday, NASA astronaut Terry Virts, who is currently aboard the International Space Station, marked the passing of Leonard Nimoy with a Vulcan salute … delivered from the final frontier, and sent over Twitter.

Jimmy Kimmel got doctors to swear at cameras to convince people to get vaccinated


A bunch of doctors went on Jimmy Kimmel Live on Thursday with a very clear message: get your children vaccinated.

This is why your foot falls asleep (it's not just because of bad circulation)


You know that pins-and-needles feeling you get when you sit too long in the same position? There's a popular idea that it's because just because of bad blood flow, but it's actually not that simple.

The Dutch embassy is trolling all of Washington, DC, with this infographic


The Dutch embassy doesn't appreciate people comparing Amsterdam to Washington, DC, just because the District legalized marijuana on Thursday.

Americans are making a big mistake about health care


If you want to understand the politics of health care in the United States, you really need to understand this finding from a recent Economist/YouGov poll that shows why it's so difficult for wonky ideas — of either a left-wing or right-wing slant — to gain much toehold with the American people.

Slot-machine science: How casinos get you to spend more money


The next time you find yourself in a casino, pause for a second to appreciate the architecture. Casinos put an enormous amount of thought into their designs.

Rand Paul wins CPAC straw poll, Scott Walker comes in second


On Saturday, the results of this year's Conservative Political Action Conference straw poll were announced.

The sick and twisted history of Ultron, Marvel’s lesson about the singularity


Born during the Cold War, sprinkled with daddy issues, and blessed with an unquenchable megalomania, Ultron, a robot created by the most troubled Avenger in history, has been one of the great Avengers villains for 46 years.

The 7 best songs of February


2015 is off to a good start for music. Stellar singer-songwriters like Natalie Prass blew us away in January, but February has been dominated by familiar voices -- like Sufjan Stevens and Drake -- who dropped great new hits.

Republican hawks stole the show at CPAC. Here’s why that matters.


At the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) this week, you might have expected to see evidence of the debate raging in the Republican Party over its approach to foreign policy.

Leonard Nimoy didn’t always love being Spock


The success of Star Trek surprised everyone, not least its stars. Leonard Nimoy, the actor who died Friday at the age of 83, probably didn't expect that the half-alien character of Mr.

Why Elizabeth Warren is declaring war on an obscure trade policy


Populist crusader Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren has picked her next big fight, and this one could create real problems for the Obama Administration.

4 years before his murder, Boris Nemtsov gave a chillingly prescient interview on Putin


Boris Nemtsov, a prominent opposition politician and critic of President Vladimir Putin, was shot to death Friday evening while walking on Moscow's Zamoskvoretskiy bridge.

Scott Walker says union-busting was the most important foreign policy decision since 1967


Saturday morning, Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker said that "the most significant foreign policy decision of my lifetime" was Ronald Reagan's aggressive response to an air traffic controllers strike in 1981.

Steve Jobs’ best advice for managers


The New Yorker's lengthy profile of Apple's chief designer, Jonathan Ive, is worth reading. But I found this argument between Ive and his late boss, Steve Jobs, to be the most interesting bit: Jobs's taste for merciless criticism was notorious; Ive recalled that, years ago, after seeing colleagues crushed, he protested.

Study: lighter-skinned black and Hispanic people look smarter to white people


As long ago as 2005, an ABC News report on colorism called it "an open secret in the black community." Two more recent documentaries about the issue, 2011's Dark Girls, and its 2015 offshoot, Light Girls, present it primarily as a source of pain inflicted both on and by African-Americans.

Last night previewed how House Republicans would handle an Obamacare fix. They wouldn't.


Friday night was a mess for House Republicans, as party infighting nearly forced the Department of Homeland Security to shutdown.


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