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Week In The News: Housing Prices, Holder And Leaks, Syria

Home prices surge. Eric Holder feels the heat. The Chinese move to buy a major American food producer.  Our weekly news roundtable goes behind the headlines.

Attorney General Eric Holder acknowledges award recipients as he speaks during the Office of Inspector Generals annual awards ceremony, Wednesday, May 29, 213 at the Justice Department in Washington. (Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP)

Attorney General Eric Holder acknowledges award recipients as he speaks during the Office of Inspector Generals annual awards ceremony, Wednesday, May 29, 213 at the Justice Department in Washington. (Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP)

A sense of things turning this week. In the economy, maybe for the better. Home prices, markets, up. In Syria, maybe for the worse. Hezbollah moving in. War spilling out. For Attorney General Eric Holder, for the hotter.  Hot seat questions on his role and leadership. In Pakistan, a U.S. drone hits high in the Taliban. In Washington, Michele Bachmann  says she won’t run again. In Florida, new questions over the FBI killing of a young Chechen-American. And a big bid from China for America’s biggest pork producer.

Up next On Point: Our weekly news roundtable goes behind the headlines.

– Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Diane Brady, senior editor and content chief for Bloomberg Businessweek. (@dianebrady)

Devlin Barrett, security and law enforcement reporter for The Wall Street Journal. (@DevlinBarrett)

Jack Beatty, On Point news analyst

From Tom’s Reading List

Politico: Growing Boycott Of Eric Holder Media Meetings  — “CNN, Fox News, CBS News, Reuters and McClatchy on Thursday joined The Associated Press, The New York Times and The Huffington Post in refusing to go to one of the Department of Justice’s off the record sessions about the department’s handling of investigations into journalists.”

USA Today: Home Price Jump Is More Rebound Than Bubble — “The rapid run-up in housing prices the past year has ignited talk of another housing ‘bubble,’ but only a few markets are at risk — so far, experts say. U.S. home prices rose 10.9% in the 12 months ending in March for their largest annual gain in seven years, according to the latest Standard & Poor’s Case-Shiller index released Tuesday.”

U.S. News & World Report: FBI Pick James Comey Nailed Martha Stewart, Nearly Capsized Bush — “President Barack Obama will nominate James Comey to replace Robert Mueller as FBI director, several news organizations reported Wednesday evening. Comey served as deputy attorney general from 2003 to 2005 during the George W. Bush administration and in 2004 famously refused to reauthorize a secret warrantless wiretapping program.”

Forbes: Why Chinese Purchase Of Smithfield Could Be Game Changer For Pork Trade — “U.S. regulators must approve any takeover and already there are cries of alarm over food security and tales of dodgy Chinese meat. Indeed, many Chinese consumers are suspicious of Shuanghui and other meat companies, with good reason…But a Chinese acquisition of a U.S. processor doesn’t mean that Americans will be eating crock Chinese cuts. The trade in pork is all the other way, and so is the technology transfer that Chinese firms crave as they seek to consolidate a fragmented, poorly run industry.”

The Atlantic: Why Did the FBI Kill an Unarmed Man and Clam Up? — “What led an FBI agent, or some other law enforcement official, to shoot and kill an unarmed man in Orlando, Florida? The man, Ibragim Todashev, was being questioned about the Boston bombing, as well as an unsolved 2011 triple murder that he may or may not have confessed to committing. Does that sound sketchy? Don’t blame me. Once he died, law enforcement started releasing anonymous, conflicting explanations so dubious that they warrant an inquiry all by themselves.”

CNN: McCain Responds To Syria Photo Controversy — “It would be ‘regrettable’ if the identities of the men photographed with Sen. John McCain in Syria this week are confirmed to be individuals responsible for a year-old kidnapping, the Arizona senator’s office said in a statement Thursday.”

 

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Lightning first ignited the Meadow fire on July 20, 2014 in Yosemite. By September 8, the fire had charred 2,582 acres. Bernie Krause has recorded soundscapes of national parks destroyed by large areas of forest fires. Listen below.  (National Park Service)

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WDBJ-TV7 meteorologist Leo Hirsbrunner, right, wipes his eyes during the early morning newscast as anchors Kimberly McBroom, center, and guest anchor Steve Grant deliver the news at the station in Roanoke, Va., Thursday, Aug. 27, 2015. Reporter Alison Parker and cameraman Adam Ward were killed during a live broadcast Wednesday, while on assignment in Moneta. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

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