• Power Players

    Turns out a taxman’s house is the oldest building still standing on the National Mall.

    The 178-year-old stone structure – known as the Lockkeeper’s House – sits at one of the busiest intersections in Washington, D.C. It’s been dilapidated for decades, but is about to get a multi-million dollar makeover.

    “Constitution Avenue was actually the Washington City Canal…food was dropped off here, goods were dropped off here, and the lockkeeper collected the taxes and took notes and took records about what came in and out of this city at this wharf,” Caroline Cunningham, the president of the Trust for the National Mall, said in an interview outside the house, which was once the gateway to commerce in the nation’s capital.

    More recently it served as a jail, storage hut and even a public restroom before being shuttered entirely in the 1970s. “A place for dead birds,” said Cunningham. “It’s deeply sad that it’s been closed for such a long time.”

    “Power Players” got a rare peak inside

    Read More »from Unlocking history: Oldest building on National Mall set to get makeover
  • The Fine Print

    For every member of Congress who lost his or her job in the midterm elections, there are multiple Capitol Hill staffers also out of work.

    And that’s where Tom Manatos comes in.

    The former Democratic aide learned first-hand how hard it can be to find work after a new party comes to power. He now makes it his business to help other unemployed workers get back on their feet. His web-based D.C. jobs board, Tom Manatos Jobs, is known among Washington's ambitious as the place to find jobs in the halls of power. In the last month alone, since the midterm elections, Manatos has gained nearly 100 new clients freshly out of work.

    “Especially when, at the end of a campaign cycle, people have lost their job, I think you have a camp of people who are proactively looking before just in case their boss lost, and a camp of people who are so loyal to their boss that they didn't even want to start looking,” Manatos told “The Fine Print.” “And you've got to help these people walk through

    Read More »from Capitol Hill's Craigslist: Meet the man who helps D.C.’s unemployed find jobs after election losses
  • Power Players

    When Matthew VanDyke set out on a “crash course in manhood” in 2007 – a motorcycle journey that would take him through North Africa and the Middle East – the 27-year-old with obsessive-compulsive disorder was at first afraid to leave his hotel room in Morocco. Four years later, he would become a foreign fighter, taking up arms with Libyan rebels to overthrow then-dictator Muammar Gaddafi.

    A new documentary, “Point and Shoot,” tells VanDyke’s story of transformation through footage he shot himself over his years-long adventure.

    VanDyke’s odyssey would take him through Iraq, where he spent time embedded with U.S. troops as a war correspondent for a Baltimore-area newspaper. While there, VanDyke said he began to feel that he was “on the wrong side of the camera.”

    “I felt that I wanted to affect events, not just document events,” VanDyke said. “I felt not at place necessarily being behind the camera and just filming. Part of me wanted to be with them. When the mission is

    Read More »from An American tells his story of becoming a foreign fighter

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