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To ventilate a room and make it more comfortable, the louver shutters in many older homes were designed to open allowing air to circulate inside. The louvers were adjustable to protect the interior from too much sun and rain. Today, however, shutters are mostly made of vinyl and used more as decoration to frame windows and add texture and contrast against the...

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has blasted officials over slow medicine deliveries and ordered his military to respond to the largely undiagnosed COVID-19 crisis that has left 1.2 million people ill with fever and 50 dead in a matter of days. More than 560,000 people are in quarantine due to the fever. Eight more deaths and nearly 393,000 newly detected fevers were reported Monday. It's not known how many were COVID-19 since North Korea likely lacks enough test kits. It’s also not clear if North Korea’s urgent messaging about the outbreak indicates a willingness to receive outside help. It has shunned vaccines from a U.N.-backed program. China and South Korea say they're willing to help but indicated North Korea hasn't requested any.

U.S. Sen. Chris Van Hollen of Maryland says he has suffered a minor stroke and is being treated at George Washington University Hospital. The Democrat says he has been told there are no long-term effects or damage. In a statement Sunday night, Van Hollen said he has been advised by doctors to remain under observation at the hospital for a few days out of an abundance of caution. The 63-year-old Van Hollen was elected to the Senate in 2016 after serving seven terms in the U.S. House.

Authorities say most of Shanghai has stopped the spread of the coronavirus in the community and fewer than 1 million people remain under strict lockdown. China's largest city is moving toward reopening as economic data showed the gloomy impact of China’s “zero-COVID” policy. Vice Mayor Zong Ming credited prevention measures and said the outbreak was under effective control with 15 out of Shanghai’s 16 districts eliminating virus transmission among people not already in quarantine. Supermarkets, malls and restaurants were allowed to reopen Monday with limits on the numbers of people and mandated “no contact” transactions. But restrictions on movement remain in place and the subway train system remains closed for now.

Former President Donald Trump’s winning streak in U.S. Senate primaries is on the line Tuesday as voters in five states cast their ballots in midterm elections. Trump backed celebrity heart surgeon Mehmet Oz in Pennsylvania and U.S. Rep. Ted Budd in North Carolina in those states’ Republican primaries for U.S. Senate. On the Democratic side, Pennsylvania Senate candidate John Fetterman revealed on Sunday that he had suffered a stroke but said he was on the way to a “full recovery.” In other races, Pennsylvania, Oregon and Idaho are  holding primaries for governor on Tuesday. In North Carolina, congressman Madison Cawthorn is trying to survive a Republican primary after a turbulent first term in office.

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