2:51pm

Thu May 24, 2012
Election 2012

GOP Hopes Pennsylvania's Still Got That Swing

Originally published on Thu May 24, 2012 7:37 pm

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney participates in a 6th-grade language arts class with Salina Beattie and other students at Universal Bluford Charter School on Thursday in Philadelphia.
Mario Tama Getty Images

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney was talking about education policy Thursday in Philadelphia.

Pennsylvania, with its 20 electoral votes, is a frequent stop for presidential candidates. But, amid a campaign likely to focus on a handful of battleground states, some are starting to wonder if Pennsylvania is still a swing state.

At the Universal Bluford Charter School in a largely African-American neighborhood in West Philadelphia, Romney toured a computer lab, helped students with an assignment in language arts class and listened to the kids sing.

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2:17pm

Thu May 24, 2012
Shots - Health Blog

What's Up, Doc? When Your Doctor Rushes Like The Road Runner

Originally published on Thu May 24, 2012 7:37 pm

Patients continue to complain that physicians don't spend enough time examining and talking with them.
iStockphoto.com

To physician Larry Shore of My Health Medical Group in San Francisco, it's no surprise that patients give doctors low marks for time and attention.

"There's some data to suggest that the average patient gets to speak for between 12 and 15 seconds before the physician interrupts them," Shore says. "And that makes you feel like the person is not listening."

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2:15pm

Thu May 24, 2012
The Two-Way

Massive Solar Plane Tries For First Transcontinental Flight

Originally published on Thu May 24, 2012 8:45 pm

The Swiss sun-powered aircraft Solar Impulse takes off on Thursday in Payerne on its first attempted intercontinental flight from Switzerland to Morocco.
Fabrice Coffrini AFP/Getty Images

The Solar Impulse, a solar-powered airplane with the wing-span of a jumbo jet, took off from Switzerland today on its first attempt to complete a transcontinental flight.

The AP reports:

"Fog on the runaway at its home base in Payerne, Switzerland, delayed the take off by two hours, demonstrating how susceptible the prototype single-seater aircraft is to adverse weather.

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1:53pm

Thu May 24, 2012
The Salt

A Meat Mea Culpa: What Went Wrong With 'Pink Slime'

Originally published on Thu May 24, 2012 2:47 pm

May cover of Meatingplace, the meat processing industry trade magazine
courtesy Meatingplace

It came as no surprise to us when outrage over "pink slime," the catchy nickname given to lean finely textured beef (LFTB), went viral a couple of months ago.

Murky government rules, off-limits meatpacking floors, and a "gotcha" media mentality have created a fear and mistrust that's left the public highly opinionated but often woefully misinformed about where our food comes from.

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1:50pm

Thu May 24, 2012
It's All Politics

Sequestered At The Edwards Trial, And I'm Not On The Jury

Originally published on Thu May 24, 2012 2:24 pm

John Edwards arrives with his daughter, Cate Edwards, at U.S. District Court in Greensboro, N.C., on May 17 for closing arguments in his trial. The former Democratic presidential candidate has pleaded not guilty to six counts of campaign finance violations.
Sara D. Davis Getty Images

One day last week, I was entering the federal courthouse in Greensboro, N.C., where John Edwards is on trial, when a U.S. marshal took my local newspaper. A moment later, he told ABC News correspondent Bob Woodruff to hand over his morning paper.

"We can't have newspapers?" I asked.

"You guys know the rules," the smiling marshal said.

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1:04pm

Thu May 24, 2012
Music Interviews

Regina Spektor Still Doesn't Write Anything Down

Originally published on Thu May 24, 2012 7:37 pm

The songs on What We Saw From the Cheap Seats don't come just from the past year but from a span of "10 years or more," Regina Spektor says.
Shervin Lainez

In 2004, singer-songwriter Regina Spektor was a staple of the so-called anti-folk scene when she sat down for one of her first public-radio interviews with the now-defunct WNYC program The Next Big Thing. In the interview, she joked that she stayed up until 3:30 a.m. writing a song, trying not to wake the neighbors, but never wrote anything down.

She still doesn't.

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12:54pm

Thu May 24, 2012
The Two-Way

Not What You Thought: Americans On Taxes; Blacks On Gay Marriage

Originally published on Thu May 24, 2012 12:58 pm

Dr. Patrick Wooden, senior pastor of the Upper Room Church of God In Christ in North Carolina, celebrates early returns that show strong support for Amendment One, which bans gay marriage in the state.
Robert Willett Raleigh News

We like when conventional wisdom is challenged. And during the past couple of days, we stumbled on two stories that challenged assumptions both the news media and Americans seem to make.

First, Reuters compares Americans to anorexics when it comes to taxes. Essentially, they say when Americans respond to polls, they see themselves as "fat with taxes." It's the one thing both political parties agree on. But taking a look in the global mirror, Americans are actually quite skinny.

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12:53pm

Thu May 24, 2012
Shots - Health Blog

Doctors Look Likely To Resist Change On PSA Tests

Did they talk first?
iStockphoto.com

Forgive me, if you're suffering from PSA policy fatigue.

But there are a few more things I thought you might want to know about the new guideline from the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force that says men of all ages should forgo routine blood tests to detect prostate cancer.

Research from Johns Hopkins suggests the chances that doctors will listen aren't great.

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12:27pm

Thu May 24, 2012
The Two-Way

In Annual Human Rights Report, U.S. Says China's Record Is Deteriorating

In its yearly report on Human Rights, the U.S. State Department noted that 2011 was tumultuous. Some countries — for example, Tunisia, which kicked off the Arab Spring — made strides while others fell back on their human rights records.

Here are a few highlights from the report:

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11:56am

Thu May 24, 2012
It's All Politics

Researchers Find Link Between Isolated State Capitals, Corruption

Despite the misspelling and grammar error, the tee-shirt message is clear on a protester at the Illinois capitol on May 16, 2012. It cites two former governors now in federal prison for corruption.
Seth Perlman AP

Do state capitals relatively distant from the major population centers have more corruption than those in more densely populated areas?

Researchers report that they have found an intriguing correlation between political corruption in state capitals and population density.

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