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A New Campaign Ad Sport: Billionaire Bashing

KPLU News - 2 hours 50 min ago
Michigan TV viewers faced a barrage of campaign ads early this month.

Federal Reserve To Markets: Nothing To See Here; Move Along

KPLU News - 2 hours 52 min ago
The Federal Reserve's policy makers just eyeballed the economy, and saw nothing new.

On Wednesday, they announced wage-and-price hikes remain low and growth continues at a moderate pace. That means interest rates can stay super low for a "considerable time," while the Fed's bond-buying program can wrap up next month, as expected.

In recent years, the Fed, which serves as the nation's central bank, has pushed interest rates to historic lows to help stimulate the economy.

Here's What Tomorrow's U.K. Newspapers Are Saying About Scotland's Vote

KPLU News - 2 hours 58 min ago
Scotland votes tomorrow on whether to become an independent country. The polls show the two sides are neck and neck. British newspapers, as expected, are leading with the story.

Here's what some of them are saying (courtesy of the BBC's Nick Sutton's Twitter feed). Copyright 2014 NPR.

Bezos' Company Blue Origin Chosen To Build NASA's Rocket

KPLU News - 3 hours 24 min ago

The U.S. has been wanting to ferry astronauts from U.S. soil to the International Space Station, but for now, American astronauts rely on Russia to get to space. That’s about to change, now that Boeing and Blue Origin, another Northwest company, are on board to build the rocket.

Diet Soda May Alter Our Gut Microbes And The Risk Of Diabetes

KPLU News - 3 hours 34 min ago
The debate over whether diet sodas are good, bad or just OK for us never seems to end.

Some research suggests zero-calorie drinks can help people cut calories and fend off weight gain.

But in recent years, the idea that artificial sweeteners may trick the brain and lead to "metabolic derangements," as one researcher has theorized, has gained tract

House Passes Bill That Authorizes Arming Syrian Rebels

KPLU News - 4 hours 3 min ago
In a vote that eschewed traditional Washington divisions in favor of novel ones, the House approved a bill that authorized the training and arming of Syrian rebels in their fight against the so-called Islamic State.

The final tally was 273-to-156. But many members of both parties broke ranks with their leaders — Reps. John Boehner and Nancy Pelosi — who strongly backed the measure.

According to a count by NBC News' Frank Thorp, 114 Democrats voted in favor of the measure; 85 voted no.

The Insights Of An Ebola Doctor Who Became A Patient

KPLU News - 4 hours 19 min ago
He had cared for Ebola patients. He himself caught the virus. Only then, said Dr. Kent Brantly, did he fully grasp the awful nature of this disease.

"When I became ill, I started to experience what my patients had suffered under my care," the American medical missionary told NPR's Melissa Block, host of All Things Considered, after testifying on Capitol Hill yesterday and today. "And Ebola is a really humiliating disease. You're isolated from your family, your community, everyone around you. ...

Kids' Perception Of Parents' Favoritism Counts More Than Reality

KPLU News - 6 hours 5 min ago
We all know which kid Mom and Dad liked best, and odds are you're thinking it's not you.

But does that really make a difference?

Want To Learn About The Scientific Method? Go Bake Some Cookies

KPLU News - 6 hours 6 min ago
Bethany Brookshire, aka @SciCurious, is a blogger at ScienceNews, where she covers the latest science research and develops creative science outreach projects.

She's recently started her own project, the deliciously named Cookie Science, which aims to illustrate the scientific method by creating what she hopes will be a tasty gluten-free cookie for a friend.

She tells

3.7 Million Comments Later, Here's Where Net Neutrality Stands

KPLU News - 6 hours 7 min ago
Now, we wait.

The window for the public to weigh in on how federal rule makers should treat Internet traffic is over, after a record 3.7 million comments arrived at the FCC.

With Jobless Rate Holding Steady, 2014 On Track To Be 'Best Statewide Since 2005'

KPLU News - 6 hours 26 min ago

Washington state’s unemployment rate held steady at 5.6 percent in August — a half-percentage point below the national point, according to a report released Wednesday by the state’s Employment Department.

State labor economist Paul Turek says improving economic conditions bode well for job seekers going into fall.

Who's Giving What: Nonprofits Step Up Anti-Ebola Efforts

KPLU News - 7 hours 34 min ago
"Charities and individual philanthropies have given generously and they can make a big difference," President Obama emphasized yesterday during his announcement of U.S. plans for addressing Ebola.

Indeed, one nonprofit has had a huge impact from the start of this outbreak.

Federal Grants To Help Preserve History Of WWII Japanese Internment Sites

KPLU News - 8 hours 10 min ago

After the bombing of Pearl Harbor in 1941, U.S. government officials rounded up Japanese Americans and sent them to harsh, ill-equipped camps. Now, the National Park Service has announced $3 million in new grants to help preserve that important history.

Stacey Camp, an associate professor at the University of Idaho, is leading an effort to survey the Kooskia Internment site with help from federal Park Service grants.

Colorado Tries Hard To Convince Teens That Pot Is Bad For You

KPLU News - 8 hours 32 min ago
Colorado's new campaign to deter teen marijuana use tries to make the case that weed is bad for your brain.

One TV ad shows a group of teens lighting up inside a dark car as moody music plays in the background. The commercial cites a Duke University study that found a link between regular marijuana use and a lower IQ.

"Some dispute the study," the PSA admits.

'Breaking Bad' Fans Get Their Fix In Spanish

KPLU News - 8 hours 54 min ago


NFL Players Association Files Appeal Of Ray Rice Suspension

KPLU News - 8 hours 55 min ago
The NFL Players Association formally filed an appeal of the indefinite suspension of Ray Rice on Tuesday evening.

When The Power's Out, Solar Panels May Not Keep The Lights On

KPLU News - 8 hours 56 min ago
The cost of solar panels is falling rapidly in the United States. And as the panels become more affordable, they're popping up on rooftops around the country.

Meanwhile, the U.S. is trying to find better ways to back up its power system against blackouts. And while it may seem counterintuitive, more solar power does not mean fewer blackouts — at least not yet.

The tiny town of Del Norte, in southwestern Colorado, is a perfect example.

If We Create Life, Who Will Control It?

KPLU News - 8 hours 56 min ago
Perhaps I shouldn't have used a conditional on the title. After all, we are already creating life.

Recently, Craig Venter, from the J. Craig Venter Institute, announced the creation of a living, self-reproducing bacterial cell with a DNA sequence produced in the laboratory.

How Catholic Insurance Companies Outsource Contraceptive Coverage

KPLU News - 9 hours 1 min ago
Catholic and other religious hospitals and universities have been arguing in federal court for much of the past two years that they shouldn't have to offer or facilitate birth control as part of their employee health plans because it violates their religious beliefs.

But what happens when the insurance company is itself Catholic?

Growing Business — Show Us Your Desk Plant

KPLU News - 9 hours 6 min ago
Post a photo of the plant on your desk in the Comments section below.

That's right: The plant the boss wants you to take home ...

Now you can explain — with some research to back you up — that having greenery in your workspace makes you more productive. And how a ficus near the phone or a lily by the laptop helps grow business.

And maybe your supervisor will make like a plant — and leave.

Rooting Out The Problem