It's All Politics
4:58 am
Sat May 10, 2014

The Congresswoman Whose Husband Called Her Home

Rep. Coya Knutson (D-Minn.), is shown shopping in a supermarket in 1955 following her demand to know why her fellow housewives remain saddled with high grocery bills while farm income continues to drop.
Maurice Johnson Bettmann/Corbis

Originally published on Sat May 10, 2014 7:06 am

Fifty-six years ago this weekend, newspapers across the nation told a sad tale of a family seemingly imploding.

At the center of the story was Coya Knutson, the opera-singing daughter of a Norwegian farmer, and the first woman from Minnesota elected to Congress.

Voted in on her own merits, not appointed to keep a late husband's seat warm for a successor, the trailblazing mother could only watch as vengeful party rivals, a manufactured scandal, and a feckless, alcoholic husband combined to sabotage her career.

It all came to a head on the eve of Mother's Day 1958.

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The Two-Way
5:45 pm
Fri May 9, 2014

Judge Strikes Down Arkansas Ban On Gay Marriage

A judge in Arkansas has struck down the state's ban on same-sex marriage, a move that clears the way for gay couples to wed.

Here's the judge's order, via Chris Johnson, chief political and White House reporter for the Washington Blade.

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Business
5:21 pm
Fri May 9, 2014

FedEx moving airport operations out of Peoria

FedEx is terminating its operations from the Peoria International Airport. The company is reportedly moving its operations to the Central Illinois Regional Airport in Bloomington. FedEx business is just under half of total air cargo flights out of the Peoria airport.  Airport Director Gene Olson says FedEx is moving to make their operations more efficient. The Peoria Airport Authority is working to find a replacement service to occupy the FedEx space at the airport. It’s unclear when FedEx will move its cargo plane services to Bloomington.

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Books
5:08 pm
Fri May 9, 2014

In A Changing Climate, Science Fiction Starts To Feel Real

cover detail
Courtesy Night Shade Books

Originally published on Mon May 12, 2014 3:17 pm

The White House released a report this week on the impacts of global warming. Many places are already feeling the effects. There's drought in the Southwest, rising sea levels in Miami, and now even fictional worlds are feeling the burn.

There have been novels about climate change since the 1960's, but to me the definitive example is a book that's not well known outside the field of science fiction: The Windup Girl, by the American novelist Paolo Bacigalupi, which won both the Hugo and the Nebula Awards in 2010.

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Education
5:08 pm
Fri May 9, 2014

Under Restructured Rules, Kansas Teachers Lose Tenure

Originally published on Fri May 9, 2014 7:45 pm

Kansas lawmakers have passed a bill to make it easier to fire teachers. The legislation will take away some of the employment protections offered to teachers. Supporters say school administrators need the flexibility to remove teachers who aren't performing, but as Kansas Public Radio's Stephen Koranda reports, teachers argue this will allow them to be fired for unfair reasons.

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Movie Interviews
4:47 pm
Fri May 9, 2014

In 'God's Pocket,' There's A Mad Man Behind The Camera

John Slattery (left) reprises his role as Roger Sterling in the seventh and final season of Mad Men.
Frank Ockenfels Courtesy of AMC

Originally published on Fri May 9, 2014 7:45 pm

The 1980s novel God's Pocket, by Pete Dexter, is a story of hapless drunks, construction workers and one washed-up newspaper columnist. The book takes its name from a fictional blue-collar neighborhood in Philadelphia.

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The Two-Way
4:23 pm
Fri May 9, 2014

Home-Wrecker: Woman Doesn't Like Neighbors, Demolishes Their Home

Originally published on Fri May 9, 2014 5:51 pm

When Ana Maria Moreta Folch had issues with her neighbors, she did what most of us would. Scratch that. She had their mobile home demolished.

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Shots - Health News
4:20 pm
Fri May 9, 2014

Europeans Are Getting Fatter, Just Like Americans

Fried cod awaits its destiny as fish and chips in London.
Oli Scarff Getty Images

Ireland is predicted to become the fattest country in Europe by 2030, according to a study released by the World Health Organization and the UK Health Forum.

As many as 90 percent of Irish men and 84 percent of Irish women are projected to be classified as overweight or obese by then. Blame goes to the usual culprits: unhealthy diets high in sugar and fats, and a lack of exercise.

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Shots - Health News
3:51 pm
Fri May 9, 2014

Keep Or Kill Last Lab Stocks Of Smallpox? Time To Decide, Says WHO

U.S. Marine Sgt. Robert Scoggin gets a vaccination against smallpox in 2003 at Camp Pendleton in California — one of the final steps before deployment overseas.
David McNew Getty Images

Originally published on Fri May 9, 2014 7:45 pm

The World Health Organization is revisiting a question that's been the subject of intense debate for decades: whether to destroy the only known samples of the smallpox virus.

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Africa
3:39 pm
Fri May 9, 2014

Nigerian Kidnapping Highlights Scale Of Child Trafficking In Africa

Originally published on Fri May 9, 2014 7:45 pm

Nearly 300 schoolgirls remain missing in Nigeria. For more information on the pervasiveness of child slavery in Africa, Robert Siegel speaks with Benjamin Lawrance, the Barber B. Conable Jr. Endowed Chair in International Studies at the Rochester Institute of Technology.

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