Politics
3:36 pm
Tue March 12, 2013

Iranian-Americans test political 'glass ceiling'

Washington Legislature

Originally published on Wed April 24, 2013 10:00 am

OLYMPIA, Wash. - In the decades since the Iranian Revolution, immigrants from there have made it to the corner offices of corporate America, academia and Hollywood. But they're largely absent from the political scene.

In the U.S., the highest ranking Iranian-American elected official is a freshman state representative from suburban Seattle. But his heritage is not the only thing worth noticing about Representative Cyrus Habib.

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Science
3:09 pm
Tue March 12, 2013

NASA: Rover Data Indicates Ancient Mars Could Have Supported Life

This image from NASA's Curiosity rover shows the first sample of powdered rock extracted by the rover's drill.
NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS

Originally published on Tue March 12, 2013 3:50 pm

The group of scientists working with NASA's Curiosity rover made a big announcement during a press conference today: "We have found a habitable environment that is so benign" if there was water there, "you be able to drink it," John P. Grotzinger, professor of geology at Caltech, said summing up the rover's latest findings.

That is, at one point Mars had the right conditions to support living microbes.

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Business
2:28 pm
Tue March 12, 2013

FAA approves Boeing plan to fix 787's batteries

All Nippon Airways' Boeing 787 Dreamliner takes off for the company's first non-stop flight from San Jose to Tokyo at the San Jose International Airport in San Jose, Calif. on Friday, Jan. 11, 2013.
Marcio Jose Sanchez Associated Press

Federal regulators have approved a Boeing plan to redesign the 787 Dreamliner's fire-prone lithium-ion batteries, although extensive testing will be needed before the planes can fly passengers again.

The Federal Aviation Administration said Tuesday the plan includes a redesign of the internal battery components to minimize the possibility of short-circuiting, better insulation of the battery's eight cells and the addition of a new containment and venting system.

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Global Health
2:10 pm
Tue March 12, 2013

Gates Foundation wants to make safe sex more fun

bnilsen Flickr

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation thinks safe sex isn’t as much fun as it should be.

At least, that seems to be the gist of one request for a grant application from the world’s largest philanthropy as part of its Grand Challenges Explorations program. One of the goals for this round is to develop a better condom.

“It is a bit unusual,” said Stephen Ward, the program officer with the Gates Foundation administering the project.

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Other News
11:45 am
Tue March 12, 2013

Navy investigates what caused jet crash that killed three

The EA-6B Prowler, used by the Navy for electronic attack.
Wikipedia Commons

SPOKANE, Wash. - The Navy says it's trying to figure out what caused a plane crash that killed three crew members Monday. The military jet went down during a training exercise 50 miles west of Spokane.

The crash happened in Lincoln County, near the small town of Harrington. There were no survivors. Aerial photos showed a gash in a farm field, ending in a crater. There's barely any wreckage visible.

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mental illness
11:36 am
Tue March 12, 2013

Lawmakers support emergency lockup during a psychotic break, but will they fund it?

Gun control proposals are having trouble getting majority support in the state legislature. But when it comes to people in a mental health emergency – who may pose a threat to themselves or others -- lawmakers appear more united.

They unanimously approved several measures late Monday aimed at making it easier to hold someone involuntarily.

They have the support of family members who’ve had to deal with a loved one who’s out of control.

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Politics
8:23 am
Tue March 12, 2013

Washington Senate approves limiting sick leave

OLYMPIA, Wash. – The Washington Senate moved Monday to limit the reach of Seattle’s pioneering paid sick leave law. In 2011, the city council voted to require all companies that do business in Seattle to offer paid sick leave. But in Olympia, the state Senate approved a measure to limit the benefit only to those companies and workers based almost all the time within the city limits.

State Sen. David Frockt from Seattle complained the bill is an attack on local control.

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Money Matters
5:30 am
Tue March 12, 2013

Tax mistakes you can avoid

www.SeniorLiving.org flickr.com

It's the second week of March and April 15th will be here before you know it. Have you started preparing your 2012 income tax return yet?

On this week's Money Matters, financial commentator Greg Heberlein and KPLU's Dave Meyer help you avoid some common tax mistakes.

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Social Media
8:33 pm
Mon March 11, 2013

Like this post on Facebook — it might reveal something about you

Anatoliy Babiy iStockphoto

Originally published on Tue March 12, 2013 8:13 am

Those Facebook likes? they may be reveal more about you than you realize.

A study published Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences says Facebook likes "can be used to automatically and accurately predict a range of highly sensitive personal attributes including: sexual orientation, ethnicity, religious and political views, personality traits, intelligence, happiness, use of addictive substances, parental separation, age, and gender."

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Business
5:04 pm
Mon March 11, 2013

More than 500 hospital workers strike in Olympia over health plans

More than 500 workers from Providence St. Peter Hospital are striking this week in Olympia. They’re protesting changes the company has made to their health plans.

The workers include nursing assistants, housekeepers and admitting staff. They say Providence raised their health plan deductibles in January, meaning they have to pay more out of pocket before their insurance kicks in.

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Law
4:56 pm
Mon March 11, 2013

Police monitor to present plan to judge, police unions ask for an injunction

The Seattle Police Department needs to hire more sergeants to work closely with rank-and-file officers. That’s the view of an independent monitor, Merrick Bobb, who's looking into excessive use of force. He'll present his monitoring plan to a federal judge tomorrow for approval.

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Transportation
4:34 pm
Mon March 11, 2013

Local leaders to state: Let us tax ourselves for transportation

Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn joins area business, labor and elected leaders to push for "local options" for funding roads and transit.
Gabriel Spitzer KPLU

Local leaders from across King County want to tax themselves to pay for bus service, ferries, roads and bridges, but even local measures would need approval from the state.

The coalition, which includes the mayor of Seattle and more than 40 other cities, want to be able to tack on fees to car tab renewals and vehicle transfers, among others. That requires approval from state legislators.

King County Executive Dow Constantine said local governments should be free to invest in their own infrastructure.

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Superfund cleanup
12:09 pm
Mon March 11, 2013

Lower Duwamish Waterway plan open for public comment

You can see dredging equipment used in the earliest work on superfund cleanup of "hotspots" at Seattle's Duwamish Waterway Park, in Southpark.
Bellamy Pailthorp Photo KPLU News

Seattle’s Duwamish River was once a meandering estuary in the heart of the city. A century ago, it was transformed into an industrial waterway and used as a dumping ground for decades.

Now it’s a Superfund site – and the Environmental Protection Agency has released a plan to clean it up.

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Other News
10:57 am
Mon March 11, 2013

A rough guide to what will happen at tomorrow's papal conclave

Cardinals gathered in Vatican City on Monday, a day before the papal selection process known as the conclave begins.
Jeff J Mitchell Getty Images

Originally published on Mon March 18, 2013 5:34 pm

The stage is now set for the opening act of one of the more spectacular and intriguing theatrical dramas on the planet: the election of a pope.

In Rome, TV camera crews have set up their positions on big platforms overlooking St. Peter's Square and the Vatican, where the secretive process will begin Tuesday.

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Tsunami
9:15 am
Mon March 11, 2013

Did 2011 Japan tsunami change preparedness on our coast?

Oregon Emergency Management Division

Originally published on Fri March 8, 2013 2:59 pm

The March 2011 earthquake and tsunami in Japan served as a wake up call for coastal residents and visitors on our shores. But two years later, it is hard to measure how much that disaster has changed tsunami readiness on the Pacific Northwest coast.

Althea Rizzo is the geologic hazards program coordinator for Oregon Emergency Management. She says she's certain tsunami awareness has increased.

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