When you ask people what impacts health you'll get a lot of different answers: Access to good health care and preventative services, personal behavior, exposure to germs or pollution and stress. But if you dig a little deeper you'll find a clear dividing line, and it boils down to one word: money.
At 2.5 percent, Lincoln, Neb., has one of the lowest jobless figures in the country. But that's nothing new — the city has ranked at or near the top of the nation, with one of the lowest unemployment rates for years, even during the Great Recession.
But on a recent visit, it's clear that Lincoln is not resting on its laurels. It's working hard at keeping and drawing talent to this city of nearly 300,000.
Foodies have long savored the cheeses of the Italian Alps. Dairy farmers still make it by hand, but unless you live in the region or can travel there, you'll have a hard time getting your hands on it. Much of this precious cheese isn't exported.
As you might imagine, this has not been good for business and the Alpine cheese makers have been slowly disappearing. That is until some farmers banded together — with the help of the Internet — and came up with an unusual adoption program called Adopt A Cow.
Originally published on Fri February 27, 2015 12:25 pm
In a string of meetings and press releases, the federal government's health watchdogs have delivered a stern message: They are cracking down on insurers, hospitals and doctors offices that don't adequately protect the security and privacy of medical records.
"We've now moved into an area of more assertive enforcement," Leon Rodriguez, then-director of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Office for Civil Rights, warned at a privacy and security forum in December 2012.
Originally published on Sun March 1, 2015 12:54 pm
This week marked National Adjunct Walkout Day, a protest to gain better working conditions for part-time college instructors. Why are college professors from San Jose State University to the City University of New York taking to the streets like fast-food workers?
Originally published on Fri February 27, 2015 3:12 pm
The Obama administration is creating new protections for Americans saving and investing for retirement, but industry groups say the new rules could hurt the very people the president says he wants to help.
If you're building a retirement nest egg, big fees are the dangerous predators looking to feast on it. The White House says too many financial advisers get hidden kickbacks or sales incentives to steer responsible Americans toward bad retirement investments with low returns and high fees.
Yesterday, the Federal Communications Commission voted to regulate access to the Internet as it would a public utility, under something called Title II of the Communications Act of 1934. Critics of the FCC say it's an old, dusty law meant to apply to phone service, not the complexities of the modern Internet. But there are some parallels to the days when Title II was enacted.
Originally published on Thu February 26, 2015 7:42 pm
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KELLY MCEVERS, HOST:
The Federal Communications Commission voted today to regulate Internet access more like a public utility, the vote split 3-2 along party lines. As NPR's Joel Rose reports, the vote reflects deep divisions over the future of the Internet.
Originally published on Thu February 26, 2015 4:27 pm
The Federal Communications Commission approved the policy known as net neutrality by a 3-2 vote at its Thursday meeting, with FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler saying the policy will ensure "that no one — whether government or corporate — should control free open access to the Internet."
The Open Internet Order helps to decide an essential question about how the Internet works, requiring service providers to be a neutral gateway instead of handling different types of Internet traffic in different ways — and at different costs.
"Today is a red-letter day," Wheeler said Thursday.
Originally published on Fri February 27, 2015 2:04 pm
Buying health care in America is like shopping blindfolded at Macy's and getting the bill months after you leave the store, Princeton economist Uwe Reinhardt likes to say.
But an online tool that went live Wednesday is supposed to help change that, giving patients in most parts of the country a small peek at the prices of medical tests and procedures before they open their wallets.
Got a sore knee? Having a baby? Need a primary-care doctor? Shopping for an MRI scan?
Backers, including many tech firms and the Obama administration, say the net neutrality rules will ensure equal access to the net for content providers. But Republicans in Congress are no fans of FCC Chairman Thomas Wheeler's plan.
The political battle over immigration, now provoking a confrontation between Congress and the White House, touches all of us in one very direct way: our food. That salad mix, and those apples, may well have been harvested by workers who arrived here in the U.S. illegally.
Originally published on Wed February 25, 2015 8:54 pm
The U.S. Supreme Court ruled Wednesday that the North Carolina dental board does not have the authority to regulate teeth-whitening services. By a 6-to-3 vote, the court said that the state board, composed mainly of dentists, violated the nation's antitrust laws by regulating the activity of competitors.
Originally published on Wed February 25, 2015 6:46 pm
Regulations intended to block money from getting into the hands of terrorist groups has led the last bank that handles most money transfers from the United States to Somalia to pull out of the business.
Somali refugees in the U.S. say their families back home need the money they send each month to survive, and they're counting on lawmakers and Obama administration officials, who are meeting in Washington on Thursday, to try to find a solution.
Originally published on Wed February 25, 2015 6:27 pm
A closely watched case before the Supreme Court Wednesday could have big consequences for religious rights in the workplace. It involves Abercrombie & Fitch, the preppy, mall-based retailer, and a young Muslim woman who wore a headscarf to a job interview at the company seven years ago.
Originally published on Wed February 25, 2015 1:23 pm
My coffee maker is texting me again. It's scheduled to make coffee tomorrow, the message says, but I need to refill its water tank. Welcome to the future.
The Mr. Coffee Smart Optimal Brew Coffeemaker with WeMo — yes, that is its official name — is just one of many household appliances being remade to connect to the Internet and take care of themselves. There are thermostats, smoke alarms, washing machines and even $1,000 Bluetooth-connected toilets.
Originally published on Wed February 25, 2015 1:18 pm
Commercial fisherman John Yates and his crew were fishing for red grouper in the Gulf of Mexico off the coast of Cortez, Fla., in 2007. His vessel was boarded by John Jones, a state Fish and Wildlife officer who was working on behalf of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
Originally published on Thu February 26, 2015 11:05 am
Saying they were threatened with violence and harassed by white co-workers, several current and former employees of a Daimler Trucks plant in Portland, Ore., have filed a lawsuit seeking some $9.5 million. The plaintiffs are African-American.
The lawsuit comes a month after Daimler Trucks settled civil rights complaints with other minority workers at its Portland plant for $2.4 million.
Originally published on Thu February 26, 2015 11:04 am
The Los Angeles area is another step closer to hosting an NFL team, after the Inglewood, Calif., City Council approved a proposal for an 80,000-seat NFL stadium. The development plan includes St. Louis Rams owner Stan Kroenke.
The unanimous vote Tuesday night came after "a consultant compared stadium noise in surrounding neighborhoods to that of bird calls," member station KPCC's Ben Bergman reports.