5:29pm

Wed March 21, 2012
Health and Welfare

Campaign Against Smoking

Kick Butts Day at the YCMA in Beaumont Circle
Josh James

A coalition of organizations is rallying Wednesday to urge lawmakers and citizens to take a stronger stance against smoking in the Commonwealth. “Kick Butts Day” is focusing on preventing young people from taking up the habit. Evidence of the 17th annual “Kick Butts Days” is on display at the YMCA of Central Kentucky in Beaumont Circle Wednesday, as the lobby is filled with pamphlets, displays, and organizers such as Betsy Janes with the American Lung Association.

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5:26pm

Wed March 21, 2012
The Commonwealth

Local Food Summit Kicks Off

Bluegrass Local Food Summit poster
sustainlex.org

The fifth annual Bluegrass Local Food Summit begins Thursday, March 22nd, and promises a wide array of events centered on the theme “Eating From Our Own Soil.” Each day of the summit will focus on a different topic – with Thursday highlighting the role of local government in creating programs to support local food systems, Friday spotlighting community partners, and Saturday emphasizing building community skills through school gardens and youth gatherings.

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5:23pm

Wed March 21, 2012
State Capitol

Clean Energy Legislation Hearing

A bill that would require a certain percentage of the state’s energy to come from renewable sources is scheduled for a hearing in the Kentucky House of Representatives tomorrow. The bill has little chance of passage this late in the session, but its advocates are hoping to set the stage for next year. House Bill 167—the Clean Energy Opportunity Act—would gradually increase the percentage of Kentucky’s energy that’s from renewable sources. Right now, about 94 percent of the state’s energy comes from coal.

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5:17pm

Wed March 21, 2012
Education

Free GED and Career Tests Offered

Two important education and workforce-credential tests will be free to eligible Kentuckians on a first-come, first-served basis through June 30 or until funds are expended. The GED tests and assessments to earn a National Career Readiness Certificate (NCRC) are sponsored by Kentucky Adult Education, a unit of the Council on Postsecondary Education, and the Department of Workforce Investment, an agency of the Education and Workforce Development Cabinet.

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5:09pm

Wed March 21, 2012
Space

Spacecraft's Wild Ride To Mercury Yields Surprises

Originally published on Wed December 12, 2012 6:40 pm

The Messenger spacecraft is depicted over the Calvino Crater on Mercury in this enhanced-color image of the planet's surface.
NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Carnegie Institution of Washington

There's a small spacecraft called Messenger that's been orbiting the planet Mercury for a year. Today, at the Lunar and Planetary Science Conference in Houston, astronomers revealed what they've learned about the innermost planet in our solar system, and some of the new knowledge is puzzling.

Maria Zuber, a planetary scientist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, studied a large crater 900 miles across called Caloris.

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5:02pm

Wed March 21, 2012
Law

High Court Throws Out Conviction In 'Bad Lawyer' Case

Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy, shown on Capitol Hill in April 2011, wrote the court's ruling Wednesday that for the most part, plea bargaining determines "who goes to jail and for how long. It is not some adjunct to the criminal justice system. It is the criminal justice system."
Evan Vucci AP

For the first time, the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that defendants have a constitutional right to effective assistance of counsel in plea bargains. In a 5-4 decision Wednesday, the court went further, declaring that when a lawyer acts unethically or gives clearly wrong advice, the defendant may be entitled to a second chance at accepting a plea offer.

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5:00pm

Wed March 21, 2012
Middle East

As Illegal Immigrants Increase, Israel Plans To Act

Originally published on Sun March 25, 2012 9:08 am

Israel says it will begin taking tougher action against illegal immigrants, many of whom are from Africa. Here, African immigrants demand the right to stay in Israel during a protest in Tel Aviv on Aug. 1, 2009.
Yehuda Raizner AFP/Getty Images

The place is Tel Aviv, but it doesn't look at all like Israel: Dozens of African men are sitting on broken stools and plastic at a makeshift restaurant.

Sudanese fare is on the menu. The men scoop up the stews and salads that remind them of home.

Abdullah Mohammad Mustafa started this restaurant with a couple of other African men who arrived in Israel five years ago from Sudan's troubled Darfur region. They are among some 40,000 Africans who have come to Israel illegally, and many have congregated in neighborhoods in Tel Aviv.

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4:30pm

Wed March 21, 2012
The Salt

Into The Wild Science Of Sourdough Bread-making

Originally published on Wed March 21, 2012 4:50 pm

Margaret Palca in her bakery in Brooklyn, N.Y.
Chris Eichler for NPR

My sister is no science writer, and I'm no baker, but recently our worlds melded in a surprising way.

Here's what happened: Last October, I attended a workshop on artisanal bread and cheese-making at Salt Water Farms in Lincolnville, Maine. Farm manager Ladleah Dunn introduced us to the concept of making sourdough bread with levain, or starter, instead of packaged yeast.

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4:29pm

Wed March 21, 2012
It's All Politics

Romney Adviser's 'Etch A Sketch' Comment Draws Flak From Rivals

Originally published on Thu March 22, 2012 1:18 pm

iStockphoto.com

4:07pm

Wed March 21, 2012
The Two-Way

Dutch Catholic Church Is Accused Of Castrating Boys

Dutch lawmakers are calling for a parliamentary hearing, today, after new allegations of abuse by the Catholic Church surfaced over the weekend. This time, an investigation by the newspaper NRC Handelsblad found that Catholic-run institutions had surgically castrated young boys.

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