Jerome Liebling’s Minnesota, a good paddling, who pays no taxes, people who do good (cont’d), and cellphones, cancer, and kids.
1) JEROME LIEBLING’S MINNESOTA
Jerome Liebling died this week in Massachusetts at age 87. He photographed Minnesota politicians starting around 1956. Not long before his death, he donated his work to the Minnesota Historical Society, which released this video Thursday afternoon.
2) A GOOD PADDLING OR TWO
Ben Jonas has a good answer for the usual “how’d you spend your summer?” questions he’ll get at UW-Eau Claire soon. He set out to canoe from the Chippewa River to New Orleans via the Mississippi River. He made it, the Cap Times reports (h/t: Matt Germonprez):
Jonas averaged 35 to 50 miles a day, passing Prairie du Chien into Iowa, where at Fort Madison he met a couple on a boat who invited him ashore and gave him dinner, a shower and a game of pool.
There was a day when he was pummeled by ugly flying carp and another when a family of deer swam past his canoe close enough to touch.
He met a remarkable man in a bright orange kayak, a middle-aged Missourian named Danny Rees, who inspired Ben with his “unstoppable spirit” and insisted Ben visit him in the riverfront city of Cape Girardeau.
Jonas slept under the arch in St. Louis — the halfway point — and went ashore in Memphis for a taste of Beale Street.
Meanwhile, it looks like Ann Raiho and Natalie Warren are going to be successful in becoming the first women to paddle from the Twin Cities to Hudson Bay. According to their website tracking page, they’re on Lake Winnipeg.
Their blog is here, but hasn’t been updated in a week. I’m going to try to call them today.
3) WHO PAYS NO TAXES?
Forty-six percent of Americans pay no federal income income tax. Who are these people? The Tax Policy Center at Brookings is out with a study that finally answers that. Low-income people, old people on Social Security, and people who take the earned income tax credit, the child credit, and the childcare credit . A family making $26,000 paid no tax this year, the study says (available here – pdf).
4) PEOPLE WHO DO GOOD (CONT’D)
Volunteers will spread out in Little Falls, Swamville, Elmdale, and Bowless in Morrison County next weekend. When they’re done, eight low-income families or elderly homeowners who financially or physically can’t get the work done themselves will have fresh-painted homes. The Paint-A-Thon is now an annual event in the area.
Volunteers are needed.
Meanwhile, I told you yesterday about a nine-year-old girl who wanted to raise $300 for clean water in the third world. She died last week and as of yesterday, about $530,000 had been raised. Today: It’s up to $605,000.
5) CELLPHONES, CANCER, AND KIDS
A new study shows cellphones do not increase their risk of cancer, LiveScience reports. But the scientific community is debating whether the study, published this week in a respected medical journal, is bogus:
n a response sent to the media, Moskowitz pointed out what he considers several flaws in Röösli’s logic, starting with how little cellphone use (one call per week) counted as “regular.” This parameter flooded the pool of truly regular cellphone users with almost-non-users, he said, skewing the results. “Such a loose definition of regular use would be expected to reduce the association between cellphone use and tumor risk,” Moskowitz wrote.
When a subset of the data corresponding only to heavy cellphone users is analyzed, he pointed out, the results become much more striking. From the journal’s paper itself: “[There] was a highly significant association between the time since first subscription and brain tumor risk. Children who used cellphones for at least 2.8 years were more than twice as likely to have a brain tumor than those who never regularly used cellphones.” The authors went on to state: “As compared to never regular users, those who used cellphones for 4 or more years based on phone company records were 3.7 to 4.0 times more likely to have brain tumors, and those who made 2,638 or more calls were 2.9 to 4.8 times more likely to have brain tumors.”
Bonus 1: To bee. The Associated Press reports bees are thriving more in cities than in rural areas.
The Chicago bees’ success could be due to the city’s abundant and mostly pesticide-free flowers. Many bee experts believe city bees have a leg up on country bees these days because of a longer nectar flow, with people planting flowers that bloom from spring to fall, and organic gardening practices. Not to mention the urban residents who are building hives at a brisk pace.
Beekeeping is thriving in cities across the nation, driven by young hobbyists and green entrepreneurs. Honey from city hives makes its way into swanky restaurant kitchens and behind the bar, where it’s mixed into cocktails or stars as an ingredient in honey wine.
This is a busy time of the year for beekeepers in Minnesota. Did you catch this great set of photos about a beekeeper in Eagle Bend, Minnesota?
Bonus 2: Did David Sedaris go too far? A screed against the Chinese culture has a San Francisco columnist upset.
The reason for Sedaris’s disdain soon becomes clear: In his view, China is ugly and filthy, Chinese people are universally rude and hostile, and Chinese food is composed of vile ingredients prepared in the most unsanitary and grotesque fashion possible. This isn’t an exaggeration: Sedaris’s narrative is condescending, xenophobic and thoroughly venomous — a sweeping 2,700-word dismissal of an entire culture and society based on a few singular anecdotal experiences.
A new agreement between the Obama administration and auto manufacturers sets an average 54.5 miles per gallon as a fuel efficiency standard by the year 2025. Today’s Question: When you’re shopping for a car, what fuel efficiency standard do you look for?
WHAT WE’RE DOING
Midmorning (9-11 a.m.) – First hour: The racial wealth gap.
Second hour: Film critics David Thomson and Richard Brody..
Midday (11 a.m. – 1 p.m.) – First hour: The health of Minnesota lakes.
Second hour: The “Bright Ideas” series with chef Isaac Becker
Science Friday (1-3 p.m.) – First hour: A a new documentary
about a 1970s experiment teaching sign language to a chimp.
Second hour: A space mission to Jupiter.
All Things Considered (3-6:30 p.m.) –