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A Project of The Annenberg Public Policy Center

Cap-and-trade: “Green Jobs” or Job Killer?

A TV ad sponsored by business groups claims a bill to curb carbon emissions “will cost up to 2.4 million U.S. jobs” if enacted. That directly contradicts claims by President Obama and his allies who say the bill would create jobs – 1.7 million of them according to one TV spot …

October 27, 2009

In 1584 French explorer Jacques Cartier said he found "gros melons" in the St. Lawrence region of North America. The name was translated as "pompions" in English, and that word became "pumpkin."

Source: History.com

October 26, 2009

The jack-o’-lantern, according to Irish legend, is named for Stingy Jack, a blacksmith who cheated the devil and later was fated to wander the earth carrying a burning ember inside a carved turnip.
Source: History.com

October 25, 2009

Irish immigrants brought the tradition of carving jack-o’-lanterns to the United States. When they couldn’t find the turnips the Irish used back home, they carved pumpkins instead.
Source: BBC

October 24, 2009

In Ireland, jack-o’-lanterns were once carved from turnips.
Source: BBC

Internet Access Denied?

Q: Is Obama seeking power to "disconnect your computer, shut down your favorite websites, or block your email"?
A: A Senate bill would allow the president to restrict access to government or "critical infrastructure" networks in case of a "cybersecurity emergency." But it has bipartisan support, and even critics admit it would not allow him to shut down all private Internet traffic.

Heather Graham Teaches Us About Polls

The liberal advocacy group MoveOn.org Political Action has released another health care ad featuring a Hollywood celebrity. Last time it was Will Ferrell talking of pygmy horses and executive compensation. This time it’s actress Heather Graham dressing up as a track and field runner (labeled "public option") and challenging health insurance executives to a race.  
As part of its argument, the ad says that "over 70 percent of Americans want the public option." We’ve previously caught both liberal and conservative groups misleading the public with polling numbers during this ongoing health care debate,

October 23, 2009

More than 200,000 people are hospitalized in the U.S. each year for respiratory and heart conditions that are associated with seasonal flu infections, according to a study conducted by the CDC and based on records from about 500 hospitals from 1979 to 2001.
Source: CDC

October 22, 2009

Most adults with influenza can spread the disease to others beginning one day before they get sick and up to seven days afterward. Children are contagious for longer than a week.
Source: CDC

37th in Health Performance?

The Wall Street Journal‘s "Numbers Guy," Carl Bialik, takes a deeper look at a well-worn statistic: that the U.S. ranks 37th in the world in health system performance. His conclusion:

WSJ’s Bialik, Oct. 21: Among all the numbers bandied about in the health-care debate, this ranking stands out as particularly misleading.

The No. 37 figure comes from a 2000 World Health Organization report that attempted to grade nations’ health care according to five factors and assign an overall ranking to each.