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September 2nd, 2009
02:06 PM ET
September 2nd, 2009
10:27 AM ET
September 2nd, 2009
10:26 AM ET

Health care reform debate hits the road

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="A crowd in the thousands attends an Organizing for America rally on health insurance reform in Columbus, Ohio on September 1, 2009. "]

It's not an election year but two different bus tours are hitting the road, all part of this make or break push on health care reform.

On the "make" side – Democrats are touring in support of reform under the label, "Organizing for America." And on the "break" side – the "Tea Party Express."

Our Jim Acosta is tracking the battle of the bus tours.

By Jim Acosta

We are riding on the Organizing for America Health Insurance Reform Now bus. That's a mouthful. But it's the old Obama campaign's effort to drum up support for health care reform.

Watch: Obamacare bus tour Video

The OFA bus (which is technically owned by the DNC but run by former campaign staffers) is hitting cities coast to coast over the next week for a series of campaign style rallies.

Filed under: Politics
September 2nd, 2009
10:01 AM ET

Give president power to take over the Internet?

In the 1960s, it was the stuff of science fiction – connecting the world through personal computers. 40 years ago today, the Internet was born and since then it has transformed our lives with tweets, e-mails, blogs and a whole lot more.

Its growth has also put our security at risk with just about everything plugged in these days. Washington's current effort to beef up cyber security has some critics concerned.

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Nick Thompson of Wired magazine says cyber security is a serious problem, particularly for the United States."]

Nick Thompson is the senior editor at Wired magazine. He joined John Roberts on CNN’s “American Morning” Wednesday.

John Roberts: The story is out there Congress is fashioning a bill that would give the president the power to take over the Internet. And any suggestion that the government could take over the Internet just drives people who have that libertarian view of the World Wide Web crazy.

Nick Thompson: Absolutely and there are a lot of people who have the libertarian view of the Internet. And if the government really were going to take over the Internet it would be a terrible idea. You can imagine a situation where there’s a coup d'état – “They take over the Internet. Well, dissent is supposed to spread on the Internet so it would block the people’s opportunity to protest against the government. It would be just awful.”

Roberts: Okay, so there’s a bill in the Senate. Jay Rockefeller’s committee is writing it. It did have some language in it that was troubling to people early on this year. It said it would "give the president the power to order the limitation or shutdown of Internet traffic." Since then the bill's been rewritten somewhat. Now it would just give the president the power to declare a cyber security emergency, do what's necessary to respond to the threat. But really does it give the president the power to take over the Internet?

Thompson: No, absolutely not. The early version was troubling. It came out on April 1st. It looked like a bad April Fool's joke. The new version – it’s so bland. It says, if there's a cyber emergency the president may, if he thinks it's necessary, direct the response in coordination with the private sector. There are about five hedges built into it. It basically gives the president no additional powers than he already has and in fact Obama has been very clear that he does not want to take over private networks.


Filed under: Controversy • Technology
September 2nd, 2009
08:16 AM ET

LA Times: Hostages of the Hermit Kingdom

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Freed journalists Euna Lee and Laura Ling after being released from North Korea on August 5, 2009."]

By Laura Ling and Euna Lee
From The Los Angeles Times

We arrived at the frozen river separating China and North Korea at 5 o'clock on the morning of March 17. The air was crisp and still, and there was no one else in sight. As the sun appeared over the horizon, our guide stepped onto the ice. We followed him.

We had traveled to the area to document a grim story of human trafficking for Current TV. During the previous week, we had met and interviewed several North Korean defectors - women who had fled poverty and repression in their homeland, only to find themselves living in a bleak limbo in China. Some had, out of desperation, found work in the online sex industry; others had been forced into arranged marriages.

Now our guide, a Korean Chinese man who often worked for foreign journalists, had brought us to the Tumen River to document a well-used trafficking route and chronicle how the smuggling operations worked.

There were no signs marking the international border, no fences, no barbed wire. But we knew our guide was taking us closer to the North Korean side of the river. As he walked, he began making deep, low hooting sounds, which we assumed was his way of making contact with North Korean border guards he knew. The previous night, he had called his associates in North Korea on a black cellphone he kept for that purpose, trying to arrange an interview for us. He was unsuccessful, but he could, he assured us, show us the no-man's land along the river, where smugglers pay off guards to move human traffic from one country to another.

Keep reading »

Filed under: North Korea
September 2nd, 2009
06:27 AM ET

H1N1: What you can do to stay healthy

From the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Situation Update:

Each week CDC analyzes information about influenza disease activity in the United States and publishes findings of key flu indicators in a report called FluView. During the week of August 16-22, 2009, a review of these key indicators found that influenza activity is either stable, or is increasing in some areas. Activity appears to be increasing in the Southeast based on influenza-like illness data reported by health care providers. Below is a summary of the most recent key indicators: Learn More »

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="The image above of the newly identified H1N1 influenza virus was taken in the CDC Influenza Laboratory."]

What You Can Do to Stay Healthy:

  • Stay informed. This website will be updated regularly as information becomes available.
  • Influenza is thought to spread mainly person-to-person through coughing or sneezing of infected people.
  • Take everyday actions to stay healthy.
    • Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it.
    • Wash your hands often with soap and water, especially after you cough or sneeze. Alcohol-based hands cleaners are also effective.
    • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. Germs spread that way.
    • Stay home if you get sick. CDC recommends that you stay home from work or school and limit contact with others to keep from infecting them.
  • Follow public health advice regarding school closures, avoiding crowds and other social distancing measures.
  • Find healthy ways to deal with stress and anxiety.
  • Call 1-800-CDC-INFO for more information.

For more information, visit the CDC's H1N1 Web site »

CNN Health: Dr. Gupta offers advice to parents on H1N1

Filed under: Health
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