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April 30th, 2009
05:08 PM ET

A pig farmer's take on flu fears

They remember what happened to the cattle market, back in the "mad cow" days. And pig farmers are worried.

Texan J.R. Fortner was kind enough to join Kyra for a live interview.

April 30th, 2009
04:52 PM ET

Karpinski, Abu Ghraib, and pardons

Something was said on CNN this morning, and I wonder if it will stun you like it stunned me.

First – let me say – in no way, shape, or form do I have compassion for terrorists, but I do take issue with people who take advantage of their authority.

Let me remind you of those photos from the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq:

Former Army Spc. Charles Graner, and the woman he later married, Megan Ambuhl, thumbs up and smiling over tightly stacked, naked prisoners. They say they were just following orders.

Then there was former Army Pfc. Lynndie England, puffing a smoke near a prisoner and posing for the camera.

By the way, we know of no classified memo that would condone pointing at a prisoner's genitals while someone's taking a picture.

OK. Now that your memory is refreshed... listen to this, from CNN's American Morning:


That was Col. Janis Karpinski (Ret.), the disgraced and demoted former head of Abu Ghraib prison.

11 of her soldiers were convicted of crimes related to the scandal – and some officers were reprimanded.

Now that CIA memos on torture have been released, Karpinski says 'hey, why shouldn't my soldiers be off the hook too?'.

What do you think – do they deserve presidential pardons?

As always, you can leave comments below; if you haven't taken our Quick Vote yet, you can do that too.


Filed under: Kyra Phillips
April 30th, 2009
03:58 PM ET

Understanding Swine Flu: Questions and Answers

Swine Flu Frenzy
Swine Flu Frenzy

The emergence of the swine flu has raised many questions.  Are your kids safe at school?  Are you safe at the office?  What can be done to raise awareness among kids?  How can we keep this from spreading?

What questions do you have and what, if anything,  is your community doing to keep the flu at bay.

Post your questions or concerns and join Fredricka Whitfield this Saturday at 4 P.M. for the answers.  Your comments may make it on air!


Filed under: Fredricka Whitfield
April 30th, 2009
01:53 PM ET

Montana town: Send us the Gitmo prisoners

A rural Montana town wants terror suspects held at Guantanamo prison moved there. City developers are lobbying the U.S. government to relocate the more than 200 prisoners at Gitmo to a new but empty prison in Hardin, Montana. Watch as Kyra Phillips asks the man behind the plan how the town of 3,400 would handle the prisoners.


Filed under: Kyra Phillips
April 30th, 2009
12:21 PM ET

Wash your hands! The story continues ...

We have gotten so many comments about our producer Sara Rudolph's post about hand-washing - and about our coverage of the H1N1 virus (or "swine flu").
On Friday, we're going to answer questions from you!
We're looking through all the comments, so please keep them coming.
Medical correspondent Elizabeth Cohen will join Heidi in the Newsroom. We get started at 9a - tell us what you want to know about this whole hand-washing thing - we're all trying to stay healthy!


Filed under: Anchors • Heidi Collins
April 30th, 2009
10:39 AM ET

You Can Make a Difference

Every week here in the Newsroom with Tony Harris, we'll take a closer look at the people and organizations working to make a positive change in the world and how YOU can make a difference. We are doing this in partnership with CNN's Impact Your World.

Today, we visit one of Ethiopia's poorest Arab neighborhoods, where the U.S. military is rolling out new efforts to eradicate extremism.  As CNN's Barbara Starr reports, instead of going into battle with guns or artillery, they're providing the children with new classrooms and opportunities.

Here are some of the charities that are making a difference for children in Ethiopia:

Children of Ethiopia Education Fund
Ethiopia Reads

To find out more ways to help children around the world and how you can make a difference, visit CNN's Impact Your World.


Filed under: Impact Your World • Tony Harris
April 30th, 2009
10:30 AM ET

Survival of the Fittest Series

By Amy Chillag
Writer/Segment Producer
CNN Newsroom AM w/Tony Harris

I decided to launch this “Survival of the Fittest” Series to show how smart entrepreneurs are coming up with inventive ways to beat the recession.

We’re hearing so much doom and gloom lately about layoffs but there are silver linings to this economic downturn.

In this piece, a successful realtor and single mom was selling fewer and fewer houses. It was a tough time for her, so for therapy and fun (and because she had time on her hands) she started to paint with her children. She was soon “discovered” and now she’s a fulltime artist whose pieces can be found in five galleries around the country. She found her true passion and calling because of the recession.

Friday Preview: Tomorrow we interview an entrepreneur who hit it big with an upscale potato chip company—then became the local advice-guy for dozens of budding entrepreneurs. He hung out at coffee shops where people tracked him down for tips and emotional support. So, to make it official, in the middle of the recession he formed a company called “Idea Ocean”. Now he’s getting paid to give advice. And he has valuable tips for any of you aspiring entrepreneurs out there with big ideas.

April 30th, 2009
09:15 AM ET

Chrysler Bankruptcy

President Obama will talk about the auto industry at Noon ET live on CNN.  An administration official says Chrysler will enter bankruptcy proceedings. Tune in as Tony Harris brings you complete coverage of what this means for Chrysler workers, the nation's economy and you as a potential car customer. We want to know, would you buy a Chrysler if the company is reorganizing under bankruptcy? Post your comments!


Filed under: Tony Harris
April 30th, 2009
08:49 AM ET

How do I wash my hands?? CNN Producer wants to know!

Every day I learn something new at work. Yesterday I learned that doctors didn't wear gloves when they gave swine flu vaccines in 1976.
Today I learned I'm the last person on earth who doesn't know the rules for handwashing.
To back up - for the last week, whenever I've heard the words swine flu, I've felt the need to wash my hands immediately. On my third trip to the break room today (all before 7am), I started wondering if I was doing it right. I came back and asked the team "hey - should we do a segment on hand-washing?"
"Do you want to end up on the Daily Show?" "Are you kidding?" "Didn't you learn the birthday song rule?" "Come on - everyone's heard how to do it a thousand times."
Well hmph. What a bunch of wet blankets. (Love you guys!)
Since they won't let me put it on the show…Here we go:
My three questions: how long should you wash, does it matter how hot the water is, and is a bar of old-fashioned Ivory soap as good as the new-fangled antibacterialmicrobialeverything stuff.
Our medical department is working on the answers. I'll post them here after the show.
Meantime at 10:20, watch Heidi and Elizabeth Cohen answer your swine flu questions!

Sara Rudolph
(Worried) producer for Heidi in the Newsroom

Sara's update:

If anybody out there is a worrier (like me), here are the dirty details:

When washing hands with soap and water:
–Wet your hands with clean running water and apply soap. Use warm water if it is available.
–Rub hands together to make a lather and scrub all surfaces.
–Continue rubbing hands for 20 seconds. Need a timer? Imagine singing "Happy Birthday" twice through to a friend!
–Rinse hands well under running water
–Dry your hands using a paper towel or air dryer. If possible, use your paper towel to turn off the faucet
Remember: If soap and water are not available, use alcohol-based gel to clean hands.
Source: http://www.cdc.gov/cleanhands/
As for the type of soap you use: a whole smorgasboard of studies out there...my bar of Ivory is just as good as the fancy antibacterial version.
Sources: In a 2005 CDC-P&G Beauty study, "researchers found that incidence of disease did not differ significantly between households given plain soap versus antibacterial soap." (www.cdc.gov)
A 2003 NIH-funded study also found that "antibacterial soap is no better a germ-killer than regular soap." (www.nih.gov)

from Sara Rudolph
(Still a little bit worried) producer for Heidi in the Newsroom


Filed under: Anchors • Heidi Collins
April 30th, 2009
07:26 AM ET

Swine Flu Update with Elizabeth Cohen

Newly sworn-in Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius held a news conference yesterday to update the rapidly growing number of swine flu cases. Sebelius said officials expect to see even more cases, more hospitalizations and sadly, more deaths in the United States.

CNN Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen joined Tony Harris to discuss the threat.


Filed under: Anchors • Clips from CNN Newsroom • Swine Flu • Tony Harris
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