Patt Morrison for August 22, 2011

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Violence and sports have always been, and will probably always be, inexorably linked. In baseball there are bean balls, collisions at the plate between runners and catcher, and of course bench clearing brawls. Hockey and football are two sports built around extreme violence, and in the case of hockey fist fights on the ice are an encouraged part of the game. Basketball games are no strangers to fights and hard fouls are routine. So it’s a little naïve to be shocked when violence on the court or field spills into the stands—sports fans are passionate about their teams and are often fueled by alcohol on game day at these various stadiums.
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In a weekend vote, 90 percent of the United Food and Commercial Workers union rejected a health care benefits proposal from Vons, Ralphs and Albertsons, automatically authorizing union officials to call a strike after 72 hours.
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On the surface it seems so logical that it’s not even worthy of a debate: of course the federal government should be constitutionally required to balance its budget each year. As with most things in Washington, it’s not always that easy.
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Comment with your opinion on any or all of the following seven economic statements: 1. Taxes have been going up and are high compared to other countries. 2. The stimulus was a failure. 3. The stimulus should have been bigger. 4. The stimulus will have no lasting legacy. 5. The stimulus was all projects. 6. The stimulus has been full of fraud, waste and abuse. 7. Infrastructure is the answer for unemployment. ProPublica’s Michael Grabell joins us to separate myth from truth. Will you agree with him?
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A secret history of guns

“A well-regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.” That constitutional phrase has fueled one of the biggest controversies in modern America. The complexities of the contemporary gun control debate are well known, but the historical origins are less so.
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Everyone says they want to eat healthier but when it comes down to it the temptations of cheap, fast, and let’s face it, delicious foods usually prove too great to resist. After all, one of the guilty pleasures of eating fast food is knowing that what tastes so good is really so bad for you. So the marketing idea behind the start-up restaurant chain “LYFE Kitchen,” with its first store opening in Palo Alto this summer, might seem like a bit of a stretch: fast food that tastes great and is good for you.
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