Correspondent, Chicago
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Mar 2, 2010

Mute Chicago film critic Ebert “voices” Oscar picks

CHICAGO (Reuters) – Film critic Roger Ebert, rendered mute by several cancer surgeries, delivered his Oscar picks on Oprah Winfrey’s television chat show on Tuesday using his newly synthesized voice fashioned from old audio clips.

“I can’t remember a year when it was easier to pick the Oscars. Those may be famous last words,” the now cancer-free Ebert, 67, said in a recorded segment on “The Oprah Winfrey Show.”

Feb 22, 2010

Tiger Woods case puts spotlight on ‘sex addiction’

CHICAGO, Feb 19 (Reuters) – Golfer Tiger Woods’ admission
that he is undergoing therapy after having adulterous affairs
has focused attention on the issue of sex addiction, a
condition some experts say is becoming much more common.

But sex addiction is a controversial concept not currently
recognized as an official diagnosis in the American Psychiatric
Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental
Disorders, considered the definitive word on psychological
disorders.

Feb 6, 2010

Illinois Democrats no cure for what ails Obama

CHICAGO (Reuters) – Still reeling from the loss of the late Edward Kennedy’s Senate seat to Republicans in Massachusetts, Barack Obama’s Democrats now face the prospect of losing the president’s old Senate seat in Illinois.

The Democratic candidate Alexi Giannoulias is trailing Republican Mark Kirk in opinion polls ahead of November’s election in which Republicans are aiming to erase Democratic majorities in the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives.

Jan 31, 2010

Could Illinois’ Senate race copy Massachusetts?

CHICAGO (Reuters) – Buoyed by their surprise Senate victory in Massachusetts, Republicans in President Barack Obama’s home state of Illinois sense the Senate seat he left vacant is ripe for their picking come November elections.

Obama’s Democrats have long dominated Illinois politics. But Republicans view their man Scott Brown’s capture in January of the late Edward Kennedy’s seat in Massachusetts as a sign of voter dismay with Democrats in the White House and Congress.

Jan 20, 2010

U.S. construction industry in doldrums -survey

CHICAGO, Jan 20 (Reuters) – A survey of U.S. companies that
build highways, buildings and sewers found nine in 10
predicting their business will not rebound in 2010 from
depressed levels, a trade group said on Wednesday.

Based on the responses of some 700 contractors across the
United States, 88 percent of the firms do not expect overall
conditions to improve before 2011 and some will likely go out
of business, the Associated General Contractors of America
said.

Jan 19, 2010

Michigan locks bid denied in Great Lakes carp case

WASHINGTON/CHICAGO (Reuters) – The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday rejected a request by the state of Michigan for an injunction to force the closing of two Chicago-area waterway locks to keep Asian carp from invading the Great Lakes.

The voracious Bighead and Silver carp are considered a dire threat to the lakes’ $7 billion fisheries.

Jan 15, 2010

U.S. charges Pakistani in Danish newspaper plot

CHICAGO (Reuters) – A leader of a Pakistani militant group was charged on Thursday with helping to plot a revenge attack on a Danish newspaper that published cartoons depicting the Prophet Mohammad which angered many Muslims.

The U.S. indictment of Ilyas Kashmiri, a leader of the group Harakat-ul Jihad Islami, accuses him of helping to plot an attack against the Jyllands-Posten newspaper. Kashmiri was described in court documents as being in regular contact with leaders of al Qaeda.

Jan 7, 2010

U.S. cities, states plow or face residents’ wrath

CHICAGO (Reuters) – In a bow to political winds that demand the streets be cleared of snow, plows were out on Wednesday across the U.S. midsection despite the strain on tight state and local government budgets.

A winter storm was forecast to dump as much as a foot (0.3 meter) of snow across the Great Plains and Midwest by the weekend. The storm was expected to bring enough snow to Des Moines, Iowa, to match the city’s normal snowfall total for an entire winter season.

Jan 6, 2010

Limits to antidepressants’ effectiveness: study

CHICAGO (Reuters) – Mild to severe depression might be better treated with alternatives to antidepressant drugs, which do not help patients much more than an inactive placebo, researchers said Tuesday.

Combining data from six studies that examined the effectiveness of two commonly prescribed antidepressants — paroxetine and imipramine — found the drugs produced benefits only slightly greater than a placebo in patients with mild to severe depression.

Dec 24, 2009

Burj Dubai to be world’s tallest building, how tall?

CHICAGO (Reuters) – In the annals of tall skyscrapers, there is no doubt that the soon-to-open Burj Dubai will be the world’s tallest. But how tall is known to only a few.

“It’s still a secret,” William Baker of Skidmore, Owings and Merrill LLP, the tower’s structural engineer, said in an interview ahead of the Burj Dubai’s January 4 opening.

    • About Andrew

      "Cover the Midwest -- from Tennessee to Kansas and the Dakotas -- with help from other correspondents in Chicago and Kansas City. Also keep tabs on issues related to religion and the environment, especially as concerns the Great Lakes."
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