Effingham Daily News, Effingham, IL

Features

Features
  • 20140322-AMX-BUREAUCRACY221.jpg Retirees' paperwork, stuck in a mine, points to government's balky IT problems

    This is one of the weirdest workplaces in the U.S. government — both for where it is and for what it does. Here, inside the caverns of an old Pennsylvania limestone mine, there are 600 employees of the Office of Personnel Management. Their task is nothing top secret. It is to process the retirement papers of the government's own workers, entirely by hand.

    March 25, 2014 3 Photos

  • money.jpg Poor aren't alone in living check to check

    When you hear the term "paycheck to paycheck," you probably think of low-income households struggling to make ends meet. That's even the title of a new HBO documentary highlighting the plight of America's working poor.

    March 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Why our brains just cannot let this mystery go

    Why should the story of Flight 370 grip us so? This mystery seems almost designed to arouse some fundamental parts of our brain.

    March 24, 2014

  • Why teens love dystopias

    It's not a mystery why so many young-adult best-sellers (and the lucrative movie franchises based on them) would take place in post-apocalyptic societies governed by remote authoritarian entities and rigidly divided into warring factions. The word dystopia comes from a Greek root that roughly translates as "bad place," and what place could be worse than high school? Adolescence is not for the faint of heart.

    March 23, 2014

  • The madness of college admissions

    A booklet, as glossy as a fashion magazine, slipped out of the envelope and fell on the floor. Its title: "The Best and the Brightest. How America's Top Students Choose Their Ideal College."

    March 23, 2014

  • The 10 types of ER patients

    You're sitting in the waiting room, icing your sore ankle. The teen-ager to your right is moaning and clutching his belly. The woman to your left is coughing into her mask. A stretcher rolls by with a man yelling at the top of his lungs. An ambulance arrives.

    March 20, 2014

  • Starbucks to expand evening alcohol sales to thousands of stores

    Starbucks will expand its evening alcohol and light bites menu, which includes bacon-wrapped dates and Malbec wine, to thousands of stores, Chief Operating Officer Troy Alstead said in a phone interview. The rollout, which can help boost sales, will take several years, he said.

    March 20, 2014

  • Why didn't the missing airliner's passengers phone for help?

    One of the most commonly asked questions we've received is: Why didn't the passengers aboard missing Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 use their cell phones to call for help?

    March 20, 2014

  • Why your Facebook friends are so gullible

    These stories aren't real. They're the work of the New Yorker's not-particularly-funny online satirist Andy Borowitz, but many people, not just your gullible Facebook friends, invariably believe them. Sometimes the official state news agencies of global superpowers believe them.

    March 19, 2014

  • Sailors looking out windows trump technology in jetliner search

    Even in this high-tech age, the search for missing Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 may rely on good luck and the oldest of sensors: the human eye.

    March 19, 2014

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