Judge who oversaw 2005 shutdown explains 'essential' services If DFL governor Mark Dayton and the Republican controlled legislature can't agree on a budget by the end of this month, Minnesota will be forced into a government shutdown. But the state can't shut down entirely, so a court would have to decide which functions of state government are essential.6:20 a.m.
Governor and GOP leaders to meet on the budget Gov. Mark Dayton and Republican legislative leaders are expected to meet privately again Monday to discuss how to erase a projected $5 billion budget deficit -- and also how to avoid a looming government shutdown. Dayton said he wants House and Senate leaders to show up at that meeting with a new budget number. But Republicans still appear unwilling to compromise on taxes or spending.7:20 a.m.
Think Twice Before Reaching For A Caffeine Boost
Caffeinated products are everywhere — from energy drinks to strips that dissolve on the tongue. But caffeine is still a drug that affects sleep and mood, experts note — and parents should be cautious about how much their kids are ingesting.
China's Rise: A Quest To 'Hug The World'?
As it reemerges as a world power, the question is: Is China's awakening to be welcomed — or feared? Some point to peaceful 15th century explorer Zheng He to show that China is not an expansionist culture. But others say China's motivations have changed — and a peaceful rise will be difficult.
Playwright Albee Defends 'Gay Writer' Remarks
Edward Albee — best known for Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf — was criticized for his acceptance speech at the 23rd annual Lambda Literary Awards. "A writer who happens to be gay or lesbian must be able to transcend self," he said May 26. "I am not a gay writer. I am a writer who happens to be gay."
Finding A Disaster's Economic Silver Lining
The weather this spring has been a tough one for residents and businesses in the Midwest and South. Violent tornadoes, flooding and even droughts have taken their toll. But while some sectors of the economy may have a tough time for a while, others are starting to boom.
New Storms, Prior Disasters Burden FEMA's Budget
As the government copes with this spring's plague of tornadoes and flooding, it is still responding to previous disasters. The Federal Emergency Management Agency continues to fund rebuilding projects related to Hurricane Katrina and other major storms.
Peruvians Hope Humala Will Focus On The Poor
Over the weekend, there was a presidential runoff in Peru. The race was between a leftist military man and the daughter of imprisoned former President Alberto Fujimori. Ollanta Humala, 48, won Sunday after softening his radical image.
Herbal 'Relaxation' Drinks Make Suspect Claims
As part of a backlash to the energy drink craze, several new relaxation drinks are coming on the market. The drinks claim to reduce anxiety and make it easier to sleep, but the research on their herbal ingredients is spotty and inconclusive.
Nintendo Falls Victim To Computer Hackers
Nintendo announced Sunday that its U.S. servers had been hacked several weeks ago, though no customer data was stolen. A mysterious group called LulzSec claimed responsibility. The same group may be responsible for attacks on Sony, Fox, PBS and a cybersecurity organization in Atlanta that works with the FBI.
U.S. Networks Bid On Olympic TV Rights
Top TV executives are in Switzerland, bidding for rights to broadcast the next two Olympic games: Russia in 2014 and Brazil in 2016. The competition is wide open, especially because of the recent resignation of Dick Ebersol as the head of NBC Sports. He spearheaded NBC's dominance over the games.
Apple's Macs Hit By Malware; Are iPhones Next?
Apple computers have avoided most serious virus attacks, but that era may be over. As the company prepared for this week's developers conference, it was also taking steps to stop a malware "phishing" program.