National News


Candidates Sharpen Attacks

The presidential campaigns have turned to harsher tactics since last week’s second presidential debate.

Pundits have especially noted the Republican candidate John McCain intensified his personal attacks on his opponent Barack Obama, due in part to the worsening economy.

McCain and his running-mate, Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, have attacked Obama most adamantly at large rallies, where their remarks please the crowds.

“Is he the candidate who promises change, or is he the politician who has bought into everything that is wrong with Washington?” McCain asked at a rally last week.

Palin, who turned her focus to Obama’s relationship with controversial anti-Vietnam War activist William Ayers, saying repeatedly at rallies that, “I’m afraid this is someone who sees America as imperfect enough to work with a former domestic terrorist who had targeted his own country.”

Obama similarly has increased his attacks on the McCain campaign, which led to a debate last Tuesday, Oct. 7 that was described by many pundits as very negative.


American Scientists Win Nobel for Chemistry

Three scientists working in the United States, two of them Americans, won the Nobel Peace Prize in Chemistry on Wednesday. The three contributed in utilizing a jellyfish’s fluorescent glow to more clearly observe life on a cellular level.

The winners were Professors Osamu Shimomura, of Japan, who is currently working at the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole, Mass. and Boston University, Martin Chalfie, who works at Columbia University, and Roger Y. Tsien, from the University of California, San Diego.

Tsien, who is a professor of pharmacology at UCSD, said, “Obviously, it’s pretty nice to hear.”

Their research allows scientists to more closely follow cellular life by adding a specific protein to cells to make them glow. It is the same protein that makes certain sea-creatures, notably jellyfish, glow in the dark.

Scientists hope that the advancement will aid in the research of stem cells and cancer.

Each recipient will receive one-third of the award money for the Nobel Prize in Chemistry, or about $1.4 million.


Heating Assistance Doubles in Vermont

Financial assistance doubled this year for winter heating bills in Vermont, allowing tens of thousands of citizens to receive relief from high heating costs.

Vermont’s three senators and congressmen are taking credit for increasing the amount of federal assistance to $5.1 billion and more than doubling the total for Vermont, from $14 million last year to $35 million.

“For low-income folks, especially individuals on a fixed income living on Social Security or disability benefits, once you get over $2 a gallon for home heating oil, that can be a budget buster,” fuel assistance program director Richard Moffi said.

Officials estimate that the new money will make assistance available to several thousand more households.

“Thousands of additional Vermont households who did not receive [heating aid] last winter should be able to receive it this winter,” Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders said, while speaking to seniors at Champlain Senior Center in Burlington.


Greyhound Cuts Service to Burlington

Greyhound Lines announced Wednesday that they would be cutting additional bus service to the Vermont area, just a month after they stopped offering service to Rutland.

The bus company announced plans to eliminate its early morning route from Vermont to Boston and New York City, as well as the last return trip from Boston to Burlington in the evening.

The company is reducing service due to low ridership, according to a Greyhound spokesperson.

All information from The New York Times