Chris Connelly


Chris Connelly is a reporter with the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism.

There's an event held every year in Washington known as the Saban Forum — named for Haim Saban, the Israeli-American media mogul who funds it. It's a night of elbow-rubbing between D.C. and Middle East political leadership, though foreign dignitaries are mostly Israeli.

Photo by Christopher Connelly

In the last twenty years, the Eastern African islands Zanzibar have become a top destination for tourists. They come for the beautiful beaches, the food, the history and the architecture.  But in the last two decades another economy has developed:  the drug trade.

Christopher Connelly

When it comes to making it big at anything, you’ve got to do some hard work. Behind every rock star, there are thousands of hours of practice, touring and rocking out. Of course, to rock out, you don’t actually need to know how to play an instrument – at least not at the San Francisco Regional Air Guitar Championships. There, rock gods are judged on their stage presence, technical merit, and something called “airness.”

To find out what that is, just take a listen to this story from KALW’s Christopher Connelly, who was there to witness it all firsthand.

After a series of earthquakes near Youngstown, Ohio last week, some observers are pointing to an unusual culprit. Yesterday seismologist John Armbruster told NPR that he thinks the quakes were related to an oil and gas extraction process called fracking.

In 1971, President Richard Nixon declared drug users public enemy number one. Young, white, middle-class kids were openly using recreational drugs, and long-held stigmas about drug use were shrinking, especially in the Bay Area. Public perception typically connected drugs with protest culture and the social rebellion of the '60s and '70s. To then-president Richard Nixon, and many others, it was a sign of society coming apart at the seams.

PRESIDENT RICHARD NIXON: We must wage total war on what I have called public enemy number one: the problem of dangerous drugs.

Technology has done great things for medicine: Machines can help keep hearts beating and lungs breathing. Electronic medical records help doctors keep track of their patients’ treatment and prevent mistakes. But all that technology needs a lot of monitoring – and that can be frustrating for nurses who want to be tending people, not machines.

To combat this problem, healthcare provider Kaiser Permanente is implementing a new program to help nurses relax a bit, and shift their focus back to what’s really important.  KALW’S Christopher Connelly has more on what they’re doing.

California is one of many states that bans talking or texting on a handheld device while driving. It's a national problem. In 2009, more than 5,000 people were killed on U.S. roads and about 450,000 were injured due because of so-called "distracted" driving.