In case you missed it


A couple of military wives have let CNN’s Pentagon correspondent have it.

“I don’t think (a cruise missile strike on Syria is) really going to affect military families at all,” Barbara Starr said on air last week, citing no boots on the ground.

Rebekah Sanderlin and Molly Blake were so upset by Starr’s remark, they penned an open letter to her on Huffington Post: “We are writing to let you in on a secret. It’s a big one — so get to a fresh page in your reporter notebook and have your pen poised and ready. … Here’s some inside information for you: There is no such thing as a person-less war. Our military cannot afford for Americans to forget that wars and battles and military strikes are fought by troops, that troops are people, and that those people have families.”

Health care countdown

The Republican National Committee  has a website up — — with specifics by state on the president’s signature health law. Among the site’s features: a “countdown to ObamaCare train wreck” clock. On October 1, insurance exchanges, the law’s key part, will open for business. That’s a good thing, according to Organizing for Action, a nonprofit affiliated with the president. Its website — — says the law is “signed, sealed and delivering.” Both the GOP and Democratic sites ask for your contributions.

Meanwhile, the Obama administration will spend at least $12 million on ads in red states, including Pa., to encourage Americans to sign up for the exchanges, sources tell Politico.
Mail delay

The troubled Postal Service has postponed a decision on whether to seek price hikes, The Hill reports. The USPS is expected to ask to increase the price of the 46-cent first-class stamp to 49 cents and to double the average 27-cent cost of mailing magazines.

Not dead yet

Life expectancy has doubled in the past 150 years, Laura Helmuth writes in Slate. “Most people credit medical advances,” says David Jones, a medical historian at Harvard, “but most historians would not.”

Helmuth says important factors for longevity include:

• Clean water

• Effective sewer systems

• The acceptance of the germ theory of disease and soap

• Housing that’s airier and brighter (sunlight kills tuberculosis bacteria)

Excerpts from This Just In for Sept. 6, 2013. This Just In, compiled by M.S. Scully, appears in the A-Section of the Tribune-Review on Tuesday and Friday.