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Off the News

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Stevens and Inouye were Washington’s odd couple

From the standpoint of political philosophy, there would seem to be little to unify the late Ted Stevens, Alaska’s former U.S. senator, with his Hawaii counterpart, U.S. Sen. Daniel K. Inouye. But many unpredictable friendships emerge from the fulcrum of Washington, D.C., and the Stevens-Inouye alliance was well known. One was Republican, one a Democrat, but they both proudly brought home a disproportionate share of federal dollars to their meagerly populated states. While Stevens was still in Washington, he and Inouye were the champions of pork-barreling, one of the few remaining bipartisan endeavors.

Help for harried drivers

No matter how you cut it, rush-hour traffic is a grind.

GoAkamai.org, the state’s just-launched website for motorists, won’t make up for the lack of real alternate routes. And it can’t see a tie-up before it happens. But it offers drivers the next best thing — "real-time information on traffic conditions before they get into the car and it’s too late," according to state Transportation Director Brennon Morioka.

The site is easy to navigate and has something for everyone, including bus riders, who can enter a street name or stop and get an ETA on the next bus.

You can even get weather conditions and a surf report — just in case you decide it’s just not worth the hassle of driving today.

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