National / International News

Weisz and Craig play 'makes $17.5m'

BBC - Tue, 2014-01-07 08:10
A Broadway revival of Harold Pinter's play Betrayal starring Rachel Weisz and Daniel Craig takes $17.5m in just 14 weeks, reports say.

Adams whitewashes O'Shea at Lakeside

BBC - Tue, 2014-01-07 08:04
Three-time winner Martin Adams beats Tony O'Shea without losing a leg to reach the BDO World Darts Championship second round.

Run Run Shaw, Kung Fu Movie Pioneer, Dies

NPR News - Tue, 2014-01-07 07:59

The Hong Kong movie mogul's films included 1972's Five Fingers of Death, which was a kung fu classic. With his brother Ronnie, Shaw produced more than 1,000 films over five decades. He also helped produce some American films, including Blade Runner. Later, he became a prominent philanthropist.

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First Batch Of Chemical Weapons Material Shipped Out Of Syria

NPR News - Tue, 2014-01-07 07:57

A U.N. official said a Danish commercial vessel carrying the cache is now in international waters, waiting on another batch.

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U.N. Suspends Counting Deaths In Syria's Civil War

NPR News - Tue, 2014-01-07 07:55

The U.N. Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights says it can't verify its sources and so will leave the figure at 100,000, where it stood in July.

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Five-year migrant benefit ban call

BBC - Tue, 2014-01-07 07:43
UKIP leader Nigel Farage says migrants should be made to wait five years to claim benefits, as a survey suggests Britons want to see immigration cut.

UK's choice: Growth v immigration?

BBC - Tue, 2014-01-07 07:42
Should UK accept lower growth to cut immigration?

VIDEO: Portugal storm wave destroys cars

BBC - Tue, 2014-01-07 07:42
A huge surge-like wave destroyed cars and shocked onlookers in Foz do Duoro , Portugal, following a storm in the Atlantic.

Russia ramps up Sochi security

BBC - Tue, 2014-01-07 07:39
Russia launches one of the biggest security operations in Olympic history a month before Winter Games in the Black Sea resort of Sochi begin.

VIDEO: N America deep freeze heads east

BBC - Tue, 2014-01-07 07:37
A brutal blast of arctic air is heading east across North America, bringing dangerously low temperatures not seen in two decades.

Turkish corruption probe row deepens

BBC - Tue, 2014-01-07 07:32
Turkey dismisses 350 police officers and the top judiciary body says it will investigate officials overseeing an inquiry into government corruption.

Spanish princess summoned over fraud

BBC - Tue, 2014-01-07 07:31
A judge in Spain summons a daughter of King Juan Carlos, the Infanta Cristina, to appear in court over accusations of tax fraud and money-laundering.

Police force plan to lose 118 posts

BBC - Tue, 2014-01-07 07:16
Nearly 120 jobs could be shed by Dyfed-Powys Police as it aims to reduce its budget by £11.5m by 2017.

UK car sales highest since 2007

BBC - Tue, 2014-01-07 07:03
UK car sales in 2013 recorded their best year since 2007, the car industry's body says, with 2.26 million vehicles registered.

Floods not the only worry for Defra

BBC - Tue, 2014-01-07 06:52
Floods not the only worry for Defra

Michael Bay: How to 'wing it' without a script

BBC - Tue, 2014-01-07 06:47
Emergency advice for when you have to 'wing it'

Senate paves way for jobless benefits extension

Marketplace - American Public Media - Tue, 2014-01-07 06:45

Now that the Senate has narrowly voted, 60 to 37, to take up a three-month extension of unemployment benefits, it likely sets the stage for the bill's Senate passage later this week. House Republicans have said they'd consider the idea, but only if the cost of the extended benefits is offset.

Deals like that are common in Washington, but that doesn't mean the savings always materialize as promised. 

“There’s a con going on,” says economist Donald Marron. 

Marron is a former economic adviser for George W. Bush, now at the Urban Institute.  He says Congress isn’t a bunch of cons, but he says its budget deals are pretty gimmicky, like when Congress ignores a program’s long-term costs, focusing instead only on short-term revenues.

“So they’ll show up and they’ll appear to be helping to pay for whatever the program is you want to pursue, but it still means in the long run that we’re going to lose money," Marron explains.

Now you see it.  Now you don’t.  That short-term thinking leads leads to itty-bitty deals, like the Senate’s proposed emergency unemployment extension, which would only last three months. 

“If it’s only for three months you can sort of slide it under the rug and you don’t have to pay for it," says Henrietta Treyz, a budget expert at Height Analytics.

Just don’t look under the rug.  Some Washington wonks say these kinds of games are inevitable right now.  Harry Holzer, who teaches public policy at Georgetown, says with some in Congress vowing to take huge bites out of the deficit, normal budget negotiations just aren’t possible.    

"It often has to be a bit of a shell game to square with their very severe rhetoric on fiscal austerity right now,” he says.

Dennis Rodman Defends North Korean 'Basketball Diplomacy'

NPR News - Tue, 2014-01-07 06:39

In a combative interview with CNN, the former NBA star implies that imprisoned American businessman Kenneth Bae, sentenced in May to 15 years' hard labor, is guilty of trying to overthrow the regime of Kim Jong Un.

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Deaths Are Bitter Reminder Of Cold Snap's Dangers

NPR News - Tue, 2014-01-07 06:37

Bitterly cold temperatures and storms have already caused at least 15 deaths in recent days. Authorities remind everyone that it's important to be prepared and to stay inside if you can. That advice may seem obvious, but people do continue to take risks.

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DUP says Haass proposals need work

BBC - Tue, 2014-01-07 06:35
The Democratic Unionist Party says the final Haass proposals on solving some of the most contentious political issues in Northern Ireland "need much more work".

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