National / International News

VIDEO: Gebrselassie: From track to business

BBC - 6 hours 38 min ago
How Olympic athlete and world record holder Haile Gebrselassie has become a property mogul and leading investor in Ethiopia.

VIDEO: US snow prompts roof collapse fears

BBC - 6 hours 43 min ago
Residents in parts of New York State hit by severe snow storms are working to clear their roofs, amid fears that the weight of the snow could cause them to collapse.

China rate cut spurs global markets

BBC - 6 hours 56 min ago
A cut in interest rates in China and comments from Europe's Central Bank chief spur US markets on to fresh highs

VIDEO: Dyson: 'Keep engineers in Britain'

BBC - 7 hours 58 sec ago
James Dyson tells the BBC it is important to keep engineers in Britain to produce hi-tech exports, as he announces a £1bn investment in research and development.

In The Hospital, There's No Such Thing As A Lesbian Knee

NPR News - 7 hours 1 min ago

People in the LGBT community often have a hard time getting appropriate health care. But the problems aren't unique to them. Doesn't everyone want to have a doctor call them by their preferred name?

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VIDEO: The minute after Obama announced his immigration plan

BBC - 7 hours 8 min ago
The minute after Obama's immigration speech

The 3-Bird Turducken Has Nothing On This 17-Bird Royal Roast

NPR News - 7 hours 22 min ago

The Frenchman who was the world's first restaurant critic launched the world's first serial food journal in 1803. To wow readers, he offered a recipe for for rôti sans pareil, the roast without equal.

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Week in pictures: 15-21 November 2014

BBC - 7 hours 24 min ago
The best news photos from around the world

Ex-News Of The World Editor Andy Coulson Freed From Prison

NPR News - 7 hours 36 min ago

Coulson, who was found guilty of conspiracy to hack personal voicemails, was released today after serving less than five months of his 18-month sentence.

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Google tries ad-free net experiment

BBC - 7 hours 37 min ago
Search giant Google has unveiled an experiment that lets people pay to visit sites rather than see adverts.

Wave power firm in administration

BBC - 7 hours 50 min ago
Wave power technology firm Pelamis is calling in administrators after failing to secure development funding.

Who is in the new Scottish cabinet?

BBC - 7 hours 59 min ago
Who is in the new Scottish cabinet?

VIDEO: 'Creating Google' for Myanmar

BBC - 8 hours 6 min ago
Chief executive Rahul Batra explains his ambitions for the Burmese search engine Bindez.

Zambia leader sacked by party

BBC - 8 hours 8 min ago
Zambia's governing Patriotic Front suspends President Guy Scott as party leader amid a power struggle ahead of elections in January.

Republicans File Suit Against Obama Administration Over Health Law

NPR News - 8 hours 13 min ago

House Republicans have been threatening to sue Obama over executive actions he's taken on the Affordable Care Act. Today, they pulled the trigger.

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Speaker Boehner Says The House Will Act On Immigration

NPR News - 8 hours 13 min ago

Republican Rep. John Boehner delivered a statement Friday in reaction to President Obama's immigration address, saying Obama is damaging the presidency.

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Go Figure: The week in numbers

BBC - 8 hours 16 min ago
The week in numbers with our Go Figure images.

The subscription box that should be

The DIY movement notwithstanding, many people are so desperate to shed chores they’ve started outsourcing even frivolous shopping. It’s a situation caused by and, in turn, fueling a big retail trend: subscription boxes.

Even if you think you’ve never heard of subscription boxes, you probably have. Years ago we knew them as the fruit- or cheese-of-the month club. Now they’ve gone upscale, niche — and run amok. 

There are subscription boxes for vegans and carnivores, for the gluten-free and gluten loaders, for people who can’t get enough ostrich jerky or infinity scarves, for preschoolers who insist on sustainably-sourced toys—maybe as many as 500.

At this point in the game — about four years since the launch of Birchbox, the beauty-sample site credited with starting the recent surge — almost any American, and her finicky pet, could survive on boxes alone.

Somehow, a nation that endlessly whines about household clutter, and is so prickly about presents that there’s a registry for every gift-giving event, has started paying strangers to pick out — excuse me, curate — random items and ship said items to their homes.

And on those glum days when the mailbox is empty, junkies can fill the void with box-centric YouTube videos, blogs, reviews, and discussion boards.

One theory to explain the phenomenon is that we have too much choice--it’s a relief to let someone else paw through all of the junk for you.  Another is that exhausted working women want a gift every month — even if it’s one they’ve sent, and paid for, themselves. Even if they don’t actually like it.

Oh, really, I shouldn’t have . . .

Subscribers take their deliveries so seriously that blogs warn of “spoilers” before discussing the contents of a particular box. It’s like learning the gender of your unborn baby, only the reveal involves small-batch pistachios.

Recently I flirted with a fashion box, but luckily the realization that I’d end up schlepping to return clothes I didn’t choose in the first place kicked in before I’d entered my credit card.

But there is one box I’d love: a subscription that takes a box of stuff from your house every month. Call it the disappearing box.

London Mayor Boris Johnson Owes IRS Money, Won't Pay

NPR News - 8 hours 25 min ago

Johnson holds dual U.S.-U.K. citizenship, but hasn't lived in the U.S. since he was 5. He told WAMU's Diane Rehm Show that he had been billed for capital gains on the sale of his first home.

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Rooney backs Welbeck's United exit

BBC - 8 hours 30 min ago
Danny Welbeck did the right thing by leaving Manchester United for Arsenal, according to former team-mate Wayne Rooney.