National / International News

Senior female police officer to leave

BBC - Mon, 2014-12-01 02:42
One of Britain's most high-ranking female police officers is leaving the service after more than 30 years.

VIDEO: Non-league player's stunning 'rabona'

BBC - Mon, 2014-12-01 02:37
Worcester City's Sean Geddes scores with a "rabona" lob in his side's 3-0 win over AFC Barrow in the FA Trophy.

Kabul police chief 'back in post'

BBC - Mon, 2014-12-01 02:31
The police chief of the Afghan capital who resigned on Sunday is to remain in post amid a rising number of militant attacks, his spokesman says.

VIDEO: Africa's first underwater hotel

BBC - Mon, 2014-12-01 02:20
The BBC's Salim Kikeke visits the first underwater hotel which has opened off the remote island of Pemba in Tanzania.

Clegg defends deficit reduction plan

BBC - Mon, 2014-12-01 02:17
The government was right not to be "dogmatic" in trying to balance the books in the current parliament, Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg says.

Selfie-stick sales outlawed in S Korea

BBC - Mon, 2014-12-01 02:11
Selling a "selfie stick" that lets people photograph themselves could result in a fine of up to £17,300, if the gadget is unregistered.

A diverse group will address inequity in Ferguson

Marketplace - American Public Media - Mon, 2014-12-01 02:00

On Monday, the 16 people who make up the Ferguson Commission will meet for the first time.

Missouri Governor Jay Nixon has charged the group with addressing systemic inequity in the state like law enforcement practices, as well as education, housing and economic disparities.

Over the next year, the commission is expected to do nothing short of making the region a “fairer place for everyone to live.”

Governor Nixon says he has appointed a mix of citizens to tackle some of the state’s most intractable problems.

"They include business owners and not-for-profit leaders. Teachers and lawyers. Police officers and community activists. Pastors and public servants," says Nixon.

Along with some socioeconomic diversity, there are ten men, and six women; nine of whom are African-American, and seven who are white.

Before any member even walks through the door, though, there are interpersonal gaps that must be bridged, says Bob Stains.

Stains is with the Public Conversation Project which facilitates dialogue around difficult community problems.

"There are these huge differences in experience that cause people to hear each other in different ways and that often leads to a lack of understanding, or no understanding at all," he says.

To avoid getting bogged down, Stains suggests members take time to talk about their experiences and how those experiences have infused their passion for this cause.

In other words, before the Commission gets rich and poor, black and white, to commit to social and economic justice, members themselves must walk the walk.

Has the Black Friday bubble burst?

Marketplace - American Public Media - Mon, 2014-12-01 02:00
11 percent

That's the drop in retail spending this Black Friday weekend over last year, the Wall Street Journal reported. That seems at odds with the improving economy and the National Retail Federation's projected 4.1 percent rise in holiday spending. The drop could be a sign that "Black Friday" has just gotten too big; with deals advertised weeks in advance and available online, consumers might not be excited at the prospect of standing in line at 4 a.m. to get a deal.


That's how many people comprise the Ferguson Commission, which meets for the first time on Monday. The group seeks to address systemic inequity in Missouri, like law enforcement practices, as well as education, housing and economic disparities. The diversity of the commission is also worth noting—There are ten men, and six women; nine of whom are African-American, and seven who are white.


That's the age of Dr. Lowell Gess, a retired ophthalmologist in rural Minnesota, who heads to Sierra Leone next month. And while he won't be a front-line Ebola responder, he will risk exposure when treating patients with eye disease, as the virus spread through bodily fluids like tears. Gess says that at his age, helping people outweighs personal risk.


That's how many New York Airbnb users rented out three or more listings in 2010. It's a small portion, but they took in half of the city's revenue on the site that year. A New York Times Magazine column examined the entrepreneurs who run businesses within the "sharing economy," from ad-hoc (and likely illegal) Airbnb hotels to TaskRabbit subcontractors.

$800 million

That's how much is raised in the annual sale of Girl Scout cookies. But that number may soon explode: the Girl Scouts of the U.S.A. have approved a digital platform to sell cookies online. How soon before we have to worry about getting LinkedIn requests from our local troop?

20 million

The number of views the "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" teaser racked up in its 24 hours online Friday. Compare that to the last time a "Star Wars" trilogy launched, with the trailer for "The Phantom Menace" in 1998. Fans lucky enough to have an Internet connection could download the two-minute trailer, CNET reported, and the unprecedented traffic put the still-young world wide web to the test.

Special shopping day overload

Marketplace - American Public Media - Mon, 2014-12-01 02:00

It looks to be another banner year for online holiday sales, anchored by Cyber Monday on December 1, when online marketers offer discount deals to get American consumers to shirk work and dot-com shop instead

IBISWorld predicts Americans will spend 15 percent more shopping online on Cyber Monday 2014 than they did on the same day in 2013. Overall, holiday retail sales are predicted to rise 4.2 percent over 2013 levels, according to IHS Global Insight; sales rose 3.1 percent year-over-year in 2012 and 2013.

“Shopping over this weekend — whether Thursday, Friday, Small-Business Saturday, Cyber-Monday — you’re doing it for the sport, more than you’re doing it for the prices,” says analyst Patty Edwards at U.S. Bank Wealth Management in Seattle.

Edwards says that since consumers can instantly compare prices online and find better deals, the value of these ‘special shopping days’ for consumers is increasingly the ritual team effort among mothers, daughters, aunts, and co-workers.

28-year-old Jessica Harper of Portland, Oregon, says special holiday shopping days devoted to hyper-consumption don’t grab her generation, with the exception of Small-Business Saturday.

“It’s becoming a little more trendy to shop local,” she says.

93-year-old doc is not afraid of Ebola

Marketplace - American Public Media - Mon, 2014-12-01 02:00

Ebola has killed more than a thousand people in Sierra Leone, including several doctors. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention continues to warn against any non-essential travel to the country. But that's not stopping Lowell Gess, a 93 year-old retired ophthalmologist in rural Minnesota, from heading to Sierra Leone January 3rd.

"When you're at a certain age, you just keep your fingers crossed you won't have a stroke or heart attack before January 3rd," he says.

Once in Sierra Leone, Gess won't be a front-line Ebola responder. But the virus is present in body fluids, including tears, so he could risk exposure when treating patients with eye disease. For Gess, it’s a worthwhile risk.

"Just being there with them facing this terror every day is encouraging because they feel abandoned," he says.

Gess’s love of Sierra Leone and its people goes back more than half a century. He and his wife Ruth, a nurse, spent two decades in Sierra Leone as medical missionaries, raising their six kids there. After moving back to the Midwest in the 1970s, they still returned to Sierra Leone regularly to help out at an eye hospital they established in Sierra Leone’s capital, Freetown.

Even Sierra Leone’s bloody civil war didn't keep Lowell Gess away. During one trip, rebel fighters invaded Freetown. It's another dangerous situation Gess just laughs off.

"It continued after dark,” he recalls. “And when bullets were flying around, I just went to bed."

Dr. Lowell Gess and his granddaughter, Dr. Debby Gess Ristvedt, walk back to Lowell's house from the Alexandria Eye Clinic where Debby, and her father Dr. Tim Gess practice.

Vickie Kettlewell/MPR News

Gess's wife died a few years ago. So these days, he usually makes the arduous 36-hour trip to Sierra Leone by himself, as he did earlier this year. In January, he will be lugging extra baggage with him—about $100,000 in donated eye medicines and equipment.

Gess’s adult children and grandchildren say there's no point in trying to hold him back. By now, they’re used to his annual pilgrimages to Sierra Leone.

His granddaughter, Debby Gess Ristvedt, an eye doctor herself, says she just wishes she accompany him, as she did once before. With two young children at home, she says that’s not practical.

"I'm excited for you, Grandpa. And I'm proud of you,” she tells Gess.

"They're hurting there,” Gess responds. “And if we can help a little bit, that will be nice."

Lowell Gess says if he does contract Ebola while in Sierra Leone, he won't seek treatment in the U.S., even if that means dying in the country he regards as his second home.

VIDEO: 'A country under siege from Ebola'

BBC - Mon, 2014-12-01 01:58
Alexander Kumar, Theresa Jones, and John Wright are British volunteers working in Liberia and Sierra Leone with people affected by Ebola and they have created a video diary.

Tunnel to be built past Stonehenge

BBC - Mon, 2014-12-01 01:52
A 1.8-mile (2.9km) tunnel is to be dug at the A303 past Stonehenge, the government announces.

VIDEO: Time-lapse shows poppy 'picking'

BBC - Mon, 2014-12-01 01:51
The BBC filmed the task of removing the 888,246 ceramic poppies which attracted more than five million visitors to the Tower of London.

Oldham rule out a move for Evans

BBC - Mon, 2014-12-01 01:50
Oldham Athletic will not invite convicted rapist Ched Evans to train with them, nor will they offer him a contract.

Why are people charged for 'landline rental'?

BBC - Mon, 2014-12-01 01:43
Why you have to have a landline to have broadband

VIDEO: Protecting heads in American football

BBC - Mon, 2014-12-01 01:40
There are growing concern about the dangers of head injuries in many sports, including American football, the BBC's Alex South reports.

UK manufacturing activity picks up

BBC - Mon, 2014-12-01 01:38
Manufacturing activity increased in November after solid domestic demand offset weaker orders from overseas markets, a survey indicates.

Gerrard offered new deal - Rodgers

BBC - Mon, 2014-12-01 01:38
Steven Gerrard is offered a new deal by Liverpool - as Reds boss Brendan Rodgers denies talk of a rift with the midfielder.

Agency mistakes waxwork for prince

BBC - Mon, 2014-12-01 01:28
A Japanese news agency issues a photo of Prince William's Madame Tussauds wax replica, instead of the prince himself.

VIDEO: AC/DC: 'We just keep going'

BBC - Mon, 2014-12-01 01:24
AC/DC, one of the most successful bands of all time, tell BBC News they're determined to keep going, despite a difficult year for the band