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How do you know when you're financially prepared to have children?  

The smartest insight and analysis, from all perspectives, rounded up from around the web: "How do you know that you are financially ready to handle the responsibility of starting a family?" asked Denise Hill at Wise Bread. Having children is a "life-altering decision," and the first step is understanding that it's a lifetime commitment, emotionally and financially. Although there's no single "magic income or savings number" that will determine whether you're prepared, it's smart to commit to se

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2018-03-24 14:32:47

North and South Korea agree to preliminary talks  

South Korea announced Saturday it has finalized plans for high-level talks with North Korea this coming Thursday. Each country will be represented by three delegates who will meet in the demilitarized zone (DMZ) in advance of planned negotiations between South Korean President Moon Jae-in and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, which will in turn be followed by discussion between Kim and President Trump. The date of the Trump-Kim summit has yet to be set. "Through these talks and future talks, we

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2018-03-24 13:40:40

U.K. authorities raid Cambridge Analytica offices in London  

The London offices of Cambridge Analytica were raided overnight Friday by agents of the United Kingdom's Information Commissioner's office. The seven-hour search, which completed early Saturday, was authorized by a warrant to investigate the company's database and servers. "This is just one part of a larger investigation into the use of personal data and analytics for political purposes," said the Information Commissioner's office of the raid. "As you will expect, we will now need to collect, a

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2018-03-24 12:02:36

Trump takes heat for transgender troops policy  

President Trump came under fire Saturday for his announcement late Friday evening that transgender people who "may require substantial medical treatment, including medications and surgery" will not be able to join the military "except under certain limited circumstances." House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) condemned Trump's memo as "cowardly" and "disgusting," arguing it is "purpose-built to humiliate our brave transgender members of the military who serve with honor and dignity": H

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2018-03-24 11:48:44

Andrew McCabe: 'I woke to find the president of the United States celebrating my punishment'  

Former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, who was fired earlier this month by Attorney General Jeff Sessions because he allegedly "lacked candor," published an op-ed about the experience at The Washington Post Friday night: On March 16, I spent the day with my family waiting to hear whether I would be fired, after 21 years in the FBI and one day before I qualified for my long-planned, earned retirement. As day turned to night, I had a lot of time to reflect on how it would feel to be separated

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2018-03-24 11:27:55

March for Our Lives rallies assemble across America to demand new gun laws  

Student-led March for Our Lives rallies are scheduled in Washington and cities across the United States on Saturday. About 500,000 people are expected to gather in the capital alone, and some 700 additional protests for stricter gun laws are listed on the march website. Students from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, where the mass shooting on Valentine's Day left 17 people dead, are among the 20 speakers scheduled for the primary event in Washington. All the speakers a

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2018-03-24 09:21:54

Trump orders ban on transgender troops who 'may require substantial medical treatment'  

President Trump on Friday issued an order banning transgender people who "may require substantial medical treatment, including medications and surgery" from the military "except under certain limited circumstances." The question of transgender troops has been in limbo for the better part of a year since Trump's surprise announcement via Twitter last summer of a complete ban on transgender service. That initial rule was blocked in court, and the Justice Department dropped its challenge to the st

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2018-03-24 08:49:35

How to attend a wedding without spending a fortune  

Here are three of the week's top pieces of financial advice, gathered from around the web: Savings for wedding guestsHosting a wedding is expensive. "But so is attending one," said Stephanie Cain at The New York Times. The average wedding guest forked out $900 in 2016 on expenses such as gifts, outfits, babysitters, and hotel rooms. The price can be even steeper for a destination wedding. But there are ways to cut costs "without ruffling etiquette feathers or looking cheap." RSVP'ing ahead of t

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2018-03-24 07:29:05

10 things you need to know today: March 24, 2018   

1. Student-led March for Our Lives rallies are scheduled in Washington and cities across the United States on Saturday. About 500,000 people are expected to gather in the capital alone, and some 700 additional protests for stricter gun laws are listed on the march website. Students from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, where the mass shooting on Valentine's Day left 17 people dead, are among the 20 speakers scheduled for the primary event in Washington. All the speakers

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2018-03-24 05:43:33

See the most memorable protest signs from March for Our Lives  

Protesters are gathering at some 700 student-led March for Our Lives events nationwide on Saturday to demand stricter gun regulations, and they're armed — if you'll pardon the pun — with signs both clever and poignant. Half a million people are expected at the main rally in Washington, D.C. President Trump is at his resort in Florida for the weekend and has yet to personally comment on the marches, but the White House issued a statement "applaud[ing] the many courageous young Ameri

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2018-03-24 04:38:20

An Iowa family of 4 was found dead in Mexico  

An Iowa family of four was found dead Friday inside their vacation condo in Tulum, Mexico, local authorities reported. Police said there are "no signs of traumatic injury," and a relative of the family reported on Facebook there "was no foul play." Autopsies will be conducted to determine the cause of death, which some reports have suggested was a gas leak. Kevin Sharp, 41, his wife Amy, 38, and their children Sterling, 12, and Adrianna, 7, were from Creston, Iowa. The Sharps owned a beer distr

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2018-03-24 04:11:05

Trump campaign officials encouraged Papadopoulos to contact Russians  

George Papadopoulos, a former foreign policy adviser to President Trump, communicated with top Trump campaign officials like Stephen Bannon and Michael Flynn about his foreign outreach efforts and received encouragement from a senior-level official to make contact with Russians, The Washington Post reported Friday. Papadopoulos, who pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about his Russia contacts last year, was reportedly urged to accept an interview with a Russian news agency by the campaign's d...

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2018-03-23 21:14:15

Punxsutawney Phil is wanted for end-of-spring deception  

In his usual disappointing fashion, Punxsutawney Phil spotted his shadow on Groundhog Day and promised six more weeks of winter. That was seven weeks ago. So with the Northeast freshly coated by another massive storm, a Pennsylvania sheriff is coming after the dishonest rodent. The Monroe County Sheriff's office put up a wanted poster accusing a brown-haired, 20-pound suspect of "deception," WBRE reported. The groundhog is still at large, but the public is encouraged to phone in tips on the

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2018-03-23 17:08:16

2 dead as gunman takes hostages at supermarket in southern France  

A gunman took hostages at a Super U supermarket in Trebes, a small town in southwestern France, on Friday. At least two people are dead and dozens wounded, a police spokeswoman tells The Associated Press. A security official told AFP that the gunman has been shot and killed by police. The Islamic State has taken responsibility for the attack, and local media reports the gunman was demanding the release of Salah Abdeslam, who is the only surviving member of the group that killed 130 people in at

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2018-03-23 14:59:01

Trump to DACA recipients: Democrats 'are using you'  

President Trump addressed recipients of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals immigration program during his signing of the omnibus spending package on Friday, telling young immigrants brought into America illegally as children: "The Republicans are with you." Trump further insisted: "The Democrats fought us. They just fought every single inch of the way. They did not want DACA in this bill." He added that he wants "the Hispanic community to know and DACA recipients to know that Republican

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2018-03-23 14:54:38

10 things you need to know today: March 23, 2018   

1. The House approved a bipartisan $1.3 trillion spending package on Thursday and the Senate followed early Friday. The proposal increases spending on the military and border protection and provides $1.6 billion for President Trump's proposed border wall, but it does not address the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals immigration program or defunding sanctuary cities. It also would result in a budget deficit of more than $800 billion this year, a fact that drew angry opposition from some cons

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2018-03-23 14:50:13

The daily business briefing: March 23, 2018   

1. The Dow Jones Industrial Average plunged more than 700 points, or 2.9 percent, on Thursday as President Trump unveiled his plan to impose tariffs on about $60 billion in Chinese goods annually, stoking fears of a trade war between the world's two biggest economies. Stock futures pointed to more losses early Friday. The White House is trying to punish China for forcing U.S. companies to hand over their technology to local partners in exchange for access to the Chinese market. Early Friday, Chi

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2018-03-23 14:23:02

Pennsylvania superintendent proposes equipping classrooms with buckets of rocks for students to throw at gunmen  

In an idea that makes bringing knives to a gunfight sound like a prudent decision, the superintendent of the Blue Mountain School District in Pennsylvania has suggested equipping classrooms with "five-gallon bucket[s] of river stone" so that "if an armed intruder attempts to gain entrance into any of our classrooms, they will face a classroom full [of] students armed with rocks and they will be stoned." The idea, first reported by Pennsylvania's ABC 16, came to Dr. David Helsel, who announced i

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2018-03-23 13:51:39

South Korea will force workers to go home by shutting off their computers  

South Korea wants its government workers to stop working so hard. Federal employees are putting in too many overtime hours, BBC reports, so the local government is taking extreme measures to make sure they head out on time: Employee computers will be automatically powered down at 8 p.m. sharp every Friday. The local government in Seoul, South Korea's capital city, is rolling out the new initiative starting later this month, BBC reports, in an effort to stop a "culture of working overtime." In A

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2018-03-23 13:45:56

Why Trump is replacing his generals with Fox News tough guys  

So much for the generals. H.R. McMaster is out as White House national security advisor. Chief of Staff John Kelly is reportedly weakened. Here come John Bolton as NSA and Mike Pompeo as secretary of state to lead America's national security establishment. The possibility of America embroiling itself in a major war seems greater now than at any moment since the early years of George W. Bush. These are scary times. So what the heck happened? The answer: President Trump's masters of war turned ou

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2018-03-23 13:26:28

John Bolton is proof that Trump has abandoned his best campaign promise  

Fifteen years after the invasion of Iraq, a Republican president who called the war a "big, fat mistake" has named one of its leading proponents as his national security adviser. If one wanted to make the case that U.S. policymakers have learned little from their biggest foreign-policy blunder of the past two decades, John Bolton's appointment would be Exhibit A. Bolton, set to take the job in April from current national security adviser H.R. McMaster after Trump tweeted the news on Thursday ni

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2018-03-23 13:14:24

These gun owners thought they were shooting an intruder. They were wrong.  

As the national conversation on gun violence comes to a head, 63 percent of gun owners maintain they keep guns for self defense. Others point out times the "good guy with a gun" argument went wrong. A new story from BuzzFeed News looks at those times. Since 2015, at least 47 people have been shot by someone who mistook them for an intruder, per an analysis by BuzzFeed News and gun violence-focused newsroom The Trace. The victims were actually family members, friends, or emergency responders —...

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2018-03-23 12:53:50

Trump pledges to build America's nuclear capabilities  

President Trump announced plans to expand U.S. nuclear capabilities during his signing of the $1.3 trillion omnibus spending bill Friday, pledging to create the "most powerful nuclear force on Earth." The president leaned heavily on his praise of increased military and defense funds within the federal spending bill, which he said he signed reluctantly after threatening a veto earlier Friday. "We're spending a lot of money on nuclear, our nuclear systems, to upgrade and in some cases brand new,

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2018-03-23 12:36:23

John Bolton's Super PAC bought Facebook data through Cambridge Analytica  

President Trump's newest hire is already wrapped up in the administration's scandal of the moment. Incoming National Security Adviser John Bolton's super PAC in 2014 bought Cambridge Analytica data collected from Facebook profiles, per a contract obtained by The New York Times. That makes Bolton's super PAC one of the firm's first customers, the Times noted. The John Bolton Super PAC spent almost $1.2 million on "behavioral microtargeting with psychographic messaging," which used data compiled

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2018-03-23 12:12:22

International adoptions by U.S. families drop for the 13th year straight  

Foreign adoptions by U.S. parents dropped 12 percent in 2017, per State Department statistics released Friday. American families only adopted 4,719 children from other countries last year, down from 5,372 in 2016. And it's only the latest fall in a chronic decline; international adoptions peaked at 22,884 in 2004 and they've fallen dramatically ever since, per The Associated Press. Nearly 40 percent of adopted children came from China in 2017, which is consistently the No. 1 home country for fo

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2018-03-23 11:38:41

The Week contest: Panda film  

This week's question: Edinburgh Zoo has suspended its panda-breeding program because pandas Tian Tian and Yang Guang have expressed absolutely no interest in getting intimate. If Hollywood were to make a romantic comedy about two mismatched pandas who get thrown together, what could it call the film? Click here to see the results of last week's contest: Tattoo me How to enter: Submissions should be emailed to Please include your name, address, and daytime telephone number f

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2018-03-23 10:31:34

John Bolton once appeared in a Kremlin-linked gun rights group's promotional video  

President Trump's incoming national security adviser, John Bolton, once appeared in a strange promotional video for a Kremlin-linked gun rights group, NPR reports. The Right to Bear Arms, a Russian organization, brought on Bolton in 2013 to promote the creation of a Second Amendment-like addendum to the nation's constitution. "The Bolton video appears to be another plank in a bridge built by Russia to conservative political organizations inside the United States," writes NPR. At the time of the

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2018-03-23 10:25:02

CNN's Chris Cuomo is sick and tired of Kellyanne Conway complaining about Hillary Clinton  

Sparring partners Chris Cuomo and Kellyanne Conway were at it again on CNN's New Day on Friday morning, debating the hypothetical fist-fight between President Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden. Cuomo blasted Trump for focusing on such distractions, wondering "how difficult is it to get the job done there," while the White House counselor waved off his complaints. Trump "doesn't spend much time on that," Conway insisted, claiming that it is Biden and "that woman who lost the election who

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2018-03-23 10:23:56

16-year-old student shot in school on Tuesday is being taken off life support  

A 17-year-old student who brought a gun to Great Mills High School in St. Mary's County, Maryland, on Tuesday did not live to see his victim die. But by Thursday, it was clear that Jaelynn Willey, 16, had "no life left in her," her mother, Melissa Willey, told reporters Thursday night, and her parents had decided to remove her from life support. "On Tuesday ... our lives changed completely and totally forever," Melissa Willey said. "My daughter was hurt by a boy who shot her in the head and too

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2018-03-23 09:19:46

9 Iranian hackers charged by Justice Department for 'malicious' worldwide cyberattack  

The Department of Justice has charged nine Iranians in a major hacking conspiracy that targeted American universities and government agencies. The Trump administration on Friday announced criminal indictments against the alleged hackers, who were involved in "massive, coordinated cyberintrusions" at the behest of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, an intelligence-gathering arm of the Iranian government. Also Friday, the Treasury Department announced sanctions against 10 Iranians, in tandem

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2018-03-23 08:50:34

Trump signs $1.3 trillion omnibus bill after teasing potential veto  

President Trump on Friday reluctantly signed the $1.3 trillion spending bill passed by Congress, after writing on Twitter earlier in the morning that he was "considering a VETO." With his tweet, Trump had built up the hopes of some critics who are angry about a resulting budget deficit of more than $800 billion this year, including Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.), who urged Trump to "please do" veto the measure. Trump said he signed the bill "to take care of our military," but vowed, "I will never si

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2018-03-23 08:22:12

7 scathingly funny cartoons about the Facebook data scandal  

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2018-03-23 07:26:46

America's happiness deficit  

This is the editor's letter in the current issue of The Week magazine. For much of the year, Finland has but a few hours of light and temperatures well below 0 degrees F. Yet the Finns are the happiest people in the world, according to the U.N.'s annual World Happiness Report. Norway is second, followed by Denmark and Iceland (also cold and dark). The U.S. dropped four places to 18th. Now, happiness is no doubt hard to quantify, and this ranking should be taken as more suggestive than definit...

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2018-03-23 06:49:31

When higher interest rates are actually good  

A lot of people are freaking out about interest rates, particularly after the Federal Reserve hiked its benchmark rate to 1.5 to 1.75 percent this week — the sixth increase in three years, and the highest interest rate in a decade. Unemployment is low, Republicans and the Trump administration just passed a massive tax cut, and they're also planning significant increases to the federal deficit. That's led to a slew of warnings that government borrowing will crowd out private investment and jac...

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2018-03-23 06:42:57

Ex-Playboy model tells Anderson Cooper that Trump offered her money after they slept together  

In an interview Thursday with CNN's Anderson Cooper, former Playboy model Karen McDougal said she "spent a lot of time" with President Trump more than a decade ago, and she found him to be "very sweet" and "liked his charisma," but was "sad" when he offered her money after they had sex for the first time. McDougal alleges she had an affair with Trump, knowing he was married to his third wife, Melania Trump. She "felt guilty about it," McDougal told Cooper, and is "sorry" for what happened. "I w

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2018-03-23 06:33:14

Jimmy Kimmel and Seth Meyers are embarrassed by Trump vs. Biden but also morbidly curious  

"You up to date on Trump vs. Biden?" Jimmy Kimmel asked on Thursday's Kimmel Live. If you aren't, he walked through former Vice President Joe Biden's claim that he would have "beat the hell" out of Trump in high school for disrespecting women and President Trump tweeting back his fantasy of beating up Biden and making him cry. "This is what it's come to, though: Two old men arguing over who could beat the other one up," Kimmel said, before speculating about who would actually win such a fight b

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2018-03-23 06:28:24

Trump reportedly wants to get rid of the role of the chief of staff  

President Trump has reportedly considered eliminating the role of the White House chief of staff, NBC News reports. Amid administration shakeups and a dizzying number of vacant positions, Trump has floated firing Chief of Staff John Kelly and not naming a successor, people familiar with the president's thinking say. Kelly has been described as a stabilizing force in the White House, serving as the gatekeeper of who can have an audience with the president and what papers can cross his desk. A fo

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2018-03-23 06:09:37

Cynthia Nixon can beat Andrew Cuomo  

Could actress and activist Cynthia Nixon really beat incumbent Andrew Cuomo in the Democratic primary race to be governor of New York? It's a steep road ahead, for sure. But she is a legitimate candidate and fairly well-positioned to take advantage of Cuomo's poor governance. She could win. Cuomo has three large weaknesses. The first is how his self-image of Mr. Competence has been severely tarnished by his grotesque mismanagement of the New York subway. He has always strutted around as a polit

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2018-03-23 06:02:33

The week's best photojournalism  

A helicopter takes off from Mont Gond in Switzerland. | (EPA-EFE/VALENTIN FLAURAUD) Gulls fly around a young boy at the Yangon river in Myanmar. | (EPA-EFE/LYNN BO BO) Zookeepers give a pedicure to an elephant at the Prague Zoo in the Czech Republic. | (FILIP SINGER/EPA-EFE/REX/Shutterstock) A man carries plastic balls on his motorcycle in Delhi, India. | (REUTERS/Cathal McNaughton) Youth create a human tower during the Newroz celebrations, which mark the start of spring in Istanbul, Turkey

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2018-03-23 05:56:05

Trevor Noah and The Opposition ask students what they want from Saturday's March For Our Lives  

Trevor Noah got serious on Thursday's Daily Show, sitting down with five students who survived the murder of 17 people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, and asking them what they hope happens next. Students from the school have spearheaded a national push for new gun laws, and they are leading a March For Our Lives in Washington, D.C., on Saturday. The five students Noah spoke with did not agree on what should happen next. Carly Novell supported banning assault rifle

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2018-03-23 05:47:50

Craigslist shuts down personal ads after passage of sex trafficking bill  

Craigslist has shut down its "personals" section and will no longer host classified ads for people searching for sex, love, friendship, or anything in between. The announcement, made Friday, comes in response to a new online sex trafficking measure passed by Congress that President Trump is expected to sign into law. On Wednesday, lawmakers approved the Fight Online Sex Trafficking Act, which holds websites liable for hosting content that advertises sex or enables potentially illegal actions. C

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2018-03-23 05:47:01

Trump's John Bolton hire reportedly surprised the White House and Bolton, upended plans to fire other officials  

When President Trump tweeted Thursday evening that he was firing National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster and replacing him with John Bolton, effective April 9, Bolton told Fox News a few minutes later that he'd been surprised by Trump's offer, though they had apparently discussed the move for weeks. But Trump's decision to fire McMaster so abruptly also "surprised senior White House aides who had been preparing a single statement announcing the departure of multiple top Trump officials," Politi

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2018-03-23 05:42:16

Cabinet officials waste money. Who cares?  

As a self-described crusader against the Environmental Protection Agency's "activist agenda," Scott Pruitt should probably not be in charge of safeguarding America's natural resources. But does anybody really care that it cost some $68,000 for the EPA chief to ride around on airplanes and stay in hotels with a hand-picked assortment of flunkies and a Secret Service detail? Did The Washington Post also write stories like this when Gina McCarthy and Lisa Jackson, Pruitt's predecessors in the Obam

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2018-03-23 05:34:44

Trump can't stop hiring people he sees on TV  

At this rate, the next time you turn on Fox News it might just be an empty set or this guy, since all of the on-air personalities are being poached by President Trump. On Thursday, Trump announced that John Bolton, a Fox News analyst and George W. Bush administration alumnus, will be replacing National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster, and another frequent guest on Fox News, Joseph diGenova, just signed on to be part of Trump's legal team. We already know Trump watches Fox & Friends like it's his

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2018-03-23 05:33:36

7 scathingly funny cartoons about the Facebook data scandal  

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2018-03-23 05:06:06

Toy company CEO launches GoFundMe to save Toys 'R' Us  

Isaac Larian is the billionaire CEO of one of the world's largest privately held toy companies, and he wants your help saving Toys 'R' Us. Larian's company, MGA Entertainment, is behind several well-known brands, including Little Tikes. He said that along with other investors, he will pledge $200 million of the $1 billion necessary to bid on 400 Toys 'R' Us stores that are being liquidated. The rest of the money would be raised through a GoFundMe campaign, with donors receiving special items de

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2018-03-23 04:54:41

The retrograde fantasies of a Trump-Biden rumble  

1984: Amid questions about whether his age is catching up with him, 73-year-old Ronald Reagan suggests that he and his opponent Walter Mondale should have an arm wrestling match. "The issue that worries Americans," Mondale replies with his characteristically keen political radar, "is not arms wrestling but the need for arms control." 2018: Former Vice President Joe Biden, age 75, and President Donald Trump, age 71, get into an argument about which one of them could beat up the other. Yes, that

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2018-03-23 03:47:50

John Bolton is exactly what Trump promised  

The negative reaction to President Trump's choice of John Bolton to be his new national security advisor has been as unsurprising as it has been swift and overwhelming. How overwhelming? As Jacob Heilbrunn writes in The National Interest, "Here's just how radical Donald Trump's appointment of John Bolton as national security advisor really is: The Financial Times reports that even Iran hawks such as Mark Dubowitz, the head of the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, are rubbing their eyes in

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2018-03-23 03:32:17

Senate passes $1.3 trillion spending bill, sending it for Trump's signature  

Early Friday morning, the Senate passed a $1.3 trillion omnibus bill to fund the government through September. The 65-32 vote came hours after the House passed the bill, 256-167; the 2,232-page legislation was released Wednesday night. Trump is expected to sign the bill, likely the last major legislation Congress gets through this year, before Saturday, averting a third government shutdown this year. Some fiscal conservatives were upset with the price tag of the spending bill, which includes bi

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2018-03-23 02:47:02

Lost on Wes Anderson's Isle of Dogs  

Isle of Dogs, Wes Anderson's latest film, begins promisingly enough: A gorgeous mural of dogs living untamed in a canine utopia is interrupted by the appearance of a real dog in the foreground. He delivers a sober history of the longstanding enmity between dogs and the human Kobayashi clan, and relates how dogs got domesticated and reduced to pets. This stylized introduction fast-forwards into a Cold War-inflected future in which a forbidding mayor of the fictional Japanese city of Megasaki res

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2018-03-23 02:42:42

China counters Trump by threatening retaliatory tariffs on U.S. pork, steel pipe, other goods  

Early Friday, China's Commerce Ministry announced tariffs on $3 billion worth of U.S. pork, aluminum scrap, apples, steel pipe, wine, ethanol, and other goods, saying President Trump's tariffs on imported steel and aluminum are "typical unilateralism and protectionism" and set a "very bad precedent." "China does not want to fight a trade war, but it is absolutely not afraid of a trade war," the Commerce Ministry said. "We are confident and capable of meeting any challenge. It is hoped that the

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2018-03-23 02:40:48

How free traders inadvertently laid the groundwork for Trump's dumb trade war  

President Trump is eager to start a trade war. And it's giving American elites heartburn. The Dow Jones Industrial Average plummeted 724 points Thursday — almost 3 percent — on the president's announcement that he will slap about $60 billion in tariffs on China. The S&P 500 fell 68 points, or 2.5 percent. On top of Thursday's moves, Trump has already slapped tariffs on aluminum and steel imports, and he's aggressively renegotiating the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). Fears of a...

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2018-03-23 01:52:17

McMaster allies say Trump's 'generals' will hate working with John Bolton  

President Trump believes that with the hawkish John Bolton as his national security adviser, he'll finally have the foreign policy team he wants, sources close to Trump tell Axios. Trump abruptly named Bolton to the post on Thursday evening, replacing H.R. McMaster, a studious Army general who reportedly bored Trump and clashed with White House Chief of Staff John Kelly, Defense Secretary James Mattis, and outgoing Secretary of State Rex Tillerson. Kelly and Mattis had nothing to do with pickin

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2018-03-23 01:45:39

President Trump is making this warmongering lunatic his national security adviser  

John Bolton will be succeeding H.R. McMaster to become President Trump's national security adviser. This should send a chill down the spines of every American — and indeed of every person on the planet. In a country with a less bellicose foreign policy establishment, Bolton would be considered a warmongering lunatic. But America's foreign policy establishment inclines toward reflexive militarism (on the grounds that American bombs, troops, and special operations forces are invariably a force ...

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2018-03-23 01:16:10

America's Weimar moment  

The right and left grow more polarized every day, with each side hating the establishmentarian center nearly as much as it does the extremists on the opposite side of the ideological spectrum. As each camp becomes more politically formidable, it draws on covert support from powerful domestic and international allies who have much to gain by the collapse of the liberal establishment. The center, meanwhile, strives to defend the liberal order in the face of powerful challenges but ends up engagin

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2018-03-23 01:03:53

Report: DNC hacker Guccifer 2.0 is a Russian intelligence officer  

Guccifer 2.0, the hacker who says he provided WikiLeaks with emails stolen from the Democratic National Committee in 2016, is a Russian intelligence officer, The Daily Beast reports. Special Counsel Robert Mueller is investigating Guccifer 2.0, and the FBI agents who determined his identity are on Mueller's team, The Daily Beast says. Guccifer 2.0 made his online debut June 15, 2016, only a few hours after a computer security firm tied the DNC hack to Russia. Claiming to be a lone hacker, Gucci

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2018-03-23 01:01:34

Jeff Zucker slams Fox News as 'state-run TV'  

CNN President Jeff Zucker isn't quite sure Fox News is an accurate name for his competitor's cable channel. "The idea that it's a news channel, I think, is really not the case at all," Zucker said at an industry conference Thursday, per The Hollywood Reporter. Those were reportedly some of Zucker's tamer words, as he went on to label Fox News a "complete propaganda machine" that does an "incredible disservice to this country." He even drew comparisons to Russia, calling Fox News "state-run TV."

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2018-03-22 22:58:51

President Trump fantasizes on Twitter about beating up Joe Biden and making him cry  

President Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden have been at each other's throats for the past year and a half, both claiming they could beat the other in a physical fight if they just got the chance. Biden, 75, escalated the threats Tuesday when he said he would have "beat the hell" out of Trump "if we were in high school." Never one to forfeit the last word, Trump, 71, delivered the counterpunch on Twitter on Thursday: Crazy Joe Biden is trying to act like a tough guy. Actually, he is we

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2018-03-22 22:54:34

Sherrod Brown likens Ben Carson to a 21st-century Marie Antoinette  

Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) delivered blistering opening remarks during Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson's hearing Thursday before the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs. "I voted to confirm you," Brown said at one point. "I'm not sure I made the right decision." After citing a litany of controversies in the department, Brown told Carson: "Instead of taking responsibility, Mr. Secretary, you seem to want to blame others" — a reference to a Carson's numer...

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2018-03-22 20:53:45

The garbage island floating in the Pacific Ocean is now twice the size of Texas  

A floating clump of garbage in the Pacific Ocean has grown to be more than twice the size of Texas, research published Thursday found. That's at least four times larger than previously thought, the researchers noted. The Great Pacific Garbage Patch lies between California and Hawaii and comprises at least 79,000 tons of plastic, the study found, spanning across 617,763 square miles. To track the patch's growth, researchers flew over the area and used 18 boats to survey its true size and density

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2018-03-22 20:30:52

Watch a defeated Bob Corker question on the Senate floor if the Republican Party 'has lost its soul'  

Republican Sen. Bob Corker (Tenn.) questioned if the GOP "has lost its soul" during grave comments Thursday ahead of a vote on the $1.3 trillion budget bill. "For the Republican Party to have the presidency, and for the Republican Party to have the Senate, the Republican Party to have the House of Representatives, and for us to be passing a bill today — obviously it couldn't happen without us, we control the agenda here — for us to be in a situation where we're getting ready to pass

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2018-03-22 19:51:47

10 things you need to know today: March 22, 2018   

1. Congressional leaders reached a bipartisan deal Wednesday night on a proposed $1.3 trillion spending package needed to avoid a looming government shutdown. The bill, which would keep the government funded through September, increases military and domestic spending but does not give President Trump all of the money he wants to build a southern border wall or address the protection of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) recipients. "No bill of this size is perfect," House Speaker Paul

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2018-03-22 18:41:01

The daily business briefing: March 22, 2018   

1. The Federal Reserve on Wednesday raised its benchmark short-term interest rate by a quarter point, the sixth such increase in three years. The hike put the rate at a range of 1.5 percent to 1.75 percent, the highest in a decade. The move came at the end of the first two-day policy meeting under the Fed's new chairman, Jerome Powell. The central bank's leaders forecast two more rate hikes this year and three in 2019, signaling a cautious but toughening approach to slowly unwinding the measures

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2018-03-22 18:02:46

China prepares tariffs aimed to hurt states that helped elect Trump  

As President Trump prepares to announce Thursday his plans to impose at least $30 billion in tariffs against China, countertariffs are being drafted overseas to specifically hurt states that helped buoy the president to his win in 2016, The Wall Street Journal reports. Focusing on the Farm Belt, China's tariffs could target American soybean, sorghum, and live hog exports, with Chinese companies preparing to turn to Brazil, Argentina, and Poland to meet their supply needs. "The challenge for any

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2018-03-22 17:41:14

The week's good news: March 22, 2018   

1. They thought their child-rearing days were long over, but then along came Georgette. Arnie Skoog, 89, and his wife Ginger, 84, live in Great Falls, Montana. A few weeks ago, their son Jay stopped by their house, carrying a lamb that had been rejected by its mother and was less than a week old. Left in the snow, she had frostbite and was in bad shape, but once she entered the Skoog home, "she was soon on her feet and eating everything in the house," Ginger told the Great Falls Tribune. Georget

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2018-03-22 14:32:46

Congress is quietly trying to codify into law the barely livable wages of minor league baseball players  

It is almost physically impossible to read the entire 2,232 pages of Congress' $1.3 trillion spending package before the midnight deadline Friday, which means a certain "Save America's Pastime Act," on page 1,967, might go unnoticed, CBS Sports reports. If the bill passes, though, the act will deliver a decisive blow in the ongoing debate over what to pay Minor League Baseball players. In order to "save America's pastime," the act would cement into law the exemption of Minor League players from

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2018-03-22 13:52:40

Scientists disappointingly determine that tiny mummified skeleton is a mutated human, not an alien  

A mummified skeleton found in Chile nearly two decades ago inspired many a conspiracy theorist to declare that alien life had made its way to Earth. But a buzzkilling new study published Thursday found that the bones simply belonged to a human with a series of bone mutations. The 6-inch skeleton — dubbed Ata by researchers and alien aficionados — displays an unusual series of DNA mutations, reports The New York Times. The combination of mutations may have caused a hereditary disorder that h...

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2018-03-22 12:11:21

Trump announces H.R. McMaster out, John Bolton in as national security adviser  

President Trump tweeted on Thursday evening that National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster is being replaced by John Bolton, a former United States ambassador to the United Nations and a Fox News analyst. "I am very thankful for the service of General H.R. McMaster who has done an outstanding job and will always remain my friend," Trump said. "There will be an official contact handover on 4/9." Bolton is known for being a hard-line conservative, and has had regular contact with Trump throughout h

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2018-03-22 10:41:07

John Dowd, Trump's personal attorney in Russia probe, resigns  

John Dowd, President Trump's personal attorney, resigned Thursday, The New York Times reported. The news comes just days after Dowd called for the end of Special Counsel Robert Mueller's probe into Russian election interference and whether the Trump campaign was involved. Dowd reportedly resigned after concluding that Trump was ignoring his advice. The president "lost confidence" in Dowd's handling of the investigation, and sought to bring new attorneys on to help, The Washington Post reported.

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2018-03-22 10:24:36

Dow plunges 500 points as Trump moves to impose China tariff  

The Dow Jones Industrial Average plunged more than 500 points by noon Thursday ahead of President Trump's announcement of new China-specific tariffs. Trump said the tariffs "could be about $60 billion" and come in response to complaints that Chinese companies "force U.S. companies operating in the country to transfer technology and intellectual property rights to local business partners," CNBC writes. Dow plummets almost 500 points as Trump's China tariff ignites trade war fears

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2018-03-22 09:33:37

Trump would still 'like to' testify in Russia probe even after his lead lawyer's resignation  

President Trump says he would still talk to Special Counsel Robert Mueller even without his lead lawyer, The Associated Press reported Thursday. Another day of legal chaos started Thursday morning as John Dowd, Trump's lead lawyer in Mueller's Russia probe, resigned. A little more than an hour later, Trump was asked if he'd still be willing to testify in Mueller's investigation. "Yes. I would like to," he replied. It's pretty much the opposite of what Dowd called for Saturday: an end to the inv

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2018-03-22 09:21:37

Trump to his 25-year-old self: 'Don't run for president'  

President Trump offered his younger self some advice while speaking at a millennial-focused panel Thursday. Asked for wisdom he'd pass on to his 25-year-old self, Trump offered a quip: "Don't run for president," he smirked. Later in the discussion, Trump lamented how much negative press he received once he announced his bid for the White House. Prior to his involvement in politics, he "got the greatest publicity," he said. Despite all the critical coverage, Trump claimed, people "get it," becau

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2018-03-22 09:20:31

Incoming National Security Adviser John Bolton has been vocal about going to war with North Korea and Iran  

President Trump's next national security adviser, John Bolton, is best remembered for his role in former President George W. Bush's administration, where he advocated for the Iraq War and became U.S. ambassador to the United Nations as a recess appointment, after the Republican-controlled Senate was unable to confirm him. Trump announced Thursday on Twitter that Bolton is replacing H.R. McMaster, effective April 9. A hawk on North Korea and Iran, Bolton wrote a piece for The Wall Street Journal

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2018-03-22 08:42:31

Instagram is making changes to its universally despised algorithm  

Instagram's universally despised algorithm has been so widely criticized that the company announced Thursday that it is going to make significant changes to appease users. In a statement, Instagram said it will at last "ensure that newer posts are more likely to appear first in feed," which will hopefully mean you will no longer miss, well, everything. As Gizmodo puts it: "Instagram apparently no longer wants you to see Christmas Day photos on New Year's Eve." Am I a Bad Photographer or Does...

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2018-03-22 07:05:31

The biggest liar of The Assassination of Gianni Versace  

Without its clarifying finale, the aims of American Crime Story: The Assassination of Gianni Versace were almost as hard to unpack as the lies of its protagonist, serial killer and pathological fabulist Andrew Cunanan. That might, in fact, be exactly the point. The series I once criticized for its roaming point of view ended by lying as freely and charmingly as its dancing villain. In so doing, it forged an unlikely and uncomfortable alliance with Cunanan himself. It's no secret that, as a seri

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2018-03-22 06:53:43

Georgette the rescued lamb makes herself at home with Montana couple  

They thought their child-rearing days were long over, but then along came Georgette. Arnie Skoog, 89, and his wife, Ginger, 84, live in Great Falls, Montana. A few weeks ago, their son Jay Skoog stopped by their house, carrying a lamb that had been rejected by its mother and was less than a week old. Left in the snow, her tail and ears were frozen and she was in bad shape, but once she entered the Skoog home, "she was soon on her feet and eating everything in the house," Ginger told the Great F

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2018-03-22 06:51:34

Hollywood's big bet on Christian movies  

Christian movies are on the rise. Just this weekend, I Can Only Imagine — a religious indie film about the best-selling Christian music single of all time — stunned observers by raking in more than $17 million, good for third-place at the weekend box office. This is hardly a random occurrence. In 2015, the Christian publication Movieguide charted that the number of films with "strong Christian content" had steadily risen from 16 in 1996 to 65 in 2015. Annual box office receipts from these f...

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2018-03-22 06:51:33

Let's talk about situationships  

I want to be a relationship person. I love the idea of being with a specific someone, of having a person to ask me how my day went, to help me put together my new Ikea desk, to simply just be with me. I love the idea of having a deep, enduring, and monogamous commitment to a single person with whom I share everything in life. But in reality, I'm a situationship person. What is a situationship, you may ask? It's the gray area between "hooking up" and being "in a relationship," where the two peop

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2018-03-22 06:38:17

New York City authorities open Kushner Cos. investigation tied to alleged tenant harassment  

On Wednesday, New York City's Department of Buildings launched investigations at 13 buildings owned by Kushner Cos., looking for possible "illegal activity" involving apparently falsified permits claiming those properties had no rent-controlled tenants when in fact they had hundreds. The more than 80 permit applications were signed when Jared Kushner, President Trump's son-in-law and senior adviser, was CEO of the family company, The Associated Press reported Sunday. Kushner did not sign any of

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2018-03-22 06:32:11

Pacific Rim: Uprising is proof that sequels are running amok  

Sequels are as sought-after in Hollywood as ever, but what happens when there aren't enough hit movies to go around? Studios have reached further and further back, making it clear that just about any cult classic or blockbuster is now game for a follow-up. But even then, the well can start looking dry, especially when costly follow-ups like Blade Runner 2049 turn out to be no more popular in 2017 than the original was in 1982 (beloved, but not by a superhero-sized audience). Boundless appetite

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2018-03-22 06:29:52

Toys 'R' Us founder dies the day the company begins liquidation sales  

It's only been a week since Toys 'R' Us announced it would close all of its stores, but heartbreak has hit the shelves again. Toys 'R' Us founder Charles Lazarus died Thursday, the company confirmed. He was 94. There have been many sad moments for Toys"R"Us in recent weeks, and none more heartbreaking than today's news about the passing of our beloved founder, Charles Lazarus. Our thoughts and prayers are with Charles' family and loved ones. — ToysRUs (@ToysRUs) March 22, 2018 Former CEO Mi...

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2018-03-22 06:14:20

With Toys 'R' Us shutting down, KB Toys hopes the time is right to make a return  

Toys 'R' Us is closing all of its stores in the United States, and a defunct retailer is hoping to rise up from its ashes. KB Toys ceased operations in 2009, but Strategic Marks purchased the brand in 2016 from Bain Capital — the same company that took Toys 'R' Us private in 2006, saddling it with debt. Strategic Marks President Ellia Kassoff told CNN Money the plan is to open 1,000 pop-up locations on Black Friday, and where the pop-ups do well, they'll make permanent KB Toys stores. Kassoff...

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2018-03-22 04:10:11

John Bolton reportedly told Trump he won't 'start any wars'  

President Trump and John Bolton, the incoming national security adviser, have spent the last several weeks trying to figure out how Bolton could replace H.R. McMaster, CNN reports, and during negotiations, the hawkish Fox News analyst made a bold statement. A person familiar with their talks told CNN's Kaitlan Collins that Bolton, who while part of the George W. Bush administration pushed for the Iraq War and has called for strikes against North Korea and Iran, promised Trump that if he gave hi

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2018-03-22 03:59:40

Trump backs $1.3 trillion spending bill in late-night tweet, looking on the bright side  

There is something for most lawmakers to like in the must-pass omnibus spending deal released Wednesday night — with 2,232 pages and a $1.3 trillion price tag, there had better be. The bill features $80 billion above budget caps for the military and $63 billion more for domestic programs like infrastructure and medical research, and $4.65 billion to fight the opioid crisis. House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) had to run to the White House amid reports President Trump was balking, but one senior ...

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2018-03-22 03:47:38

Trump brags about beating 'Crooked Hillary' on social media in 2016. Trevor Noah reminds us what he's actually boasting about.  

One of the biggest stories this week was the scandal rocking Facebook and Cambridge Analytica, the political data firm that harvested and allegedly weaponized the private information of 50 million Facebook users before being hired by President Trump's campaign — a campaign Cambridge Analytica top executives claim they won on Trump's behalf using their data and specially tested phrases like "Crooked Hillary." On Thursday morning, Trump was apparently feeling nostalgic and a bit braggadocious: ...

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2018-03-22 03:47:37

The plight of black men  

What is the shape of American racism? This thorny question received an interesting and extensive look from a recently released study examining the outcomes of a nationwide sample of people between 1989 and 2015. Their life history can help answer this question. The big headline result was a huge gap in intergenerational mobility between black and white men — but surprisingly, only for men. Black women's mobility was almost exactly the same as white women. One very likely culprit for this diff...

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2018-03-22 03:38:49

Peru's president tenders his resignation, may be impeached  

In December, Peruvian President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski narrowly survived impeachment, but the apparent deal he made to win that vote came back to haunt him this week, and on Wednesday he offered his resignation in a televised address. "I don't want to be an obstacle for our nation as it finds the path to unity and harmony that it needs so much," Kuczynski said, before walking out of the presidential palace and getting into an SUV. Peru's Congress will decide Thursday whether to accept his resign

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2018-03-22 03:37:39

Rick Saccone concedes to Conor Lamb in Pennsylvania special House race  

Finishing a race everyone had already forgotten about even though it was just last week news, Republican Rick Saccone called Democrat Conor Lamb on Wednesday to admit defeat in the special House election for Pennsylvania's 18th congressional district. Lamb won by a few hundred votes and claimed victory in the early hours of March 14. There was some rumbling from Republicans that Saccone would call for a recount or take the matter to court, but Lamb tweeted Wednesday evening that Saccone "congra

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2018-03-22 03:33:32

CNN's Jeffrey Toobin sadly chastises former mentor Alan Dershowitz for cozying up to Trump on Russia  

Legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin sparred with Harvard Law School professor Alan Dershowitz in a Wednesday night Anderson Cooper 360 appearance, expressing disappointment in his former professor's views on Special Counsel Robert Mueller. President Trump recently extolled Dershowitz's views on Twitter, sharing a paraphrased quote from a recent op-ed by the professor that opposed the decision to appoint a special counsel to investigate Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election. Dershowitz

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2018-03-22 03:20:19

It's a beautiful day to talk about Mister Rogers  

It's a beautiful day to talk about Mister Rogers. Fifteen years after the legendary host of children's TV passed away, the entertainment world is being swept up in Fred Rogers revivalism. First, there's director Morgan Neville's upcoming documentary Won't You Be My Neighbor?, which is out in theaters on June 8 but has already been making the rounds at film festivals. People who've seen it feel obliged to warn those who haven't that there will be tears. Sniffles at first. Then swells. Then full,

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2018-03-22 03:16:55

A Mueller witness working for the UAE paired with an RNC official to cultivate Trump for the Saudis, oust Tillerson  

George Nader, a political adviser to the crown prince leading the United Arab Emirates and a cooperating witness in Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation, has spent the past year working with the Republican National Committee's deputy finance chairman to steer President Trump's Middle East policy and oust Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, The New York Times reports, citing interviews and newly disclosed documents. Nader and Elliot Broidy, a longtime GOP fundraiser, used their influence

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2018-03-22 03:14:51

Jimmy Kimmel lists some things Trump is currently furious about: Leaks, Mueller, women  

President Trump is apparently furious about reports that he was warned to not congratulate Russian President Vladimir Putin about his re-election, right before he congratulated Putin, Jimmy Kimmel said on Wednesday's Kimmel Live. "Some White House staffers believe the leak was a deliberate attempt to embarrass the president — as if he needs any help with that — but the part of the story I love, and I don't even know if he realizes this: The fact that we know he's mad about the leak

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2018-03-22 03:06:14

Stephen Colbert can believe it keeps raining Stormy Daniels news  

"The Stormy Daniels story just won't go away, no matter how many photos of her bustline Anderson Cooper slowly zooms in on every night," Stephen Colbert said on Wednesday's Late Show. "They've actually renamed his show Anderson Cooper 36DD." He reminded everyone that Daniels was paid $130,000 to sign a nondisclosure agreement just days before the election, keeping her silent about her alleged affair with President Trump. Colbert found this plausible in part because Trump has made his senior sta

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2018-03-22 02:49:20

Stephen Colbert works out with Ruth Bader Ginsburg, comes away cramped and reassured  

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, "the Notorious RBG," is "a feminist icon" and at 85, "the oldest justice on the Supreme Court," Stephen Colbert said on Wednesday's Late Show. "But she has made it very clear that she has no interest in retiring. Which is good — please, just hang in there for 3-7 more years." She is ensuring her longevity by keeping in shape with a really hard workout, "which is surprising," Colbert said. "If I had a lifetime appointment to a job that let me wear a robe, I wou

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2018-03-22 02:48:08

I'm a millennial who never joined Facebook. Ask me anything.  

I am probably the only living American under the age of 90 and older than 3 who has never had a Facebook account. It's impossible to say for sure, but I gather that what I have missed over the last decade or so amounts to a lot of lame political ads and dopey personality quizzes, links to articles about liberal bias in the lamestream media's treatment of Michelle Obama's hair from the scribes at Conservative Treehouse, a video game about farming, and thousands of pictures of people I barely kne

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2018-03-22 02:31:59

Gas station clerk tracks down customer who lost lottery ticket worth $1 million  

After a man accidentally dropped a lottery ticket worth $1 million at a gas station in Salina, Kansas, an employee ensured that the winning ticket made it back to the right hands. The ticket was actually purchased in Lincoln, Kansas, but while stopped at the Salina gas station, the winner's brother held the ticket in his hand, then dropped it. After spotting it when the brothers were gone, employees picked up the ticket and scanned it, discovering it was worth $1 million. It wasn't signed, and

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2018-03-22 02:30:59

Trump is finally getting a taste of accountability. And it's driving him nuts.  

"You are a killer," Fred Trump would tell his sons. "You are a king." From the time he was a child, Donald Trump knew that while he might have to answer to his father, he wouldn't have to answer to anyone else. With his father's money he created a private company — no board of directors was going to tell him what to do — and blasted his way through life as though rules, norms, and being accountable for your actions were for the little people. And now, when he has become the most powerful pe...

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2018-03-22 02:25:14

The 20-year-old woman who took American horseracing by storm  

Men dominate the world of horseracing. Katie Clawson, 20, was helping to change that. Clawson racked up 71 racing wins in 2017 — the all-time high for an apprentice jockey in a single season. And then she called her career quits after just a little more than a year on the track. Katie Clawson. | (Harrison Hill) (Harrison Hill) Harrison Hill, a photojournalism student at Western Kentucky University, began capturing Clawson's rise in 2016. Hill grew up in Kentucky — the heart of horse count...

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2018-03-22 02:16:47

In farewell speech, Rex Tillerson bid adieu to 'mean-spirited' Washington  

On his last day at the State Department, outgoing Secretary of State Rex Tillerson gave a farewell speech that never mentioned President Trump by name but did include a jab at Washington, D.C. "This can be a very mean-spirited town," the Texan said Thursday. "But you don't have to participate in that." He asked that "each of you undertake to ensure one act of kindness each day towards another person," and reminded the State Department staffers that their integrity "belongs to you. Only you can

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2018-03-22 02:10:31

Austin bombing suspect's 25-minute recorded 'confession' leaves a lot of open questions  

Austin Police Chief Brian Manley said Wednesday evening that the presumptive serial bomber who died in a police standoff early Wednesday morning left a video recording on his phone, which was recovered from his car after the suspect, Mark Conditt, detonated an explosive device. "I would classify this as a confession," Manley said, and in it Conditt, 23, describes in some detail the six complete explosive devices that went off in and around Austin starting March 2 and ending with his apparent su

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2018-03-22 01:43:13

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