National / International News

Florida Leads Insurance Sign-Ups, Despite Political Opposition To Overhaul

NPR News - Mon, 2015-02-02 09:41

With two weeks to go until the 2015 Obamacare enrollment deadline, Florida is ahead of even California, which has twice the population and embraced the Affordable Care Act from the start.

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Taser death officers names released

BBC - Mon, 2015-02-02 09:40
Five police officers who had been granted temporary anonymity at an inquest into a man shot with a Taser are named by the coroner.

Boko Haram attack: What happened in Baga?

BBC - Mon, 2015-02-02 09:32
Survivors recall horror of Boko Haram raid on their town

VIDEO: Ebola crisis: is the outbreak over?

BBC - Mon, 2015-02-02 09:32
Cases of Ebola in West Africa have reached their lowest level in months; is the worst of the outbreak now over?

Why Cambodians Never Get 'Depressed'

NPR News - Mon, 2015-02-02 09:05

In many parts of the world, there's no direct translation for terms like depression or anxiety. Cambodians, for example, say "the water in my heart has fallen." So how does a doctor refill a heart?

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Man on trial for pensioner's murder

BBC - Mon, 2015-02-02 09:04
A 24-year-old man goes on trial accused of the murder of an 85-year-old woman at her home in the Morningside area of Edinburgh.

Obama seeks tax rises in budget

BBC - Mon, 2015-02-02 09:04
US President Barack Obama sends a $4tn (£2.6tn) budget proposal to Congress with significant tax rises, primarily on firms and the wealthy.

Tory MPs at odds over English votes

BBC - Mon, 2015-02-02 09:01
The debate on English votes for English laws is getting more complicated and it could be about to get more bloody, writes James Landale.

In Greece, designer retail therapy on a shoestring

Marketplace - American Public Media - Mon, 2015-02-02 08:59

Greece remains mired in crisis and profoundly depressed, yet at least one small corner of the country's economy is flourishing: luxury goods. The business of helping Greece keep up appearances in economically troubled times is, apparently, booming.

For instance, Starbags rents out expensive designer handbags, and offers an affordable solution to any woman who wants to flaunt her wealth even if she doesn't have it anymore.

“Most women who would rent from a company like ours would want instant recognition,” says Oliana Spiridopoulos, Starbags' owner. “They want to be recognized for their good taste and economic status. They want to be seen looking their best but also looking socially mobile.”

That’s upwardly socially mobile … even though the country may not be headed that way economically. Starbags charges the equivalent of about $60 to rent a handbag by such designers as Chanel, Louis Vuitton, Gucci and other top fashion houses. More importantly, it's a cheaper option than paying $1,800 to buy a new bag.

“People rent the handbags for very special occasions, like weddings and christenings, where they’d be expected to carry something relatively more expensive than usual,” says John Spiliotakis, Starbag’s executive director.

So, do people who rent the handbags pretend they own it? “Some tell their friends they’ve hired the bag, some don’t. But, look, nobody is going to come up and ask whether the bag you’re carrying belongs to you,” says Spiridopoulos says.

Down-on-their-luck fashionistas who prefer to own their clothes and accessories have another option in Athens, they can buy second-hand designer clothing like shirts, jackets, coats, dresses, pants and even wedding dresses at a store called Kilo Shop. “We buy large quantities of secondhand or surplus designer clothes abroad by kilo,” says George Danakas, a co-owner of the shop. “So it is only fair to sell by the kilo to our cash-strapped customers here in Greece.”

The clothes are in excellent condition but since they have been bought in bulk and could be 10, 20 or even 30 years old, the prices are low: a pair of Levi 501s for under $20, a Tommy Hilfiger shirt for just over $10. 

Sabine Danakas, another Kilo Shop co-owner, claims that the business is prospering in spite of — or perhaps because of — the crisis. “Greek people live mostly outside. They may live in plain houses and apartments but when they go out in the sun, they have this feeling of showing off,” she says with a laugh. “And this is particularly true during an economic downturn. They want to look good and if it does not cost very much to look good, they’re really happy!”

Neli Sfigopoulou, a 28-year-old tourist trade worker, looks happy as she weighs which designer top to buy in the Kilo Shop. In these difficult economic times, she says, this kind of shopping is retail therapy on a shoestring.

Schurrle completes Wolfsburg switch

BBC - Mon, 2015-02-02 08:46
German international winger Andre Schurrle completes a £22m move from Chelsea to Bundesliga side Wolfsburg.

A&E struggles with elderly patients

BBC - Mon, 2015-02-02 08:23
BBC's Panorama spends a week with one emergency department

Apple set to sell bonds worth $5bn

BBC - Mon, 2015-02-02 08:17
Technology giant Apple is expected to raise at least $5bn by issuing bonds despite sitting on a cash pile of $178bn.

Saudi tip-off saved UK lives - PM

BBC - Mon, 2015-02-02 08:14
PM David Cameron says potentially hundreds of lives were saved in Britain after a piece of counter-terrorism intelligence was supplied by Saudi Arabia.

Virtual Schools Bring Real Concerns About Quality

NPR News - Mon, 2015-02-02 08:08

E-learning in K-12 is a growing trend, but many schools are underperformers. What's to be done?

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Terminally ill schoolboy Jak dies

BBC - Mon, 2015-02-02 08:07
A terminally ill schoolboy whose inspirational story helped to raise more than £35,000 for charity in the past week has died.

VIDEO: Bus roof 'peels off' after tree collision

BBC - Mon, 2015-02-02 08:05
The roof of a bus has been ripped off after it hit overhanging trees in central London.

VIDEO: Would you drop nationality for freedom?

BBC - Mon, 2015-02-02 08:05
Jailed Al-Jazeera journalist Mohamed Fahmy has asked his Twitter followers whether they would renounce their nationality if it meant they could be freed.

Blast hits Nigeria election rally

BBC - Mon, 2015-02-02 07:59
A bomb kills three people outside a stadium in the north-east Nigerian city of Gombe, minutes after a rally by President Goodluck Jonathan.

Gas power plant plans put on hold

BBC - Mon, 2015-02-02 07:57
Plans to build a power station at a Milford Haven gas storage plant are being mothballed by owners.

VIDEO: Miliband quizzed about 'life experience'

BBC - Mon, 2015-02-02 07:48
Opposition leader Ed Miliband was asked about his "life experience" outside politics in a Facebook and Sky News question and answer session with young voters

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