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Updated: 54 min 36 sec ago

More Ambassador Posts Are Going To Political Appointees

Thu, 2014-02-13 15:23

President Obama used to say that he wanted to rely more on career diplomats to serve as U.S. ambassadors. But he's been opting for political appointees who are big donors with limited international experience.

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In Men's Figure Skating, U.S. Pins Hopes On A New Class

Thu, 2014-02-13 14:49

The U.S. is defending its gold medal in men's figure skating, but without the star power of previous games. Two skaters in Sochi, 19-year-old Jason Brown and 28-year-old Jeremy Abbott — represent the near future of the sport in America.

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Many Flights Canceled, But Fewer Fliers Stranded On Tarmac

Thu, 2014-02-13 14:31

A fliers' revolt on Valentine's Day in 2007 led to stiff fines against airlines that kept passengers waiting for too long. The delays still happen, but new technology and better planning are making them less inconvenient.

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Stopping Microbes Not Missiles: U.S. Plans For Next Global Threat

Thu, 2014-02-13 14:13

The world is at greater risk than ever from pandemics and biological weapons, health officials said Thursday. In response, the U.S. government is spearheading a global effort to build an early warning system for infectious diseases, drug-resistant microbes and possible bioterror agents.

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Facebook Gives Users New Options To Identify Gender

Thu, 2014-02-13 13:18

Facebook is rolling out changes to its 159 million members in the U.S. that will allow people to have a wider choice than simply male or female when selecting a gender description on the site. Users can choose from roughly 50 options including Trans Male, Trans Woman or Androgynous.

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Debt Ceiling Vote Relied On GOP's 'Tough Vote' Caucus

Thu, 2014-02-13 13:09

The 28 House Republicans who voted for the debt ceiling increase made it safe for the rest of their fellow Republicans not to.

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U.K. Warns Scotland: Vote To Secede, Lose Common Currency

Thu, 2014-02-13 13:03

Scots vote in a referendum on independence from the U.K. in September, and the pro-independence leader had previously said the new country would retain the pound as its currency. The message from London on Thursday: Not so fast.

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Afghan Prisoner Release Promises To Inflame Tensions

Thu, 2014-02-13 13:00

Strained relations between Afghanistan and the U.S. and NATO may only get worse this week. The Afghan government is releasing 65 prisoners, many of whom have been accused by the West of plotting and participating in terrorist activities. Robert Siegel speaks with Nathan Hodge of The Wall Street Journal to learn more about the rationale behind this release and what it might mean for Afghan security and diplomacy.

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Tech Innovator And Master Of Maps Dies At 80

Thu, 2014-02-13 13:00

Roger Tomlinson, the man widely regarded as the father of GIS — Geographic Information Systems — has died at age 80. Tomlinson's 1960s innovation, using computer software to overlay different types of maps on top of one another, revolutionized industry and government.

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Consumer Advocates Alarmed By $45 Billion Deal

Thu, 2014-02-13 13:00

Comcast, the nation's largest cable provider, is set to become even bigger. The Philadelphia-based company has reached an agreement to acquire Time Warner Cable, the nation's second-largest cable provider, in an all-stock deal valued at roughly $45 billion. Consumer groups oppose the deal on the grounds that it will hurt competition and raise prices. But the companies claim competition won't be harmed at all.

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Between U.S. And Russian Hockey, A Different Kind Of Cold War

Thu, 2014-02-13 13:00

The U.S. and Russian men's hockey teams played at the same time on Thursday. The teams will meet on the ice Saturday, when they will renew a storied rivalry that includes such historic games as the Miracle on Ice.

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With A Citizen In The Crosshairs, Where's The Line Drawn For Drones?

Thu, 2014-02-13 13:00

The Obama administration is considering targeting an American citizen who is suspected of plotting a terrorist attack. The possibility again raises questions about U.S. drone policy and whether an American's citizenship rights are lost once that person joins a terrorist organization.

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Grounded And Confounded, Airlines Wait For Storms To Pass

Thu, 2014-02-13 13:00

The snow and ice storms sweeping the East Coast have been felt not only on the ground but in the air, as well. Airlines are cancelling thousands of flights, and both the companies and their passengers have had to deal with the fallout.

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Charlotte Hosts A Rare And Rowdy Visitor — Snow

Thu, 2014-02-13 13:00

Another spate of harsh winter weather has hit the East Coast, wreaking havoc with power lines and airline itineraries along the way. Cities unused to the snow and ice are having the toughest time coping with the storms. Ron Carlee, the city manager of Charlotte, N.C., joins us to discuss the ways his city is dealing with the weather.

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No-Confidence Vote Ushers In Italy's Youngest-Ever Premier

Thu, 2014-02-13 12:50

Enrico Letta's 10-month-old government failed to stimulate growth amid the country's worst post-war recession. One of his harshest critics, 39-year-old Matteo Renzi, is next in line.

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How The Big Cable Deal Could Actually Boost Open-Internet Rules

Thu, 2014-02-13 12:24

Comcast's proposed $45 billion merger with Time Warner might strengthen provisions intended to make sure Internet providers are treating all online traffic equally by extending so-called net neutrality to millions more users. But public-interest advocates worry the deal will hurt competition.

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In A Damp Country, Record-Breaking Rains Flood Britain

Thu, 2014-02-13 11:51

Britons are accustomed to rain. But the wettest January in British history has led to extensive flooding and forced many to flee their homes for extended periods. And there's no relief in sight.

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Businesses Scramble To Deliver Valentine's Treats In Snow

Thu, 2014-02-13 11:27

If you don't get those roses from your special someone, first consider that your gift might be held up by the weather. Small-business owners across the East Coast are working overtime and trekking through snow to get orders to their customers.

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How Many Calories Do Winter Olympians Strive For? It Depends

Thu, 2014-02-13 11:18

From cross-country skiers to ski jumpers, elite athletes can have very different fueling priorities. Endurance winter athletes may need up to 5,000 calories on competition day, while ski jumpers hoping to stay light and lithe might limit themselves to 1,800 calories or less a day.

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N.Y. Attorney General Reins In National Puerto Rican Day Parade

Thu, 2014-02-13 11:12

Organizers of the National Puerto Rican Day parade have announced new leadership for one of the country's largest ethnic celebrations. An investigation by the New York state attorney general's office finds the event's longtime fundraiser misappropriated almost $1 million.

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