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3:19 pm
Mon November 26, 2012

A Jolly Christmas? Retailers Count The Extra Days

Shoppers line up in a Best Buy store in Rockville, Md., during a Black Friday sale. Thanksgiving weekend sales jumped nearly 13 percent from last year, the National Retail Federation says.
Mandel Ngan AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue November 27, 2012 7:49 am

For merchants, the stars are lining up — at least so far.

Online shopping jumped more than 28 percent on Cyber Monday compared with a year ago, according to IBM Benchmark. And the National Retail Federation says Thanksgiving weekend spending shot up to $59.1 billion, nearly 13 percent more than last year's $52 billion.

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It's All Politics
2:57 pm
Mon November 26, 2012

New 'War On Christmas' Takes A Fiscal-Cliff Twist

The Christmas shopping season could be harmed if the fiscal cliff fight depresses consumer confidence, according to a new report from Obama administration economists.
Andrew Kelly Getty Images

Originally published on Tue December 4, 2012 6:19 pm

In past years, conservatives have used the phrase "war on Christmas" to liberally accuse liberals of trying to ruin the holiday through political correctness and anti-religiousness.

This year, it's the Obama White House warning that Republicans are a threat to Christmas or, more precisely, the part of the economy that relies on the holiday shopping season — retail sales.

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The Two-Way
2:41 pm
Mon November 26, 2012

State Department: Andrew W.K. Won't Party In Bahrain On Government Dime

Becky Lettenberger/NPR

Originally published on Mon November 26, 2012 4:29 pm

Andrew W.K., whom NPR Music described as the "long-haired, wild-eyed, keyboard-pounding, sublimely over-the-top party-rocker," won't be taking his party to Bahrain.

At least not on the government's dime.The State Department has rescinded its invitation, stopped the music if you will, just as word started to spread that the U.S. Embassy in Manama had invited W.K. to perform.

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The Two-Way
1:56 pm
Mon November 26, 2012

News Outlets Punk'd, Somebody Profits: Google Wi-Fi Buy Is A Hoax

Google.com

This Associated Press report today wasn't true:

"Google has bought an operator of Wi-Fi hotspots in high-traffic locations such as airports, hotels and fast-food restaurants. Google Inc. is paying $400 million for ICOA Inc., a Warwick, R.I., company, as part of the search company's efforts to diversify its portfolio."

It was so wrong, in fact, that the AP later moved a "KILL BULLETIN" saying it was:

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The Two-Way
1:38 pm
Mon November 26, 2012

Supreme Court Refuses To Hear Case On Taping Police Officers

Chicago police move in during protests against the NATO summit in May.
AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon November 26, 2012 1:44 pm

The U.S. Supreme Court has refused to hear a case on the constitutionality of recording police officers while they do their job.

This means the court leaves in place a lower-court ruling, which found placing limits on taping police in public spaces unconstitutional.

The ACLU of Illinois brought the a suit against Cook County State's Attorney Anita Alvarez in 2010, after her office wanted to bring charges against ACLU staff recording audio of "police officers performing their public duties in a public place and speaking loudly enough to be heard by a passerby."

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The Two-Way
12:53 pm
Mon November 26, 2012

In Nigeria, Church Bombing Death Toll Now 30; Gunmen Attack Police Station

It has been a bloody last couple of days in Nigeria: First on Sunday, two car bombs exploded near a church inside a military base. According to the AP, hospital officials said the death toll in that incident has grown to 30.

And today, the AP reports, there is news that gunmen rushed a police station in the nation's capital of Abuja.

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The Two-Way
12:43 pm
Mon November 26, 2012

Paying For Success: River Otters Are Being Trapped Again In Illinois

Once almost gone from Illinois, river otters are now back in big numbers.
Illinois Dept. of Natural Resources

Originally published on Mon November 26, 2012 4:30 pm

  • On 'Morning Edition': Steve Inskeep speaks Illinois biologist Bob Bluett

"They're wonderful, they're great. But sometimes too much is too much."

That's the basic problem confronting Illinois and its wild river otters, state Department of Natural Resources biologist Bob Bluett said earlier today on Morning Edition.

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Shots - Health News
12:29 pm
Mon November 26, 2012

Some Kids Bounce Straight To The Emergency Room

First the kids pile in, then the bouncing begins.
Nationwide Children's Hospital

If your kids absolutely must jump around at their next birthday party, an inflatable moonwalk or bounce house may be a safer bet than a backyard trampoline. But only a little safer.

The wildly popular mosh pits for the school-age set have become a common source of injuries that send kids to the hospital.

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Planet Money
12:15 pm
Mon November 26, 2012

Household Debt In America, In 3 Graphs

Lam Thuy Vo / NPR

Originally published on Mon November 26, 2012 7:38 pm

For more, see What America Owes In Student Loans

U.S. households owe a bit less than they did at the peak of the bubble. But they still owe a lot: $11.4 trillion, give or take a few billion. Mortgage and home-equity debt is still by far the biggest chunk of that debt.

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The Two-Way
12:14 pm
Mon November 26, 2012

In One Corner Of Syria, A Rebel Victory Results In Friction

A Syrian rebel fighter is shown in the northeastern Syrian border town of Ras al-Ayn on Nov. 11, several days after the rebels captured it. The rebel takeover has created friction with the town's Kurdish population.
Murad Seezer Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Mon November 26, 2012 5:49 pm

When Syrian rebels seized the border post at Ras al-Ayn on Nov. 8, they celebrated the victory and went on to "liberate" the town, a place where both Arabs and Kurds live on Syria's northeast border with Turkey.

But the Kurdish inhabitants quickly saw their "liberation" as a disaster. Within days, dozens were dead in clashes between Kurdish militias and the rebels.

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