Cell phones: The new activist tool

Cell phones: The new activist tool

If you voted this fall, there’s a good chance you were texting about it. Twenty-six percent of adult Americans used their cell phones to encourage others to vote in November’s mid-term elections or to report back on conditions at their local voting sites, among other political activities, according to a survey issued Thursday by the […]

Female suicide bomber kills 43 at Pakistan food aid center

Female suicide bomber kills 43 at Pakistan food aid center

A female suicide bomber detonated her explosives-laden vest killing at least 43 people at an aid distribution center in northwestern Pakistan on Saturday, while army helicopter gunships and artillery killed a similar number of Islamic militants in neighboring tribal regions near the Afghan border, officials said. The bombing appeared to be the first suicide attack […]

Tax bill packed with goodies for business

Tax bill packed with goodies for business

The massive new tax bill signed into law by President Barack Obama is filled with all kinds of holiday stocking stuffers for businesses: tax breaks for producing TV shows, grants for putting up windmills, rum subsidies for Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. There is even a tax break for people who buy race horses. […]

Joe Biden predicts gay marriage will win acceptance

Joe Biden predicts gay marriage will win acceptance

Vice President Joe Biden is predicting that the evolution in thinking that will permit gays to soon serve openly in the military eventually will bring about a national consensus for same-sex marriage. Changes in attitudes by military leaders, those in the service and the public allowed the repeal by Congress of the “don’t ask, don’t […]

Did lame duck session breathe new life into a lackluster Congress?

Did lame duck session breathe new life into a lackluster Congress?

In the middle of a House debate, Democratic Rep. John Yarmuth of Kentucky handed the woman in charge of the rules a paper bag. Rep. Louise Slaughter, D-N.Y., peered inside, saw the bottle of Maker’s Mark bourbon and laughed. Indeed, a shot of something strong might help make sense of a prolific Congress that seemed […]

Life imitates art on ‘Law & Order’

Life imitates art on ‘Law & Order’

A star of the TV series “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” is getting her own taste of law and order — in real life. New York City prosecutors say Tamara Tunie was swindled of more than $1 million by her business manager. Tunie plays medical examiner Melinda Warner on the NBC show. According to […]

Do teens screw around less in a bad economy?

Do teens screw around less in a bad economy?

The U.S. teen birth rate in 2009 fell to its lowest point in almost 70 years of record-keeping — a decline that stunned experts who believe it’s partly due to the recession. The birth rate for teenagers fell to 39 births per 1,000 girls, ages 15 through 19, according to a government report released Tuesday. […]

The Christmas the shoppers came back

The Christmas the shoppers came back

Shoppers came back in force for the holidays, right to the end. After two dreary years, Christmas 2010 will go down as the holiday Americans rediscovered how much they like to shop. People spent more than expected on family and friends and splurged on themselves, too, an ingredient missing for two years. Clothing such as […]

Santa drops a winter gift on the Southeast

Santa drops a winter gift on the Southeast

With a rare Christmas snowfall descending on the Southeast and likely headed for the Mid-Atlantic, airlines canceled hundreds of flights and urged travelers to rethink their plans, while travel authorities warned of potentially dangerous roads. After blanketing parts of the Midwest and hampering motorists there on Christmas Eve, the storm dipped south late Friday. Winter […]

Man vs. bats: Who will win?

Man vs. bats: Who will win?

Biologist Susi von Oettingen walked into the dark World War II-era military bunker and took out her flashlight. Among the old pipes, wires and machinery parts, she saw some bats hanging from cracks in the cement walls and ceiling. It was an unusual place for the bats to hibernate, different from a mine or cave. […]