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Republicans going easy on budget cuts

Republicans going easy on budget cuts

Republicans now running the House are barely touching Congress’ own generous budget even as they take a cleaver to many domestic agencies. A new GOP proposal would reduce domestic agencies’ spending by 9 percent on average through September, when the current budget year ends. If that plan becomes law, it could lead to layoffs of […]

Bank of America will pay $410 million to settle overdraft fees

Bank of America will pay $410 million to settle overdraft fees

Bank of America Corp (BAC.N) has agreed to pay $410 million to settle lawsuits accusing it of charging customers with excessive overdraft fees, court documents show. The largest U.S. bank by assets is among the more than two dozen U.S., Canadian and European lenders named as defendants in the class-action litigation, which in 2009 consolidated […]

Farmers watch harsh winter destroy their way of life

Farmers watch harsh winter destroy their way of life

For Northeastern farmers long used to coping with all sorts of cold-weather problems, this winter presents a new one: snow and ice that’s bringing down outbuildings, requiring costly repairs, killing livestock and destroying supplies. Farmers in Connecticut alone have lost at least 136 barns, greenhouses, sheds and other structures as snow measured in feet, not […]

Once the king of retailers, Wal-Mart tries to regain ground

Once the king of retailers, Wal-Mart tries to regain ground

The battle for shoppers is playing out in this New York suburb: Wal-Mart versus everyone else. Dollar stores beckon, their small size ideal for quick shopping. Target offers 5 percent off if you pay with its store-branded card. Costco tempts with high-end, brand-name food and designer clothes at competitive prices. Bernadette Clark used to visit […]

Unemployment among vets grows to record levels

Unemployment among vets grows to record levels

More than 15 percent of Iraq and Afghanistan war veterans were unemployed in January, far higher than the national jobless rate and the highest since the government began collecting data on veterans in 2005, the Bureau of Labor Statistics said on Friday. That rate could go even higher if the U.S. military begins winding down […]

Soviet memories of Arab collapse: Been there, done that

Soviet memories of Arab collapse: Been there, done that

The astounding pro-democracy domino effect in the Arab world evokes the shock waves of 1989 that toppled communism in Eastern Europe and eventually brought down the Soviet Union. Two figures who helped shape the Soviet collapse — former Czech president Vaclav Havel and former Soviet foreign minister Eduard Shevardnadze — are watching the Arab drama […]

Cheney calls Muburak ‘a good friend’

Cheney calls Muburak ‘a good friend’

Former Vice President Dick Cheney on Saturday called Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak a good friend and U.S. ally, and he urged the Obama administration to move cautiously as turmoil continued to shake that nation’s government. Cheney’s comments came a day after President Barack Obama pressed Mubarak to consider his legacy and exit office in a […]

Mideast unrest adds unease to terror fight

Mideast unrest adds unease to terror fight

The unrest engulfing Arab streets and threatening authoritarian governments in the Mideast is complicating U.S. counterterrorism efforts. U.S. counterterrorism officials need to move quickly to firm up relationships with veteran Mideast intelligence and security services in the aftermath of momentous changes, experts say. Lingering confusion over who will take the reins of power could hamper […]

Man’s best friend for mad dog from hell?

Man’s best friend for mad dog from hell?

Man’s best friend may be a formidable enemy to wildlife, a Utah State University biologist says in a newly published paper that tracks the harmful effects of loose dogs on other animals. Based on a mix of existing research and their own case studies, Julie Young of Utah State and four other scientists conclude that […]

America fights its own Super Bowl of Snow

America fights its own Super Bowl of Snow

Unrelenting winter storms have left a chilled New England in a white maze, with growing mounds of snow and ice creating formidable public safety concerns. The barrage of winter weather has stoked concern about the potential for water pollution from snow disposal in rivers, roof collapses and traffic and pedestrians navigating narrow clearances. “Given the […]