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What you probably didn't know about 'Jingle Bells'

CNN Top Stories - Fri, 12/20/2019 - 07:57
Christmas is just around the corner. This year, instead of jumping into endless political conversations at the dinner table, try throwing some Christmas knowledge at your family. The surprising history of one of America's most beloved Christmas songs, "Jingle Bells," may be enough to draw them in.
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Boeing to launch capsule built for NASA astronauts

CNN Top Stories - Fri, 12/20/2019 - 07:39
A spacecraft built by Boeing will launch a milestone test flight Friday in what could be the last major step in a long-running mission to once again launch humans from US soil.
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Facial recognition systems show rampant racial bias, US government study finds

CNN Top Stories - Fri, 12/20/2019 - 07:37
Federal researchers have found widespread evidence of racial bias in nearly 200 facial recognition algorithms in an extensive government study, highlighting the technology's shortcomings and potential for misuse.
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After impeachment, House bestows big trade victory on Trump

Inquirer Breaking News - Fri, 12/20/2019 - 07:25
WASHINGTON - One day after its historic impeachment votes, the Democratic-led House gave President Donald Trump an overwhelming bipartisan victory Thursday on a renegotiated trade agreement with Canada and Mexico.     By a 385-41 vote, the House approved a bill that puts in place terms of the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement.   The legislation passed after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and her colleagues won key concessions from an administration anxious to pass the trade deal before next year's election season makes that task more difficult.   The deal is projected to have only a modest impact on the economy. But it gives lawmake...

Keep on reading: After impeachment, House bestows big trade victory on Trump
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Trump signs bill restoring funding for black colleges

Inquirer Breaking News - Fri, 12/20/2019 - 07:20
President Donald Trump on Thursday signed a bipartisan bill that will permanently provide more than $250 million a year to the nation's historically black colleges and universities, along with dozens of other institutions that serve large shares of minority students.       In signing the bill, Trump said historically black schools have "never had better champions in the White House."   "When I took office, I promised to fight for HBCUs, and my administration continues to deliver," Trump said. "A few months ago, funding for HBCUs was in jeopardy. But the White House and Congress came together and reached a historic agreement."   Michael...

Keep on reading: Trump signs bill restoring funding for black colleges
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Saudi prince says sports is a tool for change

Inquirer Breaking News - Fri, 12/20/2019 - 07:17
DIRIYAH, Saudi Arabia - A world-class tennis exhibition, an international golf tournament, a Formula series car race and the world heavyweight boxing championship share a peculiar commonality: They've all played out in Saudi Arabia this year.     By hosting major sporting events, Saudi Arabia aims to draw attention to the sweeping social changes underway in the country and encourage Saudis to turn their attention to sports. Yet some big-name athletes have stayed away amid criticism the events are also an effort in "sportswashing" by diverting attention from the kingdom's human rights record.   "We will face criticism whether we do something or we don't,"...

Keep on reading: Saudi prince says sports is a tool for change
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Hezbollah-backed professor to form new government in Lebanon

Inquirer Breaking News - Fri, 12/20/2019 - 07:11
BEIRUT --- A former education minister backed by the militant Hezbollah group and its allies was selected Thursday as Lebanon's new prime minister to break a political impasse amid mass protests, although he almost immediately ran into opposition from demonstrators on the streets. Hassan Diab, a professor at the American University of Beirut, was named by President Michel Aoun after a day of consultations with lawmakers in which he gained a simple majority in the 128-member parliament. He won support from 69 lawmakers, including the parliamentary bloc of the Shiite Hezbollah and Amal movements, as well as lawmakers affiliated with Aoun. But Diab failed to get the support of Leb...

Keep on reading: Hezbollah-backed professor to form new government in Lebanon
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Pelosi demands impeachment trial info before sending charges

Inquirer Breaking News - Fri, 12/20/2019 - 07:03
WASHINGTON - House Speaker Nancy Pelosi insisted on Thursday that before she will send the Republican Senate the articles of impeachment her Democratic chamber approved against President Donald Trump, GOP leaders must provide more detail about how they will handle the expected trial.     "We'd like to see a fair process, but we'll see what they have and will be ready for whatever it is," Pelosi said at the Capitol. "So far we haven't seen anything that looks fair to us," she had said Wednesday night, just after the House approved the two charges that could evict Trump from office if the Senate agrees.   The parties' Senate leaders, Mitch McConnell for th...

Keep on reading: Pelosi demands impeachment trial info before sending charges
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Dishwashers, 'lucky' Melania and other outrageous lines from Trump's longest rally ever

CNN Top Stories - Fri, 12/20/2019 - 07:01
• Analysis: Trump's disgusting and deplorable attack
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US stocks move higher as markets yawn at Trump’s impeachment

Inquirer Breaking News - Fri, 12/20/2019 - 06:48
Technology companies led stocks higher on Wall Street Thursday, extending the market's gains for the week and pushing the major indexes to more record highs.       The broad gains erased the S&P 500's slight losses from a day earlier. The benchmark index has notched gains six out of the past seven days.   A batch of encouraging earnings reports from several big companies helped keep investors in a buying mood. Rite Aid, Conagra Brands and Micron Technology rose after posting quarterly results that exceeded analysts' forecasts.   Stock indexes were little changed for much of the day. Stocks, bonds, gold and a measure of fear among i...

Keep on reading: US stocks move higher as markets yawn at Trump’s impeachment
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Author JK Rowling draws criticism for transgender comments

Inquirer Breaking News - Fri, 12/20/2019 - 06:47
NEW YORK --- J.K. Rowling is facing widespread criticism from the transgender community and other activists after tweeting support for a researcher who lost her job for stating that people cannot change their biological sex. The researcher, Maya Forstater, had been a visiting fellow at the Centre for Global Development, which in March declined to renew her contract. A London judge this week upheld her dismissal, finding that her views of sexual identity were "absolutist," even if they violate someone's "dignity and/or creates an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment." On Thursday morning, Rowlingtweeted a responsethat said: "Call yourself whatever y...

Keep on reading: Author JK Rowling draws criticism for transgender comments
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Wet, cloudy Christmas seen down South as LPA looms

Inquirer Breaking News - Fri, 12/20/2019 - 06:45
MANILA, Philippines - Two low-pressure areas (LPA) east of Mindanao are expected to gatecrash the Christmas holidays and bring cloudy skies and intermittent rain showers in parts of the Visayas and Mindanao, the state weather bureau said Friday.   In its 4 a.m. weather bulletin, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) said that an LPA was spotted 795 kilometers east northeast of Hinatuan, Surigao del Sur.   Because of the LPA, its trough will bring cloudy skies with scattered rain showers and isolated thunderstorms over the Caraga region, Davao region, Northern Mindanao, Eastern and Central Visayas.   Paga...

Keep on reading: Wet, cloudy Christmas seen down South as LPA looms
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Scientists claim to find ancient seawall off Israeli coast

Inquirer Breaking News - Fri, 12/20/2019 - 06:45
HAHOTRIM BEACH, Israel - An international team of researchers says it has discovered a 7,000-year-old-seawall along Israel's Mediterranean coast, providing evidence that coastal communities protected themselves against rising waters even in ancient times.     The scientists believe the more than 100-meter-long (110-yard-long) structure acted as a fortification against surging waters and storms. The study, published Wednesday in the Public Library of Science One journal, said the Neolithic era village, called Tel Hreiz, was abandoned and eventually swallowed by the sea.   "Here we have an example, a practical example of a process that is still going on. W...

Keep on reading: Scientists claim to find ancient seawall off Israeli coast
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Reporter asks Trump what it feels like to be impeached

CNN Top Stories - Fri, 12/20/2019 - 06:17
President Donald Trump told reporters he doesn't feel like he's being impeached and called it a "phony deal."
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See Putin's reaction to Trump's impeachment

CNN Top Stories - Fri, 12/20/2019 - 06:00
Russian President Vladimir Putin echoed GOP talking points when discussing President Donald Trump's impeachment.
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Microscopic gingerbread house a big science wonder

Inquirer Breaking News - Fri, 12/20/2019 - 05:52
  OTTAWA---There was Tiny Tim and then the Little Drummer Boy---but they had nothing on the microscopic gingerbread house believed to be the smallest in the world and unveiled on Wednesday by a Canadian researcher. About half the size of one made in France last year, it was cut and etched from silicon, complete with sharply defined bricks and trim, and a Canadian flag for a welcome mat. McMaster University researcher Travis Casagrande said he used a beam of charged gallium ions that acted like a sandblaster. Images provided by the Hamilton, Ontario school's Canadian Center for Electron Microscopy showed the house sitting atop a cap on the head of a tiny winking snowm...

Keep on reading: Microscopic gingerbread house a big science wonder
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Trump announces Democrat who voted no on impeachment will join GOP

CNN Top Stories - Fri, 12/20/2019 - 05:47
President Donald Trump announced that Rep. Jeff Van Drew would join the Republican Party, a day after the New Jersey congressman and one other Democrat voted against both articles of impeachment.
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Taking the wheel

Inquirer Breaking News - Fri, 12/20/2019 - 05:30
  TNT used a fiery third period to pull the rug from under Meralco, 101-97, and seize control of their PBA Governors' Cup race-to-three semifinal duel on Thursday night at Araneta Coliseum in Cubao. The KaTropa outscored the Bolts by 15 in the pivotal third and turned a nine-point deficit into a six-point spread going into the final quarter as KJ McDaniels rebounded from a slow start to hammer down crucial points in the stretch. McDaniels scored on two huge put-backs in the stretch, including one that gave TNT a 100-97 lead. The KaTropa then forced a missed three from the Bolts' Allein Maliksi to move within a win of a Finals berth. "We were way, way better on defens...

Keep on reading: Taking the wheel
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Trump administration pushes back on bill meant to deter Russia

CNN Top Stories - Fri, 12/20/2019 - 05:27
The Trump administration is pushing back on a wide-ranging piece of legislation meant to deter and punish Russian aggression and its interference in the 2016 election.
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