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What Should The U.S. Learn From Europe's Woes?

As President Obama and lawmakers try to find a formula for spending cuts and tax increases, they might look across the Atlantic for insights from those who have been wrestling with budget problems. The first lesson from Europe's "fiscal consolidation" experiences: It will hurt.
NPR

Can Murder Be Tracked Like An Infectious Disease?

A study in Newark, N.J., found that homicides committed over a quarter century spread out very much like an infectious disease epidemic. Using this information, cities might be able to predict when and where murders will occur.
NPR

Washington State Governor Signs Gay Marriage Into Law

Gay and lesbian couples can start picking up their wedding certificates and licenses Thursday. Last month, voters in Washington, Maine and Maryland voted to approve same-sex marriage, making them the first states where gay marriage has passed through popular vote.
NPR

Looming Spending Cuts Would Hit Hard All Over

If Congress fails to reach an agreement on tax increases and spending cuts this year, it will mean sharp reductions in a broad swath of federal spending, from defense and Medicare to education and unemployment benefits. Economists say the cuts would be a serious setback for the economy as a whole.
NPR

Obama And House GOP Engage In Fiscal Cliff Talks, Only Briefly With Each Other

The president and House Republicans continued to snipe at each other Wednesday over the impending set of automatic tax hikes and spending cuts known as the fiscal cliff. President Obama and House Speaker John Boehner later spoke briefly by phone for the first time in a week, according to reports.
NPR

White House To Seek Emergency Sandy Funds

The Obama administration is expected to ask for $50 billion to $60 billion. Top administrators told Congress Wednesday that they want at least some of that money to go toward preventing the kind of devastation caused by Sandy and other recent storms.
NPR

In Arid West, Cheatgrass Turns Fires Into Infernos

Cheatgrass is about as Western as cowboy boots and sagebrush. And until recently, scientists didn't realize that the yellowish plant is making Western wildfires much worse.

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