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  1. EARLY EXIT? Report: Gen. Allen May Retire Alex Wong / Getty Images

    1. Report: Gen. Allen May Retire

    Marine Gen. John Allen may be calling it quits after all. A source tells Politico that Allen is considering retirement, despite being cleared of wrongdoing in the Gen. David Petraeus scandal. Allen allegedly feels he’s “being pushed out for a variety of reasons,” namely the email debacle, which he fears will haunt him in his new post as NATO’s supreme allied commander in Brussels. “He doesn’t have a rabbi” at the Pentagon, the source said, especially with Defense Secretary Leon Panetta on his way out. A spokesman for Allen declined to comment on the report.

    February 13, 2013 11:15 PM

  2. OUCH Obama's SOTU Viewer Ratings Lowest Since 2000 Haraz N. Ghanbari / AP Photo

    2. Obama’s SOTU Ratings Sink

    Was it something he said? The number of people who tuned into President Obama’s State of the Union address on Tuesday was slightly down from 2012. Thirty-three and a half million people watched the president's live speech in comparison to 38 million last year, according to Nielsen ratings. It makes sense that Obama's audience was biggest during his first go in 2009 (52.9 million), but this year’s 33.5 million viewers account for the smallest audience to watch the annual address since Bill Clinton’s last address in 2000.

    February 13, 2013 8:01 PM

  3. INVESTIGATION Dorner’s Body Not Found in Cabin Uncredited

    3. Cops: Dorner Manhunt Is Over

    The manhunt is over. Rogue ex-cop Christopher Dorner’s body has not yet been identified in the burned-down cabin he was believed to have died in, but police are calling off the search, suggesting they found his body are are simply waiting for confirmation. San Bernadino’s sheriff also added that police did not “intentionally burn down the cabin” where they believed Dorner was. More details emerged about Dorner’s final hours Wednesday. Before shooting a sheriff’s deputy and barricading himself in a remote cabin, the ex–LAPD officer hijacked a truck from 61-year-old Boy Scout leader Richard Heltebrake. Heltebrake said the fugitive made it clear that he was safe, saying “I don’t want to hurt you” and telling him to start walking up the road. Gunfire erupted just “10 seconds later,” as police closed in.

    February 13, 2013 10:30 PM

  4. AILING Chávez Undergoing Alternative Cancer Treatment Dan Kitwood / Getty Images

    4. Chávez Undergoing Alternative Cancer Treatment

    More than two months after having cancer surgery in Cuba, Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez is undergoing alternative treatments for his illness. “They are complex and difficult treatments that must, at some point, end the cycle of his illness,” Vice President Nicolás Maduro said Wednesday. Officials are not disclosing exactly what kind of care he is receiving. Chávez has not been seen in public since traveling to Havana in December for his fourth cancer surgery in 18 months.

    February 13, 2013 6:35 PM

  5. SINCERELY YOURS LBJ and Lady Bird Love Letters Released Stan Wayman / Getty Images

    5. LBJ and Lady Bird Love Letters Released

    It’s Valentine’s Day! Here to regale us with one of history’s greatest romances is none other than our 36th president, Lyndon B. Johnson. Starting at 9 a.m., love letters between LBJ and his wife, Claudia Alta Taylor, or Lady Bird Johnson, will be released by the LBJ Presidential Library. Nearly 90 letters written during two and a half months in 1934 will be made available on the library's website, the first time the entire collection has been released. When the 26-year-old LBJ met the 21-year-old Lady Bird, the young congressional aide from Texas proposed to the University of Texas history and journalism graduate after just a few days, much to her shock. He eventually won her over. “Dearly Beloved,” Lady Bird begins one letter. “This sounds like a sermon—it isn’t.”

    February 14, 2013 12:00 AM

  6. MILE-HIGH MATCH AMR, US Airways Approve $11B Merger Joe Raedle / Getty Images

    6. AMR, US Airways Approve $11B Merger

    The skies are about to become more united. US Airways and AMR, the parent company for American Airlines, have reportedly agreed to a $11 billion merger that will make the combined carrier the largest airline in the world. The new company will be called American Airlines, but will be headed by Doug Parker, the CEO of US Airways. In a statement to the media Thursday, Parker conveyed his hope for the future of the company. “The combined airline will have the scale, breadth, and capabilities to compete more effectively and profitably in the global marketplace,” he said. The merger gives 72 percent of ownership to AMR creditors, and US Airways shareholders will have the rest.

    February 14, 2013 7:30 AM

  7. Media

    7. Time Warner Preparing to Sell Off Magazines

    Somewhere in Manhattan, Time Inc. editors are contemplating a move to Iowa. Time Warner is reportedly in talks with Meredith Corporation to sell off most of its magazine titles, including Entertainment Weekly, People, and InStyle. Meredith, based in Des Moines, publishes Better Homes and Gardens and Ladies' Home Journal. Time Warner would keep Time, Sports Illustrated, and Fortune. Time Inc.'s revenue fell 6.6 percent last year, and last month it announced that it would lay off 6 percent of its workforce. Time Warner CEO Jeffrey Bewkes would be following the lead of Rupert Murdoch, who decided to separate News Corporation’s publishing arm from its film and television business.

    February 13, 2013 1:40 PM

  8. SCANDAL Brits Raid Suspected Horsemeat Sellers Christopher Furlong/Getty

    8. Brits Raid Suspected Horsemeat Sellers

    British police and meat regulators on Tuesday night raided a slaughterhouse and a processing plant suspected of selling horsemeat as beef while French prosecutors opened a judicial investigation into whether the horsemeat was sold fraudulently. In Britain, selling horsemeat is not illegal, but eating it is taboo. The British regulator, Food Standards Agency, said it had suspended operations at a slaughterhouse in northern England and a processor in Wales, and the head of the agency is due to meet with European Union regulators in Brussels. The scandal began when burgers packaged as beef in Ireland were discovered to actually be horsemeat, and it has since spread to as many as 16 other countries. On Tuesday upscale British supermarket chain Waitrose pulled frozen meatballs from the shelves.

    February 13, 2013 11:43 AM

  9. Protest Tutu Compares Drones to Apartheid Michael Loccisano/Getty

    9. Tutu Compares Drones to Apartheid

    Desmond Tutu does not approve of President Obama’s drone program. In a letter to The New York Times titled "Drones, Kill Lists and Machiavelli," the Nobel Peace Prize laureate says he is “deeply, deeply disturbed” by the idea that only drone strikes against American citizens might get a judicial review. “Would your Supreme Court really want to tell humankind that we, like the slave Dred Scott in the 19th century, are not as human as you are?” he asks. “I used to say of apartheid that it dehumanized its perpetrators as much as, if not more than, its victims. Your response as a society to Osama bin Laden and his followers threatens to undermine your moral standards and your humanity.”

    February 13, 2013 9:23 AM

  10. DOCTOR’S ORDERS Lady Gaga Cancels Tour Andrew H. Walker/Getty

    22. Lady Gaga Cancels Tour

    Calling all the Little Monsters: Mama needs you. Lady Gaga has cancelled the rest of her "Born This Way Ball" tour due to a hip injury that will need surgery, followed by a period of recovery. The singer is suffering from synovitis, a severe inflammation of the joints. Early on Wednesday, she tweeted that she could no longer walk after Monday’s performance in Montreal: "I hid it from my staff, I didn't want to disappoint my amazing fans."

    February 13, 2013 10:31 PM

  11. Nature Sea Slug’s Disposable Penis Surprises Scientists Oxford Scientific, via Getty

    11. Sea Slug’s Disposable Penis Surprises Scientists

    Disposable Slug Penis would be a good band name. Japanese researchers were surprised to discover a sea slug in the Pacific Ocean whose penis drops off after mating. But what surprised them wasn’t that the creature’s penis falls off—which apparently is totally normal in certain parts of the animal kingdom—but that it grows back, allowing the slug to mate again. The rest of the slug’s sex life is just as complicated. First of all, every Chromodoris reticulata has both a penis and a female organ, and both slugs donate sperm to each other at the same time. Then their penises fall off. Also their penises are “equipped with spines.” Scientists aren’t sure why the slugs mate this way, but one researcher speculates that it’s to clear out rivals’ sperm.

    February 13, 2013 10:23 AM

  12. Rebuttal Rubio Upstaged By Water Bottle J. Scott Applewhite/AP

    12. Rubio Upstaged By Water Bottle

    Opposing Obama sure can make you thirsty. Florida Sen. Marco Rubio delivered the GOP response to the president’s State of the Union on Tuesday night, attacking Obama on taxes and government spending—but Rubio earned instant Internet fame for taking a drink of water during the televised speech. Rubio's furtive sip became an instant meme (Deadspin has it here in extreme slow motion), and Rubio moved quickly to own it, tweeting a photo of the water bottle after the speech. Asked about the water break on Good Morning America, Rubio said “God has a funny way of reminding us we’re human.”

    February 13, 2013 6:40 AM

  13. CONGRATULATIONS Alec Baldwin’s Wife Pregnant Marion Curtis/Starpix, via AP

    13. Alec Baldwin’s Wife Pregnant

    30 Rock may be over, but Alec Baldwin has already entered the next stage in his life: new father. Baldwin, 54, and his wife, Hilaria Thomas, 28, are expecting their first child this summer, he confirmed on Tuesday. “If I really shared how I felt, I would burst out crying,” Baldwin told Extra. Baldwin’s daughter, Ireland, 17, was the subject of a high-profile custody dispute between Baldwin and his ex-wife, Kim Basinger—resulting in a publicized voicemail from Baldwin calling the then-11-year-old a “thoughtless little pig.”

    February 13, 2013 7:25 AM

  14. Yo Quiero Taco Bell Adds Cool Ranch Doritos Taco

    14. Taco Bell Adds Cool Ranch Doritos Taco

    When Taco Bell launched its nacho-cheese-flavored Doritos Locos Taco last year, America's response was, “¡Más!” Now the fast-food franchise is adding Cool Ranch Doritos Locos Tacos to its menu. With more than 350 million sold in less than a year, the taco was Taco Bell’s most successful product launch ever, and ranks among the biggest fast-food product launches in history. Currently, there are 123 Doritos flavors around the world. Are Intense Pickle Doritos Locos Tacos next?

    February 13, 2013 1:48 PM

  15. WASHINGTON DIARIST New Republic Editor Splits $1M Prize Alex Wong/Getty Images

    15. New Republic Editor Splits $1M Prize

    “Mazel tov, Leon,” Adam Chandler over at Tablet writes. “And hook a brother up.” Leon Wieseltier, the longtime literary editor of The New Republic, is among the winners of the Dan David Prize administered by Tel Aviv University, which carries a $1 million award. The prize is given annually for “contributions to humanity,” and Wieseltier will be splitting it with French philosopher Michel Serres, his fellow winner in the “Present” category. The board called Wieseltier “a foremost writer and thinker who confronts and engages with the central issues of our times, setting the standard for serious cultural discussion in the United States.” Wieseltier said that he plans to “discover what life is like with somewhat less anxiety and to do the same for some others,” while invoking the Nobel Prize–winning Italian poet Eugenio Montale. “When Montale won the Nobel,” Wieseltier said, “a reporter called him that evening and asked how he felt. He said, ‘Less bad.’”

    February 13, 2013 10:45 PM

  16. Kryptonite Orson Scott Card Hired to Write 'Superman' DC Comics

    16. Orson Scott Card Hired to Write 'Superman'

    DC Comics has come under fire for hiring noted anti-gay writer Orson Scott Card to create a new digital Superman comic book that will be published in April. The author of the popular science fiction book Ender's Game has called gay marriage "the end of democracy." Some comics fans want him fired, and they're boycotting DC Comics. "Superman stands for truth, justice, and the American way. Orson Scott Card does not stand for any idea of truth, justice or the American way that I can subscribe to," said Jono Jarrett of Geeks Out. A film of Ender's Game, co-produced by Card and starring Harrison Ford, is scheduled to be released in November.

    February 12, 2013 5:23 PM

  17. WISH LIST Obama: ‘We Need Smarter Government’ Saul Loeb-Pool / Getty Images

    17. Obama: ‘We Need Smarter Government’

    President Obama addressed the nation Tuesday night, calling for unity within the government and the need for economic reforms to get the financial system back on track. “It’s not a bigger government we need, but a smarter government that sets priorities and invests in broad-based growth,” he said. He went on to describe what that smarter government would include: a federal minimum wage of $9 an hour, universal preschool education, cap-and-trade carbon regulation, immigration reform, and stricter gun control, among other things.

    February 12, 2013 9:15 PM

  18. Poop deck Cruise-Ship Smell Makes People Ill Paul McConnell/U.S. Coast Guard, via Getty

    18. Cruise-Ship Smell Makes People Ill

    The situation aboard the Carnival Triumph—the cruise ship stranded about 200 miles south of Mobile, Alabama—has become so dire that people are falling ill from the overwhelming stench of human waste. Conditions are proving especially difficult for elderly and disabled passengers, as the lines to receive food have stretched to four hours. With toilets not flushing, travelers are being told to urinate in the shower and defecate in plastic bags. The only thing keeping spirits alive is the fact that the ship’s crew is now handing out free alcohol to those on board as they slowly make their way toward the shore. 

    February 13, 2013 10:35 AM

  19. Best in Show Banana Joe Heads to Broadway STAN HONDA / AFP

    19. Banana Joe Heads to Broadway

    Break a paw! Banana Joe will lend his Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show-winning bark to the Broadway production of The Mystery of Edwin Drood Wednesday night. The 5-year-old affenpinscher’s Broadway debut will be a one-night-only engagement. Then, the role will return to Macao, the Maltese-Yorkie who is actually the real-life pet of Drood star Stephanie J. Block. What can Banana Joe fans expect? The role requires him to be carried by Block as she runs from the theater.

    February 13, 2013 12:39 PM

  20. SOUL OF A CITY Financier Marron to Give $40M to NYU Getty

    20. Financier Marron to Give $40M to NYU

    Financier Donald Marron has turned his eye to something new: urban development. The founder of the private-equity firm Lightyear Capital and former CEO of PaineWebber, Marron is donating $40 million to NYU to launch the Marron Institute on Cities and Urban Environment, he announced on Wednesday. NYU President John Sexton said Marron, a university trustee, came up with the idea during an expansion meeting—and Marron said, “This isn’t just a matter of applied science, it’s a matter of social science, it’s a matter of humanities and the soul of a city.” Richard Revesz, the outgoing dean of NYU School of Law, began searching for how many NYU professors were doing work related to cities—and the faculty quickly grew. Revesz will lead the new institute.

    February 13, 2013 7:59 AM

  21. CONSPIRACY

    21. Six Arrested in Hacking Inquiry

    Britain’s Metropolitan Police have arrested six former News of the World journalists in relation to a new investigation into phone hacking at the now defunct newspaper. Two of those arrested currently work at the tabloid’s sister publication The Sun. Police said the suspects are believed to be part of a conspiracy to hack into voicemails of new victims who have not even been notified yet. Among those arrested were ex–News of the World assistant editor Jules Stenson and former entertainment editor Rav Singh, according to the BBC.

    February 13, 2013 12:22 PM

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  23. DOCTOR’S ORDERS Lady Gaga Cancels Tour Andrew H. Walker/Getty

    22. Lady Gaga Cancels Tour

    Calling all the Little Monsters: Mama needs you. Lady Gaga has cancelled the rest of her "Born This Way Ball" tour due to a hip injury that will need surgery, followed by a period of recovery. The singer is suffering from synovitis, a severe inflammation of the joints. Early on Wednesday, she tweeted that she could no longer walk after Monday’s performance in Montreal: "I hid it from my staff, I didn't want to disappoint my amazing fans."

    February 13, 2013 10:31 PM

  24. STANDOFF Thai Insurgents Attack Base AFP/Getty

    23. Thai Insurgents Attack Base

    Sixteen Muslim insurgents were killed in a predawn raid on Wednesday at a military base in northern Thailand, the deadliest toll the guerrillas have suffered in nine years. Around 60 militants tried to enter the base but were stopped by gunfire from marines, who had been tipped off about their arrival. Thailand’s military said the marines suffered no casualties. While violence is common in the north, the attack of the southern base indicates an escalation of the Muslim insurgency in the Buddhist-controlled country. Wednesday’s death toll is the largest since the military stormed a mosque in 2004, killing 32.

    February 13, 2013 7:05 AM

  25. MANHUNT Police: Remains May Be Dorner’s Getty

    24. Police: Remains May Be Dorner’s

    San Bernardino, California, police said early Wednesday that they are working to confirm the identity of the remains found in the burned-out cabin where fugitive Richard Dorner was believed to be holed up. Dorner, a former Los Angeles cop, had terrorized Southern California for the past week since he went missing after killing an engaged couple and a police officer. On Tuesday, two maids in the Big Bear area stumbled across a man resembling Dorner, and he then allegedly tied them up, took a car from the residence, and attempted to flee. Police recognized him, leading to a shootout and resulting in the death of one officer and wounding of another. The fugitive stayed in the cabin, and it went up in flames as officers surrounded it.

    February 13, 2013 6:35 AM

  26. FAREWELL Pope: Resignation for ‘Good of the Church’ AFP/Getty

    25. Pope: Resignation for ‘Good of the Church’

    Vive il papa. Prior to giving what is likely to be his last public Mass as pope, Benedict XVI said on Wednesday he had resigned for the “good of the church” and he thanked his supporters for their “love and support.” He said he is resigning due to declining health and because he could no longer perform his duties as effectively, but said he hoped the prayers of the church would sustain him. Benedict, 85, announced on Monday that he would resign effective February 28, making him the first pope in nearly 600 years to step aside. The Ash Wednesday mass had to move to St. Peter’s Basilica to accommodate the large crowds.

    February 13, 2013 6:30 AM

  27. TRAGEDY Slain Sniper Chris Kyle Buried Max Faulkner/Fort Worth Star-Telegram/MCT, via Getty

    26. Slain Sniper Chris Kyle Buried

    Decorated military sniper Chris Kyle was buried Tuesday at Texas State Cemetery in Austin, 10 days after being shot and killed at a gun range. Kyle, 38, had been known as one of the deadliest snipers in U.S. military history. Texas first lady Anita Perry presented Kyle’s widow, Taya Kyle, with an American flag from his casket. About 150 mourners attended the burial, after around 7,000 attended Monday’s services at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington. Kyle and a friend, Chad Littlefield, were shot and killed February 2 at a gun range by former Marine Eddie Ray Routh, 25, who has been charged with capital murder.

    February 13, 2013 7:10 AM

  28. 14 Down... Senate Committee Approves Hagel Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images

    27. Senate Committee Approves Hagel

    The Senate Armed Services Committee has approved the president's nomination of Chuck Hagel to become the next secretary of Defense—but just barely. The committee voted 14 to 11 Tuesday to let Hagel move on to the next round, despite the efforts of Republican senators such as John McCain and Ted Cruz who tried to delay the vote once more. The whole Senate will vote on Hagel's confirmation later this week. 


    February 12, 2013 5:16 PM