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  1. technicalities Court Reverses Priest Abuse Case Alex Brandon / AP Photo

    1. Court Reverses Priest Abuse Case

    A court has dismissed the 2012 conviction of a Catholic Church official who was sentenced to three to six years in prison for mishandling priest sexual-abuse complaints. A Pennsylvania appeals court ruled Thursday that Monsignor William Lynn was wrongly convicted in a trial that charged him with reassigning predatory clergy to different Philadelphia parishes during his tenure as secretary for clergy between 1992 and 2004. At the time, state child-endangerment laws did not apply to supervisors, only parents and direct caregivers.

    December 26, 2013 12:50 PM

  2. what vacation? Obama Signs Budget Agreement Alex Wong/Getty

    2. Obama Signs Budget Agreement

    It's done. President Obama signed the bipartisan budget agreement that averts another government shutdown, raises spending slightly to dull the pain of sequestration, and stabilizes government funds through 2015. The bill was sponsored by Democratic Sen. Patty Murray and Republican Rep. Paul Ryan. Before you breath a sigh of relief, the struggle isn't over yet: in February, Congress must decide on raising the debt ceiling.

    December 26, 2013 5:16 PM

  3. ICE COLD 27 Dead from Freezing Weather Greg DeRuiter/Lansing State Journal, via AP

    3. 27 Dead from Freezing Weather

    Twenty-seven people have died in the freezing temperatures left behind by an ice storm that knocked down power lines from Michigan across the Northeast—with 17 fatalities in the U.S. and 10 in Canada. Of those deaths in Canada, seven were caused by carbon-monoxide poisoning from generators or barbecue grills used to keep warm. Tens of thousands of Americans who lost power in an ice storm over the weekend will remain in the dark and cold until Friday, as frigid temperatures have not allowed the ice to melt. The American Red Cross set up a warming shelter and is providing meals for people out of a mobile food truck in Flint, Mich., the state hit the hardest by the storm.

    December 26, 2013 8:33 AM

  4. signs of the apocalypse 60 Injured in Piranha Attack Silvina Salinas/La Capital, via AP

    4. 60 Injured in Piranha Attack

    Welcome to your Christmas nightmare. More than 60 people were injured when a school of vicious piranhas attacked beach goers on Christmas Day in Rosario, Argentina. Seven children are among those hurt including one young girl who had to have part of a finger amputated after being severely bitten. The attack is thought to have been provoked by abnormally high temperatures. The beach on the banks of the Parana River has since been closed.

    December 26, 2013 1:55 PM

  5. airport terror LAX Suspect Pleads Not Guilty FBI/AP

    5. LAX Suspect Pleads Not Guilty

    The man who allegedly shot and killed a TSA agent on duty at the Los Angeles International Airport in November has entered a plea of not guilty. Paul Ciancia faces 11 counts of attempted and first-degree murder charges in the death of Gerardo Hernandez, and could face a death sentence. Investigators say the 23-year-old was targeting TSA employees as part of a vendetta against the federal government when he fired a semi-automatic rifle at the airport, killing Hernandez and wounding three others. Ciancia's trial is expected to begin in February.

    December 26, 2013 2:42 PM

  6. travel lottery Delta Honors Fare Glitch Scott Olson / Getty Images

    6. Delta Honors Fare Glitch

    Your Christmas money could have gone far today. On Thursday morning, travelers noticed Delta flights were showing up as low as $25 for a roundtrip ticket between New York and Los Angeles. Amid speculation over whether the airline would honor these ridiculously priced tickets, Delta announced it would, despite a clause in its contract saying it has the right to cancel and refund erroneous tickets.

    December 26, 2013 4:55 PM

  7. DESPERATE PLEA Al Qaeda's U.S. Captive Begs

    7. Al Qaeda's U.S. Captive Begs

    Al Qaeda released a video on Christmas of a U.S. government contractor pleading for President Obama to negotiate for his freedom. Warren Weinstein, who was kidnapped from his home in Pakistan in August 2011, said in the video that he feels “totally abandoned and forgotten” by the U.S. The 72 year old, who looks significantly older and more worn down than in previous videos the terrorist group has released, noted that his health is waning, and that his captors have agreed to let his family visit him if Obama permits members of al Qaeda held in the U.S. to receive visits from their relatives. The White House has not yet responded to the video, which was released by The Washington Post, but officials have said in the past that the U.S. will not negotiate with al Qaeda.

    December 26, 2013 8:48 AM

  8. FREE TO GO Russia Releases Activists Dmitry Lovetsky/AP

    8. Russia Releases Activists

    Seven arrested Greenpeace members will finally be able to leave Russia, with the rest of their crew not far behind. In Moscow, authorities dropped criminal charges against the environmentalists, who were part of a 30-person Greenpeace ship crew that was arrested at a protest outside an Arctic oil rig in September. All 30 arrested foreign members spent two months in jail before being released on bail. Greenpeace said Thursday that the rest of the crew will also likely receive exit visas soon. Russia’s decision to let the activists go home is seen as an attempt to brighten public perception of the country's human-rights record ahead of the Winter Olympics in Sochi.

    December 26, 2013 8:54 AM

  9. EXTREMISTS U.S. Sending Arms to Iraq Khalid Mohammed/AP

    9. U.S. Sending Arms to Iraq

    The U.S. is arming Iraq in its fight against al Qaeda. The terrorist group has been gaining ground in the country and neighboring Syria, and is responsible for a recent uptick in violence that has killed local officials, an Iraqi army commander, and several of his officers and soldiers. Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Malaki visited the White House last month to ask for help fighting the insurgency. President Obama agreed to send dozens of low-tech surveillance drones and Hellfire missiles, despite criticism from military experts on how effective such a response could be.

    December 26, 2013 9:26 AM

  10. NAUGHTY LIST Racy Miley Cyrus Video Leaks Early

    10. Racy Miley Cyrus Video Leaks Early

    It was a Merry Christmas for Miley Cyrus fans as the pop star’s newest music video was leaked online a day early. “We all know Smilers would break another record if it wasn’t for the fuck face who leaked my video,” Cyrus tweeted Wednesday night. “Alllllll good! Keep smiling :).” The “Adore You” video might be Miley’s most provocative yet, with the bra-and-underwear-clad singer writhing around and touching herself while holding a video camera under white bed sheets for most of it. Guess we know who made the naughty list this year!

    December 26, 2013 12:04 PM

  11. UNSETTLING Snowden: Spying Worse Than ‘1984’ Youtube

    11. Snowden: Spying Worse Than ‘1984’

    In an “alternative Christmas message,” Edward Snowden looked directly into the camera and briefly addressed the British people about the severity of government surveillance. Snowden said the dystopian society created in George Orwell’s 1984 doesn’t even compare to the spying that goes on today. “We have sensors in our pockets that track us everywhere we go,” he said. “Think about what this means for the privacy of the average person,” he said. This was Snowden’s first TV appearance since arriving in Moscow, but he has recently been in the spotlight for a Washington Post interview in which he said his mission has been accomplished.

    December 26, 2013 8:58 AM

  12. REVOLUTIONARY BIRTHDAY China Wishes Mao a Happy 120th Wang Zhao/AFP/Getty

    12. China Wishes Mao a Happy 120th

    China celebrated Mao Tse-tung’s 120th birthday Thursday with concerts, exhibits, and broadcast TV specials across the country. President Xi Jinping, Prime Minister Li Keqiang, and other senior Beijing officials paid tribute to the communist leader at his mausoleum in Tiananmen Square. How to remember Mao’s legacy is the subject of an underlying debate, with academics pushing for a more public acknowledgement of the millions of deaths caused by his revolutionary economic policies.

    December 26, 2013 9:22 AM

  13. TOUCHY Japan PM Visits Contentious Shrine Jiji Press/AFP/Getty

    13. Japan PM Visits Contentious Shrine

    Japan’s prime minister managed to irritate Chinese and South Korean leaders and worry the United States in one move. On Thursday, Shinzo Abe visited a controversial shrine that honors those killed in battle alongside Japanese leaders who were convicted of war crimes following World War II. The shrine is seen as a symbol of hostility by China and South Korea, but Abe insisted he went to the shrine in peace. “There is criticism based on the misconception that this is an act to worship war criminals, but I have visited Yasukuni Shrine to report to the souls of the war dead on the progress made this year and to convey my resolve that people never again suffer the horrors of war,” he told reporters.

    December 26, 2013 8:29 AM

  14. WALL STREET WIN Stocks Set to Break Records John Moore/Getty

    14. Stocks Set to Break Records

    Investors will likely get a Christmas bonus in January this year. The stock market is on track for its best year since 1997, with the Standard & Poor’s 500-stock index up 28.55 percent in 2013. The Dow Jones industrial average is also slated to have its best year since 2003 if it keeps up the 24.8 percent increase its seen so far. And the Nasdaq is up 37.6 percent—the highest it’s been since 2009 and the sixth-best yearlong performance in its 41-year history. The Federal Reserve’s easy-money policies are to thank for the boost to investor confidence—and to the economy in general.

    December 25, 2013 6:08 PM

  15. WHERE'S THE CHEER? UPS Attacked Over Delivery Fail Justin Sullivan/Getty

    15. UPS Attacked Over Delivery Fail

    UPS already acknowledged being behind in delivery orders for Christmas, but that hasn’t stopped people from shaming the company all day. The UPS Facebook page is inundated with scornful posts, including one particularly angry message:  “Beyond angry. We have not left the house all day & have been nervously pacing. This was supposed to be my son's big gift. Never showed up, thanks for nothing." Another customer vented to NBC: “UPS ruined my Christmas,” Katherine McEachen told NBC. The last time UPS failed to deliver a large number of packages was in 2004 due to an ice storm. UPS recognized its failure today, releasing a statement saying “UPS understands the importance of your holiday shipments... the volume of air packages in our system exceeded the capacity of our network immediately preceding Christmas so some shipments were delayed.”

    December 25, 2013 1:49 PM

  16. UNBELIEBABLE Bieber Tweets About Retirement Dan Steinberg/AP

    16. Bieber Tweets About Retirement

    Justin Bieber is becoming the boy who cried retirement. After announcing on a L.A. radio station that his latest album will be his last, the pop star tweeted on Christmas Eve, “My beloved beliebers I’m officially retiring.” Less than an hour later, he created more confusion tweeting, “The media talks a lot about me. They make up a lot of lies and want me to fail but I’m never leaving you, being a belieber is a lifestyle.”  So is he or isn’t he? Sources say Bieber, whose newest movie “Believe,” opened on Christmas, is just messing with us.

    Whether or not this is his last hurrah, it's certainly been fun. Check out these Reel Numbers about 'Justin Bieber's Believe.'

    December 25, 2013 1:46 PM

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