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Slab of Barrier Reef sea floor collapsing, could cause tsunami, say scientists

A huge slab of sea floor near the Great Barrier Reef is in the early stages of collapse and could generate a tsunami when it finally breaks off, researchers warned Friday. Marine geologists from Australia’s James Cook University have been using advanced 3D mapping techniques on the deepest parts of…

GOP’s Plan B fails to garner enough support for House vote

The Republican’s plan to solve the so-called fiscal cliff will not come to a vote tonight as previously announced, reported CNN. House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) originally planned to push a vote on the Republican’s plan, called Plan B, despite the Democrat’s opposition — a move on Boehner’s part to…

Madoff’s brother sentenced to 10 years for fraud

Peter Madoff, brother of shamed US financier Bernard Madoff, was sentenced Thursday to 10 years in prison for cooking the books at the family investment firm. Peter Madoff, 67, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit securities fraud during his role as book keeper for Bernard Madoff’s once widely heralded, but…

Nations urge environmental activists to steer clear of Japanese whaling vessel

Anti-whaling nations on Thursday urged environmental activists not to take any action endangering human life as Japan’s fleet prepared to set sail for its controversial annual hunt. Australia, the Netherlands, New Zealand and the United States said in a joint statement that they respected the right to peaceful protests but…

Bill Moyers: America ‘turned violence into a profit center’ and has ‘fetish with guns’

Moyers began his video essay on the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre by reading the names of the children and adults murdered during the shooting that left almost 30 dead. “They will never forget,” he said of the family members of the deceased. “We mourn, move on, and too soon…

Facebook tests charging to guarantee message delivery

Facebook on Thursday began testing the feasibility of charging to guarantee that messages from strangers make it into inboxes of intended recipients at the social network. The Facebook Messages test, limited to the United States, lets a sender pay a dollar to make sure an electronic missive is routed to…

Appeals court affirms EPA regulation of greenhouse gases

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia decided not to reconsider a decision that allows the Environmental Protection Agency to continue to regulate greenhouse gases, reported The Hill. In June, the appeals court affirmed the EPA’s reading of the Clean Air Act, which gives the government agency…

Over 30 Mich. schools closing early cite Mayan apocalypse, Sandy Hook

Over 30 Michigan schools — in some part due to fears that the Mayan “prediction” that the world will end on Dec. 21 may come true — ended the semester two days early, reported NBC News. An official said that shortened semester was due in large part to the shooting…

Argentine woman to marry her sister’s convicted killer

An Argentine woman plans to marry the convicted killer of her twin sister. Victor Cingolani is serving a 13-year sentence for murdering girlfriend Johana Casas, a fashion model, in August 2010 but insists he is innocent and plans to marry her twin on Friday in his prison in Santa Cruz…

Foie gras removed from menu in Britain’s House of Lords

Britain’s House of Lords has taken foie gras off the menu after animal rights activists complained it was being served in its restaurants, a spokesman for the upper house of parliament said Thursday. Catering chiefs in the Lords, which broke up for Christmas on Wednesday, have decided not to serve…

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