USA

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American Jailed for Floating Into Canada on Mattress

John Bennett says he needed to cross border to protect girlfriend

(Newser) - As the judge put it, “Pardon the pun, but it seems to me you wanted to get there, come hell or high water.” That was apparently the case for an American nabbed while crossing illegally into Canada on an air mattress, CBC reports. Officials say John Bennett, 25,... More »

Declaration of Independence Was Illegal

At Philadelphia debate, British team makes the case against nationhood

(Newser) - Teams of British and American lawyers clashed in Philadelphia on Tuesday over the legitimacy of the United States of America. At the debate, sponsored by legal associations from both countries, lawyers for the former colonial power argued that America's Declaration of Independence in 1776 "was not only illegal,... More »

Maybe It's Time for a New National Anthem

This one's just too hard...

(Newser) - If nothing else, Christina Aguilera's national anthem mess has renewed that age-old debate, writes Alan Wirzbicki at the Boston Globe : Considering that this one is so tough to sing , shouldn't we just pick a new anthem? "Flubs like Aguilera's might be easier to overlook if the difficult-to-sing song was... More »

US Battles Back to Tie Slovenia 2-2

Americans trailed 2-0 at halftime

(Newser) - The United States rallied from two goals down at halftime to salvage a 2-2 draw with Slovenia today in World Cup Group C play. Michael Bradley and Landon Donovan scored in the second half as the United States denied the Slovenians a win that would have made them the first... More »

Poll: World Likes US Again

'Obama effect' is real, say pollsters

(Newser) - How soon they forget. America has become a lot more popular around the world since President Obama took office, according to a BBC poll. The poll of 30,000 people in 28 countries found that positive views of the US now average 40%, up from a low of 28% in... More »

8 Comebacks to Watch in 2010

Blossom, Urkel, Kelly Kapowski, and more—they're all back

(Newser) - Sure, Britney Spears staged an amazing comeback last year—but that's nothing compared with the sure-to-be-epic return of Tiffany, coming to (country) music charts this year. The Frisky singles out eight former household names returning in 2010:
  • Mayim Bialik: Better known as “Blossom” from the eponymous TV show, she
... More »

Groundbreaking Monk Solves Final Case

Show legitimized basic cable, ushering in golden age

(Newser) - Viewers will get their last taste of quirky detective Adrian Monk tonight, as the revolutionary USA show that bears his name airs its last episode. The content was never particularly groundbreaking—“Monk is very old-school,” its creator tells the Los Angeles Times . “It's a real throwback”—... More »

Thanks for the Memories, Bob, 'Cuz 2008 TV Stunk

The golden age of TV may have died this year

(Newser) - Today's golden age of TV lost a little shine this year, Heather Havrilesky writes on Salon. Twelve quick months gobbled up all of the momentum and promise from years past, leaving “a haze of crappy, unoriginal new programming, lackluster sophomore shows, flaccid sitcoms and pointless cable comedies.” Old... More »

US Phrases That Annoy Brits

"Happy Holidays", and "Have a nice day," irksome Americanisms

(Newser) - Toby Harnden must live among Yanks in his job as a correspondent for the UK's Telegraph, and sometimes American phrases drive him nuts. Here are his worst offenders:
  • Happy holidays (just say Christmas, please)
  • Have a nice day (make it stop)
  • You're welcome (this one's just "Pavlovian" to him)
... More »

US Dominance 'Fading Fast' as Global Upheaval Looms

Report predicts increasingly unstable world future as wealth and power shift

(Newser) - US intelligence agencies believe the next 20 years will be the twilight of America's global dominance, the Times of London reports. A report from the National Intelligence Council paints a bleak future of an increasingly unstable world in which new powers and alliances emerge as competition for dwindling resources heats... More »

Monk Will Go Out on Top

USA says quirky detective show will end after upcoming season

(Newser) - The news that the upcoming eighth season of Monk will be its last has fans in mourning, but the USA Network staple leaves a rich legacy, Media Life reports. Monk ushered in the era of original cable programming and has consistently scored top ratings in key demographics. Tony Shalhoub is... More »

1M New Citizens Break Century Record

Fee increase helps immigration service clear huge backlog

(Newser) - Over a million new American citizens took the oath of allegiance last year—the highest number since the government began keeping records a century ago, reports CNN. The number of people going through the naturalization process has been steadily climbing for decades. The clearing of a major 2007 backlog—along... More »

Half of America's Population Growth Now Hispanic

Baby boom among '90s immigrants behind surge in Latino population

(Newser) - A Hispanic baby boom accounts for more than half of America's population growth over the last decade, the Houston Chronicle reports. A survey found 50.5% of the growth in that period was among Hispanics, even though the group currently makes up just 15% of the population. The growth is... More »

The State of US Wine, in 50 Bottles

Can good wine be made anywhere?

(Newser) - Wine snobs contend that "terroir"—soil, climate, and topography—restrict great wines to certain regions. But are they right? All 50 US states make wine, so Joel Stein sampled a bottle from each to test the claim in Time. He discovered "quite good" varietals from surprising states... More »

Study: Homeless Numbers Drop

First study to count homeless over a full year finds numbers down 15% in '07

(Newser) - The number of chronically homeless Americans fell by 15% last year, a study has found. The survey is the first to track homelessness over a full year, the Los Angeles Times reports. Homeless advocates argue that the promising numbers may in part be due to different counting methods—and that... More »

Petrodollars Snap Up Americana

Foreigners 'recycle' bucks with trophy buys like Chrysler Building

(Newser) - Foreign investors flush with dollars from the global commodities boom are using those greenbacks to buy flashy American properties, the New York Times reports. The government of Abu Dhabi bought a 75% stake in the Chrysler building Tuesday. Other recent "trophy" buys have included Donald Trump's Palm Beach mansion... More »

Say, That Star-Spangled Banner Is Huge!

Gigantic flags greet sports fans nationwide

(Newser) - A decades-old trend for field-sized Stars and Stripes at sporting events shows no signs of flagging, writes the New York Times. A flag big enough for the Statue of Liberty to wear as a cape will cover Yankee Stadium's turf before the upcoming all-star game—and the giant 150-foot banner... More »

Apple Has Top Brand, World Consumers Say

But survey says Microsoft, USA need to revamp marketing

(Newser) - Apple is the world's "most inspiring brand," as well as the one most consumers say they can't live without, according to a new survey on brand impact. Meanwhile, Reuters reports that Microsoft was the brand buyers thought most in need of an overhaul—with the United States as... More »

UN Pleads for $500M in Food Aid

May cut food shipments to 73M hungry

(Newser) - A United Nations food program has issued an extraordinary emergency plea for an extra $500 million in aid, warning that shipments to the world's hungry may be rationed if the money can't be raised over the next month, reports the Financial Times. The World Food Program feeds some 73 million... More »

Blair Pitches Global Climate Pact

Warns change will be irreversible if something isn't done now

(Newser) - Former British prime minister Tony Blair will seek to privately broker a new international agreement to cut carbon emissions by 50% before 2050 that would include China, India and the US, reports the Guardian. Blair has been working on the project with climate change experts since he left office last... More »

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