12:01am

Thu June 30, 2011
Reporter's Notebook

Tripoli's Lone Chinese Restaurant Still Delivers

Chef Lao Wei Xiong cooks up a carry-out order for foreign reporters in the kitchen at al Maida restaurant in Tripoli.
NPR

Most foreigners fled Libya earlier this year when a popular uprising to oust Moammar Gadhafi turned into a brutal war. But in Tripoli, one Chinese family that runs a restaurant is trying to hang on.

Few people come to al Maida Chinese restaurant, which once counted Gadhafi's son, Seif al-Islam, among its customers. NATO airstrikes and gun-toting thugs make eating out an unsavory prospect for most people still in the capital.

The exceptions are foreign journalists seeking an escape from the lackluster cuisine of the hotel they are restricted to by the Libyan government.

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12:01am

Thu June 30, 2011
Business

Banks Ordered To Lower Retailers' Debit Fees

Starting in October, banks aren't going to be able to charge as much as they used to when consumers pay by debit card. The Federal Reserve has issued a final rule on so-called "swipe fees" that are charged to merchants every time a debit card is used.

Retailers have been complaining for years about the fees banks charge whenever a customer pulls out a debit card. Congress listened last year and included an amendment in the big financial overhaul to limit fees on debit transactions.

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6:23pm

Wed June 29, 2011
The Two-Way

News Corp. Takes Huge Loss, Selling Myspace For $35 Million

Loic Venance AFP/Getty Images

Back in 2005, Rupert Murdoch's News Corp. bought Myspace for a stunning $580 million. Today, News Corp. sold the struggling social network to an advertising targeting firm for $35 million.

The Wall Street Journal reports:

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5:42pm

Wed June 29, 2011
Eastern and Central Kentucky

Fireworks Stands in Sight

The upcoming Fourth of July weekend is expected to be a little louder and flashier than usual across Kentucky.  The number of fireworks stands across the commonwealth is way up over last year.

State Fire Marshall Bill Swope says 420 people received permits to sell fireworks last year.  This summer, that figure has ballooned to 776 permits.  Swope says the vast majority of those permits are for seasonal sales through July seventh.

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5:35pm

Wed June 29, 2011
Technology

Facebook's Newest Challenger: Google Plus

A screen shot of Google Plus.

Google is trying once again to challenge Facebook's domination of the social networking business. Its main social networking site "Orkut" is very popular in Brazil, but in the rest of the world, Google trails Facebook.

But the company has a new attempt to catch up.

The new social network is called Google Plus, and you're not allowed to join it. At least, not yet.

"It's small but growing," says Bradley Horowitz, who oversees Google's communications products and social applications.

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5:35pm

Wed June 29, 2011
The Two-Way

France Says It Parachuted Arms To Libyan Rebels

A Libyan rebel carries heavy machine gun rounds captured from a weapons depot, part of a network of bunkers belonging to Moammar Gadhafi.
Colin Summers AFP/Getty Images

After French daily Le Figaro ran a report saying France was secretly arming Libyan rebels, the French military has admitted that they provided the rebels with ammunition and weapons on several occasions.

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5:18pm

Wed June 29, 2011
It's All Politics

Obama Debt-Ceiling Pitch Sounds Re-Election Themes

Watching President Obama Wednesday at his first full-scale news conference since February, it was difficult not to be aware of the two simultaneous campaigns he was waging.

The first and more short-term campaign was his effort to get congressional Republicans to agree to raise the federal debt ceiling by the Aug. 2 deadline set by the U.S. Treasury Department to avert a debt default by the U.S. government.

Since the economy is the issue that tops all others for voters, Obama said the debt-ceiling was about jobs.

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4:37pm

Wed June 29, 2011
The Two-Way

Why Do Fingers Wrinkle When They Get Wet?

We know you've asked yourself that question in the headline and common knowledge dictates that the reason your fingers look pruney when you're in water for too long is that the skin absorbs water.

Well, Mark Changizi, an evolutionary neurobiologist at 2AI Labs in Boise, Idaho, thinks he has a better theory. Nature reports on the study, which was published in the journal Brain, Behavior and Evolution:

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4:23pm

Wed June 29, 2011
Shots - Health Blog

Environmental Group Rates 'Superstar' Beaches, And Their Dirty Brethren

Originally published on Thu June 21, 2012 3:14 pm

Doheny Beach in Orange County, Calif. photographed in 2005. A new report on the nation's beaches found that Doheny exceeded at least one water quality standard 42 percent of the time it was tested in 2010.
Flickr

Fourth of July weekend is right there on the horizon, and beach bunnies everywhere are mulling where to drop their towels and umbrellas. Fortunately, they can refer to the Natural Resource Defense Council Testing the Waters report, released today, before making that call.

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4:00pm

Wed June 29, 2011
The Record

EMI Publishing Dumps ASCAP

Courtesy of EMI Publishing

The music business has undergone drastic changes during the Internet era, but until recently, one thing that hadn't changed was the role of the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers, known to the industry as ASCAP. This performance rights organization has helped songwriters and music publishers get paid when their songs are played in radio broadcasts, on elevators and in clubs for nearly 100 years. But as broadcasting moves online, ASCAP's future may be uncertain.

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