VIDEO: Today's Headline News from Associated Press
OBAMA MADE LAST-MINUTE DECISION ON SYRIA APPROVAL
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Senior administration officials say President Barack Obama had planned to take military action against Syria without congressional authorization, but told aides Friday night that he had changed his mind.
Obama announced Saturday that he wanted to launch a military strike, but would first seek lawmakers' approval. (See video below.)
The officials describe a president overriding all his top national security advisers, who believe consulting with Congress was sufficient.
The officials say Obama spent the week wrestling with Congress' role and made the decision Friday after a lengthy discussion with his chief of staff, Denis McDonough. They say Obama decided seeking approval would make the U.S. stronger even though he still believes he has the authority to act alone.
The administration officials requested anonymity because they weren't authorized to discuss Obama's decision-making by name.
FINANCIAL STRESS MAY HIT YOUR BRAIN AND WALLET
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Being short on cash may make you a bit slower in the brain, a new study suggests.
People worrying about having enough money to pay their bills tend to lose temporarily the equivalent of 13 IQ points, scientists found when they gave intelligence tests to shoppers at a New Jersey mall and farmers in India.
The idea is that financial stress monopolizes thinking, making other calculations slower and more difficult, sort of like the effects of going without sleep for a night.
And this money-and-brain crunch applies, albeit to a smaller degree, to about 100 million Americans who face financial squeezes, say the team of economists and psychologists who wrote the study published in Friday's issue of the journal Science.
"Our paper isn't about poverty. It's about people struggling to make ends meet," said Sendhil Mullainathan, a Harvard economist and study co-author. "When we think about people who are financially stressed, we think they are short on money, but the truth is they are also short on cognitive capacity."
If you are always thinking about overdue bills, a mortgage or rent, or college loans, it takes away from your focus on other things. So being late on loans could end up costing you both interest points and IQ points, Mullainathan said.
CBS BLACKOUT DISPUTE THREATENS FOOTBALL FANS
NEW YORK (AP) -- It's one thing for a business dispute to knock out CBS programming in some three million homes during rerun season. Football season is another matter entirely, and there's little immediate cause for optimism.
There's been no reported progress in negotiations between CBS Corp. and Time Warner, which has blocked CBS programming from its customers' homes in Dallas, Los Angeles and New York since Aug. 2. They are at odds over a deal to carry CBS on Time Warner, most prominently over retransmission fees that the cable operator pays to CBS per subscriber.
Talks are expected to continue over the Labor Day weekend. Meanwhile, Time Warner customers caught in the middle will miss third and fourth round competition in the U.S. Open tennis tournament. The tournament's finals are next weekend, along with opening weekend in the National Football League.
CBS believes the start of football will increase public pressure on Time Warner to get a deal. The network has run radio advertisements with football announcers like James Brown instructing affected fans on other ways to watch games.
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