August 10th, 2010
07:54 PM ET

Stocks pare losses after Fed statement

A look at highlights from the day's business news:

Stocks recoup losses after Fed decision

Stocks pared sharp losses to close only modestly lower Tuesday after the Federal Reserve took a cautious stance about the recovery.

After falling as much as 147 points earlier in the session, the Dow Jones industrial average was off 53 points, or 0.5 percent, to close at 10,644.86, according to early tallies.

The S&P 500 lost 7 points, or 0.6 percent, to end at 1,121.08, and the Nasdaq dropped 29 points, or 1.2 percent, to close at 2,277.17.


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Filed under: Economy
August 10th, 2010
07:49 PM ET

The day's most popular stories

The five most popular stories during the last 24 hours, according to Newspulse.

Joke on boat leads to four deaths: Four men died after horsing around in a boat on a southern Idaho reservoir, authorities said late Monday.

Former U.S. senator killed in Alaska crash: Ted Stevens, one of five killed in a plane crash in his beloved Alaska, was remembered Tuesday as a "lion who retreated before nothing."

Flight attendant charged in chute incident: A flight attendant cursed out passengers, grabbed a beer then triggered an emergency chute Monday at a JFK Airport terminal, authorities say.

Gaga say what?: Memorable words from one of the most verbose pop stars around

Convict, fiancee won't quit easily, marshall says: Authorities have pulled out all the stops to find the last of three escaped Arizona convicts and his suspected accomplice Tuesday, and believe the couple may be in western Montana or southwestern Canada.

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Filed under: Air travel • Alaska • Arizona • Justice • Showbiz
August 10th, 2010
06:39 PM ET

Youngest Gitmo detainee faces jury pool in court

Accused terrorist Omar Khadr on Tuesday briefly addressed the 15 prospective members of a military jury that will decide the case of the youngest captive at the Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, detention facility.

Dressed in a gray suit and tie, rather than his usual white prison uniform, Khadr was asked by his attorney to stand and speak to the 11 men and four women - all military officers - who are the pool for a jury of at least five members. In a soft voice, Khadr appeared to say, "How are you?" The prospective jurors sat in silence.


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Filed under: Justice • National security • Security Brief
August 10th, 2010
05:46 PM ET

Weather poor at time of Alaska plane crash

Alaska is known for its rugged terrain, cold temperatures and terrible storms. Weather MAY have been a factor in the plane crash near Dillingham, Alaska, that took the life of former U.S. Senator Ted Stevens and several others. It's too soon to know for sure and the NTSB is investigating.

Conditions at the time of the crash were rather poor. Visibility in the area was being reported by automatic sensing equipment at about 3 miles. FULL POST

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Filed under: Alaska • Weather
August 10th, 2010
04:52 PM ET

WebPulse: Take this job and chute it

Fed-up flight attendant - Steven Slater went from JetBlue flight attendant to folk hero in 24 hours. Allegedly conked on the head by a rude passenger's luggage, Slater used some choice words to describe said passenger, then grabbed a couple of beers from the galley of the plane at JFK Airport, released an inflatable chute and zipped down to the tarmac. He then booked it to his car and drove home. Cops soon arrived and charged him with several crimes. Cue lawyer who has a news conference, cue support network Facebook page, cue columns musing about workplaces equipped with inflatable chutes and the stupid way people act on planes. America loves a bold exit, and reports say Slater looked elated as he ran away. So what has been your take-this-job-and-shove it moment? Have you had a bad day at work and fantasized about exiting stage left in a big way? Tell CNN's iReport about it.

Burning out - Speaking of leaving one's employment, seems we're all burnt out. Here's proof - a chart.

Should we turn now to Mark Hurd? Seems a likely transition. There's still much Web surfing for stories on the HP CEO who left his job following sexual harassment allegations. Fortune has a piece about Hurd hiring the company's general counsel whose strict ethics code might have hurt Hurd. (And the magazine mentioned "The Crying Game" in the first paragraph!) There has to be some good news lurking somewhere. Ah, yes, Dell is happy. Want proof? Look at this chart.

Employee of the year - You know who exemplifies the model employee? The McDonald's drive-thru person who took a beating from a customer and kept that line of cars moving. Check out this Chicken McNugget rampage. Notice that even after a bottle is hurled through the window, the employee calmly serves the next customer. Think about that the next time your order gets screwed up. We know you didn't want pickles, but you got them, so peacefully accept it.

Filed under: Web Pulse
August 10th, 2010
04:39 PM ET

Alaska's terrain, weather complicates flying, searching

The pilot of a private plane that crashed Monday night in a rugged stretch of Alaska did not file a flight plan, according to the Federal Aviation Administration.

The plane, which was carrying former head of NASA Sean O'Keefe and former Sen. Ted Stevens, was being flown using visual flight rules and didn't need a flight plan, FAA spokesman Mike Fergus said Tuesday. Stevens and four others died. O'Keefe and three others were injured.

The DeHavilland DHC-3 Otter crashed around 7 p.m. Monday amid rough weather conditions near the southwest Alaska town of Dillingham, a destination for big-game hunters. Investigators with the National Transportation Safety Board are looking into whether those conditions may have contributed to the accident and complicated search efforts.

The flight originated at GCI Lodge on Lake Nerka and was bound for Dillingham, the agency's Alaska office said.

Pilots flying under visual flight rules generally are required to file a flight plan when visibility is less than 3 nautical miles and if it is overcast from 1,000 feet above ground level, according to aviation experts. All commercial passenger flights require one.

Flights under an “instrument flight rules” plan come under the control of air traffic controllers, who determine the exact routes and height for the pilots. “Under visual flight rules, you have much more flexibility to set your own route,” said Chris Dancy, a spokesman for the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association.


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Filed under: Air travel • Alaska
August 10th, 2010
02:35 PM ET

Former Alaska senator dead in plane crash

Former Alaska Sen. Ted Stevens has died in a plane crash near Dillingham, Alaska, a source familiar with ongoing rescue efforts confirms to CNN. The private plane carrying Stevens and a former head of NASA crashed Monday night in a rugged stretch of Alaska. The crash left at least five people dead, but at least three people have survived. FULL STORY

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Filed under: Alaska
August 10th, 2010
02:12 PM ET

Tropical weather delays Gulf well-killing operations 2 to 3 days

Drilling on the final 30 feet of a relief well expected to intercept the crippled oil well in the Gulf of Mexico has been suspended
because of a tropical disturbance in the region, the government's national incident commander said Tuesday.

The weather may delay the process by two to three days, said retired Coast Guard Adm. Thad Allen.

He said that would push the interception date - which had been expected Thursday or Friday - to sometime between Sunday and next Tuesday, weather permitting, at which point crews could begin the "bottom kill" procedure to permanently cement the well.


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Filed under: BP • Gulf Coast Oil Spill
August 10th, 2010
10:32 AM ET

Latest developments in Alaska plane crash

Sean O'Keefe, who resigned as NASA administrator in February 2005, survived the crash.

 [Updated at 7:28 p.m.] The latest developments in the plane crash Monday night near Dillingham, Alaska: 


- The Alaska Department of Public Safety Tuesday released the names of
those killed and injured in the crash:

DECEASED: Former U.S. Sen. Theodore "Ted" Stevens, 86, of Anchorage, Alaska; Theron "Terry" Smith, 62, of Eagle River, Alaska (pilot); William "Bill" Phillips Sr.; Dana
Tindall, 48, of Anchorage, Alaska; Corey Tindall, 16, of Anchorage, Alaska

INJURED: William "Willy" Phillips Jr., 13; former NASA chief Sean O'Keefe, 54; Kevin O'Keefe; Jim Morhard, Alexandria, Virginia.


- Former U.S. Sen. Ted Stevens was one of five people killed in the crash, said Mitch Rose, his former chief of staff and a family spokesman.

- Alaska's FAA office said two survivors had serious injuries and two had minor injuries, and it said the flight had departed from GCI Lodge on Lake Nerka and was headed to Dillingham.


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Filed under: Alaska
August 10th, 2010
10:31 AM ET

Rescue a bright spot as 700-plus die in China mudslides

Chinese soldiers frantically dug through the mud with shovels, even with their bare hands, Tuesday to reach the second story of an apartment building in northwestern Zhouqu County. After 60 hours trapped under mud, Liu Ma Shendeng was alive.

The soldiers pulled out the 52-year-old man, a rare moment of joy in a search for survivors in which hope was fast diminishing.

The death toll doubled Tuesday to 702 people in massive mudslides triggered Sunday by rain in China's Gansu province, the state-run Xinhua news agency reported. Another 1,042 people are still missing.


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Filed under: China • World
August 10th, 2010
10:29 AM ET

Arizona convict, fiancee won't 'go down lightly,' marshal warns

Authorities have pulled out all the stops to find the last of three escaped Arizona convicts and his suspected accomplice Tuesday, and believe the couple may be in western Montana or southwestern Canada, federal law enforcement officials said.

Fidencio Rivera, chief deputy U.S. Marshal for Arizona, told CNN's "American Morning" that it's believed John McCluskey and Casslyn Mae Welch have left the Yellowstone National Park area where they initially were hiding out after McCluskey and two other men escaped from a prison in Arizona July 30.

David Gonzales, the U.S. marshal for Arizona, warned Monday that McCluskey and Welch - who authorities describe as McCluskey's cousin and fiancee - "have nothing to lose" and may not surrender without a battle.


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Filed under: Arizona
August 10th, 2010
10:11 AM ET

On the Radar: One convict caught, one still on the loose

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On the lam - The second of three Arizona prison escapees has been captured in Wyoming. That leaves one convict and a suspected accomplice on the loose. Convicted murderer Tracy Province walked into a church Sunday in Meeteetse, Wyoming. The Rev. Ron Kingston said Province seemed like a down-on-his luck soul. Province had been on the lam for 10 days. The convict enjoyed the 9:30 a.m. worship service, sang songs such as"Your Grace Is Enough" and shook hands with parishioners. One of those churchgoers recognized Province from news reports and called police, spurring the convict's capture Monday.

Meanwhile, a U.S. marshal warns another escapee, John McClusky, isn't expected to go down without a fight. McClusky and his fiancee reportedly had been hiding out in Yellowstone National Park, but authorities said the two have left. It's unclear in what general area they might be.

Oh chute! - A JetBlue flight attendant who shouted expletives over a plane's intercom, then allegedly released and zipped down an inflatable escape chute and left New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport was arrested at his home. Steven Slater was charged with criminal mischief, reckless endangerment and criminal tresspass. But Slater's creative way of quitting his job has earned him many fans. A Facebook page has sprung up with thousands of "friends." Some are calling for donations to cover Slater's legal expenses.

Diamond trial - The attorney for former Liberian President Charles Taylor accused Naomi Campbell's ex-agent of lying in her testimony at an international court Tuesday. The lawyer called Carole White's account of Campbell receiving "blood diamonds" from Taylor "a complete pack of lies." White has been testifying at Taylor's war crimes trial. Prosecutors allege the diamonds funded a brutal civil war in Sierra Leone. Campbell was at a 1997 dinner party in South Africa that Taylor also attended.

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Filed under: Crime • New York • On the Radar
August 10th, 2010
09:53 AM ET

Tuesday's intriguing people

Steven Slater

The JetBlue flight attendant chose a rather interesting way to end his career, and may become, as a columnist suggests, a folk hero in the era of flight rage.

On Monday, Slater was working on a flight landing at JFK airport that had traveled from Pittsburgh. When a passenger stood up as the plane was approaching the gate, Slater told the passenger to remain seated. The two exchanged heated words. A physical altercation ensued with Slater somehow getting hit in the head with the passenger's bag. When Slater demanded an apology and was refused, the flight attendant then came on the PA system, and dressed down the passenger with expletives.

As the plane landed, Slater then made reference to his tenure as a flight attendant before saying "It's been great!" He then grabbed a beer from a refreshment cart, pulled the emergency exit escape hatch, and slid down the inflatable slide.

Patrick Smith, columnist for Salon's "Ask the Pilot," considers Slater "the D.B. Cooper of the peanuts-and-pretzels set.... Hero to the underpaid, overworked flight attendants who regularly endure the wrath - and occasionally the fists and feet - of belligerent passengers," Smith writes.

Salon: Steven Slater, folk hero

New York Times: Fed-up flight attendant makes sliding exit

Filed under: Most Intriguing People
August 10th, 2010
08:10 AM ET

Gates proposes cutting Joint Forces command from defense budget

Defense Secretary Robert Gates announced some far-reaching proposals Monday for restructuring the massive budget at his agency, including getting rid of the U.S. Joint Forces Command. The cuts could mean a loss of thousands of jobs.

The current Defense Department budget totals more than $530 billion a year, and defense officials believe they need increases of 2 to 3 percent a year to sustain the force structure and meet modernization needs.

However, the recession caused the department to propose a 1 percent budget increase for next year, and the cuts announced Monday were intended to help hold down overall costs.

"We must be mindful of the difficult economic and fiscal situation facing our nation," Gates told reporters at the Pentagon. "As a matter of principle and political reality, the Department of Defense cannot expect America's elected representatives to approve budget increases each year unless we are doing a good job, indeed, everything possible to make every dollar count."

Gate's acknowledged the plan was "politically fraught," and congressional criticism began even before Gates was finished announcing the moves. The proposal to eliminate the Joint Forces Command, which is based in Norfolk, Virginia, met with opposition from both the state's U.S. Democratic senators.


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Filed under: Security Brief
August 10th, 2010
07:59 AM ET

Cost of Afghan conflict escalating, U.N. says

The human cost of the Afghan conflict is escalating, with killings and attacks on children by the Taliban and other insurgent groups soaring, the United Nations said in a report released Tuesday.

"Afghan children and women are increasingly bearing the brunt of this conflict," says Staffan de Mistura, special representative of the U.N. secretary-general. "They are being killed and injured in their homes and communities in greater numbers than ever before."

According to the United Nations' 2010 Mid-Year Report on Protection of Civilians in Armed Conflict, in the first six months of this year, 55 percent more children were killed or wounded by the Taliban and other anti-government groups than in the same period in 2009. The number of women killed or wounded by the Taliban and other insurgents increased by six percent.


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Filed under: Security Brief
August 10th, 2010
07:18 AM ET

Tuesday's live video events

Ongoing coverage - BP webcam of Gulf oil disaster

9:00 am ET - House floor - House lawmakers are in session to debate a plan to prevent the layoffs of teachers and other public workers.

11:40 am ET - Obama remarks on education - President Obama will call on House lawmakers to pass legislation aimed at saving teacher jobs during a Rose Garden address.


Filed under: On today
August 10th, 2010
05:41 AM ET

World update: Floods continue in Pakistan

An update from the CNN newsdesk in London on stories we're following on Tuesday:

More heavy rains forecast: The United Nations has said the number of people affected by the torrential rains and flooding in Pakistan is nearing 14 million.

War crimes trial: The former agent of model Naomi Campbell, Carole White, continues her testimony at the war crimes trial of Charles Taylor in The Hague, The Netherlands. White said Monday that Campbell was aware that diamonds she received were a gift from Taylor - an allegation Campbell denied in court last week.

U.N. flotilla inquiry: The United Nations will launch a panel of inquiry Tuesday into Israel's interception of a humanitarian aid flotilla, in which nine people were killed.