Donald Trump withdraws from his own debate. The frequently bankrupt real estate mogul and birth certificate specialist wants to keep open his option on a presidential run, so he's ankling his moderator gig in the upcoming Newsmax debate in Iowa.
National cell phone ban is coming. National Transportation Safety Board unanimously recommends that all state governments prohibit drivers from using portable electronic devices while driving. The NTSB has spent the last 10 years trying to stop cell phone use and texting. Former Reasoner Radley Balko tells U.S. Snooze: "These laws aren't about safety; they're about symbolism."
Why the apes will rise against us… Researchers in Japan plan to use monkeys to monitor radiation emitted by the Fukushima nuclear power plant. Fukushima University professor Takayuki Takahashi will fit 1,000 animals from 14 monkey colonies in the forests of Minamisoma with collars containing radiation meters and GPS transmitters.
Speaking of balding apes… Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke still has his steady hand on the tiller. The Federal Open Market Committee says the economy is still "expanding moderately," but not enough to raise interest rates to a level that accurately reflects the cost of hiring money: "While indicators point to some improvement in overall labor market conditions, the unemployment rate remains elevated," the FOMC reports from its alternate universe. "Household spending has continued to advance, but business fixed investment appears to be increasing less rapidly and the housing sector remains depressed. Inflation has moderated since earlier in the year, and longer-term inflation expectations have remained stable."
Speaking of that inflation that isn't happening… USA Today reports that household electric bills have increased by about $300 since 2007, the highest rate of energy price inflation since the 1970s.
Higgs Boson, is that you? Researchers at the Large Hadron Collider say they're close to pinpointing the Higgs boson, a particle predicted by standard physics but so far never observed. Identifying the particle could help explain why some objects have mass, how others have only energy, and whether Razzles is a candy or a gum.