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NEW YORK (AP) — For a book that has yet to be released, Sheryl Sandberg's "Lean In" — part feminist manifesto, part how-to career guide — has got a lot of people talking. In the weeks leading up to the book's March 11 release, pundits and press hounds have been debating its merits. New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd called Sandberg a "PowerPoint Pied Piper in Prada ankle boots," and countless bloggers have suggested that Facebook's chief operating officer is the wrong person to lead a women's movement.
Willpower apparently can be bought. The chance to win or lose $20 a month enticed dieters in a yearlong study to drop an average of 9 pounds — four times more weight than others who were not offered dough to pass up the doughnuts. Many employers, insurers and Internet programs dangle dollars to try to change bad habits like smoking or not exercising, but most studies have found this doesn't work very well or for very long.
WASHINGTON (AP) — A Republican senator and tea party favorite from Kentucky used an old-style filibuster lasting nearly 13 hours to take control of the chamber and block Senate confirmation of John Brennan's nomination to be CIA director. Sen. Rand Paul ended his filibuster Thursday shortly after midnight, but Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, also a Kentucky Republican, said he would continue to oppose Brennan's confirmation and resist ending the debate on President Barack Obama's nominee to lead the spy agency.
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Senate Judiciary Committee has approved stiff federal penalties for illegally trafficking guns. It's the first vote in Congress to curb firearms since December's horrific shootings at a Connecticut elementary school. The bill is sponsored by committee Chairman Patrick Leahy of Vermont. It would create penalties of up to 25 years in prison for people who buy guns for others who use them in a crime. The vote was 11 to 7, with Sen. Charles Grassley of Iowa the only Republican to support it.
ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Revenue officials from Minnesota and Wisconsin have settled a key issue to reaching a tax reciprocity agreement. Separate studies by the two states find Wisconsin would owe Minnesota about $69 million to compensate for the tax revenue it would lose if residents who live in one state and work in the other file a single state income tax return.
NEW YORK (AP) — Celebrity photographer David LaChapelle has been sued for $1 million by a Montana gallery director who claims he beat and choked him. According to the lawsuit, the Vanity Fair and Rolling Stone photographer attacked James Parmenter at a Manhattan apartment in March 2012. The suit was filed Wednesday in Manhattan Supreme Court. It says Parmenter was chocked "to the point of unconsciousness." The New York Post reports that LaChapelle's representative denied the allegations.
MOSCOW (AP) — The star dancer accused of masterminding the attack on the Bolshoi ballet chief acknowledged Thursday that he gave the go-ahead for the attack, but told a Moscow court that he did not order anyone to throw acid on the artistic director's face. The judge, however, refused to release Bolshoi soloist Pavel Dmitrichenko on bail and ordered him and his two co-defendants held until at least April 18 while the investigation continued.
ST. PETER, Minn. (AP) — An 86-year-old woman diagnosed with Parkinson's disease and dementia has been charged with voter fraud. Margaret Schneider says she forgot she had voted by absentee ballot in the 2012 primary election and about a month later, on Aug. 14, went to her polling place to vote. Now Schneider finds herself facing a felony charge and a court appearance April 2.
TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. (AP) — The Obama administration says a billion-dollar campaign to improve the Great Lakes environment is paying off. U.S. federal agencies taking part in the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative released a report card Wednesday with results from the 2011 fiscal year. The program's designed to make progress on some of the region's most pressing environmental problems.
MENOMONIE, Wis. (AP) — Authorities have recovered the body of the second victim of a fatal semi crash into a river in western Wisconsin. The State Patrol says the body of the passenger, 26-year-old Mohammed Malin, was recovered after the search resumed Wednesday.