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Gabatron Morning Briefing – 11-19-15: America Gets A Little Jittery

Several people were yanked off of a Southwest flight at Midway for fighting over seat assignments. The passengers were described as being of “Middle Eastern decent,” they were asking people to switch seats so they could all sit together, and they were taken off because they were making their fellow passengers “uncomfortable.”

Interesting Stat of the Day: $50 million.

Paul Ryan has shot down the idea of putting a religious test on refugees from Syria. Ted Cruz, Jeb Bush wanted to only allow Christian refugees into the country.

Also, proving that stupidity is bipartisan: A mayor in Virginia, who is a Democrat is suggesting that internment camps might be the way to go. Basically, he said if it was good enough for the Japanese in WWII, it should work for fighting ISIS.

KFC and Dunkin Donuts are both toying with the idea of offering delivery service. Delivery fees will run somewhere around $5-7.

In technology news, Lyft, the RC Cola of on-demand ride sharing apps, predicts it will hit $1 billion in gross annual revenue based on its October performance.

Plus, a teacher in Poland decided it was a good idea to put a question on a physics test about pushing Syrian refugees off of a raft.

Each morning Keith Conrad will give you a few stories useful for starting conversations around the water cooler at work. Assuming that your office actually has a water cooler.

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Gabatron Morning Briefing – 8-18-15: Fat Kids With Short Attention Spans Playing Violent Video Games

A new study suggests that constant Internet access is reprogramming our brains, making it much more difficult to focus.

Interesting Stat of the Day: Two. That’s the number of squirrels in Yosemite National Park that have died from the plague, leading officials to shut down a campsite.

Psychologists say they’ve scientifically confirmed that playing violent video games can lead to more aggressive behavior.

In health news, A new report by a group of retired military leaders claims that 1/3 of Americans are too fat to serve in the military.

In technology news, remember back in May when the IRS said 104,000 people had their personal information compromised by hackers? Now they’ve revised the number to 330,000 people.

Plus, a tiger was running wild through the old Packard plant in Detroit on Monday.

Each morning Keith Conrad will give you a few stories useful for starting conversations around the water cooler at work. Assuming that your office actually has a water cooler.

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Gabatron Morning Briefing – 6-24-15: US Spying On The French

WikiLeaks claims to have published documents that prove that the National Security Agency has spied on the last three French presidents. The communications were between 2006 to 2012, include discussions about a top U.N. appointment, the Middle East peace process, and the euro crisis, along with the French president’s cell phone number.

Interesting Stat of the Day: 67.6 million. That’s the number of Americans over the age of 25 who are obese. Another 65.2 million are just overweight.

People in the news, composer James Horner has died in a plane crash near Santa Barbara, California at the age of 61.

In technology news, Google is trying to idiot-proof email so you won’t accidentally send messages to the wrong people. They are adding a 5 to 30 second “Undo Send” feature.

In world affairs, there was an unlikely visitor to a meeting of various secessionist taking place in Russia. Nathan Smith is the self-styled foreign minister of the Texas Nationalist Movement. He says their movement is bigger than you might think.

Plus, Warner Bros. has decided that they will no longer license any models of the car because it has the Confederate Flag on it.

Each morning Keith Conrad will give you a few stories useful for starting conversations around the water cooler at work. Assuming that your office actually has a water cooler.

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Gabatron Morning Briefing – 4-27-15: Sudden Career Change

Saturday night was the White House Correspondents Dinner. I thought President Obama was extremely funny, Cecily Strong didn’t really blow my skirt up, although her joke about President Obama’s hair being white enough to talk back to cops the was pretty good.

The backlash against SeaWorld continues. Now Mattel has decided to dump their SeaWorld trainer Barbie doll. They point out that their licensing agreement expired and they simply choose not to renew it.

The earthquake in Nepal over the weekend killed an estimated 3000 people.

According to a new study Americans are drinking more these days, a lot more. Heavy drinking is up about 17% since 2005.

According to another new study, kids who spend more than an hour in front of the TV have a greater risk of being overweight or obese.

Plus, Stephen Hawking made an appearance as a 3D hologram in Sydney, Australia over the weekend and had great news for One Direction fans who are still in mourning.

Each morning Keith Conrad will give you a few stories useful for starting conversations around the water cooler at work. Assuming that your office actually has a water cooler.

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Gabatron Morning Briefing – 3-31-15: War On Pet Obesity

The Association of Pet Obesity and Prevention says that a 58 percent of cats and 53 percent of dogs are overweight in the U.S.

NBC has chosen their next live musical showtacular. In December you’ll be hate-watching The Wiz.

Trevor Noah has been announced as the replacement for Jon Stewart on The Daily Show. He is a comedian from South Africa, who has been on the show a handful of times as a correspondent.

Coachella and Lollapalooza here in Chicago have joined the lengthening list of venues that are banning selfie sticks.

A new study indicates children raised in poorer households have brains with less surface area, meaning they could be at a disadvantage in developing important academic skills.

A new study in honor of National Distracted Driving Awareness month takes a look at all of the things that people do in their cars instead of driving. People admitted to texting and talking on the phone, but they also admitted to making out, styling hair, applying makeup, taking selfies and changing drivers.

Each morning Keith Conrad will give you a few stories useful for starting conversations around the water cooler at work. Assuming that your office actually has a water cooler.

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Gabatron Morning Briefing – 3-18-15: Coffee Talk

Starbucks decided that they would singlehandedly take on the race debate in the United States but having their baristas chat with you about it when they gave your coffee. The backlash was so big that Starbucks decided to cancel the campaign before it even got started.

San Francisco 49ers linebacker Chris Borland has decided to retire after his rookie season because he says that the risk of injury in the NFL is not worth it. He said he made his decision after consulting with family members, concussion researchers, friends and current and former teammates about the relationship between football and neurodegenerative disease.

A new study says majority of American parents give their kids sugary drinks like soda or punch or fruit drinks.

A study says that being lonely increases your risk of early death by about 30%. It also seems to be correlated with breast cancer symptoms.

Sinéad O’Connor says that she will no longer sing her hit “Nothing compares 2 U” in concerts.

A Nevada lawmaker proposed a bill in the state legislature that would grant sick pets access to medical marijuana.

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