GateHouse News Service National Budget
For 1/26/09 editions
Here are the top national stories coming today from GateHouse News Service. Stories are available at Please submit stories below no later than 6 pm local time, unless you have breaking news that is changing significantly.
Contacts: Jean Hodges, (630) 348-3350, (630) 956-8834,
Michael Toeset, (630) 348-3356, (630) 835-8870,
HELPING YOU BE MORE LOCAL: How the news service can help you with local content.
NASCAR PREVIEW:  2009 NASCAR preview tab: Can Jimmie Johnson do it again?
OUTDOOR LIVING SPRING SECTION: Lots of fishing, with some cool gadgets, safety and turkey tips.
“STRETCHED:” Section features stories on ways to save and make money in 2009.
SUDOKU: Puzzles 218-252 (covering February) are now posted.


MORNING MINUTES: Note: we’re adding a little “today in history” beginning Monday. And we’ll still offer Word of the Day, Web Site of the Day and Number to Know.
HEALTH WATCH: Sick-day guidelines for parents: Weekly health rail, with items on sick days, space-heater safety,
cold-weather exercise, and more.
HEALTH VIDEO:  Animal therapy helps patients recover
HEALTH PAGE: Don’t just exercise -- party
WAYNE WESCOTT: Don’t let winter stop you from exercising
KATHRYN REM: Find the perfect wine pairing
SUDOKU: Puzzles 190-217 are now posted. Sudoku links package can be found here:
OSCAR NOMINEES: A look at people and movies nominated for the 81st Academy Awards.

LINCOLN LOG: Book brings immediacy to 1865 assassination   - Working with writer Barry Dennenberg, award-winning Lexington artist Christopher Bing designed and illustrated "Lincoln Shot: A President's Life Remembered," a gorgeous visual biography that propels readers through the life, times and death of a national icon. MetroWest, Bergeron, on wire now
With photo
BRITT CARTOON: On Gov. Rod Blagojevich’s TV appearances Monday. Will be posted this evening.
JEFF VRABEL: Selling ‘Star Wars’ toys 20 years ago an ill-advised financial decision - I decided as a child many years ago that forming meaningful interpersonal relationships was not something that would ever be important to me, so I got really into "Star Wars" toys.
DAN HALL: President Obama gets the economy, but House Democrats don't.
CHUCK SWEENY: Blago’s final attack will end like Battle of the Bulge - In vaudeville shows (no, I was not alive then), when an entertainer was bombing, there was a large hook on a long pole back stage that the show’s director used to pull the poor buffoon offstage. That’s where the saying “get the hook” comes from. Our own buffoon, Rod R. Blagojevich, is turning in a rotten performance in the role of governor, but he’s a great dancer and always manages to avoid the hook that we, the show managers of Illinois, are using to hurry him offstage.
LORETTA LAROCHE: 1,001 reasons to get panicky - It seems that over the last several years the news has become more and more geared to scare the living hell out of us. I just heard that we should not always believe the labels on cans. There was no follow-up information, so I really don’t know what I should be aware of. Ledger, on wire now
JEFF ADAIRJeff Adair: Are we willing to sacrifice? - It happens sometimes in sports. A prime example occurred last year in basketball, the sport President Barack Obama played in high school and dreamed about playing professionally. CNC, on wire now
PETER COSTA: Stock market will get better before it gets worse?   - The economic recession has made one expression very popular: “It will get worse before it gets better.” Actually, I think the reverse may be true: “It will get better before it gets worse.” CNC, on wire now
TOM WILSON: What’s an ex-president to do? Each time a U.S. president leaves office at the end of his term, he is asked what he intends to do in retirement. When John Quincy Adams left the office in 1829 he said, “That there is nothing more pathetic in life than a former President!” President Franklin Pierce was even more critical when departing in 1857 by remarking, “After the White House, what is there to do but drink?”

EDITORIAL: Put Granberg appointment at DNR on hold - U.S. Sen. Roland Burris has been the most high-profile appointee of Gov. Rod Blagojevich since his arrest in December on corruption charges. But Blagojevich made another personnel decision last week that arguably has as much impact on downstate Illinois as Burris’ appointment — the selection of former Rep. Kurt Granberg to be the next head of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources. An editorial from the State Journal-Register.

EDITORIAL: Props not needed for political stage performances - Got a political problem? Of late, it seems that mere theatrics offer up the easiest solution. Just bring in a few political props and people are guaranteed to think better of you! Or not. An editorial from the Peoria Journal Star.
EDITORIAL: Obama's call to maturity   - Barack Obama has studied Lincoln's speeches enough to know the importance of choosing the right line from scripture from which to preach. So a good place to begin to understand Obama's inaugural address is with the Biblical admonition he chose: "the time has come to set aside childish things." MetroWest, on wire now
FOOTBALL BRIEFS: PFW news on Ravens LB Lewis, plus Cowboys, Vikings, Patriots and Texans.

INAUGURATION SLIDESHOW: Embed sound slides presentation on your Web site: Find directions on how to place on your Web site a sound slides presentation of GateHouse News Service images of the inauguration of President Barack Obama.
IMPEACHMENT TRIAL: The Senate begins a historic impeachment trial against Gov. Rod Blagojevich Monday, hearing opening arguments while the governor refuses to participate because he says the process is patently unfair. By Doug Finke of the State Capitol bureau. Will be updated throughout the day. With the daily Impeachment Watch box.
RALLY AGAINST RACISM: Brockton rallies against racism in wake of shooting rampage   - Several hundred area residents stand together at a synagogue in Brockton Sunday to decry a racial-filled rampage that left two people dead and a third critically wounded on Wednesday.
Enterprise, Papadopoulos, on wire now
With video and photos
Video: Web of hate can fuel tragedy if unchecked   - The Brockton killing suspect spent hours online, looking at messages and videos on hate Web sites.
Enterprise, Boyle, on wire now
With video and photos

Business / Ag
BIZ BITS: Weekly business rail, with tax tips, a look at 10 items consumers are buying despite the economic downturn and more.
REPO MAN: A day in the life of a repo man (great idea for a story of your own – see how Canton did it). CANTON, Ohio

CHECKOUT LANE: How to determine if a TV has digital tuner

MAKING CENTS: What to look for if you're refinancing
CAT CUTS THOUSANDS OF JOBS: Caterpillar announces massive job cuts - PEORIA – Caterpillar Inc. announced Monday morning that it expects to cut up to 20,000 jobs by the end of the first quarter. By Paul Gordon of the Peoria Journal Star. Early version posted; will be updated.
READY TO WORK: Chrysler crew ready to trade busyness in for business again
 ROCKFORD – The 2,700 workers at Chrysler LLC’s Belvidere assembly plant returned to work Monday, after five weeks off and almost daily news reports about the troubled automaker’s future. Chrysler closed all of its plants Dec. 19 for the annual two-week retooling. But because slumping sales nationally were creating a backlog on dealer lots, the Belvidere plant remained shuttered for an extra three weeks. By Sean F. Driscoll of the Rockford Register Star.