HOUSE PASSES $1.1 TRILLION DOLLAR SPENDING BILL The bill, which will fund government operations for the fiscal year, is expected to pass in the Senate. Elizabeth Warren railed against a banking regulation change in the bill, saying “the American people didn't elect us to stand up for Citigroup.” [HuffPost]
CIA CHIEF DEFENDS INTERROGATION PRACTICES After calling torture methods “abhorrent,” CIA Director John Brennan said it was “unknowable” whether standard interrogation practices would have lead to the same intelligence gains. [WaPo]
CONGRESSIONAL STAFFERS PROTEST GARNER, BROWN CASES Dozens of staffers walked out Thursday afternoon to show their solidarity with protesters across the country. [HuffPost]
HONG KONG RETURNS TO BUSINESS AS USUAL Following more than ten weeks of pro-democracy protests. [WSJ]
AS OIL DROPS, RETAIL HOPES RISE “American retailers are getting a gift just in time for the holidays: a sharp drop in gasoline prices that is delivering a welcome boost to the pocketbooks of U.S. consumers. Savings at the pump propelled sales across retailers in November, a new economic report showed, buoying hopes for the final stretch of the holiday shopping season. The jolt to consumer spending power, after years of weak wage growth and other headwinds, appears set to continue after U.S. oil prices slipped below $60 a barrel.” [WSJ]
SUPERBUGS: THE NEW MASS KILLER "‘Superbugs,’ or drug-resistant infections, could one day eclipse cancer as one of theleading causes of death, according to a new report. If doctors can't find new methods of treatment, in a worst case scenario, annual global deaths from superbug infections could increase from a current estimation of 700,000 to 10 million by 2050. The findings were published as a Review on Antimicrobial Resistance, commissioned by U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron. The analyses were performed by KPMG and Rand Europe.” [HuffPost]
PULITZER PRIZE-WINNING PHOTOGRAPHER DIES ON THE JOB Michel du Cille, a Washington Post photojournalist, suffered a heart attack and died while in Liberia covering Ebola. He was 58. [HuffPost]
GOLDEN GLOBE SURPRISES AND SNUBS Somewhere, Channing Tatum and Angelina Jolie are fuming. [Variety]
DR. DRE TOPS HIGHEST PAID MUSICIANS We suddenly feel a lot more bullish about really, really expensive headphones. [Forbes]
YOUTUBE LAUNCHING A GIF MAKER Gif-making just got infinitely easier. [Gizmodo]
WHAT ABOUT THE MOVIE SERIAL? “Imagine if ‘True Detective,’ which aired as eight one-hour episodes' worth of cinema-quality entertainment, had instead been packaged as four two-hour installments of cinema-quality entertainment and released in theaters on the first Friday of every month. And imagine if, for the first three weeks after each release, the only place you could see the new installment was in a movie theater.” [Vulture]
SAMUEL ADAMS AND PAUL REVERE BURIED A TIME CAPSULE DUG UP YESTERDAY IN BOSTON Proving that standard first-grade activity could actually be cool for someone 219 years from now. [USA Today]
15 FOODS FOR YOUR DIET IN 2015 Add crickets, Umeboshi paste, and kalettes to your grocery list. [HuffPost]
ON THE BLOG
JOHN KERRY: WE MUST WORK TOGETHER TO COMBAT CLIMATE CHANGE “This is a collective challenge. No one country can reverse the degradation of our climate. No single emissions source causes this massive harm to our planet. But science has given us the tools to deal with the broad array of causes and we must find a way to build the political will to start taking the steps today that will cut our emissions and save our planet tomorrow.” [HuffPost]
BEFORE YOU GO
~ Rebel Wilson: the first female Ghostbuster?
~ Clouds are filling the Grand Canyon.
~ Seaworld’s CEO is stepping down because of declining attendance (hello, “Blackfish”).
~ Watch Shaq use an Easy-Bake Oven -- yes, the miniature kind.
~ Listen to Beyonce and Nicki Minaj’s leaked collab track.
~ Here’s hoping Rick Springfield’s cameo on “True Detective” season 2 includes a “Jessie’s Girl” rendition.
~ Ewan McGregor as Jesus.
~ The scariest page on the Internet.
~ Venmo: the most honest of social media networks.
~ Dennis Rodman thinks Vladimir Putin is “cool.”
~ Mother-in-laws being mother-in-laws.
~ And all the new “Star Wars” characters on trading cards.
Send tips/quips/quotes/stories/photos/events/scoops to Lauren Weber at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow us on Twitter @LaurenWeberHP. And like what you're reading? Sign up here to get The Morning Email delivered to you.