From 'Stranger Things' to 'Game of Thrones': Biggest TV character deaths of 2017

Dec 18, 2017 0

As 2017 draws to a close, it’s time for TV fans to take a look back at the many characters that won’t be making the journey with us into the New Year.

The year 2017 was no exception to the rule that good TV often means good, poignant deaths. As a tribute to some of the fictional characters whose deaths still hit home, below is a list of some of the worst losses that fans have endured this year.

Hopefully this goes without saying, but SPOILER ALERT we’re about to talk about some seriously plot-heavy details for “Stranger Things,” “13 Reasons Why,” “Game of Thrones,” “The Walking Dead,” “This is Us” and “Nashville.”

Consider yourself warned.

“13 Reasons Why,” Hannah Baker

Not all TV deaths are good because they’re shocking. Netflix’s “13 Reasons Why” makes no secret that the events of the series surround the suicide of a young high school girl. However, it spends a long time making you start to like Hannah Baker and sympathize with her struggle before showing the moment in question. Upset by the world and a collection of seemingly insignificant people unfairly putting her through the ringer, she uses a razor blade to cut her wrists in the bathtub. The scene is difficult to watch, but paints an important picture of how dark things can get young people without anyone realizing.

13 Reasons Why  (Netflix)

“The Walking Dead,”  Sasha Williams

There was hardly a character alive on “The Walking Dead” that didn’t want to kill Negan in the most violent way possible. Sasha took her shot by engaging in a one-person assault on The Savior’s compound. It didn’t work, but rather than be used as a pawn to lure Rick and her cohorts to surrender, she swallowed a suicide pill provided to her by Eugene. Right in the middle of his big monologue, Negan opened a casket where Sasha was allowed to take one last shot at him. It failed, but her sacrifice helped start the big war for freedom.

 (© AMC Film Holdings LLC. All Rights Reserved.)

“Nashville,” Rayna James

After surviving an encounter with her knife-wielding stalker, things looked to be all sunshine and lollipops for Rayna James. However, fans were left with mouths agape when her police car got into an accident on the way to her reunion with Deacon and her daughters. Although she looked like she was recovering well, she ended up dying due to the complications from the impact. It’s not rare that characters would die on a TV drama, but it’s not often that a show’s lead is among the victims.

“Game of Thrones,” Lady Olenna

Regardless of which side of Westeros’ politics your loyalties lie, it was impossible not to be charmed by the blunt, no-nonsense attitude of Lady Olenna. After the Lannisters tricked Daenarys’ army by yielding their home in favor of the second-richest location in the kingdom, Olenna found herself standing behind an under-equipped and under-prepared army that fell to Jamie Lannister’s good hand. He brought her some poison to allow her to take her own life, which she did. However, she seized the opportunity to take credit for the murder of King Joffrey, which is a pretty cool way to go out.

Game of Thrones  (HBO)

“Stranger Things,” Bob Newby

Bob was everything the Beyers household needed. He was a stable father figure, a kind boyfriend to Joyce and a brilliant mind capable of exceeding Will and the gang’s A.V. club expectations. Unfortunately, his good-guy persona and tech skills led him on a daring mission that resulted in him being eaten alive by baby demogorgons – A.K.A. demodogs – to cover the others’ escape. If one has to die, it’s best to go out like Bob, a big hero.

Stranger Things  (Netflix)

“This Is Us,” William Hill

This falls under the category of a death that wasn’t surprising, but heartbreaking nonetheless. William entered his son’s life all too late, but Randall was aware of his diagnosis all the same. As a result, he tried to make every moment count with him, leading to a father and son road trip to Memphis, where the old jazz cat could bid farewell to his son and the world once and for all.

 (2017 NBCUniversal Media, LLC)

“Game of Thrones,” Viserion

They don’t need to be played by an actor to tug at fans’ heartstrings when they die. For years fans have looked at Daenerys’ dragons as the Westeros equivalent of nukes, but the Night King made short work of one of her three companions, Viserion. When she flew her dragons north to rescue Jon Snow and his party from white walkers, the Night King threw his magical javelin and took out the mighty beast. Just like that, the imminent threat caused by the army of the dead became all-too real for the kingdom. As if that wasn’t bad enough, the dragon was raised from the dead only to be used by the Night King to bring down the magical wall. Presumably we haven’t seen the last of Viserion, but his days as a member of team “good guys” are certainly done.

Game of Thrones  (HBO)

Trump to unveil 'America First' strategy

Dec 18, 2017 14

President Trump is set to unveil a new national security strategy on Monday, emphasizing national sovereignty over alliances, economic security, and reverse Obama-era warnings of climate change.

Trump will go further into detail about the so-called “America First” national security strategy in a speech on Monday, a plan that could alter the U.S. relationship with the rest of the world if fully implemented.

According to a senior administration official, Trump’s doctrine has four main pillars: protecting the homeland and way of life; promoting American prosperity; demonstrating peace through strength; and advancing American influence in an ever-competitive world.

The official said the “principled realism (contained in the document) takes a clear-eyed view of the threats we face,” adding that “the strategy promotes a world that is free, with sovereign nations and diverse cultures with their own aspirations, respecting the rights of those nations to do so but also finding ways to promote American values.”

President Donald Trump speaks at Fort Myer in Arlington Va., Monday, Aug. 21, 2017, during a Presidential Address to the Nation about a strategy he believes will best position the U.S. to eventually declare victory in Afghanistan. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

August 21, 2017: President Donald Trump outlined his strategy towards Afghanistan.  (AP)

The document will affirm that all nations are in perpetual competition and thus the U.S. must wage a fight on all fronts – allies and foes includes – to ensure the country’s sovereignty and prosperity. “Economic security is national security,” said a senior administration official.

Trump is expected to make clear that he the U.S. will be standing up for itself even if that means unilaterally or disaffecting others on issues such as trade, climate change, and immigration.

But this will not mean the U.S. is retreating from global politics. The strategy is supposed to assert the U.S. presence in the international community, with respect for all other countries and without imposing American values anywhere.

The U.S. will continue to be open to relationships with other countries, including alliances like NATO, but they will have to be based on fairness and reciprocity. Trump attacked NATO during the campaign for letting other countries take advantage of American military while not spending enough on their own.

The new strategy will also strip the Obama administration’s decision to designate climate change as an “urgent and growing threat to our national security,” but will mention the importance of environmental stewardship.

In the speech on Monday, the president is expected to discuss “rogue regimes” such as North Korea and criticize “revisionist powers” like Russian and China. Trump is likely to issue stark criticism of the Kremlin and its actions in Ukraine and Georgia.

The criticisms of China, meanwhile, will be toned-down. Rather than accusing of “economic aggression” as it was previously believed the strategy will, the document refer to China a “strategic competitor.”

In regards to the Middle East, the new national security strategy sees emerging opportunities to promote U.S. interests in the region.

“Some of our partners are working together to reject radical ideologies and key leaders are calling for a rejection of Islamist extremism and violence,” the document reads. “Encouraging political stability and sustainable prosperity would contribute to dampening the conditions that fuel sectarian grievances.”

The document will point out to “radical jihadist terrorist organizations” and Iran as “the prime irritant preventing peace and prosperity in the region.”

“For generations the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians has been understood as the prime irritant preventing peace and prosperity in the region,” the strategy document reads. “Today, the threats from radical jihadist terrorist organizations and the threat from Iran are creating the realization that Israel is not the cause of the region’s problems. States have increasingly found common interests with Israel in confronting common threats.”

Fox News’ Jennifer Bowman and the Associated Press contributed to this report.

Lukas Mikelionis is a reporter for FoxNews.com. Follow him on Twitter @LukasMikelionis.

Spin Master's BB-8 is the droid you're looking for

Dec 18, 2017 4

Disney(LOS ANGELES) — If you can’t get enough of BB-8 — the rolling droid that first captured geeks’ hearts in The Force Awakens and returns in The Last Jedi — you’re in luck.

The company Spin Master has created a nearly full-sized BB-8, which looks and acts as if it rolled right out of that galaxy far, far away.

Even for the special effects wizards at Lucasfilm, getting the droid to roll and “act” on his own was once impossible. On The Force Awakens, it took a combination of puppeteering and other tricks to get him to move onscreen.  But after that movie was done, the special effects team managed to make a functioning BB that could roll around without wires or puppeteers.

The new and improved droid made a surprise debut at Star Wars Celebration Anaheim in 2015: fans there, who assumed BB was a computer-generated character, flipped when a “practical” BB rolled out onstage.  Now, Spin Master has taken all that capability — and more — and crammed it into their nearly 1:1 scale Hero Droid BB-8.

Not only can the toy be driven with remote control, but it interacts with its surroundings, complete with the droid’s sounds and mannerisms from the movies.  There are even voice controls and a Follow Me mode, meaning the little droid can dutifully roll behind you on all your adventures, just like the one from the movies.

The Hero Droid BB-8 is now in stores, just in time for the holidays.

Star Wars is owned by Disney, the parent company of ABC News.

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Monsanto Offering Incentives on XtendiMax and other Endorsed Herbicides

Dec 18, 2017 12

Monsanto-insentive-offer

The Roundup Ready Xtend Crop System is back for the 2018 season, and Monsanto is gearing up with a cash back incentive program and specific support for those customers who will be using the system, so it can be a safe and successful second year.

Ryan Rubischko, product manager and marketing lead says they have learned a lot about the dicamba based product, and the support includes sharing all of the insights through training and education.

“There’s a number of various things that we’ve learned in terms of best management practices as well as important highlights on our updated label for XtendiMax® with VaporGrip® Technology. As farmers know that’s our new low volatility dicamba that can be sprayed over the top of Roundup Ready Xtend soybeans,” he told HAT. “So, there will be a number of trainings going on in local areas and many are just beginning and will continue over the winter months so that applicators can attend those required trainings.”

Monsanto also has a free nozzle offer and a toll free technical support call center.

Ryan-Rubischko

“It’s 1-844-RRXTEND and if applicators, farmers still have questions prior to making that application, they can call that number and we’ll have technical experts seven days a week during essentially daylight hours to be accessible to answer any questions they may have.”

Soybean growers can earn the $6 per acre cash back when using XtendiMax® herbicide with VaporGrip® Technology. Rubischko explains why they’re doing that.

“This offer is related to our Roundup Ready Plus program that has been available for roughly ten years now. It’s really an effort to ensure that farmers have successful weed management, and when they do that they’re using multiple sites of action. One of the ways through Roundup Ready Plus is we can encourage farmers to do the right things and incorporate things like Roundup along with XtendiMax as well as the importance of using residuals.”

www.RoundupReadyPLUS.com is the website for information about qualifying herbicides and the cash-back incentive.

From Monsanto Company: The featured offer allows soybean growers to earn an additional $6 more per acre in cash back when they apply XtendiMax® herbicide with VaporGrip® Technology, now a restricted use pesticide, to their Roundup Ready 2 Xtend soybeans along with endorsed herbicides from Roundup Ready PLUS® Crop Management Solutions. Incentives are also available when growers use XtendiMax with VaporGrip Technology with endorsed herbicides from Roundup Ready PLUS Crop Management Solutions on cotton with XtendFlex® Technology.

Under the offer, participating farmers who plant Roundup Ready 2 Xtend soybeans can qualify for an additional $6 more per acre in incentives when they incorporate XtendiMax with VaporGrip Technology along with endorsed herbicides from Roundup Ready PLUS Crop Management Solutions. Cotton growers planting varieties containing XtendFlex Technology can qualify for an additional $5.50.

Besides offering the cash back incentive from Roundup Ready PLUS Crop Management Solutions, Monsanto is also taking steps to support customers who use the Roundup Ready Xtend Crop System successfully in 2018, including:

  • Expert Recommendations based on crop and region
  • Education and Training to help growers stay up-to-date on important agronomic issues based on learnings from 2017
  • Cash-Back Incentives when growers use endorsed herbicides with multiple modes of action
  • Free Spray Nozzles that are compliant with product label
  • Technical Support Call Center (1-844-RRXTEND) to help applicators easily access information on best practices and application requirements
  • Spray App for applicators to help them avoid problematic weather conditions to achieve on-target applications
  • Free Roundup Ready Xtend Crop System Flags as a part of grower technology support

“We believe cash-back incentives for using XtendiMax with VaporGrip Technology better enable growers to use a management system that represents the next level of weed control, with the added confidence of being backed by Monsanto’s training tools and toll-free help line,” said Rubischko.

Bower Trading Market Strategy Report: Cash Grain Market Picking Up

Dec 18, 2017 15

Bower Trading Market Strategy Report: Cash Grain Market Picking Up

Jim Bower

After harvest, we saw very little grain movement. However, Jim Bower says, as we come to the end of the year, a jump in basis levels is taking place to try to get some grain moving, “This is especially true in the Western Corn Belt, but we are seeing some signs in the Eastern Belt as well. A strengthen of basis levels to try and get producers to unlock the bins and sell some grain.” He added that some commercial interests are needing the grain to meet short term needs. He said several of his clients have taken advantage of this opportunity.

At the farm show last week, there was a lot of talk about planting more soybeans in 2018. Bower says, given what is happening in South America, it may be too early to make a final decision on soybean acreage, “The critical time for Soybean yields in Brazil in mid-late January and for Argentina, early February. It may be a bit premature to make any final decision on soybean acreage until we see what the yields in South America are going to look like and how they compare to what the USDA is forecasting.”

For more market strategy information, contact Bower Trading at 800-533-8045 or bowertrading.com.

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Commentary: How About Some Peace on Earth and Good Will Toward Men?

Dec 18, 2017 18

You hear it a lot this time of year, the phrase “peace on earth, good will toward men.” It first appeared in Like 2: 14 as the shepherds announcing the birth of Christ.  It is part of the carol “I heard the Bells on Christmas Day,” and it is written in glitter on thousands of Christmas cards. It is something we all long for, but rarely take the time and effort to obtain and grant.

When most of us think of peace on earth, we think big picture: no more war, no more injustice, no more social unrest, the kinds of things Miss America contestants always says they have as their life’s goal.  The reality is, in our world, this is not going to happen. Yet, finding some personal peace on earth is a lot closer and easier to achieve. We overcomplicate the process by turning to pharmacology, theology, or technology. Finding a little peace on earth may be as close as your back door.

Jimmy Emmons is a third generation family farmer and rancher in eastern Oklahoma. With 2,000 acres of farmland and 7,000 of rangeland, he keeps busy.  When he wants to find a little peace of earth he simply takes a walk, “Sometimes I just go out into a pasture and listen to my cattle graze. Just listening to them is a very therapeutic experience.”  Several other farmers I spoke with recently also talked about just taking a walk around the farm, not to check on things, or to make a list of what needs to be done, but just to reconnect with nature.

Farming is a stressful and dangerous business. A recent report highlighted the alarmingly high suicide rate among farmers.  Last year, a study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found that people working in agriculture – including farmers, farm laborers, ranchers, fishermen, and lumber harvesters – take their lives at a rate higher than any other occupation. The data suggested that the suicide rate for agricultural workers in 17 states was nearly five times higher compared with that in the general population.

Especially in difficult economic times, after a harvest that gave you better yields but less revenue than you expected, it is a time to find a little peace on earth.  The holidays are a time of joy, but also a time to reconnect with your farm and the nature that surrounds it. Some alone time in your field, pasture, barn, or machine shop might be more helpful than you can imagine.

Then there is that good will toward men thing. We have not seen much of that this year. The tenor of the conversation in the media is shrill and divisive. The tone of web and social media conversations is vitriolic. So, perhaps turning off the television and the computer and connecting with real people face to face would help. I generally find it harder to be offended or to be offensive in a face to face situation.

So, as we celebrate over the next few weeks, take some time to find some peace and try to find something respectable and redeemable about your fellow man. It may not change the world, but it may improve your world a little. When you see, say, or sing, “peace of earth good will to men,” think about how you can make that happen in your life.

By Gary Truitt

Holcomb and Other Republican Governors Meet VP Pence About NAFTA

Dec 18, 2017 18
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Four Republican Governors met with Vice President Mike Pence on Thursday to discuss their concerns about the North American Free Trade Agreement negotiations. The governors wanted to talk about their serious concerns regarding proposed changes to the agreement that they say could affect manufacturing and jobs in their states. The meetings included Governors Kim Reynolds of Iowa, Rick Snyder of Michigan, Bill Haslam of Tennessee, and Asa Hutchinson of Arkansas. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross and U.S. Trade Rep Robert Lighthizer were also in attendance.

Earlier in the week, Governor Eric Holcomb brought along representatives from the auto industry to meet with Pence. Like agriculture, they also want the administration to make sure they keep access to North American markets open.

Hutchison wants the U.S. to make sure it does not harm agriculture and global trade while it updates NAFTA. “The administration was clear that it wants to be able to negotiate a better deal for American manufacturers and workers,” Hutchinson said after the meeting. “I respect that position, but my message is that we must be able to access North American markets unimpeded by trade barriers.”
Source: NAFB News Service

FCA Reports on Agricultural Economic Conditions

Dec 18, 2017 11
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The Farm Credit Administration released a quarterly report on economic issues affecting agriculture and updated the financial condition of the Farm Credit System. The report says the USDA is predicting farm income will stabilize near its historical average. The USDA is predicting an increase in farm income, rising from $93.3 billion in 2016 to 96.9 billion in 2017. Factors driving the gain include stronger cash receipts for cattle and calves, hogs, broilers, and dairy. Cash receipts for most crops are forecast lower for 2017. With inflation adjustment factored in, net-cash income is near the long-term average (1960 to 2016) for the second-straight year. The report also says several economic and policy issues could affect the Farm Credit System. Strong crop production levels are dragging down prices. That means increasing demand will be a key for the crop and protein sectors.

The report also says changes to farm and trade policy could affect farm income and the ability of farmers to manage risk. Concerns remain about whether or not farmers have enough liquidity to cover farm expenses and pay loans. Overall, the report says the System is safe and financially sound, and should be able to face the risks posed to agriculture.

Source: NAFB News Service

Power outage at Atlanta airport has ripple effect Monday, hundreds of flights canceled

Dec 18, 2017 6

Hundreds of flights have been canceled for Monday after a massive power outage at the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport snarled air travel throughout the country a day earlier.

A statement on Delta’s website confirmed that nearly 1,000 flights were cancelled on Sunday and that an additional 300 flights were canceled for Monday “to give the operation there an opportunity to more quickly return to normal.”Delta runs a large operation in Atlanta, making it the airline’s busiest hub, USA Today reported. 

The power outage affected the entire airport on Sunday afternoon and was restored later that night. Georgia Power told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution that it believes a failure of its equipment may have started the fire.

“Georgia Power’s system responded properly by isolating areas where equipment wasn’t operating correctly to ensure safety and minimize damage,” the company told the paper. “No personnel or passengers were in danger at any time.”

Southwest Airlines, the second busiest carrier there, said it cancelled “all remaining operations” for the day but that operations should return to normal by Monday.

An American Airlines spokesperson said three of the carrier’s flights have been diverted and there have been “a couple of cancelations.”

Robert Mann, an aviation consultant and former American Airlines executive, said it will likely be Tuesday before Delta’s operations in Atlanta return to normal, Daily Mail reported.

According to FlightAware.com, 1,174 flights have been canceled at Hartsfield-Jackson as of 9:30 p.m. ET on Sunday.

Kasim Reed, the city’s mayor, took to twitter late Sunday night to announce that power had been fully restored but not before the outage had managed to ground all outgoing flights and halt any incoming.

Reed told news outlets at a press conference Sunday evening airlines are working to rebook flights, and said that a fire caused the power outage and produced potentially toxic fumes, which took two hours for fire crews to put out. Reed said it remains unclear how the fire started but it will be investigated.

Almost 2,500 planes arrive and depart Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International daily, and the airport averages 275,000 passengers per day, according to the airport’s website.

Fox News’ Nicole Darrah, Alexandra Deabler and The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

FOX NEWS FIRST: Trump to unveil national security strategy; Russia, tax reform, shutdown on Congress's agenda

Dec 18, 2017 7

Welcome to Fox News First. Not signed up yet? Click here.

Developing now, Monday, Dec. 18, 2017:

  • President Trump to outline his national security strategy in speech this afternoon
  • A pivotal week is ahead for Congress where it will face final votes on tax reform, race to avoid a government shutdown after Friday and hear testimony from two key figures in the Trump-Russia probe
  • The Obama administration threw roadblocks at anti-Hezbollah task force to help secure Iran nuke deal, report says
  • Power has been fully restored to the nation’s busiest airport after a complete outage grounded more than 1,00 flights
  • NBC quiet on whether MSNBC’s Chris Matthews could face more sexual harassment accusations after it was revealed an accuser had been paid after filing a complaint almost 20 years ago

THE LEAD STORY: President Trump will outline a national security strategy that focuses on greater border security, better trade deals and combating jihadist terrorism and will not emphasize climate change … According to senior administration officials, President Trump’s strategy will focus on four “pillars”: Protecting the homeland; promoting American prosperity; preserving peace through strength; and advancing American influence abroad.

MAKE-OR-BREAK WEEK FOR CONGRESS: Congress is slated for a busy week that includes expected final votes in both chambers on its sweeping tax-reform bill, testimony from two key figures in the Trump Russia probe and a perilous vote to keep the government from shutting down after Friday … Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told “Fox News Sunday” he cannot rule out a possible government shutdown later this week if Congress deadlocks on another temporary spending bill, but thinks that’s unlikely. shuttering the federal government would be a political nightmare for both parties, especially ahead of next year’s congressional midterm elections. And members of Congress have avoided a shutdown since 2013, when the government came to a halt over ObamaCare funding.

On tax reform, the GOP-controlled Congress last week agreed on a final plan that would reduce the corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 21 percent while adding across-the-board cuts to individual taxpayers — adding an estimated $1.46 trillion to the deficit over a decade. The House is expected to vote Tuesday and pass the measure without problems. The subsequent Senate vote is less certain, considering Republicans need 51 votes with just a 52-48 majority. Concern about Sen. John McCain’s has complicated the vote. McCain has returned home to Arizona after suffering side effects from brain cancer treatment. President Trump said the ailing veteran senator could return to Capitol Hill “if we need his vote.”

On Russia, the Senate Intelligence Committee is expected to hear closed-door testimony from two key figures in the Russia investigation. Today, Bruce Ohr, the former associate deputy attorney general who was demoted at the Justice Department following revelations about undisclosed meetings he had with officials from Fusion GPS, will testify. Fusion GPS is the firm behind the infamous – and discredited – dossier containing salacious allegations about then-candidate Donald Trump. Ohr’s wife, Nellie, worked at Fusion GPS during the summer and fall of 2016. 

On Tuesday, Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe is set to appear before the House Intelligence Committee behind closed doors and face questions about Peter Strzok’s role in the Hillary Clinton email investigation. Strzok, a former deputy to the assistant director at the FBI, was removed from Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s team investigating Russia collusion after Mueller learned Strzok had exchanged anti-Trump texts with a colleague who was also his mistress.

BOMBSHELL REPORT: The Obama administration gave a free pass to Hezbollah’s drug-trafficking and money-laundering operations — some of which were unfolding inside the U.S. — to help ensure the Iran nuclear deal would stay on track, according to a new report … An elaborate campaign led by the Drug Enforcement Administration, known as Project Cassandra, targeted the Lebanese militant group’s criminal activities, Politico reported on Sunday. But by tossing a string of roadblocks holding back the project, Obama administration officials helped allow the 35-year-old anti-Israel criminal enterprise to evolve into a major global security threat bankrolling terrorist and military operations, the report added.

WHEELS BACK UP AFTER STANDSTILL: Power has been fully restored at the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport after a complete power outage grounded flights Sunday afternoon, causing a holiday travel nightmare for fliers across the country just over a week before Christmas … Kasim Reed, the city’s mayor, announced the update on Twitter after the power outage forced the Federal Aviation Administration to suspend outgoing flights and implement a “ground stop” for incoming flights.  The power outage was caused by a fire in an underground electrical facility. Delta, with its biggest hub operation in Atlanta, was hardest hit. By evening, Delta had already cancelled almost 900 Sunday flights and another 300 scheduled for today, nearly all of them in Atlanta, according to tracking service FlightAware.com.

NBC MUM ON POSSIBLY MORE MATTHEWS ACCUSERS: NBC is remaining quiet on whether other women have accused Chris Matthews inappropriate behavior after it was revealed over the weekend that the network paid money to a female staffer who said the MSNBC host had sexually harassed her…  The Daily Caller first reported on the payment Saturday. The website reported that Matthews in 1999  paid $40,000 to the woman who worked on his show “Hardball with Chris Matthews” as an assistant producer.

AS SEEN ON FOX NEWS WEEKEND

‘I’M GOING TO BE A DOUG JONES DEMOCRAT’: “It doesn’t matter what the issue is. [There’s] always opportunity to find common ground. I have just resisted trying to put labels on myself.”” – Ala. Senator-elect Doug Jones, on “Fox News Sunday,” answering whether he will vote strictly along party lines. WATCH

A CALL TO UNITE AROUND TRUMP: “Rooting against a president is equivalent to getting on an airplane and hoping that the plane crashes.” – Darrin Porcher, retired NYPD lieutenant, on “Fox & Friends Weekend,” slamming movements like Antifa and “The Resistance” and reflecting on a poll reported by Pete Hegseth that showed only 65 percent of conservatives and 37 percent of liberals are “proud to be Americans.” WATCH

ACROSS THE NATION

Report: US soldier fought to end after ambush in Niger

LeBron James sends message with black and white shoes, makes veiled slap at Trump.

332 Royal Caribbean passengers sickened with stomach virus.

MINDING YOUR BUSINESS

U.S. taxpayers rush to claim deductions under threat from tax bill.

Bitcoin hits bigger stage as exchange giant CME launches futures.

Hunter Harrison, CEO of railroad company CSX, dead at 73.

NEW IN FOX NEWS OPINION

Michael Goodwin: Sessions needs to halt the politicization of intelligence — or hit the road.

Todd Starnes: Was the FBI weaponized to take down the Trump presidency?

Lutheran Bishop Robert Alan Rimbo: It is often in the darkest moments that faith is rediscovered.

HOLLYWOOD SQUARED

McGowan slams Streep for planning ‘silent protest’ at Golden Globes.

‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ opens with $220M, 2nd best weekend all-time.

Matt Damon slammed by ex Minnie Driver over comments about sexual misconduct.

DID YOU HEAR ABOUT THIS?

PHOTOS: Pope Francis celebrates his birthday with extra-long pizza.

A good Santa Claus can rake in $15,000 for the season.

Boy, 10, to get bionic hand in time for Christmas.

STAY TUNED

On Fox News:

Fox & Friends, 6 a.m. ET: House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy weighs the GOP’s chances at tax reform; interview with former White House communications director Anthony Scaramucci and Ivanka Trump.

Tucker Carlson Tonight, 8 p.m. ET: Cable News Exclusive: Tavis Smiley speaks out against PBS and the sexual misconduct allegations against him.

On Fox Business:

Tax reform and the Congress’s race against time to avoid a government shutdown down will be among the hot topics with all the latest news and analysis from the guests below!

Mornings with Maria, 6 a.m. ET:  Kevin Hassett, chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers for the White House; Gerald Storch, former Toys R Us CEO; and Sheila Bair, former FDIC chairman.

Risk & Reward, 5 p.m. ET: Grover Norquist, Americans for Tax Reform president, and Rep. Doug Collins.

Lou Dobbs Tonight, 7 p.m. ET: Kellyanne Conway

On Fox News Radio:

The Brian Kilmeade Show, 9 a.m. to Noon ET: Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue and RNC Chair Ronna Romney McDaniel talk tax reform; and  New York Post columnist Michael Goodwin on the state of Mueller’s Russia probe

The Fox News Rundown podcast: Extremism is an on-going battle around the world with more anti-government militias growing each day. Bill Fulton is a former FBI confidential informant who provided detail to Fox News’ Eric Shawn about taking down a man that’s charged with conspiracy to murder federal officials. Plus, commentary by National Review Editor Rich Lowry.

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#OnThisDay

1912: Fossil collector Charles Dawson reports to the Geological Society of London his discovery of supposed early human remains at a gravel pit in Piltdown. (More than four decades later, Piltdown Man was exposed as a hoax.)

1892: Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky’s ballet “The Nutcracker” publicly premieres in St. Petersburg, Russia.

1865: The 13th Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery, is declared in effect by Secretary of State William H. Seward.

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