This is Brad's morning edition.
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* The U.S. Census Bureau announced that the U.S. population is now 315.1 million. And still, nobody watched the Belk Bowl.
* It barely got up to 10 degrees on Tuesday and Wednesday in Omaha, and on Thursday we had more snow and light freezing mist. How long before the Beach Boys come to Council Bluffs again?
* Officially, the city said side streets are in “variable” condition. Which is true. You can be driving along on awful streets, then suddenly they’re terrible, and then they’re atrocious.
* The latest snow only totaled about half an inch. So the big concern is getting stuck in the two feet of sand road crews just dumped on side streets.
* I’d like to clear up some confusion. While several outdoor ice skating rinks have opened for business, there is no open skating allowed on Omaha’s side streets.
* On Monday two downtown streets will be closed for fireworks. Omaha is the only city where ice is not removed from streets after it snows, but we do close ‘em to shoot bottle rockets into the air.
* The streets are so bad that if you hear screaming you don’t know if a car is careening down a slick street or if someone just received their property tax bill in the mail.
* Much of the northeast U.S. is gripped by snow and freezing temperatures. It’s so cold in Washington D.C., John Boehner is glad he’s on the hot seat.
* Obama just flew back from Hawaii to negotiate the fiscal cliff. Which means on New Year’s Eve we’ll have a president with jet lag negotiating with Congressional representatives who are inebriated.
* On Friday Obama was to meet with congressional leaders. He’s been weakened so much, an embarrassed John Boehner had to ask: “Now, when you say Congressional leaders - that include me?”
* Congress is going to be in session on Sunday to try and solve the fiscal cliff. Sunday is normally a day of rest for Congress. Just like Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday.
* It looks like fiscal-cliff talks will extend to the end of the year. That was the Tea Party members’ goal all along. Extend the talk to New Year’s Eve when they’re the only ones in Congress who are sober.
* Members of Congress have a new plan. They’re going to stand next to the New York Jets so they don’t seem so dysfunctional.
* Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner penned a letter to Congress. To make sure members of the current Congress read it, he wrote the letter in Crayon and included several pop ups.
* West Virginia U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin is asking MTV not to air a new reality series called “Buckwild” because it depicts people drinking, swearing, four-wheeling and fighting. I remember when that used to be called the “Gator Bowl Parade.”
* Defense Secretary Leon Panetta described his potential replacement Chuck Hagel as smart and capable. If he’s both smart and capable, the big concern is that Hagel will be considered overqualified for federal government today.
* Gennifer Flowers claims that in 2005 Bill Clinton called her and asked if he could jog over to her house. Hey, what if all that weight Clinton lost has nothing to do with going vegetarian?
* NASA announced that an asteroid that appeared to be on a collision course with our planet will not hit Earth in 2040. Whew. How ironic would that have been? Just as Democrats and Republicans are finally reaching compromise on the fiscal cliff, we’re wiped out by an asteroid.
* Thousands of people in North Korea have been lining up to view the body of former leader Kim Jong-il, who’s been dead for a year. As strange as that seems, the U.S. tradition of thousands lining up to see two 6-6 teams play in a college bowl game probably seems weirder to the world community.